Hello everyone! New release under the spotlight for your consideration. It's a contemporary variation of Pride and Prejudice by Victoria Kincaid. Here's her message + an excerpt + giveaway open internationally. Enjoy and ... good luck! Maria Grazia
Hi Maria Grazia and thank you for having me as a guest at your blog! Below is an excerpt from my new novel, Darcy in Hollywood. It’s from the beginning—right after movie star Darcy nearly hits Elizabeth with his Ferrari on the streets of the studio lot. I hope you enjoy it!
Rich and arrogant movie star, William Darcy, was a Hollywood heartthrob until a scandalous incident derailed his career. Now he can only hope that Tom Bennet’s prestigious but low budget indie film will restore his reputation. However, on the first day of filming, he nearly hits Bennet’s daughter, Elizabeth, with his Ferrari, and life will never be the same. Okay, she’s a little sarcastic, but he’s certain she’s concealing a massive crush on him—and it’s growing harder to fight his own attraction….Elizabeth Bennet has a lot on her plate. She’s applying to medical school and running the studio’s charity project—while hoping her family won’t embarrass her too much. Being Darcy’s on-set personal assistant is infuriating; he’s rude, proud, and difficult. If there’s one thing she dislikes, it’s people who only think about themselves. But then Elizabeth discovers Darcy has been doing a lot of thinking about her.
She might be willing to concede a mutual attraction, but events are conspiring against them and Darcy subject to constant public scrutiny. Do Darcy and Elizabeth have any hope of achieving Hollywood’s elusive happy ending?
Read an excerpt
The movie’s producer, Tom Bennet, a portly man in his sixties with thinning, frizzy brownish hair, pushed his way through the crowd. Darcy had only met the man a handful of times, but he never exhibited the kind of focus and energy you would expect from someone who could raise millions of dollars for an independent film.
“Ah, I see you’ve met my daughter, Elizabeth.” After a cursory glance at the woman on the bench, Tom gave Darcy a vague smile as if they had encountered each other at Starbucks. “Now I see what held you up.”
His daughter? Wasn’t he…you know…worried about her? Blood stained the front of her shirt. If that had been his sister, Darcy would have been…
Of course, if that had been his sister, his parents wouldn’t have noticed from Europe.
Darcy struggled to recall what he knew about Bennet’s family, information he’d never considered of much importance. Bennet had a lot of daughters. Five? Six? He was notorious for casting family members in his movies to cut back on expenses.
“Elizabeth will be one of the PAs on the set,” Bennet told Darcy.
PA. Production Assistant. Oh God. This woman would be on the movie set every freaking day. She’d bring him props and sides from the screenplay and call sheets—with a glower that reminded him that he was a terrible driver and impossibly vivid eyes that he couldn’t ignore…
That is, if she didn’t die from a concussion on the studio sidewalk.
A short, voluptuously built blonde who had been squeezed into a bright floral form-fitting dress teetered up to Elizabeth on three-inch heels. “Oh my God! Lizzy! What happened?” Throwing her arms around Elizabeth, the blonde pulled her head against her generous chest.
“I fell when—” Elizabeth started to say.
“You shouldn’t be so careless!” the blonde chastised. “I only have four sisters. What would I do without you?”
So this was another of Bennet’s daughters? There was little resemblance. The blonde had all the conventional beauty that Hollywood craved: bee-stung lips, big blue eyes, and a curvaceous figure. By comparison, Elizabeth was no more than passably pretty, yet Darcy couldn’t drag his eyes away from her.
“What happened?” the sister demanded again.
Elizabeth leaned heavily against the back of the bench. “He almost hit me with his car.” She gestured to Darcy.
The other woman’s gaze darted to Darcy, and she did a double take. Darcy stifled a curse; he knew what was coming now. “Oh my God! William Darcy! Lizzy, you almost got run over by William Darcy!” She emitted a high-pitched shriek. “What an honor! Did you get an autograph? Did you get a selfie?”
She handed her phone to Elizabeth, careful not to disturb her fake nails. “Here, take a picture.” She snuggled up next to Darcy, who grudgingly cooperated with his first selfie at the scene of an accident.
But her sister shook her head. “Lydia, it’s a selfie. Do it yourself.”
“But I don’t have my stick!” Lydia wailed. “And I’m sure my hair is a mess, and I have coral lipstick on! Coral! Don’t you see what a disaster that is?”
Lydia grabbed Darcy’s arm, apparently urgently needing to make him understand. “I don’t usually wear coral; it makes my lips go all fishy. But Max, the makeup assistant, wanted to try something…”
Darcy tuned out her babble. She was just another wannabe movie star with more beauty than talent. Eager to move her along, he plucked the phone from Elizabeth’s grip and handed it to Lydia. “There will be plenty of time for pictures. We’ll be working together.” He gave her the killer smile, the one that always made the women melt. The one he secretly dubbed “set phasers on stun.”
Lydia was not immune. “Sure. No problem.” Her eyes remained fixed on his face while her voice became high and breathy.
A knot of gawkers had formed around the Ferrari and its lamppost. Finally noticing, Bennet stared at the accident for a few seconds before turning back to Darcy. “Do you usually park it that way? The studio might not like that.”
“That’s not my customary method. It was an accident.”
Tom turned his gaze back to the car as if it were a strange piece of modern artwork that he was trying to understand.
“I thought your license was suspended,” Lydia said.
Darcy winced. He hated how everyone with an internet connection knew the intimate details of his life. “It was restored. Just today.”
Lydia clapped her hands together. “Yay for you! Congratulations! I bet you’re so happy.” Darcy flicked his skeptical gaze toward the trashed car, but Lydia didn’t notice.
As Tom stared at the car, Darcy braced himself for overdue paternal anger. It was terrifying to think what would have happened if Elizabeth had been between the Ferrari and the lamppost.
But the producer instead loomed over his injured daughter. “Did you get in the way of Mr. Darcy’s car? He’s a very busy man, you know.”
Standing beside her father, Lydia had her hands on her hips. “That wasn’t very considerate, Lizzy.”
“I wasn’t in his way.” Elizabeth sighed, rubbing her forehead with one hand. “I was on the sidewalk.”
The producer gesticulated wildly at the wreck. “Don’t you see what happened to the car?”
Was this the kind of sympathy she could count on from her family? Darcy had been annoyed and shaken up by the accident, but it hadn’t been Elizabeth’s fault.
“Insurance will cover the car,” Darcy told Tom. “I’m sure it will be as good as new.” Although Raoul might never let me drive it again.
Tom was still berating his daughter, who was now even paler. “He could have been hurt! Do you know what that would have done to our shooting schedule? You should be more careful about which sidewalks you walk on!”
“It’s fine, Tom,” Darcy insisted. “I wasn’t hurt. I’m more worried about Elizabeth. She might need a trip to the emergency room.” Darcy supposed he would have to be the voice of reason if nobody else would.
“That would be a good idea.” Elizabeth’s voice was weaker than it was a few minutes ago.
Tom stared down at his phone screen. “No, no. Lizzy’s not essential to the movie. We’ll be fine without her.”
Darcy blew out an irritated breath. “I’m sure that’s true, but she needs immediate medical attention. I would take her to the emergency room—”
“But you can’t miss the table read,” Tom interrupted. “And I can’t either.”
Elizabeth turned toward her sister. “Lydia?”
The blonde gaped. “I can’t take you! I have two lines in the screenplay!”