I would like to thank Victoria Connelly for this lovely Q&A!
1. When did you have your first encounter with Jane Austen?
When I was a teenager, I saw the 1940s black and white film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice staring Laurence Olivier as Mr. Darcy and Greer Garson as Elizabeth Bennet. I just fell in love! I adore the love/hate relationship of the hero and heroine, the amusing characters and the happy ending, and I read the novel shortly after. I was then lucky enough to then study Sense and Sensibility at university. It’s a life-long long affair, I think!
2. And who is your favorite Austen hero (or anti-hero!)?
I think it has to be Mr. Darcy because he is willing to change for the woman he loves which is irresistible! I adore how he works away quietly in the background, helping Elizabeth’s family and not drawing attention to himself. He does it all because of his love for her. I do have a soft spot for Henry Tilney, though - he always makes me smile - and I’ve always adored Bingley from Pride and Prejudice. I’ve often thought that I’d be far more likely to end up with Tilney of Bingley than Darcy!
3. How did you choose which Austen locations to feature in your trilogy?
I picked the three main ones: Hampshire, Lyme Regis and Bath. I’d visited all three before but made special trips there to research them for my Austen addicts’ trilogy.
Hampshire is where Jane Austen was born. You can visit her final home in the gorgeous village of Chawton and see where her mother and sister are buried in the local church.
Jane Austen also spent time in Lyme Regis and wrote so lovingly about it in Persuasion – I had to set a novel there and write about the famous Cobb.
Austen also spent many years in Bath and two of her novels are set there: Northanger Abbey and Persuasion so it’s a very important Austen setting and there are so many beautiful buildings from the period there.
I feel very lucky to have spent the last couple of years writing about such beautiful places and following in the footsteps of one of my favourite authors.
Shy, brilliant screenwriter and producer Adam Craig throws himself into work to forget his broken heart. And Jane Austin addict Kay Ashton purchases a B&B in the seaside town of Lyme so she’d have a peaceful place to finish her book, The Illustrated Mr. Darcy. Neither is looking for a romance. Until they meet-and Kay tries to set Adam up with another woman.
All the sparkling drama of Jane Austen’s Persuasion comes to life as old Lyme Regis becomes the site of the new big-screen adaptation of the classic. Kay attracts the attention of handsome actor Oli Wade Owen, Adam struggles to know the secrets of his own heart, and life in quiet Lyme gets very interesting indeed…
I have two copies to giveaway.
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Giveaway End February 8.
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