Thursday, June 28, 2018

Proof of Love...Brenda J. Webb

Available at Amazon
Good morning to all of my readers! You are in for a treat! I am thrilled to welcome Brenda J. Webb back to More Agreeably Engaged. Brenda last visited on June 11, 2014, with her release of Darcy and Elizabeth: A Most Unlikely Couple. To read our interview for that post, click here

It has been too long since you last visited, Brenda. We will have to make sure you stop by more often. You are welcome any time.

Brenda is sharing an excerpt with us and it is intriguing. I love Brenda's writing and this new book sounds like it will be excellent, too. There is also a generous giveaway! :)

Take it away, Brenda!

*****




I am very excited to be visiting with my friend and fellow animal lover, Janet Taylor. When I thought about who I wanted to share my newest release with, you came to mind and you were gracious enough to work me into your schedule.


Proof of Love – A Pemberley Tale is a tale about a much younger Darcy and Lizzy than I have written before. In this book I wanted to show how they mature during the course of the story and I hope I accomplished that. Thank you for allowing me to share the cover, the blurb and an excerpt, and to give away a few copies to your lovely readers.

Blurb:

During his second year at Cambridge, a young Fitzwilliam Darcy accompanies a classmate to Lucas Lodge in Meryton for the holidays. Whilst there, he encounters a girl of sixteen who instantly captures his attention and soon after, his heart. Yet, because Elizabeth Bennet could never meet his relations’ expectations and he cannot abide her distasteful family, he returns to the university vowing to forget her.

Two years later, they are thrown into each other’s company and forced to spend several days together unchaperoned. Once they are discovered, Darcy suppresses his reservations about marriage to Elizabeth and does his duty in order to save her from ruin.

Will a young, headstrong and prejudiced Elizabeth realize how mistaken she has been about her husband’s character? Likewise, will a prideful, intractable but highly principled Fitzwilliam Darcy acknowledge his faults before their marriage is destroyed?

Excerpt from Chapter 6

Mr. Gardiner’s study
Before the wedding

Expecting Elizabeth, when Mr. Gardiner entered the study instead of his intended, William was taken aback.

“Mr. Darcy, since Lizzy is not ready yet, I have seized this opportunity to ask you about a matter of great importance. Last night I received a letter from my niece, Jane Bennet, and—”

“Has Elizabeth’s father taken a turn for the worse?”

“Quite the contrary! According to Jane, the new physician has been a godsend, working wonders with new medicines and procedures. She allows that her father is doing quite well, given the severity of his injury.”

As he watched William relax, Mr. Gardiner continued. “It is the physician who concerns me. Dr. Graham arrived in Meryton days ago, telling the family that he was sent from London to direct my brother’s care. Moreover, when asked who sent him, it seems he implied that I did.”

William looked uncomfortable. “Forgive me. That was my doing. I meant to tell you before now, but with plans for the wedding and meetings with my solicitor, I completely forgot.”

“That is understandable.”

“Dr. Graham is my personal physician, and it was I who asked him to manage Mr. Bennet’s care. It is my understanding that once Elizabeth’s father shows improvement, he will leave one of his associates in charge at Longbourn and return to London. Graham will, however, stay in touch with the assistant and continue to supervise every aspect of his recovery.”

“That cannot be inexpensive, so why was I given credit?”

“I do not want Elizabeth to learn of my part in it.”

“Why ever not? It might change her attitude towards you.”

William glanced away. “It is not gratitude that I seek from Elizabeth.”

“You wish her to feel love, not obligation.”

Embarrassed to be discussing something so personal, William merely nodded.

“I understand completely, but what if she learns of your intervention later?”

A pained smile crossed William’s face. “Perhaps by then she will have decided that marriage to me is not a horrible sentence, after all.”

Touched, Mr. Gardiner clamped a reassuring hand on the young man’s shoulder. “If it means anything, you must know that Madeline and I believe you are far and away the best man for Lizzy. She is not an average woman, and we feared she would never meet a man who would appreciate her uniqueness. My brother never had a son, you see, so he taught her everything he would have taught his heir about estate management. Moreover, he passed along his passion for reading a variety of books: histories, novels, plays and poetry, some in Italian and French. It has been my experience that most men, especially those of the ton, are intimidated by any woman who thinks for herself. They want a beauty with no brains for a wife, and whilst Lizzy is beautiful, it is her intelligence that sets her apart. Because of her intellect, she does not suffer fools easily.”

“We are alike in that.”

“However, I must warn you that Lizzy does possess one glaring fault.” William’s brows furrowed. “She leads with her heart. This means that at times she is apt to act before thinking—ergo, the need for your hasty marriage. She is still so young that I like to believe she will outgrow that flaw.”

At the anxious look on his soon-to-be nephew’s face, he added, “Just remember one thing, and you shall fare well. If a marriage is to succeed, both of you must work at it. Giving, as well as taking, is the key.”

That very second there was a knock on the door, and as it opened, Madeline Gardiner stuck in her head. “Elizabeth is here to speak with Mr. Darcy.”

“Give us just another minute, my dear.”

As the door closed again, Mr. Gardiner leaned in to whisper. “Jane warned me that her mother is still livid with Lizzy for rejecting Mr. Collins. She allows it might be best if her sister does not return to Longbourn until Fanny has calmed down. By the way, I did not inform either of Lizzy’s parents of your impending marriage. I believe that is your business.”

“I am relieved to know that Elizabeth’s father is doing well. I cannot leave for Pemberley until I finish some business in Town and that will likely be the end of this week. Perhaps by then Mr. Bennet will be on the mend, and Mrs. Bennet’s temper will have cooled.”

“I pray that is so. Now, let me leave you young people alone so you may talk.”

As Mr. Gardiner hurried from the room, he passed Elizabeth, who was right behind his wife. Giving her a fatherly smile, he patted her on the back before Mrs. Gardiner waved her into the study and closed the door.

Dressed in a simple blue satin gown trimmed with Chantilly lace at the bosom and the hem, Elizabeth looked stunning. A bonnet featuring a few white roses covered her dark hair. Moreover, the remedy her aunt had administered right before she came downstairs had calmed her persistent cough, so William saw no evidence that she was still sick. Unable to recall what he wished to say, he stared at her in amazement.

Self-conscious under his gaze, Elizabeth coloured and looked down. Seeing her discomfort, William came to his senses and hurried to explain.

“Elizabeth.” Her head came up. “I want you to know the wedding ring I chose for you was my mother’s favourite.”

Pulling a small velvet box from his pocket, he opened it to reveal a delicate, gold filigree band, featuring small diamonds and rubies set in a random pattern around the circumference. He was unwilling to burden her with the fact that this, a few more of his mother’s rings and a pearl necklace and matching earrings were the only jewellery not tendered as collateral against the new loan. “If it does not suit, you have only to tell me. There are several rings from which to choose, and you may discover you like another one better.”

“Mr. Darcy, I assure you this ring is perfect,” Elizabeth answered, giving him a fleeting smile.

“Is it not time to call me something less formal?” When Elizabeth did not reply, he ventured, “My mother called me William to distinguish between me and my cousin, Richard Fitzwilliam, who often stayed with us when I was a boy.”

“William,” she repeated just as a soft knock announced yet another interruption.

Mrs. Gardiner opened the door. “I hate to intrude, but the bishop is ready to proceed with the ceremony. Mr. Darcy, if you will accompany me, Edward will escort Elizabeth as soon as the music begins.”

As his wife walked back to the parlour with William on her heels, Edward Gardiner slipped into the study. Seeing the trepidation in Elizabeth’s face, he said, “I like your young man, Lizzy. Please give him a chance to win your heart.”

She smiled wanly. “What choice do I have, Uncle?”

“You have a much better choice than you realise, my dear.”

*****

I can't wait to read this book. I simply adore stories where Darcy and Lizzy have an arranged or forced marriage. Proof of Love sounds so good, and I already feel strongly for Darcy! What a place you left us! That is quite the teaser, Brenda!  I wish you much success with your new new release. Thank you for visiting with me and my readers. It's an honor that you thought of stopping here.  By the way, your cover is lovely!

In the next few days, I hope to post my review of one of Brenda's other books, Darcy and Elizabeth: A Promise Kept. I love that book! If you haven't read it, I hope you will soon. I highly recommend it.

As Brenda mentioned above, we share a love of animals and both have several rescue dogs. Brenda was very supportive when I posted a couple of years ago about the special pair of rescues I was fostering, Duke and Duchess. They are still with me, no longer fosters but fully integrated into my family! 

Giveaway:

Thank you, Brenda J. Webb, for the generous giveaway you are having for my readers. Brenda is giving away 2 eBooks internationally to those readers who can accept Amazon.com gift books. She is also giving away one signed paperback to readers in the US and Canada! That's awesome and we appreciate you giving everyone the opportunity to win and read your new release! The giveaway will end at 11:59 P.M. on the 3rd of July! Good luck to all of you! Please leave a comment to enter and don't forget your contact info, especially if you are new to my blog. 

45 comments:

  1. Great post Janet and a great excerpt. I love Mr. Gardiner's wisdom. Elizabeth is too young to realize what a wonderful choice she has. But it is our stubborn Lizzy after all, she has to learn the hard way. ;)
    Congratulations Brenda.

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    1. Thanks, Kate! I'm glad you popped in! Wasn't Mr. Gardiner's wisdom good. I love that character and am always happy to see him portrayed as a wise and caring uncle.

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  2. I am intrigued by a meeting of younger Darcy and Lizzy.
    Thank you for the giveaway
    I'd love to participate in the giveaway.
    jandia4@junpyo@yahoo.fr



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    1. I read of their meeting on another blog. It was neat!

      Good luck. You are entered in the giveaway.

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  3. This novel sounds so interesting! Thank you for the enticing excerpt and chance to win a copy.

    I also have a rescue dog and love to hear stories of animals finding their forever homes. :)

    stluc3@sbcglobal.net

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    1. Hi Virginia. Doesn't it sound interesting!

      I love hearing stories about rescue animals finding their forever home too. It is so heartwarming to witness how happy they become to have a good home.

      Good luck in the giveaway.

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  4. Brenda, I love the excerpt here and the final “You have a much better choice than you realise, my dear.” As I already have the kindle and the paperback, no need to include me in the drawing. I hope folks will be inspired by this excerpt. The story is wonderful and will keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat as our favorite JAFF couple makes their way down the path to HEA!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Jen. I think this one sounds so awesome! I can't wait to read more myself. I appreciate your comments.

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  5. Brenda, I can’t wait to read this book! I have been waiting for it to come out , but then I discovered all your books are no longer in KU. So it will be a little longer of a wait.

    Kbetz209@yahoo.com

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    1. Thank you for stopping by. This book sounds wonderful, doesn't it! Good luck in the giveaway.

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  6. Thanks to everyone who has commented! I would love to give out more books. :)

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  7. An interesting book with the younger protagonists. The forced marriage scenario is usuall an angsty one but the end is worth the suffering. I look forward to discovering the way they can make their marriage work...

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Agnes. I'm with you on looking forward to how their marriage works out.

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  8. Wondering if there will be a Ramsgate moment or if Wickham will be around to cause chaos

    meikleblog(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. I guess we will have to read to find out!

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  9. I love when they meet when they’re younger! Can’t wait to read this one! Congrats and thanks for sharing the love! ❤️

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    1. It is neat, isn't it, Claire. I like it when they meet earlier too.

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  10. A new book penned by the wordsmith that is Brenda? Wow!!! Fantastic! Am really looking forward to reading this one as I love the long,oft times,angst filled journey Brenda compels our beloved couple travel before their HEA!!
    Love the cover! They look so cute!!
    Best of luck with this book,Brenda!

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    1. Hi Mary! It is fantastic to have a new book by Brenda! Thanks for popping in.

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  11. Carole in CanadaJune 28, 2018 at 6:22 PM

    What a teasing excerpt! I looking forward to reading another Brenda book! Congratulations!

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    1. Wasn't it a good excerpt! I'm glad you stopped by.

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  12. This sounds great! I love the excerpt, and the cover is so romantic and beautiful. I definitely want to enter the giveaway: jcnewbrand@outlook.com

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  13. Great excerpt!! I can't wait to read this book. Thank you for the opportunity in the giveaway. Sonya.holt@gmail.com

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    1. I can't wait to read it either! It sounds so good!

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  14. A very enticing excerpt. I love Brenda's writing. This one sounds like it's going to be as good or even better than the rest.

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  15. I resisted reading any of this as it was posted so I'm now eager to read more. I do love it when Darcy and Elizabeth get married early so I'm looking forward to finding out the reason for this and also why Darcy needed to pawn his mother's jewellery????.
    Thank you so much for sharing.

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    1. I resisted too, Glynis. Now I'm ready to read it through!

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  16. Looking forward to reading this.

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    1. Me too, Mary. Thanks for dropping in.

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  17. Thanks to all of you for taking time to read the excerpt and to comment. Your comments make me smile. :) Best of luck in the drawing!

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  18. Oh my!What a sweet except! I love seeing scenes like that one!

    newyorkgirl82(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. I do too, Maria! I can't wait to read the rest!

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  19. I'm curious to know if Darcy's parents are still alive and what would they think of his hasty marriage to Elizabeth. From the looks of it, I assume they have died or they would not have missed their son's wedding.

    Btw, I don't know if I have said this before but the cover is amazing, Brenda. Good job to whoever designed it.

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    1. Good question, Sylvia! I tend to agree with your assumption.

      Brenda's cover is amazing!

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  20. So excited for a new release from Brenda. Thank you for the giveaway
    Cherringtonmb at sbcglobal dot net

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    1. Hi Becky! So glad you stopped by! Good luck.

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  21. I'm intrigued. I enjoy forced marriage stories. I look forward to reading this one.

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    1. Aren't the forced marriage stories good? I love them too.

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  22. Wonderful excerpt! I love all of Brenda’s books, so I’m sure I’ll love this one as well !
    Thanks for the great giveaway!

    Pamh5230 (at) yahoo (dot) com

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    1. Thank you for stopping by, Pamela! I feel sure I will love this one too.

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  23. Thanks for the giveaway. Brenda Webb is an amazing author. Amyk914@gmail.com

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  24. Again let me thank all of you for stopping by to read the excerpt and to comment. I wish you all luck in the drawing! :)

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