Saturday, 8 December 2012

Book Review: The Season by Sarah Maclean

Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Format: Paperback, 336 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Books/ Orchard Books (2008)
Genre: Young Adult Historical Fiction/Romance

The Season

Set in the world of Regency London, this story is the narration of a typical London Season, though twistedly driven down into a flurry of treason and danger. The book is based around the experience of a young woman, Lady Alexandra Stafford a.k.a Alex, with a determination of straying from the wealthy candidates that she herself had inconveniently lured without knowing, despite her fiery personality and inexplicably sharp-tongue. Managing to haul along her partners in crime, Ella and Vivi, they become entangled in a mystery that involves life…and death.

Sarah Maclean manages to create a clear image of each character with great detail and connection. She created various characters that will imprint in your mind. Lady Alexandra Stafford (daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Worthington) is feisty, witty and unlike many other young women of her time. She is up to date with politics and loathes the idea of marriage and the trappings of romance, though, her ideas evolve entirely throughout the social whirlwind of the London Season.  Another of Alex’s greatest friends, Lady Eleanor (Ella) Redburn (eldest daughter of the Earl and Countess of Malborough), shares her loathing for marriage and romance; this rare personality defies her petite, porcelain looks. The story is written with many sub-plots all making sense and connecting together one way or another. I find that with the many sub-plots, the way she wrote in third person yet focusing on one character was a very successful method of writing and gave way to more describing, which I loved.  The main plot was very strong and focused upon and being me who’s always shouting in my head: “Romance! Romance! Romance!”, I think this plot really answered my calls.
This book, I believe ticks most boxes that I would seek for in a book; Romance, More Romance, History, Mystery, Murder and treason. Rarely authors can manage to weave so many categories into such a satisfying story and I believe this is what singled ‘The Season’ out from other novels. I really don’t think this book could be altered in any way and emerge better. In my eyes, it is perfect already and just the type of book that I would want to read again and again (not that I know anyone who did soJ)
Sarah Maclean incorporated many messages into the book which would vary as you mature and decipher them in your own way. One of the messages that I particularly liked was “Appreciate what you have while you can and don’t let this appreciating become corrupted”. Messages like these started off as little ideas and these ideas grew as I was told more and more knowledge of the situation, then I was able to piece everything together and turn it into a meaningful message. It isn’t a wonder that Sarah was able to keep me so keen on the book. The mere subject of the book was enough to keep me from my studies until the book was done and read. Her describing skills pure amazing, providing me something to look up to in my own writing. The author always built up climaxes leading into consecutive chapters and left questions and curiousity, urging me to read on.
In the end, the Season made me feel thankful for my family yet it also made me long to have lived in the world that Alexandra Stafford lived in, Regency London (or Tudor times would be nice).Recommended for people who like history (even just a little bit) and romance. I wouldn’t suggest this book if you weren’t the Jane Austen, balls, dinner parties and tea type but it wouldn’t hurt to try new things. The Season was an amazing book and I can’t wait to read a new novel that you might suggest.

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