Saturday, July 25, 2009
Linore Rose Burkard's The House in Grosvenor Square ~ Reviewed
The House In Grosvenor Square
By Linore Rose Burkard
Published by Harvest House Publishing
Sequel to Before The Season Ends.As Ariana Forsythe plans her wedding to Philip Mornay, she must adjust to the realization that she is soon to become the wife of an extremely wealthy man. She wonders if it’s wrong to rejoice that her future husband is rich. But she promises herself to use her new position to do what she can to aid the numerous street waifs she sees all too often in London.
Shortly after Ariana’s tour of the house in Grosvenor Square, she is abducted as she leaves a performance at Covent Garden Theatre, leaving Philip to unravel the pieces of the mystery. Where has his future bride been taken, and by whom? For what reason? How does Ariana’s faith play a role?
From the very first page Linore whisked me into the year 1813. I was totally emerged into England’s sites; streets, carriages and its people hook line and sinker. I was captivated by this story and time period. It’s an intriguing read filled with many facts about how people lived in the nineteenth century, before computers and cell phones.
I totally enjoyed how young Ariana was always free to give God credit where He was due and explained His ways to others. She says, “it is God Himself who draws us along—until we find Him. Happily He has drawn Mr. Mornay, and I am most grateful.”
Mr. Mornay’s thoughts of Ariana,”…the idea of his future bride in his house was almost too happy a thought. He wouldn’t dare remain on the premises with her. The little blonde minx addled his brain and upset his customarily detached attitude. He wanted nothing more than to be married to her – yesterday! However, society and good manners demanded he wait for the wedding date set forth by Mr. and Mrs. Forsythe, and so he had no choice put to comply.” I thoroughly enjoyed this character and his challenge to stay pure on many levels. I had to chuckle at how Ariana just didn’t’ understand Mornay and his struggles. Grin!
This was a time when there were clear rules for courtship, and engagement, all had to be proper to avoid a scandal. I loved it when Ariana says to Mornay “Nonsense. You have the finest manners. We—neither of us—are accustomed to being in love, I think.” This is after a carriage ride where they are both trying to do their best to be proper and not kiss or touch each other. Linore has situations like this throughout her book—I enjoyed the humor and innocence of these scenes.
Ariana is trying not to be overwhelmed by the new world she is to enter. She is to wed a wealthy man, and live in his house filled with many servants. She is determined to learn how things work even though not every is excited about her arrival. The servants really get nervous when Ariana starts making changes to the mansion without permission from her fiancé. Linore takes you inside a mansion and shows you how things are run. I never knew a butler’s job involved anything more than just opening the door and being a servant. I learned otherwise in this story where Linore shows the drama at Mr. Mornay’s house and how dangerous a task the job can be! Grin!
Mrs. Bentley is beside herself with worry to do the right thing in society’s eyes and be safe. Mr. Mornay is about to go mad trying to keep his bride out of harms way until their wedding. Mr. Mornay and Ariana have the most grueling, suspenseful, and surprising ten days of unexpected drama before their wedding …you just have to read.
Linore kept me up very late reading to find out how it all works out in the end. I totally enjoyed and loved every minute of this book. You can read this book without reading the first. It’s that good!
Nora StLaurent -Book Club Servant Leader