The Regency Romance

JammdismHere's Jo, with some quick thoughts on the Regency romance, which has been in the light recently because of the Georgette Heyer biography. This is a bit of a rant, in fact, about the occasional regency-set book that seems to have been written by someone who doesn't truly like Regency Romance — or my vision of Regency Romance. Biheyerbio

(The Jane Austen Made Me Do It anthology isn't Regency Romance, though my story takes place there.)

I see the appeal of the Regency as a playground — a place to move through glittering high society where at least some of the men are both handsome and witty, and where a heroine can marry into love and luxury. Therefore, I have little interest in tBallcrophe seamier side of the period, though I don't mind the practical. By that, I mean, I don't mind elements of food limitations by season, cold houses in winter, and long journeys. I don't want the focus on the plight of the poor and oppressed. That might be shallow, but I'll read text books for that, not fiction.

I can't understand why anyone would write a regency romance with a sour tone of disapproval, pointing out the silliness of many social activities, peopling the ton with lazy, greedy, rude people, and presenting protagonists who are so much more worthy because they have started out in a lower class, or, that matter, in another land, such as America.

To me, that rather like Disneyworld giving lectures at every turn about idlenSteyneess and self indulgence, and papering the place with pictures of inner city poverty and the lonely aged.

Also, the engine of the Regency Romance is Society, definitely with a capital C. Society can bring together two people who would not otherwise have connected, or stand in the way of two people who love. Its rules can compel. Quite a few Regency historicals ignore rules for plot convenience, but I think to do so loses the energy of the genre. 

Very often, a good Regency involves two opposites confronted by society. Heyer did very well with opposites. She knew her craft! Nora Roberts has said that if the hero is a firefighter, the heroine had better be an arsonists, and her JD Robb books match a thief (reformed) with a cop.

Here are some examples.

The maiden and the rake: Venetia, Devil’s Cub

The innocent and the jaded sophisticate: Arabella, Sylvester, Corinthian

The lively lady and the stuffed shirt: Grand Sophy

The lady and the outsider: Black Sheep,

Ward/guardian: Regency Buck

Sensible woman and the grand catch: Frederica, Sprig Muslin

What other opposites can you think of in Regency Romance? And do you agree with me about anti-elegance romance, or do you enjoy them? Are you a revolutionary or republican at heart?

Or the ultimate question — if you enjoy Regency-set romances, why?

Jo

 

 

 

 

 

 

65 thoughts on “The Regency Romance”

  1. Since I read romance novels (or almost any novel for that matter) to refresh myself and make me more able to face the onslaughts of life in any normal day, I doubt that I have ever read a regency novel that is truly a “put down” of the period. I would get bored and put the book down in a few short pages.
    I have read (and enjoyed) a few novels set in the period in which hero or heroine (but probably not both) are in rebellion. But, if the novel works, the rebel is working with the system, even though rebelling against it (because that is what makes the novel work from my point of view).
    As for your ultimate question: See my opening as to why I read novels. The glitter, the inventiveness, the expansion, and the smug security of people in this period fascinate me and thus help refresh me for facing the real world.

    Reply
  2. Since I read romance novels (or almost any novel for that matter) to refresh myself and make me more able to face the onslaughts of life in any normal day, I doubt that I have ever read a regency novel that is truly a “put down” of the period. I would get bored and put the book down in a few short pages.
    I have read (and enjoyed) a few novels set in the period in which hero or heroine (but probably not both) are in rebellion. But, if the novel works, the rebel is working with the system, even though rebelling against it (because that is what makes the novel work from my point of view).
    As for your ultimate question: See my opening as to why I read novels. The glitter, the inventiveness, the expansion, and the smug security of people in this period fascinate me and thus help refresh me for facing the real world.

    Reply
  3. Since I read romance novels (or almost any novel for that matter) to refresh myself and make me more able to face the onslaughts of life in any normal day, I doubt that I have ever read a regency novel that is truly a “put down” of the period. I would get bored and put the book down in a few short pages.
    I have read (and enjoyed) a few novels set in the period in which hero or heroine (but probably not both) are in rebellion. But, if the novel works, the rebel is working with the system, even though rebelling against it (because that is what makes the novel work from my point of view).
    As for your ultimate question: See my opening as to why I read novels. The glitter, the inventiveness, the expansion, and the smug security of people in this period fascinate me and thus help refresh me for facing the real world.

    Reply
  4. Since I read romance novels (or almost any novel for that matter) to refresh myself and make me more able to face the onslaughts of life in any normal day, I doubt that I have ever read a regency novel that is truly a “put down” of the period. I would get bored and put the book down in a few short pages.
    I have read (and enjoyed) a few novels set in the period in which hero or heroine (but probably not both) are in rebellion. But, if the novel works, the rebel is working with the system, even though rebelling against it (because that is what makes the novel work from my point of view).
    As for your ultimate question: See my opening as to why I read novels. The glitter, the inventiveness, the expansion, and the smug security of people in this period fascinate me and thus help refresh me for facing the real world.

