The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin

The American Heiress: A Novel


Traveling abroad with her mother at the turn of the twentieth century to seek a titled husband, beautiful, vivacious Cora Cash, whose family mansion in Newport dwarfs the Vanderbilts’, suddenly finds herself Duchess of Wareham, married to Ivo, the most eligible bachelor in England. Nothing is quite as it seems, however: Ivo is withdrawn and secretive, and the English social scene is full of traps and betrayals. Money, Cora soon learns, cannot buy everything, as she must decide what is truly worth the price in her life and her marriage.


It took me quite a while to get into The American Heiress. A friend lent it to me since she loves it, but man at first I couldn't figure out why. It opens with Cora before she leaves for Europe to try and buy a title. Really her mom is the one who wants that. She is rich so they can pretty much do what they want, though they have to be proper and go about it the right way.

At first I really wasn't enjoying this book. I hated everyone and not in a good way. I didn't care what happened to anyone. Cora's mom is a nightmare, though I did enjoy the tragedy at the party in the beginning. That was kind of awesome, but the rest...not so much. When they got to Europe I still wasn't enjoying it. I found the story really boring and just...not what I like to read. Once Cora and Ivo got married though I started to enjoy it.

Ivo is kind of strange. I couldn't really figure out his mood swings. He would be all great and loving with Cora, then the next minute so cold and distant. He was just all over the place. I know he had a thing with the other girl before he married Cora, but it wasn't clear if it was still going on or not. I didn't really care either way, but by the end I did feel bad for Cora. She went into this marriage for love and she thought Ivo did as well. She really seemed to care about him, but she just couldn't figure out how to make him happy. Since he did have his mood swings she just seems to kept getting smaller and smaller. She lets the servants do whatever they wanted, she let Ivo's mom intimidate her, she just let people walk all over her because she  wasn't certain in her new surroundings. She wasn't certain how to make Ivo happy so she just kept shrinking into the background.

I did enjoy the second half of the book. I liked watching Cora settle into her new life. At times I just wanted to yell at her to grow a backbone and do something. I did feel bad for Cora when she finally finds out what has been going on, or what went on before she go married. Teddy shows up again all I love you! Let's run away together and I just was like um okay. I didn't buy that Teddy actually loved Cora ever. Sure he liked her, and maybe he did love her, but Cora definitely didn't love him. I am happy with the ending as it was and really it made me hope that Cora would live happily ever after. So it took a while to get into the story, but then I did enjoy it.

Rating: 3.5/5

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