Mr. Cavendish, I Presume
is a disappointing read in some ways, with several scenes unexplained as they are to be the focus of this book. After The Lost Duke of Wyndham, I was interested in what would become of Thomas, the former Duke of Wyndham, and how he would end up with Amelia Willoughby. These questions
are answered here, but sadly there isn't much else new or interesting in it.
Many of the scenes are the same as in The Lost Duke of Wyndham, though from either Thomas's or Amelia's point of view (rather than Grace or Jack's), and the
result feels rather repetitive. We experience the same events a second time with a few different insights into what
happens, but there's not much else to the book. Someone who hasn't read the previous book will be able to follow the events in this one easily enough as most scenes are explained, so it doesn't seem to matter in which order they are read.
Thomas comes across as a more likeable character than the ineffectual chap of the previous book. Amelia
is a good, strong character in this story, caged by her family's expectations of her and worried, at least initially, that she's marrying a man who barely even notices her. As the book moves forward and it appears
that Thomas will no longer be the duke, there are some interesting moments as he imagines his life without this enormous part of his identity.
Still, the story feels generally thin in places.
Julia Quinn has a sparky, lively writing style which is good to read if often historically inaccurate. I
am pleased with the way in which she portrays Thomas's overarching sense of honor, but the overall feeling from Mr. Cavendish, I Presume
is of too much repetition of the previous book and not enough new scenes to make it entirely worthwhile reading. I think the pair of books would have worked better merged into one overall story, but it
is a reasonable read for a rainy summer's afternoon.