Georgette Heyer, History and Historical Fiction
Edited by Samantha J. Rayner and Kim Wilkins
Georgette Heyer, History, and Historical Fiction brings together an eclectic range of chapters from scholars all over the world to explore the contexts of Heyer’s career. Divided into four parts – gender; genre; sources; and circulation and reception – the volume draws on scholarship on Heyer and her contemporaries to show how her work sits in a chain of influence, and why it remains pertinent to current conversations on books and publishing in the twenty-first century. Heyer’s impact on science fiction is accounted for, as are the milieu she was writing in, the many subsequent works that owe Heyer’s writing a debt, and new methods for analysing these enduring books.
From the gothic to data science, there is something for everyone in this volume; a celebration of Heyer’s ‘nonesuch’ status amongst historical novelists, proving that she and her contemporary women writers deserve to be read (and studied) as more than just guilty pleasures.
Praise for Georgette Heyer, History and Historical Fiction
Jennifer kloester, jenniferkloester.com
Bex Lewis, Manchester Metropolitan University
Samantha J. Rayner is Reader in Publishing at UCL,
where she is also Director of the Centre for Publishing.
Kim Wilkins is Reader in Writing and Publishing at The University of Queensland, Australia.
List of figures and tables
List of contributors
Introduction: the Persistence of Georgette Heyer
Samantha Rayner and Kim Wilkins
Part 1: Gender
1. ‘Where History says little, Fiction may say much’ (Anna Barbauld): the historical novel in women’s hands in the mid-twentieth century
2. The not so silly ass: Freddy Standen, his fictional contemporaries and alternative masculinity
3. Judith Taverner as dandy-in-training in Georgette Heyer’s Regency Buck, Laura George
Part 2: Genre
4. Pride and prejudice: metafiction and the value of historical romance in Georgette Heyer
5. Loving and giving: realism, emotional hypocrisy, and generosity in A Civil Contract
6. Georgette Heyer and redefining the Gothic romance
7. Heyer . . . in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on science fiction
Part 3: Sources
8. All’s Well That Ends Well: Shakespearean Echoes in Heyer’s Regency novels
9. Georgette Heyer, Wellington’s Army and the First World War
10. Georgette Heyer and the language of the historical novel
Part 4: Circulation and Reception
11. A reluctant movie? The Reluctant Widow on screen
Lucie Bea Dutton
12. Georgette Heyer – guilty pleasures
13. Data science: Georgette Heyer’s historical novels and her readers
Appendix 1: List of Georgette Heyer's novels used for the text analysis
Appendix 2: Survey questions
Appendix 3: A sample of the comical answers written by the Heyer readers when completing the survey
'This fascinating resource [is an] invaluable contribution to our understanding of this reclusive but enduring author whose work has been overlooked by serious critics for far too long.'
‘A powerfully interesting interdisciplinary collection, which offers rich new insights for the many who love reading the works of Georgette Heyer.’ – Bex Lewis, Manchester Metropolitan University
Size: 234 × 156 mm
13 colour illustrations
Copyright: © 2021
Publication: February 25, 2021