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8 October 2014

Upcoming release: 'The Madness of Mr. Darcy' by Alexa Adams

In March of this year, I had the lovely Alexa Adams stopping by 'A Spoonful of Happy Endings' to tell all of us a bit more about her latest novel, 'The Madness of Mr. Darcy' (click here to read the exclusive excerpt and Alexa's own introduction to the novel!). 'The Madness of Mr. Darcy' is a reimagination of Jane Austen's classic 'Pride and Prejudice' and Alexa has managed to really give it her own unique spin. 

The year is 1832 and regrets beleaguer Fitzwilliam Darcy. All he ever cared for has been taken from him: his pride, his sister, and his true love, Elizabeth Bennet. Now, having nearly murdered a man in a fit of rage, he might lose Pemberley, too. More than just his home, his very identity is at stake. In desperation, he seeks the help of Dr. Frederick Wilson, owner and proprietor of Ramsey House, a madhouse for fine ladies and gentlemen. Is Darcy’s confinement the inevitable end to his tortured descent, or will he rediscover what he lost in the most unlikely of places?   

I can't wait to read Alexa's next retelling of a Jane Austen classic, but for now I have another exclusive excerpt of the novel to share with all of you today!
Darcy walked up the ramp that led to the freshly painted door. Though other areas of the estate might suffer his neglect, this place saw none of it. He made certain conditions at the cottage were perfectly maintained. The gardens and walking paths were tended and maintained with the same attention devoted to the big house. The inside had been refurbished with the most modern conveniences and contrivances, all installed with the occupant’s condition in mind. Nothing was left unattended.
“Mr. Darcy.” The plump woman he hired as both housekeeper and nurse to George acknowledged him with a nod.   

“Good morning, Mrs. Able. How are you?”

“Tell Darcy he need not mind the pleasantries, Hatty. If he did, he would not be here at all, for his visits are never agreeable.”

“Hello, George,” Mr. Darcy replied, entering the cheerful front room. Wickham sat by a large window that framed the pleasing landscape bounding the cottage’s south side, examining the scene with a determination born out of a refusal to face his guest.

“What do you want, Darcy?”

“I have something I need to tell you.” He remained standing, staring at the back of his former friend and longtime enemy’s head, which suddenly twitched to the side, revealing the briefest glimpse of profile.
“Oh, do sit down, man! Still stubbornly formal, I see. It is a trait I have always detested in you.” Darcy perched himself upon the nearest seat, but he could not abandon his rigid posture, quite necessary for endurance of this ordeal. “What have you to say?” demanded Wickham, renewing his focus on the scene outside.
“I am leaving Pemberley for a while, and I am not sure when I will return.”
“What? Will you deprive me of your precious company?” He huffed. “I did not think you had much occasion for mixing with the world anymore.”
“I don’t.”
The wheeled chair in which Mr. Wickham sat suddenly lurched forward and around to directly confront Mr. Darcy, who willed himself not to flinch at the sight of the scarred face. “Then where do you go?” he demanded.
Mr. Darcy looked him directly in the eye, trying to not stare at the disfigured flesh. “To a madhouse, if you must know.”
“A madhouse?” The harsh visage softened. “You mean you go willingly?”
“The man who runs it offers hope, and I have none other before me.”
“You must be mad, Darcy, to consent to such a thing! And if you are not, you surely will be before long. Do you not know what happens in such places?”

“I have spoken to the doctor myself, and he has described his methods. I know what to expect.”
“Like hell you do! Good riddance to you, then! We shall not meet again.” He turned again towards the window.
“I am not leaving for some weeks.”
“I see no reason to beleaguer our goodbyes.”
“Nevertheless, I will come see you before my departure, and I feel certain I will see you again soon afterwards, even before the year is out,” Darcy told the balding head before him. Upon receiving no response, he continued, “I will leave instructions regarding your needs.”
A bitter laugh escaped Wickham. “I did not think you would leave me unguarded.”
“Take care of yourself, George.”
“Just go, Fitz.” Darcy moved towards the door, but hesitating, he turned back and stood for several moments, staring at the back of Wickham’s head. “For God’s sake, Darcy! What is it?” The head impatiently urged him to speak.
“The man who runs Ramsey House is an old friend of Lord Matlock’s,” he said softly.
“And why should that matter so to me that you must stand there in silence like an imbecile?”
Darcy forced the words out. “The matron who works beside him is called Mrs. Bennet.”
Wickham glanced quickly to the side, again revealing his scarred profile. “I see,” he said.
“So you recall the name?”
The crippled man spun his chair around with surprising force. “Of course, I remember the name, Darcy! What do you take me for?” he spat angrily.
Numbly, Darcy replied, “The kind of man who would sell an innocent.”
“Oh, yes!” Wickham smirked. “I had forgotten about that.“
Darcy felt his hatred for the man swell up for the first time since the fire. “I do not see how you could,” he said through clenched teeth. If the man before him were not a cripple, he did not think he could control himself.
“Yet you just expressed surprise that I recalled the name Bennet! Do make up your mind, Fitz: am I a complete heartless cad, or will you grant me the humanity of having a conscience?”
“Do you?” Darcy asked wearily.
Wickham held his eye. “It does not matter how I reply. You made up your mind as to my character many, many years ago.” He turned back round to the window. “So you think Mrs. Bennet is a relation to those at Longbourn?”
“It seems possible,” Darcy admitted reluctantly.
“Be sure to send her my regards, should she prove an acquaintance.”
“You make me sick, George.”
“I have no desire for your presence either, Darcy. Do take yourself off already.”

Darcy left without another word. Once he heard the door shut, Wickham rolled himself over to the front window, where he could watch Darcy mount Jason and ride hastily away. Had the master of Pemberley bothered to turn round, he might have perceived his childhood playmate’ vigil, one silent tear making its bumpy way down his distorted cheek.

If you want to keep up to date on Alexa Adams' books, be sure to stop by her blog. Thanks so much for sharing this excerpt with us today, Alexa! :)


  1. That's lovely, Jody! Thank you so much for sharing both the rough and now the finished excerpt. I hope your readers find this glimpse into my editing process interesting. The book is now published and I'm starting to receive good feedback. Looking forward to reading your thoughts soon!

    1. You're very welcome, Alexa! I can't wait to read the entire novel! :)