Friday, 16 October 2020

As Only Mr Darcy Can by Laura Hile - Excerpt and Giveaway

Banner - As Only Mr Darcy Can by Laura Hile
Today I’m happy to be welcoming Laura Hile back to Babblings of a Bookworm with her newest book, As Only Mr Darcy Can. Laura is visiting us with a delightful excerpt for you to enjoy plus an ebook giveaway for one of you. Let’s look at the blurb and then I’ll hand over to Laura for the excerpt.

Book Description

What a tangled web!

Mr. Darcy’s departure has solved nothing. He loves Elizabeth Bennet as much as ever—and he has left her vulnerable to Wickham’s lies. Why not send her a warning? Anonymously, of course. He must conquer his obsession, yet he must also do something to protect her.

But when Darcy is dunned for a bill of Wickham’s—an old trick—he sends the magistrate’s men with a warrant. Wickham, however, is nowhere to be found. At the same time, a titled lady appears in Hunsford. Why does she look so familiar? What of her pointed interest in Darcy’s sister? Is there anyone who will believe what Darcy suspects?

Elizabeth has her hands full when she comes to Hunsford. Her army-mad youngest sister causes trouble everywhere! What is more, those cryptic Valentines keep arriving. And then there is Mr. Darcy, a man she is determined to dislike. Why must his suspicions about the unknown lady match hers? Sparks fly as she joins forces with him to discover a truth that is both laughable and treacherous.

As for being at odds with Mr. Darcy, Elizabeth’s heart has other ideas. Will a nonsensical demand ruin what has grown up between them?

As Only Mr. Darcy Can is a feel-good Regency romp, featuring all your friends from Pride and Prejudice. Intrigue, romance, and laughter are waiting for you.

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Here is a peek at our favorite Pride and Prejudice guys.

Book Cover - As Only Mr Darcy Can by Laura Hile
Excerpt from Chapter 3 of As Only Mr Darcy Can

The hour grew late, but Darcy’s guest showed no interest in departing. A bright fire burned on the library hearth, while outside the wind rattled bare tree limbs and sighed at the corners of his London house.

“Fine cuisine, good company, and” —Colonel Fitzwilliam lifted his glass of after-dinner cognac— “an excellent wine cellar. You know how to put heart into a poor and friendless soldier.”

“Friendless? I’ll see that,” said Darcy. His cousin Fitz was one of the most popular officers in his regiment. “Although you are expensive—”

“Hi, now! I am not!”

“Although expensive,” repeated Darcy, “you are not precisely poor.”

“I daresay I am. Ordered about like a lackey, too. A soldier’s life is not his own. I am bound for the North, cousin of mine, first thing tomorrow morning. General Sir John Foley, bless him” —Fitz pulled a face— “has a packet for me to deliver. Matter of importance, entrusted to my hand alone.”

“Travel north? In all this frigid cold?”

“Frigid does not begin to describe it. If it snows, I’m done for.”

“Not you. You’ll hole up in some country inn and lie abed while stuffing yourself with sausages and cheese and whatever the tap has to offer.”

Fitz laughed and finished his cognac.

Darcy stretched a leg toward the fire. “Georgiana laments the icing over of our early spring blossoms.”

“Let us hope she shall not, as well, lament the icing over of her favorite cousin. Speaking of blossoms, I have been waiting all evening to ask. What, pray tell, is the meaning of this?”

With a flourish, Fitz brought out a card, stiff and white—and gaily adorned with hearts and flowers. Darcy had to laugh. “I did not wish my humble invitation to be overlooked. You needed a reminder.”

“A Valentine! You sent a Valentine! To the army office, blast you. I thought my secretary would die laughing. Moreover, you doused it with scent!”

“A sister—or more precisely, the contents of her perfume bottle—has her uses.”

“You robbed Georgiana in order to make a laughingstock of me.”

“You came, did you not?”

“Yes, in order to eat you out of house and home, and drink your cellar dry. And also to discover the meaning of this knacky verse: It is impossible to love and to be wise.

“Francis Bacon,” supplied Darcy. “You ought to read more than just The Observer and The Gazette.”

