Interview with Author Mary Moore Interview — Part 2

Mary Moore, Regency Reflections contributor and author of Beauty in Disguise is with us Author Mary Mooreagain today, and just like yesterday, she’s offering to give away two copies of her latest Regency novel to two lucky blog visitors. Be sure to leave a comment at the end of the post to be entered in the giveaway. The giveaway will end Wednesday, January 16, at midnight.

1. Hi Mary, and thanks for being with us two days in a row. Today I’d like to ask you a few questions about writing Regencies and making your stories stand out. With the Regency Era being such a relatively short time in number of years; is it hard to create new storylines and fresh ideas?  

Normally, I would give you a pretty definitive no. There are a number of different voices and creative writers out there, who all have different perspectives and specific areas of interest on the period, and this results in some wonderful new stories every month. The growth in the research process and areas of expertise also adds a wonderful level of creativeness.

You will notice, however, that I started my answer with “normally!” After I signed the contract for Beauty in Disguise and scheduled it for release, my editor contacted my agent to tell us that there was another LIH already further along in the process with a similar premise to mine. As a relatively new author, I had no idea whether my editor would want to move back the date of release or ask me to propose a whole new story. But she thought the story would work out fine if I would just be willing to “tweak” it. I said yes, but little did I realize what “tweaking” it would mean!

2. How did they want you to change it, and how hard was that for you?

In our initial brainstorming session most of the changes seemed pretty much cosmetic. They really did like the premise and wanted to keep it if we could. So, we changed where the story was staged, the heroine’s dynamic with some of the other characters and some details about her past. But as I began the rewrite I realized that some of those changes affected the story much more than any of us anticipated.

3.Gulp. I was in a similar situation with a story once. I thought I was agreeing to some surface changes that got way deeper than I anticipated. Not fun! How did the changes for Beauty in Disguise differ from what you expected?

Originally, the build up to the “reveal” was pivotal to my story. But with some of the changes I made, my editor thought it watered down some of the conflict and, thereby, the impact too much. To increase that problem, they wanted the hero and heroine to meet earlier. So one by one, changes that started out as cosmetic ended up changing the storyline pretty drastically. There were quite a few more rewrites than my editor and I expected or wanted!

4.  How do you think these changes have helped to make your book stronger?

I usually have an inspirational message (and the verses of Scripture that go with it) in my mind ahead of time, and I write the story around it. In the rewrites of Beauty in Disguise, I began to get frustrated because either the message wouldn’t fit with the changes or the changes wouldn’t go with the message. I finally got to the point where I just gave the story to God. I asked Him to make sure it was His message that went out there instead of mine. Duh, right? So, in the end, having the story revolve around what He wants to say made the book exactly what it is supposed to be.

The postscript to the story is that one day I was in a hospital waiting room and I pulled out my Kindle to kill the time. I pulled up the first Regency I came to and I knew, on that very first page, that it was the other story…the one that came out before mine and sent me on this writing journey. I wanted to find someone, anyone, to say, “This is it, this is it,” until I realized how crazy I would have sounded. It was by an author I “knew” pretty well online. She and I have had a good laugh over it and I pray that God will be able to use both our stories to His glory!

5. Well, I’m glad everything worked out well between you and the other author. Are you excited to finally see the release of Beauty in Disguise?

That would be a giant understatement! It was by far tougher to write than my first one was, but it has also been a little over a year since my first one came out. I was ready to be out among readers again, and now I can move on to my next project. I am very blessed!

Thanks, Naomi, for your time and the interview. I am so happy to be associated with this site and all of the work everyone does here to support and spread the news about inspirational Regencies.

Here’s a little more about Beauty in Disguise. If you want to enter our giveaway, leave a comment below, and be sure to visit yesterday’s blog post for another chance to win Beauty in Disguise.

Hidden in plain sight.

After her scanBeauty Cover Fulldalous first Season, Lady Kathryn needs a new beginning. Concealing her stunning hair and sapphire eyes beneath a dowdy facade, she’s grateful to earn her keep as companion Kate Montgomery. Until she comes face-to-face with her past in Lord Dalton, the only man she has ever loved.

