Duty and Desire (Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman #2) by Pamela Aidan

Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Bought
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher:  Touchstone
Publication date: 04 June 2007
ISBN: 978-0743291361

First Line - "Darcy recited the collect for the first Sunday in Advent, his prayer book closed upon his thumb as he stood alone in his family's pew in St, _ _ _'s"
When Darcy pays a visit to an old classmate in Oxford in an attempt to shake Elizabeth from his mind, he is set upon by husband-hunting society ladies and ne'er-do-well friends from his university days, all with designs on him -- some for good and some for ill. He and his sartorial genius of a valet, Fletcher, must match wits with them all, but especially with the curious Lady Sylvanie.
This is the second part in the Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman series by Pamela Aidan and I'm not sure what to make of it.  I had read several reviews for this one before I actually got to it and all I really took away from those was that it was thought best to skip this second one and go straight to number three.  Everyone has a lot to say about this one but I didn't want to miss anything so I fell straight into it.

It's a bit strange, it's true, but it's entertaining too and although I can't imagine Darcy getting up to most of what goes on in the pages
it was a fun read.  It takes place between the Netherfield ball and Rosings and in the original we don't see Darcy as he's gone to London with Bingley.  Here we see what he gets up to and it all seems very far fetched and strange. 
I really liked seeing Darcy's slow but steady fall into love though and even without Elizabeth as a character there was plenty of her as a notion.  He just never seemed to stop brooding over her.

Fletcher, Mr Darcy's irrepressible valet was great and to quote the blurb, "a sartorial genius'.   I love his character.  Actually, there were plenty of interesting characters in this one, some new and some old but a lot of strangeness too.  Oh well, on to the next one in the trilogy...eventually.

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