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Karen Doornebos | UNDRESSING MR. DARCY - Or: what is an educational "striptease" anyway?

Hello from the Guild Hall in Bath!

As an ice-breaker to each leg of my Blog Tour for UNDRESSING MR. DARCY, I'm taking you along for a ride to England, where I traveled during the summer of 2012 to do some research for the book. Said research, however, did not include seeing Mr. Darcy do an educational striptease act (which I will explain in a second).

Bath Ball

Where am I on this stop? I attended the Summer Ball hosted by the Jane Austen Centre and held at the Guildhall in Bath. Here I am in costume with some handsome Regency gents! The Guildhall itself is gorgeous and, during the Jane Austen Festival in the fall, it houses the Regency Fayre where you can buy all kinds of Regency-inspired goodies. The dancing at the ball that summer evening proved impeccable, the music--inspirational, and the room--divine.

Karen at ball

So, let's get back to this educational striptease thing.

Yes, lets! Here's how it all started. I was researching Regency male clothing for my first book, DEFINITELY NOT MR. DARCY, when I stumbled across a website in England called The History Wardrobe. Among its offerings, it featured a live show of a "Mr. Darcy" who would take off his historical clothing—down to his historically accurate drawers—while someone lectured about each article of clothing. Unfortunately, the Wardrobe no longer does their Undressing Mr. Darcy show. To date I have still not seen a Mr. Darcy do such a show, even though it provides the premise of my book! (I am aware there is a Dressing Mr. Darcy show put on by an American man at the Louisville Jane Austen Society of North America Jane Austen Festival and might just have to check that out for research purposes ;) right?)

When I saw that listing of Undressing Mr. imagination started clicking along. Well, wouldn't yours? Or is it just me?! It wasn't long before I came up with:

He's a hardcover book reader and writes with a quill pen. She's all plugged into her cell phone and laptop. Can he claim her heart without so much as a GPS?

The story began to take shape: Julian has inherited a crumbling estate. To help raise money to restore the estate to its former glory, he comes up with an idea to spend a year living as if he were Mr. Darcy. He writes a book about it called My Year as Mr. Darcy and then he comes to the states to promote his book using the Undressing Mr. Darcy show as bait.

My heroine, Vanessa, isn't really a Jane Austen fan. She takes on Julian's public relations as a favor to her aunt, but soon finds herself attracted to Julian, and yes, even warms up to Austen...

The only character that didn't figure into the first sketchy outline, but soon quickly inserted (and asserted) himself, is Chase, who was inspired by Johnny Depp's Captain Jack Sparrow! You'll have to see for yourself how the story unfolds!

Fresh Fiction reviewed UNDRESSING MR. DARCY here, where you will also find an excerpt of the first chapter. The very upbeat review called it "a delightful romp through Jane Austen fandom." It went on to say, "Filled with witty humor and quirky characters, UNDRESSING MR. DARCY is a story that Austen fans will savor."

I hope you'll love it!

Buy now at Berkley Penguin - Indiebound- Amazon - B&N - Kobo - BAM - iTunes   


Fresh Fiction readers, comment below for your chance to win a copy of UNDRESSING MR. DARCY... Would you ever want to attend an historical undressing show? If so, who might you want to see take it off down to his drawers?! Contest is limited to U.S. readers.

Mr. Darcy's Stripping Off...

...a boot. At each blog stop Mr. Darcy will strip off another piece of clothing. Keep track of each item in chronological order and at then end of the tour you can enter to win a GRAND PRIZE of the book, "DO NOT DISTURB I'm Undressing Mr. Darcy" door hangers for you and your friends, tea, and a bottle of wine (assuming I can legally ship it to your state). US entries only, please.

grand prize

Karen Doornebos is the author of UNDRESSING MR. DARCY published by Berkley, Penguin and available here or at your favorite bookstore. Her first novel, DEFINITELY NOT MR. DARCY, has been published in three countries and was granted a starred review by Publisher's Weekly. Karen lived and worked in London for a short time, but is now happy just being a lifelong member of the Jane Austen Society of North America and living in the Chicagoland area with her husband, two teenagers and various pets—including a bird. Speaking of birds, follow her on Twitter and Facebook! She hopes to see you there, on her website and her group blog Austen Authors.





27 comments posted.

Re: Karen Doornebos | UNDRESSING MR. DARCY - Or: what is an educational "striptease" anyway?

