I always feel like I have to start with a disclaimer, I LOVE all Abigail Reynolds' stories, no, we are not related, she is just an amazing writer. In Mr Darcy's Refuge the P&P story is assumed the same as the orginial up to the point Darcy goes to make his first, horribly done proposal. At that point all hell breaks loose due to a flood, they are stuck together, Elizabeth is bascially put into a situation where she has little choice but to eventually except Darcy's proposal. Well, you know that it isn't going to be that easy! Without giving away the story, several of the usual characters, ie Mr Bennet, Col Fitzwilliam, and with the addition of Lord Matlock and to some extent later, Lady Matlock all play into the back story between the characters and the current impediment to Darcy and Elizabeth. There are truly some really interesting twists to normal characters that we are used to, even Bingley and Jane are transformed outside of their norm but their story is not a large part of this story.
As usual I am always amazed how Ms Reynolds comes up with all these clever ideas. I hope she never stops, I just enjoy them too much, If the secret can be kept, this is still not my favorite story of Ms Reynolds library of work, if/when that one is made into audio I will simply have to jump up and down and squeal with delight!
Pearl Hewitt does another good job bring the characters to life.
I read/listen to almost every P&P related story to come out, (yes, I am an addict) I enjoy most, but am rarely surprised by a storyline, but I was pleasantly surprised by this one. In short, both Darcy and Elizabeth have to deal with the aftermath of their father's decisions and actions, hence the title. Darcy has to deal with the common knowledge that Wickman was his father's "first born". After his mother's death the elder Darcy treated Wickman as a cherished son. By legal agreement with Darcy's mother, Pemberley goes to the first son of their marriage so thankfully it is still in Darcy's care, but his father leaves him burdened to "take care" of his brother. I am sure you can image how well that works out!
Elizabeth is kicked out of her home (at age 15!) by her father because he blames her for the deaths of the younger children, including a male heir, from small pox leaving the only survivors being Jane and Elizabeth. Mr Bennet chose not to have the younger children vaccinated but he blames Elizabeth because her "nursing" couldn't save them. After living and traveling with the Gardners for 5 years, Elizabeth is called home by Jane when she takes ill at Bingley's. She goes, meets Darcy, nurses Jane (who is an unfeeling idiot) and of course crosses paths with her father. Needless to say, it does not go well.
In the end, D&E have to deal with all the "issues" their fathers created and in true D&E fashion learn to trust and depend on each other. There are some sad parts, some happy parts but altogether a first rate story with a first rate narrator.
A modern day Elizabeth and Darcy in the Keys. A very sweet story. Easy and short, I finished in one plane ride!
First let me start with the positive, the narrator, Anne Dover, is very good. I enjoyed her part enough to finish the whole strange, confusing story.
Now the not so good. Pemberley is supposed to be a P&P sequel but if you have even the smallest notion of the original, this story will drive you nuts! Just a few points:
1. This story is supposed to be about a year after the marriage of Elizabeth and Darcy, "coming up on a year" is how it is mentioned more than once, yet Elizabeth is worried because she is not pregnant as of yet, but Jane, who married on the same day, has already had one child who I walking (think at least 1 year) and is ready to give birth to a second child. Lydia who married before them both but not too far ahead now has 4 children under the age of 4...whaaattt???? How is this timeline even possible?
2. Georgiana and Caroline Bingley are BFF's. Georgiana is a brat.
3. Lady Catherine and Caroline are BFF's. Lady Catherine brings a distant cousin that is the supposed heir of Pemberley should Darcy not have a son. Anyone assumes there will not be an heir because it has been a year and one hasn't been produced yet.....really, a whole year!!
4. Elizabeth listens to very piece of gossip and believes it all without question, i.e. Darcy has a love child therefore he can't bare to think of having another, he is going to run off to France b/c that is where the said love child's mother is from and he wants to live with her memory.
5. Darcy goes behind Elizabeth's back and changes/cancels all her plans without word one to her, but is supposed to be doing it "to save Elizabeth the trouble". He also comes the goes with no a word to Elizabeth, she finds all this out from the servants or the other guests.
6. Darcy calls Elizabeth "Eliza" and the Bingley sisters call her "Lizzie"...seriously???
I could go on, but I think the point is made!
P.O. Dixon's books are always a joy to read and I have to say thus far all the audiobooks have been too.
Short Darcy and Elizabeth stories, all wonderful. Stories all written in true Abigail Reynolds' style, if which I am a big fan! Narrator does a really nice job. Great for when you need a quick Darcy and Elizabeth fix and don't have time to get in a full length story
Charming, lovely, wonderful
Oddly enough, for me the most memorable moment was not between Darcy and Elizabeth (even though there were several of those) but the conversation between Georgiana and Elizabeth when Georgiana is telling Elizabeth about what happened with her and Wickham. I can just picture Elizabeth's face when she understands the truth of what she falsely believed about Darcy.
Pearl Hewitt does a great job of getting the correct emotion into each character.
As I love the characters of Darcy and Elizabeth, the good stories make me sigh....I sighed!
Great story, great characters
I love Darcy as no other... Wait, is there any other....uhhhh no!! Darcy while feeling that his love for Elizabeth will never be returned is too much to pass up.
I really liked Vanessa Johansson's narration. At first I could not pin point what it was about her voice that I liked so much until a friend came upon me while I was finishing listening to a chapter and commented that her voice had emotion in it, I agree
When Darcy is leaving the country to try to forget about Elizabeth, the goodbye was delicious
Never miss an Abigail Reynolds' book if at all possible!
Finally, out of all Abigail Reynolds' books, this is the one I was most looking forward to in audio. As I have gone on and on about in the past (if you read any of my past reviews) I love all her books, but this one has always been is my absolute favorite. Darcy proposes to Elizabeth in Huntsford but before she makes it clear to him that her answer is no, he kisses her and they are seen by others. I know, big deal right, well it is in the time of this story. Basically, Elizabeth agrees to marry him to prevent scandal and all the conflict between the two in the orginial P&P story happens after they are married. Of course, Darcy thinks she married him because she wanted to, making the story at times quite heart wenching, especially when Elizabeth finally confronts him about all she holds against him and why she agreed to marry him. I will not give away anymore, but I have to say that I have read this story several times, it gets to me everytime! Rachel Hurley as the narrator does a great job. Listening to it was just as wonderful as reading it!
Did I mention this was funny!? In short, a scottish uncle, who has no children to leave his "castle" to only two nephews, decides to take matters into his own hands and kidnap suitable scottish heiress for his nephews to marry. One nephew is "tainted" with English blood and the other "French" blood, but they are his only heirs. You can just guess how well the kidnapping scheme went over, but no one could do anything about it because they where stuck there in a storm. Yes, yes, it is a predicable story and outcome, but it is written so well that you don't mind.
The narrator, Susan Duerden, was EXCELLENT....a 5+ star performance!
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