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Danse de la Folie
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Danse de la Folie

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  359 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
A light-hearted Regency folly, starring Miss Clarissa Harlowe who
wants a quiet life-but falls in love with a smuggler, the marquess of St. Tarval. Tarval’s sister, Lady Kitty, is determined to write a dramatic Gothic to save her brother’s mortgaged estate-if she can reach London. Clarissa’s much-pursued cousin, Mr. Philip Devereaux, is inexplicably intrigued by Lady Kitty,
ebook, first, 300 pages
Published August 21st 2012 by Book View Cafe (first published August 19th 2012)
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Sherwood Smith
Aug 21, 2012 Sherwood Smith added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Back in the seventies, I wrote a Georgette Heyer pastiche, but by the time I got it typed up to send around, the second wave of Regency romances had pretty much taken over, at least in the USA: spicy, the heroines hopping into the sack with the heroes. Along with the sex came the modernization of the heroines--they were often on a first name basis with everyone by page ten, they went off alone through London without a thought, etc. Readers seemed to want that, though I didn't, so I pretty much s ...more
Melissa McShane
I admit it, this wasn't a five-star rating until about halfway through, when I realized I'd become extremely attached to the characters without noticing. Danse de la Folie has a wonderful sensibility of the age and feels very authentic in the speech and manners of the characters, and I loved the romances--all of them, not just the main two. If the ending feels a little abrupt, I didn't mind so much because it felt like the right kind of comeuppance for our villain. Excellent story, and so satisf ...more
Jacob Proffitt
Sep 04, 2012 Jacob Proffitt rated it it was amazing
Shelves: romance, chaste
I thoroughly enjoyed this book (with one caveat). One of the things that has prevented me from enjoying a good many of the historical romances inundating the genre these days is that most authors seem to have no familiarity with the era and no desire to learn. Not so Sherwood Smith. Her regency depiction feels real and detailed with just enough explanation that anybody can feel comfortable with the motivations and reactions of the people in it. The main characters are engaging and their relation ...more
Aug 21, 2012 Anna rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fluff, reviewed, romance
Oh, this was simply lovely. A silver-fork Regency with a real eye for period detail and a warm beating heart. It's the sort of book with lots of twists and turns and at every turn it chooses happiness. I dithered a lot about whether I should add this one to my fluff shelf, because although it made me feel all fluffy and cozy inside it has a refreshing solidity, grounded as it is in such a goodhearted, clear eyed view of humanity. Our four heroes are well-balanced, thoughtful individuals who are ...more
Katharine Kimbriel
Regular Goodreads followers know that I rarely give new books 5 stars – that’s for classics, and books I still love after several years. But this one was so much fun, it’s joining my five star moderns club.

Sherwood Smith has delivered a delightful “sweet Regency” novel for fans of the genre. I’d have to say that for both historical accuracy and adapting the “silver fork” genre for modern readers, Smith did a wonderful job. She has a discerning eye, allowing her characters to grow and change thro
Aug 31, 2012 Hallie rated it it was amazing
I just noticed that I'd never written anything about this - not an unusual occurrence, admittedly, but one I regret all the same. Autumn 2012 was one of the more hellish times around here, but still. To make up for it, I'm doing star rating, which I don't do for friends' books normally.

Also I'm repeating the pleas a lot of us sent out at the time for more.
Jul 14, 2014 Kelly rated it it was ok
I thought this was going to be a bit better than it was. I was delighted by some of the Thackeray-esque tones that I thought I was encountering when I first entered the book, the wry omniscient narrator. But that disappeared quickly. After the initial establishing plot involving smuggling and rakish doings, I thought that the whole thing went downhill rather quickly. And even that plot was got rid of with a flick of the hand later when the time needed to be spent with the romances rather than wi ...more
Oct 15, 2013 Wealhtheow rated it liked it
Shelves: historical, regency
A lovely Regency romance. Clarissa is a conflict-averse heiress trying to avoid a boring suitor. By chance, Clarissa makes the acquaintance of the poor and infamous Decourcey family and rapidly becomes fast friends with Lady Kitty. Together, the two young ladies embark upon a Season in London, each with their own romantic entanglements. I loved the friendship between them, and the slow realizations each of them have about the other's character. But what I most enjoyed was the light, effortless f ...more
Aug 22, 2012 Kris rated it really liked it
Shelves: sherwood-smith, misc
Sherwood Smith is a chameleon! She so easily adapts to all manner of stories and genres. Danse de la Folie is no different. It is a typical Regency-style romance with four main players: Clarissa, Kitty, Carlisle, and Philip. True to form there are hijinks and misunderstandings and marriage swapping along with a couple of spoiled girls doing their best to get their own way. But also true are the proprieties of the time, which is nice. No first names and heaving bosoms (which always drove me nuts) ...more
Aug 21, 2012 Li rated it really liked it
I was initially thrown off a bit by the Heyer-like (or Austen-like?) language and the occasional usage of the author's omnipresent voice, but I actually ended up loving this frothy Regency-set romance and I have to say that I'm impressed by my first non-fantasy Sherwood Smith.

