Me and Mr. Darcy

( 70 )

Overview

Dreams come true in this hilarious, feel-good fairy tale about life, love, and dating literature?s most eligible bachelor!

After a string of disastrous dates, Emily Albright decides she?s had it with modern-day love and would much rather curl up with Pride and Prejudice and spend her time with Mr. Darcy, the dashing, honorable, and passionate hero of Jane Austen?s classic. So when her best friend suggests a wild week of margaritas and men in Mexico with the girls, Emily abruptly...

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Overview

Dreams come true in this hilarious, feel-good fairy tale about life, love, and dating literature’s most eligible bachelor!

After a string of disastrous dates, Emily Albright decides she’s had it with modern-day love and would much rather curl up with Pride and Prejudice and spend her time with Mr. Darcy, the dashing, honorable, and passionate hero of Jane Austen’s classic. So when her best friend suggests a wild week of margaritas and men in Mexico with the girls, Emily abruptly flees to England on a guided tour of Jane Austen country instead. Far from inspiring romance, the company aboard the bus consists of a gaggle of little old ladies and one single man, Spike Hargreaves, a foul-tempered journalist writing an article on why the fictional Mr. Darcy has earned the title of Man Most Women Would Love to Date.

The last thing Emily expects to find on her excursion is a broodingly handsome man striding across a field, his damp shirt clinging to his chest. But that’s exactly what happens when she comes face-to-face with none other than Mr. Darcy himself. Suddenly, every woman’s fantasy becomes one woman’s reality. . . .

Praise for Me and Mr. Darcy:

“…Unexpectedly charming. . . Me and Mr. Darcy offers a Pride and Prejudice - appropriate surprise. . . it turns out to be one of the wittier of this summer's offerings, not to mention sharp and sad in its observations about what spinsterhood, identity and aging look like for women in 2007.” — Salon

“[Me and Mr. Darcy] takes the reader on an extended daydream with an appropriately pleasant ending. “ — The Indianapolis Star

“Alexandra Potter’s clever comedy, an affectionate celebration of books and readers — and bookstores — might lead you to start browsing those travel websites yourself.”
The Times- Picayune

“Pure candy for the imagination. . . Ms. Potter has worked literary magic with the creation of Me and Mr. Darcy.” — CoffeeTimeRomance.com

“…Refreshing…” — Publishers Weekly

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

U.K. author Potter makes her U.S. debut with Emily Albright, 29, a New York bookstore manager, who half-seriously blames Jane Austen's Fitzwilliam Darcy for her abysmal dating life: Darcy sets the bar too high. As Christmas approaches, Emily, to avoid a holiday with co-worker Stella, signs up for a tour of Darcy territory, lighting out, amusingly, with a gaggle of gray-haired Darcy maniacs. As the tour group weaves in and out of Darcy locales, Emily butts heads with Spike Hargreaves, a handsome young journalist interviewing the group. Soon, the jet-lagged, drink-laden Emily finds herself-presto!-time traveling and meeting Mr. Darcy himself, complete with frock coat. As her acquaintance with Darcy deepens, Emily, to her great surprise, finds herself thinking about Spike. Despite the plot's predictability, Potter's chick lit take on Darcy has a refreshing not-trying-to-equal-the-master feel. (July)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345502544
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 6/12/2007
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 344,601
  • Product dimensions: 5.19 (w) x 7.97 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single girl in possession of her right mind must be in want of a decent man.

There’s just one problem . . .

“So we had a drink each and shared a pizza, but you asked for two extra toppings on your half, which means you owe . . . Hang on a minute, I’ve got a calculator on my BlackBerry . . .”

Sitting in a little Italian restaurant on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, I stare across the checked tablecloth and watch, dumbfounded, as my date pulls out his CrackBerry and proceeds to cheerfully divvy up the bill.

. . . where on earth do you find a decent man these days?

I’m having dinner with John, a thirty-something architect I met briefly at a friend’s birthday party last weekend. He seemed nice enough when he asked for my number—nice enough to share a pizza with on a Tuesday evening after work, anyway—but now, watching him hunched over the table, number-crunching, I’m fast realizing I’ve made a mistake.

“. . . an extra seven dollars and seventy-five cents, and that includes tax and tip,” he declares triumphantly, and shows me the screen to prove it.

A very big mistake.

0

To be honest, I blame Mr. Darcy.

I was just twelve years old when I first read Pride and Prejudice and I fell for him right from the start. Forget fresh-faced Joey from New Kids on the Block or leather-clad Michael Hutchence from INXS—whose posters I had tacked to my wall—Mr. Darcy was my first love. Devastatingly handsome, mysterious, smoldering, and a total romantic, he set the bar for all my future boyfriends. Snuggled under the bedcovers with my flashlight, I couldn’t wait to grow up so I could find a man like him.

