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Group Reads > The Quiet Gentleman Group Read December 2015 Chapters 1-11

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message 1: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
Yay! Group Read time again!

So how many times have you read this
title?

What format are you reading it in?

Is it anyone's first read?

No spoilers please -or use the spoiler tags!

Let the reading begin!


message 2: by Emilia (new)

Emilia Barnes | 145 comments This is my second re-read, first was on Kindle, this time it's an audiobook :) Love the hero!


message 3: by Elza (new)

Elza (emr1) | 296 comments I don't know how many times I've read this but it's been quite a long time. I remembered the hero and the heroine and (I think!) the outcome. However, I'm discovering the secondary characters and the plot twists again, and enjoying this read very much. Almost finished, in fact!

The Dowager Countess has to be one of the most delightfully self-obsessed characters in GH's work. "How happy they will be to be invited to Stanyon!"

I also was interested that the reader, at least at first, sees the story through the hero's eyes instead of the heroine's. We know very little of Drusilla in the beginning of this story, as it is told initially from Gervase's POV. I know there are other books in which GH does this -- Frederica comes to mind.


message 4: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Yay, first group read for me! It's been a long time since I cracked this one, but my spider senses are tingling at the mention of one Mr. Theodore Frant...

Doesn't "Faro's Daughter" also sepnd a fair amount of time in Max's head? And of course, "The Toll-Gate" is told almost entirely from the hero's POV, as I recall...


message 5: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1367 comments Reading in an old Harlequin edition with an embarrassing cover. This is one I have not read very often—which is to say, maybe five times and not recently. So I’m looking forward to familiarizing myself with it again!


message 6: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments This is my first time reading this book AND I haven't even read the GR's description so I'm going in blind.

I'm listening to the audiobook ... or at least I will be when I finish my current book. I've only got three hours in the current book left and lots of work to do so I'll probably finish it today and start on Quiet Gentleman tonight.


message 7: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
I will have read this one at least 20 times - all a long time ago. I don't remember this title well.

I have this cover which shows whoever selects covers at Arrow doesn't even read their own blurb! The Quiet Gentleman by Georgette Heyer I will see if I still have my old Pan The Quiet Gentleman by Georgette Heyer


message 8: by Kim (new)

Kim Campbell | 9 comments Yay! Group Read time again!

This is my first group read! I'm so excited!

So how many times have you read this title?

This is my first time.

What format are you reading it in?

I got a used paperback from amazon last month. This one has a forward by Karen Hawkins.

Is it anyone's first read?

Mine!!

No spoilers please -or use the spoiler tags!

I'll try to remember that!

Let the reading begin!

I have the last couple chapters of my current read to finish, but I'll be starting the Quiet Gentleman later today.


message 9: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
Great! I'll be starting in a day or 2. Wednesday is my (relatively) busy day & I've got another couple of books on the go!


message 10: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Oh, so, editions...the latest Sourcebook trade paperback for me...

and how could I have forgotten that the Quiet Gentleman is such a smartass? (quietly, of course).

Fantastic opening shot across the bows:

''It has frequently been remarked,' stated the Dowaager, 'that Martin is the very likeness of all the Frants.'

'You are too severe, ma'am,' said Gervase gently.'

oh, SNAP!


message 11: by Louise Sparrow (new)

Louise Sparrow (louisex) | 458 comments I'm listening to the Audiobook, I started it today.

I don't remember any more how many times I've re-read it, a few but not for a while and I always muddle it up with The Unknown Ajax!


message 12: by MaryC (new)

MaryC Clawsey | 480 comments My husband and I started reading it on audio a couple of evenings ago--second time through for me (first time in hard copy), first for him. I agree with Louise that the initial situation is similar to that of Ajax, with an unknown and rather unwelcome heir turning up at the ancestral home, but Gervase is no Hugo! Since we recently finished Ajax, Gervase is at a disadvantage. In addition, I didn't remember him as a dandy, but the reader is really playing up that aspect, making him sound like a less amusing Sir Percy Blakeney. I had supposed from my first reading that Gervase spoke rather simply (somewhat like Hugo when he first arrives), but this reader is giving him an effete and somewhat supercilious drawl.


message 13: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments MaryC wrote: "but this reader is giving him an effete and somewhat supercilious drawl. "

Yes. The reader is making him sound effeminate with a lisp. Not how I picture my men. I would have rather he sounded like Gilly - gentle and soft spoken.


message 14: by Louise (last edited Dec 02, 2015 09:56AM) (new)

Louise Culmer It is one of my favourites. so funny. Gervase is a delightful hero, and Miss Morville is absolutely wonderful,Heyer's funniest heroine. The bit where she tells Gervase about the colony her parents were going to found with Southey and Coleridge is hilarious. I have my old Pan edition from 1969, and an audiobook version read by Cornelius Garratt, who I think reads it perfectly.


message 15: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Now that I'm into it about as far as Chapter 7, I remember why I don't re-read this one more often...I'm afraid I fancy the villain of the piece rather more than the hero! And thus, I am afraid, I view the whole adventure with deep suspicion, and my disbelief refuses to be suspended. I hope GH pulls it together for me!

