Friday, September 11, 2009

The Finishing Touches

The Finishing Touches
By Hester Browne
Pocket Books. 411 pages. 2009. Fiction

After being left on the doorstep of an old-fashioned finishing school, Betsy Phillimore is taken in and grows up wanting to be just like the girls at the academy, but Lord and Lady Phillimore (in hopes that she will take advantage of her considerable math skills) tell her the academy is not for her.

Years later at the memorial service of Franny Phillimore, Betsy finally returns to find enrollment low and the academy in terrible disrepair. It’s up to Betsy to make use of her marketing degree and bring the school into the 21st century. But Betsy is also dealing with her own personal issues such as who her parents really are and the reappearance of her girlhood crush.

The Finishing Touches is by Hester Browne who also wrote The Little Lady Agency which I also enjoyed. She always creates such cute and funny characters, and her books tend to be cleaner than a lot of chick-lit books. I especially enjoyed all the bits of advice Betsy relates throughout the novel that she picked up from Lady Franny Phillimore.



DAP said...

I am also a HUGE fan of Hester Browne. I loved her 'Little Lady Agency' series! Like AJ says, it does tend to be cleaner than the usual chick-lit. I liked this book, but thought it seems like her use of euphemisms increased and that the characters were a bit recycled from the previous series, especially the heroine. Otherwise a fun read.


ALC said...

I love Hester Browne as well. Her primary heroines tend to be innocent and well meaning but also smart and ambitious. I would love to have Hester Browne (or one of her eccentric female characters) in my inner circle of friends. The plot in Finishing Touches seemed to be more of a focus than the characters. I wish she had explored more about the evolution of the romantic relationship in the story. I also love the strong girl friendships in her stories. I will continue to look forward to Hester Browne's work.