Friday’s Child is the first book I’ve read by Georgette Heyer. It is completely different from the type of books I normally read and at first I thought I wouldn’t like it but I soon changed my mind. It’s a light-hearted novel that’s easy to read, although full of Heyer’s Regency slang.
In 1943 when she was working on Friday’s Child Georgette Heyer wrote to her publisher describing it as
a Regency society-comedy quite in my lightest vein. … Nothing mysterious or very exciting happens, but I think it is pretty lively.
Twenty years later she described it as ‘my own favourite’. I found it entertaining and amusing. Lord Sheringham (Sherry) is rejected by the Incomparable and outstandingly beautiful Miss Milborne and vows to marry the first woman he meets. Fortunately this happens to be Hero Wantage (Kitty), a young and naive girl who has loved him since childhood. Although he is not in the least in love with her they elope.
The story is quite predictable, but none the less enjoyable, as Kitty and Sherry embark on a series of mishaps, mayhem and scrapes. The trouble is that he doesn’t realise she loves him and carries on as though he were still single and she takes what he says as the gospel truth, resulting in chaos and disaster. Eventually she takes the drastic step of running away from him aided and abetted by his friends, George, Lord Wrotham, Mr Ringwood and the Hon. Ferdy Fakenham. The end result as Sherry desperately tries to find her is very much in the vein of a Whitehall farce, with disguises and mistaken identities.
Georgette Heyer’s portrayal of Regency England is superb in detail and atmosphere. The beauty and skill of this elegant, romantic novel is that it transported me back in time to Regency England, a time of dashing heros and enterprising heroines. I’m now looking forward to reading more.
My first book for The Georgette Heyer Reading Challenge.