Friday, May 27, 2011

Review of Pride and Prejudice: Hidden Lusts by Mitzi Szereto

Pride and Prejudice Hidden Lusts

By Mitzi Szereto

Release Date: July 1, 2011

Publisher: Cleis Press

ISBN-10: 1573446637

Source: Author supplied PDF

Warning: This book is for those of mature sensibilities.

Drop those breeches and rip open those bodices and enter the scandalous behind the scenes world of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Do you want to know what Mr. Bennet really does behind the closed door of his library? Is Lydia Bennet just wild or is she really just a 7-11 kind of girl? What is George Wickham’s real motivation when he chases a skirt? Does Bingley really marry Jane for love or is his eye wandering elsewhere? How does Caroline take out her frustrations of not snaring Darcy? Most importantly, what is going on behind closed doors?

All that is explored here in a new, raunchy twist on the Austen classic Pride and Prejudice: Hidden Lusts by Mitzi Szereto.

Miss Szereto has done an admirable job of melding a classic with the erotica genre to the point that if you didn’t know that it was a spin on a classic romance you would be none the wiser. The author actually took Pride and Prejudice and made it her own with a refreshing spin. I cannot thank the author enough for taking the time to write the book the way she did, because let’s face it she could have easily cut and paste some erotic scenes here and there and not really done any work at all. It happens, but not with Miss Szereto. Thank you!

Something I also appreciated, and we know how I’ve ranted about sex in Austen novels, is the Miss Szereto is completely open about the fact that her book is full of sex. I knew what I was getting into and for that I cannot find fault. Ladies and gents you have been warned this book is full of sex, sex and more sex. It’s good sex too.

In addition, Miss Szereto had a biting wit all her own. This book is funny. It’s got sex, but it is a hoot. I laughed out loud at many places. Take this passage for example,

“Although quite pretty, Lydia was a

lively headstrong girl prone to a breathiness of speech and a

most peculiar fondness for raising up the hems of her gowns

to rub her lower half against objects and furnishings and, to

the embarrassment of all parties concerned, young officers.”

Lydia has the propensity to hump anything in sight. It leads to some humors moments in the novel. I have no desire to give spoilers however, so you should perhaps buy the book. The wit and expert storytelling Miss Szereto exhibits is a refreshing and her talent in a delight to read.

If you have ever been wondering or perhaps, lusting, for that behind the curtain kind of Jane Austen tale then you should peak into the pages of Pride and Prejudice: Hidden Lusts. Indulge your inner fantasies about what really happened.

Final Recommendation: If you like a little dirty with your clean.

For my fairytale friends check out In Sleeping Beauty’s Bed: Erotic Fairy Tales also by Mitzi Szereto.


Imagine that Jane Austen had written the opening line of her satirical novel Pride and Prejudice this way: "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a good romp and a good wife — although not necessarily from the same person or from the opposite sex." In Pride and Prejudice: Hidden Lusts Mr. Darcy has never been more devilish and the seemingly chaste Elizabeth never more turned on.

The entire cast of characters from Austen's classic is here in this rewrite that goes all the way. This time Mr. Bingley and his sister both have designs on Mr. Darcy's manhood; Elizabeth's bff Charlotte marries their family's strange relation and stumbles upon a secret world of feminine relations more to her liking; and, in this telling, men are not necessarily the only dominating sex. And of course there's some good old fashioned bodice ripping that shows no pride or prejudice and reveals hot hidden lusts in every page-turning chapter.

Visit Mitzi Szereto on her webpage or the promotional page for her upcoming novel.

Mitzi Szereto’s Website
Pride and Prejudice: Hidden Lusts Webpage

Note: I did not receive compensation of any kind for this review. I review for free.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Hot Regency Find: These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer

I have recently become acquainted with the author Georgette Heyer, who wrote over fifty novels in her life time. Impressive. She is often placed into the same vein as Jane Austen, but I find that Austen and Heyer both offer distinctly differently elements in their books. Perhaps the only comparison that holds true is that they both wrote works set in the Regency. But that is a blog post for another day.

