Monthly Archives: October 2019

The Perfect Gentleman- Guest Post & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

I’m very happy to receive author Julie Cooper today with a guest post that I absolutely loved! She  has just released a novel called The Perfect Gentleman, and in it Elizabeth Bennet has to travel through England, so Julie Cooper decided to talk to us about travelling in the Regency Era. This is a topic that I find very interesting and every time I go to the UK I try to imagine what it would be like to travel in those days. I try to imagine how inns were run and how the changing of the horses would occur. I imagine how carriages were on the inside and where would they put all their belongings, etc.

I love this topic so much that I actually spend lots of time reading about it online, so you may imagine how much I loved Julie Cooper’s post! I hope you enjoy it too, and that you share your thoughts on it with us.

 


’Tis no secret that Lizzy Bennet has dreams. Uniquely talented, as the daughter of a mother with a certain reputation, Lizzy knows she must make her own way in a world that shuns her.

Fitzwilliam Darcy carries the stains to his family’s honour upon his soul, and only by holding himself to the strictest standards has he reclaimed his place in society. If his fifteen-year-old sister cannot be found quickly, scandal may destroy years of perfect behaviour.

Darcy has Secrets.

Lizzy has Clues.

Lizzy is willing to join the pursuit to get what she wants; Darcy is willing to trust her to get what he needs.

Until the search for Georgiana reveals more than either expected to find.

 

 

You can find The Perfect Gentleman at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 

 

 

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In my book, The Perfect Gentleman, Elizabeth Bennet finds herself on a Regency road trip across England. During the course of her adventure, she uses several different forms of transportation. She begins the journey in a rented hack; Darcy, who is used to his finely furnished vehicle, looks upon it with contempt, but it was, actually, quite comfortable in comparison to the stagecoach or “post” (referring to the posting inns where transportation could be purchased), and The Royal Mail—Lizzy refers to it simply as “the mail.”

The mail was the fastest form of transport, travelling at a ten mile per hour clip, because they did not have to pay tolls and kept to a rigid timetable. Unsurprisingly the mail it carried was the priority, not the passengers. By law, only four passengers were permitted inside the mail coach—remarkably roomy travelling conditions—but the fast speed and limited stops on early 19th century roads were difficult for many. Travelling by post was cheaper; most coaches held four to six passengers, but atop was a different story, and as many as were willing to brave the elements were allowed. Occasionally coaches overturned due to top-heaviness, and passengers up top were known to freeze or fall to their deaths.

Both post and the mail stopped to change horses every seven to ten miles, and a guard sounded a horn as they neared the inns so that the stableboys would be ready, like race car drivers pulling into the pit! Some sources state that these horse changes could be accomplished in just a few minutes, and especially in the case of the Royal Mail, one to three minutes was expected. I took poetic licence with both the post and the mail, combining the two experiences for Lizzy: she rode “atop” the mail coach and experienced the discomforts of the speed and the crowding of the post. However, at least some of her horse changes took a few minutes longer, so she could accomplish her detective work! But all of the inn names in The Perfect Gentleman existed in the towns as noted, and were actual posting stops.

In Regency times, when even walking alone was frowned upon for a gentlewoman, travelling alone by post was considered “fast” and unacceptable. The most respectable inns would expect a lady to be accompanied by at least a maidservant. Lizzy has to do some fast thinking to gain admission to one such inn, The Talbot, in Stamford!

One turn of the century manuscript, “The Coaching Era” by Violet Wilson, describes commercial travel in this poem:

 

A horn now told the near approach

Of some convenient, rapid coach;

 

And soon a vehicle and four

Appear’d at the Red Lion door:

 

Into his place the Doctor pounc’d:

The Coachman smack’d, and off they bounc’d.

 

A red-faced man, who snor’d and snorted,

A lady, with both eyes distorted,

 

And a young Miss of pleasing mien,

With all the life of gay sixteen.

 

A sudden jolt their slumbers broke;

They started all, and all awoke;

When Surly-boots yawn’d wide, and spoke,

 

“We move,” said he, “confounded slow!”

“La, Sir,” cried Miss, “how fast we go!”

 

While Madam, with a smirking face,

Declar’d it was o’ middling pace,

 

“Pray, what think you, Sir?” — “I agree,”

Said simp’ring Syntax, “with all three.

 

“Uphill, our course is rather slow,

“Down hill, now merrily we go!

 

“But when ’tis neither up nor down.

“It is a middling pace, I own.”

 

“O la!” cried Miss, “the thought’s so pretty!”

“O yes!” growled Red-face, “very witty!”

 

The Lady said, “If I can scan

“The temper of the gentleman,

 

“He’s one of those, I have no doubt.

“Who love to let his temper out.

 

“But we who — these stages roam,

“And leave our coach-and-four at home,

 

“Deserve our lot when thus we talk

“With those who were ordain’d to walk.”

 

My research for The Perfect Gentleman taught me—no matter the means of transport—travelling during the Regency era was no easy ride!


 

Julie Cooper, a California native, lives with her Mr Darcy (without the arrogance or the Pemberley) of nearly forty years, two dogs (one intelligent, one goofball), and Kevin the Cat (smarter than all of them.)  They have four children and three grandchildren, all of whom are brilliant and adorable, with the pictures to prove it. She works as an executive at a gift basket company and her tombstone will read, “Have your Christmas gifts delivered at least four days before the 25th.”  Her hobbies are reading, giving other people good advice, and wondering why no one follows it.


 

You can win a $50 Amazon gift card from Quills & Quartos Publishing! The contest ends on November 13. To be eligible, just comment on any of the blog tour stops and Quills & Quartos will select a random winner from the comments. You need not visit all the stops (one point per stop and comment), however, it does increase your chances of winning by earning more entries. Please check the Quills & Quartos Facebook to find out about winners.

Good Luck Everyone!


45 Comments

October 31, 2019 · 3:12 pm

The Bride of Northanger- Excerpt

Good Afternoon everyone,

I’m very happy to be sharing an excerpt of The Bride of Northanger with you today. There aren’t many Northanger Abbey inspired novels and this new novel from Diana Birchall appears to be perfect for this time of the year. I always considered Northanger Abbey had a lot of potential for gothic variations, which is perfect for Halloween, and that is exactly what I’m expecting from this novel, apart from a great character development of course.

What about you? Are you Team Tilney? Does Northanger Abbey spike your interest? I hope so, and I hope you enjoy the excerpt we have here today 🙂


 

A happier heroine than Catherine Morland does not exist in England, for she is about to marry her beloved, the handsome, witty Henry Tilney. The night before the wedding, Henry reluctantly tells Catherine and her horrified parents a secret he has dreaded to share – that there is a terrible curse on his family and their home, Northanger Abbey. Henry is a clergyman, educated and rational, and after her year’s engagement Catherine is no longer the silly young girl who delighted in reading “horrid novels”; she has improved in both reading and rationality. This sensible young couple cannot believe curses are real…until a murder at the Abbey triggers events as horrid and Gothic as Jane Austen ever parodied – events that shake the young Tilneys’ certainties, but never their love for each other…

 

 

 

You can find The Bride of Northanger at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 

 

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The dogs’ barking outside awoke Mrs. Henry Tilney, and she opened her eyes just at the moment her new husband opened his.

“How do you do, my Catherine?” he asked tenderly.

“Oh, I am very well. But I always am in the morning.”

“But this is a different sort of morning,” he reminded her archly, “the very first of our married life.”

She was lost in joyful contemplation of the doubtless unending succession of mornings that they would welcome together in perfect joy. As Henry then asked her what she thought of it, the answer required some explanation, which Henry then elaborated upon so eloquently that Catherine wished he might never stop. But upon their noticing with surprise that the sun was rising in the sky, much faster than it ever had been seen to do before, Henry considerately retired to his own room to prepare for the day, saying that he would send the maid to her, with a cup of chocolate.

