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Masqueraders by [Heyer, Georgette]
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Masqueraders Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 63 customer reviews

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Review

"Wonderful characters, elegant, witty writing, perfect period detail, and rapturously romantic. Georgette Heyer achieves what the rest of us only aspire to" (Katie Fforde)

"My favourite historical novelist - stylish, romantic, sharp, and witty. Her sense of period is superb, her heroines are enterprising, and her heroes dashing. I owe her many happy hours" (Margaret Drabble)

"A writer of great wit and style - I've read her books to ragged shreds" (Kate Fenton Daily Telegraph)

"Sparkling" (Independent)

"Every girl, whatever her age, needs her own complete set of Heyer titles. More than romantic they are witty, elegant, stylish and the best comedies of manners since Jane Austen. Required reading for everyone" (Diane Pearson)

Book Description

A delightful romantic adventure from one of the best-known and beloved historical novelists of all time.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 725 KB
  • Print Length: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Cornerstone Digital; New Ed edition (28 Feb. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004OEIDBQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 63 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #28,021 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Anyone lumping Georgette Heyer with the baby-pink-jacketed paperbacks crowding the Romance shelves is missing the point. This is P.G. Wodehouse (for the comic timing) meeting Jane Austen (for the subtle analysis of character.) Heyer's historical research is impeccable, whether in this novel, about the aftermath of the Jacobite rebellion in the 18th century, or, in a book like "An Infamous Army", about the Battle of Waterloo. Add to this an irrepressible sense of humour and a sure talent to recreate a period faultlessly (Heyer kept a linguistic historian's notebooks of period expressions and turns of phrases, her biographer Jane Aiken Hodge tells us) and you understand why Georgette Heyer's books have never been out of print. "The Masqueraders" is one of her earlier novels, more dashing and romantic than the later, wryer and more sardonic Regency stories which made her name. Yet it contains great one-liners (usually in the mouth of Lord Tremaine, Robin's and Prudence's adventurer father) and Heyer manages to make us believe in this entertaining masquerade of the siblings posing each as a member of the opposite sex. There are wonderful shades of Mozart's Da Ponte operas: very true to the period indeed. Strongly recommended.
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By Helen S VINE VOICE on 19 Jun. 2010
Format: Paperback
This is only the second Georgette Heyer book I've read and it was very different to my first, The Talisman Ring, in setting, language and plot. The Masqueraders is set just after the Jacobite Rising of 1745 and follows the adventures of Prudence and her brother Robin. Along with their father (referred to by his children as 'the old gentleman') Robin had been involved in the failed Jacobite rebellion and is now in danger of being hanged. To prevent him being captured, the brother and sister have created new roles for themselves - Robin has disguised himself as the beautiful 'Miss Merriot' and Prudence has become the handsome young 'Peter'. All very Shakespearean! Not surprisingly, this leads to a number of misunderstandings and narrow escapes.

Things get even more interesting when Prudence, still posing as Peter Merriot, begins to fall in love with Sir Anthony Fanshawe - and then 'the old gentleman' arrives on the scene, claiming to be the lost heir to the Barham fortune.

I found the story confusing and difficult to follow at first. I spent several chapters trying to work out exactly why Prudence and Robin had found it necessary to masquerade as people of the opposite sex and what they were hoping to achieve. It also took me a while to get used to the Georgian-style dialogue, with all the egads, alacks and other slang terms of the period.

After a few chapters, however, various parts of the story started to fall into place and then I had no problem understanding what was happening. I ended up really enjoying this book. There were many things that made this book such a success for me. I thought the Georgian setting, with its powdered wigs, card games, sword fights and duels, was perfectly portrayed.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of the last Georgette Heyer novels that I got round to reading - it seemed hard to get hold of at local libraries. Having now read it, I can't understand why it is not more popular as I believe it's one of Heyer's better books. Although in some ways it bears similarity to Powder & Patch in terms of language (and I wasn't too keen on that book), the plot is far more enjoyable and twisted.
It helps to know that the two characters we meet at the beginning, Mr Peter Merriott and Miss Kate Merriott, are actually sister and brother in disguise. "Peter" is actually Miss Prudence and her brother, who was involved in the Jacobite rebellion and is therefore in some danger, disguises himself as a woman. Heyer gives us a few clues as to how this is successful - Robin (the brother) is unusually short for a man, it's the era when women painted their faces, he wears tight corsets, but overall this is a slight weakness in the plot, as is the thought that a woman dressed in man's clothes would pass for a man over a period of several weeks. One just glosses over it, however, and enjoys the fun of the masquerade as Prudence, dressed up as Peter Merriott, gets involved in London society and visits Gentlemen's clubs, challenges a man to a duel and finds herself in love with a very tall man who has befriended her - as Peter. Her brother Robin also falls in love with a young lady he rescued and it's the tortuous ways in which the young couple perform their masquerade which adds to the fun. Their father appears who is the mastermind behind their plans, and claims that he is a Viscount; there is much humour in the scenes with him as he is such an egocentric character.
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Format: Paperback
Anyone who loves Shakespeare's Viola (and who thinks Shakespeare didn't give her enough to do in Twelfth Night) will enjoy Georgette Heyer's heroine Prudence. Pru has a similarly phlegmatic temperament, wit and charm. Heyer seems to have simply lifted Viola out of the play, given her another, equally subtle name, and given her a more active adventure. Fine by me.
Of all the cross-dressing comedies I've read (or seen on stage), this is the most convincing. Perhaps it's because Prudence lacks the overtone of panic that most cross-dressed heroines (or the actresses who play them) display: she performs her masquerade calmly. Her self-confidence results from experience, her bravery is not impulsive.
In this gender-bending comedy, it's clear that the genders are not so far apart (and, like Prudence, Ms. Heyer seems perfectly comfortable with the idea). Gender--for the characters who do not cross-dress, as well as those who do--seems to be a performance, involving much artifice & costume. The characters perform for each other's benefit--and clearly relish the chance.
In this early novel, it seems to me that Miss Heyer was writing for her own entertainment. The story rockets from urbane drawing-room comedy to goofy melodrama to galloping action. It is often uneven...but its unevenness invites the reader to do as Ms. Heyer did: if you aren't satisfied with the story she gave the characters, lift 'em out and write one of your own.
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