Category Archives: Cover reveal

My Mr. Darcy and Your Mr. Bingley Back Cover Reveal

 

Good Morning dear readers,

How are you today?

I’m very happy to bring you today a partial cover release for Linda Beutler’s latest book, My Mr. Darcy & Your Mr. Bingley! And why partial you may ask? Because I will only be revealing the back cover! The lovely Ceri is revealing the front cover at Babblings of a Bookworm, so I would suggest visiting her blog to check the lovely front cover Janet Taylor worked on.

I believe you all know how much I love beautiful covers, so it makes me very happy to be able to be a part of this double cover release, but I’m also very happy because I got a chance to work with Janet and Ceri! It is an honor to be doing a separate front and back cover reveal with such a lovely lady and JAFF connoisseur as Ceri, I love her blog and her reviews, so I’m very proud to be joining her on this post 🙂

But the back cover is not the only thing I would like to share with you today! My Mr. Darcy & Your Mr. Bingley has just gone live at Amazon during the night!!! If like me you cannot wait to read it, you’ll be able to buy it right away through the below links. As the book went live just a few hours ago, when half the world was still asleep, you might even be the first to get it 🙂

 

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

 

After reading A Will of Iron and considering it one of my top 10 favorites from 2015, this is the greatest of news for me and I’m looking forward to read it.

But I’m sure you’re eager to know more about this book, so before showing you the back cover, I’ll let you read the book blurb 🙂

 

Jane Bennet had a heart to break after all, and I am a party to it.

Fitzwilliam Darcy

One simple, uncharacteristic subterfuge leaves Fitzwilliam Darcy needing to apologize to nearly everyone he knows! When Charles Bingley reaps the sad repercussions of Mr. Darcy’s sin of omission, Elizabeth Bennet’s clear-eyed view of the facts gives her the upper hand in a long-distance battle of wills with Mr. Bingley’s former friend. By the time Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth meet (repeatedly) in the groves of Rosings Park, neither knows the whole truth except that somehow, someway, their future is inextricably linked to the courtship of Charles Bingley and Jane Bennet.

In this Pride and Prejudice “what-if”, the additional dash of backbone and “far-sighted” action to the character of Mr. Bingley begs the question: how is Mr. Darcy to impress Elizabeth Bennet if Bingley does his own matchmaking? And how is Elizabeth Bennet to trust Mr. Darcy when even faith in a most beloved sister falters?

 

Linda Beutler’s professional life is spent in a garden, an organic garden housing America’s foremost public collection of clematis vines and a host of fabulous companion plants. Her home life reveals a more personal garden, still full of clematis, but also antique roses and vintage perennials planted around and over a 1907 cottage. But one can never have enough of gardening, so in 2011 she began cultivating a weedy patch of Jane Austen Fan Fiction ideas. The first of these to ripen was The Red Chrysanthemum (Meryton Press, 2013), which won a silver IPPY for romance writing in 2014. You might put this down as beginner’s luck—Linda certainly does. The next harvest brought Longbourn to London (Meryton Press, 2014), known widely as “the [too] sexy one”. In 2015 Meryton Press published the bestseller A Will of Iron, a macabre rom-com based on the surprising journals of Anne de Bourgh.

Now, after a year-long break in JAFF writing to produce Plant Lovers Guide to Clematis (Timber Press, 2016)—the third in a bouquet of books on gardening—we have My Mr. Darcy and Your Mr. Bingley bursting into bloom.

You can contact Linda Beutler though the following social media:

Twitter: @oregonclematis

Facebook: Linda Beutler Author

Wandering Pemberley’s Gardens (blog at MP)


 

And now, without further ado…the back cover of My Mr. Darcy & Your Mr. Bingley!

Isn’t it lovely? And aren’t you curious about the design in the back? I’m personally eager for the blog tour to start to learn more about the story behind this cover and all the details involving its creative process… Or maybe we can even find out about it a little earlier, so stay tuned for more information on this book and its cover 🙂

And if you still haven’t seen the front cover, please check it out at Babblings of a Bookworm or visit Amazon.

