The American Heiress

I just finished a new book called The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin.

I found this book in the “must read” section of the library and I’m glad I picked it up.  The story begins with the Cash family at the turn of the 19th century in Newport, Rhode Island.  The Cash’s are a very wealthy, nouveau rich family with one daughter named Cora.  Mrs. Cash has one goal – to see her daughter married to a titled Englishman.  Cora is a spoiled, impetuous girl who has one goal – to be free of her controlling mother.

Before the family travels to England, Cora begs her friend Teddy (old money) to marry her, because she wants control of her life and he tells her no.  Without an American marriage option, Cora is forced to travel with the mother to England to find a title and a husband, in that order.  Cora has an accident and recuperates at the ninth duke of Wareham’s castle.  The story continues as Cora finds a title and a husband and learns how to navigate English traditions and still maintain her American spirit.  Her mother-in-law hates her.  Her husband’s former girl friend befriends Cora or does she?  Aristocrats laugh at Cora’s missteps and Yankee style.  The English servants ignore her, except Bertha who is her maid from America and sometimes sole friend.  Her husband is secretive and unpredictable and yet loving at some times.

I enjoyed reading this book.  For a first time author, it was a well-written story.  The character development was good and the interweaving of stories around Cora all came together at the end.  And even at the end, Cora had two choices to make and I wasn’t sure what Cora would choose.  I’m still not sure she made the right best choice.  I found myself rooting for Cora and her American values and ways in the land of jolly ol’ England.  If you read this book, let me know what you think of the story.  Did you like Cora too?  Do you agree with Cora’s critical choice at the end?  Hmmm… are you wondering?  It’s worth the read.

Off to start my next book A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness.

It’s another book I picked up in the “must read” section of the library.  I have about ten books I want to read which are based on family and friend recommendations.  They are on what feels like a forever hold at the library – probably because everyone else wants to read them too.  So while I wait for an available copy, thank goodness for the must read section.



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