Sunday, October 3, 2010

Review & Giveaway: In the Arms of Mr. Darcy by Sharon Lathan

I want to thank Sharon Lathan again for stopping by to guest post on my blog.  Sometimes I think of myself as pretty skeptical about real love, even though I'm ever hopeful.  For some length of time, I have determined that, like Lizzy, "Only the truest, deepest love would ever tempt [me] into marriage" (Pride and Prejudice).  Ideally that sounds wonderful, but put to test in the real world can seem impossible!  To put it simply, true love and affection seem pretty far off, but may be not quite so in Lathan's beautifully crafted novels of one of our most beloved couples, Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy.

Synopsis:  In this fourth installment, Darcy and Elizabeth are as besotted with one another as ever, and happily enjoying the gift that is their first child.  Their "felicity in marriage" is obvious to all that associate with them, as we see in the opening scenes at Christmastime at Pemberley with family and friends gathered round.  Although the Darcys have been married for about year, and there is much for the young couple to be involved, various other characters come to play a role in the story.  Georgiana Darcy is of age to step out into society, as is Elizabeth's younger sister Kitty.  Under the guidance and watchful eye of Uncle George Darcy and Colonel Fitzwilliam, both young women learn about courtship, hoping to establish a relationship that is anything the likes of Elizabeth and Darcy.  All is not lost though to our most famous couple, as much happens for them to keep them busy and happily in love with their lives together.

Review:  Having read many different takeoffs and mash ups of Austen's novels, I continue to hold Lathan's at the top of the list.  There is something so fanciful and romantic about Sharon Lathan's depiction of Darcy and Elizabeth that I can't quite get enough!  I was happy to see that in this installment the couple have really settled into their roles as man and wife, and are letting go of previous insecurities they might have had previously.  While they have settled into their lives together, their passion and love for one another have only deepened. Yes, we are privy to their passionate relationship as it continues to unfold, but it is done in a beautifully mature sort of way.  Let's be honest here, who wouldn't want to continue to have a passionate relationship with the love of one's life?  If one is willing to suspend a certain belief that this iconic couple have been cemented into the pages of Austen's novel, then these books will allow the couple to live and breathe on into a beautiful, complicated and lovely future.

Although the story mainly centers on Darcy and Elizabeth, we learn much more about the people in their lives, such as their single sisters and friends.  Caroline Bingley makes an appearance in this installment and strikes out to find a match for herself.  Honestly, I wanted to hear more about her search for love, not enough to fill chapters at a time, but was genuinely interested in her struggles enough so that a few more mentions of her would have been well received.  I also was surprised at how much I wanted to read on about Darcy's sister Georgiana and Elizabeth's sister Kitty.  Usually I'm annoyed when a writer takes away from our main characters, but I didn't feel this at all in this novel, partly because our time with them is so judiciously spent.  I will say though that considering the turmoil that poor Georgiana experiences at the end of this installment, I have a feeling that more is to come for this sweet character. 

As with each of Lathan's previous novels, the language and style of her writing has a melodic charm to it that carries you through each line and chapter.  The sweetness of the writing adds depth to the story and leaves you wanting to escape into it more.  There are still the characteristic meanderings, journeys, and felicitous lounging to please any lover of Regency style and romance.  This happy, romantic couple is at no loss of love or happiness in the novel to keep any reader sighing along with them.

Thanks to Sourcebooks, who provided me with this copy of the novel.  In celebration of the release of In the Arms of Mr. Darcy on the 1st, they have offered two copies for giveaway here on One Literature Nut!  If you would like to win a copy of Lathan's newest release, just fill in the form below.  (US & Canada Only) The drawing will close on Sunday, October 10th at midnight!  Good luck! 


  1. I have a feeling that this might not be international? (although I am hoping that it is!)

  2. Wow! Thank you Becky for this fabulous review! You said so many wonderful things, but the one, above all, that resonates with me is the recognition that my story is about the hope and belief for love. I appreciate you taking the time to read my novel(s) and share your thoughts with your readers. Sharon

  3. Iris--Yes, sorry. They put the stipulation of US & Canada only on it. I went back and edited it. Sorry! I should just send you a copy! :)

    Sharon--Thanks so much. I really need to thank you for giving me something so sweet and inspiring to read!

  4. Ah, very understandable. It seems most books based on works of Jane Austen are released seperately in the US and Europe. I do hope to read this someday :)

  5. Iris, All of my novels are available everywhere, they just may be a bit harder to track down outside of the US. All online retailers sell them and they are on every type of digital format. I wish I could send to all my friends overseas! Good luck!

  6. love the cover and the title is so romantic! looking forward to this latest lathan ;-D

  7. I still haven't started it. I probably should, but I just wasn't in the mood this week, and you know how moody I am when it comes to reading.

  8. Thanks for the great review Becky!!! I totally agree with you that Sharon's words are captvating and always leaving us as readers wanting more.
    And more she delivers! The way Sharon develops each character is amazing. The richness of every characters backstory is astounding! I fall in love with these wonderful characters more with each new novel! Loved hearing your review.
    Keep up the great work Sharon!
    TSBO devotee

  9. irisonbooks--I feel bad that I forgot to include that in the original post! I'm sorry to get your hopes up. :( I really do love the way these are written though and hope you can get your hands on them!

    vvb32--It was really sweet and a great escape read!

    Heidenkind--When you're ready for something sweet, romantic, and reminiscent of a slower lifestyle, then jump in and escape! :)

    Vee--Thanks Vee. I didn't know there was a TSBO group?!? I love Lathan's work and have been peddling Sharon's books wherever I can. LOL. It's nice to see such a devoted fan backing her up.