Amazon recommendations will be the death of me because I simply can’t not buy them when they look interesting. That being said, I ordered three used books – one by the author of Austenland and two by a different author with similar themes.
Yesterday afternoon, the mail arrived. As did Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart by Beth Pattillo. I had wanted to read the other book written by her that I’d ordered first, but the mail had different plans in mind. So, I started last night. My eyes hated me for it.
Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart. The title is so fitting. Not only does Beth Pattillo have a way of writing comfortably, but she also possesses the talent of writing in a way to mimic Austen – a pleasant surprise when I first started reading the pages of “First Impressions” that Pattillo wrote into the book as Austen’s lost first manuscript of the later Pride and Prejudice. Even though it wasn’t quite what I’d expected, I loved it. It was predictable (because of layers of foreshadowing) but there were still elements that caught me off-guard. I expected the ending, because there was no other way that it could have ended, but at the same time, I wasn’t sure if that’s how it would end because of the added key player: “First Impressions.”
It was the perfect romance that made my eyes heavy with prickling tears. Though I had expected something closer to Austenland – which it had been recommended as a result of – I was completely drawn into the entirely different story. I hate mysteries (though this can’t really be classified as a mystery); it was mystery enough for me. There were mysterious occurrences? All of Oxford and its nearby residents had mysterious stories and motives? I don’t know how to describe it, but it wasn’t the typical Darcy-fanatic novel on many levels.
It’s a short read and I wasn’t able to put it down until I finished last night. I’m already planning on letting a couple of my bookworm friends borrow it for a quick read, because even though it isn’t one of those books that sticks with you in a meaningful way (or at least not in my opinion), it was a good story and it was written in a personable way that seemed like I was talking to a close friend or even stepping foot into the story myself. It was sweet and it pissed me off and it made me happy and sad and frustrated. The protagonist is one of those characters that I would hate to meet in real life, and she wasn’t any less annoying on the page. That being said, like Darcy, she improves on closer acquaintance.