on October 10th, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Pride and Prejudice
Source: via Author
A contemporary adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice
President William Darcy has it all: wealth, intelligence, and the most powerful job in the country. Despite what his friends say, he is not lonely in the White House. He’s not. And he has vowed not to date while he’s in office. Nor is he interested in Elizabeth Bennet. She might be pretty and funny and smart, but her family is nouveau riche and unbearable. Unfortunately, he encounters her everywhere in Washington, D.C.—making her harder and harder to ignore. Why can’t he get her out of his mind?
Elizabeth Bennet enjoys her job with the Red Cross and loves her family, despite their tendency to embarrass her. At a White House state dinner, they cause her to make an unfavorable impression on the president, who labels her unattractive and uninteresting. Those words are immediately broadcast on Twitter, so the whole world now knows the president insulted her. Elizabeth just wants to avoid the man—who, let’s admit it, is proud and difficult. For some reason he acts all friendly when they keep running into each other, but she knows he’s judging her.
Eventually, circumstances force Darcy and Elizabeth to confront their true feelings for each other, with explosive results. But even if they can find common ground, Mr. Darcy is still the president—with limited privacy and unlimited responsibilities—and his enemies won’t hesitate to use his feelings for Elizabeth against him.
Can President Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet find their way to happily ever after?
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I’ve always wanted to read a modern-day Pride and Prejudice with Mr. Darcy as the POTUS, and now we finally have it. I’m a happy, happy girl. Some scenes were hilariously absurd, others cute and awkward, and the rest so swoon-worthy. This Mr. Darcy is so adorable! I want to keep him for myself! One word to describe this book= kilig*.
Social status is still an important aspect that shows the disparity between Elizabeth and Darcy, and this time, not only is Darcy from old money and Elizabeth part of the nouveau riche, he’s also the president of one of the most powerful countries in the world.
President William Darcy can’t just go out with anyone without facing consequences and so he’s vowed not to date while he’s in the office, especially not someone from new money like the Bennets. After a disastrous first meeting at the White House, Mr. Darcy didn’t have the best impression on Elizabeth despite finding her captivating. He thought she was vapid and shallow, like most nouveau riche people he’s met. In his ire when people told him to dance with someone for the sake of the press, he savagely insults her looks and intelligence. He soon finds out Elizabeth is not at all what he thought—she’s actually quite intelligent and works for Red Cross in their refugee crisis unit—and obviously it was a lie that he thinks she’s ugly. Unfortunately for him, Elizabeth and Lydia heard his insult and the damage is done. Lydia, ever the teenager posting everything on social media, tweets it for the world to see.
What follow are disastrous encounters between the two where Elizabeth misinterprets his stares and attention to judgment and condescension, and Mr. Darcy constantly puts a foot in his mouth. It’s not an easy road to happily ever after for this pair, just like E and D in the Regency era.
So, let me talk about my least favorite characters first—Lydia and Wickham. Lydia’s not an evil person, but that child needs to sit down in a corner and have no access to technology. She makes me dislike this book’s Mr. and Mrs. Bennet in this story even more because they did nothing to curb her attitude. She’s so out of control I want to spritz her with water whenever she’s misbehaving. Wickham is still a sleazy SOB (no surprise there), but this time he’s a sleazy congressman. How apt. Still a thorn in Darcy’s side. I want to push him off a cliff.
But back to my favorite man. Happy and in-love Darcy is the best Darcy! This man, bless him, can’t pick up social cues when it involves a romantic interest even if it hits him in the face, so whenever Elizabeth is throwing shade or fighting with him, Will thinks she’s flirting with him. So then obviously (and inevitably), he gets rejected and goes through an emo-ish phase. But then the second chance happens and AHHHH. My fuzzy, adorable, sweet, sweet man. I love you to bits! Oh what I’d do to have someone love me the way Will loves Elizabeth.
I like that we can see part of the story in Mr. Darcy’s perspective. We can see what he’s feeling, what’s on his mind while a certain scene is happening, and see him pining over Elizabeth. The last one is my favorite hehe. So much kilig.
There’s some angst in the story that I think is just right to make this book more interesting. He wants her but can’t have her. They want to be together but they can’t. I think it balanced the humorous scenes here just right.
E and D had some pretty hilarious and witty banter especially after this book’s Hunsford proposal moment (and even some before). And I really like Bingley here despite his momentary lapse of judgment about Jane; although I can understand why he did it, surprise surprise. And Fitz (Colonel Fitzwilliam in P&P) was such a hoot as always!
I love books that make me laugh and smile and feel fuzzy all over, and leave me feeling that way even after reading the book. I was lucky enough to feel everything mentioned when I read President Darcy.
Like Debbie said in her review, there are some parts of the book that’s not to be taken seriously—like the Bennets’ fortune maker, On-A-Stick, Inc., and Bill Collins as a person (lol). Some of them are pretty entertaining and it brought in a few laughs and some secondhand embarrassment. If you enjoyed Ms. Kincaid’s previous novels and/or a fan of contemporary romantic comedies, I would wager you’d enjoy this as much as I did.
(of a person) exhilarated or elated by an exciting or romantic experience.
‘I get kilig every time I think about Mr. Darcy’
Tropes: Hate to Love, Forbidden Romance, Age Gap, Pride and Prejudice
POV: Third Person, Dual POV
Victoria Kincaid talks a little bit about her first modern Pride and Prejudice below:
President Darcy is my first modern Pride and Prejudice variation and I learned a lot by writing it. When I embarked on this endeavor, I hadn’t appreciated how much trickier it would be to write a modern than one set in the Regency. When you’re adhering to the Regency time period as an P&P author, your characters and settings are basically set. Wickham is a soldier. The Bennets are lesser gentry. Longbourn in is Hertfordshire.
