Saturday, May 23, 2009

A Company of Swans

Harriet Morton was quite an ordinary least it seemed so. Raised by her crabby father, a professor of the classics at Cambridge, the one joy she has in her life is dancing. Harriet loves the ballet and is quite talented though her father is convinced that it is not truly a ladylike pursuit. Set in 1912, there are lots of issues of propriety and proper behavior and Harriet is a good girl. But one day a Russian ballet master comes to her class and invites her to join his troupe on a trip to Brazil to dance in the corps for wealthy Europeans living along the Amazon river. For some reason, this sparks Harriet's imagination and in a mad moment of true individualism she tricks her father and heads off to South America. She's only eighteen so this is quite a big deal because legally her father could have her returned to him and really do whatever he wanted to punish her. In the Amazon she meets Rom, a wealthy Englishman who is quite different from her father's preferred suitor, Edward.

I listened to this on my Ipod and liked it. The romance was very sweet. The only thing that I wasn't sure about was Harriet herself. I liked how she came out of her shell and was able to be her own girl, but sometimes I couldn't reconcile how "good" her character was with some of the things she did. Like she was made out by the author to really be above fault which she wasn't. I liked her, but wanted her little bit darker side to be acknowleged for what it was.

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