Review: The Reluctant Heiress


Title: The Reluctant Heiress
Author: Eva Ibbotson
Publisher: Speak
Date published: 1982
Type of book: Young Adult/Romance-ish (Opera, Mistaken Identity, Love)
Pages: 325
I received this book from/at: Amazon.com

My interest in this book is: one of my favorite authors, plot
Ideas expressed/message/plot: From back cover: “A STAR-CROSSED ROMANCE Being an heiress in 1920s Austria with nothing but a broken-down castle to your name and nary a penny to your purse could be frustrating for anyone but the Princess Theresa-Maria of Pfaffenstein. Tessa, however, is thrilled with her situation, as it allows her to concentrate on her love of the arts – and no one in the Viennese opera need know that their delightful and charming under-wardrobe mistress is really a princess. But when the dashing self-made millionaire Guy Farne arrives at the opera in search of suitable entertainment for his high society guests, Tessa realizes that there may be more to life – and love – than just music. And while the attraction between them is undeniable, Guy’s insufferable snob of a fiancée only solidifies Tessa’s determination to keep her true identity a secret. Yet, after a chance meeting with the handsome Englishman, Tessa’s reserve begins to melt, and she starts to wonder if it’s too late for a fairy-tale ending.”

Favorite characters, quotes/lines: Tessa: I thought she didn’t seem as young as Ibbotson said she was, so even though Guy was older, they seemed to be a good fit; Martha Hodge: Guy’s foster mother was an amazing character, much better than Guy’s horrible fiancée!

When I finished this book I felt: It wasn’t my favorite Ibbotson book, but it was pretty good. It seemed to drag on in many parts though, which didn’t seem to be the case with the other books. Her writing is so lyrical, though, that it makes up for the slowness.

Other books to read by this author: A Countess Below the Stairs, A Song For Summer, A Company of Swans, The Morning Gift
I would recommend this book to: Fans of Ibbotson

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