Good Things Come in Fives Indeed

Good Things Come in Fives Indeed


Five years ago this month, I released To Have His Cake (and Eat It Too): Mr. Darcy’s Tale. What a remarkable journey it’s been since then. I’ve been reflecting on this milestone for weeks. In the spirit of a theme of fives, I thought I’d share five lists of fives in today’s post, starting with five things you probably do not know about yours truly.

The Rotunda -
The Rotunda –

(1) I attended the University of Virginia as an undergraduate.

(2) I pledged Delta Sigma Theta Sorority during my third year.

(3) My favorite color is red. In a related tidbit, I have a red comb I bought as a teenager that I still carry with me almost everywhere I go. I am rather certain I haven’t used that particular comb in decades, but as with my keys, I won’t leave the house without checking to see that my red comb from my high school days is in my purse.

(4) I collect elephants. Not real ones—I only admire real elephants from afar.

(5) The street name of every house I’ve ever owned begins with the letter ‘C’. The first house I bought was on Camolin Court in Richmond, Virginia. Next, I bought a house on Champlain Way in Franklin Park, New Jersey. Then there’s the house I own now. Trust me, ‘C’ is the first letter of my street’s name. I didn’t plan it that way, but I suspect that if my future house hunting endeavors find me contemplating a house on a street named Chatsworth, it will serve as a strong inducement to say yes.

Next up is a list of five books I’ve read that have had a profound impact on my adult life.

(1) The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey

(2) Getting to Yes by Roger Fisher and William L. Ury

(3) Who Moved My Cheese? by Dr. Stephen Johnson

(4) Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life by Dr. Wayne Dyer

(5) Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Here’s another list of five—five of the first JAFF books I ever purchased.

(1) Linda Berdoll’s Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife

(2) Pamela Aidan’s An Assembly Such as This

(3) Sharon Lathan’s Mr. and Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy

(4) Abigail Reynold’s Impulse and Initiative

(5) Linda Berdoll’s Darcy and Elizabeth

Much like Mrs. Bennet, I do not like to boast of my own child or in this case, children, but I’d be remiss if I did not share the next list. It’s five of my own books that are my favorites.

(1) To Have His Cake

(2) He Taught Me to Hope

(3) Bewitched, Body and Soul

(4) A Lasting Love Affair

(5) Lady Elizabeth

Wow! That was not easy for me to do. However, it does bring me to the fifth and final list. Here are five of my favorite Matthew MacFadyen films / TV series:

(1) MI-5 tops the list. I love Tom Quinn. I believe I have committed every episode of Seasons One and Two by heart. What’s more, I have written a ‘what-if’ version of the story titled, Tom and Christine. Mind you, it’s strictly for my own entertainment purposes.

(2) There’s also Little Dorrit. I love Mr. Arthur Clennam too. Were it not for the evil Rigaud sneaking around killing so many people for no good reason as far as I can discern, I would have watched Little Dorrit a lot more often than I have.

Matthew MacFadyen in Almost Strangers
Almost Strangers

(3) The Pillars of the Earth makes the list. Here’s a case where I read the book before seeing the adaptation. What a real treat it was to imagine Matthew MacFadyen as Prior Philip throughout the epic story.

(4) Almost Strangers is one of my go-to films. I have watched it at least six or seven times. I could try to explain what fascinates me most about the story, but perhaps this picture says it best.


Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy


(5) Last, but certainly not least is Pride and Prejudice. I’ve watched this film at least six or seven times in under a week. Who’s to say how many times I’ve watched it in total. During those earlier viewings, I always found myself pausing at this spot. *Swoon* It’s the moment he appeared at Rosings. That is when I knew I was in love with Mr. Darcy.


I’ve mentioned before what a remarkable five-year journey this has been. One of the things I have enjoyed most is getting to know so many of you. As amazing as you all are, I am certain there are more than a few interesting facts that others have yet to learn about you. It’s time for your share in the conversation. Tell me something about yourself that I might not already know.


Pride and Prejudice Untold Book Banner

What say you to a giveaway? I have released a Limited Edition book bundle of the Pride and Prejudice Untold series books to mark the Fifth Anniversary of To Have His Cake (and Eat It Too): Mr. Darcy’s Tale. Comment for a chance to win an eBook edition. One winner will be chosen on Tuesday, October 27th.


