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Fitzwilliam Darcy’s beloved sister Georgiana is now a woman of twenty. After living in the enclosed safety of Pemberley for years, she is sent to London for the season with Lady Catherine de Bourgh as her chaperone. Lady Catherine is determined that her niece shall make a splendid match. But will Georgiana allow her domineering aunt to decide for her? Or will she do as her brother did, and marry for love?
Can Georgiana Darcy find happiness in love when Lady Catherine takes charge of her love life?
Debut JAFF author, Eliza Shearer, has done a nice job writing a story from Miss Georgiana Darcy’s point-of-view, while also creating a variation that blends three of Austen’s stories into one variation in Miss Darcy’s Beaux. After Georgiana’s disastrous affair with George Wickham, Georgiana is left feeling very insecure about her abilities to discern the intentions of future suitors. As Elizabeth is also at Pemberley while suffering some serious complications during her second confinement, Darcy agrees to send Georgiana to Town for a Season with Lady Catherine. Initially hesitant to be away from Pemberley, as well as Darcy and Elizabeth, Georgina travels to Town with Lady Catherine, and quite pleased that Colonel Fitzwilliam has also agreed to spend time as their escort in London.
It’s no surprise that Lady Catherine approaches her matchmaking attempts for Georgiana with sheer determination and the skills of a true proficient. Naturally, this makes Georgiana uncomfortable, but it does expose her to a wide array of “suitable” gentleman. However, Georgiana’s skills at perceiving a rake from a proper husband have not significantly improved from her days at Wickham’s side, so when she finds herself attracted to Fanny Price’s brother, William, she is unsure about how to comprehend her growing feelings for him. Before she even knows how it has occurred, she has quite a few gentleman interested in pursuing her.
Over time, Georgiana’s new relationship with Anne Wentworth, née Elliot, helps her develop more self-confidence, while she also feels more secure that she can also one day enjoy the felicity and respect in marriage, similar not only to Darcy’s and Elizabeth’s marriage but also to Anne’s and Captain Wentworth’s marriage. Yet, the path to finding her own suitor doesn’t unfold without some bumps and detours in the road and when Darcy does something rather unexpected, Georgiana is unclear about how to confide her inner desires to him. Can she truly expect to make the best decisions for herself with so many roadblocks in her way?
Miss Darcy’s Beaux is a sweet story and is a rather quick read at nearly 200 pages. Miss Shearer has a nice writing style, and while parts of the story were predictable, there were a couple of twists tucked within this story that kept my interest engaged throughout the story. I wasn’t sure what to expect from a variation that blends together these three Austen stories, but I found that I loved spending time getting to know William Price. He’s such a thoughtful and respectable character. I’d love to read more variations with him as a supporting character! I also enjoyed spending time with Anne and Captain Wentworth, as there are so few Persuasion sequels to offer a glimpse into their marriage.
I must say that once the story ended, I wasn’t sure how I felt about Colonel Fitzwilliam. I enjoyed that he received a good amount of “screentime” in this story, but I wasn’t too crazy about him once his motives were revealed. I am curious to see how other readers respond to his character in this story.
Even though this is a story I would recommend for readers who enjoy alternate character stories in JAFF, I have to mention that there are some slight errors and inconsistencies in the storylines that may be distracting to readers. Assembling a cast of characters from Pride & Prejudice, Mansfield Park, and Persuasion is an ambitious way for a writer to create a JAFF story that delivers a fresh, new story with some of our favorite characters; yet the story would be stronger without these errors.
If you’re looking for an easy read told from Georgiana Darcy’s point-of-view, with a little bit of Mansfield Park and Persuasion mixed in, this book is a good choice for you. Thank you, Eliza Shearer, for writing a story that allows us to experience this fun mix of characters and storylines.
Ms. Shearer would like to offer a giveaway of this eBook to one of my Just Jane 1813 readers. Please leave a comment on this post no later than midnight, ET on June 30. The winner will be announced on this blog on July 1, 2017.
Thank you to Ms. Shearer for sharing this giveaway with my readers and for writing this fun story.
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