truedarcyWho wrote this book and when?
This book was published in 2006 by Elizabeth Aston.

Has there been a film version?
No.

Who are the important characters?
Cassandra Darcy – the daughter of the sickly Anne de Bourgh from “Pride and Prejudice”, an artistic young women with a good bit of the Darcy pride
Horatio Darcy – one of Casssandra’s distant relations, a lawyer in London who dreams of Parliament
Lord Usborne – a man of degraded morals who enjoys keeping mistresses and engaging in political intrigues
James Eyre – a military officer who catches Cassandra’s eye
Mrs. Nettleton – a woman who allows Cassandra to stay in her house for cheap rent
Petifer – Cassandra’s personal maid and loyal friend
Belle Darcy – one of Fitzwilliam Darcy’s daughters, a horrible flirt
Mr. Lisser – an artist from Germany with a shadowy past

What’s it about?
Cassandra Darcy hasn’t had it easy since her father died and was replaced with the slimy Mr. Partington. Her stepfather attempts to squash any creative tendencies Cassandra may have and is always inclined to think the worst of her. So when the brilliant painter, Henry Lisser, and Cassandra’s flirtatious cousin, Belle, both arrive at the same time – disaster is only moments away. Cassandra is sent from home to Bath to live with a crotchety aunt and within weeks finds herself categorized as a fallen woman. Determined to find a way to live on her own by the talents of her artwork, Cassandra will run into more than she bargains for in the streets and houses of London.

Why is this book a bestseller/classic?
I don’t believe it is either, but this novel is a popular one – although probably not considered best selling.

Do I recommend you read this book?
If you don’t like either of the first two in the series, then don’t bother with this one.

How did this book make my list?
I enjoy light reads like this to break up the huge bricks of books I sometimes take on.

Has it won any awards?
Nope.

Anything else?
I always enjoy reading the different takes people have on what happens to the vague, yet important character of Anne de Bourgh.

Personal thoughts:
I enjoy Aston’s books, I really do.  It’s always nice to escape just a bit back to the time and place where Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy make their homes.  And while with Aston, I can never really conjure up the Darcy family as she imagines it, I still enjoy the strong young female characters she includes.

This story is no different – in fact it’s nearly the story of Alethea Darcy redisplayed with a few twists to the packaging.  Cassandra loves painting while Alethea loves music; Cassandra is disowned while Alethea is just very poorly supervised.  So don’t expect anything spectacular in ways of creativity when it comes to the plot.  And Aston does fall back on her tendency to wrap things up in merely a chapter or two a little sloppily.  (Is that even a word?)  I’ll admit – I only pick these books up when I need a brain break.

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