The inner landscapes of North & South characters: Trudy Brasure’s In Consequence

Screen shot 2014-01-18 at 10.58.39 PMI’ve got the fabulous news that the Kindle version of In Consequence, a North & South retelling by our fellow fan and “me + richard armitage” reader, Trudy Brasure, author of the much-beloved A Heart for Milton, is now available on Kindle.

It’s a really romantic story! Get yours today!

Now, if you’ve read this blog for any length of time,  you know that I am challenged in the romance department. I think, mildly challenged, but the reactions to some things I write here suggest — I’m desperately challenged. Trudy describes herself as a hopeless romantic and I’ve never seen anything in her writing to contradict that assertion.

While me, I’ve been justly accused before of preferring fanfiction for the sex.

But Trudy hardly writes any smut!

Despite that, I followed this story for months and just bought my own copy.

All that romance and limited sex — why am I such a big fan of Milton à la Brasure?

As I said once, in an obscure place, the little sex Trudy writes is strongly historically accurate. Trudy gets what I’d call the “ineffability and sublimity” orientation of the mid-Victorians right on without ever getting oversweet — a love that is spiritual and avoids our confusion of that quality with romance. As a consequence, the sex in In Consequence, when it appears, is quite effective. But that’s not the whole story.

Screen shot 2014-01-18 at 10.57.56 PMI started reading her stuff because she’d done something I want to do — turn her fandom into concrete creativity. But I kept on with it because I thought it was good. I’ve never met an author of fanfic — or now published novels — who cares as much about development of the characters and fidelity to what she sees as their true natures as Trudy Brasure. I love her approach to these stories — retellings and sequels that explore every detail of the minds and spirits of the main characters in minute detail and with care and even passion. I love best the passages in which she gives the characters free reign to ponder their pasts, presents, futures, and decisions — mirroring the Victorian world in which people thought much more than they said and in which, as a consequence, a gesture or sign took on grand meaning in ways foreign to us today. Trudy twists the plot slightly and looks to see what these characters will do in response. But because her allegiance to the characters is so strong, when I read her retellings I end up believing the plot because she just knows Mr. Thornton and Margaret so incredibly well. Her portrayals of the supporting characters — particularly Mrs. Thornton — are incredibly sympathetic.

Admittedly, Trudy wants a happy ending for (almost) every character and her optimism also shines through the story in ways that paint the darker sides of some characters in a bright tone. Nonetheless, I think she writes Margaret exceptionally well — in a way that makes her more intelligible to me as a personality than Gaskell has done. I occasionally quibble with her reading of Mr. Thornton (the main character in North & South that I identify with). But I don’t think the aspects of Thornton that I occasionally question in Trudy’s presentation — the fact that he is more regularly aware of his passions early on, and more likely to give in to and enjoy them, than the serial in particular admitted — is something that’s likely to disturb the average reader. Even I find interesting the possibility that Mr. Thornton would give in to his desires in ways that would disturb him a provocative and dramatically productive possibility. Trudy’s Thornton realizes the implications of Gaskell’s proposal scene, in which Thornton openly conceives of himself as possessing the unique, unparalleled capacity to love. She also gives him a stronger tinge of Armitage’s self-deprecating moments for the character than did the book, which is all to the good.

That’s a Mr. Thornton — and Trudy’s an author — I can get behind.

Some more information:

The gorgeous cover displayed at above right (and, I assume, the earlier one as well) was designed by Heather Siemon, or HeathRA, as she’s known in the fandom. She had her own interesting Richard Armitage encounter after the Captain America premiere in 2011, when she was finally able to introduce herself to the muse. He remembered her work — the Havoc Tour t-shirt, which he had mentioned in an early Robin Hood press interview.

There’s a free sample of the book, for those who are not familiar with the story or would like to try before you buy. Obviously a purchase is a great “thank you” for the hours of reading pleasure Trudy’s given us.

And, if you know the story already, you can also do Trudy a big favor and go over there and leave a detailed review of your reaction to the work. Well-written reviews always boost sales.

~ by Servetus on January 19, 2014.

24 Responses to “The inner landscapes of North & South characters: Trudy Brasure’s In Consequence”

  1. Thanks so much for your acknowledgment of my dedication to Gaskell’s characters. I’ve been thinking of Thornton and N&S rather constantly for four years now and feel I know the book and characters fairly well.
    It’s a fun subject to have a passion about!
    I’ll keep your evaluation in mind when I’m tempted to be annoyed at the negative reviews! 🙂

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    • lol, that’s a bit like my concentration on Armitage. Coming up on four years. Though he still occasionally surprises me 🙂

      Negative reviews … yes, the bane of every writer.

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  2. Trudy “knows” the N&S characters inside and out and that’s what makes her writing so good. You’ll never find yourself shaking your head thinking: Thornton would never do that…
    “A Heart for Milton” is a favorite of mine that I keep going back to and I have no doubt it’ll be the same with “In Consequence”.
    There”s a very good reason why Trudy is held in high esteem amongst Gaskell/N&S fans so if you haven’t read her books, do yourself a favor and click on the amazon link 🙂
    PS. A quick reminder that if you go through RANet to reach amazon .com/.co.uk or .de, Richard’s JustGiving charities shall receive the referral fee 🙂

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    • yes, exactly, that’s the frustrating thing about reading fanfic, whether you can accept the inevitable changes to a character made by the author, that just doesn’t happen with Trudy.

