Illustrated by Peter Carnavas
Mr Darcy is a rather proud and reserved duck who is very respected by the townsfolk but also a little bit lonely. When he is repeatedly invited to tea with Lizzy and her sisters (also ducks), he becomes flustered and trips over, smacks into a tree and finally gets stuck in a puddle of mud. He is reluctant to accept help but luckily his friends (Bingley the horse, Caroline the cow and Maria the mouse) are determined to assist. They heave him out of the mud and Mr Darcy decides that tea with Lizzy and her sisters would be a charming way to spend Sunday after all.
Written by Alex Field, the story is of course inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Alex has cleverly crafted a message for children out the original classic, as Mr Darcy eventually understands the importance of friendship, love and swallowing one’s pride to accept help from others. It was a joy to illustrate and my first book that is entirely made up of animals. I particularly enjoyed plonking Mr Darcy’s exaggerated hat upon his head, depicting him as just a little bit self-important but lovable at the same time.
Illustrations are in watercolour and ink.