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The Grand Sophy

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  18,117 Ratings  ·  2,200 Reviews
When Lady Ombersley agrees to take in her young niece, no one expects Sophy, who sweeps in and immediately takes the ton by storm. Sophy discovers that her aunt's family is in desperate need of her talent for setting everything right: Cecilia is in love with a poet, Charles has tyrannical tendencies that are being aggravated by his grim fiancee, her uncle is of no use at a ...more
ebook, 384 pages
Published July 1st 2009 by Sourcebooks Casablanca (first published 1950)
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Susan I wondered this too. And do you think the broken engagement caused Dolby and Charles to have a special license small wedding?
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Jenny I wondered that too! But I suppose Sancia's presence made it all OK, even though it wouldn't be what Eugenia's Mama would have wished. Actually - how…moreI wondered that too! But I suppose Sancia's presence made it all OK, even though it wouldn't be what Eugenia's Mama would have wished. Actually - how did she get home, anyway? Cecilia had taken the carriage they arrived in and Charles went home with Sophy in his ... she would have had to get a lift from Sancia, who would have to go right out of her way to take her back to London.(less)
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Community Reviews

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The one thing that always puzzles me is people's tendency to compare Georgette Heyer to Jane Austen. As well compare Crime and Punishment to a John Grisham novel! I am not denying the literary merits of either genre; far from it, in fact. However, that doesn't change the fact that one is trying to compare chalk and cheese.

Jane Austen's purpose in writing her novels was not merely to tell a story. In fact, the story was merely a vehicle to examine critically the mores and customs of the society
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Apr 06, 2013 Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: regency
4.5 stars. If you ever wanted to see a Regency-era heroine really take charge of her life, you'll probably love The Grand Sophy. Sophia Stanton-Lacy, better known as Sophy, is dropped on her aunt's family by her globe-trotting father, who asks his sister, Lady Ombersley, to watch over his poor little Sophy.

Enter Sophy, 5' 9", independent-minded and brimming with confidence.

Sophy quickly figures out all of the dysfunctions in the Ombersley family, including a father with a gambling addiction, a p
Melissa ♥ Dog Lover ♥ Martin
Buddy Read w/ the wonderful, Candi & Phrynne.

Once again, my goodreads friends and in groups have gotten me to read a book that I thought I would never like - and guess what? I loved it!

Lady Ombersley's brother, Sir Horace decides to leave his daughter, Sophy with them while he is away. Sophy usually goes with him when he travels the world, but on this occasion he needs her to stay with her aunt and uncle and all of the cousins.

What a joy Sophy was to a most droll household. The eldest brot
"She was by far too tall; nose and mouth were both too large, and a pair of expressive gray eyes could scarcely be held to atone entirely for these defects. Only you could not forget Sophy, even though you could not recall the shape of her face, or the colour of her eyes."

I for one will not forget the unstoppable and vivacious Sophy Stanton-Lacy anytime soon! A truly entertaining Regency Romance with one of the most delightful and dynamic heroines you could ever hope to encounter from this time
Ilona Andrews
I thought the book was delightful - witty, bright, deeply hilarious - and then we ran into a very stereotypical description of a "Jewish Moneylender." I do realize that Heyer was reflecting attitudes of the time, but did the moneylender have to be quite so odious?

On one hand, he is a nasty character and nasty characters often don't have a good personal hygiene. On other hand, the description hits point by point a racial stereotype used for many years to fuel persecution of the Jewish race. It is
A Regency Romance? What? What?

Ah, but this was nothing very stuffy, indeed! Sophy was the model extrovert, a clever and busy and downright machiavellian girl. Do you like characters with so much agency that they pop right off the page? Sophy is your girl.

Of course, that also means that she's pretty much a terror for all the stuffed shirts around her, and between getting in the way and deciding to "help" her relations find marriage, while all the while being the unwitting subject of the same dast
The Grand Sophy, my first Georgette Heyer, is a very entertaining book about a complete hoyden who turns people's lives upside down. The vivacious, unconventional and head-strong Sophy is a delightful heroine. She comes to stay at her aunt when her diplomatic father has to sail away to Brazil, of all places. She soons detects many problems that the family is struggling with, and decides to intervene. For their own good, of course.

