My Writing

A Proper Charade by Esther Hatch

Sometimes I feel like there are two types of Regencies. There are the historical Regencies that not only pay careful attention to the technicalities to British class rules but also historical attitudes and expectations. Then there are Regencies that are what high fantasy is to the medieval era. Basically, there is a castle and there is a king but everything else goes. Some Regencies have started to take on that sort of feel. Add a duke and a fancy English setting but everything else goes regardless of the social and historical realities of the time period.  There are major aspects of A Proper Charade that are historically improbable–the way Patience acted as a servant would never be tolerated. Also, there’s no way the other servants would not utterly hate her. The fact that she’s not only new to the household but also incompetent and then gets promoted to governess? Rumors would circulate and not the type that would do any good for her reputation. 
Once you accept that A Proper Charade is the fantastical type of Regency, it is a really enjoyable read. One of the nice things about a Regency that doesn’t adhere to strict historical rules is a refreshing departure from many of the rigid tropes and cliches of the genre. The novel is as playful and fun-loving as its bold heroine. Lord Bryon is a minor character in the novel and he’s hilarious. Honestly, I’ve never had more payoff for a single sentence of dialogue in a long time! I was squirming in my seat and laughing out loud at the same time during more than one scene. I also loved the characterization of the two main leads and how their personalities complemented each other. That aspect of the book was particularly well done. Definitely worth the read!


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