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In the tradition of Fanny Burney's "Evelina" and Elizabeth Inchbald's "A Simple Story", but with perhaps more serious intent, Maria Edgeworth's ... Show synopsis

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Reviews of Belinda

Overall customer rating: 5.000

Kept me hooked to the last page

by Rosanne on Mar 19, 2008

A delightful story of a beautiful and refreshingly rational and intelligent young lady (wouldn't mind a few more of those!) who learns from the mistakes of those around her, Belinda had me burning the midnight oil from beginning to end. There are characters aplenty - a scheming and mercenary aunt, a captivating, middle-aged bon vivant with a sad secret and a crumbling marriage, servants faithful and faithless, a few harpies, and not one but two handsome suitors - and smack in the middle of it all, Belinda - smart, well-read, and very aware of the craziness around her. This is a very briskly-paced, very funny novel, with lots of talk, certainly, but plenty of action at every turn. Clarence Hervey must be one of the most unusual and intriguing heroes I have come across in a novel from this period (could you see Jane Austen's Mr. Darcy dressing up in a hoopskirt to make a point?). I'm sure that there are a lot of very academic things I could say about this novel - its treatment of race relations in an England that had not yet abolished the slave trade, its commentary on women making their own marriage choices - but that's not why I enjoyed it. It's a great story on its own.

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