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Death Comes to Pemberley

Average Rating 3.5
( 362 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

21 out of 30 people found this review helpful.

recommended.

I've read many British mystery books by Phillis.James, so naturally had to get the next book. It did not disappoint!

posted by simple344 on December 7, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

20 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

Disappointed.

Honestly, I am very disappointed in this novel. This is my first time reading anything by PD James but I am unhappy. I LOVE Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite novels. I feel like Austen's novel was tainted. "Death comes to Pemberley" was...
Honestly, I am very disappointed in this novel. This is my first time reading anything by PD James but I am unhappy. I LOVE Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite novels. I feel like Austen's novel was tainted. "Death comes to Pemberley" was confusing, dull, and tedious. The only positive thing I can say was of the storyline. The plot was interesting but it didn't materialize properly and was undeveloped. Also, Elizabeth, the main character in Pride and Prejudice barely existed in James's novel. The tone and manner of the novel was dull and hard to understand (I am an avid reader). It was disheartening to say the least! No wonder Austen didn't want anyone using her novels in any way for use after her passing.

posted by yowen2010 on December 20, 2011

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  • Posted December 20, 2011

    Disappointed.

    Honestly, I am very disappointed in this novel. This is my first time reading anything by PD James but I am unhappy. I LOVE Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite novels. I feel like Austen's novel was tainted. "Death comes to Pemberley" was confusing, dull, and tedious. The only positive thing I can say was of the storyline. The plot was interesting but it didn't materialize properly and was undeveloped. Also, Elizabeth, the main character in Pride and Prejudice barely existed in James's novel. The tone and manner of the novel was dull and hard to understand (I am an avid reader). It was disheartening to say the least! No wonder Austen didn't want anyone using her novels in any way for use after her passing.

    20 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 21, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Riddled With Errors

    It is a truth universally acknowledged that the writer of a sequel should carefully read the original. From the first paragraphs through the entire work, James gets her references to the events and especially the timeline of "Pride and Prejudice" wrong as often as right. She even managed to work a glaring error into a reference to "Emma"! It's disappointing that an author of James' caliber and stature would so carelessly and disrespectfully mangle another author's work.

    Without the constant irritation of these easily avoided errors, this mystery would have been a fairly amusing, if shallow, confection. As it stands, I can't recommend it to anyone who knows and loves their Austen.

    17 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2011

    Not impressed!

    It was very difficult to finish this novel. I seriously doubt Jane Austen would of written Death comes to Pemberly as a sequel to Pride and Prejudice. I also found it disturbing that the author briefly linked Jane Austen's Persusion to this novel. I certainly hope this novel isn't made into a movie. It would be an insult to her literary fame.

    6 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 13, 2012

    Underwhelming

    I really wanted to like this book, but found it quite boring. It's difficult to build on Jane Austen's classic and I was disappointed that I ended not caring much for many of the characters. The only upside was that it was a pretty quick read. Very cool idea but the actual story was weak.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2012

    I can't believe I read the whole thing

    The language pulled me in during the sample read, so I decided to give this a try. But dear Jane, I'm so sorry I betrayed you! I lost my pride as well as my prejudice! Whatever made me think anyone else could succeed your original work? Death came to Pemberly painfully and much too slowly. It needed to be put out of its misery about two hundred pages sooner. If you are looking to be truly reminded of Austen's genius, reread her books. If you are looking for an absorbing murder mystery full of intrigue, you won't find that here either.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2012

    A disappointment

    Too much rehashing of what we already know about the characters. Doesn't seem possible, but the DArcys were actually dull. This was certainly not we have come to expect from P. D. James.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2012

    Not Highly Recommended

    I did not enjoy the simplistic style of the author's writing. The events are plainly stated with little detail and basically no dialog. It doesn't do Jane Austen justice.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2012

    BETTER TITLE THAN BOOK

    I love Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and looked forward to reading this continuing story. It was long, and at times I found it hard to stay focused in my reading. What should have taken just a couple days to read took weeks. Boring, drawn out, and a let down.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 3, 2012

    Interesting start, but disappointing second half

    I've read Austen, and some James. The combination sounded interesting, and the book gets off to a good start. But halfway through, it seems to completely lose its way, and turns into the haves vs the havenots. This battle is raging in a much more interesting way on our streets right now! Sadly, the whodunit here is completely unbelievable, farcical in fact, so the story goes nowhere. The only character the reader can care about - Wickham - turns out to have selfish and biased motives like the rest, so we stop caring. Solve this one, Ms. James - the reader buys this book hoping for at least a good yarn, then just gets a good yawn, and decides never to buy another one of your books. Whodunnit? Certainly not you!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2012

