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Juxtabook

I thoroughly enjoyed it and thought the past invented and exploration of that character's behaviour through it gave said character the thorough kicking I always thought he deserved! So hard to explain without spoilers! I do know what you mean about ownership though. Maybe because I always thought he was not very admirable I minded less. I also liked the positive afterlife she gave one of the 'minor' sisters too.

Cornflower

I do see what you mean!
P & P, perhaps more than any other book, has acquired so many 'layers' of association and familiarity through the many film and tv adaptations, and the numerous spin-off books, and so we each come to it with a different set of filters in place. Just by the way, my first exposure to it was as a child of about seven, watching the Olivier film!

Readerlane

I thought it was surprisingly well done, and although Ms Baker may have an agenda, I appreciated the context she adds to the story for the work that supported the Bennetts lifestyle as well as for the war against Napoleon in Spain and those faraway West Indies plantations. I wasn’t entirely convinced by that subplot for a familiar character, but I didn’t see it as central. The slant of the story would have been even more interesting perhaps without it imo.

Cornflower

It is very well done, and that's a good point about the added context.

Dark Puss

Amazingly I have read this novel before you did! It is very well written and (I am sorry to say) that I have not read P&P (though have seen many adaptions) so I certainly don't have the same feeling of meddling with a classic novel. However I was less taken with aspects of the book as I read further though I did finish it and indeed discussed it in a (physical) book group.

Cornflower

If you have time - and wish to do so - DP, do tell us which aspects you were less keen on.

Jill

I have read and enjoyed Longbourne dear Cornflower.
Whilst not entirely convinced by the plot twist about a certain character what I took from this book was the lovely detail of the household domesticity and, may I say, drudgery for those below stairs. Life certainly was hard for the servants, perhaps even more so for middle class households without the army of servants of grander establishments. How they didn’t fall asleep on their feet I can’t imagine. I found this an engaging read.

Dark Puss

I will try, but please bear with my poor memory! First I'd like to say that I thought this was an excellent premise for a novel and Baker is to be commended for writing it. The parts I thought worked for me less well was the long section on the Napoleonic war. Important to have that backstory but I think the length probably broke up the rhythm of the whole work too much. Mr Bennet's "secret" is treated too shallowly and we could have been treated to a more detailed insight as to his behaviour within the context of the society he finds himself in. I guess the part I felt let it down most was what I felt was a rushed ending. Sorry not to be more competent in telling you what I thought but it was some time ago that I read it!

Cornflower

Very much so, and yes, fascinating domestic detail.

Cornflower

Yes, I felt the same about the war part - the excepted section I mentioned in my post.
I agree with you that both the back story of the 'secret' is insufficiently well-founded, and the ending is a bit too neat!
A quality piece, though.

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