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Christmas at Pemberley by Regina Jeffers

Christmas at Pemberley by Regina Jeffers finds Mr. and Mrs. Darcy in a run of the mill inn right before the Christmas holiday as they are stranded by the snow and stormy weather on their way back from Newcastle.  Meanwhile, Georgiana is forced into the roll of Mistress of Pemberley and must contend with Darcy’s guests, including Lizzy’s parents, the Bingleys, and some other unexpected and unpleasant guests.  Jeffers sprinkles her prose with Jane Austen’s classic lines from Pride & Prejudice about Mrs. Bennet’s nerves and Darcy’s pride and Lizzy’s prejudices.  She adheres to Austen’s characterizations ensuring that Austen purists will enjoy her followup novel, but at the same time, she demonstrates how Georgiana evolves from a timid girl in the shadows of her brother and Aunt Catherine de Bourgh to become a capable woman.

“”Yes, our Mary has snatched up a viable candidate.  At least, Mrs. Bennet has said such on countless occasions, so I must believe it so.  After all, Her Ladyship has deemed my wife to have no mental deficiencies.’

Charlotte chuckled lightly before saying softly, ‘Lady Catherine is perceptive in her evaluations.’

Mr. Bennet smiled knowingly.  ‘Lizzy has assured me that nothing is beneath the great lady’s attention.’

Mrs. Collins tightened the line of her mouth.  ‘Her Ladyship is all kindness.  She has taken it upon herself to oversee my domestic concerns familiarly and minutely, offering advice on how everything out to be regulated.'”  (page 67)

Even better, readers experience more of Mr. Bennet’s wit and see Kitty as more than just a silly young girl.  Lizzy’s precarious situation with her pregnancy has Darcy worried, especially so far away from home.  But both take the situation in stride and offer the kindness they have in abundance to those in need.  Darcy and Lizzy are at the inn meeting new people and sharing accommodations with a myriad of travelers.  Meanwhile, Georgiana is juggling unwanted guests, and in many ways the guests are rallying and teaming up against Lady Catherine.

Jeffers adheres to Austen’s characters and social commentary while building upon the original novel to create characters that evolve and come into their own.  Christmas at Pemberley by Regina Jeffers is an quiet novel that meanders, enabling readers to spend the holidays with some of their favorite characters, but those looking for big plot twists and action will not find much of that here.  Jeffers has created a solid novel that could stand alone.

This is my 76th book for the 2011 New Authors Reading Challenge.

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  • This sounds like a good read for the season and I just love that cover!

    • Doesn’t she look cozy in that outfit.

  • Thank you, Serena, for reviewing “Christmas at Pemberley.” The book is suppose to represent a Regency Christmas, which was still very religious based and family oriented. “Christmas at Pemberley” is meant to be an inspirational romance, “a sweet book for the holiday season,” as bermudaonion said above. For those who want a bit more “action,” these characters are used again in my next title, “The Disappearance of Georgiana Darcy,” which is a cozy mystery with its own twists and turns.

    • I really liked this one. I just wanted to make sure they weren’t expecting major action. I cannot wait to read the cozy mystery…that sounds like something more up my alley.

      • Serena, I wasn’t being defensive. I was just acknowledging that each of my Austen titles has a different gender.
        The Phantom of Pemberley = cozy mystery
        Vampire Darcy’s Desire = paranormal
        Christmas at Pemberley = inspirational
        Captain Wentworth’s Persuasion = historical romance
        Darcy’s Passions and Darcy’s Temptation = Regency romance
        Sometimes, people read one and expect all of them to be the same.
        You will definitely like “The Disappearance of Georgiana Darcy.” It has action, and a twist that you’ll say “I didn’t see that coming.”

        • I actually just bought Phantom of Pemberley when Borders had its going out of business sale. I noticed quite a few P&P spinoffs that I wouldn’t have normally had the shelves not been ransacked. I know exactly who’d like Captain Wentworth’s Persuasion!

  • This sounds like a sweet book for the holiday season.

    • I liked the holiday aspect of the story for sure.

  • I’m still reading this one; I put it aside to finish my challenges before the end of the year. It definitely is a quiet book, which makes it slow-going for me. But so far, I’m enjoying Jeffers’ characterizations. Glad you liked it.

    • I did like it. I’m trying to finish Pemberley Ranch for the challenge, so I won’t fail my own challenge for Civil War!