Miranda’s Mount (UK edition) Girl vs. Earl (US edition) – Phillipa Ashley.
Miranda Marshall loves her job as property manager of the beautiful castle and old fort, St. Merryn’s Mount. Steeped in history and home to the Cornish aristocratic family, the St. Merryn’s, this beautiful castle is not just a museum, but, a welcoming place for visitors to have fun in the beautiful Cornish countryside and get to learn a little about the Mount's past. Working her way up from taking tickets at the entrance, for the last three years Miranda has held the role of property manage and has helped grow the business dramatically during that time, attracting more visitors and organising regular family fund raising events, which are bigger and bigger successes each year. Miranda is Lady St. Merryn’s eyes and ears on site and even though she seems to be slowing down a little recently, Miranda’s boss still has a keen interest in everything to do with the family home.
We first meet Miranda at the end of a busy day when she is doing the final rounds following the days visitors who have all left on the last ferry back to the mainland. She is surprised by a man who appears to be an intruder, brandishing a cutlass which he has taken off the wall in the Armoury. After Calling security to detain him even though she doesn't believe he looks like a madman, Miranda finally comes to realise that this is no intruder but Jago St. Merryn, rightful heir to the Mount and son of Lady St Merryn. Jago has been away from Cornwall, travelling the world for over ten years and is seldom mentioned by Lady St Merryn. After his father’s death, Jago left the running of the family home to his mother who had welcomed the task at the time after years of living in the shadow of her cruel husband, the previous Earl.
Jago is handsome and dashing in a Johnny Depp kind of way and Miranda is instantly drawn to him, in-spite of his wielding a cutlass and his silly antics in the armoury. Soon she learns, however, that Jago has a plan for St Merryn’s Mount and he is back to execute this as his mother is ready to take somewhat of a back seat in the running of the estate and let him take over. Before long it is clear that his intentions are not what Miranda or any of the people who work there want to happen.
This is a funny, witty love story filled with interesting characters, not least of all the family estate itself. St Merryn’s Mount is based on the estate of St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall and plays a huge role in this story. I was so drawn to this lovely place that I had to take a peep at the St Michael’s Mount website, just to see what it looked like (http://www.stmichaelsmount.co.uk/). I was not surprised when I saw a photo of it as Phillipa Ashley does a great job of describing the island fort and her love of the Cornwall countryside is clear.
This is the fifth Phillipa Ashley book I have read and believe it to be the best one so far. She delves into the personalities and motivation of the main protagonists decision making and there are also many other well drawn players in this story to get to know. They are humorous, sometimes not quite what they seem and the dialogue is believable and flows easily.
If you want an enjoyable escape to Cornwall for a few hours entertaining reading, then this is the book for you.
Miranda's Mount is published in the US with the title Girl vs. Earl
The Kim-stillreading blog is book review blog. I read what appeals to me and that's not always the most recently published books. When I land on a book that looks interesting or when I discover a new author, I have been known to buy all their backlist! So, you may find a mixture of books being reviewed on the blog; those that are about to be published; those recently published; those published ages ago and classics!
For the You Couldn't Make This Up! blog, it all started with a challenge from a friend who asked me to write for six consecutive days about things I am grateful for. I did that and soon realised there were many more than six things to write about and so I decided to continue the list on this blog.
Feel free to tag along with me on my journey as I read and write my way through each day.