Hello Lovely Readers! Today I'm delighted to have Jeanna Ellsworth visiting here on So little time...! She brings with her an excerpt of her new book, To Refine Like Silver, and a very lovely giveaway!!
Thank you Candy for having me on your blog! It has been fun to bounce from blog to blog giving excerpt and interviews. It is all so exciting to hear what people think of the book. Here is the back cover intrigue to give you an idea of what the book is about.
If Mr. Darcy had met Elizabeth Bennet in his beloved Derbyshire, would he have recognized her as the love of his life instead of dismissing her as someone “not handsome enough to tempt” him? This alteration of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice adds a little spirit, flirtation, and charm to everyone’s favorite characters.
Early in the summer of 1811, Elizabeth Bennet travels to Derbyshire to help her aunt and uncle settle in as new owners of Saphrinbrooke. Elizabeth is soon introduced to the estate’s nearest neighbors: Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and his sister, Georgiana, who is suffering the results of a fateful trip to Ramsgate. Having endured several life tragedies herself, Elizabeth reaches out to the young lady of Pemberley. Under her radiant influence, both Darcy and Georgiana begin to look for help outside of themselves.
To Refine Like Silver is a romantic and spiritual journey where more than one of our favorite Regency characters must learn to fully rely on God. Their trials bring depth to the beloved story, and Mr. Darcy ultimately learns that our trials do not define us; rather they refine us.
So are you ready for an excerpt? I chose one from chapter 2, which is the morning after Darcy and Georgiana had dinner at the Gardiner’s estate. Georgiana is in the black abyss called depression. She could not even be considered functional at his point in the book and has not played the piano for three months. Darcy just received information that Elizabeth and Mrs. Gardiner will be coming to Pemberley the next day, and in the note, was a letter for Georgiana from Elizabeth who had recognized the deep sadness in Georgiana’s eyes from the night before.
Georgiana watched as William stood and left the room. Her chin dropped to her chest, and she groaned. Why was everything so taxing? Why couldn’t she simply take a deep breath and not feel like the world was on her shoulders? Only she knew the truth, and that was how it would stay for a long time.
She opened the sealed letter and read the following words.
I want you to know that I have felt the same pain you feel. I have been there. And I will come to you in a heartbeat if you wish to talk.
I had the same look in my eyes years ago, and I needed someone to listen when I did not wish to talk. I needed someone to love me when I felt unloved. I needed someone to share my pain when it overflowed, when I knew not how much longer I could exist in that state. I needed to hear how special and valued I was when I felt so very worthless. I wished so much for a friend. I needed to hear that there was joy in store for me, instead of the deep darkness that surrounded me. I needed so much but knew not how or whom to ask for it.
Please know that I wish to be there for you. I cannot explain it, but I am meant to be here, in Derbyshire, to help you. What you feel right now will not last. The sun will shine again. Trust me. I have been to the depths of hell and survived to tell you about it. I have peace now.
I wish to offer whatever part of me you are ready to accept. I can be a friend, a confidant, or even a sister. I want to help you. You can survive this. Forgive me if I speak too plainly, but it is not in my nature to mince words, especially when I see such a jewel before me in so much pain.
I look forward to seeing you tomorrow. Perhaps in time I can help you see the light this world has to offer.
Remember, sadness is just a feeling; it cannot consume you.
Georgiana folded the letter. She tucked it into her pocket and stood up to leave. As she passed the pianoforte, she ran her fingers along the keys. The sound made her stop. She paused and turned back around. I do not really want to play, do I? She leaned over and let her right hand pick out a few cords in A minor. They seemed to express what she was feeling. Sadness is only a feeling; it cannot consume you. She played a few measures of a song she knew. Without sitting down, she placed her left hand on the keys and started Prelude and fugue in A minor by Bach. The mood of the music seeped into her hands as she played.
She played it slower than usual, the passion for the piece stirring something inside her. She felt her heart start to keep rhythm with the music. Soon, she instructed her fingers to play faster and, sure enough, her heartbeat accelerated. It startled her so much that she retracted her hands immediately. The silence in the room echoed loudly as the notes dissipated.
Pulling out the bench, she sat down and rested her hands on the keys waiting for her heart to calm down. When it had resumed a normal pattern, she started to play. As she did so, her heart picked up and pounded hard in her chest. There it was again—evidence that I am alive. Evidence that she felt something other than pain. She immediately stood up and left the room, not even noticing she had knocked the bench over in her haste.
Darcy could hear the music through the halls of Pemberley. It was soulful and sad, but he was glad to hear music again. He knew Miss Elizabeth had something to do with it. After the music ended, he went to look in the music room and saw the bench tipped over. He lifted it back onto its legs and placed it in the proper position. She had played. If only for a moment, she had played. He looked down on the ground and there was Georgiana’s letter from Elizabeth. The temptation to read it was brief. He simply picked it up and placed the folded letter on the keys of the pianoforte. It seemed only fitting.
I chose this excerpt because it is the first time that Georgiana starts to make progress, and Darcy recognizes to some degree that Elizabeth is the reason his sister took up piano again. I think this is a significant part of the book because Darcy realizes that he may not be able to offer the help Georgiana needs unless he reaches out to others. He has never needed anyone in his life more than the sparkling Elizabeth Bennet. Well, I hope you enjoyed it!
I am giving away a bar of “Fitzwilliam Darcy” soap from Evie Cotton handmade soaps (Shirley’s Handicrafts), which is a tantalizing mixture of lemon and sandalwood. Here is the link if you wish to buy your own bar.
Thanks again Candy for hosting me!
You're welcome, Jeanna! It is a pleasure to have you here! Oh! Poor Georgiana! This excerpt has intrigued me to read more!!
Connect with Jeanna Ellsworth
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Connect with Jeanna Ellsworth
twitter • facebook • website
~ ~ ~ GIVEAWAY ~ ~ ~
Happy news! Jeanna is generously giving away two lovely prizes! To enter the giveaway, just fill in the Rafflecopter below, and leave a comment. Last day to enter is December 15th, 2014!
Thank you, Jeanna!!
- One person will win a bar of "Fitzwilliam Darcy" soap.
- One person will win a choice of paperback (US only) or e-copy (International)
- Last day to enter: December 15th, 2014.
Don't want to wait? Buy a copy from Amazon!
FTC Disclaimer: Link to Amazon. I am an Amazon Associate. Should you purchase a copy of the book through the link provide, I will receive a small commission. Thanks!