But when you move these characters into the modern day, you need to move their life situations as well. That meant I had to make numerous decisions about the characters and settings—while still trying to stay true to the spirit of Austen’s book.
Darcy was actually the easiest character to transfer. He became President of the United States and the son of a wealthy family. He’s a billionaire and has spent most of his life hanging out with people from other old money families. I imagined him having a privileged upbringing somewhat like FDR’s. Darcy can be reserved and snobbish in person, but he’s a good president who cares about the people of the United States.
In order to preserve the Bennets’ status as “less rich people,” I made them nouveau riche—the kind of family that is sneered at by old money families. They needed to have an element of the ridiculous about them, so they have made their money through a company called On-a-Stick, Inc., which makes foods such as doughnuts on-a-stick, brie on-a-stick, and zucchini on-a-stick. Mr. Bennet loves to talk about their many products, much to Elizabeth’s embarrassment.
The whole Bennet family works for On-a-Stick Inc., except for Elizabeth—who is a Red Cross aid worker. So she is a bit of an outlier in her own family. Despite the family’s wealth, Mrs. Bennet still wants her daughters to marry wealthy men. Lydia is just as shallow as ever, but now she’s a Twitter-obsessed college student.
Bingley, from an old money family like Darcy, is the president’s oldest friend and his chief of staff—which brings Elizabeth and Darcy together again and again when Bingley starts dating Jane. Caroline Bingley is still pining for Darcy—from a position on the White House communications staff.
Collins became a self-important employee of Catherine de Bourgh’s office supply empire and talks incessantly about the many different kinds of staplers they sell. Richard Fitzwilliam serves on Darcy’s staff, providing advice and laughter as Darcy requires. The Gardiners own a beer distributorship.
And Pemberley is a house in the Hamptons.
Hopefully when you read it, the story will feel the same but different. In other words, the characters and plot will be familiar but there are enough surprises to keep you entertained. Enjoy!
Elizabeth watched President Darcy’s retreating back. On the bright side, he didn’t seem inclined to have her arrested, but he had taken off like she had the plague. His contempt for her was so glaring that she practically needed sunglasses. What had she done to deserve that?
Besides venturing into a restricted area, hiding in his closet, and nearly giving him a heart attack. Oh, yeah. Oops.
What she wouldn’t do for a time machine. Or failing that, a complete memory wipe of the past half hour. Since no amnesia was forthcoming, Elizabeth turned to face Mr. Bingley. No doubt her cheeks were bright red, and her hair was a dusty mess. Nevertheless, he gave her a reassuring smile. “Will you join us at the dinner, Ms. Bennet?” The chief of staff had a reputation for being far more affable than the president, and Elizabeth could see why.
“Um…sure…” It was as if she were caught in the White House version of good cop, bad cop.
He continued to smile pleasantly as he gestured for her to precede him down the hallway. As she hurried toward the East Room, Elizabeth wondered if anyone would see them emerge from the hidden door. Or would the president tell his friends about her mishap and laugh? She swallowed hard. What could she possibly say to her family?
Dad, I consider it an honor to be smirked at by the president. Most Americans couldn’t claim that distinction. Mom, someday it will be an amusing anecdote to tell my children about the time the President of the United States thought I was an idiot.
That would not go over well.
I wasn’t expecting to see the freaking President of the United States, so forgive me if I use words like “thingy” and can’t remember the name of the East Room. That infuriatingly superior grin had grown wider with her every mistake and fumble. The bastard had enjoyed her consternation.
He had been chivalrous enough to help her exit the closet with some grace, but then he had wiped his hands clean of her germs. And what man under sixty carried a handkerchief in this day and age?
“Will the president report me?” she asked Bingley as they neared the East Room door. It would be a terrible blow to her family. And Elizabeth had worried that Lydia would embarrass them!
“No,” Bingley said immediately. Then after a moment, he said, “I don’t think so.” How reassuring.
By the time Bingley and Elizabeth emerged through the concealed door, the president had disappeared into the crowd. That’s good. Maybe I can avoid him for the rest of the evening—and the rest of my life.
However, Elizabeth’s hopes were quickly dashed. The moment she became visible, her mother marched up to her, grabbing her by the wrist and dragging her away. “Where have you been?” she whispered harshly. “Walter is introducing us to the president!”
President Darcy’s eyes, cool and assessing, perused her as she joined the semicircle of her family arrayed before him. Ugh. Elizabeth did not have any interest in another encounter with the man. On the bright side, at least he’s not out searching for the Secret Service to have me arrested.
As Elizabeth and her mother slipped in next to John Bennet, everybody stared; Lydia smirked, no doubt pleased by her timely escape from the hallway. The president gave her father a superior smile. “Do you often misplace your daughter?”
As if she were a wallet or a puppy. Could he be more condescending?
Her mother curtsied—curtsied!—and said: “We’re so sorry to keep you waiting, your highness.” This was followed by a violent coughing fit from Bing and a disdainful look from President Darcy.
Giveaway time!!! Ms. Kincaid has generously offered a copy of President Darcy to one lucky reader! Giveaway is open internationally, and the winner may choose between a print edition or e-book copy. To enter, simply share the post and comment on this blog post before the end of the day on October 30th, 2017.