OK, so ... I do enjoy my non-fiction, but it's definitely slower going than a novel, and sometimes, I want something a little quicker and lighter. Ergo, I read Mr. & Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One, by Sharon Lathan (Sourcebooks Landmark, 2009) one afternoon last week, when I wasn't quite up for Built to Last.
In a word, yawn. I'm usually a fan of new spins on old stories; two of my all-time favorites are The Red Tent and The Mists of Avalon, and I still want to read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. But Mr. & Mrs. was little more than vaguely naughty fan fiction -- very disappointing. Naughty is fine now and again; naughty and romantic is even more so, as it's a rare and underappreciated combination. But if you're gonna write a romantic naughty story, either write your own from scratch or, if you're starting with someone else's characters, at least bring something new to the party (and no, a smidgen of smut alone doesn't cut it).
The plot, such as it is, in a nutshell: The story begins immediately after Elizabeth's wedding to Mr. Darcy. The wedding night vastly exceeds either party's wildest imaginings, and most of the rest of the novel is devoted to how much Darcy and Lizzie love each other, how attracted they are to one another, and how tender and mutually satisfying all their many amorous encounters are. That's pretty much it; not much in the way of conflict or surprise here. Really, all the book has to recommend it are the steamy scenes -- which are OK, but not particularly compelling as the basis for an entire book.
- Ithaca, New York
- MWF, now officially 42, loves long walks on the beach and laughing with friends ... oh, wait. By day, I'm a mid-level university administrator reluctant to be more specific on a public forum. Nights and weekends, though, I'm a homebody with strong nerdist leanings. I'm never happier than when I'm chatting around the fire, playing board games, cooking up some pasta, and/or road-tripping with my family and friends. I studied psychology and then labor economics in school, and I work in higher education. From time to time I get smug, obsessive, or just plain boring about some combination of these topics, especially when inequality, parenting, or consumer culture are involved. You have been warned.