THE BANISHMENT by Marion Chesney


Vol. I of The Daughters of Mannerling
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 The eldest of six beautiful daughters is whirled away to a splendid marriage, and there are certain to be five further romances in the wings as a family tries to recapture its lost fortunes--in a new tale by the author of five previous Regency series. The splendid estate of Mannerling, home of the grand Beverley family, boasts extraordinary sculpture, painting, and decoration, and during the many balls and routs a double row of footmen dressed in gold and red livery line the staircase. Snobby Sir William and Lady Beverley and their six beautiful daughters live in a rarified world where servants are instructed to turn their faces to the wall when the family members pass. Then one day Sir William gambles away it all: house, furnishings, even the lovely little Greek temple. The owner is now the odious Mr. Judd, and the Beverleys move to humble Brookfield House with a drunken cook, one handyman, and a maid. Disaster. Coming to the rescue is kind, brogue-inflected Mrs. Kennedy, aunt of Viscount Fitzpatrick (alas, an Irish peer). It is now the duty of the eldest, Isabella--still unwed after a London season--to marry Mr. Judd and reclaim Mannerling. While Mrs. Kennedy teaches the girls to cook and sew, Isabella discovers something about humble civility and kindness and enjoys the companionship of Fitzpatrick, but she proceeds stolidly to an engagement with Mr. Judd. There'll be humiliation, disgraceful plotting, and the horrid sight of an exploding Greek temple before Isabella loves and sees the light. But now next-in-line Jessica begins to set her sights on the marriageable son of the next owner of Mannerling. Unlike Patricia Veryan, Chesney does not attempt period diction or ambience, but her plotting--precision-paced, pleasingly peopled, predictable, and tidy--is enjoyable. Another easy entertainment from a veteran romancer.

Pub Date: April 11th, 1995
ISBN: 0-312-11749-3
Page count: 192pp
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 1995


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