'A Continuation of Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice' the title says... this statement probably immediately misleads readers like myself of what to expect. It suggested a sequel to the classic romance- a brand new love story.
If you start the book with this assumption, I can tell you, you may instantly feel deceived. For when I read the first two letters of the book, I was bored, I felt nothing really happens, and the author was just repeating and worning out what was in the original storyline from the novel. At one point, I even felt I was tricked into buying the book.
It was not until I read Jane Dawkins' introduction at the beginning of the book that I started to appreciate this book. I realised what she was trying to achieve was a small 'patchwork' of writings that enhanced the original 'frock' (Pride & Prejudice), and she was not aiming to embark on a 'sequel' as it will be 'a brand new frock' altogether. With this new prospective in mind, I read on and found the book much more enjoyable and felt that Dawkins have fulfilled fully what she intended to do.
The book is split into a series of short but detailed letters, which is very handy, this makes it a very light, leisurely and pleasing read. Good for less mature readers as well as regular readers. Rather than being a 'sequel', it is like a collection of additional little extras, which makes the original book more appreciable.
Throughout the book, Dawkins had made a great effort to use Jane Austen's language. Her attempts were very successful, and sometimes created the illusion that this book had actually come from Austen's own pen.
She also stayed true to each of the original characters' natures and personalities. Elizabeth, as always, was sparking with immense intelligence and liveliness. Darcy's character continues to develop from haughty to amiable, as from where Jane Austen left us.
It was also evident that Dawkins had studied the novel carefully before writing her own. There were accurate references to the original plot that made 'Letter from Pemberley' an excellent, heart-warming and seamless addition to the original.
For me personally, 'Letters from Pemberley' is just like a personal collection of affectionate little letters that people keep.
A very worthwhile read if you are a big 'Pride & Prejudice' fan or just someone looking for something light and entertaining to follow 'Pride & Prejudice'.