Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
TYPE OF AUSTENESQUE NOVEL: Pride and Prejudice Variation
TIME FRAME: Begins 4 months after the Hunsford proposal in London
SYNOPSIS: Still heated after Mr. Darcy’s disastrous and offensive proposal, Elizabeth reads only the beginning lines of his haughty letter the next day and decides she cannot bear any more. In her anger, Elizabeth returns to Darcy and tears the letter to pieces before his very eyes. Four months later Elizabeth has often felt terribly ashamed of her cruel actions and temper. While she doesn’t regret refusing Mr. Darcy’s marriage proposal, she regrets destroying his letter and the manner of her refusal. Even more so now, because Elizabeth finds herself in need of Mr. Darcy’s help. Her family has no one else to turn to and she hopes that his good opinion isn’t totally lost forever…
WHAT I LOVED:
- Tormented and Bitter: What an inventive twist, what a painful and completely shattering situation. After such a heartrending and hurtful encounter, it is conceivable to understand that Mr. Darcy, like Captain Wentworth, is holding onto some resentment and bitterness. After all, his heart was just torn to pieces and he does admit one of his flaws is his resentful temper. It was interesting twist to see Darcy so angered and resentful towards Elizabeth. But before you go believing that he is monstrous ogre that isn’t recognizable, I will say that Ms. Lilian does a wonderful job of giving little glimpses of the man underneath all this resentment and anger. His mask cracks from time to time and we see his love, tenderness, and vulnerability.
- Relationship with Georgiana: I love when Elizabeth has a special relationship with Georgiana and how their closeness makes Darcy so happy. Although in this tale it was equal parts a cause of concern and a cause for happiness! Either way, Georgiana was adorable and I loved seeing her find comfort and friendship with Miss Lizzy!
- Relationship with Bennets: One of my favorite parts of the story was seeing how Darcy’s opinions changed about the Bennets and how many of the Bennets changed their opinions about Mr. Darcy. I especially loved what evolved between Mr. Bennet and Mr. Darcy – warmed my heart! And Mr. Darcy was adorable with how he handled Mrs. Bennet!
- Repressed and Restrained: With their tempestuous exchanges and private anguish both Darcy and Elizabeth believe that any sort of future between them is completely improbable and hopeless! But we, the reader, know that can’t be so…Lory Lilian would never do that to us!!! However, with both Darcy and Elizabeth hiding their true feelings and constantly avoiding each other it makes you wonder how anything will get any better between these two! I loved how Ms. Lilian took her time exploring the emotional development between these two characters and how she never gave anything away too early or too quickly! She made us wait for it!
- Learning His Character: Since Elizabeth didn’t read Darcy’s whole letter she lacks a bit of understanding about the man. But she is nearly always thinking of him and trying to figure him out. So many of his actions puzzle her. I enjoyed witnessing how Elizabeth grew to understand, appreciate, admire, and love Darcy bit by bit, layer by layer.
- Lady Hardwick, Didi, and Mist: I have always been a big fan of any original character created by Lory Lilian! I adored the new Lady Hardwick and her strong affection for her niece and nephew in this novel. I thought her penchant for asking seemingly innocent questions that truly aren’t so innocent was brilliant! And big applause for the way she handled Miss Bingley! In addition, I absolutely adored the two little furry friends in this story – I want my own Didi and Mist to cuddle and travel to the park with!
WHAT I WASN’T TOO FOND OF:
- I really can’t think of anything! 😉
NOTE: Only one intimate scene in the last chapter (before epilogue).
In her latest Pride and Prejudice variation, Lory Lilian offers a dramatic and daring premise that is wonderfully executed and will completely enthrall the reader. Written with heartrending poignancy and powerful yearning, A Man with Faults is another magnificent tale to treasure from Lory Lilian!