    Reply
  5. Since I read romance novels (or almost any novel for that matter) to refresh myself and make me more able to face the onslaughts of life in any normal day, I doubt that I have ever read a regency novel that is truly a “put down” of the period. I would get bored and put the book down in a few short pages.
    I have read (and enjoyed) a few novels set in the period in which hero or heroine (but probably not both) are in rebellion. But, if the novel works, the rebel is working with the system, even though rebelling against it (because that is what makes the novel work from my point of view).
    As for your ultimate question: See my opening as to why I read novels. The glitter, the inventiveness, the expansion, and the smug security of people in this period fascinate me and thus help refresh me for facing the real world.

    Reply
  6. With my younger son books, I’m writing about people who are striving to keep hold of (or attain) that glittering playground. It’s quite fun. I have a friend who DESPERATELY wants me to write a below stairs romance, but I’ll admit that the dreariness and limitations just put me off it. It’s certainly possible for a grand passion to erupt below stairs or in a factory or a workhouse, but I don’t think I’d enjoy writing (or reading) about it. Romance, especially historical romance, it about escapism to me, and that means I want balls and lords and lobster patties.

    Reply
  7. With my younger son books, I’m writing about people who are striving to keep hold of (or attain) that glittering playground. It’s quite fun. I have a friend who DESPERATELY wants me to write a below stairs romance, but I’ll admit that the dreariness and limitations just put me off it. It’s certainly possible for a grand passion to erupt below stairs or in a factory or a workhouse, but I don’t think I’d enjoy writing (or reading) about it. Romance, especially historical romance, it about escapism to me, and that means I want balls and lords and lobster patties.

    Reply
  8. With my younger son books, I’m writing about people who are striving to keep hold of (or attain) that glittering playground. It’s quite fun. I have a friend who DESPERATELY wants me to write a below stairs romance, but I’ll admit that the dreariness and limitations just put me off it. It’s certainly possible for a grand passion to erupt below stairs or in a factory or a workhouse, but I don’t think I’d enjoy writing (or reading) about it. Romance, especially historical romance, it about escapism to me, and that means I want balls and lords and lobster patties.

    Reply
  9. With my younger son books, I’m writing about people who are striving to keep hold of (or attain) that glittering playground. It’s quite fun. I have a friend who DESPERATELY wants me to write a below stairs romance, but I’ll admit that the dreariness and limitations just put me off it. It’s certainly possible for a grand passion to erupt below stairs or in a factory or a workhouse, but I don’t think I’d enjoy writing (or reading) about it. Romance, especially historical romance, it about escapism to me, and that means I want balls and lords and lobster patties.

    Reply
  10. With my younger son books, I’m writing about people who are striving to keep hold of (or attain) that glittering playground. It’s quite fun. I have a friend who DESPERATELY wants me to write a below stairs romance, but I’ll admit that the dreariness and limitations just put me off it. It’s certainly possible for a grand passion to erupt below stairs or in a factory or a workhouse, but I don’t think I’d enjoy writing (or reading) about it. Romance, especially historical romance, it about escapism to me, and that means I want balls and lords and lobster patties.

    Reply
  11. A regency romance that is a put-down of the period sounds like a contradiction. I like regencies because I like escapist fare with a touch of reality. The Regency was a real time, not a fantasy world of demons, werewolves and dragons that are so popular today. I expect the hero and heroine to be of the upper classes and for the story to be upbeat. If I want to read a depressing story, I’ll read the newspaper.
    But although I love regencies, I’m getting tired of story after story about the rich, powerful nobleman who marries a little nobody of a heroine who, although she is of his class, is only nice and pretty and nothing more. I can’t believe such a woman would attract a man like that, although there are always exceptions. I guess Cinderella stories have palled for me.
    I want a heroine who has interests besides marrying a rich man, frittering away her time at balls and attaining high status through her husband. There were Regency women scientists and artists and I’d like to see more of those. People who are only social climbers are shallow and boring.

    Reply
  12. A regency romance that is a put-down of the period sounds like a contradiction. I like regencies because I like escapist fare with a touch of reality. The Regency was a real time, not a fantasy world of demons, werewolves and dragons that are so popular today. I expect the hero and heroine to be of the upper classes and for the story to be upbeat. If I want to read a depressing story, I’ll read the newspaper.
    But although I love regencies, I’m getting tired of story after story about the rich, powerful nobleman who marries a little nobody of a heroine who, although she is of his class, is only nice and pretty and nothing more. I can’t believe such a woman would attract a man like that, although there are always exceptions. I guess Cinderella stories have palled for me.
    I want a heroine who has interests besides marrying a rich man, frittering away her time at balls and attaining high status through her husband. There were Regency women scientists and artists and I’d like to see more of those. People who are only social climbers are shallow and boring.

