Monday, 10 February 2014

The Forgotten Sister: Mary Bennet's Pride and Prejudice - Jennifer Paynter

Cover Rating: 4 out of 5
Review Rating: 4 out of 5

Synopsis:

'I prayed for a brother every night. My two older sisters also prayed. They felt the want of a brother equally keenly, for our father's estate was entailed upon a male heir, and without a brother to provide for us or a rich husband to rescue us, we would all be destitute.'

Mary Bennet has been long overshadowed by the beauty and charm of her older sisters, Jane and Elizabeth, and by the forwardness and cheek of her younger sisters, Kitty and Lydia. From her post in the wings of the Bennet family, Mary now watches as Mr Bingley and Mr Darcy – and Mr Wickham – glide into her sisters' lives. While she can view these three gentlemen quite dispassionately (and, as it turns out, accurately), can she be equally clear-sighted when she finally falls in love herself?

In this elegant retelling of Pride and Prejudice, Mary at last learns – with a little help from the man she loves – to question her family's values and overcome her own brand of 'pride and prejudice'.


Review:

I always found a like for Mary - many claim she was unlikable and forgotten but her role I found the most relatable, for she was somewhat forgotten and held the intelligence of Elizabeth - she always held the ability to be a protagonist in a story.

I enjoyed this adaptation, Paynter worked hard to include mentions of Austen's classic and cleverly made sure to give a clear understanding of Mary and her situation.

Paynter gave Mary Bennet the voice and story she longed for, she did not romanticise circumstances regarding Mary's sisters. Mary was jealous, and almost rightly so, she was home sick and she was questioning herself.

I adore Pride and Prejudice and I am glad I took the time to read this version of Mary's story.


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