Five Variations Every JAFF Fan Should Read

Five Variations Every JAFF Fan Should Read

Welcome to my Highly Subjective list based totally on my own personal tastes, mmmkay? And I’m not including any of the works by my fellow Austen Authors on this site, because I’m sure you all know by now how amazing they are. My incredulity when Sharon Lathan and Regina Jeffers invited me to join knew no bounds, and I still sometimes pinch myself, unable to believe I’m sitting in such exalted company!

We all have our favourites, as well as our authors we trust to never get it wrong. We’ve probably all one-clicked that book on Amazon which had a nice-looking cover and blurb with good reviews and ended up wondering what the heck everyone else saw in it. The books I’m about to list here might not be the best-written, or the most popular. You might have read some of them and want to scream and whack me over the head for even SUGGESTING others might enjoy. The simple truth is, I enjoyed all these books for different reasons. Why not give them a go – and why not share YOUR favourite Austen variations in the comments?


Mr Darcy Takes A Wife – Linda Berdoll

Is there any book more divisive among JAFF lovers? Mr Darcy Takes A Wife was my first introduction to the entire world of JAFF, when I picked up the paperback in a bookshop many years ago. It’s a steamy, raunchy romp and I admit I vacillate between loving Mr Darcy completely losing his mind as he discovers the carnal delights of marriage to being prudishly shocked at the ‘endless bonking’ as one reviewer described it. Parts of it are hilarious, starting with the opening scene where Darcy attempts to offer Lizzy a cushion to ease her ‘nether regions’ as they journey in a carriage towards Pemberley. If you’ve never read it, you should at least check out the 10% sample you can read for free on Amazon. And if you love it, well. There are sequels!



Mr Darcy Came To Dinner – Jack Caldwell

This one’s a fun rom-com type of read where Mr. Darcy ends up stranded at Longbourn with a badly broken leg after falling over the Bennet family’s cat. Darcy behaves like his usual over-proud self at first, but is humbled by the kindness the family show him despite his behaviour. Elizabeth has to try very hard to hold onto her prejudice against him in the face of his obvious efforts. The friendships fostered between Darcy and the other Bennet sisters are really charming.

Also, I’m a sucker for animal stories 😛 As you’ll see from my next choice…



Master Under Good Regulation – Kara Louise

To this day, Master Under Good Regulation remains the only JAFF story which has made me ugly-cry. Told from the perspective of Darcy’s loyal dog, Reggie, the story follows Darcy from a boy of 15 right up to and through his courtship of Elizabeth, completely faithful to P&P canon. You can probably guess how it ends when I point out that Reggie is in his teens by that time, but trust me – the story is worth the ugly-cry at the end.





Georgiana Darcy’s DiaryAnna Elliott

Now, I know a lot of readers don’t like JAFFs which aren’t Darcy and Elizabeth-centric, but I do. I really enjoy seeing the explorations of characters who get very little time in canon, and Anna Elliott has a terrific series called the Pride and Prejudice Chronicles. The first two books are about Georgiana, with a Georgiana/Fitzwilliam romance, and the third is about Kitty Bennet with an original character romance of her own. They’re well-written and on my regular re-read list!




Pride – Ibi Zoboi

If you like modern JAFF variations, you cannot go past Ibi Zoboi’s incredible Pride. It really is a Pride and Prejudice for the modern era, with race relations taking the place of class and wealth distinctions as the differences between the protagonists. With a proud Afro-Latino heroine from Brooklyn and her tight-knit family the Benitez just as difficult as the Bennets of the original, I honestly think this is a must-read for any JAFF fan, and I’d actually suggest it as a great resource to introduce younger readers to Austen – much as Clueless brought me to Emma back in 1995 and 10 Things I Hate About You adapted Shakespeare’s Taming Of The Shrew.




I’d love to hear about YOUR favourite Austen variation in the comments! Is it the wildly out-there Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, which I noped out of because it was too much for my suspension of disbelief to accept? Or maybe the whole of Sharon Lathan’s gorgeous Darcy saga? Share the love, and your reasons why, and let’s all find something new and fantastic to read (I hope!)



19 Responses to Five Variations Every JAFF Fan Should Read

  1. Thanks for sharing your list. I’ve heard of these titles but haven’t read them yet. My favorite ones are: Captain Wentworth Home from the Sea, Darcy By Any Other Name and The Recovery of Fitzwilliam Darcy.

  2. I was in Barnes and Noble minding my own business as I perused the stacks. I came across ‘Darcy’s Passions’ by Regina Jeffers and was intrigued that there was a book off of the classic P&P. I had never heard of the term fan fiction. Little did I know that was the beginning of a love affair with JAFF. I didn’t even know there was such a genre. It started a wildfire within me and I began searching and reading everything I could get my hands on. I happily discovered books that were… a variation, retelling, re-imagining, alternate universe, gender swap, shape-shifter, paranormal, si-fi, prequel, sequel, side story, Austen inspired, modern, future, Regency, and every combination and trope that our creative authors can conjure. Since that time, I have read hundreds of stories. I joined an online group of fellow JAFF lovers and I have read hundreds of reviews and written a few of my own. I love this genre. Jane Austen will always be my favorite author, hands down. Following her are a plethora of authors who love her work and try to honor her by continuing her legacy. I am humbled by that dedication and I honor those authors.