But now I have grown up. And here I am, still looking.

Digging out a twenty-dollar bill from my pocket, I pass it to John.

“Have you got the seventy-five cents?” he prompts, his hand still outstretched.

You have got to be kidding.

Except he’s not.

“Oh . . . um . . . sure,” I mutter, and begin rooting around in my change purse.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not Renée Zellweger. I don’t need a man to complete me. I have a career, I pay my own rent, I have a set of power tools and I know how to use them. And as for the other thing, well, that’s what battery-operated toys were invented for.

I hand John the seventy-five cents. Then watch in disbelief as he proceeds to count it.

Still, that doesn’t stop me hankering after a bit of that good old-fashioned romance I’m always reading about in books. Or daydreaming about meeting someone who could sweep me off my Uggs and set my pulse racing. A dark, handsome, faithful man, with impeccable manners, brooding good-looks, witty conversation, and one of those big, broad, manly chests you can rest your head upon . . .

Instead, in the last twelve months, I’ve been on one disastrous date after another. Now, OK, I know everyone has a bad-date story to tell. It’s completely normal. Who hasn’t been out with Creepy Guy/Mr. Nothing in Common With/The Forty-Something Fuck-Up (delete as applicable, or in my case, don’t delete any of them)? It’s just part of being single. It has to happen once. And twice is bad luck. But a whole string of them?

For example, here are a few off the top of my head:

1.Bart had “issues with intimacy.” Translated, this meant he wouldn’t hold my hand as it was “too intimate,” but it was perfectly OK to ask me back to his place to watch a porn movie on our first date.

2.Aaron wore white cowboy boots. Which is bad enough. But after canceling on me at the last minute, telling me that he had to work late, I spotted the boots glowing in the darkness of the movie theater that night. Scroll up and there was Aaron in the back row with his tongue down another girl’s throat.

3.Then there was Daniel, the nice Jewish banker who invited me over for a home-cooked dinner. Unfortunately, he “forgot” to tell me it was his mother doing the cooking. Sorry, did I say mother? I mean, smother. Five courses and three hours of listening to how fabulous Daniel was later, I managed to escape before she got out the baby photos.

4.And now there’s John, otherwise known as Mr. Chivalrous . . .

“So, how about we do this again?” he’s asking me now as we’re leaving the restaurant.

“Oh—” I open my mouth to reply but instead give a muffled yelp as John lets the door swing back in my face. I just manage to stop it with my elbow. Not that he notices—he’s already on the sidewalk lighting up a cigarette.

Rubbing my bruised elbow, I join him outside. After the warmth of the restaurant the cold hits me immediately. It’s December in New York and it’s way below zero.

“What are you doing Friday?” he persists, raising his eyebrows and taking a drag of his cigarette.

Oh, hell, what do I say now?

I falter. Come on, Emily. You’re both adults. It will be fine. Just be honest and tell him.

Tell him what? pipes up a little voice inside me. That you’d rather stick pins in your eyeballs than go on another date with him?

“Um, well, actually—” I say in a constricted voice and then stop mid-sentence as he blows smoke in my face. “I’m kind of busy,” I splutter.

Busy being too busy to go out with a complete dickhead like you, pipes up that voice again. Only this time it’s yelling.

“Too many parties, huh?”

Trust me, I so want to be honest. Why let him off the hook with an excuse? Why protect his feelings? What about those of the next poor, unsuspecting girl he’s going to date? It’s my duty to tell him. I mean, not only is he cheap and rude, but he has hair plugs.

That’s right. Hair plugs.

I glance at them now. Under the streetlamp you can see the neat little rows dotted across his shiny scalp. Tiny seedlings of hair planted in a desperate attempt to disguise his receding hairline. Despite my feelings, sympathy tugs. Oh, c’mon, don’t be so mean, Emily. He deserves understanding and kindness, not judgment and derision.

Swallowing my annoyance, I force a smile. “Yeah, ’fraid so.” I nod, rolling my eyes in a “Phew, I’m exhausted from all this crazy partying” kind of way. Honestly, I could be an Academy Award– winning actress, not the manager of a quirky little bookstore in SoHo.

In truth I’ve been to one party. It was at the Orthodontists’ Society and I had a cold. I spent the whole evening popping Sudafed and discussing my cross-bite, and I was in bed by nine-thirty. The excitement nearly killed me.

“But it was nice meeting you,” I add warmly.

“You too.”

John appears to visibly relax and I feel a warm, virtuous glow envelop me. See. Look what a difference a few kind words can have. Now I feel really good about myself. Saint Emily. Hmm, it’s got quite a ring to it.

