Mercedes Fox ~ Author

My Writing Blog

Tag: new book sample

New Book Release: The Maid and The Footman: A Pride and Prejudice Variation

Howdy lovelies! I’m thrilled to announce two new book releases from an author I had the great opportunity to interview right here on Interview FoxSeat.

Don released two Jane Austen Fan Fiction (JAFF) works that are tied together…
A Novella of about 29,000 words…”Of Fortune’s Reversal” and its companion novel “The Maid and the Footman.”

Author’s Note:
Both look at the events that swirled around Kitty Bennet in Pride & Prejudice Variations that assume a universe where Mr. Bennet dies before the Netherfield Ball.  “Of Fortune’s Reversal” presents the narrative from the traditional point-of-view—the gentry.  “The Maid and the Footman” considers the same events but as seen from the world below stairs. These are romances, to be sure, but ones immersed in the historical background of the time which gives them context and depth.
I never intended to write the second book.  I thought “Of Fortune’s Reversal” was a one-off.  I was focusing on developing the second book in the Bennet Wardrobe Series…The Exile.  As a result, I wrote “Henry Fitzwilliam’s War” during August in order to get a better handle on that character. MF: I speak for the readers when I say, I’m glad you did write the next book.
I will weave characters from other fiction into my work as I am a believer in Robert A. Heinlein’s “World as Myth” model in which authors, through the act of writing fiction, create the universes within which the actors exist.  I like to believe that Patrick O’Brien’s Stephen Maturin or Wilson Graham’s Jeremy Poldark (or for that matter Doctor Who’s Centurion) existed in Regency England. However, as Ms Austen did not know them, she did not write about them. See my “Author’s Note” at the end of the book. Look Don up on Goodreads.

Of Fortune’s Reversal (Released July 28, 2016)

A brisk early November Hyde Park morning is shattered by a child’s scream. How two adults react in those next few desperate moments sets the plot in motion in this “Pride & Prejudice” alternative focusing on twenty-one year old Kitty Bennet.

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“Of Fortune’s Reversal” is a novella-length tale based upon an inversion of Mrs. Bennet’s exclamation that with one good marriage, the other girls will be thrown in front of rich men. For more than two centuries, the Jane/Bingley: Lizzy/Darcy tetrarchy has been portrayed as the solution to Mary and Kitty’s marriage difficulties, not to mention Mrs. Bennet’s housing requirements. But, what if that was not the case?

What if Mr. Bennet dies just as Jane is receiving the Bingley sisters’ invitation to dinner?

No rainy day horseback ride. No cold for Jane. No Elizabeth coming to Netherfield to nurse her elder sister…so no links forged in any way with Bingley (beyond what he felt for Miss Bennet at the Assembly) and Darcy (no fine eyes, no walk around the library, etc).

No Netherfield Ball.

No proposal from Collins because he was already wed to a shrew who convinced him to evict the Bennet women. So no trip to Hunsford cottage for Lizzy because Charlotte remains a spinster at Lucas Lodge.

Rather, the Bennet women are forced out of Longbourn—the older girls to Gracechurch Street and ultimately taking up employment away from the city.  The two younger girls remain in Meryton with their mother, to be sent away to seminary for some much-needed formal education.  But, the death of Thomas Bennet has changed more than the family’s financial fortunes.  It has also bent the arc of the P&P universe.


The Maid and The Footman (Released 12/1/2016)

There are two sides to every great story.  The tale of how General Sir Richard Fitzwilliam, Baron St. Jean, fell in love with a governess, Kitty Bennet, after she was terribly injured while protecting the Cecil heiress is well known. Now discover how an unbreakable bond between a footman and a maid grew in the face of that same tragedy and a developing international intrigue.

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The Maid and The Footman explores the increasing affection between a young lady’s maid and a retired Army sergeant which was as great as any love written about by the immortals. In the Jane Austen universe, the celebrated novels are written from the point-of-view of the landed gentry. Servants are rarely seen except to open doors, serve dinner or fetch smelling salts. The Maid and The Footman asserts that class is an imaginary distinction conferring no better manners on the “haves” and no lesser nobility on the “have-nots” and that the deepest human emotions are universal.

 The Maid and The Footman also reveals how Annie Reynolds and Henry Wilson teamed up with General Fitzwilliam to fight the nefarious plot that had penetrated to the heart of the British government after Napoleon’s fall. The hidden motive driving the attack on Kitty Bennet in Hyde Park is gradually revealed.  Throughout it all, Annie and Henry circle around one another finding remarkable depths of love in spite of the great forces tossing them about.