I do rather fancy Drusilla, tho, too.. And I am DEEPLY chagrined, reviewing some of the conversations, particularly the horsy ones, to see how much something I've written lately reads like a chapter from this story! Aaagh...


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 361 comments I read the first three chapters last night. First-time read for me, and I'm going in totally blind as well, knowing nothing at all about the book or even who the heroine is going to be! Although it looks like I've spoiled that for myself by reading the comments above. :) It was interesting reading the physical description of Drusilla through Gervase's eyes.


message 17: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1367 comments Elliot wrote, “And I am DEEPLY chagrined, reviewing some of the conversations, particularly the horsy ones, to see how much something I’ve written lately reads like a chapter from this story!”

Sounds good to me, Elliot! It’s hard to write good Regency without borrowing from GH. Can you tell us more about what you’re writing?


message 18: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2642 comments Mod
This is my first read, and I am so excited to read a GH that I have not read before! I was looking forward (and forcing myself not to start early) all through November!

YAY!!!


message 19: by Elliot (last edited Dec 02, 2015 10:41AM) (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Abigail wrote: "Sounds good to me, Elliot! It’s hard to write good Regency without borrowing from GH. Can you tell us more about what you’re writing?
"


Think Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series meets "Beauty and the Beast", or maybe it's more "meets Tam Lin and Jack Orion"...set in Ulster during the 1790s, just prior to the Rebellion...so pre-Regency, but only just. Yeah, it is hard to get GH out of my head - she's lived there for so many, many years...I personally think POB must have read her in addition to Jane Austen.

So, on this re-read of "Quiet Gentleman", I'm looking at how GH works on misdirection. Since this is one of her "Romance/mystery" crossovers, I am curious...was she still writing mystery novels at this point? I don't have the book in front of me, so I can't quite recall the publication date.


message 20: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1717 comments I read this once many years ago. Reading through the first four chapters I can see why I didn't read it again. So far except for the Dowager I'm finding it quite boring and the Hero is dull if quick witted. Hope it improves. And yes I do really love Heyer.
By the way this is my first group read.


message 21: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 1275 comments Elliot wrote: "Oh, so, editions...the latest Sourcebook trade paperback for me...

and how could I have forgotten that the Quiet Gentleman is such a smartass? (quietly, of course).

Fantastic opening shot across..."


yes, just one of many examples of "quiet" humor ;-)


message 22: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments Am so glad I am starting this. Just finished We Need to Talk About Kevin and truly need something light-hearted.


message 23: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Kim wrote: "Am so glad I am starting this. Just finished We Need to Talk About Kevin and truly need something light-hearted."

Oh, that book scared the...uh...something out of me. Actually tempted me to kneel down and kiss the ground that I hadn't spawned. Hadn't had that bad a reaction to a story since Donna Tartt's "The Secret History".
Funny, how a story featuring several attempts on Our Hero's life still manages to look "light" by comparison!


message 24: by HJ (new)

HJ | 948 comments I'm reading this in Kindle, and I've lost count of the number of times I've read it. It's not one of my favourites. I feel as though we never really get to know most of the characters, except those who don't really count (like Marianne and the Dowager). I think that's because it is really a mystery first and foremost, and since we are being misdirected we cannot be allowed to be fully privy to any character's point of view.

I find the Dowager so annoying that I'd like her to be the victim! And although I love listening to audiobooks I find I can't like this one, because both the Dowager and Ulverstone are too shouty.


message 25: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments I, too, remember that this one is not one of my favorites - I almost feeling like GH is "phoning it in" with this one.

That being said, however, I do find that Chapter 8, in particular, has some of her most "Austenesque" writing. The whole episode of inviting Marianne to Stanyon is full of wicked little gems:

"The way was beguiled by the Dowager in extolling her vicarious generosity in giving away her son-in-law's fruit, in calling upon Miss Morville to admire her son's admirable appearance on horseback, and in discovering that the bulbs in the various gardens which they passed on the road were not as far forward as they were at Stanyon."

"Had she [Marianne] been permitted to do so, she would have rendered her parents' malady still more hideous by smoothing their pillows, coaxing them to swallow bowls of gruel and begging them to tell her, just as they were dropping into sleep, if there was anything she could do for them to make them more comfortable; but this solace had been denied her, so that she could not believe herself to be necessary to them."

Anyone else seeing a STRONG resemblance to Lady Catherine de Bourgh in the Dowager?


message 26: by Jacquie (new)

Jacquie Scuitto | 261 comments Anyone else seeing a STRONG resemblance to Lady Catherine de Bourgh in the Dowager?
-------------------------------
I happened on the film of Pride and Prejudice (the one with Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier)yesterday and did note the resemblance. Of course the film softened her character at the end which was not the case with the dowager. Edna May Oliver as Lady Catherine was a delight however!


message 27: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
For me the resemblance to Lady Catherine is so strong that I'm visualising the actress from the Colin Firth P&P while reading.

Yes some dialogue very austenesque.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 361 comments Yes, so strong I noted it both in my status updates and in my review! In fact, there's one point where the Dowager is talking about how she'd have been an expert horsewoman if she'd ever cared to make the effort, which is a very close echo of one of Lady Catherine's brags in P&P. I can't imagine Georgette Heyer wasn't doing this deliberately.


message 29: by Elliot (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Tadiana ✩ Night Owl☽ wrote: "Yes, so strong I noted it both in my status updates and in my review! In fact, there's one point where the Dowager is talking about how she'd have been an expert horsewoman if she'd ever cared to m..."

I caught that reference too, Tatiana! Probably what really got me thinking about it!


message 30: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments I'm giving up on the audiobook and switching to eBook. The narrator is making me unable to listen to the book. It's amazing what a difference a good narrator can make.


message 31: by QNPoohBear (new)

QNPoohBear | 1348 comments I read the hardcover version once and it didn't real appeal to me all that much and since I have a big TBR pile and little time to read, I'm skipping this one for now. I may play catch up later on if/when I have more free time.


message 32: by Elliot (last edited Dec 03, 2015 06:13PM) (new)

Elliot Jackson | 275 comments Elliot wrote: "Tadiana ✩ Night Owl☽ wrote: "Yes, so strong I noted it both in my status updates and in my review! In fact, there's one point where the Dowager is talking about how she'd have been an expert horsew..."

Which I mis-spelled your name, Tadiana - I am sorry!


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 361 comments No worries! My name gets misspelled so often that I hardly even notice anymore when it happens. :)


message 34: by Susan in NC (last edited Dec 03, 2015 08:46PM) (new)

Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3537 comments This is my first time rereading the book, but I don't remember much about it so it feels pretty fresh to me. I'm reading the Harlequin edition with a foreword by Karen Hawkins. And I love the comparisons to Lady Catherine from P&P - something was tugging at my memory but I couldn't place it, so thank you! I was drawn to Miss Morville right away and love her matter-of-fact description of her parents - I'm cheering for her...not sure about Gervase yet, just starting chapter 5 and he clearly doesn't appreciate our Drusilla (I harrumph for her!)


message 35: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments I love the names that GH chose for her characters. So interesting and they seem to grow on you. If I wasn't afraid of the teasing that would endure my children would be Waldo and Ancilla. Instead they are Sophia and John. :)


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Unlike other of favorites by GH, I've only read this one other time and I found it to be rather blah at that time. However, I must say in my defense, once I made the initially discovery of GH with the first book of hers that I read (Sylvester), I went on a bender with her books. This did not compare favorably at that time with titles such "Sylvester," "Black Sheep," "The Grand Sophy" etc.

Now I am ready to give it a real chance and hopefully enjoy this experience without comparison to other titles that are now favorites and old friends from repeated readings.

And finally, I will say after just completing the first chapter that it is fortunate the H had his grandmother to love him and his father and stepmother did poor Martin no favor in raising him to feel he was the heir!


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments From ch 2:


‘Dear ma’am, believe me, it is the greatest satisfaction to me to be able to perceive, at a glance, that you have not changed –not by so much as a hairsbreadth!’

I think Gervase is going to be funny with his stepmother! I'm ready to be amused at the dowager's expense!


message 38: by Susan in NC (new)

Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3537 comments Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "From ch 2:


‘Dear ma’am, believe me, it is the greatest satisfaction to me to be able to perceive, at a glance, that you have not changed –not by so much as a hairsbreadth!’

