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Pamela Aidan has created a touching coming-of-age novella based on characters from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. A Lesson In Honour explores love, duty, and family honour--principles that a young Fitzwilliam Darcy learns from both of his parents as they confront a family crisis--as well as a lesson derived from youthful indiscretion and adolescent romance that helps defiine the man Elizabeth Bennet will encounter at the Meryton assembly many years later.
Posted February 19, 2011
This story is a quick read and very well written. As always, Ms. Aidan has captured the language of Austen beautifully. The plot takes place over a couple of weeks in December, during Darcy's Christmas break from Eton. Upon his arrival at his London home, Darcy is informed that his mother is terminally ill. The news is, of course, shocking for Darcy, but he promises both his father and mother that he will shoulder the burden as a man. Darcy's mother desires that no fuss is made of her illness, and that Christmas be celebrated at Pemberley, along with their Matlock relations, as it has always been. So, the Darcys set off for Pemberley, and Darcy begins preparing for the arrival of his cousins, Richard and D'Arcy. Though Darcy works to deal manfully with his mother's illness, he finds he needs a diversion, and while riding his horse near Lambton one day, he comes across a group of children practicing for a mummer's play. He gives a false name and takes on a lower-class accent to join in with the children. He is soon given a part in the play, which is to take place at the same time the Darcys are to be in church on Christmas Eve. -- For those of you who have read FD, Gentleman - Duty and Desire, you will already know what happens when young Richard helps young Darcy to sneak away from the family pew that night! The story is full of great foreshadowing to the events of Pride and Prejudice (particularly to Darcy's proud behavior); for those who have read the FD, Gentleman trilogy, the foreshadowing is even more pronounced. There are several "aha" moments that let you enjoy the irony of knowing what is in store for Darcy in the future. In addition to all this, there is the amusement of witnessing Darcy and Richard (as well as D'Arcy and Wickham ) as lads! Their antics will bring a smile to your face, if not a laugh or two!
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Posted April 10, 2012
This is a wonderfully delightful tale of young Darcy's last Christmas with his mother. If you have read Aidan's "Fitzwilliam Darcy Gentleman" trilogy then some of the events that take place are hinted at in the trilogy but now are flushed out for your enjoyment. This is a short story that is filled with youth and young innocence. Very delightful to read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.