What if Darcy did not explain himself to Elizabeth after his disastrous proposal?
Print Length: 295 pages
Publisher: White Soup Press; 1 edition (April 28, 2020)
Publication Date: April 28, 2020
(By the Publisher)
In this Pride & Prejudice variation, Elizabeth and Darcy have a second chance to get things right. Will they be able to come together this time, or will pride intervene yet again?
Seven years after Darcy’s disastrous proposal, Darcy is in need, not of a wife, but of a governess for his young daughter. Imagine his surprise when he discovers Elizabeth Bennet on the list of possible candidates provided by the employment agency. The question is, should he take her on as a governess, or would he be playing with fire?
Elizabeth Bennet is forced by her reduced circumstances to take on a position. However, when Mr. Darcy invites her for an interview, she is embarrassed and humiliated. How could she possibly live under the same roof as the man she had rejected so strongly seven years ago?
Whatever decision she makes, there will be a high price to pay… one way or the other.
Fortune & Felicity is a retelling of Jane Austen’s famous novel Pride and Prejudice.
In this version of the story, instead of sorting their differences out and living happily ever after, Darcy and Elizabeth went their separate ways after his disastrous proposal at Rosings Park.
For those unfamiliar with the story, rich and powerful Darcy fell in love with gentile but impoverished Elizabeth and proposed marriage to her.
The problem was that, while at it, he thought it would be a good idea to disclose his many concerns regarding her lack of connections, and her family misconduct.
His proposal surprised Elizabeth and she rejected him remorselessly.
She was completely unaware of his feelings and was already inclined to dislike him because of his dealings with her friend Wickham.
In Fortune and Felicity, Darcy writes Elizabeth the letter clarifying his relationship with Wickham but decides to burn it down before handing it to her.
Heartbroken, Darcy marries his cousin Anne De Bourgh instead. Elizabeth’s father died, and she married a naval officer.
It was a little hard for me to deal with Darcy’s marriage to Anne. It made me sad for both of them. Although it was common practice at the time, the fact that they were cousins, in a loveless marriage, was quite depressing.
The story begins with Elizabeth widowed and living with her sister Jane in London. Jane’s husband was facing some financial problems which forced Elizabeth to seek work as a governess.
As fate would have it, Darcy, also a widower, was looking for someone to teach his little daughter. He believed Elizabeth’s lively personality could help his daughter recover from her grief.
After facing life’s many hardships, Elizabeth matured. It is interesting to see how she is more capable of understanding her mother, and even Charlotte Lucas.
I like this new Elizabeth. She kept her spirit but shed some of her naivete. Darcy also kept his essence. I don’t think I would have enjoyed the book otherwise.
The story is engaging and well-written. I enjoyed the added issue of Elizabeth’s fall from gentility. I also liked how the author envisioned Jane, Bingley, and Georgiana.
An interesting retelling of a wonderful book.
Disclosure: I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
About the Author:
Monica Fairview is an ex-literature professor who abandoned teaching criticism about long gone authors who can’t defend themselves to write novels of her own. Monica’s first novel, An Improper Suitor, was a humorous Regency and was short-listed for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Joan Hassayan prize. Since then, she has written eleven popular Regency romances, Jane Austen sequels, and Pride and Prejudice variations.
Monica lives in Surrey, England, close enough to Box Hill that she can go walking there once in a while, following in Miss Emma Woodhouse’s footsteps.