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Friday, 13 July 2018

Proof of Love by Brenda Webb - Excerpt and Giveaway

Book cover: Proof of Love by Brenda Webb
I'm happy to be welcoming Brenda Webb back to Babblings of a Bookworm with an excerpt of her latest Pride & Prejudice variation, Proof of Love. Brenda has brought a generous giveaway with her too! I'll now hand over to Brenda.

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Sunday, 8 July 2018

The Darcy Legacy by Joana Starnes - Blog Tour & Giveaway - Review

Blog Tour: The Darcy Legacy by Joana Starnes
Today I'm happy to be welcoming one of my favorite JAFF authors, Joana Starnes for the blog tour stop of her newest book The Darcy Legacy. There's also a fantastic giveaway! Let me share the blurb with you first.

Friday, 6 July 2018

The Son of a Preacher Man by Karen M Cox - Guest Post and Giveaway

Book Cover: Son of a Preacher Man by Karen M Cox
Today I'm happy to be welcoming Karen M Cox to the blog. Long time visitors to my blog might remember that I've read quite a few of Karen's works. I love how she moves the characters and themes from Austen's books to different places and times. Her books are usually not set in the modern day, but in the 20th Century. I've read and enjoyed depression-era 1932, and the follow up novella, The Journey Home, plus 1980s spy novel Undeceived, Find Wonder in All Things, which takes Persuasion to the 1990s, and visited Emma Woodhouse back to the 1970s in I Could Write a Book. Karen has even taken on Northanger Abbey, in a short story in the Sunkissed: Effusions of Summer anthology, which is responsible for one of the longest quotes I have ever put on my blog!

I'll now hand over to Karen for her to tell us a little more about her latest story, Son of a Preacher Man, which I hope to read later this month.

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Plans for July 2018

Hello to all of you. Is it hot in your neck of the woods? We've had a bit of a heatwave here in the UK. June was a disastrous month for my reading. Nearly everything I read was on audio, so I listened either while driving, taking a lunchtime walk or while doing chores. The building work we've been having done is coming towards the end, which is obviously a good thing, but it's taken up quite a bit of time and energy. There's still lots of sorting out to be done, and some decorating, along with some more building work, sigh! I am hoping to carve out some reading time this month. I have a huuuuge backlog. I  also have some blog visitors, who I hope you will drop by for. Let me tell you what I have planned.

Book cover: Son of a Preacher Man by Karen M Cox
Firstly, I'll be welcoming Karen M Cox back to the blog. Karen has just released a book which is inspired by Pride & Prejudice rather than an updated version of it. So although there will be themes and characters which have come from P&P, Son of a Preacher Man doesn't follow the same line.

Book cover: The Darcy Legacy by Joana Starnes
The blog tour for Joana Starnes' new book, The Darcy Legacy will be stopping by for my review. This is a Pride & Prejudice variation with quite a mysterious-sounding blurb. I'm not entirely sure what to expect except that Mrs Bennet has died, leaving Mr Bennet to try and raise his family, and that there are some secrets in the Darcy family.

Book cover: Proof of Love by Brenda Webb
Brenda Webb will be visiting with her new story, Proof of Love, which is Pride & Prejudice-inspired. This varies from canon, with Darcy and Elizabeth meeting sooner.

Book cover: Mr Darcy to the Rescue by Victoria Kincaid
Victoria Kincaid is making Mr Darcy to the Rescue available on audio book, and she'll be popping in to visit us. I've read this in ebook format, and very much enjoyed it.

So, what do you have lined up this month? Are there any books that you look forward to reading, or anything good that you'd like to recommend? Let us know in the comments. 

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Catherine by Sue Barr - Blog Tour - Excerpt and Giveaway

Blog Tour - Catherine by Sue Barr
Today I'm welcoming Sue Barr back to the blog. Sue has written sequels to Pride & Prejudice. She visited here with Caroline, and now Catherine (Bennet, not Lady!). Sue has brought us an excerpt to enjoy, plus a giveaway opportunity. Let's take a look at the blurb first:

Monday, 4 June 2018

The Events at Branxbourne by Caitlin Williams - Blog Tour - Review and Giveaway

Blog Tour: The Events at Branxbourne by Caitlin Williams
I am very pleased to be hosting a spot on Caitlin Williams' blog tour for her new Pride & Prejudice variation, The Events at Branxbourne. I was lucky enough to receive a review copy of the ebook and I'll be telling you what I thought of the book. Read on for my review, and a giveaway opportunity!

