I’ve come to the conclusion that Ibbotson can do no wrong. Honestly. I know you guys are probably getting tired of me fangirling over her books at this point, but I can’t help it. I’ll at least try to keep it brief(ish).
At first I wasn’t sure if I would be as into this book as I was “A Countess Below Stairs” or “The Reluctant Heiress.” I’m not sure why, really--I think I was just in a weird mood when I started reading it. But believe me, it didn’t take long for me to fall completely in love with this book and its characters.
Ruth is a little spunkier than the heroines of the other two Ibbotson books I’ve read. Don’t get me wrong, I adore those two girls, but they’re admittedly a little too perfect. Ruth is a little more real, a little more . . . alive, I guess. Quin, I loved A LOT. I felt like we got to spend more time with the hero and got to know him better than we did the heroes in the previous two I read, and I appreciated that. I also appreciated that Ruth and Quin actually spend time together. In “A Countess Below Stairs” and “The Reluctant Heiress,” the two main characters basically have two conversations then fall in love (and leave it to Ibbotson to do THAT in a way that didn’t have me rolling my eyes), but in “The Morning Gift,” the progress of their relationship is a little slower. The secondary characters in this book weren’t quite as memorable as I’ve come to expect from Ibbotson, but they’re still all perfectly lovely.
I’m always in awe with the way Ibbotson manages to take a fairly cliché storyline and suck me in so much that I’m holding my breath and crossing my fingers that it’ll all work out. I mean, I’ve read stories about marriages of convenience that turn into love about a million times, but that didn’t stop me from being totally invested and engrossed in this one.
Overall, I (of course) recommend this book. It’s slightly more scandalous than the other two (sex comes up a few times), but it’s not really hard to be more scandalous than those ones since they’re, like, 100 percent clean. Anyway, definitely add this one to your list of Ibbotson books to read.
Rating: 4 / 5