    Reply
  13. A regency romance that is a put-down of the period sounds like a contradiction. I like regencies because I like escapist fare with a touch of reality. The Regency was a real time, not a fantasy world of demons, werewolves and dragons that are so popular today. I expect the hero and heroine to be of the upper classes and for the story to be upbeat. If I want to read a depressing story, I’ll read the newspaper.
    But although I love regencies, I’m getting tired of story after story about the rich, powerful nobleman who marries a little nobody of a heroine who, although she is of his class, is only nice and pretty and nothing more. I can’t believe such a woman would attract a man like that, although there are always exceptions. I guess Cinderella stories have palled for me.
    I want a heroine who has interests besides marrying a rich man, frittering away her time at balls and attaining high status through her husband. There were Regency women scientists and artists and I’d like to see more of those. People who are only social climbers are shallow and boring.

    Reply
  14. A regency romance that is a put-down of the period sounds like a contradiction. I like regencies because I like escapist fare with a touch of reality. The Regency was a real time, not a fantasy world of demons, werewolves and dragons that are so popular today. I expect the hero and heroine to be of the upper classes and for the story to be upbeat. If I want to read a depressing story, I’ll read the newspaper.
    But although I love regencies, I’m getting tired of story after story about the rich, powerful nobleman who marries a little nobody of a heroine who, although she is of his class, is only nice and pretty and nothing more. I can’t believe such a woman would attract a man like that, although there are always exceptions. I guess Cinderella stories have palled for me.
    I want a heroine who has interests besides marrying a rich man, frittering away her time at balls and attaining high status through her husband. There were Regency women scientists and artists and I’d like to see more of those. People who are only social climbers are shallow and boring.

    Reply
  15. A regency romance that is a put-down of the period sounds like a contradiction. I like regencies because I like escapist fare with a touch of reality. The Regency was a real time, not a fantasy world of demons, werewolves and dragons that are so popular today. I expect the hero and heroine to be of the upper classes and for the story to be upbeat. If I want to read a depressing story, I’ll read the newspaper.
    But although I love regencies, I’m getting tired of story after story about the rich, powerful nobleman who marries a little nobody of a heroine who, although she is of his class, is only nice and pretty and nothing more. I can’t believe such a woman would attract a man like that, although there are always exceptions. I guess Cinderella stories have palled for me.
    I want a heroine who has interests besides marrying a rich man, frittering away her time at balls and attaining high status through her husband. There were Regency women scientists and artists and I’d like to see more of those. People who are only social climbers are shallow and boring.

    Reply
  16. I love Regencies. I think of them as light-hearted fun romps through a Cloud Cuckoo Land that doesn’t anchor firmly to reality. Regencies are the most escapist of all literature. When they’re done with wit and charm, as they so often is, the books are exquisite.
    Do I think Regencies should be more realistic?
    Not so much.
    IMO, this sort of light fiction can’t fulfill its purpose when it gets bogged down in the nitty gritty.
    I don’t want Oscar Wilde to tell me about Victorian England. I want him to create a space for nonsense and delight and sharp social commentary. I don’t want Ernest Bramah to write about the actuality of Imperial China.
    Now, I write in exactly this time period — though I’m mostly looking at events in France. And I love to read historical fiction set in this era. Writers who use fiction to explore class and social issues in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries produce some fascinating, dramatic stuff.
    But that’s not so much ‘Regencies’, and shouldn’t be marketed as such and probably doesn’t want to be marketed that way. I see Regencies and Historical Fiction set in the Regency period as very different sorts of writing altogether.

    Reply
  17. I love Regencies. I think of them as light-hearted fun romps through a Cloud Cuckoo Land that doesn’t anchor firmly to reality. Regencies are the most escapist of all literature. When they’re done with wit and charm, as they so often is, the books are exquisite.
    Do I think Regencies should be more realistic?
    Not so much.
    IMO, this sort of light fiction can’t fulfill its purpose when it gets bogged down in the nitty gritty.
    I don’t want Oscar Wilde to tell me about Victorian England. I want him to create a space for nonsense and delight and sharp social commentary. I don’t want Ernest Bramah to write about the actuality of Imperial China.
    Now, I write in exactly this time period — though I’m mostly looking at events in France. And I love to read historical fiction set in this era. Writers who use fiction to explore class and social issues in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries produce some fascinating, dramatic stuff.
    But that’s not so much ‘Regencies’, and shouldn’t be marketed as such and probably doesn’t want to be marketed that way. I see Regencies and Historical Fiction set in the Regency period as very different sorts of writing altogether.

    Reply
  18. I love Regencies. I think of them as light-hearted fun romps through a Cloud Cuckoo Land that doesn’t anchor firmly to reality. Regencies are the most escapist of all literature. When they’re done with wit and charm, as they so often is, the books are exquisite.
    Do I think Regencies should be more realistic?
    Not so much.
    IMO, this sort of light fiction can’t fulfill its purpose when it gets bogged down in the nitty gritty.
    I don’t want Oscar Wilde to tell me about Victorian England. I want him to create a space for nonsense and delight and sharp social commentary. I don’t want Ernest Bramah to write about the actuality of Imperial China.
    Now, I write in exactly this time period — though I’m mostly looking at events in France. And I love to read historical fiction set in this era. Writers who use fiction to explore class and social issues in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries produce some fascinating, dramatic stuff.
    But that’s not so much ‘Regencies’, and shouldn’t be marketed as such and probably doesn’t want to be marketed that way. I see Regencies and Historical Fiction set in the Regency period as very different sorts of writing altogether.

