Monday, July 18, 2011

Just Like Heaven

Marcus was an only child and was raise in solitude since his mother has passed away when he was four. His father Lord Chatteris had never thought of finding another wife and so he invested in his son. He was tutored at home with the best tutors.By twelve he could read Latin and Greek, excel in shooting and fencing,  write lengthy products and sums without wasting a drop of ink. Like every Holroyd boy he went to Eton college as it was time to get the next step in education. It was a happy moment for Marcus as he did not have any friends at all. He was not allowed to play with other children as his father fear of bad influence like running wild in the fields. Marcus had no idea how to interact with the other boys in school. 

On his first day, his father's valet dropped him and saw many boys running around and he said they were like a pack of savages. There was this boy, Daniel Smythe-Smith who knew how to get along with other children, confident, and easy smile. Daniel was a born leader and he was assigned to the bed next to Marcus and they became the best of friends.  Often during holidays it was farther to travel home to Cambridgeshire for Marcus and thus Daniel invited him to his home at Whipple Hill. Daniel's youngest sister (Honoria) had always follow him around as his sister Charlotte who was eleven wanted nothing to do with Honoria and thus wanted to play with the two of them. It was cute of her to follow but annoying to the boys. It was like this all the time and Marcus enjoyed his stay there. He was invited there many a times when there were small holidays and he felt like family there until spring of 1821.

Three years has passed, Honoria was soaking wet for suddenly the rain fell. She was trying to meet up with her cousins and friends which were at the opposite store but heavy rain came and took refuge. Her cousins and she came to Cambridgeshire to do shopping and get ready for the new season, at the same time to scout potential husbands. There were many young fellow there as Cambridge university was located nearby. Honoria was feeling all down and sad not to forget wet thought she would stuck for a long time and missing out on the fun. Suddenly, a carriage pulled to a stop in front of her and it was Marcus. He offered her a ride in the rain and also refuge which was kind of him. She was hesitant because over the years she felt that he was glowering at her all the time like he didn't approve of something she did. Seeing him bring backs childhood memories and she recalled that they both loved sweets and cakes.  He sent her back to where she was staying which was with the Royles and also his neighbour.

Honoria and her cousins were staying at Cecily Royles' family home where they manage to get a professor to tutor them after his usual class in Cambridge university. Cecily was quite interested in getting Marcus as a husband because he is wealthy and handsome, a man with high status. And so Cecily came up with a good idea which was to hold a weekend tea party at their country house and invite some eligible bachelors to it. Her mother was so excited and Marcus was invited but Honoria wrote a letter to Marcus to turn down the invitation.

Marcus thought the letter was funny and wrote back to decline the invitation but his real plan was to take a walk in the woods nearby and drop by the party for a while to keep an eye on Honoria. He had to do it because before Daniel fled the country he promised Daniel to take care of his sister and to make sure that she would marry the right person. Over the years Marcus occasionally showed up in London to investigate and scare Honoria's suitors as many were not qualified enough. Marcus was going to drop by to investigate who she was interested this year.

Honoria had a plan to capture her target which was Mr. George Bridgerton. She was digging a fake mole hole and to fake as a damsel in distress. While she was digging, Marcus was watching from far and laughing at her scheme that he easily see through. He laughed too loud which alerted Honoria and she shooed him away. She heard some noise and pretended to fall and yelled for help and in a few attempts which had no effect. She was disappointed so she left and accidentally fell and Marcus tried to save her and in the end landed on top of her. It was an awkward moment but he felt like kissing her but it failed as he twisted his feet because of the fake mole hole. Honoria tried to help Marcus up and he wanted to walk back but it was 3 miles away. She had no choice but to run back for help and things went worse when it started to rain. Honoria rushed to write a letter to his valet to pick him as he insisted.  The next day, Honoria woke up and then insisted to go visit Marcus to check on his condition. Cecily decided to follow with her and Marcus showed that he was not in a bad condition which made Honoria felt slightly better.

Few days later Honoria went back to London to prepare for the season and suddenly received a letter from Marcus's servant claiming that his condition was really bad and indicated that he is near death.  After reading that letter Honoria felt bad and worried as she was the one who caused him to be in that condition. She urged her mother to travel to his home as he has no family to care for him. Her mother got ready within 45 minutes and off they go traveling down to Fensmore. When they reached it was quite late at night and Honoria banged at the door and was answered by the butler. The butler was relieved that they came to help and she was lead by the butler to meet with his oldest maid. Both of them went to check on his condition and it was bad. Honoria was determined to help him heal and stayed by his side.  Marcus was glad to have her by his side but his condition wasn't improving, what was Honoria to do?

Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn is one historical fiction that got me hook real bad. I really love reading this book as this is my first time reading from this writer and I did not know what to expect. The book presented its story from Honoria's and Marcus's own point of view and how they felt. It wasn't straight to the point like how you can see what will happen in the story. How the character progressed was also at a good pace so from start till end, every chapter it was interesting.  It is obvious that they will end up together but how it happened you'll have to read it.  There are some vocabulary that was tough for me as for the timeline it is in, the words used are more proper and formal. I thoroughly enjoyed this book as it was not too long or too short. I'm looking forward to reading more of Julia Quinn's works.

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