The shy young Duke of Sale has never known his parents. Instead, his Grace Adolphus Gillespie Vernon Ware, or Gilly for short, has endured 24 years of rigorous mollycoddling from his uncle and his valet.
But his natural diffidence conceals a rebellious spirit. So when Gilly hears of Belinda, the beautiful foundling who appears to be blackmailing his cousin, he absconds with glee. Only he has no sooner entered his new and dangerous world than he is plunged into a frenzy of intrigue, kidnap, and adventure.
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- Ms M Morrissey - McKenzie
Wit and humour, but it does drag at times
This is one of Heyer's longer comedies, and both when read as a book and narrated in audio it seems too long for the content. It's a good, fairly classic GH storyline about the tyranny of family affection and a young man trying to assert his right to make his own decisions. A lot of well drawn characters from the overprotective household headed by Lord Lionel the domestic despot to the gloriously unrepentant villain, Swithin Liversedge, and some real comedy moments. This is a more male book than usual, with no obvious 'heroine'. The beautiful Belinda, without a thought in her head except rings and purple silk dresses, is not one, and Gilly's bride is a pleasant girl but low key. Phyllida Nash's reading is her usual excellent standard, but sometimes you just want to get out and push; it could have done with being an hour shorter. I still prefer this to having an abridged version though, they never work.