Coming soon! A Sense and Sensibility novel in tribute to one of Jane Austen’s most fascinating characters: Colonel Brandon.
Colonel Brandon is the consummate gentleman: honorable, kind almost to a fault, ever loyal and chivalrous. He’s also silent and grave, though. So what events in his troubled past left him downcast, and how does he finally find the path to a brighter future? In Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen gives us glimpses, but not the complete picture.
Now Colonel Brandon tells us his full story in His Own Words. He relates the truth about his early family life and his dear Eliza – his devotion to her and the devastating way she was lost to him forever. He shares with us a poignant tale from his military days in India – about a woman named Rashmi and how she likewise left a permanent mark on his soul. And of course Marianne. What did Brandon think and feel when he first saw her? How did his hopes for her subsequently rise, plummet, and then eventually climb upwards again? After Willoughby’s desertion, what finally caused Marianne to see Colonel Brandon in a different light?
This is not a variation but a supplement to the original story, chronicled in Brandon’s point of view. It’s a behind-the-scenes look at the things Jane Austen didn’t tell us about a true hero – the very best of men.
Colonel Brandon in His Own Words will be released June 28, 2022, in paperback and Kindle formats, with audio to follow. You can pre-order your Kindle copy here right now for automatic delivery on the 28th! This page will be updated as more detailed information becomes available. In the meantime, you can read the Prologue below and learn more about the book in these posts: Cover Design Prototypes, Creating Your Own Amusement (includes excerpt), and Sense and Sensibility: The Themes…
It is happening again, and I suddenly feel very old. Although I survived it once before – just – I have the gravest doubts that I can do so again. Some days, I do not even wish to.
The current circumstances are quite different, it is true. But the pain is the same – the sudden wrenching in my gut each time I think of it, which I do nearly every minute of every day; the repeated jolt of panic in my brain, which tells me that I must do something to stop it; the hollow ache in my heart and the certain knowledge of my own pathetic powerlessness. It is all too familiar, for once again the hand of the woman I love more than life itself is being given irrevocably to another, and there is absolutely nothing I can do about it.
It is no doubt weak and self-indulgent, as I have repeatedly told myself, but my mind will persist in entertaining questions of morbid curiosity. I cannot seem to help asking if, overall, it is better or worse this time. Is my disappointment more or less profound, the circumstances more or less regrettable? Will the resulting pain last as long as before and leave scars as deep?
Perhaps it is only the proximity, but the current event appears worse – at least for myself personally – for I shall not only have the pain that she is lost to me forever but the additional mortification of knowing she does not care for me. In truth, she thinks nothing of me at all. So, God willing, I shall be the only one to suffer, which was not the case before.
I would not wish her fate on Marianne Dashwood, not for the world. In fact, that must be my chief consolation: knowing that Marianne is happy, even if it must be in the arms of another man. I would willingly sacrifice my own happiness and more if it would secure a lasting one for her. And yet who can say that her present bliss will endure, dependent as it is upon a man of whom I have every reason to think ill? And so my mind can by no means be easy.
I have been to her sister in Berkeley Street to have my worst fears confirmed, and now I know I should put Marianne from my mind and retire to Delaford to lick my wounds. And so I have made ready to do more than once. Still, as long as she is in London, I feel compelled to stand by – for what purpose, I cannot even conceive – at least until she is well and truly married. After that, it will be nobody’s right except her husband’s to be concerned for her welfare.
Until then, however, I will wait. Perhaps there may yet be some small service I can render. If I am needed, I swear I will not fail her. Whatever the cost, I must do better by Marianne than I did by Eliza… or by Rashmi.
Meanwhile, I have nothing to do but think of the past. Although there have been enough joys and compensations over the years, the regrets and failures continue to haunt me. I am in a dangerous state of mind.