Jane Austen Lied to Me



Jeanette Watts

GENRE:  Romantic Comedy Audiobook

What college girl doesn’t dream of meeting Mr. Darcy? Lizzy was certainly no exception. But when Darcy Fitzwilliam comes into her life, he turns out to be every bit as aggravating as Elizabeth Bennett’s Fitzwilliam Darcy. So what’s a modern girl to think, except....

How could my hero be so wrong?

Enjoy an Excerpt:

Feb 7

This afternoon I got further confirmation that I’ve been seeing an awful lot of Michael.  I was wandering back to the apartment, when Lon hailed me from one of the couches inside the lobby doors.

“I have a message for you from your boyfriend,” he said, kind of stiffly.

I looked at him stupidly for a moment.  “My what?”

“Your boyfriend was here.  He said his phone was dead, so he couldn’t call or text you to tell you that he can’t stick around for dinner tonight.  He has a late meeting with a new client and he had to rush back to the office.”

I was still having trouble with the boyfriend thing.  “Wait – do you mean Michael?”

“If that’s the guy you’ve been seeing the last couple of months,” Lon said with a shrug.  “The one you’re always having dinner with.”

“He’s not my boyfriend,” I protested.  “He’s an old friend of the family.  We grew up together.”

Lon's head was back at his computer screen.  “Boyfriend, friend.  The guy who kisses you goodnight all the time after he takes you out for dinner.  He’s not coming tonight.  I’ve delivered my message, that’s all I’ve got.”

Right then Allie walked up.  “Hey, Lizzie!  Waiting for Michael?”

“No, he’s not coming tonight.”  I headed to the elevator with her.

“That’s a shame.  I know how much you enjoy having dinner with him, even if he does aggravate you a lot.”

“Yeah.  It’s kind of a love-hate relationship,” I agreed.  

About the Author:

Jeanette Watts has written three Jane Austen-inspired novels and two short stories for Jane Austen Fan Fiction anthologies, two other works of historical fiction, stage melodramas, television commercials, and historical dance manuals. She is a regular contributor to MOMCC Magazine.

When she is not writing, she is either dancing, sewing, or making videos for her YouTube channel and TikTok accounts, “History is My Playground.” 

Q&A With the Author

Who is your favorite author and why? 

I am usually writing historical fiction, but I read almost nothing but biographies! My favorite author is David McCullough. He, and Shelby Foote, and Ron Chernow, embody everything I love about history. 

History is a collection of stories. It’s not dates, although, yeah, when you care, you know what the dates are. It’s about messy imperfect people doing the best they can with what they’ve got to work with, just surviving, making mistakes, laughing and loving and crying and running for their lives sometimes.

It’s never simple, it’s never easy, and the truth is always so much better than any simplified fabrication. I try to always reflect that in my characters, and create messy imperfect people who are doing the best they can.

What is something unique/quirky about you? 

I can’t ever seem to be able to color inside the lines.

The rules are, pick a genre to write in, and stick to it. So, here I am with an audiobook for a modern Rom Com for Janeites, after writing historical fiction. I would rather write a GOOD book than an uninspired one.

The rules are, post on social media about book stuff. I have a YouTube Channel and a TikTok account both called “History is My Playground.” And what do I talk about? All kinds of things. Wearing historical costumes, making historical costumes, dancing in historical costumes. And Packard cars. And WWII planes. And trains. Lots of trains. And house museums. And forts. And how to put sunscreen on your right arm when you’ve broken your left arm. 

I suppose there are those who would say I simply follow my own rules, and follow wherever my joy will take me. I like bringing people with me on those journeys: it’s why I am a dance teacher.

What was your inspiration for writing this book? 

Just one more person sighing “Mr Darcy! He’s so handsome/romantic!”

I like asking questions. I ask too many questions, and as I tell all my students whom I encourage to ask too many questions, I will get into trouble for that. But it’s always worth it.

I’m a Jane Austen fan, the more I read her and the more adaptations I’ve written the more I appreciate her genius. But I don’t think I ever love anything so much that I stop asking questions. But  “did you read the same book I did?” was not a question to ask out loud. Jane Austen says very little about the appearance of her characters. Is Emma a blonde or a brunette? What color are Elizabeth Bennet’s “fine eyes?” She doesn’t tell us.

So, what about Darcy being handsome? The text of Pride and Prejudice refers to handsome women more often than handsome men. There are also handsome buildings, a dinner gets called handsome, behavior is considered handsome. The word shows up 46 times in the text, and only a small percentage in describing the book’s ultimate love interest.

As for romantic…? Shy, rich jerk says nasty things in public, and we never do get an explanation that justifies his rudeness…?

I had questions. That often seems to lead to writing books.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book? 

The challenge of keeping that same level of questions through all of Jane Austen’s published novels. The theme could be summarized as “Real life doesn’t work that way,” and this story isn’t a rewrite of Pride and Prejudice: my hapless heroine’s life goes through all six books. It kept me on my toes.

Do you have any other books you are working on that you can tell us about? 

I am still searching for a reader for the last of my books that hasn’t been turned into an audiobook: Brains and Beauty is going to require a particularly unique voice, because it’s important to me to pair the reader with the narrator of the book.

I am also excited by the contest I just entered where you only submit the very first page: my very first line is, “I was done with love.” The working title for the book is A Marriage of Convenience. Wish me luck!

Anything more you would like to say to your readers and fans?

Kristyna Zaharek has the most flexible and expressive voice! She does confusion, hurt, lust, frustration, anger, with so much feeling, she makes you really feel what it’s like to be 17 years old. You are going to love her reading of Jane Austen Lied to Me!

Contact Links

Website: https://www.JeanetteWatts.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JeanetteWattsAuthor

Twitter: @JeanetteAWatts

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6967936.Jeanette_Watts


Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jeanette2420/_saved/

Instagram: @jeanetteamlwatts

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClz5LwyUEhPYhBS6piNpBqQ

Or YouTube handle: @historyismyplayground1827

TikTok: @historyismyplayground


The author will be awarding a Jane Austen Coloring Book (US only) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter.  Please visit the other tour participants for more opportunities to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway



  1. Thank you so much for having me! Sorry to hear about your medical misadventures. I'm a cancer survivor, too; keep focusing on the things you love to do. This is just a temporary inconvenience. - Jeanette

  2. This sounds like an interesting book and I also like the cover.

  3. Jane austen anything interests me! i am in :)


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