Tuesday, 23 February 2010

The World of Regency Fiction



When I was a little girl I was introduced to the books of Georgette Heyer by my big sisters. It was love at first sight. To my great delight after the first book (Friday's Child), there was another (Frederica) and another (These Old Shades). For a short, golden age it seemed like my love affair with Georgette Heyer's romantic fiction need never end. Until I finally got to my last Heyer and realised the stark truth.... There Is No More.

To this day, my sisters and I still have recurring dreams about finding an undiscovered Heyer. Not daydreams, real night time, deepest-stirrings-of-the-unconscious dreams. The joy of finding a Heyer not yet read! I can almost savour it now...

Unfortunately there is no undiscovered Heyer - or not one that I have ever been lucky enough to find. However, happily for me the works of Georgette Heyer didn't just entrance the women of my family - they inspired thousands of others too. In the wake of her passing, a genre was born which finds its home in publishing houses like Harlequin Mills & Boon.

It's a wonderful, addictive world to explore - a world of high glamour, celebrity, modernity and industrialisation, set against the stark reality of the Napoleanic wars. The wealth of inspiration can be witnessed in the huge array of regency romances making their way onto our bookshelves. There are plenty of pale imitators, but there are even more authors with wit, humour, sparkling dialogue and rich narrative, like Nicola Cornick, Louise Allen and Anne Gracie.

This blog is an exploration of the novels and the world in which they are set. Sit back and enjoy!

No comments: