Pink II Week 1 in Review and a Winner

Happy Friday!  I will be handing this post off to Erin momentarily, but I’m jumping in to announce the winner of The Masque of the Black Tulip giveaway.  Congratulations to mkc28!  If you will email me at, I will get your book in the mail as soon as possible.  Thanks to all of you who entered the giveaway and shared it with others.  I wish I had a book to give each of you, but keep following along!  There are plenty more giveaways coming up in the next ten months as we work our way through the Pinks.

And now, I will leave you in Erin’s capable hands to chat about Pink II, chapters 1-11.  Enjoy!

Welcome to the first recap of The Masque of the Black Tulip. So how is everybody doing so far? Are we enjoying getting to know Henrietta and Miles again or for the first time? I know I am. I missed how funny and droll Henrietta is. It was mentioned in the first recaps from Pink I about the sense of humor in the books and I often find myself laughing out loud and snorting – yes, I snort and will admit it. What are some of your snorting moments? The first that really got me good was Eloise, on her way to Selwick Hall, contemplating to herself about her dissertation and what the department does to attenuated graduate students who don’t produce a pile of paper. “From what I understand, they’re quietly shuffled out of the Harvard history department by dead of night and fed to a relentless horde of academic-eating crocodiles.”

As we start chapter 2, we find Henrietta in her parlor with a letter from Jane. But it isn’t just any letter. It’s a letter from the Pink Carnation to her correspondent. After 7 long years, Hen finally gets to be part of a spy league. I thought the way that Jane came up with her Lexicon and coded her dispatches was genius. Because really, who wants to read about who attended what and what they wore?

I have really enjoyed the observations from both Hen and Miles, especially the points that cross over with previous opinions from Pink I from different characters. For example, Miles’ view on Almacks is very similar to Richards, which I can see since they are best friends. Also, Miles was to Richard what Henrietta is to Jane as their correspondents. Particular Genius, I think anyway.

Continuing on, so far the only one to start noticing the other in that particular way is Henrietta. It starts as jealousy over the Hussy: Theresa Ballinger, Marquise de Montval. It continues when Miles doesn’t show up on time the next day at Hen’s, and she comes to the conclusion that he was out late with the Marquise, since they both disappeared from Almacks at the same time. It gets even better when Hen finds out that he took the Marquise driving in the park. Hen’s quip in response to the Marquise’s suggestion that her opinions change because she is young but will settle when older is priceless. “Yes, I imagine that’s what happens when on can’t get about as much. Do you suffer from stiffness of the joints? My mother has an excellent remedy for it if you do.” Of course, Miles is understandably perplexed about why Hen is being so mean. Boys. They never get it.

As in the first Pink, Lauren has mentioned many more characters that we get to know so well in later books. We meet Penelope and Charlotte, along with Lord Vaughn and Mary and Letty Alsworthy. I can’t wait to continue the story and see who else we meet and see how the pull between Miles and Hen gets stronger. What were your observations this time around?

13 thoughts on “Pink II Week 1 in Review and a Winner

  1. One of my all-time favorite Lauren lines was in this section: “No one kept linen quite as fresh as Downey.” It was just so wonderfully unexpected the first time I read this book, and it still makes me laugh every time I read it.

    I’m enjoying all the character cameos too! I keep forgetting that Turnip is actually “Reggie” Fitzhugh.

  2. So, so, so much love for this book and these characters. The biggest thing for me about these chapters was that I was listening to the audio book on my way to work with tears streaming down my face at at least one point. I am sure that was a sight. It is probably a very good thing that I drive a stretch of rural desert highway.

    Specifically, it was the part when we learn how 8 year old Miles first comes to visit Uppington house for Christmas with Richard and Lady Uppington says they have to return him to his parents. When little Miles says something along the lines of it being okay because his parents don’t want him to be returned…oh, my. And then the glorious Selwicks instantaneously and naturally circle the wagons and include him as theirs, starting with lovely wee Henrietta.

    • I loved this part too, Paige – the adoption of Miles into the family. The rather formal conversation of 8 year olds was interesting too – “i’ve brought Dorrington home” and “I say, Selwick? Does your sister have any toy soldiers?” It was a reminder to me of young children having to become so independent living at boarding school at such a young age.

  3. This is my favorite book. I love the chemistry between Hen and Miles. They are both quirky and goofy which I think makes them so lovable. 🙂

  4. I flew through this when I decided to reread. I had forgotten how much I love Miles and Hen together! The way they bicker and make each other laugh its obvious from the beginning they belong together!

  5. I ended up rushing through the book — I enjoyed the first one, but I think this one is the one that engaged me in the series more when I read it through the first time. I love Hen, relate to her a bit more than I did to Amy, and her interactions with Miles just make me happy. 🙂

  6. Like many, this is favorite book in the series. It was fun re-reading it and seeing old friends again for the first time, including one of my favorite characters, the Dowager Duchess of Dovedale. Love her! Anyone else get a Monty Python vibe in the “Albatross” discussion?

    • I was telling people that if they liked Monty Python that they might like this book, and I thought maybe I was stretching. I am so glad to see you make that connection and reference! “Vibe” is a good way to phrase it.

  7. Miles is actually fairly competent as a spy — his plans seem sensible and he thinks of details like removing his shoe buckles and buying a cloak so he’ll blend in better. It’s a nice change of pace after the misadventures in Pink I.

    Charlotte was one of my favorite heroines in the series my first read around. The Dowager Duchess is so mean to her 😦

  8. So many events and characters are foreshadowed – things I never caught with the first reading.

    Jane’s thoughts in Delaroche’s study – “Her attention had recently been drawn to the possibility of an Irish rising being organized out of Paris.”

    The introduction of Charlotte and Penelope – I agree with Heather that Charlotte was one of my favorite heroines, also.

    I loved seeing the emergence of Geoff’s character – Geoff, the steady, practical one except when it came to Mary Alsworthy. He became one of my favorite characters – who couldn’t love a man who struggles over writing poetry?

    Seeing all of these things in a different light has been a joy in rereading these books.

    I really love the development of Miles’s and Hen’s relationship.

  9. I’m slow, only on chapter 3, because my 6 month old keeps trying to eat the book when I’m reading. I find that I’m appreciating Colin and Eloise more when re reading.

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