Friday, December 24, 2010

An Assembly Such as This

by Pamelia Aidan
New York : Touchstone Book, c2006.

If you know Pride and Prejudice, you already know the "what" of this story and the sequels to follow. As this is the story from Darcy's point of view, however, you may not be acquainted with the "how." Instead of following the Bennets through their mother's machinations, dinner conversations, trips to dances and London, we follow Darcy and Bingley.

While this story may be retreading familiar ground, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Aidan clearly loves Austen, and her familiarity with Pride and Prejudice comes through strongly in her use of particular scenes and her reinterpretation of them. Sometimes the dialogue is straight from the original, and other times the conversation is subtly changed, as if each party had remembered the incident with a slightly different emphasis or wording. Her characters ring true to me, and I enjoyed her explanation of Darcy's thoughts behind some of his statements. As this is the first story in the trilogy, the book only goes as far as Darcy and Bingley's retreat to London. A delightful story, and I look forward to reading the rest of the trilogy.

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