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Friday, April 1, 2011

Guest: Sharon Lathan: A Bad Boy at the Wedding

Linda Banche here. Today I welcome Sharon Lathan and the latest book in her Darcy Saga, The Trouble With Mr. Darcy. Here she tells us about that villain we all love to hate, George Wickham. I've read The Trouble With Mr. Darcy, and yup, Wickham's a bad one, and I do mean bad!

Leave a comment with your email address for a chance to win the copy of The Trouble With Mr. Darcy which Sourcebooks has generously provided. Sharon will select the winner. Check the comments to see who won, and how to contact me to claim your book. If I cannot contact the winner within a week of the selection, I will award the book to an alternate. Note, Sourcebooks can mail to USA and Canada addresses only.

And the winner Sharon selected is Jhosszu! Jhosszu, please send me an email at to claim your prize. If I do not hear from you by April 12, I will award the book to an alternate.

Welcome back, Sharon. We love to have you here.

It was inevitable. I knew it would have to happen. I just did not know when. After all, one cannot write a Pride and Prejudice related novel without eventually tackling the characters fans love to hate. Lady Catherine - check. Caroline Bingley - check. Mr. Wickham - yep, check. I had to do it. I held off though, partly for the very reason that it was inevitable. I did not want to be too predictable!

In the cases of Lady Catherine and Caroline Bingley I avoided going the typical, expected route of making them villains. I softened Lady C up a bit with Anne finding love and then giving the old battle-ax a grandchild, after she gets what-for from Mr. Darcy, Lizzy, and Lord Matlock of course, just to provide some satisfaction. Caroline also found love, eventually, after a few revelations along the way, and although still uppity and annoying she meets her match and settles down.

Maybe this deviation from JA fan-fiction norm gave me the okay to go for broke with Wickham. Or maybe I simply hungered to write a story line with intrigue, danger, and heavy drama. Or perhaps I just dislike him more! Not sure, but early on, even when ignored and left to ramble off-scene in the nether regions of England with Lydia, I knew he would pop up and wreck havoc someday. Hints have been sporadically strewn through the series as Darcy revealed bits of his childhood to his wife, eventually talking about his playmate/nemesis George Wickham. Definitely a love/hate relationship!

Yet even I was a bit surprised at just how bad Wickham turned out to be. Evil. E-Vil. As in so bad it must be spoken with two syllables! Cracked and twisted he is. Gone off the deep end. A few bricks shy of a load. Missing a full deck. Cuckoo for... well, you get the idea.

And what fun to write! I guess it is true that the bad boys are fun to write. I ended up cliche after all! Oh well. But better yet was compounding Wickham’s badness and deviant behavior with making him a partial pawn for someone even worse! Who? Not saying! My lips are sealed. Guess you will have to read the book!

So in The Trouble With Mr. Darcy, Mr. Wickham and naughty Lydia show up after an absence of several years. Ostensibly they are in Hertfordshire for the wedding of Kitty Bennet. Darcy does not believe it is that simple and he goes on high alert. Lizzy sympathizes with his distress, especially now that she knows of the history between the two boyhood friends, but she does not agree that there is a threat. Until, that is, she sees something horrifying. Pulling themselves together to enjoy the long awaited nuptials of the final Bennet daughter proves difficult, but they manage, even to the point of growing complacent. That will be a mistake they shall regret, but hindsight is twenty-twenty as they say.

The guests at the wedding are largely oblivious to the drama aside from the strained undercurrents. They are too focused on seeing Kitty’s day transpire as perfectly as possible. The marzipan is prepared for the cake. Early spring flowers are cut and arranged. The dress is sewn - a simple gown of while with green trim to please the groom who loves green. The Netherfield kitchen staff cook the breakfast feast to Kitty’s specifications, which are too simple for Mrs. Bennet’s taste, she still anguished that none of her daughters saw fit to utilize their fiances’ influence to obtain a special license for their weddings. Alexander Darcy and Claudia Daniels are entirely focused on spreading the flower petals before the bride while the groom’s five brothers are entirely focused on discovering the location of the secluded honeymoon cottage, their motives not innocent in the least. Lydia Wickham flirts brazenly with every man present, annoying her husband which in turn amuses Darcy.

Loads of undercurrents indeed. A bad boy and a wedding. What a winning combination! Talk to me about your favorite bad boys. We do love them even as they get their comeuppance.

