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on 21 July 2005
I really enjoyed this book. I have read Pride and Prejudice several times, so it was a joy to find a book that took us beyond the wedding. It is a little far-fetched, but no less enjoyable for that. And the author has managed to adhere faithfully to Austen's characters. I look forward to reading her next book and hope she has plenty more planned.
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VINE VOICEon 17 March 2005
I enjoyed this Austen 'sequel' and first 'Mr & Mrs Darcy Mystery'. It was generally quite a fun read, although with a number of incidents it's not quite so light-hearted. Many of our favourite characters from Austen's novel make an appearance, and of course Bebris introduces her own selection. Generally this is well written, although there is the usual irritation of Americanised spelling. I don't want to say too much and give things away, but I think I will pick up the sequel when it's available in paperback, although I did find the magic elements a bit strange. This was enjoyable though, and something I will probably pick up again.
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This book will be enjoyed by anyone who appreciates the gentle feminine wit of Jane Austen. The story and its characters are set in the Regency world left behind by Jane. This is a refined, drawing room tale, with overtones of detection and Gothic mystery.
The writer has tried to write in the same vein as Jane Austen, but there are a few jarring lapses. It's hard to maintain the accuracy and tone when you're a couple of hundred years after and a couple of thousand miles away.
The writer manages to convey the social scene and offers acute observation of social interactions. Some of her characters are less than finely drawn, though, and this can be a distraction. But the plot holds up well and this makes an intriguing story, interestingly told.
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on 9 October 2006
I bought this book mostly for fun, I'm a real Pride and Predjudice (the BBC series) fan and I was reluctant to see my favourite classic's main carracters being dragged through a sequal, ecspecially one not written by the original auther. It wasn't the great big masterpiece, but I didn't feel Darcy, Lizzy or the others where exploited in any way, and I enjoyed the little mystery very much, in fact I must admit that I had a hard time putting it down sometimes :)
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Fans of Jane Austen's book, PRIDE & PREJUDICE, will adore this novel! The author, Carrie Bebris, used the characters from Austen's famous novel.
Elizabeth Bennet had become Elizabeth Darcy. She had a double wedding with her sister, Jane. However, Jane's husband had a jealous sister, Caroline Bingley, who did all she could to steal the spot light from the brides. This included announcing her engagement to a rich American named Frederick Parrish.
Shortly after Caroline's wedding, odd things began to happen, such as her horse suddenly bolted almost injuring Caroline. Of course, everyone was concerned!
Professor Randolph, in archeology, specialized in the culture of North America. He traveled with the Darcys to Netherfield. He took along some American artifacts that he claimed had special powers. Things got sort of eerie when one house guest was murdered and a sudden blizzard trapped everyone in the house. It was up to the Darcys to figure out who-dunnit.
***** Characters we already know and love are in a deadly mystery, possibly involving sorcery! Carrie Bebris has done a masterful job continuing Austen's characters. Even the flavor of writing seemed the same which shows true talent! An extremely well done novel seems to be forming a possible series. Highly recommended reading! *****
Reviewed by Detra Fitch of Huntress Reviews.
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on 30 September 2005
A lovely and well written book, after the double wedding Caroline drops her bomshell...she is getting married within a week and so this stops the newlyweds from going on honeymoon. after her wedding things start going wrong, but only one person can see the danger head and that person in Elizabeth.
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on 10 February 2004
A wonderfully written book, Elizabeth and Jane marry Mr Darcy and Mr Bingley at the wedding reception ignorant Caroline Bingley announces her engagement to an American whome seems to adore her she also announces that they are marrying on the following wednesday by special licence which stops the two couples going on honeymoon so they can be at her wedding in London. Things start to go wrong not long after the wedding and Caroline looks as though she is going mad, why was she wondering around the most natorious parts of London with a bag full of money in the middle of the night? many other things happen then she is taken to try to recover at Netherfield. Many things happen a fire at Netherfield, Jane and Bingley are nearly killed Elizabeth and Darcy are the only ones to keep there heads but disagree about the out come, then there is a murder all this adds up to a brilliant end. I almost felt sorry for Caroline in some ways but in others I felt she deserved all she got. It reminded me of one of Agatha Christi Tommy and Tuppence murders which I enjoyed as a teenager.
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VINE VOICEon 21 May 2006
The newly wed Mr and Mrs Darcy are back and are the Regency answer to Nora and Nick of the Thin Man. The mystery embroils Caroline Bingley and her engagement to an American, prior to the wedding all kinds of strange events occur; nocturnal wanderings, carriage accidents and Caroline behaving very strangely. Is Elizabeth right in believing supernatural forces are at work, or is Mr Darcy correct in suspecting more mortal forces.

It's a fun mystery, and better than most add ons to Pride and Prejiduce, even if the historical aspects may be a little off kilter. The joy of this is seeing Mr and Mrs Darcy post wedding, and familiar faces from the original are handled well.

The supernatural element is a little far fetched but Berbris credibly handles what the Darcy's reactions would be. For true Austenites the Stephanie Barron series with Jane herself as a sleuth might be more satisfying and certainly mimics the tone and wit of the originals better than this, but as mystery fluff goes this is a good one.
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on 18 December 2005
But it's a pity the author decided to use Darcy and Elizabeth in this conventional mystery tale. Yes, modern readers (and modern authors) are very fond of vodoo, magic potions and such like cheap mycticism. But for me JA and this aspect of modern mass culture are simply incompatible. So I'm very disappointed. Another example of the Austen cult: love without understanding and a passion to make Austen "just like us".
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on 4 August 2012
I enjoyed most of this book but by the end I was furious with it. It's well-written, though there were a few anachronisms. For example, a servant gets "fired" - not a term I can imagine anyone in Jane Austen's world would have used. Also the author is American and this shows in other minor infelicities. Most, if not all, of these little annoying mistakes could have been avoided by simply letting an English fan of the period read the book prior to publication. I'm no Jane Austen expert, but I am English, with a degree in English literature, and the out-of-period or unEnglish slips really stood out. Perhaps other readers won't be so pernickity.

But my main issue with the book, which I enjoyed so much at first, is the plot. It revolves around enchantment and magical items, with a lot of heavy-handed clues, and for a good 4/5ths of the book I was confidently expecting clever, ingenious Elizabeth Darcy to reveal the truth - a devious but real plot underlying the cheesy supernatural rubbish. Imagine my dismay when it turned out that the cheesy supernatural rubbish WAS the plot and that therefore there was no mystery. It was all as silly as it appeared. What was particularly annoying was the idea of Elizabeth believing in voodoo. In the story she persuades a sceptical Darcy that all this mystic guff is real. I can't imagine Pride and Prejudice (Penguin Classics) giving this tale the time of day.

If you don't mind - or don't notice - the little slips out of period, and enjoy supernatural thrillers - then you'll probably enjoy this book. Lots of people like Austen with zombies and such like, and they will love this book. For me, with a clear vision of Elizabeth as a practical, no-nonsense woman, this book was - as you may gather :-) - extremely annoying. Enough so to impel me to write this review.

A far better mystery based on Pride and Prejudice is P D James Death Comes to Pemberley. P D James sticks closely to the original characters while succeeding in providing a convincing mystery.
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