Hello readers! I am so very excited to welcome back author, Jan Hahn to Austenesque Reviews! If you aren’t familiar with Jan Hahn‘s work, I entreat you to rectify that immediately! She writes some brilliant and inventive Pride and Prejudice variations (The Journey and A Peculiar Connection are my particular favorites so far!) At the moment she is celebrating her newest release (one that I understand has been a fan favorite for years!!!) – The Child. In this tale it looks like Darcy something very dramatic after Elizabeth’s refusal in Kent, I can’t wait to learn more about what happens between these two!!
Thank you so much, Meredith, for hosting me on your blog today. I’ve loved your posts for so long. Checking in with you several times a week is an absolute must at my house!
Many authors, myself included, will tell you of a strange phenomenon that often takes place while creating a story. A plot may be carefully organized in the writer’s mind when suddenly the characters seem to develop a mind of their own. Not only will they say and do things unintended by the author, but at times they even strike out on a different path than originally planned. It’s like following Alice down the rabbit hole.
When I began The Child, I thought I was writing a sympathetic tale of a misunderstood man. Darcy has always wanted to do the right thing. When he proposed to Elizabeth at Hunsford in Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, he did not intend to insult her. Despite her family and relations, Darcy thought he was fulfilling Elizabeth’s dreams, but instead he almost ruined any chance of making her his wife. Thank goodness, he knew how to write a letter or Austen wouldn’t have had a happy ending.
I do not remember when, but not long after I began writing The Child, Darcy broke free from my control and took on a life of his own. I’ve often wished I could ask him why, along with a few other questions. The following is an interview with Darcy I’ve wanted to conduct.
HAHN: Mr. Darcy, thank you for agreeing to meet with me.
DARCY: Did I have a choice?
HAHN: Not really, but shall we make the best of it? In the beginning of The Child, I aimed for your conduct toward Fan―the little girl who is the subject of the book―to be kind and caring. Instead, you seemed rather brusque, to say the least. Why didn’t you perform as I planned? Can you shed some light on your motivations?
DARCY: I do not perform. And, if you did not intend me to react as I did, why must you make the child the natural daughter of my sworn enemy?
HAHN: Well, you know how it is. Things happen.
DARCY: Oh, yes, I know how it is. He makes a colossal mess of things, and you bring me in to clean up. Darcy to the rescue! Typical!
HAHN: Do I detect a hint of resentment, sir?
DARCY: (raises an eyebrow) You have all the skills of a second-rate detective, madam.
HAHN: Let’s return to the subject. Don’t you like children? Might you have a possible character defect?
DARCY: I do not have a character defect! Austen says I have a shade in my character, but I would not describe it as a defect. I simply have not had a lot of experience with children. Men of my class living in my era are consumed with running their estates, maintaining their social status, and finding a suitable wife. They do not spend their days in the nursery. Young children are better left to the care of women, hopefully well-trained nurses and governesses.
HAHN: Speaking of such, why did you find it necessary to hire a professional baby nurse to care for young Fan when Elizabeth preferred Maggie, the young girl who had tended the child since shortly after her birth?
DARCY: Have you seen that girl? She is totally incompetent! More than once, she allowed the child to escape her notice and wreak havoc at my house in Town. And do not get me started on what transpired at Netherfield Park.
HAHN: As I recall, young Fan acted like a typical two-year-old.
DARCY: And that was your doing, madam. You accuse me of striking out on my own when you created the problem. Why did you place a willful, disobedient child in my house? Shall we discuss your motivations?
HAHN: I’d rather return to my interview of you, sir, not the other way around. Although readers may find you harsh toward the child in the beginning, do you truly dislike little Fan?
DARCY: Of course not! I am not a fiend. She is an adorable little thing―pretty, winsome, and unusually intelligent―but, she needs guidance and training.
HAHN: So, you believe children should be trained.
DARCY: I do.
HAHN: And what about Elizabeth?
DARCY: (frowns) She needs no training. Elizabeth is perfect.
HAHN: Uh…that’s not what I meant. But, since you’re hijacking this interview, let’s proceed down that path. Tell me, Mr. Darcy, what is it about Elizabeth that attracts you?
DARCY: Is that any of your business?
HAHN: It is, sir. I’m the author. I need to know how you feel about Elizabeth.
DARCY: You and every other author who writes stories about us think you know exactly how I feel. You fill pages and pages and pages with detailed descriptions of my feelings for her.
HAHN: And are we correct, sir?
DARCY: (clears his throat) No.
HAHN: We’re not?
DARCY: (his voice deepens) Not one of you can even begin to describe how I love Elizabeth.
HAHN: (begins to fan herself) Oh-h-h my! Would…would you like to enlighten us, sir?
DARCY: I would not. Elizabeth knows how I feel, and she is the only one who should.
HAHN: (leaning forward, mouth agape) Oh, please, sir, I want some more. Will you not share one small sliver of your longing for her?
DARCY: You, madam, are pitiful.
HAHN: (recovers) I…I know, sir. Forgive me. Shall we end this interview with assuring readers of The Child that, although you may begin the book sounding like a jerk, in essentials, you truly are the Darcy we all know and love?
DARCY: What is a jerk?
HAHN: It’s a…oh, never mind. Thank you for your time, sir. (exits hastily)
I cannot wait to read this long-anticipated release for myself, especially after this interview! I love seeing Mr. Darcy interact with a child, even if it is something with which he isn’t comfortable! Thank you so much for attempting this interview with Mr. Darcy, Jan! It is evident that he has not been the easiest to work with, but I loved this added insight into his feelings and thoughts! 😉
Connect with Jan
Meryton Press is generously giving away 8 ebook editions of The Child in conjunction with this blog tour!! Woot woot!
Commenting on this post and filling out the rafflecopter widget on this blog enters you in a chance to win!
- This giveaway is open worldwide. Thank you, Meryton Press!
- This giveaway ends April 4th!
~ The Child Blog Tour ~
Thank you to Claudine Pepe, Meryton Press, and Jan Hahn for making this blog tour possible! To check out the rest of the tour, click the links below!
March 21 ~ My Jane Austen Book Club ~ Guest Post & Giveaway
March 22 ~ From Pemberley to Milton ~ Book Review & Giveaway
March 23 ~ More Agreeably Engaged ~ Excerpt Post & Giveaway
March 24 ~ My Vices and Weaknesses ~ Book Review & Giveaway
March 25 ~ My Love for Jane Austen ~ Vignette & Giveaway
March 26 ~ Of Pens and Pages ~ Book Review & Giveaway
March 27 ~ Just Jane 1813 ~ Author Interview & Giveaway
**March 28 ~ Austenesque Reviews ~ Character Interview & Giveaway**
March 29 ~ So Little Time ~ Guest Post & Giveaway
March 30 ~ Diary of an Eccentric ~ Excerpt Post & Giveaway
March 31 ~ Babblings of a Bookworm ~ Book Review & Giveaway
April 1 ~ Margie’s Must Reads ~ Book Review & Giveaway
April 2 ~ Laughing with Lizzie ~ Vignette Post & Giveaway