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Charity Girl by Georgette Heyer
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Charity Girl (1970)

by Georgette Heyer

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Charity Girl definitely isn't the best Heyer novel I've read. It's rather along the lines of Sprig Muslin, just with slightly different detail. That rather reduces its charms for me, having already read Sprig Muslin, and given that the heroines are either not particularly engaging, or we don't see enough of them.

I think I'd have enjoyed it more if I hadn't already read Sprig Muslin, but it's a mild one really by Heyer's standards. There're some amusing characters, but nothing laugh-out-loud, and there's not really any excitement either. I wouldn't read it for a first Heyer novel, definitely (go for The Talisman Ring, which I adore!), or even if you're only a casual fan.

It's well-written, of course, else I'd give it only two stars. I can't bear to do that with something by Heyer, though. ( )
  shanaqui | Aug 14, 2013 |
The naive and simpleminded 16-year old Charity is living with her wicked aunt and one day have had enough of being treated as a slave - so she runs away - but on her way to London, she meets Ashley Carrington, Viscount Desford, and he pities her destitute situation and decides to help her find a place to stay - and he turns to his old and dear friend Hetta for help - so Charity can stay with Hetta and her family. That decision leads to one misundertanding after another and numerous family entanglements. What are Desfords intentions towards Charity? And Hetta?

The story starts quite well, but then in the second half gets a little too silly and at places rather long-winded. Also the two main characters are left out of the story for a long time in the second half and Ashleys brother are in the forefront - I would have liked a little more time with Charity as she's a funny and endearing girl.

This is my first Heyer, so I can't compare it to her other novels, but I like Heyers style of writing - it reminded me of Wodehouse in it's tone and humor - sparkling and refreshing - and also the very british slang - one sense immediately that nothing can go really wrong - all things will be mended and straightened out and hero and heroine united. It just plain entertaining and well written.

Audiobook. Wonderful narration by Daniel Philpott. ( )
3 vote ctpress | Jul 22, 2013 |
Ashley Carrington, the Viscount Desford, was in no hurry to get married, whatever his irritable father, the Earl of Wroxton, had to say about it. But when he came to the aid of an unhappy young runaway by the name of Cherry Steane on the road to London, he soon found himself embroiled in an adventure that demonstrated how little he knew his own heart...

As noted in my review of Heyer's Lady of Quality, the author's later novels are heavily indebted to her earlier work - one might almost say that they were inferior copies of more entertaining fare. Such is certainly the case with Charity Girl, published in 1970, and bearing a striking resemblance to Sprig Muslin. Both feature eligible gentlemen (Viscount Desford and Sir Gareth Ludlow) who come to the aid of taking young runaways ("Cherry" Steane and Amanda "Smith"), whom they place in the home of a trustworthy "older" female friend (Miss Henrietta Silverdale and Lady Hester Theale). Both also feature the hero's realization that he is actually in love with said "friend," and while neither could be described as terribly involving, Sprig Muslin has at least the benefit of coming first, and being (as much as is possible in a Georgette Heyer novel), original. As one of my online friends remarked in another review, couldn't Georgette Heyer have done better than this? ( )
1 vote AbigailAdams26 | Jun 25, 2013 |
My blog post about this book is at this link. ( )
  SuziQoregon | Mar 31, 2013 |
A good Heyer though somehow I do not recall it as vividly as some others ( )
  antiquary | Feb 23, 2013 |
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As far as it was possible for an elderly gentleman suffering from dyspepsia and a particularly violent attack of gout to take pleasure in anything but the alleviation of his various pains the Earl of Wroxton was enjoying himself.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0525079769, Hardcover)

Georgette Heyer, in her inimitable style, explores the lengths to which a gentleman must go to avoid scandal when confronted by a very young runaway lady.

When Viscount Desford encounters Charity Steane walking to London alone, he feels honor bound to assist her. Dashing about the countryside to find Charity's elusive grandfather, the Viscount must somehow prevent his exasperating charge from bringing ruin upon herself-and him.

"This is the most delightful new Georgette Heyer Regency romance in several years. It is witty, full of dashing period slang, and it trifles with the affairs of several maids and men with such style and gentle irony that readers of good 'ton,' as Miss Heyer herself might put it, will find reading it a very 'comfortable cose' indeed." -Publishers Weekly

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:32:17 -0400)

Viscount Desford tries to help a very young lady walking to London alone, and finds himself working hard to prevent his young charge from bringing ruin upon herself--and him.

» see all 3 descriptions

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