Austen lovers beware. This is NOTHING like Jane Austen. In fact, there's no story in this story. If you like reading about sexual encounters in every way, shape and form this book's for you.
Don't get me wrong - I like a good juicy sex scene in a book. Maybe two or three. However, the characters in this book are nothing like our beloved Darcy and Elizabeth. They've been reduced to characters in a soft porn film. Let me give you an example: Shortly before a ball during which Elizabeth is to be introduced as the wife of Darcy at Pemberly, Darcy enters her dressing room and gives Elizabeth a fine diamond necklace. Immediately after her expression of gratitude, he picks her up by the armpits, plops her on the dressing table and has his quickie. His sweet nothing in her ear is something to the effect of "Do not bath yourself. I want to know that when I look at you, my seed is trickling down your leg." Her only thought is to wonder how sticky the dancing will be.
I got about 1/4 of the way through the book, before giving up on it (I had hoped for improvement). If I took the time to count the sexual encounters between the Darcy's within those few pages it would probably add up to about 15. (Her second after her wedding night has Elizabeth straddling him like a horse in their private carriage on the way to Pemberly. Not bloody likely in Austen's world!)
Lastly, I would like to comment on the vocabulary throughout the book. If I were paid a dollar for every "herwith" and "betwixt" I'd be rich. The authur said it took her four years to research this book. I imagine it took her one year to write it in modern English and three years of scouring through dictionaries and thesaurus' to convert 99 percent of the words to 18th Century English. How's this one for you - "devirginate." According to Rogert's, its main word association is "rape" meaning "assualt." According to Dictionary.com it is c.1470 - a little to early for Austen's time. This was used to describe the recently wedded "devirginated females" Jane and Elizabeth.
Shame on Berdoll. She should stick to bodice rippers in the cheapest sense and leave literature to the truly talented.
Oh how I wish that somebody had torn the first 200 pages out of this book! They were just trash and should have been tossed directly into the recycle bin. It really is such a shame, because the rest of the book was (mostly) well written and very enjoyable! How many people gave up (and rightly so!) too soon and did not get to enjoy the rest of Berdoll's tale? I almost did! But I finished the darn thing. It's not that I'm against sexy stories... in fact I want to see Elizabeth and Darcy have a wonderful and loving marriage... it's just that I don't want Elizabeth turned into a whore, and Darcy a sex maniac! Within the first 24 hours of their marriage, the couple have 7 (!) sexual encounters, one of them with Elizabeth mounting her new husband in the carriage as they drive home. Come on! The author finds in necessary to say that Darcy kindly offers Elizabeth a pillow for her tender rear-end after the 6th encounter... but really she would need more than a pillow, she would need chap-stick! It was WAY over the top!
This book was hideous!!! The characters are nothing like the originals. The writing is awful... the grammer and vocabulary suck. It sounds like someone got ahold of theasaurus and just went to town without regard to rhythm or flow. I've read reviews on here saying that it is "written in the style" of Jane Austen... I assure you, she is spinning in her grave at that. The style of this book is smut using big words with no regard for character or plot development. Whether you are looking at the characters, conversation, or environment, there is NO beauty in this book. Jane Austen knew what it was to draw the reader in and make them want to learn more about her characters and see them develop. Berdoll only knows how to make you keep turning the pages to see how many more times your favorite characters can be turned into sex-craved idiots. Or worse, simple-minded women (like she turns Jane into) and cheating husbands (as she does to Bingley). AWFUL!!!
*EDIT: Okay, I just picked this book up again after 6 months of being distracted by other books. Every single page I read, I felt like saying to the author, "Lady, step AWAY from the thesaurus!" To wit:
"Even as her umbrageous aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, had suffered a rather vociferous conniption (one that was but partially vented by throwing both shoes and an empty pint of Geneva at the parlour-maid) over teh match, to Georgiana, her brother and his opinions were infallible. Above and beyond that, Elizabeth's obvious adoration of Darcy was reason enough to inflate Georgiana's esteem of her to the seraphic." (p. 175)
Honestly, it's like Mr. Collins took up a quill and tried to vent an ongoing crush on cousin Lizzy by writing a romance novel about her married life.
I'd like to think Jane Austen would have giggled, then said something appropriately witty and cutting about this book.
