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Book Title: Nine Coaches Waiting|
The author of the book: Mary Stewart
Date of issue: 1972
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 3.42 MB
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Reader ratings: 4.4
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This book has FINALLY come out on Kindle - and it's just 99c, as of Oct. 3, 2017. Cheers!
Mary Stewart is--by far--my favorite author in the romantic suspense genre. Nine Coaches Waiting is my favorite Mary Stewart book. I can't tell you how many times I've re-read this book. It's not terrifically deep or mysterious, but it's well-written and a favorite comfort read, and my love for it is quite unreasonable at this point, so just realize that I'm likely to hurl insults or furniture at anyone who questions the excellence of this novel.
Linda Martin, a young woman who grew up as an orphan, has been hired to be the governess of 9 year old Philippe de Valmy, the heir to the Valmy fortune, who lives in a luxurious but lonely chateau in the mountains of eastern France. Philippe is also an orphan, and is living in the care of his aunt and uncle. Linda's father was English and her mother French, but since she was hired primarily to teach Philippe English, Linda decides to hide the French part of her heritage and her fluency with that language. This makes for some awkward but funny situations as she tries to speak schoolgirl French and pretend not to understand when people speak it fluently.
Philippe is distant at first, but quickly warms to Linda's company, and she soon grows very fond of him . . . which makes it all the more upsetting when near-fatal accidents begin to happen to Philippe. And there are too many people who would be materially benefitted by Philippe's death: his uncle Leon de Valmy and his wife, who would own the Valmy fortune if Philippe dies; their loyal servants; and the suave and handsome Raoul, Leon's son, who has managed to quickly sweep Linda off her feet. (Yes, it's insta-love. Deal with it.)
Raoul is kind of a 50's alpha male, but he has a vulnerability that tugs at Linda's heart, even as she's afraid he'll break it. There are some really lovely Cinderella-like scenes between Raoul and Linda as she is preparing for a fancy ball at the chateau, sewing her own dress and--wait for it--losing one of her shoes, and later, when Raoul finally finds her at the ball.
Nine Coaches Waiting takes as its theme an old poem called The Revenger's Tragedy, in which "a tempter's list of pleasures" (the coaches, the palace, banquets, etc.) is "designed to lure a lonely young female to a luxurious doom." Is Linda being lured by Raoul and his father to ignore the dangers to Philippe, discounting them as accidents? This theme is followed through in kind of an amusing way with nine "coaches" or rides in planes, autos and, I think, even a wagon being taken by Linda during the course of the story.
Mary Stewart has a deft touch with humor and excels in creating sympathetic young boy characters, and Philippe is one of my favorites:"We have got bears," confided Philippe, in the tone of one inviting congratulations. He looked earnestly up at me. "We truly have. This is not a blague. Many bears of a bigness incredible." His scarlet-gloved hands sketched in the air something of the dimensions of an overgrown grizzly. "I have never seen one, vous comprenez, but Bernard has shot one. He told me so."
"Then I hope to goodness we don't meet one today."
"They are asleep," said Philippe comfortingly. "There is no danger unless one treads on them where they sleep." He jumped experimentally into a deep drift of dead leaves, sending them swirling up in bright flakes of gold. The drift was, fortunately, bearless.Mary Stewart is famous (or infamous, depending on your point of view and your affinity for this sort of thing) for her loving and lengthy descriptions of landscapes, and Nine Coaches Waiting is no exception. I'll confess to occasionally skimming through some of the detailed descriptions when I'm in a hurry to get to the "good parts," but Stewart does have an unquestionable talent for making you feel like you can really see the setting in your mind's eye, and that you're really there.
Nine Coaches is, like all of Stewart's books, intelligently written and spiced with literary allusions. If you like the romantic suspense genre and don't mind books that are a little old-fashioned, you really need to read Mary Stewart's novels, and I'd say Nine Coaches Waiting is the best one to start with. Not that I'm prejudiced or anything.
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Read information about the authorLibrarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.
Lady Mary Stewart, born Mary Florence Elinor Rainbow, was a popular English novelist, and taught at the school of John Norquay elementary for 30 to 35 years.
She was one of the most widely read fiction writers of our time. The author of twenty novels, a volume of poetry, and three books for young readers, she was admired for both her contemporary stories of romantic suspense and her historical novels. Born in England, she lived for many years in Scotland, spending time between Edinburgh and the West Highlands.
Her unofficial fan site can be found at http://marystewartnovels.blogspot.com/.
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