Fitz gave him a measured look. “Come to dinner, it says.”

“And?”

“There’s a double meaning in that.” Fitz brought a hand to his breast. “My poor heart, broken beyond repair, when I realized that An Admirer was you.”

“And I took such pains to conceal my identity.”

“From me? Impossible. The lowercase R gave you away. That quirked peak at the left side is you all over.”

“Observant fellow.” Darcy leaned forward. “You don’t happen to pass through Hertfordshire on your way north. No, probably not.”

“Should I?”

“I’d like to have eyes and ears in a place called Meryton.”

“Never heard of it.”

“The local militia is quartered there for the winter.”

“Militia,” scoffed Fitz. He reached for the bottle and refilled Darcy’s glass. “Mama’s boys in regimentals, that’s what they are. Peacocking in the village square, if ever a pretty girl happens by. Swaggering it, as if they have seen action.”

“We have a mutual acquaintance who joined up in November,” said Darcy carefully. “You remember Bingley; he took an estate in the area. I’d hate to see trouble come as a result of our friend’s presence.”

Colonel Fitzwilliam lowered the bottle. “Which friend would that be?”

“Wickham.”

Fitz nearly spat. “That devil? He would join a militia.”

“He looks well in the uniform; I give him that.”

“You saw him?”

“I could scarcely avoid it. Within a week he had entrenched himself with the leading families.”

“Sniffing out the heiresses, is he?”

“There are none, save for Bingley’s sister. She is now in London, well beyond his reach.”

“Wickham and Miss Bingley; that’s rich. The son of an earl,” said Fitz mockingly. “Why, you are the son of an earl.” He refilled his glass. “That is what I am to Miss Caroline Bingley. Honestly, where do people get the idea that we enjoy being fawned over?”

Darcy grinned. “Novels, probably.”

“I daresay Miss Bingley has read a bushel-basket full.”

“Perhaps not. She works industriously at being a proper lady.”

Fitz grinned. “Touché, old fellow, well done. Yes, if she is a Bingley, she is certainly industrious. Whereas a real lady does not care.”

Darcy hid a sigh. This would be Elizabeth Bennet. Adorably secure as a gentleman’s daughter, she hadn’t an ounce of Caroline Bingley’s artifice.

Best to return to the business at hand. “There is none whom I trust so well as you to handle a matter involving Wickham.” Darcy paused to give his cousin a look. “Although, there is a risk.”

“Indeed there is, if I have my pistol at hand,” said Fitz cheerfully. “A little shooting accident is easily arranged. Target practice, if you will. Trust militiamen to be working at marksmanship. They are notoriously poor shots.”

“Would you become a murderer?”

“It is not murder to rid the world of vermin, Darcy.”

“Before God, I could not do it.”

“Well,” admitted Fitz, “neither could I, not in cold blood. But one can always hope for a carriage accident. Or an angry blacksmith father with a hammer in his hand.”

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Author Bio

Author Laura HileBy day, Laura Hile teaches at a Christian school. By night—or rather, in the early morning when she can think! —she writes Jane Austen and Regency romance with laughs and happy endings.

The comedy Laura comes by as a teacher. There's never a dull moment with middle school students!

She enjoys gardening (she is a weed warrior!), choral singing, and having coffee with friends.

Laura lives in Beaverton, Oregon, with her husband and a collection of antique clocks. One day she hopes to add a cat or three.

Other books by Laura Hile: Darcy By Any Other Name, So This Is Loveand the Mercy’s Embrace trilogy. She is a regular contributor to the A Very Austen anthology series.

Connect with Laura:

Website • Facebook • Goodreads • Twitter 


Banner - As Only Mr Darcy Can by Laura HileBuy Links

As Only Mr Darcy Can is available to buy now in paperback, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited.

Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon CA • Add to Goodreads shelf • BookBub

 

Book Cover - As Only Mr Darcy Can by Laura HileGiveaway Time!

 

Laura Hile is kindly offering to give away an ebook of As Only Mr Darcy can to one of you. To enter, just comment on this blog post by the end of the day worldwide on 22 October.

