Today I’m hosting a writer I’ve really admired. I once tried to compile a top 10 or 15 JAFF must-reads and one of her books Mr. Darcy’s Promise was on it. If you’ve read many of my stories you’ll see I kind of have an obsession with putting Darcy and Elizabeth in a forced marriage. Mr. Darcy’s Promise was the first one I read where they didn’t begin in deceit and despair and it was lovely to read their love develop under the circumstances. Jeanna Ellsworth also always includes a metaphor throughout the book for Darcy to puzzle out. It’s a unique touch I don’t see in other books and I like trying to guess along with him!
Ms. Ellsworth has recently released To Refine Like Silver, another great story which will pull on your heartstrings, and I’m excited to share this excerpt and host a giveaway for it!!
If Mr. Darcy had met Elizabeth Bennet in his beloved Derbyshire, would he have recognized her as the love of his life instead of dismissing her as someone “not handsome enough to tempt” him? This alteration of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice adds a little spirit, flirtation, and charm to everyone’s favorite characters.
Early in the summer of 1811, Elizabeth Bennet travels to Derbyshire to help her aunt and uncle settle in as new owners of Saphrinbrooke. Elizabeth is soon introduced to the estate’s nearest neighbors: Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and his sister, Georgiana, who is suffering the results of a fateful trip to Ramsgate. Having endured several life tragedies herself, Elizabeth reaches out to the young lady of Pemberley. Under her radiant influence, both Darcy and Georgiana begin to look for help outside of themselves.
To Refine Like Silver is a romantic and spiritual journey where more than one of our favorite Regency characters must learn to fully rely on God. Their trials bring depth to the beloved story, and Mr. Darcy ultimately learns that our trials do not define us; rather they refine us.
I just wanted to say thank you to all of the readers out there who have supported me as an author. I am really excited to share this excerpt with you today. Thank you, Rose, for having me on your blog! Several of my excerpts over the last few weeks have been more serious in nature but I thought I’d share a fun one with you to show that the book is uplifting as well. Hope I get this across.
Before I share it, I want to announce that my debut novel, Mr. Darcy’s Promise, will be rereleased after thousands of editorial changes. With it being my first efforts at publishing, and fairly new to writing, I learned that it went to publication with errors! I now have finished the last edits on Mr. Darcy’s Promise and I wanted to announce that the kindle version will be free so that all of you who bought the first version will not have to buy it again so watch for the announcement. Hopefully we can get the word out there for those who may wish to read it for the first time also. If you do read the second edition, please take a moment to write a review! Especially if you loved it! LOL.
I will not delay it anymore. This is taken from chapter 2 of To Refine Like Silver, which was just released in July. Darcy and Elizabeth have only just met two days before but sparks are flying! It is Elizabeth’s first experience at Pemberley.
Elizabeth was so moved by the view from the window, that she simply nodded and murmured her agreement. From where she stood, she saw yellow and red roses directly under the window, followed by an open lawn that sloped down towards a large lake. Its left bank was covered by a beautiful canopy of trees, and she could see a pier, at least fifteen yards long, leading to a small, octagonal gazebo situated in the middle of the lake. On the right were some boulders. She could see gentle ripples of water rubbing up against their mossy bases. “Mr. Darcy, how deep is the lake?”
“Only ten feet deep in the middle; the slope is very gradual. But there is a natural spring by those boulders on the right bank. It is quite deep there.” Elizabeth giggled. If he was hooked before, that giggle captured him completely. He couldn’t help but ask, “What is so funny about my lake?”
She giggled again and turned to look at him. A small smile was on his face, but it was not big enough to reveal his dimples. He was once again hiding behind his “Mr. Darcy mask”, as she liked to think of it. “I simply had the biggest urge to jump into a lake! I have not done that for years!”
“When I was younger, my friends and I used to jump off the boulders into the deep area. But I warn you, that area of the lake is quite cold due to the spring. I doubt you would want to do it twice. You surprise me, Miss Elizabeth. I do not think Georgiana has ever done such a thing.”
“I highly doubt that. She has spirit.”
“Indeed.” Mr. Darcy wondered where his sister was hiding, but just then, Georgiana entered. She was hiding behind a small smile; it looked foreign compared to the blank look she had possessed the last three months.
Georgiana’s face felt awkward in her attempts to smile, but she had overheard Elizabeth say she had spirit, and she wanted to show her gratitude. She walked up to Elizabeth and said, “Good morning, Elizabeth. Good morning, Mrs. Gardiner. I am sorry I kept you waiting. I hope my brother has been a gentleman and made up for my absence.” The exertion she felt in saying all of that at once was so great that it sapped her energy completely; her smile disappeared. She tried once again to replace it. Who knew one would have to think about smiling at the right times?
Elizabeth stood and took Georgiana’s hand and leaned into her and whispered something in her ear just loud enough for Mr. Darcy to hear, “He was telling me all about his boyhood indiscretions. He told me he used to swim in the lake as a boy with hardly an inch of clothing on! Can you believe he would admit such a thing to a lady?”