Thank you, Linda, for hosting me today and giving me a chance to talk about the Austen bad boy we love to hate the most.

About the Author Sharon Lathan is the author of the bestselling novels Mr. and Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One, Loving Mr. Darcy: Journeys Beyond Pemberley, My Dearest Mr. Darcy and In The Arms of Mr. Darcy. Sharon also wrote a novella as part of an anthology with Amanda Grange and Carolyn Eberhart, A Darcy Christmas. In addition to her writing, she works as a Registered Nurse in a Neonatal ICU. She resides with her family in Hanford, California in the sunny San Joaquin Valley. For more information, please visit Come to Austen Authors – where Sharon and twenty other authors of Austen fiction blog together.

The Trouble With Mr. Darcy by Sharon Lathan
Sourcebooks Landmark ISBN 1402237545

Even charmed lives will encounter troubles along the way....

After a time of happiness and strife, Darcy and Elizabeth gather with family and friends in Hertfordshire to celebrate the wedding of Kitty Bennet. Georgiana Darcy returns from a lengthy tour of the Continent with happy secrets to share, accompanied by the newlywed Colonel Fitzwilliam and Lady Simone, who may have secrets of their own. The stage is set for joy until the party is upset by the arrival of the long absent Mr. and Mrs. Wickham.

Wickham's jealousy and resentment of Darcy has grown steadily throughout the years and Darcy rightly suspects that Wickham is up to no good. Darcy enlists the aid of Colonel Fitzwilliam to keep an eye on Wickham's activity, but neither anticipate the extreme measures taken to exact his revenge. Nor do they fathom the layers of deception and persons involved in the scheme.

George Wickham returns to Hertfordshire bent on creating trouble, and Elizabeth and her son are thrown into danger. Knowing that Wickham has nothing left to lose, Darcy and Fitzwilliam rush to the rescue in a race against time. This lushly romantic story takes a turn for the swashbuckling when Mr. Darcy has to confront the villainous Wickham and his own demons at the same time... devoted as he is, what battles within will Mr. Darcy have to face?


Linda Banche said...

Hi Sharon, I was happy finally to see Wickham get the treatment he deserves. I never liked the idea that Darcy paid him to marry Lydia. That's rewarding bad behavior, although I understand he did it to shield the Bennets from the scandal (a real big deal in that time) that would have ensued if Lydia hadn't married Wickham. I wish Darcy had found another method-- maybe hold something over him, or trick him, or beat him to a pulp (my favorite)--to make him marry Lydia.

Sam @ The Little Munchkin Reader said...

Hi Sharon. I am so glad that Wickham got the ending I personally think he deserved - especially considering who did it! YES! *cheers*

Many Thanks

Unknown said...

I like where your story is going. I got to the end of your description and went "but I want to know what happens." You've left me hanging and wanting to know more.

Unknown said...

As a Jane Austin fan, I found the post wonderful. The character of Wickham has always been one you want to totally beat up so to speak as he is a definite villan. I want to learn more about this in further posts.

Judy said...

I really enjoyed the post. I never liked Wickham at all. I am glad he is getting his due. I have to find out more:)


Sharon Lathan said...

Good morning everyone! Thanks for joining in the discussion of Bad Boy Wickham - all capitols since I think he has earned the title, don't you? I had fun writing this man, even if I was white knuckling it at times. Scary stuff!

Thanks for having me on Historical Hussies, Linda. You know I love to be here! I agree about rewarding bad behavior, although many have argued that marriage to Lydia isn't exactly a reward. LOL!

Sam, I sense you have read the book! *grin

Ninja Elizabeth said...

wow! I can't wait to see what happens. I finished "In the Arms.." just in time so I'm rady to dig in!


Sharon Lathan said...

Fabulous Angelia! Leaving a reader hanging and wanted more is music to my ears. :-)

Thank Lyn. I can say with assurance that in my story Wickham does get the beating you feel he deserves.

Judy, Yippee! I have accomplished my task of whetting another appetite. Score!

I'll be in and out during the day. Keep the comments coming!

Unknown said...

Oh wow, I love this, it looks fantastic! I like that he is E-vil with two syllables. I am usually such a lurker but I had to come out and say how wonderful I think this line of books must be :)


kimberly @ kimberlyadkins com

Seli said...

I am going to be getting the book today - It is finally here! You keep us in suspence Sharon! I cant wait to see what you did to Wickman. I have been reading great reviews - Congrats!

catslady said...

