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The Reluctant Heiress by Eva Ibbotson
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The Reluctant Heiress (1982)

by Eva Ibbotson

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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5222219,378 (3.85)21

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» See also 21 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
4 out of 5 stars! A sweet fairytale for young and old.

Read more of this review here: http://frommetoyouvideophoto.blogspot.com/2010/03/go-and-tell-your-white-knight-... ( )
  fromjesstoyou | Jun 9, 2016 |
It took a while to get into this book. It's set in the 1920s, featuring a likeable and egalitarian Austrian princess, and a millionaire who started life as a foundling. Throw in a fairytale Austrian castle, a struggling theatre company (for whom the princess, incognito, works as the under wardrobe mistress), a stunningly beautiful widow, and an impecunious unassertive prince.

It's light historical fiction for older teens and young adults; romantic escapism for the middle-aged. All in all, a very enjoyable novel which I'd like to have awarded four and a half stars to. A pity that the early chapters were a bit slow-moving and over-detailed, but I skimmed several paragraphs and didn't lose anything of the story as a result. Hard to put down once it got going properly, which happened by about half way through. Recommended. ( )
  SueinCyprus | Jan 26, 2016 |
I really liked the Prologue and the last two chapters but everything in between dra-a-a-a-gged. Disappointing, because I expected to like it all—a light romance set in Austria in 1922, with a castle. My copy was marketed as YA, but the characters are adults, and it just doesn't feel like YA. I like the author's children's books, which are full of fun and fantasy, but this one seems to take itself too seriously for the little substance it has. The hero's foster mother is a wonderful character, though.
  SylviaC | Dec 23, 2015 |
predictable but super cute! ( )
  NinjaTat | Dec 20, 2014 |
Well this took me a while to soldier through, be it determination or plain stubbornness, I didn't give up. Glad I didn't, but still wasn't great. It dragged a lot throughout, well, the whole damn thing. All of Ibbotson's books have the same standard plot, like something out of a Disney cartoon, princesses, villains and prince charming, all a bit boring in the end.

I really need to learn my lesson about these sort of books, just put down the repetitive plot lines and step away. ( )
  katie1802 | May 10, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Eva Ibbotsonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lock, KateNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zancan, MartinaCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"What do they celebrate, the magic flutes of love? Why, tears and laughter" After Praxilla (4th Century BC)
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To Aaron and Johanna
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They were both born under the sign of Gemini and for those who believe in the stars as arbiters of fate, this must have seemed the link that bound them.
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Book description
Spring, 1922 Tessa is a beautiful, tiny, dark-eyed princess – who’s given up her duties to follow her heart, working for nothing backstage at the Viennese opera. No one there knows who she really is, or that a fairytale castle is missing its princess, and Tessa is determined to keep it that way. But secret lives can be complicated. When a wealthy, handsome Englishman discovers this bewitching urchin backstage,Tessa’s two lives collide – and in escaping her inheritance, she finds her destiny. . .
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In 1920s Austria, no one in the Viennese opera company knows that their wardrobe mistress Tessa is really a princess. But when the dashing self-made millionaire Guy Farne arrives at the opera, Tessa realizes that there may be more to life--and love--than just music.… (more)

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