This book has been on my radar for a while, but had not made it yet to a TBR pile, however I saw it on the shelf during my most recent trip to the library to pick up some hold items. Soooooooo to get to the point, I checked it out and read most of it when I was stuck indoors all day Saturday for hurricane Irene. This book was a perfect "rained in" book. It was light with some female backstabbing, lots of fashions, and more than a smattering of romance.
The prologue begins with the funeral of Elizabeth Holland. The bulk of the book goes back about two weeks to take us through the events leading up to her death. These events include more than one ball, some sex, lots of flirting, an engagement, some nefarious plotting, and a few visits to the dressmakers. The story takes place in September and October of 1899. Its historical elements include fashion, the lives of the New York City rich and fabulous, and a teeny, tiny bit of politics. I wish there had been more about NYC in this time, but this is a book meant to be high interest for teenage girls, who might appreciate a wider look at the historical context of the story, but who are more likely to be bored by too much detail in that area.
I enjoyed the story enough to have gone on-line to reserve book two in the series, Rumors. I liked the characters well enough to be interested in what happens to them next. Will Diana get the man of her dreams? Will Penelope get her man? What will be the repercussions of Elizabeth's death at such an important time for her family? While I would appreciate more historical references, I think I can simply enjoy the next book, and perhaps the following two as the snapshots of society life they are meant to be.