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The Clergyman’s Wife – Excerpt

Good Afternoon everyone,

How are you this week? I’ve been very busy creating handmade postcards and bookmarks to sell at the Christmas Market we will have at my company tomorrow. All the profits will be donated to an institution who helps our elderly community so I’m really hoping our stand has success among my colleagues.

I’ll tell you all about it in my next post, and share some pictures too, but today I am sharing an excerpt of The Clergyman’s Wife. This novel was released today and focuses on Charlotte, one of my favorite Pride & Prejudice secondary characters. I believe she has a lot of potential as a character, and I’m curious to see how Molly Greeley approached her.

Have you heard about this book yet? It is already available at amazon, so if you like the blurb and the excerpt, you can offer yourself an early Christmas gift 🙂


Charlotte Collins, nee Lucas, is the respectable wife of Hunsford’s vicar, and sees to her duties by rote: keeping house, caring for their adorable daughter, visiting parishioners, and patiently tolerating the lectures of her awkward husband and his condescending patroness, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Intelligent, pragmatic, and anxious to escape the shame of spinsterhood, Charlotte chose this life, an inevitable one so socially acceptable that its quietness threatens to overwhelm her. Then she makes the acquaintance of Mr. Travis, a local farmer and tenant of Lady Catherine..

In Mr. Travis’ company, Charlotte feels appreciated, heard, and seen. For the first time in her life, Charlotte begins to understand emotional intimacy and its effect on the heart—and how breakable that heart can be. With her sensible nature confronted, and her own future about to take a turn, Charlotte must now question the role of love and passion in a woman’s life, and whether they truly matter for a clergyman’s wife.




You can find The Clergyman’s Wife at:







Mr. Collins walks like a man who has never become comfortable with his height: his shoulders hunched, his neck thrust forward. His legs cross great stretches of ground with a single stride. I see him as I pass the bedroom window, and for a moment I am arrested, my lungs squeezing painfully under my ribs, the pads of my fingers pressed against the cool glass. The next moment, I am moving down the stairs, holding my hem above my ankles. When I push open the front door and step out into the lane, I raise my eyes and find Mr. Collins only a few feet distant.

Mr. Collins sees me and lifts his hat. His brow is damp with the exertion of walking and his expression is one of mingled anticipation and wariness. Seeing it, the tightness in my chest dissipates. Later, when I have time to reflect, I will perhaps wonder how it is possible to simultaneously want something so much and so little, but in the moment before Mr. Collins speaks, as I step toward him through the fallen leaves, I am awash in calm.

On the morning of my wedding, my mother dismisses the maid and helps me to dress herself. Lady Lucas is not a woman prone to excessive displays of emotion, but this morning her eyes are damp and her fingers tremble as she smooths the sleeves of my gown. It is only my best muslin, though newly trimmed at the bodice with lace from one of my mother’s old evening dresses. My father went to town the other day, returning with a few cupped hothouse roses, only just bloomed, to tuck into my hair this morning. He offered them to me, his face pink and pleased, and they were so lovely, so evocative of life and warmth even as winter grayed and chilled the landscape outside, that even my mother did not complain about the expense.

“Very pretty,” my mother says now, and I feel my breath catch and hold behind my breastbone. I cannot recall having heard those particular words from her since I was a small child. I look at my reflection in the glass and there see the same faults—nose too large, chin too sharp, eyes too close together—that I have heard my mother bemoan since it became apparent, when I was about fourteen, that my looks were not going to improve as I grew older. But the flowers in my hair make me appear younger, I think, than my twenty-seven years; I look like a bride. And when I look into my mother’s face now, I find nothing but sincerity.

My mother blinks too quickly and turns away from me. “We should go down,” she says. She makes for the door, then pauses, turning slowly to face me again. “I wish you every happiness,” she says, sounding as though she is speaking around something lodged in her throat. “You have made a very eligible match.” I nod, feeling my own throat close off in response, a sensation of helpless choking.

I am largely silent during the long, rocking ride into Kent. My new husband speaks enough for both of us; he has an astonishing memory for minutiae and discusses the wedding ceremony in such great detail that I find myself wondering whether he remembers that I was also in attendance. We left for my new home directly from the church; my family and a few friends all crowded, shivering in their cloaks and muffs, outside the entrance, waving as we were driven away. Maria, my sister, cried as I left; my brothers looked solemn, my father beamed, my mother smiled a tremulous smile. My friend Elizabeth’s smile looked as if it had been tacked in place, like a bit of ribbon pinned to a gown but not yet properly sewn on.

Mr. Collins’s awkward height is emphasized by the cramped conditions of the coach. His long legs stretch out before him as far as they can go, but he still appears to be uncomfortable. The hair at his temples is moist, despite the cold, and I have to glance hastily away, feeling a lurch in my stomach that has nothing to do with the jolting ride.

He is very warm beside me in bed. I watch him sleep for a time, tracing the relaxed lines of his face with my eyes and thinking how different he seems without the rather frantic energy he exudes in his waking hours. There is a tension about him, much of the time, that I did not recognize until this moment, until sleep removed it.

He introduced me when we arrived to the housekeeper, Mrs. Baxter, who is broad and pleasant, and to the gruff, graying manservant, John, whose powerful shoulders are built from years of labor. The parsonage itself is exactly as Mr. Collins described it: small, but neat and comfortable, with surrounding gardens that he assured me would be beautiful come spring. His eagerness to please me was matched by his inability to believe anyone might find fault with his home, and I found his manner at once endeared him to me and irritated me thoroughly.

Throughout the tour, he pointed out improvements here and there that had been the suggestion of his patroness, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. There were rather a lot of them.

At our bedchamber he paused with his palm against the door. “I hope . . . it suits,” he said, then opened the door and bowed me in.

The room was much like the rest of the house: comfortably furnished, if a trifle small. “Charming,” I said, and pretended not to notice the flush on his cheeks.

We ate dinner together. I had little appetite, despite the novelty of eating a meal in my own home that I had had no hand in preparing. Afterward, I considered suggesting we adjourn to the parlor but found I could not face the intervening hours between then and bed. Tomorrow I would unpack my books and my embroidery. I would write letters. I would meet Lady Catherine, for Mr. Collins assured me that lady had vowed to have us to tea when we returned to Kent; and I would begin to learn the duties of a clergyman’s wife. But tonight—I wanted only for tonight to be over.

