Saturday, March 17, 2018

Guest Review by a Great Reader...The Child

Available at Amazon
Good morning, Dear Readers! We have a special treat today. Christina Boyd is visiting and is sharing her thoughts on Jan Hahn's new release, The Child. Her review will give you a taste of what will be coming during the blog tour for The Child, which starts on March 21st. 

Thank you, Christina, and welcome to More Agreeably Engaged.


A Review: The Child by Jan Hahn

Accomplished author Jan Hahn’s latest Austenesque novel, The Child, beseeches “can love overcome all, even the prejudice against a child born to an archenemy?” She writes just the kind of tale that lures me in, consumes me. In Hahn’s stirring re-imagining of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, two years after Miss Elizabeth Bennet baldly refused his hand in marriage, Mr. Darcy beholds her from across a London street...with a young child in tow. A child! Whose child? But before he can approach her, he is called into the church: “I say, Darce, are you coming? ... The bride is waiting, Darcy!” Bride! Whose bride? Thus, within the first pages, I was addicted.

Years have changed Darcy and Elizabeth since that ill-conceived proposal at the Hunsford parsonage and each has their own cross to bear. Darcy learns that while he and Charles Bingley toured the continent to escape heartache, the Bennets of Longbourn have been embroiled in scandal—the Wickham affair. George Wickham, his boyhood friend, now foe, had eloped with a Bennet daughter, abandoning her with child. Hearing the rumors, all fingers point to Elizabeth as the unwed mother. Yet, when the Bennets’ horse throws a shoe and waylays their carriage on the road to Hertfordshire, Fate intervenes, once again propelling Darcy and Bingley into the company of Miss Jane Bennet and Elizabeth. Offering to deliver the ladies and “the child” home, Darcy cannot but observe the interaction between Miss Elizabeth and Baby Fan:
Naturally, Elizabeth tended to the little girl, I observed she was a most proficient mother. How tender her touch and her tone as she petted and soothed the little one! Just the kind of mother I had envisioned her to be. I remembered dreams of old that had contained a child of mine suckling at her breast. Long vanished now, man!

Back in the neighborhood, the gentlemen see with their own eyes how even the four and twenty families of Meryton have shunned the Bennets. Gossips declare that Wickham is the father and Darcy is tested like never before—guilt, resentment, and pride clash with his enduring, unrequited love and his need to somehow, some way, restore the Bennets’ honor. How could she not have heeded his warning and eloped with the blackguard, resulting in these shameful consequences? Told in the first-person narrative through Darcy’s eyes, the warring between his sense and sensibilities is honest and intimate.  
Abruptly, she withdrew her hand from mine. I realized she could not bear the shame of my disapproval, for I represented society, the same society that condemned her and her family. Our hypocrisy be damned! Neither Elizabeth nor her sisters should suffer the degradation Wickham had inflicted upon them.

Darcy knows Bingley can never marry Jane Bennet as long as the child remains in the Bennet household—a constant reminder of their misfortune and fall from grace—and he takes it upon himself to find Wickham and convince him to claim the child (read: bribery). Alas, nothing ensues as Darcy expects and he must disguise these machinations—and his yearning—or risk losing all he has ever desired.
Immediately, I realized how I had exposed my feelings. What in blazes had I been thinking? That was the problem—I had not been thinking at all. I had been caught up in the pleasure of walking with Elizabeth and basking in the delicious scent that wafted over me when we inadvertently stepped too close to each other.

Further, several beloved and anticipated characters from canon add color to this heart-stopping tale.

I first discovered the elegant writings of “JanH” in February 2007 on-line at Mrs. Darcy’s Story Site. I inhaled all she had published on the Web and when she was posting her “work-in-progress” (WIP) on Sunday evenings, Sunday became “JanH Night” in my house—and soon after the dishes were put away, I was on-line, reading her latest installment. In 2011, she began posting The Child; this WIP became my weekly high, my drug of choice. To my delight, seven years later, I find this tightened and edited version exceptional as anticipated, nay, as expected. Hahn’s absolute understanding of Austen’s characters, imaginative story, and adept research of the language and mores of Regency England create powerful imagery and emotive reading. I heartily recommend you read The Child sooner than later. But be warned, once you start it, you won’t be able to stop. You’ll find yourself at midnight swearing, “Just one more chapter. I can stop any time.” 5 stars. —Christina Boyd



Christina Boyd wears many hats as she is an editor under her own banner, The Quill Ink, a contributor to Austenprose, and a commercial ceramicist. A life member of Jane Austen Society of North America, Christina lives in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with her dear Mr. B, two busy teenagers, and a retriever named BiBi. She is the editor of anthologies The Darcy Monologues, Dangerous to Know: Jane Austen’s Rakes & Gentlemen Rogues, and another coming later in 2018. Visiting Jane Austen’s England was made possible by actor Henry Cavill when she won the Omaze experience to meet him in the spring of 2017 on the London Eye. True story. You can Google it.



Jan Hahn's much loved eBook, The Journey, is on sale for $1.99. Thank you Meryton Press.

Christina, I want to say a special thanks to you for agreeing to visit my blog and post your thoughts on The Child by Jan Hahn. I loved everything you said about the book. It is such a good novel and I'm thrilled to see it published as well. It's been a privilege to have you share your review with me and my readers. I invite you to come back anytime. Thank you again.

If you haven't already purchased the eBook, you have a chance to win it here. I'm giving it away and the giveaway is international. Please leave a comment for a chance to win. The giveaway ends March 19th at 11:59 PM. Good luck to all.

51 comments:

  1. Wow! I love the review and look forward to reading this book. Marti T.

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    1. I hope you get to read it soon, Marti! It is such a good book. Thanks for stopping by.

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    2. Thank you, Marti. Good luck in the drawing!

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  2. What a wonderful review! I had a feeling that it was Wickham's child. I am surprised that the four and twenty families would think it was Elizabeth's child because Lydia is not one to keep a secret or did she die in childbirth? How will Darcy ever solve this one? I have loved all of Jan Hahn's books and know I will feel the same way with this one. We do not always read a book from Darcy's POV. Thank you for the giveaway.

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    1. Wasn't that a great review, Eva. It is a great book, too. I like reading one from Darcy's POV. You have an interesting question. Hope you get to read it soon and find the answer!

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    2. Christina did write a great review! Thank you, Eva, for your comments. I hope you enjoy Darcy's POV. He just about drove me nuts while I was trying to write it.

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  3. Sounds delightful. Thanks for the opportunity to win this book. It is currently in tbe TBR pile.

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    1. Good luck, Patty. It is delightful!

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    2. Thanks, Patty! Good luck with the drawing.

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  4. Great review Janet. I’ve heard a lot about this book and was looking forward to the release. Thanks for the giveaway ❤️

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    1. It is a great review, I agree. Christina Boyd always writes thoughtful reviews. The eBook is available now, Kate. Good luck.

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    2. Thank you, Kate! I agree - Christina writes some of the best reviews I've read.

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  5. Who is the bride??? Please don't tell me Darcy marries someone else! :(
    I wonder how long it will take Darcy to realise that the child is Lydia's and I also wonder why Elizabeth is looking after her.
    I loved An Arranged Marriage and I have just bought The Journey. This one is now on my wish list.
    Thank you Christina for such a great review and Janet for hosting :)

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    1. Questions, questions, and more questions. All are good ones, too. Ahh, An Arranged Marriage, is one of my all time favorites. The Journey is excellent too. Enjoy both!

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    2. Thank you, Glynis! Don't worry - Darcy belongs to Elizabeth in my books.

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  6. Great review for another of Jan’s great stories. Can’t wait to dive into this one !

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Karen. I couldn't agree more.

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    2. Thank you, Karen! I love Christina's reviews.

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  7. A good review, but where is Lydia?

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    1. Keeping up with Lydia is a full-time job. Thanks for your comments!

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  8. Thanks for sharing your review, it sounds so good.

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    1. I thank you, too, Christina. Excellent review!

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    2. I appreciate your comments. Thanks so much!

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  9. Thank you, Janet, for having me! It was my pleasure to read and review this latest for your blog. I love all Jan Hahn's writings. She could probably write a to-do list and I would think the prose impeccable. Always so well-crafted without feeling supercilious. I hope Austenesque fans read this novel sooner than later.

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    1. It is my pleasure to have you visit as a guest reviewer! I'm honored. I love all of Jan's writings too. I laughed at your 'to-do list' comment. Too funny! After reading your review, I'm sure that will encourage many to read the book ASAP! Thank you again for sharing your thoughts.

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  10. Great review and one that has me very intrigued! Oh Darcy, what have you done?! Looks like my reading pile is growing again!

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    1. Good Question, Carole! I'm glad Christina's review has you intrigued. I hope you get to read this one soon. Good luck in the giveaway.

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    2. Glad to see Christina's review piqued your curiosity, Carole! Thanks so much for your comments.

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  11. I can see why this one was gripping from the beginning. Can't wait. Enjoyed Christina's review!

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    1. Hi, Sophia! Thanks for your comments.

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    2. Thanks for dropping by, Sophia Rose. I hope you get to read this soon!

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  12. I was so excited about Jan Hahn's newest, I went on a binge re reading all her others!
    Really looking forward to this one, too.

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    1. Oh, my! You're binge re-reading my books? That's like hearing I've won the lottery! Thank you.

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    2. I bet you had a great time binge reading. Hope you get to read this one soon.

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  13. I'm so excited this is published. I've been wanting to re-read it for so long! :)

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    1. Thank you, Monica! You're so kind.

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    2. Hi Monica. I'm glad you popped in. Good look in the giveaway.

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  14. Thank you, thank you, dear Christina, for writing this review, and thank you, dear Janet, for posting it on your blog! It makes me want to write another book. I remember those Sunday nights on Mrs. Darcy's Story site with fond memories, Christina. You encouraged me then and you've continued through the years. I'm a lucky lady to have friends like you and Janet!

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    1. Goodness, I'll keep writing reviews and sending you kudos if it inspires you to write another. Type, type, type.

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    2. I agree, Christina! Keep her typing! haha!

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  15. Just finished reading The Secret Betrothal, so cant wait to read this one! <3

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    1. Hi Claire. Thanks for stopping by. Wasn't The Secret Betrothal Good?

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  16. Oh my! I loved The Journey (one of the first JAFFs I ever read, and still amongst my favourites) and this sounds even more intriguing, so I am sure I will love The Child. Beautiful cover, too.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. I love The Journey too and it is still amonngst my favorites. I've read it quite a few times. You are going to love this one too. I'm thrilled you like the cover! :) Thank you.

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  17. Sorry for arriving late to the party. The review is terrific and draws me in to find out who is the mother of the child and what would become of the Bennet sisters, Jane and Elizabeth. I'm guessing Lydia is the mother and if so, what happened to her? Died during childbirth or gone mad? Or sent to live far away from home perhaps? So many possibilities are spinning in my mind by just reading the review.

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    1. It's okay to arrive late. I'm glad you stopped by. Wasn't that a great review. It made me want to read the book and I've already read it! :) Yes, there are many possibilities!

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  18. What a wonderful review!!!
    This sounds like a fantastic story,both heart wrenching and heartwarming in equal parts!!
    I can just imagine the qualms some significant characters will suffer and yes! I can fully understand why 'just one more chapter' would be uttered again and again!!!

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    1. It is a wonderful review and a fantastic story. I'm so glad you dropped in. Thanks for commenting, Mary, and I do hope you get to read this book soon.

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  19. I'm very late to this party! Been a bit busy with visitors from the other side of the world for the past two weeks. Thanks for an amazing review, Christina. I have to confess that I've not actually read any of Jan's books as yet, though they are all on my Kindle TBR list. Shame on me, I know! The premise for this book sounds so intriguing and poses so many questions. Who's the bride? Who's the mother of the child? Where's Lydia? Where's Wickham?

    Now I have to catch up with the blog tour!

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    1. I bet you have been busy but hope it was a good busy. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. Didn't Christina write an awesome review? Oh my, Anji! I can't believe you haven't read any of Jan's books. You need to move them to the top of your list. They are awesome. You have some good questions on this one and I hope you get to read it and Jan's other books soon.

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