The forenoon was spent in making a circuit of the parish. Henry introduced his bride to the parishioners and cottagers, all of whom made very much of her; and afterwards they retired to a survey of their own grounds, projecting plantings, and visiting the animals.

“It is the happiest day I ever spent,” Catherine declared, as they sat down to tea at their own table, spread with their own new china set, General Tilney’s wedding-present, which Catherine had not before seen.

He was a connoisseur in china, as in many other things, and Catherine could not but admire the delicate gold-and-white dishes and cups, in their prettiness and abundance, however empty was the sentiment behind the sending.

“Happiness is a very proper state in a new bride,” observed Henry, “and I may take the opportunity to tell you that I am happy, too. Upon my word, my father did us well! That is a set that might last us all our lives, even if we have as large a family as yours.”

Catherine blushed again at this reference, and then felt it ungracious to have a secret hope that using the china would not always make her think of the giver.

“The gold leaves are very pretty,” she said, taking up a cup. “I never saw any thing like these little symbols woven round the edges. Do they signify any thing, do you think?”

“I do not know. I had not observed,” said Henry, examining a saucer closely. “You are right, however, they look almost like letters, do they not?”

“Not in any language I ever saw. Is it Russian? Is it Hebrew? Is it Arabic?”

Henry squinted at length, and finally said, “No. I perceive they are English letters, but they are so very small, I do not think they can possibly be read without a magnification glass. We have not one here. I should have to send to Cambridge for such a thing.”

“Well, I wish you would. If there is some secret writing on our china, I should like to know what it says. Do you think your father knows about it?”

“Most certainly. My father does nothing without deliberation. And he had this china made up especially for you –he told me so, in the letter that accompanied it. I can’t comprehend what he means by this.”

“Perhaps the letters are a motto of some sort,” suggested Catherine. “My mother has a set of plates that have a blessing on them, and the words, Hunger is the Best Sauce.”

“Somehow I feel it is not that,” said Henry dryly.

The eyes of the young husband and wife met.

“’Tis very strange,” said Catherine. “Are you quite sure you cannot make out any words at all? I could not, but then I only know English.”

“It does not look like any thing else,” said Henry doubtfully, “it might be Latin, but so tiny…Does this look like the letter T to you?”

“Not very much – oh, yes, perhaps it might.”

“I think it is English. T, C, I…something…L, A, M, I believe, only the size of pinpoints.”

“But that does not mean any thing, Henry.”

“I cannot tell,” he said slowly, “but I think the letters may be written backwards. Then it could be – Maledict. No, surely not. I cannot make out any more.”

He put the saucer down, rather hard.

“That does not sound much like a blessing,” Catherine faltered.

The young couple sat silent, as they each thought of what the words might mean, and what was the opposite of a blessing.

“I suppose I must write to thank your father,” said Catherine reluctantly, “but Henry, I hope you will not take it amiss if I say I prefer not to use this set of china.”

“No, I’d like to break every piece,” he said savagely. (Chapter 3, pages 19 – 22)


 

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Diana Birchall worked for many years at Warner Bros studios as a story analyst, reading novels to see if they would make movies. Reading manuscripts went side by side with a restorative and sanity-preserving life in Jane Austen studies and resulted in her writing Austenesque fiction both as homage and attempted investigation of the secrets of Jane Austen’s style. She is the author of In Defense of Mrs. Elton, Mrs. Elton in America, Mrs. Darcy’s Dilemma, and the new The Bride of Northanger. She has written hundreds of Austenesque short stories and plays, as well as a biography of her novelist grandmother, and has lectured on her books and staged play readings at places as diverse as Hollywood, Brooklyn, Montreal, Chawton House Library, Alaska, and Yale. Visit Diana at her Austen Variations author page, follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads.

 


 

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The blog tour is just starting, so don’t forget to check out other blogs for more information on The Bride of Northanger.

October 28             My Jane Austen Book Club (Interview)

October 28             Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

October 28             vvb32 Reads (Spotlight)

October 29             A Covent Garden Gilflurt’s Guide of Life (Guest Blog)

October 29             From Pemberley to Milton (Excerpt)

October 30             Drunk Austen (Interview)

October 30             Silver Petticoat Review (Excerpt)

October 31             Jane Austen’s World (Review)

November 01          So Little Time… (Interview)

November 01          Laura’s Reviews (Review)

November 04          English Historical Fiction Authors (Guest Blog)

November 04          Confessions of a Book Addict (Spotlight)

November 05          More Agreeably Engaged (Review)

November 05          Vesper’s Place (Review)

November 06          Jane Austen in Vermont (Interview)

November 06          Diary of an Eccentric (Interview)         

November 07          All Things Austen (Spotlight)

November 07          A Bookish Way of Life (Review)

November 07          Let Them Read Books (Excerpt)

November 08          Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)

November 08          vvb32 Reads (Review)

November 11          My Jane Austen Book Club (Review)

November 11          Reading the Past (Spotlight)

November 12          Jane Austen’s World (Interview)

November 12          The Calico Critic (Excerpt)

November 13          The Book Rat (Review)

November 13          Austenesque Reviews (Review)

November 14          Fangs, Wands, & Fairy Dust (Review)

November 14          The Fiction Addiction (Review)

November 15          My Love for Jane Austen (Spotlight)

November 15          Scuffed Slippers and Wormy Books (Review)


6 Comments

October 29, 2019 · 2:59 pm

A Covenant of Marriage – Cover Reveal

Good Afternoon everyone,

It’s been a while since I’ve done a cover reveal, and you know how much I love those, so I’m super excited to be sharing with all of you the cover of C.P. Odom’s new book: A Covenant of Marriage.

This book has a forced marriage scenario, which is one of my favourite premises, and I haven’t read one of those in a while, so I’m looking forward to see what Colin has prepared for us.

This book will be released around the 29th of October but you can start pre-ordering it today! If you want to know more about it, here is the book blurb.


 

A Covenant of Marriage—legally binding, even for an unwilling bride!

Defined as a formal, solemn, and binding agreement or compact, a covenant is commonly used with regard to relations among nations or as part of a contract. But it can also apply to a marriage as Elizabeth Bennet learns when her father binds her in marriage to a man she dislikes. Against her protests that she cannot be bound against her will, the lady is informed that she lives under her father’s roof and, consequently, is under his control; she is a mere pawn in the proceedings.

With such an inauspicious beginning, how can two people so joined ever make a life together.

A Covenant of Marriage is available for pre-order at Amazon.com.


What do you think? It sounds interesting doesn’t it? The cover is also very appealing, and just based on it I think I would be curious about the book! You know me, I do judge a book by its cover 🙂 But without further ado, here it is!

Covenant_cover.indd

 

Isn’t it beautiful? I find it very classy and appealing and I have to congratulate Ellen Pickels for another wonderful cover!

I am partial to covers with silhouettes and quills in them and A Covenant of Marriage has both in it, which means it is perfect in my eyes. When I see covers like these I immediately want to buy the paperbacks.

I wonder if the letter that is present in the cover has any connection to the story, and what does it mean. When I see covers I always search for details that may give me more information about the book and usually those come in the back cover. In this case, I think we can certainly say that more details are brought to our attention, and I love the ambience that is created in the image on the back cover. I can perfectly imagine a scene of Mr. Darcy arranging settlement details with Mr. Bennet while Elizabeth stands outside waiting to know what was decided for her future. But maybe I’m reading too much into it, what do you think?

Overall I think the book cover is very well achieved, and it made me want to read the book even more 🙂 Let us know what you think of it, and don’t forget, the book will be out around the 29th and you can follow the blog tour from the 5th onwards.


