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Book suggestions: Old, non-typical romance

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Showing 1-25 of 26 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 18, 2008 4:01:58 PM PDT
Kat1979 says:
Hey, I just finished reading Pride and Prejudice and was hoping someone could suggest a good *old* book, pre 1900. I can't stand most romance books because they're usually too girly (yes, I'm female). It doesn't have to be available on Amazon too...

Not to sound like a perv... there just has to be some old story out there about a man who tries to seduce women but gets seduced himself, or a relationship with a pair that seem like they hate each other but it somehow grows into strong feelings of being in love (usually unveiled at the end).

Pride and Prejudice was fantastic! Elizabeth didn't let Darcy off one single step. She was feisty and Darcy was a strong, proud, slight jerk, who just needed a little more perspective outside his class and influence. I LOOVED that book. A little more on the sweet side, but I enjoyed it thoroughly.

I remember seeing Becoming Jane, the movie. James McAvoy's character suggested a book for her (Jane)... I would so very very much LOVE to know what book it was that he suggested...

It's very unlikely to find something so specific, especially from the era, but would appreciate all replies.. Plots primarily centered around the relationships, not as much of a sub plot to another story.

Thanks all

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 19, 2008 3:50:31 AM PDT
C. Carroll says:
Pride and Prejudice is one of a kind!!! A classic! But there is an interplay between the two main characters that draws you in...the love hate that turns to love without the main character even knowing what is happening. Austen has a truth to her books because she writes of real people from her life that are transformed into her characters. I suggest you check out Amboseli Wimbo on Amazon and read excerpts from it and you will find the same interplay between the heroine and protagonist. It is set in Africa, but there is a love-hate relationship between the two that will keep you reading until you have finished the book. The twist in the end will surprise you.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 22, 2008 9:28:41 PM PDT
R. Ramos says:
I totally agree about the genre of romance novels lol, I dont know if you were interested in a book written pre-1900, or just takes place pre1900. If your looking in to the latter, I'd like to suggest Johanna Lindsey, Amanda Quick or Julia Quinn, among others.


In reply to an earlier post on Jun 27, 2008 10:56:43 PM PDT
K. Haynes says:
I am an avid P&P fan as well....and found "North and South" by Elizabeth Gaskell. SPOILER ALERT: It involves lots of angst and a wonderful proposal rejection, which really made the book for me! I guess I love the male to suffer a bit of agony before he gains the woman's hand...haha. It's set in late 1800s Industrial Revolution England and has some sad bits in the middle but I love the leads ALMOST as much as I love Lizzie and Darcy. Another book I have lately come upon is "The Valley of Decision" by Marcia Davenport, a book set in late 1800s-early 1900s Pittsburgh. I loved the movie starring Greer Garson and Gregory Peck and sought this book out. Needless to say I was a little daunted when a book the size of the Bible arrived on my doorstep. It is actually three books in one. The main character throughout it all is a strong willed, strong charactered Irish maid named Mary Rafferty who works for the Scott family and whose main goal is to basically keep them in line, despite her deep, lifelong love of their son, Paul. The tension between Mary and Paul is angsty and delightful! It's your option to read the last "book", which centers around a fifth generation Scott child. Basically, I was only concerned with the first and second book which centered on Paul and Mary, which never let up on sexual tension or amazing plot devices. So perhaps you can give these two books a try. Good luck!

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 14, 2008 12:44:50 PM PDT
Sharon Henry says:
you can look for the book jane eyre by charlotte bronte that one was good and another would be beware of virtuous women but i forgot the author of that one( i think its a series) anyways that was another good one

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 3, 2008 3:07:04 PM PDT
Hi, totally agree that P&P is a great book. You might also like to try Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell, Emma (Austen again) and Vanity Fair by William Thackeray. For a good romp, you might enjoy The History of Tom Jones by Henry Fielding.
In terms of light relief, why not try some of the books by Georgette Heyer - I personally loved Arabella, Venetia and Frederica (and also Infamous Army).
Happy reading!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2008 2:44:25 PM PDT
Denna130 says:
try Of Human Bondage by William Somerset Maugham

The Count of Monte Cristo is in my top five. Its not really about romance, but its just too cool to pass up

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 7, 2008 6:37:53 PM PDT
The book that Tom Lefroy had Jane read in "Becoming Jane" was "Tom Jones" by Henry Fielding. Do keep in mind that there is very little factual evidence for the events in "Becoming Jane." Anyway, "Tom Jones" is a rather thick book, but rather funny. I have the dvd for the 1997 film adaptation and it is very funny, though a little risque.

Posted on Mar 10, 2009 12:41:34 PM PDT
S. MICELI says:
Try Georgette Heyer. She is as close to Jane Austen as you will get.

