Over my winter break, I have been enjoying Diamond in the Rough by Jen Turano. The second book in her American Heiresses series, this book is about a woman named Poppy Garrison, who leaves her farm life in Pennsylvania to go to New York for the social Season. Her grandmother is determined for her to become the diamond of the first water, but with her constant mishaps, that dream her grandmother has for her seems impossible to achieve. Meanwhile, Lord Reginald Blackburn has arrived in the city from London to help his cousin find an American heiress. Due to the proper manners he possesses, Poppy’s grandmother pays him to teach said manners to Poppy. But with Poppy always landing herself in trouble, and with his heart also included in that trouble, the task is proven to be more than what either of them bargained for.
Jen Turano certainly did not disappoint in her book. From the very beginning, the readers find Poppy already involved in some sort of trouble. During a Quadrille, Poppy’s crown gets stuck in the sleeve of her dance partner. But the events unravel even further from there. The first few chapters are just filled with constant mishaps of Poppy’s, showing her lack of knowledge in the social arts. Also in these first few chapters, the readers are introduced to several colorful characters. There is Reginald Blackburn, who is brooding and well…at first seems to be a little bit scary. As time goes on however, the readers can’t help but fall in love with him. There is Murray Middleton, who also seems to always find himself in trouble, almost seeming to be the male version of Poppy, although a little bit more clueless. There is Nigel Flaherty, who seems to be chasing after Poppy. He is often associated with Lena Ridgeway, a curious character with a love of dogs and a knack for playing matchmaker, trying to make sure Nigel and Poppy end up together. There is also Lord Charles Lonsdale, Reginald’s cousin, who seems to be a little clueless himself. And there is Mrs. Viola Van Rensselaer, Poppy’s grandmother, who is quite strict and gets irritated with Poppy easily. And I can’t forget to mention all the other young ladies involved in the Season, who cause more trouble, trying to one-up each other and vying for Lord Lonsdale’s affections.
All these wonderful characters, and many more, lead to interesting encounters and trouble. Overall, the book is interesting, and is very difficult to put down. Jen Turano is a master at the comedy, and I was smiling and laughing throughout the book. This is my first book of Jen Turano’s that I have read, and I really did enjoy it. I hope to read more of her books in the near future, and encounter more intriguing and colorful characters as the ones she presented in Diamond in the Rough.