Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
Elizabeth Baker has bad luck when it comes to relationships. Since she was thirteen she has been in love with Mr. Darcy and holds hims as the ideal mate to measure all other men against. After a recent relationship disaster that did not end up with the marriage proposal she was expecting, Elizabeth decides to have an extended visit with her sister, Jane, in London to help get over her broken heart. However, Elizabeth’s holiday in London takes an unexpected turn as crashes a car into a ditch and winds up unconscious after trying to drive in England for the first time. The next thing she knows she is being addressed as Elizabeth Bennet of Longbourn…
It is every Pride and Prejudice fan’s dream come true isn’t? Even though Elizabeth remembers her real life and the world she came from (and realizes her presence in this fantasy world might mean she is not okay in the real world) she is fully prepared to live out her dream of being with Mr. Darcy! As an ardent fan of Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth knows the “script” and knows what parts she and the other “characters” must play. But there are still many surprises in store for Elizabeth as some encounters are happening differently from the book and some characters aren’t exactly acting as she would expect them to!
I love adventures like this one where a modern-day Jane Austen fan gets to have a taste of living in Jane Austen’s world (or in this case the world of Pride and Prejudice!) I’ve read a couple stories that are similar in premise (Attempting Elizabeth, Leap of Hope, and Yours by Design series to name a few), and can never get enough! This story is unique in that it veers in an unexpected direction… Without spoiling anything I will say that Elizabeth starts to feel conflicted about her feelings for Mr. Darcy and perturbed to discover that her traitorous heart begins to feel affection for someone else! Ack!! I absolutely adored this twist and thought it was brilliant! How many times do people fantasize about something only to finally have it in front of them and realize it isn’t what they wanted after all?!? I love how Ms. Whitman has turned both Elizabeth’s understanding of Pride and Prejudice and her own universal truths on their ears!
I adored our heroine Elizabeth, she is immediately likable with her Mr. Darcy obsession, and she earned my sympathy and compassion for all the horrendous relationships she experienced! Poor girl! I completely understand her heart’s leanings and I loved, loved, loved all her scenes and special moments with this particular character. So very swoon-worthy! Their tree, riding horses, the wet-shirt, the proposal – I need my smelling salts! I loved following along on Elizabeth’s journey and especially loved how it all ended. (sorry to be vague, spoilers!) It was very gratifying and executed wonderfully! I was put in mind of The Wizard of Oz a little, perhaps there was some slight influence there!
While I loved witnessing Elizabeth’s bold way of speaking her mind, I was sometimes bothered by her modern speech and slang. Not because she used modern speech and slang, (I think that is to be expected!) But because she didn’t seem to make much of an attempt to speak less modern, and that the other characters never really questioned her strange word usage. My other small quibble is with Mr. Darcy, whose feelings and thoughts I felt needed a little more explanation. His character seemed just a little less developed than some other characters.
However, these minor quibbles didn’t diminish my pleasure in this diverting and romantic fantasy adventure! This story is an entertaining and enchanting read for readers who dream of waking up in Elizabeth Bennet’s shoes and experiencing Pride and Prejudice firsthand. I’m so excited to see what sort of adventures are in store for these characters in Ms. Whitman’s sequel – Becoming Mr. Bingley! 🙂