Friday, 1 June 2018

Plans for June 2018

Hello my friends! I hope you haven't forgotten me, because it seems like forever since I've blogged. As you may remember, I have been having building work done. The room is built, but not quite complete. The kitchen cupboards were fitted yesterday, and the kitchen should be fully usable in about a week or so, as we are having solid worktops which take a little longer, as they are made to measure. My house is still in complete chaos, which is very wearing! I am hopeful that the month of June will bring with it some tranquility for my home; I can't wait to get back to normality, and be able to enjoy my new kitchen, which is looking lovely :)

Book Cover: The Events at Branxbourne by Caitlin Williams
So, on to the plans for the month - firstly, I will be reading The Events at Branxbourne by Caitlin Williams. This has a very mysterious sounding blurb - Elizabeth is unhappily married to SOMEONE OTHER than Mr Darcy. Harrumph! From the sound of the blurb something happens - maybe unsatisfactory hubby dies in veiled circumstances, I'm not sure.

Book Cover: Catherine by Sue Barr
Also, I get to welcome Sue Barr back to the blog, with her new book Catherine which has Kitty Bennet as the heroine. This blurb also has an air of mystery to it, with a character who is a spy...

Book cover: Austenistan, edited by Laaleen Sukhera
Later in the month, I hope to feature Austenistan, which is a book of short stories edited by Laaleen Sukhera of the Jane Austen Society of Pakistan. These stories take the themes of Austen's stories to Pakistan and I'm looking forward to seeing how they transfer to another time and culture.

What do you have planned for the month? Let me know in the comment what news you have, what you plan to read and anything you've read lately that we all should know about!


Monday, 14 May 2018

The Best Laid Flight Plans by Leigh Dreyer - Blog Tour, Guest Post and Excerpt

Book Cover: The Best Laid Flight Plans by Leigh Dreyer
Today I'm happy to be welcoming Leigh Dreyer, who has just brought out her debut novel, edited by Christina Boyd. The Best Laid Flight Plans is a modern Pride & Prejudice variation against an airforce backdrop. Leigh comes here with some Q&A and an excerpt from her book, plus there is the opportunity to win a copy of the book if you're quick! Let's take a look at the blurb:

Book Description

In this modern Pride and Prejudice variation, Captain William “Fitz” Darcy has just received a new assignment as an instructor pilot at Meryton Air Force Base. Soon he meets the intrepid 2nd Lieutenant Elizabeth Bennet, a new student at the base that he cannot keep out of his head. Elizabeth, on the other hand, finds Captain Darcy to be arrogant and prideful and attempts to avoid him at every turn. Despite Darcy’s insulting manners, Elizabeth soars her way through pilot training, but can she soar her way into love as well?

Author Q&A

Tell us a little about yourself and your background

I work as a speech pathologist, currently in the Las Vegas area. I work both in person and doing teletherapy (which I absolutely love) from my home. I write while my kids take naps and during teletherapy breaks. I also have just been the lead in the musical Thoroughly Modern Millie. I have an incredible husband who is a pilot in the Air Force and two amazing kids. My son is three and my daughter is eighteen months. Both my husband and I are Air Force brats, both children of pilots which makes for fun family get togethers.

Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special? 

Elizabeth Bennet and “Fitz” William Darcy are well known to any regular JAFF readers, but in my novel it was fun to see them in the military, a culture with which I’m so familiar. When I’ve read Pride and Prejudice, I’ve often wondered what amazing things Elizabeth would do in a time where women could go and do anything a man could, and I loved seeing her go out and reach for her dreams.

What are you working on at the minute?

Book two, The Flight Path Less Travelled and a short story about how Mr. and Mrs. Bennet meet and get married.

What’s it about? 

