29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on 15 October 2005
This is one of the best I have read so far, I was so sad when it came to an end. You could almost hear him telling you of his pain when Georgiana is so deceived by Wickham and Mrs Younge and how he blames himself for not protecting her enough.
You can understand some of his anger and alarm. Why at first he seems to like Caroline Bingley, as his friends sister. But soon realises what she is.
You can read his thoughts about Elizabeth, how at first he becomes fasinated by her, because he as never met someone so guiless like her. Then eventually how this turns to love. You can feel the hurt she bestows on him at Hunsford and the anger at Wickham when he finds Lydia and him holed a run down tavern in London.
You can feel the love develope between them during the courtshipe and marriage. I loved the visions she gave us of their married life.
I hope Amanda Grange will write a follow up to this book as I would be one of the first to buy it.
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 4 December 2006
If you've ever thought, 'How could he say that?' when Darcy proposed to Elizabeth the first time, or wondered what he thought of her when he met her again at Pemberley . . . if you've ever wondered what he said to Wickham when he finally found him in London, or what he said to Lydia . . . if you've ever wondered what Darcy felt when Elizabeth said 'Yes' . . . if you've ever wondered what happened at Christmas after Lizzy and Darcy were married . . . then this book will answer your deepest desires.
Ms Grange has also written Mr Knightley's Diary, which I loved, and Captain Wentworth's Diary, which isn't out yet but I want to read, too. I hope she does Col Brandon's Diary, that's one I would love to see.
I'm editing this review to say I've just found out from Amanda Grange's website that there's a paperback of Darcy's Diary, but it's called Mr Darcy's Diary - the slight change in the title is probably why there doesn't seem to be a link to it from this page. Anyway, you can type Amanda Grange into the search box and it will bring up al her books, including Mr Darcy's Diary, or you can type the ISBN into the search box, which is ISBN-13: 978-1402208768
33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on 17 January 2006
I started reading this book expecting to be disappointed. Although I very much enjoyed Pamela Aidan’s trilogy of books in the Fitzwilliam Darcy: Gentleman series, I am well aware there is a huge tract of dreadful material out there which is a follow-up or a retelling of Jane Austen’s story, and I thought it quite likely this would be one of those.
How wrong I was! I was relieved to discover very quickly that Amanda Grange knows her subject, knows how to write in a lighthearted and enjoyable way, and I ended up reading the entire book in one sitting. It’s short enough and light enough to do that – the story moves on with more pace than Austen’s book and Elizabeth features in most of the scenes in it, unlike the original. We get more of an insight into their life after their marriage – how the reconciliation with Lady Catherine takes place, and even an engagement between Colonel Fitzwilliam and Anne De Bourgh.
I have mentioned Pamela Aidan’s three books, also written from Darcy’s perspective. It’s been interesting to read these two works only a few weeks apart as they couldn’t be more different. Aidan’s books are detailed, things move slowly, most of the action is taking place inside Darcy’s head as we follow his thought processes as he falls in love with Elizabeth. Although in this book, written in the form of Darcy’s diary, we do get some of his thoughts these are not particularly detailed. In some ways it read almost childlike – easy sentences, minimal description, fast-paced. But it worked really well for this book and made it a fun read.
The plot device of this being Darcy’s private journal worked reasonably in some ways (it could be written in the first person) but had drawbacks – can anyone seriously imagine a gentleman writing for an hour each evening a diary with verbatim reporting of long conversations? But it was a useful tool upon which to hang the story and worked fairly well.
Probably 95% of the dialogue is lifted directly from Jane Austen’s work but Amanda Grange certainly knows how to write in the style of the period as any other dialogue that she inserted worked really well. This was a seamless work which fitted in well and was true to the original.
Finally, it has to be said it was a relief to read a book written by an Englishwoman which was therefore bereft of the so-common American mistakes. Such a delight to read a book without a single “gotten”, “fall” (for autumn) and “inquire”. Very picky of me, but I think some of the other books I’ve read have shown a lack of decent editing and research.
I certainly recommend this book. I understand Amanda Grange has written at least nine other books. I shall be on the lookout for them now.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 6 March 2008
As an Austen addict I have read some of the sequels and found most of them silly and boring so I had no great expectations of this book, but it is a nice treat. She does not fall into the Barbara Cartland style that so many Austen-wannabees often do. The language is very good and she really makes an effort (as someone else wrote) to write Austenish. I agree with the other review that said that one really feels Darcy's torment and that this sequel is close to Colin Firth's interpretation of Darcy.
58 of 61 people found the following review helpful
on 10 May 2007
What an insidious book this is! It just grabs you and sucks you right into it, so that you can't or don't even want to put it down for even one second. You just want to keep reading and reading and reading. Oh, my.
It is so easy to picture the Darcy and Elizabeth of the marvelous BBC/A&E production of ten years ago as you read Darcy's words. You wonder how this pompous stuffy prig ever managed to have even one friend, let alone the darling Charles Bingley. Darcy is the most disagreeable character until Lizzie takes him down several notches. Good for her!
When you first start reading this, you tend to think, `oh, this is so simple,' but then before you quite know what's happened, you're part of the story, and it just won't let go. You ride along, sort of on Darcy's shoulder, watching as the action unfolds with the Bennet family and Wickham, the Lucases and Mr. Collins, Lady deBourgh and her household, and Darcy's sister Georgiana and cousin FitzWilliam, plus of course, Bingley and his sisters. It's amazing! In the other versions (including the wonderful original) you see everything as it happens from your standpoint as an observer. First person is so very different, creating almost a `you are there!' situation.
