Friday, March 27, 2020

Mr. Darcy's Clan...Lari Ann O'Dell

It is my pleasure to welcome for the first time to More Agreeable Engaged, Lari Ann O'Dell, author of Mr. Darcy's Clan. It is a story about vampires and Firstborn Sons in English society. Sophia Rose is giving us her early impressions of the story and will review it at a later date.

Before we read Sophia's impressions, let's take a look at the book description and get to know Lari Ann.


Book Description:

The upper echelon of English society—comprised of vampires, or Firstborn Sons—is a world Elizabeth Bennet has no desire to join. She has little exposure to Firstborn Sons until Mr. Bingley arrives in the neighborhood and falls in love with her sister Jane. His mysterious friend, Mr. Darcy, attracts Elizabeth’s attention, but she is convinced he is hiding a dark secret. In spite of this, powerful feelings draw her to him. She learns a shocking truth when Mr. Wickham appears, and disaster strikes at Netherfield. Forced into Mr. Darcy’s supernatural realm, a confusing new world of danger threatens their deepening love. How can they find eternal happiness when members of his illustrious clan are plotting her demise? Can Mr. Darcy rise beyond his past to save her or will he lose her for all eternity?  


Author Bio:

Lari Ann O'Dell first discovered her love of Pride & Prejudice when she was eighteen. After reading a Pride & Prejudice variation she found in a closing sale at a bookstore, she said, "This is what I want to do." She published her first novel, Mr. Darcy’s Kiss, two years later.

Born and raised in Colorado, she attended the University of Colorado in Boulder and earned a bachelor's degree in History and Creative Writing. After graduating college, she wrote and published her second novel, Mr. Darcy’s Ship. Her third novel, Mr. Darcy’s Clan, is her first supernatural variation, and she is working on two more fantasy variations. She is now back at school and pursuing a degree in Nursing. She adores her two beautiful nephews, Hudson and Dean. She currently works at a middle school and writes whenever she can.


*****
Are you ready to see what Sophia Rose has to say about Mr. Darcy's Clan? I am so I will turn this over to her. Thanks, Sophia Rose. 

Sophia Rose's Early Impressions for Mr. Darcy's Clan by Lari Ann O'Dell:

A Vampiric Pride and Prejudice?  My interest was piqued.  Mr. Darcy is just the sort of tall, brooding hero who would make a good vampire character and Elizabeth a feisty heroine whose courage would rise in the face of fangs and blood.

The book opened with a history of how England became a nation ruled by vampire royals and aristocrats and received the Dictates, a code of honor, to live by and hence an alternate history with a paranormal element joined with the familiar P&P storyline.

From the opening chapter, I encountered a curious new take on an old story.  Wealth and family are important to Mrs. Bennet, but having a daughter married to a First Son (vampire) and taken as an Eternal Mate (become his vampire wife) is her end game.  News of a rogue vampire who killed a neighbor barely registers before news of a First Son and his party arriving to take the lease of Netherfield Park puts them all in a dither.

Elizabeth is eager to meet the Netherfield party because they will, if nothing else, break up the monotony of things, but soon a snub from the rude and abrasive Mr. Darcy and the snobbish behavior of Mr. Bingley’s relations gets her back up.  Even still, she is drawn to Mr. Darcy and senses he is keeping a secret.

Darcy recognizes Elizabeth immediately as her blood Calls to him, but her lower position means she cannot be for him.  Or so he keeps telling himself.  It pains him to see her fall under Wickham’s Thrall and he won’t walk away now.

But, of course, the wicked Wickham is a vampire and doesn’t follow the Dictates and he has his dastardly gaze fixed on Elizabeth when he sees what she means to his old nemesis Darcy.

The table is set for a tension-filled supernatural conflict and romance.  I reluctantly stopped at the beginning of Part Two.  A heart has already been broken, an uneasy accord has begun, and a villain is ready to wreck havoc.  It has been fascinating to see the story alter to accommodate the paranormal worldbuilding and the swifter arrival of conflict and romantic development between the characters.

My curiosity is not assuaged and I am eager for more.

*****
Thank you, Sophia Rose! It is great to read your thoughts. You have given us much to think about, and now I want to know more. How about the rest of you? Are you ready to know more? If so, you can get the book here.


Buy Info:
Amazon UK

If you want to reach out to Lari Ann, you find her here:

Contact Info:

*****
Have you been following the blog tour? If you have missed any stops or if you want to know where it is going in the next few days, please take a look at the schedule below. You can go to any stop from here. 


Mr. Darcy’s Clan Blog Tour Schedule:

April 6 Austenesque Reviews


Giveaway:
Lari Ann O'Dell is hosting a giveaway of 8 eBooks! That's right! Be sure to enter so you can have a chance to win Mr. Darcy's Clan. The giveaway is international.

