Title: The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy
Author: Beau North and Brooke West
Publisher: 4 October 2016 by Beau North
Pages: 242 pages
How I Read It: ARC book
Genre: historical fiction, romance
My Rating: 4.5 cups
“He could no longer claim to be Fitzwilliam Darcy of Derbyshire, brother to Georgiana, master of Pemberley. In that moment, he was but a man. A man filled with more frustration than most souls could bear. A man torn asunder by his desperation, his fruitless dreams and desires.”
After Elizabeth Bennet rejects his marriage proposal, Fitzwilliam Darcy finds himself in the most unusual of circumstances. At first believing the extraordinary turn of events has granted him an inexplicable boon, he is eager to put the humiliating proposal behind him.
He soon discovers that he is trapped in the same waking dream with no end in sight and no possible escape. All that he holds dear—his name, his home, his love—remains ever out of reach. How will he find his way back to his normal life? Will one mistake haunt the rest of his days? It will take all of his fortitude to weather the storms of his strange new fate, and all of his courage to grasp the promise of his future.
“In vain I have struggled, it will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”
Okay….I admit it - I am an Austen fangirl who can recite that above quote word for word! Still, with the plethora of adaptations out there, I like to think I am somewhat discerning. As to this book …. I loved it! In this clever adaptation, Darcy is trapped in a time warp (think Groundhog Day) after his disastrous proposal to Elizabeth. How? He knows not. Why? To give Darcy a second chance to right a wrong, to make good, to show the real Darcy we all know and love.
Darcy was more convinced that he was presently serving some type of punishment for a crime still unknown to him.
“Good God, what is happening to me?” he wondered aloud. “It is the same day.”
If you know the famous Pride and Prejudice, you know how this is all going to end. But how clever of these authors to take this much loved story, add a twist and have us all on the edge of our seats to see how we will arrive at our happily ever after.
Could she know how she affected him, setting his every thought aflame? He had to put his hands against the pianoforte, holding himself in place to keep from going to her.
I will admit that it lost a little for me as we entered something like ‘Day 70’ of the repeat performance and I found myself thinking, ‘okay, time to move on now’. There were only so many variations in Darcy’s repertoire to try and change the outcome that found him trapped in reliving his agonising rebuttal. Don’t despair, the humour and poignancy will keep you turning the pages to the very end.
And let’s just think about that Epilogue - sweet, sentimental and pulled at your Austen heartstrings. Overall, this book is most definitely creative and delightful.
“No,” he said through his clenched jaw. “You will not take this from me. Perhaps I never knew you, but I think it is clear that you never knew me.”
This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The quoted material may have changed in the final release