Category: Author Interview

Interview and a Give-A-Way with Author Jamie Carie

Regency Reflections Welcomes Author Jamie Carie

We are so thrilled to welcome author Jamie Carie to Regency Reflections! Jamie, the author of the Forgotten Castles series, has stopped by to tell us a little bit about her upcoming release, A Duke’s Promise, which will be available September 1st.

Jamie is kindly offering a free book (Paperback or Kindle download) to one lucky visitor!  For your chance to win a book from the Forgotten Castles series, leave a comment on this post.

1. Tell us a bit about the inspiration behind your Forgotten Castles series.

It started with the idea of doing something similar to my second book, The Duchess and the Dragon, but with a Regency spin. I love writing about royalty from that time period! I also knew I wanted something adventurous with a mystery to solve. Then the characters took over, which is the best part.

2. Setting plays a very important role in this series.  Can you tell us what drew you to using castles in your setting, and more specifically, how you tied the setting to the time period?

I had the idea of three I’s – Ireland, Iceland and Italy as the settings. Each book takes place in one of those countries and features tucked away, crumpling and forgotten or fairy-tale like castles. I had a moments panic when I discovered that Iceland doesn’t have any actual castles but then I discovered the Dimmuborgir, black lava formations that look enough like a castle that they are called the Black Castles of Iceland. It was perfect for a creepy scene!

How I tied the setting to the time period? Having Alexandria grow up on a very secluded island in an old, crumpling castle gave me more leeway with her behavior in Regency England. She couldn’t be expected to be quite so strict in her role as a woman of that time because she was never taught the rules of society and hadn’t lived among the elite until she meets her guardian, the duke, and lives for a time in London. It was fun to see how she changed and grew over the course of the three books.

3. The book covers in the Forgotten Castle series are stunning.  Can you tell us about the design process?

Thank you!! I have to give all the credit for the gorgeous covers to Diana Lawrence, Art Director at B&H Publishing. Diana always gets the “feel” of my books and carries it so well to the cover designs. I only consult and there were very few changes that I recommended. Here’s the link to the making of the first cover – The Guardian Duke.

4. Tell us a bit about your upcoming release, A Duke’s Promise.

I am so excited to have A Duke’s Promise come out in September! God gave me an ending that took my breath away, tying up all the details and answering all the questions that are raised in the first two books. I can’t give anything away, so here is the back of the book blurb:

From the Land of Fire and Ice back to England’s shores, Alexandria Featherstone finds herself the new Duchess of St. Easton. Her husband has promised a wedding trip to take them to the place where her imperiled parents were last seen — Italy and the marble caves of Carrara — but a powerful Italian duke plots against Alex and her treasure-hunting parents.
Hoping to save them, Alex and Gabriel travel to Italy by balloon. Fraught with danger on all sides and pressured by Gabriel’s affliction to the breaking point, they must learn to work and fight together. The mysterious key is within their grasp, but they have yet to recognize it. This journey will require steadfast faith in God and each other — a risk that will win them everything they want or lose them everything they have.

5. You have an amazing ability to weave the details of everyday Regency life into your novels.  If you had to pick, what would you say is your favorite aspect of Regency life?

I love the gallantry of the men of that day and age. Men (the good ones at least!) were very protecting toward their mothers, sisters, wives and daughters. Gabriel, the duke who is Alexandria’s guardian, takes very good care of his family (even though some members drive him bonkers). He treats Alexandria like a princess. I love how he loves her – tender, sweet, hot, completely besotted but not a dolt – sigh! I think he is my favorite hero to date!

6. What do you think is the biggest challenge of writing a Regency?

Probably getting the “feel” (the cadence of the language and dialog, the perspectives of the characters, etc.) of the time period. I suggest reading lots of Regencies and absorb the tone before trying to write one.

7. Do you have a favorite Regency author?

I grew up reading Georgette Heyer which probably started my love of romance novels. Also Amanda Quick, Julia Quinn, Judith McNaught and LOVE Laura Kinsale!

8. Tell us a bit more about you.  

I’m a preacher’s daughter. I grew up in Vincennes, Indiana and my entire childhood was immersed in the Charismatic movement with Bible teachers like Derek Prince, Kenneth Copeland and many others sounding by cassette tape in the background. This upbringing was both wildly crazy when it came to some of the error of that movement but also deeply theological and Bible based. I’ve had a lot to sort out as an adult, I can tell you! I think God has used all this in my writing and I’ve learned to be thankful for it and proceed with the faith that He can make beauty from ashes. Here’s my short bio:

Born and raised in Vincennes, Indiana, Jamie is the daughter of a preacher man. Road trips with her dad—to and from Bible studies across Indiana—were filled with talks of things beyond earth’s bounds – creation and the fall, God and Jesus and the rapture, the earthly walk compared to the spiritual walk, and how we are born for more than what we can see or touch.

The highlight of those nights was stopping at a truck stop in the middle of the night where her dad would spend a little of the offering basket on two slices of pie and a couple of Cokes. Nothing ever felt so special as a middle of the night slice of pie with her dad. And nothing could stop the writing pouring out of her.

Piles of poems, short stories, skits and song lyrics later, Jamie grew up and married. When her eldest son turned five she decided to try her hand at novels. Snow Angel was published and won the USA Book News “Best Books 2007” Awards winner, and 2008 RITA Awards® Best First Book finalist. Her third book, Wind Dancer, won Best Books of Indiana in 2010.

