Narrated by Katherine Kellgren.
I wanted to like this for several reasons - Daisy Goodwin is a grandchild of Dr. Fraill, the Irish Protestant rector/vicar/whatever featured in the PBS series who cannot stand by as misery & death decimate his Irish neighbors during the famine. He denies self (as his conconsious & Christian beliefs compel him) to serve the people. He ends up dying of typhus, very much like those he has served. Ms. Goodwin wrote the series, therefore I admire her research & skill to bring this to film.
Not much to do with this specific review - I understand this story is historically based on the cash Americans brought to many English landed gentry now in financial ruin. Not unlike Downton Abbey tale. That still didn't redeem this novel for me. Five minutes listening to the narrator set my teeth on edge.
I guess it is the American in me, but the ending was very unsatisfactory! Yes, yes, different time period etc, etc, but the ending could have been taken someplace spectaular, and it fell very short. Also, Cora did not have near as much spunk as I had hoped. Overall, this was a bit of a disappointment.
*** stars. Cora Cash ( yes, Cash) the wealthiest heiress in America goes to England to buy herself a title. She leaves behind a young man who lacks the courage to marry her and takes with her a mother, who is far from endearing. She "stumbles" upon a Duke with a mother to more than match her own. Think "Downton Abbey". The Duke, who was the second son, inherited the title only when his beloved brother died. Add to this an imagined or real mistress to the Duke, the Prince of Wales, and the downstairs staff and you have a great collection of characters and egos. Perhaps the most sympathetic person is Cora's black maid who tries to find an honorable means of weaving her way through the intrigue. I enjoyed the book. I believe the author would like to be Edith Wharton, but no one is, so the book cannot be held to such a standard. You are left guessing until the very end whether the Duke is a cad or man in love with his wife. A very nice read. Recommend.
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