 

39 Comments

Filed under Cover reveal, JAFF, Pride and Prejudice

Mr Bennet’s Dutiful Daughter Cover Reveal & Giveaway

mbdd-nov-2-cover-reveal-br-ann_edited-2-1Hello dear readers

Today I bring you a very special post! Along with 9 other wonderful bloggers, I’m happy to reveal to all of you the cover for Joana Starnes newest book, Mr. Bennet’s Dutiful Daughter!

Along with the cover, I would like to share with you some fun facts I discovered while doing my research for this post, the book blurb and…a giveaway sponsored by Joana Starnes.

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Joana’s new book has a very beautiful portrait on it’s cover, it is titled Portrait of Miss Frances Vinicombe, date unknown, and it’s an oil on canvas that measures 92×71 cm painted by John Opie, a Cornish historical and portrait painter.

He painted many great men and women of his day, including members of the British Royal Family, and others who were most notable in the artistic and literary professions. One of the people he painted was Mary Wollstonecraft who was an English writer, philosopher, and advocate of women’s rights. During her brief career, she wrote novels, treatises, a travel narrative, a history of the French Revolution, a conduct book, and a children’s book. Wollstonecraft is best known for A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), in which she argues that women are not naturally inferior to men, but appear to be only because they lack education. She suggests that both men and women should be treated as rational beings and imagines a social order founded on reason.

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Wollstonecraft died at the age of 38, eleven days after giving birth to her second daughter, leaving behind several unfinished manuscripts. This daughter, Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin, became an accomplished writer herself, as Mary Shelley, the author of Frankenstein.

I believe Mary Wollstonecraft’s life story and beliefs would make her a perfect Elizabeth Bennet, but John Opie painted her in a later stage of her life so the person on Joana’s book cover is not Mary Wollstonecraft but Miss Frances Vinicombe.

I tried to obtain more information on her, but I couldn’t find much. I know she was born in Devon, England ans she was painted in mourning clothes but everything else remains a mystery. I guess that is a good thing isn’t it? We will not have any prejudice concerning the cover as we will be left with only our own imagination and creativity. Every time we look at Mr. Bennet’s Dutiful Daughter we may imagine what type of live that beautiful woman may have had.

 

But I’ve been talking and talking (or writing) without even showing you the cover, and I would by no means suspend any pleasure of yours, so you can find the cover below:

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What do you think? Miss Frances Vinicombe was a better choice for the cover wasn’t she?

I am very intrigued by the painting on the cover, especially by the clothes Miss Vinecombe is wearing. Why is she wearing black? Where was she when this portrait was painted? Who ordered this painting, and where was it kept? I’m not sure if I will ever know the answers to these questions, but at least some might be answered if I ever visit Russia. And, no, that was not a mistake, the painting is currently on display at The Hermitage Museum in Russia, so if you ever visit St. Petersburg, you’ll have a chance to look at the intriguing Miss Vinecombe.

You can also find in this museum paintings of some of my favorite artists such as Van Gogh, Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, and Alfred Sisley, but also from Degas, Gaugin, Renoir, Monet, Picasso, , Kandinsky and so on.

Isn’t this a major enticement to visit St. Petersburg? Not that I needed another excuse to visit one of the most beautiful cities in the world 🙂

portrait-of-miss-frances-vinicombe-by-john-opie-1790s

 

 

But I’m digressing and by now I already spoiled who Mr. Bennet’s Dutiful Daughter is, but in case you are still wondering why Elizabeth Bennet is a Dutiful Daughter, please read the book blurb.

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***Book Description***

When Colonel Fitzwilliam’s disclosures are interrupted by the bearer of distressing news from Longbourn, Miss Elizabeth Bennet is compelled to consider an offer she would have otherwise dismissed out of hand. An offer of marriage from the all-too-proud Mr Darcy.

Yet how is she to live with a husband she hardly knows and does not love? Would she be trapped in a marriage of convenience while events conspire to divide them? Or would love grow as, day by day and hour after hour, she learns to understand the man she married, before she loses his trust and his heart?

