Thursday, 4 February 2021

Lover's Meeting by Catherine Lodge - Blog Tour, Excerpt and Giveaway

Book Cover: Lover's Meeting by Catherine Lodge
I’m really happy to be welcoming Catherine Lodge back to the blog with her new Pride & Prejudice variation, Lover’s Meeting .I can’t believe it’s been over 3 years since her last visit, with Fair Stands the Wind, it seems like yesterday!

Let's look at the blurb and then I'll share an excerpt of Lover's Meeting with you. There's also an ebook giveaway, so read on for more details. 

Book Description

‘Journeys end in lovers’ meetings, every wise man’s son doth know.’ — William Shakespeare

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the disastrous first meeting of Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet at the Meryton Assembly provided each with a ready-made set of prejudices to apply to the other. But when a horrific rural accident reveals Darcy to be a man of active, intelligent benevolence, and Elizabeth, in the absence of her appalling family, to be an extraordinary lady of courage and decision—then surely the course of true love will run smoothly.   

But alas, the lovers’ meeting is not the end but a new beginning. For though they have found each other, a seeming multitude of complications—a catastrophic flood, the last wishes of a dying friend, Lydia’s misfortunes, a dastardly Member of Parliament, and even their own fears— contrives to come between them and their ‘journey’s end.’

Book Cover: Lover's Meeting by Catherine Lodge
Excerpt from Lover’s Meeting by Catherine Lodge

From Chapter 13...Return to Netherfield

He had forgotten how tiny she was. Such a little frame to hold so much life, so much courage. “Miss Elizabeth, so long as you believe my intentions now are honourable, I find I do not care how we have misunderstood each other in the past.” Was he going too fast? She looked thoughtful but not alarmed or repulsed and, when they were called for dinner, readily took his arm into the dining room.

He had not hoped to be seated next to her for dinner, and he was not. Caroline Bingley’s doing no doubt, but he did not care. He had spoken to Elizabeth, and they had parted civilly; after their past dealings, that was so very, very much.

It was, therefore, with considerable good humour that he devoted his conversation to Mr Bennet, who was sitting on his left, succeeding in largely avoiding Miss Bingley on his right who, therefore, found herself trapped in conversation with a particularly ebullient Mrs Bennet.

Mr Bennet apparently preferred his conversation to that of Louisa Hurst, and they managed a civil exchange on the types of ideal society in Plato and Sir Thomas More. This had the added advantage of entirely excluding Caroline Bingley from their deliberations. He thought he had succeeded in hiding his self-consciousness in the presence of the man he hoped would become his father-in-law, and he was pleased to find him a man of education and sense. Darcy had no illusions about the man’s failure to run his household or his family with propriety or prudence, but at least it would be possible to converse on equal terms. He wondered whether it would be possible to lead the older man into a more dutiful attitude towards his own family and then chided himself for, once again, trying to lead another person’s life for them. There might be something he could do in the future if, please God, he were to succeed in his suit, but that must be a matter for discussion with Elizabeth. He had much more confidence in her ability to deal with other people than he had in his own. He had made too many mistakes in the past, and they had cost him dearly.

He refused dessert and sat back to examine the diners. There was, he realised, a Bennet daughter missing. The large, noisy one—Lydia, that was the name. Perhaps they had realised she was too young and too ill-behaved to appear in public. On further consideration, he knew that this had never prevented her presence in the past, so he enquired of Mr Bennet.

“I am surprised that you should mourn her absence, Mr Darcy,” replied that gentleman. “She is indisposed and has been left at home to make a nuisance of herself there rather than here.”

“Nothing serious, I trust.” He hoped he kept his displeasure at this manner of address to himself.

“Too many sweetmeats, I expect. Now, as I was saying. I have always thought that Utopia…”

This was, Darcy reflected, typical of the man’s interaction with his family. He supposed the fact that Mr Bennet esteemed Elizabeth was a mark in his favour; that he had not thought to arrange a decent future for her by way of dowry, was not. As he listened and nodded, he was conscious of a strange sensation in his chest: part admiration of her courage in refusing a man who could have secured her future and that of her family, part anger that her future was so imperilled. Mr Bennet appeared only a little younger than his own father had been at his death.

