Tag Archive | EDEN Southworth

The Hidden Hand

Title: The Hidden Hand
Also called Capitola the Madcap with the sequel Capitola’s Peril
Author: E.D.E.N. Southworth
Date Started: August 7, 2014

Other Works by Author:
The Missing Bride
Ishmael or Self-raised
In the Depths
For the complete list of her works see: EDEN Southworth Wikipedia

Genres: Fiction, History, Romance, Mystery

My Rating: 4

(New) Good for ages: 12+

Major Warfield, also known as Old Hurricane because of his violent temper and his manse Hurricane Hall, is called out in the middle of a stormy night to listen to an old woman’s confession.
He then heads to New York in search of the woman’s ward, Capitola, with intent to bring her back as his ward until he could bring her into her own stolen property.
He meets her in the middle of her trial for being found working as a newsboy dressed in boys clothes. He claims her as his ward and the judge lets her go with him and she returns to Hurricane hall in Virginia with him.

We are also introduced to Mara Rock, and her son Travers  and foster son Herbert Grayson (who was friends with Captiola before her first guardian left her). Herbert, through the kindness of Old Hurricane goes to west point and joins the army. Travers is under the tutelage of Dr. Day, a neighbor of theirs. Travers is soon taken in as a live in apprentice with Mrs. Rock as housekeeper to the family when he falls in love with the doctor’s beautiful daughter Clara.

A death, a ghost, a robber, a mad house. All these things serve to describe the rest of the book as the stories unfold and more connections and mysteries are found between the lead characters.

Note: I listened to the book so I don’t know if I’m spelling all of the characters names correctly.

My Thoughts:
I’ve read this book three times and I enjoy it every time :).

Historical fiction with romance and mystery. The PoV jumps around a bit but in a controlled and understandable manner. I was never left wondering who I was following.

The story itself is sweet, a little sad, and thrilling. Mysteries and deceptions lurk around every corner.

A warning for those who may be bothered (mild spoilers):

-Capitola is high-spirited and a little naughty and disrespectful at times.
-Her guardian, Old Hurricane is blustering and has frequent brief fits of rage. Sort of like a grown ups temper-tantrum.
– There is a scene where a man is in Capitola’s bedroom to carry her off. His intentions are evil but nothing inappropriate is said or done.

My Favorite Quotes:

~ Capitola on  her life at Hurricane Hall vs New York
“Catch me coming to my senses, when it’s so delightful to be mad. I’m too sharp for that.”
“I wonder how long they’ll keep me here? Forever, I hope. Until I get cured. I hope they won’t cure me; I vow I won’t be cured. It’s a great deal too pleasant to be mad, and I’ll stay so.”

~“And no sooner had Cap been commanded, if she valued her safety, not to cross the water or climb the precipice than, as a natural consequence, she began to wonder what was in the valley behind the mountain and what might be in the woods across the river. And she longed, above all things, to explore and find out for herself.”

~“She loved old houses and old legends well enough to enjoy them; but was not sufficiently credulous to believe, or cowardly to fear, them.”



Where can you get this book: Amazon


The Missing Bride

Title: The Missing Bride
Author: E.D.E.N. Southworth
Date Started: July 31, 2014

Other Works by Author:
The Hidden Hand or Capitola the Madcap
Capitola’s Peril
Ishmael or Self-raised
In the Depths
For the complete list of her works see: EDEN Southworth Wikipedia

Genres: Fiction, History, Romance, Mystery

My Rating: 3

Summary: The reader is first introduced to Edith, grandniece to Commodore Nicholas Waugh and heir to his estate, Luckenough. During the war of 1812 she meets a wounded British soldier and marries him. The Commodore is displeased because he hoped she would marry his friend Mr. Grimshaw.
Edith is disinherited and moves to England and little Jaquelina, another poor relative of the commodore’s is taken in as the heir. When Jaquelina reaches her teens she is tricked into a marriage with Mr. Grimshaw whom she finds hateful.
Meanwhile Edith has returned to the neighborhood, widowed and with her young child and husbands adopted sister Marion.
Marion falls in love with and secretly marries a cousin of Jaquelina, Mr. Thurston Willcoxen. They have a quarrel and Thurston has a small flirtation with Jaquelina, which makes Grimshaw insanely jealous. Grimshaw flies into a rage and Marion ends up in the middle of it.

My Thoughts: I went into the story comparing it too much to some of the author’s other works: The Hidden Hand, and Ishmael or Self-Raised. It reads similar to The Hidden Hand but it didn’t feel as expertly done as that wonderful story was.

The beginning was confusing as there was a string of brides and it was very unclear who was going missing. It was difficult to discern the main character as well as perspectives jumped a lot.

But a quarter or halfway through the story the main characters were established and the story flowed smoothly and was quite interesting.

I really did enjoy it though it took some work to get past the beginning.

My Favorite Quotes:

"Those are fugitives not foes, listen, they plead they do not
threaten, go and unbar the door, Oliver," said Edith.



Where can you get this book: Amazon, Librivox