Monday, January 9, 2012

A Weekend With Mr. Darcy

I wanted to like this book. I really did. In a sea of sequels and reimaginings, it is refreshing to read a novel that takes place in modern times. (ex. Austenland, Writing Jane Austen, The Man Who Loved Pride & Prejudce...hell, even Seducing Mr. Darcy). As long as you have a strong female lead, a believable, handsome hero and a plausible conflict, the novel will sure to be a success. This book lacked all of these things.
Dr. Katherine Roberts, a professor of literature, is off to Purley Hall for a Jane Austen weekend getaway. Guest speakers, lovers of her novels; the whole shebang set in the English countryside. The ideal vacation. Katherine is eager to meet her pen-pal and writer of Regency romances, Lorna Warwick. The two have become close via letters. Katherine is heartbroken over a broken relationship. Lorna has been her balm. Now she finally gets to meet her!
Katherine arrives at Purley Hall and instead meets a very handsome, dark stranger. He accidentally rolls his suitcase over her toes, apologizes profusely, but Katherine screams at him. I found this, amongst other interactions which I will mention, to be implausible and ridiculous. Why would she scream at him? It wasn't as though he ran over her toes and then was unapologetic and rude. He apologizes. Profusely. But no matter, Katherine finally is introduced to the handsome stranger; his name is Warwick Lawton. Hmmm. A man at the Jane Austen weekend named Warwick. Katherine is eager to meet this mystery romance writer named Lorna Warwick. Readers, do you get it? Come on...take a few minutes....yes...yes, that's right. Warwick Lawton = Lorna Warwick. But it takes Katherine, doctor of literature, the entire novel to figure this out.
There is another storyline involving the insipid Robyn, who has a mean boyfriend, but finds a new handsome man at Purley Hall and...well, I won't even go into it. I had little patience for this storyline.
Perhaps I am being too cruel on Miss Connelly's novel. Readers who enjoy a frothy romance will take pleasure in the trite storyline. I did not. Katherine was unbearable and idiotic. I cannot believe a woman of such education would have such a difficult time realizing that the man she met and the woman she wrote to would be the same person, especially since they share an unusual name. But I digress.
Read at your own peril.

I, unfortunately, can only grant this novel 1 wax seal.


  1. I enjoyed this book much more than you did, but I agree that the names were too similar for Katherine not to question it.

  2. I loved this book though I agree about the weakness in the main character you mentioned. Sorry you didn't like it! I hate it when I get a hold of a book that is just not for me.

    Thanks for posting!