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Mr. Darcy's Obsession (A Pride and Prejudice Variation) Paperback – October 1, 2010
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Mr. Darcy's Obsession does not disappoint! And to Darcy & Elizabeth lovers who have yet to discover [Abigail Reynolds'] works, you must put this at the front of the queue!
Ms. Reynolds paints vivid portraits of real people struggling with harsh economic reality to survive and find happiness.
Excellent writing, this book keeps to Austen's style.
Abigail Reynolds has created a masterful period novel. The way she weaves romance, tradition, and wit is exciting and fresh.
An exciting, well developed, and romantic novel that stays true to Austen's characters, while being a fantastic unique story of its own.
This book is just just pure escapism.
Reynolds tells a very likeable story of unrequited love, loss and vindication.
Mr. Darcy's Obsession is an adventurous variation that explores a different route with our beloved Pride and Prejudice.
Don't hesitate to purchase Mr. Darcy's Obsession... A satisfying and compelling novel that you'll wish to read over and over again.
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This sets the course for Darcy's obsession...he must see Elizabeth and find out if she is well. Of course when one gets a taste of that to which one is addicted, the addiction grows. One time only became daily and the attraction grew on both sides. Until a really bad (but not indecent) proposal. But when Darcy disappears for a month, Elizabeth assumes the worst and decides she must get over this man who is so far above her. Another begins to court her. Enter Charlie, a street urchin employed to aid in Darcy's pursuit of Elizabeth. He will do anything and is a competent spy keeping Darcy apprised of the goings on in the Gardiner household.
Obviously things must deteriorate when Lydia arrives at their house pregnant and unmarried. Elizabeth returns to Meryton after a tearful farewell to Darcy only to be further lowered in her standing while she helps do Jane's work in her husband's shop during the last weeks of Jane's pregnancy.
After Darcy realizes that he cannot do without Elizabeth, things become lighter and more entertaining. The conversations with the aunt are hilarious, while those with the uncle truly infuriating. It is a wild ride to their happily ever after but very worth the trip.
It lightens up partway through and gets better and better until--at the end, I was sorry the book was over! It's an interesting and engrossing novel in its own right. The many underbelly-related plot twists begin to be woven together and it ends in a rich and satisfying brocade.
Best of all, the main characters retain their nature. This author is extremely talented at writing unique dialogue for our same beloved characters that's in character with them, yet unique to new situations. Keep it up, Mrs. Reynolds!
I will not go over the story line in detail. The other reviewers did a good job of that. I will say that what I saw as the premise was Darcy, two years after Hunsford and Rosings and a missed chance to propose, looking at "the ton" and all their moral decay and pettiness vs the life situation of his true love and her family. Elizabeth's status is lowered not once but twice in this story...below what it was in our original P&P. First, her father dies, the family loses Longbourn, she becomes a Nanny/governess, etc., etc. Then Lydia becomes pregnant and moves in with the Gardiners to try to hide her disgrace from the Meryton denizens. So we have economical humbling and then moral standing disgrace. The ton is shown through Bingley's statements, through Darcy's uncle's and cousin's actions, through what he sees in Charlie and the use of the Mews, with Georgina and Aunt Augusta, etc., etc. And Abigail Reynolds lets us see Darcy's thought processes in sorting all of this out. It is not just Elizabeth telling him he is not a gentleman and that his disdain of others formed her opinion to not to want to marry him even if he were the last man in the world but these other observations, which make him think about whether he can actually marry her. Do Society's opinions matter? What will make him happy?
As an aside: I loved the angst and, as mentioned by others, the scenes of sexual tension as with him drawing the glove slowly, oh so slowly, off each finger and kissing her hand, etc.
This book has enough material to expand into several sequences, i.e., Georgina's story, Mary's story, the Colonel's story,etc.
Top international reviews
The social divide between Darcy and Lizzy now seems so unsurpassable and yet Darcy still cannot imagine his life without Lizzy. I enjoyed seeing this side to Darcy. He was very sweet and caring towards Lizzy and all her family and in the second half the book he was truly the knight in shinning armour! Seeing the struggles the couple face and the misunderstandings and problems they must overcome before they can be together is heart-wrenching. There are times when it seems it really will be impossible to end with the happy ending we all know, expect and love (it does of course, don't fret!)
