Saturday, 6 February 2016

KATIE OLIVER, JANE AUSTEN - REGENCY SHOPAHOLIC? AUTHOR GUEST POST & GREAT GIVEAWAY!


"Chick lit is genre fiction which addresses issues of modern womanhood, often humorously and lightheartedly. Although it sometimes includes romantic elements, chick lit is generally not considered a direct subcategory of the romance novel genre, because the heroine's relationship with her family or friends is often just as important as her romantic relationships." - Goodreads

"[Romance] books are about the celebration of falling in love and emotion and commitment, and all of those things we really want." - Nora Roberts


Jane Austen blazed the trail that every writer of romance and chick lit ever after has followed. Her popularity is still strong after 250 years. Numerous film adaptations of her novels, including the recent Austen-meets-horror film mashup, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, continue to be produced, watched, and admired, and discussed. 


Like any chick lit/modern-day romance heroine, Elizabeth Bennet's relationship with her father, mother, and sisters is every bit as important to her as her relationship with Mr Darcy. Emma Woodhouse is devoted not only to Mr Knightley, but also to her father and her governess, Miss Taylor. And certainly no two sisters are more different - or more close-knit - than Elinor and Marianne Dashwood. And like any chick lit worth its cover price, there are always plenty of humorous moments to be found in Austen's novels in addition to a deeply satisfying romance. 

Imagine, then, if Austen had to write for today's market. How might Darcy, Elizabeth, Anne Elliot, Captain Wentworth and the rest fare between the covers of, say, a Harlequin romance novel?

One of the first rules of current romance fiction is to throw the hero and heroine together as often as possible, from the very first page. Pride and Prejudice and Emma both manage this very well. Like any modern heroine, Elizabeth Bennet and Emma Woodhouse are young, spirited, and possessed of determination and (in Emma's case, in particular) self-assurance in spades. They spend a great deal of time in Darcy and Knightley's company. They flirt; they cast sidelong glances at the object of their (reluctant) affection; they argue; they ponder; they weep, and rage, and misconstrue. They want to marry, but on their own terms; they want to fall in love and be loved in return. They will settle for nothing less. 

And eventually, after numerous and ever more serious misunderstandings, they find their way to lasting love, better self-understanding, and a happy ending. 

So far, so good… 

Persuasion, however, is a romance fail if judged against this first rule of romantic fiction.  Anne Elliot spends little time with Captain Wentworth over the course of the novel. She regrets her actions and pines for the man she was persuaded to turn away. She stoically perseveres through a downturn in her family's fortunes, even as Wentworth's return confirms him as a self-made success. Not until the book is nearly over do Anne and Frederick finally admit their true and lasting feelings for one another. 

If Anne were a Harlequin heroine, she'd 'meet cute' with Wentworth early on and, despite her initial attraction, allows her snobby mother to convince her she could do better, so much better, than marry a man of no wealth or distinction. She'd have a wisecracking best friend, an over-achieving older sister, and a Pomeranian named Lacey. She'd drive a Honda and work part-time shelving books in the local library. But rather than suffering in silence like Austen’s Anne, she'd share her doubts and innermost thoughts with her bestie over a Venti skinny latte at Starbucks.  

And she'd spend a lot more time in Wentworth's vicinity - arguing, ignoring him, laughing, flirting.

The second irrefutable rule of romantic fiction is: provide conflict. To keep readers turning the pages, a story must have conflict, and plenty of it...both inner and external. Austen manages this to excellent effect in both Pride and Prejudice and Emma. Darcy thinks Elizabeth is 'not handsome enough to tempt me,' and she in return she finds him prideful and humorless. She's outraged when she learns he warned Mr Bingley away from her sister Jane, as he did not think the girl worthy of his good friend's affections. 

Cue Lizzy's understandable anger, her indignation and hurt, and wait for the inevitable conflict with Mr Darcy that follows...


Then as now, whether in the pages of today’s chick lit romances or within a classic Regency novel by Jane Austen, we're none of us more vulnerable (or comical) than when we fall in love, displaying our foibles and insecurities for the entire world to see. As Miss Austen's books and film adaptations prove time and again, romance (and the war between the sexes) never fails to amuse...and will never go out of style. 

My website is www.katieoliver.com/ko/blog and I'm also on Twitter @ katieoliver01 ), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/KatieOliverWriter/) and Instagram  ( katiewriter ). 

Katie Oliver 


What Would Lizzy Bennet do ?

When your name is Lizzy Bennet, and the object of your affections just happens to have the surname Darcy, it seems fitting that life should imitate art, and you should end up together – right?

So when a film crew arrive to shoot Pride and Prejudice at the Darcy estate next door to the Bennet home, and Hugh Darcy arrives home after eight years away, Lizzy knows that their time has finally come. Until, that is, he introduces her to Holly – his fiancée…


What is Lizzy to do? It can’t hurt that Holly knows nothing about country life, and that her ex-boyfriend and film star Ciaran Duncan just happens to be the main star of the new movie. And it’s clear that Lady Darcy does not approve of Holly either. Lizzy knows Holly isn’t right for Hugh, but can she make him see that and get her Austen ending after all?