The Grand Sophy is the perfect read when you need a lull from den
Jul 02, 2013 Phrynne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Having recently reread another of Heyer's books, I found I just had to dig this one out as well, slightly dusty, from the depths of one of my book cases. Sophy has always been one of my favourite heroines and again she did not disappoint:)
From the moment the Grand Sophy makes her magnificent entrance you know you are in for a fun ride! Heyer wrote many excellent and charming characters in her time but this young lady is one of the best. Her enthusiasm for life and her determination that everyone
Carol ♔Type, Oh Queen!♕
One of Georgette's best loved Regencies it is impossible to read it any other way than as the story is told - breakneck! & the smile never left my face!

While Sophy stays true to the period, in a lot of ways she is a far more modern heroine - it simply doesn't occur to her she can't be independent or that she doesn't know what is best for her cousins the Rivenhalls when she is sent to stay with them.

The whole family reminds me of the Von Trapps in a Sound of Music, with Charles Rivenhall havi
I think this has surpassed These Old Shades as my favourite of the Heyers that I've read. The hero isn't as much fun as Avon is, but the heroine, Sophy, far surpasses Leonie. Sophy is, admittedly, forward, bold, and out-spoken enough that she could have become as irritating to me as Leonie is; but I think Heyer handled Sophy with far more skill than she did Leonie - no great surprise, perhaps, since there's a gap of about three decades between the two books - and she's instead a very joyful char ...more
Jun 05, 2007 Kelly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all women
My goodness, I will have to review something very dark and depressing to make up for loving this book, won't I?

This is the romance novel that isn't a romance novel. The heroine who isn't a heroine. It's fixed in time and place, but with a heroine who seems modern. Sophy is fantastic. She's so very skillfully drawn. Every action and word from her is much more carefully considered than in many others of her heroines, and not forced for the sake of the romance. At least, it felt that way to me. The
Jan 18, 2010 Tatiana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Jane Austen and regency romances
Recommended to Tatiana by: Hannahr
Shelves: historical, 2010
I think "The Grand Sophy" is an excellent recommendation to fans of Jane Austen and regency romance, especially those who are quite sick of contemporary versions of the genre filled with throbbing members and heaving bosoms.

This book is very clean, light and reminiscent of Austen's masterpieces in its humor and focus on domestic issues - marriage, unwanted engagements, cheating husbands, gambling debts and such. The language is sophisticated, the characters are well drawn and likable, and the r
I wonder if I'll ever read a Georgette Heyer and not fall madly for it?
This one is definitely in my top favourites! It was funny, witty, engaging and just awesome!!! It was more about Sophy's ingenuous plans in rescuing everyone's problems than an actual romance, but it was so engaging and hilarious that I didn't really mind. All the characters were so special and unique and just such FUN! :D
The hero was very different from other Regency romances! In fact he acted mostly like an anti-hero, what
Jan 29, 2008 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I confess to a weakness for Georgette Heyer books. While I refuse to read regular romance novels, Ms. Heyer's books, which I discovered as a teenager, are well written and FUNNY. The Grand Sophy is full of pompous people and Sophy--who has a sense of the ridiculous. There are some laugh out loud scenes. I must admit that I keep a copy stashed for the times that life just gets me down.
I’m no book snob, but I must admit I was sceptic when one of my good friends suggested Georgette Heyer’s novels. There is a lot of horse talk and a great deal of drama, but this book was such a fun read. I’ve added Georgette Heyer to the list of authors to reach for when in need of entertaining and light read. Thank you for the gentle nudge my friend, you were right, this was fun! :D
3.5 stars

Favourite quotes:

