Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
TYPE OF AUSTENESQUE NOVEL: Pride and Prejudice Variation
TIME FRAME: Begins with Mr. Darcy’s arrival in Hertfordshire + prologue and epilogue
MAIN CHARACTERS: The Bennets, The Darcys, Lady Catherine, Anne de Bourgh, Colonel Fitzwilliam, and James Hamilton (original character)
SYNOPSIS: Throwing Pride and Prejudice and its beloved characters on their ear, Anngela Schroeder has crafted a variation where at the start of the novel both Darcy and Elizabeth are engaged (or assumed engaged) to someone else. What happens when they meet and feel some stirrings in their heart? What happens when they wish to declare their love for each other, but can’t?
WHAT I LOVED:
- Double Whammy: I’ve read stories where Elizabeth is engaged or married to someone else, and some where Darcy is engaged or married to someone else, but this story had BOTH characters engaged and bound by honor to someone else! I love how having both characters unavailable upped the ante a little. Even if one of them were to break or be released from their engagement it didn’t necessarily mean anything would change for the other person… It definitely left me anxiously wondering how Darcy and Elizabeth can be together!
- Darcy and Elizabeth are Utterly Adorable: Both characters spend a lot of time analyzing their feelings and situations in this story. It was adorable to witness both characters feel the stirrings of love and the moments of realization when they realize their heart is irrevocably lost to the other. I loved seeing all the cute moments where both Darcy and Elizabeth would voice their heart’s longings privately in a place where they didn’t think anyone would hear them. Especially when Lizzy talks to Mr. Darcy’s books and the moon.
- Romantic and Enchanting: Ms. Schroeder definitely knows how to pen some romantic and eloquent passages full of ardent yearning and devotion! *sigh* I loved witnessing the playful banter and friendship between Darcy and Elizabeth, but I loved the heart-stopping moments where there is so much tension and chemistry you are just dying for them to admit their feelings for each other!
- Different Principal Characters: This premise travels a good deal away from canon and with that different characters come into the spotlight. Georgiana, Kitty, and the de Bourghs are much more present in this variation, and while it was lovely to see more of Anne, Kitty, and Georgiana, Lady Catherine is truly corrupt and malicious! I also enjoyed Ms. Schroeder’s original characters, especially James Hamilton, Elizabeth’s childhood friend turned suitor. He was an interesting mix – added some tension, inspired some jealousy, and caused a misunderstanding or two! However, he was absent a lot and I sometimes found myself wishing he received more page time.
WHAT I WASN’T TOO FOND OF:
- Some Small Quibbles: I loved the endearing and tender scenes between Elizabeth and Darcy when they were alone together, although sometimes I did find some of their actions and situations a little too open or surprising given the propriety dictates of the day. SLIGHT SPOILER ALERT!: In addition, while I understand Darcy staunchly wanting to honor his dear mother’s wishes, I kind of feel he would have been at more of a crossroads about following through with the engagement when he realizes the possibility of Anne’s affections lying elsewhere. However, these small matters did not mar my enjoyment of this beautiful romance. 🙂
Tender, poignant, and beautifully romantic – A Lie Universally Hidden is a wonderful choice for readers who love to see Darcy and Elizabeth become friends first, the younger Bennet sisters redirected onto more favorable paths, and Lady C receiving her just desserts! I cannot wait to see what Anngela Schroeder writes next!
Anngela is giving away two autographed hard copies (US mailing addresses only) 2 kindle versions (Open to international winners), an autographed copy of Then Comes Winter (US mailing address only) and an autographed 5×7 print of the A Lie Universally Hidden book cover.
Commenting and entering through the rafflecopter widget on this blog enters you in a chance to win!
- This giveaway is open worldwide (with some shipping restrictions).
- This giveaway ends January 29th.
Thank you to Claudine Pepe and Anngela Schroeder for making this blog tour possible!
January 16/ My Jane Austen Book Club
January 17/ From Pemberley to Milton
January 18/ A Covent Garden Madame Gilflurt’s Guide to Life
January 19/ So Little Time…
January 20/ My Vices and Weaknesses
January 21/ Babblings of a Bookworm
January 22/ Just Jane 1813
**January 23/Austenesque Reviews**
January 24/ Obsessed with Mr. Darcy
January 25/ Every Savage Can Dance
January 26 / Diary of an Eccentric
**January 27 / Austenesque Reviews**
January 28/ My Kids Led Me Back to Pride and Prejudice
January 29/ Savvy Verse & Wit