Aug 132014
 

The Perfect MatchA Satisfying and Sweet Sequel to Pride and Prejudice 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Source: Review Copy from Author

Even though I adored all of Lory Lilian’s splendid Pride and Prejudice variations and am a fan of her romantic portrayals of Darcy and Elizabeth, I must admit, I had some reservations about her newest release, The Perfect Match. Partly because sequels that focus on Darcy and Elizabeth aren’t my favorite type of Austenesque novels, (I tend to gravitate more towards variations and minor characters stories) but also I was a little apprehensive about this book because of the title. Like Jane Austen, I’m not too fond of “pictures of perfection,” I like me some tension, misunderstandings, and obstacles. However, I’m so very glad I did read this charming sequel novella, it did not make me “sick and wicked” at all, or portray numerous repetitions of idyllic bliss – to be honest, it suited my tastes quite perfectly!

This one hundred and ten page novella was the ideal length for the author’s purpose, which was to illustrate Darcy and Elizabeth in the midst of their first year of marriage – how they are getting on with each other, how Elizabeth is adjusting to her new roles, and how relationships are developing between their two families. Through the course of the novella we see Darcy and Elizabeth celebrate their anniversary and the Christmas holidays. In addition, we witnessing Elizabeth’s “proper introduction” into society and the momentous occasion of her hosting her first grand ball. Even with an absence of tension and misunderstandings between our beloved couple, there was plenty to captivate and entertain.

I think one of my favorite aspects of this story was the comparisons made between the two sisters’ marriages, Darcy and Elizabeth illustrate the happiness derived from a “marriage of true minds,” they are open with each other and enjoy a bond that is powerful and rare. They are very attuned to each other’s feelings and share lovely moments together, but it didn’t feel too saccharine or unrealistically perfect.

Jane and Bingley, on the other hand, are not living a life of “happily ever after.” While their love for each other is strong, they are afraid to be open with each other. They also suffer from a little too much involvement from their relatives. This is a storyline I find very probable and credible. Given what we know about Charles’s “easy temper” and Jane’s “affectionate heart,” it is easy to believe that they would let their families impede their own marital happiness and privacy. I greatly appreciated how Lory Lilian handled this conflict between the Bingleys, and didn’t portray them as weak, mindless, or helpless characters. I was so happy to seem them prevail through their troubles!

Another aspect of this sequel I greatly enjoyed and appreciated was how Mrs. Bennet was portrayed. After Lizzy becomes Mrs. Darcy, I’d like to think she would stop berating and complaining about her “least-favorite” daughter. It was very touching and gratifying to see a Mrs. Bennet who was so in awe of Darcy and so stunned to be amongst aristocrats that she quite lost her silly and hysterical ways. And it was absolutely lovely to see her sweet moments with Lizzy where she conveyed her concern, support, and best of all, her admiration.

This brief little glimpse into our dear couple’s happily-ever-after was like sampling a delectable piece of chocolate after a sumptuous meal. Nothing too filling or complex – just that extra bit of “something sweet” to leave you completely satisfied. Well done, Lory Lilian!

Warning:  While nothing too explicit happens on page, there a couple sensuous and amorous scenes between our newlyweds. ;) Recommended for Mature Audiences.

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  20 Responses to “The Perfect Match – Lory Lilian”

  1.  

    Hello Meredith, I was so excited to read your review when it appeared in my inbox to see what your thoughts were. I am glad you enjoyed it as much as I did. As I have said before Lory Lilian is one of my favourite P & P authors as I have the same philosophy as her where D & E are concerned. Thanks for the review, couldn’t agree more. Just about to read His Uncle’s Favourite. Looking forward to it after reading your review of that book too!

    •  

      So happy to hear we are in accord with one another, Michelle! I can’t wait to see what Lory writes next! Hope you enjoy His Uncle’s Favorite – love Lord Matlock! Lory has such a way with original characters!

  2.  

    I read and reviewed this several months ago. I truly enjoyed it…a lot. This is an author whose books I will look forward to and will keep to re-read over the years. It has my recommendation – can’t add a lot to Meredith’s thorough review.

  3.  

    Sequels aren’t my thing, either, Meredith. I’m a what-if variation fan, but it sounds like a Perfect Match has your ringing endorsement. I can easily imagine how Bingley and Jane’s marriage is a pale reflection of Darcy and Elizabeth’s. I don’t think I’ve read anything by Lory Lillian, but since you gave it a 4.5 maybe I’ll add this one to my never ending book pile. Thanks for your review!

    •  

      I almost want to say the Bingley and Jane storyline was my favorite part of the whole story (but I loved seeing D&E and their fervent devotion for each other). I didn’t mention it, but it was also fantastic to see Caroline get several set downs! Very gratifying! If you like variations you may want to try some by Lory Lilian (very inventive and entertaining) although they do have more amorous scenes than you will find in this novella, if that isn’t to your liking.

  4.  

    I haven’t read many sequels either but I like the sound of this one. I am glad it’s not saccharine, because I don’t see either E or D having or even wanting that type of relationship. I see Jane and Bingley as possibly that type of couple but I think E & D would have become a true partnership.

  5.  

    I love that this follows both sisters’ relationships and that all is not easy.

  6.  

    After following the Austenesque genre for 20 years, it’s interesting to see how it has evolved Meredith. We share the same reaction when I see a new Elizabeth and Darcy sequel. I too enjoy exploring minor characters, what if’s and Austen bio-fic’s much more than revisiting E&D. Your glowing review might tempt me to change my mind. Thanks.

    •  

      It is amazing how 20 years ago sequels were the type of Austenesque novel that was predominantly available. Now look how the genre has changed – so much variety, so much creativity! If you are ever inclined to see the lovely happiness a “marriage of true minds” creates, I’d recommend this lovely sequel novella to you, for sure!

  7.  

    Well done Meredith you echoed my sentiments regarding this book exactly. I just loved Mrs Bennet in this and the Jane and Bingley saga was so believable. Great review 🙂

    •  

      Thank you, Tamara! I remember seeing you reviewed this one a while ago, must check out your review! Yes, I quite liked seeing Mrs. Bennet be something other than an antagonist or annoyance! 😉

  8.  

    I definitely agree with you. I think it’s a perfect length to give you a fluffy glimpse of their life – anything longer and I’d have needed more drama. I really was invested in the Bingleys’ situation, too.

    •  

      I thought the same thing, Monica. If there were a lot more pages or a lot more sequence of events, I would have craved more conflict. Yes, the Bingleys’ storyline was very well done!

  9.  

    Thanks for the lovely review, Meredith – and thank you ladies for commenting. 🙂

  10.  

    What a lovely review, Meredith!
    Thanks, and thank you, Lory Lilian for writing such a lovely story!
    Can’t wait to read it!

  11.  

    Nice review, Meredith! You are always forthright about your tastes, and then review as unbiased as possible. I got interested in Lory Lilian’s books from your review and giveaway of Rainy Days. I won a copy! It was one of my first wins!
    I have read all Lory’s books to date and liked every one. Keep writing Lory!!

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