“I am tired,” I said. “I think I will retire early.” Mr. Collins rose from his chair with alacrity. “A fine idea,” he said. “It has been a long day.” And to my consternation, he followed me up the stairs, his footsteps behind me a reminder that it will forever be his right to do with me as he pleases.

It is not so terrible, I think after, lying in the quiet dark watching my husband sleep. At my insistence, he allowed me time to change into my nightdress in private. And the rest was vaguely shocking, dreadfully uncomfortable, and far more mess than I had anticipated, but bearable. Mr. Collins, at least, seemed vastly pleased at the end, murmuring affectionate nonsense against my neck until he drifted off to sleep.

I wake before dawn, and for a moment I imagine I am still at home. There is a presence beside me in the bed, warm and heavy against my back, and I think it is my sister, Maria, until it lets out a gusty snore against the nape of my neck. My eyes open and I find myself staring at an unfamiliar wall covered in delicate floral paper. For a moment, I am held immobile by the weight of all the ways in which my life has changed. And then Mr. Collins— William—shifts in his sleep, one heavy arm reaching over my hip, his long fingers brushing my stomach, and I go rigid for the barest of instants. A moment later I force the stiffness from my body, allowing my spine to relax back against my husband’s chest. Exhaling the breath I had been holding, I wait for him to wake.

I will, no doubt, grow accustomed to mornings begun beside William. This is, after all, the life I chose.



Molly Greeley earned her bachelor’s degree in English, with a creative writing emphasis, from Michigan State University, where she was the recipient of the Louis B. Sudler Prize in the Arts for Creative Writing. Her short stories and essays have been published in CicadaCarve, and Literary Mama.  She works as on social media for a local business, is married and the mother of three children but her Sunday afternoons are devoted to weaving stories into books. 



December 3, 2019 · 8:55 pm

A Completing of The Watsons- Excerpt

Good Afternoon everyone,

How are you this week? Getting ready for Thanksgiving? Does it require a lot of preparation? We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in Portugal so I only have a small idea of the preparation it may require.

I hope it won’t take much of your reading time because Austenesque books keep being published and I’m sure your TBR pile keeps increasing!

Today I’m sharing an excerpt of Rose Servitova’s new book A Completing of the Watsons which may also be a great addition to your library. It is certainly different from other JAFF books and the first attempt I’ve ever seen of working on The Watsons. That alone says a lot about Ms. Servitova, it takes a lot of courage and skills to do this and I’m very curious to see what you all think about this book and the excerpt below 🙂

Can she honour her family and stay true to herself?

Emma Watson returns to her family home after fourteen years with her wealthy and indulgent aunt. Now more refined than her siblings, Emma is shocked by her sisters’ flagrant and desperate attempts to ensnare a husband. To the surprise of the neighbourhood, Emma immediately attracts the attention of eligible suitors – notably the socially awkward Lord Osborne, heir to Osborne Castle – who could provide her with a home and high status if she is left with neither after her father’s death. Soon Emma finds herself navigating a world of unfamiliar social mores, making missteps that could affect the rest of her life. How can she make amends for the wrongs she is seen to have committed without betraying her own sense of what is right?

Jane Austen commenced writing The Watsons over two hundred years ago, putting it aside unfinished, never to return and complete it. Now, Rose Servitova, author of acclaimed humour title, The Longbourn Letters: The Correspondence between Mr Collins and Mr Bennet has finished Austen’s manuscript in a manner true to Austen’s style and wit.



You can find A Completing of The Watsons at:






Mr Watson’s living, transferable to another clergyman on his death, afforded him five hundred pounds per year with which to maintain the appearance of a gentleman. With this modest sum and a large family he had, over the years, made valiant but largely unsuccessful attempts to keep his home in good repair. Hopes centred on his younger son, Sam, taking orders and thereby, in securing the living and house, provide protection for his sisters. But being a liberal man and having lost his sensible wife while his children were still young, Mr Watson made no outward objection when Sam declared his intention to study medicine. Emma, after all, would save them. But here she was, returned to Stanton, with less in her purse than when she had left it fourteen years before.

“I hope, my dear Emma,” said Elizabeth as they sat down to breakfast one morning, “that you have been perfecting your Vingt-un for I have reason to expect an addition to our company. I received a letter this morning with all the particulars.”

“Who can you mean?”

“Why, you must guess, of course.”

“Sam. It is Sam, surely.”

“No, I am afraid not. Sam works too hard and is determined to do well so we do not see him often. You must guess again.”

“Robert visited recently; therefore, it must be Penelope.”

“Yes, it is Penelope and in the company of a gentleman.”

“She is wed?”

“Yes, married to a Dr Harding. She is cunning and has had her way at last. They are to stay at the inn at Dorking.”

This was good news indeed for, in their residing elsewhere, Emma would be spared the trouble of becoming intimate with the sister she was most frightened of. The domestic quietude that she and Elizabeth enjoyed, even with Margaret, the principal quarreller, at home would almost definitely be upended if Penelope returned to the nest. It was with great enthusiasm, therefore, that she said, “Why, this is marvellous news!”

“Yes, and they are to continue to live in Chichester, for the doctor has a fine house there which I should like to visit someday. Penelope longs to pay a visit to Stanton so that her husband may meet with father. And, I am convinced, to show off her wealthy husband to all her old friends. So they come next Tuesday and bring the doctor’s niece and nephew with them. We will meet often, I daresay. What a wonderful thing!”

Emma could tell by how Elizabeth’s eyes lit up that the “wonderful thing” she referred to was not Penelope’s return to the homestead. It was, rather, the promise of visitors, some of whom were unknown to them and would thus widen their circle of acquaintance for a time and enliven their otherwise dull days. As if she read Emma’s thoughts, Elizabeth added,

“Oh my word, visitors means visiting. Such toing and froing as we have not had in years at Stanton. Why, Miss Shaw may be a delightful girl and her brother may be handsome, rich and ready to fall in love. I shall include them both in my evening prayers that we will find them so. But remember what I mentioned to you about Penelope,” said Elizabeth leaving the room, “do not trust her for an instant.” Pages 83-85



Irish author Rose Servitova is an award-winning humor writer, event manager, and job coach for people with special needs. Her debut novel, The Longbourn Letters – The Correspondence between Mr. Collins& Mr. Bennet, described as a ‘literary triumph’, has received international acclaim since its publication in 2017. Rose enjoys talking at literary events, drinking tea and walking on Irish country roads. She lives in County Limerick with her husband, two young children and three indifferent cats. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads.



