Darcy & Elizabeth (Fall River Press Edition): Nights and Days at Pemberleyby Linda Berdoll
“It is a truth universally acknowledged,” Jane Austen wrote, “that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” But after marriagethen what? In Darcy & Elizabeth, Linda Berdoll imagines a future for the characters of Austen’s beloved classic Pride and Prejudice that is full of drama,/b>/i>… See more details below
“It is a truth universally acknowledged,” Jane Austen wrote, “that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” But after marriagethen what? In Darcy & Elizabeth, Linda Berdoll imagines a future for the characters of Austen’s beloved classic Pride and Prejudice that is full of drama, dangerand desire.
It is several years since the felicitous union of Elizabeth Bennet and the dashing Fitzwilliam Darcy at the conclusion of Austen’s novel, and the couple are settling down to a life of domestic bliss, raising their twin infants at the Pemberley estate. All should be happy at home and hearthbut dark clouds
loom on the horizon of Derbyshire. On the continent, the Napoleonic Wars are raging, and Wickham, Lydia Bennet’s despicable husband, has returned miraculously from his presumed death with vengeance in his heart toward Darcy and all whom he holds dear. Meanwhile, haughty Lady Catherine de Bourgh, still stung by her nephew’s betrothal to Elizabeth, schemes scandalously to unite their families’ bloodlines.
Readers who enjoyed Jane Austen’s timeless tale of romance and respectability will thrill to the unbridled emotion and wild abandon of this modern sequel. Darcy & Elizabeth is a tale of pride, prejudice, and passion.
Read an Excerpt
Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove,
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines, and silver hooks.
The inestimable Jane Austen had penned only six books when she died in 1817 at age forty-one. Pride and Prejudice, her third work, was published in 1813 and has been judged by many to be the finest novel in the English language. The story of the courtship of the beautiful and spirited Elizabeth Bennet and the handsome but haughty Mr. Darcy is as brilliant as it is brief.
As remarkable a writer as she was, Miss Austen wrote only of what a respectable unmarried woman in Regency society would be privy to. Therefore, Pride and Prejudice concludes with the nuptials. Regrettably, in ending her story upon the very cusp of what undoubtedly would be a marriage of unrivalled passion, she has gifted many of her readers with an unfortunate case of literary coitus interruptus.
This hunger has spawned a prolificacy of sequels-most attempting to replicate the original in restraint, if not wit. Readers of sequels seem to fall into two categories-those who are longing to learn what Darcy might have whispered into Lizzy's ear in their nuptial chamber, and those who fall into a swoon at the notion of such heresy.
If you, dear reader, happen to fall into the latter category, we offer this caution before you read further: Hang onto your bonnet, you're in for a bumpy ride.
As our story recommences, all should be bliss within the Darcy household. At long last, Lizzy has birthed an heir and Darcy is again by her side. Motherhood, however, has not only rendered her busy and distracted, childbirthitself has left her temporarily "indisposed."Although Darcy's heart aches for what his Lizzy has endured, it is not the throbbing of his heart that is most troubling to his serenity-it is the palpable pain in his loins...
Chapter 1: New Pleasures Proved
To all the world the month of June in the year of our Lord, 1815 would come to be known as the season of Waterloo. To the members of the Darcy household, it would be called that, but not remembered as such. Far too many other events of greater personal importance to them had transpired to remember it so simply.
Although France was the conquered, England paid a harsh price for its victory. The county of Derbyshire was not immune to that heavy toll. So vast were the repercussions, they were felt even within the usually impenetrable walls of Pemberley. Lives were lost, marriages brought about, and babies born all in the space of a few months.
Having weathered these many woes within the bosom of her very own family, Elizabeth Darcy felt exquisitely compensated by the two babes nestled in her arms. Indeed, that her husband had survived war, quarantine, brigands, and pestilence and returned to her whole was all she desired.What wiles he employed and whose auspices he availed himself of as he trekked through the battlefields and drawing rooms of France to accomplish his mission of rescuing his sister was of no importance to her.
Of even less concern was that the emissary he chose to send word to her of his progress was a woman with whom he had once shared uncommon intimacy. Indeed, when at last he had returned to his wife's waiting arms, all question of his connexion with that beautiful woman was forgot. At least at first, but not for long.
Of even less importance was whether George Wickham was actually dead and buried or was gallivanting about the Continent.
Whilst Wickham's fate remained unknown, there were other vexations. What with Mrs. Darcy labouring to withstand a growing curiosity (approaching to eclipse the Alps in dimension) as to just what went on between her husband and his fetching French emissary, and Mr.Darcy labouring with equal vigour to withstand a desire for his nursing wife aroused to a similar degree, a dance of uncommon peculiarity commenced.
It extended well into the next year.
Meet the Author
Linda Berdoll is the author of Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, another sequel to Pride and Prejudice, as well as Very Nice Ways to Say Very Bad Things.
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