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Archive for the ‘200 years of Pride and Prejudice’ Category

Thank you to everyone who joined in last week’s Giveaway to win a copy of Pride and Prejudice illustrated with photos from  the Greer Garson/Lawrence Olivier film and a pack of my Christmas cards.

Congratulations!!! The winner is Janet T!

Can you please contact me here to claim your prize – Congratulations!!!!!

My blog tour for Project Darcy continues – if you missed the start of it, you can catch up here:

Wednesday, October 30th   – Wondrous Reads
Sunday, November 3rd – My Jane Austen Book Club
Tuesday, November 5th – Austenprose – OFFICIAL BOOK LAUNCH
Wednesday, November 6th –  Indie Jane
Thursday, November 7th – More Agreeably Engaged
Tuesday, November 12th Calico Critic
Wednesday, November 13th Meditating Mummy
Monday, November 18th Austen Authors
Monday, November 18th The Book Rat
Wednesday, November 20th Austenesque Reviews

It’s not too late to enter the GIVEAWAY for two lovely brooches (closing date Monday, 18th November) – click here to read more and also to win a vintage bag – click here to read more

Thank you, everyone, for making this such fun, and for all the lovely words of encouragement here and elsewhere – it truly means the world to me!
Tomorrow, I am a guest of Laura Hartness at Calico Critic – I hope you’ll join me for a chat and a giveaway of Project Darcy!

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I hope you’re enjoying my blog tour as much as I am! Today, I’m a guest on Indie Jane, talking about grandfather clocks, time, and Project Darcy – I hope you’ll join me.

Tomorrow, you’ll find me at More Agreeably Engaged with Janet Taylor!

STOP PRESS! I’ve just received a review from Kath Eastman – here it is in full at her blog – Nut Press – here’s a little of her review below – she’s made my day!

I pretty much read Project Darcy in one sitting. Even though I knew at least how Jane Austen’s own story would end, I loved spending time with Jane Odiwe’s imagining of her again in that period, as well as being anxious to see where the modern-day characters would be at the end of the book – and who with! This was a highly enjoyable read for me because it had a bit of everything: sumptuous period detail – I can imagine that Jane Odiwe had fun imagining the interiors of Ashe, both in Jane Austen’s time and in its more contemporary setting; seeing who the candidates for Jane Austen’s characters were from her own circle of acquaintances and their modern-day counterparts; a good sprinkling of romance and pairings, including a glimpse into one of Jane Austen’s own rumoured romances and the delicious puzzle of piecing all the connections together made Project Darcy for this reader.

Wednesday, November 6th –  Indie Jane
Thursday, November 7th – More Agreeably Engaged
Tuesday, November 12th Calico Critic
Wednesday, November 13th Meditating Mummy
Monday, November 18th Austen Authors
Monday, November 18th The Book Rat
Wednesday, November 20th Austenesque Reviews

Today’s treat inspired a little scene in Project Darcy – Ellie has a vintage bag similar to the one below – I’d imagined Ellie’s bag, but this one is similar in style, only with flowers and a short strap!
Ellie is getting ready for a party whilst she is staying near Steventon, at Ashe Rectory –

Half an hour later, Ellie was feeling refreshed for having had a scented soak in the bath. She’d washed her hair and was now standing in front of the wardrobe hanging her clothes, and trying to decide what she was going to wear for the party. It was still warm and light so she selected some cropped jeans and a short-sleeved cotton top, with a scoop neck and embroidered pin tucked front. The detail made it a little bit more special than the every day and to set it off, she picked a chunky necklace from her jewellery roll with turquoise stones and silver beads threaded on a long leather cord. Choosing a warm scarf in coral, scattered over with hummingbirds and edged in silk fringe in case it got cooler later on, Ellie then added a pair of canvas trainers to complete her outfit.
Jess knocked on the door. ‘I’ll just round up everyone else so I’ll see you downstairs in a minute!’

Ellie shouted back that she’d join them in a second and looked around for her bag. It was her favourite, an antique bag that had belonged to her great-grandmother. Made of black silk moiré, it was embellished with a bluebird and had a long silk strap.She’d left it on the chest of drawers in front of the window next to a blue and white jug and bowl. Dashing to fetch it, she was stopped in her tracks by the sense of something or someone moving outside in the garden below. 


If you’d like to own the little bag, please leave a comment below!

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It’s my Official Book Launch of Project Darcy tomorrow, November 5th, over at Laurel Ann Nattress’s blog Austenprose so please check back then to read an exclusive excerpt from Project Darcy, and to see what we have on offer in the way of prizes and treats. I do hope you’ll join me tomorrow for my very special day!
As you all know, Project Darcy is a novel inspired by Jane Austen’s wonderful book, Pride and Prejudice, and as this is a very special year, celebrating 200 years, I thought you might like to have a chance of owning a collector’s copy!
My first introduction to Jane Austen was through the film starring Greer Garson and Lawrence Olivier, many years ago, so I think it’s very fitting that this little illustrated movie book should be my first prize.


