Thursday, February 21, 2008

Duty and Desire

I finished this, the second of the Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman trilogy, several days ago, but since things have been crazy around here for awhile, I haven't had time to write the review. And now I'm in the middle of the third and final book already. So this review might not be the most goes.

Usually, when you read the second book of a trilogy, you have to give it some slack, because the author has to continue plotlines introduced in the first book, introduce elements that will be important in the third book, but not really finish off the story just yet. It's a hard thing to do gracefully. But Pamela Aidan? She nailed it! Not only did she continue to develop Darcy's character in a meaningful, fascinating way that resonated with me as a lover of the original Pride and Prejudice, she also made this book into almost a stand-alone...I was NOT expecting it to be a Gothic Romance/Mystery novel, but it was! It was really great. My only complaints are that, because she really only introduced the mystery (think Northanger Abbey if you want to know what kind of writing I'm talking about) halfway through the book, it was a little...abrupt.

But still, superbly done and fun fun FUN to read. One of my favorite little tidbits in this book was when one of the characters is caught reading a new book--Sense and Sensibility! Clever and sneaky, Ms. Aidan...I like it!

I also like the Q&A with the author that is included in the back of the book, because she is much better at articulating what I like about the book than I am. ;) For example, she says that in this book she wanted to "put Darcy into situations that would reveal more of his character to the reader" and that she "wanted Darcy to be truly tempted by another woman. Elizabeth Bennet...should not just win Darcy's heart by default..." but rather she would be "providing him something to choose against in contrast to what, in Elizabeth Bennet, he would be choosing for." And she did just that.

Also? Some great website info and suggestions for "enhancing your book club experience" are included, which are exquisite. In this one, we have two of the author's favorite Austen sites:

The Republic of Pemberley


The Derbyshire Writer's Guild

which are both excellent and tons of fun! I'm sad I didn't write down the sites listed in the back of the first book. Drat!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just had to say: You really know how to have fun! Jane Austen: there's no one like her...except maybe this Pamela Aidan person. Can't wait to hear how the third book went.:)