Monthly Archives: December 2020

2020 Achievements & 2021 Goals

Hello everyone,

It’s the last day of the year, and I remember that last year I started this post saying that 2019 took a long time to come to an end. Ironic isn’t it? If 2019 took a long time to come to an end, 2020 was much, much worse! I feel like I’ve aged 5 years during this year. 

As you know I love travelling and I had planned a road trip to the USA in 2020, so apart from all the other constraints we had with Covid, I was very disappointed to have missed my trip and to stay confined in Portugal the entire year. However, 2020 did bring some good things 🙂 Despite the terrible tragedy we faced, me, my family and friends remained healthy the entire time,  I read much more, and definitely blogged much more! Plus, I was able to accomplish some long standing goals which I never thought I’d be able to get through. For 2020, and before Covid striked us,  I had established the following 4 goals:

  1. Re-design the blog and create an archive containing all my posts (in an organized manner)
  2. Read more books in Portuguese 
  3. Read at least 5 paperbacks
  4. Listen to at least 12 Austenesque Audiobooks

Surprisingly, for the first time I was able to achieve them all! How wonderful is that? I’ve finally re-designed the blog and now I have dedicated pages to audiobook reviews, to author interviews, excerpts, reviews by subgenre, author etc. The change was simple in terms of design, but I was very proud to have finally done it. 

I’ve also managed to read more books per year then ever and even listen to more audiobooks then I had planned.  So let’s see what I was able to achieve in 2020, shall we?

 

As I said I, I posted more then ever with 132 posts published in 2020, and from those, 52 were reviews which is also a big increase.

I had never published so many reviews before and I am really proud of the number I was able to achieve! Last year I had only published 19 reviews and the year prior 38, so this was definitely a good evolution, I hope I am able to keep up in 2021 (even if this is a challenging number for me). But if I’ve published 52 reviews it means I’ve been reading much more too doesn’t it? Let’s take a look at that:

68 books and 16,866 pages read is a record for me, and I am not sure I’ll be able to match these numbers in 2021, at least if things get back to normal, but then again, I am listening to more audiobooks nowadays and that means I can read and listen to two book simultaneously which increases the ammount of books I am able to read, so…let’s wait and see.

From these 68 books the most popular (The Hunger Games),and least popular (Vivendo em Voz Alta), were not JAFF books, which is not a surprise because this year I was also able to read more Non-JAFF books then usual.

 

 

Variations occupy the biggest number of books read, and I believe they always will because they are indeed my favourites, but this year I was also able to read 15 Non-JAFF books, some of them were historical romances like Gentleman Jim or Lakeshire Park, but many of them were Stargate SG-1 books (remember some of them even made it to my favourites list last year? Well, this year I continued reading them) and others were books in Portuguese, which means I also achieved my goal of reading more books in Portuguese 🙂

Modernizations and sequels were the genre I read the most after Variations and Non-JAFF, followed closely by Austen Inspired which is usually a subgenre I don’t read a lot.

In 2021 I certainly hope to read more Secondary Character books, I was surprised to have only read one this year (funny because it made it to my 2020 Favourite Read Books), and that is definitely something I want to explore more. I know most of you only read Darcy & Elizabeth based novels, but I do crave for other things to spice up my JAFF TBR,  And which leads me to the next graphic! Most of the books I read were based on Pride and Prejudice, of course, but I did read 5 Persuasion based novels, and 1 Northanger Abbey (a first actually). I hope to keep up with this trend next year, and maybe even try other Austen novels (except Emma, I really dislike Emma).

And when were all these books published? I’ve been trying to read more books published before 2015, but still the big majority of books I read this year were released in 2020 or 2019. I guess that is normal because we always feel tempted to read new releases, but still, I’ll try to read more oldies next year 🙂

 

If we look at the format of books read, things have changed dramatically since last year! I used to read mainly ebooks until I started mixing up all stories I was reading, so I decided to change to paperbacks some time this year, and now they are almost even in terms of percentage with ebooks. I am hoping to have a bigger percentage of paperback books read next year comparing to ebooks, and I also hope to contoninue listening to many audiobooks 🙂 Audiobooks was the format I used the most this year to get my JAFF fix and I can see that happening next year too, I simply love audiobooks, and they are the best company while I am doing chores or taking a stroll in the park 🙂

 

So, obviously one of my goals for 2021 is to read more paperbacks and listen to more audiobooks, but I need to establish more goals don’t I?

So my 2021 Goals are the follwoing:

  1. Read at least 20 paperbacks 
  2. Listen to at least 20 audiobooks
  3. Read more older books (published before 2015)
  4. Read more seconday character books or other Austen Novels
  5. Conquer my paperback TBR (I know…it’s not realistic…but one can dream)

What about you? Are you establishing any particular goals? Whatever your goals are, I hope you will be able to achieve them and that you have a WONDERFUL 2021!!! Hopefully it will be much better then 2020 🙂

This will be my last post of the year, and first one of 2021 will bring to you my favourite read! I am looking forward to see if you share any favourites with me 🙂 Until then:

Happy New Year everyone!

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Christmas at Pemberley by Abbey North

Christmas at Pemberley is a P&P sequel where the Darcy’s are hosting the Christmas celebrations at Pemberley for the first time with both their families present. Well, all of Lizzy’s family is present and Lady Catherine is also amongst the guests, even if Anne doesn’t make any appearance and no one else from Darcy’s family is there. 

With this havoc of guests, this book had everything to be an entertaining and funny story, but unfortunately it didn’t’ convince me.

George Wickham appears uninvited at Pemberley and the family’s reaction to his presence is somehow permissive which didn’t suit well with me. I would not expect Mr. Darcy to allow him to remain at Pemberley, especially because in this story George Wickham’s character was completely lascivious, always staring at a pregnant Jane, trying to force Georgiana into something else, and later on trying the same with Elizabeth. The fact that Wickham sat and dined at the same table with Lady Catherine was also something I didn’t find believable but which could work if the intent had been humorous, which was not.

Apart from the fact that these characters gather at Pemberley because of Christmas celebrations, there isn’t any other hint that this is a Christmas book. No Christmas traditions or even spirit are present. It is more of a sensual novella, with at least two intimate scenes between Darcy and Elizabeth, which in my opinion, also didn’t seem to fit the story. 

As a Christmas novella, I think it lacked the Christmas spirit, as a sensual story, well…I’m not usually a fan of the genre, but I have appreciated a few I’ve read and this one seemed just out of place. These scenes didn’t seem to fit in an environment where Wickham’s physical abuse of Lydia is being discussed, and they were also a little too “vulgar” for my taste. 

This is a very short story and because I listened to the audio version, it only took me an hour to finish it, so you may still give it a try while you do some chores at home. I may try to listen to another book from this author because this story may be an isolated case and it was the only book from her I read, but I do not recommend this particular story.  

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Mary Bennet’s Level

To be fair, the story didn’t help me enjoy the narration, but I also add a quibble with the narrator’s low tone because it took me some time to adjust to it. I do think Verona Westbrook did a good narration, but for me it was difficult to adapt in the beginning.

 

You can find Christmas at Pemberley at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

on Audible

and on Kindle Unlimited

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Freebies & Books on sale

Good Afternoon everyone,

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas surrounded by peace and love.

