Synopsis [from goodreads.com]:
Claire Prescott is a sensible woman who believes in facts and figures, not fairy tales. But when she agrees to present a paper to a summer symposium at Oxford on her ailing sister's behalf, Claire finds herself thrown into an adventure with a gaggle of Jane Austen-loving women all on the lookout for their Mr. Darcy. Claire isn't looking for Mr. Anyone. She's been dating Neil -- a nice if a bit negligent -- sports fanatic. But when a tall, dark and dashing stranger crosses her path, will the staid Claire suddenly discover her inner romantic heroine? Her chance meeting with a mysterious woman who claims to have an early version of Austen's Pride and Prejudice -- in which Lizzie ends up with someone other than Fitzwilliam Darcy -- leads to an astounding discovery about the venerated author's own struggle to find the right hero for Lizzie Bennett. Neil's unexpected arrival in Oxford complicates Claire's journey to finding her own romantic lead.
Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart is the story of a woman who finds that love isn't logical and that a true hero can appear in the most unexpected of places.
I'm sure I've said this before, but I'm one of those people who have yet to pick up a book by Jane Austen. And again, I'm not too sure as to why I haven't. I suppose the language of the book scares me away... But anywho, going into this book with Sense and Sensibilites and Sea Monsters [check out my review] being the only Austen-ish book under my belt (in addition to a movie here and there), I have to say my review is probably a little skewed...
With that said... I enjoyed MR. DARCY BROKE MY HEART. I believe if I had read Pride and Prejudice before-hand my opinion of the book would have either been entirely different or more strengthened. Basically I think you'll either really like the book or you won't. In the book, the main character Claire stumbles upon a early version of Pride and Prejudice called First Impressions. Although First Impressions is entirely fictional, it would have been really nice to have the original story in my brain to compare it to. Although, the author does a good job explaining or pointing out the differences as she writes, which I appreciated very much.
As for Claire herself, she was an interesting character. She wasn't an extraordinary character, yet I found her personality very enjoyable. As the story progresses, Claire's life is laid out for the reader to discover bit by bit. This summer symposium at Oxford is an event that forever changes Claire's life and her outlook on life. She discovers what love truly is as she meets a handsome Darcy-like gentleman in Oxford while juggling her current boyfriend who she's been comfortably invovled with for quite some time. She re-evaluates her relationship with her family, especially her sister, and how her personality and lifestyle came to form around others rather than herself. I found MR. DARCY BROKE MY HEART to be a fresh and entertaining read that involved real emotion without the story dragging on and on.
I definitely recommend fans of Jane Austen to give this a try to see if it's your cup o' tea. I think people who have never really read Jane Austen will enjoy it like I did as well.
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Giveaway ends Febrauary 22nd and the winner will be announced February 23rd. US Entries only.