The blog tour is almost over but you can still check the other blogs for more information on A Completing of the Watsons.


November 18 My Jane Austen Book Club (Interview)

November 18 Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

November 19 The Lit Bitch (Excerpt)

November 20 Austenesque Reviews (Review)

November 20 vvb32 Reads (Review)

November 21 All Things Austen (Review)

November 22 My Love for Jane Austen(Spotlight)

November 25 From Pemberley to Milton (Excerpt)

November 25 Diary of an Eccentric(Interview)

November 26 So Little Time… (Excerpt)

November 27 Impressions in Ink (Review)

November 27 Babblings of a Bookworm (Spotlight)

November 28 More Agreeably Engaged (Review)

November 29 My Vices and Weaknesses (Excerpt)

November 29 The Fiction Addiction(Review)



November 25, 2019 · 9:24 pm

The Perfect Gentleman- Guest Post & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

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

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


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

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

Darcy has Secrets.

Lizzy has Clues.

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

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



You can find The Perfect Gentleman at:





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

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

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

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

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


A horn now told the near approach

Of some convenient, rapid coach;


And soon a vehicle and four

Appear’d at the Red Lion door:


Into his place the Doctor pounc’d:

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


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

A lady, with both eyes distorted,


And a young Miss of pleasing mien,

With all the life of gay sixteen.


A sudden jolt their slumbers broke;

They started all, and all awoke;

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


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

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


While Madam, with a smirking face,

Declar’d it was o’ middling pace,


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

Said simp’ring Syntax, “with all three.


“Uphill, our course is rather slow,

“Down hill, now merrily we go!


“But when ’tis neither up nor down.

“It is a middling pace, I own.”


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

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


The Lady said, “If I can scan

“The temper of the gentleman,


“He’s one of those, I have no doubt.

“Who love to let his temper out.


“But we who — these stages roam,

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


“Deserve our lot when thus we talk

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


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


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


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

Good Luck Everyone!


October 31, 2019 · 3:12 pm

The Bride of Northanger- Excerpt

Good Afternoon everyone,

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

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


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




You can find The Bride of Northanger at:





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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The eyes of the young husband and wife met.

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

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

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

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

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

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

He put the saucer down, rather hard.

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

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

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

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



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




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

October 28             My Jane Austen Book Club (Interview)

October 28             Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

October 28             vvb32 Reads (Spotlight)

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

October 29             From Pemberley to Milton (Excerpt)

October 30             Drunk Austen (Interview)

October 30             Silver Petticoat Review (Excerpt)

October 31             Jane Austen’s World (Review)

November 01          So Little Time… (Interview)

November 01          Laura’s Reviews (Review)

November 04          English Historical Fiction Authors (Guest Blog)

November 04          Confessions of a Book Addict (Spotlight)

November 05          More Agreeably Engaged (Review)

November 05          Vesper’s Place (Review)

November 06          Jane Austen in Vermont (Interview)

November 06          Diary of an Eccentric (Interview)         

November 07          All Things Austen (Spotlight)

November 07          A Bookish Way of Life (Review)

November 07          Let Them Read Books (Excerpt)

November 08          Babblings of a Bookworm (Review)

November 08          vvb32 Reads (Review)

November 11          My Jane Austen Book Club (Review)

November 11          Reading the Past (Spotlight)

November 12          Jane Austen’s World (Interview)

November 12          The Calico Critic (Excerpt)

November 13          The Book Rat (Review)

November 13          Austenesque Reviews (Review)

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

November 14          The Fiction Addiction (Review)

November 15          My Love for Jane Austen (Spotlight)

November 15          Scuffed Slippers and Wormy Books (Review)


October 29, 2019 · 2:59 pm

Jane Austen’s Ghost – Excerpt

Good Morning everyone,

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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

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


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


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




Carlton House Library


November 22nd, 1816


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

‘It would be an honour, Miss Austen.’

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘My novels, sir?’ Jane was puzzled.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘Never! Not until you say “yes”.’

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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


You can contact Jennifer Kloester throught the following social media:

Twitter: @JenKloester

Instagram: @jenkloester

Facebook: /JenniferKloesterAuthor


Goodreads: JenniferKloester



October 17, 2019 · 9:32 am

A Case of Some Delicacy- Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

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

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

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

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

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

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

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




You can find A Case of Some Delicacy at:



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

Excerpt from Chapter 4

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

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

“I am not afraid, Mr Darcy.”

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

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

“Deep, very deep,” he answered solemnly.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Lydia snorted. Unseemly?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

Mary began coughing.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

Contact Info:










You can win a $50 Amazon gift card from Quills & Quartos Publishing! The contest ends on October 18. To be eligible, just comment on any of the blog tour stops. You need not visit all the stops (one point per stop and comment), however, it does increase your chances of winning by earning more entries.


October 4, 2019 · 6:47 pm

TORN- Guest Post, Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

I am very pleased to welcome today at From Pemberley to Milton one of my favourite authors and a dear friend who didn’t mind going on a Jane Austen Road Trip with me back in 2017. Putting up with me for a couple of days is not that easy, so you can see what a gem she is 🙂 I am speaking of Lory Lilian, mostly known as the “Queen of Hot Mush” and who has recently released a regency variation which is very atypical for her. TORN, I am told, is her most angsty book and she is here today to talk about this and also to ask for your opinion, so please feel free to join the discussion and let us know where you are at when it comes to angst 🙂 You already know where I stand, so no point in stating once more how much of an addict I am to it 😉

Thank you for visiting Lory, and the best of luck with this new release!!! I absolutely LOVE the cover by the way 😉

