#WCW: Romola Garai

I don’t know what it is with Romola Garai, but she has managed to play the main character in the film adaptations of six of my favorite books. And in her other movies she’s equally as fantastic. She’s just ugh–amazing.

I Capture the Castle


A young Romola Garai plays Cassandra Mortmain, a seventeen-year-old girl who lives in a refurbished castle in the 1930s in England. She writes about her quirky family and about falling in love for the first time. This book reminds me of a meadow of flowers, in the best way. It’s Austenesque. And Cassandra is an insightful narrator and wonderful character.



A dark-haired, vampy, ridiculous Romola Garai brings a new level of sympathy and childishness to one of my favorite literary antiheroes. Read the full review of one of my favorite books here.

The Crimson Petal and the White


NEED I SAY MORE. She plays the dry-lipped, brilliant young prostitute I fell in love with many years ago. The Crimson Petal and the White is probably my favorite book of all time, and when I learned Romola Garai would be playing Sugar, I screamed a lot. It was an emotional day.



Okay okay, she’s the supporting actress to Keira Knightley’s top billing but still, Briony Tallis is equally as important in this novel, and much more complicated. She resurrects her bob in this movie, to my delight.

Vanity Fair


Also a supporting actress in this one but again, she brings a level of complexity to a frankly annoying character. She plays the motherly Amelia Sedley, a kind of clueless companion to the devilish Becky Sharp, who is one of the best and worst characters in literature, and an amazing antihero.


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Yes, she played the handsome, clever, rich Emma. Romola Garai is truly the best blessing of existence. She’s also a dab hand at Shakespeare adaptations.

Check her out. I think I’ve seen 90% of her movies, and that’s modest considering how much I love her.

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  • You liked the film of I Capture the Castle? I loved the book so so so much I’m afraid to see the film (but I love Romola Garai – I should take a chance, right?)!

    • Oh, it was fantastic. My sister is a huge fan of the novel (she reads it every year) and she also loves the film. It’s definitely worth a watch, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed (even though the book is obviously superior!)

  • Xhezaira Guleksi

    Your review propelled me to put a book I’ve never heard before on the top of my ever-growing tbr pile. Thank you!! I hope I will enjoy this book as much as your review suggests.