Monday, June 10th, 2013
It’s here at last! After several delays, my new book, Mr. Darcy’s Noble Connections, is out in Nook, Kindle, Kobo, and paperback. It’s getting some great responses from readers, and if my goal in life was to prevent my readers from sleeping, I apparently did pretty well with this book! You can read the blurb and the first chapter here. As a special bonus, I’ve compiled pictures of the settings of key scenes here.
Rather than telling you about the book myself, I’m going to quote in full an early Amazon review by Dara Montyne:
Abigail Reynolds was the author that got me hooked on JAFF. She still remains my favorite Austenesque author. Previously, The Last Man in the World was my favorite of her novels–it had angst and passion. Mr. Darcy’s Noble Connections is similar. It definitely has the angst and the romance to take the top spot on my list of Abigail Reynolds’ novels!
The story takes place shortly after Darcy’s first proposal at Hunsford. Instead of meeting again at Pemberley, Darcy and Elizabeth meet at a house party at Bentham Park, the home of Elizabeth’s friend Lady Eleanor and Darcy’s cousins. Thrown into the mix are many new characters whose matchmaking and flirtations end up with Elizabeth and Darcy thrust into each other’s company so soon after Elizabeth’s rejection. Emotions run high for Darcy and Elizabeth upon first encountering each other. Darcy tries to act indifferent to Elizabeth, but, happily, we know it will all be for naught. Reynolds, however, throws a delightful twist in the form of Lord Charles Carlisle (Eleanor’s brother and notorious rake). Lord Charles appears as a suitor to Elizabeth, which, of course, does not make for a happy Darcy! Chaos ensues as Darcy tries to protect Elizabeth from Lord Charles as well as help his friend Geoffrey Paxton (whose low connections do not endear him to the Eleanor’s family) meet Lady Eleanor in secret. I won’t go into more detail of plot, as you’ll just have to read it yourself!
I cannot remember the last time I read a JAFF novel where I literally felt like my stomach was being twisted in a million different knots. The emotions Elizabeth and Darcy were put through left me feeling emotionally exhausted (in a good way!). Reynolds truly has a gift of placing the reader in the minds of her characters. You feel their joy, their passion, their heartache. Yes, this novel has angst, but don’t let that deter you from reading it if you’re not a big fan of the angst. Granted, there were a few moments in the novel where I was afraid for Darcy and Elizabeth, but I knew Reynolds wouldn’t let me down with my desired happily-ever-after! The ending of the novel and the stolen moments between Elizabeth and Darcy are reward enough for surviving the angst!
It is such a worthwhile, emotional journey when you read one of Abigail Reynolds’ novels. Lovers of Darcy and Elizabeth will rejoice when picking up this novel. Reynolds truly has a love for Darcy and Elizabeth and she understands that her readers do, too. She is always spot on with her characterizations. I always feel like I understand Darcy and Elizabeth a little bit better after reading one of her novels. So if you want a passionate, angsty read or you just want to spend a little extra time with Darcy and Elizabeth, read this book. You won’t think of hairpins the same way again!
I’ll be posting a few more times this week with more news. I hope you enjoy the book!
Bentham Park, aka Castle Howard
Monday, February 11th, 2013
It seems like there’s always something I need to catch everyone up on, or at least to distract everyone from the February weather. First, there’s a giveaway. You can win a free ebook copy of Mr. Darcy’s Refuge or one of many other wonderful books at the League of British Actors Valentine’s Day giveaway. Leave a comment anytime between now and February 20 for a chance to win! Next up is news about the four new audiobooks that are now available at Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. You can now get Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy: The Last Man in the World, Mr. Darcy’s Obsession, Mr. Darcy’s Undoing, and By Force of Instinct, in addition to the four already available. A note for bargain hunters: the audiobooks of Mr. Darcy’s Refuge, Mr. Darcy’s Letter, and The Man Who Loved Pride &Prejudice are available for $1.99 if you own the Kindle version of the book – even if it was a free promotional download. So if you want one of those audiobooks, buy the Kindle ebook for $4.99 first (it doesn’t matter if you have a Kindle or not), and then get the audiobook for $1.99, which is less than half the price of the audiobook alone. And yes, my other three books will be appearing in audio later in the spring!
