This was my first Georgette Heyer novel, and I found it truly delightful. I rarely read romances because I have no patience for swooning heroines and brooding heroes, and though one of my favorite authors cites Heyer in general and this book in particular as an inspiration, it took me some time to pick it up.
I had no trouble with the amount of period detail, because it seemed no more overwhelming than reading any period piece (such as Jane Austen, who is mentioned a couple of times in the text); indeed, it was set out in a fairly accessible way, which it often is not when reading something written during that time period. I also had no trouble with the time spent on description, particularly of clothing -- Heyer uses her descriptive passages well, always making sure that they are accomplishing either some character-building or at the very least are humorous. (In many cases they were both.) I did find the characters drawn a trifle broadly for my taste -- each person, when introduced seemed so much a stereotype that I worried the plot would be wholly predictable.
However, once all the principal parties were introduced, Heyer was able to just set her characters at one another, and this was where she soared for me. I giggled throughout the novel, and actually found myself dog-earing pages with particularly witty dialogue so I could read them to my boyfriend later on. I found Jenny a heroine after my own heart, particularly because she would have laughed at anyone even attempting to call her one.
And that was why I loved the ending so very much. The novel has no ". . .and they lived happily ever after", and that makes it feel far realer than a romance has any right to be. There is no melodrama in this novel, no great stores of passion; it is simply two people finding contentment with each other, and discovering that if the choice is between passion and contentment, contentment is to be preferred. Truly, a novel after my own heart, and one I can heartily recommend.
It is a realistic book. A realistic love that blossoms between the main characters. While a bit bitter sweet, it leaves you aching for Jenny to have something more - what she deserves. You are left with a strong desire for Lynton to love her so much more passionately. I was disappointed and sad.
Though not one of my favorite Heyer novels, still a wonderful book!
A marriage of convenience takes place between a lord and the daughter of a nabob. He NEVER comes to realize how much she loves him.
Of all her books, this is the only one I didn't like!
The heroine is so different from any romance that I have ever read. Yes, she does love our hero more than he loves her but he does come to love her. To me, this story is just more realistic than most romances. The short, chubby girl with the obnoxious father does get the guy.