Devils Cub By Georgette Heyer

    Written November 9, 2014

    4 1/2 Stars - Magnificently adventurous, fun and romantic in a still strong 1930's 'Pre-Regency'

    Devil's Cub is an quite old romance novel from 1932 by Georgette Heyer. Mrs Heyer is an British classic author that I completely missed in my earlier reading-life. I'm so glad i found her at last. - From a recommendation and help from Sofia of course. ~ Thanks dear!

    ~ This ended in a very fun last-minute weekend buddy-read & buddy-listening with my always so sweet book-loving friends: Sofia, Irina and Rosa, with great support from Kathleen. ~

    I loved it. Simply perfect for an old Ms Austen lover

    Jolly Good!! ~ I just finished my listening to a lovely old classic. This was so much fun and a lot of chuckling. What a journey with so many nice and amusing characters, a great romance plot and so very well told.

    London and Paris in the 1780:s...

    From the audiobook blurb:
    ‘The excesses of the young Marquis of Vidal are even wilder than his father's before him. Not for nothing is the reckless duelist and gamester called the Devil's Cub. But when he is forced to leave the country, Mary Challoner discovers his fiendish plan to abduct her sister. And only by daring to impersonate her can Mary save her from certain ruin...’

    And there start this adventorous love tale Devil's Cub about a well-known, quite charming but still very young (24), noble rake: Dominic Alastair, Marquis of Vidal. The only son of the famous Duke of Avon. We also get a lovely quite impressing heroine. She is both 'resourceful' and energetic as well as brave. A twenty years old very modest and wise older sister: Miss (Mary) Challoner.

    They both kind of needed each other in different ways and soon they are in France and there'll be a lot of fun events with their relatives and friends. I will not try any more attempts to describe what is actually happening here, but I promise you grand drama, pistol duels and hot emotions combined with many comic scenes.
    “Ah, but I’m not a gentleman,” said the Marquis.
    “I have it on the best of authority that I am only a
    “Good gracious, Vidal, who in the world dared to say such a thing?” cried his cousin, instantly
    “Mary,” replied his lordship, pouring himself out a glass of wine.”

    It was a bit hard to understand it all at first but when I had all names, characters and understand the plot it all cleared. [Sofia wrote a much needed character list for me (see in the spoiler below) and Kathleen tried to explain the main story plot (excellent done).] After a few chapters was the story also much more concentrated on those young so sweet languorous love-doves (two future couple actually..) and their escapades.

    This was written 80 years ago so of course we don't get any kinky details from any bedchamber, a lot of steamy smut, or barely even a kiss, but beautifully romantic is it anyways. That's what I call well written. ~ Recommended!


    In my opinion an perfect pleasing audio...
    I listened to the audiobook narrated by Michael Drew. It felt as listening to what we call radio theater up here. ~ Nicely done with unique voices for each character. For me, worked this quite theatrical style excellent for this type of old-fashioned story.


    I'm sure it will be more Georgette Heyer novels in the future for me. I've read / listened to / watched Austen's and the three Brontë sisters novels and stories so many times by now so it feels GREAT to have another pile of romantic well written old classics to chose from and read between all these new (very smexy, sexy, steamy...) romances I usually read every day.

    A romantic drama in an old witty Errol Flynn spirit is also always a welcome favorite.

    I LIKE - definitely, a new favorite author is on my list

    Extra, if you need more facts: 9780373835638
    Okay, this isn't my favorite Heyer mainly due to the fact that I'm not highly enthused by anything that takes place in France about 20 years prior to the French Revolution (1789). I'm constantly distracted by the thought, Laugh it up, chuckleheads, it'll be off with your motherfuckin' heads soon enough. Foreknowledge kills some of my enjoyment.

    While this book is awesome, I'd recommend going with one of Heyer's Regency novels. For instance, Frederica, Sylvester or Arabella. Or The Corinthian. You know what? I'll just make you a list.

    Anyway, do you like Regency romance novels? Well, Georgette Heyer invented that shit. READ SOMETHING BY HER.

