Monday, July 19, 2010

Mr. Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy is one of the most fawned over fictional men in the history of literature. I'll admit to having done my own fair bit of swooning. But there are such gaps in Pride and Prejudice where we hear nothing of him. Have you ever wondered what he was up to during those times? Ever wanted to have a peek at what was going on in his head, and more importantly, in his heart?

Now you can, thanks to Amanda Grange and her wonderful book Mr. Darcy's Diary. It really is his diary, and in it everything is revealed. It begins the summer before Bingley takes Netherfield, and ends a few months into his marriage to Lizzy. It is accurate, often with lines taken directly from P&P. Miss Grange knows the characters inside and out; every piece of dialogue is precisely how I think Jane Austen would have wanted it. We come to know the Bingleys better, as well as Georgiana Darcy. Darcy's intervention in the Wickham and Lydia problem is explained in full detail. And of course, Miss Elizabeth Bennet is ever present in his thoughts. All his struggles and feelings are there, beautifully laid out on paper right in front of you. Probably the part most worth getting excited about is the last few chapters, where we get to see a bit of Lizzy and Darcy after they're married; and let me tell you, they make an adorable couple.

This book is a must-have for every fan of Jane Austen. It really is perfect; it made me love Mr. Darcy even more, if that's possible. I also loved getting to know Mr. Bingley better. Mr. Darcy's Diary is officially one of my all-time favorite books, and I highly recommend it to anybody, provided they're familiar with P&P.
I think if Jane were alive today she'd applaud Amanda Grange on a job very well done. For this reason, it has a place of honor in my bookcase right next to its parent book, Pride and Prejudice.

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