Wednesday, December 17, 2008

REVIEW: These Three Remain

Title: These Three Remain
Author: Pamela Aidan
ISBN: 9780743291378/ Touchstone
Historical Fiction, #3 in a trilogy
Rating: A-

First Line: "Heigh-up, there!" James the coachman's voice rang out in its familiar timbre, urging the team pulling Darcy's traveling coach to put to in their harnesses and take them through the tollgate out of London and on to the road to Kent.

Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite books, so I tend to look very skeptically at any "fan fiction", no matter the author or publisher. For some reason, Aidan's trilogy intrigued me enough to sample the first book in the trilogy, An Assembly Such As This, which begins the Pride and Prejudice tale from Darcy's viewpoint. I was hooked and soon had read the second, Duty and Desire. Although not as strong as the first, I could not leave the trilogy unfinished.

These Three Remain picks up the story at the time Elizabeth visits the Collins, and Darcy visits his aunt, Lady Catherine de Burgh. After that long period of time in Duty and Desire when the two didn't see each other, this third book in the trilogy rebounds solidly and is just as strong and satisfying as the first.

Aidan does an excellent job with the language of the time, which isn't as easy as it may appear. Aidan's writing sounds like Austen without being a slavish imitation, and yet it still flows smoothly to the modern ear. The characters she introduces to the story are well-drawn and just as interesting as the familiar ones we know and love from the original. The very first time I read Pride and Prejudice, I remember thinking, "What did Darcy think about all of this?" Aidan satisfies my curiosity in fine style, working through all of his reactions to Elizabeth's resounding refusal of his proposal to how he decided to change his character and win fair lady.

If, like me, you've been hesitant to read follow-ups to Pride and Prejudice, I think you'll be very pleasantly surprised with Pamela Aidan's trilogy.


  1. I am so glad to hear your recommendation of this trilogy! I think I am going to read this in summer of 2009! thanks for the review.

  2. I used to have my doubts about fan-fiction or Austen sequels, too. But I've discovered that there are indeed some good ones out there!

    I haven't read this trilogy, but now am much more likely to pick it up based on your recommendation!

  3. I hope you two get the chance to read at least one book in this trilogy. They're quite good!


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