Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
Caroline Bingley, “handsome, clever, and rich,” with no home of her own and an unpleasant disposition, seemed to desire nothing more than to be accepted into the upper echelons of society; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very much to distress and vex her. Because of her humiliating and unsuccessful pursuit of Mr. Darcy, and her refusal to apologize for her part in separating Jane and Bingley, Caroline loses her brother’s good opinion and is banished from his home and care. Forced to leave all the fashionable and elite society she adores, Caroline is sent far north to Cumbria to live with her mother and step-father. Will Caroline finally learn that there are more important things in life than wealth and titles? Will she apologize to Elizabeth Darcy and reunify her family? Or will she find herself embroiled in yet another scheme to ensnare a wealthy husband?
Well, it just so happens that there are two eligible bachelors in Cumbria… One will inherit a title and owns an ancestral home, the other works in trade and owns a crumbling mansion (according to Caroline). One loves Caroline’s “impudence and independent spirit,” the other loves her inheritance. Who do you think Caroline is chasing? Who do you think will claim her heart?
In Jennifer Becton’s second brilliant Pride and Prejudice sequel, we spend a lot of time with Caroline. And believe it or not, it’s not torture! Yes, you are probably going to want to smack her and shake her a few times. And yes, she is still the grasping, cold-hearted snob we all love to hate. But…through the skillful and excellent prose of Jennifer Becton, we see that underneath all the “pretense and accomplishment,” Caroline has moments of vulnerability and honesty, just like every other human. Readers cannot help but feel some sympathy for this woman who merely just desires to be accepted, to belong, to be seen better than she is.
I adore the writing of Jennifer Becton! I love the new characters she creates; seeing Caroline paired with the seemingly unfashionable and lowly Mrs. Pickersgill was genius! And Mr. Rushton – he is definitely being added to my list for favorite Austenesque heroes! I’m so very thankful that Ms. Becton included not one, but two exquisitely beautiful tender and romantic scenes in this novel. Scenes that are chaste yet make your heart pound and catch your breath. *Sigh* I think these scenes are becoming hallmarks for Ms. Becton; I loved the scene in Charlotte Collins “where they almost touched hands.”
I sincerely enjoyed my journey into the psyche of Caroline Bingley. While I still think she can be exasperating, I discovered that she is a strong, courageous, and unique heroine that deserves our compassion and understanding. I sincerely hope there will more installments in Jennifer Becton’s The Personages of Pride and Prejudice series! Such exceptional writing! Who should be next? Mary Bennet? Anne de Bourgh? Please keep writing Austenesque novels Ms. Becton!!!
GIVEAWAY!!! Author Jennifer Becton has kindly donated a brand new paperback copy and an ebook copy of Caroline Bingley for me to giveaway!!
All you have to do is leave a comment on this review. (To save inbox from unwanted spam, please don’t leave your email address.) Just check back to see if you win! Fortunately for our international friends, the ebook giveaway is open worldwide! The paperback giveaway is open to US and Canada. Thank you, Jennifer!!
This contest will close November 25th. Good luck and thank you for entering!