Tag Archives: Austen

Review: Colonel Fitzwilliam and The Countess of Sainte Toulours

I received an advanced review copy of this title from the author.

My Review:
Colonel Fitzwilliam and the Countess of Sainte Toulours - Stanley Michael HurdHistorical fiction, mystery, espionage and romance are all part of Stanley Hurd’s new novel that centers around the character of Colonel Fitzwilliam.  Hurd takes Austen’s beloved character from Pride and Prejudice and creates a story just for the Colonel.  When the story opens Fitzwilliam is working in the War Department trying to figure out Napoleon’s next move.  A peace has been declared and French ports are starting to open back up to British trade, but no one in the British government trusts Boney to keep his word.  So the government decides to send Fitzwilliam undercover as a spy to see whether or not Napoleon is sincere about peace or if he is using this time to build more ships and gear up for war.

Before he is shipped off to France for his mission, Fitzwilliam is invited to his cousin Darcy’s house for a social dinner.  At this gathering he meets a lovely young woman named Emily for whom he instantly develops romantic feelings.  Love and romance spring up very quickly between Fitzwilliam and Emily and just as they are getting to know each other Fitzwilliam has to go off on his spy mission in France.  One of the best aspects of the writing of this book are the heartfelt letters that Fitzwilliam sends to Emily.  Since their acquaintance is new he doesn’t want to be overbearing or inappropriate towards her; his letters contain just the perfect amount of amorous sentiments and a description of his time spent spying on the French.

While he is in France, Fitzwilliam meets up with his spying partner, a feisty and charismatic man named Esparaza.  The situation gets especially interesting when they rescue an upper class French woman who claims she is a Countess.  They bring the Countess back to England where she reveals to them that the French have captured her mother and are holding her ransom until the Countess provides them intelligence about the English war plans.  Fitzwilliam and Esparaza have quite a mission on their hands at this point; they need to somehow rescue the Countess’ mother from a French jail and keep her safe from French spies watching her in England.

The entire novel comes to a rather exciting and unexpected conclusion.  A duel, a stint in a French prison and a rescue all play a part in Fitzwilliam’s adventure.  I like the fact that Hurd is not trying to change or rewrite the Colonel’s story as it is handed down to us by Austen.  He gives us a truly unique and exciting story that is in line with Austen’s original character.

About The Author:
HurdStan Hurd is a Ph.D. neurochemist who currently occupies himself writing, teaching fencing and Karate, and polishing samurai sword blades. He was introduced to Jane Austen’s works late in life, but became immediately captivated by the unlabored beauty of her prose. Having read one of the many adaptations written to extend the story of “Pride and Prejudice”, while he was delighted to be back in that world, he found the exclusively female perspective of the author was at times intrusive; since he could not let himself complain if he did not attempt it himself, he set out to write “Darcy’s Tale”.

Many of his friends are amazed that he should be writing a Regency romance; he takes a particular delight in that fact.

 

Giveaway:
The author is generously giving away two e-book copies of his novel.  This giveaway is open internationally as long as you can accept a Mobi version of the book for Kindle.  Just leave a comment letting me know you want to win.  I will pick a winner on Friday.

6 Comments

Filed under Historical Fiction

Giveaway: Austen in August-Pride and Prejudice Novel Journal

I received a box of beautiful and unique books and journals from Thunder Bay Press. Their selection of journals and classic books make great gifts for those who love literature, writing and journaling. For the Austen in August event hosted by Adam at  Roof Beam Reader I am giving away one Pride and Prejudice novel journal (US only).

Novel Journals:

Novel JournalAs a blogger I am always looking for journals in which to scribble my thoughts about books. I have a scattered collection of notebooks and I was thrilled to receive the journals from Thunder Bay Press so I could better organize my reviews. The sturdy, heat burnished covers ensure that the pages are not easily ripped and if I spill a beverage on the journal then the paper is still protected.

The durable nature of these journals, however, is not their most notable feature. Each journal contains the lines of a famous novel in tiny print. The lines of print serve as the lines one which to write in the journal. This would make a fabulous gift for anyone who likes to write and appreciates classic literature. Thunder Bay Press has a large collection of novel journals which include Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Great Expectations and TheJournal Text Adventures Huckleberry Finn. To see a complete list of journals that are available please visit this link: http://blog.thunderbaybooks.com/2015/03/novel-journals/

 

Giveaway:

I am giving away one Pride and Prejudice novel journal, just like the one pictured above. It contains the lines of Austen’s famous novel in small print.  To enter:

  •  Leave a comment below and tell me what your favorite Austen novel is.
  • You must also be signed up for the Austen in August event on Roof Beam Reader.
  • The giveaway runs from August 5th through August 12th.
  • I will choose one random winner who will be notified via e-mail.
  • The winner will have 48 hours to respond with a valid U.S. mailing address.
  • Open to U.S. residents only

24 Comments

Filed under British Literature, Classics, Favorites, Giveaways

Review: Novel Journals and Word Cloud Classics from Thunder Bay Press

I received a box of beautiful and unique books and journals from Thunder Bay Press.  Their selection of journals and classic books make great gifts for those who love literature, writing and journaling.

Novel Journals:

Novel JournalAs a blogger I am always looking for journals in which to scribble my thoughts about books.  I have a scattered collection of notebooks and I was thrilled to receive the journals from Thunder Bay Press so I could better organize my reviews.  The sturdy, heat burnished covers ensure that the pages are not easily ripped and if I spill a beverage on the journal then the paper is still protected.

The durable nature of these journals, however, is not their most notable feature.  Each journal contains the lines of a famous novel in tiny print.  The lines of print serve as the lines one which to write in the journal.  This would make a fabulous gift for anyone who likes to write and appreciates classic literature.  Thunder Bay Press has a large collection of novel journals which include Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Great Expectations and TheJournal Text Adventures Huckleberry Finn.  To see a complete list of journals that are available please visit this link:  http://blog.thunderbaybooks.com/2015/03/novel-journals/

Word Cloud Classics:

Word Cloud ClassicsFor those of you familiar with my blog and my reading habits, 19th century British authors including Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte are among my all-time favorites.  I fell in love with these authors when they were introduced to me in high school and I have read their books countless times over the years.  My own paperback copies of these books are tattered and well-worn.  But Thunder Bay Press has sent me new copies of Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre from their classics collection.  The unique feature of these books is their durability; each book contains a heat burnished and foil stamped cover with a word cloud taken from the pages of the book.  The copies of these books will last much longer than my old paperbacks and I delighted that they will last long enough for me to pass them along to my daughter.

To see a complete list of the Word Cloud Classics that are available please visit this link: Word Cloud Classics P and Phttp://blog.thunderbaybooks.com/2012/09/word-cloud-classics/

So, what are your favorite literary gifts to give the reader(s) in your life?  I would love to have more suggestions from other readers!

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Filed under Classics