Bingley had an interesting role and turn of character in this story. The situation and emotional state he ends up in because of Jane's marriage to another is very sad to see in the normally happy, cheerful and upbeat Mr Bingley. His journey through the story is an interesting one. Georgiana too faces many problems to overcome after the incident with Wickham (to which there is an extra aspect in this tale) before she can mature into the young woman she truly is.
There is a major theme through this book linked to what the supposed 'gentleman' of society and the 'ton' really get up to. I found all the talk of mistresses through this book and incidents revolving around the issue quite distressing (the main distress coming from Colonel Fitzwilliam's horrid father and brother) although it was an interesting and brave topic to expand on. I understand, however, how very relevant and true the issue of mistresses and maltreatment of servants is and it is clear the authoress has put a considerable amount of time into researching it properly for historical accuracy, to which she is to be commended.
Although as I said at times I found the book distressing this is not a bad thing. I believe it actually made the book more compelling as I wanted to keep reading to see what was going to happen and how it would resolve all the issues. I am very pleased to say that all the problems and difficulties faced for so many of the characters all sort themselves out eventually, resulting in some very happy (and some very surprising (VERY surprising!)) endings. And also, although I talk of a more serious atmosphere to this variation, there are still many, many moments throughout which had me laughing, a lot!
If you are interesting in a variation which strays dramatically from the original plot as well as a wonderful romantic tension between Darcy and Lizzy, some intruding new characters and a more serious spin on the classic then this is the book to read.
There were elements of this book that were quite unsettling, especially on the first read. The author shines a spotlight on the place of women in this society - women of the lower orders being sold by their parents to rich men, and those of higher orders are all just as much at the mercy of men's whims and under their power, makes you glad to be born now and have some say in your own life! I felt quite bad for Lizzy to be honest, as a woman she was so powerless but she behaves pretty much how I would expect Lizzy to behave in adversity. Also explored is the way that the high society had the morals of alley cats. Darcy's family are particularly horrible in this book, Col Fitzwilliam is nice, but the rest are pretty vile.
On the whole, an excellent read in my opinion, good style, good characterisation of Lizzy and Darcy, v. romantic. For those who like to know these things there are no sex scenes between Elizabeth and Darcy which I thought was fitting.
Generally this tale is more in keeping with the times and does not have the sex scenes that can feature heavily in other variations. Mr Darcy finds himself being slapped around the face for attempting to steal a kiss!
I struggled to like so many of the characters in this book which perhaps says something about how well this book is written. However Aunt Augusta is fantastic and I wish we had seen more of her.
All in all a pleasant read but lacking in excitement and adventure!
Deeply unsatisfying perhaps Reynolds has written too many of these variations.
The novel starts a later them the original Pride & Prejudice. Mr Bennet died shortly after Elizabeth was in Rosings to visit Charlotte. Mr Darcy had not the chance to propose. The story takes an other turn than the orginal as Elizabeth never travels to Pemberly and Bingley never returns to Netherfield.
Elizabeth lives with the Gardiners in London, Jane married a shopowner to help the family, the rest of the family moves in with the Phillips as they don't have a home anymore and also no money. A year after the death of Mr Bennet, Bingley happens to meet Elizabeth in London and he gets to know of Jane's life. After that Darcy meets Elizabeth while her morning walks. Other family members of Darcy, his uncle and cousin, are introduced who are not amiable characters. After some misunderstandings and problems solved there is a happy end not only for Darcy and Elizabeth, but also for Jane and Bingley.
Lydia has a small role as she gets pregnant from an officer and Darcy again arranges a marriage between both. The other sisters do not really have a role in this novel. Georgiana plays a big part here, she got pregnant from Wickham, but she gave her baby away.
It is more of a sad novel. Society is described in a non-romantic way, as gentelmen have mistress or just take a servant for their needs.
I liked the idea of the novel that Mr Bennet died and Mrs Bennet and her daughthers have to manage. Darcy does everything in his power to help Elizabeth.
A good entertaining novel if you like Pride & Prejudice variations.
J'ai beaucoup aimé ce Darcy qui est un vrai gentleman plein de compassion et dont le comportement contraste avec celui de sa famille, particulièrement de son cousin et de son oncle. J'ai également adoré le personnage de Charlie, l'orphelin plein de ressources et de finesse et celui de Marie, la jeune fille qui échappe à un sort bien triste. Une excellente variation, pleine de suspens, très bien écrite et qui va droit au coeur.