By the 1950s, even the closest friends of Georgette Heyer had learned to avoid any mention of politics. She was, all agreed, an arch conservative and Tory, distressed by the changes in British society after World War II, and particularly mourning the loss of the great estates, a concern that continued to creep into many of her novels. But even the conservative Heyer—or perhaps especially Heyer, always one to pay attention to what her fans might want—could recognize that even her most devoted fans could feel a certain impatience with traditional gender roles.
After all, three of her most popular novels had featured women cross-dressers. And even the conservative Heyer could question a postwar world which in many ways seemed to retreat from the acceptance of women in (some) careers prior to and during World War II. And so, in Sylvester, or the Wicked Uncle (1957), she focused on a new type of Regency character, a young aristocratic woman actively pursuing a career. A career suited to a woman, certainly, but still, a career.
You can all gasp now.