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Darcy and Elizabeth are about to learn how “necessity” never makes a fair bargain.
When ELIZABETH BENNET appears on his doorstep some ten months after her refusal of his hand in marriage, FITZWILLIAM DARCY uses the opportunity to "bargain" for her acceptance of a renewal of his proposal in exchange for his assistance in bringing Mr. George Wickham to justice. In Darcy's absence from Hertfordshire, Wickham has executed a scam to defraud the citizens of Meryton, including her father, of their hard-earned funds. All have invested in Wickham's Ten Percent Annuity scheme. Her family and friends are in dire circumstances, and more importantly, Mr. Bennet's heart has taken an ill turn. Elizabeth will risk everything to bring her father to health again and to save her friends from destitution; yet, is she willing to risk her heart? She places her trust in Darcy's ability to thwart Wickham's manipulations, but she is not aware that Darcy wishes more than her acquiescence. He desires her love. Neither considers what will happen if he does not succeed in bringing Mr. Wickham before a magistrate. Will his failure bring an end to their “bargain”? Or will true love prevail?
Can a bargain between two headstrong people evolve into a lifetime of happiness?
When Elizabeth Bennet (who never received the letter Darcy wrote to her in Kent) and her Uncle Gardiner show up in London, ten months after Darcy’s failed marriage proposal, asking him for his help, can Elizabeth really expect the gentleman to assist her during her time of need? Once Darcy learns the particulars of her family’s troubles and realizes that there are many people in Meryton affected by her family’s woes, Darcy must decide what’s in it for himself as he plots to best George Wickham against his vicious schemes towards the residents of Meryton. But are Elizabeth and Darcy truly both willing to enter a marriage of “convenience” just to save Bennet’s neighbors from financial ruin? Once Darcy and Elizabeth decide upon the terms of their “bargain,” they set to work together to unravel Wickham’s schemes.
Mr. Darcy’s Bargain is a fast-paced, adventure-filled story that contains a nice mix of romance and intrigue as many of our favorite characters become personally invested in beating Wickham at his nefarious plots. Once Darcy and Mr. Gardiner take the time to survey the situation, plans are set into motion to fool Wickham and recover the thousands of pounds that are at stake between the residents of Meryton. Foolish Mr. Bennet! After placing his own family and friends into a perilous situation, he now has no other recourse but to work in conjunction with Mr. Darcy in an attempt to help him save his reputation in Meryton after his carelessness allowed him to fall for Wickham’s plots. As Elizabeth becomes an intimate part of their operation, Mr. Bennet and Darcy grow weary about allowing her to remain involved in their plans; however, it’s unclear to both of them how they can be successful without Elizabeth’s timely interventions.
Yet, even with the support of friends and family, including Colonel Fitzwilliam and Charles Bingley, things don’t fall neatly into place the way that Darcy and Elizabeth had initially hoped for, and with each one doubting the other’s true intentions, misunderstandings and arguments become all too frequent between the two of them. As tenuously as their bargain began, the nature of their relationship follows a similar course and becomes filled with uncertainty for a happy future together. As both of them seem to grow more stubborn about their true feelings, events unfold that cause them to grow even further apart. Was there ever any real hope that their bargain would bring happiness to either one of them?
Regina Jeffers knows how to write a variation that pulls readers quickly into her plot and makes them cheer for our dear couple from the very first chapter. I loved the clever schemes that Ms. Jeffers put together throughout this story and the wild twists and turns that she throws in along the way that makes the characters work even harder to find solutions to their dilemmas. The story moved at a pretty even pace throughout the book and maintained a moderate amount of angst for the majority of the story.
My only quibble about this story was that there were a few loose ends that I didn’t feel were wrapped up by the end of the book in the manner that I would have liked to see them resolved. I had some questions pertaining to some of the supporting characters and I had wished I would have learned a bit more about their situations by the end of this story.
All in all, Mr. Darcy’s Bargain is an entertaining tale of precarious beginnings, nefarious schemes, and a hard-earned happily-ever-after!
I’d like to thank Ms. Jeffers for providing me with the opportunity to read an eARC of this story for a fair and honest review.
Regina Jeffers, an award-winning author of historical cozy mysteries, Austenesque sequels, and retellings, as well as Regency era romances, has worn many hats over her lifetime: daughter, student, military brat, wife, mother, grandmother, teacher, tax preparer, journalist, choreographer, Broadway dancer, theatre director, history buff, grant writer, media literacy consultant, and author. Living outside of Charlotte, NC, Jeffers writes novels that take the ordinary and adds a bit of mayhem.
To connect with Regina, send her a line at the virtual spaces listed below:
Every Woman Dreams Blog reginajeffers.wordpress.com
Austen Authors Blog austenauthors.net
Regina Jeffers Website (excerpts, news, and events, reviews, etc.) www.rjeffers.com
You may also find Regina at the spaces below:
Twitter @reginajeffers https://twitter.com/reginajeffers
I have two giveaways of this book for my Just Jane 1813 readers. To enter your chance to win one of her two ebooks of “Mr. Darcy’s Bargain,” please leave a comment on this blog by midnight, ET on November 23rd. The winners will be announced on November 25, 2016.
Thank you, Regina Jeffers, for writing such an adventurous story for JAFF readers and for your generous giveaways for my readers!
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