Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Blog Tour + Giveaway: Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen by Sally Smith O'Rourke

Yours Affectionately tour

Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen

Was Mr. Darcy real? Is time travel really possible? For pragmatic Manhattan artist Eliza Knight the answer to both questions is absolutely, Yes! And Fitzwilliam Darcy of Pemberley Farms, Virginia is the reason why!
His tale of love and romance in Regency England leaves Eliza in no doubt that Fitz Darcy is the embodiment of Jane Austen’s legendary hero. And she’s falling in love with him. But can the man who loved the inimitable Jane Austen ever love average, ordinary Eliza Knight?
Eliza’s doubts grow, perhaps out of proportion, when things start to happen in the quiet hamlet of Chawton, England; events that could change everything. Will the beloved author become the wedge that divides Fitz and Eliza or the tie that binds them?

My Thoughts: This was a charming story about Jane Eyre and the possibility that Mr. Darcy existed. Turned out that this was a sequel but Sally Smith O'Rourke did a decent job in summarizing what happened in the first book, though I think I would have gotten more out of it if I have read the first book. But as a stand-alone, it was a pretty good.

I found the story to be interesting. I liked the idea that a modern day Mr. Darcy went back in time and got to meet Jane Austen. I also enjoyed the fact that the outcomes between these two characters was more realistic than a hopeful "what if". I did wished though I got to read more between them instead of how Jane lived and how Mr. Darcy tried to move on with his life with a woman named Eliza.

This story was simple and informative about regency era. There was not much action nor major issues to solve in the story. Fitz Darcy just had to concern himself to prove his love for Eliza. Also, a lot of the story dealt with describing how Jane's life was. I got to learn more about women's lives back then.

However, there were a few quirks for me that had me lower my rating. First, I did not like Eliza's character. She was jealous and cynical when it came to love. I found her constant worry about Darcy's love for her and her jealousy towards his affection to Jane to be tiresome. Next, the encounter between Eliza and Jane did not appear to be realistic. I just saw it as a way to give Mr. Darcy the go-ahead to be with Eliza. Last, I felt that the story was too simple for my taste. I did admire though what O'Rourke do to explain the reason behind Jane's Mr. Darcy.

Overall, this was a decent book. It would have been better if I read the first book but I still recommend this to others who are fans of Jane Austen. I give it:

Praise for Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen
O’Rourke creates a world that defies cynicism and demands suspension of disbelief – even in this age of doubt and hyper-realism. Sheer escapism at its best. Clever, charming and affectionate. ~Jocelyn Bury …the reader must tenaciously read on rather than put the book down to satisfy their hunger for the story to resolve, which it does in characteristically Jane Austen fashion. ~Erin Murdock
In Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen, author Sally Smith O’Rourke creates a compelling story that investigates what and who might have inspired Jane Austen. While the story line is certainly far-fetched, it is a truly unique idea, one that captivated this reader until the very last page. ~Meg Massey
Audio Book Excerpt

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Author Sally Smith O'Rourke Sally Smith O’Rourke is a surgical scrub nurse at the City of Hope national cancer research hospital in Duarte, California and resides in the near-by Victorian village of Monrovia. With her late husband, author Michael O’Rourke (aka F.M. O’Rourke) Smith O’Rourke owned and operated a medical advertising company where she used her diverse talents to produce and co-write teaching films and videos. Working not only with major medical and surgical manufacturing companies but also network television. These endeavors ultimately led to a collaboration on two feature films (direct to video) and three published novels. The wife and husband writing team of Sally Smith and Michael O’Rourke, being long-time fans of Jane Austen, wrote The Man Who Loved Jane Austen released by Kensington Books in 2006. Kensington followed that very successful effort with The Maidenstone Lighthouse in 2007 and Christmas at Sea Pines Cottage in 2009, both also collaborative projects by Smith and O’Rourke. Published after her partner and spouse’s untimely death in 2001, the publisher chose not to use the names Michael O’Rourke and Sally Smith (as the manuscripts were presented), releasing all three books under Sally Smith O’Rourke. Yours Affectionately, Jane Austen is Sally Smith O’Rourke’s first solo novel.
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Ends 6/27/13
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