Only Mr. Darcy Will Do is Kara Louise’s latest Jane Austen adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. Clearly Pride and Prejudice is in the top spot for being everyone’s favorite Austen novel, therefore it seems to get the most treatment for sequels and adaptations. This particular storyline took a different twist. I liked the plot line and decided to bring the expert opinions of two of my most beloved bibliophile friends in on the review wagon this time around.
Heidi T. is a friend of mine who reads anything from cook books to Diana Gabaldon and all the steamy vegetables in between (if you know what I mean).
Jen R. is a reader of discerning tastes ranging from pedestrian to Wiccan. From holistic to vampiric and all the fun that comes with those genres.
Read my interview with Kara Louise.
Read more about Kara Louise.
I felt I had a great sampling to work with, especially considering they very little Austenalia. Fresh readers! I was practically foaming at the mouth.
The both plowed through their copies quickly. A good sign. I had already made my decision on how I thought the book did, but didn’t give my opinions because I wanted their cold reactions.
A brief overview of the book – Elizabeth Bennet and the entire Bennet family, suffers a life changing moment when her father dies. Forced to face the reality of the Colins taking over the lodge, Elizabeth becomes a Governess for a wealthy family of The Ton. All of this takes place after Elizabeth turns down Mr. Darcy’s proposal at Hunsford Cottage. She thinks back upon that time, but is it with regret?
Heidi sent her review to me first, here are some outtakes:
Mr. Darcy, (breathy sigh), doesn’t disappoint as the great romantic lead that he is. The author may be guilty of over-the-top romanticism bordering on cliché-(rescuing a kitten in the middle of a flood where people are being swept away)! Despite the unbearable cuteness of that little situation, Mr. Darcy manages to be the believable hero we all know him to be…
Kara Louise’s perfectly acceptable writing style and fast-paced, well laid out plot lacked Jane Austin’s sophistication and witty sense of irony. As portraying the Regency time period accurately in the book, I could find no flaws. Unfortunately that means nothing considering the aforementioned ignorance.
I found this book to be a very enjoyable read and I give it 3 stars. Passionate Regency sex might have garnered the book 4 stars.
Hmmm… now you see what I mean by steamy vegetable reading?
Jen’s review was very similar. I suspected them of speaking with each other before writing, but when confronted… they denied all wrongdoing!
Elizabeth displays the self-doubt brought on by her new status in life. In contrast to that though, some of her actions are even more forward than we might expect. I can’t call this boldness on her part since the moments were not premeditated. It wasn’t instances of uncharacteristic speech that stood out to me but of physical actions on her part toward Mr. Darcy (reaching into his coat!). They seemed to be more than might be allowed by the usual propriety of the time.
My favorite surprise character is Rosalyn. The transformation of her character (or perhaps revelation of her true character?) was interesting. I especially loved the audacity of her comments to Elizabeth after giving Mr. Darcy her advice as to the décor of Georgiana’s sitting room. Oh my! My jaw dropped and then I laughed out loud.
It was relaxing to sit back and watch as this story strolled along it’s sun-dappled path, through some muddy patches to be sure, but never-the-less on to arrive at the anticipated place of contentment and bliss.
Overall, Kara hit a home run with my control group and both mentioned to me the possibility of reading more work by her. I’d like to say that I’m responsible for creating two new Austenites, but the kudos go to Kara Louise and her deft wielding of the mighty pen.
4 out of 5 stars!