Friday, 27 December 2013

Only a Heartbeat Away by P.O.Dixon

This story was a what if but more a retelling of Pride and Prejudice. Usually when I read a book that follows the original and repeats most of it I lose interest because I would much rather read the original if that is the case. But this story was different there were small changes that did not lead to a different story, but rather a reconstruction where things were shaken up.

Having travelled to Pemberley before the Meryton assembly and making an acquaintance with Miss Darcy (Darcy not being present), Elizabeth and her become regular correspondents. Elizabeth having admired the portrait of Mr Darcy at Pemberley misses an opportunity to meet him in person at the Meryton assembly due to a sprained ankle. Elizabeth does not meet him at Netherfield either when Jane takes ill because he leaves,  he can not bear to watch his friend Bingley make a grave mistake in aligning himself to the Bennets of Longbourne.

Refusing to be a party to the impending disaster of his young friend attaching himself to the Bennets, he had left Hertfordshire, at the break of dawn, the day after the eldest Bennet daughter arrived at Netherfield on horseback in the midst of a violent storm. What audacity! Whilst Bingley paid no mind to the impropriety, Darcy saw plainly what was afoot. Miss Bennet was nothing more than another young woman hell-bent on securing a rich husband, only she was more brazen and made little effort to mask her intentions.- P.O.Dixon

When Elizabeth finally meets Mr Darcy she should have no reason to dislike him apart from hearing of Mr Wickham's misfortunes, but as the brother of her dear friend Miss Darcy she is prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt! We all know it will not be that simple.

Original P&P lines are said at different times and by different people which is actually well done rather than a reaction of "oh why would you do that". Lady Catherine was more rude and condescending than ever. Mr Collins was too self important and damn right out of order, he thinks he is well above his station, an influence  of spending  too much time with Lady Catherine I dare say.

Jane was less than prudent and I was shocked to think Jane capable but she is as sweet and as dear as ever. Georigana was lovelier and all the more delightful as a consequence of Elizabeth's influence.

I did not think Darcy would be able to give more offence in his proposal at the parsonage but I was wrong, what a presumptuous man!!!!

Elizabeth was much the same as always, I really liked her in this, she was so unlike many other books that make her foolish, impertinent and sometimes proud.

There are some brilliant lines in this book obviously taking their ques from the original P&P but changed to make the book most refreshing indeed.

Then, a young woman appeared in the doorway and stood next to Georgiana. His heartbeat pounded. The couple trailing along closely behind him nearly bumped into him as he stood frozen in place. She was nothing as he had pictured her. He had imagined a fair-headed creature with bright eyes and an angelic smile, much like a caricature of her older sister; not this dark-haired beauty with a light, pleasing figure and eyes even Poseidon would be tempted to drown himself in. Had I met her at the Meryton assembly, no doubt I would have been tempted to remain in Hertfordshire a bit longer.-  P.O.Dixon

All I will say is, if you would like to see a confrontation with Mrs Bennet and Lady Catherine then read this book, If you like the original which I know you all do (that was a silly question) then this is a refreshing take on the original.

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