Sunday, February 5, 2012
Apologies and The Maid of Fairbourne Hall
Pampered Margaret Macy flees London in disguise to escape pressure to marry a dishonorable man. With no money and nowhere else to go, she takes a position as a housemaid in the home of Nathaniel Upchurch, a suitor she once rejected in hopes of winning his dashing brother. Praying no one will recognize her, Margaret fumbles through the first real work of her life. If she can last until her next birthday, she will gain an inheritance from a spinster aunt—and sweet independence. But can she remain hidden as a servant even when prying eyes visit Fairbourne Hall?
Observing both brothers as an "invisible" servant, Margaret learns she may have misjudged Nathaniel. Is it too late to rekindle his admiration? And when one of the family is nearly killed, Margaret alone discovers who was responsible. Should she come forward, even at the risk of her reputation and perhaps her life? And can she avoid an obvious trap meant to force her from hiding?
On her journey from wellborn lady to servant to uncertain future, Margaret must learn to look past appearances and find the true meaning of "serve one another in love."
My Take: First let me apologize for being absent. I've had a severe bronchial infection that my asthma has made worse. Feels like I always have that lately. It's getting better now, but I was running a serious fever and really sick. I also have been trying to dedicate more time to actual writing. Crazy right? We had some family stuff going on as well, but it looks like things may be slowing down and getting back to normal.
My (reading) year started well. This was a fantastic book. The story was very well done. There was this thread of tension winding throughout the story. You wondered if she was going to get away with it and stay safe or if her stepfather was going to catch up with her. I also loved how much she changed over the course of the book. There was a lot of growth but it happened naturally - not overnight.
I loved all the details about life "from the other side of the tracks" that you get to see in this book. Julie always manages to write a wonderfully rich -- historically accurate book without making it seem like you're getting a lesson. This time period is one of my favorites and you don't often get to see it from this perspective.
This one is going on my list of favorites. I hope you'll consider adding it to your reading list. Have a wonderful day. :o)