Skip to content

Series Review – The Denton Connection

Posted in Book Blogger

As I mentioned previously, because I’ve read so many of Sydney Salier’s books, I’m grouping my reviews of their works. This post covers The Denton Connection series. Be aware, there are spoilers in some of these reviews. There is a note at the beginning of each review that contains spoilers, as well as an asterisk on the links below.

Books included in this multi-review: Mrs Bennet’s Surprising Connections | Don’t Flatter Yourself* | It’s a Duke’s Life* | Lady Alexandra’s Hunt | Don’t Flatter Yourself – Revisited

Mrs. Bennet’s Surprising Connections: Prequel to ‘Don’t Flatter Yourself’

Series: The Denton Connection, Book 1
Genres: Romance, Angst, Regency, Pride & Prejudice Variation
Release Date: November 8, 2019
Pages: 156
Purchase from: Amazon
My Rating: ★★★☆☆


I chose to read The Denton Connection in chronological order, so started with the prequel. It definitely needs to come with a trigger warning. While I’m fortunate enough to not be bothered by too terribly much, there are mentions — granted, nothing explicit — of physical and sexual assault, rape, suicide, psychological abuse, and child neglect. While, ultimately, there is a happily ever after, Mrs. Bennet’s Surprising Connections (MBSC) isn’t all the upbeat story the synopsis makes it out to be. While I imagine I’ll be happy I read MBSC for the context it provides for the later books, I don’t know that I’d ever want to read it again.

NOTE: This review is based on an eBook I borrowed from Amazon on June 5, 2022 as part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

Don’t Flatter Yourself

Series: The Denton Connection, Book 2
Genres: Romance, Humor, Regency, Pride & Prejudice Variation
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Pages: 221
Purchase from: Amazon
My Rating: ★★★★☆


I definitely preferred Don’t Flatter Yourself to the prequel. There wasn’t all the negative topics. There were, however, a handful of things that really stood out to me.

Caroline Bingley’s arc was great. It was clear throughout the story that Caroline was getting set up for a fantastic failure. And the author didn’t disappoint. Caroline’s spectacular downfall was one of, if not the, most satisfying I’ve come across.

Jane and Charles were surprising. Their “courtship” seemed to be going so well. I assumed they would have a happily ever after. But then, Jane decided to retreat. It made sense after overhearing Caroline having a bit of a rant. But she also had some well-thought-out reasons outside of Caroline.

Lady Catherine’s and Mr. Collins’ transformations were impressive. They were both given a chance to do some real soul searching, and they came out better for it. I’m interested in seeing if they get more page time in the remaining books in the series. If so, maybe we’ll get to see if their changes are permanent.

I also look forward to seeing more of Jane and Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam.

NOTE: This review is based on an eBook I borrowed from Amazon on June 6, 2022 as part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

It’s a Duke’s Life: Sequel to ‘Don’t Flatter Yourself’

Series: The Denton Connection, Book 3
Genres: Romance, Regency, Pride & Prejudice Variation
Release Date: February 1, 2020
Pages: 211
Purchase from: Amazon
My Rating: ★★★★☆


To start, I was annoyed by how much repetition there was in the first half of It’s a Duke’s Life (IADL). It’s one thing to include the same events, but provide you with drastically different information due to differing viewpoints. It’s another thing entirely to simply copy a scene with a couple of notes from the other person’s perspective. Most of the repetitive scenes in IADL were the latter.

Now, with the negative out of the way, I can focus on the positives.

I enjoyed how Alistair and Robert switched places to avoid having to deal with fortune hunters. It’s definitely a good fit for their personalities.

Lady Catherine was a surprising one for me. I believed in the change she showed in Don’t Flatter Yourself. I was convinced she had seen the light. But, I supposed I should have known better. I couldn’t believe she was willing to ruin her daughter’s reputation by attempting to force a compromise. But, at least it afforded Anne a chance to get away from her mother.

I really enjoyed the Alistair – Charlotte pairing. Despite how unlikely it is that she would refuse him, the author gave her a line of reasoning that made sense for her character. The Dowager Duchess, of course, remains a force to be reckoned with. She not only managed an impressive set of arguments to sway Charlotte, she also managed a plan for Charlotte’s launch on society that would make generals envious.

It would have been nice to see more of that launch in the story. I always love when Charlotte gets a chance to shine. Instead, we got mentions of a detail here or there. Overall, though, it was a great story and ended with a fantastic cliffhanger. I can’t wait for the next “true” book in the series to find out if Robert is in love with Lydia or Georgiana.

