14/11/2002

The Convenient Marriage (by Georgette Heyer)

Oh, I do like Georgette Heyer's historical romance novels! No matter what other books I read, I always come back to a Heyer when I'm a bit tired, or need to relax. I have most of them, and re-read them all regularly.

I last read 'The Convenient Marriage' in 1999. It's one of my favourites.

Horatia, youngest daughter of the impoverished Winwood family, is also perhaps the most aware of the need to marry a wealthy husband. She's practical, and does not consider herself particularly romantic. So when the Earl of Rule offers marriage to her beautiful eldest sister, despite her sister being in love with someone else, Horatia decides to take matters into her own hands. Not really understanding fully what marriage entails, she offers herself as a substitute bride.

Rule, who has a reputation as something of a rake, finds himself surprisingly enchanted by Horatia, and then worries that he is far too old for her. She, in turn, is jealous of his current mistress and determined to conquer his heart.

A gentle romance, entwined with lots of excitement: suspicion, gambling, and even a duel. As ever with Heyer's novels, it's cleverly plotted with a most satisfactory ending.

This seems to be almost continually in print in the USA and UK with new editions brought out regularly. Highly recommended.

(I wrote a rather longer review of 'The Convenient Marriage' on another re-read just over five years later)

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