Most helpful positive review
on July 19, 2000
Okay, I know that, if you've seen my reviews anywhere else, you're probably tired of hearing about Ransom. So this time, I'm going to do my level best to explain what I like so much about this book without being overduely annoying- after all, not everyone liked Ransom, and everyone should love .R.
Augusta is wonderfully daring, bold and quite reckless, which I like because all too often in Romance books you have heroines who end up being fairly prissy, so Augusta is an interesting variation. Or complete opposite, I suppose. I loved the way she stood up for her brother loyally even when it looked so much like he was the 'Spider'. Unfortunately, I found that Lovejoy was too transparent as a villian to really lend that much credence to the idea that Richard really was 'Spider'. Still, I got absolutely delicious chills when I read 'Spider's Web' and I found that a deft touch to add to the suspense- although, sadly, most Quick novels do seem to be lacking that quality of on-the-edge of your seat entertainment. I also found myself in reluctant agreement with Harry's rather derrogatory opinion that Augusta excused her own behavior far too often with the rather tired line about being a Northumberland Ballinger. However, I really think that Augusta's habit of using her heritage as an excuse was really very human, and added a whole new dimension to her character as well as gave her some shading and color.
Harry was perhaps a little- well, overwhelmingly would be a better description- too straightlaced. And I very much enjoyed watching Augusta rid him of those laces- literally and figuritively! I also enjoyed Harry's character because typical male romance figures are brawny, very un-scientific, unprincipalled types, and ocassionally one likes to read a book where the guy is the prude. And Harry was certainly a prude! . . . . Although I did feel that making 'sweet love' in a carriage was certainly an improvement on his usual bleached and starched behavior, I didn't like the idea that the wedding was suddenly moved up an entire three months- I kind of wanted to see them both struggle with their attraction more.
Meredith was a very nice touch, as, again, all too many books, including quite a few of Lowell's, Small's, Garwood's and Lamb's lack the element of a child to unite the lovers in question. And I very much enjoyed the scene where Harry finds out that Augusta took Meredith to Pompeia's.
On the whole, I would say that Quick's books are written with remarkable humor, a light touch, and although I agree with the complaint that they seem fairly cookie-cutter, it is books like .R. and Wicked Widow that really stand out. And of course, the interim books aren't bad at all. . . .