“TORN” is a romantic, Regency Pride and Prejudice variation. The road to happiness is set with obstacles to overcome, making the journey more arduous for our beloved characters—and readers.
Separated by pride, prejudice, and misunderstandings, betrayed by their temper and wounded by vanity, Elizabeth and Darcy take separate paths in the heat of anger—and are tormented when they must reap what they have sown.
Darcy struggles to avoid the woman he loves more every day, but Fate keeps bringing them together. Elizabeth’s thoughts wander to Mr Darcy and, even in his absence, her feelings for him improve, until she realizes he is the only man in the world with whom she could be truly happy. Such revelations come far too late when both are bound by promises to others. Can they live a lifetime torn between love and duty?
Stealing a moment of passion one hot summer night, how can Elizabeth and Darcy continue without the other after knowing such true happiness?
Rated Moderate for hot romance but not explicit sex scenes.
Lory Lilian has a golden rule when it comes to reading and writing Jane Austen fan fiction: Elizabeth and Darcy only belong to each other, with no one to separate them. This story might appear to break this rule, but the author kindly asks the readers to trust her.
“Torn” might tear your heart out but Elizabeth and Darcy surely find a way to put it back.


You can find it at:





It is always a great pleasure to be at “From Pemberley to Milton.”

Rita is one of the JAFF people I had the great pleasure of meeting two years ago and visit many JA’s related places together. Sharing the news of my latest release on her blog is just awesome!

Today, I would like to chat about my latest book TORN, about angst and how much of it we can bear in JAFF stories. How much we like to torture ODC before we allow them to find their HEA eventually.

For many years, I admitted being an angst wimp. I still am. I wrote six variations full of mush until I dared to plunge into the angst. (Although my second one – “Remembrance of the Past” – did have some very distressing parts…)

Pushed by some cyber-friends / bloggers (Meredith, Claudine and even Rita!), who insisted that I should add angst to enhance my stories, I did so and in 2017, when I published “A Man with Faults”. I was thrilled by the reader’s favorable reaction. The book claimed on Amazon Sales Rank 235, which was huge and it meant that lots and lots of people read it. In that book, the tortured one was Darcy. He was resentful, angry, tortured, and uncertain of Elizabeth’s feelings (though very much in love with her) until the last chapter. Poor guy, right?

TORN is the second angst-filled I wrote and I must say I needed tissues while working on it. I suffered for what I did to my beloved characters. And to make it even worse, there is no character to hate! Everyone (except out Wicky – who has a short, yet significant role) is honest, kindhearted, honorable, and generous – which made ODC’s struggle more difficult to follow. I intended to make the readers feel TORN as much as Elizabeth and Darcy, to wonder what they would do in a similar situation. Hope I succeeded to some degree.

There is a HEA – of course. Nobody who knows me would doubt that. This story was exhausting to write, and I am sure I will focus on hot mush for at least another year.

For now, here are a few questions for you, dear readers: how much angst do you like in JAFF stories? What sort of angst (forced marriage, other partners, unequal affection – or any other kind)? And – what kind of angst would you like to read about and did not find in any variations? (But I very much doubt there was something undone yet! LOL) If you have any other ideas to talk about, feel free to do so.

I look forward to chatting with you!

Elizabeth walked down the left side of the shore to where the long grasses and wildflowers grew undisturbed and the paths were lined with bright yellow gorse.

She took off her shoes and waded into the sea up to her ankles, the waves caressing her feet. The air was cool and refreshing, but the water felt warm.

The cottage behind her, the bay revealed itself to her eyes. As the wind blew through the line of trees, it mixed with the sound of waves, as in a symphony. There was no sun, so she took off her bonnet and unpinned her hair. She yearned to feel uncaged, unrestrained.

The bay was as beautiful as she remembered. The combination of colours and sounds, and the softness of the sand between her toes enchanted her. She turned towards the hidden place, where she had fallen asleep—and gasped in astonishment. There was a horse tied to a tree.

She immediately minded her own appearance, looking around. With her bonnet removed and her hair blowing free, she was in no state to be seen and had not imagined meeting anyone in such a place.

She saw nobody nearby, until her eyes were drawn towards the shore where waves, stirred by the wind and tide, crashed noisily.

It seemed surreal as a man rose from the water and stepped out of the waves, stunning her senses. He wore but a white shirt and dark trousers, striding unburdened until he noticed her. At that moment he stopped; the waves pushed him, and he almost fell but still did not advance.

Even at this distance, the heart recognised what the eyes still hesitated to admit.

Eventually, he seemed to gather the strength to approach and so did Elizabeth. Slowly, hesitantly, as in a dream.

When they were only steps away, she could see the look of yearning on his handsome features. His curled hair, wet and dishevelled. His dark, staggering gaze. The water dripping from his face. His white shirt soaked, unbuttoned, revealing his neck and torso.

He stared at her, narrowing his eyes, his lips half parted as if he struggled to speak.

Before any of them could say a word, Elizabeth’s heart finally defeated her mind, freed itself from any restrain, any rules, any demands of duty and decorum, screaming the truth inside her with such a power that it shattered her and weakened her knees.

She loved the man in front of her with every sense and every fibre of her body! She had loved him for such a long that she did not even remember when it began. She loved him against her own will and reason and judgment. She loved him most ardently.

“Miss Bennet…”

“Mr Darcy…”


Lory Lillian is giving away 2 eBooks to my readers, and the best thing is, you can choose any book from her portfolio! Comment on this post to be eliegible to the giveaway and please let us know which book your would prefer and why. In case you don’t know Lory’s entire portfolio, feel free to peruse her Amazon author page, and you will find all her books there.

The giveaway is international and it is open until the 14th of October. The winners will be announced shortly after.

Good Luck Everyone!


September 30, 2019 · 8:57 pm

The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion – Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

I am very pleased to be opening today the blog tour for The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion, Don Jacobson’s last book on the Bennet Wardrobe series. I know this series is highly regarded by everyone in the community and I am finally starting to read the entire collection this month, so you may expect some reviews on these books shortly. Until then, I would like to welcome Don Jacobson to From Pemberley to Milton, and share with you an excerpt of Lydia’s story.

I hope you like it and that you share your toughts on this series with all of us. If you’ve read any of the previous books, pelase don’t be shy and share your impressions with us 🙂


“My life has been very much like an unfinished painting. The artist comes to the portrait day-after-day to splash daubs of color onto bare canvas, filling in the blanks of my story. Thus grows the likeness, imperfect as it may be, which you see today.”