The Maid and The Footman is a companion and simultaneous novel to the popular novella Of Fortune’s Reversal. Readers may find that revisiting Of Fortune’s Reversal will make for a broader and more rewarding experience.

Life After: Werewolf Domination – sample

Here’s a teaser of my dystopian novel Life After:

Our camp went undiscovered for three weeks. One night, just before bedtime, we were sitting around the campfire, each of us lost in our own thoughts. Then suddenly, a long eerie howl shattered the silence. Everyone looked at each other, stunned.

Dad was the first to react. He leapt up and ran for his rifle, me right behind him, followed by Grandpa and Mom. All of us were armed to the teeth, and we crept to the edge of camp using the cars as cover. Dad scanned the area with his night-vision monocular.

“Looks like there’s only one, but it’s coming this way,” Dad said. He turned to Mom and whispered, “Suzi, on the count of three, turn the floodlight on straight ahead.”

She didn’t need to respond—she was ready to go. The rest of us knew what to do; when the light exposed the werewolf, lead would fly.

I was on pins and needles, and my breath was coming in short little gasps. “One…two…three!”

Mom flipped the switch. One hundred yards directly in front of us, stood the werewolf. Blinded by the sudden light in the darkness, it’d stopped and tried to shield its eyes. This only proved to irritate it further. It snarled in frustration and raised its head to smell the wind. I could hear it gnashing its teeth together.

Just as the beast lunged into a run toward us, gunshots tore through the quiet prairie and announced to anyone within a several mile radius they were not alone. Each of us aimed for a different part of the monster. The torso was the biggest target, but head shots were more effective. However, both only slowed the creature down unless we used silver bullets. Unfortunately, we were fresh out at the time.

But we continued to fire until the beast finally fell, some twenty yards away from where we stood. Once it hit the ground, all four of us raced as fast as we could to the body. It was rolling around growling and whimpering, obviously in pain

Then suddenly there was a sizzling noise as the werewolf body ejected the bullets and healed itself. Dad and I whipped out our machetes and went to work. He swung at the neck, and while he was pulling back to chop again, I hacked away. My blow did some damage, and blood squirted from the wound hitting me across the face. Mom and Grandpa joined in, and all four of us took turns swinging our axes into the creature’s bloody flesh.

It was over quickly once I’d delivered the blow decapitating the monster. Dad kicked the head away just in case it tried to sew itself back to the neck. Without silver bullets, cutting off the head was just as effective in killing a werewolf, albeit more dangerous to accomplish.

We stared at the bloody carcass for a minute while we caught our breath. Then we returned to the safety of the circle. We’d deal with the body in the morning. Since everyone else sat back in camp and did nothing, they could clean the mess up.

Liked what you read? Want more?

Buy Paperback HERE or HERE or HERE (enter BZ7QFE62 discount code for $5.00 off)

Vengeance of the Werewolf – sample

Enjoy this sample of Vengeance of the Werewolf:

 

When the beast reached the door it stood on its hind legs and grabbed the door handle and pulled. The bright light of the bathroom hurt its eyes until they adjusted. It ducked down and walked into the bathroom aiming for the handicapped stall at the other end. She was in there, it could smell her and the stupid dog. When the beast was about two stalls away from Harley, it heard her whispering to the dog and the rustle of clothing.

 

Skipper looked over his shoulder at Harley and she knew they were in very serious danger. The claws were close, so close the musky scent overwhelmed her. “Skip, I need you to scare the hell out of whoever that is. No biting, just bark and run. We have to get to the car.” She pulled her keys out of her pocket and reached for the door latch.

 

When the latch released the beast smashed the flat of its paw against the outside of the door. It ripped from its hinges revealing the girl. The beast almost smiled, forgetting about the dog.

 

Skipper lunged yanking the leash from Harley’s hand. Neither girl nor dog had ever seen anything like what stood in the open doorway. The thing facing them had to be over six feet tall and it was standing on its back legs. But it wasn’t a bear. It had the face of a wolf, but with more teeth.

Harley screamed when Skipper pulled away. Because of the slick floor, Skipper’s jump didn’t come as close to the neck as he would have liked. But no matter, his instinct was to attack and protect so he latched onto the first part of the monster he hit.

Harley watched in horror while Skipper clamped down on the monster’s groin. It screamed in rage and pain as Skipper shook his head from side to side.

Did you like what you read? Want more?

Buy Paperback HERE or HERE or HERE (enter LN9KBWTX discount code for $5.00 off)

Poaching the Immortal – Sample

This is a taste of the page turning goodness inside the front and back covers of Poaching the Immortal:

Donavon halted at the resonance of Ted’s challenge. Aaron ran into his backside and almost knocked them both to the ground.

