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The Pemberley Ball: A Pride and Prejudice Vagary Novella Paperback – April 3, 2016
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About the Author
Regina Jeffers is an award-winning author of historical cozy mysteries, Austenesque sequels and retellings, as well as Regency era romances. A teacher for thirty-nine years, Jeffers often serves as a consultant for Language Arts and Media Literacy programs. With multiple degrees, Regina has been a Time Warner Star Teacher, Columbus (OH) Teacher of the Year, and a Martha Holden Jennings Scholar. With seven new releases in 2015, Jeffers is considered one of publishing’s most prolific authors. Come check out some of her 19 novels: Darcy’s Passions, Captain Frederick Wentworth’s Persuasion, The Mysterious Death of Mr. Darcy, A Touch of Grace, A Touch of Honor, and The First Wives’ Club.
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Don’t get me wrong…I have loved other books by this author and have a few on my kindle written by her yet to be read. However, I did not like the characters portrayed in this variation and almost wanted to skip writing any review at all.
They are engaged and planning to wed in about four weeks. Darcy reverts back to being a prig at times in his reactions to Elizabeth’s impulsive and at times, childish, behavior. (What happened to the Darcy who changed his behavior at her bidding to win her after the Hunsford Proposal?) She gets herself into two near fatal accidents also immediately and then seems to be seeking how far she can go before he will walk away. She questions his handling of and his remarks about every event or decision. She eavesdrops on part of a conversation and draws a drastically wrong conclusion. The final straw is when she elicits an old beau to flaunt her disdain of Darcy’s attempts to control her, to mold her behavior into what is expected of the Mistress of Pemberley, by that old beau’s raising objections at the third reading of their banns in the Meryton church…in front of all of entire congregation.
Through it all Darcy continues to remind himself that he loves Elizabeth and wants her as his wife. And at times both Bingley and the Colonel remind him of reasons he choose her, that she is not molded to the ton’s expectations and that is what in part he loved about her. Childhood memories, as well as memories of his mother are used to bring clarity to what happiness is all about.
Elizabeth has her sister and Georgiana reminding her of what she has in Darcy, that he does love her, that he proposed to her, not Caroline who would fit the model for the ton. But she also has a lack of self confidence in this story…This is not the Lizzy I know from canon and from other stories. Her mother’s harping at her may have come to roost on her shoulder and whisper in the ear. She goes all out to test his love and I am sure exasperated more than myself in reading this part.
Yes, we are offered three different ways this could come to a climax with a little bit of theatrics by Mr. and Mrs. Darcy at the end. But I have to say it just rubbed me the wrong way. One reviewer said it succinctly in stating that one of the reasons she has for reading JAFF is that we know we are in a comfort zone, we know our characters and what to expect. Not going to happen in this story. I like angst but this was not my cup of tea.
It's the only reasonable explanation of the personalities displayed by Elizabeth, Darcy and others in this "novella" (a pretty high-falutin' word for this document). Other than their names and backstories being the same, there is no resemblance to Jane Austen's wonderful characters. Both Darcy and Elizabeth are unlikable, stupid, weak and rude throughout the book. There seems little possibility of a happy ending and one feels as if that would be a just conclusion.
SPOILER ALERT: The idea that Elizabeth would seek refuge with Lydia and Wickham for ANY reason is the ludicrous last straw for this book.
The writing is better than much JAFF, although some phrases and words are overused. Even so I can't recommend it.
It is well written but I did not like the story.
Elizabeth was portaited as incredibly stupid and the fact that Darcy was an arse did little to placate me.
Their engagement periode is fraught with doubt, arguments and misconceptions. Caroline's shrewed behaviour is perfectly acceptable to Darcy, Elizabeth's vivaciousness is not. Eavesdropping on Darcy and Bingley when Darcy speaks of her unsuitability, Elizabeth concoct a vicious revenge with an old friend. Making the friende stand up in church as the banns are read for the third time, that Elizabeth is already promised to him. A devastated Darcy flees to Pemberley and the story then continues with three alternative endings. An "in control", "alpha male" and "out of control" Darcy. This part was slightly better than the first. Ends in ball at Pemberley ball where Darcy surprises all his acquaintances with introducing his wife.
The story portraited ODC as they had learned no lessons in their previous dealings. As both lacked likeability the story grated on me.
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I am not sure who acted worse, but I'll leave that up to you to decide...Read more