One of the titles I picked up was The Marriage of Katherine (or, Katherine's Marriage). This is the first of the Stevenson titles I picked to read upon returning home. Unfortunately I discovered in the first few pages that this is a sequel to Stevenson's Katherine Wentworth. I paused and wondered if I should try to find the first title but then grimaced over the price. I guess there just has to be a book or two to travel back to England for, yes? Ultimately I figured I might as well go ahead and read this one.
Now, you can be in love with anyone or anything and still understand and accept the fact that it has flaws. (At least, I fancy you can do that if you are being honest with yourself.) I have come to love Stevenson but I cannot say that I cared for this particular title. I wish to be careful about spoilers, but suffice it to say that The Marriage of Katherine picks up where I assume Katherine Wentworth left off - with her marriage to Alec MacLaren. Katherine and Alec are off on their unconventional honeymoon when this book opens. We find them in the Scottish Highlands, staying in a remote, mysterious and incredibly beautiful cave. (I know that sounds weird but you've just got to go with it.) The characters they meet there are intriguing and interesting. There seems to be a bit of a mystery introduced around a local couple and an antique jug but that story line ends up dying at the conclusion of the honeymoon. You might logically assume that the jug is going to pop up later in the book but you would be wrong. You will wonder about the jug for all time.
Katherine and Alec return back home to Katherine's three children (and now Alec's stepchildren). There is a matter of trying to live alongside Alec's cantankerous sister. There is actually quite a little feud going on with the sister and you wonder what kind of trouble she is ultimately going to make for Katherine and Alec. But have no fear! Ultimately, the sister has no relevance to the story. She just disappears, all handy-like. Lastly, about halfway through the book, Katherine's oldest boy suddenly enters into an inheritance, drawing to a halt all previous happenings. The remainder of the book deals with inheritance matters which raise a few issues, none of which turn into anything remarkable. At the conclusion, I really couldn't tell you what the book was ultimately about because I don't think that Stevenson knew either. If Stevenson doesn't know, how should I?
Am I glad to have purchased this book? Oh yes! As I say, I've come to really love Stevenson and I find her books delightfully distracting. For me, they are just plain fun, except for when they apparently aren't. I can't say how Katherine Wentworth plays out but I would say don't bother trying to locate the sequel.
Do note though that my opinion of this title differs from Goodreads Reviewers who are doling out 4 and 5 stars at a dizzying rate. I might be tempted to think they are somewhat delirious but perhaps we should accommodate for tastes? (HA!) Perhaps I had better say of this title, "Enjoy it if you can!"
Personally, I'd suggest checking out one of these titles instead (linked to my reviews):
- Miss Buncle's Book (re-printed and available through Amazon at a good price for the story)
- The Young Clementina
In the meantime, there's a Powell's trip in my future and I might see if I can snatch a few more titles. Fingers crossed!!