Jamie and Tony have been married for twenty-four years and live in Indianapolis with their three sons, a giant of a dog named Leo, and their new addition – a half Siamese/half Snow Shoe kitten named Luna.

If she could only say one thing to her readers it would be, “Live the dreams God has destined you for!”

9. How can readers connect with you to learn more about your other projects or get in touch with you?

Website: www.jamiecarie.com
Blog: http://jamiecarie.com/blog
Facebook: http:www.facebook.com/jamie.carie?ref=profile
The Forgotten Castles series FB Pagefacebook.com/ForgottenCastles
Twitterhttps://twitter.com/#!/jamiecarie
Email: jamie@jamiecarie.com

10. One last question:   Pride & Prejudice or Sense & Sensibility?

Pride and Prejudice! I’ve seen the movie at least a dozen times. I love Sense and Sensibility and Emma too though. Now, you’ve done it!! I’m going to be craving some Jane Austen and have to squeeze that into my schedule!

Thanks again to Jamie Carie for stopping by and sharing her story. Be sure to leave a comment to be entered it the giveaway for the winner’s choice of a book in the Forgotten Castles series!

Originally posted 2012-08-15 10:00:00.

Interview and Give-A-Way ~ Regina Scott

Interview with Regency author Regina Scott.

 

Veteran Regency writer Regency Regina Scott stopped by to tell us a little about her writing journey, as well as her love for regencies.

Regina’s first published book was The Unflappable Miss Fairchild in 1998, a regency with Zebra Regency Romance. Since then she has published continuously with 18 novels to her credit and four novellas.

In the last couple of years, she has turned to writing regencies with a Christian tone. These have found a home with Love Inspired Historicals. She has four LIH regencies to date. Her latest, The Captain’s Courtship, is out this month. Regina has graciously donated a copy for a lucky reader. For a chance to win it, please leave a comment today.

 

What drew you to write during the Regency Time Period?

I loved to read growing up, but by the time I reached college, it had been awhile since I’d found a book to truly engage me.  Then I stumbled upon Elizabeth Mansfield’s The Phantom Lover at my library.  I couldn’t put it down!  I’d always wanted to be a writer, but I knew then I wanted to write a book in this wonderful time period called the Regency.  I loved that the era had its own language, with an interplay between men and women that was so elegant and witty!  Twenty-two stories later, and I still love that period!
 

2.      Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.

The Captain’s Courtship is actually set before the strict definition of the Regency, in 1805.  But that time definitely has the same flavor, whether in clothes or social sensibilities.  I chose the year for the Everard Legacy series, of which this is the second book, because the series needed a time that would give rise to a true villain, someone who threatened my characters’ happiness, their faith, and their freedom.  Who better than Napoleon and his henchmen?  In 1805, England was certain “the Corsican Monster” meant to invade at any moment, and he was certainly trying to comply!
 

3.      Who is your favorite Regency Author?

I couldn’t possibly list just one!  Elizabeth Mansfield is probably my all-time favorite, as I mentioned.  Love Inspired is publishing a number of wonderful authors such as Louise M. Gouge (whom I see you had on recently!), Deborah Hale, Mary Moore, and Abby Gaines.  I’m really excited that Cheryl Bolen will have a new book out in October.  And this blog is blessed with so many talented authors!  Those of us who love Regency romances have a lot to look forward to!

 

4. What is your favorite Regency expression?

I have several:  having a nice coze for sitting down and chatting with a good friend, piffle as a sign of disappointment, and here-and-therian, a fellow who won’t commit to anything, who traveled about with no set home or preferred to chase women rather than catch them.  See what I mean about a language all its own?

 

5. What is your favorite Regency setting; e.g., London, country house, small village?

Definitely a small village.  I love developing the various characters and the relationships among them.  So far, my more recent stories keep getting set in the wildness, though—places like the Lake District and the Peak District.  I think perhaps the isolation of a single manor, far from others, allows me to focus on the hero and heroine and how they come to find love.  That was certainly the case with The Captain’s Courtship.  Though it starts and ends in London, most of the action takes place in the Lake District, when my hero Captain Richard Everard brings the heroine to meet his cousin, who she’s agreed to sponsor for a Season.

Tell us about your book.

The dashing Captain Richard Everard has faced untold dangers at sea. Steering his young cousin through a London season, however, is a truly formidable prospect. The girl needs a sponsor, like lovely widow Lady Claire Winthrop-the woman who jilted Richard years ago. Claire believed herself sensible in marrying a well-to-do viscount rather than a penniless second son. How deeply she regretted it! Now their fortunes are reversed, and Richard’s plan will help settle her debts and secure his inheritance. Yet it may yield something even more precious: a chance to be courted by the captain once more.

When did your novel release and with what publisher?

The Captain’s Courtship will be out in July from Love Inspired Historical.

Tell us about yourself:

 I always wanted to be a writer, but it took a while to convince myself that that was what I was meant to do.  I tried being a day care provider, a nanny, a technical writer, and a risk communication consultant before I heeded God’s call on my life.  Now, I feel so blessed to sit down at my computer and write!  The Captain’s Courtship marks my 22nd published story (18 novels and 4 novellas), all set in the Regency period.  The Rake’s Redemption, the next book in the Everard Legacy series, will be out in November.  You can learn more at my website at www.reginascott.com, where I also have articles about the Regency period.  You can also find me online at Goodreads (http://www.goodreads.com/reginascott), and the blog I share with author Marissa Doyle at www.nineteenteen.blogspot.com.   

