Published by Escape Publishing on 15th July 2016
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
Amazon US, Barnes & Noble, Publisher
Jane Austen gets a little dusty in this outback retelling of a beloved story about a man who learns that first impressions can be wrong when you’re looking for Ms Right.
Wheat farmer Evan Bennet is happy being single until his brother falls for the new girl in town, wealthy hotel owner Claire Bingley. Suddenly finding a girl seems more appealing…unless you’re talking about Claire’s best friend, pretentious lawyer Darcy Fitzwilliam. Her cold manners have Evan seeing red, and when a cute girl with links to Darcy’s past catches his eye, he’s even more determined to dislike her.
When a startling revelation turns Evan’s world upside down and he unexpectedly crosses Darcy’s path again, he’s forced to reassess his opinion of her. But just as he starts to open his heart, a crisis engulfs his family, threatening to destroy any hope of a future with Darcy.
With a cloud hanging over his family, Evan knows his chance of winning Darcy’s heart is gone… until some surprising news and a generous gift leave him wondering if her heart might be his after all.
Let’s just face the facts: I’m total trash for when it comes to a Jane Austen retelling, and Evan and Darcy is something I’ve been needing for a long time and never realised it. One thing I’ve learnt about my reading habits this year is that I’m a total sucker for rural romance, making Evan and Darcy my total kryptonite.
Evan and Darcy is a sublime retelling of a personal favourite classic, with an Australian twist that will make it a favourite. Evan is our Elizabeth, the second of five sons, and at a curveball in his life, torn between staying and helping on the family farm, or following his dream of becoming a vintner. When he meets Darcy, a hotshot lawyer from Melbourne, the two instantly butt heads, and from there on the age old story of Pride & Prejudice plays out.
The best part of the story is the”gender bent” twist – I’ve never actually read a retelling before where the roles are reversed, and it was completely refreshing. I would have loved to have seen more interaction between Evan and Darcy (Darcy especially; I felt like we really didn’t get to see a lot of her character growth in comparison to Evan) – most of their conversations felt rushed and lacking, and one of the things I love about the original is those interactions.
If it’s a sweet, fun romance you’re after, then definitely give this a one a go – a perfect beach read for those sunny days coming up!