Cover Reveal & Giveaway – A Quest for Mr. Darcy by Cass Grafton

THE BOOK: A Quest for Mr. Darcy

Fitzwilliam Darcy is on a quest. Convinced he is over his foolish infatuation with Elizabeth Bennet, he returns from a year of travelling with a plan, both to protect the estate of which he is guardian and to ensure his sister’s happiness: he intends to do his duty and secure a wife at the earliest opportunity.

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Duty; a path from which Darcy knows he should never have been diverted. Duty was safe and nothing would persuade him from it a second time.

Soon restored to his home in Derbyshire, Darcy puts his quest in motion, preparing to welcome guests from Town, one of whom is the suitably eligible young lady he has earmarked as his future wife.

But what of the Bennets of Longbourn? What befell them in Darcy’s absence from England? And what of the new tenants on his estate named Bennet? Is his path fated to cross with Elizabeth’s once more?

With the addition of his friend, Bingley’s, mischievous twin younger sisters, letters from a stranger and a shadowy figure lurking in the grounds of Pemberley, Darcy’s life is about to be turned upside down.

Can he remain steady to his purpose, or will his carefully laid plans soon be in tatters as the rigid protection he has placed around his heart begins to falter?

And now…

A WORD FROM THE AUTHOR: Cassandra Grafton

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A love of all things Jane Austen has enriched my life in many ways, but one of the most important things I have gained in recent years is the friendship of some amazing people, none of whom I would have met had we not been brought together through our shared admiration for her.

I ‘met’ Rita (the one with the hat on the picture below), owner of this Blog, online some years ago. She has an impressive and informative archive page on Facebook (called All Things Jane Austen) which has over 40,000 followers!

Brought together by a shared love of one of the world’s favourite authors, we have become firm friends, despite being very different from each other! About eighteen months ago, we had the chance to do what so many hope for when they meet through social media: we met in person, and what better place to do it than Hampshire, Jane Austen’s home county?

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We had a wonderful few days, sometimes educational, sometimes inspirational, often touching and always fun! Our adventures took us to Chawton, Winchester and onwards to Bath, where we spent the night in Jane’s former home at No 4 Sydney Place on the anniversary of Jane’s actual birthday.

Having been able to show Rita some of my (and her) favourite places (and things – just ask her about her addiction to M&S Percy Pigs!), I was delighted when she invited me to come to her home on the Internet to reveal the cover of a new novel I have coming out later this month.

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A Quest for Mr Darcy is a story inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, set largely in Derbyshire. I wanted the cover to reflect the location in which it is set, as well as the mood of story: romance with a hint of mystery.

What could I possibly do? I have no technical skills at all, so knew I would have to enlist someone’s help with the design. My thoughts turned immediately to my good friend, Ada Bright, a talented photographer and artist.

Copyright on images is often an issue, so we decided to use our own photos. Getting one of Derbyshire scenery was easy – I’d been there often enough to already have a selection of images we could use, and in the end, we settled for the one which has been part of the banner for the story as I posted it online over a period of six months between October last year and April of this.

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Ada had an idea for the colour palette; all we needed now was a Regency couple! We scoured pages and pages of stock images, but nothing quite fitted what we wanted. Then, an idea began to form.

At first, I batted it away as nonsensical, but as is often the way, once a notion takes hold, it persists in making itself heard! I whizzed a one line email to Ada making the suggestion, then sat waiting for her reaction, convinced it would be: ‘Don’t be ridiculous!’

Ada’s response? GREAAAAT IDEA!!!

Another email flew out into the void, and I chewed my nails in suspense – only to have our potential cover models agree to the photo shoot!

Now this may sound all very well, but you then have to bring in the logistics. I live in Switzerland, and I had possession of the items of Regency clothing we needed to use. Ada lives in California, along with her cameras. Our cover models live in Surrey in England.

How was this a great idea? Because I happened to know that our models were due to fly out to LA in April for a holiday. What could be simpler? Put the Regency clothing in the post from Switzerland to the USA and lo and behold, once the models arrive, the photo shoot can happen!

And so it did, and we were delighted with the results and I am over the moon with how Ada pulled all the elements together.

I hope you enjoyed reading about how this cover came about. I will be offering several giveaways of the book at various Blogs throughout June in the run up to publication.

THE GIVEAWAY (winner announced)

The first chance to win is today! The draw is open worldwide, with the winner choosing either a paperback (be warned, it’s a big book – you might need wrist rests!) or an eBook. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment here on Rita’s Blog (this one) saying what the most important thing is that Jane Austen has brought into your life.

