Undressing Mr. Darcy! Karen Doornebos shows you how…

Next week it’s all Austen all the time here at the Riskies as we celebrate Jane’s birthday (December 16) so we have a special guest to get you in the mood. We invited Karen Doornebos to talk about her release UNDRESSING MR. DARCY.
WP_000070As an ice-breaker to each leg of my Blog Tour for UNDRESSING MR. DARCY, I’m taking you along for a ride to England, where I traveled during the summer of 2012 to do some research for the book.

cocktavernWhere am I on this stop? Today I’m providing you a smattering of some of my London shots that inspired, but didn’t make it directly into the book. Since I’m visiting Risky Regencies here, I thought you’d enjoy the pub sign for Ye Olde Cock Tavern, for obvious, middle-grade humorous reasons! WP_000044I went into Fortnum & Mason, but my heroine’s friend Sherry, didn’t, and bemoaned the fact that my heroine wouldn’t let her! She certainly missed out.

9780425261392_UndressingMr_CV.inddHe’s an old-fashioned, hardcover book reader who writes in quill pen and hails from England. She’s an American social media addict. Can he find his way to her heart without so much as a GPS?

You can read the first chapter here!

Buy now at Berkley PenguinIndiebound - AmazonB&NKobo BAMiTunes

I’d like to thank you, Janet, for having me back at Risky Regencies!

I learned from your bio that you used to work in advertising, and I’m wondering whether that inspired your heroine Vanessa Roberts. Do you identify with her?

Vanessa works in PR, that infinitely more glamorous cousin of advertising. PR girls get to go to all the galas, fundraisers and schmooze the media with wining and dining. But yes, working in the ad world did in part inspire Vanessa’s character. In the worlds of both advertising and PR, everything is very fleeting, deadlines are looming multiple times per day, and you’re always busy. Too busy. Work doesn’t stay in nice tidy boundaries, but overflows into nights and weekends. Since Vanessa is an * older * heroine at thirty-five, it made sense that her busy-ness would have distracted her from falling in love and settling down. I identify with Vanessa career-wise, but I happened to have gotten married at age twenty-six and had two kids by the time I was her age of thirty-five!

One thing I loved about the book was watching Vanessa become a Jane Austen fan. What was your Jane Austen journey?

Thank you, Janet, I’m so glad you enjoyed her coming around to the Jane side! Here was my journey: read about Mr. Darcy at age sixteen; smitten for life. Seriously, though, my journey to appreciating Austen was much more typical than Vanessa’s. P&P was assigned in high school, and I have to say, I really did fall for Darcy within Austen’s first few lines about him, but of course, she deliberately hooked us all. I became an English major, read more of Austen, but I have to say I didn’t come out of the Austen closet until the 1995 version of P&P and then the Emma Thompson and Hugh Grant version of Sense & Sensibility. I discovered Republic of Pemberley online and had already, by 1997, had the beginnings of my first book, DEFINITELY NOT MR. DARCY, written. By 2008 I had joined the Jane Austen Society of North America…and felt like I had found my tribe!

You include real places and real people, including events and speakers at JASNA (Jane Austen Society of North America) conferences. What’s your best JASNA experience?

I have to say my best JASNA experience happened to be my first in 2008, but they have all been great, really. The first conference I attended was in Chicago, my hometown, and I presented a larger than life academic poster called How Not to Write a Jane-Austen Inspired Novel that you can see on my website here. But that wasn’t even the best part. The best part happened to be joining in on the Regency promenade and then, without any lessons, getting pulled onto the ballroom dance floor. Janeites are all very friendly!

On your research trip last year did you learn anything about London that surprised you?

I learned that London is still one of my top three places in the world. I didn’t really know that until I went back. What surprised me was that I promised myself another return trip very soon because I didn’t get to do everything I wanted—restored Globe Theatre, anybody?! I also wanted to try and find Benedict Cumberbatch.

(Hmmm. She’s not telling us whether she did or not!) Who is your dreamteam cast for the movie version of the book?

I’ll be dating my * old * self here, but I always saw Julia Roberts as Vanessa…hence the name Roberts. She’s a little too old to be playing a thirty-five year old, though. I could see Henry Cavill as Julian, although he needs to be a little older! Hugh Grant would be wonderful if he were a little younger. Johnny Depp could still play Chase!!!

What do you think is the enduring appeal of Mr. Darcy and P&P?

Janet, I wrote an entire essay on that subject for the January 2012 issue of Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine. It boiled down to the vast size of Mr. Darcy’s…library! Seriously, though, Darcy is an avid reader, with a large and growing library. As I say in UNDRESSING MR. DARCY, he’s the smart girl’s pin-up boy. How clever of Austen to snare her female readers with a man who values reading! Nothing better than the image of a gorgeous specimen of a man reading a book on the settee!

What are you working on next?

Laundry. Frantically getting ready for Christmas! Really, I have to say that once again I have too many ideas for my next project. I need to get serious about which one is worthy. Not sure yet. They’re duking it out in my head.

WIN!

Risky Regency readers, comment below for your chance to win one of TWO copies of UNDRESSING MR. DARCY. What do you think makes Darcy so enduring and…sexy?

To increase your chances of winning you can share this post on your Facebook page or Twitter via our nifty Rafflecopter widget and enhance your social media pleasure by following Risky Regencies, Karen, and Janet on Facebook or Twitter. Contest limited to US entrants only.

