Mrs. Rushworth
by Victor Gordon
amazon.com (out of print)
1989
Andre Deutsch ISBN 0 233 98358 9


        Review by  Linda Waldemar on 6 August 1998
As you can guess from the title, the story is principally about Maria Bertram Rushworth and what
happens to her after going into exile with her Aunt Norris.

Maria is portrayed as a reckless woman of strong passions.  She feels that she is a victim of the
Crawford affair.  Henry suffers no repercussions from his actions; they are all heaped upon her.  She
accepts that her indiscretions were foolish, but she does not regret them.  She only regrets letting her
feelings (her heartbreak over Henry Crawford's rejection) cause her to marry Mr Rushworth in the
first place.

If possible, Mrs Norris is even more self-serving, manipulative, interfering, even evil than portrayed
by Jane Austen.  It is difficult to read very far without hating her.  And, I hated her more as the book
progressed.

Tom Bertram becomes Sir Tom.  He is good-hearted, but weak-willed and insecure in his own
judgment.   Therefore, he consults his brother about almost everything and always follows Edmund's
advice.

Edmund and Fanny are portrayed as sanctimonious and self-righteous.  They always try to do the
most morally correct thing, whether or not someone will be hurt.

Maria finally gets out from under Aunt Norris' thumb and starts to live her life on her own terms.
Unfortunately, her choices are frequently bad.   She does marry a gentleman and produces two
children.

I am very ambivalent about this novel.  On the one hand, I was drawn in and really began to care
about the characters.  Yet, on the other hand, I was very unhappy about the way they are treated.
The author does exhibit some wit and a little irony. However, I did not feel satisfied when I finished
the book.  I was not happy with the ending.   I will not give the plot away, but I would suggest that
you form your own opinion should you have the opportunity to read this book.