Friday, August 19, 2011

Miss Ware’s Refusal

Miss Ware’s Refusal by Marjorie Farrell ****

A Regency romance, and one of the best in terms of quality writing. Simon, the Duke of Sutton, is blinded in the Napoleonic Wars, and shuts himself up in his London home. Judith Ware is a poor relation to gentry, forced to become a governess. Mutual friends arrange for Judith to work as a reader for Simon, and of course they fall in love. Although this is an older book (published 1990) and the setup sounds trite, it plays out in a very realistic way that feels far more historically accurate than most romances. The author is clearly influenced by Jane Austen. Although she mentions Judith reading Emma, the real influence here is Pride and Prejudice. Imagine a blind version of Mr. Darcy. Yes, it’s that good. No purple prose, no miracle cure, no embarrassingly awful sex scenes, just good solid writing.

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