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Cotillion [Kindle Edition]

Georgette Heyer
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (192 customer reviews)

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Book Description

"Sparkling"-Independent on Sunday


"A literary bubble bath...Take a delightful and frothy dip among the gayer aspects of the author's favorite and well worked Regency period."-Sunday Tribune


Almost an heiress

Country-bred, spirited Kitty Charings is on the brink of inheriting a fortune from her eccentric guardian - provided that she marries one of his grand–nephews. Kitty has spent her secluded life pining for the handsome, rakish Jack, who is well aware of her attachment.


A plan of her own

But when Jack fails to respond to his great–uncle's ultimatum, Kitty hatches a strategy of her own - a counterfeit betrothal to mild–mannered Freddy Standen (who neither needs nor wants the money).


A most unlikely hero

And when Kitty's generous heart leads to all sorts of unintended troubles, there is only one man who can rescue her from more than one dreadful fix, pick up the pieces of her plotting and in the process her heart...


"Thus begins Cotillion, arguably the funniest, most charming of Georgette Heyer's many delightful Regency romances." - Amazon.co.uk


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Young Kitty Charing stands to inherit a vast fortune from her irascible great-uncle Matthew--provided she marries one of her cousins. Kitty is not wholly adverse to the plan, if the right nephew proposes. Unfortunately, Kitty has set her heart on Jack Westruther, a confirmed rake, who seems to have no inclination to marry her anytime soon. In an effort to make Jack jealous, and to see a little more of the world than her isolated life on her great-uncle's estate has afforded her, Kitty devises a plan. She convinces yet another of her cousins, the honorable Freddy Standen, to pretend to be engaged to her. Her plan would bring her to London on a visit to Freddy's family and (hopefully) render the elusive Mr. Westruther madly jealous. Thus begins Cotillion, arguably the funniest, most charming of Georgette Heyer's many delightful Regency romances.

No sooner does Kitty arrive in London than she becomes embroiled in the romantic difficulties of several new acquaintances. Kitty's French cousin, Camille, a professional gambler, has won the heart of her new friend, Olivia--who also happens to be the object of Jack Westruther's dishonorable intentions. Meanwhile, Kitty's doltish cousin Lord Dolphinton has fallen in love with a merchant's daughter who's embattled with his mother and needs his help. Finally, there is Kitty herself, who begins to wonder if the dandified Freddy might not be the man for her after all. As in all of Georgette Heyer's books, Cotillion transcends genre--it is, quite simply, wonderful literature. Historically accurate down to the finest details of dress, deportment, and speech, Heyer was also a master at creating unforgettable, comic characters, and Kitty Charing and Freddy Standen stand out as one of her most charming romantic duos ever.

From Library Journal

Miss Catherine Charing is in a difficult situation. Her irascible and eccentric guardian, Mr. Matthew Penicuik, will bestow his entire fortune on her only if she will marry one of his great-nephews, not a choice lot. The Rev. Hugh Rattney is a self-righteous prig; Capt. Claud Rattney is a well-known rake; Lord Dolphinton is none too bright and frightened to death of his Mama; the Honorable Frederick Standon is a useless fribble; and Kitty's hero, Capt. Jack Westruther, resisting Uncle Matthew's tyrannical ways, has refused to even show up. If Kitty does not accept one of them, she will be penniless and homeless. Driven to folly by these circumstances, she attempts to flee to London to find a position as a governess. Heyer's characterizations are at their sharpest as her people change and grow in unexpected directions. The book is a joy to listen to, as Phyllida Nash manages to keep the complicated cast of characters both separate and equal. Highly recommended for all public library collections where romance or the author's works are popular.ABarbara Rhodes, Northeast Texas Lib. Syst., Garland
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 564 KB
  • Print Length: 366 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1402210086
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (October 1, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001POX73C
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,112 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
138 of 141 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the great Regency Romances. January 28, 2000
By Daniel
Format:Hardcover
This book has been described as one of the greatest Regency romances of all time. It subtly and with cracking good humour subverts all the expectations of the genre with a great deal more subtlety, humour and cunning than most deliberate parodies. Heyer builds up her usual cast of powerful and memorable characters - no two-dimensional characters for her!
She gives us a vain and slightly selfish, yet also totally generous and completely charming heroine, who you cannot dislike; a delightful, stammering and ineffectual dandy who turns out to have gumption beneath his affectations, his lovely, silly sister with no fashion sense, but a great deal of kindness, a wicked rake who yet fascinates and interests us - a cast literally of dozens of characters, all of whom are distinctively portrayed.
There are no less than four romantic plots in this book, interthreaded and interwoven out of each other with exquisite grace - (hence the title - "Cotillion" - basically a gay little dance). In less skilled hands this book would have become heavy-handed and ponderous, exquisitely tactless. In Heyer's hands the book is light and flowing, fluently written, complicated and yet not at all hard to follow. It is a book for the fan of Heyer, and is best read after you have cultivated a familarity with Heyer's traditional Regencies - for example, Regency Buck. She subtly and wickedly subverts traditions she herself established.
You'll laugh, you'll cry, your emotions will all be twanged one by one. It is a very fine book. A very fine book indeed. I won't tell you who the hero is, because it would ruin the book for you - but you won't be disappointed. Cotillion is a happy book, written by Heyer at the very height of her powers. It is not just a Regency Romance.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars High Comedy November 2, 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is quite possibly my favorite Heyer, which is saying something, because the competition is fierce. The author plays with the usual ingredients of her books, and reverses them (the man who appears to be the hero is actually the villian.) Everybody is slightly absurd, including the heroine. In books by numberless imitators of Ms. Heyer, the heroine is always perfect. Not here. Kitty Charing is bright and good-natured. She is also very innocent, very impulsive, a crusader, a match-maker, and the despair of her putative fiancee, Freddy Standen. Freddy himself is one of Ms. Heyer's happiest creations. The plot is tightly wound, and fits together with satisfying clicks. Great scenes: Dophinton's proposal to Kitty; Freddy's ditto; Kitty meets Freddy's family; Freddy and Kitty go sight-seeing in London; Freddy discusses the Elgin Marbles with his father; Freddy discovers why Kitty is seeing Dolphinton; Kitty and Olivia encounter Olivia elderly admirer; the masquerade; the elopement; and Jack's comeuppance at the hands of Freddy.
If you have never read this book, prepare for a treat.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A charming tale to read again and again January 9, 2006
Format:Hardcover
The first time I read Cotillion I found myself a little disappointed. Perhaps because Freddie isn't really the sort of hero I go for (The Marquis of Vidal, Marquis of Alverstoke or Earl of Worth from Heyer's novels spring to mind here), perhaps because Kitty wasn't the usual intelligent, witty heroine, perhaps because there were lots of different stories which diluted the overall effect.

