Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Book Review: The Grand Sophy

I interrupt my regularly scheduled review of The Wheel of Time series, to review ...

The Grand Sophy
by Georgette Heyer

I was at a church friend's house waiting for a meeting to start, and we started discussing books. She and I have similar tastes, and, at the end of the evening, she lent me one of her new books. She said if I liked Austen, I would like Heyer. (I have to say that she must have incredible trust in me -- lending me a new book and all. I admit, I have a VERY hard time lending out my books. But then again, she does have 5 kids under 7, so maybe her expectations regarding the overall conditions of books are low... *laughs*)

Well, I have been wanting to expand my reading repertoire, and I like Austen, and the Regency period, so I gave it a whirl before I started on The Wheel of Time.

I have to admit that the language was a little more than I expected. Not only do her characters, of course, speak in a more formal language, but the book is written that way too! Sure, I can handle it from Austen, but it did take me a little time to get used to it. However, once I did, I found some charming, amusing characters. Also, sometimes things aren't always as they seem, and for a Regency Romance, there wasn't so much romance as more match-making, and the sort. I ended up enjoying the story and wished, once again, to get just a little more resolution, even if it were just a little bit of how the characters ended up overall.

Since this is my first foray into Regency Romance, I have to say I enjoy it, and apparently this is one of Heyer's more-loved novels. So, if you want to try something new, and wouldn't MIND Regency Romance, give it a whirl!


Anonymous August 5, 2009 at 12:32 AM  

Hm, sounds interesting. I wonder if I would get lost in the language?

You are book reading monster (a nice one, of course). Love your reviews...keep 'em coming!

Manda August 5, 2009 at 7:14 AM  

Heyer is considered, I believe, one of the gold stars of Regency romance writing. I do like her, but I prefer Marion Chesney, whose writing style is decidedly less ostentatious.

Gabby August 5, 2009 at 8:56 AM  

Ooo, Manda, "ostentatious" is a good word for her style!

Rocketgirl August 7, 2009 at 1:25 PM  

There are so many fabulous heyer novels, I love em!! The only one I can think of at the moment is The Nonesuch. Loved them! Heyer did write more modern mysteries that were pretty dull, she did regency well.

jillyfae August 11, 2009 at 1:56 PM  

ooh, there's so much Heyer. She's generally credited with the commercially successful creation of writing 'period' regency novels, to be honest. (And her potentially stilted language was much more common 50+ years ago when she was writing.)

While I'm a big fan of Heyer, 'Grand Sophy' was not one I ever particularly liked, if I'm recalling the correct book. *shrugs* 'The Quiet Gentleman', 'Unknown Ajax', 'The Tollbooth', and 'Frederica' are a few I remember tracking down recently and enjoying. There were a couple more I had as favorites, but I can't think of them at the moment...

Erika August 11, 2009 at 10:48 PM  

HOW HAVE I NEVER LOANED YOU HEYER BEFORE??? She's one of my favorite authors, ever! I also own just about every Regency romance she's written. One of the things I like about her is that her characters stay in-character. No last-minute personality changing epiphanies.

Some of my favorites are 'Frederica', 'The Masqeraders', and, if you want a little intrigue, 'These Old Shades'. I agree with jillyfae that 'The Toothbooth' and 'The Unknown Ajax' are also up there. Let me know when you want another one!

You do have to get in the swing of her language, but she's a great vocabulary builder! ;-D

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