Pride and Prejudice
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.
   However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families that he is considered as the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters.
   “My dear Mr. Bennet,” said his lady to him one day, “have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?”
   Mr. Bennet replied that he had not.
   “But it is,” returned she; “for Mrs. Long has just been here, and she told me all about it.”
   Mr. Bennet made no answer.
   “Do not you want to know who has taken it?” cried his wife impatiently.
   “You want to tell me, and I have no objection to hearing it.”

Also on offer is one of my packs of six greetings cards, three of Steventon Rectory, three of Christmas at Steventon!

If you’d like to be in with a chance of winning this vintage book with a pack of Jane Austen Christmas cards, please leave a comment below. Names will be drawn from a hat – closing date for this competition is Sunday, 10th November – winner announced on Monday 11th November!
Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for more goodies here and on Austenprose!

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Project Darcy

I’m so excited to announce that next week sees the start of my blog tour and Book Launch for Project Darcy! I hope you’ll be able to join me here on my blog and also with all the wonderful bloggers who are generously hosting me.

There will be giveaways and treats on my blog, as well as those blogs listed below, so please keep checking back – after all, it’s 200 years of Pride and Prejudice, and I want to celebrate that, as well as my new book.

Here’s the list of lovely blogs I am visiting!

Wednesday, October 30th   – Wondrous Reads
Sunday, November 3rd – My Jane Austen Book Club
Tuesday, November 5th – AustenproseOFFICIAL BOOK LAUNCH
Wednesday, November 6th –  Indie Jane
Thursday, November 7th – More Agreeably Engaged
Tuesday, November 12th Calico Critic
Wednesday, November 13th Meditating Mummy
Monday, November 18th Austen Authors
Monday, November 18th The Book Rat
Wednesday, November 20th Austenesque Reviews

Jane Austen Prints

It is high summer when Ellie Bentley joins an archaeological dig at Jane Austen’s childhood home. She’s always had a talent for ‘seeing’ into the past and is not easily disturbed by her encounters with Mr Darcy’s ghost at the house where she’s staying. When Ellie travels into the past she discovers exactly what happened whilst Jane danced her way through the snowy winter of 1796 with her dashing Irish friend. As Steventon Rectory and all its characters come to life, Ellie discovers the true love story lost in Pride and Prejudice – a tale which has its own consequences for her future destiny, changing her life beyond imagination. 

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I’m very excited to announce that Project Darcy is now available on Kindle, here in the UK, the US, CanadaFrance, GermanyItaly  Brazil, Mexico, Spain, Japan, and India! The official launch is on November 5th and I’ve a blog tour coming up – so I hope you’ll join me for some fun blogs and prizes!

I’ve been having a lovely time on Pinterest putting together a mood board for Project Darcy. The book is a timeslip adventure for my heroine, Ellie, and she and her friends are lucky enough to stay in a very special house. I’ve had a wonderful time imagining what the house would look like inside, and Pinterest, I’ve discovered, is almost as good as having your own dolls’ house!

The house they’re staying in is Ashe House where Jane Austen’s friend Madame Lefroy lived. It’s a beautiful Georgian house and I had the excitement of imagining it in the past, 200 years ago, as well as the present.

I had a lovely time dreaming up bedrooms for the five girls – Ellie, Jess, Martha, Cara and Liberty. Ellie’s best friend is Jess, and she, of the five friends, is a Jane Austen fan.

So, I just pictured my idea of a bedroom I thought Jess would like – here’s a description – Jess’s bedroom with chalk pink walls boasted a French bed with buttoned silk upholstery and a chaise longue in one corner. On the walls was a collection of silhouettes of people from past times. The profiles of soldiers and debutantes looked across at one another from ebony frames ranged around the marble mantelpiece. It looked as if it had been designed with Jess in mind with its Regency furniture and vast portraits of ladies dressed in white muslin. 

Apart from the Georgian and Regency eras, I love Art Deco and so it was fun to imagine Ellie’s bedroom. Ellie is the main heroine of my novel – she is a painter and illustrator and I thought she’d like lots of paintings and visual stimuli:

Ellie’s room was perfection to her way of thinking; she loved anything vintage. In muted tones of Naples yellow in the patterned wallpaper and silvery grey satin falling to the floor in a cascade at the windows, the room was flooded in light. Sunbeams danced through the ancient embroidered lace like a bridal veil at a summer wedding, parted to give a stunning view over the beautiful garden. Touches of duck egg blue in the embroideries on the walls and in the milk glass vases on the mantelshelf were echoed in a shot of deeper blue silk in the dressing gown dangling from a padded hanger of cream silk. It looked like a film set left over from the 1930s and in contrast to Jess’s room, which was a Regency haven, Ellie couldn’t have wished for

anything more glamorous. A deco dressing table complete with a mirrored surface and a triptych looking glass was topped with a selection of exquisite objects – a porcelain tray and boxes for jewels, a Japanese fan, a silver hairbrush enamelled with blue as vivid as a butterfly’s wing, and a cloisonné vase filled with old-fashioned roses. The bed draped with grey satin and ivory lace was flanked either side with paintings typical of the era, watercolours of primroses or lilac in turquoise bowls, and a still life, of paper lanterns suspended from branches of white blossom, hung above the fireplace. She almost couldn’t wait to go to bed when she’d be able to sink into the pile of satin covered cushions on her bed, pull the quilted eiderdown up to her throat and admire all the treats before her.

