• The Heiress

  • The Revelations of Anne de Bourgh
  • By: Molly Greeley
  • Narrated by: Ell Potter
  • Length: 11 hrs and 44 mins
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (86 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

"Greeley’s storytelling is intricate, masterly, and delightfully imaginative. Highly recommended." (Library Journal, starred review) 

In this gorgeously written and spellbinding historical novel based on Pride and Prejudice, the author of The Clergyman’s Wife combines the knowing eye of Jane Austen with the eroticism and Gothic intrigue of Sarah Waters to reimagine the life of the mysterious Anne de Bourgh.

As a fussy baby, Anne de Bourgh was prescribed laudanum to quiet her, and now the young woman must take the opium-heavy tincture every day. Growing up sheltered and confined, removed from sunshine and fresh air, the pale and overly slender Anne grew up with few companions except her cousins, including Fitzwilliam Darcy. Throughout their childhoods, it was understood that Darcy and Anne would marry and combine their vast estates of Pemberley and Rosings. But Darcy does not love Anne or want her.

After her father dies unexpectedly, leaving her his vast fortune, Anne has a moment of clarity: what if her life of fragility and illness isn’t truly real? What if she could free herself from the medicine that clouds her sharp mind and leaves her body weak and lethargic? Might there be a better life without the medicine she has been told she cannot live without?

In a frenzy of desperation, Anne discards her laudanum and flees to the London home of her cousin, Colonel John Fitzwilliam, who helps her through her painful recovery. Yet once she returns to health, new challenges await. Shy and utterly inexperienced, the wealthy heiress must forge a new identity for herself, learning to navigate a “season” in society and the complexities of love and passion. The once wan, passive Anne gives way to a braver woman with a keen edge - leading to a powerful reckoning with the domineering mother determined to control Anne’s fortune...and her life.

An extraordinary tale of one woman’s liberation, The Heiress reveals both the darkness and light in Austen’s world, with wit, sensuality, and a deeply compassionate understanding of the human heart.

©2021 Molly Greeley (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

What listeners say about The Heiress

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  • Overall
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Not a pleasant listen

This book is about addiction and lesbianism. It is not a Jane Austen spin off. Don't be fooled.

7 people found this helpful

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A beautiful work of historical fiction

I loved this book. Anne is a heroine you want to root for. The narration was serene and beautiful and, without spoilers, Ell Potter paced herself with the story of the protagonist. Themes of finding one's self, and, in the latter half, a heartbreaking, captivating, and honest depiction of female love between two souls in a hopeless time period. My tears at the end caught me off guard, but they were the welcome kind that only come with a truly gripping story about perseverance, and looking back at one's life journey and finding what matters most.

5 people found this helpful

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A depressing spinoff of Pride and Prejudice

I found the premise of this book intriguing, but the plot meandered and came to a predictable ending. I would compare this book unfavorably with "The Other Bennett Sister," which is also an attempt to tell the story of one of the minor characters in P&P, but which does so far more successfully and compellingly.

3 people found this helpful

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A Little Lethargic

The story is excellent and the narrator does a fine job, however you should listen to it at a quicker pace (about 1.25) because if not she'll put you to sleep. She's so slow in the way she draws out the words it almost makes the story dreary and blurry. Speeding it up solves this problem.

3 people found this helpful

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Thoroughly Enjoyed

It's starts off slow in the first part but once you get into the second part, it gets going. This book gave me what Greeley's other Pride and Prejudice book didn't. True romance, a protagonist who gets what she wants, and a story that comes full circle.

I sped up the audio to 1.45. I enjoyed the narrator's her voice but she just spoke too slowly for me.

2 people found this helpful

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Wonderful

So brilliantly written and wonderfully read. The talents of both writer and reader ooze from the sound system. My only complaint is it could have been twice as long. I think each scene and opportunity could have been explored more. I also would have been thrilled to listen to the details of their life from their 40's on. The school, trips to London, their familial interactions, how true love grows & ages, and all the difficulties & triumphs in between.--I could have read this book forever. Loved it that much. I bought it because I read a 1-star review which talked about how horrible the book was, stating it was about "addiction and lesbianism"; I thought "Those aren't actual *critiques* are they. No. They're just a bigot's reflection in the mirror I suppose... Well, 'addiction and lesbianism'? --sign me up then!" Unfortunately this book is not about addiction & lesbianism, but it is an actual piece of artwork that I am certainly better for having read it. It's lovely.

1 person found this helpful

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Beware - This is a book about female/female romanc

I wish I would have known the protaganist was a lesbian before I got almost half way through. I did suspect it at one point but still went on with it. I don't have any issue with this, just not my cup of tea. I love Ell Potter as narrator. Unfortunately, my credit was wasted.

1 person found this helpful

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Disapointed

While I truly liked Molly Greeley's first book. The Parson's Wife, The Heiress was not to my liking. I think that I am too conservative about the topic of Miss De Bourgh's leanings that Ms. Greeley imagined.
The writing is well done and the reader does a fine job. The subject was not my cup of tea.

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Superb

This is gorgeously imagined and told. Molly Greeley has grown in power and passion. The lyrical quality of the book itself is mesmerizing. Narration spot on.

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The perfect narrator to fall asleep to!

Such a soothing listen! Just wishing it was a little longer & a little happier.