Pride & Prejudice set (following Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife )"/>

Darcy and Elizabeth: Days and Nights at Pemberley

Linda Berdoll, Author . Sourcebooks Landmark $16.95 (448p) ISBN 978-1-4022-0563-7

Berdoll's second lighthearted romp through Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice set (following Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife ) turns nasty. Things start off sweetly as the terminally dignified Darcy returns from the continent to greet wife Elizabeth and the twins she has borne in his absence. Despite initial annoyance engendered by Elizabeth's recuperation, during which sex is rather out of the question, hearth and home soon return to normal. However, dealing with Darcy's conniving aunt, Lady De Bourgh, as well as the machinations of his troublesome sister-in-law, Lydia, and his arch-rival and nemesis Wickham (here truly evil), threaten their domestic happiness. Elizabeth takes all this circumspectly but with keen concern; between bouts of marital jollity, she provides Darcy with wise and commendable counsel. The story is thick in period trappings and language; the secondary characters and tangential story lines are Dickensian to a fault and the ending is very deus ex machina. But Berdoll's take on Darcy & Co. contains enough pleasures to overcome overwriting and underplotting. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/27/2006
Release date: 05/01/2006
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