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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 hands 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 and romantic sequel to Pride and Prejudice goes far beyond Jane Austen.

Topics: London, Love, Devotion, Adventurous, Retellings, England, War, Marriage, Comedy of Manners, Regency Era, Babies, Bawdy, France, Poignant, and First in a Series

Published: Sourcebooks on Sep 1, 1999
ISBN: 9781402234859
List price: $16.95
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It was a good book. It was a little slow at the beginning, but it had ups and downs. Just when you think it's slowing down it gets exciting once again. It truly is a very good book. Still have not read the sequel to this one yet. Had it, but reading three books right now.One thing about this book, I did not agree with, was Elizabeth's meakness. Her keeping things to herself so much. I do not think after realizing in Pride and Prejudice that she should not keep her mouth shut, that she would in this book. Seems that she was making the same mistakes again.read more
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I LOVE, LOVE, LOVED this book!!! Okay, so it is far removed from Jane Austen and there is the occasional anachronism it but I think it was an absolutely marvelous read! Best P&P sequel I've seen so far.read more
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First, this is not Jane Austen. This will never be Jane Austen, as Jane Austen is dead. Purists shouldn’t be reading Austen FanFiction to begin with. And I think to enjoy it for what it was, you have to be able to look at it as a book written by someone who is not trying to be Jane Austen. Because, in all honesty, Jane Austen would not have written so much about sex.If you can skip over or don’t mind the plethora of sex scenes, I found the background and future of Mr. & Mrs. Darcy intriguing, entertaining, and satisfying. While the first few chapters felt somewhat stilted as Berdoll attempted to copy Austen’s writing style, but gradually she warmed up it her own style. Once you get past the first couple of chapters where Darcy and Elizabeth are just mostly having sex, the plot really picks up. I think she did a great job of illustrating Elizabeth & Darcy’s life in the first six or seven years of their marriage, and the continued development of the characters, and introduction of new faces, was well done.read more
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Some parts of this story were enjoyable but it seemed to be written to shock with its explicit sexual descriptions. This just didn't seem believable and certainly didn't add to the appeal of the book.read more
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I think, in order to get through this novel, it is important to mentally replace the names Darcy and Elizabeth with other ones – say, Percy and Alice for instance. And, while you are at it, replace all of the names of all of the other characters as well. Also, try to do your best to forget all the references to plot points and occurrences in Pride and Prejudice. This will be difficult as the author keeps bringing them up. You might, if you are the forgetful type and not a raging P & P fan, also do well to let a year or so go by after reading the sacred P & P before tackling this book – thereby ensuring that the details might grow a little fuzzy in your mind. After doing all of that, it is just possible to get all the way through this book and discover that it is a passable Regency novel. If you love P & P, you will probably hate this book. Hate, hate, hate. Most likely, you will not even finish it and may be moved to destroy it in some violent way. This is a very long book – much of the length made necessary, I think, by Darcy and Elizab – no, wait, Percy and Alice – spending so much of their time all tangled up in sweaty, pre- and post-coital heaps. The author likes to use lots of euphemisms and Latin to name body parts and various acts of passion, which gets a little tiresome after a while. Also, I did find it hard to credit the bit about the mirror and a couple of scenes where Percy and Alice (dressed only in Percy’s shirt) go dashing off on horses so that they can disport themselves in the fields - for a slight change of scenery, I suppose. Still, I am going to give it three and half stars, for I found it pretty entertaining after I got the hang of changing all those names in my head. 465 pagesread more
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Pure romantic drivel based on the classic Austen book (but really derived from the A&E mini-series). Don't think about it too much and it's fun. If you aren't a regular reader of bodice ripping romances, prepare yourself for a lot of eyerolling (reading at the beach or with a nice adult beverage to hand can help this.)read more
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I confess I couldn't finish it. The plot was lacking but it was a good introduction to sexy P&P. It did wet my appetite and I found more P&P what if, sequel or inspired writers who write more sensual sex scenes and with better plots.read more
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A disappointing sequel to Pride and Prejudice which clearly states its intention to write what Jane Austen would NOT have written. You've been warned. The narrative gets off to a good start (who hasn't fantasized about Elizabeth's and Darcy's honeymoon), but it soon begins to lose its appeal; the Darcy's romping sex life takes up nearly 90% of the book. The other 10% is taken up with bandits, near rapes, mysterious bastard sons and mistresses. Not Miss Austen, indeed. Nor do I think the writer's depictions of Elizabeth and Darcy were in character. Elizabeth is far too ready to accept blame and fault in any situation and Darcy's stoic, arrogant demeanor edges slightly to meanness on occasion. It reads like a bad regency genre novel that has simply taken the names of our beloved characters to give it a marketing boost.read more
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I wanted to read it, I wanted to enjoy it and I couldn't. I never got into the story, or the sex in this book. So I gave up even though I would have liked to get through the story. I guess now I realize I would rather read and reread "Pride and Prejudice" and let Elizabeth and Darcy live like that.read more
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As a bit of a Jane Austen puritist I found this book at first very unnerving. I thought that the author had taken too many liberties and destroyed any vision of what I thought Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy would be like after their marriage. I'm not a complete JA puritist, though, and I did finish the book. In the end a sense of humour comes in handy while wading through the pages of this novel. There are only so many times Elizabeth can recount her husband's randy ways and her 'sore bottom' before you either just have to laugh out loud or close the book indefinitely.read more
