Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
What if after several months of living in anguish and despair over Elizabeth Bennet’s rejection, Darcy encountered a gentle and compassionate person named Anne Elliot?
What if Anne, with her kind and encouraging nature, brought about a significant improvement in Georgiana’s shyness and confidence, while at the same time soothed Darcy’s broken heart with her easy-going friendship?
What if Darcy decided the best course of action for him and Georgiana, at this point in time, was for him to offer marriage to…Anne Elliot!
In this incredibly inventive and daring novel, author Joana Starnes explores the possibility of the characters from Pride and Prejudice crossing paths with characters from Persuasion. Taking place three months after Darcy’s disastrous proposal in Hunsford, Darcy, instead of reuniting with the Bingley family at Pemeberley, travels to Somersetshire in the company of his relations from Matlock. And accompanying Elizabeth and the Gardiners on their northern tour is Mrs. Gardiner’s former school companion, Mrs. Croft (as well as her husband and charming younger brother – a naval captain!)
I found the combination of these two beloved Jane Austen couples to be extremely successful and conceivable! Darcy and Anne Elliot do have a lot in common with each other, they are “kindred spirits,” and perhaps make more sense – on paper – than do Darcy and Elizabeth (*gasp* Yes, I said it.) And with their outgoing personalities and love of adventure perhaps Elizabeth and Captain Wentworth do seem like they would make a compatible pair (c’mon, you have to admit they do!) But do not be alarmed, dear readers! Joana Starnes throws a wrench into these not-so-happily-ever-afters by bringing a betrothed Darcy back to Netherfield! What will he do when he encounters the charming and attentive Captain Wentworth…
I must devote this next paragraph of my review to express the love I have for Joana Starnes’s Darcy! In a style similar Abigail Reynolds and Lory Lilian, Ms. Starnes portrays a very emotionally intense and impassioned Darcy. *sigh* I love seeing Darcy rendered as a romantic – so desperately in love with Elizabeth that there is no hope of cessation. This story is told from his perspective so readers are privy to all the painful anguish and repressed longing he feels. And if you are a sympathetic reader, like me, you will experience all poor Darcy’s heartache and torment right with him!
Besides a well-crafted variation and an incredibly romantic Darcy, other parts of this story I enjoyed were the altercation with Wickham, the combative conversations between Darcy and Wentworth, Mr. Bingley clumsily trying to play matchmaker, and Colonel Fitzwilliam’s hard heart-to-heart with Darcy. Oh! and I mustn’t forget Caroline Bingley and Lady Russell, who were always trying to thwart Darcy’s plans at every turn! So much going on, felt a little like a Shakespearen comedy! Perhaps the only thing missing was seeing a little bit of the story from Captain Wentworth’s point-of-view, but that might have been a bit challenging to integrate.
Achingly romantic and exquisitely expressive – The Subsequent Proposal is a beautifully blended story with our favorite, albeit mismatched, couples. I absolutely adored it and I’m so elated to learn that Joana Starnes is currently working on another variation that combines Pride and Prejudice with Sense and Sensibility! Woot Woot!
Because she is super awesome and generous, Joana Starnes has set me up with ONE paperback and TWO ebook copies of The Subsequent Proposal for me to giveaway to THREE lucky winners!
To enter this giveaway leave a comment below!
- This giveaway is open to residents worldwide. Thank you, Joana!
- The giveaway ends December 21st.