15/02/2006

The Grand Sophy

I love Georgette Heyer's historical romances, and indulge myself with re-reading every so often. This one features one of her triumphs of characterisation: Sophy Stanton-Lacey. Sophy goes to stay with her aunt and uncle after spending most of her time abroad. She is independent, spirited, argumentative, and totally unlike any other young ladies of the Regency times. Sophy is worried that she might get bored, but quickly discovers that her cousins are not happy. Charles is engaged to a tedious women he does not love; Cecilia is in love with a vague and impractical poet; Hubert has worries he will not divulge. Sophy resolves to sort them out, and does so in her inimitable way.

There's light humour, well-written banter, and brilliantly drawn characters throughout - even if a few of the less likeable one are rather caricatured. At the end, there's one of this author's classic and effective plot devices: an unexpected gathering of most of the important people in the book, where they manage to sort out their misunderstandings.

A great light read; not one of my absolute favourites, but still very enjoyable.

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