C. Allyn Pierson’s Inspiration for Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister

C. Allyn Pierson, author of Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister available from Sourcebooks, recently agreed to share with my readers not only her inspiration for the novel, but also her initial thoughts about Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen upon first reading it.

Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister focuses on Georgiana as she blossoms into a young woman from a small girl growing up under her brother’s care and the many changes that can bring.  Stay tuned for my review tomorrow, Sept. 3.

Additionally, the publisher is offering my US/Canada readers an opportunity to win Pierson’s book and read it for themselves.  Check out those details after the guest post.

Without further ado, please give C. Allyn Pierson a warm welcome.

Like many people, I read Pride and Prejudice in school and I liked it, but somehow it didn’t really click with me, probably because of the outdated language.  Then, when my children were young, we hired au pairs from England to care for them because we had difficulty finding suitable care for our younger son, who has autism.  Au pairs are only allowed to stay for a year so we went through quite a number of them, but our third was a big Austen fan.  She not only induced me to reread all of Austen’s major works, she introduced me to the 1995 BBC version of Pride and Prejudice and gave me the book about the making of the series and I was hooked!

For a number of years I read and reread Austen’s works and I would pick up new insights with every reading.  Finally I decided to try Pamela Aiden’s three book series telling the P&P story from Darcy’s point of view.  Although I enjoyed her book very much, I found that I had very strong feelings about how the characters in Pride and Prejudice were developing and my opinion was different than Ms. Aiden’s.  It was not quite a stroke of lightning, but I suddenly wanted to write the story of what I felt happened after Darcy and Elizabeth married. I wrote in secret, when my husband was working or playing tennis, and did not tell anyone what I was doing because I did not know if I would actually finish it.  I was rather tied at home since my younger son went to bed early and could not be left alone, and it was a perfect situation for writing.

When I finally decided to publish I knew that my stumbling efforts were not ready to interest a traditional publisher, so I decided to self-publish with iUniverse.  At that point I needed to let my husband know I was going to be spending some significant money to publish. My husband and I have a standing date on Tuesdays and I picked one evening to tell him that I had written a book.  He was absolutely flabbergasted (and let me tell you it is not easy to bring an eye surgeon to a complete standstill!), but, after a long, disbelieving pause, said, “You might just be able to sell that” and encouraged me to move ahead on publication.

Living in a small town, I did not have a lot of contacts with other writers or teachers who were experienced in publishing so I purchased the editing services I needed from iUniverse and basically used the various editors as my teachers.  Not surprisingly, the manuscript evolved over time and became more and more Georgiana’s story, since the first year of the Darcys’ marriage would include Georgiana’s coming of age.  I was pleased with the final book and it caught the eye of an agent, and the rest is history…

Thanks so much for sharing your inspiration with us, C. Allyn Pierson.

About the Author:

C. Allyn Pierson is the nom-de-plume of a physician, who has combined her many years of interest in the works of Jane Austen and the history of Regency England into this sequel to Pride and Prejudice. She lives with her family and three dogs in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Giveaway details:

2 copies of Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister are up for grabs.  Sorry, US/Canada residents only.

1.  Leave a comment about your first impressions of Pride & Prejudice.

2.  Blog, Tweet, Facebook, etc. for a second entry.

Deadline is Sept. 17, 2010, at 11:59 PM EST.


  1. Pam S (pams00) says

    I fell in love with Mr. Darcy from the moment I was introduced to him :). ty for the great giveaway.

    pams00 @ aol.com

  2. During my senior year of high school, our English teacher handed us a list of books and told us that we had free choice to pick one we thought we’d like to read and discuss in essay form. I had never read Austen so I chose Pride and Prejudice. I remember needing to make a cheat sheet to keep the characters straight, but loved the book right away. Still do.

  3. Marlene Breakfield says

    Tweeted. http://twitter.com/mbreakfield/status/24757828569

  4. Marlene Breakfield says

    P&P is my favorite book. I have loved it, since I first read it in jr, high. This book looks like my kind of read.

  5. I remember being a little daunted by the size as a child, but I really liked it. Even if I didn’t understand it all at the age I read it.

    [email protected]

  6. I first read Pride and Prejudice when I was a freshman in high school. It was a revelation. I quickly declared it my favorite book and, as soon as I was finished the first time, I read it again. Then I saw the Colin Firth version of P&P and it was all over. I was ruined for other books for a long time.

  7. The first time I ever had anything to do with Pride and Predjudice was when I was a little girl. My mom was watching one of the made for tv versions. I was laying on the couch with her. I remember I didn’t know what was happening but I was entranced by it.

  8. Here too, http://bit.ly/cefcad
    comethespring at gmail dot com

    The cover is so beautiful!

  9. I blogged here, http://bit.ly/afFkIw
    comethespring at gmail dot com

  10. What a lovely giveaway. I haven’t read the book (P&P) yet thought it is in my TBR pile. I’d love to read this one after it.

    comethespring at gmail dot com

  11. Forgot to mention: please enter me, though I’m international I can send this as a gift to a friend who lives in the US 🙂 Thanks!

  12. I also read this while in high school, and it didn’t really leave an impression other than it had to be read so let’s get it over with.
    But rereading it out of my own will, I liked it, especially how Jane’s character is often contrasted with Elisabeth’s.
    It’s great to see the good in others, but not only the good though, right? 🙂

  13. I loved Pride & Prejudice from the first page onward. It was different from anything I’ve read before.

  14. This does sound really good. Pride & Prejudice is my favorite Austen. This sounds like an interesting take on Georgiana.

  15. Thanks for the comments! Those of you who are not from Canada or the US can enter a contest on http://www.thesecretunderstandingofthehearts.blogspot.com/
    This is a blog by Italian Maria Grazia called “My Jane Austen Book Club” and I will be personally mailing signed copies of “Mr. Darcy’s Little Sister” to the winners (the publisher’s policy limits them to sending copies to the US and Canada, but they were perfectly willing to send the books to me so I can send them to the winner’s of Maria Grazia’s contest) She has not posted the contest yet, so keep an eye on her blog as well as on Savvy Verse and Wit!

  16. Wow, I have no idea how she managed to keep writing a book a secret from her husband! At least he was very supportive.

    No need to enter me, as I already have a copy, but I added the giveaway to my sidebar.

  17. What a great story!! I love that the au pair got her hooked on Austen. I do have to “settle into” the language to older books, but once I do, I love it.

  18. Like Ms. Pierson, my first impression of P & P was less than enthusiastic because of the outdated language, but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the movie versions of the wonderful story. This novel sounds great. Thanks for the giveaway.

  19. i enjoyed P&P…thanks for the opportunity to read this novel…i’m very interested 🙂

  20. I always wondered when a book on Georgiana would come out. This is definitely going on my Wishlist.

    Don’t enter me. I’m international 🙂