57 Responses to Good Things Come in Fives Indeed

  1. I first read Pride & Prejudice because of the 2005 movie. I was 12 and wanted to see it really bad, partly because it had Keira Knightley in it, but I refused to go and see it until I read the book first. Lets say I got confused at times on which Miss Bennet was who at times but when I then saw the movie everything I was confused about became clearer.

  2. Liked your lists! I loved Little Dorritt. As a Lord of the Rings fan, I found Rigaud’s character interesting, although very creepy…not so different from Gollum. Pam Aidan was also one of the first JAFF authors I ever read, back before I had even heard of JAFF. Congrats on your 5 years!

  3. As Mallory and Melanie have said Matthew in Ripper Street is amazing. He still has Darcy like hauteur but is a kind and thoughtful man with and unmistakable grace and class. An older, slightly grittier, Mr Darcy. And he is still yummy 🙂

    I do enjoy your novels. They are well written, well edited and their stories captivating – keep up the great work!

    • Thanks so much for your kind words! I think this is the first time I’ve read such a compelling view of Matthew in Ripper Street. I’ve only watched a few minutes of one episode. Now, I absolutely must give it another try. 🙂

      • I found Ripper Street the second season and HAD to order the first season on DVD to determine some of the plot lines (especially about his daughter). I now have HULU and Netflix but didn’t have that then. I really like the show but it does have a very dark side. Some of the characters’ backgrounds are only now being revealed. But then I only found MI5 recently and am still catching up on that series. Being that not only Matthew but also Rupert Penry-Jones and Richard Armitage are in the series I HAD to view it. But was saddened when Matthew left the show. Still wonder what he is doing in civilian life…even if he is a fictional character.

        • I couldn’t stop thinking about Tom Quinn’s civilian life either, Sheila. That’s the reason I wrote my own story. I love the way it turned out. 😉 A wonderful HEA ending. Plus, I purchased a book titled [Spooks] The Personnel Files to learn additional insights into the storyline. It includes info about what happened next for the character.

          I have been hesitant to watch Ripper Street for so long, citing my ardent distaste for violence. Never mind the fact that I’ve watched the Tom Quinn MI5 episodes dozens of times. I also had the excuse of not wanting to pay for the earlier Seasons. Now, I have Hulu (I have to keep up with Mindy, after all) and Netflix. Ripper Street, here I come. 🙂

          • I will have to look for the Spooks Personnel File book – wonder if it is renamed like the show for across the ocean?

          • Amazon has it as an “import” used for $.79. I wonder what kind of condition it will arrive in? But I think I will find out.

  4. Hello from Germany! Thank you for sharing all your 5 favorites. I have all your books on Kindle and all that have come out in audio up to now. I just think it’s relaxing to be able to drive or do chores at home while listening to my favorite books:) I wonder if there is a site with information on all JAFF books released in audiobooks. It would save me time checking around for them! Ha!! Congratulations on your five years and may there be many more…My favorite Mr. Darcy is Colin Firth!

    • Hi, Zonia! I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I love knowing you have all my audiobooks. Another two will be available soon: To Refuse Such a Man and The Mission. 🙂 I am not aware of a site with all JAFF books released in audiobooks, but it would be nice. Maybe someday. Thanks so much for your kind words.

  5. I love all you books my fave being to have his cake and eat it,I must admit firth is my Darcy except for Sharon Lathans book.have read all the books.I live in South Africa !i an sure I am the biggest janite fam in South Africa,please add me into this draw – till your next book

  6. I love all your books,my favourite being “to have his cake and eat.Colin Firth is my Mr Darcy in all the books with the exception of Sharon Lathans variations.I purchased your new book the day it was published.Your books are not easily available in South Africa where I live.I have every P&P available o. My kindle is on overload .I am totally in love with Mr Darcy

  7. 63 year old man here. My 5 favorite JAFF novels, not by P.O. Dixon, who I love as an author.

    His Uncle’s Favorite by Lory Lilian
    Remember the Past by Maria Grace
    Falling for Mr. Darcy by KaraLynne Mackrory
    Memory: A Tale of Pride and Prejudice: Lasting Impressions by Linda Wells
    The Force of Instinct by Abigail Reynolds

  8. Thank you for sharing your “fives.” I especially enjoyed your favorite books and JAFF. There are a few I will be checking out. 🙂

  9. Congrats on achieving the milestone, Pam. I hope you can reach another great milestone. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity.