If you haven’t tried Pinterest, I highly recommend it – though it is addictive!


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Reading Pride and Prejudice at the Jane Austen Festival

I’m at the Jane Austen Festival in Bath this week, and was very honoured to be part of the Pride and Prejudice reading that took place on Sunday.
The opening chapters were read by the wonderful actors, Adrian Lukis, who played Mr Wickham in the 1995 production of Pride and Prejudice, and Caroline Langrishe, the well-known actress of British stage and television.
I love reading aloud – it’s always been a pleasure of mine ever since I was a little girl, but I hadn’t really thought about what a huge challenge this was going to be until I actually sat down on the same row of chairs as these wonderful actors! I’m sure appearing on the same bill as Adrian Lukis, Caroline Langrishe and Maggie Ollerenshaw would be the dream of most would-be actors, and all of a sudden the enormity of the whole event struck hard! Anyone who really knows me will appreciate how nervous I felt – I really have to make myself volunteer for speaking events – I’d much rather hide in a corner, but I decided a while ago that I would try and embrace those things that frighten me. With a bottle of water secreted in my bag as defence against a dry mouth, I tried to tell myself it would all be okay.
Adrian Lukis was fantastic – his rendition of Mr and Mrs Bennet both funny and memorable, and then Caroline Langrishe followed on with equal brilliance. Their ability to capture the characters was spot-on, and the audience reacted accordingly, laughing out loud as they interpreted Jane Austen’s wonderful writing.
Also reading was the lovely Sophie who presented the last readathon at the centre, and an up and coming actor, Jack Collard who I’m sure will be playing Mr Darcy one day!

With Adrian Lukis and Caroline Langrishe

Waiting for my turn to read chapter five was agonising, and my knees were knocking together as I stood in front of the large crowd, but it was soon over – thank you, Jane Austen for writing short chapters – and I could return to my seat to wait for my turn again.

In the evening, we were treated to another fantastic performance from Adrian Lukis and Caroline Langrishe who performed a set of duologues – all the wonderful scenes from Jane Austen’s novels. They are both so generous with their time, and so charming – I was lucky enough to have my photo taken with them, and they signed autographs afterwards for all their fans!

 

Jack Collard

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I’m sorry I’ve been so quiet lately but I’ve been very busy writing a new book. I’ve hesitated to talk about it very much because I wasn’t sure whether I would be able to publish it this year, but things are looking hopeful! 
It’s another time-slip book, Project Darcy, which is inspired by Pride and Prejudice, and is to be published in the autumn.
Part of its inspiration comes from the Steventon archaeological dig that took place  some time ago, only the dig that takes place in my book is completely from my imagination, of course. It is high summer when my heroine Ellie joins the volunteers on the dig with some friends from university. She’s always had a bit of a talent for ‘seeing’ into the past and is not easily phased by the ‘shade’ she encounters at the house where the friends are staying. As Ellie travels into the past and sees life through the eyes of Jane Austen, she discovers exactly what happened when Jane danced at the Harwood’s Ball in the snowy winter of 1796 and finds how love inspired her to write Pride and Prejudice. As  Steventon Rectory and all its characters come to life, Ellie finds she has a heartbreaking decision. Should she stay in the past with Mr Darcy’s ghost or be brave about facing the present where both Pride and Prejudice might just influence her future destiny?

Because it’s the 200 year anniversary of Pride and Prejudice, I’ve been very lucky to be involved in some exciting events! I am particularly delighted to be invited to participate in a reading of Pride and Prejudice in Bath at the Jane Austen Festival, and to give talks on Pride and Prejudice and its influence in my own work at the Royal Automobile Club in Epsom, and the University of the Third Age in High Barnet. Here are more details:
 Sunday 15th September
 Jane Austen Festival 
Reading Pride & Prejudice the novel – Bath Central Library
Sunday 15th to Saturday 21st September 2013

Thursday 24th October

200 Years of Pride and Prejudice – Jane Odiwe talks about her love of Jane Austen’s most celebrated novel and its influence on her own writing and painting.
The Royal Automobile Club
Woodcote Park
Wilmerhatch Lane
Epsom
Surrey KT18 7EW
Telephone 01372 229230 Fascimile 0870 460 6934
http://www.royalautomobileclub.co.uk

5th December
Celebrating 200 Years of Pride and Prejudice with Jane Odiwe 
University of the Third Age, 
United Reformed Church, Wood Street,
High Barnet, Hertfordshire


I’d love to see you at any of the above events!

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