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Cotillion (1953)

by Georgette Heyer

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,269946,944 (4.11)371
Classic Literature. Fiction. Romance. Historical Fiction. HTML:

The bestselling Queen of Regency Romance, Georgette Heyer, brings her signature wit and humor to this fake engagement love story, with charming results.

A most unusual hero
Freddy is immensely rich, of course, and not bad-looking, but he's mild-mannered, a bit hapless—not anything like his virile, handsome, rakish cousin Jack...

A heroine in a difficult situation
Young Kitty Charing stands to inherit a vast fortune from her irascible and eccentric guardian—provided she marries one of his great-nephews...

A sham betrothal
No sooner does Kitty arrive in London then the race for her hand begins, but between confirmed rakes and bumbling affections, Kitty needs a daring scheme...

Praise for Georgette Heyer and Cotillion:
"Sparkling"—Independent on Sunday
"Triumphantly good...Georgette Heyer is unbeatable."—Sunday Telegraph
"My favourite historical novelist."—Margaret Drabble
"Thus begins Cotillion, arguably the funniest, most charming of Georgette Heyer's many delightful Regency romances."—Amazon.co.uk

.
… (more)
  1. 50
    Friday's Child by Georgette Heyer (ncgraham)
    ncgraham: Both books feature heroines who have lived all their lives in the country and are brought to London to be introduced into the ton, attend masquerade balls, and be spirited away by their respective unlikely knights whenever they fall unwittingly into social error. But somehow Heyer manipulates the various circumstances and events in such a way that the drama of each story is distinct, memorable, and moving.… (more)
  2. 10
    Sprig Muslin by Georgette Heyer (JalenV)
    JalenV: This time the young lady of quality is running away to force her grandfather to allow her to marry the man she loves. She involves the kind gentleman who meets her on the road into quite a few scrapes that are more amusing for the reader than the gentleman.
  3. 10
    Miss Lockharte's Letters by Barbara Metzger (writard)
  4. 01
    Lady Elizabeth's Comet by Sheila Simonson (writard)
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» See also 371 mentions

English (91)  Italian (1)  Swedish (1)  German (1)  All languages (94)
Showing 1-5 of 91 (next | show all)
Probably my favorite of all Heyer's books (that I've read so far) ( )
  rsainta | Jul 23, 2023 |
This ins one of those books where the excitement isn't in the ending, it's in the journey. Uncle Matthew is the spider at the centre of this web. He announces to his various great nephews that he will bestow his fortune on his adopted daughter Kitty and which ever of the great nephews she marries. They get the girl and his fortune. At which point 4 of them descend on Uncle Matthew's house. George is married and so ineligible and no-one know why he's come. He's come to make sure that his brother, the Rev Hugh come up to scratch (he does, but badly). Dolph is slightly lacking mentally even if he is an Earl and is only here because his rather overbearing mother has forced him to it. He is relieved when Kitty rejects his suit. Freddy is the dandy in the family and everyone is surprised when Kitty accepts him. Because they all thought that she was in love with Jack, the rake and dashing gamester in the family.
We see that actually Kitty is rather put out by all this and has conspired with Freddy to pretend that they are engaged because what she actually wants is some time in London and has a scheme that is never outlined but we imagine is to make Jack jealous. From here (about page 35) we al know how this is going to end up, it;s just how we are going to get there. The rest of the plot involves Kitty being young and inexperienced in London, resolving Dolph's love life and circumventing his awful mother, Kitty's French cousin who falls inauspiciously in love and Jack being an awful rotten scoundrel. Along the way both Kitty and Freddy grow, it does Freddy good to have someone else to care about and Kitty discovers a lot about the real world and what her feelings really are.
Lots of excellent adventures along the way and even the ending has a bit of a twist to keep things interesting. ( )
  Helenliz | Apr 16, 2023 |
paperback
  SueJBeard | Feb 14, 2023 |
"One of you shall have her, and my fortune into the bargain"

Such was the whimsical, some would say outrageous, statement of the ageing Mr Penicuik, to the three of his great-nephews gathered around him.

