Kristen's Reviews > Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James
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's review
Nov 29, 2011

it was ok
Read from March 11 to 21, 2012

Heard about this book on NPR today. Sounds like a great read--Jane Austen and a murder mystery all wrapped up in one!

Ok, now it's several months later and I've had the opportunity to read the book. It was tolerable, I suppose, for a read at the beach. But I admit it failed to live up to the expectations of an Austen novel or a good murder mystery. As for striving to achieve the heights of Austen, I feel James spent too much time apologizing for the actions of the characters in P&P. I think we can understand their motivations well enough, or at least accept their imperfections, such that we don't require further explanations. And as for the mystery, I was disappointed at the lack of active mystery solving undertaken by the characters. The truth eventually unfolds, due to the late presentation of evidence from individuals involved, but no one seemed interested in seeking out the truth. I would have liked to see Darcy dig deep to find his inner Sherlock Holmes and be the one to solve the mystery.
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03/13/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by PD (new)

PD I listened to the reviewer too. What a clever method for attempting to follow up Austen's classic work.

Rachel The NPR story made me think it sounded good too. It wasn't. too bad.

message 3: by Sarah (new)

Sarah I'm not gonna let you whine when you're reading on the beach!:)
Congrats, btw!:)

message 4: by E (new) - rated it 2 stars

E I too, found that James' apparent need to try and explain or apologize for the P&P's characters' actions unnecessary and kind of strange in the midst of a different work. Write an article of literary criticism, by all means, but don't incorporate it in a novel.

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