The Flight Path Less Travelled will start where The Best Laid Flight Plans ends and will continue the story to see where Elizabeth’s dreams end up.

If this book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?

The Best Laid Flight Plans will be book one in a series (although I think it stands alone quite well). I really wanted to see the journey of Elizabeth Bennet and see how our dreams change based on factors outside our control. My Elizabeth is a strong, independent, woman who, unlike the original, doesn’t need a man to help her move up or continue in the world and I think it is interesting to explore how love changes us.

How much research do you do? 

For this book most of my research was talking to my husband or calling my dad or father in law. My husband went through pilot training in 2009, my dad spent over 15 years as a master instructor pilot in the T-38 and still works at the base Meryton is based on, and my father in law did more than twenty years in the Air Force as a pilot.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?

I went to a book club attended by Diana J Oaks and told my sister in law my idea about Darcy in the Air Force and I started writing the next day.

Book Cover: The Best Laid Flight Plans by Leigh Dreyer
Tell us about the cover/s and how it/they came about.

The photoshoot was done in Utah at the Air Force museum at Hill Air Force Base. It was important to me to highlight Elizabeth as a female pilot. Females are so rare in the pilot world that I wanted to be able to see Elizabeth as I see her, a strong woman who is willing to work harder than anyone else to achieve what she sees for herself. I made the choice to have the little ringlets and her hair up in a kind of braid Mohawk, because I thought it was a fun throwback to the Regency hairstyles. The back cover is Darcy and I love his name tag and the idea of a compass for Elizabeth’s journey.

Where do you get your ideas? 

Life, really. I’ve been around the Air Force my entire life and it is something I know well. Every time I’ve gone to an Air Force event over the last few years, I’ve sent my husband weird note-taking text messages about the event so I can remember them and put them in a book later. I think it’s important for me to give a glimpse for all the civilians into the world of the modern military. There aren’t many books written about them these days that isn’t about the combat aspect, and while that is certainly important, my husband has been deployed several times and that is an ever-present theme in our lives, I think the culture of the military outside of combat is just as interesting.

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Excerpt from The Best Laid Flight Plans
Elizabeth Bennet smoothed her hands downs her starched camouflage ABUs once more and reached absently to the pins in her brunette hair, exhaling nervously. Again, she rehearsed what she would say, muttering under her breath. Putting her hand on the large, wooden door, she paused, stretched out as tall as her petite frame would allow, and walked in. 

“Major Warby, sir,” Elizabeth said crisply.

The major did not look up from the papers on his desk, his hand hovering over one particular sheet, and staring back at his computer. Over his slouched frame, she could see the top of his bald head reflecting the cheap fluorescent office lighting. 

“Major Warby?” To her dismay, Elizabeth’s voice lilted higher in question.

The major let out a noisy sigh and looked up, rolling his eyes as he did so. As he rustled the papers on his desk, tiny dust particles danced into the air. 

Picture from The Best Laid Flight Plans
“Hmm?” He grunted the question. Elizabeth hated when men grunted that way. They tended to do it a lot to her. And sighed. The sigh, especially, was always a sign she had disappointed them. The difficulty was however, she could never figure out precisely what she had done to offend. She persevered, thinking it would be best to have this sorry excuse for an interview over with.

“Sir, I’ve shredded and replaced the regulation binders as you asked. It took a little while because it was difficult to find all of the appropriate AFI’s for each flight when no one could tell me where the binders were exactly. You should be ready for inspection next week.”

“Thanks.” Major Warby grunted his response and gave her a bored look that seemed to politely invite her to get the hell out. She stepped forward, fidgeting, but ventured forth regardless. 

“Sir, is there any other work I can complete?” She hoped against hope that there would be a task, anything, for her to do. Elizabeth Bennet hated to be idle. She was a useful sort of person who thrived in activity and one more day of mediocrity might just kill her.

“Bennet, look”—Major Warby spoke to her like he spoke to his three-year-old at the last Family Day picnic—“You’re in casual status. Do you know what casual lieutenants do?”

“Yes sir. They complete all work assigned to them and are available to their commanders for additional assignments as needed. Sir.” The sarcastic answer dripped from her lips before she could stop herself, so she smiled as she spoke to ensure it sounded more polite than she felt.

