Pride and Prescience (Or a Truth Universally Acknowledged): A Mr. And Mrs. Darcy Mystery by Carrie Bebris

This book is riveting.  Filled with humor, playful banter between our beloved Darcy and his witty bride, and heart-stopping moments of terror, the story takes us on the “honeymoon” with the Darcys and Bingleys, but this is no honeymoon we dreamed of for them. Instead, their sojourn in London offers danger beyond anything Austen ever showed us.

Some of the most entertaining figures from Austen’s work appear here: notably Caroline Bingley, whose behavior and mental capacity are most intriguing in the face of her new marriage to—of all things—an American. We also see Mr. Bennet’s predictions about Jane and Bingley’s household come true: they employ orphans and other destitute people, mostly without experience or any skill, out of pity. Louisa Hurst and her useless husband seem even more reprehensible here than before, in their preoccupation with money and finery, even in times of trouble.

The murders and violence of this ilk would never appear directly in Austen, but our characters handle such trouble as Austen, no doubt, would have had them handle it—with grace, with bravery, and sometimes (poor Bingley) with confusion. Bebris enters the heads of both Lizzy and Darcy as they face their first drama as a married couple, and the result is a love story/murder mystery/action adventure tale that, as novelist Michael Bowen writes, Austen herself would have picked up “to relax after a demanding day of astute observation and well-crafted prose.”

Published in: on September 26, 2009 at 3:33 pm  Leave a Comment  

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