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Donna Fletcher Crow

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Donna Fletcher Crow (US) is the author of forty-some books, mostly novels dealing with the history of British Christianity. She is the author of The Monastery Murders series; The Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime series; The Elizabeth & Richard literary mysteries, GLASTONBURY,A Novel of the Holy Grail and more.

Fay Sampson

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Fay Sampson (UK) is a writer of adult and children's fiction and non-fiction, including A MALIGNANT HOUSE, #2 in the Susie Fewings series, a British Crime Club Pick.

Launching Jane

By Donna Fletcher Crow ~ October 15, 2013

I have dreamed of stepping back into Regency England since I first read Pride and Prejudice as a teenager. Attending the Annual General Meeting of the Jane Austen Society of North American last month was very nearly that dream come true. "Austenland for grownups."

The publication of my Jane Austen themed book A Jane Austen Encounter, book 3 in my Elizabeth & Richard literary suspense series was the perfect excuse.

so I packed my finery, reread Pride and Prejudice and Stan and I drove across the country to Minneapolis. Some of the events that gave participants a feel of living in the Regency, or having stepped through the screen of their favorite Jane Austen movie, were the afternoon tea, a banquet with period food, and— most especially— the Regency ball with English country dancing right out of Pride and Prejudice. Stan and I took a Country Dancing class the day before so we could keep up with the intricacies of the lines as the partners moved up and down to the caller’s instructions.






A variety of tours of Minneapolis sites were offered through the week and we chose a tour of the Sherlock Holmes Collection at the University of Minnesota.




The excellent plenary speakers and the wide variety of breakout sessions gave serious intellectual depth to the week. Most of the speakers were university lecturers or noted authors on the subjects covering the history, social customs and literature of the Regency. Several speakers were from England, including Tim Bullamore, publisher of the Regency World magazine.

I learned how to make a Regency hair ornament in the bonnet workshop.


And had great fun visiting with readers and launching A Jane Austen Encounter at the author signing. Not the least because I sat next to Syrie James, author of The Missing Manuscript of Jane Austen. Http://


is currently available in all ebook formats. Http:// and will soon be out in print.

English professors Elizabeth and Richard are celebrating twenty years of marriage with their dream vacation— visiting all of Jane Austen’s homes in England. But not even the overpowering personality of their Oxford guide nor the careful attentions of the new friends they make can keep their tour free from lurking alarms. When a box of old documents is donated to the Jane Austen Centre in Bath Richard volunteers to help sort through it. Later that night, however, he finds the Centre’s director bleeding on her office floor. Could the valuable letter that has gone missing really lead them to new revelations about Jane Austen’s unfinished manuscript The Watsons?

Join Elizabeth and Richard on their tour: Visit all the sites so redolent of Jane Austen and her characters in the beautiful city of Bath; stay in the Chawton House Library and visit the charming cottage where Jane’s writing flowered and the nearby Steventon church where her father was rector and her own faith established; stand by her grave in Winchester Cathedral; and enjoy your time at the lovely country estate of Godmersham. But don’t let your guard down. Evil lurks even in the genteel world of Jane Austen.

A Jane Austen Encounter

Donna Fletcher Crow (US) is the author of forty-some books, mostly novels dealing with the history of British Christianity. She is the author of The Monastery Murders series; The Lord Danvers Victorian True-Crime series; The Elizabeth & Richard literary mysteries, GLASTONBURY,A Novel of the Holy Grail and more.

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Reader Comments:

Oh, this looks such great fun!
-Sheila Deeth, October 15, 2013

I can truly say I had the time of my life, Sheila.
-Donna, October 15, 2013

Wow! Congrats, Donna! You look magnificent. You are such a terrific writer and full of surprises.
Linda Kupecek
-linda, October 17, 2013

Thank you, Linda. It's lovely to hear from you!
-Donna, October 17, 2013

Like you, Donna, I've been humbled, amused and inspired by Jane Austen's literary accomplishments since I was a teenager. I reread her often, and have read several biographies of her, and watched every version of her works that have been done even reasonably well in film and for TV. Her acute understanding of human pretense and frailty is both awe inspiring and unsettling, and I wish very much I'd known her, even if I'd been the recipient of her well aimed barbs. There was Christian charity in Jane's insights too, of course. Even Lydia and Wickham were happier than they deserved. And I, whether I deserve it or not, have a husband who never tires of watching Austen DVDs on Friday night when we finally relax together and let the treadmill lie idle.

Why I don't belong to the Jane Austen Society I don't know. And it goes without saying that I wish my novels displayed a fraction of the insight Jane brought to hers.
-sally wright, October 18, 2013

What a lovely, thoughtful comment, Sally. Oh, yes--Jane's insight into human pretense and frailty is so true!
-donna, October 21, 2013

What wonderful costumes. It's great to get into the spirit of thing in that way. It's that immersion in the times which leads to authentic writing.
-faysampson, November 6, 2013

How lovely to hear from you, Fay. Oh, yes--the whole AGM was like living in the Regency and I learned a great deal.
-Donna, November 6, 2013

Just wondering if the book will be available in paperback at some point? I don't have a Kindle . . .
-Diane Vint, January 24, 2014

Diane, thank you so much for asking! Definitely, yes! I was expecting it in November--I'm not sure what the tie-up is. My publisher tells me "It's in process." I'll be announcing it here and on Facebook when it's out.
-Donna, January 24, 2014

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