Available at: Amazon.com

***Author Contacts***

joana-starnesFacebook: All Roads Lead to Pemberley/ Joana Starnes Facebook Page

Twitter: Joana Starnes/ Twitter

Goodreads: Joana Starnes Goodreads Author Page

Amazon:  Joana Starnes Amazon Author Page

 

 

***Blog Tour***

This book will go on a tour, don’t miss the several stops to find out more about it, and have an extra chance at the giveaways!

 

November 17/ My Jane Austen Book Club/Launch Post & Giveawaymbdd-blog-tour-banner-vertical_d

November 18/Pemberley to Milton/Book Review & Giveaway

November 19/Obsessed with Mr. Darcy/ Book Review & Giveaway

November 20/ A Covent Garden Madame Gilflurt’s Guide to Life/Guest Post

November 21/ Margie’s Must Reads/ Book Review & Giveaway

November 22/ Babblings of a Bookworm/ Book Review & Giveaway

November 23/Diary of an Eccentric/Book Review & Giveaway

November 24/ Happy Thanksgiving

November 25/ So Little Time… So Much to Read/ Excerpt & Giveaway

November 26/ Just Jane 1813/Interview with Joana Starnes

November 27 / My Kids Led Me Back to Pride and Prejudice/ Guest Post & Giveaway

November 28/ More Agreeably Engaged/ Vignette & Giveaway

December 2/ Austenesque Reviews/ Excerpt & Giveaway

 

***It’s giveaway time***

 

Joana Starnes would like to offer our readers 3 copies of Mr. Bennet’s Dutiful Daughter. One reader will receive a paperback and two will receive an ebook copy. They will also receive assorted Austen-related mini-gifts. The giveaways are open to international winners.

Also, as a special bonus, all Rafflecopter entrants will receive an exclusive excerpt of the book that will not be included in the Amazon sample.

To enter the giveaway, just click here.

 

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Filed under Cover reveal, Joana Starnes, Pride and Prejudice

The Honorable Mr. Darcy – Launch Post & Giveaway

Hello Dear Readers,

Today I’m pleased to celebrate with all of you the release of Jennifer Joy’s new book!

It doesn’t seem too long ago that she released her last book Win, Lose or Darcy, but after writing Accusing Elizabeth, Jennifer Joy developed a tender regard for mysteries, and some ideas could not get out of her head, so a few months later The Honorable Mr. Darcy came to life and today it’s being released for sale in Amazon. You can check it by cliking here.

 

honorableThe Honorable Mr. Darcy is the first volume of the Meryton Mystery Series and revolves about the murder of George Wickham, but do not fear, you will have some closure with this book as the identity of the murderer is revealed, quite surprisingly I might add!

Curious about the premise? You can read more about it below:

 

***Book Blurb***

Everyone has a secret. Who will kill to keep theirs?

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Lieutenant George Wickham is dead.

The shot rings out in Wickham’s tent as the good citizens of Meryton dance the night away at Mr. Bingley’s Netherfield ball. The only person who can confirm Fitzwilliam Darcy’s alibi faces the loss of her reputation and her freedom if she comes forward.

Convinced that her sole motive is the pursuit of justice— and not her growing attraction to Mr. Darcy— Elizabeth Bennet begins an investigation to clear his name and evade an unwanted marriage.

If Darcy didn’t shoot Wickham in cold blood, who did? Which of Longbourn’s neighbors is not who they seem?

With a killer on the loose, can Elizabeth avoid being the next victim as she comes closer to revealing the truth?

Bestselling author, Jennifer Joy, brings you The Honorable Mr. Darcy, the first standalone book in the A Meryton Mystery romance series. If you like falling in love with characters as they fall for each other while uncovering shocking secrets, then you’ll love this mystery romance.

 

***

 

To celebrate the launch of the book we bring you today an excerpt of my favourite scene in the book.

I hope you like this little teaser 🙂

 

***Excerpt***

 

A rustle in the corner of the room startled Darcy from his thoughts. Squinting his eyes against the darkness, he saw a lump on top of the couch.

