Monday, November 19, 2012

Review: The Future Mrs. Darcy by Maria Grace

Given Good Principles Volume 2

The people of Meryton have differing opinions on the militia’s arrival. Naturally, the Bennet girls are enjoying the officers’ company, perhaps a little too much. Mr. Carver, who has recently let Netherfield, finds the officers’ manners crass and less than refined. Having two sisters in his care, Mr. Carver makes haste in removing his family from the untamed influence of, not only the regiment, but also the boisterous Bennet girls. Once tongues start wagging about the girls’ behavior in Meryton, several other families remove the Bennets from their acquaintance.

In The Future Mrs. Darcy, Jane and Elizabeth have switched roles. While Jane tries warning Elizabeth about Kitty and Lydia’s behavior, Elizabeth refuses to believe her sisters are that wild. However, once she comprehends the harsh truth, Elizabeth quickly changes and begins questioning her perceptions. She realizes her initial thoughts regarding Lydia’s behavior were wrong and discovers there is much more to Mary and Kitty than meets the eye. I rather enjoyed seeing the changes Elizabeth’s attention creates in Mary and Kitty.

In the same way Darcy’s Decision: Give Good Principles Vol. 1 focuses on Mr. Darcy’s humbling changes and struggles, this novel focuses on Elizabeth’s. Elizabeth regards these revelations and reproaches in the same way as she attends to the truths written in Mr. Darcy’s letter in Pride and Prejudice. Upon hearing these terrible rumors about Lydia, Mrs. Bennet has taken to her rooms. It falls to Elizabeth to restore her family's reputation as well as to take up the task of running Longbourn. But is it too late? Is the damage irreversible?

In this original work, Mrs. Bennet still suffers from her nerves, yet we are given more depth to her character. Mrs. Bennet takes her duties as mistress seriously, meticulously attending to her household and tenants. Add to this the way she handles Lydia after her attempted elopement, I was thinking maybe this lady has some sense after all. I hope we see more of this Mrs. Bennet in the next volume.

Even though there were a few confusing passages, causing me to reread portions, and, at times, Elizabeth annoyed me with her Jane-like goodness, this was an enjoyable book. The Future Mrs. Darcy: Given Good Principles Vol. 2 is a delightfully unique prequel variation. Because it seems both Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth have overcome many of the characteristic struggles associated with Elizabeth's refusal of Darcy's hand and her acknowledgement of the harsh truths found in his letter, I am all anticipation to see how their relationship will develop and what obstacles remain in their way in volume 3.

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  1. Yes, I liked finding out how much Mrs. Bennet did to run the household and tend to the tenants, that the girls didn't know about until they had to take over all the responsibilities. Very interesting to see that there is more to Mrs. Bennet!

    I enjoyed this story too and look forward to reading the next!

    1. Hi Candy! Yes, it was great to see a different side to Mrs. B than we are usually given. Can't wait for volume 3! :)

  2. Maria Grace will be pleased with this review. :)

  3. This lovely book is also now on audiobook. I just found it on Audible