“Bennet. That was a lovely book answer, but really, do you know what you guys do?”

“Umm.” Elizabeth glanced at the white-painted cinderblock wall to her left and saw the clock ticking. She could almost hear its silent taunting. 

“Bennet.” Elizabeth could hear the sigh as he said her name. “You wait. That’s it. Nobody cares about what you do or don’t do because you don’t have a real job. You just sit around waiting for your slot to come up. Now, can I do anything for you or are you just here to distract me from what I’m trying to finish before I can go home and have a drink?” He punctuated his question by raising his eyebrows, the wrinkles on his forehead becoming deep creases.

“No, sir. I’m sorry to have bothered you. I’ll just go sit at scheduling in case you need me.”

The major grunted in reply as Elizabeth exited, letting the door slam behind her. Her boots squeaked as she strode down the dull, tile floors. Oh, but she was bored. The assignment the major had given her had taken her two days. Two whole days that she was not sitting, bored, at the scheduling desk waiting for life to happen to her. 

She turned left down the hall and looked at her favorite picture in the squadron. It was small and in a cheap, plain black frame, but she loved it. A loaded A-10 aircraft flying right above the cloud line where she could see the colors of the clouds. Most people thought clouds were big, white puffy cotton balls in the sky, but Elizabeth Bennet knew better. Clouds were a million colors: white and pale yellow with streaks of bright cerulean and cornflower blues, sparkling like pearls in the sunshine or darken in a sinister instant. This picture somehow captured what Elizabeth was so anxious to see for herself. 

Elizabeth had only ever had one dream. She wanted to fly. When she was eight, she wanted to bend her legs, jump, and take off swirling through the skies. When she was twelve, she met a pilot during career day at school and decided to do everything she could to become one. She worked hard and blasted through her classes as fast as she could. And now, here she was, not quite twenty-one...and stagnant. Stuck as a casual lieutenant in a squadron that did not care whether she showed up to work or not. Elizabeth took another long look at the painting and sighed. She hated to wait.

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Author Bio

Leigh Dreyer is a huge fan of Jane Austen variations and the JAFF community. She is blessed to have multi-generational military connections through herself and her husband, who she met in pilot training. She often describes her formative years in this way, “You know the Great Balls of Fire scene in Top Gun (“Goose you big stud!!!”), where Goose and Meg Ryan have their kid on the piano? I was that kid.” Leigh lives with her pilot husband, a plane-obsessed son and a daughter who is almost walking.

Connect with the Author - Facebook - Goodreads - Website

Book Cover: The Best Laid Flight Plans by Leigh Dreyer
Buy links

This book is available to buy now! US / UK

Giveaway Time

There is a giveaway associated with this blog tour, but you'll need to be quick to enter. Use the rafflecopter to enter.

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Sunday, 15 April 2018

The Secrets of Pemberley by Rose Fairbanks - Blog Tour - Guest Post and Giveaway

Book Cover: The Secrets of Pemberley by Rose Fairbanks
I'm pleased to be welcoming Rose Fairbanks back to the blog today with the tour of her latest book, a Pride & Prejudice vagary called The Secrets of Pemberley. This has a very interesting sounding blurb, which I'll share with you in just a moment. Rose is here today with a guest post of a video diary for Elizabeth, and there's a giveaway opportunity as well. Read on for more details...

Friday, 6 April 2018

Lover’s Knot: A Mysterious Pride & Prejudice Variation by Jenetta James - Blog Tour - Review & Giveaway

Blog Tour: Lover's Knot by Jenetta JamesToday the blog tour for Jenetta James' new book, Lover’s Knot: A Mysterious Pride & Prejudice Variation stops by for my review. I was very pleased to have the opportunity to read this book, having previously enjoyed reading Suddenly Mrs Darcy, The Elizabeth Papers and The Darcy Monologues. The other reason I wanted to read this is that it's a mystery. I love reading mysteries, and prefer historical ones such as those by Agatha Christie with sleuthing and legwork. The blog tour also has a giveaway attached! We'll start off with the blurb: