Guest review by Marie Burton of The Burton Review
An impetuous flight…
Tiffany Wield’s bad behavior is a serious trial to her chaperone. “On the shelf ” at twenty-eight, Ancilla Trent strives to be a calming influence on her tempestuous charge, but then Tiffany runs off to London alone and Ancilla is faced with a devastating scandal.
A gallant rescue…
Sir Waldo Hawkridge, confirmed bachelor and one of the wealthiest men in London, comes instantly to the aid of the intrepid Ancilla to stop Tiffany’s flight, and in the process discovers that it’s never too late for the first bloom of love.
The Nonesuch is one of Georgette Heyer’s many Regency romances novels with a wide range of characters. It was my very first Heyer read, therefore this review is from my first impression of Georgette Heyer’s work, and stands as my introduction to the Regency world.
While the text is somewhat dated to non-Regency readers, it is done so that we truly feel we are reading something written in that time period yet we can understand the old-fashioned dialect. It reminded me of reading Margaret Mitchell and Louisa May Alcott. There were quite a few words that were ‘new’ to me, although the words I am sure were quite old. Such as sennight, which I looked up: a week. And the line “O my God! thought Sir Waldo. Now we are in the basket!” I also have seen the phrase “on the shelf” for those unmarried girls past their prime (at age 26!).
This novel has a simple storyline: The main character is the nonesuch (the talented and popular guy who was at the top of his social game in all ways). He is the very likeable Sir Waldo Hawkridge who comes to town to settle an estate he has inherited. We are introduced to those he crosses paths with along with some of his own family who may or not have his best interests at heart. Miss Ancilla Trent is a governess to the spoiled Tiffany Wield within the social circle of butterflies around the nonesuch, but it is the nonesuch and Ancilla, the governess, who fall in love from afar. Of course, there are obstacles to that endeavor being from two different social classes, and we chuckle along the way as the younger set in the story supplies enough antics to keep us occupied.
The characters are well-defined and at times hilarious, and I often found myself feeling that I was watching a black and white movie in my head while reading it. There was a lot of dialogue going back and forth and it would have played really well on the Silver Screen. The storyline itself is not a far-reaching plot, therefore it was slightly slow at times, yet the chemistry between the characters is quite charming and coupled with the writing style it becomes amusing and witty, in typical Heyer fashion. However predictable the plot may have seemed, I did enjoy this novel and I look forward to her other books. The book made me smile and I enjoyed the way the writing took me back to that period and was a fabulous introduction to Georgette Heyer though other Heyer novels have since become my favorite.
The Nonesuch, by Georgette Heyer
Trade paperback (352)
Marie Burton works full-time as a’ book keeper’ which is a nice way for saying the calculator is her best friend, but she’d rather work in a library ‘keeping books’. She writes book reviews in her spare time at The Burton Review. She enjoys reading about the past and learning the history of the world through the skill of authors such as Jean Plaidy, Alison Weir, Sharon Kay Penman and, of course, Georgette Heyer. You can follow Marie on Twitter as BurtonReview.
Celebrating Georgette Heyer – Day 16 Giveaway
Enter a chance to win one copy of The Nonesuch, by Georgette Heyer (Sourcebooks, 2009) by leaving a comment stating what intrigues you about the plot or characters, or if you have read it, which is your favorite character or scene by midnight Pacific time, Monday, September 6th, 2010. Winners will be announced on Tuesday, September 7th, 2010. Shipment to continental US and Canadian addresses only. Good luck!
Upcoming event posts
Day 16 Aug 27 – Review: False Colours
Day 17 Aug 29 – Review: Frederica
Day 17 Aug 29 – Review: Black Sheep
Day 18 Aug 30 – Review: Cousin Kate