13 August 2013
The Convenient Marriage (audiobook and book)
Unconventional, warm and witty, this Georgian romance by Georgette Heyer unusually begins with a marriage rather than ending with one. When Horatia Winwood steps in to marry the Earl of Rule, the disappointed suitor of her elegant sister, it is the luxuries of high society life that she becomes entranced with rather than her husband. And yet, despite the countless misunderstandings, spats and blunders, somewhere along the line, this marriage of convenience turns into the real thing.
Who likes more Georgette Heyer? Specifically Heyer that is read by Richard Armitage? The Convenient Marriage is the last of the three Heyer romance novels Armitage narrated so I started it on the way back from Indianapolis. Love. Then I read the unabridged novel once I got home (thanks, nookbook).
The Convenient Marriage is a bit different from the other two in that it is set in the Georgian period, rather than the Regency but it sparkles all the same. Perhaps even more. I just loved Horry, with all her scrapes and her stutter. She's so bold and brash and a teenager. Such great character development on Heyer's part to leave Horry's stutter alone, that getting married, growing up, gaining self-confidence, etc., didn't cure her stutter and Rule loved it as part of her. Rule is also a fantastic Heyer hero - not a rake but a very confident, virile aristocrat who doesn't have any hang-ups (contrast that with so many current historical heroes). The development of the relationship between Horry and Rule was so good - how does one broach the possibility that one has fallen in love with one's spouse when you've both previously agreed to the Georgian version of a sort-of open marriage? Also, there's a great dueling scene, for Errol Flynn fans.
Audiobook specifics: I had wondered how Armitage was going to play two different rakes with his luscious rake-voice. Fear not, he plays it off wonderfully. Also, his foppish, lisping twitter was perfect for Crosby Drelincourt.