    Reply
  19. I love Regencies. I think of them as light-hearted fun romps through a Cloud Cuckoo Land that doesn’t anchor firmly to reality. Regencies are the most escapist of all literature. When they’re done with wit and charm, as they so often is, the books are exquisite.
    Do I think Regencies should be more realistic?
    Not so much.
    IMO, this sort of light fiction can’t fulfill its purpose when it gets bogged down in the nitty gritty.
    I don’t want Oscar Wilde to tell me about Victorian England. I want him to create a space for nonsense and delight and sharp social commentary. I don’t want Ernest Bramah to write about the actuality of Imperial China.
    Now, I write in exactly this time period — though I’m mostly looking at events in France. And I love to read historical fiction set in this era. Writers who use fiction to explore class and social issues in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries produce some fascinating, dramatic stuff.
    But that’s not so much ‘Regencies’, and shouldn’t be marketed as such and probably doesn’t want to be marketed that way. I see Regencies and Historical Fiction set in the Regency period as very different sorts of writing altogether.

    Reply
  20. I love Regencies. I think of them as light-hearted fun romps through a Cloud Cuckoo Land that doesn’t anchor firmly to reality. Regencies are the most escapist of all literature. When they’re done with wit and charm, as they so often is, the books are exquisite.
    Do I think Regencies should be more realistic?
    Not so much.
    IMO, this sort of light fiction can’t fulfill its purpose when it gets bogged down in the nitty gritty.
    I don’t want Oscar Wilde to tell me about Victorian England. I want him to create a space for nonsense and delight and sharp social commentary. I don’t want Ernest Bramah to write about the actuality of Imperial China.
    Now, I write in exactly this time period — though I’m mostly looking at events in France. And I love to read historical fiction set in this era. Writers who use fiction to explore class and social issues in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries produce some fascinating, dramatic stuff.
    But that’s not so much ‘Regencies’, and shouldn’t be marketed as such and probably doesn’t want to be marketed that way. I see Regencies and Historical Fiction set in the Regency period as very different sorts of writing altogether.

    Reply
  21. With the problems of real life in the last two months alone:losing my mother,having our all our home water equipment need to be replaced forcing a home equity loan, (we are in late 60’s) and finding out I’m losing my sight sooner or later (macular degeneration)—-I DO NOT want to read a book that makes me feel guilty and/or depressed!
    I want uplifting “life can be beautiful” books that gives me hope while making me forget my own problems!

    Reply
  22. With the problems of real life in the last two months alone:losing my mother,having our all our home water equipment need to be replaced forcing a home equity loan, (we are in late 60’s) and finding out I’m losing my sight sooner or later (macular degeneration)—-I DO NOT want to read a book that makes me feel guilty and/or depressed!
    I want uplifting “life can be beautiful” books that gives me hope while making me forget my own problems!

    Reply
  23. With the problems of real life in the last two months alone:losing my mother,having our all our home water equipment need to be replaced forcing a home equity loan, (we are in late 60’s) and finding out I’m losing my sight sooner or later (macular degeneration)—-I DO NOT want to read a book that makes me feel guilty and/or depressed!
    I want uplifting “life can be beautiful” books that gives me hope while making me forget my own problems!

    Reply
  24. With the problems of real life in the last two months alone:losing my mother,having our all our home water equipment need to be replaced forcing a home equity loan, (we are in late 60’s) and finding out I’m losing my sight sooner or later (macular degeneration)—-I DO NOT want to read a book that makes me feel guilty and/or depressed!
    I want uplifting “life can be beautiful” books that gives me hope while making me forget my own problems!

    Reply
  25. With the problems of real life in the last two months alone:losing my mother,having our all our home water equipment need to be replaced forcing a home equity loan, (we are in late 60’s) and finding out I’m losing my sight sooner or later (macular degeneration)—-I DO NOT want to read a book that makes me feel guilty and/or depressed!
    I want uplifting “life can be beautiful” books that gives me hope while making me forget my own problems!

    Reply
  26. The societal rules, the elegance and manners, the clothes and social life and all the rest – those are the reasons I read Regency set historicals and the reason I write them.
    I love the time period. I love the society of the ton. I love the homes and the tabbies who go after the prettiest debutante.
    I like a hero who knows he has to marry, probably even dreads his arranged marriage and then discovers his betrothed is going to give him a run for his money in love and in life.
    Regency society and its rules are only a hindrance to writing great romance if the writer allows them to be. Romance is about the human condition. About finding love when you are told it isn’t necessary for a good marriage and thanking your lucky stars when it happens to you.
    Real life is tough enough. Regency romance offers me a change to escape all that. Regency romance, when done right offers me magic. A rare gift in an often mundane world.

