Pink V Week 2 in Review

pudding Happy Friday! First off, congratulations to the winner of the signed copy of The Mischief of the Mistletoe: it’s carmabeth! If you will send me an email at, I will get your prize in the mail to you. As for the rest of you, don’t despair! There are still seven Pink books to go.

On to chapters ten through sixteen of Pink V.

Poor Arabella has realized that, if Catherine Carruthers goes for another night-time walkabout, she could very well lose her position at Miss Climpson’s. Her attempts to catch Catherine in the act lead to the hilarious scene where Sally, Lizzy and Agnes help Arabella round up a prowler. When Miss Climpson arrives on the scene, the carpets are covered in porcelain shards, furniture is overturned, and Lizzy Reid is sitting victoriously on the back of the phony music master, whose mustachios are drooping right off his face. I wasn’t sure whether to laugh at Miss Climpson or wonder why parents paid her to look after their daughters when she seemed more concerned about Signor.Marconi’s posture and breathing than what he was doing trespassing on school grounds at night.

Two incredibly sweet things happen in these chapters. First, we learn that Turnip has been watching over Miss Climpson’s at night from the gardens, with the occasional spot of relief from his valet, Gerkin (Lauren kills me). We know this is Sally’s school, but you don’t get the impression he’s standing outside all night in a wet British December from a sense of familial duty. Second, Turnip scales the trellis up to Arabella’s window. What follows is admittedly wonderful, but it’s important to remember Turnip’s intentions when he starts searching for ivy – he wants to talk to Arabella, and to make sure she’s okay. Everything that follows is icing on the cake, but I love that the only thought in Turnip’s head when he started scaling the walls was Arabella’s peace of mind.

And again, I have to say – poor Arabella. She’s having a rough time at Miss Climpson’s. Between worrying that Catherine’s behavior will get her sacked and trying to decide if Turnip’s intentions are honest, she has to deal with a terrible violation of her privacy.  She returns from a day of Christmas shopping with Jane to find that her room has been vandalized. In addition to stealing the notebook that Arabella found during the altercation with Signor Marconi, the person responsible has damaged the majority of Arabella’s belongings. She doesn’t have much in the world to begin with, only a few dresses that aren’t school uniforms and a handful of nice accessories, all of which have been torn, stained or broken. This is a prime example of why I say Arabella is scrappy. She lets herself have a ten second pity party, and then immediately moves into recovery mode: “None of it was irreparable. Ink stains could be washed out; linen could be ironed; coral could be restrung.” She’s just been dealt a major blow, but she’s already got her game face back on.

Then there is the Christmas pageant scene, which is hilarious because it’s so authentic to the real life experience of watching or participating in a school play. I never thought about this before, but Lauren includes lots of plays in these stories! Mary and Arabella have both been involved in theatricals in some form or another, and I can think of at least two more examples of plays from later in the series. But I digress.  Amidst the confusion of an entire class of teenage girls blundering on and off stage and forgetting their lines, Turnip and Arabella are having trouble communicating. I really did want to throw things at Arabella and tell her to quit being so cold to Turnip at several points during these last two chapters. But honestly, once you read the rest of the book and see what the majority of her experience is like with men of the ton, you can’t blame her. She doesn’t expect Turnip to care about her at all, because no one else ever has. EVER. Good thing we know that, as is the case with each of the Pink books, all will come to a happy end.

What were your favorite quotes or moments from this section of Pink V?

13 thoughts on “Pink V Week 2 in Review

  1. Thank you for that wonderful recap Ashley. I have to confess, there is no way I could make this reread last a month. I have tried to find my favorite quote from this section, and failed miserably. My favorite quote of all the books is when Turnip quotes Latin and says that there is nothing like a good orgy to get a schoolboy to read Latin. Aside from being intrinsically funny, it shows, to me at least that the Dear Boy is not all the root vegetable people think he is. A lot of his classical education seems to have stuck, although he would have one to believe he slept through it all. His thoughtfulness in planning for the frost fair outing shows a mind and heart in the right place. And he is rich and looks like Simon Baker. What’s not to love? I think the rest of them are jealous.

  2. My favorite quote is: “Turning to Turnip, Miss Dempsey said, ‘Do you think?’. ‘As little as I can,’ Turnip replied honestly.”
    Because I think it’s hilarious. And quite honestly, totally Turnip! I don’t remember if it’s from this section though. I always pick one quote from every book I read and this is the one I had picked for this selection!

  3. There were so many hilarious things in this section. I think one of my favorite quotes has to be, “M’groom spells me. Splendid sort, Gerkin. Always good in a pickle.” Couldn’t stop laughing about that one. Lauren really knows how to use names to their best advantage. All of the misunderstandings in conversations made me think of the old Abbott and Costello “Who’s on first?” routine.

    I have to agree with you Ashley about Arabella. Although I understand the upsets in her life, she was still rude to Turnip on so many occasions when he was nothing but kind and concerned. Turnip really goes after what he wants though – determination!

  4. Lots of great bits. I liked the description of the kiss: “Like her hair, the rest of her was surprisingly lush once one started exploring. It was a bit like being Columbus, landing on what seemed from the water to be nothing more than your average dull beige beach, only to find a verdant forest bursting with glorious and unexpected foliage. As he mapped out the cartographical angles of the curve of Arabella’s hip, Turnip was a very happy amateur explorer. Then she yanked down on his head and he forgot all about metaphors and just went back to kissing her. She scooted in closer, and he gathered her up in both arms, pulling her in as closely as nature and the desk would allow. Nature was with them, but the desk was proving to be something of a problem”

  5. I also love how thoughtful Turnip is. Ashley, I am not quite sure I will know what to do if you have a vote for your favorite hero feature at the end. It might cause me great stress and agony. 🙂

    Sally is just a bright little star. I find it adorable that she calls her brother “Reggie.” The best part is that I am so accustomed to everyone else referring to him as Turnip, that I forget that it isn’t actually his given name. I really enjoyed that slice of life. From the moment she came bursting in with he other schoolgirls leading the chant of the school motto, “Each to each, that’s what we teach!”to Turnip’s observation that she had a bit of Dowager Duchess of Dovedale in her, I thought young Sally sparkled. All the while, Turnip knows her and understands her and never gets overwhelmed or overrun by her. He loves his little sister and knows how to stay a step ahead of her without making her aware of it.

    When I was reading, I was thinking that Turnip should not be underestimated. That led me to hearing that quote from Michael Scott of The Office, ” Next time, maybe you’ll estimate me.” My brain is so goofy! But Turnip is definitely not. I also read ahead, so no spoilers from me, but my very favorite Turnip moment is upcoming.

    One of my favorite sections was about Arabella after Turnip catches sight of her hair out of pins. “He had known it was blond, but he would never have imagined it would be quite so exuberant. But, then, that was Miss Dempsey all over, wasn’t it? She pretended to be all shy and quiet, and then there she was, chasing down prowlers in the middle of the night.” I’d say that is a great summary of her.

    • Great comments, Paige. I agree it would be hard to select a favorite hero, also heroine, because Lauren makes so many of her characters real and wonderful.

      Love the quotes you listed. So many stand out with such amazing dialogue.

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