In the years before World War I in Byron, Australia, the males of the Hurlingford family hold all the power and money. Those Hurlingford women without a man due to spinsterhood or widowhood lead cramped lives of hard work and little money on scraps of land or in businesses that just barely support them. Thirty-something spinster Missy Wright leads a narrow existence on the wrong side of the tracks with her widowed mother Drusilla Hurlingford Wright and crippled aunt Octavia when Byron is consumed by two events, the upcoming wedding of Missy's beautiful cousin Alicia Marshall to William Hurlingford and the arrival of rough looking stranger named John Smith. With limited funds and suffering bouts of ill health, Missy's only consolation are her trips to the lending library where her distant cousin Una Hurlingford works.
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Sometimes fairy tales can come true--even for plain, shy spinsters like Missy Wright. Neither as pretty as cousin Alicia nor as domineering as mother Drusilla, she seems doomed to a quiet life of near poverty at Missalonghi, her family's pitifully small homestead in Australia's Blue Mountains.
But it's a brand new century--the twentieth--a time for new thoughts and bold ne. But it's a brand new century--the twentieth--a time for new thoughts and bold new actions. And Missy Wright is about to set every self-righteous tongue in the town of Byron wagging. Because she has just set her sights on a mysterious, mistrusted, and unsuspecting stranger Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
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Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. But it's a brand new century--the twentieth--a time for new thoughts and bold ne Sometimes fairy tales can come true--even for plain, shy spinsters like Missy Wright. Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages.
Published May 1st by HarperCollins Publishers first published More Details Original Title. Neville Hurlingford , Mrs. Cecil Hurlingford , Mrs. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
To ask other readers questions about The Ladies of Missalonghi , please sign up. Athulya This book was horrible lolz. See 1 question about The Ladies of Missalonghi….
Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Start your review of The Ladies of Missalonghi. May 03, Ryl rated it did not like it Shelves: thissucked , reviewed. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I admit I knew this book was crap when I picked it up. I first heard about it in a discussion of L.
Montgomery's The Blue Castle , a vastly superior book. The stories are exactly the same. She wears a lot of brown. She has a more attractive cousin abou I admit I knew this book was crap when I picked it up. She has a more attractive cousin about the same age who will be married soon.
She lives in a town populated mainly by her large clannish family. She is suffering from mysterious chest pains that may indicate a serious problem. She finds escape in books: Valancy prefers nature books while Missy revels in trashy romances. But where The Blue Castle is a touching look at taking charge of your life and finding your dreams, Missalonghi is about lying and manipulation.
Let us begin shredding. Missy's only friend is Una, a clerk at the local lending library. Una is the one who got Missy hooked on trashy romances. She is also the spark that ignites Missy's independent streak. She tells Missy that the Mysterious New Guy in town is not an axe murderer or a jailbird as rumor has labeled him. Missy meets Mysterious New Guy who goes by the "I have nothing to hide!
He carries her home and gets the doctor for her. Because he is a the only guy in town not related to her in some way and b the only guy who's ever touched her, Missy decides to fall in love with him. After this incident, Missy goes to her cousin Alicia's wedding shower. Alicia is beautiful, wealthy, and a right bitch. Missy ends up telling her cousin exactly what she thinks of her pink and white Barbie wedding plans and goes outside to have another chest pain attack.
While she is recovering, she overhears Alicia and her other cousins talking smack about her and her brown dresses inside the house. Missy, insulted, decides to have nothing more to do with Miss Barbie Bride and goes home in a snit. Alicia later sends Missy an old out-of-style amber dress to wear at the wedding so she won't drab the affair up by wearing brown.
Missy takes the dress out to the cow barn, stomps it into a pile of manure, wraps it up, and hands it back to Alicia. The men decide they'll buy up the stocks owned by the widowed and unmarried women of the family at bargain basement prices so they can keep control of the company while the women stay poor. Missy, who happens to live with two of these poor, unmarried women, is quite miffed and storms over to the library to bitch about it to Una.
Missy gets the necessary forms and permission from her aunt, mother and two other poor cousins to sell their stocks. She and Una got to town the next day and take care of business, facilitated by the suddenly revealed fact that Una is conveniently a Justice of the Peace and thus can sign the Power of Attorney forms. While she's in Sydney Missy visits A Specialist about her chest pain issue. The Specialist diagnoses a pinched nerve and cracks Missy's back which cures her completely.
He then takes her in his office, tells her she needs to get laid, and walks out. While he's gone, Missy reads the letters on his desk and steals an old woman's diagnosis of heart trouble for nefarious purposes.
She goes home, packs her bag, and goes down to John Smith's house. Here is a piece of paper on a doctor's letterhead that doesn't name names but really and for true gives me a diagnosis of Terrible Heart Problems. Will you marry me? They plan the wedding for the next day. Missy says she ain't going home until she's hitched.
John informs her that "the honeymoon may begin early" if she stays. She says that's fine by her. The doctor did tell her to get laid, after all. John Smith then shows the reader what a great guy he is as he imagines how he will de-virginize her.
He wouldn't be too rough, he'd just "rape her a little. How thoughtful. After a completely unnecessary sex scene, they go to sleep and don't wake up until the next morning.
They go down to the bathing spring where they have another completely unnecessary sex scene, get dressed, and head to Sydney separately. Missy first goes to the library to invite Una to the wedding but Una says she can't go. She has a present: the scarlet lace dress and hat that Missy's always dreamed of. Missy is thrilled to have something that is not brown to wear so she immediately puts it on and hops a train to Sydney. She and John Smith get married. On the way home John tells Missy about his bitter first marriage.
Missy doesn't care. John likes that. Now I am by no means a prude. I am on a first name basis with all the major profanities and innuendos.
However, I thought that John Smith was being unnecessarily vulgar there.
Picks and Pans Review: The Ladies of Missalonghi
I was just thinking about The Ladies of Missalonghi today. No kidding. I love the book, too, and today I was ruminating on the question of how many times I've read it, two or three. Last year I retired as a high school librarian.
Book Rant: The Ladies of Missalonghi by Colleen McCullough
The first in a new series of short novels by accomplished authors, this book looks as though it had been designed by the late Laura Ashley, with a pastel-colored cover of the three ladies of the title decked out in long dresses and picture hats. It is a small volume with eight sketches reminiscent of illustrated books from the turn of the century. Men, again, ultimately are reduced to the weaker sex. And none too soon in this case because the entrenched Hurlingford clan has been mistreating its womenfolk—the ones who are manless—by cheating them out of their inheritance and income. The name of the town in the Blue Mountains where they live, Byron, suggests the heights of romantic fantasy the author aspires to. The home the three inhabit is Missalonghi, named after the place in Greece where the poet died. Missy, with the help of a glamorous spirit who appears to her, helps turn the victimized women around.
Liz Dexter Book confessions , Book reviews book confessions , book reviews , books 23 Comments. Hm, see below the book confessions to read how true that is! This is a fairy tale really, but a lovely one where you really root for the heroine, and you also do get quite a lot of detail about the fate of impoverished genteel ladies trapped in small-town Australia, unable to earn any money in all but the most indirect ways and vulnerable to being preyed on by even their male relatives. All men were untouchables, even jailbirds. All men had choices. All men had power.
The Ladies of Missalonghi
View Book Info Page. Genre: Historical: Other , Romance. NB: We have a doozy of a book rant this Saturday, but after spending some quality time with family members, we might all be in need of letting out a little aggression. The Ladies of Missalonghi also sounds like a pretty good candidate for an intense hate read. This particular book rant comes from author Marian Perera.