                                   Lydia Fitzwilliam, Countess of Matlock, letter to her sister

                                               Elizabeth Bennet Darcy, March 14, 1831.


Does it matter how a man fills out his regimentals? Miss Austen never considered that query. Yet, this question marks the beginning of an education…and the longest life…in the Bennet Wardrobe saga.

Lydia Bennet, Longbourn’s most wayward daughter, embarks on her quest in The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion. This biography reveals how the Wardrobe helps young Mrs. Wickham learn that honor and bravery grow not from the color of the uniform—or the gender of its wearer—but rather from the contents of the heart.

In the process, she realizes that she must be broken and repaired, as if by a kintsugi master potter, to become the most useful player in the Bennet Wardrobe’s great drama.

Multifaceted and nuanced, The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion, speaks to the verities of life. Once again, Don Jacobson has combined the essence of Pride and Prejudice with an esoteric story line and the universal themes of redemption and forgiveness in this well-crafted narrative.”

Mirta Ines Trupp, author of The Meyersons of Meryton.




You can find The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion at:




Chapter III, IV Excerpts

July 29, 1813 Longbourn

The three wives of the 2nd Battalion of the 33rd Foot (Wellington’s Own) have been desperately awaiting news of their husbands in the wake of the great battle at Vitoria. No such information was forthcoming. Thus, nerves have become increasingly raw. A carriage has pulled into the carriage way in front of the manor house. Mr. Bennet has greeted its occupants, Sergeant Henry Wilson, Corporal Charlie Tomkins, and Lieutenant George Wickham.

The Sergeant bowed and answered succinctly, “We fought at Vitoria. T’was one of those queer things, fortunes of war, sir. Never saw it before.

“A frog cannon—one of those gallopers, smaller caliber—opened up from our flank as we advanced. T’was a lousy shot, but, they’re French, so what can you expect? In any event, the ball came across at a diagonal, missing everyone at the Lieutenant’s end of the file.

“It smacked into a 32-pound ball that had dug into the ground when le brutal let loose as we came down the road. The moment that smaller iron ball hit the other, it exploded into a thousand pieces. Ripped two men to bloody rags. Hurt three or four more.

“One of those shards caught Mr. Wickham in his short ribs. Because it came in from the side, it skidded across his back atop the bone. Laid him open a good eight inches, Mr. Bennet. The surgeons did not have to dig around to find it. It fell out of his work-a-day tunic onto the stretcher.[i] He has been fighting infection ever since, although he is now weaker from travel than suffering the effects of fever.”

Wilson extended a closed fist toward Bennet and then opened his hand. In the half-light that poured out of the front door…the torches having only just been lit by Hill and James…Bennet saw a twisted, blackened chunk of metal.

Bennet lowered his voice and leaned in toward Wilson, “Please, I entreat you, do not show this to any of the women. I have been living in a house full of females afflicted with nerves for over a month. Seeing this would cause a vapor attack that would rival any of Vesuvius’ eruptions!

“But tell me, before we are besieged by fluttering females, why did not you or Colonel Fitzwilliam advise the ladies that you were alive? We knew of the battle, but casualty lists have been spotty.”

Wilson nodded, “I do apologize if our lack of communication was trying. However, Colonel Fitzwilliam was also wounded in the battle. Tomkins and I were fortunate enough to see him swept from his horse by a voltigeur’s ball. We collected him from the aid station and loaded him onto the same wagon with the Lieutenant.

“Then the bone cutters spent the next few days fiddling with both. The good news was that since they were body wounds, they could not amputate anything.

“T’wasn’t until they had dumped them at our feet outside of the hospital, and we got our hands on some of Sergeant Harper’s maggots as well as some good Spanish honey that we were able to get them on the mend.

“In truth, Mr. Bennet, Charlie and I decided that t’would be better for us to get the Colonel home to Rosings and Mr. Wickham back here to Longbourn than to try to explain ourselves in letters that would probably not arrive until after we did.

“So, I went to Captain Sharpe who went to Lord Wellington’s camp. Whatever he did or said, I cannot say. All I know is that he came back with passes for Tomkins and me to carry dispatches and escort the two officers home.

“Took us several weeks, but we made it to Lisbon, and Nosey’s paperwork got us aboard a schooner heading up to Dover. Got there three days ago. We delivered the Colonel to Mrs. Fitzwilliam and Miss Bennet yesterday.

Suddenly a flurry of skirts and raised voices broke the night’s quiet.

Laura launched herself past Mr. Bennet and wrapped her arms around her husband’s neck.

Lydia and Annie looked fearfully over their friend’s head at the Sergeant.

In a voice more jovial than necessary, Wilson called out, “Are the three of us ever glad to see you! Mr. Wickham is a bit worse for wear, no little bit of it due, I am sure, to Tomkins’ incessant chattering.

“Did you know, Mrs. Tomkins, that your husband is an indifferent traveler? We had to stop about four times between Town and here so Tomkins could stretch his legs, although I am hard-pressed to understand how those short sticks needed any limbering.”

By this point, Tomkins had poked his head out the door.

“ ‘ere now, ya big oaf. While you’ve bin chin-wagging…beggin’ yore pardon, Mr. Bennet…my Mr. Wickham could ‘ave been upstairs getting sponged off by sumthin’ pr’ttier than the likes of you.”

As Wilson feigned outrage, Lydia pushed past and made for the carriage. Her father delayed her progress.

“Your husband was wounded in the fight, but you knew that, did you not, my girl? He is on the mend but remains weak.

“You must be strong, now, for Mr. Wickham.”

Lydia looked up at her sire and firmly replied, “Papa, at this moment, I am your daughter and not my mother’s. Imagine me as Lizzy, if you must, although I would rather you see me as a soldier’s wife ready to shoulder the portion that title brings.”

The subalterns gently hoisted Wickham from the carriage. They made to carry him, but the Lieutenant stopped their effort with a gentle shake of his head. Instead, as they set him on his feet, Lydia ran forward and inserted herself beneath his right arm, forcing a wince from the man as she wrapped her arm around his waist.

