Thursday, October 4, 2012

Audiobook Review: Belinda Goes to Bath

Belinda Goes to Bath (The Travelling Matchmaker, 2) by M.C. Beaton, read by Helen Lisanti, August 1, 2012. 5 hours 27 minutes. Published by AudioGo. Source: Audiobook Jukebox/Publisher.
No sooner does Miss Pym board her next stagecoach than she finds herself embroiled in the plight of Miss Belinda Earle, a spirited heiress banished to Bath after swearing off the marriage market. When the coach founders near Baddell Castle, and the dashing Marquis of Frenton comes to the rescue, Miss Pym decides to give Fate a hand. Although the austere bachelor disdains romance, his furtive glances towards Belinda prove to Miss Pym that her expert matchmaking will soon turn this star-crossed couple into a heavenly match!
First Sentence:
Hannah Pym arose at four in the morning in a bedroom in the Bell Savage Inn in the City of London and prepared for adventure.

Last week I reviewed Emily Goes to Exeter the first book in M.C. Beaton's Traveling Matchmaker series. I know, sometimes the strangest things appear on my blog. *shocks me, too*

There were parts of Belinda Goes to Bath that I enjoyed more than in Emily Goes to Exeter, and then there were some that I thought fell a little flat compared to the first book in the series. What I liked more in this book would have the be that there was a lot more danger and adventure in it, like, the storm/drunken coach driver who sent the stagecoach in the chilly waters very nearly killing the passengers.
The second book in the Travelling Matchmaker exceeded the first book in that it was just more exciting with all the intrigue concerning the Marquis Baddel Castle, and whether or not Miss Pym would be able to find a suitable match for the spoiled Belinda.
What made it less interesting then the previous book would have to be that it followed the same outline, Miss Pym travelling by stagecoach meets a young lady who is in need of a good match. While pretty similar, I liked that Belinda and her circumstances were completely different from those of Emily, so the plot saved itself from repetition.

I have my theories about Miss Pym and a certain gentleman who loves to hear of her adventures when she returns to London after her journeys. I am secretly hoping that maybe, just maybe, the two of them well wind up together by the time the series draws to a close. Until then, I will continue on in the series to see how it all plays out for the enjoyable Miss Hannah Pym.

Miss Hannah Pym was just as enjoyable in Belinda Goes to Bath as she was in the previous book. Although, I really wish she would take the advice she gives to the love torn people she meets on the stagecoach and put her foot forward in her own love life (I don't care if it's regency England). I do hope that maybe when the series draws to a close Hannah will find a happy ending to her story.

What I enjoyed most out of Belinda Goes to Bath would have to be Miss Pym. I just love the way she so forth coming with her thoughts and that she has no fear of sticking her nose where it does not belong. I just enjoy reading about her adventures, as well, as the way she helps those she travels with find love...even though I'm generally not a big reader of romance like books.

If you would like to know what I did not like about Belinda Goes to Bath just highlight the content section and you'll see. I know must people, probably, won't have any qualms about reading what I mentioned in the content review of this book, but for me it just did not work for me.

Content (will contain spoilers; highlight to see):

*Le sigh* While Emily Goes to Exeter was squeaky clean Belinda Goes to Bath was...not as clean. While it is not dirty romance book bad, there are a couple of scenes that I could have done without.

What you can expect: there is one or two scenes of extremely heavy kissing and the guy had some grabby hands. Near the beginning of Miss Pym's adventure to Bath, there are a couple scenes where one of the passengers gets rough with his wife (i.e. hitting, purposefully scaring, and belittling her). Lastly, general mudslinging by jealous parties who feel that they have been cheated out of what should have been there's.

Almost forgot one thing. Drinking, they do an awful lot of drinking in this book. O_O


When I listened to Emily Goes to Exeter last week I was still a little unsure of what I thought about the narrator, Helen Lisanti, but after listening to her narrate Belinda Goes to Bath I am sold on the fact that she does a wonderful job on the series.

What really makes Helen Lisanti so perfect, is that she does such a great job with Miss Pym's personality. I also enjoy the fact that she is capable of doing slightly different variations of the British accent-from a more refined upper class, to the more unpolished diction of the working class.
I just really enjoyed listening to the range she has while narrating Belinda Goes to Bath. Plus she does such an excellent job with the whiny, overly cosseted rich girls and absolutely nails their lines.

The only thing I didn't really care for while listening to Belinda Goes to Bath would have to be the length of the tracks. They tended to be a bit on the long side with some of them being close to an hour, which meant that I ended up stopping mid-track on numerous occasions.

Final Verdict: Miss Pym and her stagecoach matchmaking continues to be a delightful diversion from my normal reads.

Belinda Goes to Bath earns 4 out of 5 pineapples.

Travelling Matchmaker-
Emily Goes to Exeter
Belinda Goes to Bath

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