Friday, October 14, 2011

Yes, It's True: DEATH COMES TO PEMBERLEY by P.D. James


I know. Everyone is all aflutter. P.D. James, the British doyenne of literary mysteries, the creator of the erudite Adam Dalgliesh - can it be so? Apparently it is.

Though I've read only a couple of the Pride and Prejudice pastiches - this is one I will definitely NOT pass up. Hey, it's P.D. James.

Read more about the intriguing news (well, it's news to me) at this NY Times link.

27 comments:

  1. Yvette,

    Thanks for the update. This is the first I've heard of this.

    I have never read any of the sequels to Austen's novels up to this point; however, PD James is my favorite mystery writer, so I have to make an exception this time.

    I remember seeing PD James in an interview many years ago. She said that Jane Austen was her favorite writer and that, if Austen were alive today, she would be writing mysteries.

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  2. I'm surprised, but totally interested! I usually avoid the recent spate of Jane Austen novels, but P.D. James is too good to miss!

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  3. Fred: I read your comment which appeared on email alert, but refuses to appear on the blog. I'm sorry this is happening. Can't figure it.

    Yes, I agree: this is a must-read. :)

    I haven't read any P.D. James in ages, but that doesn't mean I don't remember reading and appreciating her work.

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  4. jenclair: I'm with you. This is an Occasion, for sure. I will read this soon as I can.

    Good news, indeed.

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  5. Fred: I also agree with P.D. James' statement that Austen would be writing mysteries today.

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  6. I thought T.H. White already did this with his book DARKNESS AT PEMBERLEY back in 1932. Another book I own but have never read. So I glanced through it to discover the difference. White's book does not really continue the story of Elizabeth and Darcy as James' book does. White's book only makes sly jokes by naming the house Pemberley and the victim Charles Darcy. The other members of the household are supposed to be descendents of Austen's characters.

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  7. I can only imagine (and hope) that her Austen sequel is better than her attempt at sf, THE CHILDREN OF MEN. Though I suspect the fans of Joan Aiken and Georgette Heyer won't feel their heroines challenged in this arena...

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  8. John: Unlike you and Todd, I'm taking this news seriously. Really. P.D. James.

    I will report once I've read the book, of course.

    Hoping I won't be disappointed.

    You book mavens are so cynical! ;)

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  9. John: Unlike you and Todd, I'm taking this news seriously. Really. P.D. James.

    I will report once I've read the book, of course.

    Hoping I won't be disappointed.

    You book mavens are so cynical! ;)

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  10. Todd, was that a dig? I am a fan of Georgette Heyer AND on occasion, Joan Aiken, and I'll stand them up to any of your ghoulish-noir-slam-bam-thank-you-m'am books that you guys seem to go for in droves. How's that? ;)

    ...so cynical and sniffy.

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  11. This looks REALLY interesting :)

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  12. Yvette,

    I'll try again.



    Yvette,

    Thanks for the update. This is the first I've heard of this.

    I have never read any of the sequels to Austen's novels up to this point; however, PD James is my favorite mystery writer, so I have to make an exception this time.

    I remember seeing PD James in an interview many years ago. She said that Jane Austen was her favorite writer and that, if Austen were alive today, she would be writing mysteries.

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  13. Okay, Fred, over and clear. :)

    See my replies above. I'd only heard the news this morning, though apparently some other websites had it earlier.

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  14. Yvette,

    The previous message I left on your website. I am posting this message from my mail editor--I clicked on POST in the message. I wonder which message will make it.

    The earlier message was posted, according to the message that I got, and I even saw it in the listing.

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  15. Ah, the mysteries of the internet. Speaking of mysteries, I just heard thunder. Hmmmm. We must be in for it tonight.

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  16. Todd,

    I agree: I too was disappointed with her SF effort. Since this will be a mystery, I'm more optimistic about it.

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  17. Didn't read her sci-fi try, but I am definitely reading this. I'm optomistic too, Fred.

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  18. Is a sequel to the immortalised works of Jane Austen justified? For purists PRIDE AND PREJUDICE came and went with Austen. I'm willing to read P.D. James' new offering of P&P because she is such a fantastic writer and I might actually like her story even if the prose is not reminiscent of Austen's style. I don't recall ever reading sequels by one author of another author's famous work. That includes SCARLETT by Alexandra Ripley (sequel to GONE WITH THE WIND by Margaret Mitchell) and Agatha Christie sequels by Charles Osborne which, I believe, are really good.

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  19. Prashant: I'm not usually a big fan of sequels either. But as you say, since this is P.D. James, I will give a try.

    It sounds like it might be something good. I haven't read those other sequels you mention, either. Wouldn't care to.

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  20. Yvette, yes, that was certainly a dig on the sludgy, homophobic bore that was THE CHILDREN OF MEN (the film adaptation managed to improve markedly on the hundred or so pages I managed of the novel, and it still wasn't very good). It was By No Means a dig at Heyer, the bit of whose work I've read I've liked, nor at Aiken, much of whose work I've loved.

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  21. ghoulish-noir-slam-bam-thank-you-m'am books.

    That is a humdinger of a dig at certain types of thrillers and noir books, chock full of gratuitous violence.

    And it's brilliant. Might I quote it if I'm blogging somewhere else and this topic comes up? I will give credit to "an extremely discerning mystery reader."

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  22. Although I'm a great fan of PD James, I have to agree with Todd: her SF novel was terrible. And, I did manage to finish it.

    It's a classic example of what happens when a writer switches to an unfamiliar genre and doesn't understand what constitutes that genre.

    The film was better because it turned it into an action-oriented work.

    However, this is a mystery, so I am more optimistic.

    On the other hand, I have to give James credit for trying to write SF and now trying something a bit different again--an historical mystery that is also a sequel to a great novel. Many writers would never try this.

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  23. Good, enough then, Todd. We're on the same wavelength. Don't think I'll try James' sci-fi attempt. Didn't see the movie either. It just didn't appeal to me.

    But I'm still going to give DEATH COMES TO PEMBERLEY a very good look.

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  24. Good, enough then, Todd. We're on the same wavelength. Don't think I'll try James' sci-fi attempt. Didn't see the movie either. It just didn't appeal to me.

    But I'm still going to give DEATH COMES TO PEMBERLEY a very good look.

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  25. Kathy: Ha! I hope you find a way to use it, kiddo.

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  26. Fred: I love her daring to try something new at an age when most human beings would taking it easy and resting on their laurels.

    She is 91.

    Since I am a HUGE Austen fan I will probably be extra picky, but I will be reading this new book.

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