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A Match For Mary Bennet: Can A Serious Young Lady Ever Find Her Way To Love?
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A Match For Mary Bennet: Can A Serious Young Lady Ever Find Her Way To Love?

3.83  ·  Rating details ·  442 ratings  ·  55 reviews

A unique and inspirational Pride and Prejudice sequel that will resonate with all readers who can relate to Mary Bennet's determination to live according to God's wishes

Written by a Franciscan nun, this is a sympathetic tale of the middle Bennet sister from Pride and Prejudice. Pious Mary Bennet tries to do her duty in the world as she thinks God envisions it.


Paperback, 358 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by Sourcebooks Landmark
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Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
At last, an Austen follow-on by a modern author who can write grammatical English and respect the original characters and story, while adding depth and development to Austen's universe! I never thought I'd see the day.

I must admit that while P and P is not my favourite of the Austen canon, I've always had a fellow-feeling for Mary, and whenever I've read it or seen a film/series adaptation, always wondered why the Bennets didn't think of offering to let Mr Collins marry Mary. Granted, Mr B. woul
Hmmm. I did like parts of this a lot, but ultimately, it was pretty long and the love story wasn't set up quite well enough.

But I'm glad it exists. Mary is probably the sister I relate most to, really, and it was nice to see her growth. And the book itself feels very Austen-like.
Feb 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: austenesque
Jane Austen’s minor character Mary Bennet is not exactly heroine material. With only eight passages of dialogue in Pride and Prejudice she has made a lasting impression on readers over the centuries as a pious young woman who often insensitively offers advice of “threadbare morality” to her family at the most inopportune moments. Author Eucharista Ward has taken a bold step in devoting an entire novel to this pedantic and socially clueless young lady. She is not the first to tread this path. Las ...more
A Pride and Prejudice sequel which concentrates on Mary Bennet, though the lives of other Bennets are included. I admit that Mary, with the Colonel, are my two favourite characters. This story is where Mary learns of her mistakes concerning her family and spends her time mainly with her two older sisters at their estates. I enjoyed reading about these, and the new characters added to the story. I found the style of writing very easy to read.
This is a re-read of the book and on the whole I enjoye
Nov 06, 2009 added it
I liked the character of Mary (and especially the fact that the author didn't feel compelled to transform her into a beauty, as did Colleen McCullough in her own Austen spinoff). I did find the pacing a little slow, and I think the novel would have been better if the author had jettisoned some of the subplots and some of the minor characters and spent more time on the main characters and the love story. ...more
Jul 11, 2021 rated it liked it
There's often times when I've read JAFF that I've joked to myself that I'm Mary. Sure we all want to sweet Jane or sparkling Elizabeth, or maybe even vivacious Lydia, but I'm Mary. I'm not like the Mary in this book.

I did find this to be an interesting characterization of Mary. We start of with the staunch version of the character and over the course of the book, see her grow and become more flexible. I thought it was a saying but maybe it was just said on a tv show about how an unyielding branc
Baja Janeite
Oct 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Mary Bennet is quite satisfied. Now that Lizzy and Jane have married wealthy men, Mary can ignore her mother’s schemes to find Mary a husband. She can withdraw into her music and books. She no longer has to worry about her fate when Longbourn is invaded by the Collins’ family. She need never marry. Well, at least that is what Mary hopes…

Two very different men become part of Mary’s life.

Stephen Oliver, gentle and intuitive, glories in his vocation as a minister. He asks Mary to help him, but s
Sep 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Jane Austen lovers
Eucharista Ward O.S.F.'s A Match for Mary Bennet is delightful and reminiscent of the regency craftswoman Jane Austen herself. The novel's pace is dead on, unfurling Mary Bennet's character slowly, allowing readers to sit with her, getting to know her mind, her choices and motivations, and her true heart's desire.

"'I fell asleep in Inferno, and the candle went out. I awoke in Purgatorio. But all the light is on now. I have found Paradiso.'" (Page 323 of ARC)

With her older sisters, Jane and Eliza
Aug 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Jane Austen fans
Shelves: romance, historical
This novel is a historical romance set in the world of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. It's a "sequel" focusing on Mary Bennet and, to a lesser extent, her sisters. It's a thoroughly enjoyable book.

The story was written in much the same tone and style as Pride and Prejudice, and the author stays true to the characters and events of that book. The pacing was a bit slower than most modern novels, but it's consistent with the pacing of Jane Austen novels. The world-building was excellent with ma
Jan 05, 2010 rated it liked it
This was written by a nun. Does that make a difference? (yes.) Should it make a difference? (no.)

A charming novel, albeit slow, and a generally thoughtful Austen spin-off that doesn't try (and fail) to imitate. I appreciate (because it is so rare.) the calm development of Mary's character, and her change from a young lady who understands only music and The Word Of God to a woman who learns to value also the companionship of love, and family, and her own human capability. (And her implie
Laurie Sand