For a chance to win A Captain’s Courtship by Regina Scott, leave a comment. We will draw a winner on July 31, 2012. Be sure to check back on this comment thread on that date to find out who won.

Originally posted 2012-07-25 05:00:00.

Laurie Alice ~ Louise Gouge Interview

LaurieAlice: I’ve known Louise for many years and know she is her own worst critic. She is hard on herself in describing her own work. Let me assure you, this is truly a Regency romance.

Meet Louise M. Gouge

Interview Questions with Louise Gouge:

LAE: What drew you to write during the Regency Time Period?

Louise: I know it’s an old answer, but I just love Jane Austen’s classic books, so I wanted to try my hand at a Regency story. The strict social and moral codes seem to make happiness for a hero and heroine next to impossible. Can my couple who come from different social classes find true love in spite of all the social restrictions they face? Well, of course. It’s a romance. But can I make it an interesting journey along the way? That’s the challenge that Jane Austen met with success every time, in my opinion. I can only hope to do the same.

LAE: Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.

Louise: My book begins in late 1813 and ends in early 1814. My hero, a British major, has been wounded in the American War, which England was fighting at the same time they were fighting Napoleon (as was the rest of Europe). But the battle my hero fights to find his place in English society is every bit as difficult as the struggle he found in America. I chose this particular time period because I think wartimes always make interesting backdrops for romances.

A Proper Companion by Louise M. Gouge

LAE: What’s your favorite, unique Regency aspect of the novel, something you wouldn’t be able to include in a novel set in another place or time?

Louise: Actually, I can’t think of a single thing. I’m too new at writing in this period to know all of the clever little stuff. (This is my first full-length Regency.) I must have some nerve, right? But I hope readers will find my hero and heroine compelling and will enjoy their pathway to happily ever after.

LAE: What are the biggest challenges to writing in the Regency Period?

Louise: Regency readers are very particular and knowledgeable about the era. I try very hard not to make a mistake, but I’m sure something has slipped through that I wasn’t aware of. Still, no one has slammed me so far. If I do make an error, I hope readers will gently inform me!

LAE: Who is your favorite Regency Author?

Louise: Much to my shame, I haven’t read any of the old Regency authors who really established the genre, which may be the reason I don’t know those unique things about the era. I do enjoy the stories by my fellow Love Inspired Historical authors: Regina Scott, Mary Moore, and Deborah Hale. From other publishers, I love Laurie Alice Eakes, MaryLu Tyndall, and Linore Rose Burkard.

LAE: What is your favorite Regency setting; e.g., London, country house, small village?

Louise: I like both the country manor house (with its village) and the London townhouse. The lavish homes in either place just stagger me, especially when one considers the poverty that existed barely a stone’s throw from either home.

LAE: What makes your hero and heroine uniquely Regency?

Louise: Other than the historical events taking place in the background, I actually think my hero and heroine’s story could be set in a rather wide span of English history from mid-Eighteenth Century to well into the Victorian age, perhaps even touching the Edwardian age. The main conflicts separating my would-be sweethearts are the societal structure and hero’s lack of career options. In England, these were basically unchanged for centuries, as we can see in the recent BBC television series, Downton Abbey.

LAE: Tell us about your book.

Louise: A Proper Companion, With her father’s death, Anna Newfield loses everything—her home, her inheritance, and her future. Her only piece of good fortune is a job offer from wounded major Edmond Grenville, whose mother requires a companion. The Dowager Lady Greystone is controlling and unwelcoming, but Anna can enjoy Edmond’s company, even if she knows the aristocratic war hero can never return her love. Even amid the glittering ballrooms of London, nothing glows brighter for Edmond than Anna’s gentle courage. Loving her means going against his family’s rigid command. Yet how can he walk away when his heart may have found its true companion?

LAE: When did your novel release and with what publisher?

Louise: A Proper Companion, from Harlequin’s Love Inspired Historicals, released in June 2012.

About Louise:  Award-winning Florida author Louise M. Gouge writes historical fiction, calling her stories “threads of grace woven through time.” In addition to numerous other awards, Louise is the recipient of the prestigious Inspirational Readers’ Choice Award for her 2005 novel, Hannah Rose. With her great love of history and research, Louise has traveled to several of her locations to ensure the accuracy of her stories’ settings. When she isn’t writing, she and her husband love to visit historical sites and museums. Her favorite Bible verse is “He shall choose our inheritance for us” (Psalm 47:4), a testimony to her belief that God has chosen a path for each believer. To seek that path and to trust His wisdom is to find the greatest happiness in life. Read about Louise’s books at her Web site http://blog.Louisemgouge.com

For a chance to win A Proper Companion by Louise M. Gouge, leave a comment. We will draw a winner on June 20, 2012. Be sure to check back on this comment thread on that date to find out who won.

 

Originally posted 2012-06-13 05:00:00.

Interview and Giveaway with Author Jillian Kent

Hello all you Regency fans,

Naomi Rawlings here today, and I’ve got a special guest to introduce: Jillian Kent, author of the newly released novel Chameleon. Jillian has graciously agreed to giveaway one copy of her novel to someone who reads the interview and then leaves a comment below. The contest will end Saturday at midnight and is open only to U.S. residents. Here’s a bit about Jillian:

Jillian is employed full-time as a counselor for nursing students in a hospital based college. She and her husband are both social workers and met in West Virginia and they’ve been married for 31 years.