 

By training, I’m a retired engineer, born in Texas, raised in Oklahoma, and graduated from the University of Oklahoma. Sandwiched in there was a stint in the Marines, and I’ve lived in Arizona since 1977, working first for Motorola and then General Dynamics.

I raised two sons with my first wife, Margaret, before her untimely death from cancer, and my second wife, Jeanine, and I adopted two girls from China. The older of my daughters recently graduated with an engineering degree and is working in Phoenix, and the younger girl is heading toward a nursing degree.

I’ve always been a voracious reader and collector of books, and my favorite genres are science fiction, historical fiction, histories, and, in recent years, reading (and later writing) Jane Austen romantic fiction. This late-developing interest was indirectly stimulated when I read my late wife’s beloved Jane Austen books after her passing. One thing led to another, and I now have four novels published: A Most Civil Proposal (2013), Consequences (2014), Pride, Prejudice, and Secrets (2015), and Perilous Siege (2019). Two of my books are now audiobooks, Most Civil Proposal and Pride, Prejudice, and Secrets.

I retired from engineering in 2011, but I still live in Arizona with my family, a pair of dogs (one of which is stubbornly untrainable), and a pair of rather strange cats. My hobbies are reading, woodworking, and watching college football and LPGA golf (the girls are much nicer than the guys, as well as being fiendishly good putters). Lately I’ve reverted back to my younger years and have taken up building plastic model aircraft and ships (when I can find the time).

 

 

Contact Info:

Colin Odom Facebook page

  1. P. Odom Amazon Author page
  2. P. Odom Goodreads page
  3. P. Odom Meryton Press page

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The blog tour for A Covenant of Marriage will take off next month at A Covent Garden Gilfurt’s Guide to Life, don’t forget to follow it to see all the guest posts, excerpts and reviews that my fellow bloggers will publish:

11/05 A Covent Garden Gilflurt’s Guide to Life

11/06 More Agreeably Engaged

11/07 From Pemberley to Milton

11/08 Half Agony, Half Hope

11/09 My Love for Jane Austen

11/11 Diary of an Eccentric

11/12 Darcyholic Diversions

11/14 Margie’s Must Reads

11/15 Austenesque Reviews

11/16 My Jane Austen Book Club

11/17 Babblings of a Bookworm

11/18 My Vices and Weaknesses

11/19 Interests of a Jane Austen Girl

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Thanks for stopping by and see you on the 7th of November 🙂


35 Comments

Filed under JAFF

Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions – Review & Giveaway

Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions storyline is very different from canon but it is clean, simple and captivating because it avoids major alterations that could scare away the reader.

The main difference in this book is that the Bennet family lives in Derbyshire and Mr. Bennet is a vicar whose patron is Mr. Darcy. The vicarage is but a mile away from Pemberley and Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy have known each other their entire lives. This changes everything in the story because when the book starts we see that Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth are good friends and she is someone whose opinions he values and from whom he seeks advice. I found their relationship and comradery very soothing, and the Pemberley setting enhanced that feeling. Most of the story is placed at Pemberley and the restricted scenario along with the relationship between the main characters made this book a very agreeable story.

Unlike other books, Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions doesn’t start with a conflict or dislike between the main characters. Darcy and Elizabeth’s conflict free relationship was something I enjoyed during most of the book and I only wish Mr. Darcy hadn’t been so obtuse for so long. He had some attitudes that I didn’t like, but somehow, in this book, I could understand them. I believe that Maria Grace should be praised for her writing skills, because in fact, Darcy’s character is a little different then canon, but I loved him nonetheless.

The conflict only appears when Mr. Darcy decides to throw a house party with several guests, namely the Bingley’s, Anne De Bourgh, Col. Fitzwilliam and the Garlands, two original characters who will be the cause of much turmoil. I found those characters very interesting in the beginning of the book, but as the story advanced, I started to feel some discomfort towards them. If I think about their dialogues and behavior during the entire story, I can’t figure them out, and that was the main quibble I had with this book. I wish their motives and evolution as characters had been made more clear to the reader.

The other major difference in the story is Georgiana’s character. She is portrayed as someone with dyslexia, and that changes her personality because at the time people didn’t know what that was or how to properly teach students with dyslexia, which means her tutors thought she was either dumb or lazy due to her difficulties in reading or writing. She causes Darcy many headaches throughout the entire story and to be honest I liked that change in this book. Elizabeth’s creates a bridge between Darcy and Georgiana due to her maturity and understanding and I enjoyed to see her on that role.

Overall, this story is very pleasant and it gave me a feeling of comfort. It is clean, sweet and mature, which was one of the things I loved the most about the book. Elizabeth knows Mr. Darcy like no other and he loves her as the result of years of companionship. This maturity in their feelings is not always seen in JAFF and I loved it. I’ve seen some contradictory opinions about this book, and some readers may think that Elizabeth’s personality is not true to canon, but that was the whole point of this book. Elizabeth is not Mr. Darcy’s equal on Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions and readers who accept that will enjoy it immensely, I know I did and I usually don’t like books that don’t follow canon. I definitely recommend this book to readers who like cozy, sweet romances.

 

You can find Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 


Maria Grace would like to offer one ebook of Fine Eyes & Pert Opinions to one of my readers. The giveaway is international and is open until the 3rd of November. To apply to it, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post and share your opinion on the blurb or review with us. The giveaway winner will be announced shortly after.

Good luck everyone!


 

16 Comments

Filed under JAFF

Jane Austen’s Ghost – Excerpt

Good Morning everyone,

How is October treating you so far? It is already cold in my part of the world and autumn is definitely set here. This weather always makes me want to stay home, grab a hot beverage and read something interesting, and even if in Portugal we don’t celebrate Halloween, I had vouched that this month I would only read paranormal books with a hot coffee in front of me. Unfortunately, that hasn’t happen yet. I have stayed very little time at home and I haven’t read any paranormal books yet. But I am happy to welcome author Jennifer Kloester with an excerpt of Jane Austen’s Ghost because that is in line with the paranormal theme:)

It is the first time I am receiving Jennifer Kloester at From Pemberley to Milton and I am very happy to be working with her team to promote Jane Austen’s Ghost. As you know, I am a big fan of the paranormal and this Austen inspired book really caught my attention. I am eager to have a chance to read it.

I hope you all enjoy the excerpt and share with us your thoughts on this book. It will be released on October 29th, but you can pre-order it already on Amazon.com.

Thank you so much for visiting Ms. Kloester and happy reading everyone!

 


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A masterpiece of wit, ingenuity and impeccable style, Regency maven Jennifer Kloester brings the great Jane Austen into the modern world in this enchanting, exhilarating adventure of love, literature and life everlasting…

With her life a mess, Cassandra Austin seeks refuge in Winchester with her eccentric great-aunt – but Aunty B has problems of her own. Ghost problems.

Cassie doesn’t believe in ghosts but she’ll do anything to help the only person who’s ever loved her. Besides, a simple spell in the cathedral crypt couldn’t do any harm, could it? Well, except for the two-hundred-year-old curse on Jane Austen, that is.

Overnight, life is suddenly a whole lot weirder and it’s up to Cassie to save the day with the help of a dour Bishop, two literary geniuses, a couple of wise-cracking geriatrics and the enigmatic Oliver Carling.

Magic and mystery abound in this genre-bending contemporary-historical paranormal romance with a Regency twist.

 

Jane Austen’s Ghost is not yet out, but you can preorder it at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 

The book will be automatically delivered to you on October 29th.

 

 


Prologue

Carlton House Library

London

November 22nd, 1816

 

‘MARRY you?’ repeated Jane, and there was that in her voice which ought to have given him pause.

‘It would be an honour, Miss Austen.’

