An Arranged Marriage Blog Tour with Author Jan Hahn

An Arranged Marriage, by Jan Hahn (2011)Please join us today in welcoming author Jan Hahn on her book blog tour in celebration of the release of An Arranged Marriage, a new Pride and Prejudice “what if” novel just published by Meryton Press.

Thank you, Laurel Ann, for inviting me to post a blog at Austenprose for my first novel, An Arranged Marriage.  I am delighted to be with you and to share my love for Jane Austen with like-minded friends.

The idea of being forced into a marriage of convenience has always fascinated me.  Today, it would seem horrific to imagine a woman spending her life with a man she did not choose, but we know such unions were common in Regency England.  If you were Elizabeth Bennet, however, and if the man was tall, handsome, and rich, would that make you more amenable to such an agreement?  Elizabeth’s views on love and marriage were way ahead of her time.  After all, she dared to challenge convention by refusing two proposals, so what would she choose?

In my story, immediately after Elizabeth refuses Darcy’s proposal at Hunsford, her father dies, leaving Longbourn entailed away and with little money to sustain his widow and daughters.  Six months later, the Bennet family receives a visit from a gentleman with a most unusual offer that promises to save the family from financial and social ruin, and Elizabeth is torn between her sense of duty and her dislike of the man, Fitzwilliam Darcy.

What if Elizabeth and Darcy had never met at Pemberley?  What if she had thrown aside the letter he composed at Rosings? What if she didn’t know that he had been the means of saving one sister while injuring another? How would she react to a proposed match?  And what would ever make her accept Darcy as her husband?

These questions inspired me to write An Arranged Marriage.  I spent a great deal of time considering Elizabeth’s dilemma while soaking in a tub of hot water, which for reasons unknown, inspires creativity in me.  After toweling off, I slipped my feet into Elizabeth’s shoes and conjured up a story that would thrust Lizzy and Darcy together, even though she believed that he was the last man in the world she could ever marry.

A lady’s maid who Elizabeth begins to suspect is more to Darcy than a servant, a distrustful, repressed Georgiana, intrigue, and even danger intrudes into the Darcys’ new marriage, causing Elizabeth to battle between anger towards her husband and a growing attraction for him.

An Arranged Marriage is written in first person from Elizabeth’s point of view.  I found that process both enlightening and frustrating, but I discovered that it suited me.  I absolutely love stories set in the early 19th century.  I will always be grateful that I wasn’t born into that life, but I find its manners, customs, and fashions utterly romantic.  Writing in first person enables me to feel as though I am present at Longbourn, London, and Pemberley—and I’m married to Darcy!  It is an escape I treasure, and one I can’t help visiting again and again.

I appreciate all of you who have supported me through the years with your generous encouragement for my stories.  I hope you will enjoy owning a copy of An Arranged Marriage.

Author Jan Hahn (2011)About the author:

Jan Hahn left  the world of business and plunged into her love for writing.  She has created stories since childhood, spending hours entertaining friends with her tales.  For years, she has been enlisted by various local organizations to write skits and dramas.  Until recently, she recorded, edited, and published oral histories.  Currently, she is working with her editor on The Journey, her second novel to be published in the fall.  She is blessed to have five children and to have been married to her own Mr. Darcy until his death in 2008.  She lives in Texas, but in her heart, she longs to spend a season in Derbyshire. An Arranged Marriage is her debut novel. Visit Jan on Facebook or at Meryton Press

Grand Giveaway of An Arranged Marriage

Enter a chance to win one of three copies of An Arranged Marriage by leaving a comment stating what intrigues you most about reading a Pride and Prejudice “what it” story, or which character in the original novel is your favorite, by midnight PT, Wednesday, August 10th, 2011. Winners to be announced on Thursday, August 11th, 2010. Shipment to US and Canadian addresses only. Good luck!

An Arranged Marriage, by Jan Hahn
Meryton Press (2011)
Trade paperback (232) pages
ISBN: 978-1936009145

© 2007 – 2011 Jan Hahn, Austenprose

54 thoughts on “An Arranged Marriage Blog Tour with Author Jan Hahn

  1. Any P&P what if is interesting to me. The characters have such depth and strength of character that a different set of circumstances usually provides a great story. As long as the story is true to the original characters then how can it miss.

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  2. I’m greatly intrigued by this story! I like the idea of Elizabeth marrying Darcy when she isn’t in love with him. I saw that happen in 1932 and The Last Man in the World, both stories were excellent! I’m curious about his lady’s maid??? Can’t wait to read it!

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  3. I look forward to reading this! It has intrigued me that Darcy could have attempted to “arrange” a marriage with Elizabeth but chose not to do so.

