Monday, November 26, 2018

To Conquer Pride...Jennifer Altman



Today is a special day at More Agreeably Engaged. Author Jennifer Altman is celebrating the release of her debut novel, To Conquer Pride and today is the day! This is also Jennifer's "debut" visit here. It is great to have her visit with us.

I am so thrilled to be participating in your blog tour, Jennifer. I also hear that you have a special treat for us today. I know my readers are going to be as excited about it as I have been. I will wait until after the excerpt to share the rest of the news!

Thanks again for letting me be part of your tour and congratulations on your new novel. 

*****
Jennifer: Hi Janet! Thanks so much for hosting me today to celebrate the release of my debut novel, To Conquer Pride—and a HUGE thank you to author Joana Starnes who has agreed to participate in today’s interview.  

I thought I’d start with a brief excerpt from the book, and then we’ll get right down to business. :)

Some of you may have read the opening of To Conquer Pride over at Austenesque Reviews (if not, you can check it out here, but to catch you up, the story begins seven months after Darcy’s failed proposal at Hunsford. Darcy and Elizabeth have met by chance at a coaching inn in Kent and certain unforeseen circumstances have led to them being stranded together in an abandoned cottage during a snowstorm. I hope you enjoy!


To Conquer Pride – Excerpt


The fire had long since burned down and the room was becoming cold. Darcy glanced over at Elizabeth, asleep in her chair. Several chestnut curls had escaped their pins and now rested against one rosy cheek. Even in repose, she was the most beautiful creature he had ever beheld. His eyes roamed her body, and warmth ignited in his chest. He would have liked to say that what he felt was a chaste sort of tenderness but strictly speaking, that would be untrue. He could not look at her—long lashes impossibly dark against her fair skin, the neckline of her gown slipping from one shoulder—and not feel a certain degree of carnal longing. But to his surprise, there was a stronger feeling holding the physical desire at bay. Watching Elizabeth, a fierce sense of protectiveness surged within him, and he knew in that moment that he would stop at nothing to keep her safe.

He turned his attention to the mantelpiece. The pistol from the carriage still rested atop the roughhewn surface. He had attempted to press it upon his footman, but Thomas had refused the weapon. Now, Darcy was glad to have it. Elizabeth was under his care, and although he would gladly inflict bodily harm with his bare hands if it came to that, the pistol would make things easier.

His gaze returned to Elizabeth’s sleeping form. As he watched, the shadow of a smile hovered at the corners of her lips and a feeling of guilt stirred in Darcy’s chest. He should not be staring at her as she slept. Observing her in such a vulnerable state was clearly an invasion of her privacy. Such intimacies were the privilege of a husband—or a lover—and heaven knew he was neither of those. Nor would he ever be.

The muscles in his throat constricted and he forced himself to look away. No, that honor would belong to some other man.

Closing his eyes, Darcy drew a ragged breath. The scent of wood-smoke filled his lungs, mingling with the lingering aroma from their dinner. Ignoring the burning in his ribcage, he inhaled again, this time picking up the subtle hint of wildflowers and lemon. God, he needed to remember that smell!

A log popped against the grate and he opened his eyes. Across the room a fly buzzed, futilely thumping against the sealed windowpane. Fingering the armrests of his chair, Darcy stared at the once-bright colors of the hearth rug, long since faded to a single muted hue. Slowly he adjusted his position, turning to survey the modest parlor. An old rocking chair sat beside a scarred wooden table and a small writing desk was tucked in a corner beneath the eaves.

It wasn’t much, but he felt a sudden uncontrollable urge to memorize every detail. To imprint this place upon his consciousness, to hold it tight within his heart, so that someday, in ten or twenty or thirty years, when he was feeling sentimental, he could call up every sight and sound and smell and touch. Every precious moment of the one night he had been exactly where he longed to be—alone with the woman he loved.
~ * ~

What a lovely excerpt. Doesn't it make you want to read more? Thank you, Jennifer for sharing it with us.

Now for the added treat...welcome author Joana Starnes! She is joining us today. Joana and Jennifer delight us with a question and answer session. Welcome, ladies!

*****

Joana: Many thanks, Janet, you’re ever so kind to welcome us here today to celebrate the launch of Jennifer’s debut novel together!

What a soulful excerpt, Jennifer, and what a poignant beginning to the launch post! How can we not love a deeply vulnerable Mr Darcy in silent and heartrending contemplation of what he had lost? Your Mr Darcy is an absolute delight, and one of the reasons I loved this story from the moment you shared the WIP with me.

To Conquer Pride is an ever so moving portrayal of our favourite characters learning to overcome their errors and misconceptions and finally finding their way to each other and to their happily ever after

I’ve been looking forward to seeing it published for quite some time, and it was my absolute pleasure to share what I knew about indie publishing, introduce you and your beautiful story to Meredith, Janet, Rita and Ceri and put you in touch with Susan Adriani, whose covers are such exquisite works of art! Huge thanks, lovely ladies, for kindly hosting the blog tour, and Susan – oh my, what a gem! By the way, Jennifer, I hope your debut novel will come out in paperback soon. I’d love to get a better look at that gorgeous cover.

But now let’s hear a little more about how this story came to be:

JS: What was your inspiration for To Conquer Pride?

JA: As I touched on in my previous blog post at Austenesque Reviews, I’d been reading JAFF for years before I ever had an inkling that I’d take a stab at writing an Austen-inspired novel. But during the time when I was first discovering the genre, I read a short piece by Jack Caldwell called Snowbound that I absolutely adored. The story had Darcy and Elizabeth trapped in an abandoned cabin during a freak snowstorm, and the premise stayed with me long after I finished reading. Honestly, the only thing I didn’t like about that story was that it ended. I wanted MORE and I kept wishing that it had been the jumping-off point for a full-length novel. So, when I decided to try writing a P&P variation of my own, that premise was immediately what came to mind. I should probably add that the idea of having Darcy and Elizabeth stranded together (in a snowstorm, rainstorm, locked in a library, etc.) is not new. I think the thing that appeals to so many of us about this trope is that it gives us the opportunity to see how these two characters interact when they’re alone together… and in an era when it was not socially acceptable for unmarried men and women to really ever be alone together, it also adds an element of the forbidden. And what could be more awkward and uncomfortable than running into the person you’ve humiliated yourself in front of, and then ending up trapped in a cottage with them. The premise was just brimming with possibilities! (Note: If you’re interested in checking out Snowbound, you can find it here.)

            JS: Oh, I love Snowbound and I love your reasons for having Darcy and Elizabeth    stranded together – the delicious element of the forbidden, the awkwardness and above all, the possibilities!

JS: Plotter or pantser? Do you outline or go wherever the story idea takes you?

JA: LOL! Pantser, unfortunately. To Conquer Pride is only my second attempt at writing a novel (the first was a middle grade contemporary fantasy which may never see the light of day), so I don’t have a vast amount of experience in this, but I didn’t outline either of my books. With both of the novels I’ve written, I knew the beginning and the end…and I had a few key plot points I wanted to hit in the middle…but it was pretty much winging it after that. :) And with To Conquer Pride, I went one step further and wrote many of the scenes out of order, which made revising, er…a most unpleasant experience. So, I’m thinking with the next book, I may force myself to do at least some form of an outline. I don’t want to stifle creativity too much, but I think it will make revisions a heck of a lot easier.

            JS: Goodness, yes, I know, that’s a bit of a nightmare, writing the scenes out of          order and then fitting them together. The revision stage must have been tricky, but all that hard work was more than worth it. You made the story flow seamlessly and so beautifully!

JS: Which section or aspect of your debut novel dragged you to your desk, begging to be written?

JA: As I mentioned above, I wrote a lot of TCP out of order, so if a scene popped into my head, I usually tried to get it down immediately (even if I knew it was going to come later in the book) because otherwise I was afraid I wouldn’t remember it with the same clarity I had when I first imagined it. I did write the first five chapters sequentially, but after that, I actually skipped to a pivotal scene that occurs in a garden at Pemberley towards the end of the book. I don’t want to give too much away, but when I decided to write a P&P variation, the one thing I knew was that I wanted to give Darcy the opportunity to redeem himself from that disastrous first proposal, and I wanted to give Elizabeth the chance to hear Darcy express his true feelings in the way (I felt) he should have from the beginning. So, that was the scene that was really begging to be written. And since I wasn’t sure what was going to happen after the first few chapters, that’s the scene I jumped to. The interesting thing is that with all the revisions I’ve done on this novel, that scene remains almost exactly as I first wrote it, and it is also one of my favorites in the book.

            JS: Mine too! It was so wonderful to see Mr Darcy redeeming himself (and then        some) with a very gentlemanly and heartfelt second proposal.

JS: I couldn’t help noticing that you love to torture Mr. Darcy (and Elizabeth a bit, too ;)). Would you tell us why?

JA: Hmm… Torture is a strong word. :) I guess I’d prefer to say that I like to see Mr. Darcy made vulnerable. I tend to enjoy writing injuries and illnesses into my books… I think because they are the ultimate equalizers. When someone is debilitated in some way and forced to rely upon another person, it tends to humble them—something that I think certainly works well with the Pride and Prejudice storyline. Also, one thing that really resonates with me when it comes to Darcy and Elizabeth is that they both realize they have brought their misery upon themselves. So, in a way, I think a lot of that “torture” is self-inflicted. (And let’s face it, who doesn’t love a tortured Darcy?)

JS: Who, indeed ;)? You make a great point about the ultimate equalizers, and I absolutely loved the scenes where you portrayed Mr Darcy’s difficulty in relinquishing control and relying on others – especially Elizabeth. And I’m not talking just about the cottage scenes, but also about a deeply moving one towards the end. I won’t dream of spoiling your readers’ enjoyment, so my lips are sealed!

JS: I hope you’re already writing or planning to write another JAFF book. If so, which novel will it be inspired by, and can we have a peek?

JA: Well, I haven’t put anything down on paper yet (mostly because all my time and energy has been spent trying to get TCP revised and out into the world) but, yes, I do plan to write another Pride and Prejudice variation. Again, in my usual pantser fashion, I don’t have an outline in place (yet!) but I do have a general idea of where I want the story to go and I can tell you that this one will involve Darcy and Elizabeth marrying early in the book, and falling in love afterwards. I don’t want to call it a forced marriage scenario, because they will marry of their own free will (for their own separate reasons) but as in canon, their mutual pride and prejudice make it difficult for them to initially see how well suited they are. So, that’s the plan. But I have lots of ideas floating around inside my head, so I reserve the right to change my mind! 

            JS: Let’s call it an ‘early marriage scenario’, then. You’re right, ‘forced’ doesn’t       quite suit when they both agree to it of their own free will. Oh, I love early marriage      scenarios, when they have to live together before they know how, and before they discover they are each other’s perfect match and realise they’re head over heels in love. It gives them plenty of opportunities to ‘hurt each other’s feelings in a rich variety of ways,’ to quote Jami Dragan again (as I warned her I would :). I LOVE that phrase!!!).

Jennifer: And now I’m turning the tables! Joana has graciously agreed to answer a few questions of her own. :)

JA: Describe your writing process: How often do you write? Time of day? Special location? Music or silence? Longhand or on the computer?

JS: I write as often as I can. Mostly in the mornings, when everyone’s gone to work or school, the house is quiet and I can hear the voices in my head. No music, it distracts me from the voices :). I’m not too fussy about the location. What works best is sitting in the back garden with my coffee (and a couple of foraging pigeons) and ‘watching’ the scenes unfold, then rushing to my PC to type them in, but I also tend to walk around with a big notebook and lots of pens in my bag, just in case, or hide away in a couple of favourite coffee shops to write.

JA: LOL! Maybe best not to tell people about the “voices!” :) And I agree about the music, I can’t do it either. I know writers who come up with actual playlists for their books that they put on when they write… but that would be way too distracting for me! I can’t even do the coffee shop. I like total peace and quiet.

JA: Plotter or pantser? Do you outline your books before you write them, or go wherever the idea takes you?

JS: I love that, ‘plotter or pantser’! (I loved it so much that I had to ask you the same question). I think I’m a bit of both. I write down the pivotal moments and the direction I’m expecting the story to take, but then I tend to go freestyle from one main point to the next, follow a general idea and see where it takes me. It’s great fun, especially when I don’t find myself where I imagined I would be. Only two things are set in stone: there has to be a HEA, and it must be Darcy’s and Elizabeth’s.

JA: Sounds similar to my method. And, yes! Always a HEA. Otherwise the readers would string us up. :)

JA: Who is your favorite Austen character (NOT from Pride and Prejudice) and why?

JS: Oh dear, not from P&P? Then it’s got to be Mr Knightley. He is dependable, resilient, loyal, tolerant of many foibles (Emma’s and many other people’s), he shows more maturity and consistent goodness than Mr Darcy (I can’t believe I said that, but I have to, because I think it’s true) and puts love before self from the very beginning, without the need of some great epiphany.

JA: Yes! I knew I liked you! I LOVE Mr. Knightley. I love how he sees the best in Emma and really pushes her to be the finest version of herself. *swoon!*

JA: Which of your books took you the most time to write?

JS: Probably my first. It took me years from the start to the final version. But I don’t think that counts. I wasn’t really trying to write a book then. It was more like trying to keep the P&P magic going in my head for as long as possible. If I discount the amount of time I spent daydreaming on my first, the one that took me most to write was my latest. It’s in a different style than my other books, and with a more complex (and wilder) plot.

JA: Honestly, I think that’s how all of us start: Just trying to keep the P&P magic going as long as possible. Also, now I don’t feel so badly about the three years I spent on TCP!

JA: What are you working on now? Can you give us a brief teaser? 

JS: I’m working on an idea I had several years ago, in the winter of 2013, when I came across some stunning scenery: dark clouds hanging very low over the countryside, just before a raging storm. This variation starts a few months after the Hunsford proposal, with Darcy and Elizabeth crossing paths a little sooner than in P&P. The other main difference is that Elizabeth is much quicker to recognise her feelings and admit to herself there was attraction from the start, before Darcy went and ruined everything with ‘She is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me…’.

Sounds like plain-sailing from here, right? Well, it would be, if I weren’t so tempted to go back to the old habit of torturing them, especially Darcy. In my opinion, yearning for Elizabeth is what he does best, so I can’t help it, I have to imagine him simmering, with his legendary self-control hanging by a thread. It’s not fair on him, I know, but where’s the fun in jumping straight to the ‘happily ever after’? ;)

JA: Ah! Thank you for sharing that little tidbit. And I think I speak for many, many people when I say: Write faster! :)

Lightening Round – Jennifer’s Answers

·         Coffee or tea? Coffee (or iced tea).

·         Cats or dogs? Dogs. (Sorry, cat lovers!)

·         Early riser or night owl? Night owl.

·         Wine or beer? Wine.

·         Text or talk? Text.

·         Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate.

·         Paper books or e-books? I hate to say it, but e-books.

·         Ice cream or cake? Ice cream!

·         Reading or writing? Reading. Writing is work!

·         Gold or silver? Silver.

·         City or country? Both. :)

·         Fruits or vegetables? Veggies.

·         TV or film? Film… unless it’s a British period drama, then TV.

·         Ketchup or mustard? Mustard.

·         Pool or sea? To relax beside: sea. To swim in: pool.

·         Fall or spring? Spring.

Lightening Round – Joana’s Answers

·         Coffee or tea? Coffee.

·         Cats or dogs? Dogs in theory, but I wouldn’t have to take a cat out for daily walks, so the jury’s still out on that one.

·         Early riser or night owl? Early riser, mostly.

·         Wine or beer? Wine.

·         Text or talk? Talk.

·         Chocolate or vanilla? Oh, chocolate, always.

·         Paper books or e-books? Both.

·         Ice cream or cake? Ice cream.

·         Reading or writing? Depends if inspiration strikes.

·         Gold or silver? Gold.

·         City or country? Country.

·         Fruits or vegetables? Fruits.

·         TV or film? TV.

·         Ketchup or mustard? Mustard.

·         Pool or sea? Sea.

·         Fall or spring? Both, but I love spring more.
~ * ~


Thanks for having us, Janet! To Conquer Pride released today in eBook form with a print version to follow. You can order by clicking here.

About the Author:

Jennifer Altman is a novelist, an anglophile, and a love of all thinks Regency. After a long career in the television industry, Jennifer shifted to book publishing in 2016. She currently works in the corporate division of a large publishing company. Jennifer makes her home in New York City where she lives in a small apartment with a considerable collection of books. When she's not writing, Jennifer can be found reading, watching British period dramas, and not cleaning her house. To Conquer Pride is her debut novel. 


You can connect with Jennifer on Facebook and Twitter.





To Conquer Pride Blog Tour: 




·       November 19th: Austenesque Reviews – Cover reveal, book excerpt, giveaway.

·         November 26th: More Agreeable Engaged – Author interview with Joana Starnes, book excerpt, giveaway.

·         November 29th: From Pemberley to Milton – Book review, book excerpt, giveaway.

·         November 30th: Babblings of a Bookworm – “Ask Me Anything” author interview, book excerpt, giveaway.

Giveaway:

It's giveaway time! Today we have a double giveaway going to one lucky winner! Jennifer is giving away one copy of the eBook version of To Conquer Pride, and Joana will be giving a way a Kindle copy of one of her books (winner's choice) or an audio-code for the download of one of the six books she has available in Audible. (all narrated by the wonderful Stevie Zimmerman) The giveaway is international. IN order to be entered to win, please post a comment below.



What a special giveaway, ladies! Readers, good luck to each of you. The giveaway will end at 11:59 P.M. Central Time on the 2nd of December!

Jennifer, thank you for visiting today. Joana, thank you for your part in today's post. It was lovely to share the experience with both of you. The questions and answers were awesome! I learned more about you both and that was such fun. The excerpt was quite heartrending. Poor Darcy. Jennifer, are you going to be as adept at "torturing" Darcy as dear Joana? :) How she does love to make him suffer! 

Best wishes to you, Jennifer, on today's release of your debut novel, To Conquer Pride. I hope we will be seeing more of you in the future. Please come back for a visit anytime.

Thanks again, ladies, for such a delightful post.

108 comments:

  1. It is nice to hear from two authors on their style of writing and inspirations. Congratulations to Jennifer on her first of what I hope is many books. I am already a Joana fan but I look forward to your next release.

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    1. Thank you! The interview was a lot of fun. :) Best of luck with the giveaway.

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    2. Thanks so much for your kind words, Sagan, and for stopping by to read the post. I hope you'll like my next book too and, same as you, I hope that 'To Conquer Pride' is the first of many novels with which Jennifer Altman will delight us. Best wishes and happy reading!

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    3. I am a Joana fan too, and I hope we have much more from Jennifer!

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  2. I remember reading Snowbound and enjoying the premise, this then be a good read

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    1. Thank you! Snowbound was great. :) I hope you'll like this just as well. Best of luck with the giveaway.

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    2. Thanks for reading the post, Susan. I'm so glad you enjoyed 'Snowbound' as much as we did. I'm sure you'll love Jennifer's debut novel too. Best wishes and have a lovely December!

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    3. Thanks for stopping by, Susan. Good luck!

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  3. Oh, poor poor Darcy! I know his proposal was insulting but he didn't mean it that way, as far as he was concerned he was proving how much he loved her. (I just love books that have me feeling sorry for Darcy) I also love books with ODC trapped together alone.
    I see you have been influenced by Joana in your torture of Darcy :) I know you just can't help yourself Joana so thank goodness the romantic endings compensate.
    I'm looking forward to reading this and Joana's new one whenever it's finished. Thank you so much for the lovely excerpt and the interviews.

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    1. Thanks so much, Glynis! I know, poor Darcy! But that first proposal was just not satisfactory, so I needed to write a better one. :) Thanks for the kind words. I hope you enjoy the book, and best of luck with the giveaway.

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    2. Joana is the queen of "Darcy torture!" She may be getting some competition from Jennifer! Thanks for popping in, Glynis.

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    3. Thanks for visiting, Glynis, it's so lovely to chat to you again! Oh yes, that's how I read Mr Darcy's first proposal too: as far as he was concerned, he was telling her that he couldn't give her up, despite the expected family opposition and all the precepts they had drilled into him.

      Don't we just love books that have D & E trapped together! That premise is so delicious! You'll just love the way they interact in Jennifer's novel!

      Oh no, I don't think I enticed Jennifer down the 'let's torture Darcy' path :D . She started writing TCP looong before I began torturing the poor man in earnest. But I'm SO relieved that
      a. you know I just can't help myself, and especially
      b. that you love books that have you feeling sorry for Darcy :))
      I'll do my best not to disappoint you in my next ;) . We'll have to get some shares in Kleenex after all :D

      Thank *you* for reading the post! Many thanks to Jennifer for coming up with the idea of this fun interview and for writing TCP in the first place, and a big Thank You to you, Janet, for hosting us and for your ever so kind words!!

      Lots of hugs to you all, lovely ladies, and have a great week.

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  4. Such a delightful, well-written variation on Jane Austen's original masterpiece. Thank you Jennifer.

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    1. Thank you so much, Diana!!! :) I will never hold a candle to Jane Austen, but if I can provide some entertainment, I'm happy.

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    2. I'll second Diana, Jennifer. Thank you for this delightfull and ever so well-written variation. Here's to many more!

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    3. Thanks for stopping by, Diana, and sharing your thoughts.

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  5. What a lovely excerpt. It does show Darcy's honor and vulnerability. Thank you both for the entertaining interview and the chance to win in the giveaway!

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    1. Isn't it a great excerpt, and the interviews are awesome! Thanks for stopping by, Agnes.

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    2. The excerpt is simply wonderful, Agnes, isn't it? I'm so glad you liked it, and I'm sure you'll love the rest. All the best and happy reading!

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    3. Wasn't it a lovely excerpt! The interview was icing on the cake. Good luck in the giveaway.

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  6. Thank you, Agnes! I'm so glad you enjoyed the excerpt, and the interview was a lot of fun. Best of luck with the giveaway. :)

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    1. My feelings, exactly, Ria! :)

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    2. LOL! :) Best of luck with the giveaway, Ria!

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    3. Indeed, Ria :))
      Best wishes and thanks for stopping by.

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  8. Enjoyed the excerpt and interview. Thank you both for the giveaway!

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    1. Thank you! I'm so glad you enjoyed it. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    2. A pleasure, Darcybennet. Thank *you* for reading the post and for taking part in the giveaway. Good luck!

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  9. Loved the excerpt and can't wait to read the novel! Congrats on your first publication, Jennifer! May it be the first of many....
    Joana, you are a treasure in the world of JAFF. I love every book you've written and can't wait until the next one!

    Thanks for the nice giveaway!

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    1. HUGE thanks for your ever so kind words, Pamela, I'm SO happy that you loved my books! I hope you'll enjoy my next one and yesssss, may TCP be the first of many beautiful stories from Jennifer's pen!

      Thanks for writing such a gem, Jennifer, for inviting me to celebrate with you on your special day, and for this lovely comment. Right back at you, my dear friend: counting the days till your next, too!

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  10. Thanks so much, Pamela! I hope you enjoy the book. :) And we're on the same page about Joana. Counting the days until she publishes her next! Best of luck with the giveaway!

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  11. I love when ODC are stuck in a cottage together in a snowstorm!! One of my favourite scenarios 😂❤️ I look forward to reading this one!

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    1. Such a promising scenario, Claire, isn't it? You'll love Jennifer's debut novel, I'm sure. Best wishes and good luck in the giveaway!

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    2. I do too, Claire. Can't get enough of that "together" time!

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  12. Thank you, Claire! I hope you have as much fun reading it as I had writing it. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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  13. Janet, thank you so much for hosting me today... and another big thank you to Joana, my partner in crime. :) And thanks to everyone who read the post and commented so far. I can't think of a more fun way to launch my first book.

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    1. Huge thanks, Janet, for hosting us, you're always so very welcoming and kind!!

      Loved being your partner in crime, Jennifer :D . This was great fun! Best of luck with the launch and here's to many more Austenesque fiction from you!

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    2. Thank you, ladies. I was so excited about this post. With both of you interviewing each other and Jennifer's wonderful excerpt, I knew this was going to be one good launch day! I was thrilled to be part of it!

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  14. Congratulations on your novel! Thank you both for the delightful interview and the chance to win copies of your books :)

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    1. An absolute pleasure, Virginia. So glad you liked the interview! Thanks for stopping by to read it and join us in celebrating the launch of Jennifer's great book. Best of luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Thanks so much, Virginia! The interview was just as much fun for me. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    3. Thanks for stopping by Virginia. Good luck in the giveaway.

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    1. Oops, must have clicked on the wrong button because my reply to Sagan's lovely comment ended up here. Delete & start again :D

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  16. The interview was so much fun. Having these 2 stuck together anywhere and being forced to talk is so much fun for us. Congratulations on the novel and for the generous give away.

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    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed the interview, Debbie!

      Oh, yes, I love to see ODC stranded together and forced to talk to each other. You'll love Jennifer's debut novel! Best of luck in the giveaway and thanks for stopping by.

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    2. Thank you! Yes, I love that premise, too! I can't get enough of D&E trapped together somewhere. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    3. I feel the same about Darcy and Lizzy being trapped together and getting to know each other better. It's a delicious premise!

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  17. The more I hear about this book, the more I want to read it! Great interview!

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    1. Wonderful to hear that! Many thanks for reading the post and best of luck in the giveaway.

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    2. Aww... That made my day! I hope you enjoy it. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    1. Thanks so much, Ashley! I hope you like it. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    2. So glad that Jennifer's debut novel caught your eye, Ashley! Best of luck in the giveaway.

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    3. Thanks for stopping by Ashley!

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  19. What an intriguing post, Janet. I just love the dynamic between both authors. Joana is such a wonderful writer! Here you can almost feel the mentor relationship she has with Jennifer. The book sounds just terrific; I'm looking forward to reading it!

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    1. Thank you so much! I'm so glad you liked the post. I had a blast doing the interview. Joana is not only an outstanding writer, but one of the kindest, most giving people I have ever met. She has been on this journey with me form day one, and I couldn't have asked for a better mentor or friend. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    2. Aww, Jennifer, thank you!!! I don't know about mentoring, but I loved our chats from day one! We had a whale of a time :)). I'm so happy to see your beautiful book published, and I love how the love of Jane brought us together!

      Thanks ever so much for the kind words about my writing, RS! Lovely to hear you enjoyed the post. Best of luck in the giveaway and thanks for taking part. I'm sure you'll love Jennifer's debut novel, it's every bit as terrific as it sounds!

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    3. Wasn't it an intriguing post, Regina! I loved it. The two authors did such a great job of interviewing each other. I think the book sounds terrific too. I can't wait to start reading it. What I've seen so far, makes me feel sure I'm going to love it!

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  20. Love the excerpts and descriptions. I know this is going to be a delightful read.

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    1. Thank you, Jen! I hope so. :) Wishing you the best of luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Thanks so much for stopping by to read the post, Jen, I'm so glad you liked it! All the best and have a wonderful week

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    3. I agree with all you said, Jen! Thanks for dropping by!

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  21. I enjoyed the excerpt and the two interviews. Congratulations on the release of your first book!

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    1. Thank you, Patty! I'm glad you enjoyed the interview and I appreciate the well wishes!

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    2. So happy you stopped by, Patty. Glad you enjoyed the post! I thought the interviews and the excerpt were exceptional!

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    3. So glad you enjoyed the post, Patty! Thanks for reading and best of luck in the giveaway!

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  22. Beautiful excerpt and I'm always a great fan of Joana's. Thanks for the chance at the giveaway(s).

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    1. Hi Beatrice. Thanks for stopping by. It doesn't get much better does it...having a great new author and Joana together! I'm a great fan of Joana's too, and I think I'm going to be a great fan of Jennifer's! Good luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Thank you so much, Beatrice! I am a great fan of Joana's also! Best of luck with the giveaway. And thank you, too, Janet!

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    3. Thanks so much for your wonderful words, lovely ladies! It was such a pleasure to be here to celebrate the launch of Jennifer's debut novel. Thanks again for hosting us, Janet! I'm so glad you liked the excerpt and the post, Beatrice. Thanks for visiting and have a lovely and relaxing December!

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  23. You had me at "stranded together in an abandon cottage"! Lol! Yes, that is a lovely excerpt, and I would definitely love to read more! :) Thanks for a chance to win a copy!

    Nice to meet you, Jennifer, and congratulations on your new book!

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    1. Thanks for dropping by, Candy. I always love having you visit. Stranded together always gets me too. :) Good luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Indeed, Candy :)) The delicious premise had me hooked right from the start. Best wishes and thanks for stopping by.

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  24. LOL! Ditto on the "stranded together" premise. :) Thanks so much for your kind words and well wishes. Best of luck with the giveaway!

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  25. What a treat to have two wonderful authors visiting your blog! I'm a bit late, but that excerpt has me wanting more...much more! Congratulations Jennifer on your debut and I love the interview between you and Joana! What a treat! Thank you for a chance at the giveaway for your e-book! I already own all of Joana's books but still have to read her latest!

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    1. It is such a treat, Carole. I've been excited about it ever since I knew they were coming for a visit! I agree! The excerpt is a great teaser and the interviews were awesome! Thanks for stopping by.

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    2. Thank you so much, Carole! Joana is a fabulous writer and a wonderful person. I was so honored to have her participate in this blog post with me. I'm glad the excerpt left you wanting more. :) Wishing you the best of luck in the giveaway!

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    3. Carole, Janet and Jennifer, you're EVER so kind! Thanks SO much!! I'm a bit late catching up too, a nasty cold knocked me for six, but it's so wonderful to come back and see the fabulous reception for Jennifer's debut novel. I'm sure you'll love the book, Carole, it's so beautifully and sensitively written! Have a lovely day and thanks for visiting.

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  26. Stuck in a storm? I want every book to have that. Yes!

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    1. That is a great premise, isn't it? I always love those too.

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    2. Add my name to the list of people who love this premise! :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    3. Yesss! The best premise! Best of luck in the giveaway, kneyda, and thanks for stopping by to read the post.

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  27. Jennifer - looking forward to your books as much as I do Joanna's.
    Thank you both for giving us many enjoyable hours.

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    1. Thank you!!! I cannot think of a higher compliment. :) Wishing you the best of luck in the giveaway!

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    2. Thank *you* for reading and keeping us going, maomac! All the best and have a lovely day!

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  28. Delightful and promising excerpt! I can't decide what I like more: "stranded together" or "early marriage" scenarios, so I will like both equally and will look forward to reading one day a new book by debut author!:)

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    1. Thank you! And yes! I love those two premises as well! Write what you love, that's my motto. :) Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    2. Lovely to see you again, oloore! Such delicious premises, both of them. Best of luck in the giveaway and thanks for taking part.

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  29. Aww, great except. I enjoyed the Q&A from both ladies. Joana, I agree with Jennifer... write faster. 😬. Love your writing! Congrats again, Jennifer on your debut novel, I’m looking forward to reading it.

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    1. Thanks very much, Dung! The Q&A was a lot of fun! And Joana is a trooper for doing this with me. :) Best of luck with the giveaway and I hope you enjoy the book.

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    2. SO glad you liked the post, Dung, and it's ever so nice to chat to you again! What a fabulous time we had last year! I wish you and Claudine could come back soon. Let's not wait till annother big event like that one, it'll be years and years till the next. Hope we get to giggle at another ball or assembly, and I'll do my best to finish at least one book till then :D

      Thanks for stopping by to celebrate the launch of Jennifer's debut novel with us and best of luck in the giveaway!

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  30. Love a tortured Darcy! And the question and answer format was very entertaining and informative, though I really must advocate for cats....

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    1. Thank you, Lynn! And ditto on loving a tortured Darcy. :) I had so much fun doing the interview with Joana. So glad it was entertaining. And LOL about the cats. I knew someone was going to come after me about that. :) The funny thing is that cats LOVE ME! Best of luck with the giveaway!

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    2. Love a tortured Darcy too, Lynn, did I ever mention that ;) ? Thanks for stopping by to read the interview. It was great fun, and I'm so glad you liked it. Best wishes and have a lovely December.

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  31. Thanks for sharing this excerpt with us. Looking forward to reading this book!

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    1. Thanks, Ginna! And thanks for following the blog tour! I hope you enjoy the book. :)

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    2. Best of luck in the giveaway, Ginna, and thanks for stopping by to read the post.

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  32. I am very much looking forward to reading this and, since my book purchase budget for 2019 has been greatly slashed, I pray that I may be the lucky recipient of such a wonderful novel. Merry Christmas.

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    1. Thank you so much! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you with the giveaway. Best of luck!

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    2. Merry Christmas to you too! Fingers crossed indeed, and thanks for reading & taking part in the giveaway.

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  33. That's a very stunning and amazing cover, Jennifer. Susan Adriani certainly did a fabulous job for the design. I had an enjoyable time getting to know you and Joana better. Congrats and all the best in promoting your debut novel.

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    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate the kind words and the well wishes. :)

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    2. Susan's covers are such works of art!! I love the one she designed for 'To Conquer Pride', it's exquisite. Best wishes and thanks for stopping by to read the interview, I'm so glad you liked it.

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  34. I love the dual guests and Qs&As from both ladies.

    Congrats, Jennifer, on your new release. I'm hearing so much positive buzz, which only makes me more interested to read it. And a lovely cover!

    Joanna, your WIP is most definitely tempting me. Can't wait!

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    1. Thanks so much, Lori! That's really nice to hear. I loved doing the interview. I adore Joana's books, too!

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    2. The interview was such fun! You had a fabulous idea, Jennifer, and Janet was so kind to host us! I'm so glad you enjoyed reading it, Lori. Thanks for taking part in the giveaway and best of luck!

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