‘I fear it would be too great an honour for me, Mr Clarke.’ Jane laid down the book of prints she had been perusing and eyed her unlikely suitor with disfavour. Rising from her elegant gilt chair she added firmly, ‘I assure you that I am well past the marrying age.’

The Reverend James Stanier Clarke folded plump hands across his tight velvet waistcoat. ‘It is indeed true that you are no longer in the first blush of youth.’ He nodded with a satisfied air. ‘But I am confident that the tone of your mind, your principles and literary attainments will more than compensate for those other things which a gentleman generally looks for in his bride.’ He wiped his glistening forehead with a large red handkerchief and reached for her hand.

Jane took a hasty step backwards and gestured towards the magnificent bookcase. ‘Such intricate woodwork. I assure you I never saw a palace as beautiful as Carlton House.’

‘Its beauty is only enhanced by your presence, dear Miss Austen.’ Mr Clarke smiled and, to Jane’s dismay, stepped towards her.

She quickly lifted an elegant volume from the shelf. ‘I see the Prince Regent has a taste for Miss Burney’s books. Here is a copy of Camilla.’ She opened it. ‘And signed to His Majesty, King George. How delightful. I must confess, however, that I prefer Evelina.’

‘As always, we are in agreement, Miss Austen. I am in no doubt that our months – nay – our year of shared correspondence has shown you how entirely your taste in literature, as in so many other things, accords with my own.’

‘You place a great deal too much weight on a few letters, sir. I cannot—’

‘A few letters?’ Mr Clarke frowned. ‘Never say so. Why, I have counted six at least between us since your first visit to this library little more than a year ago. And then there are your novels, Miss Austen.’

‘My novels, sir?’ Jane was puzzled.

‘In which members of the clergy figure so largely. I cannot conceive of any type of man who would make you a better husband than a clergyman.’

Jane suppressed the bubble of laughter that rose within her and looked at him in wonder. ‘Do you think I should enjoy being married to Mr Collins, sir, or do you prefer Mr Elton?’

Mr Clarke considered the question with such ponderous gravity that she itched to seize quill, ink and paper from the nearby secretaire and set down the preposterous scene. At last he said, ‘I cannot, of course, answer for either of those gentlemen but, for my own part, I think us an ideal match.’ He held up a hand to silence her protest. ‘If you will but consider: I am a clergyman and you are a clergyman’s daughter. You have also two brothers who are clergymen. How well you would understand me, what support you would give me in writing my sermons and I, in my turn, could assist you with your stories. I have several ideas that—’

‘I am aware of your ideas, sir.’ Jane’s voice grew cold and her hazel eyes glittered. ‘You have already shared several of them with me in our brief correspondence.’

He smiled, his thin lips parting to reveal yellowed teeth and ruddy gums and she eyed his stout, middle-aged figure with increasing dislike. He did not seem to notice but said with a smug certainty that only made her long to box his ears, ‘There, I knew you would understand. Imagine how it will be when we are married. Two like minds working together as one. I can see us now, living in complete accord, reading and writing our books together in happy understanding.’ He surged towards her across the sumptuous crimson carpet and Jane, finding her back hard up against the Regent’s bookcase, suffered him to take her hands in his.

Mr Clarke sank slowly to one knee, his black clergyman’s breeches straining across his mutton thighs until she thought they must surely split at the seams. As he bowed his head Jane found herself staring down at his shiny pink pate. It glistened through his thin sandy locks and she saw he had grown his hair long enough to comb it across. It was a poor sop to vanity, she decided, and did nothing to lessen her revulsion. She wrinkled her fine, straight nose just as her suitor, unaware of being thus exposed to his chosen bride, launched into speech.

‘My dear Miss Austen.’ He gazed adoringly up at her, his florid face shining with perspiration. ‘My dear Miss Austen, make me the happiest of men and say you will be mine.’

Jane tugged her hands free. ‘Please get up, Mr Clarke.’

‘Never! Not until you say “yes”.’

‘Then you shall be on your knees for a very long time. The truth is we should not suit.’

This pronouncement brought him to his feet in an instant. ‘Not suit? Not suit? I do not see how that may be. Not when you are the very woman for me and I am the ideal man for you.’

She shook her head resolutely and spoke with a civility she was far from feeling, ‘I thank you for your kind offer but I beg you will accept my refusal. It is from one who has long ago decided against entering the married state.’

His expression became mulish. ‘It is your Duty to marry. It is every female’s responsibility to marry.’

‘But not where there is no love,’ countered Jane. ‘I firmly believe that anything is to be preferred or endured rather than marrying without affection.’

‘But I love you.’ He spoke with the air of one making an irrefutable pronouncement.

Ignoring the inward tremor his declaration evoked, Jane enunciated carefully. ‘You do not even know me. You have created a mythical creature in your mind of the woman whom you seek to wed. Let me assure you that I am not she. Indeed, had you seen me in my own home, among my own set, with my friends and family just as I always am, then perhaps you might have formed a just judgement of me. As it is, our acquaintance has been of the shortest duration and what little we know of each other has been expressed only in the occasional courteous letter.’

She set her hat on her brown curls, lay her long red stole across her shoulders and took her fur muff from the Boulle table upon which she had laid it on her arrival. Drawing herself up with unnatural haughtiness she said with a crispness that belied her pounding heart, ‘I am ready to meet the Prince Regent now.’

‘I am afraid that will not be possible.’ Mr Clarke spoke coldly.

‘Indeed? But did not the Regent invite me here? Your letter explicitly stated that His Royal Highness regretted not having met me here last November and wished me to return so that he might thank me himself for the pleasure of reading Emma. I assure you, Mr Clarke, that the Prince’s command is the only reason I am here. In general, my health does not allow me to undergo the exigence of travel.’

‘I apologize for the inconvenience, Madam, but there will be time enough for you to meet the Prince Regent once we are wed.’ He held out his hands to her, ‘You see, Miss Austen, His Royal Highness expected you here in the capacity of my affianced wife. He was most pleased when I told him we were to be married.’

Jane gasped. ‘How dared you tell him such a thing?’ Her heart was beating so fast she wondered she did not faint. ‘It is an odious lie.’

‘I am certain that if you consider the advantages of the match you will think differently.’

‘Indeed, I shall not. Oh, what can I say that will convince you that we should not suit?’

‘Nothing at all, for my mind is made up.’ He nodded wisely. ‘You will learn to trust my judgement in time, my dear Miss Austen, for you of all people have long recognized the superiority of the male intellect. Why, your books abound with men of sound judgment, and all of them with wives or daughters to manage.’

‘Like Mr John Dashwood, I suppose?’ Jane barely concealed her disgust.

‘Yes, or Mr Woodhouse. Now there is a man of great good sense.’

‘I am glad you think so,’ she retorted. ‘But if you believe that your good opinion of two of the most selfish, thoughtless men ever written into my books will convince me to marry you, you are sadly mistaken.’

‘And yet marry me you will. Whether you wish it or no.’

A chill ran down Jane’s spine. She watched his tongue flicker across his lips and saw the carnal hunger in his eyes and knew she had never met a man who repulsed her more than James Stanier Clarke. For one wild moment she considered taking refuge behind the Regent’s graceful Louis XVI desk, but forced herself to stand firm. Meeting Mr Clarke’s hungry stare with as much dignity as she could muster, she pulled her stole tightly about her and turned her back on him. Then, with her chin held high and trying not to tremble lest he seize her from behind, she marched to the door, before turning to face him one last time.

‘Mr Clarke.’ Jane was glad to hear her voice sound calm and steady. ‘Mr Clarke, let me assure you once and for all – for I can promise you, we shall never meet again – that you are the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed upon to marry.’ She dropped a slight curtsey, turned away and closed the door sharply behind her.

