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The Observations
The Observations
Author: Jane Harris
An extraordinary historical novel about a peculiar friendship between the mistress of a Scottish estate and her irresistibly appealing housemaid — Scotland, 1863. In an attempt to escape her not-so-innocent past in Glasgow, Bessy Buckley—a wide-eyed and feisty young Irish girl—takes a job as a maid in a big house outside Edinburg...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780143112013
ISBN-10: 0143112015
Publication Date: 6/27/2007
Pages: 416
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.

3.7 stars, based on 42 ratings
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics)
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette
Members Wishing: 1
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

bookaddicted avatar reviewed The Observations on + 128 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 12
Jane Harris has written a wonderful debut novel. Set Scotland in 1863, it tells the story of a young girl from a hardscrabble background who becomes a servant and her relationship with the lady of the house. The lady, Arabella, has many secrets and her strange behavior at first mystifies and then draws in young Bessy. Bessy, acting as narrator, relates the story in a believable and many times witty voice, although the story is a dark and tragic one. This is a book not to miss out on.
reviewed The Observations on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
This is a very enjoyable story, full of mysteries, set in 1890s Scotland. The main character is a naive but spunky girl who finds herself working as a servant for a strange and enchanting mistress. Slowly the mysteries surrounding both women's pasts and their current relationship unfold. Their loyalty and friendship creates a bond that overcomes social status, age, lies, and betrayals. Although the pace was at times laborious, it was worth finding out the secrets of these engaging unlikely friends.
reviewed The Observations on + 209 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
I absolutely fell in love with this book it is very uniquely written and the star of this one is a very likeable character. This is also the first book I ever sent out and have been wanting it back ever since! Great book great story and very different not the same old same old going on here.
reviewed The Observations on + 149 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Excellent historical tale! Mysterious and haunting!
reviewed The Observations on + 209 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book is wonderful and very intriguing, hooked from the start to finish. Many curves and turns. Enjoyed this very much. So very interesting. Wanted to skip words to find things out LOL it is a very good book.
Read All 13 Book Reviews of "The Observations"

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jamie00 avatar reviewed The Observations on
Loved this book. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that love gothic mysteries.
thameslink avatar reviewed The Observations on + 723 more book reviews
I thought this was an intriguing book -- loved the main character of Bessy, the wise-cracking Irish maid in a Victorian Scottish country home where things are not quite what they seem. Lots of twists and turns in this very assured first novel. Unexpectedly funny amidst the doom and gloom.
reviewed The Observations on + 628 more book reviews
Thoroughly enjoyable talke. Very original. Hard to put down.About a servant girl and her mistress in Scotland in the early 19th century.
reviewed The Observations on + 23 more book reviews
The story was good and the narrator charming, but the book could've used a 100 page edit. Took too long to get to the point and the mystery wasn't strong enough to keep you reading.

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