Lady Fortescue Steps Out : The Poor Relation

  • by M. C. Beaton
  • Narrated by Davina Porter
  • Series: The Poor Relation
  • 4 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Life is not easy for the poor relations of England’s upper crust, but fate and clever schemes bring them together. Lady Fortescue and Colonel Sandhurst hatch a plan: What if they were to transform her decrepit Bond Street home into a posh hotel, offering their guests the pleasure of being waited upon by nobility? With the help of other down-and-out aristocrats, they do just that, and London’s newest hotel, The Poor Relation, is born.
The establishment is an immediate hit with London’s most illustrious citizens, save the Duke of Rowcester, Lady Fortescue’s nephew. Rowcester believes that his aunt’s entry into the trade will denigrate their family name and is determined to shut the hotel down - until he meets Miss Harriett James, the lovely young woman who accepts Lady Fortescue’s offer to become The Poor Relation’s chef after the death of her parents and the loss of her fortune. Rowcester moves into The Poor Relation for the season - ostensibly to keep an eye on his aunt’s business.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

sweet but overpriced trifle

The first four volumes of this light and humorous series were perfect for some fatigued time listening, but Beaton/Chesney could have knitted together one excellent novel from the first three instalments ??? one that could have equalled a Heyer classic. I do like intelligent braincandy, but I prefer my fluff thicker!

This series is similar in style to the author's Lady Rose mysteries, even though Poor Relation is more Heyerite romance; the series may not appeal to fans of Beaton's Hamish McBeth or Agatha Raisin mysteries. I thought Poor Relation much richer than the Daughters of Mannerling series, which they also resemble with a continuing storyline.

I think the best in series (of the first four now on Audible) is v 1; you can listen to any independent of the others, however, should you catch a sale because there is enough backstory in each to get the history of the hotel and its proprietors.

Porter is as usual excellent, and do I detect an extra bit of love in her voice for this series and Lady Rose's exploits?


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- connie "Narrative makes the world go round."

Charming Regency Fun - Romance & Adventure

Set in Regency London it has the trials and tribulations of a group of high and upper class impoverished aristocrats who band together to open a hotel. Some of the characters are oddly appealing, some (Sir Philip) is oddly appalling. There is a romance, but a great deal of time is spent on the other characters, such as the marvellous septuagenarian Lady Fortescue.

On the surface frothy fun, but serious issues often simmer to the top, such as the fate of unmarried impoverished women, or the scenes at Newgate.

This is a Marion Chesney Story (I had to google to see who this MC Beaton was). Good clean fun. If you like Georgette Heyer you will enjoy this book which again shows close attention to historical detail (without it intruding in the flow of the novel)

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- Clare "Historical & SciFi Book Lover, especially Georgette Heyer, Lois McMaster Bujold, Connie Willis (& New Who). Also books for the kids."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-01-2012
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.