Maid At Arms

~ A Novel by Enid Cushing & Andre Norton

maid at arms 1981 50156 6

NOTE: Andre Norton's name is not on this book ~ Lore has it that she completed the story for Enid Cushing when Enid became ill. However  both Andre's and Enid's names are on the original contract writing as "Enid Cushing".


Synopsis ~

From the back of Paperback Edition ~

Twins, One Girl, One Boy, Age twenty. Madcap twins who were fond of dressing up as each other and fooling everyone. Well, almost everyone. This time the masquerade is not so simple. Jennifer, disguised as her brother (who preferred poetry to horses and guns), poses as a captain in the army, which exposes her to many dangers - and the love of one man she couldn't fool.


Write-ups from Fans ~

Twins (Johnathan and Jennifer) are dismayed when their uncle Rufus has decided to "make a man" out of the Johnathan and has bought him a pair of colors in a regiment due to be shipped out to Halifax. The boy had long preferred much less active pursuits, and the uncle did not approve: the final straw for Uncle Rufus was coming into a party in London and discovering Johnathan preparing to read some of his poetry.

The "kids" get shipped off to Halifax, but on the way, Johnathan becomes deathly sea sick. Jennifer is fine and desperate to get out of the cabin and up on deck, which a girl can't do in stormy weather because of all the petticoats would catch the wind and blow her overboard. So, she puts on her brother's uniform. By the time they reach Halifax, their reversal of roles is pretty well established, so they decide it would be "fun" to continue - especially since Jennifer is as they say "Army-Mad" and she turns out to be a pretty good officer.

Meanwhile back in London their neighbor Rupert has discovered their absence and follows them to Halifax, with the intentions of assisting the kids in their plot? - No, he doesn't know anything about it but knowing the kids suspects they will try something. Jennifer gets herself involved in first a duel, then a horse-race where she breaks a leg which of course would expose her, leading Rupert to undertake trying to save her and her brother's reputation. ~ SL


Cross dressing siblings. If it was good enough for Shakespeare (Twelfth Night), it was good enough for Andre.
Jennifer and Jonathan Welland, orphaned at eight were made wards of the Duke of Burghley. Jenny, a tomboy who loves the outdoors, riding and other "boy" pursuits. Jonnie loves poetry, music and reading. Their neighbor Rufus, Lord Randall, ten years older than the twins is the only one who knows that the twins swap clothing and identities to enjoy the activities that they enjoy. The duke in clueless about the swaps. Twelve years have passed and the duke, in order to make Jonnie more Manly buys him a commission in the army and has him shipped off to Halifax, Canada. Jenny talks the duke into letting her go along. The passage is marred by violent storms and Jonnie is suffering debilitating seasickness which doesn't affect Jenny. In order to go on the deck to enjoy the fresh air and the storms, she dons Jonnie's uniform and is accepted as her brother by the captain. When they reach Halifax, Jonnie has to be carried off the ship while Jennie walks off in Jonnie's clothes. Before they can change back, Jenny as "Captain Lord Welland" has to report to his unit and discovers that her commander and the Governor are both friends of the duke. On top of that, the governor's wife insists that Lord Welland's "sister" move into Government House to recuperate. They are stuck, her in the army and him in dresses with a female persona. Three Months later Rufus discovers where the twins are and boards the next ship to Halifax while acting as guardian to the Halifax governor's niece. He has sworn to help the twins out of their predicament because he has realized that he loves Jenny. That is just in the first half. Then things start to heat up. Enjoy! I did. ~ PG


Bibliography of English Editions ~

  • (1981) Published by Fawcett, PB, 0-449-50156-6, $1.75 ~ Coventry Romance # 90 ~ cover by unknown

View the Original contract



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