03 April, 2010

Review of The Darcy Cousins by Monica Fairview

The Darcy CousinsProduct Description From Amazon.com

A young lady in disgrace should at least strive to behave with decorum...
Dispatched from America to England under a cloud of scandal,
Mr. Darcy's incorrigible American cousin, Clarissa Darcy, manages to provoke Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Mr. Collins, and the parishioners of Hunsford all in one morning!
And there are more surprises in store for that bastion of tradition, Rosings Park, when the family gathers for their annual Easter visit. Georgiana Darcy, generally a shy model of propriety, decides to take a few lessons from her unconventional cousin, to the delight of a neighboring gentleman. Anne de Bourgh, encouraged to escape her "keeper" Mrs. Jenkinson, simply...vanishes. But the trouble really starts when Clarissa and Georgiana both set out to win the heart of the same young man...

Excerpt
Chapter One
"The church door flew open and footsteps resounded through the church, forcing its lethargic inmates into sudden animation. Mr Collins, whose sermon on fire and brimstone had taken on a decidedly monotonous rhythm, was awakened into new fervour. His eyes rounded and his voice rose, ringing with conviction now that he had found a target for his wrath. Even his conviction, however, did not regain him his audience, for the congregation turned en masse to survey the newcomers. Heads turned, necks stretched and hats fluttered. Twittering echoed around the stone pillars.
 Mr Collins tried his best to ignore these disturbing signs of inattention. He proved himself worthy of his position indeed, for he did not falter for an instant and, when the restlessness of his flock became too apparent, he turned his eyes on the one person who was worthy of the benefit of his words – indeed, had had a hand in suggesting those very words – his noble patroness Lady Catherine de Bourgh. She sat rigidly upright in her pew and kept her gaze calmly fixed upon him. Her daughter Anne, though generally too sickly to be curious, shifted in her seat so that she could sneak a glance at the new arrivals, until a sharp pinch forced her to recall the gravity of their elevated stature.
But, at last, even Lady Catherine de Bourgh herself could not ignore the disturbance, for the newcomers, instead of squeezing silently into whatever empty bench they could find, came straight in her direction, and signalled for her to shift down towards the other side of the family pew. Lady Catherine, torn between the diminished dignity of moving from her accustomed seat, or the prospect of causing a scene in the Lord’s presence, moved closer to her daughter. At this insult to his dear patroness, Mr Collins stuttered, not once, but twice, an event of such unprecedented magnitude that he succeeded in drawing all attention back to himself again.
“I am sorry we were tardy, Lady Catherine. I know we wrote that we would arrive before church today,” said a cheerful young voice in a loud whisper. Those closest to Lady Catherine’s pew strained to listen above Mr Collins’s voice, and a few turned to convey her words to the ears of their less fortunate neighbours. An elderly lady’s voice could be heard complaining forcefully that no one ever told her anything. “What is the young lady saying?”
She received several disgruntled looks.
“One of our horses was lamed,” continued the young lady, “and we had to wait until a fresh one could be brought. It took forever.”
Mr Collins fixed a quelling look at the young lady in question. She was apparently chastised for she said nothing more. But no sooner had Mr Collins resumed the familiar flow of his sermon than the young gentleman leaned across his sister and added in a whisper, “I hope we have not missed too much of the service,” he remarked. “My watch must have been stolen by pickpockets when we stopped in Bromley, for I could not find it, and I have no idea of the time.”
Lady Catherine did not deign to reply. Mr Collins paused in the middle of a sentence and cleared his throat.
Georgiana Darcy, who was sitting to the right of Anne, wished Mr Collins would simply ignore the newcomers, instead of drawing even more attention to them. Her party seemed to have become the focus of all eyes. If only their pew faced forward, instead of standing sideways where everyone in the congregation could see them! She squirmed in her seat, trying her best to look unruffled. If only she were sitting with her brother Darcy, whose tall form was partly hidden by a pillar. Such thoughts did not avail her, however, for there she was, with all eyes turned towards her group. She needed to project an air of calm dignity. She grasped her hands together in her lap and concentrated on practising serenity." excerpt from the ARC of The Darcy Cousins given to me from Sourcebooks for review...

So begins The Darcy Cousins by Monica Fairview... A very humorous and delightful story about the goings on in and around Rosings Park, London and Hunsford, among other locations. With familiar characters as Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth Darcy, Lady Catherine de Bourgh and her daughter Anne. Added to this mix of colorful characters are the American Darcy cousins, Robert and his sister Clarissa. Clarissa scandalizes from her first day at Rosings Park. Georgiana and Clarissa become fast friends and is a refreshing addition to the Darcy family... this story is almost a comedy of manners and how the lack of communication between characters male and female can result in various misconceptions and misunderstandings.
I liked the way the author wrote this sequel, it was fun to read and I had a hard time putting this book down. I have read a few other Jane Austen sequels and they were kind of stuffy and boring to read, whereas this one was a joy. I especially liked the character of Anne, who at first appeared to be weak and sickly, but later showed that she had spunk and went after what she wanted which was to be away from her mother and not get married just because society said she had to. I hope the author is planning on a sequel to this sequel as there is a lot more story to tell here I would think...one can hope anyway. I rate this book 5/5..



 I received this review ARC of The Darcy Cousins by Monica Fairview from Sourcebooks. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. 

I am an Amazon Associate and if you are interested in obtaining a copy of this book you can click on book cover on the left,of course you are under no obligation to buy.....     










3 comments:

  1. Great review -- I've added this book to my TBR pile. Thanks for the recommendation.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I like the Jane Austen spin-offs and retellings. This one sounds good. I also read one where Anne seemed more her own woman and outgoing. It was The Private Diary of Mr. Darcy by Maya Slater. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  3. You are both welcome. Michelle, I will have to check that one out....

    ReplyDelete

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