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The Fortune Hunter

Goodwin, Daisy

(Book - 2014)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
The Fortune Hunter
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A beautiful empress trapped in a loveless marriage, a dashing but impoverished horseman and a clever heiress form a passionate love triangle in 19th-century England against a backdrop of the legendary Grand National competition "Empress Elizabeth of Austria, known as "Sisi," is the Princess Diana of nineteenth-century Europe. Famously beautiful, as captured in a portrait with diamond stars in her hair, she is unfulfilled in her marriage to the older Emperor Franz Joseph. Sisi has spent years evading the stifling formality of royal life on her private train or yacht or, whenever she can, on the back of a horse. Captain Bay Middleton is dashing, young, and the finest horseman in England. He is also impoverished, with no hope of buying the horse needed to win the Grand National--until he meets Charlotte Baird. A clever, plainspoken heiress whose money gives her a choice among suitors, Charlotte falls in love with Bay, the first man to really notice her, for his vulnerability as well as his glamour. When Sisi joins the legendary hunt organized by Earl Spencer in England, Bay is asked to guide her on the treacherous course. Their shared passion for riding leads to an infatuation that threatens the growing bond between Bay and Charlotte, and all of their futures. This brilliant new novel by Daisy Goodwin is a lush, irresistible story of the public lives and private longings of grand historical figures"
Publisher: New York :, St. Martin's Press,, 2014
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 1250043891
9781250043894
Branch Call Number: FICTION GOODW...D
Characteristics: 473 pages

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Dec 02, 2014
  • Chapel_Hill_MarthaW rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This is a fun read based veeeerrrry loosely on real historical events and follows a wealthy heiress, a famous horseman, and an empress legendary for her beauty. There's plenty of romance to be found in these pages, but the writing is good enough and the historical research thorough enough to appeal to readers for other reasons, too. Goodwin does a good job of portraying complicated characters with complicated relationships, and I really enjoyed reading about them.

I was very disappointed in this book. I thought it would be an historical fiction. I read about the first hundred pages and found no history, merely a predicable love story. Couldn't bring myself to finish it.

Brighter than the world-famous Lennox diamonds that are her birthright, heiress Charlotte Baird is more interested in the new medium of photography than the time-honored tradition of marriage - until she meets the dashing Captain Bay Middleton. The finest equestrian in 1875 England, Middleton lacks the pedigree to wed an heiress as well as the funds to fulfill his lifelong dream of winning the Grand National. Although instantly drawn to each other, Charlotte and Bay's budding courtship is threatened by the arrival of the Empress Elizabeth of Austria, an accomplished horsewoman who capture's Bay's attention. As in Daisy Goodwin's previous novel, My Last Duchess, the Gilded Age provides the stage for a dramatic love triangle set against the backdrop of high society. Historical Fiction newsletter August 2014.

Aug 11, 2014
  • sstoneham rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Well written and captivating. Having learned of SiSi when I visited Vienna, I found this portrait of her life interesting. The contrast between etiquette in Austria and England was interesting, especially when compared to the US at the time. I found Charlotte extremely likable and curious, but often wanted to throw the book at Bay- but I suppose that was the point. Without giving anything away, I didn't find the ending as compelling as I hoped- and don't think any of the characters had really changed enough to be happy

Jun 16, 2014
  • stephaniedchase rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Even better than her first; a complex look at the restricted lives men and women of all kinds had to live in Victorian England.

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app04 Version gurli Last updated 2014/12/09 10:52