His Good Opinion
Today, I am super excited to share with you my review of His Good Opinion! Nancy Kelley is one of my #TangledJaneite buddies, and co-owner of Indie Jane. We have some hilarious conversations, and I was honored to be one of her beta readers during the final stages of prepping HGO for publication. I guess I did a good job, because she trusted me enough to let me do an official review of the finished product! And let me tell you, it's even better this go-round!
His Good Opinion is Pride and Prejudice, from Darcy's perspective. Different from Mr Darcy's Diary, this is a complete novel that follows the Austen original with painstaking, careful attention. But it also fills in the gaps of the story. You know, like how exactly did Darcy discover Georgianna and Wickham, and how did he work through that near-disaster? What went on when he was in London, or at Rosings Park, away from Elizabeth? And, perhaps the most pressing question: What did Darcy do after Elizabeth refused him? Nancy does a wonderful job of answering these questions - and more! - while maintaining an authentic feel and tone. All her characters feel true-to-form, and I especially loved getting to see the relationships between Darcy and Bingley, and Darcy and Col. Fitzwilliam.
The story itself is well-paced and well-formed, and the 'behind-the-scenes' material (aka: the stuff Jane Austen left to our imagination) does much to further the story. Instead of going straight from the disastrous first proposal to the reunion at Pemberley, where we meet a more 'mellow' Darcy, Kelley takes the time to explore Darcy's psyche. In sorting through Darcy's reactions to Elizabeth's words, and his subsequent examination of his own words and actions, we are introduced to a man who's wholly human - and entirely lovable. Not to mention one super appealing hero. And he's hopelessly in love with the one woman he can't have -- or can he?
His Good Opinion is a beautiful new look at one of the most timeless love stories ever written. It's fun, it's fresh, it's detailed and delightful. And it hints at so much more to the story - just what is Col. Fitzwilliam up to, anyway? Alas, I must wait for those answers (yes, Nancy Kelley is working on a new novel aready!), but until then, Darcy is quite satisfactory.
Digital ARC provided by author for review.