Edith Nesbit, the author of this sweet little book, has been a firm favourite of mine since I was about 11 or 12.
My godmother had been clearing out her children's book shelves and gave me "The Enchanted Castle", a book I have read and re-read several times (in its German translation) and am most likely going to read again later this year, this time in English.
Until some years ago, I only knew Nesbit's children's books, and the first adult novel I read by her wasn't at all what I had hoped for. I was disappointed, as you can read in this review from 2013. Last week, I gave her adult books another try, and "The Incredible Honeymoon" was delightful from start to finish.
There are 10 years between the publication dates of "The Incomplete Amorist" (1906) and "Honeymoon" (1916) - maybe she was still developing her style for adults, or there are other reasons for the one being so much better than the other.
Young man meets young woman - the old formula works well here. The circumstances are as unusual as are the characters, and when the two of them agree on a mock marriage in order to get the woman away from a situation she does not want to bear any longer, they embark on their "incredible honeymoon", travelling (mainly) the south of England.
A stranger soon seems to be of some danger to them, but is he really? And is the call to help her sick aunt the beginning of the end of their wonderful adventure? How will the mock marriage really play out?
You can probably guess at how most of what I have mentioned here plays out, but the story does not lose any of its charm. I liked the characters, I liked the places and travelling described, and I liked Edith Nesbit's trademark style, witty but never vulgar.
If you are interested to learn a bit more about the author, who lived from 1858 to 1924, you can read the last paragraph here.