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Lizzie Bennet's Diary: Inspired by Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice

Review

Lizzie Bennet's Diary: Inspired by Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice

When Lizzy Bennet is 20 years old, she receives a diary from her dear Papa as a Christmas present. He appreciates that his daughter is much brighter than her sisters and hopes that she can be distracted from all the “idle chatter” of her family.  Totally thrilled, she soon begins entering short accounts of their daily affairs.  But, she does not just write in her diary --- she also adds charming drawings and occasional items like leaves or ribbons; the diary is also a scrapbook.
 
Like any young girl, Lizzy often dwells on social activities, especially if there are young men involved.  Unfortunately, there is simply nothing of interest happening after the busy holidays, and the passing winter seems to last forever.   Well, wait a moment --- there is some gossip about an unattached gentleman moving in nearby.  Could it be true or is it just “servants’ tattle”?  How exciting for Lizzy, her sisters and especially her mother when they discover that indeed a Mr. Bingley and his two sisters are living at Netherfield.
 
In late September Lizzy begins a very important project  --- a new waistcoat for her Papa.  Now the diary becomes sprinkled with samples of the stitching to be used and the buttons and other materials to be incorporated.  Working on her father’s Christmas present means trips into town to purchase various items, and of course, time-consuming evenings stitching out of her father’s sight. 
 
Lizzy’s diary is beautiful and charming from beginning to end.  If Jane Austen were presented with this little journal, she would be utterly delighted.  
 
By November, a ball is planned and there’s a buzz of great anticipation.  Gowns must be prepared, dresses must be augmented with ribbons and flowers and hair must be styled. At last, Mr. Bingley and his sisters are introduced to the Bennet family and Lizzy is quick to notice that her sister Jane is “much taken by Mr. Bingley and he by her.”  Unfortunately a certain disagreeable man known as Mr. Darcy spoiled Lizzy’s evening --- he was so snooty and stuck up!
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Lizzy continues with tales of her family, her high-strung mother, the silliness of her sisters, her friend Charlotte’s marriage to Mr. Collins (at last he was no longer pestering her), and a wonderful, handsome soldier called George Wickham. 
 
In no time at all, what she once considered a very boring life is definitely not boring. She is soon horrified by the things she learns about George Wickham. She is also astounded at the things she discovers about Mr. Darcy.  Perhaps her judgment has not been the best. Her head is in a whirl.
 
Author, Marcia Williams, has taken the characters from Jane Austen’s PRIDE AND PREJUDICE and has allowed the witty Lizzy to re-tell the story in her own words.  Lizzy’s diary is beautiful and charming from beginning to end.  If Jane Austen were presented with this little journal she would be utterly delighted.  LIZZY BENNET’S DIARY stands on its own and you would not have to be familiar with the original book to totally enjoy it.  Publishers recommend this book for ages 8 through 12, but perhaps 8 through 80 would be better.  Austen fans will love it and anyone who has ever kept a diary will be thrilled and inspired.  What a treat!

Reviewed by Sally Tibbetts on May 13, 2014

Lizzie Bennet's Diary: Inspired by Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice
by Marcia Williams

  • Publication Date: November 7, 2013
  • Genres: Children's, Classics
  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
  • ISBN-10: 1406346942
  • ISBN-13: 9781406346947