I think Gervase is go..."


I agree wholeheartedly, she's rather ripe for skewering - I just read the part where the neighbors have commenced visiting to catch a peep at the prodigal Gervase, who has endured two days of such neighborliness and is sneaking out the back door for a ride leaving the Dowager to contentedly hold forth with one of her forceful monologues at the visitors....priceless!


message 39: by Susan in NC (new)

Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3537 comments Amy wrote: "I love the names that GH chose for her characters. So interesting and they seem to grow on you. If I wasn't afraid of the teasing that would endure my children would be Waldo and Ancilla. Instead t..."
The Grand Sophy - wonderful choice, lucky girl!


message 40: by Susan in NC (new)

Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3537 comments Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "Unlike other of favorites by GH, I've only read this one other time and I found it to be rather blah at that time. However, I must say in my defense, once I made the initially discovery of GH with ..."

I couldn't help thinking the same thing, what were they thinking?! Banking on a battlefield death isn't really a well thought out succession plan...and leaves poor Martin a spoiled, restless, immature brat with a big chip on his shoulder.


message 41: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
I am enjoying this reread but...

Usually when I read one of the lighthearted GH books I bolt through the read, snarling at anyone foolish enough to try to talk to me. This one 2 days in & I'm not even half way through. Possibly too Austenesque not Heyerish enough?


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Oh dear Carol! That is a bad sign if counter to your modus operandi for reading GHs books!


I'm up to ch 7. Martin is a terrible brat! His parents did him no favors spoiling him so!

If I had to choose between the two disagreeable supporting characters bratty Martin and Vincent Darracott, I'd prefer Vincent, but maybe I'm unfair since VD was older than Martin is.


message 43: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (last edited Dec 04, 2015 03:05PM) (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote:

I'm up to ch 7. Martin is a terrible brat! His parents did him no favors spoiling him so!

If I had to choose between the two disagreeable supporting characters bratty Martin and Vincent Darracott, I'd prefer Vincent, but maybe I'm unfair since VD was older than Martin is.
"


I'm managing to make allowances for Martin since he had such lousy parents. The Dad however, might win the Heyer Award for the Most Disagreeable Character to Stay Offstage.
Kit from Faro's Daughter is my least favourite brother.


message 44: by MaryC (new)

MaryC Clawsey | 480 comments Elliot wrote, "Anyone else seeing a STRONG resemblance to Lady Catherine de Bourgh in the Dowager?"

For sure! However, the Dowager is even more awful! For one thing, as of her husband's death, she has become a dependent of Gervase's, but one would never know it from the way she runs the household. Not only does she give away fruit from his greenhouse, but she makes the decisions about the ball, including whether they'll have one. Of course, the strident, caricaturish voice the reader gives her doesn't help!

As I think of it, was Rosings Lady Catherine's property or her daughter's? Still, there does seem to be a bit of difference!


message 45: by MaryC (new)

MaryC Clawsey | 480 comments Speaking of awful people, well, GH warns us that Louisa is her mother all over again, but even the Dowager never hints that she hoped Gervase would be killed in the war! But, once that thought arises, could the Dowager have been intended as a red herring--someone we're meant to suspect behind the attempts on Gervase's life? Of course she couldn't be laying those traps herself, but she might have had a cat's paw--Mr. Clowne? Maybe he's in the story for that purpose?


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments I think the use of "Clowne" as a surname is funny.

I was ready to be amused by this character bec of his name, but so far, GH hasn't done anything with him, but I'm into ch 9 now.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 361 comments Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "I think the use of "Clowne" as a surname is funny.

I was ready to be amused by this character bec of his name, but so far, GH hasn't done anything with him, but I'm into ch 9 now."


Don't hold your breath. He never happens as a character. I'm not sure why Heyer included him in the novel.


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Tadiana, that is disappointing. I was expecting something silly or amusing.


Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ | 361 comments I just read a review on Austenprose that makes an interesting suggestion: Heyer may have been planning to model Mr. Clowne on Mr. Collins, Lady Catherine's toady, but gave up on that plan. That makes a lot of sense to me, actually.


message 50: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4321 comments Mod
Tadiana ✩ Night Owl☽ wrote: Don't hold your breath. He never happens as a character. I'm not sure why Heyer included him in the novel.

Maybe included because a character like the dowager would always have a sycophant - & Martin & Drusilla don't fit that description?

But the Mr Collins explanation also makes a lot of sense!


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