Jillian can’t believe Book Two of the Ravensmoore Chronicles, Chameleon, is on the shelves and in the cyberspace bookstores! It was just this time last year that her first book, Secrets of the Heart, The Ravensmoore Chronicles, Book One hit the shelves. Jillian says, “It’s been a year of growth and change in the publishing world and the constant personal challenge of seeking balance while writing a new book, working as a counselor, and enjoying my family. This has taken the development of new time management skills.”

So without further ado, here’s a few Regency questions I asked of Jillian:

1.    What drew you to write during the Regency Time Period?

That’s the time period I like to read.

2. Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.

Chameleon, The Ravensmoore Chronicles, Book Two is set in 1819.

3.    What’s your favorite, unique Regency aspect of the novel, something you wouldn’t have been able to include in a novel set in another time or place?

I had many favorite aspects of this novel. This is just one of those novels that will be difficult for me to top as a personal best. I really believe that. I don’t know how others will judge it, but it’s everything I wanted it to be. Here’s a brief scene that includes Carlton House that I think adds that Regency-ish aspect you’re talking about.

Witt, with Ravensmoore at his side, walked through the Carlton House main entrance, which was graced with six Corinthian columns. Inside they were greeted by a grand staircase, chandeliers, marble floors, and ceilings painted with scenes of myths and legends. Though he’d seen the place many times, he was again struck by the grandeur, the paintings by Gainsborough and Reynolds, and portraits by Van Dyck and Rembrandt.

Grand indeed.

When he’d last entered only a few hours earlier, it had been through the rear entrance of the palace with Stone dripping blood onto the polished marble. This time, his attention was on Ravensmoore and the argument that had ensued in the carriage prior to their arrival.

4. What are the biggest challenges to writing in the Regency Period?

As much as I read about and study this era, I feel like there is so much yet to learn. I’m always terrified of making an error. I want to make the time period come alive and want readers to feel like they are there in London, in Parliament, seeing what was to be seen in those days and smelling the smells, some of which were not so lovely in town.

5. What initially drew you to be interested in writing  books set during the Regency Era?

I discovered England when I spent a semester living in Oxford for part of my senior year of college in 1976.

6. Who is your favorite Regency Author?

Oh, that’s hard. I’m not going to pick a CBA author because I love all of them. In the ABA I’d have to say Julia Quinn.

7. What is your favorite Regency Food?

Any kind of dessert but no fruit cake. I love custards. Here’s a nice page of desserts. http://www.janeausten.co.uk/online-magazine/regency-recipes/desserts/

8. What is your favorite Regency setting?

London and Yorkshire. I love the moors and the mist.

******

Jillian, thanks so much for being with us today, and what a lovely interview you gave. How lucky you were to spend a semester in England. You must have loved it. I’m afraid I’m not very well traveled, but I’m jealous of those who are! I’d have to agree with you that Julia Quinn is one of my favorite secular Regency authors. She can make the simplest situations so hilarious, and I love that about her. And I’m so not a fruitcake fan. So I agree with you about the desserts. Thanks for sharing the recipe website.

Here’s some more information about Jillian Kent, and Chameleon:

How much can you really know about someone?

Lady Victoria Grayson has always considered herself a keen observer of human behavior. After battling a chronic childhood illness that kept her homebound for years, she journeys to London determined to have the adventure of a lifetime.

Jaded by his wartime profession as a spy, Lord Witt understands, more than most, that everyone is not always who they pretend to be. He meets Victoria after the Regent requests an investigation into the activities of her physician brother, Lord Ravensmoore.

Witt and Victoria become increasingly entangled in a plot targeting the lords of Parliament. Victoria is forced to question how well she knows those close to her while challenging Witt’s cynical nature and doubts about God. Together they must confront their pasts in order to solve a mystery that could devastate their future.

Chameleon released May 15th  from Charisma Media/Realms

A final message from Jillian:

If you read book one you know I’m fascinated with human behavior and how our minds work. This will be even more clear to you if you read Chameleon.:) And if you do read this book PLEASE don’t give away the ending so that others can enjoy the journey the whole way through to its conclusion. Once again you will find yourself in Regency England. You will return to Bedlam. You will meet Devlin’s sister, Victoria, aka, Snoop. It won’t take long to find out why the family calls her Snoop. I hope you will escape into the past with me and you, just like some of my characters may find faith for the future. If you are a sleuth at heart you will love this story. If you want to read the first chapter of this novel to see if it’s your kind of read please visit my website at http://jilliankent.com/books.html You can also join in the conversation on my blog anytime.

Other than my personal blog I also blog with the other Realms writers at Just the Write Charisma. http://justthewritecharisma.blogspot.com/

I’m very proud of the Well Writer column that I organized with the encouragement of Bonnie Calhoun. You can find it here: http://www.christianfictiononlinemagazine.com/brilliant_well.html

If you’re interested in being entered in the giveaway for Chameleon, please leave a comment below, and thank you so very much for stopping by to meet Author Jillian Kent today.

Originally posted 2012-05-30 10:00:00.

Marriage A Glimpse Of Heaven Or Hell

Vanessa here,

Glad you can join me here, today. Well, the porch at the Regency Reflections Blog now possesses new paint, a bit of a makeover. We’ve been posting here since 2012. We love being able to showcase different glimpses of Inspirational Regencies, talking about the stories and the motivations behind them. We’ve even given tastes of the Regency romances that hooked us long before the first traditionally printed Christian Regency was released.

But our fire had grown cold.

It was time find our love again.

