Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Three Colonels: Jane Austen’s Fighting Men by Jack Caldwell

This book had me at its title The Three Colonels: Jane Austen’s Fighting Men. A book about Austen’s beloved heroes in uniform, count me in! Then I noticed who wrote the book – Jack Caldwell. Caldwell is the author of the wonderful Pemberly Ranch. I couldn’t wait to read what he had in store next for Austen’s characters. Add to that a beautiful cover and I couldn’t wait to read this novel.

I was not disappointed by the story, especially as a great fan of Caldwell, Austen, and historical fiction. The Three Colonels blends together the worlds of Austen’s beloved novels Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility. The three colonels include Colonel Brandon from Sense and Sensibility, Colonel Fitzwilliam from Pride and Prejudice, and a new hero Colonel Buford. Military men Denny and Wickham from Pride and Prejudice also make an appearance.

Marianne and Colonel Brandon are happily married and enjoying their young daughter Joy. Colonel Buford is soon to be married to a reformed Caroline Bingley, and Colonel Fitzwilliam is discovering that love has been right in front of him all along. The romance in the novel is very enjoyable. When Napoleon escapes form Elba, the three Colonels are called to their duty and to the horrific battle of Waterloo for God and country. Will they survive and how will this battle affect their loved ones?

I loved the story in this novel and thought it was a very unique spin on Jane Austen’s tale. I love historical fiction and it was intriguing reading about Napoleon and the infamous Battle of Waterloo as fought by Austen’s beloved characters. I loved how so many of my favorite characters returned including Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth Darcy, the Bingleys, the Collins, etc. I also like how Caroline Bingley was given a great depth and an ability to redeem herself. Anne de Bourgh is also fleshed out and given a great depth. Napoleon is not the only villain in this novel with appearances from Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Mr. Wickham, and Willoughby. If I had to face Napoleon or Lady Catherine, I’m not sure which would be the safer route!

The only complaint I had about the novel is that there are a lot of characters with a lot of story going on. I want to learn more. How about a sequel, The Three Colonels and a Captain, with Captain Wentworth?

Overall The Three Colonels is sure to delight lovers of Austen, romance, and historical fiction. This book is another winner from Jack Caldwell.

Book Source: Review Copy from Sourcebooks. Thank-you!


  1. Excellent review, Laura. I also read The Three Colonels and reviewed it for Austenprose. I agree that there is enough material for a second book. What do you think Jack?

  2. I think it's wonderful that Jack Caldwell wrote about the men in Austen's books. I love that he combined several of them from different books in this book. I love Sense and Sensibility so I'm excited that those characters are here.

    This book sounds like it's totally own story inspired by Austen's characters, many of whom we see from a different perspective now. It's no wonder your enthusiasm for this book bubbles over. It sounds captivating!

    I really enjoyed your review, it's fantastic. I'm putting this book on my tbr list!