katewrites: (Default)
Whoever told me I'd love Frederica? *waits an ominous pause*

WAS RIGHT. It was so my kind of book - competent heroines who don't need the heroes AT ALL, but the heroes JUST WANT TO HELP.

spoilers are spinsters at the age of 22 )

Frederica is a book about two families. One wealthy, greedy, and bored of EVERYTHING. This is Alverstoke's family.

The other family is the Merrivales - Frederica's brothers and sisters. They aren't penniless, but their estate has been mortgaged to the hilt and their eldest brother doesn't show a penchant for managing it well. So, their oldest sister, Frederica has taken charge of everything, including her siblings.

The cast is the Marquis of Alverstoke, who would spend the whole book like this if he could get away from the Merrivales long enough.

Frederica who is, as previously noted, competent, awesome, flawed in that occasionally she is SO FED UP with being a middle aged spinster aunt at 24. (or 22, I can't remember.)

Jessamy, the second son who thinks he wants to join the church and so is REALLY SAD whenever anything bad happens, and blames himself. Everyone else is like, "SHUT UP, JESSAMY. It was not your fault!" And then Jessamy makes a sad!Charlie Brown face and declares he's unfit for a life in the church. If Jessamy knew about global warming, he'd think that was his fault, too.

Felix who is obsessed with steam technology and stows away aboard a steam ship and then aboard a hot air balloon and convinces Alverstoke that it's an amazing treat (for Alverstoke) to visit a foundry that uses steam technology.

Charis whose angelic beauty makes Frederica think that all she needs is a season in London to land a good husband.

The whole plot is essentially:

Frederica and Alverstoke have flirty conversations and are interrupted by...

Jessamy!
Jessamy: I have done this TERRIBLE, AWFUL THING. I will pay you back when you tell me how much money it cost you.
Alverstoke: It is not that terrible.
Jessamy: It is the most terrible awful thing that has ever been done. Also, for real. Tell me how much money I owe you.
Alverstoke: It is not that bad. And stop talking about money.

Felix!
Felix: You want to take me to see machines!
Alverstoke: How about my secretary takes you?
Felix: But it is a TREAT. FOR YOU.
Alverstoke: Ugh. Fine.
Felix: =) =) =) <3

Charis!
Charis: I am participating in Romeo and Juliet with a guy who is also my pseudo-cousin, but it is SECRET AND NO ONE KNOWS.
Alverstoke: You are so boring. It's a pity you're so beautiful.
Charis: I am in loooooove. And it is tragggic! Alverstoke is trying to deny our loooooove.
Frederica: Everyone knows, Charis, stfu and marry someone who can support you, not our penniless pseudo-cousin, ok?
Charis: You are trying to deny our looooove. You are evil! No you aren't! But you're trying to break us apart.
Frederica: *facepalm*

If that has not convinced you, then let me remind you WHACKY FAMILY SHENANIGANS. 'nuff said.
katewrites: (Default)
This book starts out with a hilariously honest conversation between a suitor and the younger sister of the girl he wants to marry. She argues that if all he wants is a wife, he should marry her because her sister is IN LOVE with someone else. Strangely he agrees.

The great thing about this book is that Horatia is actually, genuinely normal. She stutters and is described as the least attractive of her sisters. And yet! She's the heroine! It's not an ugly duckling story because she stutters and is normal looking for the whole book.

Then in usual Heyer fashion it all goes hilariously hijinxy. It turns out that much like her brother, she's got a weakness for gambling. At first this seems like a flaw, but then it becomes awesome because her brother likes to bet on EVERYTHING.

When Horatia is running away from a man who kidnapped her and who she thinks she killed she runs into her brother and his friend and the conversation goes like this:

Horatia: Oh, good, it's my brother, Pelham! Pelham! I think I killed this lord!
Pelham: I bet you didn't. Bet you 2 to 1 that she didn't kill him Pom.
Pom: I'll take that. 2 to 1, you say?

I think one of my favorite things about this book is that there is no Big Misunderstandings. The hero never thinks ill of his wife, and explicitly says at one point that he's "no Othello". Which, props to Heyer for that.

Plus, the whole tone of the book is so delightful.
katewrites: (Default)
I love this book so much. I loved it when it started with a pair of siblings chatting about whether they should rescue the young, eloping heiress in the next room from a drunken suitor. I loved it more when it turned out there was crossdressing. I loved it MORE when Prudence got to be awesome while dressed as a man and her suitor loved her not "despite" her pretending to be a guy but because she did so with aplomb and sheer awesomeness.

Plus, once Dad shows up, every scene can be summarized like this.

Lord Tresomethingorother: I'm the long lost Lord of Tresomethingorother!
Pru: Oh, my god. You're going to get us all hanged.
LT: No, for real this time, I really am.
Robin: Yeah, remember when you made us be JACOBITES? Or when you had us crossdress in polite London Society?
LT: I'm SO AWESOME, why are you questioning my AWESOME.
Pru and Robin: *eyeroll*
Tony: I want to take your daughter away and marry her and keep her safe.
LT: PSHAW. You don't need to keep her safe! I'll keep her safe.
Robin: Actually, Pru will keep HERSELF safe. Or I'll take her away to France.
Pru: Tony, I can't marry you! I'm an ADVENTURESS! I'll drag your name into the dirt!
Tony: I don't care!
LT: Why are you DOUBTING MY BRILLIANCE. BECAUSE I"M BRILLIANT. STOP HATING.
Peter: Yeah, I mean, after you having so many scares, why would we question?
LT: HATERS GONNA HATE.
Pru and Peter: *duitifully follow father*
Tony: !!!
Pru: Listen, he always gets us into messes and then gets us out.
Me: *cracking up*

There's a scene where someone tries to blackmail their father and he literally talks him out of it by OUT NICE-ING him.

Blackmailer: I have something very dangerous for you right HERE. *pats chest*
LT: In your heart?
Blackmailer: No! In my pocket!
LT: Oh, an inside pocket! I have to get one of those, how forward thinking of you!
Blackmailer: ...

I am in ecstasy over this book.

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February 2016

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