Monday, 12 August 2013

When they Fall in Love by Mary Lydon Simonsen

Although I purchased this book for a reasonable price it does end up rather expensive, as once you are finished you will need a flight to Italy! As anyone who reads this will dearly want to go!
This book is a guide to Italy with the added bonus of an Elizabeth and Darcy love story. The description of food, art, scenery, language and history are exquisite. I recently studied Machiavelli  in philosophy but did not have the time to read The Prince, only excerpts; thanks to this book my interest was re-piqued and I have purchased that also (see what I mean about expensive lol). This Darcy was so indirectly romantic and as per usual Elizabeth misunderstands every gesture! The chapters were short, each one leaving me hanging and wanting so much more. This book really shows Darcy and Elizabeth as intelligent, deep and insightful people who have much in common. This will surely lead to a love match that will last as a result of the friendship and common interests they share.

“The model used by Titian was a celebrated Venetian courtesan and companion of the artist. There is speculation that the painting once decorated the bedchamber of the Duchess of Urbino to serve as a tutorial for the young bride of the duke.” A tutorial! Knowing nothing of what went on behind the closed doors of a married couple, Elizabeth would have to find a way to view the painting without Jane knowing of it." - M.L.Simonsen

Astonishing to be seven and twenty and ignorant to what goes on between a man and woman, it is fascinating and yet a refreshing change to the society we now live in. Naive maybe, but innocence is still a value to be treasured.

So many times throughout this book I wanted to know what Darcy was thinking! Although I had a good idea, this book was similar to Austen in that you rarely knew what Darcy was thinking or feeling. What was funny was that there were so many hints from a man of such a taciturn nature, that you were never totally sure what to think and the author always left room for doubt. Elizabeth does not fully comprehend such hints and it was a pleasure to try and work them out on her behalf. Finally when Darcy was given  a chapter all to himself  I was blown away. You will not be disappointed, such love, such anguish and heartbreaking despair and Elizabeth's blind naivety and humble modesty is endearingly frustrating.

“I was not referring to your compliment of me, but to how beautiful you look. I am surprised at how frequently you misunderstand me.” “Any compliment, no matter how excessive, is welcome,” she answered, blushing. “Certainly, you are not suggesting that I am lauding you with false praise. You know me better
than that, so please allow me to say that you look even more beautiful than the night of the Netherfield ball, and at that time, I considered you to be one of the most handsome women of my acquaintance.” After allowing for the full weight of his words to settle, she finally thanked him. “I have my faults, Miss Elizabeth, as you well know, but I always speak the truth.”-M.L.Simonsen

The intimate talks between Elizabeth and Jane are a treat and seeing a maturing Jane was a delight. Wise in her advice to Elizabeth, it was funny to see the tables turn.
I love it when Elizabeth is portrayed as someone who loves to ride, which is rare in many of the novels I have read thus far. Elizabeth loves to walk and strikes me as someone who loves life and would enjoy many outdoor pursuits.
This book is so romantic and being in Italy just makes it the icing on the cake, I did not want it to end. I think Italy at that time must have been more romantic than it is now, as I feel the beauty would have been less spoilt by the consequences of a growing population and capitalism.
I dearly hoped the epilogue was the start of the second part of the book ( A girl can dream!). This book is a little gem!

“I have never danced the waltz,” Mr. Darcy said, a statement that brought Elizabeth back to earth. “Because of the intimacy of the dance, I would have to be in love with my partner.”- M.L.Simonsen

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