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Saturday, March 21, 2020

When Duty Calls...Belén Paccagnella

It is my pleasure to have the lovely Belén Paccagnella visit today. She allowed me to interview her for my stop on the When Duty Calls blog tour. I hope you enjoy her responses as much as I did. Thank you, Belén, for stopping by and answering my questions. Are you ready to get started? I am so let's do it! :)


Why did you decide to write a forced marriage scenario? What about it intrigues you?

When I discovered the wonderful world of Fanfiction I read almost everything that was out there. But as it usually happens, the more you read, the more picky you become. Some stories became too sweet and mushy for my taste and I walked away for angst for the sake of angst. I remember distinctively the first forced marriage story I read in 2000.  I was fascinated by it, by the idea of Elizabeth and Darcy overcoming their issues and dealing with their problems as a married couple and not apart as it happens in the original novel. As a reader, I want them to interact, to argue, and to really know each other before falling in love. The only way to achieve that, at least in a Regency context, is by marrying them early in the story. Making it against their will makes it even more interesting, at least to me!  

I feel the same way you do. I don't like angst for the sake of angst. That does nothing for a story. I also want Darcy and Lizzy together as much as possible and witness them interact. Thankfully, you have lots of that in When Duty Calls. I loved the scene where Darcy sent a letter and locket to Elizabeth. Was there anything specific that inspired that scene?

Not something specific per se. That scene was written with the purpose of keeping them apart until the wedding so Elizabeth wouldn’t have the chance to ask Darcy about Wickham. Initially, it was going to be a very short letter that would increase Elizabeth’s animosity towards her betrothed. But something quite unexpected happened as I was writing Darcy’s letter. I am a very visual person, scenes flow in my head like videos which I then translate into written words.  So, here I was envisioning of this scene of Elizabeth sitting on her bed, opening the letter, sulking because her plans are ruined, when suddenly the image of a heart-shaped pendant falling from the envelope appeared in my mind. I wrote it down and, of course, Elizabeth reacted to this beautiful token and the passionate declaration engraved behind. It only added to her confusion. She wants to hold on to her hatred, but she wishes things were different between them. The locket also shows the reader Darcy in a more benign light, because, until that point, he comes out as a complete idiot.

That scene was truly well done. You showed Elizabeth's confused state of mind and emotions quite well. As the story progresses from that letter and gift of the locket, readers begin to see the Darcy you meant us to see. Even though this scene is later in the book, you made Darcy “real” and likable when he fell into the water going after the frog. Was that a fun scene to write? What about the way he hushed Lizzy’s protests? That was well done!

It was, wasn’t it? Who doesn’t love a wet, cheeky Darcy? That was actually the first scene I wrote for this story. The very first one. The image of him stealing a kiss from his wife in front of everyone popped in my mind and I wrote it down. I knew it had to be a forced marriage scenario, so then I sketched the entire story around that moment. Aside from the sudden kiss, the other thing I love in this scene is Mr. Gardiner’s comment on Darcy’s method to silence a woman. It was a fun way to wrap it up.

How interesting that the "wet scene" was the first one you wrote! I love that! Yes, Mr. Gardiner's comment was wonderful! I laughed when I read that part and I agreed with him! Tell us something about When Duty Calls that you love most. What is your favorite scene? (if you can tell us without giving anything away)

Two of my favorite scenes have been posted during the blog tour, so I won’t be spoiling much. There is also one happy scene I like a lot, and it’s the one where Darcy gives Elizabeth the letter. She comes to bid him goodbye and runs like a maniac across the house because she overslept. It was great fun to write that one. But I also like angst and drama, so there are also a couple of sad scenes that I think are beautiful and poignant. One of them is the one where Elizabeth sheds her first tear at the townhouse and Darcy sees her crying. That is a turning point for him and it’s the kickoff for some important character growth.

Oh, I love the scenes you mentioned too, and some of my favorites have been in the blog tour. I loved your book, so I can pick quite a few favorite scenes! I must admit that I prefer novels set in Regency times so I was thrilled that you wrote this one in that era. Do you prefer to write stories that are in Regency times or modern times?

Being a native Spanish speaker, I find easier to write modern.  But I like both. Modern allows me the possibility to play around with the original plotline, while Regency has more complexity and richness in the vocabulary that challenges me to try harder. For this rewrite I read 4 Jane Austen’s novels to be more in tune with Regency ‘lingo’.

Wow! That is dedication. Obviously you've read lots of Jane Austen! How and when did your interest in Jane Austen take root?

It happened when my sister insisted that I watched the 1995 BBC mini series. It was love at first sight. Before that, I didn’t even know about Jane Austen.

Watching the 1995 BBC miniseries was love at first sight for me too. What drove you to start writing your own books? Did you write other things before writing Austenesque stories?

When I was kid, around 11 or 12, I used to come up with episodes of my favorite show and then tell them to my cousins or friends (who obviously shared my passion for that show). So, I guess, fanfiction is in my genes! Even know, when I watch a movie or tv show, a ‘what if’ storyline always manages to sneak into my mind. 

That's neat. Can it be troublesome when watching shows though? You must have a strong muse! Does that muse cause your story to lead you at times, or do you use an outline and follow it religiously? What is your writing routine? Is there any setting that is more inspirational to you when writing?

I usually come up with the general idea, the backdrop for the story, and I sketch out the characters. It’s easy to get confused and switch names or places. Then I start writing. Random ideas and scenes pop in my head and I write them so I can use them when the right time comes. Sometimes the characters take me in a different direction and, if it works, I adjust the plot so they can be part of the story. But I somehow find my way back to the original plotline. Side stories and secondary characters are usually the ones that grow beyond what I imagined initially. It happened with Jane’s and Bingley’s storyline in Appearances (maybe I’ll publish it one day). That was a very interesting side story to write and I loved how it became entwined with the main character’s arc.

I'm fascinated with the possibility of "Appearances" and the side story entwining with the main character's arc. I hope you will publish it someday. Now for my last question, what have you learned from writing that has helped you in your daily life?

It certainly improved my English! And my knowledge about the things I write. I do a lot of research when I’m writing story. I also met very interesting people along the way and made great friends.

Readers, do you have any questions for Belén? If so, please leave them in the comments. I'm betting she will be happy to answer them. 

Thanks so much, Belén for taking the time to respond to each of my questions. I enjoyed all of your answers.
Should you want to find Belén on social media, her contact info is below.

You may purchase the book at these links.


If any of you have missed any stops along the away, you can go back to each of the blogs and read the posts as well as enter the giveaway for one of the eBooks of When Duty Calls. There are eight being given away so your chances of winning are good!

When Duty Calls Blog Tour Schedule

March 13 Austenprose

Giveaway:
Meryton Press is giving away 8 eBooks of When Duty Calls. Thank you to all following the blog tour and good luck in the giveaway. As of today, March 21st, there are four days left to enter the giveaway which ends at 12:00 AM on the 26th. 



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Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Elizabeth: Obstinate Headstrong Girl

Today I'm spotlighting the anthology Elizabeth: Obstinate Headstrong Girl. I will be featuring an excerpt from Elizabeth Adams' s story, "Something Like Regret." I hope you will enjoy it. There is also quite a nice giveaway, so be sure to check that out at the bottom of the post.

Before we get to the excerpt, allow me to show you more about the book.

About the book(e-book, trade paperback, pp.350): “Obstinate, headstrong girl!” For over two hundred years, Elizabeth Bennet has enchanted and inspired readers by being that “obstinate, headstrong girl” willing to stand up to the arrogance and snobbery of her so-called betters. Described by Austen as having a “lively, playful disposition,” Elizabeth embodies the perfect imperfections of strong-willed women everywhere: she is spirited, witty, clever, and loyal.
In this romance anthology, ten Austenesque authors sketch Elizabeth’s character through a collection of re-imaginings, set in the Regency through contemporary times. In ELIZABETH: OBSTINATE, HEADSTRONG GIRL, she bares her most intimate thoughts, all the while offering biting social commentary about life’s absurdities. Elizabeth overcomes the obstacles of others’ opinions, not to mention her own flaws, to find a love truly worthy of her—her Mr. Darcy—all with humor and her sparkling charm.
“I think her as delightful a character as ever appeared in print…” wrote Jane Austen in a letter to her sister Cassandra, January 1813―and we think so too!
Foreword by NY Times & USA Today bestselling author Tessa Dare.

Stories by Amy D’Orazio, Jenetta James, Christina Morland, Beau North, Joana Starnes, Karen M Cox, Elizabeth Adams, Leigh Dreyer, J. Marie Croft, and Christina Boyd. 



Excerpt:


An excerpt from in “Something Like Regret” by Elizabeth Adams, Elizabeth meets Darcy at Pemberley much like in canon, however, a little honesty helps them reach their happily ever-after sooner. This is an excerpt with a swoon-worthy letter exchange by the newly betrothed couple:

Our journey home was uneventful, and I reread Fitzwilliam’s letter more times than I can remember. One passage in particular made me blush in embarrassment, but I will admit, I read it more than any other.
I can hardly believe you will be my wife in little more than a month—more importantly, I will be your husband. Mine will be the privilege of sharing a life, a home, and a bed with you. Your kisses will be mine alone, your affection my reward—for what I know not, but I am grateful, nonetheless. My dearest, loveliest Elizabeth, you are all that I could ever wish for and more than I ever dreamed of. Speed time for me, my love. Five weeks now feels interminable…
I could do naught but reply.
My Dear Fitzwilliam,
How shocking it is to refer to you as such, and yet, how delightful. I have never written a love letter before. I am certain I will improve with practice, if you do not mind being the recipient of my fledgling efforts.
I have not opened your second letter, as requested (it really is quite cruel of you to leave me in suspense, teasing man), but your first has brought on more blushes than the whole of my life. I too look forward to our life together with eager anticipation. Was it only yesterday that I left Pemberley? It feels ages ago.
I watched the forest through the window as we left, wishing the trees and paths and animals a silent farewell. Is it strange that I feel Pemberley is already my home? Perhaps I feel that way because you love it so dearly and I love you so dearly. I have never been one to wax poetic on my feelings toward others, but if I am all you could wish for, you have far surpassed my wildest dreams.
I never dared to hope that such a man would be my husband. That he would love me, and want me with him forever, and hold me in such tender regard.
You honor me with your affection, Fitzwilliam, and you have mine in its fullest measure. All my heart has to give, I give to you. All my affection, my kisses, my embraces, my love, it is all yours. It is my privilege to be your wife and a source of great joy to have such a husband.
Have I made you blush yet? It is only fair as I was the color of a beet root while reading your letter and my aunt sat across the room, smirking behind her needlepoint as I did so. Have I told you how happy I am that you have become friends with the Gardiners? They are my dearest relations next to Jane and it pleases me greatly that you see their value.
I am quite a pathetic creature as I miss you already and I saw you only yesterday morning in Lambton. How ever will I maintain my equanimity for five long weeks? Hurry to Hertfordshire, my love. You will be greeted with open arms and warm affection.
Your Elizabeth
I followed instructions and waited until the third day of our journey to open his second letter. I was rather surprised to see practical suggestions of places to visit and a detailed travel guide. It wasn’t until I reached the end that I understood his game.
If you should visit Ravenswood Hall, explore the maze and pay special attention to the fountain in the northwest corner. It occurs to me that it would be an excellent place to steal a kiss, or three, when next we visit my friend John. He has recently married, and he and his wife will return to Ravenswood by the time I bring you home to Pemberley. (I do not think I shall ever tire of thinking of Pemberley as your home.) We can test the maze ourselves. You may tell me then if you approve my plan.
If you are not pleased with the maze, there is a ruin near Bellamy that has a very fine prospect; there is also the river at Peagram, with its secluded willows…
He went on, telling me of secluded glades and hidden follies he knew of. Truly, he was practicality itself.

ELIZABETH ADAMS is a book-loving, tango-dancing, Austen enthusiast. She loves old houses and thinks birthdays should be celebrated with trips—as should most occasions. She can often be found by a sunny window with a cup of hot tea and a book in her hand. She writes romantic comedy and comedic drama in both historical and modern settings and occasionally puts her sociology degree to use in nonfiction. You can find more information, short stories, and outtakes at www.eadamswrites.com.

Giveaway: The #OmgItsOHG (Oh-my-gosh, it’s Obstinate Headstrong Girl) Blog Tour began February 18 with announcement and cover reveal at Austenesque Reviews, and we hope you will continue to join us and connect with each author about their “Elizabeth” story. We’ve included a Grand Prize package giveaway (a book of your choosing from each of the eleven author’s backlist) as well as additional giveaway: my Silly Austen-inspired blank note cards and coordinating coffee mug. Open worldwide, so be sure to participate. 1) Enter the Rafflecopter for the Grand Prize package of books, and 2) comment on the blog stops to be counted for the additional giveaway (you need not comment everywhere to be entered in that drawing but we hope you’ll have your share of the conversation.) Ends March 31.





If you haven't made all the stops in the blog tour, the schedule is below.


This anthology sounds really good. The letter from Darcy was, indeed, swoon-worthy! Wow! Elizabeth's letter to Darcy was quite nice too! I loved this. Thanks, Elizabeth Adams. If this is any indication, I know I will enjoy reading the anthology when time permits.  We may all have plenty of time on our hands in the coming weeks. Some good reading will be nice. 

Thanks, Christina, for including me in the blog tour. I wish you and all the authors well. 

Good luck to everyone in the giveaway.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Georgiana...Sue Barr

It is a pleasure to welcome Sue Barr back to More Agreeably Engaged. Sue has a new release, Georgiana, and is sharing an excerpt with us from her novel. Before we move on to the excerpt, take a look at the Book Description and the cover. Isn't the cover stunning. The colors are lovely.


BOOK DESCRIPTION
She longs for true love... 
A dowry of thirty thousand pounds places a hefty weight upon the shoulders of Miss Georgiana Darcy. Her tender heart has been broken before by a cad who cared not one whit for who she was, but as a prize to be won, and she fears no man will ever see the worth of her heart.

Duty and honor... 
These are the stalwart columns which hold up the life of Maxwell Kerr, Fifth Duke of Adborough. After rescuing Miss Darcy from an inescapable compromise, an offer of marriage is as natural to him as breathing air. When he discovers this is not the first compromise she has evaded, anger becomes his faithful companion and threatens their tenuous bonds of love and respect.


First and foremost, thank you for hosting me and sharing an excerpt from my latest release, GEORGIANA: Pride & Prejudice continued… Book Three. I’m sharing from near the beginning of the story to lay the foundation of what Georgiana’s family expects from her upcoming curtsy to the Queen and introduction to the social elite of London.


**Read an Excerpt**

Before the week was out, the Darcy’s had arrived in London and were almost immediately beset upon by Lady Matlock and Colonel Fitzwilliam.

“Aunt Lucinda, Richard, you are here at an ungodly hour. We have only begun to break our fast.” Fitz stood and gave their aunt a kiss on the cheek.

Georgiana and Lizzy started to push away from the table to stand, but Lady Matlock waved them down. Richard called out a cheery ‘good morning’ and promptly attended the sideboard. Lady Matlock settled beside Georgiana and accepted a cup of tea from one of the footmen.

“To what do we owe the honor of your company so early, Aunt?” Fitz asked once he’d resumed his place at the table. “Richard, I know, came only to stuff his face with my food.”

He gave his cousin a mild glare as his cousin sat next to Lizzy after filling his plate to near overflowing. Richard’s reply was to raise an eyebrow and take a bite of his fresh baked roll.

“We have no time to waste,” Aunt Lucinda began. “Elizabeth and Georgiana’s presentations are but a scant eight weeks away. Not near enough time to accomplish everything I’d like. I have arranged several fittings at Etienne’s, for which I am eternally grateful to the Duchess of Adborough. Normally, Madame Etienne has a line weaving down the street for her services, but Margaret was able to exert her influence and hire her exclusively to attend all our girls.”

“Caroline and Kitty, as well?” Lizzy asked.

“Oh, yes. Margaret adores both of them and is determined to have them shine this upcoming Season.” Lady Matlock let out a satisfied sigh. “There are rumors the Prince Regent himself may attend in honor of Lord George’s loyalty to the Crown. I would not be surprised if he doesn’t bestow on George his own dukedom.”

Georgiana’s memory briefly touched on the near-scandal a few days before Nathan and Caroline’s wedding. Guests at Pemberley had been informed that a gun accidently discharged in the stables and Viscount Stanhope had been tragically killed. She knew that to be a falsehood as she’d overheard Fitzwilliam and Cousin Richard discussing Stanhope’s treachery.

“I hear the Barwick Duchy is vacant.” Richard volunteered the information around a mouthful of ham. “At least two hundred acres of valuable farmland and long-term tenants.”

“Yes, of course. And there are the secondary titles of Marquis of Glanworth and Viscount Mandeville.” Lady Matlock enthused.

“You are a veritable walking and talking volume of Debrett’s, dear aunt,” Fitz teased.

“You laugh now, Fitzwilliam, but when you and your lovely bride begin to move among London’s finest, you will be glad to know whom to avoid and whom to curry favor with,” she decreed with an elegant sniff. “If not for your sake, then for Georgiana’s. We expect her to make a splendid match this season. Already there are rumors the Marquis of Trevayne is on the hunt this year.”

“Dear God, Mama. You make it sound like he’s about to call the hounds.” Richard exclaimed. “Trevayne needs to find a wife, that’s a certainty, but he is not about to stalk the halls of Almack’s and pounce on innocent debutantes their first night out.”

“Be that as it may, I expect the foyer of Darcy house to be filled with flowers and cards when eligible gentlemen discover how beautiful my niece is.” Aunt Lucinda patted her niece’s hand.

Georgiana’s insides shrivelled at her aunt’s sentiments. Her aunt meant well. However, she knew, just knew, many eyes would be on her because she was a Darcy and because she was wealthy. Not for the first time she was grateful Elizabeth, Caroline and Catherine would be by her side the whole season.

“Mama would be in raptures if Kitty became a titled lady in her own right,” Lizzy said with a laugh. “She will be hard put to remain humble if that happens.”

“As soon as you are finished with breaking your fast, we shall meet the Duchess at Etienne’s. With six of us to outfit, she will need all hands-on deck.”

“Mother, where have you learned Navy terms?” Richard slathered more creamy butter on yet another roll. “Your second and most favored son is an army colonel” – Lady Matlock raised an elegant eyebrow – “one would assume you would use terminology more suited for land warfare.”

Lady Matlock waved a hand in Richard’s direction, as though shooing his concerns away from her thoughts. “I do know a few Admirals and Navy Captains, Richard. My social circle is quite wide, which you would know if you attended some functions with me.”

“Ah, but then you’d expect me to dance attendance on some fresh-faced chit of a girl and make polite talk with dewy eyed innocents.”

“Richard!”

“Sorry, Mother. That was quite unchivalrous,” Richard apologized, casting a slight eyeroll in the direction of his cousin, Fitz.



AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY

“The prairie dust is in my blood but no longer on my shoes.”

Sue Barr coined that phrase when once asked where she came from. Although it’s been over thirty-seven years since she called Saskatchewan home, her roots to that straight-lined province and childhood friends run deep. The only thing strong enough to entice her to pack up and leave was love. When a handsome Air Force pilot met this small-town girl, he swept her off her feet and they embarked on a fantastic adventure which found them settled in beautiful Southwestern Ontario when hubby retired from the military and began his second career as an airline pilot.

Sue started writing in 2009 and sold her first manuscript in 2010. For four years she was published under the pen name of Madison J. Edwards, and in 2014 began to write sweet contemporary romance under her own name. Always a reader of Regency romance, she discovered Jane Austen Fan Fiction through a childhood friend who writes under the name of Suzan Lauder. Almost immediately a question popped into her head, “Whatever happened to Caroline Bingley after her brother and Mr. Darcy became engaged to a Bennet sister?” and the “Pride & Prejudice Continued…” series was launched.

Sue is a member of Romance Writers of America and its satellite chapter, The Beau Monde. She is one course away from achieving her Professional Creative Writer’s certificate from the University of Western Ontario’s continuing study curriculum. In her spare time, she cans and preserves her own food, cooks almost everything from scratch and grows herbs to dehydrate and make into seasoning. Hubby has no complaints other than his trousers keep shrinking. At least that’s what he claims…. Oh, the kids and grandkids don’t mind this slight obsession either.


AMAZON BUY LINKS


Be sure to check all the stops for the blog tour. I'm sure Sue will have lots of interesting posts and excerpts for us.


GIVEAWAYS
Sue is also gifting three e-copies of GEORGIANA to three lucky winners via Rafflecopter. Open internationally through March 12.


Thank you for stopping by on your blog tour, Sue. It was great to have you visit again. Thank you to Christina Boyd for organizing the blog tour. 

I wish you much success with your new novel, Sue. It sounds really good, and the cover is so pretty. Thanks for the generous giveaway to all the visitors to the blog tour.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Karen M. Cox...Tenth Anniversary Edition of 1932

More Agreeably Engaged welcomes Karen M. Cox today. She is here to celebrate the 10th Anniversary Edition of 1932. Karen is sharing an excerpt from her book and has a giveaway. The excerpt is intriguing and the giveaway is generous. Enjoy!


Thank you for hosting me today at More Agreeably Engaged to celebrate the Tenth Anniversary Edition of 1932: Pride and Prejudice Revisited! I’m so excited about this re-release because there are several new scenes added, giving readers even more Elizabeth and Darcy time. Which is always a good thing, right?
For those who aren’t familiar with the story of 1932, it takes place in the US South during the Great Depression (you might have guessed that from the title.)
In this excerpt, Jane and Elizabeth Bennet have been at Netherfield for several days, sewing evening dresses for Caroline and Louisa Bingley (no Mr. Hurst in this story.) Mr. Darcy has become intrigued by Elizabeth Bennet and has ventured another visit to Netherfield before the sisters return to Longbourn…

Darcy strode by the hedge separating the driveway from the flower garden. He made a beeline for his roadster, halting in mid-step when he heard female voices. He froze in place, hoping he remained unseen. The last person he wanted to see him escaping was Caroline Bingley. The woman always made him squirm, like his tie was too tight. Louisa was less problematic; she actually seemed to realize she was too old for him. Caroline, though, was only a few years older than he—and for her, that meant he was fair game. In another life, he might have even considered her had she not been such a cold, detached shrew.
As the voices continued, he realized that they didn’t belong to the Bingley sisters but to the Bennet sisters. Now he froze for a completely different reason. He strained to hear their conversation, chastising himself for eavesdropping. As he listened, he realized, from their conversation, they hadn’t seen him at all.
“I sent a message to Uncle Ed this morning.” That was Jane’s voice. “He should be here around one o’clock tomorrow.”
Elizabeth sighed. “Oh, Jane.” He glanced around guiltily and closed his eyes. He was going to indulge himself in the sound of her voice, just this one last time. “I never thought I’d say this, but I’ll be glad to get back home.”
“It hasn’t been so bad, has it?”
“No, I suppose not so bad. Your charming friend Mr. Bingley is very kind and attentive.”
“He’s not my friend, really. Although he is charming.”
“But his aunts seem to want little company at all, except for Mr. Darcy. They certainly don’t seem to be very fond of us. I keep waiting for Miss Caroline to bark at me to serve her tea until I see poor sweet Nan appear. Boy, wouldn’t you hate to have that job?”
Jane giggled.
Elizabeth lowered her voice. “I tell you one thing I will miss, though.” Darcy leaned closer to the hedge, his hope rising. Might she say she would miss his company? 
“What?” 
“The bathtub.”
Darcy could hear the smile in her voice, and unexpectedly, he smiled too.
“I know the housekeeper must think I’m crazy. I’ve been in that tub every night—warm running water, lavender soap, soaking as long as I want.”
Darcy found himself visualizing the scene—sensations all but forgotten igniting his blood. 
“It’s heavenly.” Elizabeth’s voice was as warm and fluid as the water in the tub.
He audibly swallowed.
“That crunched-up little metal tub in the kitchen at home just won’t be the same.”
Darcy’s eyes opened. Of course, old farmhouse, not lived in for years. No indoor plumbing. No bath. His hand reached up and touched the hedge. The wistfulness in her voice tugged some place deep inside him.
He remained still, letting the rest of their conversation wash over him. Jane and Elizabeth’s voices slowly moved away, leaving him alone beside the hedge. A cold, sharp wind kicked up, and he turned toward his car, feeling all the heaviness of the world in his bones.

*****
So, Mr. Darcy isn’t above eavesdropping on the woman who’s captured his attention. As fans of Pride and Prejudice, we’re all pretty sure he’s going to act on those feelings at some point. The question is…

How? 

Book Description:

“…do anything rather than marry without affection.”
Pride and Prejudice

During the upheaval of the Great Depression, Elizabeth Bennet’s life is torn asunder. Her family’s relocation from the bustle of the big city to a quiet family farm has changed her future, and now, she must build a new life in rural Meryton, Kentucky.

William Darcy suffered family turmoil of his own, but he has settled into a peaceful life at Pemberley, the largest farm in the county. Single, rich, and seemingly content, he remains aloof—immune to any woman’s charms.

Until Elizabeth Bennet moves to town.

As Darcy begins to yearn for something he knows is missing, Elizabeth’s circumstances become more dire. Can the two put aside their pride and prejudices long enough to find their way to each other?

1932, Karen M Cox’s award-winning debut novel, is a matchless variation on Jane Austen’s classic tale. 


Winner of the Bronze Independent Publishers Book Award in Romance, 2011

Author Bio:

Karen M Cox is an award-winning author of five novels accented with history and romance, a novella, and several short stories.
Karen was born in Everett WA, the daughter of a United States Air Force Officer. She had a nomadic childhood, with stints in North Dakota, Tennessee, and New York State before settling in her family’s home state of Kentucky at age eleven. She lives in a quiet town with her husband and works as a pediatric speech pathologist.

If you would like periodic bits of authorly goodness delivered to your inbox, be sure to get Karen’s News and Muse Letter. Updates, sales, book recommendations, etc. are yours for the asking.


Social Media Links:


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Giveaway:


1932 Tenth Anniversary Edition Launch and Birthday Party
To celebrate the 10th anniversary edition of 1932, Karen is giving away
a signed copy of the book and some Jane Austen swag: fun notecards
from The Quill Ink, What Would Jane Do? book of quotes, and Austen
coffee mug (if US winner) or an ebook copy of the book and 25$
Amazon Gift Card (if International Winner - cause #shipping :)

To enter the giveaway, click this link.
























Oooh, I enjoyed that excerpt. Hmm, I wonder...will Elizabeth get running water and a new bath tub? My curiosity is raised. :)  Thank you for asking me to be a part of your tour, Karen. I wish you the best with your Tenth Anniversary Edition  of 1932.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Mr. Darcy's Perfect Match...Kelly Miller

Happy February to everyone. I can't believe that January is already gone for 2020! It was a busy month for me. How about you?

*****
I guess everything is going too fast for me. I'm a day behind this week. I had it in my mind that tomorrow was the 3rd of February and was getting my post ready to go. Then I got an email from Kelly asking me if all is okay and when might my post go live? UGH! I organized the blog tour and missed my own stop! That's pretty bad! I apologize to you, Kelly Miller, and to all of you readers! 

Now on with the post below!

*****
I'm taking part in Kelly Miller's blog tour for her newest release, Mr. Darcy's Perfect Match. Sophia Rose is giving us her "First Impressions" of Kelly's book, with a full review to follow at another time. Before posting her thoughts on what she has read to date, I'll give you the book description.

Book Description:

When secrets are revealed and a family agenda works against him, can Fitzwilliam Darcy recover his damaged spirits and find happiness?

Following his disastrous proposal to Elizabeth Bennet, Fitzwilliam Darcy returns to London from Kent broken-hearted and dejected. One bright spot penetrates his sea of despair: his sister, Georgiana, has finally recovered her spirits from the grievous events at Ramsgate the previous summer. She has forged a new friendship with Miss Hester Drake, a lady who appears to be an ideal friend. In fact, Lady Matlock believes Miss Drake is Darcy’s perfect match.

Upon Elizabeth Bennet’s arrival at the Gardiners’ home from Kent, she finds that her sister Jane remains despondent over her abandonment by Mr. Bingley. But Elizabeth has information that might bring them together. She convinces her Uncle Gardiner to write a letter to Mr. Bingley providing key facts supplied to her by Mr. Darcy.


