Praise for Pride and Prescience
The Library Journal named it one of the five best mystery books of 2004.
"Carrie Bebris pulls off quite a coup with this novel. She has an acute ear for the language and wit of Pride & Prejudice, along with a real empathy for the
characters. She has also constructed an entertaining and satisfying mystery, producing a novel that is enormous fun." -- Jane Austen's Regency World
-- Library Journal
"Austen fans will delight in this novel, which easily immerses readers into Regency England and the lives of the captivating Darcys."
-- Romantic Times Book Club
Bio on Carrie Bebris
She was an editor of the fantasy publisher TSR for many years and even published a few of her own fantasy books herself. Carrie holds a master's degree in English literature with an emphasis on 19th-century authors and studied Austen on the graduate level with one of the country's most respected Austen scholars. She is a longtime member of the Jane Austen Society of North America and has taken research trips to England to enhance her understanding of Austen's life and work.
Carrie related this tidbit about Darcy being the hero of her new book:
Shortly after I sent the final draft of Pride and Prescience off to my editor, a British survey of 1,900 female readers identified Mr. Darcy as the literary character with whom women would most like to go out on a dinner date. Of the next six characters on the list, five were detectives or crime fighters. So I figure Mr. Darcy as a detective makes him pretty much the perfect hero!
My Review of Pride and Prescience (Or a truth universally acknowledged) A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery:
Let me first qualify this review by saying that we will be hard pressed to find a Jane Austen spin off novel that reaches the high level to where we have placed Jane Austen's original novels. That said, I think that Pride and Prescience by Carrie Bebris is one of the few spin offs that I would consider recommending because she gives us what we have wanted in regards to Pride and Prejudice – she lets us back into the lives of Elizabeth and Darcy and lets us see what happens next, what they are like as a married couple. She includes great characterizations of the characters though maybe not being precisely as Jane would have done (I mean who can do it as well). Ms. Bebris still did an exceptional job. In the first chapter, you not only get to see Elizabeth and Darcy along with Jane and Bingley, but you see all of the perfectly crafted characters that we love from the original text - Mr. Collins and Charlotte, Mr. and Mrs. Bennett, Caroline Bingley, Louisa and Mr. Hurst. And throughout the novel, OVERALL, I found that the characters continued along the path that Miss Austen would have approved of.
The story picks up at the double wedding of Darcy and Elizabeth and Jane and Bingley. And it is at this most intimate and happy occasion that Caroline Bingley announces her own engagement. Due to the imminent nuptials of this new couple, Elizabeth and Darcy prolong their return to Pemberley. In fact, throughout the book they are wishing they could be there at Pemberley. After Caroline's speedy wedding, disturbing and unexplained things begin happening to Caroline which brings them all back to Hertfordshire and Netherfield. The unexplained continues and it is up to Mr. and Mrs. Darcy to figure out this series, of what seem supernatural, happenings before things get any worse.
I really enjoyed the characters and getting to see them in a new light. I think they are true to the original text, mostly. It was truly great to see Darcy and Elizabeth married and how they truly loved each other and complimented each other so much. It was also nice to see the banter (though now in a light manner) between them did not cease when they said 'I do'. This was expected in Elizabeth but even Darcy would initiate it at times to the surprise of his bride. And Darcy was ever Darcy, still strong and taking charge in time of trouble.
The one thing that bothered me was that the plot line was essentially a paranormal one. I would have to ask the author why of all the plot lines that she could have come up with, did she choose this direction. I know that Northanger Abbey is considered a Gothic novel and maybe this is why along with her background in writing fantasy that the author chose this plot. But still I would struggle with this story line especially with it being a spin off of such a classic favorite as Pride and Prejudice. If this had been any other story (not connected with Pride and Prejudice) the supernatural storyline would not have bothered me.
The idea of this Gothic paranormal story may throw some of you off, but don't. Though I don't exactly agree with the plot idea; it is still a good book with great characterization and, I must say, it was very well written and easy to plough through in a couple of days. The author obviously had done a lot of research and knew the Regency era quite well. As a mystery, I continually kept trying to reason out who was behind everything, changing my mind and the scenario several times. This book really can be enjoyed even if you have never read Pride and Prejudice, but it is even more pleasurable if you have. I really enjoyed reading it. I give it my recommendation. A-
Look for book #2 Suspense and Sensibility and #3 North by Northanger.