The future of his vivacious step-daughter, Miss Kitty Charing, was thus assured, provided she married one of the handsome beaux now seeking her hand. But Kitty was in no hurry to conclude such a contract. By hook or by crook she meant to go to London, where anything might happen and very often did... ( )
  Karen74Leigh | Jan 18, 2023 |
Kitty Charing has been brought up by her rich guardian, Matthew Penicuik. Out of the blue, Matthew decides to name Kitty as his heiress, but with conditions: she will only receive it if she marries one of his great-nephews. The horrid thing is the cousin she wants to marry (Jack) doesn’t even come to claim her hand, leaving her to pick from the rest of her weird cousins or be left destitute. She plans to runaway and runs into Freddy Standen another cousin who arrives unaware of his uncle's intentions. Being a favorite of hers, she begs him to fake propose and take her to finally see London under the guise of being introduced to his parents. They plan that after a month they'll quietly break it off and at least she would have seen London. Her real plan of course is to make Jack jealous and force him to finally propose, but what if Freddy is really the one for her?

This book was hilarious. Both Freddy and Kitty willingly put themselves in this farce, and although he knows Kitty has another plan he doesn't know it involves the rakish Jack. Kitty sounds pretty conniving, yet I wouldn't call her that in a negative way...like she's crafty in a sweet way? If that makes any sense, and I love Freddy. He is the weirdest hero for sure. He’s described as being a dandy, very much interested in clothes and the latest fashion. Look at this description of him:

"When he relinquished his coat, his hat, his cane, and his gloves into the landlord's hands, a slight look of anxiety was in his face, but as soon as a penetrating glance at the mirror had satisfied him that the high points of his shirt-collar were uncrumpled, and the intricacies of a virgin cravat no more disarranged than a touch would set to rights, the anxious look disappeared, and he was able to turn his attention to other matters."

I guess he was the Ryan Seacrest of his day or something, and he doesn't readily seem like a hero at all. I think that's what’s so cool about this book, because of his growing love for Kitty he becomes a hero doing things he would not normally do. He becomes someone she can rely on, and he goes out of his way to make sure her wishes are granted. I love the trust between the two, and how he does everything in his power to help the people she loves.

I know some people have issues about the extreme details on all aspects of regency life in Heyer novels, but it wasn't that bad. The language confused me sometimes, but I liked reading all the regency slang (dashed well making a cake of me!), and the view of fashionable London through Kitty’s eyes.

Overall
I’m not an expert on Georgette Heyer, or if this is good book to start with. I often hear that if you are new to her novels you should start with Frederica, Venetia, or The Grand Sophy, but I really enjoyed Cotillion. It was witty, and fun to see all the couples in this book end up with who they should. ( )
  AndSkye | Aug 23, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 91 (next | show all)
A cotillion is a Regency dance where you change partners, and Georgette Heyer’s Cotillion is a Regency Romance where everybody twirls and faces their partners and ends up in a happy set of not-entirely predictable couples. It’s an implausible confection set in a world that never was, and it’s delightful. It’s full of banter and tiny details of taste and behaviour, and it has an ending that is surprising the first time through and beautifully played no matter how many times you’ve read it.
added by lquilter | editTor.com, Jo Walton (Mar 20, 2012)
 

» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Georgette Heyerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Nash, PhyllidaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The Saloon, like every other room in Arnside House, was large and lofty, and had been furnished, possibly some twenty years earlier, in what had then been the first style of elegance.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Classic Literature. Fiction. Romance. Historical Fiction. HTML:

The bestselling Queen of Regency Romance, Georgette Heyer, brings her signature wit and humor to this fake engagement love story, with charming results.

A most unusual hero
Freddy is immensely rich, of course, and not bad-looking, but he's mild-mannered, a bit hapless—not anything like his virile, handsome, rakish cousin Jack...

A heroine in a difficult situation
Young Kitty Charing stands to inherit a vast fortune from her irascible and eccentric guardian—provided she marries one of his great-nephews...

A sham betrothal
No sooner does Kitty arrive in London then the race for her hand begins, but between confirmed rakes and bumbling affections, Kitty needs a daring scheme...

Praise for Georgette Heyer and Cotillion:
"Sparkling"—Independent on Sunday
"Triumphantly good...Georgette Heyer is unbeatable."—Sunday Telegraph
"My favourite historical novelist."—Margaret Drabble
"Thus begins Cotillion, arguably the funniest, most charming of Georgette Heyer's many delightful Regency romances."—Amazon.co.uk

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