Saturday, August 8, 2009

What Happens in London

Julia Quinn's books always seem to have a quirky element that makes them different. And I mean that in a good way. I'm trying to decide exactly what that is. It probably is a few different factors. She writes well, she has witty dialog between her lead characters, she lets her lovers get to know each other, and she sneaks in secondary characters that leave you wanting their story next. It sounds so easy. She makes it read so easy. But it is not. That my friends, is why her books work.

What Happens in London is her latest, and it features Olivia and Harry. Olivia is very lovely lady, but really has not found that special someone to wed. Harry meets her by chance and at first glance they do not really like each other. It probably doesn't help that he thinks she is a beautiful twit and she's heard gossip that he's killed his fiancee. And it does not help that Olivia has taken to spying on him - since he's next door - and has discovered he does have some secrets. Having your neighbor notice that you're spying does make it a bit awkward the next time you meet them at a ball.

Harry does Russian translation for the British government and ends up being assigned to watch Olivia since her latest suitor seems to be a Russian prince that the government wants to watch. Hence, he ends up meeting with Olivia more than he ever intended. Their dialog of getting to know each other and to like each other - really sets this book apart.

Filled with a mix of various quiet scenes and some hilarity - the scene of Harry's cousin enacting a Gothic novel for the Prince and the household is pretty funny - the future lovers grow to appreciate each other. And isn't that what a romance is supposed to be about? A very good read.