The rift between Darcy and his aunt Lady Catherine de Bourgh has been somewhat mended since Elizabeth has given birth to an heir. Of course that doesn’t mean that Lady Catherine actually recognizes Elizabeth’s presence. But the entire family is gathering at Rosings once more for Easter. Joining the family are Robert Darcy (see The Other Mr. Darcy) and his wife and two relatives from America, Frederick Darcy and his sister Clarissa Darcy.
Georgiana is hoping that she and Clarissa will become close friends. Georgiana has been feeling that she’s in the way or not really wanted. Darcy marrying Elizabeth was definitely a good thing but where Georgiana always had her brother for company now he seems always involved with Elizabeth and their son — they don’t purposely exclude her they just don’t seem to notice.
Once Frederick and Clarissa arrive, they seem to get off on the wrong foot with Lady Catherine. While Frederick can be accepted, after all he is American, a business man, and rich. Clarissa must learn to become a lady — of course that’s the type of lady that Lady Catherine approves of, and that’s where all the trouble begins. Clarissa is neither tractable or docile.
Georgiana and Clarissa do become friends. Georgiana learns that one can be a lady and still have strong opinions and interests of her own. When Clarissa is appalled by the way everyone ignores Anne de Bourgh and has Georgiana join her in her campaign to become friends with Anne, Georgiana begins to realize that she’s always just accepted things and never looked at them from the outside. She’s also surprised by what they learn. Her eyes opened, she begins to look at other behaviors she’s always accepted.
As is usual, one things leads to another and before long Lady Catherine is convinced that Clarissa is practically the devil personified, and there to ruin the family. Once again the family finds itself rent by Lady Catherine’s insistence on her point of view. Everyone decamps for London and the season.
Georgiana struggles to find her own way in society with her new insights. She learns that Clarissa is in England for more than this visit and that there are depths to her American cousin. In fact, soon Clarissa and Georgiana find themselves interested in the same man. But is he the right man for either of them? Will their friendship last through the season?
To say any more would spoil the fun of learning all the secrets, intrigues, and adventures to be had in The Darcy Cousins. The book’s advanced press implies that the book is all about Clarissa and her problems but this is really Georgiana’s story. Clarissa is the spur that goads Georgiana to action and change. Georgiana is firmly front and center. She’s always been in the background and this time Monica Fairview gives the reader a chance to get to know her a bit better. Shy? Yes, but also she has the same strong Darcy stubbornness and loyalty. It’s a turbulent story as Georgiana becomes a person most of us would like to know better and have stand at our side in adversity.
Another excellent follow on to Pride and Prejudice that maintains the integrity of the original characters while moving the story of their lives forward.