“Will you watch where you’re going, jackass? You damn near knocked me down!” Donavon regained his footing and threw a dirty look back towards Aaron.

“Hey, I’m not the one who just stopped in the middle of the road here! Stupid fucker.”

Donavon ignored Aaron and said, “You heard that right? He’s changed. The werewolf is out of the bag now.”

“Of course I heard it. And it sounded fucking awesome. Can you see it? Because I can’t.” Aaron was bobbing his head back and forth and up and down while squinting his eyes.

“No, after he was hit and went down I saw dark fur and then just the bushes shaking. Maybe we killed him. They are supposed to be allergic to silver.” Donavon stared at the last spot he’d seen Ted.

Before either man could respond or raise their weapons Ted burst out from seemingly nowhere, catching them off guard. He caught Donavon first by bashing his full weight into him. Donavon fell to the ground with Ted’s snarling maw in his face. He could smell the hot animal breath and felt drops of saliva speckle him. He wasn’t prepared for the terror he was experiencing now. Nor was he prepared to be lying on the ground pinned beneath a ginormous monster.

Ted’s lips turned up a bit in a smile as he met eyes with Donavon. He was going to enjoy this. One ear swiveled backwards honing in on Aaron’s movements. His breathing was rapid and he was whimpering… it sounded like he was crawling away. He’d deal with him later. Ted turned his full attention back to Donavon and raised his right hand. He held his first finger up and waggled it back and forth before Donavon’s wide eyes.

Ted had his victim’s full attention now and lowered his clawed finger slowly to Donavon’s chest. Then he blinked his most innocent look at the man and balled his fist. Donavon didn’t have a chance to take his last breath. In a flash Ted jerked his hairy arm back and plunged his monstrous fist into his victim’s chest, shattering the breast bone and demolishing his heart.

Donavon gasped and his eyes darted wildly. His body was dead before his mind registered the trauma.

Ted continued to stare into Donavon’s eyes watching them dim while he raised his fist to his mouth and licked the gore from it. It tasted so good. He couldn’t believe he’d waited so long before feeding. His long tongue lapped at the final chunk of Donavon on his fist.

He looked down at Donavon’s corpse debating on whether to eat a bit or go after Aaron. Blood lust overruled the hunt. Ted used both clawed hands and tore the body cavity open. He buried his face in the warm flesh snapping at organs and lapping at blood. When the sweet viscera was gone, he rose to his feet and howled his joy at the sky.

I hoped you enjoyed the excerpt above. Want more?

Book Working Sample

For today I have a sample of the book I’m currently writing. Enjoy!!!

My life used to be blissfully happy. Before Santana was stolen from me. She left the house for school like normal. There wasn’t anything different about this Wednesday. The morning was brisk; fall always brings colder and colder mornings. Even though I’m the high school principal, Santana liked to walk with her best friend to school everyday. She never acted embarrassed of me like so many other teenage parents. No, she liked to gossip without dad listening to everything about everybody.

Santana and I don’t talk at school unless we pass in the hallway. A simple hi is all. She’s no angel, she’s been to my office before and I treat her just as any other student. She told me once she preferred it that way, she didn’t want anybody to get the idea that she received special treatment for being the principals daughter. It’s not commonplace for us to see one another either. This is how I lost my daughter.

I usually get home from school around five. Most days Santana is home unless she’s studying at her best friends house. Normally there’s a note on the counter letting me know or she texts me. I guess she forgot. She’s a teenager after all and they don’t always remember the rules.

At seven I was worried. I’d sent her several text messages, called her cell many times and finally gave in. What Chloe said chilled me to the bone. “I thought she was sick today. I waited at the park like normal. Santana never showed up. So I sent her a text asking if she was coming or what. She texted back she was sick.”

“She wasn’t sick. She got up and ready like any other day. She left the house at the normal time.”

“I’m sorry Mr. Howell, I didn’t think anything of it when she said she was sick. I sent a couple texts throughout the day but she never responded. I thought she was sleeping. I was actually getting ready to call her.”

Every parent’s nightmare was now my reality. My baby girl never made it to school.

It’s been over a year since Santana’s disappearance. The police have no leads. The only thing found was her cell phone and backpack tucked behind a bush in the park. Sheriff Thorton and his deputies Randy and Ted are some of the best folks I’ve ever met, but they can’t work miracles. What could it hurt if I did a little snooping of my own? You see all these documentaries on TV about human trafficking and it gets you to thinking. My Santana is a doll if there ever was one. She’d be perfect for human trafficking.

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