Guest Post ~ Author Maya Slater

book cover private diary darcyGentle Readers:   Maya Slater has penned a guest post for us on her book The Private Diary of Mr Darcy  – and as I mention in my previous post, it is quite an entertaining read!  Thank you Ms. Slater for sharing your thoughts with us [and those of Mr. Darcy!]

 

 

 

 

INTRODUCING:  The Private Diary of Mr Darcy, the American edition to be published on June 15th by W.W.Norton.

 ‘What book would you most love to read, if only it had been written?’

I found myself answering, without hesitation, ‘Oh, Mr Darcy’s diary.’ Everyone round the table laughed, and the moment passed. But the idea stayed with me for months, till finally I had to give in to it, and start writing.

It’s not as though Mr Darcy was the kind of man to have kept an intimate diary of his own volition. He started it as a child when his mother gave him a moleskin notebook, gently suggesting he should make it his confidant. A few days later she was dead, and keeping a diary became a sacred duty to him.

The final volume of his diary, published under the title The Private Diary of Mr Darcy*, begins on the day that he first sets eyes on Elizabeth Bennet – although she makes no impression on him whatsoever. It concludes as they happily plan their wedding. In between, he unburdens himself of many secrets, and lives through the weeks and months when he is absent from Pride and Prejudice: that first winter when Mr Bingley has deserted Jane, the following summer when Elizabeth has turned him down, the anxious search for Lydia and Wickham.

 Of course the diary is private. Much of what it contains would shock his female acquaintance, describing as it does his life as a rich bachelor about town.   His gentlemen friends too would be astonished – at the uncertainties, weaknesses and powerful emotions confided by this politely reticent and formal young man. It is not surprising that he decides to abandon it when he marries: it would not do for his wife to discover it.

Throughout, it is Mr Darcy who has directed operations; I have merely followed where he led.

 MAYA SLATER 

*The British edition (Phoenix, 2007) was titled Mr Darcy’s Diary.

[ See also the full Maya Slater interview at Bookzone.tv  [type in < Maya Slater > in the “search video” box and click on the book cover]  and my previous post with additional links here ]

The opening question, by the way, is quite thought-provoking – anyone want to add their thoughts? –

What book would you most love to read, if only it had been written?

Maya Slater’s ‘The Private Diary of Mr. Darcy’

In my previous very short  review of Mr. Darcy’s Diary by Maya Slater, I make mention that I liked this book more than any of the other what-Mr. Darcy-was-thinking sequels [not that I have read them all.]  The American edition published by Norton is to be released on June 15th [as always, check with your local independent bookseller; and it is now available for pre-order on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, & Borders]

Note that the American title is The Private Diary of Mr. Darcy [so as not perhaps to be confused with Amanda Grange’s Mr. Darcy’s Diary published in 2007].

book cover private diary darcy

 

and though perhaps I am quibbling, I do much prefer the British edition cover …  I like my Mr. Darcys to be left to MY imagination…

book cover mr darcy's diary

Here is a Booklist review: [from the Amazon.com site]

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen’s Mr. Darcy is one of the most fascinating heroes in literature. Other writers have tried, with varying degrees of success,  to capture some of that old Darcy magic. This time around, we are made privy to Darcy’s secret diary. Though the story presented in the diary entries adheres to the structure of Pride and Prejudice,  the Bennets, even including Elizabeth herself, are very much in the background, while other characters, such as the Bingleys and Darcy’s sister Georgiana, play a larger role. While trying to fend off his growing attachment to Lizzie, “an undersized young lady of doubtful family,” Darcy recounts his day-to-day activities—managing his estate, looking after his sister, engaging in pastimes with his disreputable friend Lord Byron that would make the ladies at Longbourn blush. Austen knockoffs should always be judged on their own merits, and if the Darcy presented here isn’t quite her Darcy, or yours, the book is still a smart and entertaining period piece. –[Mary Ellen Quinn]