“Her attention was attracted by movement close at hand and she saw the dark shape of a bird–no, a bat–heading towards the window. She closed it quickly, leaving the bat to hover outside. As she looked at it she was seized with a strange feeling. She thought how lonely it must feel, being shut out; being a part and yet not a part of the warmth and light within.” (Page 67 of the ARC)
Amanda Grange‘s Mr. Darcy, Vampyre, published by Sourcebooks, catches up with Mr. & Mrs. Darcy right before their nuptials and follows them along their wedding tour. As plans change and the Darcys spontaneously tour Europe, mingling with Mr. Darcy’s friends, Elizabeth begins to feel that there is a deep dark secret her husband is hiding from her.
Throughout the novel, Grange adheres to Jane Austen’s characters and the time in which those characters live. Readers of Pride & Prejudice may have wondered why Fitzwilliam Darcy was so reserved, but Grange provides a paranormal alternative to mere position and wealth considerations in the 19th century. The lush landscape and dramatic plot will suck readers into Mr. Darcy, Vampyre as they travel with Elizabeth and Darcy through Paris, Italy, and the Alps.
“She needed no urging. The sumptuous atmosphere was starting to oppress her and the strangely sinuous people were unsettling. She was relieved to get outside and breathe the fresh air.
Night hung over the city like a dark mantle, pierced with the light of flambeaux and, up above, there seemed to be a thousand stars.” (Page 47 of ARC)
Elizabeth is captivated by her foreign surroundings, but eventually she begins to feel weary of her new acquaintances and the tension in her marriage. Readers will grow anxious and paranoid just as Elizabeth does. From bandits and wolves in the woods outside a secluded castle to the reappearance of Lady Catherine de Bourgh and her ties to Darcy’s secret, Grange weaves a twisted narrative that leaves Elizabeth, Darcy, and readers on the edge of their seats.
Mr. Darcy, Vampyre is a paranormal continuation of Austen’s Pride & Prejudice that is executed successfully. Even though the title does the novel a disservice by telling readers Darcy is a vampire, Grange is a master of this time period and her imagination shines through in this novel. There are enough descriptive clues and dialogue in Grange’s novel that a different title would not have detracted from its paranormal quality. It took me less than 3 days to read this novel in the free time I had at home. Readers will be absorbed by this paranormal world. Mr. Darcy, Vampire is another notch in Grange’s repertoire, and if readers have enjoyed Mr. Darcy’s Diary (click on the link for my review), they will enjoy this paranormal novel.
This is my first book for the Everything Austen Reading Challenge. What books have you read for the challenge? What movies have you watched?