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Review: Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James is one of the most enjoyable novels I have read in a long time. This was an impulse selection from a trip to the library a few weeks ago. A friend of mine had recommended it to another friend…and we’ll after observing thier discussion back and forth after both had read it, I couldn’t help picking it up and reading it for myself.

Death Comes to Pemberley reintroduces us to our favorite Jane Austen characters- Elizabeth, Mr. Darcy, Jane, and Mr. Bingley as they have settled after getting married. But tradgedy strikes on the eve of the annual autumn ball as a coach carrying none other than Lydia Wickham comes careening up the drive, and she tumbles out announcing that Wickham has been murdered.

I have been reluctant to read any of the take-offs based on Jane Austen’s beloved Pride and Prejudice characters, believing that modern day authors would be unable to capture the ton, and knowing I would be disappointed with the story. So what made me take the risk with this one? Well…the two friends who read this are also Jane Austen fan’s and just as snobby as I am. And if they loved it, it was worth a shot.

And it was more than worth a shot. Death Comes to Pemberley is a fantastic read. P.D. James does a phenomenal job of capturing Austen’s beloved characters, not recreating them, but somehow magically capturing Austen’s voice while weaving in a mystery. The plot was intriguing, the characters well done, and the end not quite what I had predicted. Overall, its a fantastic read, and one I would highly recommend.


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