    And if you happen to read her at a very young age you may come to the conclusion that some gentleman will eventually discover your innate awesomeness, no matter what state of degradation you live in, and make you a Duchess or, at the very least, extremely rich. This is unlikely to happen.

    But fuck it. The books are totally rad.

    Fuck, I forgot. BR with the innately awesome Ingela, Irina and Sofia! I kinda pooped out of the BR--my apologies! 9780373835638 Hoo, boy.

    I will start off with this thought: I almost think this is a Poe. It's obviously a comedy: all of Heyer's romances are. But is the comedy just in the supporting characters, the completely implausible plot and anachronistic contents, and the ridiculous conversations about fashions of the late 1700s? Or is it also in the supposed 'romantic' attachments portrayed in the book?

    I want to think that Heyer's book here is a Verhoevenesque masterpiece, an explosion of the totally wacky and conflicting sexual desires of and societal expectations for 'respectable' women, both contemporary and historical.

    Devil's Cub, what is up with thee? Well, for starters:

    1) Rape-y, murder-y Vidal. Our hero. Who really doesn't stop being thoroughly reprehensible throughout the whole story.

    2) Mary Challoner, our ostensibly sensible heroine who nevertheless does dumb things at least 50% of the time, including believing she can fix and manage our hero. You know, the one who threatened her and throttled her and abducted her and then tried to rape her until she shot him.

    Then when she shot him, he *finally* realized she wasn't a slut, so then he totally respected her enough to try and force her to marry him instead, even though she repeatedly said she did not want to. But that was still totally cool with her, then, and it was practically all her fault because she convinced him she was a saucy prankster. Because everyone knows it's okay to rape a woman if she plays a trick on you, because only trollops can make a fool out of you, and you can't rape a whore because whores always consent no matter what.

    Mary, honey: NO. Just, no.

    3) Juliana and Frederick. Oh, Fred, don't you understand? Ju doesn't want your respect and your chivalry and your reasonability! She wants you to DOMINATE HER. Slap her around a bit and she will stop flirting with other men to make you jealous! Fight her suitors! Fight! Show her your sexy Caveman Stupid Moves!

    Look, I get the appeal of the sub/dom thing, but there's a difference between playing in private with an affectionate partner who is otherwise not a total fucking criminal, and marrying Charles Manson. Or, if you're Juliana, trying to goad your law-abiding, loving, and definitely not psychic boyfriend into acting like an abusive, jealous boyfriend in public. Which he refuses to do, because he's, y'know, not an asshole. But I think that is maybe intended to be part of the comedy here. You know, if you find that sort of thing funny. And since they're all cartoon characters, I guess cartoon romance physics can work in the right hands. I got pretty squicked out by it, but that's me.

    And alas, I cannot be sure that Heyer is really sophisticated enough in her satire to intend for us to laugh at/be disgusted by her 'romantic' coupling as well. But I can't be sure that she didn't, either. Is she Eszterhas, or is she Neumeier? Hard to say.

    The overall prose quality is uneven, but let's face it: it's still a much more enjoyable read than Twilight. Still, I won't come back to this one soon. 9780373835638 Oh boy, I still feel lightheaded after finishing the book. While I always count on Georgette Heyer to give me an entertaining read, this is beyond my expectation. It's the best love-hate relationship I've read in a long time. Some scenes were so freaking romantic, it still tugs at my heart. What's more, it's all written without so much as a kiss. (Yes, there's one kiss at the end, in case you wonder.) That's the strength of well written characters. Current YA authors could learn a lesson or two from Georgette Heyer's writing. Intense chemistry can exist without all that kissing and touching. In case of Devil's Cub, the anticipation of what's going to happen actually made it more enticing and passionate. The dialogue were lively and hilarious, yet amazingly consistent with each individual character.

