Monday, June 15, 2009

Review: The Private Diary of Mr. Darcy, by Maya Slater


Well, here we go again. Another “sequel,” or Jane Austen spinoff. The Private Diary of Mr. Darcy is just that—Mr. Darcy’s story as told through his own eyes.

The story covers pretty much the same time period as Pride and Prejudice, and is essentially a retelling of the famous novel—with none of Pride and Prejudice’s wit or humor. She even steals lines directly from Austen! Slater creates nothing truly new with this novel, but at the same time she doesn’t even stick with what we know of the characters from Jane Austen’s novel (it’s often overlooked, but in Austen’s book, Mr. Bingley has about four sisters). It was hard for me to believe, too, that Darcy would be friends with Byron.

Nor is there any kind of historical accuracy (in many places in the book, for example, Darcy refers to Caroline Bingley and Mr. and Mrs. Hurst by their first names, where in reality they would have been known as Miss Bingley, Mrs. Hurst, and Hurst). All the characters in this book are one-dimensional, and in the end you don’t really know much about Mr. Darcy, except for what he does all day long. There’s no emotion or feeling, and I finished this book with a kind of flat feeling. Slater’s Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet have none of the chemistry that made Austen’s characters so appealing. The constant mentions of sex were pretty bad, too. This book is just another Pride and Prejudice spinoff. It reminds me of why I shouldn't be reading these kinds of books.

8 comments:

Hagelrat said...

oh dear, be giving this one a miss, along with most people I guess.

Serena said...

this sounds like a novel that does not stay true to the original characters..I will skip this one.

I really enjoyed Mr. Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange. I think this author did a good job of staying true to the characters.

Kristen M. said...

I just can't bring myself to read ANY of these retellings and spinoffs. It's such a cheap way to get a novel out there.

sharazad said...

I haven't read any of the Jane Austen "sequels". I thought I might like to, but it has occurred to me that they are probably badly written...and don't live up to Austen's greatness.

Diane said...

thanks for the post, i was wondering about this one.

Veronica said...

I always want books like this to be good and I'm almost always dissapointed. They're never the same as the original. I try to stay away from them now.

nbbaker1102 said...

I usually love these kinds of books. But, I think I'll skip this one.

jacketsandcovers said...

I've heard mixed reviews about this one, but if the novel doesn't stay true to the original characters, I won't like it. Better skip for now.

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