The reason I write Regencies is because I found my voice in the 1800’s.  It sounds of a woman, with dreams of a happy-ever-after, challenged by the circumstances, the very skin she’s born within. These stories, gifted by my first love, a passionate, merciful God must be told. It is my first love. And this blog will now share stories of authors and characters who possess the same fire.

Now some of my friend’s stories may be secular authors.  Before you throw holy water at me, I just have to say it. Not everyone is meant to entertain the pews. All types of stories are needed to edify, entertain, and to educate. All of my friends, regardless of what they write use their God-given talents to bring joy and hope into this world. This is something all should see.

 


The Fabulous Jude Knight


My first guest is the wonderful Jude Knight.  Jude traveled all the way from New Zealand to have tea with me on my Atlanta porch. Jude writes strong determined heroines, heroes who can appreciate a clever capable woman, villains you’ll love to loathe, and all with a leavening of humor.

“Jude, I know you must be tired, so have a seat. Let me fix you some tea. How would you like it?”judeknight

“Thank you, so much for your hospitality. I’d like a green tea with a slice of lemon, or black tea with a small dash of milk.

“Green it is. Here you go. It’s quite hot. While it cools, tell the good readers what a happy ever after means to you.”

“My view of ‘happy ever after’ is shaped by my life and my beliefs. Falling in love is not enough. A wedding is not enough. Good intentions are not enough. To believe that a romance has a happy ending, I need to believe that the couple’s love will last for a lifetime; that they have what they need to work out the inevitable problems that will try to tear them apart.”

“I don’t mean to get you kicked out of any ‘ABA’ bad girl societies, but tell me what love and faith means to you.”

“My beloved and I have known one another for 47 years, and been married for nearly 44. In that time, our love has been tested over and over, but each challenge we’ve surmounted has made our relationship stronger.
I joke that our marriage has survived because his parents and mine were both against it, and we were too stubborn to admit they were right. He always adds that it also survived because we lived at the end of a long country road and were very poor. Walking out on the marriage would have meant a literal walk — and it was a long way.”

“I love that. Please continue.”

“More to the point, though, we both believed that we had to work things out. Our Christian faith told us that marriage was a permanent commitment. We promised ‘as long as we both shall live’, and we meant it. And we both came from fractured marriages; we knew what disharmony did to children. We were determined to find our ‘happy ever after’, and we did.”

“Tell me how your beliefs have shaped your writing.”

“My husband is a Catholic, and I converted to Catholicism some eight or nine years after we first met. Catholic marriage theology holds that marriage is a sacrament — a visible sign of the presence of God in the world. Just as water is the sign of Baptism, and the bread and wine are the signs of the Eucharist (Holy Communion), so the man and the woman are the sign of Marriage. Water signifies (and becomes) the cleansing grace of God. Bread and wine signify (and become) the presence of Christ in the church community and each individual. The couple signify something very wonderful: Christ’s union with the Church, God’s union with His creation. A person could spend a lifetime thinking about the implications of this, and some people have.”

“Wow. That’s deep. I’m Baptist, and I get it. More so, I feel the same.”

“For today, suffice it to say that building the kind of marriage that is a true signifier of this mystery is not a magic trick taking place in front of the altar on a couple’s wedding day. It is the work of a lifetime together.”

“Ok, tell the good folks about A Baron for Becky.”

“A Baron for Becky is my Regency about marriage, which is why it is a book of two halves. In the first part of the book, my heroine — rescued from dreadful danger — becomes the mistress of a kindly libertine whose view of marriage is extremely jaundiced. Their relationship is founded on lust and convenience on his part, and gratitude on hers.”

“Did I mention to you to tell the PG version for Regency Reflection readers? Just kidding. So in a A Baron for Becky, the heroine makes wrong choices, but that didn’t disqualify her from finding true love. Now that is a message for today.”

“Yes. The second half of the book is about just that between, Becky and Hugh. The libertine arranges their marriage, which takes place at the midpoint of the book. But Becky and Hugh build that marriage. I poured my heart into showing them falling in love; showing how their past experiences almost destroyed them; showing the slow painful process of rebuilding.”

“He was sorry for hurting her, for not trusting her, for manipulating her into marriage, for being a representative of the men that had hurt her. He was sorry for it all, and he could never make it up to her. But he would live his life trying.”

“Dear hubby and I just made 19 years. An accomplishment in this age, but tell us your 44-year secret.”

“The trick of a happy marriage (and a happy life) is to go on loving one another between trials, and to consistently fall in love with the same person, over and over and over. Because love is not about being in love, pleasant though that state is. Love is an action, not a state, not a feeling. Love is making breakfast for the person you want to brain with the frypan. Love is listening to the same joke for the twentieth time and laughing yet again. Love is walking hand in hand for no better reason than that you are fond of one another. Love involves feelings: lust and affection, familiarity and friendship, mutual respect and regard. It grows on shared experiences, memories—both good and bad—of the things you’ve lived through together. But above all, love is what you do when your feelings prompt you against being loving.

How could it be otherwise when love is an echo of Love Himself, the One who loved His people even though they betrayed him, rejected him, and even killed Him? Love is far too important to depend on chemical soup. Love is an action.”

Now that is a message to kick off the new Regency Reflections. Thank you Jude. While my friend takes a swig of her green tea, I just want to thank her for traveling to Atlanta and being my guest. Below is more about Jude and links for A Baron for Becky.baronforbeck

About Jude Knight

Jude Knight is the pen name of Judy Knighton. After a career in commercial writing, editing, and publishing, Jude is returning to her first love, fiction. Her novella, Candle’s Christmas Chair, was released in December 2014, and is in the top ten on several Amazon bestseller lists in the US and UK. Her first novel Farewell to Kindness, was released on 1 April, and is first in a series: The Golden Redepennings.

