‘Pride and Prejudice’ has been quoted, paraphrased and ‘fanfictionalized’ by a long list of writers since it was first published. One has to wonder if Jane Austen had any clue just how influential her novel would be on the world of literature, and for romantics for generations.
Each variation has come up with a unique twist to the story, but I don’t believe there has been such a curious, thought-provoking retelling than from Kelly Miller’s new Pride and Prejudice variation, ‘Accusing Mr. Darcy.’
This was my first Kelly Miller to absorb, and I have to say, I can’t wait until I read the next. Miller presented this great romantic story like a chef preparing a meal for the queen – her development of characters was meticulous, yet she allowed for rawness and vulnerability.
Miller went beyond the flowers and romance of star-crossed lovers that Austen gave us – she took them to the next level, adding an edge of your seat mystery that involved murder and a versatile cast of characters.
Other than the names, and a few details that were similar, Miller accomplished something other Pride and Prejudice variations couldn’t. She made it her own.
And I think Austen would be proud.
There was a lot of length, but most of it was necessary to keep readers, and the cast of characters, guessing about what had happened, and who had done it. Because of so many things unknown about Mr. Darcy, it seemed only natural that perhaps he become the accused.
Though, how could anyone accuse him – the dark, handsome stranger who arrived in the original and swept Elizabeth away from the life she knew and expected, and she didn’t mind. To curtail a possible uprising of Fitzwilliam Darcy fans, Miller blows some of her magic fairy dust through the pages that makes it all seem OK.
Book clubs, Jane Austen fans, mystery book lovers would so enjoy a discussion on the book, and the opportunity to read it. But they must know, it may borrow a few characters, and a few similar scenes as the original, but that is it.
This is a murder mystery that Agatha Christie would be proud of for sure.
You’ll most certainly not want to put it down until the final page, and when you get there, you will want more.
And maybe Kelly Miller will grace us with another tale soon.
Reviewed after receiving book from author.
Reviewed also on Reedsy Discovery and Goodreads and Amazon.