Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Jane Austen Review Challenge: Mr. Darcy's Little Sister

Awhile ago, I received a recommendation from a friend about this book, and having a shortage of good reads on my list lately, I decided to try it.  It's a continuation of P&P, and it's about Georgiana Darcy and her life after Lizzy and Darcy's marriage.

I really, really liked Mr Darcy's Little Sister (by C. Allyn Pierson).  The characters were all true to JA's original, and although the book is quite long, it's also fast-paced and I was never bored.
Although Georgiana took center stage here, Lizzy and Darcy were also shown quite a bit, and the portrayal of their marriage was pretty amazing.  I've read several P&P 'sequels,' and this was the closest to what I thought their relationship would be like after the wedding and honeymoon.  They were absolutely adorable together, in the best way possible.  Another thing I was impressed by was Georgiana's development; she was much more confident and poised by the end, but it was made totally believable.  She could get a little annoying at times, to be honest, but it didn't seem out of character, and overall she was very sweet and likeable.  Her romance with--no, I'm not going to tell you that, that would be spoilers :P was so, so gorgeous; it was a big plot twist, but a slow one; you know, where it bursts on you, but when you look back over the book, you're amazed that you didn't see it coming.
Also--and this was the thing that attracted me to the book in the first place--, Sir Andrew got a cameo!!!  Cool, right?  I freaked out and went into hyper-fangirling mode for at least fifteen minutes when I read "his" chapter.  They even mention a "daring band of Englishmen"!  Sir Percy is never mentioned by name, but then, he never takes credit for his noble deeds, so it's understandable.  He's so heroic...*siiiiiigh*
Random picture of Percy and Marguerite, because they're just so romantic...

Okay.  Focus.  Back to the review...where was I?  Oh, yes. *grins*  Sir Andrew.  Actually, *SPOILERS* Caroline Bingley ended up marrying the Comte de Tournay.  They're perfect together. :P *END OF SPOILERS*
Lizzy and Georgiana had an amazing sisterly relationship.  Lizzy was a mentor of sorts, as well as being a major confidence-booster and fashion consultant, while Georgiana looked up to Lizzy and tried her best to emulate her, as well as using all her considerable influence in society to get Elizabeth accepted into the higher circles.

Pierson never tried to imitate JA's writing much, but she did keep the dialogue old-fashioned and as far as I can tell, it was historically accurate.
One thing I didn't like about this book was Kitty.  Not that she was made any different from the original book, she was just...never there.  She and Georgiana reportedly giggle together quite a bit, but she probably says three sentences in the entire novel.   She's mostly just used to get Georgiana out of the way, in my opinion, and she's kind of written off and never given a personality--but, well, forgive me for saying this, JA did the same thing.
I tend to be a bit of a purist about JA, but this book never annoyed me with inaccuracies (and Pierson even quoted bits of P&P in the dialogue, &c. several times, which was a huge plus for me), as well as being very well-written in general.  This was by far the most true-to-life "sequel" to P&P that I've ever read.  Overall, it was a highly enjoyable read and I recommend it to any Janeite, or even just a casual reader of her books. 


Melody said...

I shall put it on my book list! I always hesitate to read JA spinoffs without a recommendation, haha. You never know what sort of treachery you may discover. :P

Miss Jane Bennet said...

I think you'll enjoy it! Haha, definitely; there were a few authors I knew of who'd written P&P stuff, so I went to the library and read them, and they were...well, some of them were sweet, but none of the authors seemed to really understand the characters and very few of them were well-written. :P
...Sorry about the mini-rant there, but I HATE it when people spoil JA's amazing book. ;)

GreenMedallion said...

I never thought I'd be interested in reading a P&P sequel, because I love the book to death and am very protective of it and its characters, haha. But you've actually made me very interested in this book, and I just might give it a try! ;)

Miss Jane Bennet said...

Indeed. Those were my thoughts exactly, before I read this book. ;) The friend I received the recommendation from is an avid Janeite, so I wasn't too nervous about Mr. Darcy's Little Sister messing P&P up.
Thanks! I hope you like it if you read it! :)

Lady Éowyn said...

Jane - I greatly enjoyed this review! I have never read any sequel to P&P, but I think I may very well have to read this one! Quick question: For how long does this challenge go?

Miss Jane Bennet said...

Lady Eowyn,
Thanks! I hope you like it! :)
Well, about the Challenge end date...
It doesn't have a specific end date. It ends when I'm done reviewing all of JA's six major novels, which could take several months or just till the end of January. Persuasion is the last novel I'm reviewing, and the compilation of reviews will be posted a day or two after that. So Persuasion is the "warning" that time is running out. I'd say that this will last until March--that's the closest estimate I can give you. Sorry for the vagueness. :)
Haha, long answer to quick question. I hope that answered it, though! :)

Jack said...

Now you've made me want to read it. I've always kind of wanted to read a good squeal with Lizzy and Darcy after they are married, because I was convinced Lizzy would be a great big sister to Georgiana. And if Sir Percy is in it?!?!?!?! Oh yes, then it is a MUST!!!

Aspirer said...

Just found your blog and think it's wonderful. :) Thanks so much for the book recommendation-- this one I've got to give a whirl. :) P&P is one of my favorite novels of all time.

♥ aspirer