Take Charge Series
by Shana Granderson A Lady
Genres: Regency England, Historical Fiction, Romance
Because there are six books in this series (thus far), I didn’t want to review each one separately. As a whole, the series contains the fun, lighthearted, happily ever after type of stories I love to read.
However, there are a few recurring items I’d like to mention now so I don’t have to repeat myself in each book’s review:
- The extended families are too perfect. I can only assume this is because they are mostly of Ms. Granderson’s creation — either original characters or characters only briefly mentioned in Pride and Prejudice. But, the Fitzwilliam family, as well as extended Bennet and Fitzwilliam relations are all perfectly jolly, down-to-earth, unprejudiced people. Despite their elevated status, the parents only want their children to marry for love and are disappointed in Darcy when he forgets that his parents wanted the same for their children. They are all happy to welcome the Bennets into the extended family, without a question of their suitability, and those who are of an age with the Bennet sisters are happy to extend informality well before it would be considered appropriate given that they aren’t related.
- Ms. Granderson doesn’t like Mr. Bingley. Most of his interpretations in this series are weak-willed and led astray — often to the point of ridiculousness — by his sisters. While he didn’t attend a finishing school — since those were for women — his time at Cambridge, as Darcy’s friend, and among the Ton should have taught him basic social rules. However, in several of the books in the Take Charge series, Mr. Bingley is either ignorant of them, or allows himself to disregard them in order to appease one, or both, of his sisters.
- The proposals and acceptances feel fake. They are very wordy and seem perfectly thought out, even though the women’s answers, at least, are meant to be offered without much, if any, forethought. Even if I’d scripted my acceptance and practiced it regularly as a young woman, only needing to substitute in my future fiancé’s name, I don’t think I could have delivered such a long, perfectly articulate response to a marriage proposal. I also find the use of complete names — including any middle names — when proposing and accepting proposals to be odd.