×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Georgette Heyer
     

Georgette Heyer

4.0 1
by Jennifer Kloester
 

See All Formats & Editions

The groundbreaking biography of one of the world's best-loved and bestselling authors

Who was the real Georgette Heyer?

Georgette Heyer famously said, "I am to be found in my work."

Who was this amazing writer who was so secretive about her personal life that she never gave an interview? Where did she

Overview

The groundbreaking biography of one of the world's best-loved and bestselling authors

Who was the real Georgette Heyer?

Georgette Heyer famously said, "I am to be found in my work."

Who was this amazing writer who was so secretive about her personal life that she never gave an interview? Where did she get her ideas? Were there real-life models for her ultra-manly heroes, independent-minded heroines, irascible guardians, and clever villains? What motivated her to build a Regency worldso intricately researched that readers want to escape there again and again?

Heyer's Regency romances, historical novels, and mysteries have surprised and delighted millions of readers for decades, while the woman behind the storieshas stayed hidden...Until now!

With unprecedented, exclusive access to Heyer's notebooks, papers, and early letters, Jennifer Kloester uncovers both the complex life of a private woman anda masterful writer's craft that will forever resonate in literature and beyond.

"A wonderful entertaining biography—a readable and lively account of this beloved writer."—Eloisa James, #1 New York Times bestselling author

"Required reading for all lovers of Regency novels."—Mary Jo Putney, New York Times bestselling author of No Longer a Gentleman

"A superb portrayal of one of my all-time favorite writers."—Anne Gracie, award-winning author of Bride By Mistake

"An engaging, intriguing, absorbing, read!"—Stephanie Laurens, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Praise for Georgette Heyer's Regency World:

"Meticulously researched yet splendidly entertaining ... a must-have."—Publishers Weekly Starred Review
"Detailed, informative, impressively researched. A Heyer lover writing for Heyer fans."—Times Literary Supplement
"Kloester's lively book will delight died-in-the-wool Regency readers." —Booklist

Editorial Reviews

The Washington Post - Kathy Blumenstock
…meticulously researched…a thoughtful portrait of an author whose long-running popular success failed to draw critical acclaim…Heyer's devotees will be charmed by this engaging tour of the author's world. Kloester wisely allows all facets of Heyer's personality to emerge, depicting a feisty, humorous, accomplished woman who is more interesting than her own fictional characters.
Publishers Weekly
English Regency social historian Kloester details the life of Georgette Heyer (1902–1974), the “Queen of Regency romance,” who sold her first book at age 17 and, over the next 50 years, married Ronald Rougier, bore one son, and wrote 55 books. With access to a thousand pages of new material plus full access to Heyer’s private papers, Kloester adds to, and sometimes corrects, some facts in Joan Aiken Hodge’s 1984 biography, while remaining frustratingly reticent about others. Despite the new material Kloester, like Hodge, provides scant insight into the writing process of the fiercely private Heyer, who granted a single interview and destroyed all her manuscripts and most of her personal correspondence. Kloester relies on Heyer’s early contemporary novels for clues to the author’s inner life bolstered with guesses based on quotations from correspondence, especially with Heyer’s agent and publishers. Kloester is not completely uncritical but her sympathy is obvious, often putting the best possible spin on Heyer’s snobbery and poor financial decisions. The result is a parlor portrait of this famous writer who claimed to despise her readership while craving the critical attention that eluded her. 73 illus. (Jan.)
From the Publisher
"A superb portrayal of one of my all-time favorite writers. As engaging as a novel to read and containing a wealth of fascinating new material, I found the Heyer biography utterly engrossing." - Anne Gracie, award-winning author of Bride By Mistake

"Kloester has opened the door on one of the most private literary icons of the past century, one whose works made and continue to make a lasting impression on readers worldwide. Meticulously researched and supported, Kloester's study is both sympathetic and exact, and paints a finely detailed portrait of the woman behind the books. An engaging, intriguing, absorbing read-history is rarely this entertaining!" - #1 New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens

"A vivid and highly readable portrait of a woman whose wit and keen social insight reshaped twentieth century fiction. As a writer whose work has been powerfully influenced by Heyer, I loved reading about her, her professionalism, and her own lasting real life romance. This biography should be required reading for all lovers of Regency novels." - Mary Jo Putney, New York Times bestselling author of No Longer A Gentleman