When the ladies retired, Darcy did not dare watch her leave, conscious of the gimlet eyes next to him. However, Bingley was anxious to return to his intended bride and, after a little good-natured teasing from his guests, they rejoined the ladies. Elizabeth was seated next to her mother, and as they entered the room, he could see that, once again, she was deeply embarrassed.

Mrs Bennet’s shrill tones pierced the air. “I care not who knows it. I still say that you could have secured Mr Collins and then we could be assured of staying at Longbourn when your father dies.”

For a moment, he hesitated. Would she be more embarrassed if he approached to change the subject or if he stayed away and let her mother continue?

“I see you are wishing my death upon me once more, Mrs Bennet. Take heart, madam: you may die first.”

That did it—his poor love surrounded on all sides by insensitivity and noise. She was lively herself but not in this loud, vulgar way. How she must hate all this. He approached and bowed. “I wonder, Miss Elizabeth, whether I could persuade you to play? I remember with particular pleasure the music you gave us during your stay at Netherfield.” The relief on her face was all the reward he required. He followed her over to the fortepiano and wondered whether he dared volunteer to turn the pages. She looked up at him and smiled shyly, and he was seated before he knew what he was about.

She played the first few bars. He could see that her hands were trembling somewhat and, on impulse, upset the sheet music onto the floor. He apologised, loudly enough for the room to hear, and in the bustle of setting matters aright, she had time to compose herself.

“It is very kind of you to bother with a rank amateur such as myself, Mr Darcy. You forget that I have heard you play,”

“I assure you, Miss Elizabeth, that I have always taken great pleasure in your music.” He dropped his voice. “Although I would, of course, be delighted to have the opportunity to play a duet.” Was that too forward? Apparently not, for although she flushed slightly, she smiled.

“Perhaps our styles of playing would not suit.”

Now that was definitely encouraging. “I have already taken considerable pains to make my playing more agreeable to my listeners,” he said. “I would be more than happy to make any further adjustments you might consider necessary.”

“Perhaps I ought to hear more of your playing before I venture an opinion.” She looked up, and he knew that she could see the fond smile that creased his face. “Page, Mr Darcy. It is time to turn the page.”

He dare not press the matter further. “My sister has accompanied me for the wedding. I would be most grateful for an opportunity to introduce her to you and Miss Bennet. She is somewhat shy and did not feel equal to a large dinner party; however, if you are available tomorrow or the day after, I would be honoured if you would permit me to make her known to you.”

“My sister and I shall be at home tomorrow morning and should be delighted to meet Miss Darcy. I am afraid our afternoons are committed to the dressmaker, the milliner, the shoemaker…” She rolled her eyes, and they laughed quietly together. Elizabeth finished her piece, and was displaced at the instrument by Miss Bingley, no doubt hoping to secure his services as page-turner.

He was in such good humour that he turned away as though he had not noticed her expectant presence, and exclaimed, “Ah, coffee. May I get you a cup, Miss Elizabeth?”

As they left the fortepiano, she shook her head. “I am afraid that was rather wicked of you, Mr Darcy.”

“I know. However, I believe the fox has the right to revenge on the hound. Just once in a while.”

“Poor, hunted Mr Darcy.”

“You have no idea, Miss Elizabeth. You have no idea.” He passed her a cup of coffee, a little cream, no sugar, and they were separated by the press of company: she to her sister’s side, he to Bingley’s to discuss the political situation, the war in Spain, the health of their respective families, and the utter and complete perfection of Miss Jane Bennet in face, form, and disposition.

Author Catherine Lodge
Catherine Lodge Bio

Catherine Lodge is a retired English lawyer and lecturer, currently living in North Yorkshire. She spends her days reading, admits to a slightly shame-faced addiction to Minecraft, and volunteers to explain IT to the senior citizens at her local library (despite the fact that some of them are younger than she is).  She is also prepared to send a fifty-pound/dollar/euro Amazon gift card to the first person who can prove that Colonel Fitzwilliam’s first name is Richard.  So there.

You can reach her at [email protected] and she would love to hear from you, especially if you don’t get the Ancient Briton joke in Chapter 2.

Lovers’ Meeting, once known as A New Beginning to online readers at A Happy Assembly and fanfiction.net, is Catherine’s second novel. She published Fair Stands the Wind in 2017.