About the author


Katie Oliver loves romantic comedies, characters who "meet cute," Richard Curtis films, and Prosecco (not necessarily in that order). She currently resides in South Florida with her husband, two parakeets, and a dog.
Katie’s been writing since she was eight, and has a box crammed with (mostly unfinished) novels to prove it.  With her sons grown and gone, she decided to get serious and write more (and hopefully, better) stories.  She even finishes most of them.


Check the Dating Mr Darcy Series at 


and the Marrying Mr Darcy Series at 



Grand  Giveaway !




Have a look at the amazing prizes in our grand giveaway. Click on the dots in the rafflecopter form to discover the prizes one by one: a  great deal of goodies! All for one winner and open internationally! To enter the giveaway use the rafflecopter form below. Good luck!!!

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

53 comments:

BookLuver88 said...

I love the covers!

Library cat said...

I think that it's Jane Austen's fault :) that women (read: me) who read her books are hopelessly romantic and have high expectations in love. I love Elisabeth Bennet, she is so romantic and so realistic at the same time. When we meet someone, we are all so proud of ourselves and full of prejudices about our partner, and it takes time to settle things down.

P.S. Thank you for this amazing giveaway just around Valentine's Day. All the themes are so cute. xxx

Anonymous said...

Los libros de Jane Austen logran captar la esencia de los personajes, que los muestra reales y creíbles. Eso es lo que más me gusta de su literatura.

Unknown said...

I love Jane Austen book.

Unknown said...

I love Jane Austen book.

kimberly said...

I love the book covers, really cute. I think that Jane Austen has influenced so many things today from books to movies to tv shows.

Meg Wilkins said...

I love the book covers! Thank you for doing this amazing giveaway!

schilds said...

The covers are great. I have been in love with all things Austen for as long as I can remember. I have cried and laughed and found pure joy from her works. Thanks for the giveaway!

Diana said...

"I am in love" with Jane Austen's work. We can learn many lessons from her heroines. I am always curious for any modern version of these heroins.
Gorgeous covers, thank you for the great giveaway!

Raffle name: Artemis Giote

Willow and Thatch said...

Very nice giveaway - hope it is okay that I am entering (Willow and Thatch is a site dedicated to period dramas). I understand if I'm not eligible, but it would be fun to win the tote bag :)

Anonymous said...

Nice covers !! I love Jane Austen & her wonderful books <3 Thank you for this awesome giveaway !! :)

Miette

AM said...

That was a very intereting post, thank you!

Ginna said...

Oh! I just put these on my wishlist - how timely to see this post. I have to say - your giveaway is the most awesome that I've ever seen! Really looking forward to reading these books.

kneyda said...

This is an amazing giveaway and I actually do love Darcy. ;)

Tea Guide said...

Wonderful article -- and many thanks for your generous give-away. Sure hope I win! :-)

And I'm happy to find a new Austen-esque author!

Katie Oliver said...

Wow - thank you all for the wonderful comments! I'm in the middle of revisions for the third book in the series, Who Needs Mr Willoughby, and haven't raised my head from my laptop in a few days. So glad everyone is liking the giveaway and the book covers. xx

dstoutholcomb said...

fun covers! love the idea!

Denise

Anji said...

The covers and titles are fantastic and the giveaway is amazingly generous, especially as it includes us international readers. Thank you so much for that.

It's always good to discover a new author,, so I'll have to go off and look up Katie's books now!

Katie Oliver said...

You're welcome, Anji. I always to to include everyone in my giveaways. Glad you like the covers and I hope you like the books. :) I had fun writing them.

Sonja said...

I look forward to reading this interesting book. It sounds good that there are many different relationships discussed in this book!

Deborah Ann said...

I love the book covers. Your books sounds interesting and I have added it to my TBR. Thank you for your generous give away.

Mariam said...

Hello :D

Thank you for this giveaway :D This is so much :D
I really love the 50's comic cover for the novel, it is quite refreshing from what we suallay have : pictures and paintings.
It made me smile that his name is High Darcy ( like the actor) did you picture him as your character while writing?

Katie Oliver said...

That's a good question, Mariam. I confess that while I do love Hugh Dancy, I had Henry Cavill in mind when I wrote Hugh. And maybe a little bit of Colin Firth, too... Lol

I wasn't sure about the covers when I first saw them. They were so different from anything other Austen type books. But that's what makes them stand out. So they've grown on me. The 'Emma" cover is my favorite...I love the colors. ;-). Best of luck to you in the giveaway!

Kim Amundsen said...

Cool covers.

Irene Ivy said...

What an honor to be able to enter this giveaway! The covers are beautiful and elegant and the amazing prizes are so desirable! Thank you so much!

Nicole Adam said...

The covers are amazing and will definitely stand out!!

And so excited to be able to enter this giveaway!!