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"Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife" isn't so much "Pride and Prejudice" continued as it is a new take on a beloved classic. Writing a sequel to such a beloved classic, with such endearing characters as Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet, would have been a harsh task for even Jane Austen herself, much less Linda Berdoll. Is Ms. Berdoll attempting to write a campy parody? Or guilty pleasure trash? I'm not sure and I don't know if Ms. Berdoll was either. While she expresses clearly that Darcy and Elizabeth have an obviously very happy and mutually pleasing marriage, the constant sex, sex, sex gets old. I like a nice juicy novel as much as the next person, but the constant references to their overabundant sex life, and Darcy's exceptional endowment got so repetitive that it got boring. Obviously Ms. Berdoll was attempting to write in Austen's style, a venture that did not go smoothly. The words sometimes feel forced and there is none of the lightness and humor that was so present in Ms. Austen's literature. I also did not like the liberties that Ms. Berdoll took with some characters, most particularly Bingley. It's bad enough to be subjected to verses about how Jane is apparently not as sexual as her husband (or obviously Elizabeth), but then to read further that Bingley is apparently a philanderer, with a love child . . .ugh! On a positive note, Ms. Berdoll does give storylines to smaller characters of "Pride and Prejudice", notably Colonel Fitzilliam. But overall, I was heartily disappointed with "Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife". None of the wit and fun was present in Elizabeth that engrossed "Pride and Prejudice" - - she seemed merely to be present in "Mr. Darcy" to rhapsodize over their lovemaking and Darcy's endowment. Darcy's character was explored more in this book, but I didn't find him more likable for it. If you are a Jane Austen purist, and a fan of the original "Pride and Prejudice", this book will do nothing but anger you so do yourself a favor and skip this one (Juliette Shapiro's "Excessively Diverted" is a better attempt at a sequel). Disappointing.read more
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As an imitation of Jane Austen's writing, this is a poor substitute - but Ms. Berdoll does a pretty good imitation of Henry Fielding. Her continuation of "Pride and Prejudice" reminds me quite a bit of "Tom Jones". There are prostitutes and sex and humor and secrets and love and people of unequal stations that fall in love. The storyline is interesting and those who are craving the high romance of Darcy and Elizabeth will surely be satisfied with all the love scenes between them. Just don't expect to hear Ms. Austen's voice in all the drama.read more
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I am a Jane Austen addict. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book ever. And I cheerfully buy any and all sequels to it, knowing without a doubt that there's no way on the planet that they will live up to the original. But I can't help myself. I may not read them in a timely manner, as proved by this particular book which I bought years ago, never read, and only rediscovered languishing on my shelves when it was re-released a couple of years ago under a different title (which I also promptly bought and had to return) but I buy them nevertheless. After reading this, I am a little sorry about my blanket Austen sequel reading policy.An unattributed blurb on the back tells readers to "Hang on to your bonnets, this isn't Jane Austen. Reader discretion advised." Truer words were never spoken (and I'm a veteran romance reader so graphic desciptions don't bother me but this book is completely over the top. Opening with Darcy and Elisabeth [sic] jolting down the road towards Pemberley following their wedding night, we find the new Mrs. Darcy ignoring the pillow Mr. Darcy has so kindly offered her to give her lower bits respite from their aching. And this is just the beginning. We are treated to scene after scene of our newlyweds thinking lewd thoughts about each other or engaged in vigorous romping throughout the entire estate. Somehow the plot seems tangential to all the steamy (adn quite frankly fairly laughable) sex. We are told of Darcy's discreet exploits when he was younger and see further into his character as he snubs a neighbor who legitimized his bastard son as his heir. We meet Elisabeth's sisters again and get to encounter the still slimy Wickham as he makes a pass at Elisabeth. In addition we are treated to bad guys (why didn't Austen write about a kidnapping?) and another illegitimate child about whom speculation is rife. Elisabeth has trouble getting pregnant despite the constant sex. And Darcy continues to learn that his pride is misplaced as he discovers things about his own family that disappoint him.With as much going on in this novel as there is, the chaos and the sex aren't the things that bothered me the most. Instead it was the stilted and unintentionally hilarious writing. I know that Berdoll was trying to mimic Austen's writing but it would probably have been better to just claim her own voice instead of producing this awkwardness. In addition to this, the book was incredibly poorly edited, with sentences trailing off into nothingness or making absolutely zero sense, even after several re-readings. The characters were as static as possible, perhaps in a nod to trying to stay true to Austen's original depiction, but since so much else of the story was as Austen would never have imagined it, why bother to try and keep them slotted into their familiar molds when circumstances should have dictated growth? And even at that, some of the characters are more true to the BBC production than to the original book. I really can be forgiving of a well-done sequel, after all; who hasn't wanted to know what happened after the happily ever after wedding in P&P but this is not that sequel. Really, it's fairly egregious.read more
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Summary: On the day after their wedding, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy travel to Pemberley to begin their life together. Elizabeth learns to manage the household, ride for the hunt, and throw a ball. Although the Darcys are the focal point of the novel, we also learn about the marriages of Jane and Lydia and a bit about Wickham and Darcy as boys. Other familiar characters make an appearance as well.Why I Abandoned the Book: I listened to just over a third of this 22-hour audiobook before I called it quits. It isn't that the novel is so bad, it's just that it seemed to be going nowhere. The story alternated between blissful love scenes with the Darcys to several other plot lines involving Wickham, the Bingleys, a man servant, Darcy's ex-mistress, and others. Perhaps there were too many subplots, but I found it difficult to connect with the novel, and I had no clear idea of where the book was going. I think I ended up being a bit bored.A Quick Look at Reviews: I checked several commercial book sites and book cataloging sites and discovered that Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife averages a 3.5-star rating. I found a few 5-star reviews in Library Thing: A couple of them mentioned that the plot does come together by the end, so it is possible that I gave up too soon. This book was also reviewed by Katherine at A Girl Walks into a Bookstore (2-star rating).Note that I am not an Austen purist, and I normally enjoy the Austen spin-offs. For example, I liked the movie Lost in Austen (review here), I loved Clueless, and I loved the book Confessions of a Jone Austen Addict. I just didn't like Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife. In case you're wondering, the audio was read by Rosalyn Landor, who did a nice job.read more
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The two books by Linda Berdoll that continue Darcy and Elizabeth's story was a great read. I could not put the first one down and rushed out to buy the second book so that I could remain in the world that Ms. Berdoll created. I felt the story she tells stays true to JA's and yet it also stood alone...if I'd never read P&P I still would have been caught up in the world she created.read more