He drew closer, his steps hushed against the carpet. When he saw that it was a young lady, he started. He ought to leave the room. But something about the lady made him peer closer.

Her dark hair blended into her surroundings. However, the familiar curve of her lips and the mischievous arch of her brows– even in sleep– identified her. It was Miss Elizabeth Bennet. She had avoided him all evening, and now here she was. He would have enjoyed her conversation.

Leaning down, he appreciated how peaceful she looked in slumber with her eyelashes spread across her cheek. She sighed and shifted her weight, freezing Darcy in place. Slowly and deliberately, he shifted his weight to his toes so that he might depart without waking her. He took a step back and lost his balance when he stumbled on an object lying on the floor. Flailing his arms out to avoid toppling over, his hand whacked against a vase or lamp or something inconveniently placed. It clattered to the floor in the one place not covered by a rug to soften its fall just as the clock struck the top of the hour. Darcy reached for the offending object which had caused his stumble and soon held in his hands one of Miss Elizabeth’s slippers.

“Who is there?” asked Miss Elizabeth in a startled voice.

Darcy groaned. “I apologize if I startled you, Miss Elizabeth. I was not aware anyone else was in the library. I shall depart.”

He had closed the library door behind him. If anyone chanced upon them alone in the dark room, Miss Elizabeth’s reputation would be compromised.

“What time is it?” she asked, looking around her frantically.

“The clock just struck midnight.”

“Midnight? Drat it all, I must have fallen asleep. I must go.”

She scrambled to her feet, her stocking toes searching for her slippers. Darcy reached down and placed the one he held before her.

The door widened and Bingley’s housekeeper peeked in. “Is anyone in here?” she asked.

Miss Elizabeth moved forward. If they were seen… Darcy clamped his hand over her mouth, pulling her against him further into the shadows.

With a cluck, the housekeeper closed the door, locking it behind her. They were stuck.

 

***

 

Elizabeth’s immediate inclination was to bite Mr. Darcy’s thick fingers, which she did with enthusiasm. Though she heard him suck in air sharply, his arms did not loosen from around her. She would scream if only she could breathe.

“Hush!” he hissed, his breath tickling her ear and annoying her further.

She found herself stuck in Mr. Bingley’s library with Mr. Darcy. Alone. Together.

The clattering of the housekeeper’s keys stopped and after a few seconds, Mr. Darcy released his hold on her.

Taking a large step away, she spun around to face him. “Why did you prevent me from leaving? Now, we are locked in!” She ought to have stomped on his foot.

Taking off his glove and rubbing the finger she had bitten, he visibly controlled his breath. Only one angry tremor marred the control in his low baritone, “If Mrs. Harris saw you, she may very well have seen me too. Can you imagine the consequences to your reputation had she seen me attempting to hide from her in a dark library?”

His smooth voice and sound reasoning stood no chance before her ire. “And can you imagine the consequences when I am missed and it is discovered that both of us have gone missing from the ballroom?”

Mr. Darcy paced, reminding Elizabeth of a black panther she had seen at an exhibition once. “If we are caught here, you will be compromised and I will have to make an offer for you.”

“You would act honorably toward me when you have failed to do so for others?” she spat.

Running his uninjured hand through his perfect hair, he said, “I can only guess that you refer to Mr. Wickham. Let me assure you, Miss Bennet, that there is more to that tragic story than he would dare admit to you. He is not to be trusted.”

“And I am to trust you?” She poured as much sarcasm as she could muster into her tone.

“Trust is earned, not seduced with charm.”

She scoffed. “And what do you know of charm, sir? Perhaps you can enlighten me as I have yet to see its display in your behavior.”

He closed the distance between them with one step. His dark eyes lit with a smoldering fire which made her skin tingle. She crossed her arms in front of her chest and lifted her chin before her thoughts muddled.

“Of what use is charm when it is used to disguise one’s flaws?”

“Of which you have none, I suppose?”

“I have faults enough, but they are not, I hope, of understanding nor so grave as those of Mr. Wickham.”