Follow Jude on social media:

Visit Jude’s Website http://judeknightauthor.com/

Like Jude on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/JudeKnightAuthor

Buy links

Amazon http://amzn.to/1C3hFNl

Amazon UK http://amzn.to/1H3YmTk

Amazon Aus http://bit.ly/1HzUZ9R

Smashwords http://bit.ly/1HzUXPf

Barnes & Noble  http://bit.ly/1GRTvkR

iBooks http://apple.co/1FVFNfU

Kobo http://bit.ly/1NzI2LK

 

Originally posted 2015-10-05 06:00:00.

New Romances by Kristi Ann Hunter

Vanessa here,

It’s my pleasure to have Kristi Ann Hunter on my porch today to talk of her latest novels.  Really, I should have had you here sooner since we are both Georgia Peaches, but we’ve both been a little busy.

Kristi Hunter and I enjoying the music.
Kristi Hunter and I enjoying the music at RWA 2013.

Please have a seat on the pollen free chair. So Kristi Ann what made these stories come to life in your head?

There are always stories in my head. It’s a very noisy place.

Isn’t that always the way. Please continue.

There are a few things I do to streamline my thoughts enough to actually pull a coherent tale together, though. Usually I start with a question, a “What If” sort of scenario, or I start with a character that I’d really like to explore. Once I have both of those pieces, I know I’ve got the basis for a real story.

 

In A Lady of Esteem I started with the idea of Amelia. On the surface, Amelia had everything she needed to make a good connection – respectable family, connections to aristocracy, and a home in a fashionable area of town. Even though she had the necessary elements, they were useless because she had no way to utilize them. She’s a Cinderella figure oppressed by circumstances instead of people. The big question then was what do I do with her?

 

That’s where the big What If question comes into play. What if the servants of London decided they wanted something to happen? These people are so deeply embedded in the lives of the aristocracy that it’s hard to believe they couldn’t do something is they put their collective minds to it. That was the birth of the story.

She said free everyone. Please go find this free romance. http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!a-lady-of-esteem/c2407ALoECover

What do you want people to think about when they read a Kristi Ann Hunter book.

While they’re reading it I hope they’re not thinking much of anything. My books are meant to be an enjoyable escape. I hope the story takes them into the world of Regency England until they’re completely immersed. A laugh or two would be good. Mostly I want them to enjoy the story. Once they’ve closed the book is another story. If an element of the story resonates with them and gets them to think about life a little differently or come to a better understanding about God and how much He loves us, then I consider that a success.

A Lady of Esteem is available now as a free eBook!

Miss Amelia Stalwood may live in London at her absent guardian’s townhouse, but she’s never actually met any nobility, and instead of aristocrats, her closest friends are servants.

Kristi Ann Hunter and Julie Klassen in Regency garb
Kristi Ann Hunter and Julie Klassen in sweet Regency gowns.

Quite by happenstance, she’s introduced to the Hawthorne family and their close family friend, Anthony, the reformed Marquis of Raebourne. They welcome her into their world, but just as she’s beginning to gain some confidence and even suspect she may have caught Anthony’s eye, she’s blindsided by an unexpected twist in her situation accompanied by nasty rumors.

Will she lose her reputation when the world that has only just accepted her turns its back on her, or will she rest in the support of the friends who’ve become like family and the man who’s shared his faith and captured her heart?

It’s free people! : http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!a-lady-of-esteem/c2407 

On September 8th Kristi Ann Hunter’s first full length Regency Romance Will be Available.

A Noble Masquerade will be available everywhere on September 8!

Lady Miranda Hawthorne acts every inch the lady, but inside she longs to be bold and carefree. Entering her fourth Season and approaching spinsterhood in the eyes of society, she pours her innermost feelings out not in a diary but in letters to her brother’s old school friend, a duke–with no intention of ever sending these private thoughts to a man she’s heard stories about but never met. Meanwhile, she also finds herself intrigued by Marlow, her brother’s new valet, and although she may wish to break free of the strictures that bind her, falling in love with a servant is more of a rebellion than she planned.NobleCover

When Marlow accidentally discovers and mails one of the letters to her unwitting confidant, Miranda is beyond mortified. And even more shocked when the duke returns her note with one of his own that initiates a courtship-by-mail. Insecurity about her lack of suitors shifts into confusion at her growing feelings for two men–one she’s never met but whose words deeply resonate with her heart, and one she has come to depend on but whose behavior is more and more suspicious. When it becomes apparent state secrets are at risk and Marlow is right in the thick of the conflict, one thing is certain: Miranda’s heart is far from all that’s at risk for the Hawthornes and those they love.

Let’s all go order a copy:  http://www.kristiannhunter.com/#!a-noble-masquerade/c190y

Thanks for visiting with me. Next time I’ll serve cake.

Originally posted 2015-08-06 10:17:10.

The Husband Campaign ~ Guest Post by Regina Scott

Like many of the wonderful writers on this blog, I work hard to make sure my stories are true to the historical period, but there are some areas of the Regency that frankly scare me. I am in awe of the writers who can name every battle Wellington fought in or the color of the braid on the 95th Rifle’s uniform. I admire authors who manage to study period medical books without growing queasy. And if you can figure out how to do more than describe the colors of horses as they pull the appropriate carriage to whisk a heroine away to a ball, well, you have my respect.

