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Mr Darcy, Vampyre coverInquiring reader,

Great news! I have come across some letters by Elizabeth Bennet about  Mr. Darcy, Vampyre, written by Amanda Grange
, which is coming out this month. These letters, well, critiques, really, were penned long ago and describe events that seem to have transpired in a parallel universe. I was particularly struck by how freely Elizabeth shared her thoughts with her sister Jane about her adventures with an other-worldly Mr. Darcy. I will be publishing all of Elizabeth’s critiques over the next few days. Contained herein, then, is critique, part one of Mr. Darcy, Vampyre. For those to whom this matters, spoiler alert!

My dearest Jane,

I have unaccountably awoken in the 21st century and I am writing to you out of habit, though I surmise that you must be long gone, or also living in that grey netherworld of the undead fictional character into which I have landed. I’ve just discovered that Mr. Darcy and I are the hero and heroine of a spate of books that, frankly, my dear sister, make me blush from shame. Apart from their topics (imagine us as zombie fighters and being married to vampyres), I am depicted as behaving in a manner that is so unlike myself that I fear my blood shall boil from the rise in my temper.

A recent book, which has turned my Mr. Darcy into a vampyre, has me seething in particular, for, my dear Jane, you know better than anyone that I am no namby pamby missish nebbish. In this book, the author has Mr. Darcy shunning my bed. The REAL Elizabeth Darcy née Bennet, had Mr. Darcy been guilty of such a heinous offence, would not have accepted the situation without hunting him down the corridors of their cruise ship (which is what honeymoon vessels seem to be these days) and demanding an explanation of why he was unresolved in his husbandly DUTY of BEGETTING an heir immediately. Instead, this Ms Grange has me strangely accepting the situation as if I were a zombie, which I am assuredly NOT, for has not Mr. Grahame-Smith given me the warrior skills to chop off their heads?

What particularly burns me, to use 21st century parlance, is that I take pride in my conversational ability. Sparks fly when Mr. Darcy and I converse. Even when such a mundane subject as tea comes up, double entendres abound. One may be assured that Mr. Darcy and I can easily devote hours of our lives sparring verbally and taking pleasure from these seemingly uneventful encounters. But Ms Grange has us speaking in dead and flat voices, as if we were not Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth from the brilliant mind of Jane Austen, but another couple conjured up by some other author who happened to have given us similar names.

My dear Jane, I can assure you that there is only ONE Mr. Darcy and his Elizabeth. And so, I do protest strongly. Let Miss Grange choose another couple to write about. Miss Jane Austen was the first to use us and she should be the last! Oh, I am exhausted. My blood has almost reached boiling point, and I must find a cooling bath for, unfortunately, more than one reason.

Signed,

Your wedded but unbedded sister, Lizzie.

P.S. Are you experiencing a rabid bat infestation? One almost flew through my window, but I slammed it shut before it could enter. I shudder to think what might have happened had it landed on my neck. (Now why on earth did I think that?) I shall write more about this situation tomorrow, for there is so much I must share with you about my new life that my thoughts cannot be contained within a mere few sheets of vellum.

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