Posted on May 20, 2009 10:03:49 AM PDT
Lostgirl says:
Elizabeth Gaskell is also great. Check out North and South and Wives and Daughters
Also read:
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (I think someone else might have suggested this one) Awesome heroine, great love story and some mystery
If you like that one check out
Villette by Charlotte Bronte
The Tennent of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte
If you haven't read Jane Austen's other novels do so now. All have great, complex heroines and heros, humor and romance. My faves (other than P&P) are Emma and Sense and Sensability, but I know a lot of Persuasion fans as well. Jane Austen's favorite of her own novels was Mansfield Park.

Posted on Aug 21, 2010 9:48:16 AM PDT
Kit Marlowe says:
Jane Eyre is the classic romance. Almost everything since is derivative. If you want something old and romanctic and a bit more challenging, try Wuthering Heights, a truly great book written by Emily Bronte,(Charlotte's sister). And what about all the other great novels by Jane Austen? Mansfield Park, Emma, Sense and Sensibility, Northhanger Abbey. None is the perfect thing that P&P is, but all of them are way way better than most books of that kind.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 23, 2010 1:58:59 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 23, 2010 2:08:10 PM PDT
Sheri Garvin says:
I second the recommendation for Georgette Heyer. I have all of her books in print (except the 4 no longer in print). Been collecting them for 30 years and read them over and over (have had to replace some as they are reprinted). Hard to find authors like this! Start with "These Old Shades" and then the followup "Devil's Cub". After that, Grand Sophy, Arabella, The Nonesuch...

Posted on Sep 25, 2010 4:55:13 PM PDT
Lauren Burd says:
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Howthorn, definitley not a typycal romance

Posted on Nov 29, 2010 9:33:56 PM PST
J says:
Ethan Frome.

Posted on Nov 30, 2010 8:32:08 AM PST
Kit Marlowe says:
Jane Eyre is a great suggestion. You would probably like all of Jane Austen's books. She is a great creator of plot and character and also one of the best stylists in English. Her readers compose one of the largest and most diverse groups in all of English literature. Soldiers in the trenches in WWI read her novels with relish. I have taught her novels to students are the top colleges and to students at open-admissions colleges. All of the students just love her stuff. She has been widely read now for two-hundred years. I don't think that will be the case with Georgette Heyer.

Pride and Prejudice has a perfect a plot as any novel in English. And some hidden jokes. Wickham seems to get off lightly , doesn't he? Well do note that the regiment he belongs to was sent to France and suffered extraordinarily high losses. Did Jane Austen know this? Well, it was no secret.

And just what do you all think of Mr. Bennet?

Posted on Dec 5, 2010 5:39:23 AM PST
Ellie says:
I have to agree with the recommendation of Georgette first read of hers, back in the '70s, was "Frederica". It's funny, witty, and charming. All of Mrs. Heyer's novels are supreme. She did an incredible amount of research into the regency period, and it shows. A brilliant woman with the ability to make characters come alive, much like Jane Austen. You really won't find anything closer to P

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 8, 2011 7:15:54 AM PST
madmaeve says:
Desiree by Daphne du Maurier About a young woman spurned by Napoleon and and falls in love with one of his Generals ( who becomes King of Norway) Historically accurate and told in such a way as to be ageless. I too don't care for your typical Gothic romances. This book you feel like you're there and the characters touch your heart.

Posted on Jan 11, 2011 5:38:01 AM PST
Avid Reader says:
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Pamela by Samuel Richardson
all the books by Edna Ferber
Maria by Mary Wolstonecraft (the mother of the author of Frankenstein)
Yes, anything by Georgette Hyer
And any of the novels by Victoria Holt, Susan Howach, Phillipa Carr, PHyllis Whitney

Posted on Apr 11, 2011 6:55:46 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Apr 12, 2011 1:06:51 PM PDT]

Posted on Sep 12, 2011 12:30:18 PM PDT
North and South (book and film) by Elizabeth Gaskell is truly magical and I love John Thornton and Margaret Hale as much as - if not more than - Darcy and Lizzy. I adore Austen's Persuasion aswell. I adore that Wentworth and Anne love each other and wait for each other for so long

Posted on Dec 1, 2011 2:32:46 PM PST
I recommend The Black Rose by Thomas Costain. Written in the 1950s, it was made into a movie starring Tyrone Powers. One of the first "romances" I ever read, it's full of rich description, unique characters and believable adventure.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 6, 2011 8:04:50 AM PST
Can't suggest an old book, but see my reviews of THE BOOKWOMAN'S LAST FLING and THE BOOKMAN'S WAKE. They meet all your criteria except "old." Rusty

Posted on Jan 21, 2012 5:27:05 AM PST
Pruney Toes says:
Have you read Wuthering Heights?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 18, 2012 7:05:03 PM PST
Christmas in Wine Country
Check out my new ebook Christmas in Wine Country.
Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book of all time.
I tried to write a new romance in the style of a traditional romance.
Hope you enjoy!
-Addison Westlake

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 18, 2012 7:07:41 PM PST
Christmas in Wine Country

Hi there -- If you enjoy Pride and Prejudice, check out my new book
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Total posts:  26
Initial post:  Apr 18, 2008
Latest post:  Feb 20, 2013

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Pride and Prejudice
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (Hardcover - June 1973)
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