A Continuation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice
When Charles Bingley and Mr. Darcy made proposals of marriage to the Bennet sisters at the end of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Caroline Bingley was both distressed by her brother’s choice of bride and humiliated by Mr. Darcy’s rejection of her.
And she made her objections known.
Now banished from her brother’s household, Caroline must return to her mother’s home in the north of England until she can make amends with both Bennet sisters. Desperate though Caroline may be to return to polite company, she absolutely refuses to apologize to Miss Elizabeth Bennet, and instead, she seeks an alternative route back into society in the form of Mr. William Charlton, heir to a barony.
Through her existing connections with Mr. Charlton’s sister Lavinia, Caroline begins to infiltrate the household in the hopes of securing the gentleman and his title for herself. However, she must also contend with her vexing emotions regarding Mr. Patrick Rushton, a once-wealthy landowner, and the meddlesome opinions of Mrs. Rosemary Pickersgill, the companion sent by her brother.
When all that Caroline has ever dreamed of attaining—an ancient family name, a title, and a home of her own—is finally within her reach, will she grasp for it even if it means disregarding the workings of her own heart? Or will she cast off the trappings of society and give herself to true love?
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Reviews of Caroline Bingley
“I don’t know quite how [Becton] did it, but at the end of this book I like Caroline. Not only do I LIKE Caroline, I totally get her. I sympathize with her. I want her to succeed. I want her to be happy. Up is down . . .wrong is right . . . ‘Dogs and cats living together . . . MASS HYSTERIA!’…. as the reader comes to learn more about Caroline’s history as Becton presents it, and the pressure put on her by her father (intentionally or not), and how she internalized that pressure, she becomes a much more understandable and sympathetic character. I’m not saying that she is easy to love, but there is something about the difficulty in getting past those prickles that makes the reward worthwhile….
“Did I mention Mr. Rushton is hot?
–Narniamum (Amazon Review)
I admit I was surprised then to learn that Caroline was to be the subject of Jennifer Becton’s second Personages of Pride and Prejudice novel. Why would she choose to write about someone so… unlikable? How much would she have to change Miss Bingley to make her sympathetic?
“The answer is not at all. Much as what happens between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy, it is not Caroline that changes, but rather our understanding of her increases.
–Nancy Kelley, Indie Jane
Caroline Bingley is a woman most people care little about…okay, dislike a lot. So why write a story about her? Why indeed! Jennifer Becton did a marvelous job writing this story. We see Caroline for who she really is. We see her struggle to get back what she lost or what she had hoped to gain, without having to admit doing anything wrong….
Mrs. Pickersgill and Mr. Rushton were my favorites! They didn’t let Caroline get away with much and they helped her see things clearer….
Amazing! I actually came to care for Caroline Bingley! This is a great story!
5 out of 5 stars!
–Candy M, So little time.
I think the author did a fantastic job of portraying the hardships for women in regency times. I also like the new characters that the author introduces. I love Caroline’s mother, Elthea. She’s more like Mr. Bingley personality wise and was a joy to read about. Mr. Rushton is swoon worthy. He’s not afraid to stand up to Caroline. Mr. Charlton is also swoon worthy but he’s a bit of a cad. Which personally, I like.
This is another fantastic book by Jennifer Becton. I love how Becton takes the supporting characters from Pride and Prejudice and gives them their own story. She filled this novel with humor, wit, and retribution. Caroline Bingley is a feisty character that is fun to read about. Jennifer Becton didn’t really change Caroline Bingley but she did change the way I feel about her.
–Marcie, To Read or Not to Read
Ever wondered what happened to Caroline Bingley after the end of Pride & Prejudice? Yeah, right, me either. I felt the same way about Charlotte Lucas, and Jennifer Becton changed my mind about that. I purchased this book three days ago and planned to read it as soon as I finished the three others I had going at the time. After the first few pages of Ms. Becton’s story, those other books – including a Georgette Heyer – were set aside for Caroline Bingley.
There is one thing Becton does particularly well: She writes an amazing hero, and I’m not talking about some Fabio wannabe. While Mr. Charlton has a title and some well-chosen words to recommend him, Mr. Rushton’s wit, perception, and manners make me wish I would meet a real-life Rushton (if I weren’t happily married, that is). The banter between Rushton and Caroline is well-written, and at times, the heat between the two is palpable….
As much as I love when authors portray Caroline as the unrepentant, heartless and cold ‘bad girl,’ Becton makes her readers actually like and empathize with Caro. (It is shocking, I know, to feel anything but the desire to strangle the chit!)
–Jakki Leatherberry at Austen Inspired Fan Fiction by Mary Simonsen