Thursday, October 18, 2007

Georgette Heyer

I only discovered her five years ago. Her books were recommended to me by a writing friend (who also got me hooked on Terry Pratchet and Ian Rankin, but that's another story.) I read Bath Tangle and I was entranced. I swiftly trawled my local second-hand bookshop and now have all of her books. I enjoy reading widely and I also read a lot of non-fiction for research purposes. But when I'm tired or a bit low, I turn to Georgette Heyer. Not only are her books perfect comfort reading, they are also a master-class in deft plotting, appealing characters, a comprehensive understanding of the social demands and constraints of the period, and wonderful comedy.
My favourite is Faro's Daughter. Deborah Grantham is a superb heroine, spirited, honourable and loyal. Max Ravenscar - the wealthy, saturnine, arrogant Mr Max Ravenscar - is a terrific hero and a worthy adversary. The battle of wits and words that ensues between these two, who loathe and despise each other's actions while discovering aspects of each other's character that surprise then attract, is a joy to read.
That would be reason enough to enjoy this book. But for me, what makes it stand out is the wonderful character of Deb's Aunt Lizzie, Lady Bellingham, who accepted responsibility for Deb and her brother Kit after their parents' death and was then forced to open a gaming house in order to make ends meet. Aunt Lizzie's panic and bewilderment at the events erupting around her is both touching and hilarious.
It's a wonderful book. If you haven't read it, I'd recommend you get a copy at once. Then there's Devil's Cub...
Best wishes,
Jane Jackson

1 comment:

Marg said...

I've only just read my first ever Heyer, but I do intend to read more!