James Stanier Clarke stood listening until the sound of her footsteps had passed beyond hearing. When all was silent he moved to a chair by the window and sat down, his gaze lingering on the small, ornate table so recently home to Miss Austen’s hat and stole.

‘I must not do it. I am a man of God.’ He muttered the words a dozen times, before moving abruptly to the bookcase. Here he traced his fingertips across the books’ embossed bindings until he found Camilla. Easing it from its place, he held it gingerly between his finger and thumb. ‘Undoubtedly her taste walks hand in hand with mine. It is merely that she cannot see. If she only knew how ardently I admire and love her, she would think differently.’

He carried Camilla to the Boulle table, spread out his handkerchief and carefully laid the book upon it. Delving into his coat pocket he drew forth a piece of fur from Miss Austen’s muff and a red feather stolen from her elegant black hat and placed them on the book. Turning to the secretaire, he withdrew three letters from the drawer, kissed each one tenderly and added them to the pile. He carefully tied his handkerchief around the items, then sat and stared at the bundle until the clock on the mantelpiece chimed the hour.

Prompted by the sound, Mr Clarke took a key from the fob at his waist and turned it in his fingers.

‘Dare I do it?’ he whispered. ‘It is dangerous to be sure, but would I not risk all for her? I would, indeed I would. The book came to me, called to me. Is that not a sign?’ He unlocked a drawer and withdrew a heavy black volume. It was worn with age, with faded symbols tooled into the heavy leather cover. A curiously-wrought metal clasp in the shape of talons held it shut. Forcing the talons apart, he carefully turned the thick parchment pages. With every page his smile grew, and once or twice he laughed softly. He was nearly three-quarters of the way through the book before he found what he was looking for and a greedy smile spread across his face as he savoured the ancient names. When at last he had finished reading, the Reverend James Stanier Clarke laid his hands over the heavy black text and chuckled triumphantly, ‘I promise you this, Miss Jane Austen. I promise that we shall meet again. Oh, yes. Whether it be in this life or the next, we shall most certainly meet again.’


 

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Jennifer Kloester first read Georgette Heyer’s novels while living in the jungle in Papua New Guinea and re-read them while living in the desert in Bahrain. In 2004, she completed a Doctorate on Georgette Heyer and her Regency Novels. Since then she has written extensively about Heyer and the Regency and has given writing workshops and public presentations in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand. She is the author of Georgette Heyer’s Regency World and Georgette Heyer: Biography of a Bestseller. Jennifer also writes fiction; her novel Jane Austen’s Ghost is out October 29, 2019.

 

You can contact Jennifer Kloester throught the following social media:

Twitter: @JenKloester

Instagram: @jenkloester

Facebook: /JenniferKloesterAuthor

Web: jenniferkloester.com

Goodreads: JenniferKloester

 


5 Comments

October 17, 2019 · 9:32 am

Books on sale today

Good Afternoon everyone,

I know I have published something an hour ago, but I was perusing Amazon to see what is new when I started discovering several JAFF books on sale. I started sharing these sales on Facebook, but the list just kept growing, so I thought it would be better to compile all these sales in one single place, hence this post. This is not something I usually do, but I was truly impressed with the number of books that are currently on sale and thought you might like to know about them, so here they are:

Jane Austen Fan Fiction on sale

Steady to His Purpose – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

What if Elizabeth Bennet was compromised during that unchaperoned half-hour in the Netherfield library with Fitzwilliam Darcy? Would they still have their happily-ever-after? This story begins as Elizabeth and Jane Bennet return home after their brief stay at Netherfield Park.

Meryton Medley – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

A collection of four clean, sweet Regency romance stories.
“Her Derbyshire Friend” – What if Elizabeth responded to Darcy’s letter? Would our dear couple find their way to each other? This story begins the day after the Hunsford Proposal.
“Hunsford Day” – The day of the Hunsford proposal is repeated over and over, Groundhog Day style; from Elizabeth’s point of view. This out-of-character story begins after the disastrous Hunsford proposal.
“Secret Valentine” – What if Elizabeth received a series of valentines from a secret admirer? This short story is not intended to change any events in our favorite story.
“Frog Pride” – What if Darcy was a prince with a spell cast on him by evil Catherine? (A short and clean Pride and Prejudice / Frog Prince fantasy.)

 

Mary Bennet: A Novella in the Personages of Pride & Prejudice Collection -0,99$

Book Blurb:

Now that all her sisters have left home, long-neglected Mary Bennet finds herself the focus of her mother’s attention. Mrs. Bennet intends to find the perfect match for her bookish, socially awkward daughter, and Mary wants nothing more than to please her mother.

But when Mary receives the gift of a large dowry, Mrs. Bennet is no longer content to find her daughter an ordinary husband. He must be rich as well as landed. Now the center of Meryton society, Mary realizes her dream of being noticed, but will she find herself ill-equipped to handle the attention? Will her moralizing ways scare away her mother’s choice of suitor?

But more importantly, can Mary please her family without losing herself in the process?

Mary Bennet is a novella of approximately 33,000 words.

 

A Gentleman’s Mistake – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

Every man knows finding a wife is a crucial and delicate subject, but any man with wealth and station must surely find himself a suitable woman to wed if he intends on having a life of prosperity and abundance – or, at the very least, if he intends on being a dutiful citizen and fine example of a gentleman.

Such an exhausting position was the very place that Fitzwilliam Darcy had found himself in. And yet, though many an eligible young woman was available, he could not imagine entering the bonds of matrimony with anyone who lacked wit, decorum or intelligence – creating the perfect storm of inopportunity and frightening him into fleeing at the mere mention of the word marriage. That is, until one damsel in distress, Elizabeth Bennet’s need for rescuing disrupts his day, and places the two of them in a compromising position unchaperoned.

Elizabeth Bennet is facing her own dilemma with her mother’s incessant worrying over her daughters’ fates and finding them ideal husbands who can care for them. In fact, Elizabeth is mortified at her mother’s lack of discretion and the way her family has been viewed by others in their city due to her mother’s blatancy. She becomes consumed with worry and humiliation over how to not to upset her parents, and yet still be true to her own heart. She is distraught when she learns that Mr. Darcy comes from a family that holds a great deal of influence and importance on social propriety. Frustrated upon realizing that Mr. Darcy has a prejudice against her and her family due to the behavior of her family members, Elizabeth is stunned when Darcy states as much.

Disturbed by his lack of consideration, Elizabeth questions if Mr. Darcy is as kind and helpful as he first presented himself to be when rescuing her. Elizabeth soon begins courting her sister’s fiancé’s cousin, Archibald – who is hopeful about finding a wife of his own and seems intent on having Elizabeth’s hand – placing a rift between Elizabeth and Darcy as Archibald begins making plans on how to propose and if he should. Terrified that Elizabeth might accept Archibald’s proposal, Darcy feels torn between his true feelings and what others will think should he overstep his boundaries.

Will Darcy finally admit to his feelings or risk losing the only woman he can actually see himself spending the rest of his life alongside?

 

For the Sake of her Happiness – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

“For The Sake of Her Happiness” is a clean, romantic novella of about 30 K words that brings Darcy and Elizabeth together in Kent, in the beauty of Rosings Park.

At that point, their relationship is quite similar to the original; however, one small incident will change things completely.

What should a private man like Fitzwilliam Darcy do with the torment in his heart, if there is not a single living soul he trusted enough to share it? Writing his turmoil in a diary, of course!

But when the haste made him drop the precious possession in the grass and, and someone read it before he realized the loss and returned to claim it, the circumstances changed – for the better.

By the time the relationship slowly improved between our dear couple, most distressing news interrupted Elizabeth’s visit and demanded her presence in town.

What could Darcy do when the woman he loved suddenly left, with no apparent reason? Follow her and do everything for the sake of her happiness – of course!