    Lacked emotion

    I was so looking forward to this book and was pretty disappointed with it. As a crime novel it is decent but there are barely any scenes with Darcy and Elizabeth (and hardly any Elizabeth at all). It lacks emotion and rehashes too much...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2012

    Boromg Boring

    The characters have lost all their spark and personality. I didnt like how the author had Elizabeth and Darcy keep apologizing for the misunderstandments in Pride & Prejudice.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 17, 2012

    Well, I felt like it started out strong and I was interested and

    Well, I felt like it started out strong and I was interested and into it, but it lost me at the end, it was so disappointing. There was such promise and I felt like the author took the unfortunate, taudry,boring way out...if you're an Austen fan, maybe just skip it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 19, 2012

    This is my first time picking up a P.D. James novel and I was d


    This is my first time picking up a P.D. James novel and I was disappointed. Fantastic idea of placing a murder at the palatial residence of one of Austen’s most endearing stories, Pride & Prejudice. I adore Ms. Austen’s works but in reading Death Comes to Pemberley, I was bored at P.D. James’ recapping of the story lines of P&P. I guess she did so for those who’ve never read P&P?

    I felt the main characters of Death Comes to Pemberley, chiefly Elizabeth, Colonel Fitzwilliam, and Darcy were quite dissimilar to their respective characters in P&P. Colonel Fitzwilliam came across as stuffy and pompous; Elizabeth lacked her pert sardonic wit; and Darcy seemed ineffectual. They were dull in Death Comes to Pemberley – which is incredible. And Lydia was barely in the novel when [SPOILER ALERT] it’s her husband, George Wickham, being accused of murder!

    The voice of Rosalyn Landor was fine when she read as Elizabeth and Jane (and the various other female characters in the novel). But her reading of the male characters was horrible – they all sounded very much alike. I was annoyed, especially at her chosen voice for Colonel Fitzwilliam.

    On a positive note, I liked that P.D. James made reference to characters from other Austen novels, namely Persuasion and Emma. And I liked P.D. James’ inventive recounting of Darcy’s family history – the life of his grandfather, Darcy’s mother, the Bidwells (the family that served Pemberley for many generations).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2014

    Not her best.

    The novel is a so so mystery compared to PD James usual standards. Okay but not her best. As an Austen continuation it is very weak. There are mistakes about the period and the background of the characters. James got it wrong about Colonel Fitzwilliam's position and suitability as a husband, for example.

    If you like cotinuations even when they don't do either author justice, this should be okay. But I was really disappointed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2014

    The only parts I enjoyed were the references to Pride and Prejud

    The only parts I enjoyed were the references to Pride and Prejudice.

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  • Posted August 22, 2013

    It drones on and on with details that are silly or useless.  The

    It drones on and on with details that are silly or useless.  The book is simply too long.  The story is enjoyable, mysteries can be difficult to write.  I appreciate the effort.

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  • Posted July 21, 2013

    Stylistically perfect, beautifully researched, terrifically bori

    Stylistically perfect, beautifully researched, terrifically boring.

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  • Posted July 19, 2013

    I have never read anything else by PD James and will not be incl

    I have never read anything else by PD James and will not be inclined to. This was mediocre "fan fiction"; characters and much of the narrative story were re-gurgitated from Jane Austen's classic. Looping in the Knightleys from Emma? Borrow this from the library for a quick read but not worth paying for.

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  • Posted April 13, 2013

    mixed feelings about this book

    I had a mixed reaction to this story. I did read it all but there were parts that I didn't like. Some of the characters were a little different for instance Elizabeth Bennett and Colonel Fitzwilliam were more attractive characters in Jane Auseten's Pride & Prejudice.

    I don't think that introducing a murder plot fits very well with Pride and Prejudice. This was my first time reading anything by P.D.James.

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  • Posted April 7, 2013

    Meh! I have not read any of P.D. James' books, nor have I read

    Meh! I have not read any of P.D. James' books, nor have I read Pride & Prejudice, although I am quite familiar with the story due o hvainjg seen thr TV series (with Colin Firth) several times. However, I love mysteries, and Ms. James is reputed to be one of the best. Am I the only person who guessed the killer about one-third into the story?

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