Teverton Hall
by Jane Gillespie

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Paperback: (February 1987)
St. Martin's Press; ISBN: 0312906749
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Hardcover: 192 pages  (September 1983)
Hale; ISBN:
0709011121
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 ISBN:
0312793715


       
Review by Linda Waldemar, October 11, 1997
Jane Gillespie chooses Mr and Mrs William Collins as the lone P&P characters on which she will build this sequel.  The action takes place about 20 years later.  Mr Collins is now the Rector of Teverton. Mr. Collins feels that he has been used ill through no fault of his own.  Two incidents are especially painful to him.

The first; Lady Catherine de Bourgh was so incensed that her nephew married beneath him to one who was connected to him that he had to seek another living.  In consequence of the reason for the ire of his patroness, he seeks help from the disgraced nephew.  This gentleman sought about for a living, and having none then at his own disposal, and through a friend, was able to offer Teverton, in Mr Dallow's gift. "When the child was born he was christened Fitzwilliam in honour of the mismatched nephew, and Mr. Collins addressed himself to his new position with effusions of humble gratitude.  But as time passed, and no further gestures were received from the nephew, and the Rectory and garden were found to be smaller and less convenient than those in Kent, and Mr Dallow found to be less susceptible to respectful adulation than his precursor and it was understood that the nephew and aunt were again on fair terms, the boy's name was for convenience shortened to William."

The second unfortunate happenstance was that his cousin, whose estate was entailed on him, remained in excellent health.  This deprived him of what he considered his rightful property.  This defines Mr Collins attitude throughout the novel.

The quoted material is included to give you an idea of the tone and language of the book.  But, the story is more about his children, William and Marcia; the young Dallows of Teverton Hall, George, Corinna, Jane, Phillipa and Walter; their cousin, Silvia Webster, and Robert Pavey, son of William's employer.  These young people fall in love, with others and each other,  there is a great deal of reticence and misinterpretation which leads to the usual types of  misunderstandings that keep lovers apart.  But each couple is finally reunited and all live happily ever after.

I enjoyed this story.  The plot was light and predictable and the characters were likable.  Mr Collins was less ridiculous than portrayed by JA, but more annoying.  Charlotte's character was quite true to the original.  She manages her husband, ignores him when necessary and promotes what she thinks is in the best interests of her children.

Should you encounter this book, I recommend that you give it a read.



       
Review by Lynn Lamy, November 11, 1997
This is a story of what takes place after Pride and Prejudice, but, as with all of Jane Gillespie's continuations, it is only marginally about the characters from Jane Austen's novel.

The story this time focuses on the inhabitants of the Teverton Hall of the title, who are landed gentry with a handsome son who is to inherit, beautiful daughters, a kind mother and a father who is frequently from home.  There is also a solicitor in town, with a son the same age as the squire's son, and an annoying clergyman with a quiet wife, who turn out to be none other than William and Charlotte Collins.

The story is not about the Collins so much as it is about their children, a son and daughter, and their dealings with the family at the Hall.  I thought this was a delightful story.  The characters were engaging, the few times you see Mr. and Mrs. Collins, they seem to act pretty much in character (Charlotte's worries for her daughter Marcia's happiness ring especially true), and the characters created are lovely.

I never cared too much for William Collins, but he is so little in the story, that it doesn't matter, and you genuinely feel for the gradual awakening of his son's realization of his father's stupidity.  A spoiler:  I love how Collins' son leaves his family, never to return, to be welcomed with open arms to the homestead he will someday inherit - you've got it, Longbourn - Mr. Bennet welcomes the intelligent offspring of his favorite object of scorn with pleasure.  The letter he writes to Mr. Collins is priceless.

Overall, I really enjoyed the book, and recommend it, not as a sequel, for the main characters of Pride and Prejudice are barely mentioned, but as a work in itself. I'm sorry I can't remember more of the names of the characters for you, as they were delightful.


       Review by Nadine Mendoza, 15 May 2001
Like Anne Hampson, Gillespie supposes what happens to Charlotte Collins post- P&P. But here, the action takes place 20 years after the classic and centers (as do Gillespie's other "sequels") on peripheral characters. Gillespie actually chooses to focus the tale on the romantic possibilities of the Collins' children, William and Marcia. If you're the kind of Austen fan who embraces the contemporary regency romances, this novel will be of particular interest to you, as it's very much of
that genre. Again, this is only a must for those (like myself) who must read anything Austen related. But if you do encounter the book, it's worth a read -- and a quick and easy one at that.