Regina Scott The Husband CampaignAnd then along came John, Lord Hascot, the hero of my April Regency-set romance from Love Inspired Historical, The Husband Campaign. John who raises hunters, those powerful horses that carried gentlemen into the hunting field and, occasionally, into battle. I was fairly certain I would never be able to think about horses the way John, Lord Hascot, does. Horses are John’s life. But they would need to become the life of any lady he wed. How could I possibly describe Lady Amelia’s response to John’s horses or her own?

Luckily, research led me to an exceptional little book, lovingly recreated online, called The Young Lady’s Equestrian Manual. Though its original publication date of 1838 (taken from material dating from 1829) post-dates the Regency, it is close enough that I felt comfortable relying on it. The manual describes such things as how to choose a proper ladies mount, the various parts of the horse and its accoutrements, and how to mount, manage the reins, and find your seat. It confirms that the way a lady sat upon her horse was very important to many Regency era gentlemen, as this passage indicates:

“A lady seldom appears to greater advantage than when mounted on a fine horse, if her deportment be graceful, and her positions correspond with his paces and attitudes; but the reverse is the case, if, instead of acting with, and influencing the movements of the horse, she appear to be tossed to and fro, and overcome by them. She should rise, descend, advance, and stop with, and not after the animal. From this harmony of motion result ease, elegance, and the most brilliant effect.”

And how, you might ask, can a lady have the best deportment on horseback? The manual explains that as well. A lady must

• Keep her shoulders even but back
• Put no weight on the stirrup
• Incline partially backward
• Keep her head in an even, natural position looking straight ahead
• Hold her elbows steady and near her side, with the lower part of the arm at a right angle to the upper
• Above all, never carry the whip in a way that might tickle the horse.

Got all that? Good, because according to the manual, “Nothing can be more detrimental to the grace of a lady’s appearance on horseback, than a bad position: a recent author says, it is a sight that would spoil the finest landscape in the world.”

All I can say is that I’m glad Amelia gets to ride the horses and I only have to read about them. What about you? Do you ride? Were you given any rules of the road for how to sit on horseback? Are you glad women are no longer constrained to riding sidesaddle?

reginascott11-07mediumAfter 27 sweet historical romances set in the Regency period, Regina Scott knows there is still much to learn. You can learn more about her at her website at www.reginascott.com, her blog she shares with author Marissa Doyle at www.nineteenteen.com, and her Facebook page at www.facebook.com/authorreginacott.

 

 

 

 

Book Blurb
The moment John, Lord Hascot, encounters a young woman sheltering in his abandoned stable, his future is sealed. To prevent scandal, and protect Lady Amelia Jacoby from her parents’ ire, he must propose. John’s ability to trust vanished when his former love married his twin brother. Yet he offers Amelia everything she could want, except affection.

Amelia sees John’s true nature shine through when he cares for his horses. But the brooding aristocrat seems determined to keep her at arm’s length. Little by little Amelia will turn Hollyoak Farm into a home, but can she turn a marriage of convenience into a joyful union?

Originally posted 2014-04-17 10:00:00.

Interview with Ruth Axtell

Axtell_HeartRebellionOur beloved Ruth Axtell has a new Regency romance just out! Here’s the back cover blurb:

In a world governed by unspoken rules, one young woman is about to break them all . . .

Dutiful Jessamine Barry is tired of waiting patiently for a man to decide her future. So even though Lancelot Marfleet, second son of an aristocrat, is taking an interest in her during the London season, she refuses to consider him as a suitor. Instead, she’s ready to take fashionable society by storm–and finds a rakish young man all too willing to help her do it.

Can Jessamine trust her heart to lead her to a love that proves true through thick and thin? Or will her rash actions close the door on the life she really desires?

Lose yourself in Ruth Axtell’s sumptuous story of discovering one’s true self and finding true love.

Camy here: I have the honor of interviewing Ruth today!

The hero, Lancelot Marfleet’s, hobby in A Heart’s Rebellion is botany. How did you come up with this for a hobby?

The regency era was a time for amateur scientists. It was considered an appropriate pastime for the gentry and aristocracy. Lancelot studied some of it while at Cambridge pursuing his divinity studies, and when he went to India as a missionary, he was able to indulge his hobby, seeking out and identifying many new varieties of plants.

Did you learn any interesting facts from the regency period about botany?

Yes, I learned about Captain Cook’s travels to the Pacific (Australia, New Zealand, and the islands down there) and how many new plant specimens he brought back. This spurred on botanists like Carl Linnaeus, who laid the foundations of the modern classification system of genus & species.

The hero has been in India as a missionary. What was it like for a missionary in regency times?

Very difficult in tropical countries like India, mainly because of disease. Many died very quickly because of fevers and such, which their bodies were not immune to.

The heroine is a vicar’s daughter. She makes a brief appearance in the previous regency, Moonlight Masquerade. Did you already have a sequel in mind when you wrote Moonlight Masquerade?

Yes, I got the beginnings of an idea for her story while writing Moonlight Masquerade.

What interested you about her character?

I think some of Jane Austen’s heroines inspired me. A lady was supposed to be ladylike–self-controlled, gentle, well-mannered. So, even if her heart was trampled on, she was expected to take it like a “lady.” I wanted to explore what was really going on inside this ladylike facade when a woman’s heart was breaking.

Camy again: Thanks so much for the interview, Ruth!