Buoyed up by my success, I continue: “And the plugs are amazing.”

“Plugs?” John looks at me blankly.

Shit. Did I really just say that?

“Er . . . I meant to say pizza. The pizza was amazing.” I’m flustered, blushing beet-red and trying not to look at his hairline, which of course my eyes are now drawn to with some kind of magnetic force.

Argghh. Look away, Emily. Look away.

There’s an excruciating pause. We both try to pretend we’re not aware of it. Me by picking my cuticles. Him by surreptitiously patting his hair and checking out his reflection in the restaurant window when he thinks I’m not looking. Guilt overwhelms me. Now I feel like a really bad person. Maybe I should apologize. Maybe I should—

In one seamless move, John takes a final drag of his cigarette, grinds it out under his foot, and lunges for me.

Oh, God. This isn’t happening. This can’t be happening.

It’s happening.

For a split second I freeze. Everything seems to go into slow motion. I watch him looming toward me, eyes closed, mouth open, tongue sticking out, and realize he’s misinterpreted kindness for a come-on. Fortunately (or should that be unfortunately?), I’ve been on enough bad dates in the last year to keep my reflexes sharp, and at the last moment I come to and manage to swerve just in time.

His lips crash-land on the side of my face and he plants a sloppy kiss on my ear. Eugghhh. I pull away sharply. Even so, it’s a bit of a struggle as he has his hand wrapped around my waist like a vice.

We spring apart and face each other on the sidewalk.

“Well, in that case, I think I’ll grab a cab home,” he says curtly, stuffing his hands into the pockets of his pleated pants.

“Yeah, me too,” I reply shakily, wiping my spit-soaked ear with my sleeve.

Silence. We both stand at the curb trying to hail a cab. Finally, after a painful few minutes, I see the familiar sight of a yellow cab with its light on. It pulls up and I heave a sigh of relief and reach for the door handle, but John beats me to it. I’m pleasantly surprised. At last! A bit of chivalry.

Heartened, I soften and throw him my first real smile of the evening as he tugs open the door. Perhaps I’ve misjudged him. Perhaps he’s not so bad after all.

Without hesitation, he jumps inside and slams the door.

“Well, thanks for a great evening,” he says, sticking his head out the window. “Happy Holidays!”

“Hey!” I yell, suddenly finding my voice. “Hey, you’ve stolen my—”

But the cab takes off down the street with a screeching of tires.

Abandoned on the slushy sidewalk, I watch the taillights disappear into the traffic and, despite my anger, I suddenly feel myself crumple inside. Unexpectedly my eyes prick with tears and I blink them back furiously. Honestly, what’s gotten into me? I’m being ridiculous. The man was a total moron. I’m not upset. I’m fine, totally fine. And sniffing determinedly, I stuff my hands in my pockets and head off in the direction of the subway.

“You should have called the cops.”

It’s the next morning and I’m at work at McKenzie’s, a small, family-owned bookstore, where I’m the manager. I look up at Stella, my assistant, who’s standing on a stepladder stacking books.

“Why? For stealing the first cab?” Smiling resignedly, I pass her more titles. “Please, Officer, my date stole the first cab. He’s not a gentleman. Arrest him.”

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 70 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(23)

4 Star

(22)

3 Star

(14)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(5)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 70 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 22, 2007

    A reviewer

    I have to write this while my thoughts are still fresh on the subject. Because I will completely forget this entire book within the next few days. It wasn't particularly interesting, funny, or original. There is supposed to be a paranormal element to it but I never bought it or was invested in that part of the storyline. The love interest had such little interraction with the main character I found it hard to believe that he fell in love with her or that they had any sort of chemistry. I'm honestly surprised something like this got published.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2013

    Good Story but the Typos Make it Harder to Enjoy

    I thought this had a cute story idea. I especially liked the idea that a modern woman's interaction with Mr Darcy would be far from the romantic ideal I certainly had in mind.

    But there are way too many typos!! "Um" is consistantly typed as "Urn" and an italicized I is alwayss forward slash as wellas random letters where I assume punctionation should be. And then there is the poor formatting. I can only assume someone besides the author typeset this and it was never proofread.... Its too bad because it distracts from the story and expect better for tbe pricd of the book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2013

    This book was not even worth finishing. I managed to get about t

    This book was not even worth finishing. I managed to get about two-thirds through, but it was so unoriginal and poorly written that I could not continue. If you are a loyal Austen fan, I would not recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2012

    Fun

    Modern day pride and prejudice

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2012

    Great take!

    Read this book several times and it is always good!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 26, 2011

    Enjoyed it

    I really enjoyed this book. I love pride & prejudice and found it very interesting to see how mr darcy and a present day woman would interact

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 30, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Ehh...