I absolutely hated what was done to the original story. I had hoped it would be a story that kept with the spirit of the original, but all that happens is that we get an insight into EVERY bedroom thought that the book's characters have. Don't get me wrong, I love eroticism in books, but just not this one. It just doesn't fit with the world Miss Austen created and then this Berdoll person bastardizes. Maybe the story gets better, but I am not going to waste my time finding out when there are books out there that are interesting within the first ten pages. I'm not going to wade through trash to get to some mediocre ending. Austen lovers beware!
This book should be considered porn....I could not read it at all. In fact you can't read it past the first 5 pages. This book is NOT for Jane Austen lovers at all. It totally ruined my whole thinking on Pride and Prejudice.
This book is sooooo cheaply written...you could have put it next to the cheap Wal-mart "Novels".
Not a recomended read
My complaint about this book is not the sex (although some of it is rather silly). My main complaints are 1) The author totally changes the characters and 2) the author abuses a thesaurus abominably.
Clever and kind Lizzy becomes ditzy and intolerant - to the point of extreme rudeness - of her ridiculous family members (in P&P she is annoyed by them but is not unkind). Reserved and honorable Darcy turns out to have a scandalous past. Others behaved very uncharacteristically, some to the point of having nothing in common with the originals but their names.
I will echo another reviewer by saying that if I had a dollar for every "betwixt" and "howbeit" in the book, I would be a rich woman. It seems Berdoll used many obscure words just for the sake of using them.
Most new characters and plots were uninteresting to me, so I did a great deal of skimming as I ploughed through the book (I was determined to get to the end, although I can't explain exactly why.). I don't recommend it.
Linda Berdoll has written two books (this, and the equally terrible "Days and Nights at Pemberly") that prove two things: first, that she knows nothing about the characters Elizabeth and Darcy, and second, that she is egocentric enough to claim (multiple times) on the jacket covers that she has acheived something Jane Austen hadn't -- showing us that Darcy and Elizabeth can have sex.
And sex they have -- again, and again and again. At one point Darcy claims "I am a beast to be at you this way, Lizzy." And "Pray, forgive me, Lizzy, I fear I must have you again." Mr. Darcy certainly does 'take' his wife. Ad nauseam.
After "christening" all 200 rooms in Pemberly, the reader gets sick of it too, believe it or not. Darcy adopts the annoying habit of calling her "Lizzy" only when he wants to bed her, and Elizabeth is so overcome with passion that she starts to secretly fear her master will determine she is a common street trollop. (This is where we learn -- definitely too much information -- that Darcy is schooled in the street language and sexual habits of the London common man -- referring to a certain sexual position as a "thrup'ence upright" and the vernacular "dip your wick.")
Even worse is the time Darcy and Elizabeth ride off from a hunting group while at Pemberly to have sex in the woods, and upon their return one of the older married women of the group shouts in front of all prim English society, "You are plowing the fields often enough, Darcy, you should get a good crop soon." Ugh. It is also inferred that Elizabeth likes for Darcy to read the smutty parts of Shakespeare to her, but only after Darcy warns her Shakespeare is not for ladies.
The writing style is atrocious, with Berdoll preferring a bizarre method of using flashbacks to the point of delirium. The reader finds herself introduced to the "aftermath" of something at the chapter's start, and is soon tumbled backward in time to get to the heart and understanding of the matter -- and if one is REALLY lucky, the author will treat you to a flashback-within-a-flashback, which leaves one dreading a third-generation flashback is just around the corner, and I can't say that doesn't emerge at some point . . .
But WORST of all, is the author's complete and total disregard for the very nature of Darcy and Elizabeth. Elizabeth, one of the strongest female characters in English literature, is portrayed as meek and careless, including angering Darcy once by contradicting him in front of his head servant. Always a lady, Elizabeth would never commit such a social gaffe. And Darcy! The worst of Berdoll's ignorance of nature is left to him.
**SPOILER ALERT (to end of paragraph)** It is not only implied that Darcy was a frequenter of a London upper-class prostitute (including fervently bedding her just before returning to Elizabeth to propose for the final time in "Pride and Prejudice," in one of Berdoll's ever-present flashbacks) but it is also heavily insinuated that Darcy impregnated a young Pemberly chambermaid when he was 16, all the while the maid was also servicing Wickham, which leads to the introduction of a young man who comes to work in the stables at Pemberly. This boy of 13 or 14 yrs old just happens to look SO much like Darcy that Elizabeth casually comments upon it, and the paternity of said young man is never firmly revealed.
