After Fitzwilliam Darcy finds his suit rejected by the only woman in the world he would ever marry, he looks to make a quick exit out of Kent and go back to his life before he met Elizabeth Bennet. Yet, when he wakes the next day he discovers that getting back to everything he still holds dear may be more challenging than he ever imagined. What if finding his way back means getting another chance to win Elizabeth’s love?
Beau North and Brooke West, co-authors of Holiday Mix Tape from the Meryton Press winter anthology, Then Comes Winter, tour the blogosphere from October 8-October 19, 2016, to share their latest collaboration, The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy. Thirteen book bloggers, specializing in Austenesque fiction and romance stories, will share excerpts, guest posts, an exclusive interview with the authors and book reviews from this highly anticipated Austen-inspired novel. Four ebooks and four paperbacks are also being included in our giveaways and entry is available to anyone who participates. And this great blog tour starts right here, at My Jane Austen Book Club, today! Let's welcome Beau and Brooke on their first day on tour.
Good morning, Maria Grazia, and thank you for welcoming us to your lovely blog, My Jane Austen Book Club. We are thrilled to launch our tour for The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy here with your readers, and we look forward to sharing a wide range of posts related to this story throughout this tour. Today, we have a post that readers have been anticipating because we are revealing our top three choices for our The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy contest, where your readers, and anyone else who votes during this tour, will be able to pick our final winning image.
Before the big reveal, I want to thank all of my readers at Just Jane 1813 who contributed such gorgeous and inspiring images! We were truly blown away by your creativity and your search skills. There were so many entries that we had never even considered before, and we have to say that it’s amazing how one character can inspire so much enthusiasm and ardent admiration!
The idea for our contest was inspired by the passionate reactions that so many readers have to Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy; the wealthy and swoon-worthy character that has lived on for more than two centuries in the hearts and minds of so many people.
As Austen scholar, Janine Barchas, discusses in her Persuasions article, How Celebrity Name Dropping Leads to Another Model for Pemberley (#35), for Austen herself, there was a strong interest to find an image that would symbolize her own beloved Elizabeth Bennet. A few months after the publication of Pride and Prejudice, she visited the widely popular exhibit, which displayed Sir Joshua Reynolds’ artwork in London, at the British Institution. In a letter to Cassandra, Jane Austen describes her visit as a search for “Mrs Bingley” and “Mrs Darcy.”
First, she mentions attending an “Exhibition in Spring Gardens”:
It is not thought a good collection, but I was very well pleased— particularly . . . with a small portrait of Mrs Bingley, excessively like her. I went in hopes of seeing one of her Sister, but there was no Mrs Darcy. (24 May 1813)
Although she fears that there is “no chance of her in the collection of Sir Joshua Reynolds’s Paintings which is now shewing in Pall Mall, & which we are also to visit,” she still jokes, “I dare say Mrs D. will be in Yellow” (24 May 1813). That evening Austen adds to her letter, reporting on the visit to the Reynolds show:
We have been both to the Exhibition & Sir J. Reynolds’,—and I am disappointed, for there was nothing like Mrs D. at either.—I can only imagine that Mr D. prizes any Picture of her too much to like it should be exposed to the public eye.—I can imagine he wd (would) have that sort [of] feeling—that mixture of Love, Pride & Delicacy.— Setting aside this disappointment, I had great amusement among the Pictures. (24 May 1813)
Although we do not know whose celebrity portrait, “in Yellow,” Austen had been hoping to spot, this letter strongly suggests that she had a particular real-world referent in mind for Elizabeth Bennet, too. (Barchas)
Our contest is a pursuit very similar to the one taken over two hundred years ago by Jane Austen, in which we seek to find an image that readers will love and connect with, in regards to Austen’s hero, Fitzwilliam Darcy.
Without further ado, here are the three images for our The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy contest:
Richard Madden Matt Bomer Eduardo Verastegui
Stunning men, aren’t they? I think it’s going to be a challenge to pick just one!
To vote for your favorite image of Fitzwilliam Darcy from the images shown above, go to The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy Contest Link.
The winning image and the winner will be announced on October 20, 2016, at our last blog stop, So Little Time… So Much to Read. The winner of the winning entry will receive the big giveaway prize collection, which will include:
A paperback copy of Then Comes Winter by Meryton Press, edited by Christina Boyd
A paperback copy of Longbourn’s Songbird by Beau North
A paperback copy of The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy by Beau North & Brooke West
A $15.00 Amazon gift card
Assorted Jane Austen postcards
Pride and Prejudice Post-its by Girl of All Work
Thank you, for hosting us today, Maria Grazia. May your readers, from all over the world, enjoy the pleasures of voting for their very own beloved Fitzwilliam Darcy!
Beau & Brooke
The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy
“He could no longer claim to be Fitzwilliam Darcy of Derbyshire, brother to Georgiana, master of Pemberley. In that moment, he was but a man. A man filled with more frustration than most souls could bear. A man torn asunder by his desperation, his fruitless dreams and desires.”
After Elizabeth Bennet rejects his marriage proposal, Fitzwilliam Darcy finds himself in the most unusual of circumstances. At first believing the extraordinary turn of events has granted him an inexplicable boon, he is eager to put the humiliating proposal behind him.
He soon discovers that he is trapped in the same waking dream with no end in sight and no possible escape. All that he holds dear—his name, his home, his love—remains ever out of reach. How will he find his way back to his normal life? Will one mistake haunt the rest of his days? It will take all of his fortitude to weather the storms of his strange new fate, and all of his courage to grasp the promise of his future.
Beau North is the author of Longbourn’s Songbird and a contributor to the anthology Then Comes Winter. Beau is a native southerner who now calls Portland, Oregon home with her husband and two cats. She attended the University of South Carolina where she began a lifelong obsession with Literature. In her spare time, Beau is the brains behind Rhymes With Nerdy, a pop culture podcast and website, and a contributor at the San Francisco Book Review.
Facebook: Beau North Writes
Blog: beaunorthwrites.com (coming soon)
Goodreads: Goodreads Author Page: Beau North
Amazon: Amazon Author Page: Beau North
Brooke West is a contributing author to the anthology Then Comes Winter. Brooke has a naturally creative soul that pulls her into myriad artistic endeavors. While writing fiction always has been her life's passion, Brooke also finds joy in silversmithing, sculpting, and costuming. Between projects, she runs and practices yoga. She lives in South Carolina with her fiancé, son, and three cats.
Facebook: Brooke West
@WordyWest and @BrookeWest
Goodreads: Goodreads Author Page: Brooke West
Amazon: Amazon Author Page: Brooke West
Beau and Brooke are giving away 8 copies of their book, which includes 4 ebooks and 4 paperback copies. To win a paperback copy, the winners must have a U.S. mailing address.
October 8/ My Jane Austen Book Club/Launch Post & Giveaway
October 9/ Just Jane 1813/Interview with Beau and Brooke
October 10/ Pemberley to Milton/Book Review & Giveaway
October 11/ A Covent Garden Madame Gilflurt's Guide to Life/Guest Post
October 12/ Austenesque Reviews/ Excerpt & Giveaway
October 13/ Margie's Must Reads/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 14/ Babblings of a Bookworm/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 15/ The Calico Critic/Excerpt & Giveaway
October 16/ Obsessed with Mr. Darcy/ Guest Post
October 17/ Diary of an Eccentric/Book Review & Giveaway
October 18/ My Kids Led Me Back to Pride and Prejudice/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 19/ More Agreeably Engaged/ Fitzwilliam Vignette
October 20/ So Little Time... So Much to Read/ Excerpt & Giveaway