Yes, the plot wasn't exactly ground-breakingly original, but the way we got to the ending was immensely enjoyable(view spoiler)
Aug 23, 2012 Jacey rated it liked it
A regency romance somewhere between Austen and Heyer with a likeable heroine (or two). It's genteel, of the period and doesn't make the mistake of modernising the heroines. They stay striuctly within the period. It's Clarissa's story with Kitty as a strong secondary character. Expect the usual Regency fare of unrequited love, misunderstandings, engagements to the Wrong Man and fortune hunters slightly spiced up by the fact that Clarissa falls for a smuggler - but no ordinary smuggler, a marquis, ...more
Rachael Levy
Mar 05, 2013 Rachael Levy rated it really liked it
Rock-solid romp of a Regency romance with a great nod to the Georgian era built right in for depth and extra flavor. Clearly Smith can write a Regency and nail the historical details without feeling stiff or fussy. She's got the right stuff!
Feb 03, 2013 MaryBliss rated it really liked it
This is a rare find. Here is a regency novel, well-written by a current author, who has done her homework in regards to early 19th century culture and morals and which depicts some intelligent, honorable and generally rational protagonists in an enjoyable storyline. Brava. I enjoyed it.

Aug 06, 2013 Laylah rated it really liked it
Sherwood Smith has a rare talent hardly found in these days' other authors. She can create a lively cast of multiple characters with unique interests and traits and can handle the juggling superbly. The plot, although loosely centered around the two main couples, is well distributed to encompass other characters' plights and situations also. All in all, this book is a very refreshing read. All four leads are immensely easy to root for. On the other hand, the villain is very deliciously sketched ...more
Jan 06, 2015 Catie rated it liked it
I'm a fan of this author's fantasy novels which always have a whiff of the Heyers about them so when I found she'd written a straight regency novel I was quite excited to read it.
I found her less sure-footed here, her powers of characterization had not deserted her, though I found myself sometimes more interested in the Becky Sharp type anti heroine than in the pretty behaved girl I was supposed to root for.
It was largely free from the American type usages that upset British readers but night se
Dec 02, 2012 Laura rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this story very much. It was clean - so so pleased to find no heaving bosoms,etc. I also loved how the author had the characters call each other Miss so and so or Lord whatever; they didn't meet and automatically call each other by their first names.

The viewpoint switched between characters. It threw me a little at first but I came to appreciate being able to know what each one was thinking and how they were viewing each other's actions.

Very enjoyable read - I will be recommending it
Jan 01, 2013 Andrea rated it liked it
Shelves: austen-esque
This was a pleasant, fun read. Very like Georgette Heyer, and I enjoy her work. I really liked the two main characters--especially Kitty. I did wish for a little more at the end, as I thought it ended a bit abruptly. Still satisfying, though.
Oct 05, 2015 lielabell rated it it was amazing
Absolutely charming! I tore right through this, simply loving every word.


