Title: The Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever
Author: Julia Quinn
Series: Bevelstoke #1
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Historical romance, Regency romance
Dates read: 5th – 6th July 2020
5th sentence, 74th page: That is neither here nor there.
2 March 1810…
Today, I fell in love.
At the age of ten, Miranda Cheever showed no signs of Great Beauty. And even at ten, Miranda learned to accept the expectations society held for her – until the afternoon when Nigel Bevelstoke, the handsome and dashing Viscount Turner, solemnly kissed her hand and promised her that one day she would grow into herself, that one day she would be as beautiful as she already was smart. And even at ten, Miranda knew she would love him forever.
But the years that followed were as cruel to Turner as they were kind to Miranda. She is as intriguing as the viscount boldly predicted on that memorable day – while he is a lonely, bitter man, crushed by a devastating loss. But Miranda has never forgotten the truth she set down on paper all those years earlier – and she will not allow the love that is her destiny to slip lightly through her fingers…
I have been reading a lot lately, and I really wanted and needed something that was just pleasantly, easily light and fluffy. Which is exactly what this is. After all, that is exactly what I love about Julia Quinn. You know there will be a happy ending. You enjoy the journey. And everything is just… generally, good and easy. Perfect for a nice night when you just want to sink into a good book with a nice, big glass of wine.
Miranda is predictably sweet. I love that at the beginning she feels a little like a wallflower. Until she is crossed, and in this case, I would be completely on her side. Then she is a bit of a hellcat. The imagery of her trying to beat a man with her bag is ingrained into my mind. And still has me giggling mercilessly. I would probably want to do the exact same thing in her shoes… it helped that when Turner begins to see her for who she is… he actually acknowledges that fire and spirit and states that his own brother would not be a good match for it. It just made the relationship all the more sweet… he recognised her less than desirable (at that time) qualities and adored them about her, didn’t dismiss her.
Where Miranda is predictably sweet, Turner is kind of a moron throughout much of this story. I kind of love him because he’s a wonderful character. But he’s just so damn stubborn. And even after that moment when he and Miranda finally decide to show their love for one another… he continues to be a moron. And stubborn. And just too damn scared to do or say anything that is against what he believes to be his truth… even when it’s damn obvious that he’s wrong, wrong, wrong.
Although the middle point where there is a great problem and milestone to overcome is kind of great. It’s also kind of frustrating. Because Turner is a fool. And, even as the story reaches its conclusion, you still want to smack some sense into the boy. Luckily though, at the point when you are just starting to get truly, and deeply fed up… things are solved and the horrors are mitigated. It’s a great story. A great ending and just all round cute. The perfect happy, peaceful and bubbly story to spend a night with.