Darcy swings back and forth between his stoic, prideful nature that had cooled Elizabeth to him in the original book (that she was supposed to have cured him of - DUH, Ms. Berdoll!), and his feverish desire to bed Elizabeth at every opportunity. Elizabeth is part trollop and part idiot -- worrying at one point that Darcy will divorce her because he refers to her (ugh) 'nether-regions' as "small." Of course, in Berdoll's graphic, sex-filled Pemberly, this euphemism is meant by Darcy to be a complement to his virile manhood and the "snugness" he finds within his wife . . . however, Elizabeth is relegated to acting the part of idiot as she answers him by saying "I am stunted, and you must now find a woman more suited to the wifely duties you require." What nonsense.
Darcy and Elizabeth, at their hearts, are two characters who changed each other's lives in Pride and Prejudice. Some things Berdoll got right -- **SPOILER ALERT (to end of paragraph)** like the fact that Darcy and Elizabeth choose to share a marital bed (which I think is a breach of convention at the time that they would choose to do) and Darcy allows Elizabeth to nurse her own babies instead of employing a wetnurse. However, allowing Darcy to regularly slip back into his stoicism and prideful nature (the one Elizabeth's love broke him of in "Pride and Prejudice") and then constantly treating the smart, witty, outspoken (yet always ladylike) Elizabeth as a feeble-minded nit wit who constantly defies convention in ways that are a potential embarrassment to Darcy, is simple unacceptable.
Trust me, if you wish to read erotica about Darcy and Elizabeth, pick up a book with some good sex scenes in it and then insert the names "Elizabeth" and "Darcy" and you will get the same satisfaction this book garners. From the ridiculous to the impossible --**SPOILER ALERT (to end of paragraph)** an illegimate son, a kidnapping of Elizabeth by a sex-crazed madman, Darcy's cousin Colonel Fitzwilliam falling in love with Elizabeth (WHAT?!), Lydia and Wickham popping out babies left and right (including Wickham visiting Elizabeth at Pemberly when Darcy isn't there, and Elizabeth keeps it secret from Darcy -- which would NEVER happen!), Elizabeth's near-death after a stillbirth, the introduction of the French prostitute Darcy had favored as she returns to their lives . . . it just seems as though Berdoll will do anything she can to invent reasons to keep the reader reading, when actually it just shows her desperation.
After finishing Pride & Prejudice, I was very nearly depressed that there was no more of the wonderful story to be told. Jane Austen had succeeded in drawing me in so deeply that no other book could measure up. Of all the sequels out there, this one had received the most positive reviews, and in researching the author, I found that I've passed her home and family's business at least a hundred times over the years, so if I was going to read any of the sequels, it should be the one written by my neighbor.
The first few pages made me miss P&P, as this was definitely no Jane Austen book. But then I wasn't expecting it to be. I simply wanted to know more about Darcy & Elizabeth's happily ever after, and I was not disappointed. I do not agree that the characters are mere caricatures of the originals. In fact, I found Elizabeth & Darcy exhibited all the traits Austen gave them, and Berdoll simply expanded upon their complexities. If anything, she added both the realistic and romantic elements of life after "I do," and provided a satisfying end to the captivating story Austen began.
And now I can give the book the best compliment I know, as this is one of the few modern books I will allow to stay on my bookshelves, otherwise filled with nothing but the most well-regarded classic literature.
Alisa S. (sumhope) - reviewed Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife: Pride and Prejudice Continues on
Helpful Score: 2
I own a copy of this book and its one paperback I am not going to swap. If you are expecting a book like jane austen would write forget about it, shes dead isn't she. I hapen to like that Berdoll doesn't try to copy Austen but writes in her own style and doesn't make any exscuses.
This book delievers on everything it promises. Life after the happily ever after. Berdoll addresses some very real issues of the time including infidelity, expectations of bearing heirs, and the overwhelming danger of childbirth.
I loved the tongue in check conversations between darcy and elizabeth but I was also pleasently surprised by Georgiana's story. The sex in this book is sizzaling, so if your an absolute prude don't pick up a copy. Also don't read this book if your expecting roses and rainbows and perfection of the Darsy's married life. They have their problems. But I think its why the book works so well. They are a real couple.
Poor Miss Austin must be rolling in her grave over this book. There is no Austin style as is repeatedly reported on the cover.
I have no doubt that the person I ordered this book from, was happy to get it off their shelf. They probably chuckled behind their hand, then shook their head. I had no idea what I was in for.
After attempting to read this book twice (as well as "Darcy and Elizabeth" by the same author}, I have given up. I've considered going through the book and redacting all the unnecessary words, but I fear it would leave most pages blank.
This story has nothing to do with our beloved Darcy and Elizabeth.
I found it very difficult to follow the story with all of the flashbacks within flashbacks. It was like going in circles. And the fact that Ms. Berdoll wasn't even true to the flashbacks was even more disappointing.
It's mild to medium porn with such ridiculous scenes, it made this 53 year old roll my eyes or blush (and I am by no means a prude).
I'm torn as to what I should do with my copy. It's perfect compost, or possibly fire starter. Maybe I will repost it to my shelf. Then I can chuckle behind my own hand when some poor unsuspecting reader requests it from me.
This book gets half a star from me, only because a rating is required to post this. It's not worth the half.
This is one of the few books that I have not finished reading. Not because I didn't have time or that it was too difficult for me to read. But it was just horrid. It's not difficult to read, but it's difficult to follow through the many characters in the book. There were so many minor characters it got very confusing. It also had more bodice ripping than actual story. So, I give props to those who have actually finished the book because I didn't, and had no intention of doing so.
This book is not in Austen's style. Austen demonstrated with wit, the classism and gender roles of her time. The only wit appearing in this book is the sexual innuendo of the title. This novel is a rather smutty 21st century plot, in humor and character development (think housewives on Wisteria Ln. with more sex). The only throw back is the flowery language splashed about carelessly on the pages. The author's attempt at mirroring the Austen vernacular is cumbersome, clumsy and often out of context.
I read 140 pages into the book and decided that my initial perception had been accurate. If you love Austen you'll hate this. If you've never read Austen, think of this as another trashy romance novel with hard to understand language.
Sara T. reviewed Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife: Pride and Prejudice Continues on
Helpful Score: 1
I will start off stating that I am in no way an expert on Jane Austen, but I have read Pride and Prejudice a few times and love the characters and story. So I was excited to see someones opinion about what happened after Jane Austens story ends. Overall I was disappointed with this version. My first impression was that the author is TRYING to write in Jane Austens style, and it was not a success. The word betwixt was used so often that it became annoying and distracted from the story, along with the French terms that I felt were not necessary. If I hadn't become familiar with the characters personalities from Pride and Prejudice, they would have been a mystery to me in this book. I feel that they didn't stay true to their personality traits and many times found myself thinking "They would not do that",or "They would not say that." The other disappoint was the lack of dialog. Almost all of the book was the narrator telling us what the characters where thinking or saying instead of a direct quote from the character. This was the most frustrating because unlike Austens work, I felt like I was getting word of mouth from someone instead of feeling like I was directly observing this family. On the good side there were times where I agreed with the situation the author had created and felt like it was something that these characters might have dealt with or chosen. So over all the book left me with very mixed feelings. I am disappointed with many of the conflicts, and agree with even less, but am happy with the way the story ended. If you are totally devoted to Pride and Prejudice and love the story/characters I may not recommend this book to you. But if you are open minded and don't mind they word betwixt you may like this book.
This novel is a belabored, poorly edited attempt to write a sequel for Pride and Prejudice. I have never seen so many parentheses inappropriately used before. And the author seems to favor the term "howbeit", since it is used on almost every page, which I find peculiar, since it not a phrase favored by Jane Austen. At approximately 500 pages, I was disenchanted after the first twenty. While the interaction between Elizabeth and Darcy is adorable at points, the rest of the "plot" will bore the reader to tears.
TRASH! If someone is going to write an extension of Austen, the least they could do was not make it a high-class smutty romance! I read the first few chapters and was so disgusted that I returned it to the library and was stunningly grateful I hadn't wasted money on it. Sure, I should have been forewarned by the trashy looking cover, but I had hoped that a book of mild popularity regarding an Austen novel would read better than the average Harlequin. Pride and Prejudice has not continued, but instead got into a fiery car crash where all the good parts (like actual romance and manners - the whole point Austen) got burned up.
Bookfanatic reviewed Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife: Pride and Prejudice Continues on
Helpful Score: 1
I adore Pride & Prejudice. I've read it many times over so I had high expectations of this sequel but I just couldn't finish the book. I barely recognized my favorite characters, Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth. They had changed so much. Although she tries, the author can't capture Austen's witty repartee and sharp observations about human weaknesses. The result is stilted dialogue and an unbelievable storyline. This sequel is more like a modern trashy romance thanks to its graphic and gratuitous sex rather than a worthy genteel successor to Pride & Prejudice. If you want a very R-rated take on Darcy and Elizabeth's life then this book is for you.
Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, is very differant than Pride and Prejudice, more steamy, more drama. It is diffenatly not how Ms. Austen would have written a sequel. I loved Pride & Prejudice, this was alittle differant but a fun book experience.
OK, if you are thinking this is going to be written in the style of Jane Austen then you will not like this book. It is a different style, voice and there is a lot of sexual encounters. I did like it for the fact that it was funny, sexy and you learned more backstory on other characters. Could have been edited better and storyline tightened up more but it is a fun read as long as you are NOT planning on Jane Austen's style.
I'm a little shocked that anyone would describe this book as 'sophmoric', but did read that in a review. I found it more along the lines of "Gone With The Wind". Take Austen's style and add sex and high drama. All intimacy is handled under enough flowery vocabulary to assure the reader has to check twice to understand what really happened!! It was quite a ride and certainly a romp by the time I got through this book but I have to say it made me laugh outloud in various places. It was also extremely poignant and sad. This story will be hard to stomach for any true Austen-ite but it's a good read. Her attention to detail is phenomenal and she breathes more life into the characters with far more literary license!
This is decidedly not a book of which Jane Austen would approve. It borders on pornographic most of the time and focuses very little on the actual personalities of the characters whose lives it purports to portray. However, if you have always wondererd what sort of a lover Mr. Darcy might be, then this is the book for you. I can't say I didn't enjoy some of the risque scenes in this book, only that after page 50 I was very tired of that being all there was. Well written prose, but perhaps not enough variation in theme.
I loved this book! For those readers like me who are used to breezing quickly through a L. Kleypas or J. Quinn novel, you'll need to slow down for this story which is written in the literary style of Jane Austen. Sometimes the sentences seem overly long and complex compared to other historical romances. But slow down and savor this wonderful story which covers about seven years of Darcy and Elizabeth's marriage beginning with their honeymoon.
Darcy is so very aristocratic, proud, often aloof, and is occasionally accused by his friends as being prudish. But he loves (and lusts after) Elizabeth with all his heart and soul. Why, he even kills three men in her defense.
All the supporting players in this novel are so thoroughly developed that you'll easily conjure up mental images of them. And be prepared for some sexy passages in this sweeping tale. I promise that you will laugh out loud in some places.......but you will cry in others.
Do be patient and read it all the way through. You'll be sorry the story ended.
Now my quandary is: post it or keep it for a re-read.....hmmmmmm....
This book & the sequel Darcy & Elizabeth...have brought many happy reading hours. Linda Berdoll excellently keeps my attention, the reading is effortless and the additional characters are very interesting. It's nice to have an intelligent sequel to Pride & Prejudice - so many of the Jane Austen "fan fiction" is sooooo insipid!! THIS ONE IS NOT!
If you loved Austen's Elizabeth and Darcy and didn't want the story to end, here's your chance for it to continue! Wonderfully written, I loved this series - Berdoll does justice to Austen's characters!
That's pretty much it. A fairly decent story got lost in the bedroom antics of the newlyweds. So you read for a while and skip the gratuitous sex, read for a while and skip the gratuitous sex. I felt the author had read too many of those bodice rippers and not enough Austen.
I liked the treatment of the other personalities, and they all have strong personalities, but even for a woman as healthy and accepting as I am, I would have prefered a little less in the bedroom and more in the drawing room.
I thoroughly enjoyed this continuation of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice." Though significantly 'spicier' than P&P, I felt the author stayed true to Austen's characters and the subsequent events were believable.
From the back of the book: Every woman wants to be Elizabeth Bennet Darcy-beautiful, gracious, universally admired, strong, daring and outspoken-a thoroughly modern woman in crinolines. And every woman will fall madly in love with Mr. Darcy-tall, dark and handsome, a nobleman and a heartthrob whose virility is matched only by his utter devotion to his wife. Their passion is consuming and idyllic-essentially, they can't keep their hand off each other-through a sweeping tale of adventure and misadventure, human folly and numerous mysteries of parentage. Hold on to your bonnets! This sexy, epic, hilarious, poignant, romantic sequel to "Pride and Prejudice" goes far beyond Jane Austen.