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Linda Berdoll's two book continuation of the infamous Pride & Prejudice novel would be an excellent choice for any P&P fan who desires for the story to continue. Berdoll stays true to the characters while allowing them to grow and change with each new experience, as all good characters should. Her continuations also grant Austin's fans with the deeper intamacy between Darcy and Elizabeth that we have all imagined. I especially loved how she told the story not only from Elizabeth's perspective, but from Darcy's as well. They were both very well done and I found a great deal of pleasure in reading them.read more
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Good fun, but def. soft porn! I was embarrassed reading it! hee hee heeread more
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My obsession with Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice led me to this book. I really enjoyed it. Berdoll did a great job of emulating the correct style and portraying the characters in a believable fashion. I got more of the story that I wanted and there's another book to boot!read more
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Linda Berdoll does a wonderful job in continuing Darcy and Elizabeth's story. I greatly enjoyed reading this 2 book series, which I would recommend to any P&P fan. She does a great job in continuing the story in a way I believe Austin would have respected, if not have done so herself (due to the greater sense of passion in these stories). These books are an excellent choice if you are looking to continue the beloved story of Elizabeth and Darcy.read more
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This isn't literature, it's porn. I have to wonder about some of the people who say that the author has (pardon the expression) nailed Jane Austen's voice. Nothing could be further from the truth. The whole point of P&P, in fact the works of JA in general, is the sexual tension that never turns to explicit description. Obviously there's going to be sex once the characters are married, but you can imply that, and have the characters give each other knowing looks without describing various disgusting incidents. (Some have said that it's nice to see a little "modern spice" in the book, but I've read plenty of modern "spicy" books that didn't repulse me the way some of the scenes in this book do.)If you want erotica, that's fine. Just don't pretend you're reading anything that has anything but the most tenuous of connections to JA.read more
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I'm trying to weed out of some books that have been in my towering TBR stacks for awhile, books that I suspect I won't like if I ever got around to them. I skim-read this one tonight. It's truly awful. Had I known that it was initially self-published, I never would have gotten it. Who knew that Mr. Darcy was such a randy lad and that Elizabeth Bennett had the makings of a soft-porn queen? Or that Bingley had an illegitimate child because Jane couldn't satisfy his needs? Ick. Just ick.No stars for this one.read more
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I can see why the Austen purists are downing this book, but personally, I enjoyed the book very much. The sex was at times too much, however it's very nice to think that Darcy and Elizabeth had a passionate relationship.read more
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One really must look at this book as a fanfiction rather than an actual attempt at a sequel to P&P. Otherwise your brian is liable to explode! To describe it as "smutty" is an understatement. Jane Austen must have turned over in her grave when this was published!There are plenty of plot peaks and valleys allowing one to really be entertained by it all. However as a quasi-Austen-Purist I was shocked that Berdoll had the nerve to kill off *anyone* of cannon - no matter how unsavory the character was previously portayed.As others have said, seeing Mr. Darcy and his sister as primary characters was a real treat and for that I couldn't put the book down. That, and the smutt. ;)read more
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When I first started reading this book, I wasn't expecting Austen. Let's face it, nobody can do subtext, complexity, and wit as well as Austen can. So I wasn't completely disappointed by what I found in Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, but I was disappointed.What I noticed straight off was that the characters were different. I can't put my finger on it, but they were a bit flatter, and didn't have as much complexity as I generally like my characters to have. There was no subtext going on in the background, everything was all very straightforward. Jane seemed way too good, in my opinion. And Bingley is ruined in this novel. Elizabeth is also not herself; she seems to care way too much about what Darcy thinks of her. In short, definitely not my favorite where characters are concerned.The second thing I noticed is that this entire book is just one big melodramatic event after another. I swear, it's a Pride and Prejudice soap opera. Nothing goes right for Elizabeth and Darcy, and they get into all sorts of trouble throughout the novel. What Berdoll lacked in characterization, she tried to make up for in plot. I was entertained by the ridiculousness of it all, but I'm not sure that's what I was supposed to like about it.There was one good thing about this novel, and that is its humor. I'm not sure if Berdoll intended for it to be funny, but I laughed for at least the first quarter of the book; especially during the honeymooning period. The euphemisms used for male and female body parts, and the way the sex is described made me feel like a thirteen-year-old again. I couldn't stop giggling!There's really nothing much in this book; the characters don't experience much change, there's not much of a plot, just various overly dramatic situations, lots of revelations of clandestine lovers, and the inadvertent comedy. The one saving grace, for me, was the fact that I listened to the audiobook. Rosalyn Landor's narration was perfect. Her careful pronunciation of the words and the prim and proper way she read it definitely made me think 19th century gentry. Her seriousness combined with the ridiculous plot lines and euphemisms really made me laugh. And, let's face it, the only thing this novel has going for it is the ridiculous drama and inadvertent comedy. Conclusion: Read it if you're interested, but don't expect anything great. The characters are off and all the subtlety and wit of Austen's Pride and Prejudice is blown to smithereens. If you're looking for Austen, this isn't it. If you're looking for ridiculous drama, you've come to the right book.read more
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didn't like it at all...I don't agree with how Elizabeth and Darcy are being prtrayed. I couldn't finish it because it was making me mad.read more
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This just doesn't go with Jane Austen's writings. But has some amusing moments.While enjoyable in a completely different way, this continuation of P&P really made me appreciate Pamela Aiden's series about Fitzwilliam Darcy all the more.A hoot.read more
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This book was enjoyable and amusing from start to finish. It takes up with Elizabeth and her Mr. Darcy the day after their wedding and continues on through a number of years - and weddings, births and deaths.read more
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I am a huge Jane Austen fan, so much so that I read every bit of published fan fiction that I can get my hands on (often to disastrous results). Some are decent, but most are pretty awful. Of those, some truly fall beneath the heading 'atrocious.' Berdoll's The Bar Sinister is one such. She is one of the Austen-inspired writers who attempts to write in Jane Austen's style, by which I mean she pretty much refuses to use any words shorter than three syllables. She also likes to pretend that she knows foreign languages, especially Latin.