I just finished Heyer’s These Old Shades. I must admit to first being ill disposed toward the heroine, Léonie, but she soon grew on me. I really did not warm to this book until chapter 10 and then I found that I could not put it down. Perhaps, I had to slowly taste what was being offered before I realized I like it.

These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer


Paperback: 384 pages (Also avaliable on Kindle)

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca; Reprint edition (October 1, 2009)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 9781402219474

ISBN-13: 978-1402219474

The gentleman in question is Justin Alastair, the Duke of Avon, known by friends and enemies alike as Satanas--the devil. On this particular evening, the dangerous rake crosses paths with Léon, a red-headed youth of low birth who is fleeing a certain beating at his brutal brother's hands. On a whim, Avon buys the boy and makes him his page. It soon becomes clear, however, that Léon is not what he seems, and that Avon has an ulterior motive for bringing him into his household. Set in pre-Revolutionary France, These Old Shades follows a twisting course as young Léon (or is it Léonie?) is swept up in a dangerous mystery: how to account for the page's amazing resemblance to the sinister Compte de Saint Vire, for example; and why will this man go to any lengths to get the youth in his power?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Releasing Colonel Fitzwilliam: An Austenesque Novel Release Announcement

It’s time for the big announcement if you have not already followed my twitter feed. I’ve been pecking away and toiling to complete my first novel. I am happy to report that it is flowing nicely and should be ready for edits in the next month or so. YAY! I have picked a release date for my novel. Drum roll please……

MARCH 2012

Ok, so it is missing an actual day, but we have the month and year which is significant. I have a DEADLINE! It has motivated me to work faster.

I have decided to self-publish with CreateSpace. It is the best option and it is easy to use. I already uploaded a portion of the novel to my Kindle just to see what it would look like. Not bad, but it needs to be formatted and most importantly edited. I’m on the indie author route.

My novel is titled Saving Grace. It is a Jane Austen sequel to Pride and Prejudice. Colonel Fitzwilliam is the hero and he has been a delight to write. I have realized my book title needs to also have something included to denote that it is in the Austen Sequel genre. Any ideas?

Without further ado I would like to thank Jessica over at NarniaMum (she’s self publishing a Sleeping Beauty story) for writing out a back cover synopsis of my novel. This is subject to change, but just so you know my original synopsis was a bit pathetic compared to the one below which has pizzazz. I hope you are intrigued.

Saving Grace: A Continuing of Pride and Prejudice*

March 2012

Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam has spent the last several years battling Napoleon's army. Although he has returned home to the loving arms of his family, he cannot quiet the battles that still rage in his mind and soul.

Lady Grace MacKenna is battling demons of her own. Beautiful and passionate, Lady Grace is bound by the strictures of a society which shuns her, and must hide her broken heart. Although Colonel Fitzwilliam has sworn off romance, there is something about Lady Grace's melancholy beauty that inexorably draws him.

Can these two wounded souls find healing in each other's arms, or will the fire of their attraction consume them?

*That portion of the title, A Continuing of Pride and Prejudice, is subject to change as I feel it too closely mirrors author Jennifer Becton’s secondary title A Continuation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Also check out Nancy at Austen Aspirations as watch her journey on the self publishing route for her Austen sequel, His Good Opinion. :D

Monday, May 16, 2011

Gimme, Gimme, Gimme A Man After Midnight: Prince Naveen of Disney’s The Princess and the Frog

Some fellow Indie Authors and I were chatting about our favorite Disney Heroes. We each chose one of our favorites and are sharing our thoughts on what makes them a hero. Enjoy.

The Blog Tour featuring Disney Hero’s!
The Beast of Beauty and the Beast featured on A Words Worth
Prince Phillip of Sleeping Beauty featured on NarniaMum
Flynn Rider of Tangled featured on Austen Aspirations

"The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else." Umberto Eco

Prince Naveen in the hero in the Disney fairytale The Princess and the Frog. He’s one smooth talking sun-of-a-gun with a charming arrogance to match. He is privileged and feels entitled to everything. His parents have cut him off until he marries and so he has come to the party loving city of New Orleans Louisiana to find his bride so he can return to his high-living lifestyle. A fitting place for a playboy prince.

Our first introduction to Naveen is when he descends off the boat, grabs a guitar to play in turn knocking down his valet and then he proceeds to flirt with a group of simpering women who surround him. I have to admit Naveen has a fabulous smile, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Naveen is not the most enduring hero at first glance. Instead it’s more like Fitzwilliam Darcy’s insult to Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice which is not amusing.

Prince Naveen
In an effort for some playboy freedom he gets tangled with the villainous Shadow man (A.K.A. Dr. Facilier) who turns Naveen into a frog and it is Naveen’s envious valet who gets to be the Prince instead. Poor Naveen is now a frog and he wants to be human again. Our hero’s tale does not end with him as a frog however.

Prince Naveen is a flirt and his first meeting with the heroine, Tiana, shows Naveen as cocky. He is under the mistaken impression that she is a real Princess and that her kiss will break the spell. He arrogantly proclaims that to turn him back Tiana must kiss him and he promises that she will enjoy it as all women who kiss him enjoy doing so. Unfortunately, Tiana becomes a frog too.

There is a charming quality about Naveen’s arrogance not found in Darcy. Even when Naveen is being obnoxious there is something enduring about him that captures a ladies interest, but he is still obnoxious.There are a series of occurrences which allow Naveen to grow in our estimation. We constantly see Naveen encourage others dreams, for example Louis the crocodile and his dreams of playing Jazz with the ‘Big Boys’. Yet, it seems he has no dreams of his own, but riches and loose women.
Something that I must point out is that unlike Darcy, Naveen has a wicked sense of humor. He has the ability to make you laugh, which for me is a top quality in a hero. Even when he was being obnoxious and I found myself rolling my eyes I was laughing. We all know that guy who just makes us laugh even when we are trying to be cross with him. Men like that are enduring and you know that beneath all t here bravado there is lurking a heart of gold.

Naveen make our heroine Tiana laugh too. As frogs they are capture by some bayou frog hunters. As they are working on their escape Tiana is amused by the actions of Naveen. Tiana gets in on the antics as well. She sees him in a different light. He is carefree and it is not that he doesn’t want to work he just has not found a purpose too. It is little things that they bond over like Naveen learning how to mince food from Tiana.

Madame Odie, the voodoo priestess of the bayou, wisely proclaims to Tiana and Naveen (while they are frogs) that they need to dig a little deeper and see what they need, not what they want. They want to be human again, but that is not what they need. While we do not get this wisdom until later in the film it is the guiding principle of the film and self-exploration for Naveen as the hero.

Naveen wants to be privileged and rich and he wants to live life as he always has, but what he needs is a sense of value and purpose and more importantly love. This is where you can start to fall in love with Naveen. Through his journey with Tiana he comes to see that there are things worth more than money. He is still arrogant, but in his arrogance is a charming heart which one cannot help put love.

Tiana has always been hard working, holding down two jobs, to fulfill her dream of owning a restaurant. Her hard working etiquette begins to rub off on Naveen who begins to see the value that comes from working for something. That is not all however, as her dreams begin to suddenly mingle with his. He has purpose now.
Naveen relaxing and Tiana working

Through all their adventures to become human again Naveen grows as a character and as a hero. He becomes the man you root for and you secretly hope he gets the girl. There is a scene where they dance. Tiana does not want to dance as she believes she has two left feet, but Naveen will not let her shy away. I’m sure part of falling in love with each other was from dancing. After all, like Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye sing in White Christmas the best things happen while you’re dancing.

