- By Eva Ibbotson

The Reluctant Heiress

  • Title: The Reluctant Heiress
  • Author: Eva Ibbotson
  • ISBN: 9780142412770
  • Page: 403
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Reluctant Heiress Spring Tessa is a beautiful tiny dark eyed princess who s given up her duties to follow her heart working for nothing backstage at the Viennese opera No one there knows who she really is or t

    Spring, 1922Tessa is a beautiful, tiny, dark eyed princess who s given up her duties to follow her heart, working for nothing backstage at the Viennese opera No one there knows who she really is, or that a fairy tale castle is missing its princess, and Tessa is determined to keep it that way.But secret lives can be complicated, and when a wealthy, handsome Englishman diSpring, 1922Tessa is a beautiful, tiny, dark eyed princess who s given up her duties to follow her heart, working for nothing backstage at the Viennese opera No one there knows who she really is, or that a fairy tale castle is missing its princess, and Tessa is determined to keep it that way.But secret lives can be complicated, and when a wealthy, handsome Englishman discovers this bewitching urchin backstage, Tessa s two lives collide and in escaping her inheritance, she finds her destiny.Magic Flutes is an enchanting story of love, music and secret princesses from Eva Ibbotson.

    1 thought on “The Reluctant Heiress

    1. Alright, I really like this author but enough is enough. I think I have read too many of her books in too short of time. Heck, I think I could write one of these books. Hmm, here goes. Impoverished adorable female heroine who, despite very bleak odds, is still the happiest, calmest, sweetest girl on the block. It doesn't matter that her parents hate her of she has no money, her beauty shines through the mess her life is in. Rich, tall, dashingly attractive man comes on the scene. Has all the mon [...]

    2. Update: I finished actually, I skipped a lot of the book. I just couldn't get into it. And it wasn't even the random big words (see earlier rant below). I just didn't really care about these characters. And there was so much in this book that didn't seem to fit quite right or that just felt like filler. I really doubt I'll ever read anything by Eva Ibbotson again.Just a quick note I'm only 40 pages in and I'm a bit annoyed with the author. "Vituperative" and "salubrious"? Really? She couldn't us [...]

    3. When I flipped through the book at the library the cover told me this was the story of beautiful dark eyed princess who has shrugged off her royal duties and taken up the life of theatre and how she meets and falls in love with a handsome and rich English businessman. For me atleast the story isn't so much about romance really. Atleast, not one of those heady romances where every other page is filled with detailed descriptions of the heroine's face. No, this was less of romance and more of, well [...]

    4. This is EXACTLY the kind of book I would want to write. It's a ridiculous confection, but not a wispy meringue or an overdone croquembouche. It's likea Sachertorte! Layer upon layer of substantial deliciousness that is almost but not quite too much, and best enjoyed with a strong cup of coffee. (Or like I did, in a hot tubn you eat Sachertorte in a hot tub? I volunteer to find out.)

    5. I was so excited to find another Eva Ibbotson book! Awhile back I blew through A Song for Summer, A Countess Below Stairs, A Company of Swans, and The Morning Gift. When I surfaced again, I found myself really hoping the magic spell wouldn't end there. Happily there was one more sweet historical in store for me. THE RELUCTANT HEIRESS is a (retitled) re-issue of Ibbotson's Magic Flutes, which was originally published in 1982. It is set in the 1920s and revolves around the outrageously funny and t [...]

    6. Another joyous romp through Eva Ibbotson's world of love in the face of early 20th century post-war Europe, great art, and truly disarming heroines. Tessa (who just happens to be an Italian princess) has dedicated herself as a maid of all work in the service of opera. Guy (tycoon/former foster child & chaos creater) buys up her old palace in honor of his fiance. Said fiance turns out to be in love with herself. Which is actually a good thing because you know sooner or later Tessa & Guy a [...]

    7. Eh I love Eva Ibbotson's world.I have only one problem with her books, there are not enough. Practically, there are only six (plus short stories) for adults. And now I have read the fifth.The book was simply compilation of: the love for music (classic music), the love for nature, the longing for the old world of great Vienna (the world before IWW) and a charming love story like from a fairy tale.‘Breathe?’ said Tessa, shocked. ‘I don't need to breathe when I’m with you'Ibbotson was an am [...]

    8. I feel like I am in a Bad Book Rut, I need a good book asap to restore my faith in writers everywhere!!Author Eva Ibbostson is 1-1. Her book "A countess below stairs" was wonderful, I thouroughly enjoyed reading it. This book, "The Reluctant Heiress' was a flop.It took me about 200 pages of reading this one (or scanning it) to become half-way interested. The wording in this one is just too much. I know she was trying to write fitting to the time period, but I just really didn't like it. The char [...]