 

In a More Amiable Light – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

“In a More Amiable Light” is a clean, fresh, romantic novella of approximately 30 000 words, that follows Elizabeth and Jane in London, when they visit their Aunt and Uncle Gardiner.
Both sisters are hurt after Mr. Bingley’s hasty departure from Netherfield, although their suffering differs. One of them is trying to mend her broken heart and the other one tries to soothe her anger against those who hurt her sister. Jane and Elizabeth are unexpectedly reacquainted with the men who will change their lives forever.
“In a More Amiable Light” is the first Austenesque attempt of a man who has been in love with reading and with Jane Austen’s books all his life but has tried his pen only in other genres so far.
The author hopes the readers will give this story a try, so he gains enough courage for another longer and more complex project.

 

Ruined Forever – 1,99$

Book Blurb:

Mr. Collins is rightly angered when Elizabeth Bennett refuses his honorable offer of marriage.

Sadly that is the last emotion he experiences. Which gives the gossips of Meryton a delightful piece of news to gossip over – Miss Elizabeth Bennett has pushed her cousin, her father’s heir, down the stairs to his death!

Elizabeth Bennett, Murderess? Oh, shocking, shameful scandal.
Someone must speak for her before she is ruined forever.
Fortunately, a new arrival in the neighborhood – a Mr. Darcy – read law at Cambridge and is willing to be of use to Miss Elizabeth.

The Pursuite of Mary Bennet – 1,99$

Book Blurb:

A tale of love and marriage, society balls and courtship, class and a touch of scandal, Pamela Mingle’s The Pursuit of Mary Bennet is a fresh take on one of the most beloved novels of all time, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Growing up with four extraordinary sisters—beautiful and confident Jane and Elizabeth, and flirtatious and lighthearted Lydia and Kitty—wasn’t easy for an awkward bookworm like Mary Bennet. But with nearly all of her sisters married and gone from the household, the unrefined Mary has transformed into an attractive and eligible young woman in her own right.

When another scandal involving Lydia and Wickham threatens the Bennet house, Mary and Kitty are packed off to visit Jane and her husband, Charles Bingley, where they meet the dashing Henry Walsh. Eager and naïve, Mary is confused by Henry’s attentions, even as she finds herself drawing closer to him. Could this really be love—or the notions of a foolish girl unschooled in the art of romance and flirtation?

 

Tom: To Secure his Legacy – FREE

Book Blurb:

Sometimes, when a gentleman wants to secure his future and mend the errors of his past, all he needs is Faith.

Tom Bertram spent his life chasing pleasure until a gate proved too tall for his horse. Now, having faced his own mortality, he is a changed man. He plans to be all that he should be so that he can secure his legacy. If only he had paid more attention to his lessons, he would be able to fix his follies on his own. However, he did not, and now, he must enlist the help of a financial expert.

Faith Eldridge has witnessed the devastation of living to excess and possesses the skills necessary to protect her future from such calamity. Despite her best efforts to keep her activities secret, her talent has not gone unnoticed, and she soon finds herself in a position to lend aid to a gentleman in desperate need of assistance in recouping his losses.

When Tom meets Faith, he doesn’t realize that they have met before — well, they have sort of met before — but that’s a secret Faith hopes to keep Tom from discovering. However, when her student turns out to be as clever as he is handsomely distracting, and when Tom finds his tutor more than a trifle alluring, can any secret be concealed? And when tragedy strikes, can Tom secure both his legacy and his heart, or will his heart be the price he must pay for his former behaviour?

Tom: To Secure his Legacy is the fourth episode in Leenie Brown’s Other Pens, Mansfield Park series of books. If you like well-written stories with charmingly resolute heroes bent on bettering their lives and practical yet compassionate heroines determined to choose their own future, then you will enjoy this story about overcoming the past and learning that love is far more valuable than a healthy financial portfolio.

So, put the kettle on, grab your copy of Tom: To Secure his Legacy, and discover with Tom and Faith that taking risks is necessary when securing a happily ever after.

 

Monica Fairview on sale for 0,99$ (regency, not JAFF)

 

An Improper Suitor – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

A lady in possession of a fortune has no need for a husband. Julia Swifton, secure in that belief, has no interest in finding one, not even after three seasons in London. That is, until her grandmother reveals her plans to marry her to a notorious rake, Lord Thorwynn. Julia will do anything not to marry him, but when he proposes a false engagement for reasons of his own, she plays along. That will solve the problem, she thinks.

Lord Thorwynn is perfectly happy with his lifestyle, but a chance encounter forces him into a disagreeable situation. A temporary engagement to bluestocking Miss Swifton will resolve his difficulty and he will walk away free.

However, as feelings between them flare up, it isn’t long before both of them realize that they’re in more of a muddle than they thought.

This traditional romantic romp through Regency society by Kindle bestselling author Monica Fairview will make you smile.

 

The Unexpected Duke – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

“Did you sleep well, Duchess?” In the small space of the carriage, his voice seemed to be purring.
“You could have pushed me away.”
“I did.” His voice was amused. “But you came back.”
A carriage accident, an inheritance, and broken promises.
It was supposed to be an arranged marriage. Isabella and James had agreed on the terms, which did not involve living together. But when James unexpectedly succeeds to the title, he is determined to redeem the family name, and for that he needs Isabella to be with him.
Meanwhile, Isabella has no intention of playing the role of a model wife, especially when a marriage of convenience means having to deal with a crumbling mansion and a demanding duke who is a stranger. She counters by setting new terms. Only, now that she is getting to know him, she discovers an unexpected side to him.
Will the two of them be able to stick to the agreed terms, or will the unexpected happen? Will love bring them together when marriage did not?

A Merry Christmas Chase – o,99$

Book Blurb:

When the new Earl at Sorrelgate Lodge catches Cherry poaching, she manages to escape before he discovers her identity. But the Earl is serious about catching his poacher and bringing “him” to justice, so Cherry flees to her estranged rich aunt. Imagine her dismay when she discovers that the Earl is a house guest there for the whole Twelve Days of Christmas! She quickly has to improvise to throw him off the scent.

Lord Carsdale is attending the Christmas house party to find a wife, but there is something very odd about Lady Ashburn’s niece. At first he does everything he can to avoid her, but soon catches glimpses of someone else behind the mask she wears. As Carsdale becomes more and more intrigued, he is unaware that she is leading him on a merry chase in which the boundary between the hunter and the hunted quickly gets hopelessly tangled.

A Sweet Traditional Regency romance that will warm the cockles of your heart.


 

I hope this has been helpfull everyone!

Happy Reading!

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The Giveaway Winners are…

Good Afternoon everyone,

I hope you’re having a lovely week!

I hope you are all well on your side of the world.

I am a little stressed today because I’ve been travelling through the Balkans for the past two weeks and I’ll fly to Thailand tomorrow after being home for only one day. I’m not complaining, I do love to travel and this month will be awesome when it comes to travelling, but I should have returned home a little earlier to have more time to prepare everything for the next trip. Anyway, I’m here today to share with you some good news.

Lory Lilian has recently released an angsty book called TORN and she visited From Pemberley to Milton two weeks ago to talk a little about it. On that visit she also promoted a giveaway of two ebooks. She knows not all readers love angsty novels, so she didn’t restrict the giveaway to TORN, but opened it to all books from her portfolio. I would like to thank Lory for being such an awesome guest, and for the generosity in offering not one but two ebooks to my readers 🙂 I would also like to thank all of you who took the time to comment and share your opinions with us! It is always much more interesting to see what you have to tell us about JAFF books 🙂

Now, without further ado, the randomly chosen winners for the giveaway are:

 

*** Mary-Ann Perras ***

*** Kelly Miller ***

 

Congratulations everyone! Can you please contact me through e-mail ritaluzdeodato at gmail dot com, tell me which is your book of choice and provide me the e-mail address to which it should be sent?