  3. Georgiana Darcy’s Diary is free right now on Amazon. I have too many favorites to list all of them but books by Cat Gardiner, J. Dawn King, Brenda Webb, Nicole Clarkston, Mary Lydon Simonsen are also on my list among others. But I have to add that when an author charges $9.99 for 302 pages she/he puts me off reading her/his book. Stanley Michael Hurd’s variation on P&P from Darcy’s POV is also excellent. (Darcy’s Tale: Vol. 1, 2 & 3)

  4. Thanks fellows (sepacial mention- Chelsea) for sharing the titles of these variations books. am keeping track of the ones I am not familiar with. I need to add to my wish list. Hopefully I can have/read all of them 😉

  5. Great list. The Pride books looks intersting and unique, esp with unique cultures added in the story.

    Sharon – I love Pride and prejudice and Zombies esp the movie version (though the editting needs some editting 😉 I love almost all P & P variation stories, hard to give just a few…Recently I have come to love the modern variations too. To name a few of them- A promise kept, Darcy’s Choice, Green Card, Darcy and the Young Knight’s Quest, EB’s excellent adventure, These Dreams, Conceit and Concealment, Darcy’s Voyage, the Child (Oh I Can go on forever….)

    I like stories that are centered primarily on our couple and not so many characters… I lose track of who’s who.

    • I loved Darcy’s Voyage by, Kara Louise as well and was thinking of putting it on my list. There are just so many wonderful books!

  6. Neat list, Catherine. I wished that you had gone on and on. 🙂 I really liked Anna Elliot’s P&P Chronicles and have been meaning to reread them ever since she came out with Margaret Dashwood’s story, and that’s been awhile. The more JAFF I read the reread list that is calling to me to abandon the TBR and come over the dark side gets longer and longer. And that tug-of-war gets worse all the time. I also loved Jack Caldwell’s book and have reread that one numerous times…so charming. I ddn’t give the audio version of that a thumbs up though, because of the stilted narration, what a disappointment. I really need to read Berdoll’s book. And why haven’t I read Kara Louise’s book sitting there in my TBR pile??

    I truly enjoyed the books others have listed above, thanks to all. We’ll be here till summer if I list my faves. And narrowing it down to 10 would be agony. Even 10 favorite authors.

  7. I have Master Under Good Regulation by, Kara Louise, Mr. Darcy Came To Dinner by, Jack Caldwell, and Georgiana Darcy’s Diary by, Anna Elliott on my TBR list and like you I also enjoy reading books that further explore some of the characters who are not as prominent in the original story.

    Here is a list of a few of my favorite non Austen Author JAFF Variations
    Henry: A Pride & Prejudice Novella by, Christie Capps
    Falling for Mr. Darcy by, KaraLynne Mackrory
    The Houseguest A Pride and Prejudice Vagary by, Elizabeth Adams
    To Capture Mr. Darcy by, Elizabeth Ann West
    The Unexpected Miss Bennet by, Patrice Sarath
    Longbourn’s Unexpected Matchmaker by, Emma Hox

    Here is a list of a few of my favorite Austen Author JAFF Variations
    Master of Longbourn: A Sequel to Mr. Darcy’s Comfort by, Leenie Brown
    Waking to Mr. Darcy: A Pride and Prejudice Novella by, Leenie Brown
    When Mary Met the Colonel: A Pride and Prejudice Novella by, Victoria Kincaid
    Miss Bingley’s Christmas: A Pride and Prejudice Variation by, Renata McMann
    Coincidence by, Jann Rowland

    There are just so many books I have loved that I have read and so many more I want to read!

  8. I’ve read half of those you have listed, and my favorite is Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife. Wonderful! But…When I saw “Six Variations Every JAFF Fan Should Read” I thought it would include one from each published novel. I’d really like to read variations on JA’s OTHER books, too, especially Persuasion. Will you be posting a list of those, too? Please?!

  9. I have read Linda Berdoll and really liked all four of them. Mr Darcy comes to dinner sounds good,too. The one through Reggie’s eyes I probably wouldn’t handle well. I don’t handle animal stories or movies I am a cryer!

  10. I’ve read the first three of your favourites and really enjoyed them. My favourite favourite is Imperative by Linda Wells, I bought the two volumes before I had a kindle and, despite their weight 🙂 , I couldn’t put them down. As soon as I finished I ordered her other books then read Imperative again while I waited for them. the rest of her books are favourites as well.
    Other favourites are Rainy Days by Lory Lilian, Unwavering Trust by Leslie Diamond, The Conscience Series by Cat Gardiner, The Truth About Mr Darcy by Susan Adriani, and These Dreams by Nicole Clarkston. I could go on and on as I do have so many that I re read often.
    I’m so grateful for the discovery of JAFF in 2014 thanks to Sharon Lathan’s Two Become One!

  11. My current number one favourite is Stranded with Mr Darcy by Mei Wei Lin, which has the most delightful banter between Lizzy & Darcy after a shipwreck & during their Robinson Crusoe-type adventure. A very close second, if not a tie, is Mr Collins’ Deception, by Renata McMann, with a strong-minded Mr Collins determined to get the best of Lady Catherine by faking being a sycophant; not only is it clever and amusing, but the ending will tear at your heart. We are lucky there are so many exceptional JAFFs these days – way too many to name. I was making a list of favourite authors but lost the list when it already had 50+ names.

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