Family Portraits – Guest Post & Giveaway

Hello everyone,

Today I’m very happy to receive for the first time in From Pemberley to Milton author Pamela Lynne. I’ve heard so much about her and her books, but unfortunately haven’t read any of them yet. I have heard wonders about Sketching Character and I have it on my TBR pile for months! Now she has released Family Portraits which is a continuation of Dearest Friends and I found myself with another book on the must read list.

I hope you enjoy Pamela Lynne’s post today, and I promise to read one of her books very, very soon to review it and share my thoughts with you 🙂

Until then, I would like to thank Mrs. Lynne’s for her visit to From Pemberley to Milton, it is a huge pleasure to receive you here 🙂

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***Guest Post***

 

The Strength of Supporting Characters

 

Thank you so much, Rita, for hosting me here at From Pemberley to Milton. This is my first visit to your lovely blog, and I am so excited to share a couple of my favorite people with you today.

I first found JAFF and the world of Austenesque literature a little more than four years ago. For months, I devoured every book I could find before I started jotting down ideas for what would become Dearest Friends on a notepad I kept by the bed. I still have those pages. I came across them recently when I was cleaning out my abandoned crafts cabinet. As I read over them, I noticed that, other than Darcy and Elizabeth’s initial meeting, all my early notes were about the side characters—those who would support D&E on their journey to happily ever after.

One of the reasons we all love JAFF, I believe, is that we have an instant emotional connection to the main characters. We love Darcy and Elizabeth, and we cannot get enough. For an author, that is both a blessing and a curse. Having that connection is vital to the success of any novel, but it also means we have a lot to live up to. We all have our own preconceived notions about Canon and who Darcy and Elizabeth are and how they should behave. Changes to the personalities or behaviors of ODC can be a hard sell and doing too much can be detrimental to the book’s success.

I believe a strong creative power we JAFF authors have at our disposal is the freedom to tweak Austen’s supporting characters. As many of you already know, I took a great deal of liberty with some characters in Dearest Friends, namely Mr. Bennet and Jane. We see enough of them in Canon, I believe, to justify any prejudices we have against them or any love we have for them. The same cannot be said for Anne de Bourg and Mary Bennet. We see so little of them, and what we do see is not always positive. But, surely, there’s more to explore there. In both Dearest Friends and Family Portraits these two women, who were relegated to the background in Pride and Prejudice, had a chance to shine.

*~*

“Are you well, Anne?”

Mary sat next to her friend, who had removed herself from the party to rest in the shade of a tree, watching the men and children race on the lawn.

“Of course I am. I am always well.”

Mary said nothing, only placed her hands in her lap and waited. Eventually, she heard her companion sigh.

“I am tired. I should not have stayed out as long as I did yesterday morning.”

“Why did you?”

“Because it was a lovely day, and I was with my favorite people. The journey here was difficult, and I did not give myself time to recover. I was too excited to see everyone.”

“I will not admonish you, though I am not sure your husband will do the same. Was your fatigue the reason you kept provoking him yesterday?”

Anne smiled. “That was mostly for fun. I did not want him to see my fatigue. Of course, there was no keeping it from him last night, and he forbade me from coming today.”

Anne rolled her eyes and Mary laughed. “You will rest more, though?”

“I will. When we return to Darcy’s today, I will keep to my rooms.” She paused for a moment, watching Richard swing their daughter around by her arms. “Look at them. Thank God Richard is able to help her expel some of her vigor. She has so much of it. I worry, Mary, as she comes up around such strength and vivacity, she will see me as weak, different. I would not want her to resent me for the things I cannot do.”

“You cannot think that way, Anne. You will make yourself miserable dwelling on the things you cannot change. Marianne will see you thriving in the ways you can and will love you because you love her.”

Anne smiled. “I know this. It is just hard to see it when I have days similar to this. Shall we speak of more pleasant things?”

“What do you wish to talk about?”

“Hmm. How about how very pretty you look.”

Mary rolled her eyes.

“I am serious. At Christmas, it felt as if I hardly knew you. You were so altered. Now, you seem like Mary again.”

“I do admit that for a brief moment yesterday, I felt more like myself than I have in quite some time.”

