My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I love Mary Hooper. It remains a fact that I will automatically read any of her new work because it is fairly guaranteed to be good. If it’s historical, you know you get a well told story in believable circumstances, and if it’s contemporary (such as her Megan series – the first of which is here – Megan), you know you get a well told story in believable circumstances.
Hooper is good, there’s no doubt about it, but I’m not sure The Disgrace of Kitty Grey is her best work. Such a statemement though reflects the Scale of Hooper (patent pending) and therefore Kitty is still a really solid, engrossing book that I did enjoy.
However. I don’t think it’s packaged right. The cover and blurb didn’t gel for me at all with the text. They led me towards thinking of a more Austen-esque route for the story when, if anything, we’re sliding towards a sort of historical / tragedy / fairytale hybrid narrative. It’s an intriguing book really but not one that is wholly reflected by that cover and blurb.
So what is The Disgrace of Kitty Grey? It is a beautifully researched and written novel, featuring country life and London in 1813 and in lovely detail both. It is also my first #readyourwayaroundtheUK book so yay for that. And it is a genuinely interesting and moving book.
But oh, that front cover and that blurb.