Someone more EVIL - I can't wait and yes you left us wanting more!! Ever since I saw the movie The Mummy and heard the word "comeuppance" for the first time, it has become my favorite word and I'm so glad to hear your bad boy(s) get theirs. One of my favories is Joaquin Phoenix in Gladiator. I would love to know what you have in the works next?

Sharon Lathan said...

Hi Ninja/Sheila! You are making tracks in the reading. Keep it up!

Ellis, Have you ever seen "So I Married an Axe Murderer" with Mike Myers? It is a hysterical movie, but in there he does the E-Vil thing and I have never forgotten it. Cracks me up!

"Comeuppance" is a fabulous word too. Don't you just love vocabulary?

Sharon Lathan said...

Hi Seli my friend!!! Love ya!

Catslady, next for me is Miss Darcy Falls in Love, which is Georgiana Darcy's love story. It will be released in November.

Linda Banche said...

You're welcome, Sharon. Always happy to have you here.

Caffey said...

I adore this title and blurb! And so sounds like you had a blast writing this one as I will to read it! I can so picture the wedding with your writing! Its always been so visual reading your books that I have so far. Huge congrats on this release! Can we look forward to more, like book 6 and 7 and so on? I so hope so!
Thanks on the joy and all you do! Love to be in the contest.

cathiecaffey @

lynnquiltsalot said...

As most of the commenters have said, we need to know what happens. I love it when "bad boys" think they've outsmarted everyone only to turn a corner one day and BAM! Can't wait to find out how our favorite bad boy got his. Thanks.

cyn209 said...

i am soooo excited & happy for you, Sharon!!! many Congrats & Good Luck!!!
i can't wait to read your new release!!!


ps....thanx for the giveaway!!!!

Rachel Rossano said...

I can't wait to read this book!

I am one of those writers that has a hard time writing bad men, but I am working on it. I am sorry to say I don't have a favorite.

Thank you for such a great post. As I said I eagerly await reading this chapter of your saga. :)

Sharon Lathan said...

All sorts of activity while I was out to dinner! Hi everyone! Glad to hear the consensus is for the bad boy getting his due.

Caffey, I had more fun writing Wickham than I would have thought. I think I delayed for so long because I thought it would be very hard to write an evil character. Then I ended up writing 2! Go figure.

Lynn, Oh indeed, the oh-so-smart bad boys are never quite as smart as they think, are they?

Hey Cynthia! Thanks for coming by. Get busy reading girlie!

Greetings Rachel. I do hope you enjoy your reading experience. And best of luck with the writing! Bad boys can be fairly rewarding.

Margay Leah Justice said...

I would really love to read about a confrontation between Darcy and Wickham. It's a long time in coming!


Vee said...

Great post! Sharon I must say for a beautfully romantic and historical writer you certainly attack the drama with gusto! The twists that you give Wickham making him totally e-vil are totally riveting! He does turn into a dark dark character! That of course gives the ever delightful and gorgeous Darcy a chance to show his manliness. Like your Darcy needs an excuse to do that!;) But by all means keep it coming because you give JA"s characters so much depth I cannot get enough of them!
Congrats on this wonderfully exquisite novel!
TSBO devotee

jhosszu said...

Loved how Wicham brought suspense into the novel and how you brought back other E-Vil doers from prior books! I could not out the book down because I HAD to know what happened next. It was an intricate story how Wicham plotted and the way everything tied together was wonderful. Thanks for giving me another great book to read. I can't wait for more!!!

Kit moss said...

Sorry to do this here, but I would love a contact email to offer a novel about a tremendously historical hussy who goes to fight in the crusades as a man.. see for more on Beloved Pilgrim . If not a review, how about a guest post, an interview or even just run my book trailer?


Nan Hawthorne
hawthorne at nanhawthorne dot com

LisaS said...

What a fabulous post Sharon. You give us so much to sink our teeth into. I can't wait to read more about the dastardly Wickham (and believe me, I never imagined myself saying that ever).

Thank you!
lcsieck at gmail dot com

Unknown said...

Wait! Did I just read correctly? That in this novel Wickham is used as a pawn by someone even more e-vil than he?! Oh my! That makes it even more of a must read! Can't wait to find out who it is!

Unknown said...

woops, I forgot my email address.
Here it is:
jakki36 at yahoo dot com