Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister
Miss Georgiana Darcy is preparing for her first season, and she’s terrified. Most of us can relate to teenage angst, but during the Regency when you’re seventeen and unsure whether your personal charms make you as attractive to prospective suitors as your dowry of thirty thousand pounds, the social landscape becomes much more complicated.
In debut novelist C. Allyn Pierson’s Pride and Prejudice sequel, we see Mr Darcy’s little sister develop from a painfully shy and insecure teenager to a young woman of confidence and determination. Piqued by the condescending attitude of her cousin Colonel Fitzwilliam, who shares guardianship of Georgiana with her protective brother, Georgiana acts in predictable churlish teenage fashion – to the consternation of her family. One of the charms of this book is Georgiana’s transformation, which is triggered by the conniving fortune hunter Jonathan Walker.
Ms Pierson picks up Georgiana’s story just before the marriage of her brother to Elizabeth Bennet, who proves a kind and sympathetic friend to her self-doubting young sister-in-law. The new Mrs Darcy is one of a cast of characters we first met in Pride and Prejudice, and it was enjoyable to see them interwoven into Georgiana’s story.
While the first half of the book provides a wealth of interesting detail on the customs and fashions of the Regency period which will appeal to Jane Austen fans, I felt the book really benefited from the increase in pace and conflict which occurs about halfway through with Georgiana’s kidnapping and its ramifications. When Georgiana at last learns her own heart, she acts with conviction and determination. It’s a sweet romance.
Mr Darcy’s Little Sister is written with elegance and a faithfulness to the Regency era that will appeal to lovers of Austenesque sequels.