Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Review: MR. DARCY'S OBSESSION by Abigail Reynolds

Mr. Darcy's Obsession, the latest of Abigail Reynolds's Pride and Prejudice Variations, is a stunning tale of love lost and refound.

Two years have passed since Darcy last saw Elizabeth. Having convinced both himself and a reluctant Bingley of the Bennet sisters' unsuitability for marriage, Darcy encounters Elizabeth in London. Her father's death has cast her family into dire financial straits and Elizabeth labors as an unpaid nanny for her Uncle and Aunt Gardiner's children.

Even as he tries to stay away, Darcy rediscovers how much he enjoys Elizabeth's conversation and wit. Against his better judgment, he asks her to marry him in his trademark bungled proposal. An enraged Elizabeth refuses, and Darcy must convince her to agree.

Already disillusioned with his world of privileged excess that often mistreats the less fortunate, Darcy regrets the grave errors he made in losing Elizabeth--twice. A distraught Bingley, furious that he accepted Darcy's advice to spurn Jane, lashes out at him when he discovers Jane has married to survive.

This novel brings to the forefront what many romances gloss over--the importance of money. Elizabeth's uncle and aunt, hard-pressed to support her, urge her to accept the marriage proposal of her uncle's head clerk. Jane wed a kind shopkeeper old enough to be her father because he helps support her mother and sisters.

Ms. Reynolds paints vivid portraits of real people struggling with harsh economic reality to survive and find happiness. Jane and Bingley's story is especially heartbreaking. That we wonder how all will fare, even as we know the ending, is a testament to Ms. Reynolds's fine storytelling.

Abigail will guest here on October 7, and will give away two copies of Mr. Darcy's Obsession. The publisher can mail to US and Canada addresses only.

Thank you all,
Linda Banche
Welcome to My World of Historical Hilarity!
ARC provided by Sourcebooks


Svea Love said...

I am so excited about this book! Looking forward to the guest post and giveaway :)

Maggi Andersen said...

The invitation to delve back into that world is irresistible! I love humour with my Regencies.

Linda Banche said...

I liked this book very much. Abigail did a good job showing the lives of the not-rich in the Regency.