I have to get my brain back on target. I don’t think I’ve mentioned Miss Austen on this blog in weeks, and this is a Jane Austen related blog, for goodness sake.
I know, I suck!
So, I offer up a book review; hard as it was for me to read anything of late not related to Star Trek.
Well, what can I say about it? It wasn’t the awful read that I tend to expect from most sequels to Pride and Prejudice; actually, it was better than most, especially for a literary endeavor (though, I still maintain that Jane Austen Fan Fiction wins the “hearts and minds” category for me).
The story is an unusual take on the Darcys apres marriage. All is not rosy in “Pemberland”. Darcy, doesn’t have the good sense to be happy in his marriage (as Jane Austen envisioned) and contents himself with roaming about the halls of Pemberley on the verge of tears or with moist eyes or with his eyes filled with unshed tears or groaning in the agony of it all. But Lizzy is there with wit and vivacity, ever ready to be his champion and to offer a shoulder upon which to cry, again and again… and again.
The writing was very good, and may I even say, excellent. But the story, as a whole, was not to my taste. I am not so dull as to always expect Austen’s style or a “Happily Ever After”, but I guess I am not quite ready to accept this.
It began well enough, with scenes of a near disastrous wedding night that would give any Austenite a shiver of foreboding down their spine. And just when the story starts to get interesting, it takes a dive and simply falls apart for me at the end. The conclusions to several parts of the story simply ended unsatisfactorily. Georgiana’s love life was almost an afterthought, Charles and Jane were just plain bland, and there was entirely too much laughter at times where laughter should never be.
In the nit-picky department, I wish there could have been just a tiny bit more research into names, naming conventions, and societal attitudes for the times. I mean, James Darcy? Lord de Bourgh? Total acceptance and understanding of diverse lifestyles? Hopefully some of the more minor errors will be corrected in future editions.
However, it was pleasant not to have to read (in yet another story) that Charles Bingley turned into some kind of adulterous leach; at least we are spared that misery, but, my lord in heaven, can I please read one book where at least one of the Bennet sisters does not suffer from a miscarriage. Come on authors, lay down the hackneyed plot device; the jig is up.
I give it 3-1/2 stars out of 5. Most readers will fully enjoy the story for its original spin; some of us (meaning me) will just have to keep looking.