“A man who would contract the mumps,” declared Cecilia, “would do anything!” Lady Omber
Sep 03, 2016 Robyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
A very delightful Regency, anchored by a strong, clever heroine. Love how it all wrapped up.
Sherwood Smith
Except for a gratuitously vicious bit of anti-Semitism in the middle of this book that could just as well have been left out, it's one of Heyer's best, balanced between strong characters and a smacking good pace. There are some genuinely funny bits, and the whole is so cinematic that it surprises me this hasn't been optioned by the BBC. Though if they do, I hope they skip that disgusting middle chapter, or take the FAIL out of it.
A lovely book. The plot was a bit laboured towards the end, still in keeping with Sophy's unpredictable nature. The dialogues between the characters were first rate. 'Flirtation' at its best!
I really hate giving this 2 stars, because going down the list of my GR friends who have read it, I see that almost all of them (with the exception of Carol) gave it 4 or 5 stars. I know we all have different tastes for books, but when I veer off so decidedly from everybody else in a book that is an almost universal fan favorite among Georgette Heyer readers, I does make me question my own reading tastes. Oh well, it's not the first time this has happened, and it won't be the last.

The character
Dec 25, 2011 Felicia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
OKAY Get ready for an onslaught of book reviews because I just got back from vacation and literally read like 20 books, maybe more.

FIRST, this book was on my Kindle for a while because I guess this author is considered the mother of historical romance novels. It was written in 1950, and actually, due to the historical nature of the subject matter, doesn't feel THAT dated (caveat, see one of the things I hated about the book, lol), and is very witty and engaging. The main character reminded me of
Feb 19, 2010 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved! So fun!! I have a hundreds of books on my to read shelf and yet I came back to this one and read it again. I adore these characters who make me laugh and smile.

Content: Clean (some mild language - "my god" & "good god" used as exclamations)

Originally read November 2015 - Reread in March 2016 & finished a 3rd time in July 2016
I consider myself a pretty learn'd historian, particularly of women and gender in Britain post-1792, and, yet, before I started to read romance, I'd never heard of Georgette Heyer. She's a founding member (not consciously, obviously) of the most popular fiction market in the world: romance. And she undoubtedly launched a thousand writing careers; I think pretty much all of my favourite historical romance writers cite her as a major influence. I understand, intellectually, why she's not as well k ...more
Jul 02, 2016 Lindsay rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a Regency-era romantic comedy with the eponymous Sophy entering the lives of her aunt, uncle and cousins, the Ombersleys, and basically doing a non-magical Mary Poppins on the poor unsuspecting family.

Lord Ombersley is a useless gambler who has long since abdicated his role in the family and Lady Ombersley is of delicate and nervous constitution and frets over everything. That leaves it all on their eldest son Charles who is desperately trying to navigate his family out of financial ruin
Jul 29, 2016 Veronique rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: stars-4-0, 2016
"I find it a marvellous circumstance, cousin, that no one has yet strangled you!"

A few years back, I discovered Heyer and read a few of her regency novels. The Grand Sophy is one of her best, less of a romance and more a comedy. 

Sophy is a vivid protagonist, full of intelligence, world experience and energy. Really, she has the makings of a monster and yet remains likeable. She comes into the lives of her aunt and cousins like a whirlwind and it is hilarious to witness how she manipulates them,
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Dec 29, 2014 ᴥ Irena ᴥ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I had a bad start with Georgette Heyer. The first two books I'd read didn't impress me and I didn't think much of those characters. Then I stumbled upon Frederica and really wished that it wasn't just good luck. Well, I can say now that it wasn't an accident because The Grand Sophy is just as entertaining, lovely, humorous and occasionally over the top as Frederica, maybe even more.

