Darcy in Hollywood: A Modern Pride and Prejudice Variation
by Victoria Kincaid Series: standalone Published by Meadowbrook Press
on June 26th 2019 Genres: Contemporary Romance Pages:
235 Format: Kindle Edition Source: Author Buy on Amazon Rating:
Rich and arrogant movie star, William Darcy, was a Hollywood heartthrob until a scandalous incident derailed his career. Now he can only hope that Tom Bennet’s prestigious but low budget indie film will restore his reputation. However, on the first day of filming, he nearly hits Bennet’s daughter, Elizabeth, with his Ferrari, and life will never be the same. Okay, she’s a little sarcastic, but he’s certain she’s concealing a massive crush on him—and it’s growing harder to fight his own attraction….
Elizabeth Bennet has a lot on her plate. She’s applying to medical school and running the studio’s charity project—while hoping her family won’t embarrass her too much. Being Darcy’s on-set personal assistant is infuriating; he’s rude, proud, and difficult. If there’s one thing she dislikes, it’s people who only think about themselves. But then Elizabeth discovers Darcy has been doing a lot of thinking about her.
She might be willing to concede a mutual attraction, but events are conspiring against them and Darcy subject to constant public scrutiny. Can Darcy and Elizabeth have any hope for a happy ending to their Hollywood romance?
Pride and Prejudice meets Hollywood in this slightly edgy, modern adaption of Austen’s original story. The story was part romance, part comedy and was infused with elements that reached deeply making this not just a pale shadow, but a solid tribute to the classic tale.
Darcy in Hollywood begins on a cringeworthy scene when an A-List actor, Will Darcy, arriving on set in his Ferrari nearly runs over a beautiful young woman, Lizzy Bennet. Naturally, he doesn’t apologize and blames her a little even though he knows that he was in the wrong by fiddling with his radio and nearly hitting her. This starts the beginning of an acrimonious enemies to lovers romance where he slowly sees himself- as in he is egotistically oblivious at first- through Lizzy’s eyes and doesn’t like what he sees. She has no idea that he has been challenged by her to be a better man and can’t stand him- well other than pretending not to notice his amazing good looks or being puzzled when he doesn’t act like an arrogant jerk.
Meanwhile, Lizzy’s Hollywood family are all involved in the new indie film her dad is producing from her gorgeous sister Jane who has the lead role opposite Darcy to her silly, starstruck youngest sister, Lydia. The movie is the story of a trans teen kicked out for being trans and, from homelessness, finds a way to his dream and the film is helping to generate support for a local shelter that take in LGBTQA teens when they found themselves on the street and destitute.
I was engaged with the characters from the beginning even when Darcy was a real piece of work. He grew so much throughout the story and I enjoyed being on that journey of discovery with him. Lizzy was right about him, but, not completely. Her family, other than Jane, have been awful to her since she wants to be a doctor and not involved in the movie world so she has a jaundiced view of actors already which has her getting the wrong end of the stick about Darcy, especially when she believes charming Wickham’s lies and sees the plastic people Darcy is surrounded by.
The surrounding cast of characters offered some good layers to the story with some of the secondary plot threads particularly the Jane-Charlie-Ricky story and young Garrett’s story wth Darcy mentoring him.
There are some of the author’s fun over the top screwball moments when she plays around with the characters of Darcy’s insufferably proud aunt and her groveling assistant along with Mrs. Bennet, former starlet and eager promoter of her favorite child, Lydia. They are funny even while being awful and annoying.
I found the couple of surprise twists about the screenwriter and about the scandal that sidetracked Darcy’s career were great and I didn’t see them coming. I thought both offered defining moments in Darcy’s life to show Lizzy who he really was when the Hollywood veneer is peeled back and Wickham’s lies revealed.
The romance had a goodly level of conflict and had some angst, but nothing over the top. I liked seeing them get past the surface issues and enjoyed the moderate level of attraction buzzing between them even when they were on the outs or thought they were, at times.
All in all, it was an engaging slightly spicy contemporary romance giving a strong nod to Austen’s classic. It’s a recommendable romance for those who enjoys a movie set background and an enemies to lovers trope.
