Book Review: Back In Society (The Poor Relation #6) By M. C. Beaton

“It is impossible, in our condition of society, not to be sometimes a Snob” – William Makepeace Thackery

 “Back In Society” is the last book in “The Poor Relation” series but can be read as a stand-alone without the need to read the other titles before reading it. To read my reviews on other books in this series, click the “book reviews” tab on this blog’s homepage menu bar.

The Poor Relations are now wealthy and are almost ready to sell off the hotel as Prince Hugo and his retinue has taken up almost all the rooms at the hotel and was paying hard cash every week for their stay. Little did they know that a whole new adventure would begin as Lady Jane Fremney takes up stay in the only room left at the Poor Relation Hotel. Jane has run away from her father as he plans  to marry her off to an old friend and the wickedness of her governess turned companion, Miss Stamp. The Poor Relations discover Jane’s plight by a stroke of luck and assume the responsibility to help her out of her ordeal.

Filled with action, adventure, humor and romance, this story was definitely the icing on the cake. What I have grown to love about this author’s regency romance series is the fact that she is able to bring to the fore, societal issues that were prevalent at the time and  allow us to see them through the eyes of different people. I particularly enjoyed this series as it had a diverse number of characters with interesting personalities. I also learnt a lot about the fashion, culture, food and mannerisms during that time in history as it gave a panoramic portrait of British society. All of it was witty and highly entertaining from the first book to the last.

I recommend this book and the rest of “The Poor Relation” books in the series to all romance and historical fiction lovers alike. These book are also clean and suitable for teenagers and Christians who want to read romance but are put off by too much sexuality or profanity.

Rating: 4 Stars

Published: 2013 by Canvas (First published in 1993)

Pages: 188

Genre: Historical Fiction

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The Author: Marion Chesney was born on 1936 in Glasgow, Scotland, UK, and started her first job as a bookseller in charge of the fiction department in John Smith & Sons Ltd. While bookselling, by chance, she got an offer from the Scottish Daily Mail to review variety shows and quickly rose to be their theatre critic. She left Smith’s to join Scottish Field magazine as a secretary in the advertising department, without any shorthand or typing, but quickly got the job of fashion editor instead. She then moved to the Scottish Daily Express where she reported mostly on crime. This was followed by a move to Fleet Street to the Daily Express where she became chief woman reporter. After marrying Harry Scott Gibbons and having a son, Charles, Marion went to the United States where Harry had been offered the job of editor of the Oyster Bay Guardian. When that didn’t work out, they went to Virginia and Marion worked as a waitress in a greasy spoon on the Jefferson Davies in Alexandria while Harry washed the dishes. Both then got jobs on Rupert Murdoch’s new tabloid, The Star, and moved to New York.

Anxious to spend more time at home with her small son, Marion, urged by her husband, started to write historical romances in 1977. After she had written over 100 of them under her maiden name, Marion Chesney, and under the pseudonyms: Ann Fairfax, Jennie Tremaine, Helen Crampton, Charlotte Ward, and Sarah Chester, she getting fed up with 1714 to 1910, she began to write detectives stories in 1985 under the pseudonym of M. C. Beaton. On a trip from the States to Sutherland on holiday, a course at a fishing school inspired the first Constable Hamish Macbeth story. They returned to Britain and bought a croft house and croft in Sutherland where Harry reared a flock of black sheep. But Charles was at school, in London so when he finished and both tired of the long commute to the north of Scotland, they moved to the Cotswolds where Agatha Raisin was created.


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