    9. When I reviewed A Countless Below Stairs last week, I felt as though I couldn't single out one of Eva Ibbotson's books for a 5-star rating because I love them all and don't have a favorite. Since then, a couple of friends have read my review and expressed interest, and I found myself backtracking from Countess and recommending The Reluctant Heiress (in some editions alternatively titled Magic Flutes) because they would probably like it even more. Apparently I have a favorite.It will be difficult [...]

    10. If I had read this book before I read A Countess Below Stairs it would have been one of my favorite books. A beautiful story with such a great leading lady, and the operaDebussy, Mozart, Puccini--love love love. I like the sacrifice of everything toward the greater good of music, and that Beethoven's button business-genius.However, this is strikingly similar to A Countess Below Stairs and that book has a slightly more appealing hero, bigger climax moment with that great line that goes something [...]

    11. Eva Ibbotson's usual lovely effort to raise the bar in the romance category, redeeming a typical fairy-tale plot with real people and real humor. Taking place in Austria just after World War I, we are swiftly introduced to two people obviously intended for each other: Guy, an English foundling turned self-made millionaire, and Tessa, an Austrian princess with a lineage that goes back to Charlemagne. But Guy is smitten with a snobbish fiancee and buys Tessa's castle to impress her, while Tessa is [...]

    12. I've never really read any Eva Ibbotson before, at least I don't remember doing so. I got this one out because I was going through a ballet-fiction phase and the Company of Swans book looked good and this one looked interesting as well. Gosh, I could shoot myself for that run-on sentence. But anyway, I couldn't renew this book from the library, so I set out to read it in three hours. Needless to say this was an uncomfortable pace - roughly a hundred-something pages an hour, which would be a litt [...]

    13. This was typical Eva Ibbotson fare: a story that's just predictable enough to make it feel cosy and well-loved without feeling boring or clichéd. I like her blend of simple storytelling mixed with delicious description, only in this case I found the description began to detract from the story. I can forgive a little exaggeration, but too much and I start to squirm. Oh, and Guy's eyes changing colour felt just a bit too much for me. And -- as with all Eva Ibbotson's books -- there were reference [...]

    14. Oh no, fooled by the great re-naming bug. I loved this book when I read it years ago under its original title of Magic Flutes. The new packaging is nice. However, all the time I was waiting for this to come out I thought I was waiting for a NEW story.

    15. This is a historical fiction book that is largely a romance, but there is a good plot line besides just that. Tessa is an Austrian princess, but she is a strong republican and all she really wants to do in her life is work in the theater and help to make operas. The book is set in 1920's Austria, which makes it interesting in the historical context as well as having an enjoyable storyline. Eva Ibbotson's writing really draws you in, making it difficult to put the book down.I really enjoyed Tessa [...]

    16. Having read three books by Eva Ibbotson in a row, it had become quite clear to me that the woman was a master when it came to writing historical romance. And totally adorable romance at that. Don't go thinking these are going to be adorable or cute in the way that you'd find Stephanie Perkins or Kasie Wests books. These are romance that are set during a time when the approach to romance was all about courting, dowries and engagement announcements.Magic Flutes, by the end of it, had stolen my hea [...]

    17. Fun fact: one of the castles with an important role in the plot is supposed to be Neuschwanstein Castle, which was also the inspiration for Disney's Sleeping Beauty castle. How fitting for a princess novel. Technically not a princess novel, but if you have aristocrats and pretty dresses, it counts in my book.Eva Ibbotson's YA thing (as opposed to her MG books) seems to be comforting Cinderella fluff set in different historical European settings. I read (or reread) these books when I want the goo [...]

    18. I'm not sure which is more crazy, the fact that I read this book or that I enjoyed it! First alluring the reader in with a cover of a sweet looking young woman, the book tells the tale of two people: a princess in the glory of a fading court, and a waif found upon the docks who turned himself into a millionaire. A romance, a historical adventure, and almost fairy-tale, "The Reluctant Heiress" sweeps a reader into the 1930s and the adventures of music, theater, and 'republicanism'. With good writ [...]

    19. Una novela feelgood con personajes cargados de humor. Tal vez demasiado cliché la prometida de Guy, pero la lectura es amena y te deja con buenas sensaciones.

