March 25, 2013

Review: Edenbrook by Julianne Donaldson


About the Book:

Marianne Daventry will do anything to escape the boredom of Bath and the amorous attentions of an unwanted suitor. So when an invitation arrives from her twin sister, Cecily, to join her at a sprawling country estate, she jumps at the chance. Thinking she’ll be able to relax and enjoy her beloved English countryside while her sister snags the handsome heir of Edenbrooke, Marianne finds that even the best laid plans can go awry.

From a terrifying run-in with a highwayman to a seemingly harmless flirtation, Marianne finds herself embroiled in an unexpected adventure filled with enough romance and intrigue to keep her mind racing. Will she be able to rein in her traitorous heart, or will a mysterious stranger sweep her off her feet? Fate had something other than a relaxing summer in mind when it sent Marianne to Edenbrooke.

My Thoughts:

Oh my goodness, that was adorable! Such a cute and fun story. (I also have to admit that I read it right after watching Sense and Sensibility for the umpteenth time, so I read Marianne's name with an British accent thereafter. ;) A wonderful little story that reads similar to Jane Austen and other Regency writers. But it's more of a nod to those authors, not an exact likeness. There's none of Austen's biting wit here, but just a lovely story with mysteries to be solved and hearts to be won. Ms. Donaldson is a fabulous writer! And Marianne is a wonderful heroine. She's hilarious as she gets herself into scrape after scrape in the beginning! I don't think I've laughed that much during a book for a while. The poor girl has such good intentions, but they keep getting overridden by her awe of the outdoors. She loves being outdoors and especially loves orchards. She can collect her thoughts and find peace there. And she's got enough worries that peace is definitely something to go searching for quite often. She is also extremely likeable, and reminds me somewhat of Jane Bennet that way. She is aware that people are friendly to her, but not aware of what her effect is on them. Yet her fiestiness and stubbornness is certainly more suited to Elizabeth Bennet. She likes to be in control of things as well. After the upheaval in her life for the past year or so, it's perfectly understandable though. But matters of the heart can't be controlled very well. We get thrust into her adventure pretty quickly, with the first pages detailing her unique suitor Mr. Whittles. No wonder she wants rid of him! I sure wouldn't want him either. But by the middle of chapter two, we're off in the carriage enroute to Edenbrooke, happily leaving Mr. Whittles behind. And this is where Marianne's adventures really start! From highwaymen to arrogant gentlemen to surprises at Edenbrooke, Marianne's life is never dull. Add to that her talkative maid Betsy, who knows everything! or can find it out quick should Marianne require more information about something or someone. And a certain someone definitely needs figured out as he likes to keep things mysterious. But it's nothing nefarious, so no worries in that regard! :) During conversations in the library, horseback-riding in the mornings, territorial and outspoken ladies, sisters who turn out to be different than you remember, friends who aren't really friends, and so many other goings-on, Marianne has a lot on her plate. And you're bound to enjoy every single minute!

There's nothing new or earth-shaking to be found in this story. But it doesn't matter!! You'll be having so much fun that you could care less whether similar things have been done before. The characters are what these kinds of stories are about, and Ms. Donaldson has created some memorable ones. You'll love Marianne and shudder at Mr. Whittles. You'll wish for Cecily to live up to Marianne's memories. You'll wonder who a certain gentleman is and what his intentions are, as all the while you swoon over him. Because I did think he was quite swoonworthy! :D The end result? Read it! I can't imagine you being disappointed.

A Fun Passage For You:
"I was taken aback. "Oh. Well..." I did not know how to respond.
"Now tell me what brings you to this area."
I was irked by the feeling that this man once again had the upper hand. "I don't believe I should confide in you."
He sighed. "I thought we had agreed to be friends."
"Yes, but that was before I knew you would refuse to tell me your name. I can hardly be friends with someone who has no name."
He looked as if he found everything I said to be very entertaining."

Toodle-loo kangaroos!


  1. I love this book! Such a cute love story and very funny :)

    1. Yay! Happy you agree with me, Eva! It really is a wonderful story, isn't it? :)

  2. It sounds like a really sweet story!! I'm going to add it to my wishlist :D

    1. Alex, it really is a lot of fun. I laughed a lot through the whole story. Hope you enjoy it! :)


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