I have found that the best of the Austen-inspired works do not try too hard to capture her style of language and merely to do right by the characters. The reason that this is better is that these authors are modern; they are not from Jane Austen's time and her language does not come naturally. An author using words she does not know in an effort to sound classy and scholarly has the reverse effect. Words are misused and sentences fail to flow, as words have so obviously been substituted in for the originals after perusal of thesauri and dictionaries. I include here a sample of Berdoll's diction from the first page of the book:

"As each and every muddy mile they travelled diminished the distance betwixt Elisabeth and the awesome duty that awaited her as mistress of such a vast estate, she became ever more uneasy. It was not that she had only then fully comprehended what awaited her, for she had. At least as comprehensibly as was possible.
Hitherto, there had been the excitement of the wedding, and moreover, the anticipation of connubial pleasures with Mr. Darcy that buffered her from the daunting devoir that lay ahead."

These sentences are fairly mild as her language goes, but they get the idea across. Berdoll will never use the word between if she can say betwixt. She will also refer to the act of love making by every imaginable, old-timey term possible (and some that should not have been, such as many of her forays into Latin). I will finish complaining about the writing momentarily after an illustration that Berdoll does not know what words mean. On page 353 of my edition, Lizzy mouths I love you to Darcy and "he wordlessly said, 'I know.'" Wordlessly means that there should be know quotation marks, you dolt! Her writing makes the book, already one of the most absurd stories I have encountered, and makes the book possibly the worst I have ever read from cover to cover.

The story itself is truly atrocious. Lizzy and Darcy, when not having sex (a shockingly rare occurrence), encounter numerous personal difficulties: an insane footman who kidnaps Elisabeth and tries to rape her, a poor shot by Mr. Collins that nearly deafens Darcy permanently, a miscarriage and a stillbirth that nearly kills Elisabeth. And this is what happens to the characters Berdoll likes.

Berdoll hates Bingley. She must, because she has decided that he and Jane do not have a good marriage. Where Darcy and Lizzy are constantly soaked in various forms of connubial pleasure (which sometimes involve a mirror), Bingley does not manage to actually deflower Jane until after a few nights of marriage, during which he missed. There are no words. But, rake that he obviously is, Bingley manages not only to impregnate Jane (five or more times), but to also get a poor woman sick with tuberculosis pregnant with a bastard. Seriously. This happened.

Collins dies after getting chased into a pond by some bees. He lands upside down, gets stuck and drowns. For real real. Colonel Fitzwilliam falls in love with Elisabeth, which he feels guilty about. His guilt propels him to volunteer to go fight Napoleon (honestly referred to as Nappy within the 450 pages of dreck I read through). Georgiana, who is in love with him, follows him, enlisting as a nurse. He gets a little bit blown up, but survives, thanks to Georgiana's loving ministrations. When they finally return, brought back by an irate Darcy, they get married, because bum leg or not, Georgiana is preggers. Yup, shy wallflower Georgiana Darcy took charge and got herself a baby out of wedlock. I think not.

Wickham is found (supposedly posthumously) to be Darcy's brother (maybe), since Darcy's dad slept around (the sadness of which killed the former Mrs. Darcy). For this reason, Darcy donates money to Wickham and Lydia's litter of brats. Despite the fact that Wickham fathered a son on a serving girl at Pemberley when he and Darcy were young (they both slept with the girl, who later had a 'relationship' with the crazy footman mentioned earlier) and that Wickham (unknowingly but still) shot and killed this progeny while deserting the army in France. And even so, the book ends with the news that he is still alive. Great. I would not have finished this suck-fest, if not for the sheer joy of ripping it apart (figuratively, although literally is also tempting).

P.S. This book was republished as Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, so avoid that too (or just stay away from this author in general).

