Saturday, November 8, 2008
Title: The Lost Duke of Wyndham
Author: Julia Quinn
Publishing Date: 2008
Grace Eversleigh’s parents died of fever five years ago leaving her orphaned at seventeen. The dowager Duchess of Wyndham took pity on Grace and employed her as her companion. The two of them are coming home from a party when their carriage is pulled over by highwaymen. The highwayman in question is very suave and debonair. The Duchess thinks she recognizes him as a relation to the house of Wyndham as he is the spitting image of her dead son John.
Ms. Quinn certainly writes an entertaining historical. Jack Audley is quite the character, with his witty charm and sharp intelligence. He steals the show in this book, leaving Grace to fade somewhat into the background. While the book begins from Grace’s point of view in third person, the majority of the rest of the book is told from Jack’s perspective. Also, with the plot centering on the question of Jack’s lineage, the focus tended to remain on Jack, forcing the story to be more hero-centric. I didn’t really mind this, since Jack was a vibrant character. The only problem I did have with it was when Jack would wax poetic about the love he felt for Grace. The prose came across slightly flowery and didn’t match Jack’s masculine persona. It would have been more appropriate coming from Grace.
The plot was great. The question of Jack’s identity and how everything was going to be resolved satisfactorily added quite a bit of tension to the book. I kept wondering to myself, “How in the heck is Quinn going to fix this mess?” Not to worry she does deliver on that aspect. I did think that after a big secret is revealed the ending was too abrupt. I wanted a little more closure on how things were going to work out for the individuals involved.
One thing that may have influenced how I read the book was the fact that I know there is another book, Mr. Cavendish I Presume that tells the same story from Thomas’s point of view. (Thomas was the legitimate Duke that Jack was usurping.) I noticed, as I was reading The Lost Duke of Wyndham, that there were scenes that sort of left holes in the book and I imagine they will be a part of Mr. Cavendish I Presume.
Here is what others had to say:
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