If you’re interested in meeting me in person, I’ll be making an appearance at the Jane Austen’s Life & Times event at the Schuster Mansion in Milwaukee on Saturday, March 16. There’ll be lots of fun activities and opportunities to learn about Jane Austen, and it takes place in a gorgeous restored mansion. Tickets will be limited, so don’t wait until the last minute.
And finally, the one thing my readers may actually care about: my next book. I’ve been on a writing binge this month, and it’s starting to look like my new book may actually be ready to go in April or May as I’d originally planned. Who’d have thunk it? It’s a new Pemberley Variation that’s currently going by the catchy working title of P&P/MP2, but I’m hoping to come up with something a little more interesting by the time it’s published.
Stay warm and read about Darcy!
Monday, January 28th, 2013
Pride & Prejudice first edition
It’s a big day for birthdays in my house. Today my son turns 19, and Pride & Prejudice turns 200. I’m taking part in today’s Pride & Prejudice Anniversary Blog Hop, hosted by my fellow Austen Author Alyssa Goodnight, so I sat down to think about what I could say to celebrate Jane Austen and Pride & Prejudice – - and drew a complete blank. That’s a little scary, given how much I adore both the author and the book! Then I realized why I was stumped. I celebrate Jane Austen and Pride & Prejudice every single day, usually multiple times. So I decided instead to figure out all the different ways I’ve celebrated her in the last week.
- Writing and editing my new variation of Pride & Prejudice
- Writing the first chapter of The Bennet Brother, an interactive group writing project at Austen Authors
- Blogging at Austen Authors about the effect having a son would have had on the Bennet family, and responding to 30+ reader comments about their views.
- Giving a 45 minute interview to the Wall Street Journal for their fantastic article on Austen Power
- Making a video about how Jane Austen inspires me for the BBC anniversary celebration
- Adding my two bits to the Austen Authors anniversary post
- Celebrating the audiobook release of By Force of Instinct and preparing for the upcoming release of the audiobook of Mr. Darcy’s Obsession (released today!)
- Proof-listening to the audiobook of Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy: The Last Man in the World (to be released in late February)
- Tweeting as @edwbennet as preparation for unveiling of The Bennet Brother
- Preparing for a Jane Austen Day in Milwaukee in March
- Last but not least, during the course of these 7 days, I opened my pdf of the text of Pride & Prejudice 23 different times, and Mansfield Park 3 times.
No wonder I have nothing left to say besides this:
Happy 200th Birthday to Pride & Prejudice
My life wouldn’t be the same without you!
Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013
Happy New Year to all my readers!
To start out the New Year, several other authors and I are holding a Load Up Your Kindle/Nook sale. I’ve cut the prices on five ebooks by up to 65% for January 2-4, so it’s a great time to stock up. Prices are good at both Barnes & Noble and Amazon. Due to a problem at Amazon, there are actually two editions of some of these ebooks, and only one has the sale price, so the titles below are a direct link to the correct editions. There are also books on sale by Regina Jeffers, Mary Lydon Simonsen, Shannon Winslow, Maria Grace and Marilyn Brant – 28 books in all! Click here for the complete list.
Also, there will be a special one-day sale on another of my ebooks on Saturday, January 5. Stop by my Facebook page any time after 11 AM Eastern Time on January 5 for the announcement.
Interested in my next book? I’ve posted a long excerpt from it over at Austen Authors.
Mr. Darcy’s Refuge – now $2.99
Mr. Darcy’s Letter
- now $2.99
A Pemberley Medley - now $0.99
Morning Light - now $0.99
By Force of Instinct – now $2.99 - only available at B&N because Amazon is having problems with the listing, but should eventually be on sale there as well.
