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A Civil Contract | [Georgette Heyer]

A Civil Contract

Set in the Regency period, this is a classic tale of misunderstood love and an arranged marriage.
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Publisher's Summary

Set in the Regency period, this is a classic tale of misunderstood love and an arranged marriage.

©1999 Georgette Heyer; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (374 )
5 star
 (201)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Overall
4.3 (196 )
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Story
4.5 (195 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (1)
Performance
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  •  
    Lulu 11-29-14
    Lulu 11-29-14

    I ignore genre labels. Some of my favorite books are outside my genre comfort zone. Listening to audiobooks is still reading. Not theater.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An anti-romance"


    This book is actually an anti-romance. The main character is in love with a woman other than the one he marries for money. And his wife is well aware of that fact. Nevertheless they form a close and strong relationship that grows to the point that at the end the hero realizes he is with the wife best suited for him. I can't say he grows to love her and ceases to love the woman he did not marry. It is more that he accepts his lot in life and realizes it is actually a very pleasant lot.

    I found it a little depressing and sad, although I don't think that was the intent. Marriages such as this were commonplace at the time among this class of individuals and we are told many were very successful. But I had a great deal of sympathy for the wife in this one. The narration was very good.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer San Francisco, CA, United States 07-02-08
    Jennifer San Francisco, CA, United States 07-02-08 Member Since 2005
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    "Would listen to it again"

    If you are looking for hot and steamy, between-the-legs romance, this is not the book for you. But if character development and delving into the culture of Regency times -- as much as a modern writer can recreate for us -- is of interest, than this is a perfect choice. No, not great literature aka Jane Austen, but Heyer brings an intelligence to her novels that contemporary romance writers lack.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Chicago, IL, United States 03-24-13
    Jane Chicago, IL, United States 03-24-13 Member Since 2014
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    "Settling for someone you don’t love,"

    and then finding value, and it’s good. And your life is better.

    Readers in the mood for “true love” with passion and seduction, will not want this. Some find it sad. Although I wasn’t sad. I felt calm and pleased at the end.

    THE STORY:
    Adam’s father dies leaving huge debts. Adam needs to sell the family’s London house and possibly the ancestral home. A friend arranges a meeting between Adam and Jonathan a wealthy business man. Jonathan wants a title for his daughter Jenny. In return he will pay Adam’s mortgages and other things. The wedding is arranged and occurs.

    OPINION:
    I loved watching Jenny. She is short, stout, unattractive, and quiet. She knows Adam will never look at her with romantic feelings. She accepts that. Her goal is to give Adam a comfortable life. She turns out to be an ideal wife. Things she does are perfect for what is needed. She is thoughtful, cares about others, and desires to please both her father and husband. She has become one of my favorite characters. So solid, so true. And at the end, Adam realizes what a treasure he has in her.

    This book is not romantic love. It’s a different kind of love. Before Adam met Jenny, he and Julia had a romantic love - an infatuation. Adam never felt that way for Jenny. But at the end, Adam was comfortable, laughing, and happy in his life with Jenny.

    A few times my mind wandered. I forget what those parts were about. Some of them were military things. So I wasn’t fully engaged all the way through. But I enjoyed the relationships and characters as a nice change from traditional romance, which the author is famous for.

    The narrator Phyllida Nash was good.

    Genre: relationships fiction, regency

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elna 09-18-12
    Elna 09-18-12
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    "Hearing story with accent enhances experience"
    Would you listen to A Civil Contract again? Why?

    One of my favorite authors and stories. Great character development through dialogue and interactions. Reader has developed voices which match personalities as created by author.


    What other book might you compare A Civil Contract to and why?

    Georgette Heyer seems to have followed Jane Austin's Pride and Prejudice which portrays some of the foibles and absurdities of cetain elements in English 19th Century society. Both books give a fairly accurate picture of some of the daily life of these characters.


    Which character – as performed by Phyllida Nash – was your favorite?

    I felt that Phyllida did an outstanding job of creating Mr. Chawley. Through her voice and the timing of many of his lines, I felt that I had a very good picture of him. I always knew when he was speaking,too.


    If you could take any character from A Civil Contract out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    I would like to take the main character, Adam, out to dinner and find out in more specifics just how he planned to improve his farmlands and help the tenant farmers. The story mentions methods and equipment in general, but they are unfamiliar terms and I would like to have them explained. Because of the specific problems with Adams farm lands, especially the salt water seepage, I am intrigued with how he was going to make things better.


    Any additional comments?

    I have re-read the book many times, and really enjoy hearing it now.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Richardson, TX, United States 07-30-12
    Karen Richardson, TX, United States 07-30-12
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    "Heyer Hits it Again"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, for the storyline and wonderful characters


    What did you like best about this story?

    The fully realized characters: very real characters: I felt like I knew them at the end of the book.


    What about Phyllida Nash’s performance did you like?

    She was great doing the different characters: her voice range is phenomenal, her inflection was wonderful, and she was a pleasure to listen to.


    If you could take any character from A Civil Contract out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Definitely the father in law: rough around the edges but a heart of gold.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan allora, Australia 05-10-12
    Jan allora, Australia 05-10-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Old Favourite"

    I am on old fan of Georgette Heyer and was delighted with this rendition. The narrator did a good job and the emotional tones were appropriate to the story line.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marion Vacy, Australia 04-29-11
    Marion Vacy, Australia 04-29-11
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    "Great reading"

    Heyer is at her best with this book. Her humour is wonderful and her incredible understanding of the history of the time makes the book so much more interesting.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Isia Pretoria, South Africa 04-28-11
    Isia Pretoria, South Africa 04-28-11 Member Since 2011
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    "Not my favourite Heyer"

    This was not my favourite Heyer. It lacked humour and spice, and the plot was somehow reminiscent of "Gone with the Wind", although that might have been just my perception.The ending was also a bit flat, as if the story just petered out. I found the narrator good, and learnt the correct pronounciation of more than one word! Despite that, the book was a little bit tedious, and I found my attention wandering.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katherine 10-15-10
    Katherine 10-15-10 Member Since 2007
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    "Loved it!"

    As usual Georgette Heyer does more than tell a love story, she presents her stories in history and we have an insight into what life was like for women and for those who were not born into the aristocracy and how most women had no control over their lives.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebecca 08-26-10
    Rebecca 08-26-10
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    "Love Georgette Heyer"

    This is different than some of her books. The heroine is not beautiful. It is still a great book. Love the authenticity of her stories.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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