Tuesday, 18 October 2016

"The Many Lives Of Fitzwilliam Darcy" Blog Tour ~ Review & Giveaway!

Hello Fellow Readers!

Today I have the pleasure of reviewing  ‘The Many Lives of Fitzwilliam Darcy' By Beau North & Brooke West, Including a book Giveaway!
I would like to thank Claudine at Just Jane 1813, for her part in bringing this blog tour to fruition and to Beau and Brooke for writing such a fun read and giving readers the opportunity to win a copy. Plus links to 'The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy contest', with extra prizes to be won!

Synopsis ~
“He could no longer claim to be Fitzwilliam Darcy of Derbyshire, brother to Georgiana, master of Pemberley. In that moment, he was but a man. A man filled with more frustration than most souls could bear. A man torn asunder by his desperation, his fruitless dreams and desires.”

After Elizabeth Bennet rejects his marriage proposal, Fitzwilliam Darcy finds himself in the most unusual of circumstances. At first believing the extraordinary turn of events has granted him an inexplicable boon, he is eager to put the humiliating proposal behind him.

He soon discovers that he is trapped in the same waking dream with no end in sight and no possible escape. All that he holds dear—his name, his home, his love—remains ever out of reach. How will he find his way back to his normal life? Will one mistake haunt the rest of his days? It will take all of his fortitude to weather the storms of his strange new fate, and all of his courage to grasp the promise of his future.

Review ~
What a fun read! I cannot begin, to tell you how much I enjoyed this story.  The story begins at the Netherfield ball and swiftly follows Darcy from London to Kent, where the story becomes a ‘what if’. Although Pride & Prejudice fans will know the parts until the 'what if', the scenes and conversations until then, are different from canon, which is always better than a standard repeat. Most importantly, some of you will be pleased to hear, the book is written from Darcy’s perspective, so we get to follow him everywhere!!!.

By page four of my Kindle, I was already highlighting passages. The cattiness of Miss Bingley, the humour of the Colonel and the slow but gentle reminder that Mr Darcy, as much as we love him, is a snob, all had me laughing. At this point I had planned to put the book down and get on with my housework, as some of you know from experience, when you read a good JAFF there is no “putting the book down”. Justifying that I was a fast reader and needing some fresh air, I took my kindle outside saying to myself "I’ll just read one more chapter". Do I need to tell you, I finished the book in the garden? I thought not. Welcome to Groundhog day Mr Darcy style and not just any day, but the day after his disastrous proposal to Elizabeth, I guess Mr Darcy won’t be departing Kent as swiftly as he thought lol!

“Excellent! I shall join you if you want for company.” 
“On my account, I suppose?” Darcy asked with a lazy grin. 
Fitzwilliam dismissed him with a wave. “Oh come now, Darcy, you love paying my way. It keeps the distinction of rank preserved.” 
“From Her Ladyship’s lips to your ears it would seem,” Darcy said with a chuckle.  - B.North & B.West

I liked that Darcy was able to rationale, what was happening to him, was it real or not real? What could he alter or not alter, it all felt very believable, which is what you want with concepts such as these, you want the reader to buy into the impossible. I myself, was planning alongside Darcy as to what he could do to work this out and I loved that every part of the book was working towards, not just D&E having their HEA, but Anne, Jane, the Colonel and Bingley also. Ultimately though, it was the humour and wit, that stood out for me.
Watching someone going through the same day and what it could do to them had me laughing and crying, especially because it was Mr Darcy and the day after Huntsford. In particular, Darcy went through a school boy phase, being immature and playing pranks, which was hilarious at times. For example, Darcy hid Lady Catherine’s best silverware, sending the Butler a note.

“Mr. Turnbull read the note again: If you wish to give fools something to eat, you shall find your tools amongst treacherous sweet." - B.North & B.West

After reading this particular passage, I laughed; slowly letting it sink in,  I laughed some more, by the time I had grasped the full weight of what he had done, I was crying in hysterics. I literally, could not, stop laughing and I do believe the neighbours must have wondered, what I was laughing at so loudly, however the more I thought about how I would explain it to them the more I laughed. I mean really, if I told them what Darcy had done, do you think they would be in the same hysterics? I think not, but isn’t that the beauty of JAFF and the special connection Janeites have with it? We know the butlers going to be in a lot of trouble, the wrath of Lady Catherine, that Darcy would never deliberately make a member of staff suffer at his expense, it is so out of character, which is what makes it all the funnier.  As we imagine, the implacably dressed, stoic faced Mr Darcy, gathering all the silverware and sitting at a writing desk, looking every inch the Master of Pemberley, writing 'that note' to Lady Catherine’s butler. Indeed, I do not believe my neighbours would understand with as much insight, because let’s be honest you don’t bump into Janeites every day or lovers of JAFF for that matter, yet the exclusivity of it, is exciting, something to feel almost proud of, that you're part of something that other people know little about, like you’re in on the 'inside joke' or the greatest secret.

Great JAFF is written by true Janeites, not only do you feel connected with the story but with the authors' love of all things Austen, I felt the respect and admiration they had for Pride & Prejudice. I enjoyed, that the Colonel was central, as was Anne, the relationship between Darcy and his valet, Lady Catherine’s haughtiness, Mrs Gardiner, Jane and Charlotte! 
The way in which the Colonel could read Darcy, always good news for the reader, because we know Darcy won’t get away, without some kind of confession to the Colonel, even if he is not aware that he has made one lol! And I always enjoy the part of the story when Darcy is attending church in Kent, it’s funny that these scenes feel so familiar, yet they are not in canon. As JAFF has evolved, new scenes have emerged that we are all so familiar with, that they feel like they were, in canon. I enjoyed that Elizabeth’s reactions were realistic and I thought the authors got that spot on, especially considering Darcy knew it was the same day over and Elizabeth did not. At times,  I do believe Darcy took risks, considering the day may not have reset, however taking into account how long it went on, I even believed, that it may never end!

"Peace, Sister. What has that poor instrument ever done to deserve such treatment?”
Georgiana looked up at him, her mouth compressed in a grim line. “I must prepare myself for battle,” she said, her fingers not pausing for an instant.
“Battle? Who do you imagine would be so foolish to attack you in your own home?”
“It is not...Oh, Will.” She threw her hands up, the sound of the keys still lightly vibrating in the air. “Miss Bingley and Mrs. Hurst. I have never found their company to be congenial.” ~ B.North & B.West

 I could not have asked for a better ending, I enjoyed every minute of it! High praise you say, indeed it is, yet, it cannot be helped, I love JA and JAFF, but only if it is good, therefore from one JAFF lover to another I recommend that you read this book and for those of you new to JA or JAFF, it’s an opportunity to see the wonderful talent that JA has inspired in so many people. If you want a story that will have you laughing and captivated, then you can’t go wrong with 

                                          The Many Lives Of Fitzwilliam  Darcy !

This book is worthy of 5 hearts ~ Mr Darcy!

The Many Lives Of Fitzwilliam  Darcy Giveaway!
Beau and Brooke are giving away 8 copies of their book, which includes 4 ebooks and 4 paperback copies. To win a paperback copy, the winners must have a U.S. mailing address. 

Please enter using the Rafflecopter link below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy” Giveaway Contest

            Richard Maddon                                              Matt Bomer                                              Eduardo Verastegui

To vote for your favorite image of Fitzwilliam Darcy from the images shown above, go to The Many Faces of Fitzwilliam Darcy Contest LinkThe winning image and the winner will be announced on October 20, 2016, at our last blog stop, So Little Time… So Much to Read.

Blog Tour Schedule 
October 8/ My Jane Austen Book Club/Launch Post & Giveaway
October 9/ Just Jane 1813/Interview with Beau and Brooke
October 10/ Pemberley to Milton/Book Review & Giveaway
October 12/ Austenesque Reviews/ Excerpt & Giveaway
October 13/ Margie's Must Reads/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 14/ Babblings of a Bookworm/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 15/ The Calico Critic/Excerpt & Giveaway
October 16/ Obsessed with Mr. Darcy/ Guest Post
October 17/ Diary of an Eccentric/Book Review & Giveaway
October 18/ My Kids Led Me Back to Pride and Prejudice/ Book Review & Giveaway
October 19/ More Agreeably Engaged/ Fitzwilliam Vignette
October 20/ So Little Time... So Much to Read/ Excerpt & Giveaway

Beau North
Beau North is the author of Longbourn’s Songbird and a contributor to the anthology Then Comes Winter. Beau is a native southerner who now calls Portland, Oregon home with her husband and two cats. She attended the University of South Carolina where she began a lifelong obsession with Literature. In her spare time, Beau is the brains behind Rhymes With Nerdy, a pop culture podcast and website, and a contributor at the San Francisco Book Review. 

Twitter: @BeauNorth
Blog: beaunorthwrites.com (coming soon)

Brooke West
 Brooke West is a contributing author to the anthology Then Comes Winter. Brooke has a naturally creative soul that pulls her into myriad artistic endeavors.  While writing fiction always has been her life's passion, Brooke also finds joy in silversmithing, sculpting, and costuming. Between projects, she runs and practices yoga.  She lives in South Carolina with her fiancĂ©, son, and three cats. 

Facebook:  Brooke West
  @WordyWest and @BrookeWest

I was given an ARC for my honest opinion.