A Weekend with Mr Darcy by Victoria Connelly

I don’t normally read romantic chick-lit fiction, but this book was a gift, described as a light easy read and it is. I didn’t expect too much from it but I quite enjoyed it. A Weekend with Mr Darcy takes place at a Jane Austen conference, attended by Katherine Roberts, a university lecturer who doesn’t want her colleagues to know she is a Jane Austen fan and Robyn Love, a Jane Austen fanatic who is stuck with Jace,a boyfriend from her childhood who dislikes anything to do with Jane Austen.

They meet at the conference at Purley Hall in Hampshire, not far from Jane Austen’s birthplace, Chawton Cottage. Katherine is hoping to meet the novelist Lorna Warwick, famous for her risqué Regency romances, but Lorna who has been writing to Katherine is reluctant to go, not wanting Katherine to find out that she is in fact a man, Warwick Lawton. (This is not a spoiler as it’s revealed early on in the book.) But as Warwick he goes to Purley Hall and the inevitable conclusions follow. Robyn is desperately trying to ditch Jace, who has insisted on driving her to Hampshire and staying at a local pub. Chaos follows as Robyn falls in love with Dan, who she thinks is ‘totally beautiful’.

The attraction of the book for me is in the Jane Austen references and in particular the Jane Austen quiz. The book may not be entirely my cup of tea, but it has made me keen to re-read the Jane Austen novels I haven’t read for many years, such as Mansfield Park, Sense and Sensibility and in particular Northanger Abbey which I haven’t read since I was at school.

For a more detailed and enthusiastic review than mine see this post on the Austenprose blog.

5 thoughts on “A Weekend with Mr Darcy by Victoria Connelly”

  1. Hello Margaret,

    I think that my reaction to this book, would be much the same as your own. The only possible good thing to come out of my association with it, would be to reawaken my interest in reading the ‘real thing’ … the Jane Austen novels themselves!!

    I did as you suggested and checked out Laurel’s review, over at Austenprose and the most appropriate lines I could glean from her post, were those below ….

    “I am amazed at how many Austenesque novels continue to have ‘œMr. Darcy’ worked into the title. Recently there has been: A Wife for Mr. Darcy, by Mary Lydon Simonsen, The Trouble with Mr. Darcy, by Sharon Lathan, The Truth about Mr. Darcy, by Susan Adriani, Mr. Darcy and the Secret of Becoming a Gentleman, by Maria Hamilton, Only Mr. Darcy Will Do, by Kara Louise, What Would Mr. Darcy Do?, by Abigail Reynolds and ironically Mr. Darcy Goes Overboard, by Belinda Roberts ‘“ and that is only in the last four months!!! Gentle readers, have we indeed gone overboard over Mr. Darcy?
    What could Victoria Connelly possibly offer that has not already been said several times in historical, contemporary or paranormal versions?”

    Personally, I detest the current ‘trending’ of taking a classic author and reworking their books into modern genre classifications.

    A classic author, or book, is that for a reason and should be left that way. There are plenty of opportunites for today’s authors to be future classics in their own right, but they should be in addition to those who have already earned their places in this hall of fame, not at the expense of …

    Thanks for an honest appraisal of ‘A Weekend With Mr. Darcy’

    Yvonne

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    1. Thanks, Yvonne. I don’t like sequels, prequels etc of classics. This one is a bit different as it’s a Jane Austen ‘inspired’ book, but it’s still going overboard in my opinion. But they are popular – each to her own, I suppose!

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  2. I have the same difficulty you do, with reading all the Jane books that are built on her work, instead of building something new. I can’t read many of them because I love Jane Austen’s works so much! I would be interested in this one because of the conference and quiz, as you were.
    Thanks for the review, Margaret.

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  3. I read a lot of romantic/chick lit books and, in my opinion, Victoria Connelly is one of the genre’s best writers. I’m not much of a fan of Jane Austen sequels (even though Jane Austen is one of my all-time favourite writers), but Victoria’s books aren’t trying to re-write Austen or change her wonderful books; rather, she weaves wonderful allusions and references to Austen, which I find absolutely delightful.

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