Book: Animating Maria

Title: Animating Maria
Author: Marion Chesney
Genre: Regency Romance
Length: 160 pgs

Summary:This is the fifth book of the School for Manners series in which twin sisters Amy and Effy Tribble advertise that they can make eligible matches for any troublesome yong woman. This time, however, they have a perfect client: Maria Kendall. She is pretty, well-mannered, graceful, and has a rich dowry. Unfortunately, there are two problems in Maria’s way: 1) she tends to daydream a lot because 2) her parents are gaudy, self-important, and like Mr Collins about Lady Catherine de Bourgh from Pride and Prejudice, know the monetary value of everything they own (and like to reflect upon that). Her parents have chased away every eligible suitor in Bath, and now Maria journeys to London, where she meets the Duke of Berham. Can Maria climb down from her dreams to see the quality in the Duke? Can the Duke get past the common Kendalls?

pg 87 – The fact was that that glorious present had made Amy feel attractive and fascinating, and when a good-hearted woman feels attractive and fascinating, she quite often is.

Why should you read this book?
This is one of those light reads that I always suggest to my mother. The romance is traditional, which is my specialty, and means that the physical romance never gets past kissing, or, as in this case, a little petting (and that’s usually after the couple has agreed they’re going to marry). Chesney does a good job of making the characters fun to read about, and you do think about them after you’ve finished the book, which I always consider a victory for the author. I will say, however, that I was a little disappointed by the ending, because Chesney uses a quick fix to get her couple together, and then sets us up for the sequel.

Read this for a good example of traditional romantic fiction and an easy read.