Sunday, 10 February 2013


I've had the pleasure of being a guest on one of Maria Grazia's blogs before and, always, it's been a delightful experience! About 2 years ago, we did a Q&A about my debut novel, According to Janewhich was the story of a woman who had the ghost of Jane Austen in her head giving her dating advice. (To read Maria Grazia's post, just click HERE  and, if you'd like, you can find an excerpt from that novel HERE ).
My debut came out back in October 2009 and several other books followed it, but this new book -- my seventh novel, Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match -- is the first one since then that was an Austen-inspired story. I had a lot of fun writing this it! It's a short, contemporary romantic comedy about two people who don't believe they're really right for each other. Love has a way of changing their minds, though! Here's the premise:
A single mother and an ER doctor meet on an Internet dating site—each for reasons that have little to do with finding their perfect match—in this modern, Austen-inspired story. It’s a tribute to the power of both “pride” and “prejudice” in bringing two people romantically together, despite their mutual insistence that they should stay apart…
Would an Elizabeth Bennet by any other name be as appealing to a Darcy?
Beth Ann Bennet isn’t looking for love. She’s an aspiring social worker using an online alias to study sex-role stereotypes. Dr. William Darcy isn’t looking for love either. He’s just trying to fund his new clinic by winning a major bet. Both think Lady Catherine’s Love Match Website will help them get what they want—fast, easy and without endangering their hearts. Both are in for a big surprise.
Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match…where true love is just a fib and a click away.
And I hoped you might enjoy an excerpt from the story, too:
The next day at dawn, Beth reviewed her stereotypes list:

1. Greater size and strength
2. Goal-oriented, often highly ambitious
3. Values the rational/logical over the emotional
4. More independent, assertive, critical and competitive
5. Fast visual-attraction reactions
6. Better at spatial/mathematical skills
7. Difficulty expressing emotions

Yep. That seemed to pretty much sum up the major male stereotypes as she knew them, omitting universal truths like men’s bizarre predilection toward big tools and bigger remote-control devices.
Beth laid down her pen. She was armed and ready for today’s coffee "date" and planned to find as much direct, supporting evidence as she could for each point in the few minutes she and Will would spend together. She prayed she’d be able to pull it off.
Somehow she managed to get Charlie to kindergarten, do a morning’s worth of organizing at the agency and pull into the Koffee Haus parking lot right on time.
The scent of warm, roasted coffee beans enticed her nostrils even before she made it through the doorway. The singles’ bar of this century had cinnamon shakers and skim milk pitchers on the counter instead of vodka jiggers and salty peanuts, but the idea was unchanged.
A pair of lanky guys leaned against the counter waiting for their orders to be ready. Neither of them looked anything like Will’s website photograph. Where was he?
A small table opened up near the door and Beth leaped for it. She slid into the chair and began casing the room. Mostly couples or small groups of friends. A dark-haired man in his early
thirties sat alone with a newspaper. His back was to her so she leaned to the left to try to catch a glimpse of his face.
It could be him. Might be.
She leaned a little further but before she could see him she felt that roller-coaster dip in her stomach and lost her balance—hands swiping the floor, chair scraping awkwardly. Very smooth move.
The guy turned to stare at her. So did everyone else. She readjusted herself and tried to bury her head in her purse.
That looked like him. Close enough to the photo anyway to make her pretty sure. Darn it. There was no way he’d want to be approached by a klutz.
When she looked up, he was staring at her again. An assessing glance. Yep. The game was over before it had a chance to begin. Something about him struck her as odd, though. His email personality was so warm, so charming. This guy—well, arrogant seemed to be a better descriptor.
She wondered what he’d do now. Ditch her? She grabbed her stereotypes list from her purse, scanning it covertly in case he worked up the nerve to come over before she approached him. A glimpse at her watch told her it was already ten minutes past one. When she looked back at his table, he was gone.
She sighed. This wasn’t good. Her final project was due in a few weeks, and she needed to cite concrete examples of Case Study #1’s behavior, documented and dated over a period of thirty days. She didn’t have time to start again with a new subject. As it was, she’d have to use all of their email correspondence in her report, and that still left her with over a week’s worth of communication to obtain and record.
And nothing she had thus far was very conclusive.
She didn’t want to resort to shortcuts to complete the paper, but Charlie’s future was at stake here. She stood to leave.
"So, are you the woman Lady Catherine thinks I’m destined for?" a deep voice with a laugh hidden in it whispered in her ear.
She swiveled around and stared at the man behind her. He wasn’t the guy with the newspaper, but he, too, looked like Will’s website photo… only better. Much better.
"If so," he continued, "I’m your Perfect Match."
Have you ever gone on a blind date or tried computer dating? Is it something you'd ever want to do, if you could...or not? I'd love to hear your thoughts!! I'm giving away a PDF copy of one of my earlier ebook romantic comedies to one commenter on this post. The winner can choose from Double DippingOn Any Given Sundae or Holiday Man. Open internationally. Don't forget to leave your e-mail address to be contacted.  Deadline February 18th. Many thanks to you all! 

Marilyn Brant


Prue Batten said...

I'm a Jane Austen fan, but more particularly, my daughter is having a 'Darcy' month of reading as she copes with chronic fatigue and fybromyalgia, and whilst I have my own Darcy and have never been internet-matched, I would dearly love to try and win this for her.

