Friday, February 24, 2017

Book Review: The Grand Tour

The Grand Tour
Or, the Purloined Coronation Regalia

Although I'm not talking about sewing, I am continuing the Regency theme by reviewing the sequel to Sorcery and Cecelia. I must say, I like books that have interesting subtitles. I love the Regency/magic combo. This book was in a journal format, and I like that almost as much as epistolary.
But I am sorry to say, this book disappointed me, in several ways.
  • First off, I was unhappy with the lack of uncomfortable content in the previous book. There was nothing terrible in this book, but there were several things that made me feel uncomfortable. A reference was made to "fallen women," to a girl having "no reputation left to lose," and a veiled reference to prostitution which would likely go over the heads of younger girls. The two worst spots were with Kate and her husband Thomas. First, a scene in which Kate, Cecy and Kate's mother-in-law are chatting, the evening after their wedding. The mother-in-law says something like "you know what you're supposed to do, right" and Cecy replies something to the affect of "How can you live in the country and not know," while Kate says "My aunt explained it once." The book then says that the mother-in-law proceeded to give Kate a better explanation; later Thomas comes in and Kate feels awkward around him, before the scene closes. The second and worst part was when, later on, Thomas quotes part of the current wedding vows to Kate, "With my body, I thee worship," and adds "we'll have some of that later." I was not at all pleased by the authors' insertion of this sort of thing into the book and almost stopped reading. Less bothersome in my opinion, but noteworthy, that there was one or two uses of d---n.
  • Honestly, I found Cecelia quite annoying in this book. At several points, her husband would scold her for doing something foolish, and she would reply with something like "But I didn't die" or "But nothing did happen." That's not the point, woman! Something might have happened and if you don't start behaving more sensibly, the next time something probably will. And I won't feel bad for you. She also seemed to find immorality in women (and the discomfort of men when the subject was brought up) frankly amusing. And when a man was murdered, she and Kate both seemed happy about it. Kate admitted to feeling bad about her cold-heartedness, but Cecy didn't think she needed to.
  • I wasn't a big fan of Thomas, Kate's husband. He was supposed to be romantic but I thought he was just a little annoying and grumpy. Kate was okay. I did like James.

Plus there was something about Cecy which reminded me of Lydia.

The plot was still interesting, and I have still started the third and last book. However, I cannot recommend it as enthusiastically as the previous one. 

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1 comment:

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