Friday, January 4, 2019

North by Northanger by Carrie Bebris-- Book Review


Hello readers! How's your first week of 2019 reading gone? I've just finished this year's first read, North by Northanger by Carrie Bebris---a fun continuation of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. It was my second time through and I enjoyed it (and "got" it) much more this time around.

From Amazon: "After the intrigues and excitements of their time in the city, the Darcys are more than prepared for a bit of peace and quiet at Pemberley. Finally, they can spend time together as Elizabeth settles into her pregnancy. 

However, serene solitude is not meant to be. First a letter from Lady Anne Fitzwilliam Darcy, long deceased, is discovered. The contents are both mysterious and prescient for Mrs. Darcy. 

Then a summons to Northanger Abbey involves the young couple in intrigues that threaten not just the Darcy legacy and good name, but Mr. Darcy's freedom as well. To make matters even worse and more uncomfortable for the expectant mother, Darcy's overbearing aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, arrives on the scene to further bedevil Elizabeth. Add to this rumors of treasure and past scandals, and it becomes obvious that peacefulness is not at home in Pemberley, but secrets and spirits of the past are, and their revelations may have a most chilling effect on both the Darcys and their family to come." 

I'd forgotten how much I really love this author. I first read this book about 8 years ago and loved it then; but now, after visiting England a few times, reading through all the Austen novels, and learning a ton about their authoress, I found that I loved it all the more. I'll definitely be looking to find and reread the other Carrie Bebris Darcy mysteries. 

This was a fun mix of storylines as the Darcys traveled to Northanger Abbey and met the Tilneys, later finding that their lives are intertwined through the friendship of the two families' matriarchs. The story offered an interesting insight into what Elizabeth may have faced as new mistress of Pemberley---following in the footsteps of Darcy's mother. 

My favorite phrase from the story was, "invent cause for correspondence", which I found to be much more poetic than, "find a reason to write a letter." 

If I have any complaint about the story, it's that I don't think Lady Catherine and Lizzy would have been quite so horrible to one another. Once Lizzy was married and mistress of Pemberley, I believe the same spirit that caused Lady Catherine to be so cold to those "beneath" her would also force her to give more respect to the station Lizzy now occupies. With Lady Catherine, it's the standing of the person and not the person herself to which she responds.

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