You won't soon forget this Mr. Darcy. Of course, I've not yet forgotten the other one - Colin Firth as the premier Mr. Darcy of all time. It was amazing to hear that voice in my mind as I read his words and felt his inner pain as he tumbles from his lofty perch to join the rest of us mortals in his quest for the love of his life. Eventually, he's even willing to put up with Mrs. Bennet if only he can have his Lizzie.
Of course, true love wins out in the end. Hooray! Brava to Ms. Grange. This is a masterful concept, masterfully executed. I wouldn't mind a sequel, either.
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 4 October 2007
This is only the third Austen-inspired novel I have read but I found it excellent. I only read it by chance because my mother saw it in the library and picked it up thinking I would like it and I loved it.
What a writer has to be careful of with taking a character like Darcy as the main focus is that his reserve must be just as much of a feature as his growing love for Elizabeth Bennet. Amanda Grange has done well not only to show her reader the warmth of feeling hidden behind the proud exterior, but has also skilfully demonstrated his changing attitudes and the way his character evolves throughout the timespan of Pride and Prejudice.
The book being in diary form, meticulous attention is given to the dating of events. It could be argued that many of the conversations in the novel are drawn from Austen's original text, but given that this story is essentially Pride and Prejudice from another perspective it is inevitable that some crossover should occur.
One other thing I appreciated was the pains Amanda Grange took to make the novel's action "period-correct". Darcy and Elizabeth are never inappropriately close and she explores the disgrace of Lydia and the trouble her relations take to try to make her see the reality of her actions.
I have not yet purchased this book but when it goes back to the library, I think I will have to. It comes to a satisfying conclusion and - given the possible hint of further plot development at the end - I hope the author is considering making her Darcy begin another diary where this one finishes.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 21 January 2006
..especially for those who wish so much that she'd lived to write a few more! (But that's all of us, isn't it?) Amanda Grange's book is one to pounce upon with joy - Jane couldn't have done it better herself. It's far from easy to pull off this kind of thing perfectly, without a single note that doesn't ring quite true, but Amanda Grange has done it wonderfully. Put this on your wish-list, all Austen-addicts! Better still, treat yourselves at once.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 5 August 2008
I recently read part (and a very small part) of Linda Berdoli's ghastly attempt to write a Pride & Prejudice sequel, Mr Darcy Takes a Bride. I've written a review of it, which can be read on that page. Here, I'll just say that it is the worst book I've ever tried to read. I had also ordered Amanda Grange's diary by Mr Darcy, and I rather dreaded reading it for fear it might turn out to be more rubbish. I was very pleasantly surprised to find that Ms Grange can write and that she knew how to get this right. The great trap for amateur writers trying to write a period book, especially one based on an existing classic, is that it can lead to attempts to imitate the original style. Instead, Grange chose the right path, writing in clear modern prose that did not jar with the conceit of this being a diary written in the early 19th century. She also avoided the trap of inventing so much that she would be out-Austening Austen. Her narrative runs smoothly alongside the original text without seeming a boring repetition of it. The insights we have of Darcy's thought processes do not alarm us. They are much what we always expected. But it is a pleasure to see the story from a different angle. It must be very hard to keep the reader's attention since, after all, they know what happens at every turn. I plan to read more of her novels, and I recommend this one very heartily.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 7 October 2009
There are so many issues with this novel I hardly know where to start... but I will try in order to save others from this poor piece of work.
There can be only one Miss Austen; everything else is poor pastiche. Although the idea of a diary written by Mr Darcy is one that has great promise, it must follow that if one takes on such an endeavour, then one must execute it in the tone and manner of the time. Instead the author has interspersed the dialogue copied from Miss Austen's work, scattered in amongst it, a more modern tone of voice. Thus the voice changes mid-flow, as if Mr Darcy is more of a Jekyll and Hyde character than the gentleman we all know so well.
The other challenge for the author must have been the format itself. A diary, an novel in epistolary format, rarely contains dialogue. Who writes entire pages of dialoges in their diary? 'He told me that...' would seem a more adequate way of writing in one's journal.
There are factual mishaps as well; for example, the author has Mr Darcy looking to replace Mr Wickham Sr, a full three years after his departure from this earth. Not only would there have been no shades at Pemberley for Elizabeth to pollute had Mr Darcy waited thus long, but it would also not be in his character to wish for the delay.
The author seems to like to explain for the more intellectually challenged readers of P&P what it was about Elizabeth that Darcy found so attractive, and to make clear the etiquette of the time in doing so. *yawn* Trust the readers with some intelligence, please, Ms Grange.
Immediately after reading this, I wondered if Miss Austen was spinning in her grave at such an unabashed effort to milk her intellect for personal gain (since there is little or no creativity on behalf of Ms Grange in this effort), but I have come to the conclusion that, as usual, she would not. Rather, she would be diverted at the vanity of Ms Grange, and all those of us who spent money to read this novel.
Nice try, Ms Grange, no cigar.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 21 December 2007
I got this book through yesterday morning and finished the whole book in one sitting. Any plans for that day were duly cancelled as I could not put this book down for a moment. Like the lady below stated it just sucks you right in!
What a fantastic read!