The debutante Dalton fell in love with years ago was beautiful beyond compare. The gentle, mysterious young woman he encounters at a country house has qualities he now values more highly—until he learns of her deception. Kate has broken his heart not once, but twice. Can faith help him see that love, like true beauty, always comes to light?

Interview with Regency Romance Author Abby Gaines

Naomi Rawlings here today, and I’ve got a special guest to introduce: Abby Gaines, author of the newly released novel The Governess and Mr. Granville. I’m especially excited to host Abby here today, because she writes for the same publisher that I write for, Love Inspired Historical.

Abby has graciously agreed to giveaway one copy of her novel to someone who reads the interview and then leaves a comment below. The contest will end Saturday at midnight and is open only to U.S. residents. Here’s a bit about Abby:

I handwrote my first romance novel at age 17. Disillusioned by my first rejection, I gave it up for about 20 years! Obviously I developed a thicker skin over that time, because when I started again, I weathered numerous rejections before selling my first book to Harlequin Superromance in 2006. Since then, I’ve written 20 books across Harlequin’s Superromance, NASCAR and Love Inspired Historical lines.

1.    What drew you to write during the Regency Time Period?
Like many others, I fell in love with the Regency through the works of Georgette Heyer and Jane Austen. Although men and women had very different, clearly defined roles, when it came to clever, witty dialogue, they could be equals, and each could use the strengths of their gender to befuddle the other!

2.    Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.  
It’s set in 1816. Not for any particularly good reason – when I wrote my first Regency, I found a picture of a young woman who looked just how I imagined my heroine, and it was dated 1816. Since then, that time period has turned out be quite interesting. It was after the wars with Napoleon, and in a time where some well-known artists and writers, like Turner and Keats, were coming into their own. Not to mention new inventions coming out. Those things provide interesting background and sometimes drive the story in a new direction.

3.    What’s your favorite, unique Regency aspect of the novel, something you wouldn’t be able to include in a novel set in another place or time?
My heroine has a secret engagement in her past. When I first started writing the book, I knew that was a scandalous thing, but I didn’t understand why. In my research, I discovered how financially risky that would have been for her if the match had gone ahead, and how it would have damaged public perception of her beloved father. Her guilt over that past event isn’t just about breaking a convention – she could have lost everything.

4.    What are the biggest challenges to writing in the Regency Period?
No challenges with the period itself, but the need to check just about every word’s date of origin and early meaning in the Oxford English Dictionary is time-consuming!

5.    Who is your favorite Regency Author?
Georgette Heyer. And right now, Sylvester is my favorite book of hers.

6.    What is your favorite Regency Food, aspect of dress, and/or expression?
Those muslin dresses are hard to beat! So flattering to both the bust and the waist – bring back the empire-line dress!

7.    What is your favorite Regency setting; e.g., London, country house, small village?
I prefer London settings as a reader and a writer. Partly because I know London well, having lived there for several years, and it’s such a buzz seeing familiar streets and landmarks transported back in time. But also the dynamism of the city appeals. I do like Bath settings, too.

8. What makes your hero and heroine uniquely Regency?
She’s a governess and a parson’s daughter – impoverished but of noble lineage. That puts her in a difficult situation with regard to finding a husband. He’s a traditional dad, trying to do his best for his family, convinced he can marry without love and have it all work out fine. Naturally, he learns otherwise!

9. Tell us more about your novel.Dominic Granville needs a wife—whether he wants one or not! And governess Serena Somerton intends to find one for him. A marriage of convenience would provide the wealthy widower’s five children with a mother’s tender care. And yet none of Dominic’s prospective brides can meet Serena’s increasingly high standards.

Dominic can’t imagine why his sister hired such an unconventional, outspoken governess. Yet Miss Somerton’s quirks can’t curb his growing interest in this spirited young woman. His imperfect governess could be his ideal wife…

*****

Thanks so much for interviewing with us today, Abby. It’s always fun to see what draws various authors to the Regency Period. And can I admit that any and every European set governess story always reminds me of the Sound of Music? For those of you interested in the giveaway, please remember to leave a comment below. And if you’re interested in learning more about Abby and her other novels, please visit www.abbygaines.com.

