Late last year, I reviewed Emmanuelle de Maupassant’s short story, “Highland Pursuits”, which appeared in Because Beards, an anthology that benefited the Movember Foundation for men’s health. You can read my (super gushy) review here but, suffice to say, I loved the stockings off that story – so much so that I privately wished Emmanuelle de Maupassant would turn it into a novel. Happily, she did just that.
Highland Pursuits the novel is a wry, clever, incredibly sexy romp that reads as if it were written by Julian Fellowes’s tongue-in-cheek, worldly-wise sister. Emmanuelle de Maupassant makes the most of the fabulous possibilities that might arise for a modern young woman, banished to a remote manor house in the 1920’s. As one might imagine, hijinks ensue and they are everything one could hope for.
The thing that I especially loved about the novelization of this story is that Ms. de Maupassant did more than just expand on everything that worked so beautifully in the short story. She developed aspects of it that I couldn’t have anticipated but which led to a deeply convincing tapestry of period fiction. We get a sense of the house’s eccentric, wealthy denizens from below-stairs now, as well as a greater sense of Ophelia’s singularity as a young woman exploring her sexuality in the 1920’s.
The romance between the protagonists unfolds in a way that is both convincing and adorably star-crossed, while the rest of the cast colors the book with so much personality that the book pops with fizz and life. It’s a completely engrossing, utterly enjoyable read, and I can’t recommend it highly enough, especially if you always wished that PG Wodehouse and Stella Gibbons had written the naughty bits. It’s fabulously fun, and yet one more example of Emmanuelle de Maupassant’s talents – not only as a writer, but as a literary chameleon.
MORE FROM THE AUTHOR:
Emmanuelle de Maupassant is thrilled to announce the launch of her saucy 1920s romance romp: ‘Highland Pursuits’.
In celebration, Emmanuelle is not only offering three signed paperback copies, via Goodreads here, but has her entire catalogue on sale for 99c/99p from March 1st-8th: Baby Love, Scarlet, Cautionary Tales and Gentlemen’s Club (as recommended by Stylist Magazine)
1920s debutante Lady Ophelia Finchingfield is banished to wildest Scotland to come to her senses, having refused a proposal from the Earl of Woldershire. In the care of her eccentric grandmother, Ophelia is soon caught between rugged widower Hamish and the villainous Comte de Montefiore.
She’s ready to play with fire, but will she burn more than her fingers?
WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:
I can’t tell you how much I love this book. It was a true delight to read. The author has captured 1920s Britain wonderfully, and her detail is exquisite. – Rachel De Vine
As a comedy of manners, this is exceptionally well done. – Fionna Guillaume
Highland Pursuits is a wry, clever, incredibly sexy romp… a completely engrossing, utterly enjoyable read. I can’t recommend it highly enough…fabulously fun – Malin James –> (It’s true – I can totally vouch for myself on that).
The scene was set beautifully… I felt like I went back in time to high society Scotland – Christine of Sweet and Spicy Reads
‘Highland Pursuits’ draws inspiration from a short story of the same title Emmanuelle wrote originally for the charity fundraising anthology Because Beards: all proceeds have been given to the Movember Foundation.
This longer, novella, length offers more scope to explore the wonderful characters’ eye-popping shenanigans. Hamish and Ophelia were in Emmanuelle’s dreams for many weeks, as she wrote this story.
Pssst… if you enjoy Highland Pursuits, don’t forget to leave a review. Reviews make books more visible online, bringing new eyes. If you’re on Twitter or Facebook, tag Emmanuelle in your review post and she’ll say hello.
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