Katie Oliver said...

Thank you all, so much! I'm wowed by the response and glad to connect with new readers and Austen fans!

Shooting Stars Mag said...

I really love this idea! So many adapt Jane Austen, but I haven't seen her stories done quite like this! Thanks for sharing.

-Lauren

Laura Hartness said...

What unique covers for Austenesque fiction! I'm quite intrigued with all of these, and what an amazing giveaway. Thanks for the chance to win!

Sam said...

The book covers are amazing! I love them. And the characters in them �� thank you so much for such an AMAZING giveaway! Fingers crossed xx

Mariam said...

thank you Katie for answering my question . XD I must say we all think of Colin Firth when it comes to Darcy but I tend to love more Mattew Macfadyen, he was my first Darcy :D
I also prefer the Emma cover , there is so much expression and interpretation to it and I love her hair style :D
Thank you, I also hope to win :DD , It would so wonderful (over the moon )

Bethany Clark said...

Such cute covers! I can't wait to read more! xx

Alba Forbe said...

The first thing that caught my attention was the cover for these books. They are really clever! But reading more about the stories themselves, I am even more interested. I think they are the kind of books I enjoy! :)

Katie Oliver said...

I'm really enjoying reading all of your comments!

Thank you, Alba - I hope you like reading my books too. I sure had fun writing them...I hate to see them end. ;-)

And thanks Bethany - I'm happy you like the covers. They're certainly very eye catching! Lol

Mariam - I really liked Matthew MacFadyen as Darcy, too. He brought such emotion to the role. And Keira Knightley is hands down my favorite Elizabeth. x

Best of luck to you all, and happy reading!

@lauraprime1 said...

I love the way you are bringing the JaneAusten way of life BACK to life.
I love the book covers even on a kindle they're amazing 🌹

Katie Oliver said...

Thank you, Laura.

Let's hope they do well enough as ebooks to go into print! I'd love to see that. 💗💗

Magdalena Johansson said...

Love this post. Now I want to watch persuasion again! ;)

Annette Oliver said...

I,love every adaptation of Jane austens books

Katie Oliver said...

Me too, Magdalena and Annette! You can never have enough Jane Austen. ����

Have you seen these Little Miss Austen books for kids? They help teach little ones how to count, and they're adorable.

http://www.amazon.com/Pride-Prejudice-BabyLit®-Counting-Primer/dp/1423622022

Jill of all Trades said...

Yay! I love Jane Austen give-aways...and it's my birthday soon, wouldn't that be sweet! ;)

SteffR said...

Lovely comp, Austen-a-holic for life!

Ana Valente said...

I am a hopeless romantic because of Jane Austen and this is an amazing giveaway :)

Katie Oliver said...

I wish EVERYONE could win the giveaway!

But never fear, if you don't win this one, I've another one coming next month for my third Jane Austen Factor book, Who Needs Mr Willoughby? I promise I'll give away lots more great stuff.

Many thanks to everyone who's taken the time to comment and to read my guest post on Maria's wonderful blog. Best of luck to those who've entered the contest. Cheers! xx

Katie

Bharti (Bee) said...

I love the spinoffs on the classics, especially Jane Austen, as they keep the hope alive and makes me fall in love with he characters all over again.

Sophie Isma said...

I love retelling so much, for it's a story you are already familiar with but with a new flare and few surprises down the road. In addition a retelling keeps the classic alive and introduces it to a whole new audience that haven't read it before.Love these covers by the way!
Thank you for the awesome giveaway!!

Katie Oliver said...

I agree, Sophie and Bharti. I think it's important to introduce a new generation of readers to Miss Austen's novels. She's inspired not only me, but so many other authors with the wit and deeply felt emotion of her stories. If my re-imagining of her classic novels leads even one reader to pick up and read Pride and Prejudice, Emma, or Sense and Sensibility, then I'll be very pleased. :-)

Best of luck to you both in the giveaway! xx

Anniek Snowroses said...

I love anything from Jane Austen. It is the whole she creates in all of her stories

Irma Jurejevčič said...

Don't we all love books from Jane Austen? She opened up a new world to us :) Historical romances are amzing. Thank you for the chance <3

Anonymous said...

Love Jane Austen and historical romance. Thank you for the chance x

Bube said...

Great covers and intersting post!
Thanks for sharing :)

Adrienne said...

What an amazing and oh so generous giveaway! Good luck, all! xx

Katie Oliver said...

I really wish all of you could all win!!

I so appreciate your comments and kind words about my book covers. The Trouble With Emma is out on 29 February, and Who Needs Mr Willoughby is pubbed 24 March. Writing books based on Austen's three beloved novels has been fun but challenging - her footsteps are impossible to fill. I hope I managed to pen fun, entertaining books...and I hope they'll inspire readers to return to Austen's originals.

Warmest thanks and best wishes

Katie xx

Oh Chel said...

Persuasion was always one of my favorites from Jane Austin. I think I even preferred that to Pride and Prejudice.