Death Comes to Pemberley

[a Novel]

James, P. D.

(Book - 2011)
Average Rating: 3 stars out of 5.
Death Comes to Pemberley
Random House, Inc.
A rare meeting of literary genius: P. D. James, long among the most admired mystery writers of our time, draws the characters of Jane Austen’s beloved novelPride and Prejudice into a tale of murder and emotional mayhem.

It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy’s magnificent estate. Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable. Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house. They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles. Elizabeth’s sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy’s sister Georgiana. And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball.

Then, on the eve of the ball, the patrician idyll is shattered. A coach careens up the drive carrying Lydia, Elizabeth’s disgraced sister, who with her husband, the very dubious Wickham, has been banned from Pemberley. She stumbles out of the carriage, hysterical, shrieking that Wickham has been murdered. With shocking suddenness, Pemberley is plunged into a frightening mystery.

Inspired by a lifelong passion for Austen, P. D. James masterfully re-creates the world ofPride and Prejudice, electrifying it with the excitement and suspense of a brilliantly crafted crime story, as only she can write it.

Baker & Taylor
Pemberley is thrown into chaos after Elizabeth Bennett's disgraced sister Lydia arrives and announces that her husband Wickham has been murdered.

Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2011
Edition: 1st United States ed
ISBN: 9780307959850
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY J
Characteristics: 291 p. ; 25 cm.


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Dec 05, 2014
  • Chapel_Hill_SarahW rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

I love reading about the continued stories of Elizabeth and Darcy and a mystery seemed like it might be fun. I had heard quite a bit about this when it came out, but it didn't quite live up to my expectations. The writing and dialogue was appropriate for an Austen spin-off, but there wasn't any suspense or intrigue really.

Sep 05, 2014
  • Another_Opinion rated this: 0.5 stars out of 5.

Wow! Some people actually liked this book! I thought it was dull and plodding, slow and wordy. This is not a mystery, there are no clues that could allow you to solve the case as you go along. Odd behavior by Colonel FitzWilliam is explained late but has no real relation to the plot, only to a poorly developed sub-plot.

I don't recommend this at all.

May 27, 2014
  • Rock_Shadow rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Another fun murder mystery by P.D. James. I expected a good crime novel, and the book delivered. It helped to have read Jane Austen to know who was who, and not to expect a sequel.

Nov 12, 2013
  • falconroom rated this: 1.5 stars out of 5.

Whle i've enjoyed Austen and p & p in the past, it was so long ago, like the previous commenter said, I was "mystified" and--ultimately--bored to death. It was a staff pick, which i usually enjoy (I find some gems!), i sent this one back unread; that is extremely unusual for me.

Jul 22, 2013
  • tuesdayswithlori rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

The mimicry of Jane Austin was very good. The plot...not so much. It was a bit obvious, actually and while I thought some of the loose threads from Pride and Prejudice were cleverly wrapped up, it was not a real revelation. I also thought the voice of Elizabeth was a bit too anxious almost right from the start and the voice of Darcy was at times too effusive. It was an interesting take on how the Darcy's would have grown and the ultimate ending was not unforseen and was satisfactory, but not stupendous.

Jun 21, 2013
  • Haley_B rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I was excited to read this book in preparation for BBC One's adaptation of it. P&P is one of my favorite reads and I looked forward to this book.

It was a good story, but somehow I didn't find P.D. James' portrayal of Mr. Darcy to ring true to Austen's. He seemed unsure of himself sometimes, and allowed his cousin to take control far too easily. Elizabeth's dialogue was nothing like Austen's.

The mystery was interesting to me. I enjoyed watching it unfold, but it just seemed to end in a hurry.

Although this was an interesting read to me, simply writing using Regency language and turns of phrase does not a Jane Austen book make. If you can read this as an interesting story and not as a sequel to P&P you might enjoy it more.

i did not take out this book

Dec 17, 2012
  • digenio55 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This was a great sequel to Pride and Predjudice
It was almost as if Austen herself had written it.
I loved the way the story humanised Wickham.

Nov 05, 2012
  • joanniek rated this: 1 stars out of 5.

I had such high hopes for this one and it let me down. I don't think P.D. James got the characters right and it wasn't very exciting.

Jun 28, 2012
  • GMora rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I've read other sequels/homages to P&P and Austen's other works, but I felt this had Austen's literary style and sly wit. While Austen herself wouldn't write a murder mystery, and I was saddened by the choice of victim, it was a credible nod and did the job well. I really liked the references to Emma and Persuasion. Well done, Ms. James.

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James, P. D.
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