“I said nothing of the sort!”
The shock in his face was great indeed, and she let out a laugh. “Now he forces me to tell the truth: I must admit he did not mention any clothes at all! But to save me from embarrassment I imagined him wearing at least a little clothing!”
Mrs. Gardiner laughed, and Georgiana’s face showed a slight grin on it. It was a weak one, but an honest grin. Elizabeth had made her grin.
It was then Mr. Darcy’s turn to show his embarrassment, and he stood and tucked his arm behind him and bowed. “I see now why gentlemen do not take tea with ladies. I shall leave you with Georgiana.” He turned to leave after first making eye contact with Georgiana. “If they have time, perhaps we could give them a tour of the estate afterwards.”
Georgiana looked to Elizabeth and asked, “Would you like that?”
Elizabeth smiled brightly and said, “I would love a tour. We have finished all our calls for today, so we are free to spend more time.”
“Then I shall be in my study. Please let me accompany you. There is nothing I enjoy more than sharing my home with others who I know will appreciate the history and memories it holds.”
Elizabeth couldn’t restrain herself; he was such an easy target. “Will I be hearing more stories of your indiscretions?”
He smiled at her widely. “I shall admit to only a few. But simply because if I do not give you something to quench your thirst for gossip, I fear you will make up your own stories about me. I worry I will soon have a very different reputation entirely.” He saw her bright smile answer him in the affirmative, and he left the room.
What kind of woman is this? She seems to take me to task with every conversation! One minute he felt in control of himself, and the next he wanted to dance with her. He hardly knew her! What kind of power did she possess to manipulate him so? He felt a bounce in his step as he entered his study. He sat down and looked out the window at the same scene Elizabeth had just admired. It truly was a beautiful view. And how did she know he used to jump from the boulders wearing little but undershorts in the heat of the summer?
He shook his head. She hadn’t known, but his reaction had confirmed it for her. Again he wondered how a lady could draw his attention so drastically. He seemed to think of little else but Elizabeth Bennet for the next half hour. He thought of her giggle, her teasing, her impertinence, and her sparkle. He did not realize how long he had been sitting, doing nothing but thinking of her, until he heard a knock on the door. He glanced at his pocket watch and realized an entire half hour had passed.
As you can see, Darcy is drawn to her right from the beginning. It is rather fun to see them interact so flirtatiously instead of having their pride and prejudice prevent them from seeing who the other really is. Wow, that could be something on Pinterest for a life lesson! Don’t let your pride or prejudice get in the way of your happiness! Ha ha! Well, I hope you enjoyed this excerpt.
I am giving away two prizes to two lucky winners. One prize is a bar of Fitzwilliam Darcy soap from Shirley’s Handmade soaps. Ever wonder what the 200 year old fictional character smells like? He smells like lemon and sandalwood. The second prize is a copy of To Refine Like Silver. You have your choice of eBook (internationally) or a paperback (U.S. only). To enter, like my author’s page on Facebook, Jeanna Ellsworth, and comment below. Do not forget to tell me if you have a preference on what prize you want to win. Liking my author’s page will mean you will know when Mr. Darcy’s Promise is released and any new writing projects!
My next novel I will be publishing is an original work called Inspired By Grace. I am hoping for a July or August 2015 release. I am very excited to share this book with all of you as well. Hopefully you will enjoy it as much as all the fan fiction I have written.
Thanks again, Rose, for having me!
Jeanna is a mother of three daughters, all whom are well versed in Pride and Prejudice; they are her best friends and the inspiration for her writing. She also proudly states she is the eighth of thirteen children. When she isn’t blogging, gardening, cooking, or raising chickens—or more realistically, writing—she is thoroughly ignoring her house for a few hours at a time in order to read yet another romance novel. Somewhere between being a mom, sister, writer, and cook, she squeezes in three 12-hour shifts each week as a Registered Nurse in a Neurological ICU. She finds great joy in her writing and claims she has never been happier.
Jeanna fell in love again with Jane Austen when she was introduced to the incredible world of Jane Austen inspired fiction. She can never adequately thank the fellow authors who mentored her and encouraged her to write her first novel. Through writing, Jeanna has gained something that no one can take away from her: hope for her own Mr. Darcy. More than anything, she hopes to prepare her three best friends to look for their own Mr. Darcy and to settle for nothing less.
Jeanna’s works include: Mr. Darcy’s Promise, Pride and Persistence, To Refine Like Silver, Hope For Mr. Darcy, and Hope For Fitzwilliam. She is eagerly working on her first attempt at an original Regency romance novel: Inspired By Grace. For more information on these books, please visit her website, www.HeyLadyPublications.com
This giveaway is for one ebook open internationally and one paperback for US. To enter please comment below with the format you would like to enter for and be sure the e-mail address you provide is one I can contact you through. Giveaway entries close Monday, December 29 at 11:59 pm EST.
You can also like her facebook page for a second chance to win.