Here to kick off our first 2009 Character Debut Party is Sarah MacLean, author of THE SEASON, which I was lucky enough to read back in November. It kept my poor husband up all night, as every other page I was either oh-ing or oooh-ing or flat our laughing at strong-willed, sassy Lady Alexandra and her equally-engaging BFFs. One of the things I loved most about THE SEASON was the characters. Each was so well-developed and distinct, unique and multi-dimensional without ever overshadowing Lady Alex’s lead. Even the minor characters were full of life, each making his own impact on the story. After I read this book, I emailed Sarah for a crash course in Jane Austin for beginners — I’d never read Lady Jane and was so inspired by THE SEASON that I wanted to dive right in to Regency romance!
About THE SEASON
Seventeen-year-old Lady Alexandra Stafford doesn’t fit into the world of Regency London — she’s strong-willed, sharp-tongued, and she absolutely loathes dress fittings. Unfortunately, her mother has been waiting for years for Alex to be old enough to take part in the social whirlwind of a London Season so she can be married off to someone safe, respectable, wealthy, and almost certainly boring. But Alex is much more interested in adventure than romance.
Between sumptuous balls, lavish dinner parties and country weekends, Alex, along with her two best friends, Ella and Vivi, manages to get entangled in her biggest scrape yet. When the Earl of Blackmoor is killed in a puzzling accident, Alex decides to help his son, the brooding and devilishly handsome Gavin, uncover the truth. It’s a mystery brimming with espionage, murder, and suspicion. As she and Gavin grow closer, will Alex’s heart be stolen in the process?
Romance and danger fill the air, as this year’s Season begins!
Lady Alexandra’s 2009 Debut Party
Sarah MacLean is letting us crash! Let’s see what she has in store for Lady Alex and her friends on the big debut day.
The Guest List
- Emma Woodhouse from EMMA, sure to put her foot in it, but makes for a fun party nonetheless
- Lizzie Bennett from PRIDE & PREJUDICE, who is very clever and intelligent and would certainly add to the conversation
- Diana Holland from the LUXE series, real and fun and precisely the kind of friend Alex gravitates to
- Cedric Diggory from HARRY POTTER, a great sport and more than a little bit handsome
- Annabel and Owen from JUST LISTEN, an adorable couple and whom Alex would definitely like
- Rosalind from AS YOU LIKE IT — she’s smart and not afraid to masquerade as a boy. She’s bound to be fun!
Well, Alex has already had the debut her mother wanted her to have, complete with tepid lemonade, too many people and a hot, sticky ballroom.
The debut she would have liked to have had would have been outside at Hyde Park on a glorious, sunny, Spring afternoon… and very chill. No dancing, no inane conversation and absolutely no dress fittings. It would have included an elaborate picnic spread, Ella, Vivi, Nicola Salisbury, her brothers, Gavin (who is *like* a brother) and Freddie Stanhope, who is always good for a laugh. In a perfect world, Gavin would have let her drive his curricle to the party, which would have made the afternoon that much more fun.
The theme for Alex’s party would be good friends, good conversation. Guests would receive copies of PRIDE & PREJUDICE by A Lady.
The Guest of Honor: Alex Stafford
Alex would wear a dark green riding habit. That way, if she dirtied her gown while playing Pall Mall, her mother won’t flip out.
And her theme song? Like a Luminous Girl, by Mike Doughty.
Sarah MacLean’s Advice for Alex on Her Big Debut
Don’t get caught in the gardens doing something you shouldn’t be doing with someone you shouldn’t be doing it with.
Hmm… how very scandalous!
Thanks, Sarah, for letting us peak in on Alex’s debut party — sounds like the perfect way to spend an afternoon. And if you guys ever met Gavin, well… put it this way. As long as he’s around, a freak thunderstorm complete with hail couldn’t cool off that garden party!
THE SEASON is available in book stores now, and also online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound. If you pick your copy up at the local book store, take a picture and head on over to Sarah’s blog to let her know. On top of having a great book on your nightstand, you could win a cool Regency prize!
About the Author: Sarah MacLean grew up in Rhode Island, where she spent much of her free time bemoaning the fact that she was more than a century too late for own Season. Her unabashed addiction to historical fiction helped to earn her a degree in European History from Smith College before she moved to New York City to pursue a career in publishing. After receiving a Masters in Education from Harvard University, Sarah returned to New York, where she lives with her husband, their dog, and a ridiculously large collection of romance novels. She is currently working on a series of regency-set romances to be released in 2010 from Avon/HarperCollins. Visit her online at MacLeanSpace.