|Cotillion, by Georgette Heyer, narrated by Phyllida Nash|
When Kitty’s cantankerous care-taker insists that one of his own nephews marry Kitty for her to inherit his fortune, three of them rush to Kitty’s home to propose. When she spurns those three, they patiently explain that she must marry one of them or else she will be left destitute. Kitty hatches a plan (which the reader is left only vaguely aware of) to free herself from these constraints – but it requires her to go to London for a few weeks. That’s where her cousin Freddy comes in. He didn’t propose – had no wish to propose – but only came because he was curious what this big summons from his uncle was about. In secret, Kitty convinces Freddy to propose marriage so that he could take her to London. Of course, she’ll break it off when the few weeks are over….
This is my first book by Georgette Heyer. I’ve heard so many great things about her that I wanted to see for myself. At first, I wasn’t too pleased with the book, but I warmed to it once time had passed, and Kitty matured in London. You see, I didn’t like Kitty at first. She seemed so manipulative – getting Freddy to propose when he clearly didn’t want to. And it seemed her plan could end up destructive to both of them – even if we didn’t know what the whole plan was about. I realized as she grew that the plan was just naivete and not pure manipulation, but I still found all the dangerous lies a bit disturbing. Regardless, everything turned out well in the end, and I was left with a warm fuzzy feeling about the novel.
Heyer’s writing is delightful. She mixes humor with the beloved Regency Romance genre, and she’s often suggested to readers who have finished all the Jane Austen novels. They definitely have the same feel as an Austen, though the humor has a slightly different tone. Austen has more sarcasm in her books. Both writers have a mixture of wit and silliness. I will hopefully have time to read another Heyer soon. Just think, a brand new author to explore!
6 thoughts on “Cotillion, by Georgette Heyer”
I do love Georgette Heyer. She is just fun and witty. They are not books to be taken seriously but they are well written and well researched. After all, she basically started the whole Regency Romance genre. Hers are some of the books I pull out when I am having a bad day and just need a comfort read. I hope you enjoy exploring the rest of her books.
I've heard a lot of people say that Heyer is one of their comfort reads. Austen is one of mine, and I can see where Heyer could be a close second. 🙂
I love both Heyer and Austin, but they seem very different to me. Austin's characters seem real — they are facing real things. Heyer's people live in a frothy wonderland; I never worry that things could turn out poorly for anyone.
Well, I guess I don't think all of Austen's characters are very realistic either. I find them more satirizations of humans. Depending on the character, of course. Elizabeth Bennett and Emma are both pretty well rounded. And I'm guessing Anne Tyler is, too. Though I never worry about a bad ending. 🙂
I've always wanted to read a Georgette Heyer book, but have never gotten around to it. They just sound fun. Maybe I'll add one to my reading list this year.