Mr. Knightley’s Diary has been on my “to read” list for quite awhile so I was very happy to finally read it as the fourth item for my Everything Austen Challenge.
Mr. Knightley’s Diary is a retelling of the story of Emma from Mr. Knightley’s point of view. The timeline was roughly the same as of Emma, from Mr. Weston and Miss Taylor’s wedding to the wedding of Mr. Knightley and Emma. As I have recently written a summary of Emma on this blog, I only have one addition. I love how Mr. Knightley agrees to live with his father-in-law in order to marry Emma. If that is not a sacrifice, I don't know what is! There are not too many of us in this day and age that would agree to live with your ailing in-laws in order to marry your spouse.
What did I like about this book? My favorite part was reading about Mr. Knightley’s denial of his love for Emma. I especially liked how he kept telling his friend how he was looking for a spouse, but no woman could measure up to Emma . . . yet he still didn’t see it as love for Emma at first. It was pretty funny. I also liked the added subplot (SPOILER ALERT) of the romance between Miss Bates and Mr. Longridge. It was a very nice addition to the story. (SPOILER END) It was also great that the story was extended to include a brief description of Emma’s wedding.
The only negatives I had were that the word “saucy” was used way too much. It was funny at first that Mr. Knightley was always talking about Emma’s “saucy” looks, but after awhile it got old. It also would have been nice to extend the story more to include more information before and after the events of Emma. I really like how Captain Wentworth’s Diary did this.
Overall it was an enjoyable read, especially for the fans of Emma. I will continue on my all things Emma trek by re-watching Emma (1996) hopefully this weekend. I will also continue on my Amanda Grange kick by reading Edmund Bertram’s Diary sometime in the next month!