Given that this book is essentially Pride and Prejudice fan fiction written by a nun, I went into it with tempered expectations. I was not disappointed, but I was also not blown out of the water. Although the style is somewhat reminiscent of Austen--an omniscient narrator, a focus on events, development of relationships over a span of time--the tone was not. Austen's narrative voice is arch and amused, inviting the reader to laugh at the frailties of human nature. Ward's tone, by cont
Oct 25, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: jane-austen
This P&P companion novel was written by a former nun, so I should have expected the heavily-Christian undertone throughout. Mary seems overly rigid and entirely uninteresting, completely satisfied with the single life and dozens of religious platitudes with which she can judge her neighbors and relations. Her ultimate love-match is predictable, in that the author leaves few choices, but despite its obvious approach, it is still too sudden. Mary speaks not once of any attraction to Mr. Oliver, an ...more
Feb 09, 2010 rated it liked it
While I like this book okay there were some aspects to it that bugged me like characters jumping into the story suddenly and just as suddenly disappearing again never to be heard of again. Also, the book focused on Mary's over analytical perception of marriage which over time went from distorted to pleasing but when she finally marries herself you don't find out what she finally thought about it. Grrr! Overall I thought it was a nice read with a loose end from Pride and Prejudice tied up in to a ...more
May 18, 2010 rated it it was ok
I found it to be rather dull and predictable. However, it was readable- meaning I was at least able to finish it.
One of the better Pride & Prejudice sequelae.
Dec 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I haven't read that many P&P based books that are out there. Something intrigued me about this one, and I'm very glad I read it. I very much liked the way Mary was portrayed in this novel. It read true to the original source, yet the character was more mature and interesting in this interpretation. There are two aspects of the book I didn't like so well. First, I thought the story dragged on somewhat. It could have been a bit tighter and shorter. Second, I didn't like the portrayal of Elizabeth. ...more
Jun 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So I started this simply because I wanted a Mary story. I went in fully aware that this book is written by a nun, and that's not really my cup of tea. But, oh my! Did I love this book! Though staying true to Austen's characters, I found this book interesting, and funny, and charming, with a lovable and very relatable Mary. The book takes place over a few years, and follows all the Bennets through their lives, with births, balls, and going to church. I loved the very realistic lives of characters ...more
Jun 23, 2020 rated it it was ok
It's always fabulous to revisit characters I loved from Pride and Prejudice, even written from a slightly different perspective, which is what I found in books such as the excellent books "The Other Bennet Sister" and "Mary B". This book, however, is not like those ones. By the end, the characters words and actions were so far removed that they bore no relation -- with the exception of Lydia -- to the originals. An entertaining although long read from the regency era, but with many word and acti ...more
Nina De Lorenzo
Jan 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I adored this book as the author’s purpose was to tie up all the lose ends of Pride and Prejudice- which she did very well! The hero of this story is Mary Bennet who evolves beautifully over the course of the book. She starts off much as she was in P&P, serious and honest but more blindly trusting of others than her own discernments. I loved watching her grow in wisdom to match her intelligence! This is my first foray into Jane Austin sequels and it sets a high bar.
Gigi Black
Jun 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book does justice to Austen’s work, here Mary Bennet has a gorgeous character development and actually has a great resemblance to the original Mary in Pride and prejudice. Lovely written a bit slow at times but it makes sense for the main character herself goes slow.

I absolutely recommend any Austen lover to read this if you wanna see a possible future for Mary Bennet after the events of Pride and prejudice.
Mar 11, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is my first P&P continuation. I enjoyed the growth of Mary's character over the course of the book, and found her continuation of other characters mostly true to the original. At times there seemed a lot of irrelevant side-stories, but they all tied together by the end (though some stayed somewhat irrelevant other than to bring in well-known characters). She did a lovely job with Mary's development, and, overall, it was a pleasant diversion. ...more
Karen Sofarin
Jul 20, 2019 rated it liked it
One of the more enjoyable Austen sequels I have read. Interesting with an occasional delight.
Camille Duka
Aug 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
A delightful read.
Nov 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical, regency
A good, relaxing read that shows Mary Bennet maturing from her awkward, sermonising girlhood.
Sep 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: gave-up
The premise is interesting but I found the book much too slowly paced and without the nuanced, sometimes wry observations of Austen on her characters and their society. It seemed like the author spent too much time trying to develop detailed plot lines and not enough on making the characters seem real or bringing out insightful commentary about their situations. I lost interest and bailed out about halfway through. Not surprised, though. Jane Austen is a hard act to follow.
Nov 27, 2015 rated it liked it
Considering the fact that I've resisted P&P sequels on principle, I have to say that I did enjoy reading this book. However, I have to consider it in two separate ways--1. As a Regency novel in its own right and 2. As a Jane Austen wannabe sequel.
First, when considered in its own right, the book is delightful. The characters are mostly interesting and the plot is believable for the most part. However, I did feel that the resolution between the two main characters was too easy and happened way to
Jun 09, 2009 added it
Shelves: austenesque
I didn’t have extremely high expectations for A Match for Mary Bennet, given that Mary isn’t the most exciting or engaging character in Pride and Prejudice, but I thought it would be entertaining to find out how the least marriageable Bennet sister handles the marriage-obsessed Mrs. Bennet (one of the most annoying characters I’ve ever encountered) after Jane, Elizabeth, and Lydia all are married off. But the book completely blew me away. Eucharista Ward completely “gets” Jane Austen. The langua ...more
Sep 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite continuations. Well done and fun!
At first glance, this book is charming as it reunites the cast of Pride and Prejudice. The main plot of the novel is Mary's growth and maturity. Her falling in love and getting married is more of a subplot in this novel, and I'm okay with that. The new characters also add a freshness to this story. That said, it never raises to the heights that Austen's novel does. On its own merits, the plot is overdrawn, and the characters that Ward didn't create are shadows of their former glory.

The novel's c
Carole Rae
Dec 26, 2011 rated it liked it
This book has been sitting on my shelf since 2010. Waaaaaaaay too long. Now I regret it.

I always felt for Mary and I've read few books that give her a HEA and that is why I picked this up. Young Carole was Mary - serious and kinda prudish. Now that I'm older I'm more like Lizzie. But I am so happy Mary got a good book and a HEA.

The beginning is very, very deceiving. The Colonel gets a few pages of having a POV - which had me thinking he was going to be one of the young men in a bid for heart, w
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