“You believe yourself more honorable than he when you are the one locked in a dark room with an unmarried lady?” It was a low blow, but the irony of his claims and their present situation was too great to ignore.

“I will marry you if it comes to that.” He sounded as thrilled about it as she did.

“And what makes you think I would accept your offer? Nay, Mr. Darcy, neither of us wants to be trapped in a loveless marriage. No more than we want to be trapped in this room. There must be a way out.”

She pulled out a hairpin and scurried to the door.

“You must be quiet lest someone pass by,” ordered Mr. Darcy.

Annoyed, she answered, “I suppose you have a better way?”

The doorknob rattled and Elizabeth jumped back, clamping her hand over her mouth to keep from exclaiming aloud. Jovial voices on the other side of the door conversed.

Mr. Darcy tugged his hand through his hair, resting it on the back of his neck. “This is lovely,” he mumbled.

Elizabeth remained by the door, hoping that the gaggle of people on the other side would leave.

“We must find another way out,” said Mr. Darcy. He turned to the window, pulling the curtains aside.

“I could climb out the window,” she suggested, opening the glass and peeking out. Nobody was about.

“Absolutely not!”

Crossing her arms, she asked, “Why not? I am light and can easily fit through the opening.”

“What if you fall?”

Must he object to her every idea? What an agitating man. “There is a nice ledge running around the house and I am certain that it will be no more difficult to jump down from it than from the branch of a tree.”

Mr. Darcy looked shocked. “You have experience climbing trees?”

Squaring her shoulders, she said proudly, “I have had sufficient practice over the years.” What did she care if he thought her a hoyden? His opinion meant little to her.

“Why does that not surprise me?” he smiled, disarming Elizabeth’s witty retort on the advantages of tree-climbing. He had a nice smile. A beautiful smile. She nearly smiled back at him before she remembered that she did not like him. Not in the least.

He continued, “I do not doubt your skills, Miss Elizabeth. However, I doubt you have attempted the feat in a gown and slippers. Were you to return to the assembly with your dress torn, it might prove difficult to provide a satisfying answer without compromising yourself further.”

There was that. She dearly wanted to contradict him, but she could find no fault with his reasoning.

“What do you propose then, Mr. Darcy?” She looked him squarely in the face, determined he not see how greatly his smile had disturbed her.

“I will do it.”

“But will you fit through the opening?” His superior height and wide shoulders would not allow it. Only the most agile of men could make such a climb without his size hindering him.

“I can squeeze through the side. Do you doubt my abilities?” he asked, his eyes full of… mischief? Mr. Darcy knew how to tease? He even appeared to look forward to the risky descent. Elizabeth did not know what to make of him, and it grew increasingly difficult for her not to smile at him.

“Who am I to doubt you, sir? The fact is that we need to leave this room before we are discovered, and our only other escape is blocked,” she said, keeping her voice down. She still held the hair pin with which she had planned to pick the lock. Frustrated and confused, she shoved it back into place, jabbing her scalp. Oh, how she wished she did not need Mr. Darcy’s help. She could manage well enough on her own.

“I will enter the house again as if I had merely stepped out of doors for some fresh air, and I will ask where you might be so that I may request a dance.”

So much for refusing to dance him. She really had no choice. “Ask Jane. She will know to look for me here.”

“It is the first place I would have thought to look.” He looked at her as if he expected her to say something, but his understanding of her only made her wonder why he would remember that unimportant detail. He had given no indication during her stay at Netherfield Park to care for Jane that he noticed her at all.

Accepting her silence, to which she was grateful, he bowed. “Very good. Now I must be on my way.” Like a cat, he hopped up and through the window, his coat slipping across the frame as he squeezed through in one smooth motion. “Please be so kind as to close the window,” he said as he inched across the ledge and leapt down to the ground with ease.

Elizabeth reached out to the glass, letting the cold breeze cool the spark of admiration and flame of curiosity. Tugging at the curtain, she paused. Was that a shadow behind the fountain?

 

***It’s giveaway time***

Don’t you just love these cliffhangers? When I read this part of the book I could not stop to find out what would happen 🙂

But…Now it’s giveaway time!

Jennifer Joy would like to offer 4 ebook copies of The Honorable Mr. Darcy to her readers across the globe.

The giveaway is international and to participate all you have to do is comment this post. Let us know what you thought about the story or the excerpt, congratulate Jennifer on this new release, or ask her anything about the story. The comments can be anything you like 🙂

The giveaway is open until the 23rd of October and the winners will be announced shortly after.

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Filed under Cover reveal, giveaway, Pride and Prejudice

The Courtship of Edward Gardiner – Cover Reveal & Giveaway

tcoeg-cover-reveal-banner

Hello everyone,

I know I have been away for a long time, and I apologize for that, but I’m finally taking some days off my job and that has given me the time I needed to get back to my favourite hobby: JAFFing! That may not be a real word, but it’s the closest one I could find 🙂

After this time away, I’m very happy to be returning with a post that is very special to me ! I’m incredibly honored to be the one doing the cover reveal to Nicole Clarkston’s new Pride and Prejudice novel: The Courtship of Edward Gardiner.

This is a sweet prequel of Pride & Prejudice taking Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner as main characters and will be released on October 21st. The book is already available for pre-order, so if you are curious about it, you can check it here.

Before showing you the cover, I would like to invite you to read the Blurb:

 

***Book Blurb***

 

Every great love has a beginning.

In Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, we meet with perhaps the most sensible, caring relatives a lovelorn young woman could hope for: Mr and Mrs Gardiner. What is their story?

Edward Gardiner has just been refused by the lovely young woman he had intended to make his wife. Heartbroken and eager for a diversion, he accepts an invitation from his brother-in-law, Thomas Bennet, to accompany him along with his two eldest daughters to the north on family business. Gardiner’s pleasure tour is interrupted, however, when his eldest niece falls ill and is unable to travel farther.

Stopping over in the scarcely remarkable village of Lambton, the men decide that Bennet must continue on, while Gardiner and the children remain. The only trouble is that Gardiner has not the least idea how he should care for one ailing niece and another who is ready to drive him to distraction… until he meets with Madeline Fairbanks.

***

What did you think? Did you find this appealing? Curious to know where Edward Gardiner meets Madeline Fairbanks?

The place where the story is developed is crucial because it will allow Nicole Clarkson to bring all characters from Pride and Prejudice to this prequel. With their paths crossing, we will see younger versions of our beloved characters and understand why they grew up to be the characters we know them to be… But you’ll learn more about this story during the upcoming Blog Tour 🙂

 

I’ve mentioned I’m honored to be doing the cover reveal and that is partly because Nicole Clarkston’s writing is exquisite, and partly because of the cover itself, or better yet, the cover creator.

This cover was created by Janet Taylor from JTOriginals, and I’m sure that many of you already noticed I’m a huge fan of her work!!

It all started when Janet’s close friend Jan Hahn suggested she drew a picture for the cover of one of her books, the soon-to be released, The Journey. Janet Taylor accepted the challenge and even if the cover ended up not being used for that book it was the beginning of many more drawings, the Jane Austen calendar, and merchandise featuring her drawings.

Janet Taylor’s first book cover was for Linda Beutler’sThe Red Chrysanthemum in the summer of 2013 but many more followed, namely Nicole Clarkston’s Northern Rain and now The Courtship of Edward Gardiner:

 

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Janet started searching the internet for pictures and/or paintings that might work for this book, she sent several of them to Nicole Clarkston and she chose this one almost immediately.

This beautiful painting was Janet’s pick from the beginning because it fit perfectly to the story (she always wants covers to give hints to what is inside, everything on them needs to play a part in the story or depict something in the story, even the back cover) so she was very happy this was Nicole Clarkston’s pick as well.

The editing of the image began and the result is a little different from the ones Janet did in the past, but beautiful as always, don’t you think?

The painting on the front cover is titled, ‘The Newly Engaged Couple’, 1881, by Carl Thomsen of Denmark and I think it perfectly fits the story! What do you think of it?

As I said, Janet Taylor really loves to pay attention to the details of her covers and that also includes the back cover, so we would like to show you the entire book cover!

 

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What do you think of it? Isn’t it incredibly tasteful?

 

***It’s Giveaway time***

 

Nicole Clarkston would like to offer 2 copies of The Courtship of Edward Gardiner to our readers.

The giveaway is international for ebook copies and is open until the 15th of October. All you have to do is comment this post and share with us your thoughts and encouragement to Nicole’s new release.

Good Luck everyone!

 

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Filed under Cover reveal, giveaway, Pride and Prejudice

Complicated Attachments Cover Reveal & Giveaway

Hello everyone,

Today, and for the first time, I’m receiving Denise O’Hara as a guest on From Pemberley to Milton.

And why is she a guest today you may ask? Well, Mrs. O’Hara will release a new novel called Complicated Attachments on the 23rd of May and From Pemberley to Milton is happy to be doing its cover reveal!!

I don’t know about you, but I love to see book covers, and even if we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, truth is, I have bought some books because of the cover.

But before the big reveal, let’s get to know a bit more about the book itself! Mrs. O’Hara is bringing us the book blurb and an excerpt to satisfy our curiosity.

 

***Book Blurb***

Timing can make all the difference! What if the Militia and the Netherfield party arrived at the same time in Meryton? As events unfold, Jane first meets Mr. Wickham, while Elizabeth encounters Mr. Bingley. Introductions to new acquaintances can lead to attachments that become complicated. Wickham is enchanted and seriously pursuing the lovely Jane. Mr. Bingley is interested in Elizabeth, but it becomes complicated when he has a chance to spend time with her older sister. And Darcy finds himself increasingly drawn to a woman he is adamant he will never marry, which an unlikely source has much to say about,  in Complicated Attachments, A Pride and Prejudice Variation by Denise O’Hara.

 

***Complicated Attachments Excerpt***

I believe we are both in a predicament,” Bingley said to Darcy while they were alone in the library and unlikely to be overheard. “I am unsure how to handle this situation.”

“Bingley, I warned you about getting involved with these country girls. Although I admit, from what I know of them, the eldest Miss Bennets appear to be unusually well bred compared to most. Even so, they are still not cut from the same cloth as those in our London circle. These girls are not used to the nuances of flirting for fun.”

“That is not fair, Darcy! I was not flirting for fun. I truly liked Miss Elizabeth, I still do in fact. It is just that…”

“It is obvious to me that you have come to hold a great deal of affection for Jane Bennet,” Darcy inserted. “It is evident you have a great deal in common. Your tempers are beyond similar. However, I too am unsure if you could declare that affection without causing hurt or offense to her sister, considering she was the one who originally had your attention.”

“Not to mention the fact that Jane Bennet already has a suitor.”

Darcy’s face turned stony. “Ah yes, Wickham. I had forgotten about his part in the picture.”

“I had not, for it has come back to me that he has been making constant enquiries about her all over town. It is obvious that he is desperate to find out more about her stay here, and to see her again.”

“And more than likely to see her for all the wrong reasons.”

“Perhaps, but perhaps not. What if this time, his affection is genuine? It would not surprise me if even the likes of Wickham would not have his head turned but such an angel as Jane. Not only is she the most beautiful girl I have ever seen, but she has the sweetest and most generous nature I have ever encountered. It pains me to think of her with anyone else, for I feel as if we are the perfect match, but I cannot deny that Wickham knew her first, and there is a chance that they hold genuine affection for each other.”

“I would not give myself a moment’s concern over stepping on his toes. In fact, I would be more than happy to squash him completely.”

Bingley laughed. “I dare say you would, but it would not do my reputation here any good. Having made discreet inquiries and found that so many of the townspeople have been fooled by Wickham already, if I made such a move it would be I whom would be the blackheart and blaggard. I would rather like to fit in here and not go upsetting my new neighbors.”

“Yes, I suppose I can see your point, but I can also see a solution for it. There is no doubt that Wickham will not be able to keep up his charade for long. You must keep up your acquaintance with Miss Bennet until such time as Wickham has shown his true colors to everyone, and then no one will consider you out of line for declaring yourself. It would also be beneficial if they could be kept apart so he has no more opportunity to work his charm upon her.”

“How do you suggest we do that?”

“Well, for one, it is fortunate for you that this tempest English weather is keeping her here. He would not dare to call here while I am in attendance, nor will she depart without her sister. Besides, I do not think she is in any hurry to leave, for it appears to me as if she has grown very fond of you.”

Bingley beamed. “Do you really think so?”

“I do, although it does seem likely she only feels friendship for the man she believes to be interested in her sister. It is hard to know since her countenance is always so serene.”

“Yes, I know what you mean. But sometimes, I think, or perhaps it is just hope, that I see something more than friendship when she looks at me.”

“Well then, if you are correct, then perhaps Wickham is no longer a concern and she has already forgotten him. After all, there acquaintance was not of a long duration before she joined us at Netherfield to attend her sister. If she has not forgotten him, then there is another way, although I would be reluctant to use it unless it was absolutely necessary.”

“Darcy! What are you thinking?”

Darcy chuckled. “Nothing as untoward as you, apparently. I merely meant that if the worst came to the worst, I might be forced to tell her the truth about the scoundrel.”

“But you said you have never told a soul other than me and your cousin! You would do that? For me?”

“Charles, you and Richard are my closest and probably my only true friends. Of course I would if it would help, although it is not in my nature to share my sister’s misfortune with others unnecessarily. However, I would not stand by and see you lose the object of your affection to that despicable cad. I also confess that I too have come to like Jane Bennet and would not wish to see her hurt.

“Thank you, Darcy. That you would act so means a lot to me.”

“However, Bingley, your sisters did inform me of a conversation they had with Miss Bennet. While she is a gentleman’s daughter, I understand her mother is not. Having only a brief introduction to Mrs. Bennet I have no knowledge of her character. Perhaps she is as lady-like as her daughters, but even if she is, she is not a lady by birth. I also believe she has relatives in trade? Have you taken this into consideration?”

“That makes no difference whatsoever to me. No one who gets to know her would think any less of her for having such relatives. She is a true lady in every sense of the word.”

Darcy shrugged. “I think you may be overestimating the ton, my friend. They are quick to judge those not of their class. Your sisters may very well do the same, though they seem quite taken with Miss Bennet, much more so than with her sister. But, as you have never been one to care about such things, and may settle among her neighbors, you are probably correct that it will make little difference to your circle. However, that still leaves us with the small problem of Elizabeth Bennet. The more I get to know her, the surer I am that you two are not well suited for one another. However, you do rather seem stuck with an obligation to her and I cannot see a way out of it without causing her distress or embarrassment.”

“I am surprised that you care about such a thing, although as I know you so well, it has not escaped my notice that you have been spending more time with her.”

Darcy smiled ruefully at Bingley. “I confess that over the last three days while I have been visiting with her and reading to her while she recovers her strength, I have found myself growing increasingly fond of her. She is everything that I admire; intelligent, quick-witted, assured, and impossibly stubborn and determined. I find her company such a refreshing change from the simpering fools that are normally foist upon me by adoring mamas. But, you have already shown that you favor her, remember? Besides, I have made my reasons clear to her; that of killing two birds with one stone. While we must endure remaining indoors lest we be drowned,” Darcy rolled his eyes in contempt, “ I am selfishly indulging in my favorite pastime of reading without feeling I am neglecting my friends, while at the same time allowing Miss Jane Bennet a chance to have a break from the strain of caring for her sister all day, every day. I have no interest in furthering my friendship with Miss Elizabeth, I assure you. Unlike you, I have a responsibility to my family to marry well, in every sense of the word. Although her company has been more enjoyable than the usual empty-headed women I regularly encounter, Elizabeth Bennet is among the class of women I shall never marry.

 

And now, it is time for the big cover reveal!!!

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