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The Grand Sophy

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  24,401 ratings  ·  3,014 reviews
When the redoubtable Sir Horace Stanton-Lacy is ordered to South America on business, he leaves his only daughter Sophia with his sister, Elizabeth Rivenhall, in Berkeley Square. Newly arrived from her tour of the Continent, Sophy invites herself into the circle of her relatives. When Lady Ombersley agrees to take in her young niece, no one expects Sophy, who sweeps in and ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published June 3rd 2004 by Arrow (first published 1950)
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Average rating 4.17  · 
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Vinaya
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
...more
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Apr 06, 2013 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.
description

Sophy quickly figures out all of the dysfunctions in the Ombersley family, including a father with a gambling addiction, a
...more
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf 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 brother,
...more
Candi
"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
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Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂
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 having C
...more
Bradley
Jul 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
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
...more
Lizzy
Oct 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
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
...more
Melindam
Updating my rating to 4 stars on re-reading this novel.

Full review to come.
Siria
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
Tatiana
Jan 18, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Jane Austen and regency romances
Recommended to Tatiana by: Hannahr
Shelves: 2010, historical
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
...more
Phrynne
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
...more
Anne
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
...more
Alex
Feb 18, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2020
Regency romances are extremely specific things, set precisely between 1811 and 1820, as Prince George 4 was ruling as regent for his father, the arguably mad King George 3. This was Jane Austen's home turf, and it was also sortof Peak Fancy Ball, so you can see where the attraction comes from, and by the way do you realize how late these balls went? People were constantly being handed into phaetons at dawn. There was booze at them, too. Makes you wonder how much 19th-century novelists were leavi ...more
Kelly
Jun 05, 2007 rated it liked it
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
...more
Chrissie
I was told this would be light and fun. By the end, this was exactly as I too saw it to be--my first Georgette Heyer!

The author wrote this in 1950. It belongs to what is known as the Traditional Regency Romance genre, the genre for which the author is famous. Such books are, of course romances, but they are without explicit sex. Even discussion of sex is verboten! They are set in the early 1800s but written by authors of later generations. They are characteristically filled with fast-paced dialo
...more
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.
Ellery Adams
Feb 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved every word!
Nancy
Jan 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
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.
Felicia
Dec 25, 2011 rated it liked it
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
...more
Hannah
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
...more
Robyn
Sep 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
A very delightful Regency, anchored by a strong, clever heroine. Love how it all wrapped up.
Annie
Nov 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I loved this!! As a Jane Austen fan, it was so nice to read another Regency Period novel, but with a much more buck-the-system female than any of Jane's characters. Sophy is one of my favorite characters of all time. If I can't be her, I want her as a best friend. The last two chapters in particular were so much fun and comical. I woke up thinking that I can't wait to read more before remembering that I finished this last night. Highly recommend!
Melanie (Mel's Bookland Adventures)
Still my favourite of all the Heyer's Regency Romances.
Jan
Jun 30, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical, regency
3 to 3.5. Heyer as always writes beautifully, but this was never my fav book by her. On this reread I started to find Sophy's antics and manipulations a little tedious and OTT.

I did like Charles, though, and it was also great to see Eugenia get her comeuppance. She and Bromford truly deserve each other, and one can imagine them being extremely happy together. So in spite of the ridiculous way she went about it, Sophy did Charles a true good turn by saving him from marriage from Eugenia. They wo
...more
Laure
Nov 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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!
Marie
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was such a pleasant read - I enjoyed the story very much -Sophy is a great character, witty and delightful - perfect story when you want a book that puts a smile on your face.
QNPoohBear
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
Kiwi Begs2Differ  ✎
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
...more
madandelion [hiatus 160420]
Oh lord, I need more! A serving of a thousand more chapters please! ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

I would say the plot could have been better and a lot more things in that periphery. And in that regard, thus give this book 4 stars. But I can't seem to give it anything less than 5 stars for the amount of rich entrainment it provided me. And this level of writing certainly helps to alleviate the sullenness of the reader. Which I was in dire need, to get on with some productive work in these stand-still circumstantial
...more
Theresa
Jul 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Man, why has it taken me so long to read a Georgette Heyer book and who will be able to stop me from buying all of her books now? I guess we'll never know.

I absolutely adored this book from start to finish and devoured it in a matter of hours with no regard for sleep or food or pretty much anything else.

It follows a young woman called Sophy, whose widowed father is sent to Brazil on diplomatic duties and so she is taken in by her aunt's family to stay with them in hopes they can find a husband f
...more
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3,585 followers
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. Rougier later became a barrister and he often provided basic plot outlines for her thrillers. Beginning in 1932, Heyer released one romance nov
...more

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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.”
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“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.”
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