Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
(Note: This is a sequel to Pamela Lynne’s Pride and Prejudice variation, Dearest Friends, and it is recommended you read that story prior to reading this one.)
In Dearest Friends, Pamela Lynne shows readers what happens when Darcy and Elizabeth lose the trust, friendship, and support of those closest to them. Darcy and Elizabeth are hurt badly by the betrayal and selfishness actions of those they love, but by chance become reacquainted in London and find friendship, compassion, and something infinitely more dear…true happiness and marital bliss!
And some of Darcy’s and Elizabeth’s friends and family members find happiness in marriage as well. But some do not. One couple is forced to go their separate ways (even though both are in love and wish to marry each other!) and another finds themselves living in an unhappy marriage filled with marital strife and misery. It is these two couples we spend the most time with in Family Portraits. But similar to Dearest Friends, this story includes a large cast with many subplots and switching of storylines. Both books are a rather encompassing and epic family saga!
Oh happy day! One of my favorite original characters receives some major time in the spotlight in this sequel! If you read my review of Dearest Friends, then you know I could only be talking about Pamela Lynne’s lovable original character, Sebastian Fitzwilliam, Viscount Hedley (Colonel Fitzwilliam’s rakish and reprehensible brother!) He’s the classic bad boy that everyone warned you about but you end up falling hard for anyway! While he is charming and devastatingly handsome, what I love most about Sebastian is his blunt honesty and how he notices what others don’t. Especially when he sees the value and beauty in a person others often discard and neglect.
In this story we see how Sebastian moves on and becomes a worthy man. He may not be able to pursue a future with the woman he loves, but he still wants to make her proud. And so he strives to always do what is right, to fix the messes he and his family made, and become the kind of man he didn’t think was possible. Sebastian faces some difficult and heartbreaking trials in this book and I loved Pamela Lynne’s sensitive and perceptive development of his character. He will forever remain one of my favorites!
Besides Sebastian (because he is reason numero uno of why I love this book!), another element of this sequel I greatly enjoyed was the creative storylines Pamela Lynne dreamed up for all characters involved. There is a lot of diversity with her storylines (which I appreciated) and I found each one plausible and engrossing. It is always a good thing when you can’t decide which subplot you want to follow most! I loved how even Darcy and Elizabeth got a plenty of page time and how they had to learn how to not let family matters come between them.
And lastly, I loved how this story was told with letters in the beginning and jumps in the timeline supported by summaries of important events. I especially loved witnessing the letters exchanged between Richard and Sebastian, they were hilarious! And speaking of hilarious, wait until you see what happens with Lydia!! What a hoot! It is with these sparkling subplots and attention to small detail where Ms. Lynne’s talent really shines!
I adored this expressive and entertaining pair of books by Pamela Lynne! I loved how Pamela Lynne featured so many characters and intertwining storylines, and I greatly admire her fearless and creative approach to Jane Austen’s characters. If you have not already read these lovely books I recommend you make haste and do so at once!!!
Warning: Due to a few intimate and romantic scenes that take place in this novel, I’d recommend this novel for Mature Audiences only.