It sounds like such a great read...

otroscuentos said...

I have a story, a Mr Darcy kind of story ;) I had a friend, I have met him thanks to my family and I know him since I was a child. We saw each other a couple of times a year, when our families hang out but nothing more. However, Internet was there... We talked, we wrote friendly emails from time to time... And even we didn't have anything in common... I imagine that Cupid arrives and... we realised that we were made for each other, although no one else would have said that. Five years later, here I am, in love and with a modern Jane Austen fairy tale to tell :) I hope you have a great success with your new book and I hope I win the book, lol!
Best wishes from Spain,


otroscuentos said...

My email!!!

Lúthien84 said...

No, I have never gone on a blind date before or tried Internet dating. I wish my friends could introduce someone who is suitable for me.


Marilyn Brant said...

Maria Grazia, hugs and thanks to you, once again, for inviting me to visit your blog! I really appreciated it!!

Prue, thank you! I'm so glad you think this sounds like a good story for your daughter, and how cool to have a "Darcy" month of reading! (I'd like to do that, too. :) Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match isn't one of the books in the giveaway (I'm giving the winner his or her choice of one of my earlier romantic comedies, as listed above), but I can tell you that my new book is PG as far as adult language and situations. I don't know if your daughter is a young adult or older, but this particular novel is suitable for teens and above. (Some of my others are definitely for mature adults ONLY!!) Wishing you a wonderful week!

Marilyn Brant said...

Belén, ohhh, how romantic!!! I *love* your real-life Mr. Darcy story -- that is wonderful! -- and thank you for sharing it. As I mentioned above, Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match is not one of the books in the giveaway, but the other three novels are all romantic comedies, too, and ones that I hope readers here will enjoy ;). By the way, beautiful Spain is where my husband and I went on our honeymoon -- almost 20 years ago. We LOVED it there!!

Lúthien, I know *exactly* what you mean! When I was single, friends did try -- on occasion -- to set me up with guys they knew, but finding one who was really and truly suitable for me proved to be very difficult... In the end, I met my husband at a restaurant, completely by chance, but I'm always amazed when I hear stories of successful matchmaking -- either by friends, family or computer ;).

aurora said...

I have never been on a blind date. I would like to win the book no matter which. Thank you.
My e-mail

BarbieFantasies said...

Hello, Maria
I am also a fan of Jane Austen and read all her novels.
I also collect Barbie dolls and have created some photo adaptations of Austen's novels on my blog. Austen fans find it inspiring. I would be very glad if you could add me to your blog list with this link to my reproduction of "Pride and Prejudice"
and/or of "Emma" (that I am publishing regularly on my site):

Let me know if you are interested and if you want me to link back to you.

I would be glad to read your answer.

Marilyn Brant said...

Thanks so much for stopping by! I've never been on a totally blind date either, although friends used to try to introduce me to their single guy friends in group settings ;).

Kate, your comments were for Maria Grazia, not for me, but hello anyway!

Patricia F. said...

I have never tried blind dating nor have tried online sites

Pamala Knight said...

Long ago, I went on a blind date that didn't lead to anything. He was nice but there was no spark and I don't think either one of us mourned a loss ;-).

I LOVE P&P and the Perfect Match and wonder if I could navigate the online dating world as well or with as much fun as your characters.

Thanks for posting!

Marilyn Brant said...

Patricia, thanks so much for sharing your thoughts :).

Pamala, *waving!!!* Thank you!! You already know how thrilled I am that you enjoyed the book - xox! And LOL about the blind date. Glad you ended up waiting for your hubby ;).

LisaS said...

Well, no, I've never been on a blind date or tried internet dating. I met my husband in jr high, didn't start dating him till senior year of high school, and then we've been following each other around ever since. :) My friend's daughter has tried internet dating though and I do hope she finds someone special.

LisaS said...

Oops... my email is slapshinyhappy at yahoo dot com. :)

Marilyn Brant said...

It's always so exciting and inspiring to me when I hear stories like yours -- about meeting your spouse in junior high!! Wow. That's my son's age right now, so it's really cool to think that you and your hubby met then... Love it :). And fingers crossed for your friend's daughter!

Joan Ark said...

Keep doing what you're doing!

A Writer's Nakama

Marilyn Brant said...

Thanks, Joan Ark!! :)

Unknown said...

I've never gone on a blind date, or done computer dating. But I do have a friend who is really pushing computer dating. I have a few friends who met their spouses that way, which is why I've considered it.

divavixenqueen said...

They look really good. Never been
on a blind date and not
interested in computer dating either.

Margaret Literary Chanteuse said...

Internet dating seems to be the way these days. All my single friends are doing it now but I'm still old school and am skeptic about it. I just think I would take it really slow. If the guy was truly honest and interested he wouldn't be in a rush to hook up. Take a lot of time to weed out the bad weeds especially before actually meeting that person.

Thankfully I'm married and do not have to deal with this type of situation lol!

Thanks for the giveaway Marilyn as I am just squeaking in before it is over lol.


Marilyn Brant said...

Unknown - I've known a few people who've had good luck with it, too ;).

Diva Vixen Queen - Thank you!!

Margaret - LOL!! I agree with you. I'm glad I don't have to deal with the dating scene right now either...but it was an interesting adventure in my early 20s ;). So glad you took the time to stop by!

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