    The book started out nicely, you like Emily, the heroine and the story line. But I could never like Spike, the new Mr. Darcy. The story wasn't very creative. Emily has dreams and hallucination throughout the book where she thinks she's actually talking to a real Mr. Darcy. The fights between Emily and Spike were taken directly from Pride and Prejudice with no change. For those Pride and Prejudice lovers, read Shannon Hale's Austenland.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2008

    An Enchanting Trip

    Although the language was not very creative, Me and Mr. Darcy is an easy read with a lovable plot. One can envision the characters perfectly with Ms. Potter's good descriptions, and one can feel transported to a land where time is void. I loved the hardy, English atmosphere of the novel, and the heart-warming characters like Rose, Rupinda, Hilary, Maeve, and, of course, Ms. Steane! If one is looking for a good book on a rainy day, I highly recommend Me and Mr. Darcy. It is a delightful escape.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2008

    So terrible I had to put it down.

    Honestly I had to stop reading this book after about 50 pages because the writing was horrific, and caused me to cringe in literary agony every other paragraph. A good idea for a story gone horribly wrong by writing that seems to be created by an 11 year old. Not only was it bad, but the wrong also assumes the reader is an idiot, explaining things in boring and petulant detail. I have never written a review for a good or bad book before, but I wanted to write one for this to caution people AGAINST spending money on this painful dribble...I really wish I could return it.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2007

    A reviewer

    Beyond the initial spark to create a modern day Mr. Darcy, I can't believe this book was published. I seriously wondered if a 5th grader wrote it. Had I not been stuck on a plane, I'd have recycled it after the first 40 pages (instead of donating, because I wouldn't want someone else to suffer through it). The protagonist is supposed to be a well-read 28 year old book store manager and self-proclaimed geek who adores the classics...and yet she has no original thoughts, no in- depth observations, and the most mundane speech. The lead curses like a sailor and has the maturity and vocabulary of a 12 year old. The author employs the word 'plonked' to its greatest extent. The 'banter', if you could call it that, was tedious and did NOT make me want more. In a nutshell, the characters were not believable or well developed, and the book was not well written, in my opinion. If you loved Jane Eyre, Pride and Prejudice, or books by modern day romance writers such as Julia Quinn and Karen Moning, don't bother with this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 11, 2007

    Excellent

    For Darcy lovers and avid readers alike, Potter spins a tale that captures the essence of Jane Austen and provides a modern twist on a classic tale. Relaxing, creative, and captivating read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 7, 2014

    SOOOOOOOOO romantic!

    My first book by Alexandra Potter. You figure out quite quickly what's going on and what is going to happen. Set in Jane Eyre's England, the characters are great. A very good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2013

    Entertaining

    I enjoyed this book. It isn't the most amazing romance ever written, but it kept me well entertained.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2013

    I love this genre but was disappointed. There was a lack of chem

    I love this genre but was disappointed. There was a lack of chemistry between the characters. But, it certainly wasn't all bad, and was a nice way to spend a day with a cold.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2013

    This should be rated a zero!!!

    What the fire...
    This was
    Sooooooooooo
    Fudging lame but cute
    Seriously DO NOT BUY
    Get your friend to buy it and then eat poison berries cause this is like a faux hawk a knock-off

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2010

    Simple

    Being a person who did not read Pride and Prejudice before this book, I found it extremely charming and thought it had a unique twist. It is great for light reading, but if you plan on finding any answers or wisdom hiding between the lines then I wouldn't reccomend this book. For an avid reader it could seem immature or predictable, but the humor and romance of the story makes it an enjoyable book.

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  • Posted July 16, 2010

    Are you kidding me???

    This was by no means a good book - or any relevance to Mr Darcy. The main character, who 'meets' Mr Darcy comes across sounding like an idiot rather than an intelligent 29 year old woman who loves books and words. Why is it that every other word spoken by her to Mr Darcy was either slang or curse word?
    The character portrayal was poor as was the writing. An Unfortunate waste of money.

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  • Posted April 10, 2010

    Me & Mr. Darcy....not really enjoyable

    I did not like this particular novel & being a "Jane Austen" fan- this did not suit well with me. This is not a keeper in my library. The character of "Mr. Darcy" was not used to a better advantage in this book- all in all -the characters were not very agreeable/likeable.....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2009

    Good Read

    Its a well written book with developed characters, it flows easily couldn't put it down BUT if you are in love with Fitzwilliams Darcy this is not the book for you... In a way it makes you dislike Darcy a lot...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2009

    Good for a Fun Book

    I borrowed this from a fellow Pride and Prejudice fan and thought it was fun to read, and it showed Mr. Darcy in a new light. The story is somewhat predictable, but it was good none the less

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