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Vixen - Volume 3

M. E. Braddon

Book Overview: 

This is an exquisite and heartbreaking love story. Violet Tempest and Roderick Vawdrey, otherwise known to each other as Vixen and Rorie, are childhood sweethearts. However, Rorie's family wants him to marry elsewhere. You may think it is the old story all over again, but nothing in this novel is what it seems. It is far too realistic for that. Many books talk about falling in love. This book starts after that stage, and speaks about the harder stage of a relationship: loving earnestly but understanding that love - even in the truest and purest sense - is not everything in life. There are duties to fulfil, and they might have nothing to do with love. Family life plays a large role in this novel, and it is not always warm and good. Many of the characters are strong and complicated. The novel has some feminist ideas, but they have boundaries, and are presented side by side with the conventional ideas of the times. But the signs of change are there... loud and clear.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .sh with a grand air, and performed all the services of the table with as much dignity as if he had never been anything less than a butler. He poured out a glass of ale for the Captain and a glass of water for his mistress. Miss Skipwith seemed relieved when Violet said she preferred water to ale, and did not particularly care about wine.

"I used to drink wine at home very often, just because it was put in my glass, but I like water quite as well," said Vixen.

After the fish there came a small joint of lamb, and a couple of dishes of vegetables; then a small custard pudding, and some cheese cut up in very minute pieces in a glass dish, some raw garden-stuff which Doddery called salad, and three of last year's pears in an old Derby dessert-dish. The dinner could hardly have been smaller, but it was eminently genteel.

The conversation was entirely between Captain Winstanley and his aunt. Vixen sat and listened wonderingly, save at odd . . . Read More