P.P.S. Linda Berdoll, if Jane Austen were a vampire (as is the case in many books now), she would suck you dry with dispatch to prevent any further such disgrace being done to her characters.read more
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Okay, this book is nowhere close to porn. Yes, there is sex in it. And yes, I was quite surprised when I first started reading it. But there is plenty of storyline that has nothing to do with sex. I really like the book, it kept me interested. Yes it is a bit of a departure from the type of things that Jane Austen wrote about (mainly the sex bit). But the think to remember is that Jane Austen never got married, that's why all her stories end at the engagement/marriage. This author is able to show us how life continued for Miss Austen's characters, something Miss Austen would not have been able to do herself (in my opinion). But anyway, this is a good read and well written. Very enjoyable.read more
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Where Jane Austen has left off, Linda Berdoll has continued. What Jane Austen lacks, Linda Berdoll goes over and beyond in excess. Mr. Darcy and his love interest, Elizabeth are now married and with legality comes a whole lot of romping around the bedchambers and mysteries pertaining to parentage. Their marriage is as passionate as their courtship was proper. The only adequate way to summarize the books is Victorian classic meets Desperate Housewives. If you are a diehard Austen fan, this probably is not your cup of tea since Pride and Prejudice is literally transformed into a lusty and lascivious experience. For those of us who aren't loyal Austen fans, it's just a fun time imagining the life, post the happily ever after ending, of one of English literature's most romantic couple.read more
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It was a good book. It was a little slow at the beginning, but it had ups and downs. Just when you think it's slowing down it gets exciting once again. It truly is a very good book. Still have not read the sequel to this one yet. Had it, but reading three books right now.One thing about this book, I did not agree with, was Elizabeth's meakness. Her keeping things to herself so much. I do not think after realizing in Pride and Prejudice that she should not keep her mouth shut, that she would in this book. Seems that she was making the same mistakes again.
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I LOVE, LOVE, LOVED this book!!! Okay, so it is far removed from Jane Austen and there is the occasional anachronism it but I think it was an absolutely marvelous read! Best P&P sequel I've seen so far.
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First, this is not Jane Austen. This will never be Jane Austen, as Jane Austen is dead. Purists shouldn’t be reading Austen FanFiction to begin with. And I think to enjoy it for what it was, you have to be able to look at it as a book written by someone who is not trying to be Jane Austen. Because, in all honesty, Jane Austen would not have written so much about sex.If you can skip over or don’t mind the plethora of sex scenes, I found the background and future of Mr. & Mrs. Darcy intriguing, entertaining, and satisfying. While the first few chapters felt somewhat stilted as Berdoll attempted to copy Austen’s writing style, but gradually she warmed up it her own style. Once you get past the first couple of chapters where Darcy and Elizabeth are just mostly having sex, the plot really picks up. I think she did a great job of illustrating Elizabeth & Darcy’s life in the first six or seven years of their marriage, and the continued development of the characters, and introduction of new faces, was well done.
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Some parts of this story were enjoyable but it seemed to be written to shock with its explicit sexual descriptions. This just didn't seem believable and certainly didn't add to the appeal of the book.
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I think, in order to get through this novel, it is important to mentally replace the names Darcy and Elizabeth with other ones – say, Percy and Alice for instance. And, while you are at it, replace all of the names of all of the other characters as well. Also, try to do your best to forget all the references to plot points and occurrences in Pride and Prejudice. This will be difficult as the author keeps bringing them up. You might, if you are the forgetful type and not a raging P & P fan, also do well to let a year or so go by after reading the sacred P & P before tackling this book – thereby ensuring that the details might grow a little fuzzy in your mind. After doing all of that, it is just possible to get all the way through this book and discover that it is a passable Regency novel. If you love P & P, you will probably hate this book. Hate, hate, hate. Most likely, you will not even finish it and may be moved to destroy it in some violent way. This is a very long book – much of the length made necessary, I think, by Darcy and Elizab – no, wait, Percy and Alice – spending so much of their time all tangled up in sweaty, pre- and post-coital heaps. The author likes to use lots of euphemisms and Latin to name body parts and various acts of passion, which gets a little tiresome after a while. Also, I did find it hard to credit the bit about the mirror and a couple of scenes where Percy and Alice (dressed only in Percy’s shirt) go dashing off on horses so that they can disport themselves in the fields - for a slight change of scenery, I suppose. Still, I am going to give it three and half stars, for I found it pretty entertaining after I got the hang of changing all those names in my head. 465 pages
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Pure romantic drivel based on the classic Austen book (but really derived from the A&E mini-series). Don't think about it too much and it's fun. If you aren't a regular reader of bodice ripping romances, prepare yourself for a lot of eyerolling (reading at the beach or with a nice adult beverage to hand can help this.)
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I confess I couldn't finish it. The plot was lacking but it was a good introduction to sexy P&P. It did wet my appetite and I found more P&P what if, sequel or inspired writers who write more sensual sex scenes and with better plots.
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A disappointing sequel to Pride and Prejudice which clearly states its intention to write what Jane Austen would NOT have written. You've been warned. The narrative gets off to a good start (who hasn't fantasized about Elizabeth's and Darcy's honeymoon), but it soon begins to lose its appeal; the Darcy's romping sex life takes up nearly 90% of the book. The other 10% is taken up with bandits, near rapes, mysterious bastard sons and mistresses. Not Miss Austen, indeed. Nor do I think the writer's depictions of Elizabeth and Darcy were in character. Elizabeth is far too ready to accept blame and fault in any situation and Darcy's stoic, arrogant demeanor edges slightly to meanness on occasion. It reads like a bad regency genre novel that has simply taken the names of our beloved characters to give it a marketing boost.
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I wanted to read it, I wanted to enjoy it and I couldn't. I never got into the story, or the sex in this book. So I gave up even though I would have liked to get through the story. I guess now I realize I would rather read and reread "Pride and Prejudice" and let Elizabeth and Darcy live like that.
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As a bit of a Jane Austen puritist I found this book at first very unnerving. I thought that the author had taken too many liberties and destroyed any vision of what I thought Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy would be like after their marriage. I'm not a complete JA puritist, though, and I did finish the book. In the end a sense of humour comes in handy while wading through the pages of this novel. There are only so many times Elizabeth can recount her husband's randy ways and her 'sore bottom' before you either just have to laugh out loud or close the book indefinitely.
