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Most of her ardent readers would probably agree that Georgette Heyer's best books are set in the British Regency era (1795-1835). This one is set in England and Paris during the reign of Louis XV and "la Pompadour" (i.e., sometime between 1745 and 1764) and features men who wear powdered wigs, red high heeled shoes--and makeup.
"Powder and Patch" is short (5 hours, unabridged) and lighthearted (no shadow of the guillotine yet for these French aristocrats), and the stylishly (and humorously) arcane language, beautifully interpreted by Jamie Glover, whisks the reader away into a long bygone era. Be warned but not necessarily deterred by the many (untranslated) passages in French; I *felt* like I understood them, even though my French is extremely limited.
The book loses stars for its airhead heroine and an ending that pushes the game-playing between the would-be lovers too far and too long. But the supporting characters are all delightful and clearly personified in Glover's performance.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
Gerogette Heyer has once again written a story full of memorable and lovable characters. Both the principal and secondary characters are so well written and well performed that you can see them in your mind's eye. Jamie Glover's performance is masterful. You are never at a loss as to who is speaking, or how that person is feeling. Just expertly done! And this book is funny - the transformation of the hero from the macho, masterful country bumpkin to the elegant, languid, bored, poetry-writing English fob is just hilarious!
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
It took me a long time to try this Heyer novel, as I was put off my mixed reviews and a bad report from a friend. Which is a real shame, because this one is a charming way to spend a few hours. It doesn't reach the stomach cramping, crying with laughter heights of some of the later books, nor is it one of those intricate confections that Heyer does so well, but it's lovely and frothy like a glass of champagne with plenty of her signature wit.
I wouldn't recommend it as the first Heyer, if you are new to her then I suggest The Grand Sophy, The Talisman Ring, Cotillion or Friday's Child. But if you're already a fan then you MUST hear Powder and Patch.
The basic story is simple, girl refuses boy so he goes away to try to learn how to be what she wants, but the characterisation is excellent - these people aren't shallow, just very young and silly and it's a pleasure to be with them as they grow (a little) towards maturity. It's a fun ride and I grew to love Philip and Cleone a lot. The supporting cast are equally fun and the relationship between Philip and his father adds a bit of depth.
I really enjoyed Jamie Glover's narration, this is not a stylised reading but warm-toned straightforward narrative with good range of voices. I'd happily listen to him again, and I'm looking forward to the next time I revisit this novel.
In summary, if you like Heyer, don't deprive yourself of a treat. Her comedies are exactly that, they aren't meant to be taken too seriously. There is a lot to enjoy here, and it's fun to see the beginnings of such a great writer.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Very clear audio and well read. It was like listening to a play.
What was one of the most memorable moments of Powder and Patch?
I liked the transformaion from country lad to French gallant. It had me giggling. Jamie glover's French accent is well done and it is wonderful how he changes voices with the characters.
Which character – as performed by Jamie Glover – was your favourite?
If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
Be careful what you wish for.
Any additional comments?
Just so enjoyable. Thanks.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful