Caroline Bingley

After reading through the collection of Jane Austen’s books I was given several suggestions by fellow blogger Dot at La Deetda Reads. She had suggested two books, Charlotte Collins and Caroline Bingley by Jennifer Becton. I had looked into the story about Charlotte first and discovered that it sounded familiar. I had read the book about four years ago, so I crossed that book off my list and went in search of Caroline Bingley from my library.

Caroline had been exiled from her family and she was sent to her mothers home. Caroline was very resentful of her brother and the Bennett sisters but she was determined to get back into his good graces and to find herself a wealthy suitor.

I was apprehensive of reading this story because like many who have loved Pride & Prejudice Caroline’s character was not loved. She was snotty and thought she was above everyone else, especially the Bennett sisters. After reading Jennifer Becton’s novel I will have to say that I like Caroline, don’t love her character, but definitely liked. I thought Becton did a really fantastic job on keeping Caroline’s character in tact from the original story.

In this novel Caroline was the main character, which really let you get to know her. I liked her in this novel because you got to read that she truly loved her family and wanted what was best for everyone. She just goes about things the wrong way. It also helped that Caroline was given a dose of her own medicine. She is humbled by the situation which lets her truly follow her heart.

In the end I was cheering for Caroline to find that happy ending with the right man.

Charming Sir Charles

Sir Charles had been courting Lady Norwood but she was oblivious to his attempts. Charles knew that he had to step up his attempts and he will get the chance with the help of Sally’s niece.

Lady Norwood, Sally, was escorting her niece Meg. Sally was happy with the season especially as Meg had a suitor, Sir Charles. Sally thought they would be a good match but she was conflicted as she wanted him, though she knew she could never have him.

Charming Sir Charles is the fifth novella to the series Dashing Widows by Anna Campbell. I was a little disappointed with this novella. It really didn’t have anything to do with the plot as I liked the idea of the plot. A younger man (only by four years) was wanting a mature woman instead of a school lady who would be eighteen. This plot had promise but for me it was slow going and not as fun as the other. The reason for me was Sally’s character. I thought Sally was a good woman and was trying to do what was right but she was so unsure. She drove me a little crazy with the switch of wanting Charles and then not wanting him. I just wanted her to make the decision. I also just wasn’t connecting with her character.

After reading this one from Anna Campbell I am hoping that the sixth novella from the Dashing Widows will be better. When the sixth story comes out I will give it a try and hope for the best.

Pursuing Lord Pascal

pursuing-lord-pascalAmy, Lady Mowbray was not really ready for society but she made a pact with her two friends. Amy will do her best and will be surprised when the man she had a crush on since she was a teenager had taken an interest in her, and as a member of the Dashing Widows she was going to take a chance with Lord Pascal.

Gervaise Dacre, Lord Pascal needed to marry a wealthy heiress but none of them were interesting him. Then Pascal spots a woman he needed to know. Pascal will pursue Amy relentlessly and will find himself falling for her.

Pursuing Lord Pascal is the fourth book to the series Dashing Widows by Anna Campbell. I liked this novella. I thought it was a good continuation to a series that I thought was finished. In the third book Campbell finished with the three original friends but in the fourth one, three more friends are introduced and are determined to do the same as the the widows before them.

Amy was a sensible young woman in my opinion and was very smart. I liked that she was not afraid to explore her own interest which was with farming. Amy was also cautious with her heart which helps when there will be trouble coming her way. When that trouble comes I was happy to read that she wasn’t too scared to just talk about the problem. Pascal was a rake and in trouble financially. I liked him though he had to mature some which Amy will make sure that he does.

I am looking forward to reading about the other two friends.

A Scot in the Dark

a-scot-in-the-darkMiss Lillian Hargrove was ruined by society’s standard. Knowing that she had only a little time before she was publicly disgraced Lily was planning her escape. The only problem was her guardian showed up and was insistent that she not run from her problems.

The Duke of Warnick hated everything English but he was determined to make sure his ward was taken care of. Warnick would make sure Lily was protected through a marriage. Though with feelings starting to form it was hard for Warnick to have Lily go with another.

A Scot in the Dark is the second book in the series Scandals & Scoundrels by Sarah Maclean. I ended up liking the novel. I thought it was cute but it was tough at times to keep with it, especially in the beginning.

Lily’s character was one that I grew to like. I thought she was interesting but she kept wanting to leave and express her misery. I understood why she was sad but it seemed that it went on a lot. She got better when she found herself challenging Warnick and really discovering what she wanted in life.

Warnick’s character was a man that didn’t want his dukedom. He was against it and against everything English. I actually really liked Warnick and wanted to know about his past as Maclean kept bringing up his shame. I wanted to know what he did that made him that shameful. The shame which kept getting brought up was a little much at times but once I found out what had happened Warnick’s character made sense.

The relationship between Lily and Warnick was driving me crazy. They were at some point arguing with each other, wanting each other and feeling ashamed for their own particular issues. All of these things are not bad, it was just expressed a lot. It helps when Maclean gives a little more explanation about the characters past.

The next book to this series comes out in June 2017.

Mr. Darcy Presents His Bride

mr-darcy-presents-his-brideAfter reading all of Jane Austen’s stories I wanted to read just a little more but as I couldn’t get any more from Austen I decided to try a book that was a continuation of Pride & Prejudice. I had gotten Mr. Darcy Presents His Bride years ago for Christmas from my parents. It has been awhile since I read the book. I was happy to read this book again because it is really well written and a great sequel to a book I love so much.

The book is simply a continuation of the story Pride & Prejudice. Helen Halstead writes about the lives of Elizabeth and Darcy. She also writes about the family and friends that know Elizabeth and Darcy, along with some new friends they make in their come out as husband and wife.

I liked how Halstead wrote the continuation because it really showed how the characters lives had altered into a new way of living. I loved how Elizabeth felt overwhelmed but because of her charm she was able to glide through society, though it was still a struggle. She had to make sure not to embarrass her husband and to make sure they don’t lose their love for each other. It was interesting that Halstead gave each character a chance to have their own thoughts told on the page. You were really able to get to know the characters from Halstead’s words.

There was definitely some sad news that I didn’t like towards the end but you knew it would happen. Though I think Halstead brings it together to give you that happy ending which many have dreamed for Elizabeth and Darcy.

Well that is it for me with reading stories all related towards Austen, at least for now. I am sure I will come up with some more adaptations or inspired Jane Austen stories through my search of other authors to read.

Lady Susan

lady-susanI had only just recently heard about the short story of Lady Susan and the reason I heard about it was because my cousin had seen the movie Love & Friendship, which is Lady Susan in movie form. Well, needless to say when I heard about this story I immediately went to Amazon and found that it was free but I waited to read it until I was done with all of Jane Austen’s novels.

So, this book is about a woman, Lady Susan, who is going through town and finding mischief along the way.

I really liked this short story. It flowed really well once I got into the writing. What was different about this story was the format. The story was written in letter form. This kept my interest as I kept wanting to read what was happening with Lady Susan and what she was doing around town. Lady Susan’s character was an interesting character. She was more of a villain type than all other heroines in Austen. She was very much all about herself and her needs. Those needs did not extend to her daughter. I got the distinct impression that she didn’t really care for her daughter. Based on how she treated her daughter, she would certainly never earn any mother of the year rewards. What also made her different from other Jane Austen female leads was that she was the one pursuing the man but the man was younger and of course wealthy.

What bugged me about the story was that there was no inner thoughts from these characters. I wanted to know what Lady Susan thought or her daughter. I wanted more of a background of these characters. Though I suppose that would come if this story was longer and in a different format. This didn’t bug me to the point of not wanting to read the story but it made me wonder.

Well, I have finished with reading Jane Austen.  I have a couple other books related to the story of Pride & Prejudice that I am thinking about reading.

Persuasion

persuassionPersuasion is the one novel that I was not really anticipating to read from Jane Austen.

The book is about a young woman Anne Elliot who had broken off an engagement to a poor officer. Now eight years later that poor officer, Captain Wentworth, is wealthy. Anne regrets letting her family persuade her but she has to live with her consequence.

So, years ago I had tried to watch the movie and it just bore me to death. Although, I have to remember I was ten years old and any movie that wasn’t animated or comical would not hold my attention. Now, before I read the book I decided to watch the movie which was made in 2007 and all I can say was, I was captivated. There was no time in the movie I wanted to fast forward. Sure I wanted to shout at Anne to do what she wanted. To marry the man that she wanted. The ending had me smiling but I had wondered if that ending would ever happen.

After I watched the movie I was very much looking forward to reading the story. I really liked the story but saying that I wonder if I would have liked it if I didn’t watch the movie. By watching the movie before reading the story I was able to follow along when the writing got a little long in certain parts.

I will say that one thing which bugged me was how Anne’s character just did whatever her family had said or requested. Anne was always in the background but no one really noticed her. I wanted Anne to break free of that hold they had on her. Also, her family was just horrible to Anne, but Anne didn’t stop their behavior. Although there was someone, which was Captain Wentworth. I liked that even though he had been hurt by Anne there was still a good man underneath all the hurt. He helped Anne out because he was a kind man which I loved about him.  What kept me interested in the story was the interaction of Wentworth and Anne. There were both unhappy yet content to live their lives with how they were living. Though they will get it right, it just takes losing each other again to make them realize how they still feel.

I am reading my last Jane Austen novel, Lady Susan, next.