Mrs. Wickham by Sarah Page (audio drama)

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Pride and Prejudice-inspired Mrs. Wickham by Sarah Page (available on Audible) is a short audio drama that focuses on the former Lydia Bennett’s life after her elopement with Mr. Wickham. Pride and Prejudice fans that consider Lydia a simple and foolish girl will be surprised to see inside her mind: in this full-cast audio drama, Lydia is portrayed as a sympathetic character, and her rapid “growing up” shows how even silly and foolish girls can learn from their mistakes. The crude scenarios in Mrs. Wickham shows how Lydia could possibly have found her place in the harsh society of 1800s England, despite her ruined reputation and her scoundrel husband.

Mrs. Wickham takes place after about a year of marriage, and Lydia reflects on how she got into her unenviable situation. Her husband is, of course, sleeping around as well as spending their meager income recklessly. Realizing that her husband will never sustain her, love her, or take care of her, she takes matters into her own hands, finds a way to support herself, and manipulates Wickham to get what she needs. Lydia’s transformation is from the foolish flirt we may have seen portrayed in Pride and Prejudice into a determined woman. This builds George Wickham’s respect for his now self-confident wife.

Sequel fiction like this must always face extra scrutiny. I cannot help comparing the characters to those in the original book. While I loved how Mrs. Wickham ended, I do question whether George Wickham deserved to be happy in the end. I despise him! But, it certainly is time for Lydia to have her own success and this audio drama gave her the successful she would most enjoy.

Also, this is not truly the world of Jane Austen, of course. As can be expected, it is written with a modern audience in mind and does not shy away from crude language and adult content throughout the two-hour production. It is most certainly for adults fully aware of what the content will most likely be. For those wishing Lydia had a voice, it certainly has come at the right time.

I listened to Mrs. Wickham through Audible.

Reviewed on May 15, 2023

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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