From the start, when her father asks his sister to take care of her while he is in Brazil, you know you are in f
Good God, I LOVE reading about tall heroines who have fashionably expensive taste and a disregard for delicacy. The Too Tall Grand Sophy is an excellent rider who owns a silver pistol, is so mischievously intelligent that she runs circles around those trying to foil her plans, and while not beautiful is so charismatic that everyone loves her. Is this wish fulfillment? I DON'T CARE! SHORT PEOPLE GET WISH FULFILLMENT ALL THE TIME! When the Honorable Eugenia Wraxton (who considers herself tall and ...more
Sarah Anne
Mr Rivenhall pulled the door to behind them and in a very rough fashion jerked her into his arms, and kissed her. 'I don't: I dislike you excessively!' he said savagely.
Entranced by these lover-like words, Miss Stanton-Lacy returned his embrace with fervour, and meekly allowed herself to be led off to the stables.

This would be the only meek thing Sophy did throughout this whole book. I was laughing to the point of being near tears several times throughout the book. It fluffy and silly and utte
One of Heyer's absolute best, though sadly marred by a racially stereotypical portrayal of a Jewish moneylender.

Sophy herself is endlessly entertaining (though I'm not sure I'd want to come into her orbit in case she decided to organise my life for me), and her relationship with Charles one of the few that comes close to a semblance of equality. I particularly appreciated how people's flaws can be magnified or lessened depending on the company they keep - Charles is simply the worst version of h
Aug 01, 2016 Kathy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first Regency Romance and my first Georgette Heyer book. Actually this is less of a romance and more of a comedy.

When Sophy moves in with her aunt's family in London, she finds the whole household in disarray. She manages to put everything right and find love all in a very clever, comical way.

It is a very well written, funny book.
Lady Ombersley is overcome by her brother's plea to welcome his "little Sophy" into her home while he is away on a diplomatic mission to Brazil. Sir Horace Stanton-Lacy is quite a force and Lady Ombersley does feel sorry for her poor motherless niece. When "little Sophy" arrives, she does so in full force. Sophy is neither little nor to be pitied for being motherless. She is an immediate hit with the children for bringing them an exotic pet and for her lively and open manner. Charles, the heir, ...more
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Georgette Heyer was a prolific historical romance and detective fiction novelist. Her writing career began in 1921, when she turned a story for her younger brother into the novel The Black Moth.

In 1925 she married George Ronald Rougier, a mining engineer, and he often provided basic plot outlines for her thrillers. Beginning in 1932, Heyer released one romance novel and one thriller each year.

More about Georgette Heyer...

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“I shall be much obliged to you, cousin, if you will refrain from telling my sisters that she has a face like a horse!’
‘But, Charles, no blame attaches to Miss Wraxton! She cannot help it, and that, I assure you, I have always pointed out to your sisters!’
‘I consider Miss Wraxton’s countenance particularly well-bred!’
‘Yes, indeed, but you have quite misunderstood the matter! I meant a particularly well-bred horse!’
'You mean, as I am perfectly aware, to belittle Miss Wraxton!'
'No, no! I am very fond of horses!' Sophy said earnestly.
Before he could stop himself he found that he was replying to this. 'Selina, who repeated the remark to me, is not fond of horses, however, and she-' He broke off, seeing how absurd it was to argue on such a head.
'I expect she will be, when she has lived in the same house with Miss Wraxton for a month or two,' said Sophy encouragingly.”
“You are shameless!” he said angrily.
“Nonsense! You only say so because I drove your horses,” she answered. “Never mind! I will engage not to do so again.”
“I’ll take care of that!” he retorted. “Let me tell you, my dear Cousin, that I should be better pleased if you would refrain from meddling in the affairs of my family!”
“Now, that,” said Sophy, “I am very glad to know, because if ever I should desire to please you I shall know just how to set about it. I daresay I shan’t, but one likes to be prepared for any event, however unlikely.”
He turned his head to look at her, his eyes narrowed, and their expression was by no means pleasant. “Are you thinking of being so unwise as to cross swords with me?” he demanded. “I shan’t pretend to misunderstand you, Cousin, and I will leave you in no doubt of my own meaning! If you imagine that I will ever permit that puppy to marry my sister, you have yet something to learn of me!”
“Pooh!” said Sophy. “Mind your horses, Charles, and don’t talk fustian to me.”
More quotes…