He said nothing, but tenderly kissed the crown of her head where it rested by his chin.

Clearing his throat, he addressed Mr. Bennet in a voice a few shades above a whisper, humility showing in every word.

“I had despaired of ever again seeing this beautiful edifice…and I speak first of my wife,” at this, he kissed Lydia’s forehead as she gazed up at him, “and second, this house. Thank you, Mr. Bennet, for caring for my wife and her friends whilst we have been off in Spain.

“I would hope that you could extend your hospitality further to allow me time to recover my strength…”

A troubled look crossed Mr. Bennet’s face, and he closed the few feet between himself and Wickham, halting the Lieutenant’s address with a hand gripping his left shoulder. He studied the younger man’s face, bronzed both by the sun and the entry’s torch baskets which had begun to gain traction against the deepening twilight. There was not a single jot of self-pity, once Wickham’s stock-in-trade, but rather a distinct weariness.

Bennet was firm but, he hoped, friendly.

“Now, I will have none of that, sir!

“Even if you were not my daughter’s husband and, thus, my son, I would never begrudge one—or three—of His Majesty’s soldiers bed and board.

“However, Mr. Wickham, I fear that you must be under some misapprehension concerning my thoughts about you.

“Unlike another of my boys, who bruits about that ‘His good opinion, once lost, is lost forever,’ I endeavor to be less rigid. I find Mr. Blake’s words apt:

The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water,

and breeds reptiles of the mind.


“Do not think that I criticize Darcy. In truth, his old unforgiving nature has softened somewhat since he wed my Lizzy. He does remain quite protective of his family, so I would not expect an invitation to Pemberley anytime soon.

“I, on the other hand, have watched your progress in the years since we were introduced. Reports have reached me from those of our mutual acquaintance including Colonel Fitzwilliam and Mr. Hunters. You, sir, have reshaped yourself, not only becoming a respected officer in the Regulars, but also a better, more decent man.”

Wickham furiously blinked away the moisture bejeweling his lashes. Lowering his eyes toward the ground, “My emotions conspire to make a fool of me. Ever since I took that fragment…

“You seem to have absolved me of my sins against your daughter and family, Mr. Bennet. While I was not expecting it, t’was the one great regret that worried me when I thought I would perish before I had the opportunity to make amends and to ask your forgiveness.”

He sagged against Lydia. Wilson and Tomkins firmly gripped him. Mr. Bennet leaped forward and clasped his son’s hands quickly concluding their conference saying, “Rest easy, young man. You are family, and family forgives, especially in the face of indisputable evidence.

“You, Wickham, have long been lost, but now you are found.

“Welcome home, son.”

[i] This is drawn from the bullet found on the gurney used to carry Governor John Connelly into Parkland Hospital on November 22, 1963.



Don Jacobson has written professionally for forty years. His output has ranged from news and features to advertising, television and radio. His work has been nominated for Emmys and other awards. He has previously published five books, all non-fiction. In 2016, he began publishing The Bennet Wardrobe Series

The Keeper: Mary Bennet’s Extraordinary Journey (2016)

Henry Fitzwilliam’s War (2016)

The Exile: Kitty Bennet and the Belle Époque (2017)

Lizzy Bennet Meets the Countess (2017)

The Exile: The Countess Visits Longbourn (2018)

The Avenger: Thomas Bennet and a Father’s Lament (2018)

The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion (2019)

Jacobson is also part of the collective effort behind the publication of the upcoming North and South anthology, Falling for Mr. Thornton: Tales of North and South due out in the Fall of 2019.

Other Austenesque Variations include the paired books Of Fortune’s Reversal” (2016) and The Maid and The Footman.” (2016) Lessers and Betters offers readers the paired novellas in one volume to allow a better appreciation of the “Upstairs-Downstairs” mentality that drives the stories.

Jacobson holds an advanced degree in History with a specialty in American Foreign Relations. As a college instructor, Don teaches United States History, World History, the History of Western Civilization and Research Writing.

He is a member of JASNA. Likewise, Don is a member of the Austen Authors collective (see the internet, Facebook and Twitter).

He lives in the Las Vegas, Nevada area with his wife and co-author, Pam, a woman Ms. Austen would have been hard-pressed to categorize, and their rather assertive four-and-twenty pound cat, Bear. Besides thoroughly immersing himself in the JAFF world, Don also enjoys cooking; dining out, fine wine and well-aged scotch whiskey.

His other passion is cycling. Most days from April through October will find him “putting in the miles” around the Seattle area (yes there are hills). He has ridden several “centuries” (100 mile days). Don is especially proud that he successfully completed the AIDS Ride—Midwest (500 miles from Minneapolis to Chicago) and the Make-A-Wish Miracle Ride (300 miles from Traverse City, MI to Brooklyn, MI).

Contact Info:

Don Jacobson’s Amazon Author’s Page

Goodreads Author’s Page (with blog)

Author Website (with blog)Twitter (@AustenesqueAuth)






The blog tour is just starting, so please don’t forget to check the following blogs for more excerpts, author interviews, reviews and much more 🙂

9/25 From Pemberley to Milton

9/26 So Little Time…

9/27 Interests of a Jane Austen Girl

9/28 My Love for Jane Austen

9/30 Babblings of a Bookworm

10/1 Diary of an Eccentric

10/2 More Agreeably Engaged

10/3 My Vices and Weaknesses


Don Jacobson is generously giving away 4 eBooks of The Pilgrim: Lydia Bennet and a Soldier’s Portion. To apply to this giveaway, just click on this Raffelcopter link.

Good Luck Everyone!


September 26, 2019 · 10:09 am

A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods – Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

Today I am sharing an excerpt of A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods whose first pages I found gripping! This is a low angst novella that readers can devour in one afternoon and that introduces a very cute new character to the plot. Spoiler alert: You can actually see that new character on the books cover which is absolutely amazing!!!

Have you heard about this book yet? It is Brigit Huey’s first novel and if you take a closer look at the book’s details on Amazon’s page, you can see it was edited by the lovely Nicole Clarkston 🙂 Promising, right? If you haven’t heard about it yet, you can read the blurb and the excerpt to decide if this is your next weekend read 🙂

A surprise meeting

A baby alone in the woods

And a second chance at love

Fitzwilliam Darcy returns to his beloved Pemberley with one thing on his mind ̶ to forget Elizabeth Bennet. Riding ahead of his party and racing a storm, he happens upon the very woman he wants to avoid. To his astonishment, she is holding a baby whose name and parentage are unknown.

