Goodly Creatures: A Pride and Prejudice Deviation

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Overview

A life altering event inextricably links a fifteen-year-old Elizabeth Bennet to Fitzwilliam Darcy while simultaneously creating an almost insurmountable divide. This Pride and Prejudice deviation takes the reader on a journey through a labyrinth filled with misunderstandings, bias, guilt and fear--not to mention, laughter, animal magnetism and waltzing. As Elizabeth says, 'she shed enough tears to float one of Lord Nelson's frigates' but as she also observes 'unhappiness does, ...
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Goodly Creatures: A Pride and Prejudice Deviation

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Overview

A life altering event inextricably links a fifteen-year-old Elizabeth Bennet to Fitzwilliam Darcy while simultaneously creating an almost insurmountable divide. This Pride and Prejudice deviation takes the reader on a journey through a labyrinth filled with misunderstandings, bias, guilt and fear--not to mention, laughter, animal magnetism and waltzing. As Elizabeth says, 'she shed enough tears to float one of Lord Nelson's frigates' but as she also observes 'unhappiness does, indeed, have comic aspects one should never underestimate.'

Though the path for our protagonists is much more ardurous than canon the benefit remains the same, a very happy Janeite ending for these two soul-mates. Along the way there is retribution, redemption and reward for other characters--including a few that recall players in Ms Austen's 'Sense and Sensibility.' While reading her first published novel, I came across grievances so unjust that they called out to this long-time struggler for women's rights. With this novel, I became determined to give them some vindication.

A sampling of comments left for this story at an online Jane Austen fan fiction site:

Thank you for bringing this amazing, complex, heart-wrenching, story to a beautiful conclusion. Beverly K--Wellington, New Zealand

Awesome story. Could not sleep until I finished it. Riveting reading. Well done.
J. Bolinas--Sydney, Australia

Beautiful story, one that made me both laugh and cry. Amy A--Pacific Northwest, USA

Such a good job of presenting a subject that affects women (and the men who love them) today as much as in that day... your writing draws out the fear behind what a victim is unwillingly to voice out loud and then cauterizes the wound after it is revealed and cleansed of its venom. Jan L--Pacific Northwest, USA

It was more than good -- it was beautiful. I have tears in my eyes. Christine Marciasini--Italy

That was beautiful! It was perfect. One of the best stories I have read. Lauren R--San Juan, Puerto Rico

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781470045340
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication date: 3/1/2012
  • Pages: 636
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.28 (d)

Meet the Author

Beth Massey lives in Chicago with her husband of forty plus years.

Her first love as child in Chattanooga, Tennessee was the theatre. She spent her youth preparing for a creative life on the stage. A voracious reader, she devoured plays and novels with an eye toward imagining how she would play certain characters. Beth joined the Chattanooga Little Theatre's youth troupe at age eight. She was awarded a work study scholarship to Monticello College in Godfrey, Illinois in the theatre department. While there, she played numerous roles-from Shaw to Shakespeare. After transferring to Barnard College in New York City as a junior in 1967, she switched her major to literature. But, 'the times they were a changing.' She threw herself into the struggle against war, racism and the emerging women's liberation movement that had broken out all over the United States. One of her first acts of expressing her convictions was to participate in the Columbia University student strike in the spring of 1968.

It was during this time, she met her husband Bill. Together the two-first as friends and then as partners-have devoted their lives to political activism. Beth spent her working hours as a payroll manager. In 2008, her job of seventeen years was outsourced. Given a compensation package that allowed her to stay home with an already retired Bill, she embraced the opportunity that working '9 to 5' had made a challenge for most of the years of their marriage. Though Bill's ability to be active has been curtailed by AMD, COPD and a debilitating essential tremor, his wit and knowledge are as sharp as ever. Ms Massey now spends her days in the company of her well-informed best friend and the two are free to engage in a great deal of conversation. Jane Austen would approve.

Beth may have left a life in the theatre behind, but the desire for a creative outlet and a need to sketch the human character is still fervent. Goodly Creatures is the first endeavor of her new found leisure time.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2012

    While it is accurate the content of this novel is difficult, it

    While it is accurate the content of this novel is difficult, it rings very true. The story is compelling yet sensitively written with nothing graphic. A similar thing happened in Sense and Sensibility to a fifteen-year-old, so I disagree that the plot was not like Austen. It is fashionable among Austenesque literature to make Elizabeth a damsel-in-distress and Darcy a romantic hero who comes to her rescue. IMO that is far removed from anything Austen was trying to say. I liked that Elizabeth and Darcy were not so in Goodly Creatures. They were regular human beings with flaws. She was strong (like the original Elizabeth) with a better reason than in canon to cling to her prejudices--though as a reader I knew she needed to throw them over if she was to heal. He was a rigidly good man (like the original Fitzwilliam) who felt compassion and struggled to see the truth, though convential wisdom said he should not bother. I believed their attempts to change and worried when they had trouble seeing through their misunderstandings much as I did when I read the original. Pride and Prejudice was never so much about romance to me, as it was about two humans with the very best motive to improve--attraction, affection, respect--in other words love. I felt that was what Goodly Creatures was all about and I enjoyed it. I loved that 'the letter' was from Elizabeth to Darcy--so many of the words and phrases were Austen's but they took on such different meanings.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 22, 2012

    If you are a true fan of P&P retellings and variations DO NO

    If you are a true fan of P&P retellings and variations DO NOT waste your money or bother with this book. By the third chapter I was literally sick to my stomach. I could not believe what I was reading. Our precious Elizabeth is raped by Darcy's cousin Lord Something or other and was set up for it by none other than Darcy's wife/cousin Anne. YES that Anne, this author actually had them married!!!!! That right there should have been my first clue the author does not understand our Beloved Darcy.
    I am slowly making my way through all the retellings,prequels,diaries and sequels and I have read some really really bad ones but this is by far the worst. I felt as though with each line I was being slapped in the face.
    Believe me I love the retellings they are my favorite but there should be some silent rule as to how far a variation should go. Even An Unpleasent Walk by C.Rafe knew when to draw the line. I loved that book so I am not totaly oppsoed to taking a retelling in another direction but I am disgusted as to how the author could take such beloved characters and porrtay in such a manner is beyond me. Spoiler alert it ends well but I could not stomach the whole book so I peeked.That is 4 dollars and half a morning I will never get back.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 30, 2013

    different

    I did enjoy this version of Darcy's love for Elizabeth and how he overcame her fear and gained her trust.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2012

    Loved it!

    I loved Goodly Creatures and had trouble putting it down to go to sleep each night. I enjoyed how Elizabeth and Will's relationship progressed and was VERY happy about the final outcome. I am always so impressed when I read a well written book and marvel at the talent it takes to write one. Well done!

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  • Posted April 27, 2012

    Although the story was different, I enjoyed it. I am a true P&a

    Although the story was different, I enjoyed it. I am a true P&P fan and was disappointed with Darcy married to Anne but I understand it is a different twist for the characters of P&P. From reading P&P, I don't think Darcy's character would marry Anne even to save her from her mother. Don't misunderstand the story was well written even if I found some mistakes but it broke my heart not to have Elizabeth and Darcy's son take over Pemberley. This story should have had both Anne and her baby die but the story made me feel the pain and suffering of Elizabeth. I enjoy history but it was alittle too much. Great story though!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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