Friday, February 22, 2013
Here I am, reviewing yet another wonderful book by Georgette Heyer. Of course, everyone has their own opinions when it comes to best books, but in mine, this is one of her best books. I haven't read all of them, but I've read most of them. The Grand Sophy is very good too. The romance was well developed and even though it had the plague of a rushed ending, it still managed to shine.
Faro's daughter tells the story of Deborah Grantham, who runs a gaming house in regency London alongside her aunt. Adrian, a young gentleman is smitten by her and wants to marry her. This makes his socially consious mother uneasy who ends up enlisting her nephew's help to end this relationship. The arrongant Max Ravenscar belives that this gaming wench with lack of upbringing can be bought off. However, his presumption infuriates the well bred Deborah Grantham who in her attempts to extract revenge ends up creating a chain of funny situations which culminate in her falling in love with him.
Max Ravenscar is quite a typical Heyer hero but Deborah Grantham is quite unusual. His frequent visits to the club to plan his counter measures push the relationship along well. Adrian is out of the game from the beginning because we know this is a romance novel written by Georgette Heyer and it will have a happy ending. However, he manages to find love in his own way with a runaway gentlewoman. The side stories here, were quite interesting, especially Adrian's. With every meeting, Max Ravenscar's opinion of Deborah changes until he finally admits being in love with her. Her sense of fair play (though not always intact), independant personality and wit attract rather than repulse him.
However, even I have to admit that the protagonists at times are quite inconsistent, especially Deborah. She is full of pride and honour at one point of time and then she devises immature schemes for revenge which do not always display her sense of justice and maturity. The hero just switches from wanting to buy her off to falling for her unyielding spirit. The other contender for Deborah's hand (I can't even remember his name!), was not any serious competition from the beginning and even though he keeps recurring, the ending is quite predictable.
Pacing was a big advantage for this novel. The ending was a bit rushed but not as much as some of her other novels which only start the romance in the end. The streamlined pacing allowed more events to take place so that the love developed consistently and the conclusion sounded more believable. The side story was another big plus. Okay, Adrian was a little slow but he got there in the end- all's well that ends well!
As always, Heyer's dialogue and sense of time period are commendable. A lot of historical romance writers these days just dump contemporary characters and mannerisms into a historical setting and disguise it as a historical novel. However, Georgette Heyer's novels are well researched and depict society accurately to a larger extent than current novels at least. They are also based on love rather than lust which helps the plot and overall quality of the novel. Her characteristic wit and humour are there and shine though like any work of hers though Devil's cub was a lot funnier than Faro's daughter.
Overall, a very good read with strong characters.
Characters- main and secondary
Characters inconsistent at points
Predictable (I guess that's true for all romance novels!)
Posted by bestcritic at 1:36 PM