Unlike a majority of Georgette Heyer’s romances, Devil’s Cub is not set in Regency England. Instead, it is set about 30 years before, prior to the French Revolution.
Like Georgette Heyer’s other romances, though, Devil’s Cub includes a supercilious man who is an expert shot, a couple foolish male foils, a rather silly and romance-headed girl, a sensible female, and several other major players. As is usual, it took me a couple of chapters to get the characters straight in my mind – but once they were fixed, I was transfixed.
Murder in the first chapter. Female squabbling in the second. A love interest in the third. High-stakes cards in the fourth. Before the book was out, there was mistaken identity, abduction, and an elopement (or was it two elopements?). Just the sort of thing to get one’s mind off the laundry and the dishes.
I enjoyed this book, as I usually do Heyer’s romances. I did find a few bits jarring – a groom starts off the book taking the Lord’s name in vain (there are usually quite a few “damn’s” in Heyer’s books, but this seemed out of place compared to what I’m used to), and the different time setting meant the terminology and attire were a little different (requiring me to work a bit more than usual to understand what the characters were saying and wearing.)
It was also plain to see that this was a sequel – that Heyer had previously written the story of the parents of the “Devil’s Cub”. While the story was plenty enjoyable without knowing the back story, there were frequent allusions to the parents’ story that would probably have been more enjoyable had I read These Old Shades prior to reading Devil’s Cub.
In all, I was glad I read this – but it probably wouldn’t be my recommendation for a first foray into Heyer.
Rating: 3 stars
Category: Historical romance
Synopsis: Straight-laced Mary Challoner attempts to save her sister from the clutches of the notorious “Devil’s Cub” – and ends up embroiled in scandal herself.
Recommendation: Fellow fans of Heyer will enjoy this one – but it’s not the best intro to Heyer’s writing.