“What is the difference from then to now?”

Mary did not answer, not wanting the conversation to turn too serious. Anne would not let it be, however.

“You should allow him to kiss you.”

“Anne!”

“Mary, you will not give voice to it, so I will. You are more like yourself because the man who loves you is here. Why do you wish to fight that?”

“I do not do it on purpose, Anne. I wish I could just brush aside everything I am feeling, but I cannot.”

“I am sorry, Mary. I do not wish to upset you. You said you felt like yourself yesterday. What was happening?”

“He was holding my hand.”

Anne sighed. “Imagine how much better you would feel if you kissed him!”

“You are impossible!”

Mary’s composure cracked as Anne made kissing noises, and they both collapsed into a fit of giggles.

*~*

It makes perfect sense to me that these two should be friends. In Canon, they are miles apart and never meet. In the what-if, however, they become strong characters who are far more than their wallflower status. I hope you agree with me. Who are your favorite supporting characters? Are there any you feel and underutilized in JAFF. I’d love to hear what you think!

 

***It’s giveaway time***

 

Follow Pamela Lynne’s advice and tell us who your favorite supporting characters are. Tell us why you like one character, or why you dislike another. You can also share your thoughts on this post because all comments will entitle you for the giveaway of one e-book that Mrs. Lynne would like to offer to one lucky reader.

The giveaway is international and is open until the 3rd of October.

Good luck everyone!

And don’t forget to follow the blog tour for more information on this book:

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28 Comments

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28 responses to “Family Portraits – Guest Post & Giveaway

  1. How fun to see both Anne and Mary like real people!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Glynis

    I think 2 of my favourite original characters are Mr & Mrs Gardiner. They seem to be more like loving parents to Jane and Elizabeth especially. I really like the way they are portrayed in both Dearest Friends and Family Portraits. You really really must read these wonderful books Rita as I know you will love them and Sketching Character. Please don’t enter me in the giveaway as I have all 3 books 😃 📚

    Liked by 3 people

    • If these are your favourite secondary characters Glynis, I think you will LOVE a cover reveal I’m doing next month 🙂 And you’ve said so many good things about these books, that I will read Sketching Character very, very soon. There are always a lot of books that I want to read, but then something new is released, or someone suggests something else, and I end up delaying the Reading of some books that i really want to do. I will do a TBR list for 2017 composed of 12 books, and I’ll make myself read at least one of them per month 🙂 No excuses 🙂 Thanks for stopping by 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Well, I am partial to Georgiana, mostly. Can’t even explain why, I just am.

    But yes, it is true, supporting characters in cases such as P&P are an incredible way of expanding the story beyond the main plot and a pleasure to imagine because not much of them is shown.

    I am quite curious about this one, truly!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m not very partial to Georgiana, and usually I am only very fond of her when her love interest is our dear Colonel. But you are right about the importance of secondary characters to the story, and in some cases, I even like them more than D &E 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Theresa M

    How interesting that Anne and Mary are so good for each other. Anne and Charlotte always seem to be the more obvious connection due to their circumstances.
    I agree with Glynis that M/M Gardiner are interesting due to their kindness to Jane and Elizabeth and clear affection for each other. Their backstory I imagine as pretty romantic.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Lynn char

    I have read Sketching Character (and loved it by the way) and have Dearest Friends downloaded to my kindle. I frequently enjoy novels that delve into the character of Caroline Bingley. I don’t mind if she’s all bad or has some redeeming qualities, it’s just always interesting to see what she’ll do next. I think bad girls must be fun to write, they can do and say such amusing things

    Liked by 3 people

    • That is an interesting choice of character Lynn, I don’t know many people who would like reading about Caroline Bingley, but what you said is very true! One of the things I like when she is a secondary character in a JAFF book is that we never know what to expect 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Laurie May Aquino

    Another book on my TBR, hooray!

    My favourite supporting character will always be Caroline Bingley. I’m not saying she’s secretly good inside, or the opposite– that she’s the ultimate villain. But her character has so much potential! She’s really driven, and she’ll give it her all, no matter how misguided. Whether portrayed as good or not, she can “support” the main characters by showing how they’ll react to her. It’s exciting!

