Estara's Reviews > The Unknown Ajax

The Unknown Ajax by Georgette Heyer
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's review
Dec 11, 11

it was amazing
bookshelves: ebook, favorites, read-in-2011, re-read
Recommended to Estara by: one of my favourite Heyers
Read from December 09 to 11, 2011 — I own a copy , read count: 10?

Yes, this works for me in English just as well as in German - having read the original now I have to say incredible KUDOS to the original translator into German for getting Hugo's Yorkshire cant an equivalent dialect treatment without which the story wouldn't work - for that matter Heyer uses so many outdated metaphors and images that I do wonder how they explained those to the translator and what he/she had to do to research the German equivalent of regency speak, heh.

Sartorias says in her review of this on GR that she thought the pace was sometimes a bit slow - for me it is just right: This is not a romance as a focus - although what romance there is, is lovely and understated and develops organically - this is the story of a grown man abruptly thrown into a family and heritage he had little knowledge of before and how he deals with it.

Excellently highlighted are the single characters inside the family and their snobism - I wonder if this was one of the later Heyers, because she usually has an "upper-class birth means you're socially acceptable and otherwise an encroaching mushroom" vibe. This is somewhat upended - Hugo's maternal grandfather got him a gentleman's education but he did start out as a weaver himself and only became an industrialist by hard work.

There's also the matter of the Exise Lieutenant who, while being brilliantly misled at the end in a beautiful intrigue and action set-piece, is an earnest person wanting to do his best at his job and will be taken care of (in a supportive way) by Hugo, who knows best the problems that smuggling can bring to a country and its army and who does not let his own convictions be overridden by his pure-blooded aristocratic living relic of a grandfather, who believes time and right-by-might has not changed.

From the servants Polyphant and Cripplesham to Claud and Vincent to Lady Aurelia and Mrs. Darracott, and of course Lord Darracott, Richmond and Althea - it's just a pleasure to see Hugo Darracott subtly exert his common sense, soothing and irreverent influence. I love this book.
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Reading Progress

12/10/2011 "re-reading an old favourite I finally own in e."

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