Oct 6, 2009

A Match for Mary Bennet by Eucharista Ward


Eucharista Ward O.S.F.'s A Match for Mary Bennet: Can a serious young lady ever find her way to love? is delightful and reminiscent of the regency craftswoman Jane Austen herself.  The novel's pace is dead on, unfurling Mary Bennet's character slowly, allowing readers to sit with her, getting to know her mind, her choices and motivations, and her true heart's desire.

"'I fell asleep in Inferno, and the candle went out.  I awoke in Purgatorio.  But all the light is on now.  I have found Paradiso.'" (Page 323 of ARC)

With her older sisters, Jane and Elizabeth married to Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy, and her youngest sister, Lydia, married off to Mr. Wickham, Mary and Catherine Bennet are left at home with their meddling mother, eager to marry them off.  Mary continues her ways of sitting alone with her books and her music, content to expand her mind rather than chase after men in society.

"'You sat so creep mouse in a corner with, of all things, a book! What a way to comport yourself at a dance! Why, you might as well scream to all the world that no man is good enough for you. . . .'" (Page vi of ARC)

Despite her shyness and unconscious judgment of others, Mary comes to learn there is more to life than just books and music, though they certainly enhance her journey and even direct her ultimate place in society.  Readers will revisit with Mr. & Mrs. Darcy and Mr. & Mrs. Bingley following their marriages and how Mary perceives their married lives.  Lydia, Mr. Wickham, Mr. and Mrs. Bennet, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, her daugher, and Kitty Bennet return as well.  But there are new characters to love and dislike from the new pastor Mr. Oliver to the odd Mr. Grantley and the musical Mr. Stilton. 

Ward lives in Austen's world, manipulates language easily to emulate regency England, and expands the characterizations sketched out in Pride and Prejudice: (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) without losing Austen's vision.  However, Ward's Mary Bennet is more than the thinly sketched, judgmental, religious, bookworm on the sidelines.  She is observant, knowledgeable, and deeply committed to her family and her faith.  Overall, readers will find A Match for Mary Bennet fills out the other Bennet sisters deftly and makes a perfect addition to any Austen lovers' collection.

Sourcebooks has kindly offered 1 copy of A Match for Mary Bennet: Can a serious young lady ever find her way to love? by Eucharista Ward O.S.F. for a U.S./Canada reader.  To Enter:

1.  Leave a comment here about why you want to read about Mary Bennet or what your first impressions of her were when you first read Pride & Prejudice.

2.  Blog, Tweet, Facebook, or spread the word about the giveaway and leave me a comment. 

Deadline is October 16, 2009 at 11:59PM EST 




This is my 4th item for the Everything Austen Challenge 2009.

23 comments:

Blodeuedd said...

This one sounds so fun :D
I never really liked Mary, but I always wanted to find out what happened to her

Sandy Nawrot said...

She was the homely wall-flower! I guess she does deserve a chance to develop into her own person, and get the heck away from that mother!

Patti said...

This book sounds good! Mary was the one to watch and soak it all in - it would be interesting to see what opinions she made from observing her parents/siblings marriages and how she put it to practical use.

Anna said...

I loved this book, too, and will be posting my review tomorrow. I think Ward really gets P&P, which made this sequel so enjoyable.

No need to enter me, of course, but I'll add your giveaway to my sidebar.

--Anna
Diary of an Eccentric

Julie P. said...

I am just jumping on the Jane Austen bandwagon in the past few months. Based on your review, this books sounds really good!

bookingmama(at)gmail(dot)com

A Bookshelf Monstrosity said...

Ooh! Please enter me...

We only saw such a small bit of who Mary is in P&P. I'd like to hear about things from her perspective.

Pam said...

To be honest, P&P is on my to-read list...This would make a great accompaniment to it though!

melacan at hotmail dot com

Melanie said...

I'd love to see who Mary ends up with. Will it be someone serious like herself, or will it be someone more light hearted?

bermudaonion said...

Wow, you're doing great with the challenge! No need to enter me.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

No need to enter me, babe. I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book.

MoziEsmé said...

I'd love to read this. I like Austen work since it's about inner strength in women when they are perceived/expected/desired to be weak...

janemaritz at yahoo dot com

Linda said...

I'm not usually a fan of the current "follow-ups" to the old classics, but this one sounds promising: what happens to Mary?
lcbrower40(at)gmail(dot)com

Jo-Jo said...

I don't think I had much of an impression of Mary, so I think it would be interesting to see how this author develops her charachter.

joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Serena said...

Linda: You'll have to read it to find out!

Jenny N. said...

I wanted to read about Mary Bennett because at first I thought she would be a good match for Mr Collins in P&P but that didnt happen so I want to know what to know who else she could end up with.

jen4777[at]hotmail.com

Jo-Jo said...

I blogged about your contest here.
joannelong74 AT gmail DOT com

Laura's Reviews said...

I have always wanted to read a book about Mary Bennet. Poor Mary was ridiculed by everyone in P&P for being bookish and was the odd sister out. It's time for her to get her day in the son!

laarlt78(at)hotmail(dot)com.

Thanks!

Nancye said...

I'd like to read/win this book because I'd like to learn more about Mary Bennet

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Tweet! Tweet!

http://twitter.com/NancyeDavis/status/4753619706

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Anonymous said...

I'm curious to read Mary's story...

karen k
kmkuka(at)yahoo(dot)com

Sarah said...

When I first read about Mary in Pride and Prejudice, I thought she sounded like an awkward, socially inept loner. Please enter me in this giveaway!

saemmerson at yahoo dot com

Sarah Emmerson

edmontonjb said...

I didn't like her but maybe as the central character she would be more enjoyable.
dftrew(at)gmail(dot)com

Lynz Pickles said...

I'd love to read about Mary because I never really got a fix on her. She was so contrary, but there was no real reason offered as to how she ended up that way. I felt like she was the least-developed character in the book, so it'd be fun to see her get her in the starring role.

lynzajw[at]gmail[dot]com