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  3. Dear Servetus. Thank you for the work that you have put in re blogging material from the Ponter/Proust play reading. Have enjoyed it veryucg. RA was born to be a stage actor as I’ve watched a lot of the materiAl this became more evident. I really enjoyed A Heart for Milton. Do you happen to know when I could download or onto my IPad . Thanks again

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    • I’ll pass that on — Trudy, do you know when your work will be available for sale in Australia?

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    • Thanks for your interest in my stories. I don’t know how long it takes for Amazon products to be available in every international venue. The Kindle is available already in the UK. I haven’t checked any others. It will also be available in paperback, Nook, ibook, etc. before long.

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  4. I love Trudy’s N&S stories! I already have “A Heart for Milton”. Now I definitely have to get my Kindle for PC copy of “In Consequences”! Thanks for the heads up!

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  5. Self-evidently it is our sacred duty as fellow John-Thornton-fans to support Trudy’s work/book and it is well worth it!!! I loved “A Heart of Milton”, which I gladly was able to read in one go, as it was already complete by early 2011 when I found it. I have it on my kindle (always reassuring to have it with me + I own a paperback, as I really like the cover). I followed the evolution of “In Consequence” throughout the last 3 years. Reading a new installment every time truly was a dear pleasure, even though it required some longanimity! 😉 Thanks Trudy for “officially” publishing this beautifully written and satisfying story and….. Darn! The joyous read is really only 1 click away! ….Done!
    BTW Servetus (+ Agzy), your words for Trudy’s book are genuinely felicitous/dead on. They should whet everybody’s (N&S-) appetite for the read and therefore hopefully should prove to be a good kick-about.

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  6. Thanks, Agzy, Gatiana, and Linda for your commendation and support. It really is Richard’s fault I fell under the Gaskell spell. It’s been a fabulous journey for me. Thanks for following along with me.

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  7. […] What do you get when you cross Trudy and Milton? […]

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  8. I also read “A heart …. and in consequence in wattpad and just couldn´t get enough!They are both brilliant .I love them some much that I had to have my paper back copy of ” A heart” from Amazon! Now I would love to have the paperback copy from “in consequence”.Do you have any idea of when it´s going to be out there ?
    Thank you

    Greetings from Portugal

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    • Thanks, Patricia. So glad you love both stories. The print version of IC should be available within a couple weeks. Keep looking for it! It’s a much more difficult process to get every formatting issue resolved for print publication. It’s not available … yet.

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  9. Dear Trudy

    Thank you for your quick answer!I will be looking for it anxiously!I love to read a book and underline my favorite passages!I think that as I become older I become more incurably romantic!!! As you I became an avid fan of Victorian period !For me it was my sister´s “blame” because she´s a scholar in that area!Do you have any idea of what you are doing next?

    Thank you

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    • I love print books, too. But I can’t bring myself to mark them! N&S is the exception – my copy is full of underlinings and side notes. I’ve only recently begun to catch up on Victorian classics. Have you read Wives & Daughters? I loved it although the pace and setting are wholly different.
      Next? I’m writing a short N&S story. Who knows, maybe it will become something lengthier. I’ve been wrong before. We shall see….

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  10. […] Photo Source […]

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  11. I have just finished reading A Heart for Milton. I finished it in two days. I could have finished it much sooner, but was unable to do so because I had unexpected company. I had trouble putting it down. I am sitting here now with big tears in my eyes. I never wanted this book to finish – much the way I felt about the 4-part Mini Series of North & South. I did get very smart this time though….I also bought at the same time I bought A Heart for Milton – In Consequence. I am most anxious now to start reading Ms. Brasure’s further book on the retelling of North & South. May I send further comments when I have finished In Consequence. If this book is anywhere near A Heart for Milton, then I know that I am in for so much more enjoyment.

    Thank you Trudy Brasure

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    • Thanks for the comment, and welcome!

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    • You’re welcome. I’m glad you enjoyed A Heart for Milton so much. Getting lost in John and Margaret’s world is a favorite pastime of mine. 🙂
      In Consequence is very much written with the same style and intensity of love and passion. I’d love to hear your thoughts after you’ve finished it.
      It’s a treat to hear from my readers. Thanks so much for leaving a comment.

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  12. I absolutely loved In Consequence. I have read it over, and over. And I am getting ready to start it again. I loved the beginning, and I love the ending. Perhaps you will write a Consequence 2, because you have left your people alive and happy and Margaret and John starting out on a new venture. This book is just perfect to me.

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    • So glad you enjoyed IC, and thanks for both your reviews at Amazon. 🙂
      Unfortunately, I don’t have any plans to continue this story, but I do hope to write yet another N&S tale for those who love immersing themselves in Thornton and Margaret’s world.

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  13. I anxiously await another tale about John and Margaret. Why can’t I get enough of these two people. There is so much love between John & Margaret that I think I can feel their emotions while I am reading In Consequence. You have made these two people come alive (for me, anyway), that they do not seem to be just characters in a book. I am re-reading this great book (again), and it is still giving me the same warm feeling as it did when I first read it. Thank you. And please hurry on your next book. I can’t wait.

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    • Have you checked out all the N&S fanfiction at C19? That should keep you busy for awhile…. 🙂

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  14. Thank you for your input re N&S fanfiction. I scanned several stories, but didn’t get into any particular one. I noticed that some of them had some sort of violence….fire, guns, one even had an attempted murder of Margaret. My reading habits have changed this past year. I was never big on fiction. I much preferred bios, and true life in general. Since I became a widow I have found that love and happiness and companionship in a story is much preferred by me now. Your books have been so nice to read and I thank you for both of them. Regards, Mame

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