Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
- Grab your current read
- Open to a random page
- Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
- BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
- Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
My teaser this week comes from The Observations, by Jane Harris.
Harris’ debut, set in Scotland in 1863, is narrated by the lively, sharp Bessy Buckley, who leaves Glasgow and happens into a job as a maid at Castle Haivers, an estate nowhere near as grand as its name suggests. Her mistress, Arabella, takes a personal interest in Bessy and encourages her to write her thoughts and experiences in a journal. She also subjects Bessy to odd experiments, but Bessy goes along with them because she is flattered by the attention and quickly growing attached to her mistress. Things change when Bessy snoops in Arabella’s locked desk and discovers the book Arabella has been writing, The Observations, a study of the “habits and nature of the Domestic Class.” Bessy is incensed to read some less-than-favorable things about herself in the account, as well as to learn of her mistress’ affection for one of her predecessors, a girl who died under mysterious circumstances. Bessy concocts a revenge that ends up having consequences far more lasting than she ever envisioned. Bessy’s unique, witty voice distinguishes this boisterous novel.
Of course deep down I knew the truth. It was a desparate blow to learn that she had found out some aspects of my past, let’s just say I would have preferred her not to know. But what was worse was how she thought of me. Hells teeth, how can I explain the wretched despair I felt, except to say my heart was banjaxed.