Thank you so much!

Happy Reading!

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10 Reasons why Audiobooks are Amazing

Good Afternoon everyone,

It’s been a long time since I’ve published a post about Audiobooks and I think it is about time I re-introduce this topic in my blog. Why? Because not only Audiobooks are awesome, but also because I’ve been listening to a lot of them. It is because of Audiobooks I’m being able to keep my yearly reading challenges in Goodreads, and this means I’ve been reviewing quite a few audiobooks here at From Pemberley to Milton.

But every time I review a book I’ve listened to on Audible, I feel something is missing. I’m not happy with the structure I use to review them and I’ve been working on new strategies to review audiobooks in an organized and harmonized manner, so I’ve finally came up with a rating system that I believe will help me and my readers to clearly identify the quality of the narration.

Apart from the usual stars rating system that I will continue to use concerning the story itself, I will now use the Bennet Sisters rating system to appraise the narration.

The Bennet Sisters rating system will be as follows:

Elizabeth Bennet – Perfect! There is no way this narration could have been better, everyone wants to get to this level.

 

 

Jane Bennet – Pretty good! The narration is lovely and adorable but it isn’t the Elizabeth Bennet everyone wants to be.

 

 

Mary Bennet – Not bad, but not that good either. The narration is pretty much like Mary: simply plain.

 

 

Kitty Bennet – It is not very good, but there is still hope for improvement.

 

 

Lydia Bennet – It is hopeless case. It will never get better.

 

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What do you think? Does it make sense? I hope this makes sense to you and that you find this new format of reviewing audiobooks helpful 🙂

Additionally I will have to create a new page on my blog fully dedicated to audiobooks, but that will have to happen only when I have some free time to revamp the entire blog design (a project that has been in the pipeline for the last 2 years!).

I’ve recently done a survey on this blog to try to understand which type of reviews people enjoyed the most, and audiobooks had a very low percentage of replies, but still, since I am listening to them, I think it is only fair I also rate the narration.

It is also my impression that this is a market that is continually growing, so I’m hoping more and more people will join me in the love for audiobooks. If you’re not into them yet, here is why you should give it a try:

1 – Time saver 

With Audiobooks you can ‘read’ a book while walking/cleaning/driving etc, and this means not only that you can save time because you are multitasking, but it also means you will be entertained while doing boring tasks. My commutes to work are incredibly long, and without audiobooks I think I would get to work much more stressed. Audiobooks keep me company and distract me from the city stress while stuck in traffic. The same thing applies to my walks or even the chores I do at home. If I’m listening to an audiobook I don’t get the feeling I’m wasting my time doing something that doesn’t bring me much enjoyment.

2 – You can listen to audiobooks in the dark

No lights? No problem. If you want to stay up and your roommate wants to sleep, you can just grab a pair of headphones and listen to your book in the dark! Plus this experience of listening in the dark is very relaxing and really transports you into the book.

3 –  Audiobooks can be enjoyed by those with disabilities

If you have dyslexia, visual impairments, muscle degeneration in the hands or any other disability that makes it difficult to read a physical book , audiobooks may become your best friend! The accessibility to books that audiobooks provide is incredible. Everyone deserves to be able to delve into a story regardless of their eyesight or physical or ability and audiobooks are opening doors in that area by connecting everyone with the love for storytelling.

4 –  Audiobooks allow you to revisit the classics or re-read your favourite books

Sometimes I really feel the need to go back to a story I’ve loved, but with so many books coming out on a monthly basis, I feel I don’t have time for re-reads, and that is where audiobooks come in. I tend to buy more books on Audible that I’ve read before then new titles because for me audiobooks are complementary to e-books or paperbacks. They also allow me to try new authors that I wouldn’t try on ebook format, so they keep opening doors for me. Who knows if they won’t do it for you too.

5 –  Great narrators provide you incredible experiences

Great narrators will guide you through the story effortlessly and you will forget everything around you. You will feel transported into the book in a magical way.

Whatever your age or situation, the narrator can be there for you, always ready to read you a story.

6 –  You can listen to Colin Firth and Richard Armitage’s voices for hours!

Yup, these two gents have also narrated a few books and honestly all you can focus on in the beginning is their voice. But that just means you’ll have to listen to the audiobook twice and have more of Colin or Richard’s voice speaking to yourself alone. You can start with The End of the Affair narrated by Colin Firth, or Sylvester written by Georgette Heyer and narrated by Richard Armitage. If these two didn’t convince you, what about trying to listen to Richard narrating another one of Heyer’s novels such as Venetia, or Classic Love Poems? And yes, you got that right too, you can actually listen to Richard Armitage reading love poems to you 🙂

7 –  Book Binging

I absolutely love reading but I also receive more requests to review books then I can manage. Audiobooks are a great help in this area because they allow me to “read” more than one book at the same time. I can read an ebook and listen to an audiobook simultaneously, and that allows me to increase the number of books I can read in a month. It is also great if you want to read different genres and diversity your reading habits. you can read one specific genre and listen to another. I promise you won’t get the details mixed up 🙂

8 –  They help you improve your language skills

If you are learning a second or third language, hearing it spoken can be really important to cement your memory. You are able to acquire more vocabulary and improve your pronunciation too.

9 –  Audible’s database keeps growing

A couple of years ago there weren’t that many JAFF books to choose from on Audible and I listened to most that were available, but nowadays most authors are joining Audible and at this point it is already impossible for me to keep up, so you know you will have plenty to choose from.

10 –  Diversity

Some books are better to consume over audio than over text such as conceptual books and biographies. I would probably not buy biographies to read on my kindle, but I may grab an audio copy and discover more about a certain person because I find the narration more appealing. It feels like someone is telling me about someone else’s life, and that’s more appelaing then reading about it.

.

Has any of these reasons convince you to try Audiobooks? If they have, I have good news for you. Amazon’s Audible program allows you to try Audiobooks for FREE during one month, so there is no risk in trying. The worst that can happen is for you to dislike the experience and give up after a while. If you do like it, their membership is $14.95/month and gives you 30 days of membership free, plus 1 audiobook and 2 Audible Originals to get you started.

The Audible membership may not be the best option though, and they have a new option now called Audible Escape which is a kind of Kindle Unlimited program and that allows you to listen to as many books as you’de like for  $12.95/month. The cool thing is that if you also have Kindle Unlimited then the value decreases to $6.95/month. This is the one I use because I do listen to more then one audiobook per month, so if you are like me, this may be the best option.

If you don’t think these programs are for you, then maybe you will like to know that if you already own an ebook copy of a book, you may get the audiobook for a reduced price, so that may be an option if you want to listen to just one title every two months or even less.

Now, if all this has not convinced you, there is nothing else I can say, I guess Audiobooks are just not your thing. They are mine, so I’ll be coming back soon with some audible reviews using my new Bennet sister scale 🙂

Until then, Happy Readings everyone!

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A Case of Some Delicacy- Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

I hope you are all well and with great books on your kindle to read during the weekend. I have filled mine with lots of them because I’ll be travelling during the next 3 weeks and all the flight hours need to be occupied somehow, right?

Even though my travels will increase my reading time, they also mean I may be a little absent from the blog because I’m not sure how the internet connection will be in the countries I will be visiting, but before leaving, I had to share with you an excerpt that really spiked my curiosity towards K.C Khaler’s latest novel. I read her first novel Boots & Backpacks this year, but her most recent release is a regency novel, so it has to be very different, and I’m very curious to see how it turned out. The reviews so far have been amazing, so it promises to be a good one 🙂

If you haven’t read it yet, you can start with the excerpt below 🙂 And good luck in the giveaway!!


