Review: The Corinthian by Georgette Heyer


The Corinthian ranks in my top 5 favorite Georgette Heyers to date.

My favorite things about this novel:

  • The hero and heroine spend a majority of the book in each other’s presence.
  • The heroine cross-dresses to look like a young lad for most of the novel with the hero helping her in her disguise.
  • The heroine is not a fainting female and is intelligent, if a little young.
  • The childhood sweetheart of the heroine has his own love match and is no way put out by the romance between the hero and heroine.
  • The thief cant: snabble and snaffle are my two new favorite words.
  • The kiss scene. How’s that for a tease?

Corinthian: a man about town, esp. one who lives luxuriously or, sometimes, dissolutely.


Sir Richard Wyndham reminds me a bit of Lord Worth. [Hopefully I’m recalling the right hero.]  With Wyndham however it is easier to tell his amusement and enjoyment around Penelope Creed.

Penelope or Pen as she’s referred to when dressed like a boy, is escaping her aunt’s household. She won’t marry her cousin! She won’t! She will marry instead her childhood sweetheart, Piers Luttrell, with whom she’d made a secret engagement five years ago.

Richard is on the verge of making the worst mistake of his life. He’s planning to give his suit to Melissa Brandon, a cold practical woman, because his family is badgering him to marry. The idea drives him to drink. Imagine his surprise at seeing a young lad escape through a window via knotted bed sheets… and then to find out that the lad is in fact a young chit of a girl barely out of the school room.

I’ve noticed in the novels that I’ve read so far that Heyer likes to pair considerably older gentleman with young ladies still in their early teens, rarely in their twenties. It’s usually about a decade age difference. Why do you think she did this?

Rating: 4 Stars

Buy: The Corinthian

Find and buy more Georgette Heyer novels.

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3 thoughts on “Review: The Corinthian by Georgette Heyer”

  1. Another book to add to my TBR pile & all because you didn’t tell us about the kiss scene.
    Maybe Heyer knows that young ladies actually desire older men. After all, I refuse to say how old I was when I fell in love with Sean Connery.

  2. In reply to your question about why Georgette Heyer tended to pair the hero with girls about ten years the man’s junior: I believe it was the fashion of the time for the woman to marry a man considerably older than herself. Eighteen was considered a good age for a woman to marry, and 30 was a good age for a man to marry. Indeed, once a woman reached 27, she was considered “on the shelf”: she was too old to expect marriage any more.

    The relative ages of Heyer’s characters isn’t bizarre, it’s period. Hope this helps!

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