Wednesday, November 14th, 2012
Now through November 17, the Kindle version of my book Mr. Darcy’s Letter is free to all readers. This is one of the surprise gifts as part of the November Revels at Austen Authors where we’re celebrating the 200th anniversary of the wedding of Elizabeth and Darcy. This is likely to be the only time that one of my full-length novels will be free, so please take advantage of it. If you have friends who haven’t given Austen-inspired fiction a try, maybe this will convince them. ;)
Also, the sale on the ebook version of What Would Mr. Darcy Do for $1.99 will continue for the rest of November. It’s available for all ebook readers, not just Kindle.
Saturday, November 3rd, 2012
As part of the November Revels event at Austen Authors, the e-book of What Would Mr. Darcy Do? is on sale for $1.99. It usually goes for the hefty price tag of $12.99 – a price set by the publisher, not by me – so this is a great time to pick it up. Don’t forget to stop by Austen Authors to read the vignettes in the P&P200 series!
Meantime, since Mr. Darcy’s Refuge takes place during a disastrous flood in Hunsford village, I’ve decided to donate to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund half the royalties from sales in the first two weeks of November. This applies to the paperback, ebook and audiobook versions. Pearl Hewitt, the narrator of the audiobook, will also be donating her royalties. It’s a chance to enjoy a good book and help hurricane victims at the same time.
Wednesday, October 24th, 2012
I posted this on Austen Authors today, but decided to share it here as well. This month my muse has deluged me with ideas too good to ignore, so instead of my usual two works in progress, I have no less than four. I was going to give you an excerpt from the WIP that I’m trying to focus on, but then my muse laid down a challenge for me. I’d just seen a powerful play about a good marriage turned bad by personal tragedy, and that’s not the kind of marriage that I want to think about. So out popped this little vignette, completely unlike anything I’ve ever written before, and I have no idea if it’s any good or not. That’ll have to be your decision!
With satisfaction, Darcy scanned the crowd of friends and family gathered in the Pemberley dining room. It had been a good day. Darcy approved of the young lady of good family to whom Thomas was now safely married. Her impertinence sometimes dismayed him, but she reminded him of his Elizabeth when he had first met her, before he knew the warm heart that lay under her teasing. But it was good that Thomas’ bride had spirit; even as a baby, he had been the most energetic of their four children, the one who always spotted trouble and managed to find the messiest part of it. The army had settled Thomas a little, but still, his wife would have her work cut out for her.
The wedding breakfast was proceeding without a hitch. The new housekeeper whom Elizabeth had hired seemed to know her job, although it was odd to have a housekeeper who was younger than he himself was. He still missed old Mrs. Reynolds, who had retired not long after Elizabeth found her feet as Mistress of Pemberley. It had not been an easy transition for his own bride; several times in the first months of their marriage he had found her in tears of frustration over learning some aspect of the work she was required to oversee. Of course, she had mastered the complex role as quickly as anyone could expect, but then again he had known she would. Those few servants who had been foolish enough to question that when the new Mrs. Darcy arrived had found themselves rapidly replaced by Mrs. Reynolds, who allowed no criticism of his choice of bride.
He shifted as close to Elizabeth as her voluminous skirts would permit, thinking for the thousandth time how much he wished for a return of the fashions of their youth. Girls might look pretty enough in these modern dresses with their bell-shaped skirts buoyed out by masses of petticoats and their waists constricted to an unnaturally tiny size, but he missed those high-waisted gowns that had fallen so naturally along Elizabeth’s form. How he had loved watching her in them, the thin muslin clinging to her shapely body, the translucent fabric exposing just a hint of the shape of her legs. He pitied the young men of today, condemned never to catch a glimpse of a woman’s true shape except in the most intimate moments. Thank heaven Elizabeth had never adopted the full modern regalia. Her public dresses were fashionable, but she managed to look lovely despite keeping her corset comfortably loose, and, knowing his preferences, she often dispensed with some of the petticoats when they sat together in the privacy of their rooms. And she was still lovely, after all these years, with four children grown and a world changed beyond recognition.
