"To be or not to be—in love…"
"As a ward of the Duchess of Dorset, Harriet can hardly expect more from a match than the ringing endorsement of “from what I’ve heard, the man is financially secure and his teeth are quite regular.” After all, she’s only the lowly daughter of traveling actors, not the actual daughter of the duchess.
William Talbot, Earl of Abingdon is set to marry the duchess’s daughter. After his elder brother’s scandalous death, his family’s reputation is paramount, and he’ll allow nothing to damage it again. But when Harriet disappears to save her father from debtor’s prison, the scandal threatens William and his intended’s family. The simple task of fetching the duchess’s runaway ward turns complicated when Harriet insists on traveling with her father’s acting company. William’s forced to tag along, and finds himself entranced. The stage transforms Harriet into a free-spirited, captivating beauty. But, someone’s been sabotaging the theater company, and instead of facing scandal, William and Harriet discover a threat not only to their growing passion, but to their lives…"
"Stages of Desire" ended up in my hands through a Goodreads giveaway. The action takes place in the early nineteenth century and tells the story of Harriet, daughter of itinerant actors, left to the care of a duchess, and William, Earl of Abingdon.
When Harriet flees to help her father, William goes after her in an attempt to help the duchess’ family. Both end up being surprised by the various incidents and the birth of feelings, which occur along the way.
The writing is simple, easy to understand and very light, but I have to mention that the narrator comes across as an observer from another time, describing what happened in the past. While reading I never felt that I was in fact at that time, the language did not seem appropriate and the dialogue did not seem adequate to the restrictions that existed.
Furthermore, the development of the story happened very quickly. An event led to another without much exploration of the characters, what they felt and what moved them. In fact, there were moments that the characters seemed inconsistent and poorly defined, as if the author had not decided completely what decision they would make. However, I do not know if this was intentional, as an attempt to explain the self-discovery road that the main players were going.
In short, a good book to distract us, perhaps dreaming of a time when everything was different, and lead us to appreciate what there is of good in our own.
“Stages of Desire” veio parar as minhas mãos através de um giveaway no Goodreads. A acção decorre no início do século XIX e. conta a história de Harriet, filha de actores itinerantes, deixada ao cuidado de uma duquesa e, de William, conde de Abingdon.
Quando Harriet foge para ajudar o pai, e William vai atrás dela numa tentativa de ajudar a família da duquesa acabam por ser surpreendidos pelos seus sentimentos, e pelas várias peripécias que ocorrem no caminho.
A escrita é simples, fácil de compreender e muito leve mas, tenho de referir, que o narrador transparece como um observador de outra época a contar o que se passou no passado. Durante a leitura nunca senti que estava de facto naquela época, a linguagem não me parecia adequada e os diálogos não pareciam apropriados à época e as restrições que existiam.
Além disso, a acção parecia decorrer muito rapidamente. Um acontecimento levava a outro sem grande exploração das personagens, do que elas sentiam e do que as movia. De facto, havia momentos em que pareciam inconstantes e pouco definidas, como se a autora ainda não tivesse decidido completamente qual a decisão que elas iam tomar. Todavia, não sei se isto foi intencional, numa tentativa de explicar o caminho de auto - descoberta que os intervenientes principais sofriam.
Em suma, um bom livro para nos distrair, talvez sonhar com uma época em que tudo era diferente, e levar-nos a valorizar o que temos de bom na nossa.