Note about comments: If you have any problems adding your comment please contact me and I will add your comment for you :)

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26 comments:

  1. Oh, this is good! I just bought a copy and cannot wait to read it all. Laura really knows how to tell a story!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brenda, thank you! This one is really fun.

      Delete
  2. HaHa! Love the idea of Darcy sending a Valentine card to the Colonel! At the barracks! I certainly hope the Colonel finds a way to eliminate Wickham! I also hope that Elizabeth realises that Darcy is a man worthy of being loved, sooner rather than later?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Glynis,
      These two are way too much fun to write. Who knew Darcy has a mischievous streak? I guess I did, ha.

      Good luck in the giveaway!

      Delete
  3. I would love to read this so thanks for a chance to win. I have enjoyed Laura's other stories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Sheila,
      There's not much that's profound in this story, just plain old fun and romance. Good luck in the giveaway!

      Delete
  4. A very enticing excerpt. Looking forward to reading it!

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Lily,
      These two are such fun when they get together. Thanks for your interest in As Only Mr. Darcy Can. Good luck in the giveaway.

      Delete
  5. Colonel Fitzwilliam is a great time in this excerpt! I had a few small giggles from him. Congratulations on the release and thanks for the giveaway!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Jen. We love good old Fitz.
      Good luck in the giveaway!

      Delete
  6. I do love a good comfy coze between the Fitzwilliam cousins. :) This will be an engaging one, I think.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Sophia Rose,
      This one is just for fun, a merry romp through Hunsford with our favorite group of Austen friends. Thanks for entering the giveaway. Good luck!

      Delete
  7. Carole in Canada17 October 2020 at 22:29

    Boys will be boys...that was a fun excerpt and I do look forward to reading it. Love the cover art too. I still have to read Charlotte's story! Thanks for a chance at this one!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Carole,
      The excellent thing about books is that they wait ... until the time is right for discovery. Good luck in the giveaway!

      Delete
  8. Replies
    1. Thanks, darcybennett. Good luck to you in the giveaway!

      Delete
  9. Sounds like a great book! I would love to see the colonel get his hands on Wickham.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Cyndy!

      Wickham gets payback, all right. So too does Mr. Collins, although to a lesser extent. This book is just for fun, and we loves it.

      Thanks for entering the giveaway. Good luck!

      Delete
  10. Always love to have (hear) the Colonel in the novels. Thank you for this excerpt and the chance to win a copy

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    Replies
    1. I enjoy the banter between these two cousins. I'm glad you enjoy them too. Good luck in the giveaway, Buturot.

      Delete
  11. I have a comment to add on behalf of Eva:

    Darcy sending a scented Valentine to Colonel Fitzwilliam at his barracks. I am still laughing over that antic. Is Darcy sending a warning about Wickham to Elizabeth? Thank you for the excerpt and giveaway.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I don't know where that idea came from, Eva, but doesn't it sound like something Darcy would do? That sense of humor bubbles up and gets him into trouble. :)

    Kind of like my sense of humor. I write books like this just for fun. Thanks for entering the giveaway. Good luck!

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  13. I love the cousin's banter. This scene is a hoot. I love the way our Colonel thinks. I love that last sentence... what a hoot. "Or an angry blacksmith father with a hammer in his hand." That was pure gold. I look forward to reading this. That cover was amazing. I loved it. That is so our dear couple. Blessings on the success of this story. Stay safe and healthy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. About the cover...

      When the draft came in (that very day), smoke from the wildfires in California and the Pacific Northwest showed up here in my part of Oregon. Our sky here looked exactly like the dramatic cover. Right down to the purple.

      I'm not sure if Blogspot will allow me to post a link with a photo. Hope so!

      Wildfire Smoke Blows In


      Good luck in the giveaway, J.W.

      Delete
  14. This was such an enjoyable excerpt! Thanks, Laura, for sharing it with us. Best wishes for your novel's success, but then it is by you, after all. :) I look forward to reading this one.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Janet,

      This one is just for fun. And you might win! Good luck.

      Delete