My Christmas has been quite special as I’ve been at my parents house with my family, a warm fire place and the ocean close by.

As I have been occupied with family celebrations, I haven’t paid much attention to Amazon in the last couple of days but as I was perusing it today, I realised there were many books on sale, so I decided it was time for another compillation of books on sale.

Please note this may be an incomplete list, I’m sure there are more books on sale that I have missed as it is impossible to know all the price reductions that are occuring on a daily basis, but I’m also counting on you to help other readers. If you know about any other sales, please do let us know in the comments and share your knowledge with us 🙂

 

Jane Austen Fan Fiction currently FREE

 

Mr. Darcy’s Christmas Surprise – FREE

Book Blurb: 

Mr. Darcy is grieving and a young lady is desperate to cheer him.
Can Elizabeth Bennet help Mr. Darcy with the assistance of friends and a puppy in time for Christmas?


Mr. Darcy Takes a Potion – FREE

Book Blurb:

‘Mr. Darcy Takes a Potion’ is a clean Pride and Prejudice variation featuring Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennet, with prominent contribution from Colonel Fitzwilliam and Georgiana Darcy.
And, an …. interesting …. cameo from Lady Catherine de Bourgh.

This Pride & Prejudice re-imagining takes place after Elizabeth Bennet refuses the offer of marriage from Fitzwilliam Darcy at Hunsford.

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Pride & Prejudice & Airships – FREE

Book Blurb:

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single woman in possession of good fortune, must be in want of a husband. Similarly, young men of meager means, such as the Bennet brothers, must be desperate to find a wife.
In an alternate universe where airships rule the sky, women govern the world. Men aren’t allowed to join the military, carry firearms, or pilot airships. In fact, a young man’s only goal is to attract a wealthy wife. For centuries, unmarried men have been labeled as “spinsirs” and treated like social pariahs. In a world where gentlemen are little more than property, Elisander Bennet longs for something more.
Elisander meets Darcy Fitzwilliam, a military captain who turns up her nose at the Bennets’ low birth. She antagonizes Elisander and his family, while secretly resisting a growing attraction to him. Meanwhile, Elisander is robbed and romanced by Georgette Wickham, a flirtatious pirate with a dark reputation.
Regency and steampunk collide in this gender-swapped Pride & Prejudice retelling.

 

Bewildered – FREE

Book Blurb: 

While Elizabeth Darcy is suitably happy in her very fortunate marriage, she cannot help but feel as if something is missing.
When her husband comes to her with an interesting plea, she cannot help but be curious herself.
Bewildered is the first in a new series of intimate and sensual short stories by Grace Reeve. A sequel to Pride & Prejudice, the series will follow Elizabeth and Darcy as the newlyweds become acquainted with one other and learn how to be the sort of spouse the other deserves.

 

Secrets & Splendor – FREE

Book Blurb: 

Sense will always have attractions for me.”

Whether Avalyn is sensible or not, whether she falls in love or not, does not matter. Matrimony isn’t in her future, and when the beautiful Miss Owian befriends her, Avalyn knows for certain she shouldn’t have let her heart wish for Mr. Andred.

Lilla’s magic makes everything she feels burst out of her, in broken windows or flares of fire. Why can’t she be sensible and keep her magic from overcoming her? She would wish her magic away in an instant, but could she survive the cost?

Mr. Andred is haunted by what he has done. He wishes to change the past. Then, perhaps, he’d be worthy of the kind and sensible Avalyn Pellinore. When Avalyn’s life is in danger will he let his past overcome him and fail to do what he must to save her life?

In Secrets and Splendor, Jane Austen’s beloved characters take a turn down a road of magic where polite Regency society merges with power and enchantment.

Secrets and Splendor is Book 4 in the Fantasy Austen Retellings series. Each book in the series is a standalone work and can be read in any order.

 

 

Jane Austen Fan Fiction on Sale for 0,99$

 

The Mist of Her Memory – 0,99

Book Blurb:

What Happened that fateful morning in Lambton?
What brutal attacker caused her grievous, near-fatal injuries?
Does she remain in danger? Elizabeth cannot remember!Sequestered in her Aunt and Uncle Gardiner’s London home, Elizabeth Bennet tries to recover from a devastating incident that stole her memories during their Derbyshire tour. She continues to suffer from strange, angry voices in her head and to recall events that people tell her never happened. Even those who love her refuse to believe her. Elizabeth can barely endure the confusion.Fitzwilliam Darcy is desperate for any hint of his beloved’s well-being, yet he lacks the information he seeks as her family forbids him contact with Elizabeth. His frustration mounts when he learns that her mental impairment incited taunting and torment in the market town of Meryton.Which of Elizabeth’s recollections bear the closest resemblance to the truth? And what is the result of her sister Lydia’s elopement with Mr. Wickham? How is Mr. Darcy to rekindle his romance with Elizabeth when her aunt and uncle strictly shield her from him?Prepare to grip the edge of your seat during this original romantic tale of suspense and mystery, another Pride and Prejudice variation by bestselling author Suzan Lauder.

 

Colonel Fitzwilliam’s Challenge – 0,99

Book Blurb:

He was given a special assignment. He didn’t count on falling for her.
Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam, a hopeful romantic, cannot afford to marry for love. When he is offered a new assignment with the promise of a promotion, he eagerly accepts– only to find himself immersed in a world of intrigue and lies.
Adélaïde Mauvier is a successful dressmaker on the verge of attaining everything she thought she wanted. When she is thrown into Colonel Fitzwilliam’s company, she begins to think there might be more to life than her ambitions.
As the colonel gets closer to the truth, he finds out that people are not always what you believe them to be. Will he fall in love while catching a traitor? Or worse … will he fall in love with a spy?
Colonel Fitzwilliam’s Challenge is the third book in The Darcy Cousins Series trilogy. If you like falling in love with your favorite heroes and heroines as they fall for each other, then you’ll love this sweet romance based on Jane Austen’s timeless classic, Pride and Prejudice.
Read Colonel Fitzwilliam’s Challenge to satisfy your craving for a clean, sweet Regency romance with a page-turning mystery today!

 

Anne’s Adversity – 0,99

Book Blurb:

Lady Catherine has a secret…
When Anne de Bourgh discovers a family secret in an old letter, she is given two choices: Burn the letter and forget about it or leave Rosings and face disinheritance. How can a sickly lady past the bloom of youth, with no prospects and few friends, hope to stand on her own two feet? How can she learn more about her family’s past without causing a scandal which would forever cast a shadow over the de Bourghs?
Luc Mauvier has led a life of freedom and success as a small theater owner in town. His tragic past has taught him to enjoy life and its pleasures to the fullest. When he meets Anne de Bourgh, she is opposite to everything he has ever known and he is soon reminded of how a gentleman should behave with a real lady. Can a tradesman win the heart of a lady? Even more important: How can he win Lady Catherine’s approval?
What Anne reveals about her past gives her courage, but will it be enough?
Anne’s Adversity is the second book in The Darcy Cousins Series trilogy. If you like falling in love with your favorite secondary characters as they fall for each other, then you’ll love this sweet romance based on Jane Austen’s timeless classic, Pride and Prejudice.
Read Anne’s Adversity to satisfy your craving for a clean, sweet Regency romance today!

 

Longbourn to London – 0,99 

Book Blurb:

A courtship is a journey of discovery…
…but what do we know of the official betrothal of Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet? We may assume there were awkward social events to navigate, tedious wedding arrangements to negotiate, and Bingley’s toplofty sisters to accommodate. How did Darcy and Elizabeth manage these travails, and each other?
Longbourn to London is not a Pride and Prejudice “what if,” nor is it a sequel. Rather, it is an expansion of the betrothal of Jane Austen’s favorite couple. We follow Lizzy’s journey from spirited maiden scampering about the fields of Hertfordshire to nervous, blushing bride in Mayfair, where she learns the unexpected joys of marriage to a man as willing to be teased as she is to tease him.
Join us as IPPY award-winning author Linda Beutler (2013 Silver Medal, Independent Publishers Awards, for The Red Chrysanthemum) imagines the betrothal and early honeymoon of Jane Austen’s greatest couple.
Includes mature content.

 

The Child – o,99

Book Blurb:

In Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice,” Fitzwilliam Darcy’s proposal to Elizabeth Bennet at Hunsford is disastrous. In Jan Hahn’s “The Child,” Darcy flees England soon afterward, striving to overcome his longing for her. Upon his return two years later—while standing on the steps of St. George’s Church in Hanover Square—he spies the very woman he has vowed to forget. But who is the child holding her hand?
Darcy soon discovers that Elizabeth and her family are suffering the effects of a devastating scandal. His efforts to help the woman he still loves only worsen her family’s plight. His misguided pride entangles him in a web of falsehood, fateful alliances, and danger.
Will Elizabeth be able to forgive Darcy for his good intentions gone awry? And what effect will the child have on Darcy’s hopes to win Elizabeth’s love?

 

How to Mend a Broken Heart – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

Three years after Mr. Darcy’s disastrous marriage proposal to Elizabeth Bennet, they meet again. Due to an unexpected twist of fate, Elizabeth finds herself a guest in the home of Mr. Darcy’s aunt, the Dowager Lady Matlock. Long believing Elizabeth lost to him, Darcy has recently proposed marriage to an old flame, the widow of his friend. Now newly engaged Darcy encounters Elizabeth again and realizes she still owns his heart.
Although bound by honor to another, Darcy sets out to improve Elizabeth’s opinion of him. Tension mounts between Darcy and Elizabeth in that pursuit, and Darcy’s betrothed begins to see Elizabeth as a threat to her upcoming marriage. How will Darcy and Elizabeth ever reach their happily ever after?
How to Mend a Broken Heart is a non-canon variation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and is intended for mature readers.

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Pride in Meryton – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

“Pride and Tolerance”: What if Elizabeth immediately objected to Darcy’s ‘tolerable’ remark on the night of the Meryton Assembly? Would Darcy realize his blunder and make amends?
“Meryton Revisited”: What if Darcy had a Groundhog Day experience? In this story, the day of the Meryton assembly is repeated over and over until Darcy finally gets it right!
“Hedgerows”: What if Mrs. Bennet’s worst fears came true and she and her daughters were evicted from their home? Would they be forced to live in the hedgerows? This story follows the Bennets out into the cruel world after losing their beloved Longbourn. Will our dear couple find their way to each other?

 

Perilous Siege – 0,99

Book Blurb:

What is the Siege Perilous, and how does it affect the lives of everyone in the Regency universe of “Pride & Prejudice”?
When a man dressed in strange attire falls to earth in a field on his Pemberley estate, Fitzwilliam Darcy has little inkling of the many and startling changes this mysterious man’s arrival will have on his life, his family’s lives, and indeed, his whole world.
Set in the Regency world of “Pride and Prejudice,” this refugee from a future Armageddon is befriended by Darcy. Will the presence of Major Edward McDunn influence the events of Jane Austen’s signature work, especially the tangled courtship between Darcy and the complex and endearing Elizabeth Bennet?

 

Civil Pemberley – 0,99

Book Blurb:

The most beloved “Pride and Prejudice” moments and characters weaved within an epic and steamy romance. This “What If” Jane Austen inspired tale delves into an adventure story, full of espionage and intrigue.
Well-received by the upper classes in the country’s capitol, no one suspects this charming young woman to be a wolf amongst sheep. Elizabeth Bennet is not who she appears to be. As war rages on, Elizabeth is expected to carry out her role as spy. Her life and the safety of her family depends upon it. But what happens when she realizes her values align with those of the enemy? Will the love of a handsome young officer, Captain Darcy, endanger her?

 

The Ball At Meryton – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

In Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, Fitzwilliam Darcy insults Elizabeth Bennet at the Meryton ball. This slight was the first offense leading her to declare him the last man on earth she would ever marry. But what if, following the insult, they were seen in a compromising position? With the gossips of Meryton embellishing the story, will Mr. Darcy look beyond his own prejudices toward the Bennets and perform his gentlemanly duty? And how will Elizabeth respond?

 

Mistress Mary and The General – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

Richard Fitzwilliam, second son of the Earl of Matlock and cousin to Fitzwilliam Darcy of Pemberley, has led a blessed life. Believing the most he could want was a distinguished military career, he was pleasantly surprised when he found the love his life and married. After welcoming a son into this world followed by twins two years later, his beloved wife fell ill. Though she recovered, her health was never what it once had been and, after three years, she succumbed to a fever. Left now with three young children to raise alone, he turns to his cousin and Pemberley for solace and direction.
Mary Bennet, third daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Bennet of Longbourn and sister to Mrs. Elizabeth Darcy, has been searching for some meaning in her life. Being the only unwed daughter, she unwillingly command the sole attention of her matchmaking mother. She seeks escape at Pemberley, hoping to find her way while assisting the Fitzwilliam children cope with the loss of their mother.
Though inspired by the epilogue of Behind the Mask: A Pride and Prejudice Alternative Novel, this work is able to stand alone.

 

Beauty Slays the Beast – 0,99

Book Blurb:

When Elizabeth Bennet makes a deal with a monster to save her father’s life –she never expects to fall for the man who has been her captor. As inspired by the familiar story of Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy, familiar characters are placed into a magical retelling of the beloved classic.

 

What if He Were to Pick Me – 0,99

Book Blurb:  

What if Mr. Darcy, trying to avoid the appearance of being lofty and proud, so far mistook himself as to be charmed by Lydia Bennet?
How long could the fair strumpet lady hold his interest? How would Elizabeth Bennet feel about it?
As all the Bennet sisters fall into the strangest of relationships, you’ll fear you lost your mind. But you haven’t. Just grab your sweetie and a whip – in case of unruly pillows – and hire a Bennet coach to Gretna Green. They have the best carriages, and guarantee no one will catch you.
Then hold on to your hat. You’re in for the ride of your life.

 

Mr. Darcy’s Fault – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

What if an accident prevents Elizabeth Bennet from reading Mr. Darcy’s letter of apology? What if said letter goes missing and ends up in the hands of George Wickham? What if Mr. Wickham plans to use the evidence of both Georgiana Darcy’s ruination and Darcy’s disdain for the Bennets to his benefit? How will Darcy counter Wickham’s plans and claim happiness with Elizabeth Bennet?
When he notices his long-time enemy in the vicinity of Hunsford Cottage, FITZWILLIAM DARCY means to put an end to an assignation between ELIZABETH BENNET and Mr. Wickham, but Darcy is not prepared for the scene which greets him in Rosings Woods. Elizabeth lies injured and crumpled beneath one of trees, and in order to save her, by Society’s standards, Darcy must compromise Elizabeth. Needless to say, Darcy does not mind claiming Elizabeth to wife, but what of the lady’s affections? Can Darcy tolerate Elizabeth’s emotions being engaged elsewhere?
Compelled into an engagement she least desires, Elizabeth Bennet thinks it impossible she could ever care for the arrogant Mr. Darcy, but the man proves more irresistible than Elizabeth first assumes. Yet, just when Elizabeth begins to believe happiness is within their grasps, Mr. Wickham reappears in her life with a “proposal” Elizabeth cannot refuse, and it is all Mr. Darcy’s fault.

 

Mr. Darcy’s Present – 0,99

Book Blurb:  

The Greatest Present He Would Ever Receive is the Gift of Her Love…
What if Mr. Darcy purchased a gift for Elizabeth Bennet to acknowledge the festive days even though he knows he will never present it to her? What if the gift is posted to the lady by his servants and without his knowledge? What if the enclosed card was meant for another and is more suggestive than a gentleman should share with an unmarried lady? Join Darcy and Elizabeth, for a holiday romp, loaded with delightful twists and turns no one expects, but one in which our favorite couple take a very different path in thwarting George Wickham and Lydia Bennet’s elopement. Can a simple book of poetry be Darcy’s means to win Elizabeth’s love? When we care more for another than ourselves, the seeds of love have an opportunity to blossom.

 

Mr. Darcy’s Bargain – 0,99

Book Blurb:

Darcy and Elizabeth are about to learn how “necessity” never makes a fair bargain.
When ELIZABETH BENNET appears on his doorstep some ten months after her refusal of his hand in marriage, FITZWILLIAM DARCY uses the opportunity to “bargain” for her acceptance of a renewal of his proposal in exchange for his assistance in bringing Mr. George Wickham to justice. In Darcy’s absence from Hertfordshire, Wickham has executed a scam to defraud the citizens of Meryton, including her father, of their hard-earned funds. All have invested in Wickham’s Ten Percent Annuity scheme. Her family and friends are in dire circumstances, and more importantly, Mr. Bennet’s heart has taken an ill turn. Elizabeth will risk everything to bring her father to health again and to save her friends from destitution; yet, is she willing to risk her heart? She places her trust in Darcy’s ability to thwart Wickham’s manipulations, but she is not aware that Darcy wishes more than her acquiescence. He desires her love. Neither considers what will happen if he does not succeed in bringing Mr. Wickham before a magistrate. Will his failure bring an end to their “bargain”? Or will true love prevail?

 

Mr. Darcy’s Miracle at Longbourn – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

‘Tis the season to believe in miracles!
Less than a month after Fitzwilliam Darcy left Hertfordshire, he regrets the decision. Still, stubborn as they come, he will abide by the choice even if his heart freezes over worse than a December chill.
At Longbourn, Elizabeth Bennet rejects the Christmas themes of unconditional love and forgiveness. In her mind, Mr. Darcy deserves neither and not only for insulting her upon first sight. Elizabeth is certain Darcy is behind her sister’s heartache.
Fate has other plans, however, when it throws them together again and again and again. Christmas magic works on their hearts and minds as the calendar refuses to budge from December 23. What will it take to see Christmas Eve? How many lives need to change?
Mr. Darcy’s Miracle at Longbourn is a heart-warming holiday read from Rose Fairbanks, author of Mr. Darcy’s Bluestocking Bride. If you love A Christmas Carol, It’s a Wonderful Life, and Miracle on 34th Street, fill your mug with hot cocoa and buy your copy today!

 

A Dance with Mr. Darcy – 0,99

Book Blurb: 

The reason fairy tales end with a wedding is no one wishes to view what happens next.
Five years earlier, Darcy had raced to Hertfordshire to soothe Elizabeth Bennet’s qualms after Lady Catherine’s venomous attack, but a devastating carriage accident left him near death for months and cost him his chance at happiness with the lady. Now, they meet again upon the Scottish side of the border, but can they forgive all that has transpired in those years? They are widow and widower; however, that does not mean they can take up where they left off. They are damaged people, and healing is not an easy path. To know happiness they must fall in love with the same person all over again.

 

The Road to Understanding – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

DARIUS FITZWILLIAM’s life is planned down to who he will marry and where he will live, but life has a way of saying, “You don’t get to choose.” When his marriage to his long-time betrothed Caroline Bradford falls through, Darius is forced to take a step back and to look upon a woman who enflames his blood with desire, but also engenders disbelief. Eliza Harris is everything that Darius never realized he wanted.
ELIZA HARRIS is accustomed to doing as she pleases. Yet, despite being infuriated by his authoritative manner, when she meets the staunchly disciplined Captain Fitzwilliam, she wishes for more. She instinctively knows he is “home,” but Eliza possesses no skills in achieving her aspirations.
Plagued with misunderstandings, manipulations, and peril upon the Great Valley Road between eastern Virginia and western Tennessee in the years following the Revolutionary War, Darius and Eliza claim a strong allegiance before love finds its way into their hearts.
This is a faith-based tale based on Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

 

The Pemberley Ball – 0,99$

Book Blurb:

Elizabeth Bennet’s acceptance of his hand in marriage presents FITZWILLIAM DARCY a hope of the world being different. Elizabeth offers warmth and naturalness and a bit of defiance; but there is vulnerability also. With characteristic daring, she boldly withstood Caroline Bingley’s barbs, while displaying undying devotion to her sister Jane. More unpredictably, she verbally fenced with the paragon of crudeness, his aunt, Lady Catherine, and walked away relatively unscathed. One often finds his betrothed self-mockingly entertaining her sisters and friends, and despite Darcy’s best efforts, the woman makes him laugh. She brings lightness to his spirit after so many years of grief.
Unfortunately for ELIZABETH BENNET, what begins gloriously turns to concern for their future. She recognizes her burgeoning fears as unreasonable; yet, she cannot displace them. She refuses to speculate on what Mr. Darcy will say when he learns she is not the brilliant choice he proclaims her to be. Moreover, she does not think she can submit to the gentleman’s staid lifestyle. Not even for love can Elizabeth accept capitulation.
Will Elizabeth set her qualms aside to claim ‘home’ in the form of the man she truly affects or will her courage fail her? Enjoy a bit of mayhem that we commonly call “Happily Ever After,” along with three alternate turning points to this tale of love and loss and love again from Austen-inspired author, Regina Jeffers.

