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Arabella
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Group Reads > Arabella: Group Read July 2018 Spoiler Thread

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Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
For final conclusions & open spoilers. :)


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments I know some readers don't like the mock abduction at the end, but I am not bothered by it. Arabella did basically ask for it, and Beaumaris's did everything to protect her reputation. I like how he really, really wants her to trust him and confide in him; he's trying to shepherd her through the process of growing from a girl into a woman. I like how he treasures her conscience and hope he continues to do so throughout their marriage.


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Well-said Abigail!


Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
Finished & while I still loved this book (Arabella is a wonderful heroine, Ulysses is GH's best dog) after this time (probably my 50th read) I'm over Bertram. His troubles push Arabella & Robert off centre stage.


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments I agree about Bertram, but at least he doesn't get as much page space as other troubled brothers in some of the books.


Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
Abigail wrote: "I agree about Bertram, but at least he doesn't get as much page space as other troubled brothers in some of the books."

These burdensome brothers do reflect GH's own life.


Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
I've just been rereading some scenes in this book (I don't think I ever do this with any other author) Wonderful dialogue.


Susan in Perthshire (susanageofaquarius) | 1201 comments Whenever I feel aggrieved or annoyed by something regarding GH’s snobbishness or anything else for that matter - I remember how she took on board the support of her whole family - including her husband - for the length of time she did. She may not have regarded herself as a feminist - but oh boy, she foreshadowed them by a mile. I think her younger brother characters were a way of dealing with that burden although she may not have seen it in that way.


message 9: by Vasoula (last edited Jul 05, 2018 08:57AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Vasoula | 43 comments Has anyone seen the Arabella film in German? Unfortunately I do not speak the language and I cannot see it. I was wondering what kind of adaptation it was.


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Sherwood Smith (sherwoodsmith) | 92 comments Vasoula wrote: "Has anyone seen the Arabella film in German? Unfortunately I do not speak the language and I cannot see it. I was wondering what kind of adaptation it was."

Where is this? I speak German. I'd be very interested in it.


Vasoula | 43 comments Sherwood wrote: "Vasoula wrote: "Has anyone seen the Arabella film in German? Unfortunately I do not speak the language and I cannot see it. I was wondering what kind of adaptation it was."

Where is this? I speak ..."


I hope this helps:
http://www.georgette-heyer.com/movies...


Vasoula | 43 comments Vasoula wrote: "Sherwood wrote: "Vasoula wrote: "Has anyone seen the Arabella film in German? Unfortunately I do not speak the language and I cannot see it. I was wondering what kind of adaptation it was."

Where ..."


If you see it, please let me know what you think of it!


message 13: by Sherwood (new) - added it

Sherwood Smith (sherwoodsmith) | 92 comments It looks like there aren't any copies to be found for love nor money. A friend in Germany did some searching, and so far, there is only a rumor of an old VHS. Sadly! But maybe something will surface. The actors in it were quite well known in their day.


Sheila (in LA) (sheila_in_la) | 373 comments I finished the book last night and enjoyed it tremendously--only a little disappointed by the amount of weeping that Arabella does in the final scene. I felt the delicious balance of naive but somehow putting Beaumaris in his place got lost in Arabella's portrayal and she became more of a ninny.

That's my only quibble with this book. I think it's close to perfect.


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments I see your point, Sheila, though I feel that the combination of being in love for the first time and worry over her foolish brother and planning to do something immoral might well reduce her to jelly--it would me!


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Abigail,

What do you make of Arabella's father? His lack of concern for getting his numerous daughters established is drifting over into "Mr. Bennett" territory. He isn't as callously detached as Mr. Bennett, I'll concede that he loves his children and cares about their moral development, but he has a lack of concern for practicalities. As poor as he is, I can't see that he's in a position to support several unmarried daughters indefinitely, plus leave something for his wife when he dies.


Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "Abigail,

What do you make of Arabella's father? His lack of concern for getting his numerous daughters established is drifting over into "Mr. Bennett" territory. He isn't as callously detached as ..."


I think he is too good & unworldly to concern himself with practical matters like that! & his wife plays him like a violin.

Every time GH calls Arabella "Papa's daughter" I "see" him! Wonderful writing.


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments Interesting comparison to Mr. Bennet, Andrea! I hadn't thought of him as being an irresponsible parent, only as an unworldly one, but his excellent wife might justly point out that being so very unworldly IS being irresponsible! He is at least more loving toward his children than Mr. Bennet, but that would not have saved the daughters from starvation had Arabella not made a good match. Thank heaven they had their practical mother!


Sheila (in LA) (sheila_in_la) | 373 comments Abigail wrote: "I see your point, Sheila, though I feel that the combination of being in love for the first time and worry over her foolish brother and planning to do something immoral might well reduce her to jel..."

Good point, Abigail! I imagine she regains her equilibrium soon enough.


Barb in Maryland | 714 comments Carol ꧁꧂ wrote: "Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "Abigail,

What do you make of Arabella's father? His lack of concern for getting his numerous daughters established is drifting over int..."


Oh, let us not forget, Daddy dearest is also a bit of a snob! One reason he reluctantly agrees to okay Arabella's London trip is that there is a marked lack of suitable (in his eyes) suitors in the local area. I am sure that young Joseph Drayton is a perfectly fine young man with many virtues, but the money he will inherit 'smells of the shop', which renders him ineligible to dear old dad. Carol, you nailed it when you said that Mrs T plays him like a violin!!


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments Can’t help feeling a bit for Mrs. T - or any more “worldly” partner in any relationship with many children needing to be provided for; its a lot of responsibility.


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments I liked the way Mr. Tallant had naively thought that the perfect match for Arabella would just drop into their laps when the proper time came! Many more practical parents than he have a hard time seeing that their own children are growing up so, although his attitude makes me laugh, it is understandable. His snobbishness, too, also comes from an intellectual standpoint, from his fear that none of Arabella's suitors are intelligent or understanding enough to deserve her. Money and social position don't really enter into his thoughts. Impractical, yes, but still a man trying very hard to
be a good man.


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments Thinking about the "unequally yoked" couples that I've known, and it's no wonder that it's a serious concern for the intelligent parent in literature. My quibble with Mr. Bennet is his indolence; he knows his wife is silly, vain and grasping, but he leaves his children almost entirely to her care. I wonder if he'd stirred himself up a bit, if he would have at least exercised some good influence over her (as Anne's mother in Persuasion did her father). The Tallants, however, seem to really complement each other, one partner making up for lacks in the other - a much more loving and efficient marriage.


Teresa | 1810 comments I agree with you Karlyne. In the film 'My Big Fat Greek Wedding' the mother says to her daughter, 'the man might be the head of the family but the wife is the neck and the neck always turns the head'. I always thought this a brilliant piece of wisdom because in many cases it's true and it certainly is here.
I finished the book just now and loved it. Been a long time since I last read it and this made it more enjoyable as I'd forgotten a lot of it. I love the names of people she came up with, Leaky Peg and Quartern Sue!! Hilarious!


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments There's a lot of humor in this one! I love the wry way Beaumaris talks to Ulysses, especially.


Teresa | 1810 comments Also the way he looked after Jemmy. I know he was doing it to please Arabella but it shows he also had a kind heart.


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments And neither Jemmy nor Ulysses are handsome!


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a better person. The haut ton--at least as portrayed by Georgette Heyer--is pretty ethically debased, and he is resolving to pursue a more moral path. I've always loved this aspect of Arabella, the seriousness underpinning the romance. I tend not to be satisfied by romances that are all about attraction; I want the characters to grow and become a better version of themselves.


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments Abigail wrote: "I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a better person. The h..."

Absolutely! My heroes and heroines have to grow!


Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2724 comments Mod
Abigail wrote: "I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a better person. The h..."

Wonderfully said - I agree completely!


message 31: by Jackie (new) - added it

Jackie | 1385 comments Abigail wrote: "I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a better person. The h..."
I love this post, Abigail


Pragya | 3 comments Jackie wrote: "Abigail wrote: "I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a bett..."

Me too!

It reminded me a little of how Lord Alverstoke is forced into doing things he never imagined for Frederica's sake.

I really loved the fact that Arabella had a social conscience and that GH chooses to focus on that. Can't imagine a regency heroine who is callous to the underclass but this aspect of their personalities is hardly ever discussed.

I liked the whole episode with Ulysess but having read a couple of her books, I understand now that GH employs the affection of pets and children as a technique to endear characters to the reader and I must say it's getting a little old!


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments Abigail wrote: "I do enjoy how Beaumaris knows he is yoking himself to a person who will demand a lot from him (not a "conformable wife") and he willingly submits to it because she makes him a better person. The h..."

Beautifully said - I just finished and enjoyed myself immensely, chuckling along with Robert as I imagined their life together - certainly won’t be dull!


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments I'm not sure why Arabella hasn't been in my top Heyers before, because Beaumaris had me laughing in every one of his scenes. His relationship with Ulysses has to be one of the best dog/master ones ever written, not to mention his short dialogue with Scunthorpe ("my congratulations to your parents"), and, of course, his behavior to Arabella herself is worth millions. Arabella is sweet, and I love her conscience and her budding sense of humor (which will definitely increase), but Beaumaris has definitely climbed up the ladder in my regard. I am a fan.


Christmas Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4484 comments Mod
Karlyne wrote: "I'm not sure why Arabella hasn't been in my top Heyers before, because Beaumaris had me laughing in every one of his scenes. His relationship with Ulysses has to be one of the best dog/master ones ..."

He is one of my favourite heroes. I know people have problems with some of his actions & I do wonder if GH should have made him a little younger - like around 25?


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments I thought he was perfect, and loved his scenes with Ulysses! And his descriptions of his visit to the vicarage.


Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments But if he'd been younger, I think he wouldn't have come off as well. He needed to be very assured, quietly in control, and able to see Arabella's worth behind her silly charade. He also needed to have been the most eligible bachelor in London for a good time period, so that he could be bored by the whole matchmaking scene. The age difference, I know, bothers some modern sensibilities, but it doesn't me. I've known several very successful May/December marriages!


Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2724 comments Mod
I have no issues with his age, and think him a very nice hero, indeed.

And Arabella, with her impetuous nature, strong moral beliefs and nigh-unsinkable attitude - love her!

Possible Frederica (view spoiler)


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments I wanted to move my comment here from the chapters9-17 thread. I think Robert will keep an eye on Bertram to spare any possible upsetting behavior to reach the ears of Papa and mama! (And Arabella)!


message 40: by Belinda (last edited Jul 14, 2018 01:00AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Belinda | 220 comments I just finished reading it. I expected it to be saccharine because the heroine is only 17 or 18 but arabella doesn’t disgust. Her tear down of Beaumaris is a priceless bit of preciousness. As pointed out it’s a real rags to Rich’s story and I think the juxtapositions work so well due to moral authority. That is poor girl from highly religious and ‘good’ family versus indolent rich famed for his cut if coat. As arabella says in the tear down, it’s not as important as being an important statesman etc. thoroughly enjoyed it and agree there is alot of humour and Beaumaris grows on you. I’ll move it up to top ten.


Belinda | 220 comments I found penn in the Corinthian a much more annoying youth than arabella who seems more worldly wise although still young in years.


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments Belinda - I liked that she was young, but never in danger, like previous young “diamonds”, of wasting away with love for Beaumaris! She’s clear headed enough to use his attention to her advantage...She sees what a sham so much of polite society can be, and yet appreciates kind people, the fun of dancing the night away, and enjoys what life has to offer while clearly remembering who she is and what is expected of one of Papa’s daughters!


Belinda | 220 comments Susan in NC wrote: "Belinda - I liked that she was young, but never in danger, like previous young “diamonds”, of wasting away with love for Beaumaris! She’s clear headed enough to use his attention to her advantage....."

Agree! She is very likeable although not cloying (maybe because she likes those worldly things so much like we all do such as fine clothes and a good time). Must have been hard for her growing up with such a strict father? Still he seems loving although inclined to preach (natural given his profession).


Teresa | 1810 comments Her love for the underdog shines through. First Jemmy and then the little dog. She doesn't think at all just wades in when she thinks something has to be done. A great quality in a person.


message 45: by Jackie (last edited Jul 14, 2018 06:00AM) (new) - added it

Jackie | 1385 comments I realized Arabella used to be one of my favorites - decades ago! - for the humor of it, especially Heyer poking fun at the Not Too Brightness of Lady B and the clueless arrogance or her son and then all the silliness surrounding the adoption of Ulysses. it starts with Arabella angry over the "louts" being violent, but approving of Beaumaris roughing them up. and the image of a beautiful young woman using her sunshade as a weapon!

Probably my favorite scene in the book is how insulted the snooty poodle guy is by Ulysses, that was hysterical.
Now that I am in my 50s I could still enjoy this one, but prefer a heroine who is more of an equal, and not such an ingenue.


Teresa | 1810 comments Oh yes, Poodle guy. Hilarious!!!!!


message 47: by Jackie (new) - added it

Jackie | 1385 comments Teresa wrote: "Her love for the underdog shines through. First Jemmy and then the little dog. She doesn't think at all just wades in when she thinks something has to be done. A great quality in a person."

while I was posting earlier this morning I couldn't remember how to spell Ulysses and was going to call him The Little Underdog Who Could. He is my favorite character in the book, I think.


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments Jackie wrote: "I realized Arabella used to be one of my favorites - decades ago! - for the humor of it, especially Heyer poking fun at the Not Too Brightness of Lady B and the clueless arrogance or her son and th..."

I agree with you and Teresa - the humorous situations in this book just delighted me! This was only my second read, and I listened to it while knitting, and I dropped a few stitches laughing during the run-in between Ulysses and the poodle! I guess because we have a little mystery blend mutt who weighs about 20 lbs but wants to challenge any dog he sees, no matter the size or breed - Ulysses is truly one of my favorite characters, and this continues to be one of my favorite Heyers, just for the sheer fun.

Listening this time was a revelation- I could picture it all coming to life in my mind - Phyllida Nash was a wonderful narrator.


Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1430 comments Poodle Byng! He was a real person, though the confrontation over Ulysses was doubtless fictional, and absolutely inspired!

I probably got the idea from Arabella, but when I lived in New York City in my twenties I was notorious for whacking taxicabs over the hood with my flowered umbrella if they cut me off in a crosswalk (or tried to). Coworkers would follow me when I went out for lunch to see if they could catch me in the act! It was a lovely umbrella, to a design by Grace Kelly, and deserved much better treatment.


Susan in NC (susanncreader) | 3661 comments Abigail wrote: "Poodle Byng! He was a real person, though the confrontation over Ulysses was doubtless fictional, and absolutely inspired!

I probably got the idea from Arabella, but when I lived in New York City ..."


Lol! Abigail, you are a hoot - have you ever read the Amelia Peabody historical mysteries by Elizabeth Peters? Amelia was very much the Victorian English lady abroad in Egypt, but when roused by injustice or threat to her family, was legendary for her way with an umbrella as a weapon! (Later in the series, she had them specially made with a steel shaft...)


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