Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
Diverging her path from Jane Austen’s just days after Darcy’s disastrous proposal at Hunsford Parsonage, debut author Jan Hahn delivers a riveting Pride and Prejudicevariation that is full of conflict, deception, mystery, and romance. Similar to Mr. Darcy’s Proposal by Susan Mason-Milks, Mr. Darcy’s Obsession by Abigail Reynolds, and To Have His Cake by P. O. Dixon the characters of this novel are greatly impacted and affected by the death of Mr. Bennet. Because of Mr. Bennet’s premature and unfortunate passing, the Bennets must leave Longbourn, move to smaller lodgings, and the eldest daughters must look for governess situations, unless Elizabeth accepts the aid and arrangements offered to her by Mr. Darcy…
As you may have guessed given the title of this Pride and Prejudice variation, Elizabeth nobly sacrifices her happiness and romantic desires by unwillingly accepting the hand of Mr. Darcy, the man she emphatically refused to marry just six months before. Being the fiercely independent and slightly stubborn heroine we know and love, Elizabeth experiences quite an emotionally turbulent journey. Throughout the pages of this well-crafted variation we witness Elizabeth battle between her anguished grief, former prejudices, jealous suspicions, and her burgeoning feelings of love.
What I loved most about this splendid variation was that it was told solely from Elizabeth’s point of view, and that the reader was able to observe all her feelings, thoughts, and emotions first hand. It seems that most retellings of Pride and Prejudice tend to focus on Darcy and allow readers to get inside his head; this alternative perspective was refreshing and illuminating. Readers are able to comprehend why Elizabeth is resentful and distrusting of Darcy when he doesn’t confide in her, refuses to answer her questions, seems to have an uncommonly familiar relationship with her maid, and claims to have only married her because she would be a good influence and companion for Georgiana. Witnessing Elizabeth’s struggles and sorrows, the reader cannot help but feel sympathetic and even more endeared to this beloved heroine.
Although the main focus of the novel is Elizabeth and Darcy, readers will be pleased to see that Georgiana and Colonel Fitzwilliam receive a lot of page time and are given some interesting character development. The relationship between Georgiana and Elizabeth in this novel is especially sweet and charming. I took pleasure in seeing Georgiana confide her past dealings with Wickham, go to Elizabeth for advice about love, and divulge her deepest secrets.
GIVEAWAY!!! Thanks to Jan Hahn and the lovely people at Meryton Press I have ONE beautiful new copy of An Arranged Marriage to give away to ONE lucky winner!
All you have to do is leave a comment on this review. (To save your inbox from unwanted spam, please don’t leave your email address.) Just check back to see if you win! This giveaway is open worldwide!
This contest will end February 13th! Thank you for entering and best of luck!