A secret alliance grows when an unwanted suitor arrives at Longbourn…

When rumours of Jane Bennet’s impending betrothal to her father’s heir begin spreading at the Meryton Assembly, Elizabeth vows to save her dearest sister’s happiness from being sacrificed in marriage.

She finds an unlikely accomplice in Mr Darcy, the taciturn man whose heroics on the cricket field have managed to turn Lydia Bennet’s infatuation away from redcoats. Upon overhearing a heated exchange between Elizabeth and Mr Bennet, Darcy is stunned not only by her devotion to her sister, but also by her defiant words to her father. An inexplicable desire to help Elizabeth draws Darcy into the match-breaking scheme, despite knowing that he should want nothing to do with a family like the Bennets.

As the new allies work together, their friendship deepens into mutual admiration. But they must navigate a complicated web of sisters, parents, friends, cousins, and aunts, some of whom may be attempting their own manipulations and romantic schemes. Eavesdropping and jealousy abound, cricket balls go astray, and love blooms in spite of Mrs. Bennet’s misguided matchmaking.

 

 

 

You can find A Case of Some Delicacy at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 

 


Notes: To further her matchmaking goals, Ms Bennet hosts a picnic at Longbourn. This scene begins during a break between innings of a friendly cricket game. Lydia is on Mr. Darcy’s team while Elizabeth and Mr. Bingley are on the opposite team. Lydia is very competitive and wants to prove that she is a better player than Lizzy. Also Mr. Collins is a terrible cricket player!

Excerpt from Chapter 4

Lydia sought out Mr Darcy to ask whether she could field in her normal spot, silly mid-on. Her quick reflexes often allowed her to catch or run someone out from that position.

He regarded her for a moment. “I suggest you play short instead. There are new players today. For example, Mr Bingley bats much as he bowls—he swings wildly at anything.” Lydia laughed, and Mr Darcy continued, “We do not want you injured.”

“I am not afraid, Mr Darcy.”

“I can see that, Miss Lydia.” The fleeting appearance of his dimples stunned her. “You may field as silly as you like when the batsman is someone you know, such as one of your sisters, but stay farther back when any of the gentlemen are striking. Is that agreeable?”

Lydia conceded before asking, “Where shall you put Mr Collins?”

“Deep, very deep,” he answered solemnly.

She burst into giggles. “I think that is wise.”

“Thank you.” There were those dimples again. “Do you have any other suggestions about field positions?”

Nobody ever asked her for advice. “Kitty is a surprisingly good wicket keeper, but do not allow her to bowl unless you want six extras given away.” She added, “If Lizzy and Peter Lucas are paired up, they will stretch what should be a one-run hit into two or three runs. They are both very quick.”

“I suspected as much from the way they fielded. Miss Elizabeth seems to enjoy cricket.”

“Yes, Lizzy always preferred boy games to proper girl activities.”

Miss Bingley emerged from behind Mr Darcy as if she had been invited into the conversation. “Miss Eliza is a regular hoyden. It was shocking to see her leaping about and catching balls.”

“She is quite an asset to her team,” Mr Darcy answered.

“I do not think it proper for young ladies to play cricket amongst gentlemen.”

“I disagree. Georgiana and I often played cricket with our cousins and neighbours.” Mr Darcy turned to Lydia. “Georgiana is my sister. She is about your age. I taught her to play.”

Miss Bingley amended her earlier statement, “Oh, playing with family is perfectly acceptable, of course. But for Miss Eliza to be making a spectacle of herself among these officers and mere acquaintances, it is rather unseemly.”

Lydia snorted. Unseemly?

Mr Darcy responded more eloquently. “Again, I disagree. If Georgiana were here, I would be happy to let her play in such a friendly match.”

Miss Bingley had dominated the conversation quite long enough, in Lydia’s opinion. “Oh, Mr Darcy, we should love to have your sister play with us! She must be very good if you taught her.” He smiled, making her quite giddy. “Does Miss Darcy have many fine gowns? And bonnets! Lord, I can imagine the bonnets she has, with you being so rich!”

Just then, Elizabeth and Mr Bingley came over. “Shall we resume the match?”

Lydia was pleased with her fielding performance. She bowled an over fairly well, and ran out Charlotte Lucas. But her proudest moment was catching out Mr Bingley, who did swing wildly at any ball that came his way.

When Peter Lucas and Lizzy were at the stumps together, it was just as Lydia feared. Neither Lizzy nor their young neighbour hit powerfully, but each picked the best spot to hit the ball, and each ran so fast that they scored many runs. After two overs, Mr Darcy bowled again. Surely, his spin would hinder Elizabeth. Lydia moved even closer, certain that her quick reaction could make the difference. She wished desperately to catch Lizzy out.

Mr Darcy’s first throw was wide, which disappointed Lydia. He always seemed to have such control. As she looked at him, she noticed he had rolled up his sleeves, as Denny and some of the other officers had done earlier. Lydia did not often have occasion to see men in such a state of dishabille, and certainly not gentlemen. She could not tear her gaze from Mr Darcy’s forearms. They were tanned and sinewy, hinting at the strength contained therein. As she watched him bowl, Lydia was struck by his gracefulness—a masculine gracefulness that she had never seen before, or perhaps simply had never noticed.

Further thoughts on Mr Darcy’s fine bowling form were cut short by the sudden searing pain above her right ear, and then, darkness.

***

Jane ran towards Lydia in a panic. When she reached the gathering crowd, Elizabeth and Mr Darcy were both kneeling at Lydia’s supine form.

Elizabeth spoke quietly, “Liddy, can you hear me? Lydia?”

After a few moments, Lydia groaned and murmured, “I stood too silly.” Jane sighed with relief.

“Oh Liddy!” Elizabeth cried. “Why weren’t you attending the match? Whatever had you so distracted?”

Her eyes were still closed but Lydia said clearly, “Mr Darcy’s arms.”

Mary began coughing.

“Stop your coughing, Kitty. I’m the injured one,” Lydia said.

Of course Kitty defended herself, “That’s not me! That’s Mary!”

Jane cleared her throat. “Perhaps if the crowd could move back a bit… ”

Charlotte and Sir William ushered people away from the scene, leaving only Lydia’s sisters and Mr Bennet standing there.

Mr Darcy asked, “Miss Lydia, can you open your eyes?”

Her eyes fluttered, but then Mrs Bennet’s lamentations reached the group. “My dearest Lydia! Has Lizzy finally killed you with her hoyden’s game! I knew I shouldn’t allow a cricket match today, but Lizzy insisted! Oh, speak, my poor child!”

“Mama, your yelping hurts my head. In the name of all that is holy, lower your voice,” Lydia said crossly.

“Oh!” Mrs Bennet cried in an agitated whisper. “She has been knocked senseless!”


 

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KC Kahler lives in northeastern Pennsylvania and works in online education, after having dabbled in sandwich making, bug collecting, and web development. She discovered Jane Austen fan fiction in 2008 and soon began dabbling in writing her own.

KC blogs about Austen and other pop culture topics. In 2015 and 2017, her popular Austen + The Onion Headlines meme was featured in The Atlantic, Flavorwire, and AV Club. In 2017, she made the requisite pilgrimage to Jane Austen country, where she took the waters in Bath, walked the lanes of Steventon, didn’t fall off the cobb in Lyme Regis, and stood awestruck in Chawton.

KC’s first novel, Boots & Backpacks, was published in 2014. Her second, A Case of Some Delicacy, released in 2019.

Contact Info:

Blog: http://www.kckahler.com/

Tumblr: https://kcinpa.tumblr.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kc.kahler.12

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KCKahler

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCN2DbzTN3C37WbaE0MyJxDA

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8635395.K_C_Kahler

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/KC-Kahler/e/B00P5F3ZZW

 


 

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October 4, 2019 · 6:47 pm