Sep 252017

My New Favorite Man in a Redcoat!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Source: Review Copy from Author

Since her plans for a grand match for Charles fell through when he married Jane Bennet, Caroline Bingley turns to her other brother, Captain Robert Bingley, to achieve a brilliant marriage and fulfill the connections and elevation she feels the Bingley family needs (and deserves!) And she has just the girl in mind…her dear friend, Miss Helena Paget. Charming, beautiful, delicate, and witty – Helena Paget is an ideal choice, not to mention she is already besotted with Robert, besties with Caroline, and the niece of an earl! Up to her usual machinations, Caroline has decided Jane and Charles must invite Miss Paget to their small holiday gathering at Netherfield when Robert has two weeks leave from the army. It will be the perfect setting for him to court Miss Paget and eventually propose! What could go wrong…

Mary Bennet is very disappointed to hear that several strangers are joining their family party at Netherfield. She doesn’t feel comfortable around people she doesn’t know, and she is fully aware that she has “never mastered the art of social niceties.” Fortunately for Mary, she finds Miss Helena Paget to be very kind (not at all like Caroline, phew!) and Captain Bingley quite handsome. But it is immediately clear where Captain Bingley’s affections lie, so Mary knows that there is no prospect for her (or Kitty) in that quarter (which is fine, because marriage frightens her). But it looks like Mary’s heart has other ideas, and poor Mary suffers because she knows it cannot be…

Oh, yes. From the very first moment I read the back cover and discovered that we were meeting a new Bingley brother, my pleasure in this story was a sure thing! I love stories about secondary characters, and Mary Bennet is one of my favorites to see featured as a heroine. I love the dichotomy of her being introverted and shy, yet decided in her opinions and firm in her judgements. I thought it was absolutely lovely to observe Mary falling in love, yet finding herself in the very unhappy position of knowing it must be unrequited. She handles it all most admirably. In addition, I thought Helena Paget was a great new addition, and an ideal adversary for Mary because she is so flawless, beautiful, and everything Mary feels she is not.

However, Ms. Lawrence’s portrayal and thoughtful development of Mary Bennet isn’t the only thing I loved about this story. Far from it! I must admit, with his rugged handsomeness, honorable charity towards others, and kind demeanor I quite lost my heart to Captain Bingley! He is very much Charles’s brother with his friendliness and charm, but at the same time he isn’t one easily controlled and is more confident in his actions. I loved and admired Captain Bingley for his honorable actions involving a mistreated stable boy, and for how he noticed Mary Bennet and found so much to appreciate and applaud in her character. I always love it when a dashing hero understands and recognizes an unassuming heroine’s true worth.

Aside from Captain Bingley and Helena Paget, Ms. Lawrence created several more original characters for her tale – an unfortunate stable boy named Daniel Westover and the vicar of Meryton, Mr. Penrose. Both these characters effect some change and some turbulence within this story. Daniel is a delight and my heart warmed seeing his relationship with the Bennet sisters and Captain Bingley. In addition, I thought Mr. Penrose quite charming and masterful in his handling of some people… I hope this isn’t the last we see of him!

I am exceedingly pleased with this lovely, sensitive, and well-composed sequel to Pride and Prejudice! I love that Nancy Lawrence featured Mary Bennet, introduced stimulating new characters, and constructed a beautiful story of strength, inner beauty, compassion, and heart. I sincerely hope we see many more Austenesque novels from the pen of Nancy Lawrence!!! I highly recommend!

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  28 Responses to “Mary and the Captain – Nancy Lawrence”


    Got my paperback, just need to set aside a few undisturbed hours to read


    Now THAT sounds like a great story. Will have to get a copy!


    With your review I’m sure this book will be my cup of tea!. I didn’t know Nancy Lawrence but from this moment I’ll check her novels 😉
    As you, I love finding new stories about Mary. Bravo Mary Bennet!


      Yay! I think it will be! I believe this is Nancy Lawrence’s first Austenesque book, I definitely hope we see some from her!

      You will definitely be cheering Mary on in this story!! 😉


    I have not read any by this author but you do write a review which makes her book sound intriguing. I mostly focus on P&P variations but this might be an exception. Thank you for sharing.


    Great review and this is one that has been on my wishlist since it came out! I just have to bump it up to my TBR list!!! Hopefully, soon! I do love secondary character stories!


    This sounds delightful, and I’m going to have to grab it. I only have to wonder: if the two Bingley boys are so lovely, what happened to Caroline??


    Just making mary the spotlight wins me over. And another bingley brother!
    Win win situations!


    This novel was a surprisingly delightful and romantic tale. I greatly enjoyed it and hope ‘s.. Lawrenae continues to write more of Mary’s story.


    This sounds very interesting. I do love reading about Mary Bennet finding her own perfect man and if he just happens to wear a redcoat — well, better and better!


    Oh, Meredith, I loved this story and that delightful child… my heart went out to him. He was adorable. Fantastic review. Well done.


    Wow, Meredith! I’m thrilled you enjoyed reading about Mary’s path to love with dashing Captain Bingley. Thank you for your very kind review of Mary and the Captain!


    Sounds fascinating.


    I was already intrigued by this story after I first read about it. Now I want to read it even more! And who wouldn’t fall for a hero in a red coat?


    Nancy: I hope that you are planning to write another Austen continuation novel. Mary and the Captain was so well written and such a pleasure to read. Mary Bennett has always been one of my favorite Austen characters. I did a brief search for another novel written by you, but did find one. Any suggestions for me — one of your creations or a book that you favor by another author.Thanks for your time, Roberta


    Thank you for such a beautiful review Meredith! I’ve added this to my TBR pile as soon as I finished reading your review. I love books whose main character is Mary Bennet, and I dearly love to see her fall in love 🙂

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