    20. HeheheheI just finished reading someone else's review of this book and no longer feel dumb in thinking that there was a superfluous of big and foreign words in this book. I eventually got too lazy to constantly check the dictionary and instead decided to just power read through the paragraphs littered with these magnanimous words. I've read previous books from this author and didn't suffer as much so I thought perhaps the author made an effort to represent the time period (1920s), the characters [...]

    21. I know, I KNOW, that any time I pick up one of Eva Ibbotson's romances, I can't put it down. I KNOW THIS. And yet, last night when I got home after midnight, I STILL PICKED IT UP. Fortunately I could sleep in this morning.The remarkable thing about this unbreakable grip Ibbotson's books have on me is that the main characters are the same from book to book, which you'd think would get boring. All the girls are young and full of loving, giving life, and all the guys are about 10 years older, hot-t [...]

    22. "But if you have a drop of pity for my unhappy lot, you'll not forsake me"-K. S. Shilovsky (paraphrased by me), libretto of Tchaikovsky's Eugene OneginMy rating might be so high because I didn't expect much from this book. It sounded like the main characters of A Countess Below Stairs changed their names and got dropped into the setting of The Star of Kazan only fifteen years later.Anna Tessa is a Russian Countess Austrian Princess working at a(n) English Manor Viennese opera company when she me [...]

    23. “A smultronställe is any place that’s absolutely private and special and your own. A place where life is an epiphany.” The Reluctant Heiress is one my favorite Ibbotson young-adult novels. It is very similar to A Countess Below Stairs but also has its unique twists. A major component in the story is the idea of Star Siblings. The main characters, Tessa and Guy, are both born under the sign of Gemini, which supposedly strengthens their actual connection. Tessa is a poor Austrian princess, [...]

    24. While I have to saw that I found this a highly enjoyable book, I really felt that it drug on for way too long. Despite knowing how it would work out before I even opened the book, after finishing the first third, I honestly thought that the book should have ended. It's almost as if Ibbotson ended it and then decided that she wasn't quite finished with the characters and chose to change a couple of lines and then continue on for another couple hundred pages. Thus, while good, I've read better in [...]

    25. Found on the docks at Newcastle-upon-Tyme, Guy is a foundling who spent his earliest years at the Foundling Home fighting any perceived insult or injustice. At the age of 6 he was adopted by the widow Martha Hodge, who saw his potential and loved him unconditionally. Guy worked hard to please Martha and turned his energy to his studies. After attending University in Vienna, Guy came home changed and determined to make millions. Now, in 1922, he has become a multi-millionaire and is rich enough t [...]

    26. A romantic, wistful story that pulls at the heartstrings.I absolutely loved how Eva Ibbotson weaved music into her writing through the presence of the opera. The way she moved through time using the opera as the story’s time marker was a craft decision that I enjoyed immensely. Tessa as a character was relatable and empowering. Her views about her social standing and her unwavering love for the work she put into the International Opera House was unique for her time and refreshing for me to rea [...]

    27. Ibbotson's writing is entrancing, and this is another un-put-down-able romance for teens.There are none of the direct scenes that appear in some of her other books for older readers, though a few mature-theme references prevent it being suitable for under 13s. As it is, I'd keep it for 15+ Part of the reason it's so easy to 'lose your heart' in her stories is that her female characters are superb. How she can make an ordinary looking, hard-working, self-sacrificing and kind-hearted girl look abs [...]

    28. How does one describe the novels of Eva Ibbotson? She has a way of blending outlandishly caricatured, eminently familiar hero and villain types with simple, earnest storytelling. Damning with faint praise, you say? No, no, for she does it so very well that, as a reader, you allow yourself to be swept away into her unabashedly modern fairy tale world. And her YA romance novels are nothing if not that. They don't contain the obvious trappings of fairy tales, for the characters are real people (eve [...]

    29. This book was exactly what I wanted at exactly the right time. I was suffering from a migraine yesterday when I started it, and this light and fluffy concoction was enough to distract me from my pain while still being light enough not to add to my strain.This book is entirely predictable, but that's part of the reason you'll want to turn to it. As much as we readers know how the narrative will end, it's a delight getting there. The characters are lively and often filled with joy. Love of music f [...]

    30. I love Eva Ibbotson, I really do, but it does seem like she recycles the same storyline. Her writing really sparks my imagination and that a huge compliment to her style and descriptions. However, in this book, I pictured Tessa (not my favorite name choice) as an early teenager rather than a 20-year-old woman and that did not enhance my feelings of the book, for obvious reasons.Other things I enjoyedImagining Pfafferstein and the groundsDitto the sets and music from the operaAll the music refere [...]

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