Elizabeth Bennet never dreamed she had wandered into Pemberley’s Woods on her afternoon walk. But when she finds an infant alone in the storm, she turns to the last man in the world she wants to see ̶ and the only one who can help them both.

As the mystery of the baby’s identity intensifies, Elizabeth finds Mr. Darcy to be quite the reverse of what she expected. But when the child’s family is discovered, will the truth bring them together, or tear them apart?

You can find A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods at:

To his surprise, Miss Bingley and Mrs. Hurst stood apart from the other ladies, their heads bent together—similar unhappy looks upon their faces. He felt a pang of remorse. Had they not been in constant pursuit of him, they might have been pleasant enough. However, their treatment of both Miss Elizabeth and Georgiana was inexcusable.

As soon as they saw him, they ceased their private conversation, rising to greet him instead. Sycophantic smiles pasted on their faces, they asked whether he wished for tea and cake. He accepted the tea then moved away from them to sit near Georgiana.

“Shall we not have some music?” Mrs. Hurst enquired. “I am sure Caroline would oblige us.”

Darcy answered in what he hoped was a polite and kind way. Caroline moved toward the pianoforte, and the rest of the company sat nearby, the better to hear her performance. It was masterfully done, of course. Caroline was an extremely accomplished woman. Darcy stole a glance at Elizabeth. She was sitting beside her aunt, attending to the music with polite interest.

When Caroline had played two pieces, she stood and invited Georgiana to play. Darcy looked at his sister, trying to determine how best to make her excuses. He knew she disliked playing for company. To his surprise, however, Georgiana rose and made her way toward Elizabeth.

“Miss Elizabeth,” she said in a confident tone Darcy could scarcely recognize. “Would you accompany me?”

Elizabeth received this request with surprised pleasure but confessed that she did not know any duets.

“Then perhaps you would turn the pages for me?” Georgiana asked.

“I should be delighted, Miss Darcy,” came the reply.

Darcy watched as his sister took her place at the pianoforte and began to play, Elizabeth dutifully turning the pages of her music as necessary.

When Georgiana had finished her first piece, no one clapped louder than he. Mr. Gardiner leaned toward him, sharing the settee as they were, and whispered, “She is quite accomplished, sir. Her love of music is obvious.”

“Yes,” he replied. “She has always been musical, and I am happy she finds such enjoyment in the discipline.”

“They make a pretty picture, do they not?” his companion replied. Darcy glanced at him, detecting something in his tone that sounded a bit like his teasing niece. Mr. Gardiner was obviously close to his niece, and their resemblance was occasionally rather striking. Darcy had the sudden feeling that Mr. Gardiner understood his feelings toward Elizabeth quite clearly.

“A very pretty picture indeed,” he replied, not wishing to hide his interest. He watched as Georgiana prepared to play another piece after extracting a promise from Elizabeth that she would play next.

Georgiana played his favorite solo arrangement of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23. When at last Elizabeth sat down to play, she too played Mozart. It was when she began to sing that Darcy felt his heart clench in the familiar pain of desire for that which he could not have. Dear Elizabeth, how very lovely she is. He thought again of her words about him in the parsonage: “… the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.”

Darcy felt a steely resolve beginning to build within him as he sat there in his family home, watching Elizabeth play. He would show her that he had changed, that her words had been taken with all the seriousness they deserved. And he would win her heart if there was any possibility to do so.



Brigid has been in love with Jane Austen since first seeing the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice as a young girl. She lives in Ohio with her husband and two kids, and spends her free time reading and writing. This is her first Pride and Prejudice variation, though many others live in her imagination.

Contact Info:


Facebook Author Page: 


Instagram: @brigidhueywrites





The blog tour for A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods is almost at an end, but you can still read all the guest posts and excerpts that were shared in the other blogs. In case you’ve missed them, here is the list of blogs involved in this tour:


September 9  – So little time…

September 10 – Darcyholic Diversions

September 11 – Interests of a Jane Austen Girl

September 12 – Savvy Verse & Wit

September 13 – Babblings of a Bookworm

September 14 – My Love for Jane Austen

September 15 – My Life Journey

September 16 – Austenesque Reviews

September 17 – Half Agony, Half Hope

September 18 – Diary of an Eccentric

September 19 – From Pemberley to Milton   

September 20 – My Jane Austen Book Club

September 21 – My Vices and Weaknesses



Meryton Press is giving away 8 eBooks of Brigid Huey’s A Chance Encounter in Pemberley Woods. To apply to this giveaway, just click on this Raffelcopter link.

Good Luck Everyone!



September 19, 2019 · 5:03 pm

Letters of the Heart – Excerpt & Giveaway

Good Afternoon everyone,

Today I’m closing the Blog Tour for Kay Bea’s recently released Letters From the Heart and I hope you have followed it because I some very interesting posts out there. I’ve also seen a lot of good reviews on Amazon which means this book promises to be a good one! It’s on my TBR pile and I do hope I have the time to read it, until then I’ll have to settle for excerpts such as the one we are sharing here at From Pemberley to Milton. I hope you like this one 🙂



November 26, 1812
Pemberley, Derbyshire

Dear Richard,

I can scarce believe it has been only one year since I danced with her at Netherfield. Forgive me; I have attempted to follow your advice and not dwell overmuch on the past, but on this day, I cannot help but think of how different things might have been.

I was enchanted that evening. I can still close my eyes and recall her scent of lavender, contemplate her grace as she danced, and see every expression of her magnificent eyes. They sparkled with merriment as she spoke with her friends, burned with shame when she watched her younger sisters, and flashed with anger when she spoke to me. Every look spoke of her passion and loyalty, and I was lost. I was terrified and I ran the next day. The day I left was the very day Miss Elizabeth declined Collins’s first proposal. Had I been there, I would like to think I would have declared myself immediately. But, perhaps not. I had not yet learnt to be humble or to consider how I might please a woman worthy of being pleased.

