What is it about the Regency Period that we love so much?
Like many readers, I first came to this fascinating era through the novels of Georgette Heyer. My older sister had an English penpal, who used to send us British editions of books like The Grand Sophy, Cotillion, and An Infamous Army. When I read my first Heyerâ€”it was Regency Buckâ€”I was quickly hooked. Then in high school I was introduced to Jane Austen, which pretty much sealed my fate as far as establishing the Regency as my favorite period of history.
Eventually, I wound up getting a graduate degree in English literature, specializing in British female writers of the Regency era. The more I studied the period, the more I loved it. Itâ€™s simply a fascinating time, with the glamour, glitter, and wit exemplified by Londonâ€™s elite society co-existing alongside a truly gritty and flourishing underworld. The beauty and culture of the Mayfair mansions were only a few blocks away from the worst stews of London, but these worlds so often intersected in a dramatic and strangely democratic way in places like Covent Garden and Vauxhall.
And the Regency was a very sexy period, too, with men dressed in tight breeches and leather boots, and women clad in scandalously low-cut and revealing gowns designed to tempt their beaus into shocking declarations of passion! Mix all these characteristics together and you have a killer backdrop for a hero and heroine to find adventure, maybe a little danger and, of course, love. Youâ€™ll find all these elements in my stories, because those are the things I love to read in historical romance myself!
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Vanessa Kelly was born and raised in New Jersey, but eventually migrated north to Canada. She holds a Masterâ€™s Degree from Rutgers University, and went on to attend the Ph.D. program in English Literature at the University of Toronto. Alas, she didnâ€™t finish her degree, but she did spend many happy hours studying the works of 18th and 19th century British authors and writing about the madness of King George III. Vanessa now writes Regency-set historical romance for Kensington Zebra and contemporary romance with her husband under the pen name of VK Sykes.