Overall rating: ❤️❤️❤️❤️💔
Heat Level: 🔥
Narration by Ruth Sillers: 🎧🎧🎧🎧
Sub-genre: Historical, Regency period
Trope: Mistaken/False identity
A brother and sister switch places in this surprisingly witty Regency romance. I’m a huge fan of Georgette Heyer, but not everyone enjoys her overzealous love for details. But if you’re in the mood for an unconventional historical romcom packed with action, romance, and intrigue then I suggest you start developing the art of skimming and add “The Masqueraders” to your reading list.
While the idea of a cross-dressing brother and sister might seem silly and unbelievable (I’m thinking of Amanda Bynes in “She’s the Man” here), the author’s detailed description of the pair and their mannerisms make it both conceivable and hysterical. Prudence is taller than her younger brother, Robin, and has an easy sense of humor and excellent acting skills. Robin, on the other hand, is a gentleman of shorter stature and a “pretty face”. Thanks to fashion of that era, he was able to transform into a woman with the help of voluptuous dresses, excessive makeup, and powdered wigs.
This siblings are the off-spring of a charismatic, narcissistic con-artist, often referred to as “the old gentleman.” The father believes himself to be a great man indeed, and has dragged his children across Europe encompassing a multitude of fictional characters, until their latest escapade in England.
The first time I read this book, the Jacobite rebellion went totally over my head. This time around I was paying attention, and understood how the old gentleman backed the losing side, and why Robin had to conceal himself in women’s petticoats. Thanks to the fantastic series, “Outlander” I now have a good understanding of what the Jacobite risings were all about 🙂
The were two simultaneous love stories in this book. The romance between Prudence and her “Mountain” Sir Anthony Fanshawe was delightful, even if it didn’t go beyond a kiss. For all his sleepy eyes, Sir Anthony is in fact very much awake and quite sexy. I really like the idea of a Regency gentleman who respects a strong woman and treats her as his equal.
Robin’s love interest, Letitia, made me want to roll my eyes. There’s nothing that grates on my nerves more than a silly young chit looking for excitement and romance. A typical, sheltered girl of the times, with too much time on her hands and a lively imagination. I think Robin could’ve done better for himself, but then only a naïve ninny like her would be willing to completely overlook his deception and cross-dressing.
The narrator had a wonderful reading voice and was able to distinguish the characters well. Some of the gentlemen’s roles were perhaps a bit too nasal for my taste, but overall very enjoyable.
“The Masqueraders” is a delightful read. The characters are colourful and the dialogue witty. As for the descriptive details in this book, I suggest you don’t let them put you off, because this book is well worth the read!