"With rare access to Heyer's private papers as well as the newly identified letters, Kloester perceptively analyzes Heyer's novels... This well-written, thoroughly researched biography is more detailed than Jane AIken Hodge's The Private World of Georgette Heyer. Heyer enthusiasts and readers interested in popular romantic historical fiction or the Regency period of English literature will enjoy this." - Library Journal

"Meticulously researched" - Kirkus

"The result is an absorbing and enlightening biography, a must-read for Heyer fans and all who cherish Regency romances." - Booklist

"Heyer's devotees will be charmed by this engaging tour of the author's world. Kloester wisely allows all facets of Heyer's personality to emerge, depicting a feisty, humorous, accomplished woman who is more interesting than her own fictional characters." - The Washington Post

"If you are a fan of the Regency period, and/or of Georgette Heyer, you will find this biography interesting and informative. Perhaps, like myself, you will be reading or re-reading Georgette's novels upon finishing Kloester's work." - A Garden Carred in the Pocket

"A well-written look at one of the 20th century's most beloved authors." - Scandalous Women

"An admirably unmelodramatic tour through a life and work." - The Wall Street Journal

Library Journal
Georgette Heyer published her first novel, The Black Moth, in 1921 when she was 19 years old and published her 56th and last one more than 50 years later. Heyer is recognized today as the creator of the Regency genre of historical fiction. Kloester (Georgette Heyer's Regency World) contends in this biography based on her PhD thesis that Heyer's body of work—her historical novels, crime fiction, and especially Regency novels—continues to inspire readers and writers around the world and that her significance in the literary arena endures. With rare access to Heyer's private papers as well as newly identified letters, Kloester perceptively analyzes Heyer's novels. Plots, characters, sales figures, and income are detailed as she methodically chronicles the appearance of each novel and reveals the steady progress of Heyer's rise to best-seller status. Kloester also documents Heyer's family life, her relationships with business associates, and even her luncheon with Queen Elizabeth II, who described the novelist as "formidable." VERDICT This well-written, thoroughly researched biography is more detailed than Jane Aiken Hodge's The Private World of Georgette Heyer. Heyer enthusiasts and readers interested in popular romantic historical fiction or the Regency period of English literature will enjoy this.—Kathryn R. Bartelt, Univ. of Evansville Libs., IN
Kirkus Reviews
A detailed, yet sometimes-plodding study of the life and work of Georgette Heyer (1902–1974), the best-selling British Regency romance writer. Kloester (Georgette Heyer's Regency World, 2005) spent 10 years researching this book, which draws from "new and untapped archives of [Heyer's] letters," as well as the author's notebooks and other private papers. The result is a carefully crafted, narrowly focused biography that concentrates on Heyer and her novels to the near exclusion of the times in which she was writing. The woman whom the Daily Telegraph called the "20th Century Jane Austen" was "born an Edwardian." But Kloester points out that Heyer's upper-middle-class world and many of the traditions that informed it--"servants, horses and carriages, good manners, correct speech, the right clothing and a certain level of education and cultural literacy"--were products of the English Regency. Encouraged from an early age by her literature-loving father to read widely and write, Heyer produced her first novel when she was just 17. However, it would be more than 20 years before she would focus exclusively on the Regency romances for which she is best remembered. Until that time, she dabbled in historical, contemporary and detective fiction writing and experienced modest, but steadily increasing, success with each novel she published. After her father died in 1925, Heyer supported her mother and two brothers on her literary earnings. Until her husband could practice as an attorney, she had to support her own household as well, factors that Kloester believes contributed to her all-consuming drive to write. Heyer produced more than 50 novels in her lifetime, in addition to numerous short stories. Unable to see her work as being on par with "serious" writers, she would assert that her books sold because they were historical romances "that [didn't] date." But as Kloester observes, the literary legacy Heyer could not fully own still "endures." Meticulously researched, but with limited audience appeal.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402271762
Publisher:
Sourcebooks
Publication date:
01/01/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
572,432
File size:
10 MB

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
"A superb portrayal of one of my all-time favorite writers. As engaging as a novel to read and containing a wealth of fascinating new material, I found the Heyer biography utterly engrossing." - Anne Gracie, award-winning author of Bride By Mistake

"Kloester has opened the door on one of the most private literary icons of the past century, one whose works made and continue to make a lasting impression on readers worldwide. Meticulously researched and supported, Kloester's study is both sympathetic and exact, and paints a finely detailed portrait of the woman behind the books. An engaging, intriguing, absorbing read-history is rarely this entertaining!" - #1 New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens

"A vivid and highly readable portrait of a woman whose wit and keen social insight reshaped twentieth century fiction. As a writer whose work has been powerfully influenced by Heyer, I loved reading about her, her professionalism, and her own lasting real life romance. This biography should be required reading for all lovers of Regency novels." - Mary Jo Putney, New York Times bestselling author of No Longer A Gentleman

"With rare access to Heyer's private papers as well as the newly identified letters, Kloester perceptively analyzes Heyer's novels... This well-written, thoroughly researched biography is more detailed than Jane AIken Hodge's The Private World of Georgette Heyer. Heyer enthusiasts and readers interested in popular romantic historical fiction or the Regency period of English literature will enjoy this." - Library Journal

"meticulously reserached..." - Kirkus

"The result is an absorbing and enlightening biography, a must-read for Heyer fans and all who cherish Regency romances." - Booklist

"Heyer's devotees will be charmed by this engaging tour of the author's world. Kloester wisely allows all facets of Heyer's personality to emerge, depicting a feisty, humorous, accomplished woman who is more interesting than her own fictional characters. " - The Washington Post

"If you are a fan of the Regency period, and/or of Georgette Heyer, you will find this biography interesting and informative. Perhaps, like myself, you will be reading or re-reading Georgette's novels upon finishing Kloester's work." - A Garden Carred in the Pocket

"A well-written look at one of the 20th century's most beloved authors.
" - Scandalous Women

"An admirably unmelodramatic tour through a life and work." - The Wall Street Journal

Meet the Author

During the extensive study and research of Georgette Heyer's work for her PhD thesis, Jennifer Kloester had access to private papers and other information through the generosity of Georgette Heyer's estate, discovering a wealth of new material on the immensely private author. Kloester lives in Victoria, Australia.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

Georgette Heyer 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
thebookwormNJ More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy Georgette Heyer's works, Frederica being one of my favorite books. I was very eager to read this biography as I really haven't read much about the "Queen of Regency Romance" herself. Jennifer Kloester does a fantastic job with this book. I found this to be a well written and informative Heyer biography. You can see she does her research here. The book starts at Heyer's birth in 1902 during the Victorian Age to a comfortable middle class family in England and goes through the rest of her life until her death in 1974. Her family life, her marriage, her book deals and correspondence with her publishers and motherhood are all within these pages. Heyer was always writing! There's plenty of interesting information here. I did find the first chapter or so to be slow going, but once the book got into Heyer's adult life and her writing, I was unable to put it down. Her father was a teacher and a writer, her mother was an educated woman who loved music. Heyer was closest to her father. Impressively, her first novel was published by the time she was just nineteen years old. She preferred to be alone, and was an opinionated, yet private lady. And what a fascinating life Heyer lead! Living in Africa, and writing a novel there, in a grass hut no less. She also lived in Macedonia and Scotland. She had two girlfriends, fellow writers, and they would each critique one anothers works. Heyer was her own worse critic though. She even had some of her books pulled from publication at one point because she didn't want them out there anymore. She was a no-nonsense lady. ------ "She wrote The Masqueraders on her lap in the hut in Kyerwa, drawing on her prodigious memory for details of costume and eighteenth century ephemera when her small library failed to give her what she needed. It must have given her pleasure and some amusement to describe the powdered wigs, splendid jewels, silk patches, dancing, dueling and elegant evenings spent among the ton while sitting in a grass hut in a remote corner of Tanganyika." p.94 ---- I think what is really interesting about author Jennifer Kloester is that she's actually met with Georgette Heyer's son and he gave her his personal blessing to write his mothers biography. He gave her access to his mothers notebooks and private papers. How amazing is that? Each chapter in this biography begins with a Heyer quote, which I found to be a nice touch. Photos of Heyer and her family are also included which are really great to see. There's photos of Heyer and her husband in Africa. Snippets of Heyer's personal letters are included and as I read them, I could see a bit of her personality in there. This was a woman who was a writer, a mom, a wife and a daughter. She supported her family financially after her father passed away. I really like the cover on this one as well, and I noticed Heyer is holding a cigarette. Apparently, she smoked about two packs a day. Heyer successfully wrote novels for over fifty years and all these decades later, they are still in print and are still popular. If that's not impressive, I don't know what is. I recommend Georgette Heyer by Jennifer Kloester to Heyer fans. This is a nice way to get to know about the author behind the famous books. Disclaimer: This review is my honest opinion. I did not receive any kind of compensation for writing it. I received a free review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.