How unimaginable all of this would have been to him in those early days! Had the world ever before altered so much in the course of one generation? Theirs had begun in a bucolic world, and now they were surrounded by the new industrial age. The huge factories in Manchester and Birmingham, the ugly railroads that were springing up everywhere, the influx of the poor into the cities where they became poorer still, forced to endure terrible conditions until they were near collapse from exhaustion. Oh, he could admit that it was pleasant to be able to reach London from Pemberley in a day, forgoing the jolting ride of carriages over rutted roads for two or three days at a time, and not having to worry about changing the horses or the quality of the coaching inns. Still, he did not like being locked up in the noisy box of a train car, even the elegant first class ones. He likely would never have boarded one in the first place had it not been for Elizabeth’s urging. She loved new experiences, and he loved to give her the pleasure of them. Giving her pleasure was still one of his greatest joys.
Of course, he had not always been able to protect her from unhappiness. The tears and depression that had followed the death of little Emma, just three months old, had seemed to last forever, and he had not known how to help her, just when she had needed him the most. But life had gone on, and another disaster had brought them together again – that cursed year of 1816, when they had to work together for the sake of Pemberley, through famine and a smallpox epidemic. The Irish Disease had come close on its heels, carrying off many of their servants, and for a time they had feared for Georgiana’s life. Thank God they had managed somehow to keep the tenants of Pemberley fed when the harvests had failed! That was when he congratulated himself on choosing such an intelligent and capable wife whom he could depend on as a helpmate rather than a society miss without a thought in her head.
He chuckled at the idea that he had chosen to marry Elizabeth – his need for her in the early days had been more like a force of nature – causing his wife to give him a quizzical glance. Patting her hand to assure her all was well, he smiled into her eyes that were every bit as fine as when they had first met. Her hair might be threaded with silver now, but he could still see the laughing, teasing, bewitching girl he had married all those years ago when she tilted her head in that special way of hers, an arch curve to her lips. When she had first accepted his hand, he had believed that no man could ever love a woman more than he did at that moment, but he had been a callow youth. Passion and fascination were powerful, but they were nothing to the love that grew over the years, improving like brandy with age.
So much had changed, but some things never would. He leaned close to her and said softly, “In vain have I struggled. It will not do. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.” Her eyes lit up, and he felt the power of their bond, which had survived misunderstandings, great joy and equally great pain. She was, indeed, a woman well worth pleasing.
Thursday, September 6th, 2012
I’m once again taking part in the Austenesque Extravaganza, but this year I’m doing something new and different. I had the pleasure of being interviewed via Skype by Team Austenesque, and they’ve made a lovely podcast from the recording – their first podcast ever. It includes some of my radical views on Darcy and how my medical background influences character development. If you’re interested in listening, you can find it on iTunes. If that link doesn’t work for you, try this one.
Tuesday, August 28th, 2012
My new book, Mr. Darcy’s Refuge, is available a few days earlier than expected. It’s available in paperback as well as for Nook and Kindle. The audiobook will hopefully be ready in a month or so. And speaking of audiobooks, To Conquer Mr. Darcy is now available in audio, and both that and the audio of Mr. Darcy’s Letter are on sale for $5.95 through September 2.
I’ll be appearing and signing books at the Decatur Book Festival in Georgia on Sept. 1-2, and again at the Jane Austen Festival in Bath on Sept. 15. More details about the books and my travels can be found in my post at Austen Authors.
Friday, August 10th, 2012
I already have a proof of Mr. Darcy’s Refuge in my hot little hands! The thrill of holding my own book never goes away, and now I can say for sure that it’ll be available by Sept. 1. But if you don’t want to wait until then, you can win a free advance copy by commenting on my post at Darcyholic Diversions. In case you missed it, there’s also a sneak peak at Mr. Darcy’s Refuge in my July 31 post at Austen Authors.
Just so you know that I do occasionally think about something besides the new book, I posted a vignette for the P&P200 project at Austen Authors. And I have an adorable new puppy to distract me!
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