23 March 2011

Sense & Sensibility Bicentenary Challenge (2011) Colonel Brandon's Diary: A Novel - Amanda Grange

Summary: James Brandon cannot remember a time when he did not love his father's ward, Eliza. But the elder Brandon has the final word and forces her to marry James's brother, Harry. Drunk, womanizing Harry.
James thinks only distance can heal his heart, and he sets off to fight in the east Indies. While he's gone, Eliza suffers the depths of despair - abandoned with a child, then ravaged by consumption - and James hardly recognizes her when he stumbles upon her in a debtor's prison.
Now James must face tragedy - and a bleak future, brightened only by Eliza's little daughter, whom he adores. And even though fate has more heartbreak in store for James, it also holds happiness beyond his
wildest dreams. (Source: Book)

Comments: I had not intended to start Colonel Brandon's Diary: A Novel yet, but within a few pages, I could not put it down. I have ignored all other things I should be reading for it. I read half before I knew I had done it. I almost stayed up all night to finish, but decided to get some sleep and read the rest the  following day - which I did.
This is the first book by Ms. Grange that I have read and I now am greatly looking forward to reading more in the Diary series. This seems entirely plausable and much like the Colonel Brandon we know from Sense & Sensibility, but with so much more. It's nice to see Brandon's life and struggles from his own point of view. And I enjoy the ending, which we all know is coming, but is nonetheless very satisfying to read.
I only wonder if this can be read as a stand alone book, without knowing Sense & Sensibility? I will never know since I have the book, along with all of Miss Austen's works practically memorized. It's an interesting question. That said, I am ordering another in the series today - but which one... that is the question.
Col. Brandon and Marianne
Thanks Ms. Grange for an OUTSTANDING read.

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