When Mr. Bingley discovers that his friend and sisters colluded to keep Jane’s presence in London from him, how will he respond? Given the chance, will Darcy and Elizabeth overcome their past misunderstandings? What will Darcy do when his beloved sister becomes a hindrance towards winning the lady he loves?


Early Impressions Post by Sophia Rose:

Mr. Darcy’s Perfect Match by Kelly Miller

Without glimpse of cover or blurb, I eagerly accepted Janet’s invitation to share my impressions at the start of Kelly Miller’s latest, a Pride and Prejudice variation story.  This will be one that depends on the reader to already be familiar with Austen’s Pride and Prejudice to some extent because it assumes the reader knows what has come before the point when Mr. Darcy approaches a hostile Miss Lizzy in Rosings’ grounds to deliver his fateful letter.

The title told me to anticipate a luscious amount of time with Mr. Darcy and, from the first sentence, I saw this to be true.  Darcy is narrating and the reader feels his sorrow and bit of anger at being rejected and the shame for his own previous conduct.  He must win back the good opinion of his lady even if he can never hold her heart.  So he is prepared to deliver his defense in a letter.

And, this is where the story blazes a new trail. 

Right when I anticipated Darcy getting comfort from his cousin, his friend, Colonel Fitzwilliam and Darcy have a falling out over Darcy’s unilateral decision to share Georgiana’s secret with a woman who is the barest of acquaintances to the Colonel. 

Next, Georgiana takes the narration in their London home as she excitedly tells her brother about a new friend, Miss Drake, and at the same time notices her brother’s melancholic state. 

Miss Drake’s name comes up again when Darcy wisely checks out her credentials with Georgiana’s companion and his aunt, Lady Matlock, who introduced the girls.  He does not notice the gleam in Lady Matlock’s eye over his interest quite like the reader does.  Look out Darcy, she’s matchmaking.

But, just as the reader believes Georgiana has made a lovely new friend who isn’t cozying up to get to her brother, Miss Drake gets to narrate and we learn that this fresh-faced, pretty mannered lady is no better than Caroline Bingley- merely more cunning and clever.  What will she get up to in order to bag her prey?  Stay tuned, gentle reader!

Meanwhile, the readers rejoice when Lizzy arrives in London and lands upon a fantastic scheme to bring about her sister, Jane, and Bingley’s happiness.  Darcy gave her the intel for what action was needed in his letter.  Ouch!  Every time she recalls the letter and the letter writer, she feels shame and remorse for her behavior and words.  She doesn’t love him and can’t because he was arrogant, but she is well aware that she was no better and possibly worse.

Charles might have come across as wishy-washy in the original, but when he gets all the facts, boy howdy, did the man leap into action to gain his lady love.  And, wasn’t that a brazen encounter when he crossed swords with his sisters and came out the winner of that skirmish.

What is this?  Oh no, Georgie… spilling secrets and trusting the wrong party!!!!

And, that was where I left it off.  Twenty five percent in and I was captivated.  My mind is racing over where this story will take me.  Such fantastic foreshadowing of the conflict that is to come.  Such engaging characters!  And, I love getting all those perspectives and changes of scenes so I could get inside the heads of so many.

My early impression leads me to predict that Ms. Miller’s latest will be a ‘perfect match’ for many readers who adore Austenesque historical romance.  And, with that last bit, I’m off to finish the rest of Mr. Darcy’s Perfect Match.

Thanks for letting me stop by today, Janet!

Author Bio:
Kelly Miller is a native Californian and Anglophile, who made her first visit to England in 2019. When not pondering a plot point or a turn of phrase, she can be found playing the piano (although like Elizabeth Bennet, she is errant when it comes to practicing), singing, and walking her dogs. Kelly Miller resides in Silicon Valley with her husband, daughter, and their many pets.
Mr. Darcy’s Perfect Match is her second novel published by Meryton Press. Her first was the Regency novel Death Takes a Holiday at Pemberley, a Pride and Prejudice romantic sequel with a touch of fantasy. Her third novel, Accusing Mr. Darcy, will be released later in 2020.
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Mr. Darcy’s Perfect Match Blog Schedule             

January 27 Austenesque Reviews
January 29 Austenprose
January 30 So Little Time…
February 4 Savvy Verse & Wit
February 6 Donadee’s Corner


Giveaway:
Meryton Press is giving away 8 eBooks of Mr. Darcy’s Perfect Match. Use the Rafflecopter below to enter the giveaway. Good luck to all.

Thank you for sharing your first impressions with us, Sophia Rose. I'm glad to read your thoughts. I felt the same way about the entire book. It grabbed my attention and wouldn't let go until I finished it. I hope everyone gets a chance to read it soon. 

If you have missed any of the stops, be sure to go back and read the excerpts, interesting guest posts, and vignette that Kelly has written for us.

Best wishes to you, Kelly, with this new release. I look forward to your next book! I'll try to keep my days straight next time around! :)

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