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"Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife" isn't so much "Pride and Prejudice" continued as it is a new take on a beloved classic. Writing a sequel to such a beloved classic, with such endearing characters as Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet, would have been a harsh task for even Jane Austen herself, much less Linda Berdoll. Is Ms. Berdoll attempting to write a campy parody? Or guilty pleasure trash? I'm not sure and I don't know if Ms. Berdoll was either. While she expresses clearly that Darcy and Elizabeth have an obviously very happy and mutually pleasing marriage, the constant sex, sex, sex gets old. I like a nice juicy novel as much as the next person, but the constant references to their overabundant sex life, and Darcy's exceptional endowment got so repetitive that it got boring. Obviously Ms. Berdoll was attempting to write in Austen's style, a venture that did not go smoothly. The words sometimes feel forced and there is none of the lightness and humor that was so present in Ms. Austen's literature. I also did not like the liberties that Ms. Berdoll took with some characters, most particularly Bingley. It's bad enough to be subjected to verses about how Jane is apparently not as sexual as her husband (or obviously Elizabeth), but then to read further that Bingley is apparently a philanderer, with a love child . . .ugh! On a positive note, Ms. Berdoll does give storylines to smaller characters of "Pride and Prejudice", notably Colonel Fitzilliam. But overall, I was heartily disappointed with "Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife". None of the wit and fun was present in Elizabeth that engrossed "Pride and Prejudice" - - she seemed merely to be present in "Mr. Darcy" to rhapsodize over their lovemaking and Darcy's endowment. Darcy's character was explored more in this book, but I didn't find him more likable for it. If you are a Jane Austen purist, and a fan of the original "Pride and Prejudice", this book will do nothing but anger you so do yourself a favor and skip this one (Juliette Shapiro's "Excessively Diverted" is a better attempt at a sequel). Disappointing.
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As an imitation of Jane Austen's writing, this is a poor substitute - but Ms. Berdoll does a pretty good imitation of Henry Fielding. Her continuation of "Pride and Prejudice" reminds me quite a bit of "Tom Jones". There are prostitutes and sex and humor and secrets and love and people of unequal stations that fall in love. The storyline is interesting and those who are craving the high romance of Darcy and Elizabeth will surely be satisfied with all the love scenes between them. Just don't expect to hear Ms. Austen's voice in all the drama.
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I am a Jane Austen addict. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book ever. And I cheerfully buy any and all sequels to it, knowing without a doubt that there's no way on the planet that they will live up to the original. But I can't help myself. I may not read them in a timely manner, as proved by this particular book which I bought years ago, never read, and only rediscovered languishing on my shelves when it was re-released a couple of years ago under a different title (which I also promptly bought and had to return) but I buy them nevertheless. After reading this, I am a little sorry about my blanket Austen sequel reading policy.An unattributed blurb on the back tells readers to "Hang on to your bonnets, this isn't Jane Austen. Reader discretion advised." Truer words were never spoken (and I'm a veteran romance reader so graphic desciptions don't bother me but this book is completely over the top. Opening with Darcy and Elisabeth [sic] jolting down the road towards Pemberley following their wedding night, we find the new Mrs. Darcy ignoring the pillow Mr. Darcy has so kindly offered her to give her lower bits respite from their aching. And this is just the beginning. We are treated to scene after scene of our newlyweds thinking lewd thoughts about each other or engaged in vigorous romping throughout the entire estate. Somehow the plot seems tangential to all the steamy (adn quite frankly fairly laughable) sex. We are told of Darcy's discreet exploits when he was younger and see further into his character as he snubs a neighbor who legitimized his bastard son as his heir. We meet Elisabeth's sisters again and get to encounter the still slimy Wickham as he makes a pass at Elisabeth. In addition we are treated to bad guys (why didn't Austen write about a kidnapping?) and another illegitimate child about whom speculation is rife. Elisabeth has trouble getting pregnant despite the constant sex. And Darcy continues to learn that his pride is misplaced as he discovers things about his own family that disappoint him.With as much going on in this novel as there is, the chaos and the sex aren't the things that bothered me the most. Instead it was the stilted and unintentionally hilarious writing. I know that Berdoll was trying to mimic Austen's writing but it would probably have been better to just claim her own voice instead of producing this awkwardness. In addition to this, the book was incredibly poorly edited, with sentences trailing off into nothingness or making absolutely zero sense, even after several re-readings. The characters were as static as possible, perhaps in a nod to trying to stay true to Austen's original depiction, but since so much else of the story was as Austen would never have imagined it, why bother to try and keep them slotted into their familiar molds when circumstances should have dictated growth? And even at that, some of the characters are more true to the BBC production than to the original book. I really can be forgiving of a well-done sequel, after all; who hasn't wanted to know what happened after the happily ever after wedding in P&P but this is not that sequel. Really, it's fairly egregious.
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Summary: On the day after their wedding, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy travel to Pemberley to begin their life together. Elizabeth learns to manage the household, ride for the hunt, and throw a ball. Although the Darcys are the focal point of the novel, we also learn about the marriages of Jane and Lydia and a bit about Wickham and Darcy as boys. Other familiar characters make an appearance as well.Why I Abandoned the Book: I listened to just over a third of this 22-hour audiobook before I called it quits. It isn't that the novel is so bad, it's just that it seemed to be going nowhere. The story alternated between blissful love scenes with the Darcys to several other plot lines involving Wickham, the Bingleys, a man servant, Darcy's ex-mistress, and others. Perhaps there were too many subplots, but I found it difficult to connect with the novel, and I had no clear idea of where the book was going. I think I ended up being a bit bored.A Quick Look at Reviews: I checked several commercial book sites and book cataloging sites and discovered that Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife averages a 3.5-star rating. I found a few 5-star reviews in Library Thing: A couple of them mentioned that the plot does come together by the end, so it is possible that I gave up too soon. This book was also reviewed by Katherine at A Girl Walks into a Bookstore (2-star rating).Note that I am not an Austen purist, and I normally enjoy the Austen spin-offs. For example, I liked the movie Lost in Austen (review here), I loved Clueless, and I loved the book Confessions of a Jone Austen Addict. I just didn't like Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife. In case you're wondering, the audio was read by Rosalyn Landor, who did a nice job.
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The two books by Linda Berdoll that continue Darcy and Elizabeth's story was a great read. I could not put the first one down and rushed out to buy the second book so that I could remain in the world that Ms. Berdoll created. I felt the story she tells stays true to JA's and yet it also stood alone...if I'd never read P&P I still would have been caught up in the world she created.
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Linda Berdoll's two book continuation of the infamous Pride & Prejudice novel would be an excellent choice for any P&P fan who desires for the story to continue. Berdoll stays true to the characters while allowing them to grow and change with each new experience, as all good characters should. Her continuations also grant Austin's fans with the deeper intamacy between Darcy and Elizabeth that we have all imagined. I especially loved how she told the story not only from Elizabeth's perspective, but from Darcy's as well. They were both very well done and I found a great deal of pleasure in reading them.
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Good fun, but def. soft porn! I was embarrassed reading it! hee hee hee
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My obsession with Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice led me to this book. I really enjoyed it. Berdoll did a great job of emulating the correct style and portraying the characters in a believable fashion. I got more of the story that I wanted and there's another book to boot!
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Linda Berdoll does a wonderful job in continuing Darcy and Elizabeth's story. I greatly enjoyed reading this 2 book series, which I would recommend to any P&P fan. She does a great job in continuing the story in a way I believe Austin would have respected, if not have done so herself (due to the greater sense of passion in these stories). These books are an excellent choice if you are looking to continue the beloved story of Elizabeth and Darcy.
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This isn't literature, it's porn. I have to wonder about some of the people who say that the author has (pardon the expression) nailed Jane Austen's voice. Nothing could be further from the truth. The whole point of P&P, in fact the works of JA in general, is the sexual tension that never turns to explicit description. Obviously there's going to be sex once the characters are married, but you can imply that, and have the characters give each other knowing looks without describing various disgusting incidents. (Some have said that it's nice to see a little "modern spice" in the book, but I've read plenty of modern "spicy" books that didn't repulse me the way some of the scenes in this book do.)If you want erotica, that's fine. Just don't pretend you're reading anything that has anything but the most tenuous of connections to JA.
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I'm trying to weed out of some books that have been in my towering TBR stacks for awhile, books that I suspect I won't like if I ever got around to them. I skim-read this one tonight. It's truly awful. Had I known that it was initially self-published, I never would have gotten it. Who knew that Mr. Darcy was such a randy lad and that Elizabeth Bennett had the makings of a soft-porn queen? Or that Bingley had an illegitimate child because Jane couldn't satisfy his needs? Ick. Just ick.No stars for this one.
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I can see why the Austen purists are downing this book, but personally, I enjoyed the book very much. The sex was at times too much, however it's very nice to think that Darcy and Elizabeth had a passionate relationship.
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One really must look at this book as a fanfiction rather than an actual attempt at a sequel to P&P. Otherwise your brian is liable to explode! To describe it as "smutty" is an understatement. Jane Austen must have turned over in her grave when this was published!There are plenty of plot peaks and valleys allowing one to really be entertained by it all. However as a quasi-Austen-Purist I was shocked that Berdoll had the nerve to kill off *anyone* of cannon - no matter how unsavory the character was previously portayed.As others have said, seeing Mr. Darcy and his sister as primary characters was a real treat and for that I couldn't put the book down. That, and the smutt. ;)
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When I first started reading this book, I wasn't expecting Austen. Let's face it, nobody can do subtext, complexity, and wit as well as Austen can. So I wasn't completely disappointed by what I found in Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, but I was disappointed.What I noticed straight off was that the characters were different. I can't put my finger on it, but they were a bit flatter, and didn't have as much complexity as I generally like my characters to have. There was no subtext going on in the background, everything was all very straightforward. Jane seemed way too good, in my opinion. And Bingley is ruined in this novel. Elizabeth is also not herself; she seems to care way too much about what Darcy thinks of her. In short, definitely not my favorite where characters are concerned.The second thing I noticed is that this entire book is just one big melodramatic event after another. I swear, it's a Pride and Prejudice soap opera. Nothing goes right for Elizabeth and Darcy, and they get into all sorts of trouble throughout the novel. What Berdoll lacked in characterization, she tried to make up for in plot. I was entertained by the ridiculousness of it all, but I'm not sure that's what I was supposed to like about it.There was one good thing about this novel, and that is its humor. I'm not sure if Berdoll intended for it to be funny, but I laughed for at least the first quarter of the book; especially during the honeymooning period. The euphemisms used for male and female body parts, and the way the sex is described made me feel like a thirteen-year-old again. I couldn't stop giggling!There's really nothing much in this book; the characters don't experience much change, there's not much of a plot, just various overly dramatic situations, lots of revelations of clandestine lovers, and the inadvertent comedy. The one saving grace, for me, was the fact that I listened to the audiobook. Rosalyn Landor's narration was perfect. Her careful pronunciation of the words and the prim and proper way she read it definitely made me think 19th century gentry. Her seriousness combined with the ridiculous plot lines and euphemisms really made me laugh. And, let's face it, the only thing this novel has going for it is the ridiculous drama and inadvertent comedy. Conclusion: Read it if you're interested, but don't expect anything great. The characters are off and all the subtlety and wit of Austen's Pride and Prejudice is blown to smithereens. If you're looking for Austen, this isn't it. If you're looking for ridiculous drama, you've come to the right book.
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didn't like it at all...I don't agree with how Elizabeth and Darcy are being prtrayed. I couldn't finish it because it was making me mad.
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This just doesn't go with Jane Austen's writings. But has some amusing moments.While enjoyable in a completely different way, this continuation of P&P really made me appreciate Pamela Aiden's series about Fitzwilliam Darcy all the more.A hoot.
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This book was enjoyable and amusing from start to finish. It takes up with Elizabeth and her Mr. Darcy the day after their wedding and continues on through a number of years - and weddings, births and deaths.
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I am a huge Jane Austen fan, so much so that I read every bit of published fan fiction that I can get my hands on (often to disastrous results). Some are decent, but most are pretty awful. Of those, some truly fall beneath the heading 'atrocious.' Berdoll's The Bar Sinister is one such. She is one of the Austen-inspired writers who attempts to write in Jane Austen's style, by which I mean she pretty much refuses to use any words shorter than three syllables. She also likes to pretend that she knows foreign languages, especially Latin.

