Since Bridgerton first landed on Netflix in December 2020, it became an instant hit. According to Netflix, around 63 million households immersed themselves in this steamy historical romance. Many young viewers, especially the romance-loving girls binged the entirety of Bridgerton in just a couple of days. For those, who still don’t know about the sensational hit series, Bridgerton is a Netflix original TV series set in Regency London and follows the romantic exploits of eight Bridgerton siblings. The first season followed the love affair of Daphne Bridgeton which was based on the first book of the series by Julia Quinn, ‘The Duke and I’. While the latest second season follows the love between the eldest Bridgerton Anthony and Indian elite Kate Sharma. This season is based on the second book by Quinn, ‘The Viscount Who Loved Me.
Bridgeton and our love for Regency-era shows
The appetite for the Regency is such that Netflix is even selling tickets to an event called the Queen’s Ball. The love for Regency Era is so that the sub-genre of Lucrative Romance is named the Regency romance. A kind of season jam-packed with independent loke minded women, balls and dances, vicious gossip, and a happily ever after sort of love. The real Regency period lasted for less than a decade from 1811 to 1820. It started with the rule of George IV when his father King George III was deemed mentally unfit to rule. During his rule of nine years, aristocracy flourished, and a new fashionable society emerged known as ‘le bon ton’. It is by these changes, that most of the medieval era books are centered around the Regency Era of developing England which dukes and duchess.
The book adaptations are often critiqued under the three categories- there are good adaptations, there are bad adaptations and then there are exact adaptations. The Bridgerton comes under the last one as the show offers nothing more or less than what you’ll read in books. Though you won’t be able to have screentime for all the characters, it does somehow manage to bring out each one of them perfectly, be it the not-so-alike Bridgerton siblings or the Featherington family. Along with the eight books by Quinn, she also wrote a pre-sequel of four novels, which follows Rokesby, the close friend of the Bridgerton family one generation earlier.
Each novel focuses on one Bridgerton sibling and their quest for true love all the while battling their ways into the society and so-called marriage season of the town. Well, if the books are to be ranked, my personal favorite remains the second edition, ‘The Viscount Who Loved Me. This enemies-to-lovers kind of love is what I always adore, but if you are more into the adventurous journey to finding a happy ending all the while juggling with several try and run, you must enjoy reading the eighth edition ‘On The Way To The Wedding’. This book focuses on Gregory Bridgerton who falls in love multiple times, runs all over London to stop a wedding, sneaks into his beloved’s bedroom to confess, and gets shot all at once!
Not only does the book ensures the diverse tales of love, but it also ensembles the cast who look fabulous in Regency clothes, but also loves the diversity among the cast members. You’ll see people of both white and black ethnic backgrounds in the main cast, while Asians also play supporting roles or extras. Quinn’s unbiased exclusion of racism in the book is what makes it much more ahead of its time. In an era, when the world saw the first Black Queen, Charlotte, it doesn’t really stop the color discrimination on the ground. But with Quinn’s adaptation of this unbiased society, we saw people of color becoming the protagonist of her novels.
The vibrant cinematography and the natural chemistry between actors are the best when it comes to the Netflix series. Imagine Jane Austen served with Anais Nin, yup that’s Bridgerton for you! Its Gossip Girls presented with more humor, less angst, and intense romance. The book is a must-read for romance-loving readers, though you might not find each book as entertaining as you may anticipate but you can always have the liberty to pick some over others! Below is the list of all 8 books by Julia Quinn.
- The Duke and I- Follows the story of Daphne Bridgerton.
- The Viscount Who Loved Me- Follows the story of Anthony Bridgerton.
- An Offer From a Gentleman- Follows the story of Benedict Bridgerton.
- Romancing Mister Bridgerton- Follows the story of Colin Bridgerton.
- To Sir Phillip, With Love- Follows the story of Eloise Bridgerton.
- When He Was Wicked- Follows the story of Francesca Bridgerton.
- It’s in His Kiss- Follows the story of Gregory Bridgerton.
- On the Way to the Wedding- Follows the story of Hyacinth Bridgerton.