May 282018
 

Hello readers! Today I’m so excited to welcome two contributing authors of the recently published Austenistan anthology to Austenesque Reviews!!! For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, Austenistan is a collection of short stories written by various members of the Jane Austen Society of Pakistan (JASP) and edited by Laaleen Sukhera! The collection consists of seven stories inspired by Jane Austen and set in contemporary Pakistan. I don’t know about you, friends, but I think this sounds terrific and wonderfully unique! 🙂 I’m so thrilled to have contributing writer and editor, Laaleen Sukhera, and contributing writer, Saniyya Gauhar, stop by for a little tête-à-tête.

Welcome, ladies! How about we begin by talking about Jane Austen! When and where did you first discover Jane Austen? Did you fall in love with her novels right away?

Laaleen: I did, yes. I grew up surrounded by books and had an early affinity for classics. My English aunt gave me my first set of Austens on my twelfth birthday and the very first one I read was Pride and Prejudice. I remember being fixated by the banter between Lizzie, Darcy and Caroline Bingley at that scene at Netherfield—I didn’t actually find Darcy crush-worthy until Colin Firth later portrayed him. Other first impressions of her novels: getting amused by Sir Walter Elliot keenly reading Debrett’s Peerage, relating to Catherine Morland, finding Anne Elliot a little sad, comparing Fanny Price to Jane Eyre, and preferring Willoughby’s glamour to Colonel Brandon’s decency. But of course, I was a child myself then.

Saniyya: I first discovered Jane Austen when I was twelve years old – Pride & Prejudice was required reading for our class and I started reading it very reluctantly because I never enjoyed books that school made us read! However, I found myself reading beyond the chapters that the teacher set and I still remember how Darcy’s first proposal took me by complete surprise- I really wasn’t expecting it and my reaction was to put the book down, smile and go “Wow!” Continue reading »

Apr 272018
 

Hello dear readers, today Austenesque Reviews is paid a visit from a lovely new author, Leigh Dreyer, who just published (today!) her debut novel, The Best Laid Flight Plans – a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice! I’m so excited for this story as it combines Jane Austen with the US Air Force. 😉   Leigh has thoughtfully prepared a little Q&A to share with you today, which I hope you enjoy reading!  I hope you enjoy learning more about Leigh, her writing, and her debut release, The Best Laid Flight Plans!

1. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I work as a speech pathologist, currently in the Las Vegas area. I work both in person and doing teletherapy (which I absolutely love) from my home. I write while my kids take naps and during teletherapy breaks. I also have just been the lead in the musical Thoroughly Modern Millie. I have an incredible husband who is a pilot in the Air Force and two amazing kids. My son is three and my daughter is eighteen months. Both my husband and I are Air Force brats, both children of pilots which makes for fun family get togethers.

2. Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?

Elizabeth Bennet and “Fitz” William Darcy are well known to any regular JAFF readers, but in my novel it was fun to see them in the military, a culture with which I’m so familiar. When I’ve read Pride and Prejudice, I’ve often wondered what amazing things Elizabeth would do in a time where women could go and do anything a man could, and I loved seeing her go out and reach for her dreams. Continue reading »

Apr 042018
 

Hi friends!!  I’m so very excited to have the lovely Jenetta James visit my blog today to celebrate her new release, Lover’s Knot!  I absolutely adored The Elizabeth Papers which had a bit of an air of intrigue to it so I’m super excited to read her latest which introduces a mysterious death at Netherfield!!! I hope you enjoy this lovely Q&A Jenetta so kindly put together!

Firstly – thank you Meredith for having me to visit Austenesque Reviews for an interview. It is always an honour to feature on this splendid blog and I’m thrilled to be back here as part of the Lover’s Knot blog tour.

What is Lover’s Knot about?

Lover’s Knot is a murder mystery and variation story combined. It asks what would have happened to the love story in Pride & Prejudice if it was effectively interrupted by a murder at an important moment in the narrative. So, when Lizzy is staying at Netherfield to tend Jane, a crime is committed in the house and that changes everything. It sends our characters, and particularly Mr. Darcy on a new trajectory where love and truth are linked and to achieve personal happiness, he must put himself out for others and assume the role of sleuth. It is written in the first person present tense from the perspective of the man himself.

First person, present tense – what is that all about?

The whole story (apart from the postscript) is Mr Darcy in the present. The idea is that the reader lives the story through the lens of his experience and in the moment. I hoped to convey a sense of immediacy and closeness to him as a narrator. The idea with Lover’s Knot is that it is a mystery which Mr. Darcy has to work out – but it is also a journey on which he learns about himself, and of course his love for Elizabeth. So I hope that the way it is written helps to underline that. I’ll have to wait to see how successful readers believe it really is:-) Suddenly Mrs. Darcy is a first person story – but I have never written in the present tense before – and it was a bit of an experiment. Sustaining that was quite hard work and gave my poor editor lots to correct! Continue reading »