Naveen and Tiana dancing
Naveen tries to set up a romantic dinner for Tiana at one point. It goes about as well as Darcy’s Hunsford proposal to Elizabeth. Yet, you still want Naveen become the ultimate hero. Even though you sort of know Naveen and Tiana will end up together you still want to see everything in the middle to show he’s earned the title of hero. A perfect example is in the beginning of the film Naveen would have sneered at work, but by the end, when Tiana has her restaurant, he is seen rolling up his sleeves and working. Suddenly you love him all the more as a hero and more importantly he makes you laugh.

Yes, Naveen gets the girl and they turn back into humans again. As Disney would tell you they lived happily ever after, but I’m sure lovers quarrels occurred as they would in any healthy relationship. Naveen became a hero worthy of his lady loves affection.

That’s the thing with heroes, they hardly ever start out as heroes, but through a series of events they become heroes. It’s a relationship that only grows sweeter over time in its enduring qualities that make both the hero and heroine better together than apart.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Austen Reads: Pemberley Ranch by Jack Caldwell

Whew! I am coming off a long weekend which included a wedding in Santa Cruz and visiting Santa Maria and falling in love with my little nephew who was born on April 21st. So, my blog has been neglected. Look for a longer post later this week, but in the mean time we will have another installment of Austen Reads.

This week’s Austen Read is Pemberley Ranch by Jack Caldwell. Take a ride through the post-Civil War West where there is plenty of delightful gun slinging western action. A great twist to Pride and Prejudice.

Pemberley Ranch by Jack Caldwell

Paperback: 384 pages (Also avaliable on Kindle)

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark (December 1, 2010)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1402241283

ISBN-13: 978-1402241284

When the smoke has cleared from the battlefields and the civil war has finally ended, fervent Union supporter Beth Bennet reluctantly moves with her family from their home in Meryton, Ohio, to the windswept plains of Rosings, Texas. Handsome, haughty Will Darcy, a Confederate officer back from the war, owns half the land around Rosings, and his even haughtier cousin, Cate Burroughs, owns the other half.

In a town as small as Rosings, Beth and Will inevitably cross paths. But as Will becomes enchanted with the fiery Yankee, Beth won't allow herself to warm to the man who represents the one thing she hates most: the army that killed her only brother.

But when carpetbagger George Whitehead arrives in Rosings, all that Beth thought to be true is turned on its head, and the only man who can save her home is the one she swore she'd never trust...

Jack Caldwell is set to release a second book titled, The Three Colonels, in Spring 2012. I’d post a picture of the cover, but as Sourcebooks is his publisher it is subject to change. Visit Jack Caldwell’s website for more info on his works.

Mr. Caldwell is still delighting us over at the Derbyshire Writer’s Guild where you can read a story (posting is in progress) he has written titled Mr. Darcy Came to Dinner.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Caroline Bingley: Are we Missing Something?

In Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice we are introduced to Caroline Bingley as the desperate woman intent on snaring Mr. Darcy and his fortune. In her defense she was only behaving how many around her were and single women did not have many options but the hope of marrying well. Unfortunately, she is everyone’s favorite villain.

I spoke of Caroline Bingley in an earlier blog post with little warmth, yet I have always felt she was misunderstood. Caroline has her faults, but you have to believe that even when she is being despicable to Elizabeth Bennet that some good lays within her. We just are not always sure what. So I ask: Are we missing something about Caroline Bingley?

It is with great anticipation that I await the release of what is sure to be another fine novel by Jennifer Becton. She is set to release a book about Caroline Bingley. I was fortunate to see a sneak peak of Chapter 1 and I can already tell it is going to be a wonderful read. I am curious as to how Miss Becton will make me see Caroline and what journey we will be treated to. In other words will I see what I have always initially missed about Caroline Bingley before?

Here is the beautiful cover for Caroline’s story below.

In the meantime, if you have not already, you should read Jennifer Becton's debut novel Charlotte Collins.

What are your thoughts on Caroline Bingley? Is she misunderstood or is she just all around bad?