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PRIZES:

  • A set of handmade P&P pencils
  • 20 Jane Austen book plates
  • A handmade P&P wooden badge
  • Plus the book (if paperback is chosen)

ALL IN A “I’D RATHER BE AT PEMBERLEY” TOTE BAG!

WINNER: CINDY KANE 

I am also delighted to be supporting the Jane Austen Literary Foundation, a registered not for profit organisation. The foundation was created by Caroline Jane Knight to improve global literacy rates by raising money to fund reading and writing resources for communities in need across the world, in honour of Jane Austen.

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http://janeaustenlf.org/

I will be donating 10% of any profit made on eBook sales of A Quest for Mr Darcy to the Foundation.

206 thoughts on “Cover Reveal & Giveaway – A Quest for Mr. Darcy by Cass Grafton

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  1. Cass! This is SO wonderful! I am so happy for you. And so impressed by you! And Ada! Congratulations on such a fine achievement. Another!! BRAVA, with hugs, from San Diego. Karylee

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Joy – Jane Austen has brought joy into my life. And smiles. And a sense of peace, which seems to help me get through these troubled times. I am so glad to have her work on my bookshelves; it’s lovely to read her words whenever the moods strikes. Which is often.

    Congratulations on your new book – it looks wonderful! And thank you for the fabulous giveaway.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Lilyane – it’s out on 22nd June, but in the meantime, good luck in the draw!

      I love the things Jane Austen as brought into your life! ❤

      Like

  3. My mom and I first saw “Pride and Prejudice” at a hospital. We both fell in love with Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. It was a wonderful experience.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Oh! JANE!! In addition to all the lovely folk I have met, due to our mutual passion for Jane, my decades long love for her – and her goodness – intellect – her wisdom – have given me a peace and meaning to which I can barely put words. She is, to me, a true friend. I know you can understand that. Thank you for this lovely opportunity. Your autograph in your book would mean so much. Good luck, everyone!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Jane Austen has ignited my passion for reading, something I thought I’d thought I had lost. Her ability to take the reader into a world that comes alive with each page, plot line and amazing characters cannot be surpassed. Love her writing.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I agree, Carol, and I do think this is one of the most wonderful things about her writing, that it has ignited a passion for reading. You are not the only person here who has said it was something they thought they’d lost. ❤

      Like

  6. Jane Austen has been my idol since I was 12 years old – when I first read Pride & Prejudice….it opened up a whole new world to me, it enriched my vocabulary, my imagination….I love all things Austen…especially blogs like these!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I love All Things Jane Austen too, the Blog and the Facebook page. Such an amazing and broad-ranging collection of albums and wonderful things! Rita does a fabulous job!

      I also love that Jane Austen enriched your vocabulary and imagination!

      Like

  7. Jane Austen brought me something I had lost for fast too long – a love of reading. When my first child was born prematurely and required time consuming care, I no longer had time to sit and read. Then we moved away from family to a place where I knew no one and had no back up caregivers. Then two more babies came. I might have gotten through one book in a year. One year I decided to try P&P (even though I didn’t care for it when forced to read it in school). I fell in love! I feel in love with the story, the characters, and Jane. I fell in love, again, with reading. For the last few years I’ve read up to 3-4 books power week! I don’t sleep as much as I should, but my girls are rather self sufficient and I spend a lot of time waiting for them at rehearsals, practices, meetings, etc. I only carry purses big enough to hold my kindle or a book – never leave home without one! Thank you Jane for reminding me of one of my first loves!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Jane Austen has brought so much into my life … romance with wit, examples of strong women, swoonworthy gentlemen, and a sweeping picture of what life was like for the different classes in the regency era. Her novels should be a “must read” for all young people.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. The thing that Jane Austen did for me was teach me how timeless good literature can be. When I first read P&P I was a teenager and I immediately felt a kinship with Elizabeth Bennet, even though the best part of 200 years had passed since the story was written. I loved Austen’s humour in her writing. Her books have given me many happy hours, and the Austenesque genre many more happy reading hours. I’ve ‘met’ some lovely people online through our shared appreciation of Austen’s work, and hopefully one day I’ll meet some of them face to face. All the best with your new book, and welcome back to Rita after your blogging hiatus.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I first read P&P as a teen, too, Ceri, and it has stayed with me all these long years. I love her wit and her characterisations so much. ❤

      The people I've met online and also in person have been a true blessing. I hope our paths cross one day when I'm in the UK!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. This is exactly the kind of book I’d like to read, and the story of how the cover came about is gold! I’d love to know more about your models. Who are they and how did you meet them? Can’t wait to read the book.

    If it’s not too presumptuous id love to enter the competition! Jane Austen introduced me to some of the most precious people in my life – and Colin Firth. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so pleased you love the cover, Amanda. I’m a little in love with it myself.