    I am so glad someone else decided to commit her musings on the possibility to paper. Congratulations, Jan

    mhw38

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  4. I do enjoy reading ‘what-if’ Elizabeth and Darcy novels because I fine the time period so fascinating. The role of women in the 19th century society as little more than today’s arm candy and mother of the legitimate heir makes me appreciate how Austen’s Elizabeth was radical for the times….making me love Jane Austen even more!

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  5. I’ve read a few “what if” Austen stories, and this one intrigues me in particular because of the story being told in the first person from Lizzie’s perspective. It’ll be interesting to see how her relationship with Darcy develops.

    And of course, my favorite original character is Mr. Darcy himself!

    Laura Hartness

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  6. I have only recently become a fan of the “what-if” Austen literature. I think the main thing that interests me in this type of literature is how many of these writers explore more of Darcy’s perspective than our dear Jane did. When reading the original, there is so much of his time that is unaccounted for, and I really enjoy these writer’s ideas of what he was doing and thinking during these times.

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  7. Of course, now that I’ve left the above comment, I feel like an idiot. I honestly didn’t read the entire review, because I never read reviews for fear of unintentional spoilers. (You’d be surprised how many reviewers give away little things that can really spoil the reading experience.) I read far enough to believe that this book was of interest to me, but not far enough to see that it was written in the first person from Elizabeth’s perspective.

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  8. It speaks volumes about the greatness of Jane Austen that no other author in the past two centures has inspired so many sequels, prequels, films, and “what-ifs.” Miss Austen invites me into the pleasant reverie of “projecting” where I imagine all of the “What if” possibilities before, during, and after her stories. With that said, I admire you and all of the other authors who have likewise “projected” and have actually written those down for our entertainment and edification.

    I think Jane Austen poured more of herself into Elizabeth Bennet than any other heroine.

    And Ms Hahn, you have undertaken the challenge to present us with Mr Darcy, one of the most elusive and enigmatic heroes in all of literature. Your premise sounds fascinating.

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  9. I love What if stories. It’s a way to indulge our fantasties of what if Jane Austen had Elizabeth or Darcy do this instead of that. For every action their is a reaction.

    So pleased to see Jan get published. I loved this story when it was premiered on DWG.

    Kaydee

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  10. Like Meredith, I am very curious about the lady’s maid! I loved The Last man in the World and reading how Elizabeth was forced to marry Darcy and how her feelings changed. I cannot wait to read your spin on this! What ifs are my fav! This book sounds so good!
    Congrats on your first published novel! :)

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  11. I will definitely be reading this one. I think it is one of those books that goes into all the little “what ifs” that we asked when we read the story. Plus I am intrigued about the characters, especially Georgiana. I think this book might give us a little more insight into her. With the things that she had been through it would be logical that she would be distrustful. Can’t wait to read this one!!!

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  12. I love “what-if” Pride and Prejudice variations and I’ve read a number of them, so I’m always interested in seeing what another author thinks. I’m really interested in Jan Hahn’s version because I would imagine it would take really drastic circumstances to persuade Lizzie to marry a man she hated. And I think things would get nice and complicated once she realizes she’s attracted to him, while still hating him!

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  13. I love being immersed into the world of Longbourn, Pemberly, and Rosings. The perspective of the situation through Elizabeth’s eyes is absolutely perfect. Although I love “what If’s” from different perspectives (favorite being Pamela Aiden: Fitzwilliam Darcy Trilogy), the story is always Elizabeth’s. Elizabeth is the heroine with whom most of us identify. We love her wit and rebellion of what is expected of her (ie…marrying Mr. Collins-eeww!). Women in modern, western society, I believe, would react in the same way that Elizabeth did to each of her marriage proposals. That connection to Elizabeth is what keeps drawing me back to P&P again and again.

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  14. Oh, my – what delightful “what-ifs”. I must admit I have never thought of “what if Lizzy never changed her mind about Darcy”. And to then be thrust into a marriage with him – how delicious!

    I’ve often wondered why Georgiana would be anything BUT resentful and distrusting – left alone for so long, pretty much “jailed” even if it IS in Pemberley! I can’t wait to read this book!

    Julie

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  15. I have always been in love with the ‘forced/arranged marriage’ ‘what if’ stories for Darcy and Elizabeth. It’s amazing to find out just what circumstances would prompt such a pairing and how the authors manage to ultimately bring them together as one. Jan’s writing is wonderful so I feel very confident that this story will be more than excellent.

    Elizabeth Bennet has always been my favorite female character in literature…her strengths as well as her faults and how she overcomes them. Love and hate are such strong emotions and sometimes…the line between becomes so blurred that…well…it will be interesting to find out!

    Thank you Jan!

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  16. Well, I’m a good one for asking “what if” all the time, which is one of the reasons why I write myself, so I’m always interested in discovering how people answer that question for themselves.

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  17. I cannot wait to read this book! I, too, like the idea of Darcy making an honorable offer of an arranged marriage to save the family and Elizabeth struggling with that. I can’t wait to see what happens and how long it takes her to defrost in her feelings and then for the moment when they both realize that they truly love each other. I suspect I will spend many late nights reading this just waiting for that thrill.

    Congratulations on your 1st novel!

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  18. I’m really looking forward to reading this one. Very few novels take this premise. It’s a refreshing way of looking at the story.

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  19. Lizzy may put aside her headstrong ideas in order to benefit her family, but I have and idea she thinks she will make Mr. Darcy pay for all the “wrongs” he has committed, maybe by never truly giving her heart to him. It will be nice to see what takes place that breaks down the wall she has built. PS I love Lizzy, but Mr. Darcy will always be my fave.

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  20. I love the sound of this variation. My favorite character in Pride and Prejudice – other than Elizabeth – is Aunt Gardiner. She plays a subtle yet important part in bringing Elizabeth and Darcy together.

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  21. We all love Pride and Prejudice! How could you not? But I think we all enjoy going down the mental road of “what if”? We have a tendency to do this in real life. These books offer a new look at a great story!

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  22. Wow, this book sounds truly interesting! I love reading about Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy :-) And I hope the maid really ISN’T anything more to Mr. Darcy!!

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    • Oh, I know Chelsea! I really hope it is all a misunderstanding. I bet you it is the maid who is the evil one and purposefully misleading Elizabeth (like I could see a Caroline Bingley doing). I can’t wait to read this!

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  23. I like the others enjoy “what if” P&P novels. I haven’t read one like this before per se. It does sound fascinating. Isn’t the cover on this book on a different book in this same genre? just a question.

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  24. The idea about Elizabeth Bennet marrying a man she does not love is kind of mind-blowing (the whole nothing-but-the-deepest-love thing is rather essential to the Pride and Prejudice plot). At the same time, I am intrigued and wonder about how Darcy convinced her to marry him after all, especially if she still hated him! I guess I will have to read to find out. :)

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  25. I’m rereading Pride and prejudice (again). This time around I’m caught by
    Mr and Mrs Bennet. I tend to see them through Elizabeth’s eyes.

    I’ve become rather fond of them – Austen writes wonderful characters.
    I’ve started to like Mrs Bennet quite a bit and understand Mr Bennet taking refuge in his library. Some top notch writing and characterization with
    Mr and Mrs Bennett.

    The novel An arranged marriage sounds interesting and the review.
    Good review – think I’ll put it on my reading list.

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  26. Sounds great–from Elizabeth’s POV esp. if she didn’t read the letter is truly intriguing! What she must think of Darcy and what she must say to herself to say yes to the arranged marriage is a curious predicament and I’m curious to see what Ms. Hahn does with that.

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  27. I can’t wait to read this. May of the what if books are spectacular and this one intrigues me. I am interested in reading it because Elizabeth’s father didn’t want her to marry a man she didn’t respect and at the time she refused his marriage proposal she didn’t respect him. So her marrying him to save her family while disliking him has to be a quandry for her.

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  28. Thank you, everyone, for your interest and for your kind comments! I hope you enjoy reading An Arranged Marriage as much as I enjoyed writing it.

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  29. what i like about the ‘what if’ books, is the permission granted to imagine my own continuations… and the permission to like or dislike those i’ve chosen to read!
    thx, Jan, for taking time and pleasure in creating your own work of ‘what if’!
    looking fwd to the read ~ especially as my own copy! thanks for your generosity…

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    • wrong link – here’s the correction “)

      what i like about the ‘what if’ books, is the permission granted to imagine my own continuations… and the permission to like or dislike those i’ve chosen to read!
      thx, Jan, for taking time and pleasure in creating your own work of ‘what if’!
      looking fwd to the read ~ especially as my own copy! thanks for your generosity…

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  30. I gotta say, in the original novel I really liked Elizabeth Bennet’s wit, Mr. Bennet’s dry humor, and Mrs. Bennet’s neurotic tendencies!!! What a funny family!!! :)

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  31. I really like the idea of the arranged marriage–I always wondered how that would feel, if I was forced to marry someone I didn’t know–and reading about Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy being forced to at least be civil will be very entertaining!!