    Reply
  27. The societal rules, the elegance and manners, the clothes and social life and all the rest – those are the reasons I read Regency set historicals and the reason I write them.
    I love the time period. I love the society of the ton. I love the homes and the tabbies who go after the prettiest debutante.
    I like a hero who knows he has to marry, probably even dreads his arranged marriage and then discovers his betrothed is going to give him a run for his money in love and in life.
    Regency society and its rules are only a hindrance to writing great romance if the writer allows them to be. Romance is about the human condition. About finding love when you are told it isn’t necessary for a good marriage and thanking your lucky stars when it happens to you.
    Real life is tough enough. Regency romance offers me a change to escape all that. Regency romance, when done right offers me magic. A rare gift in an often mundane world.

    Reply
  28. The societal rules, the elegance and manners, the clothes and social life and all the rest – those are the reasons I read Regency set historicals and the reason I write them.
    I love the time period. I love the society of the ton. I love the homes and the tabbies who go after the prettiest debutante.
    I like a hero who knows he has to marry, probably even dreads his arranged marriage and then discovers his betrothed is going to give him a run for his money in love and in life.
    Regency society and its rules are only a hindrance to writing great romance if the writer allows them to be. Romance is about the human condition. About finding love when you are told it isn’t necessary for a good marriage and thanking your lucky stars when it happens to you.
    Real life is tough enough. Regency romance offers me a change to escape all that. Regency romance, when done right offers me magic. A rare gift in an often mundane world.

    Reply
  29. The societal rules, the elegance and manners, the clothes and social life and all the rest – those are the reasons I read Regency set historicals and the reason I write them.
    I love the time period. I love the society of the ton. I love the homes and the tabbies who go after the prettiest debutante.
    I like a hero who knows he has to marry, probably even dreads his arranged marriage and then discovers his betrothed is going to give him a run for his money in love and in life.
    Regency society and its rules are only a hindrance to writing great romance if the writer allows them to be. Romance is about the human condition. About finding love when you are told it isn’t necessary for a good marriage and thanking your lucky stars when it happens to you.
    Real life is tough enough. Regency romance offers me a change to escape all that. Regency romance, when done right offers me magic. A rare gift in an often mundane world.

    Reply
  30. The societal rules, the elegance and manners, the clothes and social life and all the rest – those are the reasons I read Regency set historicals and the reason I write them.
    I love the time period. I love the society of the ton. I love the homes and the tabbies who go after the prettiest debutante.
    I like a hero who knows he has to marry, probably even dreads his arranged marriage and then discovers his betrothed is going to give him a run for his money in love and in life.
    Regency society and its rules are only a hindrance to writing great romance if the writer allows them to be. Romance is about the human condition. About finding love when you are told it isn’t necessary for a good marriage and thanking your lucky stars when it happens to you.
    Real life is tough enough. Regency romance offers me a change to escape all that. Regency romance, when done right offers me magic. A rare gift in an often mundane world.

    Reply
  31. I read romance because I know it will have HEA. It is the same reason that I always read the comics after I read the front page of the newspaper. Life is not bad, it is life, but a little bit of escapism can’t hurt. And when it is combined with a glass of wine and a bubble bath it is heaven (at least until the hot water runs out). Please keep on giving me books to balance out the real. Realizing that the accurate historical aspects are appreciated and often cause me to read non-fiction as a follow up (very parallel to the comics and front page). Again thank you.

    Reply
  32. I read romance because I know it will have HEA. It is the same reason that I always read the comics after I read the front page of the newspaper. Life is not bad, it is life, but a little bit of escapism can’t hurt. And when it is combined with a glass of wine and a bubble bath it is heaven (at least until the hot water runs out). Please keep on giving me books to balance out the real. Realizing that the accurate historical aspects are appreciated and often cause me to read non-fiction as a follow up (very parallel to the comics and front page). Again thank you.

    Reply
  33. I read romance because I know it will have HEA. It is the same reason that I always read the comics after I read the front page of the newspaper. Life is not bad, it is life, but a little bit of escapism can’t hurt. And when it is combined with a glass of wine and a bubble bath it is heaven (at least until the hot water runs out). Please keep on giving me books to balance out the real. Realizing that the accurate historical aspects are appreciated and often cause me to read non-fiction as a follow up (very parallel to the comics and front page). Again thank you.

    Reply
  34. I read romance because I know it will have HEA. It is the same reason that I always read the comics after I read the front page of the newspaper. Life is not bad, it is life, but a little bit of escapism can’t hurt. And when it is combined with a glass of wine and a bubble bath it is heaven (at least until the hot water runs out). Please keep on giving me books to balance out the real. Realizing that the accurate historical aspects are appreciated and often cause me to read non-fiction as a follow up (very parallel to the comics and front page). Again thank you.

