Bebris, Carrie

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Bebris, Carrie

PERSONAL:

Married. Education: M.A.

ADDRESSES:

Home—WI. E-mail[email protected]

CAREER:

During early career, worked as a newspaper reporter, college English teacher, and editor for publisher TSR, Inc.

MEMBER:

Jane Austen Society.

WRITINGS:

(With William W. Connors) Shadowborn (fantasy novel), 1998.

Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor (fantasy novel), Wizards of the Coast (Renton, WA), 2001.

Also author of articles for Better Homes and Gardens.

"MR. & MRS. DARCY" SERIES; MYSTERIES

Pride and Prescience; or, A Truth Universally Acknowledged: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, Forge Books (New York, NY), 2004.

Suspense and Sensibility; or, First Impressions, Revisited: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, Forge Books (New York, NY), 2005.

North by Northanger; or, The Shades of Pemberley: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, Forge Books (New York, NY), 2006.

SIDELIGHTS:

After working in journalism and as an English teacher, Carrie Bebris first got into writing while she was an editor for TSR, Inc., a publisher of fantasy novels and games. Working in this environment, it is not surprising that her first two novels, the cowritten Shadowborn and the solo effort Pool of Radiance: Ruins of Myth Drannor, are fantasy tales. After leaving the publishing house and setting off on her own as a freelance author, however, Bebris went in a different direction with her "Mr. & Mrs. Darcy" series. These mystery novels feature the characters created by Jane Austen in her classic novel Pride and Prejudice.

When asked by Monica Whitebread in a Publishers Weekly interview about her switch from fantasy to historical mystery, Bebris explained that it really was not much of a leap: "Both the fantasy novels and the Mr. and Mrs. Darcy mysteries contain supernatural elements," she asserted, adding: "The Darcy novels are also essentially 'quest' stories, in that the characters are essentially searching for the truth." Bebris went on to tell Whitebread that she has been a fan of Austen since high school. Although she has taken her characters from her new series from the famous author, Bebris assured Whitebread that she always remains respectful of the original writer's creation: "I have so much love for Austen, and such respect for her creations, that I don't want to transform them in ways that I think wouldn't be true to character. So there are always limits to what I can do and how far I can go with their stories, but within those limits I can have a lot of fun."

Beginning with Pride and Prescience; or, A Truth Universally Acknowledged: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, Bebris reintroduces audiences to Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy as they are being wed in a dual ceremony with Elizabeth's sister Jane, who is marrying Fitzwilliam's friend Charles Bingley. Unfortunately, Elizabeth's rival, Caroline, spoils the wedding by rudely announcing her engagement to a wealthy American. Soon after the wedding, though, Caroline begins to act strangely, and she is found one day with her wrists cut in an apparent attempt at suicide. The newlywed Darcys put their lives on hold as they investigate suspicious goings on that involve a rival of Bingley's father and, apparently, the occult. Booklist critic Kristine Huntley called the novel a "charming mystery" that should prove a "delightful yarn, especially for teens who know Austen's characters." Bebris "provides convincing portraits of life in London …," observed a Publishers Weekly contributor. "With a touch of sorcery and lots of red herrings, Bebris works her own brand of Austen magic."

Bebris followed Pride and Prescience with Suspense and Sensibility; or, First Impressions, Revisited: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery and North by Northanger; or, The Shades of Pemberley: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery. In the former, the Darcys go back to London to help Elizabeth's younger sister Kitty. Kitty becomes involved with Harry Dashwood, a man who treats the young Kitty poorly and who is somehow involved with the sinister Hell-Fire Club. "The author smoothly combines characters from Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility while remaining true to Austen's originals," reported a Publishers Weekly contributor. In North by Northanger, Elizabeth is close to giving birth to her first child. Meanwhile, she also becomes interested in finding a missing heirloom that belonged to her husband's mother. The quest leads them to Captain Tilney, who claims his and Darcy's mothers were friends. The Darcys are then falsely accused of stealing Mrs. Tilney's diamonds. While defending themselves in court, the Darcys try to figure out what is really going on and why the heirloom is so important. While a Kirkus Reviews critic felt that the Austen-based fiction of other authors would be better for those "desperate to spend more time with Elizabeth," Huntley asserted in another Booklist review that North by Northanger is an "absorbing mystery that stays true to Austen's tone and characters." "Austen fans will be happy to see the reappearance" of their beloved characters, concluded a Publishers Weekly writer.

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, December 15, 2003, Kristine Huntley, review of Pride and Prescience; or, A Truth Universally Acknowledged: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, p. 729; May 1, 2006, Kristine Huntley, review of North by Northanger; or, The Shades of Pemberly: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, p. 16.

Kirkus Reviews, November 15, 2003, review of Pride and Prescience, p. 1341; January 15, 2005, review of Sense and Sensibility; or, First Impressions, Revisited: A Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mystery, p. 84; March 15, 2006, review of North by Northanger, p. 262.

Library Journal, January, 2004, Rex E. Klett, review of Pride and Prescience, p. 162; February 1, 2005, Rex E. Klett, review of Suspense and Sensibility, p. 57.

Publishers Weekly, January 12, 2004, review of Pride and Prescience, p. 40; January 24, 2005, review of Suspense and Sensibility, p. 224, and Monica Whitebread, "Suspense and Jane Austen," interview with Carrie Bebris, p. 225; February 20, 2006, review of North by Northanger, p. 138.

ONLINE

AllReaders.com,http://www.allreaders.com/ (November 1, 2006), Harriet Klausner, review of Pride and Prescience.

Carrie Bebris Home Page,http://www.carriebebris.com (November 1, 2006).

New Mystery Reader,http://www.newmysteryreader.com/ (November 16, 2006), Anne K. Edwards, review of North by Northanger.

Sonderbooks,http://www.sonderbooks.com/ (July 7, 2004), review of Pride and Prescience; (June 20, 2005), review of Suspense and Sensibility. *