 

Interview and a Give-A-Way with Author Jamie Carie

Regency Reflections Welcomes Author Jamie Carie

We are so thrilled to welcome author Jamie Carie to Regency Reflections! Jamie, the author of the Forgotten Castles series, has stopped by to tell us a little bit about her upcoming release, A Duke’s Promise, which will be available September 1st.

Jamie is kindly offering a free book (Paperback or Kindle download) to one lucky visitor!  For your chance to win a book from the Forgotten Castles series, leave a comment on this post.

1. Tell us a bit about the inspiration behind your Forgotten Castles series.

It started with the idea of doing something similar to my second book, The Duchess and the Dragon, but with a Regency spin. I love writing about royalty from that time period! I also knew I wanted something adventurous with a mystery to solve. Then the characters took over, which is the best part.

2. Setting plays a very important role in this series.  Can you tell us what drew you to using castles in your setting, and more specifically, how you tied the setting to the time period?

I had the idea of three I’s – Ireland, Iceland and Italy as the settings. Each book takes place in one of those countries and features tucked away, crumpling and forgotten or fairy-tale like castles. I had a moments panic when I discovered that Iceland doesn’t have any actual castles but then I discovered the Dimmuborgir, black lava formations that look enough like a castle that they are called the Black Castles of Iceland. It was perfect for a creepy scene!

How I tied the setting to the time period? Having Alexandria grow up on a very secluded island in an old, crumpling castle gave me more leeway with her behavior in Regency England. She couldn’t be expected to be quite so strict in her role as a woman of that time because she was never taught the rules of society and hadn’t lived among the elite until she meets her guardian, the duke, and lives for a time in London. It was fun to see how she changed and grew over the course of the three books.

3. The book covers in the Forgotten Castle series are stunning.  Can you tell us about the design process?

Thank you!! I have to give all the credit for the gorgeous covers to Diana Lawrence, Art Director at B&H Publishing. Diana always gets the “feel” of my books and carries it so well to the cover designs. I only consult and there were very few changes that I recommended. Here’s the link to the making of the first cover – The Guardian Duke.

4. Tell us a bit about your upcoming release, A Duke’s Promise.

I am so excited to have A Duke’s Promise come out in September! God gave me an ending that took my breath away, tying up all the details and answering all the questions that are raised in the first two books. I can’t give anything away, so here is the back of the book blurb:

From the Land of Fire and Ice back to England’s shores, Alexandria Featherstone finds herself the new Duchess of St. Easton. Her husband has promised a wedding trip to take them to the place where her imperiled parents were last seen — Italy and the marble caves of Carrara — but a powerful Italian duke plots against Alex and her treasure-hunting parents.
Hoping to save them, Alex and Gabriel travel to Italy by balloon. Fraught with danger on all sides and pressured by Gabriel’s affliction to the breaking point, they must learn to work and fight together. The mysterious key is within their grasp, but they have yet to recognize it. This journey will require steadfast faith in God and each other — a risk that will win them everything they want or lose them everything they have.

5. You have an amazing ability to weave the details of everyday Regency life into your novels.  If you had to pick, what would you say is your favorite aspect of Regency life?

I love the gallantry of the men of that day and age. Men (the good ones at least!) were very protecting toward their mothers, sisters, wives and daughters. Gabriel, the duke who is Alexandria’s guardian, takes very good care of his family (even though some members drive him bonkers). He treats Alexandria like a princess. I love how he loves her – tender, sweet, hot, completely besotted but not a dolt – sigh! I think he is my favorite hero to date!

6. What do you think is the biggest challenge of writing a Regency?

Probably getting the “feel” (the cadence of the language and dialog, the perspectives of the characters, etc.) of the time period. I suggest reading lots of Regencies and absorb the tone before trying to write one.

7. Do you have a favorite Regency author?

I grew up reading Georgette Heyer which probably started my love of romance novels. Also Amanda Quick, Julia Quinn, Judith McNaught and LOVE Laura Kinsale!

8. Tell us a bit more about you.  

I’m a preacher’s daughter. I grew up in Vincennes, Indiana and my entire childhood was immersed in the Charismatic movement with Bible teachers like Derek Prince, Kenneth Copeland and many others sounding by cassette tape in the background. This upbringing was both wildly crazy when it came to some of the error of that movement but also deeply theological and Bible based. I’ve had a lot to sort out as an adult, I can tell you! I think God has used all this in my writing and I’ve learned to be thankful for it and proceed with the faith that He can make beauty from ashes. Here’s my short bio:

Born and raised in Vincennes, Indiana, Jamie is the daughter of a preacher man. Road trips with her dad—to and from Bible studies across Indiana—were filled with talks of things beyond earth’s bounds – creation and the fall, God and Jesus and the rapture, the earthly walk compared to the spiritual walk, and how we are born for more than what we can see or touch.

The highlight of those nights was stopping at a truck stop in the middle of the night where her dad would spend a little of the offering basket on two slices of pie and a couple of Cokes. Nothing ever felt so special as a middle of the night slice of pie with her dad. And nothing could stop the writing pouring out of her.

Piles of poems, short stories, skits and song lyrics later, Jamie grew up and married. When her eldest son turned five she decided to try her hand at novels. Snow Angel was published and won the USA Book News “Best Books 2007” Awards winner, and 2008 RITA Awards® Best First Book finalist. Her third book, Wind Dancer, won Best Books of Indiana in 2010.

Jamie and Tony have been married for twenty-four years and live in Indianapolis with their three sons, a giant of a dog named Leo, and their new addition – a half Siamese/half Snow Shoe kitten named Luna.

If she could only say one thing to her readers it would be, “Live the dreams God has destined you for!”

9. How can readers connect with you to learn more about your other projects or get in touch with you?

Website: www.jamiecarie.com
Blog: http://jamiecarie.com/blog
Facebook: http:www.facebook.com/jamie.carie?ref=profile
The Forgotten Castles series FB Pagefacebook.com/ForgottenCastles
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/#!/jamiecarie
Email: jamie@jamiecarie.com

10. One last question:   Pride & Prejudice or Sense & Sensibility?

Pride and Prejudice! I’ve seen the movie at least a dozen times. I love Sense and Sensibility and Emma too though. Now, you’ve done it!! I’m going to be craving some Jane Austen and have to squeeze that into my schedule!

Thanks again to Jamie Carie for stopping by and sharing her story. Be sure to leave a comment to be entered it the giveaway for the winner’s choice of a book in the Forgotten Castles series!

Interview and Giveaway with Author Jillian Kent

Hello all you Regency fans,

Naomi Rawlings here today, and I’ve got a special guest to introduce: Jillian Kent, author of the newly released novel Chameleon. Jillian has graciously agreed to giveaway one copy of her novel to someone who reads the interview and then leaves a comment below. The contest will end Saturday at midnight and is open only to U.S. residents. Here’s a bit about Jillian:

Jillian is employed full-time as a counselor for nursing students in a hospital based college. She and her husband are both social workers and met in West Virginia and they’ve been married for 31 years.

Jillian can’t believe Book Two of the Ravensmoore Chronicles, Chameleon, is on the shelves and in the cyberspace bookstores! It was just this time last year that her first book, Secrets of the Heart, The Ravensmoore Chronicles, Book One hit the shelves. Jillian says, “It’s been a year of growth and change in the publishing world and the constant personal challenge of seeking balance while writing a new book, working as a counselor, and enjoying my family. This has taken the development of new time management skills.”

So without further ado, here’s a few Regency questions I asked of Jillian:

1.    What drew you to write during the Regency Time Period?

That’s the time period I like to read.

2. Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.

Chameleon, The Ravensmoore Chronicles, Book Two is set in 1819.

3.    What’s your favorite, unique Regency aspect of the novel, something you wouldn’t have been able to include in a novel set in another time or place?

I had many favorite aspects of this novel. This is just one of those novels that will be difficult for me to top as a personal best. I really believe that. I don’t know how others will judge it, but it’s everything I wanted it to be. Here’s a brief scene that includes Carlton House that I think adds that Regency-ish aspect you’re talking about.

Witt, with Ravensmoore at his side, walked through the Carlton House main entrance, which was graced with six Corinthian columns. Inside they were greeted by a grand staircase, chandeliers, marble floors, and ceilings painted with scenes of myths and legends. Though he’d seen the place many times, he was again struck by the grandeur, the paintings by Gainsborough and Reynolds, and portraits by Van Dyck and Rembrandt.

Grand indeed.

When he’d last entered only a few hours earlier, it had been through the rear entrance of the palace with Stone dripping blood onto the polished marble. This time, his attention was on Ravensmoore and the argument that had ensued in the carriage prior to their arrival.

4. What are the biggest challenges to writing in the Regency Period?

As much as I read about and study this era, I feel like there is so much yet to learn. I’m always terrified of making an error. I want to make the time period come alive and want readers to feel like they are there in London, in Parliament, seeing what was to be seen in those days and smelling the smells, some of which were not so lovely in town.

5. What initially drew you to be interested in writing  books set during the Regency Era?

I discovered England when I spent a semester living in Oxford for part of my senior year of college in 1976.

6. Who is your favorite Regency Author?

Oh, that’s hard. I’m not going to pick a CBA author because I love all of them. In the ABA I’d have to say Julia Quinn.

7. What is your favorite Regency Food?

Any kind of dessert but no fruit cake. I love custards. Here’s a nice page of desserts. http://www.janeausten.co.uk/online-magazine/regency-recipes/desserts/

8. What is your favorite Regency setting?

London and Yorkshire. I love the moors and the mist.

******

Jillian, thanks so much for being with us today, and what a lovely interview you gave. How lucky you were to spend a semester in England. You must have loved it. I’m afraid I’m not very well traveled, but I’m jealous of those who are! I’d have to agree with you that Julia Quinn is one of my favorite secular Regency authors. She can make the simplest situations so hilarious, and I love that about her. And I’m so not a fruitcake fan. So I agree with you about the desserts. Thanks for sharing the recipe website.

Here’s some more information about Jillian Kent, and Chameleon:

How much can you really know about someone?

Lady Victoria Grayson has always considered herself a keen observer of human behavior. After battling a chronic childhood illness that kept her homebound for years, she journeys to London determined to have the adventure of a lifetime.

Jaded by his wartime profession as a spy, Lord Witt understands, more than most, that everyone is not always who they pretend to be. He meets Victoria after the Regent requests an investigation into the activities of her physician brother, Lord Ravensmoore.

Witt and Victoria become increasingly entangled in a plot targeting the lords of Parliament. Victoria is forced to question how well she knows those close to her while challenging Witt’s cynical nature and doubts about God. Together they must confront their pasts in order to solve a mystery that could devastate their future.

Chameleon released May 15th  from Charisma Media/Realms

A final message from Jillian:

If you read book one you know I’m fascinated with human behavior and how our minds work. This will be even more clear to you if you read Chameleon.:) And if you do read this book PLEASE don’t give away the ending so that others can enjoy the journey the whole way through to its conclusion. Once again you will find yourself in Regency England. You will return to Bedlam. You will meet Devlin’s sister, Victoria, aka, Snoop. It won’t take long to find out why the family calls her Snoop. I hope you will escape into the past with me and you, just like some of my characters may find faith for the future. If you are a sleuth at heart you will love this story. If you want to read the first chapter of this novel to see if it’s your kind of read please visit my website at http://jilliankent.com/books.html You can also join in the conversation on my blog anytime.

Other than my personal blog I also blog with the other Realms writers at Just the Write Charisma. http://justthewritecharisma.blogspot.com/

I’m very proud of the Well Writer column that I organized with the encouragement of Bonnie Calhoun. You can find it here: http://www.christianfictiononlinemagazine.com/brilliant_well.html

If you’re interested in being entered in the giveaway for Chameleon, please leave a comment below, and thank you so very much for stopping by to meet Author Jillian Kent today.

Special Announcement! Free Book!

Kristi here and I am very excited to announce that today and tomorrow only (May 15 and 16, 2012), you can get a FREE Inspirational Regency novel!

That’s right, you can own “A Necessary Deception” by our very own Laurie Alice Eakes for free! It’s available as a free eBook on Kindle and Nook. Don’t own a Kindle or Nook? You can get the Kindle app for your PC or smartphone for free! (I just love all this free stuff, don’t you?)

So CLICK HERE to go to Amazon and get your free book. It’s perfect for getting you ready for the next book in the series coming out in October.

CLICK HERE if you want the Nook version.

If you have friends that you want to introduce to the fabulous world of Regency England, this is a great way to do it! Who doesn’t love a free book?

Have you already read “A Necessary Deception”? Get in the comments below and tell everyone how great it is so they’ll go get their own copy. Gotta go now… I’m off to snuggle on my couch and read!

Mr. Darcy, An Alpha Male in Love

Vanessa here, exposing some of my pert opinions.

A man losing the battle of the heart is a thing of beauty.  When the male in question is an Alpha man, the dominant, powerful man of the group and protector of those dearest, his torment and ultimate victory is sheer poetry.

I love the classics, but I must say Dicken’s Pip (Great Expectations) languished too much without any measure of success with Estelle.  Pip doesn’t scream Alpha to me. An Alpha would have moved on or found away to convince Estelle to marry him.

Side note: To truly be a successful Alpha hero, you not only have to get the girl, but you have to live to tell about it. The whole dying thing, ruined Romeo and Juliet for me. I guess, I am a sucker for a happy ending, that is a happy ending with a breathing Alpha male.

So what is a good portrait of an Alpha male?

Mr. Darcy

.  He’s Jane Austen’s careful balance of natural male pride, protector, and fear. To surrender to love is a struggle that Darcy fights until he knows the battle is lost.

In Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth asks Darcy when he did he know he loved her. Darcy replies:

“I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look, or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.”

A collective sigh should leach from this blog screen.  Oh, if Laurence Olivier (1940) , Collin Firth (1995), or Matthew Macfadyen (2005) could have said those words, I’d have their version of Pride and Prejudice DVD on perpetual rewind.


Back to Darcy’s Struggle

Austen showed us glimpses of Darcy’s Alpha journey much more than the movies give credit.

At Netherfield during Jane’s convalescence:

Elizabeth could not help observing, as she turned over some music-books that lay on the instrument, how frequently Mr. Darcy’s eyes were fixed on her. She hardly knew how to suppose that she could be an object of admiration to so great a man; and yet that he should look at her because he disliked her, was still more strange.

 

After an exchange of teasing between Darcy and Elizabeth at Netherfield:

Darcy had never been so bewitched by any woman as he was by her. He really believed, that were it not for the inferiority of her connections, he should be in some danger.

The growth of his feelings are displayed in a private exchange with Miss Bingley at Netherfield:

Miss Bingley says: “As for your Elizabeth’s picture, you must not have it taken, for what painter could do justice to those beautiful eyes?”

Darcy replies: “It would not be easy, indeed, to catch their expression, but their colour and shape, and the eyelashes, so remarkably fine, might be copied.”

A Display of His Protective Nature for Elizabeth:

The path just admitted three. Mr. Darcy felt their (Bingley’s sisters) rudeness, and immediately said “This walk is not wide enough for our party. We had better go into the avenue.”

But Elizabeth, who had not the least inclination to remain with them, laughingly answered: “No, no; stay where you are. You are charmingly grouped, and appear to uncommon advantage. The picturesque would be spoilt by admitting a fourth. Good-bye.”

After a heated exchange with Elizabeth at Netherfield where Darcy’s messaging for sympathy before emotionally retreating:

Elizabeth said, “And your defect is to hate everybody.”

“And yours,” he replied with a smile, “is willfully to misunderstand them.”

“Do let us have a little music,” cried Miss Bingley, tired of a conversation in which she had no share. “Louisa, you will not mind my waking Mr. Hurst?”

Her sister had not the smallest objection, and the pianoforte was opened; and Darcy, after a few moments’ recollection, was not sorry for it. He began to feel the danger of paying Elizabeth too much attention.

Upon learning that Jane and Elizabeth would soon leave Netherfield, Darcy believes ignoring Elizabeth will solve his problem:

To Mr. Darcy it was welcome intelligence—Elizabeth had been at Netherfield long enough. She attracted him more than he liked—and Miss Bingley was uncivil to her, and more teasing than usual to himself. He wisely resolved to be particularly careful that no sign of admiration should now escape him, nothing that could elevate her with the hope of influencing his felicity; sensible that if such an idea had been suggested, his behaviour during the last day must have material weight in confirming or crushing it.

At the end of their famous dance at the ball of Netherfield:

“I would by no means suspend any pleasure of yours,” he coldly replied.

She said no more, and they went down the other dance and parted in silence; and on each side dissatisfied, though not to an equal degree, for in Darcy’s breast there was a tolerable powerful feeling towards her, which soon procured her pardon, and directed all his anger against another.

 

Side Note: I love when an author uses the phrasing of a man’s breast. It sounds as if the emotions have penetrated his chest armor and gotten very deep inside.

Back to Darcy

The famous first proposal, his bold admission of losing his heart is classic Alpha trying to be in control when love has sent him spinning:

He sat down for a few moments, and then getting up, walked about the room. Elizabeth was surprised, but said not a word. After a silence of several minutes, he came towards her in an agitated manner, and thus began:

“In vain I have struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”

Elizabeth’s astonishment was beyond expression. She stared, coloured, doubted, and was silent. This he considered sufficient encouragement; and the avowal of all that he felt, and had long felt for her, immediately followed. He spoke well; but there were feelings besides those of the heart to be detailed; and he was not more eloquent on the subject of tenderness than of pride. His sense of her inferiority—of its being a degradation—of the family obstacles which had always opposed to inclination, were dwelt on with a warmth which seemed due to the consequence he was wounding, but was very unlikely to recommend his suit.

He concluded with representing to her the strength of that attachment which, in spite of all his endeavours, he had found impossible to conquer; and with expressing his hope that it would now be rewarded by her acceptance of his hand. As he said this, she could easily see that he had no doubt of a favourable answer. He spoke of apprehension and anxiety, but his countenance expressed real security. Such a circumstance could only exasperate farther, and, when he ceased, the colour rose into her cheeks, and she said:

“…I have never desired your good opinion, and you have certainly bestowed it most unwillingly. I am sorry to have occasioned pain to anyone. It has been most unconsciously done, however, and I hope will be of short duration. The feelings which, you tell me, have long prevented the acknowledgment of your regard, can have little difficulty in overcoming it after this explanation.”

Mr. Darcy, who was leaning against the mantelpiece with his eyes fixed on her face, seemed to catch her words with no less resentment than surprise. His complexion became pale with anger, and the disturbance of his mind was visible in every feature. He was struggling for the appearance of composure, and would not open his lips till he believed himself to have attained it.

To attain peace cost Darcy two sheets of paper written in close hand, days of searching London;s underbelly, 10,000 pounds of bribe money, countless hours of recalling Elizabeth’s reproof. Priceless.

What I love the most is the sheer masculinity of Darcy’s regard. In a single breath, he tries to ram through the proposal and collect his acceptance. He’s all man as he tries to keep his feelings close to his waistcoat. Even as he exposes a bit of his heart to Elizabeth, he keeps his pride of his accomplishment and stature between them, a wall too high. Only the most ardent love will climb it.

And as he passes his black moment, he asserts to prove his worthiness with compassion and strength. He overcomes all of his own objections to save Elizabeth’s family and prove himself worthy. All alpha male, all the time.

Do you share my Alpha love? If you do leave a comment. Any one leaving a comment on this post or Fridays will receive on Saturday a link for a:

Free copy of Pride & Prejudice for the Kindle, Nook, or IPad.

I’ve formatted the Guttenberg Project’s version into ePub (Nook and IPad) and Mobi (Kindle) formats. I’m looking forward to sharing with you.

References:

The Guttenberg Project

Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice

Pride & Prejudice, 1940 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Production

Pride &Prejudice the Miniseries, 1995 BBC

Pride & Prejudice, 2005 StudioCanal/Focus Features