Mr. Darcy’s Stripping Off…

grandprizeHis other stocking. At each blog stop Mr. Darcy will strip off a piece of clothing. Keep track of each item in chronological order and at then end of the tour you can enter to win a GRAND PRIZE of the book, “DO NOT DISTURB I’m Undressing Mr. Darcy” door hangers for you and your friends, tea, and a bottle of wine (assuming I can legally ship it to your state). US entries only, please.

KAREN BathminiKaren Doornebos is the author of UNDRESSING MR. DARCY published by Berkley, Penguin and available here or at your favorite bookstore. Her first novel, DEFINITELY NOT MR. DARCY, has been published in three countries and was granted a starred review by Publisher’s Weekly. Karen lived and worked in London for a short time, but is now happy just being a lifelong member of the Jane Austen Society of North America and living in the Chicagoland area with her husband, two teenagers and various pets—including a bird. Speaking of birds, follow her on Twitter and Facebook! She hopes to see you there, on her website www.karendoornebos.com and her group blog Austen Authors. You can also check out the other stops on her Blog Tour.

WIN!

Risky Regency readers, comment below for your chance to win one of TWO copies of UNDRESSING MR. DARCY…

What do you think makes Darcy so enduring and…sexy?

To increase your chances of winning you can share this post on your Facebook page or Twitter via our nifty Rafflecopter widget below! You can also increase your odds by following Karen and Janet on Twitter or Facebook, or, if you’re not already, following Risky Regencies on Facebook. Contest limited to US entrants only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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15 Responses to Undressing Mr. Darcy! Karen Doornebos shows you how…

  1. Kirsten says:

    What I find SO incredibely appealing about Fitz, is that he goes above and beyond to ensure Lizzies happiness. Something that is hard to forget!! A man who does everything humanly possible for love, *sigh*.

    He also humiliates himself for her sake, by sorting out the situation of her sister/Wickham. All the while not being sure of her affection or attachment to him. Melts my heart and that of many other ladies I’m sure :)

    I’m non US but desperate to read this one Karen!! Does that mean there is no hope, or is the book only giveaway not restricted? In the first case, don’t count me in…

    • Kirsten, very thoughtful reply, thank you! Yes, the humiliation is what really endears us!

      I wish I could open this contest up to international, but I’m not mailing the books from my home, they are coming from my publisher, so I have certain rules I have to follow, so sorry! I certainly hope you’ll consider ordering regardless :) If you join my fb & twitter & I’ll run an international contest on my social media sometime in 2014!

  2. Kerri says:

    A man who can ADMIT he is wrong is a RARE TREASURE; that he then alters his behavior to make amends?!? Bring on the smelling salts!

  3. Given the terrible thing Helen Fielding did recently to her Mr. Darcy, maybe your next book should have a pathologist heroine and the title should be “Dissecting…”
    But I digress! Great to have you here, Karen.
    I have to admit I have reservations about Darcy who is not my favorite Austen hero (let’s hear it for Henry Tilney!). I think he’d be hard work, but maybe that would be compensated by his huge tracts of land.

    • Janet, I adore Henry Tilney too! Enough room in my heart for the pantheon of Austen heroes! I agree that Darcy would need some work, but I’m inclined to agree that by the end of the novel he is transformed!

  4. Kim V says:

    I plan on reading this because I just think it sounds fantastic!
    Just one question. Is Mr. Darcy wearing three stockings? I have been following Mr. Darcy’s strip tease and I thought he took off his stockings at the Brant Flakes and Skipping Midnight stops.

  5. Dee says:

    I’m so excited you have a new novel out. I loved your first book.

    As for Darcy, I agree – a man willing to change and who puts others’ needs ahead of his own. That’s a winner. Still, as romantic a hero as Darcy is, I like Wentworth best. Fallible, steadfast, imperfect, and self-made – he’s more approachable and human than Darcy. Or maybe my faults wouldn’t show up so badly next to his. I wouldn’t want to take on the responsibility and position that Elizabeth does.
    This title is belatedly going on my Christmas list.

    • Dee, your comments are very thoughtful & I agree, being Mistress of Pemberley would be a daunting task. Wentworth is fantastic & I really liked Ciaran Hinds ;)

      Thank you for the compliment on DNMD!

  6. Her Grace says:

    I love how he lets down his walls. That’s what endears him to me–his taking a chance, taking a risk for love. He doesn’t consciously realise that love is what he wants the most, but he is listening to his gut and going for it.

    I’m Aussie, but I have a US shipping address. Makes life convenient from time to time.

  7. bn100 says:

    The premise sounds interesting
    Because of what he does for Elizabeth

  8. I think it is the idea of him putting on all of his armor to keep himself safe. He knows women are attracted to his money, his estate, his position in the world. And the number of people who treat him as more than all of these things are few – his sister, Bingley. He’s lost his parents. He nearly failed as Georgianna’s protector. He’s sure of so many things and completely unsure of others. It is endearing to watch him open himself up to Lizzie to the point he will slay dragons for her with no idea of ever winning her regard.

  9. Pingback: Celebrating Jane Austen’s Birthday! ~ Blog Tour & Giveaway: Undressing Mr. Darcy, with Karen Doornebos. | Jane Austen in Vermont

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