    When Matthew’s P&P to be released in 2005, I was interested to watch more of his films and TV roles. So I devoured Spooks (aka MI-5), diligently watch Little Dorrit (though it wasn’t half as good as Bleak House) and even got the opportunity to see his movie, In My Father’s Den. It’s quite a dark film so if you haven’t watch it, beware that it doesn’t have a happy ending.

  10. Hi Pam. Thanks for sharing your lists of five with us all.

    I have all of your books that are available on audio, and a good many of them on my Kindle, too. My favourites so far are the Darcy and the Young Knight tales, although the Lady Elizabeth pair run a reasonably close second.

    My first intro to the world of JAFF was stumbling across Pamela Aidens’s trilogy, again on audio. I didn’t discover the greater world of JAFF until the beginning of last year and what a fantastic community it is! I think I’ve made some really good friends here, even though we may never meet face to face.

    Colin is, and will be for a long time, MY Mr Darcy, even though he wasn’t my first. That was Laurence Olivier, when I saw the 1940 film one Sunday afternoon in around 1966/67. I can hear Colin’s voice quite clearly in He Taught Me to Hope!

    As for something about me: I’m a hugh sci-fi/fantasy geek. Some folk know that, many may not.

    • It’s my pleasure! Thanks so much for enjoying all my stories. I’m delighted you’re such an ardent audiobook fan. I am too. I think I’ll add PA’s books to my collection. I have to do something other than check Audible (US) each day to see if Warleggan is available for sale in my region. 😉 I’m impressed you’re able to hear Colin’s voice so clearly in He Taught Me to Hope.

      Thanks for letting us know you’re a sci-fi/fantasy geek. 🙂

  11. Happy fifth anniversary! I’ve enjoyed every book of yours that I’ve read; my favorite is ‘Bewitched Body and Soul.’ Looking forward to your next five years!

  12. Loved yor post my favourite part in the movie which I also warch endlessly is when Darcy and Elizabeth are dancing as if no other is in the room with them its the moment when there eyes say everything x

  13. Enjoyed your post very much. Will have to look for Almost Strangers – haven’t seen it yet. Congratulations on your 5th Anniversary!

    • I’m delighted to know you enjoyed the post. Thanks for your kind words. You’ll love Almost Strangers. As many times as I have seen it, I always find myself glued to the story every time.

  14. Congratulations on your fifth anniversary. I love your novels especially the ones involving the little knight. i read Jane Austen as a young girl in junior high school and fell in love with her novels. I am a retired OR nurse and love to read. My first P & P novels I purchased were Linda Berdoll’s novels and stayed up all night reading til I finished one and then started the next one. Of course, it also involved children and their antics. Then I started buying,l buying and buying P & P novels. I have 3 bookcases full and a Kindle Voyage with 150+ on it. Of course the Kindle can hold 3000 so I have a long way to fill it.
    Matthew MacFadyen is my favorite Mr. Darcy and loved him in P & P and also Pillars of the Earth of which are my favorites of his roles!
    I have three nursing degrees, widowed, grandmother of 2 grandsons, mother of 2 living children, one son and one daughter. One daughter passed away 3 years ago of childhood diabetes at the age of 53.
    Keep up the great work with your writing.

    • Thanks for your kind wishes, MaryAnn. I’m saddened to read about the loss of your daughter.

      Thanks for telling us how your love of Jane Austen came about. Three bookcases full of stories is quite impressive. Heartfelt gratitude for all you do in support of the JAFF community.

  15. Enjoyed your post. I’ve only been reading JAFF tot about a year, but I’m totally hooked! I loved Sarah Johnson’s Leaving Bennett Behind series. Colin Firth is my fav Darcy, but Matthew is 2nd. I enjoyed him in Ripper Street and I saw Pillars of the Earth but didn’t remember he was in it. Anyway, thanks for the chance to win, and congratulations on your 5 year anniversary!

  16. I became a P&P crazy person after seeing the 1995 miniseries. I became a Colin Firth crazy person at the same time. I soon found and spent many hours reading the wonderful fanfiction there. My first purchase of a P&P-inspired novel was Linda Berdoll’s “The Bar Sinister”…and I was truly hooked. I can’t get enough of it now. It makes me happy. I’ve been so fortunate as to win quite a few novels in the generous giveaways provided by the lovely Austen authors. I’m so happy to be a member of this online community.

  17. Congrats on 5 years. And thank you for all your great stories. Linda Berdoll’s Mr Darcy takes a Wife was my first intro to JAFF. And I love Matthew as well. Have Little Dorrit, Pillars of the Earth, Ripper Street, and of course P&P. I hated that he wasn’t on MI5 long.
    Again, thank you. I have digital books and audio of almost all your books, and one day hopefully will get signed copies to add to my collection. Here’s to many more stories from you.

    • Thanks for your kind words, Melanie. I wish he had been on MI-5 longer too. I stopped watching after his last episode at the beginning of Season 3. Thanks so much for reading and enjoying my stories.

  18. The first variations I read were by Sharon Lathan Linda Berdoll and Linda Wells and I was completely hooked. I have a number of books and even more ebooks and have read some of them many times. I am lucky to live near both Pemberleys in fact it is only 10 mins to Lyme Park (1995) and have visited many times since I was a child (too many years ago). Please don’t enter me in the giveaway as I bought this when you mentioned it on Facebook. Loved it thanks ?

    • I’m delighted to know you loved the stories, Glynis. Thanks so much. Indeed, you are lucky to live near both Pemberleys. I’m really looking forward to the day I visit Chatsworth House. That will be several years from now, but I am certain it will be worth the wait.

  19. Congratulations on your anniversary — and thank you for the chance to win!
    I came to the P&P world late and only thanks to PBS broadcasting the BBC version of P&P with Colin Firth. After that, I bought the book and movie and then bought and read all the rest of Jane Austen. Since then, I have been hooked.

  20. I have not seen Almost Strangers but have watched all the others in which Matthew played a role…having only recently discovered MI5 and being able to watch it on HULU. He is not my favorite Darcy…Firth will always be that for me. But he is a handsome man and a very good actor. I also read (actually listened to on audio books) Pillars of the Earth before the TV adaptation was released. And I did finish reading your Fifth Anniversary bundle for those three books (and posted a review). I have read and enjoyed a number of your books but have to say I need to take time to look at the list and consider if I have read all of them. So you have read several of LInda Berdoll’s books. I met her at the NYC yearly convention and she signed the third book in her series for me. She certainly likes her “bedroom” scenes!

    Thanks for sharing all this interesting info about you and your life. I feel like I know you so much better. Obviously you live east of the Mississippi if those addresses still indicate such…unless the last one was a BIG move out of this territory. I live in PA but just about the whole east coast has many relatives spread up and down in various states.

    • It’s my pleasure, Sheila. Thanks so much for reading, enjoying, and reviewing my books. I’m still east of the Mississippi–I live in NC. I hope you’ll have an opportunity to watch Almost Strangers. It is such an amazing story.

      • In looking for this on the Internet it comes up as Perfect Strangers (renamed Almost Strangers for American distribution) is a television drama first aired in 2001, produced for BBC Two. It confused me at first but Wiki had the details.

  21. I love your stories and am glad you are writing. My favorite color is pink and I love to read. Before I fell in love with Darcy I fell in love with King Arthur and Robin Hood as well as anything medieval. I even participated in events with The Society for Creative Anachronism.

    • Darcy, King Arthur, and Robin Hood. That’s what I call good company, Debbie! 😉 I enjoy medieval books and films as well. Thanks for reading and enjoying my stories.

  22. Love your books! My fav is “He taught me to Hope”. Just loved the Camelot theme. But I’m personally a Firth fan. Don’t get me wrong, I do love Matthew Macfayden and I’ve watched a lot of his movies. And I find that when I’m reading I can tell which Darcy is in the story. At least I think I can! Lol

    • I’m a major Firth fan as well. I remember going through a long period of watching almost every Firth film I could find. You can imagine how much fun that was and how long it took, given that I found myself watching most of them more than once or twice. I am always delighted when ardent Firth fans tell me “He Taught Me to Hope” is such a favorite, especially because I began writing it at the end of my Firth Fest. I believe I thought only of him in many of Darcy’s interactions with Ben, particularly the Medieval Festival at Rosings. Thanks so much for reading and enjoying my stories!

  23. I always know I will love the book if it’s written by you! I also watch my Matthew MacFayden DVD’s over & over! Keep on writing!

    • Thank you, Sally. I appreciate your kind words. I love knowing I am not alone in watching MM DVDs repeatedly. It goes to show one can never have too much of a good thing.

Your thoughts are precious!