The Mistress's Black Veil: A Pride and Prejudice Vagary

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Overview

In this new twist to Jane Austen's favorite romance, M. K. Baxley explores the road that might have been taken had one small alteration occurred in the original plot. Instead of Lydia Bennet going to Brighton while Lizzy toured the Lakes, what if she had gone instead while Elizabeth visited Charlotte in Kent?

In this tale of Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth was called home immediately after receiving Mr. Darcy's letter. Her father, while searching for his youngest daughter in ...

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The Mistress's Black Veil: A Pride and Prejudice Vagary

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Overview

In this new twist to Jane Austen's favorite romance, M. K. Baxley explores the road that might have been taken had one small alteration occurred in the original plot. Instead of Lydia Bennet going to Brighton while Lizzy toured the Lakes, what if she had gone instead while Elizabeth visited Charlotte in Kent?

In this tale of Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth was called home immediately after receiving Mr. Darcy's letter. Her father, while searching for his youngest daughter in London, succumbed to a cold and later died of heart failure. The subsequent events that follow are told in the narrative fashion of Henry Fielding's Tom Jones and within the manner of Jane Austen.

The Mistress's Black Veil begins five years after that fateful day at Hunsford Parsonage when Mr. Darcy proposed to Elizabeth Bennet. The Bennets, now reduced to poverty after the death of Mr. Bennet, are barely surviving, having been thrown into the hedgerow by their cousin, Mr. Collins, at the directive of his noble patroness Lady Catherine de Bourgh. As the situation becomes ever more desperate, Elizabeth makes a difficult and irrevocable choice that will forever change not only her life, but the lives of those she loves as well. In the end will she and Fitzwilliam Darcy find their way to their happily ever after?

The Mistress's Black Veil, influenced by Nathaniel Hawthorne's short story, "The Minister's Black Veil," is for mature readers only.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781449974763
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
  • Publication date: 3/5/2011
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 855,499
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Meet the Author

Mary Baxley was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1954, but spent her young formative years with her parents on her Grandfather's farm in Falls Mill, Tennessee. She attended Tennessee Technological University in the heart of the Cumberland Plateau, earning a BS degree in Computer Science. Upon graduation, she worked in the aerospace industry for four years before leaving her career to care for her children.

She currently resides in Huntsville, Alabama with her husband and three of their five children. Her daughter and third son attend the University of Alabama in Huntsville while her oldest son is serving as a Major in the U.S. Marine Corps, having completed three tours of duty in Iraq, one as a battery commander. Her second son also serves his country in the U.S. Marine Corps.

She enjoys gardening, reading, cooking, needlework and sewing. She has completed many personal designs in children's clothing, and though she lives in the city, she has often said she was more at home in the woods with a good book and a hound as her companion. She is a self described genteel classical lady from rural Tennessee.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 31, 2013

    I really enjoyed this Pride and Prejudice variation. It was not

    I really enjoyed this Pride and Prejudice variation. It was not just a P & P rehash. The characters were believable and sympathetic, and the plot was interesting. I couldn't put it down.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 31, 2013

    A wonderfully original "what if" story about the Benne

    A wonderfully original "what if" story about the Bennet's tragic circumstances forcing Elizabeth to do something drastic to save her family from an even worse fate. Knowing what she had already gone through in an attempt to support her family - and comparing the option of becoming a courtesan to what else was available to her after she had barely escaped her previous position - when Elizabeth chose to do this, I found it very believable. The relationship between Darcy and Elizabeth develops beautifully amid difficulties inherent in their unique situation. Well done, Ms. Baxley!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 18, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    An Interesting P&P Variation

    While I typically enjoy Pride and Prejudice variations, and have little difficulty suspending my disbelief in a novel, there were events in this novel that were difficult to get past. While it is plausible that all but a handful of the Bennets, Gardiners and Philipses have passed away, I find it less believable. In addition to these deaths, another unlikely happening is when Elizabeth refuses to take off her mask and veil for a whole three months, even while engaged in amorous activities and sleeping. I know the author has these events happen to further the plot along; however, I found them far-fetched. This is where our story begins. Having been sent to the hedgerows, Jane, Elizabeth and Kitty Bennet struggle to put food on the table. Upon losing her third governess position for failure to offer her services to the master of the home, Elizabeth decides her only option is to take up a position as a courtesan. Again, I find it difficult to believe if Elizabeth quit her three prior jobs because she refused to sleep with the master of the house that she would immediately take up such a position. While she would be offered money and protection, it goes against her previous convictions. Attending the Courtesans’ Ball, Elizabeth becomes Sophia Molina, Spanish Cyprian. The last person Elizabeth expects is to encounter Mr. Darcy, who happens to be in attendance. By the end of the ball, Darcy is seeking a contract with Sophia Molina. Adding a mystical element, Baxley begins and ends each chapter addressing the reader. The way the narrator breaks the fourth wall and illustrates how Cupid, Aphrodite and other Greek gods are playing their parts in this story reminds me of Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream working his magic to get the right characters to fall in love. Page by page the reader becomes drawn in and becomes more curious as to how and when Darcy will find out his lover is the same lady he loved all those years ago and whom he believes is dead. The way Sophia quotes and refers to conversations Darcy and Elizabeth had is rather entertaining. Darcy is left bewitched by Sophia, who reminds him of his lost love. Elizabeth struggles as she must decide whether staying with Darcy is worth the scandal when two men from her past threaten to reveal her secret, as well as Darcy knowing she has deceived him. While at the same time, Darcy must overcome his objections and decide if he is willing to forget the trappings of society and take his mistress as his wife. Along with a bit of trickery, the book ends on a high note, and poetic justice for Lady Catherine and Mr. Collins. I enjoy when authors include an epilogue which gives the reader a glimpse of what life is like for the characters after the story ends. Baxley does a wonderful job tying up any loose ends, even for Elizabeth’s cat, Cocoa.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 26, 2013

    As a Jane Austen fan fiction addict, I'm sad to say I hated this

    As a Jane Austen fan fiction addict, I'm sad to say I hated this book. Elizabeth Bennet a courtesan. I did read the whole book but it was just so hokie and unfaithful to Jane Austen's beloved characters. If you enjoy bad romance novels, this may be the perfect read. To me it read like a romance 101 class assignment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted June 10, 2013

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    Posted July 14, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2013

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