Compulsively Mr. Darcy by Nina Benneton (check out her writing space guest post) is a modern re-telling of Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen, but in this rendition, Darcy is not only proud, but he has OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). He’s not the only one with control issues, though, with Bingley showing symptoms of ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and Lizzy Bennet being completely spontaneous and snap in her judgements and decisions. Jane as always is responsible and caring — so much so that she’s taken over the running of a local orphanage in Vietnam, while her sister works at the local hospital treating patients with infectious diseases for free. While selfless, both Bennets have particular prejudice against those who waste their money, and Lizzy is the most vocal about the rich tourists and their egotistical ways.
“‘I’ve been doing yoga for a while. I bet I can keep my balance on that bicycle,’ Bingley said.
Behind closed eyelids, Darcy’s eyes attempted a roll. He hoped the bouncy Tigger next to him had remembered to take his daily Ritalin. He didn’t feel up to dealing with an impulsive Bingley.
‘I’ll be right back.’ Bingley leaped out of the car before anyone could stop him.” (page 3 of ARC)
Benneton’s wise-cracking and dry humor is delightful as Darcy and Bingley bumble their way through Vietnam as tag-a-longs with the Hursts who are seeking the latest rage in high society –to adopt a third-world child — and climb the social ladder. The first meeting between Lizzy and Darcy is not pleasant and some presumptions are made by Lizzy about Darcy and Bingley’s relationship. Although the original meetings and situations from Austen’s work are altered, there are brief nods to the famous writer in the dialogue between Darcy and Lizzy. The chemistry between Darcy and Lizzy heats up once the misconceptions Lizzy and Darcy have about one another are quickly dispatched, but there are other obstacles to test their whirlwind relationship, especially from family members Richard, Anne, and Catherine.
Some may find the sex scenes a little too detailed, but they certainly heat up the tension between the lovers as they come to know one another better and stumble along the way. Benneton’s Lizzy and Darcy still fail to trust and must build it from the ruins of misconception, but they are stronger for it. Benneton showcases her wit in this rendition of the Darcy and Lizzy love story, and the additional behavioral disorders of the main heroes was entertaining. More than a love story, Compulsively Mr. Darcy is about loving someone faults and all, accepting and not changing who they are, and growing together in love. Steamy, sexy, and fun, it will have readers giggling and blushing at the same time.
***As a side note, it had me wondering about how Benneton knew about the differences in tonal language between Vietnamese and English; she explained it so well, I learned something new. ***
About the Author:
Nina Benneton was a scientist on her way to save the world and win a Nobel Prize in something, anything, when a rare-bird enthusiast nut whisked her off her restless feet. A flock of beautiful children and a comfy nest kept Nina contented in domestic bliss until one day, she woke up and saw that she was too obsessed with alphabetizing her spices and searching for stray Barbie shoes.
This is my 8th book for the 2012 New Authors Challenge.