      The cover models are my son and his girlfriend. Ada had to give my son a ‘virtual’ shave from the photo she took, as he has facial hair! 😉

      I’m with you on feeling blessed by the people who have come into my life through a shared love of Jane! Good luck in the draw!

      Like

  11. Jane Austen and her works, especially P&P, have given my teenage daughter and I something to bond over. She read P&P for the first time last summer and we have spent the year discussing Austen’s works and the various film adaptations (her favorite being the Colin Firth/Jennifer Ehle version, of course). We may fight about her clothes or her homework habits, but we always have Jane Austen to fall back on as a common point of interest.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh no! I hope it won’t be sleepless the second time around, Alexandra! The book’s out on 22nd June, but in the meantime, good luck in the draw!

      Like

  12. I’m excited for your book’s release- the cover is lovely!
    Jane Austen’s books- and all Austen-inspired books- allow me to escape from the craziness of daily life!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Carmelita! I am so in love with the cover! Escaping from crazy real life seems the best thing to do these days, doesn’t it? Good luck in the draw!

      Like

  13. A mutual love for Jane Austen’s books has introduced me to so many wonderful women/kindred spirits and allowed me to live vicariously through her at the JA festival in Louisville, Kentucky.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jane Austen brings so much to enjoy through her works, but I agree, the people I’ve met and the friends I’ve made are just the icing on the cake! I hope you get to go to the JA Festival regularly! I try to get to the Bath one every year if I can!

      Like

  14. Jane Austen has brought me so much. A love of history and romance. I am addicted to historical romances. She took me to a time that is so different from today. It helps me to escape the stressful happenings of today’s world. Jane has brought about marvelous movies based on her books which I have watched over and over. I could go on but ….

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Those are excellent things to have brought into your life, Lori, and I agree! I love re-reading her novels and I could watch adaptations all day long (in fact, sometimes, I do!) 😉

      Like

  15. The influence Jane Austen has in my life is to believe is destiny and true love. Her quotes can be related to everyday life like “remember the past as much as it brings only pleasant memories” and you can be completely,perfectly and incandescent ly happy if you choose not to make hasty first impressions.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Loved this blog!! I couldnt wait for the biweekly posts!! I have been missing the story… cant wait to get the book!!! I love Jane Austen and the story by Cass is my first venture in JAFF. Super glad she decided to share with us!!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. This is so great! JA has brought my life a new way of looking at things…meaning…not to give up in what I want and to be proud of who I am! I started reading JA in high school and am now in my late 30s still loving her stories!

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Reading P&P fan fiction is the only reading I can do in light of short term memory issues resulting from several general anesthetics I received during treatments for cancer. Having studied the novel in college after first reading it in high school, I can remember enough from the originals, I am able to read and follow the variations through to the end. . .each time I read and reread them. Consequently, I owe my continuing pleasure in reading to Jane Austen.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s lovely to hear, Betty.

      I experienced something very similar after chemotherapy – I used to call it ‘chemo-brain’, so I know where you are coming from!

      Good luck in the draw!

      Like

  19. I came late to the world of Jane Austen. While many fell in love with her work early on, I have just recently, in my 40’s, been introduced to the world of Austen. I actually came upon Miss Austen’s work while looking for period pieces to fill the void left by Poldark. Since then, I have seen practically every Austen adaptation out there and am in the process of reading all of her works. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite. I think I have become somewhat obsessed. So much so that when I adopted two Siamese cats last summer I named them Mister Darcy and Lizzie Bennet. Jane Austen has rekindled a love for reading, not only her work and variations, but also other Regency novels (although no other could compare to Mr. Darcy 😍). Happiness is Jane Austen…and my cats Mr. D & Lizzie B. Also bring me joy! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Tara’s that so lovely!

      I think it’s so wonderful that Jane Austen’s works can be discovered at any age and have brought so much richness into people’s lives. ❤

      Love that you called your cats Darcy and Lizzie! 😀

      Like

  20. Your cover is pure loveliness, Cass. And this story? Oh, sigh and swoon!!! Please hurry with the release, OK?

    Jane Austen has gifted me with hours of exquisite reading pleasure, a whole new community of cherished friends, and an opportunity to put my own words into print. If she was here I would kiss her feet.

    Congrats, Cass and welcome back, Rita.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Joy! I do love the cover! ❤ The book is out 22nd June!

      LOL re kissing Jane's feet! 😀

      And, last but definitely not least, CONGRATULATIONS on your new release out today!!! Hope it all goes brilliantly for you! ❤

      Like

  21. Hope, friendship and love. My mother and grandmother introduced me in magnificent world of Jane’s. Grandmother gifted me her P&P copy. I stil have as same feelings as 25 years ago while reading JA or watching adaptations 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  22. What has Jane Austen brought into my life? A love of romance and good quality books. A knowledge of the way of life in her time. An appreciation for dancing and beautiful music. Movie marathons full of laughter heartache and a serious crush on Mr. Darcy. Whenever I run out of books to read I know where to turn for good literature. Thank you thank you Jane!

    Liked by 2 people

  23. The most important thing Jane Austen’s books have brought into my life is the certainty to always have a great time every time I read and reread any of her books. Nowadays I am so lucky to have been reading JAFF for about four years and the hours of contented happiness seem to be endless. Who can ask for more?
    Great cover, Cassandra.
    Cristina

    Liked by 2 people

  24. The cover is perfectly dreamy! I can understand why you are so proud of it! Best of luck with your book launch, I’m looking forward to re-reading the final version.

    Jane Austen has sparked by creativity. I have been writing P&P variations for only two years and have tons of ideas but sadly, little time to write them, especially when captivating stories like A Quest for Mr. Darcy grab my attention!

    Best wishes to you!
    (Carol in CT)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Carol, have you published online or on Amazon? I understand having little time to write! This time for me was an exception. A Fair Prospect took me four years because of working long hours full time!

      I love that you and I share how Jane sparked our creativity! ❤ And I love that you love the cover!

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Genuine pleasure– I read Jane Austen simply becaue I want to. As an educator I read a lot- most often educational research and adolescent fiction. However, when I simply want to enjoy myself I read and reread Austen. In fact, I have an audio edition of Persuasion on my table now, ready to be enjoyed during long afternoons of hand stitchery. (A yearly summer holiday tradition of mine.) And as much as I dearly love Ms Austen’s work, I also enjoy modern ‘Austen-esque’ fiction, too!

    Liked by 2 people

  26. I would love to read this new book. I’ve read the others, Pride And Prejudice is my favourite. Jane’s heroines have their foibles but they are all good hearted souls and mean well apart from Emma.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. Congratulations on the new book, Cass! I am so excited about it and the cover is beautiful! It was amazing to follow this story while it was being posted and now see the book cover!
    What Jane Austen brought me, besides her beautiful books, was the fact that I could meet so many great and talented people who love her and also get to read amazing stories every day!
    Thank you for the giveaway! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Daniela! I valued your support and I love that you love the cover! ❤

      Meeting like-minded people through a shared love of Jane is the most wonderful thing!

      Like

  28. My husband suddenly died several years ago and Pride and Prejudice was my escape for even a short time from my own pain. I compulsively read the book over and over until the book literally fell apart. The story is intelligent and has a happy ending. Something I desperately needed at the time. I then moved to watching all of the various movie versions. I no longer solely read Jane Austen, but I can’t seem to go more than a few months without circling back to Pride and Prejudice or occasionally one of her other stories.

    This new story sounds quite interesting. I look forward to reading it.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Congratulations on the new book and beautiful
    cover! There aren’t words enough to describe all that Jane Austen has meant: my lifelong favorite reading; true heroine role models to emulate; long-term & life-altering friendships with fellow Janeites…

    Liked by 2 people

  30. I loved reading this story when it was posted online and suspect I will enjoy it even more when I can read it all at once rather than in installments. (You don’t scare me with the size of the book, Cass: As you know, A Fair Prospect is still one of my all-time favourite JAFFs.) The cover is wonderful — that’s just the way I would picture Lizzy: not beautiful but with that certain je ne sais quoi about her. Congratulations on publishing, brava to Ada for her artwork, and many thanks for the delightful blog post and giveaway. (What’s the most important thing JA brought to my life? Along with the pleasure of her stories and characters, her books have introduced me to a time and place — Regency England — that I knew very little about and frankly had very little interest in. Now I can’t stop reading her books or the history of the Regency!)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Janis, I am so glad you enjoyed the story. I am told by my proof reading team that it does read better as one story rather than posted serially! Here’s hoping!

      LOL re the size! 😉

      I must admit I didn’t want a ‘perfect’ Lizzy, though I do think my cover model is gorgeous! I think her expression really captures ‘something’ and she has such a Regency look about her. I love it!

      Good luck in the draw!

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Love this story! Cass, you are a remarkable author!
    Jane Austen and her characters give me a sense of family, of belonging. I’ve been a fan forever, I’ve read and reread and still find that sense of excitement to see what will happen. That is the joy of jaff As well . You know the basics,you just don’t the twist and turns!

    Liked by 2 people

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