NOTE: This review is based on an eBook I borrowed from Amazon on June 6, 2022 as part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

Lady Alexandra’s Hunt

Series: The Denton Connection, Book 4
Genres: Romance, Regency, Pride & Prejudice Variation
Release Date: August 25, 2021
Pages: 249
Purchase from: Amazon
My Rating: ★★★☆☆

While I enjoyed the story, Lady Alexandra’s Hunt (LAH) was the weakest of the series so far, in my opinion. Sir Martin’s and Lady Alexandra’s dancing around each other was drown out too far, slowing the whole story down. We get it, he’s worried he’s not good enough; she’s worried he doesn’t like her. Given the almost-too-fast pacing of the author’s other books, this overly slow section surprised me.

It’s then followed by a rushed conclusion that would have benefited from more time and detail.

Nearly the full scene at Almack’s was copied exactly from Consequences & Consequences, merely substituting Lady Alexandra for Elizabeth. The phrase “I do not suffer from insanity… I rather enjoy it,” was also from one of the author’s other books, although I don’t recall which one.

I did, however, enjoy the relationship between Lady Alexandra and her sister, Lady Daphne. And the final takedown of Frederick, Earl of Marven, was delicious.

As it’s a standalone — or spinoff — of The Denton Connection series, I don’t think you’ll be missing much if you give LAH a miss.

NOTE: This review is based on an eBook I borrowed from Amazon on June 8, 2022 as part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

Don’t Flatter Yourself – Revisited: The alternate version of this Pride & Prejudice Variation

Series: The Denton Connection, Book 5
Genres: Romance, Regency, Pride & Prejudice Variation
Release Date: March 31, 2020
Pages: 254
Purchase from: Amazon
My Rating: ★★★★☆


Before starting Don’t Flatter Yourself – Revisited (DFYR), I was a bit concerned that it would be a copy-and-paste from the original with just a handful of details changed. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case for the majority of the book.

There were, however, two areas where it felt like that had been done, and poorly at that. Elizabeth’s initial response to Darcy’s proposal reads as though something was removed from the proposal without editing Elizabeth’s response. It seemed overly harsh.

Also, the entire theater planning scene once Elizabeth and Darcy are engaged needs another edit. Several of the responses are awkward given that the original plan — to make Darcy jealous — is not part of this version. The theater scene as a whole — planning and attending — is rather unnecessary in this version, in my opinion.

I was also disappointed with the ending/epilogue. It was all very rushed, but didn’t need to be. DFYR was short enough that the author could have taken their time with the ending, adding detail as desired.

While not bad, there were a couple of missed opportunities with Lady Catherine. First, during her visit to warn Elizabeth to stay away from Darcy, she badgered Elizabeth into a promise to not accept an offer of marriage “from [her] nephew.” Elizabeth found a way around the promise, obviously. However, it would have been better — in my opinion — for her to have pointed out later that Lady Catherine never specified which nephew. Colonel Fitzwilliam is also her nephew, after all.

I also feel the final confrontation with Lady Catherine should have had more or larger consequences for her. She ultimately got off very easily for insulting the entire family of a Duchess.

But now, on to the good stuff.

I found it interesting that Jane wasn’t really into Bingley in this version. Granted, getting left alone on the dance floor in the middle of the dance — the first they shared, I believe — would upset me, too.

Caroline’s realization that she needed to change, and her subsequent efforts, were lovely. It’s rare that we get treated to a “nice” Caroline, so it makes for a lovely change.

And, finally, I adored Elizabeth’s confrontation with Wickham and how she got him to admit he was lying. Also, Mr. Bennet’s revelations of Jane and Elizabeth’s dowries were great. Darcy’s and Fitzwilliam’s reactions were priceless.

NOTE: This review is based on an eBook I borrowed from Amazon on June 8, 2022 as part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

About the Author

I have always been a bookworm.

In 2018 I discovered Fan Fiction and stumbled onto Pride & Prejudice. I loved many of the stories, but often wished the characters would behave differently. I kept thinking about Elizabeth’s reaction at the assembly, wondering how I would like her to respond. I jotted down bits of conversations and ‘Don’t flatter yourself’ was born. Encouraged by the other readers I decided to publish my story. It turned out that other people liked it too.

I had so much fun writing Don’t flatter yourself, and receiving the positive responses, that I continued writing other stories.

My stories will generally be low angst and have a happy ending, although not always the one people might expect. I don’t pretend to write great literature, just the kind of fun stories that I would like to read.

I recently re-edited my early stories and rereleased them with new covers.. I hope you will find them improved.

I live in Australia, used to work in IT, and love full contact martial arts and bad puns.

I hope you enjoy my stories.

Author links: Goodreads | Amazon Author Page

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *