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Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife: Pride and Prejudice Continues (Pride & Prejudice Continues) Paperback – Illustrated, 1 May 2004
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"I loved "Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife", and I want more! And being the lucky girl I am, there's more, because Berdoll has written a sequel to this sequel. I will be continuing the exciting story of Darcy and Elizabeth in Darcy & Elizabeth: Nights and Days at Pemberley. I can't wait!" - blogcritics.org
"I loved "Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife," and I want more! And being the lucky girl I am, there's more, because Berdoll has written a sequel to this sequel. I will be continuing the exciting story of Darcy and Elizabeth in Darcy & Elizabeth: Nights and Days at Pemberley. I can't wait!" - blogcritics.org
"In short, with this book, Linda Berdoll proves herself to be a worthy novelist, and her continuation of Austen's evergreen tale will live long in readers' memories, perhaps even as long as the original." - CurledUp.com
" If you want to see what a romance writer can do with Austen's characters, then Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife is an overheated potboiler of a bodice ripper that can't fail to elicit a strong opinion one way or the other." - This Gaudy Gilded Stage
"I loved Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, and I want more! And being the lucky girl I am, there's more, because Berdoll has written a sequel to this sequel. I will be continuing the exciting story of Darcy and Elizabeth in Darcy & Elizabeth: Nights and Days at Pemberley. I can't wait!" - blogcritics.org
"This is such a treat for Pride and Prejudice fans. There is the perfect balance between the continuation of a wonderful story with visits from lovable characters (or characters that you love to hate). The story ends on a cliffhanger, but as I have mentioned, there is a sequel to this sequel.
From the Publisher
Hold onto your bonnets! This sexy, epic, hilarious, poignant
and romantic sequel to Pride and Prejudice goes far beyond Jane Austen.
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Top customer reviews
I love this book. I appreciate that Austen purists are not keen - the language can grate ('howbeit' and 'gotten' the main miscreants), her geographical knowledge of England is dubious to say the least (following their marriage, travelling from Hertfordshire back to Pemberley, stopping at Darcy's London house on the way!!) and she can ramble on: hence the removal of 1 star, but there is much to enjoy here. The book covers about 5 years and Berdoll does cram a lot in. All of the original characters are back (and most of their story lines do move on) along with a few new ones, I particularly liked Lady Millhouse.
Yes there is plenty of 'bedroom action' sometimes passionate, other times quite light-hearted but never course. They are newly weds after all and Elizabeth's original refusal has left Darcy with a lot of pent up testosterone! I have found similar Abigail Reynolds' scenarios quite jarring.
There are also laugh out loud lines - one of my favourite being Lydia giving Jane and Elizabeth the benefit of her (as well as Mrs Bennet's) marital experience prior to their own weddings "You cannot imagine anything so frightening as the sight of Wickham's excited member!" Brilliant!
This is a book of fiction, not a travel guide or history lesson and should be read as such. I think the wealth of 1 star reviews are from avid JA fans who maybe shouldn't be reading variations in the first place.
In her original works, Jane Austen only hints at impropriety in the way her characters behave. To give an example, in Sense and Sensibility she doesn't describe in detail how Willoughby seduced Colonel Brandon's ward and made her pregnant. It's only alluded to by the Colonel himself and the reader is left feeling shocked and horrified by what is left to the imagination. As for what Lydia gets up to when she runs off with Wickham in Pride and Prejudice, well...
This sequel to Pride and Prejudice leaves nothing to the imagination at all, and that's why the Austen purists will hate it. The very idea of Lizzy and Mr Darcy actually getting down to the business of sex (without clothes, too!) is probably mind-boggling to most, but without actually doing it there will be no heir for Mr Darcy, so it has to be addressed, anyway. But it does beg the question of whether or not the act should be described in so much detail by the author. The relationship between Lizzy and Darcy isn't the 'duty' described by Lizzy's sister Jane between herself and Bingley, it is passionate and heated and borne of a very deep love. Darcy is desperate to show Lizzy how he feels, so the reader cops more than an eyeful. Personally I don't see a problem as the author isn't confined to 19th century censorship: what I do have a problem with is that the first quarter of the book describes nothing but Lizzy and Darcy in bed. It was getting a bit boring, and I was amazed Mrs Darcy could still stand up! The scene at her presentation ball where she is asked by Darcy not to wash after they've been together is definitely an 'ewwww' moment, as is what happens with the bed sheet after their wedding night.
Having said that the author creates a world beyond Austen which isn't as pretty as we all hope to believe while reading the original works, and I appreciated being informed Darcy has a past. Not much is mentioned of his previous existence in Pride and Prejudice other than his history with Wickham and the fact he has a sister. It was no surprise to me that he sowed his wild oats before meeting Lizzy. The possibility that he could have fathered a child with a serving girl and the mention of other possibility of infidelities of other characters - one which takes us by surprise - adds tension to the story, and the description of the abduction is riveting. Colonel Fitzwilliam's realisation that he is in love with Lizzy isn't much of a surprise to me. They got on well in the original book.
The author also brings back all the old characters, like Mr Collins, Wickham, Lady Catherine, all retaining the characteristics they possessed in the original, perhaps somewhat magnified. Mr Collins is a little more ridiculous than usual.
I agree with other reviewers that the book is let down by the language. The author is trying too hard to re-create the usage of the period, and although I would have expected correct English, I think it goes a bit OTT. There is a confusing mix of 'Austen-ish' ('compleat' not 'complete') and modern. Apart from the Americanisms which don't fit at all - 'period' (full-stop) and 'sidewalk' (pavement) - I never knew 'dipping his wick' was a 19th century term. I may be wrong, though. What I did find interesting is the British spelling of words, possibly an attempt by the author (who I believe is American) to make the work authentically British. 'Colour' not 'color', 'travelled' not 'traveled', 'learnt' not 'learned;, and 'realised' with an 's' not 'z', an acceptable spelling in the UK but not in the US (technically a misspelling in fact, but not incorrect over here as 'ise' is often used preference to 'ize').
Overall, though, I enjoyed the book and read it until the end, but I would disagree with some claims that it is 'hilarious'. There are some very sad and moving scenes involving Lizzy's difficulties with conception which I thought were very sensitively written.
It arrived on time and in good condition though, hence the 2 stars. But a terrible book overall.
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