Enough. I shall be maudlin no longer. I can give you no excuse to spend Christmastide torturing me. Georgiana and I shall arrive at Ashford Lodge on December 10. Georgie wishes to have some time with your parents before the arrival of our Kent relations. I have had a letter from Anne; she intends to introduce her mother to Mr Addison whilst we are all together. She has contrived, with the apparent cooperation of your own dear mother, to have Mr Addison and his sister invited for a visit of several days. The Addisons seem to have many friends in the area and, in what I am certain is no coincidence, they will be spending Christmas with a family residing not ten-miles from Ashford. You may wish to bring your sword as it might be required to defend Mr Addison from our aunt. Lady Catherine is an enigma to me. She is very much as she ever was in her fundamental nature: demanding, unyielding, and imperious. Yet, in the matter of Miss Elizabeth, she has been exceedingly useful and has acted with naught but kindness to that lady. It confounds the mind. I shall not question it as I am told that Miss Elizabeth’s general condition is much improved. The relief this news brought to that lady’s father can only be imagined.

’Tis unfortunate your Lady Amelia cannot join the family party. I suspect her father would be more amenable to the arrangements if you would formalise the nature of your understanding. As you have not spoken to either of them of your intentions, you cannot be truly surprised at her family’s reluctance. Perhaps your courage will be found amongst the gifts this year.

Your cousin,
Fitzwilliam Darcy



November 26, 1812
Hunsford Cottage, Kent

Dear Jane,

Was it only one year ago that we danced with our friends at Netherfield? So very much has changed since then. I wonder, if I had not been so hasty to judge Mr Darcy, whether things might have been different. But it is no matter now. I can scarce believe I shall be an aunt in just a short time. You and my brother will make wonderful parents. I do wish Mama would give you some peace. I would suggest you appeal to our father, but after so long a marriage, I do not think he will begin to check her behaviour now. I was happy to hear from Mary that Lydia is learning to play so well and that Kitty continues to improve in drawing. Indeed, it sounds as though Miss Darcy made quite the impression on our little family in the weeks she was visiting you at Netherfield. Perhaps the newfound peace will have some influence on Mama as well.

Life in Kent continues on rather quietly. Lady Catherine sends her coach daily that I might continue my friendship with Anne. I have been assigned my own rooms at Rosings as there are times when Anne feels she cannot part with me and begs that I remain overnight. Lady Catherine keeps Mr Collins busy with the various needs of the parish. Between his increased responsibilities and my new duties to Anne, it frequently happens that I do not see my husband more than once or twice a week. I find I can well bear the separation.

I confess I dread the coming holiday, for Lady Catherine and Anne will travel to Ashford Lodge for a month complete, and I shall find myself quite desolate without them or my dear family for company. We shall make a very small party, just Mr Collins and myself. Perhaps I should invite some distinguished family of the parish to join us. I shall speak to Lady Catherine first as my cousin will never fail to do her bidding.

Please give my brother and sisters and father my love. As to our mother—and do not think I have ignored your entreaties in this department—I have not yet learned to forgive her. I do not know that I ever shall. I know you do not approve of that sentiment, but I cannot help myself. Our father was ill, but he was not dying, and she very well knew it. To force me into my present circumstance was unconscionable. Please do not ask me to pardon the woman who has been responsible for ruining all my hopes. I am at last finding some measure of contentment here, but it is not due in any part to that lady.

Wishing you every joy.

Elizabeth Collins



The death of one’s spirit should come with a great deal of noise: weeping and wailing, if not thunder or the roar of a fire. Elizabeth could not have imagined a spirit forced into darkness by something so mundane as the scratch of pen on paper. Elizabeth Bennet has been certain of many things in her life; her place in society, the love of her family, her ability to choose her own future, and her ability to accurately judge the character of those she meets. Three days after the Netherfield Ball, a near tragedy shakes that foundation and in the weeks that follow, Elizabeth learns that nothing is certain. Compelled by circumstance and her mother’s will, Elizabeth is condemned to marry her father’s heir, Mr William Collins. Isolated from everyone she knows and loves, Elizabeth is faced with a dark and difficult future. Unaware of the changes that have occurred in his absence, Fitzwilliam Darcy returns to Hertfordshire determined to right his wrongs and prove himself worthy of Elizabeth’s love. When he learns he is too late to secure his happiness, Darcy determines he will express his love for Elizabeth the only way he can – by protecting her younger sisters as well as he would his own. Old bonds are strengthened, family ties are severed, and unlikely allies emerge as each of them struggles to make sense of the changes they face.Can happiness be found when it seems all hope is lost?

This novella is a variation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and as such contains her characters as well as those of the author’s creation.




You can find Letters of The Heart at:






Kay Bea is an administrative assistant and Jane Austen lover living in Kansas City with her husband of twenty-five years, her mother-in-law, and her fur kids. She has written several short stories and drabbles on as “I Found My Mr. Darcy” and on A Happy Assembly as MrsDarcy2032.

Kay grew up in Wyoming, enjoyed a two-year adventure in Maryland, and now calls Missouri home. When she isn’t writing, Kay enjoys photography, cooking, and spending time with her adult children and three granddaughters.



We have just closed the blog tour for Letters of the Heart, but you can still read all the guest posts and excerpts that were shared in the other blogs. In case you’ve missed them, here is the list of blogs involved in this tour:


Tuesday, September 3: My Jane Austen Book Club

Wednesday, September 4: Austenesque Reviews

Thursday, September 5: My Vices & Weaknesses

Friday, September 6: Calico Critic

Monday, September 9: Babblings of a Bookworm

Tuesday, September 10: Savvy Verse & Wit

Wednesday, September 11: Margie’s Must Reads

Thursday, September 12: From Pemberley to Milton


Quills and Quartos is offering a generous giveaway of a $50 Amazon Gift Card for one lucky reader who comments  on any of the blog tour stops. To be eligible, just comment on any of the blog tour stops, and fear not, one need not visit all the stops (one point per stop and comment), however, it does increase your chances of winning by earning more entry points.

The giveaway is open until the 19th so you still have time to to check out all the posts and increase yoru chances of winning 🙂

Good Luck Everyone!




September 12, 2019 · 6:13 pm