When I was a child I spake as a child. I understood as a child, I thought as a child:
but when I become a man I put away childish things.
For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face
Through a Glass Darkly is the second in a three book series set in Georgian England. Barbara is the granddaughter of the Duke and Duchess of Tamworth and she and her younger siblings were raised by their grandparents instead of their parents Kit and Diana Alderley. Kit is an exiled Jacobite involved in the plots to put James III on the throne and Diana is a scheming slut desperate to wed Diana off to a wealthy man to save her from her creditors. Diana is negotiating with the much older but very wealthy Roger Montgeoffry, Earl Devane, and Barbara is thrilled as she’d always loved Roger from afar – although Diana’s insatiable greed might bring those talks to a screeching halt.
The path to true love and married bliss is never easy, especially when you have a family as complicated and double dealing as the Barbara’s -it is way too complex to try and explain – just sit back and enjoy the fun. Roger eventually takes his new wife and business to Paris and an innocent Barbara soon gets quite an education in the debauched lifestyle of the French court and its courtiers. Someone from Roger’s past returns that thoroughly upsets Barbara’s marital applecart and sends her life spinning out of control, and only Grandmama can set it to rights. Or can she?
And that’s all I’m going to tell you – I don’t write book reports. This is the second time I’ve read the book and I enjoyed it just as much as the first. While I enjoyed all of the family’s antics, I most especially adored Grandmama and her cats, as well as Barbara’s very smutty mother who steals every scene she’s in. I loved watching Barbara mature from a young innocent (you will want to slap her a few times) to a mature woman who could take just about anything life threw her way – and life throws her a lot of heartache. It broke my heart watching Tony’s unrequited love for Barbara, and as for Philippe? Grrrrrr.
This is a book to be savored, like a box of fine chocolate or a rich red wine. Highly recommended, and one I will read again and again and again. The first book in the series is Dark Angels and the last is Now Face to Face. I recommend reading Dark Angels last after you have come to know and love the old Duchess, then go back and read Alice and Richard’s story.