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Showing posts from January, 2009

Snubbing George Wickham!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.

Saturday, January 23rd, 1802

Kitty and I took great pleasure in snubbing George Wickham today, as we walked through the High Street in Meryton. He was walking along with Mary King at his side, swaggering along on the opposite path with an air of self congratulation. On seeing us, he raised his hat and waved. Perfectly affronted, we immediately looked away and took refuge in Brown’s, where we spent a pleasant half hour trying on all the new bonnets. During our sojourn, we made the observation that Mr Wickham and Mary King could be seen through the elegant bow window of Holland’s Coffee House, partaking of hot beverages and cake, whilst enjoying the company of Mr Denny, Mr Chambe…

Valentine's Day

Calling all men! (As Lydia would say!) Look here - I know there's still a couple of weeks left until Valentine's day, but I wanted to draw your attention to the lovely work of Jean Judy and her blog about Jane Austen which features her lovely jewellery. I first discovered her work on Ms Place and Laurel Ann's lovely blog and couldn't get an e-mail out quickly enough to ask her to make me one after I'd dropped some large hints to my husband about February 14th! Here's a sneak preview of my beautiful bracelet (underneath) which features Sense and Sensibility on one side of the medallions and a selection of my own paintings on the other. I asked for spring colours - I love blues and greens and I think it's beautiful.

I'm not sure I will be able to wait until Valentine's day to wear it.

Here's my lovely husband with a couple of gorgeous girls - my sister and my daughter.

A Favourite Illustrator, Ernest H Shepard

My dear friend Jenny bought me some gorgeous books for Christmas - she finds the most wonderful books. I have so enjoyed them, particularly reading about the early life of the illustrator Ernest H Shepard. He is best known for his illustrations of Winnie the Pooh and Wind in the Willows - my favourite illustrations as a child were the ones he drew for A A Milne's children's poetry books, When we were very young and Now we are six.
The books I've just enjoyed were written by Shepard himself and have illustrations on almost every page - Drawn from Memory and Drawn from Life. He was born in 1879 living through the last years of the Victorian age and well into the 20th century and was still illustrating books as late as 1971. His voice is so clear in the books prompting many visuals in the imagination and the illustrations are like a window into his mind to a past that is gone forever. These biographies tell the tale of his childhood, schooldays, his artistic training and of g…

Margaret Dashwood, a heroine in my new book, Willoughby Returns, a Sense and Sensibility Sequel

In Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, Margaret Dashwood, the youngest sister has a minor role. We learn in chapter one that she was a good-humoured, well-disposed girl; but as she had already imbibed a good deal of Marianne's romance, without having much of her sense; she did not, at thirteen, bid fair to equal her sisters at a more advanced period of life.

At thirteen Margaret is too young to be 'out' and we only see glimpses of her as she observes her sisters' behaviour. She does not miss a trick; telling Elinor that she thinks Marianne is engaged because she has witnessed Mr Willoughby stealing a lock of her hair. I love the following extract, which shows how keenly Jane Austen observed the foibles of the young.

Margaret's sagacity was not always displayed in a way so satisfactory to her sister. When Mrs. Jennings attacked her one evening at the Park, to give the name of the young man who was Elinor's particular favourite, which had been long a matter o…

Mr Wickham finds a new love!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.

Monday, January 18th, 1802

Having despaired at Kitty’s apparent lack of interest in my welfare, I am now cheered by the presence of her company at my bedside, all be it in short bursts before she rushes off to some engagement or other. It transpires that she has been spending much time in the company of my Aunt Philips and dear friend Emma Nicholson in Meryton, and I think has been enjoying the fact that I have not been there to eclipse all her efforts at engaging the officers with her charm and beauty.
She has much in the way of delicious gossip to impart and it is now clear why Lizzy did not speak particularly warmly of dear George Wickham or have much to say of him at all whe…

Lydia feels better and hears some interesting news!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.


Sunday, January 17th, 1802

I take up my pen again after a week where consciousness and time itself have been unknown to me. Having travelled as far as death’s gaping doors, ('tis quite certain, I assure you,) and after greatly alarming my dear family with my fevers and swellings, aches in the head and growths on my throat, (that the apothecary declared he had never before seen the like) I am at last out of danger. Everyone has been very thoughtful and caring with the exception of Mary, who asserted that it is her belief that mere sore throats would have little chance of taking hold if infected people did not take their pleasure in kissing the inhabitants of Meryton in the …

Hollywood, Lydia Bennet, the West End Stage and Persuasion??!!

I've an interview on Hollywood Today with Gabrielle Pantera, talking about Lydia Bennet's Story. Here's the link if you are curious about how and why I wanted to write Lydia Bennet's story plus the 'researching' into love scenes that a writer is forced to undertake!

I went to see Carousel the musical at the Savoy Theatre last week. It was gorgeous - wonderful songs, fabulous dancing and some brilliant acting. David Collings (Mr Shepherd in Persuasion, 1995) was the Starkeeper and very good he was too, though for me, I thought Lauren Hood as Carrie Pipperidge stole the show. It's her West End debut, I'm sure she'll go far. A lovely evening's entertainment of pure escapism. I came out feeling really uplifted, even though I must admit to shedding a tear or two over the story.