Yes I'd love to go to a undressing Mr Darcy party...I love to see Ryan Reynolds as Mr. Darcy!!!!
(Bonnie Capuano 7:50am December 9, 2013)

Colin Firth is the ultimate Mr. Darcy!
(Kathy Sullivan 11:08am December 9, 2013)

Please don't shoot me, but I've never read a Jane Austen book before. I'm really out of the loop, as far as reading goes, and have been trying to play catch-up. Your book really peaked my interest, and actually made my day!! I think a Mr. Darcy undressing show would be quite interesting, and Johnny Depp would have my first vote, then Robert Downey Jr. Since you're in the Jane Austen Society, I think I'm going to have to look up your books to get my feet wet, so to speak. Congratulations on your book, and have a Merry Christmas, and the best in the New Year!!
(Peggy Roberson 11:36am December 9, 2013)

If Colin Firth was Mr. Darcy, count me in!
(Abby Thorne 11:48am December 9, 2013)

Colin Firth is always a good choice, but what about Jason
Statham? I wouldn't mind doing "research" with him modeling
the regency style menswear.
(LaRonda Atchison 12:31pm December 9, 2013)

That is a fun idea. How about a show with all Jane Austen heroes.
(Maureen Emmons 1:00pm December 9, 2013)

I guess it really would depend upon who was undressing.
(Kim V 1:34pm December 9, 2013)

Definitely want to see Mr. Darcy...but I would not mind a few Regency-dressed hotties such as Henry Cavill, Ian Somerhalder, and Chris Hemsworth!
(Sandy Kenny 2:03pm December 9, 2013)

So Orlando Bloom might not be Darcy, but he would be smashing in an historical undressing show.
(Anna Mekus 2:35pm December 9, 2013)

Not sure who I would want to see historical undressing but a
fun idea! maybe Robert Downey Jr. :)
(Dianne McVetty 2:41pm December 9, 2013)

Sounds like a good book. I have your other one, Definitely Not Mr. Darcy, and I'd love to win this one. I'd watch the undressing if it was on T.V.
(Michelle Fidler 2:53pm December 9, 2013)

I always thought Davy Crockett was probably an imposing, handsome, adventurous guy. So, I would want to go to an undressing party for him. Wonder what he wore under those buckskins?
(Sandy Fielder 3:01pm December 9, 2013)

Hmm not sure but I would love to see Gerard Butler strip down to his underwear
(Vickie Schultz 3:53pm December 9, 2013)

I have always loved Mr. Darcy and your book sounds so delightful. Love to win it.
(Nancy Wolfe 4:13pm December 9, 2013)

Your book sounds like such fun! I'd definitely go to an undressing Mr. Darcy party. LOL
(Marcy Shuler 4:42pm December 9, 2013)

Well, if we were to have an undressing party and I were to choose a historical fiction figure I would have to say Rhett Butler!I would enjoy such a party for sure!
(Vennie Martinisi 5:16pm December 9, 2013)

This is way out in left field for me......I don't know who I'd like to see undressed but I think I'll go with Michael Caine. I've loved him since Alfie and always will.
(Susan Coster 5:42pm December 9, 2013)

I would choose Chris Hemsworth or Johnny Depp for my choice in getting undressed (gotta have some eye-candy) at this PARTY! I better bring a fan! I love your book cover.
(Linda Luinstra 6:02pm December 9, 2013)

I would have a blast and of course George Clooney is my take it off man
he is so sexy can you blame me
(Michelle Dodd 6:38pm December 9, 2013)

Book sounds great, not to sure I'd like to attend an undressing.
(Sheila True 10:08pm December 9, 2013)

Hugh Jackman for the undressing of Mr. Darcy. He has sideburns.
(Kai Wong 10:14pm December 9, 2013)

So many images popped into my head when I read the title for this book. :)~
(Callie Stuck 10:24pm December 9, 2013)

Would have to say Colin Firth.
(Leslie Davis 10:33pm December 9, 2013)

Oh my! Where is my fan when I need to hide my red face? Would I like to see Mr. Darcy take off his historically accurate clothing? Um, well, yes! Colin Firth is still my go to guy for the role, though!
(Marcia Berbeza 10:33pm December 9, 2013)

Yes... But I would be blushing up a storm! I'll go with a Mr. Darcy and say Matthew Macfadyen :-)
(Chelsea Brooks 11:41pm December 9, 2013)

What a wonderful occasion to attend. I was in Bath years ago
and loved the area.
I need to re-read these books.
Appreciate the giveaway.
(Leona Olson 9:57am December 10, 2013)

I'd be up for an educational show as well. Do we have to
stick with one model??
(Glenda Martillotti 11:06pm December 10, 2013)

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