Book Cover: Lover's Meeting by Catherine Lodge
Buy Links

Lover's Meeting is available to buy now in Paperback, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited. 

Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon CA • Add to Goodreads shelf

 

Giveaway Time!

 

Quills and Quartos are giving away an ebook of Catherine Lodge's Lover’s Meeting to a commenter on this blog post. To enter, leave a comment here. Q&Q will choose a winner on 12 Feb.

If you have any problems adding your comment please contact me and I will add your comment for you :)

Blog Tour Schedule

The blog tour for Lover's Meeting is stopping elsewhere. Please visit these stops too, to learn more about the book and increase your chances to win! 

Blog Tour: Lover's Meeting by Catherine Lodge

* * *

If you don’t want to miss any of my future posts, please subscribe

Subscribe to Babblings of a Bookworm

If you'd like to be friends on Goodreads then please invite me - just say that you visit my blog when it asks why you'd like to be friends with me.

 

 

 

37 comments:

  1. Hi Ceri,
    I’m looking forward to reading this delightful book.
    I’ve heard great things about it.
    Hope you and yours are keeping well.
    Stay safe. 🍀
    Mary.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really fancy reading this one. I very much enjoyed Catherine Lodge's last book, Fair Stands the Wind but I never blogged about it, had been planning to last year but time got away from me! I hope you enjoy it when you read it, Mary!

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Good to hear, Sheila, because if you enjoyed it there is a good chance that I will too!

      Delete
  3. Great excerpt. Love how Mr. Darcy dodged Caroline Bingley at the pianoforte... congrats on your latest release. I’m looking forward to reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Patricia Finnegan4 February 2021 at 23:56

    I like the excerpt!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Carole in Canada4 February 2021 at 23:58

    Oh, I just love this 'new and improved' Mr. Darcy! Looking forward to reading it! Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  6. An improved Darcy? OOOOOHH! Sounds like a must read!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you enjoy it when you read it, Lily.

      Delete
  7. I really enjoyed Fair Stands the Wind, so I am looking forward to reading this one too. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I enjoyed FStW too, looking forward to reading this too.

      Delete
  8. I remember reading this on Fanfiction.net, and enjoying it then!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I remember reading this at AHA. I’m looking forward to reading the published version. Congrats, Catherine, and thank you, Ceri, for all the work you put into your blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Lucy. I always feel I'm not doing enough so I am glad to hear praise even if I suspect I don't deserve it :)

      Delete
  10. Oh, that was a lovely excerpt! Darcy was so charming here. And I loved the humor. What, do you mean to say that Caroline Bingley does not read Plato? Shocking! Congrats, Catherine, on your new release!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Between you and me (looks both ways to ensure nobody is listening...) I don't think Caroline Bingley is as much of a reader as she professes to be! I knew you suspected the same!

      Delete
  11. Enjoyed their interaction with one another in the excerpt.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I have a comment to add from Eva:

    I love how Darcy was attentive to Elizabeth. I hope it works out for them. Thank you for the excerpt and giveaway.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I have a comment to add from author Catherine Lodge:

    Just popping in to say thanks to Ceri for hosting and I hope you all enjoy the book. It’s really interesting to see what little thing or other people notice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So sorry if you've had trouble posting Catherine! All the very best with this book :)

      Delete
  14. Thank you for the excerpt. I like this Darcy, taking control to win over Lizzy. I like the way he questions himself if this is what she would want not what he would have wanted to do.

    Thank you for the chance to win a copy

    ReplyDelete
  15. Wonderful excerpt! Looking forward to reading

    ReplyDelete
  16. I have a comment to add from Luisa1111, sorry I didn't add it sooner!

    Can’t wait to read how Elizabeth discovers Mr Darcy can play the pianoforte! Let’s hope they play a duet soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for commenting Luisa. Again, I'm sorry I didn't add the comment sooner, but it was in time for the giveaway, phew!

      Delete
  17. Enjoyed the excerpt. Can't wait to read the book. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thanks everybody for stopping by, reading and commenting! Quills and Quartos chose a winner, who was Dung. Dung, I have dropped you an email about how to claim your prize :)

    ReplyDelete