A historical novel, set in 18th-century Versailles and England and telling the story of a street urchin who is brought up by a duke to act as a page. First published in 1926 and out of print in hardback for approximately 2 years.A historical novel, set in 18th-century Versailles and England and telling the story of a street urchin who is brought up by a duke to act as a page. First published in 1926 and out of print in hardback for approximately 2 years.Read Less
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First, I really like Casablanca Source Book editions of Gerorgette Heyers books. My old paperbacks (from the 60's) are falling apart from re-reading, the bigger print and spaces between lines are great for older readers.
This Book has a sequel "Devil's Cub" and another generation is mentioned in "An Infamous Army."
Set earlier than Heyer's Regency Novels, one feels to be in the room with the characters. The more often I read this book, the more I discover subtleties, even facail espressions become more vivid.
The plot is masterly spun, characters well defined - with temperment and weaknesses.
I own all of Heyer's books, no other regency novels, other than Jane Austen, because all other recency writers are copies, not original...
One wonders, if Georgette Heyer was using family and/or aquaintances as models for her characters or if she was wishfully thinking, members of her family would be more like the illussions sie spun.
For me, this and all other books of G. Heyer are therapy after a long day at work, personal setbacks or simply to have a good time.
Jul 30, 2009
This is the first book of a trilogy. i didn't know that when I read THE DEVIL'S CUB (the second book). Reading this book answered some questions I had about the second book.
It is a very entertaining book with some very interesting characters.
I enjoyed it very much.
Jul 11, 2008
The introduction to my copy of this work says that the "authority of [Heyer's] voice and the authenticity of her works is captivating." This sentiment strikes at the very heart of why Heyer is so fantastic: she makes it difficult to believe any othe author's interpretation of the period. "These Old Shades" is one of her Georgian (pre-Regency) works, and it's a doozy. Alastair is a rake--a commanding, domineering rake-- and something of a devil. You'd be tempted to pity the poor object of his affection, the young Frenchwoman Leonie. But she stands up so heartily that there is no need. I don't personally favor hellish men as heroes (like Anne Shirley, I'd rather a man who could be bad but isn't). However, Heyer is so very true to her characters, their time and place, and the story that I'm pulled into liking Alastair anyway. You demands respect, and gets it from all and sundry. Leonie is a bright, shiny young woman who acts as the perfectly complementary foil to Alastair without being run over.
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