Reread this book and was as captivated with it the second time as i was the first.
Jul 17, 2013 Melody rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the Audio of this book. The narrator did a phenomenal job. This a very well researched Regency double romance. It is completely clean.
Judy Bullard
Jan 17, 2013 Judy Bullard rated it really liked it
This is the first time I have read this author. I was very impressed! Very good story - and very good writing style.
Mar 10, 2017 Mary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this so much and was sad that this is her only Regency title. Heyer readers will probably like it immensely.
Anoush Emrazian
Dec 20, 2014 Anoush Emrazian rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, ebook, romance, regency
Clarissa takes her new friend Kitty to London for a season after being rescued from a sinking yacht while traveling. Kitty is quite naive to society, but is fantastic company and is a lovely person. Both Clarissa and Kitty have perceived responsibilities (marrying so as not to be a burden to her brother and his future wife or making enough money to get her family out of debt and take care of the family estate) that influence their interactions in town.

Of course they fall in love and of course th
Nov 16, 2016 Titetoile11 rated it it was ok
Shelves: eau-de-rose
i love regency romance but i have been disapointed so many times. But this book i liked.

Most of the regency romance i read, frustrated me by either their total non respect of the conventions of the times, or their bad writing (tho that is not confined to regency romance) or both. But this book is well written, the language is a pleasure to read, and the story, although unlikely, at least respect a semblance of probability for the convention of the regency world. So i was pleasantly surprised, an
Mailee Pyper
Sep 26, 2014 Mailee Pyper rated it it was amazing
I loved, loved, loved this book! I don't know if it just caught me in the perfect mood, but regardless I found it splendid. I love the regency setting, in general, but I especially love the historical accuracy of this particular regency novel. I've read many regency books which annoy me with their lack of adherence to the period, but I had no such thoughts about this book. I absolutely loved the romance in these books. It felt so real, not a lot of poetical mumbo jumbo, but the real depth and de ...more
James  Theo
May 12, 2016 James Theo rated it really liked it
Admittedly, initially I was going to give this 4 stars- mainly due to the lack of sword fighting. But then I realized that for the entire second half of the book I had lost all control of my facial expressions and had begun smiling, laughing and even a few times cursing vulgarities at the actions of the characters. Any book that makes me react out loud should probably get a bump up, so 5 stars it is.
I read the entire book in one sitting which also speaks to it's credit. Don't read this if you'r
And clean!
(cleanness counts a lot in my ratings...)
I would definitely recommend to everyone I think would be interested in this kind of book.
I especially enjoyed the growing relationships between the players (though I wished they spent more time together "on camera" as it is, just to see the dialogue) and the realness that was so evident. I felt like... I was aggravated at Lucasta and her superficiality, but she proved to be humorous at times as the antagonist. Her ending was hilarious
Sep 27, 2014 Maren rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
My best Boxing Day ever was spent curled up with this delightful story. Thank you, Ms. Smith, for writing a Regency Era novel with characters who act and talk and think like Regency Era people. Thank you for writing men who think and act like men. Thank you for a beautiful love story that didn't depend on heart-flutterings and skin-tinglings. Thank you for never describing anyone's lips or breathing speed.

And thank you for Clarissa. She was so wonderfully normal yet truly good. I loved Kitty, t
Shula Mussnug
Jan 16, 2014 Shula Mussnug rated it it was amazing
I wishThis author, Sherwood Smith, would write more Regency romances. This one is excellent. The plot is complex and there are several subplots that are intriguing. The characters are multi-dimensional, well developed and likable. Even the villain is well-drawn. Very important to me is that Ms Smith is true to characteristics of the Regency period. Loved this book and highly recommend it.
Jennifer Stevenson
Oct 09, 2012 Jennifer Stevenson rated it it was amazing
This is a rich, very Austinian Regency romance with lots of characters, lots of texture, and the perfect Austen voice. I loved the ill-matched betrotheds you love to hate! The whole tangled mess of relationships starts slowly and then rolls toward one disaster after another...I didn't know if the author would ever unscramble these poor lovers! A great ride!
Apr 07, 2015 Krystal rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Not my favorite Sherwood Smith novel. Maybe I was disappointed since I had read Rondo Allegro first, so I had very high expectations. I felt like this story focused too much on the "villain" of the story rather than the heroines. And it lacked the adventure in Rondo Allegro and Crown Duel. Not bad, but not my favorite.
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I am a writer, but I'm here on Goodreads to talk about books, as I've been a passionate reader as long as I've been a writer--since early childhood.

I'm not going to rate books--there are too many variables. I'd rather talk about the reading experience. My 'reviews' of my books are confined to the writing process.

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