    The boy hates girl, girl loathes boy, then turns into love theme has been done countless times, but in Devil's Cub, the emotion and story felt not only refreshing, but also natural. The good girl, Mary, wanted to save her silly sister from ruin by a known hot-tempered bad boy, Marquis of Vidal, so she disguised herself as her sister and met with Vidal. Mary grossly underestimated Vidal's wrath and ended up being abducted by him. They crossed verbal swords and at times real sword and bullet. Along the way, the resourceful, level headed Mary managed to steal not only her sister's lover but also her best friend's lover. Then boy and girl tried to escape the hot pursue of other boy and girl, with their parents trying to catch up with them all. To be married or not to be, and with whom, these questions persisted and many things happened. Simply put, I couldn't put the book down until I had reached the end.

    The story was high spirited, the characters always entertaining, but the emotions behind the characters felt real. The way Vidal and Mary tried to protect one other regardless of their self-interest was very touching, and for a long time they did it without realizing each other's feeling. The secondary characters were also well developed and fit perfectly with the protagonists. There's another young couple, Vidal's cousin Juliana and Mr. Comyn. Their quarrels and tangled up relationship with Mary and Vidal were equally amusing if not as heartwarming. Then there's Duke of Avon, an even more swoon-worthy figure than his son Vidal, when he showed up things would get really exciting. Somehow in the end among all the hilarious confusion, everything worked out in a believable way and left me with a silly grin after turning over the last page.

    What a treat. I'm sure this won't be the last time I read this book.
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    🎃 Read for the Unapologetic Romance Readers Halloween 2017 Reading Challenge for the category of: a romance written by an author who is dead 🎃

    There might not be any sex in Georgette Heyer regency romances, but man that woman can pack more drama into these puppies than Julia Quinn at her most malicious. DEVIL'S CUB is downright soap opera-ish in terms of scope and characterization.

    The plot is basically this - hold onto your bonnets: Dominic/Dominique (for some reason his name is spelled two different ways here) is a marquis and a rake and a wastrel who has resolved not to marry, instead flitting about with mistresses until he tires of them. His current prospect is a girl named Sophia Challoner. Her mother, foolishly, encourages the affair, thinking that she can use her daughter's pending disgrace as a means of trapping the marquis into marriage. Sophia is more than willing to let Dominique use her. Her sister, Mary, is the only one who thinks this is stupid.


    One day, Dominique accidentally sends his plans for elopement to the wrong sister (he's forced to flee the country after mortally wounding a man in a duel). Wanting to save her sister, Mary goes in Sophia's place. At first he plans to use her as well, even making a threat of rape, but Mary shoots him with a gun. For some reason, this makes them get on fairly well and Mary even confesses (privately, in her head) to loving him shortly after....!?

    At the same time, there's a character named Frederick Comyn who is in love with a girl named Julianna. They're supposed to be married as well, but Julianna thinks he's too stuffy (she's Dominique's cousin) and constantly provokes him to spark a light under his seat. Instead, she ends up offending him and rather than admitting wrong, loftily declares that being with Comyn would be marrying beneath her, anyway. Comyn ends up making a marriage proposal of convenience to Mary instead, seeing as how Dominique and his proposal to Mary have upset her (?!).

    Obviously, there's a happy ending but it's a rough road getting there.

    Why? Because all of the characters in this book, with very few exceptions, are odious AF.

    Sophia, Mary's sister, is absolutely awful and takes an unpleasant amount of glee at the thought of bad things happening to Mary, even though Mary was attempting to save her honor. She throws tantrums, cries, and insults everyone around her, when she's not acting like a vain little slip. I really could not stand her, and thought it was odd that the book ended with her just dropping out of the plot.

    Mrs. Challoner, Mary and Sophia's mother, is also awful, so keen to push Sophia into the arms of the marquis despite his reputation. She's also not very nice to Mary, calling her plan and declaring that she will be impossible to wed (which is rather Mary Sue-ish since Mary receives 2 marriage proposals and is constantly getting praise for being well-spoken and pretty).

    Leonie, Dominque's mother, is utterly dismissive of her son's behavior and when she finds out that he may have abducted a girl, immediately blames the victim and makes light of the situation, basically saying, Well, it's not like he tied her down and raped her. When people call her on her son's behavior, she insults them or their children. She's a truly awful woman. I hated her.

    Julianna, Dominique's cousin, is just as spoiled as Sophia. I couldn't stand her for how she treated Comyn, who is the only other character I truly liked apart from Mary. She wants him to be forceful with him so she tries to provoke him into anger to make him man up. I'm sorry, but that's borderline emotionally abusive, in my opinion; this is exactly how cycles of abuse are perpetuated. (And, disturbingly, several characters say how Julianna could use a beating to correct her behavior.)

    Dominique/Dominic the hero was also not really a favorite character of mine. He had the potential to be a good antihero but at the last minute, Heyer pulls the punch and decides to make him fall head-over-heels for Mary (?), offering her anything she wants and basically going around acting like butter wouldn't melt in his mouth. Too many romance authors want to have their cake and eat it too when it comes to alpha heroes, and it usually doesn't work. It doesn't work here.

    I'm giving this book 3 stars because the story was interesting and the dialogue was witty, and Mary was a pretty good heroine (she gave as good as she got, and her properness was quite amusing). If you're new to Georgette Heyer, though, don't start with this one. She has much better books in her bibliography.

    3 stars 9780373835638

    The young Marquis of Vidal, nicknamed Devil's Cub for his reckless and excessive behavior. But the Marquis is soon to be reformed by the practical Mary Challoner. Devils Cub

    This is my second read of this title on Goodreads (first read on Goodreads here but I have read this title over a 100 times.)

    It is my favourite book of all time.

    This time I am reading my Dad's old paperback. He gave all his old GH paperbacks to me - except for this one. It was beside his Lazyboy when he died. He also reread this book often.

    I don't have much to add to my original review other than it is an interesting character study of two couples, one romantic and one practical and they may surprise you!

    9780373835638 This book has the distinction of being the very first Georgette Heyer novel I ever read. Maybe that’s part of the reason I give it all 5 stars, but it also has one of my favorite heroines, a man madly chasing down the girl he loves, and my favorite chapter in any Heyer novel, starring a sardonic old gentleman. So all the stars!

    Mary Challoner is a practical girl. She's well-educated. She has common sense. She needs to be sensible, since her widowed mother and her lovely younger sister Sophia are so utterly bubble-headed. So, logically, she realizes that it's insane to get a crush on Vidal, the sexy rake who's been pursuing Sophia.

    Nevertheless, when Mary accidentally finds out that Vidal has convinced Sophia to run off to Paris with him in the middle of the night to begin a relationship without the benefit of marriage, she conceives of the idea of taking Sophia's place in the carriage, hiding her identity until it's too late to get Sophia. Then Mary will tell Vidal that Sophia helped plan the switcheroo, to put him off pursuing the relationship with her sister further. Hah! Then he will shamefacedly let her return home, and the Marquis will darken their doorstep no more. That's the plan, anyway. If there is any ulterior motive there at all, Mary's not admitting it, not even to herself.

    It will surprise no one to learn that Mary's plan doesn't go as expected. But really, that's where the real fun starts in this novel. Everything gets crazier and funnier from there, and when, toward the end of the book, Mary recaps her adventures for the benefit of an older gentleman, who gently offers sarcastic commentary on her tale, it is absolutely hilarious. <——This is my favorite scene, bar none, in any Georgette Heyer novel, although the climactic scene in The Unknown Ajax comes thisclose.

    Some readers are understandably put off by the character of Vidal in this book. At best he's spoiled, hotheaded and undisciplined; at worst you could call him a sociopath.

    In a truly massive understatement, Vidal admits to another character (whom he just nearly killed in a swordfight) that I'm a thought too ready with my hands. And this from Vidal's father: I comfort myself with the reflection that your wife will possibly be able to curb your desire--I admit, a natural one for the most part--to exterminate your fellows.

    So why does this book still get 5 stars from me, since sexy hotheads who try to seduce/kidnap/rape/kill people are, truly, not my thing, even in books? Well, for one thing the whole plot of this book is just so amusing and almost farcical that I really can't take Vidal all that seriously. And even at his worst, it's clear he still has at least a little bit of a conscience. And I adore Mary, with all her intelligence and level-headedness, and if she sees something worthwhile in Vidal and thinks she can turn him into a decent husband, I will defer to her judgment!*

    *Okay, so in real life I'd be sitting her down and saying, girlfriend, this guy is NOT a good long-term bet, but hey, it's fiction and in this case I'm just going to roll with it.

    2nd (or maybe 3rd?) reread for me, not counting that one scene toward the end of the book that I've probably read a dozen or more times. Actually, I've reread bits and parts of this book so many times that I really have no idea anymore what my total read count is! 9780373835638 Update: I found it a LOT funnier on second reading! I laughed from the beginning with What have you done with the corpse, my boy? Done with it? WHAT SHOULD I DO WITH A CORPSE?!?!?!?!!! to the end Give Sophia a glass!! We're drinking your health! IT'S MARY!!!

    **Contains spoilers and strong language**

    'They're all mad, every one of 'em,'

    That's what I thought at about 1/3 of the book, and then I decided to view this story as just a fun, silly screw-ball comedy.

    And....I loved it. When I put Devil's Cub down, I was sorry it was over, and felt that I had truly read a masterpiece. Though the characters are particularly silly and irrational, and the plot exaggerated and totally improbable, it was a really good read merely for the humour and satire that Heyer seemed to have bestowed on the period. The whole book is so silly, in a way, that one wonders whether or not Heyer meant it as satire.

    Devil's Cub is in no way a These Old Shades number two. It is in fact so different that I needed to adjust to the style of it before coming to like it.

    The story can pretty much be summed up like this:

    Duke of Avon: Vidal, what the heck son??? You can’t just shoot a man inside the club when you’re drunk!! Even I had more sense than that! Off you go to France, now!
    Vidal: France sounds cool. Gonna take a chick with me. Twill be even cooler.
    Mary Challoner: This is terrible… Have to do something about it, quick! *grabs mask* I will be Sophia!!
    Vidal: Man! What the hell?!? You’re not Sophia!! What are you doing here???
    Mary: Are seriously such an idiot?!? I ain’t letting no sister of mine getting ruined by you!!!
    Vidal: Okay, fine, YOU’RE getting laid tonight!
    Mary: *vomits*
    Vidal: *holds a bucket for her*
    Mary: ♥♥♥
    Mrs.Challoner: SCANDAAAAALLLL!!!! Where is the Duke?? Where is the Duchess??? MY DAUGHTER HAS RUN OFF WITH THEIR SON!!! I’ll make him marry her or I will ruin the Alastair family for good!
    Lady Fanny: I swear if you don’t shut up, you will be the one that’s gonna be ruined!
    Mrs. Challoner: How outrageous!!!
    Lady Fanny: LÉÉÉOOONIIIIE!!!! We got the biggest problem EVER!!! That Dominic has run off with Mary Challoner!! If Justin hears of that he will KILL. EVERY. ONE. OF. US.!!!!
    The Duchess: Voyons!!!! This is ridicule!!! Dominique is an angel! But don’t worry, Monseigneur will never hear of it. I will invent an awesome lie. I’ll just say I’m going to visit my cousin Harriet or something!
    The Duchess: Rupert!!! Get your lazy butt over here, we’re going to France!!!
    Rupert: Waiiit. Who's WE!?!?
    The Duchess: But uuuus!! You and me!! Remember in These Old Shades??! We had so much FUN!!!
    Rupert: FUN?! Last time I went to France with you, I got a bullet in my shoulder! Now, what has that damnable son of yours done AGAIN!!! If anything, he will be the one shooting bullets at me!
    The Duchess: Calm down, imbécile, he’s just gone off to France with a Miss Challoner, whom I HATE, and now we’re gonna go track ‘em down and force them to marry and Monseigneur will never know, because if he knows he’s gonna be so pissed, but he won’t find out because even though he knows everything he won’t know that because he’s not here, so now off we go to cousin Harriet’s!!!!
    Rupert: .... !!!!
    Vidal: Well, damn. I thought you where some kinda whore like your sister, but you’re actually a devilish fine girl, and now i can’t really do what i generally do to sluts, so hummm…marry me???
    Mary: NEVER!!!
    Vidal: Say that again and I’ll STRANGLE THE LIVING BREATH OUT OF YOU!
    Juliana: Omg my boyfriend is like, sooo annoying, like seriously I can’t take it, gotta go out and party hard and flirt with every jerk I meet. Mary you stay here nice and quiet and see ya later!
    Mr. Comyn: Mary, where’s Ju??? Don’t tell me she went to that party!?!? I swear, can’t take her anymore, she’s such a flirt. I’m going over there and tell her we’re so totally over.
    Avon: Hello Fanny! How are you?? I hear there’s going to be some wedding bells!!!
    Lady Fanny: !!!Gasp!!!!
    Avon: I must congratulate you! Your daughter will be so happy with that Comyn guy, whom by the way I consider a very appropriate match for her! ;)
    Lady Fanny: Justin…what the???
    Avon: Ok, bye now, I gotta go.
    Lady Fanny: Go??? Go WHERE?!?
    Avon: Oh, just to see cousin Harriet!
    Mr. Comyn: Juliana, we’re OVER.
    Juliana: FINE. I HATE YOU!
    Mr. Comyn: Mary, run away with me to Dijon and let’s get married!
    Mary : *agrees so the scheme because marrying a dull dog like Comyn is so much better than marrying the man you love!*
    Vidal: Juliana!!!! WHERE IS MARY!!!!!!!
    Juliana: What the hell do I care???
    Vidal`: I WANT MARY. NOWWWWW!!!!
    Juliana: Well, idiot, go see if she’s at your place!
    Vidal: Oh. My. Good. Lord. SHE RAN OFF WITH COMYN!!!!
    Juliana: WHAT THE FUDGE!!!! COMYN IS MINE!!!!
    Vidal:Let’s run away together to Dijon, that’s where they went to get MARRIED!!!!
    The Duchess: Where. Is. My. Son. Getting real tired of this shit.
    Tante Élisabeth: *bawls* He ran off with Juliana!!!!
    The Duchess: !!!!!!!!dammmn bitch! what about the other chick!!!
    Rupert: Vidal is mad. Completely stark MAD!!!
    The Duchess: You’re mad, imbécile!!! VOYONS!!! Nothing makes sense!!!!
    Tante Élisabeth: *bawls* They ran off to Dijon!
    Rupert: LOL!!! Dijon!!! Why in the devil for!!! Dijon!!!
    the Duchess: But crap, Dominique has to marry the slut girl, but now he’s gone with Ju!! What are we going to do!!!!
    Rupert: Kay, seriously now, why Dijon???
    The Duchess: Justin will be Fu.Ri.Ous.
    Juliana: You are the WORST douchbag EVER!!!!
    Vidal: Mary didn’t think so.
    Juliana: You’re nothing but an ASSHOLE!!! I’m gonna get the vapours!!!!
    Vidal: Mary never threatened me with the vapours. Mary…
    Juliana:Oh. My. Good. Lord. YOU LOVE HER!!!!
    Mr.Comyn: Devil’s Cub is coming!!!!
    Mary: Ohhh nooo!! Shit!!!!!! Say we’re married anyways!!!
    Vidal: Mary!!!
    Juliana`: I hate you all!!!
    Mr. Comyn: Please don’t come near my wife!
    Juliana: WHAT!!! MARRIED!!!! Getting the vapours for real now!!!
    Mary: GUYS!!! Stop fighting!!! I wont marry anyone!
    Vidal: AAHHH!!! I KILLED HER!!!!
    Mary: I’m fine. Just wanna. Go to bed.
    Rupert: Why is everyone in Dijon!??!!
    The Duchess: Oh my dear Dominique!!! Listen now, my boy, you gotta marry that slut girl that I hate, I’m gonna arrange everything and Avon will never know exactly what happened. But why did you run off with Juliana!!!
    Juliana: EWWWWW!! We didn’t elope! I could never marry him!!
    Rupert: Okay, but why come here, to DIJON!!!?!?!?!?
    The Duchess: I wish everyone could just SHUT UP and explain one a time.
    Mary: *runs away*
    Elderly gentleman: Excuse me ma’am, you seem in trouble. May I help?
    Mary: *tells him her whole entire life story*
    Elderly gentleman: You are such a resourceful woman. I am a-ma-zed.
    Mary: Oooh, but do you know the best part?! I got sick on the ship, and-
    Elderly Gentleman: Bleargh, poor Vidal! I sympathize with him a bit now...
    Mary: But no, no! He was awesome!! HE HELD THE BUCKET FOR ME! <3 <3 <3
    Elderly Gentleman: Please STOP! We are eating and I do not want to get sick!!!
    Vidal: Mary!! I found you….OH MY GOD!!!
    Elderly Gentleman: Well, well, well.
    Mary: OHH!! AHHH!! You are…you…you cannot be…..!!!!!
    Elderly Gentleman: The Duke of Avon himself. But could you doubt it?? ;)
    The Duchess: Justin!!! How did you know everything!!!!
    Avon: Did 24 years of marriage made you forget that I am omniscient?
    Rupert: AVON!!! We got the biggest problem, dude!!! There’s all this wine I got from amazing Dijon but I cant afford it all!!!
    Avon: Now, that is a REAL problem!!! But I’ll help you.

    Okay, this is an ultra exaggeration of the story, but still somewhat accurate lol!

    Dominic Alastair, Marquis of Vidal, it the notorious son of my beloved Duke of Avon, and the first thing that comes to mind when I think about him is dayuuummmm he's crazy!!! I found his character very difficult to like at first, for all his nonchalance, cynicism, and plain meanness. Then as the story unfolded he definitely grew on me, and although he became my momentarily favourite hero, he never equalled his father, because he lacked his polish and wit.

    On the other hand, I loved Mary instantly, for she is a sensible, capable girl, and yet, we aren't given enough about her character to determine exactly how she fell suddenly in love with Vidal. I understand the idea, that good-girl-falls-for-bad-boy and opposites-attract, but it was so sudden when we learn that she loves him, that it kind of threw me off, especially since she keeps running away from him!!!! If I was given the chance to marry Vidal, AND that I loved him, I WOULDN'T JUST RUN AWAY AND DECIDE TO MARRY THE FIRST DOUCHEBAG I ENCOUNTERED INSTEAD!!!!

    Honestly were was the logic in accepting to marry Mr. Comyn?!?!? I really did not understand that. I get that she thought that if Vidal did not love her, and she had to marry him he would make her very unhappy, because ohhh hummm, I don’t know, he tried to strangle and rape her a couple of times, so yeah, maybe she had a reason to want to run away (even though I still would’ve married and tamed the shit out of him!) the first time, but to agree to marry Mr. Comyn?!?!?!!??!? Seriously, what the heck???? That would an even worse marriage than with Vidal!! I mean, Comyn is really THE ONE character that pissed the hell out of me the entire book. He was so irritating and annoying I just couldn’t stand him.

    To be perfectly honest, I would have rated this a lot lower had it not been for the appearance of the dear Duke and Duchess of Avon, and of the irrepressible Lord Rupert. They had the BEST moments. Léonie cracked me up and Rupert was so funny that I kept laughing at his lines long after I’d read them (and every one thought me insane, but whatever!). The novel is worth reading just because of them.

    Actually, it’s worth reading period.

    It was awesome. It was silly, crazy, ridiculous, but awesome.

    I love that part at the very end, when the women are chit-chatting in a room & are all so over excited about Mary & Vidal's betrothal and that of Juliana & Frederick, and all the men just slip out and go to another room to drink wine!! It was so typical!!

    SOMEBODY TELL ME WHY THERE ARE NO HEYER MOVIES YET!!!! 9780373835638 An apt title! Dominic, the Marquis of Vidal, is the devil's cub indeed - a devilish beast who may one day grow up into a human. This bestial young nobleman immediately resorts to violence or threats of violence when angered, is quietly and eerily dangerous when drunk, nonchalantly guns down any who may annoy him - whether that be an intrusive highwayman or a fellow gambler who calls him a liar (personally I can't blame him for either), and less understandably, has no notion of chivalry when it comes to ladies who aren't of the gentlewoman persuasion: sneering, threatening, kidnapping, and throttling without an iota of remorse, basically treating them like trash. This book often functions as a fascinating portrait of a child who combines the less attractive traits of his compelling parents (as featured in the excellent These Old Shades): the animalistic temper of his mother Leonie and the cold ruthlessness of his father the Duke of Avon, as well as their mutual disregard for human life. Fortunately, Dominic has also inherited some of their more positive traits. Even more fortunately, the redoubtable Mary Challoner - a wonderfully admirable and relatable creation - has entered his so-called life. Not only will she not brook his argumentative selfishness, she'll bring a gun to the debate. My money is on Mary to transform the selfish beast into a caring human being.

    In case I'm giving the impression that I thought this was a dark psychological portrait, I should be clear that the book - despite its disturbing moments - is mainly delightful, full of sweetness and empathy, wittily written, briskly paced. A light and charming affair, for the most part. It has all of the strengths of the best of Heyer. The disturbing elements actually deepened the novel in an interesting way; although I preferred its predecessor, this sequel was great. My only genuine complaint is dealing with Dominic as a romantic lead. As a character, he was entirely absorbing. An often chilling creation and a study on how little distance this apple fell from the parental tree. But as a romantic lead? For the most part, I did not enjoy him as such, often completely loathing him and actively rooting for him to experience physical harm. I'd expect this sort of reaction to a lead character when reading about some typically rape-inclined antihero within an operatic bodice ripper, but not so much when enjoying a delicate, nuanced Heyer confection. And thus a lower rating than what I'm used to giving her novels.

    Complaints aside, Devil's Cub features a lengthy scene near the end of the book that is one of the most hilariously written in the Heyer books I've read so far. The scene is basically Mary recounting her misadventures to - unbeknownst to her - the Duke of Avon. This scene should have bored and annoyed me, as it is explaining in detail a story that I've literally just read. Instead it is a wonderful example of comedic storytelling. Reading the icy Duke's subtle reactions to everything he's hearing (including Mary's perspective on both his son and himself) was pure pleasure. I love how much Georgette Heyer can make me smile.

    3.5 stars 9780373835638 How do you review your favourite book, especially when you love it beyond all reason?

    My love for what I think of as Georgette Heyer's masterpiece doesn't mean I would want Vidal in my own life as either a spouse or a son. Vidal's fondness for solving his problems by either murdering or threatening to murder people who cross him wouldn't make him a very comfortable companion! & I don't see myself as the normally sensible Mary. No these characters are right where I want them - between the pages of a book.

    These are clearly characters GH loves. The story moves along at a cracking pace & you forget or forgive any flaws including the fact that Vidal is at least a & in some bizarre way Vidal is almost a contemporary hero - or else some things stay the same. He worships speed, drinks heavily & he & his cronies spend a lot of time/money on fashionable toys!

    I think the break neck speed of the whole book would make a wonderful BBC production. Casting the female roles would be difficult (& I would say in the case of the nearly ageless Leonie well nigh impossible) but I have some thoughts for the male roles.

    My choices for some of the males;
    Harry Styles for Dominic. A bit on the slim side, but he has the right air of decadence.

    Avon. Rufus Sewell He is considerably younger than Avon - but that means he could be cast in These Old Shades as well. & make up can do wonders.

    & one of my favourite secondary characters the feckless Lord Rupert. I would like Crispin Bonham-Carter (Bingley in the BBC Pride & Prejudice) He has left acting so I didn't want to invade his privacy too much by looking for recent photos but he was born in 1969 so he is about the right age.

    I may still fiddle about with this review - I simply can't praise this book too much as wonderful escapist fiction!

    Sorry for all the problems with my pictures - one of the reason I don't normally use images.

    My third read of my favourite book of all time since I have been on Goodreads. All the characters are so vivid & I have found some wonderful quotes to add to the Goodreads database.

    Still love it.

    Link to my other review 9780373835638


    characters Devils Cub