I read it again, two months later and completely changed my mind. Freddie IS a great hero because of his sweetness of nature, self-awareness and the way that he rises to the occasion when it becomes necessary and saves the day in so many ways, but humbly. And as for the hero character, Jack Westruther, who you might expect to be that - he isn't; we hear of his rake lifestyle and it's offputting. However, Freddie's father makes a fascinating side-character with his sly wit and amusing turn of phrase; Lord Legerwood definitely adds a spice to the book and he's now my hero of it, alongside his son.

The period detail of Heyer's books is of course fantastic and this one is no different. What stands out for me in Cotillion is that Heyer is able to portray many different people, some of whom are simple or at least not particularly intelligent, with real veracity. Kitty's young and bighearted and is utterly convincing; Freddie isn't particularly intelligent but has a lot of common sense and worldly knowledge and he is convincing; Freddie's sister whose husband is away and is flexing her flirting muscles is convincing - all the characters we come across in Cotillion are different from each other (and from other Heyer characters) but work. No mean feat!

I recommend this book very much, and it definitely improves with subsequent reading.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't miss the audio! April 5, 2005
By juki654
Format:Audio Cassette
I never really appreciated this book until I heard Phyllida Nash read it. Oh my heavens! I was laughing out loud. The voices for all of the characters are perfect--esp. Dolph, I think.

It's expensive to buy, but your library network might have a copy. Once I started listening to it, I walked around with my walkman and earphones while doing dishes, laundry, walking the dog . . . I kept looking for things to do because I so wanted to keep listening.

I love all of her books on audio, but this is one of the very best.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars My absolute and all time favourite romance
My favourite Georgette Heyer. I have read this book many times and it never ceases to make me laugh and just feel good about the world. Read more
Published 5 days ago by CitCat
5.0 out of 5 stars A regency romp!
Kitty must choose one of her cousins to marry, but the one she wants does not come to her guardian uncle's summons. Read more
Published 6 days ago by C. Reynolds
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my all-time favorites.
I have read this several times - that's the kind of novel it is. Light-hearted, fun and funny, with an different kind of heroine and most unusual hero.
Published 15 days ago by G. Shen
4.0 out of 5 stars Engaging story.
It was an interesting read. I found the beginning a bit confusing in terms of keeping track of the characters. But after that, I found it difficult to stop reading. Read more
Published 27 days ago by kchkar
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Introduction to Historical Romances
Wanted to read one of the foremost writers of historical romances. This book was written more than 60 years ago. I think it is true to the way they spoke at the time. Read more
Published 28 days ago by B. Tiscia
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't get enough of Georgette Heyer
Georgette Heyer's books have been a constant source of delight for me for many years. I first read them for the romance, second for the characters, third for the intelligence and... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Beate Boeker
5.0 out of 5 stars Regency romance at its finest
I had never read any of Georgette Heyer’s well-regarded Regency-era historical romances until recently, when I saw them mentioned favorably on several people’s threads, especially... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Julia LaBua
5.0 out of 5 stars I love the characters in this book
I love the characters in this book. Georgette Heyer shows her sense of humor, her instinct for gesture and her understanding of how and why people behave the way they do.
Published 1 month ago by Lisa T
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh Freddie!
Another great Georgette Heyer book!!! A fun romp full of interesting characters. You will read it more than once.

...
Published 1 month ago by melzy
5.0 out of 5 stars Tangle of romantic affairs!
Young Kitty Charing finds life and relatives are not quite what she expected when she finally sees London. Romance galore!
Published 1 month ago by E. Deckeri
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