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  32. Loved the interview!! “What if” stories & Pride & Prejudice variations are my most favorite thing to read! Elizabeth & Darcy, of course, are my favorite characters… I just can’t get enough of them! Who doesn’t LOVE Mr. Darcy, especially professing his love for Elizabeth?? Completely swoon-worthy! I also love the time period, the language, the customs… those incredible homes! I could go on & on ;) Looking forward to reading this story :)

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  33. Please forgive me for leaving a hurried, somewhat-generic reply yesterday to all of your generous comments, although I assure you it came from my heart. I am more than slow at navigating the various JA sites and confess I just recently discovered the comments line!

    I agree with you, FHC and Kathleen, about the lure of what-if stories. Veering off the path at certain key points in the original produces a totally new diversion. Joy, I love the Bennet family, too. JA created such unique characters, and they’re fun to play with. Katie, can you really imagine being forced into marriage? On the one hand, it gives me chills, but then if he’s swoon-worthy Darcy, as Valerie has so aptly described him, well . . .

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  34. I love to read Pride and Prejudice what ifs. And I can never get enough of Elizabeth and Darcy! I’m really excited to read this one!!

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  35. I love P&P what ifs–a way to enjoy the characters we love in alternate situations and see how they react. :) And arranged marriage situations (in P&P what ifs and any kind of historical romance–check out Georgette Heyer’s “The Arranged Marriage”) are my favorites–I love to see how the characters fall in love when they have the forced intimacy/close proximity of a marriage. It also allows for a bit more familiarity that we (present day readers) enjoy–the inevitable propriety of the regency period is a bit more relaxed in a marriage! :)

    And having read some of Jan’s work online already, I already know she’s a fantastic writer–can’t wait to read this one!

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  36. Thank you Catherine, Kelli, and Araminta! I, too, can never get enough of Elizabeth and Darcy. I love the unspoken sexual tension present between them in JA’s original. Allowing that will-they or won’t-they question to remain in a forced marriage where the couple is thrown together daily opens up all kinds of possibilities.

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  37. The idea of Elizabeth Bennett being forced into a marriage that she doesn’t want is enough for me to want to read this book! I feel that she must have liked him at least a little bit to agree no matter what their circumstances were. The Dashwoods managed with the same situation as did Jane herself and her family after the death of her father.
    The idea of Georgiana being more like Mr. Bingley’s sisters, and this maid are also very fascinating. I’m looking forward to reading this book.

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  38. Pingback: An Arranged Marriage Blog Tour with Author Jan Hahn « Austenprose – A Jane Austen Blog » Jan Hahn's Books

  39. It will be fascinating to read about how elizabeth will behave in an arranged marriage situation, especially to a person she hates. Can’t wait to read this.

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  40. Although this book is told from Elizabeth’s perspective, one gains much insight into the character, and even childhood, of Mr. Darcy. The book transported me back in time to an era of romance and beauty, to Georgian England, London and Pemberley. I never wanted to stop reading. It was intriguing…a fascinating book and one I look forward to reading again and again.
    I have to admit, Mr. Darcy is my favorite character in the original book, as well as this one, but Elizabeth does run a close second.

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    • Thank you, Janet! I appreciate hearing from someone who’s read the book and wants to read it again. I share your desire to escape into a fictional time of romance and beauty. Austenesque books never fail to lift my spirits.

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  41. Thank you, Jocelyn, Nida, and Fatima for leaving comments. Without revealing too much, Jocelyn, your suspicions about Elizabeth’s feelings have the ring of truth about them. The problem is she doesn’t or won’t acknowledge that truth. And Fatima, I’m with you – who else but Mr. Darcy could be my favorite character?

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  42. This book sounds great…and I LOVE the cover! Elizabeth is my favorite, of course…though I am partial to Jane, as well.

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  43. What intrigues me most about a “what if” P & P? When I was in literature class many, many years ago I was annoyed with the constant, required dissection of literary works. “What did the author mean? Why did the author choose to portray something this way? What else could the author have done?” My thoughts at the time were, “Well, since the author is either not here or long dead and we can’t ask him or her, it does us no good to sit here and ponder the possibilities. We’ll never know the answer.” But now, having been captivated by Jane Austen’s works and especially P & P, I can’t keep myself from wondering, “what if?” So now I am happily lost in the world of Elizabeth and Darcy “what ifs.” How my attitude has changed. If only my literature teacher could hear me now!

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  44. Thank you, Lauralee and Mia! I love Jane as well and appreciate the difference in their personalities. Mia, I too hated dissecting literature in class and especially poetry. I now have three children who all teach literature!

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