    Liked by 3 people

    • You and Lynn are making me rethink about Caroline’s character Laurie! It’s true, she has been portrayed in so many ways, and there is so much potential to make her completly evil, or good at heart that she probably is one of the most interesting characters to develop. Much more interesting than Jane Bennet, for exemple. Thanks for your comment, I really liked Reading your thoughts on this.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. This sounds delightful! My favorite secondary character is Colonel Fitzwilliam (though that might be because of all the JAFF I’ve read with him at the forefront). And I love to hate Caroline Bingley and Lady Catherine.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Colonel Fitzwilliam is also my favourite Anna, along with Mary, who is my favourite Bennet sister. You can imagine what I thought about When Mary Met the Colonel right?
      But people are starting to make me thing of Caroline Bingley in a light I had not thought of before, and I think I don’t like to hate her, I’m just starting to think that I just like to have her, regardless of her good or bad intentions 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Mary

    I have a soft spot for Charlotte!! I think she’s incredibly shrewd,after all she’s the only one that hints to Lizzy that Darcy is attracted to her,hence his frequent calls to the Parsonage and his repeated delayed return to London.

    Of course Lizzy rejects this as absurd,but an an outsider looking in,Charlotte has a different perspective.

    Of course Chatlotte serves as a constant reminder of what Lizzy could have become had it not been for his letter that serves to clarify so many misunderstandings and perceived prejudices.

    This leads them to a new understanding and ultimately they realise they are the perfect foil for each other.

    Really enjoyed the excerpt. Thanks to all concerned.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I like Charlotte as well Mary, even if she is not a favourite of mine. It is curious how the person who willingly chose to spend the rest of her life with William Collins is portrayed as the wise one in many JAFF books isn’t it? Have you ever thought about that?
      Thanks for your comment, as always 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Favourite supporting male character: Mr Bennet. Unless you really think about how neglectful he has been to his family, he is quite lovable! LOL!
    Favourite supporting female character: Charlotte Lucas. She understands Elizabeth, and Darcy, long before Elizabeth does. And she certainly knows herself, which is more than Elizabeth can say until after she is put in her place by Mr Darcy’s letter.
    Many thanks for the excerpt and the giveaway!

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Patricia Finnegan

    I cannot tell you how long I have been anticipating this book’s release! I love your books!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Dung

    Great excerpt, love the bond between them. I always enjoy reading more about Col Fitzwilliam & Anne when they have more active roles.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Do you like when there a love interest between them Dung? He gets paired off with many characters, and even if I like him with Anne, I always prefer to see him with Georgiana, for exemple.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dung

        I actually prefer they have different love interest then within first cousins. I’m not a big fan of when Col Fitzwilliam and Georgiana end up together. I know it was popular back then for first cousins to marry, but it’s never sat comfortable with me because he was her guardian and they is such a large age gap. I’ve read many novels that is done tastefully, but still prefer otherwise.

        Like

  12. Lis

    Like Patricia Finnegan, I’ve been waiting for this book ever since I finished reading ‘Dearest Friends’. As to favourite supporting characters – Colonel Fitzwilliam must be my favourite male, I love stories where he gets a HEA as well as Darcy, and my top female supporting character is a toss up between Charlotte Lucas and Mary as they have the potential to be strong women in their own quiet way. Thank you for the excerpt and giveaway 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I love all your answers and find it curious that one person has been left out entirely–Lydia! She was featured heavily in Sketching Character and a good bit in Family Portraits as well. To me, she’s the typical teenager who has been left to her own devices far too much. I think there’s great ‘what-if’ potential there. I adore Colonel Fitzwilliam (in spite of what you read in Sketching Character) and have great plans for him in my next work. I also like reading about the implied characters–the elder Fitzwilliam brother and other Lucas siblings. On the flip side, a character I do not like is Kitty Bennet. I kept losing her in Family Portraits! Thanks for all the wonderful comments. Good luck in the giveaway!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. My favorite character is Col. Fitzwilliam. He is such a wonderful character and I enjoy all his interactions with Darcy. I only wish he wasn’t made into a love interest for Elizabeth so often in jaff.

    Like

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