Elizabeth Bennet and her sister Jane in conversation

From Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice

I love this conversation between the Bennet sisters which reveals their closeness and fond regard for each other as well as Jane Austen's wonderful sense of humour! Jane Bennet is recently engaged to Mr Bingley and has only just become aware of the true duplicity of his sister, Caroline Bingley.

Elizabeth had now but little time for conversation with her sister; for while he was present, Jane had no attention to bestow on any one else; but she found herself considerably useful to both of them, in those hours of separation that must sometimes occur. In the absence of Jane, he always attached himself to Elizabeth for the pleasure of talking of her; and when Bingley was gone, Jane constantly sought the same means of relief.

"He has made me so happy," said she one evening, "by telling me, that he was totally ignorant of my being in town last spring! I had not believed it possible."

"I suspected as much," replied El…

Lydia is feeling poorly!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.

Sunday, January 10th, 1802

Am in a very poorly way, exacerbated by the fact that no one has come near me, except dear mama who put her head round the door this morning and Rebecca who is turning out to be my only comfort and solace, bringing me news from downstairs with bowls of hot broth. She says Miss Elizabeth has received two letters today and when pressed said she overheard that one was from London, which must be from Jane and the other from Kent, which must be from Mrs Collins. How strange that looks - Mrs Collins! Poor Charlotte - to think of her lying abed with William Collins!

Lydia Bennet

Lydia Bennet's Story Reviews

Pictures and Conversations Blogspot

Read This! "Lydia Bennet's Story" by Jane Odiwe
I'm an die hard Jane Austen fan, her unfailing devotion to a love-conquers-all ideal dovetails with my inner romantic perfectly. But above all, she was a brilliant writer, filling her novels with sparkling dialogue and great wit. The characters may not always been totally realistic (Fanny in Mansfield Park gets this accusation lobbed at her quite frequently) but there is much heart and spunk behind the heroines.

I wasn't sure what I would make of another author taking a stab at these characters, continuing the stories of my favorite of the Austen novels, Pride And Prejudice. But I'm always game to try new books, and if Lydia Bennett was ruined in Jane Odiwe's story I would not be that distressed. After all, even her father finds her to be one of the silliest girls in the land.

Lydia Bennet's Story starts while Lizzie is visiting her cousin Mr. Collins and his wife. Lydia f…

The Lovebirds of Longbourn tie the Knot!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.

Saturday, January 9th, 1802

Charlotte Lucas and Mr Collins were married today - can you believe it?!! Whilst I was confined to my room and left in bed to fend for myself, my family waved them off from the church door on their way to Kent. I am sure no one spared me a thought - yet I am very ill! Ned the stableboy was the only person who could be bothered to visit me. He was so kind and he has such nice eyes.

Lydia Bennet

Illustration: Jane Odiwe

A New Year - 1802

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.

Friday, January 1st, 1802

A New Year and a new hope that this will be a good one bringing new friends as well as old, new dances to learn, new dresses to behold and of course, new officers, new flirts and novel fun!
Mama is at last coming to terms with the fact that Miss Lucas and Mr Collins are to be married next Thursday and has even been heard to say she wishes them happy. She does not fool me however and it is plain that she thinks if she says it often enough, she will eventually believe it herself.
I have not been into Meryton for a week as I cannot face Captain Carter and I have been feeling a little under the weather. My head aches and my throat is sore-no doubt I have con…

Lydia has a broken heart - for a moment or two!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.
Sunday, December 27th, 1801

I have been a fool, completely taken in, and for that I will find it hard to forgive Captain Carter if I ever will. How dare he do that to me! How dare he make me believe that he had singled me out alone.
I spent the rest of the evening avoiding the ‘happy couple’ and refused to dance when petitioned by Captain Carter, telling him that I was engaged for every one, otherwise I would have been only delighted. I will not give him the satisfaction of knowing that I am grieved, confused and wounded to my very soul.

George Wickham was most consoling - he is a true gentleman and one of the most handsome men I have ever set eyes on!

My spirits are very low and…

Phantasmagoria at Lucas Lodge!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.
Saturday, December 26th, 1801
We arrived at Lucas Lodge this evening and were all ushered into the library where the candles had been snuffed and the large fire put out so that the room was warm but very dark. Even when our eyes became adjusted to the gloom, it was difficult to see and there was no time to look about but grope for our places. There were only seats for the elders who sat at the front as though in a theatre and the rest of us stumbled about in the dark, treading on toes and trains of dresses. There must have been a hundred people crammed in the room, all vying for position, and I heard my mother complain at the top of her voice that she would faint without her fa…

Lydia makes a visit!

Lydia Bennet's Online Diary.
At this time of the year I always read Pride and Prejudice and I thought it would be fun to see what Lydia is thinking about all the goings on at Longbourn. Lydia's online diary starts just before Mr Bingley arrives and finishes where my novel, Lydia Bennet's Story, begins.
Saturday, December 26th, 1801

My sisters and I visited the poor with boxes of gifts and food this morning. I am sure I would not be so grateful to receive a linen shift and a couple of old meat pies, but I suppose to them they are riches indeed. Dame Wilkins said I was a very comely girl and remarked on how much I had grown since last year. She said that whilst sitting at her window watching the world go by, that she has noticed how much I like the company of a young redcoat. I was tempted to say that I notice how some elderly gossips have nothing better to do but use their observations to spread malicious tittle tattle but I knew Lizzy or Jane would have something to say if I …