I have found that the best of the Austen-inspired works do not try too hard to capture her style of language and merely to do right by the characters. The reason that this is better is that these authors are modern; they are not from Jane Austen's time and her language does not come naturally. An author using words she does not know in an effort to sound classy and scholarly has the reverse effect. Words are misused and sentences fail to flow, as words have so obviously been substituted in for the originals after perusal of thesauri and dictionaries. I include here a sample of Berdoll's diction from the first page of the book:

"As each and every muddy mile they travelled diminished the distance betwixt Elisabeth and the awesome duty that awaited her as mistress of such a vast estate, she became ever more uneasy. It was not that she had only then fully comprehended what awaited her, for she had. At least as comprehensibly as was possible.
Hitherto, there had been the excitement of the wedding, and moreover, the anticipation of connubial pleasures with Mr. Darcy that buffered her from the daunting devoir that lay ahead."

These sentences are fairly mild as her language goes, but they get the idea across. Berdoll will never use the word between if she can say betwixt. She will also refer to the act of love making by every imaginable, old-timey term possible (and some that should not have been, such as many of her forays into Latin). I will finish complaining about the writing momentarily after an illustration that Berdoll does not know what words mean. On page 353 of my edition, Lizzy mouths I love you to Darcy and "he wordlessly said, 'I know.'" Wordlessly means that there should be know quotation marks, you dolt! Her writing makes the book, already one of the most absurd stories I have encountered, and makes the book possibly the worst I have ever read from cover to cover.

The story itself is truly atrocious. Lizzy and Darcy, when not having sex (a shockingly rare occurrence), encounter numerous personal difficulties: an insane footman who kidnaps Elisabeth and tries to rape her, a poor shot by Mr. Collins that nearly deafens Darcy permanently, a miscarriage and a stillbirth that nearly kills Elisabeth. And this is what happens to the characters Berdoll likes.

Berdoll hates Bingley. She must, because she has decided that he and Jane do not have a good marriage. Where Darcy and Lizzy are constantly soaked in various forms of connubial pleasure (which sometimes involve a mirror), Bingley does not manage to actually deflower Jane until after a few nights of marriage, during which he missed. There are no words. But, rake that he obviously is, Bingley manages not only to impregnate Jane (five or more times), but to also get a poor woman sick with tuberculosis pregnant with a bastard. Seriously. This happened.

Collins dies after getting chased into a pond by some bees. He lands upside down, gets stuck and drowns. For real real. Colonel Fitzwilliam falls in love with Elisabeth, which he feels guilty about. His guilt propels him to volunteer to go fight Napoleon (honestly referred to as Nappy within the 450 pages of dreck I read through). Georgiana, who is in love with him, follows him, enlisting as a nurse. He gets a little bit blown up, but survives, thanks to Georgiana's loving ministrations. When they finally return, brought back by an irate Darcy, they get married, because bum leg or not, Georgiana is preggers. Yup, shy wallflower Georgiana Darcy took charge and got herself a baby out of wedlock. I think not.

Wickham is found (supposedly posthumously) to be Darcy's brother (maybe), since Darcy's dad slept around (the sadness of which killed the former Mrs. Darcy). For this reason, Darcy donates money to Wickham and Lydia's litter of brats. Despite the fact that Wickham fathered a son on a serving girl at Pemberley when he and Darcy were young (they both slept with the girl, who later had a 'relationship' with the crazy footman mentioned earlier) and that Wickham (unknowingly but still) shot and killed this progeny while deserting the army in France. And even so, the book ends with the news that he is still alive. Great. I would not have finished this suck-fest, if not for the sheer joy of ripping it apart (figuratively, although literally is also tempting).

P.S. This book was republished as Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, so avoid that too (or just stay away from this author in general).

P.P.S. Linda Berdoll, if Jane Austen were a vampire (as is the case in many books now), she would suck you dry with dispatch to prevent any further such disgrace being done to her characters.
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Okay, this book is nowhere close to porn. Yes, there is sex in it. And yes, I was quite surprised when I first started reading it. But there is plenty of storyline that has nothing to do with sex. I really like the book, it kept me interested. Yes it is a bit of a departure from the type of things that Jane Austen wrote about (mainly the sex bit). But the think to remember is that Jane Austen never got married, that's why all her stories end at the engagement/marriage. This author is able to show us how life continued for Miss Austen's characters, something Miss Austen would not have been able to do herself (in my opinion). But anyway, this is a good read and well written. Very enjoyable.
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Where Jane Austen has left off, Linda Berdoll has continued. What Jane Austen lacks, Linda Berdoll goes over and beyond in excess. Mr. Darcy and his love interest, Elizabeth are now married and with legality comes a whole lot of romping around the bedchambers and mysteries pertaining to parentage. Their marriage is as passionate as their courtship was proper. The only adequate way to summarize the books is Victorian classic meets Desperate Housewives. If you are a diehard Austen fan, this probably is not your cup of tea since Pride and Prejudice is literally transformed into a lusty and lascivious experience. For those of us who aren't loyal Austen fans, it's just a fun time imagining the life, post the happily ever after ending, of one of English literature's most romantic couple.
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