In addition to my review, author, Victoria Kincaid has sent along a few extras…
Hi Night Owl Book Café Readers,
Thank you for having me as a guest!
Darcy in Hollywood starts with a bang: movie star Darcy almost hits Elizabeth, an aspiring medical student and production assistant, on a studio lot. Here is an excerpt from the beginning—right after Darcy nearly hits Elizabeth with his car.
Darcy stomped on the momentary flare of irritation. “Is the sarcasm really necessary?”
She regarded him through narrowed eyes. “Yeah, I think it is. What’s the alternative? That I should be honored to be knocked over by your car? Because I don’t think your identity would have been much comfort to my parents. ‘We don’t have a daughter anymore, but at least she was killed by a celebrity. Maybe he can autograph her coffin.’”
Why did she have to be so difficult? He was already putting up with so much doing an indie film. “That’s not what I meant. You don’t have to put it that way—”
“I almost got hit by a car. I can put it however the fuck I want to!”
Darcy was so over this woman. She wasn’t nearly as pretty as he had initially thought. If only he could leave. But he needed to make sure she wouldn’t talk to the media; another car-related incident would be a disaster for his career. From now on, I only travel by train or boat. Pity about her personality; she had fine eyes.
Darcy helped the woman limp to a nearby bench and gently lowered her to the seat. “Maybe I should call for an ambulance,” he suggested. He would have preferred to discuss having her sign a nondisclosure agreement, but it seemed a little insensitive.
“Let me sit for a minute.” Leaning forward, she cradled her head in her hands, providing a good view of the blood matting the hair on the back of her head. Huh, maybe she wasn’t wrong about the possible concussion.
Darcy settled on the bench beside her despite a desperate desire to cross the street and slip into Building 4, where they were holding the table read. They won’t start without me, he reminded himself. But being late wouldn’t impress them with his professionalism.
He took the opportunity to check her for other injuries. She had a scrape on her right arm and favored her left ankle. Of course, her clothes were disheveled—and a fashion disaster. The sleeve of her t-shirt was ripped where she had fallen.
“I can get you a new t-shirt.”
He gestured to the rip.
Her mouth hung open. “I don’t give a shit about the t-shirt!”
“I don’t think that kind of language is called for.”
“That kind of language?” she echoed and then squinted at him. “Are you drunk?”
“It’s 7 a.m.”
“Yes, it is. Are you drunk? Or high?”
Damn, you have one scandal…
“No,” he said sharply.
“The car was moving rather erratically.”
“I was…trying to work the stereo. It’s complicated.”
“You almost killed me because you couldn’t work the radio?”
“To be fair, it’s satellite radio. And I didn’t almost kill you!”
His jaw clenched so tightly he could grind glass. “This isn’t a matter of opinion! You would have been fine if you hadn’t fallen.”
“I also would have been fine if your Ferrari hadn’t come hurtling toward me.”
Darcy didn’t respond; arguing was futile. After a moment she gave him a sidelong glance. “You don’t need to babysit me; I can call myself an ambulance if I need one.”
“I shouldn’t leave you alone.”
“Oh! You don’t want me talking to the press. Don’t worry.”
“That’s not what I’m worried about,” he lied. “My primary concern is your well-being.”
“I bet you say that to all the girls you almost run over.”
Darcy stifled a smile. Under other circumstances, he’d think she was funny. “I assure you that you’re the first.”
The woman examined the scrape on her arm. “I accept your apology, by the way.”
“I didn’t apologize.”
Now she turned her blue-green gaze on him. “I noticed that. Why didn’t you? Do you think this is my fault? That your car had the right of way on the sidewalk?”
Darcy would have apologized—if he had thought of it—but now he couldn’t without losing face. “I didn’t hit you. You agreed I didn’t hit you!” I sound like an idiot insisting on that point.
“You. Are. Unbelievable.”
Darcy had heard that before but usually in a more complimentary tone.
Victoria has graciously offered up an e-book of Darcy in Hollywood for one (1) lucky winner. International entries welcome. To enter, leave a comment with your email and the winner will be randomly drawn one week from the post date. Winner will be notified by email and the author will be given confirmed winner’s name and email so she can distribute of the prize. Good Luck!