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The Girl from Summer Hill: A Summer Hill Novel    by Jude Deveraux order for
Girl from Summer Hill
by Jude Deveraux
Order:  USA  Can
Ballantine, 2016 (2016)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Jude Deveraux's new romantic romp, The Girl from Summer Hill is fluffy and frothy, but also quite a lot of fun for the legion of Pride & Prejudice fans. You see, the author gives us her modern, rural Virginia take on that story, though with quite a different perspective on Lydia and Wickham's relationship!

The modern Darcy is revealed (naked) to our heroine Casey on the first page as he takes an outdoor shower on her front porch. She enjoys the glorious view in her nursery rhyme PJ's. But she doesn't appreciate the subsequent encounter as he (assuming she's a member of the paparazzi) berates her in the guesthouse she's been given to live in.

Turns out that her morning visitor is famed actor Tatton Landers, owner of the Big House and unaware of her presence in the guest house. He has arrived with his friend and fellow star, Jack Worth, our new Bingley.

Tate's older relative Kit (who has looked after the mansion for him) is putting on a play for charity - Pride & Prejudice of course! Casey, a very talented chef, is there to cook for all concerned. Soon Jack befriends Casey and falls hard for her absolutely beautiful friend Gizzy, a reckless tomboy, cast as Jane.

The new Wickham, Devlin Haines, has the original's character but is now the ex of Tate's beloved sister and the father of his delightful young niece Emmie (who has a hand in developments). As Casey and Tate's relationship matures (off and on stage, when she is cast as Elizabeth Bennet), Devlin's lies create the expected misunderstandings.

There are all kinds of romantic entanglements (including between Kit and Olivia, who have a history) and some very funny scenes, for example when Casey reveals her most unusual family background. The Girl from Summer Hill is a fast and entertaining read that Austen fans will devour.

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