Today is the official launch day for the second fantasy novel in the Austen Adventures series, The Unexpected Past of Miss Jane Austen, by Ada Bright and Cass Grafton. Congratulations to the authors.
This novel includes heroine Rose Wallace and her beau Aiden Trevellyan who we were introduced to in book one, The Particular Charm of Miss Jane Austen. As time-travelers, they are sent back to Regency-era England to be reunited with Jane Austen.
Jane Austen and time travel. What Janeite has not dreamed of having a personal conversation with the author herself? What would you ask her? What would she be like? What would it be like to be in nineteenth-century England? The possibilities of learning insights into her life, family, and friends are fascinating.
I am pleased to share additional information on the book and an exclusive excerpt to give you a bit of a peek inside the story.
Rose Wallace thought her time-traveling adventures were over. Jane Austen is about to prove her wrong.
After becoming trapped in present-day Bath due to a mishap with her time-traveling charm, Jane Austen is safe and sound back in the 1800s thanks to Rose’s help. Now, Rose is ready to focus on her fledgling romance with dreamy Dr. Aiden Trevellyan.
But when Jane reappears in the present, it looks like Rose and Aiden have no choice but to follow her back to 1813…
Staying in the Austen household, Rose and Aiden are introduced to a number of interesting figures from the past, including Jane’s eccentric – and surprisingly modern – neighbour. Suddenly it looks like Rose’s life is in need of a re-write as she discovers some unexpected ties to Jane Austen’s world and her past.
The sequel to The Particular Charm of Miss Jane Austen is perfect for fans of Victoria Connelly’s Austen Addicts series and The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler.
‘Last time,’ Aiden repeated quietly as he replaced the trunk and closed the boot, locked the car and crouched down to conceal the keys. ‘You mean the last time you travelled through time.’
Colour flew into Rose’s cheeks. ‘No. Not exactly.’ She looked across the street. Jane was watching them, and Rose turned back to face Aiden as he straightened. ‘Look, Aiden, I started off convinced she was a madwoman too…’
‘Who’d somehow convinced you she was Jane Austen?’ He ran a hand through his hair. ‘Why is it I feel like I’m being drawn under her spell, too? Why am I almost believing she is who she says, even considering it might be possible to travel back in time with her? Is the fascination with history flowing in my veins tempting me to believe I could do the impossible?’
Rose had no chance to respond to this as her name was hissed from across the street, and before long they stood surveying the Jane Austen House Museum, all shuttered up for the night. There was no one in the street, despite the mild evening, but light still spilled out from the nearby Greyfriar pub, which had only recently closed its doors.
No car lights approached from either direction, and the lady urged them over to stand beside the open gate into the garden of Chawton cottage.
‘How did you open that?’ Rose stared at Jane. Did she have powers of her own Rose had yet to hear about?
Jane, however, looked unimpressed by her own prowess. ‘It has no catch – can you not see? Come; let us make haste.’ She extracted a leather pouch and opened it, holding aloft a gold chain bearing a topaz cross, and Aiden frowned, instinctively reaching a hand towards it.
‘Wait! Isn’t that—?‘
‘Beware, Dr Trevellyan.’ The lady drew back a little. ‘The charm has powers of its own.’
‘But Jane…’ Rose pointed at the relatively short chain, thinking instinctively of Hermione Granger and her time-turner. ‘How will there be room for all three of us at once?’
‘There is not. An attempt at combining the chains from the other two necklaces with this one was made, but it did not oblige.’
Aiden’s brow raised. ‘There are three of them? I thought—’ He stopped as Rose shook her head at him before turning back to Jane.
‘But how will it work for all of us?’
‘You must not worry so, Rose. One would have to be very foolish not to have made a prior attempt. We merely need to be in contact with each other when I make use of the charm.’
Like side-along apparition, mused Rose. Morgan would be highly entertained by this. Morgan!
‘Jane, I need to send a quick text.’ She fished in her reticule for her phone and tapped into it, only to find Jane taking it from her as she hit send.
‘You must leave it behind, Rose.’
‘Yes, yes, of course. I wasn’t thinking.’ Relieved to have at least sent her friend a message so she wouldn’t worry for the present, Rose watched Aiden walk back over to the car to place the phone in the boot. She sighed softly as it was closed and he replaced the keys before turning back to join them as they walked through the gate and followed Jane to a shadowed corner of the garden.
‘We are safe here. There is nothing for us to disturb when we arrive.’ Jane tucked the pouch away, the necklace held in one hand.
Rose looked around, startled. She’d hardly thought about what the garden might contain back then.
‘I must ask you both to step closer.’
Aiden and Rose instinctively stepped towards each other, and Jane rolled her eyes. ‘Not to each other, to me.’
‘Oh!’ Rose stood beside Jane as Aiden took up a position on her other side, and the lady urged them a little nearer still.
‘You may take hands for this, and you must both rest your other hand on my nearest arm to you. Do not break contact. Once we are connected, I will place the charm about my neck.’
Rose’s heart was pounding fiercely as Aiden took her hand firmly in his grip and squeezed it. Clear grey eyes met rich brown ones, and they stared at each other for a moment before each placing a hand on one of Jane’s arms. Rose felt a brush of air as Jane raised her hand to place the chain about her neck, and then everything went black.
Chapter One, pages 12-14
- Ada Bright has lived all her life in Southern California, which makes her intolerant to any weather above or below 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Ada spent over a decade as a photographer before dedicating herself to writing, though she still believes that life should be documented well and often. There is nothing she loves more than a good, subtle love story whether it be in real life, tv, movie, theatre or book form… well, except for cake. She also really loves cake.
- A proud bookworm since childhood, Cass Grafton writes the sort of stories she loves to read – heart-warming, character-driven and strong on location. Cass loves traveling, words, cats and wine, and enjoys them in any combination. She currently splits her time between Switzerland, where she lives with her patient husband, and England, where she lives with her characters. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, the Society of Authors, the Jane Austen Society UK and is a founding member of the Jane Austen Society of Switzerland. Her previous novels are A Fair Prospect: Volumes I, II, & III and A Quest for Mr. Darcy: An emotional tale of Elizabeth and Darcy inspired by the classic.
Time travel is such a creative trope in fiction. The characters are total “fish out of water,” so the possibilities of cultural surprises are endless. While Jane Austen created characters for her novels, the thought of her as a character is intriguing to me. There are so many unanswered questions about her books and life that can be addressed. No spoilers, but the energy and twists in both The Particular Charm and The Unexpected Past will delight and entertain you for hours. They are a total Austen escape that I found engaging and fun.
These two previously published novels have been re-issued by Canelo Escape in digital format. Not to worry if you have not read the first in the series. They are standalone’s too and can be read independently of each other.
The Particular Charm of Miss Jane Austen (Austen Adventures Book 1), by Ada Bright and Cass Grafton
Canelo Escape (September 12, 2019)
eBook (366) pages
When a time-traveling Jane Austen gets stuck in modern-day Bath it’s up to avid Janeite Rose Wallace to save her… because she’s the only one who knows that Jane exists!
Rose Wallace’s world revolves around all things Austen, and with the annual festival in Bath – and the arrival of dishy archaeologist, Dr. Aiden Trevellyan – just around the corner, all is well with the world…
But then a mysterious woman who bears more than a passing resemblance to the great author moves in upstairs, and things take a disastrous turn. Rose’s new neighbour is Jane Austen, whose time travel adventure has been sabotaged by a mischievous dog, trapping her in the twenty-first century.
Rose’s life is instantly changed – new home, new job, new friends – but she’s the only one who seems to have noticed! To right the world around her, she will have to do whatever it takes to help Jane get back home to write Rose’s beloved novels. Because a world without Mr. Darcy? It’s not worth living in!
The Unexpected Past of Miss Jane Austen (Austen Adventures Book 2), by Ada Bright, and Cass Grafton
Canelo Escape (November 7, 2019)
eBook (322) pages
Cover image, book description, & author bios courtesy of Canelo Escape © 2019; Excerpt Ada Bright & Cass Grafton © 2019; Text Laurel Ann Nattress © 2019, Austenprose.com