 

Jane Austen Fan Fiction on Sale for 1,99$

 

Falling For Elizabeth Bennet – 1,99$

Book Blurb:

Please note – This book has a new cover only. The content has not been changed in any way.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that fans of Austen’s masterpiece, Pride and Prejudice, simply won’t be able to get enough of Debra-Ann Kummoung’s reimagining of this timeless classic. With the search for love being hard enough in Georgian England, Kummoung places our heroine – the plucky and witty Elizabeth Bennet – in the centre of even more difficulties as she attempts to assert herself, her destiny, and her heart in the face of a great secret.
Elizabeth Bennet is a singular young woman. Daughter of an overbearing mother, and sister to a handful of independent women each seeking their own fortunes through marriage, she is determined to only settle for a partner who can not only ensure the prosperity of her family, but who will also cherish and respect her for who she is. However, Elizabeth has a secret which has the potential to cause untold difficulties in her search. Will the mysterious Mr. Darcy, a wealthy young man with no shortage of responsibilities and expectations, be able to overlook what she perceives as her failings and accept her wholeheartedly as his own?
Follow Elizabeth and her sisters, as well as Mr. Darcy, Mr. Wickham, the Bingleys and almost all the other characters from Pride and Prejudice as they attempt to unravel the labyrinth of the human heart.
Set against the backdrops we all know and love from dozens of adaptations, reimaginings, and the source text itself, Kummoung’s vision of this historical romance taps into the hidden lives of the Bennet family like never before. For fans of Pride and Prejudice, this romantic and perceptive novel offers new insights into the much-loved characters, and shows sides of them they had perhaps never before imagined. It’s a tour de force of imaginative and interpretive fiction, and one which is sure to be taken to the hearts of old fans and newcomers alike.

 

Mrs. Collins Lover – 1,99

Book Blurb: 

Elizabeth Bennet was raised with a strong belief and faith in God’s plan for her life. She knew He had a plan, even if the details were hidden from her. But, when placed in an untenable situation, she turned instead to the arms of a man to find brief moments of joy. Finally, when able to realize the happiness which was always intended for her, the weight of her guilt over her past sins convinces her of her unworthiness. Only through reconciliation with the Lover of her soul can she truly fulfill the life He planned for her. But first, she must forgive herself in order to find redemption.
Remember: In order to be redeemed, there must be sin. This story is intended for mature audiences.
Trigger Warning: There are incidents of abuse in this story.

 

Georgiana Darcy, Matchmaker – 1,99

Book Blurb:

After Fitzwilliam Darcy surprised his sister, Georgiana, at Ramsgate and learned she was being tricked into eloping with his childhood friend, George Wickham; he took a most unprecedented path. Deciding Georgie was unprepared for such circumstances due to their society’s preference to keep young ladies innocent and unknowing of the ways of the world, he chose to enlighten her. He began discussing things with her and educating her on matters that others may feel were not for the eyes or ears of a lady. He wanted her to be prepared when she came out in society and not be susceptible to the fortune hunters. What he did not realize was that she would use her new found knowledge upon him.

 

A Beneficial, In Unwilling Compromise – 1,99

Book Blurb: 

A Pride and Prejudice Variation.
When Mrs. Bennet discovers all her worse nightmares are about to come true, she does not react the way her family expects. Instead the normally silly woman takes matters into her own hands and gives marching orders to her daughters.
Will they follow them to the letter? Will any of them find their happy ending? Just remember, the secret to a long and lasting relationship is compromise.

 

Jane Austen Fan Fiction on Sale for 2,99$

 

True Love Never Fails – 2,99$

Book Blurb:

Edited and revised February 2020. Main plot remains the same.
From the family lives of the Bennet sisters and their characterful parents, to the hidden charm, grace, and elegance of the unflappable Mr. Darcy, it might seem as if fans of Austen’s timeless classic, Pride & Prejudice, know all there is to know about this truly great novel. However, within the pages of this much-loved book, there are questions which call out for answers… the greatest of which are: what if everything we believed to be true about the Bennets and their fellow characters was, in fact, a veneer for something quite different? What if the behavior and intentions of the iconic sisters was all an act? And what if Mr. Darcy, Mr. Bingley, and all the other refined gentlemen of Pemberley and beyond were not the genteel and mannered men we saw them to be?
Such questions, such mysteries, and such tantalizing possibilities form the backbone of True Love Never Fails, a daring and bold reimagining of Jane Austen’s most famed and adored work. Throughout the pages of this stunning novel, which abounds in all that we fell in love with in the chapters of Pride & Prejudice – and much more besides – we’re left second-guessing every motive, every word, and every eventuality we thought we knew so well. As readers, we’re taken into the heart of a dazzling set of cliff-hangers and revealed truths… and we’ll never be able to look our favorite characters in the same way again.
Alongside the rollicking storyline that weaves its way through the moral mazes of 18th century English high society, True Love Never Fails introduces its readers to the elusive and serious Mary Bennet. She’s a sister with a secret, and one who holds the key to the heart of the fun-loving Colonel Fitzwilliam, around whom a spiraling storyline forms. As revelation follows revelation, hearts will be broken, bonds will be formed, and the truth behind this timeless novel will be reimagined and revealed. Thanks to the astonishing deftness of the storytelling, and the author’s keen eye for a twist and tantalizing details, readers will find themselves on a new ride through a familiar landscape that’s as breathlessly romantic as it is captivating. From the first page you’ll be hooked, and by the time you reach the the very last, you’ll be calling out for more from this awe-inspiring retelling of Austen’s masterpiece.
Warning – Cliffhanger!

 

True Love Conquers All – 2,99 

Book Blurb: 

In the anticipated conclusion, True Love Conquers All, author Debra-Ann Kummoung returns you to her unique Pride & Prejudice retelling just hours after the shocking ending in True Love Never Fails… which had cost Mary Bennet her new engagement to Colonel Fitzwilliam.
Elizabeth and Jane along with Darcy and Bingley try to console Mary in the aftermath. Family and friends try to bring our couple back together again, but both are stubborn in their refusal to see the other.
Recalled to war, Colonel Fitzwilliam must depart England, leaving behind his family and friends and most importantly his heart. With the reappearance of an old friend to help him in this difficult time, Colonel Fitzwilliam despairs that he has lost the only lady he has ever loved.
Join the journey across the treacherous ocean to the bustling shores of Portugal and on to the battlefields of Spain. With surprising twists and turns and the steadfastness of a young lady’s heart, discover the truth that true love never fails, but rather despite all obstacles, true love conquers all.

 


I’m certain there might be more sales out there that I’ve missed, but please do share them in the comments so that other readers may know about them.

I hope this has been helpfull everyone!

Happy Reading!

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Merry Christmas & Giveaway Winners

Good Afternoon everyone,

Christmas is finally here and I am sure everybody is busy cooking delicious dishes for today, and maybe some are still trying to get that last minute gift, so I’ll keep it short.

I have some giveaway winners that needed to be announced and thought this would be the perfect day 🙂

I had both Anngela Shroeder and Elizabeth Adams visiting this month and they brought ebooks with them. Needless to say I was really happy to receive both of these ladies, whose work I’ve come to appreciate a lot in the last years, in From Pemberley to Milton. I hope they’ll be able to visit again next year 🙂

But as I said earlier, you’re probably too busy today so I just wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas full of joy, love and health, and to let you know who will receive these Christmas presents, so without further ado, the giveaway winners are:

 

Sons of Pemberley

*** Jen D ***

 

A Life Worth Choosing

*** maryvad ***

Congratulations ladies! As always, please contact me throught e-mail ritaluzdeodato at gmail dot com and let me know your order of preference concerning the 3 gifts that were being offered along with your home address so that I can mail them.

Merry Christmas 

&

Happy Reading everyone!

 

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Christmas With Mr. Darcy by Victoria Connelly

Christmas With Mr. Darcy is sequel to the Austen Addicts series, and after having read and liked A Weekend With Mr. Darcy, I thought it would be nice to be once more transported into a Jane Austen conference with dear friends. I didn’t read books two and three in the series, but was still able to enjoy this novella, so even though I recommend reading all books in the series before this one, it can still be read as a stand-alone.

In Christmas With Mr. Darcy, Dame Pamela Harcourt is once more organizing a Jane Austen Conference, this time during Christmas time and at Purley Hall in Hampshire. This conference is a very special one because it will combine the usual games and movie parties with Christmas celebrations. The story has a wintery cosiness I really appreciated and the storyline occurs during Jane Austen’s birthday, so that was an additional fun element.

As guests start to arrive at Purley Hall the reader is reconnected with dear characters such as Doris, Katherine and Warwick. It was nice to reconnect with all these characters and to discover what had happened to them and how they were in life.

I didn’t feel as engaged with the story as I did with A Weekend with Mr. Darcy but once more it felt as if I was talking with friends who understood me, especially in regards to the Richard Armitage comments and blond male roles. I believe this is the big enticement of these books by Victoria Connelly, the reader feels he is amongst like-minded friends and is integrated in the story due to the shared love for Austen. I believe every Austen admirer will wish they could participate in such conferences.

This novella also had some mystery as some valuables begin to disappear and Dame Pamela starts looking for the culprit. This was a detail I truly appreciated and which brought some action into the story. It isn’t a very complex mystery but it is certainly in line with the liveliness and light feeling of the book.

Christmas With Mr. Darcy is a fun and entertaining story that can be read very quickly and it is perfect for this time of the year. I recommend it to Austen fans looking for an entertaining afternoon by the fire 🙂

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Jane Bennet’s Level

Jan Cramer’s narration was nice but nothing stood out to make it an Elizabeth level narration, plus I can’t say I was too fond of Benedict’s voice, and because he was a character I did love in this story, that had an effect in my enjoyment of the audiobook.

You can find Christmas With Mr. Darcy at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

and on Audible

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Unexpected Gifts by Maria Grace – Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

Yesterday I posted a review of  The Darcy’s First Christmas which is the second book in the Darcy Family Christmas series, and today I am happy to welcome Maria Grace with an excerpt of the fourth book in this series: Unexpected Gifts

In this book the Darcy’s have been married for a few years, so Maria Grace decided to focus this story on redemption… You can imagine which characters will be called on stage can’t you? If you liked yesterday’s review, and if you’re curious about this new story featuring the Darcy’s during Christmas time, please check out the excerpt Maria Grace brought to you, and don’t forget to participate in the giveawy 🙂

Thank you so much for visiting Maria! I’ve recently finished Kellynch: Dragon Persuasion, so you’ll here from me soon, but until then, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


 

Yuletide 1814, the Darcys are celebrating their third wedding anniversary and the baby Elizabeth is expecting. Overprotective and perhaps overbearing, Darcy is ready to do anything for Elizabeth’s comfort, including defying the will of his aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh who demands their presence to bestow a gift that absolutely cannot wait.

What sort of gift is so urgent it cannot wait for a more auspicious time?

Christmastide 1815, the Darcys hope for a particular sort of joy to bring a close to a dark and difficult season. It only seems fitting that an unexpected—and unwelcome—guest disrupts their small family house party. Could the unexpected gift they bring be the key to the fulfillment of the Darcys’ most heartfelt desires?

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You can find Unexpected Gifts at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk 

and on Kindle Unlimited

 

 

 

.And if you’re in the mood for Christmas books, here are the other books in the series 🙂

 


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Thanks so much for hosting me Rita! The year is winding down rapidly! I’m so glad to be able to get in one more visit before the new year.

I know Christmas is nearly upon us, but it’s not too late for a great holiday story, next to my dragon books (which I’m so tickled you’ve enjoyed!), holiday stories are my favorite sort of writing project. I still haven’t quite found a way to mix the two, but I am still trying. (And no, I’m not entirely a joking…)

Try as I might, I just couldn’t get into holiday romances writing mode this year. Not during a year that I’ve caught myself using (2020) as an adjective to describe something going sideways fast.  While many have had far worse experiences this year, 2020 has been a challenge.

I tried out a lot of different ideas until I landed on another favorite genre of mine, redemption stories. There are a lot of broken relationships out there in need of healing. That finally felt right.  

Now mind you, I’m not talking about the sort of fairy-dust-makes-it-better sort of thing. That’s too easy, and sadly too unrealistic. So I rolled up my sleeves and looked at some of the difficult relationships in the Darcy family’s life: Lady Catherine, Charlotte Collins, Lady Matlock, Lydia Wickham, and tried to figure out what it would take to make those relationships whole again. Yeah, you can imagine it was a challenge.

These stories may make you laugh, make you think, and might even make you cry. But they will definitely leave you with the fuzzy-warm holiday feelings that we all need right now. So why don’t you grab a cup of hot cup of tea/coffee/cocoa/what have you, maybe a plate of your favorite cookies, put up your feet and enjoy this little excerpt.

This is the fourth book in the Darcy Family Christmas series. Remember to check out the other three!

***

A draft blew from the windows at the end of the corridor. The chill air sent a shiver between her shoulders. Perhaps she had underestimated the comforts of the blazing parlor fire. Tiny, wiry, not-to be-trifled with Mrs. Reynolds bustled up to her, that something-is-not-going-according-to-plan look on her face. She did not wear that look often.

“Mrs. Darcy, guests have arrived and are waiting for you in the lower parlor.” Though petite, Mrs. Reynolds commanded respect—and perhaps even a little fear when her dark eyes flashed the way they did now.

Something about the way she said guests … “I am not aware that Mr. Darcy has invited anyone else to Pemberley for Yuletide.”

“That is what I understood, too, madam. But the young woman was insistent that I present you with her card.” Mrs. Reynolds held out a plain white card.

No, that was not possible. 

“So, you were not expecting her? Shall I turn them away?”

“Them?”

“Yes, madam, there are two small children with her.”

“She brought the children? Is there anyone else?”

Creases tightened beside Mrs. Reynolds’ dark eyes. “I imagine you are asking if there is a man with them. No, I have been assured there is not.”

“Then …” She chewed her lip. No doubt Darcy would not like it very much, but really, what else was she to do? They had come such a long way—how had they managed that? As long as he was not with them … “See that rooms are made up for them and another girl is assigned to the nursery to assist. I will go down and find out how long she and the children are to stay. I will inform Mr. Darcy of the plans myself.”

“Very well, Madam.” Mrs. Reynolds looked just a little relieved as she took Elizabeth’s arm and escorted her down the grand stairs—another one of Darcy’s precautions in her delicate state.

Perhaps he was a little, just a little, overprotective.

Elizabeth paused just outside the lower parlor door and smoothed her periwinkle blue gown over her ample midsection.  Yes, enjoying the soft wool beneath her fingertips was just stalling, but surely that could be excused this once. 

What was Lydia doing here, and why had she given them no notice of her plans?

Elizabeth waddled into the elegant room, appointed in teal and ivory furnishings and drapes. It was one of those rooms that was not precisely according to her tastes, a bit too reserved and formal for parlor company. The carved mahogany furnishings demanded respect rather than welcomed visitors. But Darcy liked it very well indeed as his mother had seen to its décor herself. So, she had determined, it would stay exactly as it was.

Darcy rose from the wingchair near the not-yet-lit fireplace and approached her.  

Darcy? 

What was he doing here? Mrs. Reynolds had made no mention … He took her arm and guided her to a soft teal armchair close beside his. It was probably polite for him to keep his expression so neutral, but it also meant his feelings were quite the opposite. The baby kicked and fluttered, perhaps agreeing with her sentiment.

“No wonder you were so slow to arrive, Lizzy, you are as big as a horse.” Lydia sprang up from the long ivory settee where both her children lay sleeping and bounced toward her. The thick floral carpeting muffled her footfalls. 

How dare she be so light and easy on her feet.

“I had no idea of your coming.” Elizabeth looked directly at Darcy.

“No, neither of us did.” He pressed his hand tight against her arm. 

No, he was not pleased. 

“You did not expect me to arrive on St. Nicholas day? It is the traditional start of all holiday visits, is it not?” Lydia started to roll her eyes but stopped the expression with a slap to her forehead. “I am such a goose, I must have forgot to post the letter. What a joke! Even so, you cannot be surprised at my coming for a house party at Christmastide.”

Calm, she much be calm. “How did you—”

“Jane mentioned she and Bingley were coming in one of her letters.” Lydia curtsied and flounced back to her seat. Ragged threads dangled from her dusty faded hem, and her half-boots sported scuffs and dirt, more than travel alone would explain.

“Of course, she did.” Elisabeth shrugged at Darcy. She would have a few—gentle—words with Jane.

“I know you would have invited me had you thought we had any way to get here.”

“Naturally.” Did Darcy realize how strained his voice sounded when he spoke through a forced smile? He gripped the arm of his chair hard enough that the veins stood out on the back of his hand.

“Are you not going to ask me how we managed?”

“How did you manage it?” Elizabeth hid her hand under her skirt and clenched her fist.

“La, it was not so difficult after all. You have noticed, I am sure, that Wickham is not with us. He has been on the continent you see, since … since May I think.”

Elizabeth gasped and Darcy pressed his shoulder to hers.  

Waterloo.

 “After some months without the regiment in residence, Julia, Martha, and I decided we no longer wanted to keep house together. Julia decided to go with her baby back to her father’s house only ten miles from here. So, the children and I came with her that far and paid our way from there. You see, I am far more clever than you gave me credit for, am I not, Lizzy?”

Elizabeth blinked several times. Dare she ask? No, if there were bad news, they would surely know by now. “You came all this way, with the children?”

“As you see,” she pointed to the children sleeping on the settee beside her. The little mites’ faces were dusty and their clothes seemed ill-fitting and in need of mending.

“And where are you going to live now that…”

“Oh, that. I am going to Longbourn of course.”

“You have written to Mama—”

Lydia picked at her skirt. “I will directly if you are so insistent about it. But now that Kitty is the only one living there, I know there is plenty of room for us. It will be ever so much nicer than the fourth-rate house we rented up north. I know that Mama will enjoy the lively company we will bring. You remember how dull Kitty can be. I will ask Papa to send the carriage for us after Twelfth Night unless Mr. Darcy would rather send us with his coach.”

“You ought to prepare yourself for Papa to insist you take the stage instead.”

“I am sure it will all work out. You have become such a worrier, Lizzy. I do not see how you tolerate her, Mr. Darcy.” Her laughter always grated when she used it to blunt an insult.

“We make do very well I think.” He laid his hand on hers. Was that the tiniest bit of amusement in his eyes?

“I have no doubt you have room for us in such a very grand house. I think we shall do very well together for the holidays, do you not?”

Elizabeth chewed the inside of her cheek. Lying was unbecoming, at least under most circumstances.  “I suppose, what is one more, and her children, to an already merry little party?”

“I knew you would see it that way. Oh, I see your housekeeper Mrs. Richards—Is that her name?” Lydia sashayed past them and out into the corridor where indeed Mrs. Reynolds waited with a pair of maids who swept in and picked up the children. 

Darcy rose and shut the door, sighing as he turned back to her. 

“I had no idea she was coming.” Pray he would look her in the eye.

“I have no doubt. Clearly that was her intention all along.” Some of the tightness around his lips eased.

“And her visit is agreeable to you?”

He fell heavily into the chair beside her. “The only person I have forbidden from this house is Wickham. About that I will never change my mind. But Georgiana is away with the Matlocks, and Lydia is my sister now. I will not deny her hospitality.” He leaned his head back and stared at the ceiling as he often did when resigning himself to some duty he disliked.

“I will do my best to see that she does nothing to disturb you—”

“I will not have you worrying about anything, Elizabeth. Not. Anything.” When he stared into her eyes like that, there could be no argument. “You must remain calm and rested for the baby. If she upsets you, that will be reason enough for me to find her other accommodations. There is an inn at Lambton. We can send a maid with her if need be.”

“You are all that is considerate, even if she is not. I suppose we should be accustomed to unexpected guests at Yuletide by now.” Her laughter sounded thin even in her own ears.


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Six-time BRAG Medallion Honoree, Maria Grace has her PhD in Educational Psychology and is a 16-year veteran of the university classroom where she taught courses in human growth and development, learning, test development and counseling. None of which have anything to do with her undergraduate studies in economics/sociology/managerial studies/behavior sciences. She pretends to be a mild-mannered writer/cat-lady, but most of her vacations require helmets and waivers or historical costumes, usually not at the same time. 

She writes gas lamp fantasy, historical romance and non-fiction to help justify her research addiction. Her books are available at all major online booksellers.  

 

She can be contacted at:

author.MariaGrace@gmail.com 

Facebook: 

Twitter

Random Bits of Fascination 

Austen Variations  

English Historical Fiction Authors 

Pinterest 

 


Maria Grace would like to offer one ebook copy of Unexpected Gifts to one of my readers. The giveaway is international and will end on the 28th of December.

All you have to do to participate in the giveaway is comment on this post. Every comment earns an entry in the drawing.

Good Luck everyone!

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The Darcy’s First Christmas by Maria Grace

The Darcy’s First Christmas is the first book in the Darcy Family Christmas series following Darcy and Elizabeth: Christmas 1811: Pride and Prejudice behind the scenes (Darcy Family Christmas Book 1).

This second instalment is a short sequel to Pride &Prejudice that allows us to see the difficulties the mistress of Pemberley faces on her first Christmas. Maria Grace’s knowledge of regency manners and traditions is evident in this book where the characters doubts and struggles feel true and real. If people think being Mistress of Pemberley would be absolutely perfect, they are very mistaken because with a great estate and family name comes great responsibilities, and Elizabeth is put to the task.

I don’t usually love sequels because most of them lack the necessary conflict to make the story evolve, but that was not the case with The Darcy’s First Christmas. In this book the lack of communication between the newlyweds served the purpose of bringing some conflict to the story and also making the reader invested in it.

One of my favourite aspects about The Darcy’s First Christmas was the new characters in the book, particularly Darcy’s aunt once we understood her a little better. She is a character that is hard to get in the beginning, but as the story unfolds, and we know her real personality, we do appreciate all she has done and said. Georgiana’s character is not an original one, but I did love what Maria Grace did with her. It was completely unexpected and riveting. Her character development was probably my favourite aspect of the entire book. It may not be for everyone’s tastes, but I certainly enjoyed it.

In the beginning of the book it did not appear we would have a lot of romance, because the story was more focused on the adjustments to married life and having new responsibilities, but we do get some romance after all, and many readers will rejoice with the romantic scenes in this short story.

The Darcy’s First Christmas gives the reader a glimpse of what the Darcy’s first months of marriage were like, showing us the daily struggles of managing an estate and an household, and above all, how hard it is to manage family’s expectations. All this is done while creating a Christmas feeling that fits perfectly the book and makes it the perfect read for this time of the year.

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Elizabeth Bennet’s Level

There wasn’t any particular feature that stood out in Melissa Durbin’s narration, but there wasn’t anything I believe could be done better either. It was perfectly agreeable and the fact that I didn’t think about the narration, only meant the narrator was able to keep me as a reader focused in the book, which in the end is the main goal of a narrator.

 

You can find The Darcy’s First Christmas at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

on Audible

and on Kindle Unlimited

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Leap of Hope by Shannon Winslow

Leap of Hope is the second book in the Crossroads collection and even though some characters are the same, the main character is a different one with a separete storyline , so the reader doesn’t need to read Leap of Faith before this second instalment. 

The main character in Leap of Hope is Hope O’Neil a college student who has a fascination towards Jane Austen and who is given a second chance in life at the Crossroads Center. Here she is given the opportunity to live another life in any period of her choosing, and due to her love for Austen, she chooses the regency period.

Unlike other time travel Austen inspired books, where someone from the 21rs century goes back in time to Regency, in Leap of Hope we actually see the character making that decision and having several options before her. I truly liked the section of the book where Hope is at Crossroads doing investigation and pondering her options. 

Once everything is settled, she goes back in time, and once more the entire experience is much different from any other time travel book I’ve read because the main character not only knows what will happen, but also has a lot of help that will facilitate her integration.

I particularly liked to see that this Austen inspired story didn’t focus solely on Pride & Prejudice (even if Hope keeps dreaming for a Darcylike gentleman to come along), and instead goes through all of Austen’s novels with cleverly inputted parallels that keep not only Hope but also the reader quite excited about the current events and also what may come next. I also enjoyed the fact that despite these parallels with scenes and characters from Austen’s novels, the character’s themselves are all original. I cannot enjoy a time travel story where someone from modern time ends up paired with Mr. Darcy, and that is definitely not the path Shannon Winslow takes with these stories. Of course, the reader will recognise many Darcy traits in one particular character, but he is not Mr. Darcy, so it is quite all right for Hope to end up with him.

I wasn’t completely in love with Hope O’Neil’s character, but I did love the male hero. Despite the fact that Hope had many suitors, with a bit too many marriage proposals in my opinion, I kept rooting for one in particular because he conquered my heart from the first moment!

The ending was quite a surprise and I did like the fact that the author kept us in the dark until the end. The encounter at the book shop in the end of the story was the cherry on top of the cake and the perfect ending for an incredible journey.

Leap of Hope is unlike any other Austen time travel book, it is creative, well written and heart-warming. The reader is transported into Austen’s world with the advantage of having original characters making this journey an exciting surprise. I highly recommend it to any Austen fan who would like to see Austen’s work cleverly incorporated in an original story.

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Elizabeth Bennet’s Level

Meagan Moses is an accent genius! Her southern accent is incredible and what is more impressive is to see her changing it from that superb American southern accent into a flawless British accent. She was the perfect narrator for this book, she made the characters sound authentic and it was very easy to distinguish when Hope was being herself and when she was portraying Kate. It was even perceptible to see when Hope was transitioning into Kate, and that was simply incredible. I highly recommend this narrator to authors who need someone able to portray many different accents. She definitely sells this audiobook!

 

You can find Leap of Hope at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

on Audible

and on Kindle Unlimited

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Giveaway Winners

Good Afternoon everyone,

I hope you’re all having a nice week 🙂

Last month I published my usual Christmas Gifts post and with it I announced the opening of my small Etsy shop and offered a giveaway of one of the products I have there for sale at the moment, along with a signed paperback copy of The Second Chance by Joana Starnes and a You Have Biwitched Me Pillow Case, so today I am here to announce the winners.

For the first time I used Rafflecopter not only to manage the entries, but also to randomly pick the winners, so without further ado, here they are:

Congratulations ladies! As always, please contact me throught e-mail ritaluzdeodato at gmail dot com and let me know your order of preference concerning the 3 gifts that were being offered along with your home address so that I can mail them.

Merry Christmas 

&

Happy Reading everyone!

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The Mist of Her Memory by Suzan Lauder

In The Mist of Her Memory something happens to Elizabeth after she receives Jane’s letter at Lambton which causes not only some memory loss, but also some confusion regarding the events that surrounded Lydia’s elopement. The reader is unaware of what caused this memory confusion and is forced to go through the mist of Elizabeth’s memory along with her. Suzan Lauder crafted this story with a skill that impressed me because we could feel the confusion and frustration Elizabeth felt with the entire situation, and like her, we just wanted to know exactly what happened. 

The first chapters of this book are bewitching and the reader feels immediately transported into a Pride & Prejudice variation he doesn’t quite comprehend yet, but which he feels compelled to understand. This story and the manner in which it was written was so different it captured my attention for a long time. It was exciting not to know what was happening and why the characters were acting in such a strange manner. 

I loved the writing style in this book, the way sentences were built and the words chosen were enticing and gave me a sense of wellbeing throughout the story. The entire ambience of the book is compelling and somewhat magical, it forces the reader to feel something, and in my opinion these are always the best books. 

Apart from the writing style, one of the aspects I loved the most about The Mist of Her Memory was the fact that both Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth are in love with each other from the very beginning. This allowed me to witness many touching and heartwarming moments, and to rejoice in the love and trust they showed towards one another. The strength of their convictions and love is undeniable in this story, even when all odds were against them, they believed in one another and never gave up on their convictions.

The mystery in the story was very well built and another plus in this book. I do not believe most readers will ever be able to answer all the questions that arise throughout the narrative. 

I truly enjoyed listening to this book and I was only slightly frustrated to see that it dragged a little towards the end. I found it hard to believe that Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy would spend so much time together without speaking what was on their mind, and it also felt like the Bennet family wasn’t reacting to Lydia’s situation as they should. 

Summing up, The Mist of Her Memory is an enthralling book that is able to capture and hold the reader’s attention for a very long time due to its crafty writing style, the innumerous mysteries that need answering and the intense passionate love the characters have for one another demanding a happy ending. I do recommend this book, especially to readers who want a creative storyline that is simultaneously exciting and believable.

 

Audiobook Narration:

Elizabeth Bennet’s Level

Neil Roy McFarlane was the perfect voice for this story. The pleasantness of his voice along with his ability to make the reader engaged with it made me want to listen to this book non-stop until I understood what was happening. He has a natural pacing ability that allowed me to get immersed in the story and forget about any other technicalities.

 

You can find The Mist of Her Memory at:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

on Audible

and on Kindle Unlimited

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