    Reply
  35. I read romance because I know it will have HEA. It is the same reason that I always read the comics after I read the front page of the newspaper. Life is not bad, it is life, but a little bit of escapism can’t hurt. And when it is combined with a glass of wine and a bubble bath it is heaven (at least until the hot water runs out). Please keep on giving me books to balance out the real. Realizing that the accurate historical aspects are appreciated and often cause me to read non-fiction as a follow up (very parallel to the comics and front page). Again thank you.

    Reply
  36. Interesting comments. I see most people agree with me. πŸ™‚
    I have to say that I can take only so much of the heroines with strong avocations. Variety’s the thing. I enjoy ladies of a conventional sort, but that should usually include a good brain, conventional skills (household management and such) and a general zest for life. Not passivity.
    I come across a distressing number of heroes who seem lacking any meaningful purpose in life. They should either have estates and manage them, or have a career. IMO.

    Reply
  37. Interesting comments. I see most people agree with me. πŸ™‚
    I have to say that I can take only so much of the heroines with strong avocations. Variety’s the thing. I enjoy ladies of a conventional sort, but that should usually include a good brain, conventional skills (household management and such) and a general zest for life. Not passivity.
    I come across a distressing number of heroes who seem lacking any meaningful purpose in life. They should either have estates and manage them, or have a career. IMO.

    Reply
  38. Interesting comments. I see most people agree with me. πŸ™‚
    I have to say that I can take only so much of the heroines with strong avocations. Variety’s the thing. I enjoy ladies of a conventional sort, but that should usually include a good brain, conventional skills (household management and such) and a general zest for life. Not passivity.
    I come across a distressing number of heroes who seem lacking any meaningful purpose in life. They should either have estates and manage them, or have a career. IMO.

    Reply
  39. Interesting comments. I see most people agree with me. πŸ™‚
    I have to say that I can take only so much of the heroines with strong avocations. Variety’s the thing. I enjoy ladies of a conventional sort, but that should usually include a good brain, conventional skills (household management and such) and a general zest for life. Not passivity.
    I come across a distressing number of heroes who seem lacking any meaningful purpose in life. They should either have estates and manage them, or have a career. IMO.

    Reply
  40. Interesting comments. I see most people agree with me. πŸ™‚
    I have to say that I can take only so much of the heroines with strong avocations. Variety’s the thing. I enjoy ladies of a conventional sort, but that should usually include a good brain, conventional skills (household management and such) and a general zest for life. Not passivity.
    I come across a distressing number of heroes who seem lacking any meaningful purpose in life. They should either have estates and manage them, or have a career. IMO.

    Reply
  41. Joanna, I like the comparison with Oscar Wilde. Even more so, perhaps PG Wodehouse.
    Martha, I’m very sorry to hear about your problems. You’re right, we all need light from our reading.
    Thanks, Lyn.
    Cheers,
    Jo

    Reply
  42. Joanna, I like the comparison with Oscar Wilde. Even more so, perhaps PG Wodehouse.
    Martha, I’m very sorry to hear about your problems. You’re right, we all need light from our reading.
    Thanks, Lyn.
    Cheers,
    Jo

    Reply
  43. Joanna, I like the comparison with Oscar Wilde. Even more so, perhaps PG Wodehouse.
    Martha, I’m very sorry to hear about your problems. You’re right, we all need light from our reading.
    Thanks, Lyn.
    Cheers,
    Jo

    Reply
  44. Joanna, I like the comparison with Oscar Wilde. Even more so, perhaps PG Wodehouse.
    Martha, I’m very sorry to hear about your problems. You’re right, we all need light from our reading.
    Thanks, Lyn.
    Cheers,
    Jo

    Reply
  45. Joanna, I like the comparison with Oscar Wilde. Even more so, perhaps PG Wodehouse.
    Martha, I’m very sorry to hear about your problems. You’re right, we all need light from our reading.
    Thanks, Lyn.
    Cheers,
    Jo

    Reply
  46. I love the land of Regency Romance. It’s a tiny world, with very strict rules and expectations, and I love authors who can weave romance within the prescribed limits. I rather resent it when they suspend the rules, as if you could start to do the Charleston in the middle of a minuet and no one would notice.
    I also love the same period in historical novels, Romance or not. This is a broader world and deals with more problems and more levels of society.
    I wouldn’t want to have to choose. I love Elizabeth Bennett, but I also love Becky Sharp. I don’t mind a Regency in which no one is aware of the Napoleonic Wars, but neither do I mind a book where no one seems to have heard of Almack’s.
    I want to have my cake and eat it too.

    Reply
  47. I love the land of Regency Romance. It’s a tiny world, with very strict rules and expectations, and I love authors who can weave romance within the prescribed limits. I rather resent it when they suspend the rules, as if you could start to do the Charleston in the middle of a minuet and no one would notice.
    I also love the same period in historical novels, Romance or not. This is a broader world and deals with more problems and more levels of society.
    I wouldn’t want to have to choose. I love Elizabeth Bennett, but I also love Becky Sharp. I don’t mind a Regency in which no one is aware of the Napoleonic Wars, but neither do I mind a book where no one seems to have heard of Almack’s.
    I want to have my cake and eat it too.

    Reply
  48. I love the land of Regency Romance. It’s a tiny world, with very strict rules and expectations, and I love authors who can weave romance within the prescribed limits. I rather resent it when they suspend the rules, as if you could start to do the Charleston in the middle of a minuet and no one would notice.
    I also love the same period in historical novels, Romance or not. This is a broader world and deals with more problems and more levels of society.
    I wouldn’t want to have to choose. I love Elizabeth Bennett, but I also love Becky Sharp. I don’t mind a Regency in which no one is aware of the Napoleonic Wars, but neither do I mind a book where no one seems to have heard of Almack’s.
    I want to have my cake and eat it too.

    Reply
  49. I love the land of Regency Romance. It’s a tiny world, with very strict rules and expectations, and I love authors who can weave romance within the prescribed limits. I rather resent it when they suspend the rules, as if you could start to do the Charleston in the middle of a minuet and no one would notice.
    I also love the same period in historical novels, Romance or not. This is a broader world and deals with more problems and more levels of society.
    I wouldn’t want to have to choose. I love Elizabeth Bennett, but I also love Becky Sharp. I don’t mind a Regency in which no one is aware of the Napoleonic Wars, but neither do I mind a book where no one seems to have heard of Almack’s.
    I want to have my cake and eat it too.

    Reply
  50. I love the land of Regency Romance. It’s a tiny world, with very strict rules and expectations, and I love authors who can weave romance within the prescribed limits. I rather resent it when they suspend the rules, as if you could start to do the Charleston in the middle of a minuet and no one would notice.
    I also love the same period in historical novels, Romance or not. This is a broader world and deals with more problems and more levels of society.
    I wouldn’t want to have to choose. I love Elizabeth Bennett, but I also love Becky Sharp. I don’t mind a Regency in which no one is aware of the Napoleonic Wars, but neither do I mind a book where no one seems to have heard of Almack’s.
    I want to have my cake and eat it too.

    Reply
  51. I love the Regency, love lords and ladies and the security of wealth, but as a writer, I like poking around the edges of the comedy of manners. My heroes tend to be well born but psychologically troubloued in some way. My heroines may or may not be well born. They’re almost alway resourceful and economically precarious, but cheerfully getting on with life.
    And because I like the fantasy, my books almost always have a makeover scene of the “great clothes can make a woman look and feel great” variety. *g*

    Reply
  52. I love the Regency, love lords and ladies and the security of wealth, but as a writer, I like poking around the edges of the comedy of manners. My heroes tend to be well born but psychologically troubloued in some way. My heroines may or may not be well born. They’re almost alway resourceful and economically precarious, but cheerfully getting on with life.
    And because I like the fantasy, my books almost always have a makeover scene of the “great clothes can make a woman look and feel great” variety. *g*

    Reply
  53. I love the Regency, love lords and ladies and the security of wealth, but as a writer, I like poking around the edges of the comedy of manners. My heroes tend to be well born but psychologically troubloued in some way. My heroines may or may not be well born. They’re almost alway resourceful and economically precarious, but cheerfully getting on with life.
    And because I like the fantasy, my books almost always have a makeover scene of the “great clothes can make a woman look and feel great” variety. *g*

    Reply
  54. I love the Regency, love lords and ladies and the security of wealth, but as a writer, I like poking around the edges of the comedy of manners. My heroes tend to be well born but psychologically troubloued in some way. My heroines may or may not be well born. They’re almost alway resourceful and economically precarious, but cheerfully getting on with life.
    And because I like the fantasy, my books almost always have a makeover scene of the “great clothes can make a woman look and feel great” variety. *g*

    Reply
  55. I love the Regency, love lords and ladies and the security of wealth, but as a writer, I like poking around the edges of the comedy of manners. My heroes tend to be well born but psychologically troubloued in some way. My heroines may or may not be well born. They’re almost alway resourceful and economically precarious, but cheerfully getting on with life.
    And because I like the fantasy, my books almost always have a makeover scene of the “great clothes can make a woman look and feel great” variety. *g*

    Reply
  56. I love Regency romances and the reason is, the same as I see from a lot of others, escapism pure and simple. I like to enjoy the immersion in another time and place, something with no reminders of my own daily realities. I like the opposites attract plot that Jo was talking about. I also like the marriage of convenience theme, I recently read The Bargain by Mary Jo and I adored that book. So keep writing those “true” Regencies and I will keep reading them. I used to call them a guilty pleasure but now I don’t feel at all guilty, I enjoy them and I don’t care who I tell πŸ™‚

    Reply
  57. I love Regency romances and the reason is, the same as I see from a lot of others, escapism pure and simple. I like to enjoy the immersion in another time and place, something with no reminders of my own daily realities. I like the opposites attract plot that Jo was talking about. I also like the marriage of convenience theme, I recently read The Bargain by Mary Jo and I adored that book. So keep writing those “true” Regencies and I will keep reading them. I used to call them a guilty pleasure but now I don’t feel at all guilty, I enjoy them and I don’t care who I tell πŸ™‚

    Reply
  58. I love Regency romances and the reason is, the same as I see from a lot of others, escapism pure and simple. I like to enjoy the immersion in another time and place, something with no reminders of my own daily realities. I like the opposites attract plot that Jo was talking about. I also like the marriage of convenience theme, I recently read The Bargain by Mary Jo and I adored that book. So keep writing those “true” Regencies and I will keep reading them. I used to call them a guilty pleasure but now I don’t feel at all guilty, I enjoy them and I don’t care who I tell πŸ™‚

    Reply
  59. I love Regency romances and the reason is, the same as I see from a lot of others, escapism pure and simple. I like to enjoy the immersion in another time and place, something with no reminders of my own daily realities. I like the opposites attract plot that Jo was talking about. I also like the marriage of convenience theme, I recently read The Bargain by Mary Jo and I adored that book. So keep writing those “true” Regencies and I will keep reading them. I used to call them a guilty pleasure but now I don’t feel at all guilty, I enjoy them and I don’t care who I tell πŸ™‚

    Reply
  60. I love Regency romances and the reason is, the same as I see from a lot of others, escapism pure and simple. I like to enjoy the immersion in another time and place, something with no reminders of my own daily realities. I like the opposites attract plot that Jo was talking about. I also like the marriage of convenience theme, I recently read The Bargain by Mary Jo and I adored that book. So keep writing those “true” Regencies and I will keep reading them. I used to call them a guilty pleasure but now I don’t feel at all guilty, I enjoy them and I don’t care who I tell πŸ™‚

    Reply
  61. Oh!these people who cannot be happy! There was a child-raising fad some years ago that dictated that children should not read fairy tales because they were not “realistic!” Even Sesame St was criticized because it did not show “reality.” I have a friend downstairs who never reads fiction and is addicted to certain news programs. She does not even read the comics or the arts section of the Sunday paper. She has the saddest face and usually scowls. These people cannot look at a rock without lifting it up to find what lives under it. I pity them like I pity atheists. For them there is no better place and the one we are in is grim and they are determined that the rest of us should be as miserable as they are.
    Keep writing, keep dancing, keep flirting. Those of us whose lives are boring and yes, grim, need those bright lights and love songs.

    Reply
  62. Oh!these people who cannot be happy! There was a child-raising fad some years ago that dictated that children should not read fairy tales because they were not “realistic!” Even Sesame St was criticized because it did not show “reality.” I have a friend downstairs who never reads fiction and is addicted to certain news programs. She does not even read the comics or the arts section of the Sunday paper. She has the saddest face and usually scowls. These people cannot look at a rock without lifting it up to find what lives under it. I pity them like I pity atheists. For them there is no better place and the one we are in is grim and they are determined that the rest of us should be as miserable as they are.
    Keep writing, keep dancing, keep flirting. Those of us whose lives are boring and yes, grim, need those bright lights and love songs.

    Reply
  63. Oh!these people who cannot be happy! There was a child-raising fad some years ago that dictated that children should not read fairy tales because they were not “realistic!” Even Sesame St was criticized because it did not show “reality.” I have a friend downstairs who never reads fiction and is addicted to certain news programs. She does not even read the comics or the arts section of the Sunday paper. She has the saddest face and usually scowls. These people cannot look at a rock without lifting it up to find what lives under it. I pity them like I pity atheists. For them there is no better place and the one we are in is grim and they are determined that the rest of us should be as miserable as they are.
    Keep writing, keep dancing, keep flirting. Those of us whose lives are boring and yes, grim, need those bright lights and love songs.

    Reply
  64. Oh!these people who cannot be happy! There was a child-raising fad some years ago that dictated that children should not read fairy tales because they were not “realistic!” Even Sesame St was criticized because it did not show “reality.” I have a friend downstairs who never reads fiction and is addicted to certain news programs. She does not even read the comics or the arts section of the Sunday paper. She has the saddest face and usually scowls. These people cannot look at a rock without lifting it up to find what lives under it. I pity them like I pity atheists. For them there is no better place and the one we are in is grim and they are determined that the rest of us should be as miserable as they are.
    Keep writing, keep dancing, keep flirting. Those of us whose lives are boring and yes, grim, need those bright lights and love songs.

    Reply
  65. Oh!these people who cannot be happy! There was a child-raising fad some years ago that dictated that children should not read fairy tales because they were not “realistic!” Even Sesame St was criticized because it did not show “reality.” I have a friend downstairs who never reads fiction and is addicted to certain news programs. She does not even read the comics or the arts section of the Sunday paper. She has the saddest face and usually scowls. These people cannot look at a rock without lifting it up to find what lives under it. I pity them like I pity atheists. For them there is no better place and the one we are in is grim and they are determined that the rest of us should be as miserable as they are.
    Keep writing, keep dancing, keep flirting. Those of us whose lives are boring and yes, grim, need those bright lights and love songs.

    Reply

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