To celebrate the release of A Heart’s Rebellion, Ruth will be giving away two copies of her book. The first giveaway will end Monday, March 24 at midnight, and the second will end Monday, March 31 at midnight. To enter this week’s giveaway, answer this question in the comments below:

In regency times, being the firstborn male was everything in terms of inheritance. What career avenues were open for younger sons? 

Thanks for stopping by Regency Reflections for our Spring Release Extravaganza! Be sure to come back on Thursday for a history post by Ruth as well as another chance to win a copy of A Heart’s Rebellion.

Originally posted 2014-03-24 03:59:20.

One, Two, Three… Dance With Me. A Wondrous Set With Julie Klassen

“What place is so proper as the assembly-room to see the fashions and manners of the times, to study men and characters…”  Thomas Wilson, Dancing Master, An analysis of Country Dancing, 1811, pg. 6 of The Dancing Master.

Vanessa here,

It was late. The lights had dulled. I turned to leave, and there across the crowded bookstore, I saw it. A book like no other.

Timed to the subtle Barnes & Noble background minuet, I stepped near and ran a finger along it’s fine spine. It whispered a blurb just for me.

Finding himself the man of the family, London dancing master Alec Valcourt moves his mother and sister to remote Devonshire, hoping to start over. But he is stunned to learn the village matriarch has prohibited all dancing, for reasons buried deep in her past.

Alec finds an unlikely ally in the matriarch’s daughter. Though he’s initially wary of Julia Midwinter’s reckless flirtation, he comes to realize her bold exterior disguises a vulnerable soul—and hidden sorrows of her own.

Julia is quickly attracted to the handsome dancing master—a man her mother would never approve of—but she cannot imagine why Mr. Valcourt would leave London, or why he evades questions about his past. With Alec’s help, can Julia uncover old secrets and restore life  to her somber village . . . and to her mother’s tattered heart?

Filled with mystery and romance, The Dancing Master brings to life the intriguing profession of those who taught essential social graces for ladies and gentlemen hoping to make a “good match” in Regency England.

The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen
The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen

It had me at Finding. With The Dancing Master tucked firmly in my grasp, I gave the attendant my coins and fled to a carriage, content in the knowledge I’d found a joy to keep me warm through the frigid Atlanta night.

Vanessa: Today at R&R we have Julie Klassen joining us. Julie, it is my pleasure to welcome you back to Regency Reflections. The Dancing Master ‘s premise really intrigues me. Normally, we see Regency books with the hero as a duke, a barrister, a spy, or maybe a doctor, but a dancing master, not so much.   How did you come up with this idea?

Julie: In Regency England, dancing was one of a limited number of ways young men and women could spend time together or court one another. It was considered such an important social skill that parents hired dancing masters to come into the homes and teach their sons and daughters to dance. “Every savage can dance,” Mr. Darcy says, but unless one wished to dance very ill (Mr. Collins comes to mind) lessons were crucial. So, as an author of half a dozen other books set in the Regency era—and someone who Screen Shot 2013-10-08 dance classloves to dance–it was probably only a matter of time until I wrote about a dancing master. As I say in my author’s note, I learned to dance the box step standing atop my dad’s size 15 triple E shoes. Later, I went on to take every ballroom dance class I could sign up for at the University of Illinois. I even taught a few dance classes of my own through community ed. I enjoyed drawing on all of these experiences to write this book. Like ballroom dancing, I find English country dancing exhilarating, joyful, and just plain fun. I hope to express that joy in the novel.

Vanessa: Wow, Dad has some big shoes to fill. Poor Mr. Klassen, has his work cut out for him, between dad and all of your romantic heroes. Tell me about what kind of research you conducted. Hopefully plenty of dancing.

Julie: I read instructional guides and journals written by dancing masters of ages past, and watched reenactors perform English country dances online. But the best and most enjoyable kind of research was actually learning dances from that period. My dear, long-suffering husband and I went English country dancing several times.

Julie Klassen at the Ball
Julie Klassen at the Ball

I also attended the annual general meeting of the Jane Austen Society of North America, held in Minneapolis in 2013. There, I took two more dancing classes to polish my skills before the “Netherfield ball,” complete with live musicians and costumes. It was a wonderful experience to dance with fellow Austen fans from around the world.

During the conference, we also watched a BBC production: “Pride And Prejudice: Having A Ball.” In this program, a team of experts recreated a private Regency ball, complete with historical food, costumes, music, and dances. Unlike most of the sedate dances we see performed in period movies nowadays, in reality many of the dances of the era were fast paced and lively. Those of us watching were surprised how energetic the dances were, and how the performers (trained dancers in their twenties) were breathing hard and perspiring after a few dances.

By viewing the program and taking the dance classes, I gleaned several details to include in The Dancing Master. For example, when a couple reaches the top or bottom of a long-ways set (line of dancers) they stand out for a round before working their way back up or down the line. This gives couples a breather, and more importantly, a chance to talk and flirt with their partners!

If you’d like to learn more about the JASNA conference, here’s a fun video my publisher took of me (in costume) at the event. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5KmFKlJlfk

Vanessa: Ok, enough of the pleasantries. Julie, tell me about dreamy Alec Valcourt.

Julie: Alec is capable, loyal, and determined to support his mother and sister. He is a sharp dresser, prefers to keep his hands clean, and wields a fencing sword far better than an axe or spade in a rural village where most men are farmers or miners. As you can imagine, this leads to several painful scrapes along the way.

Vanessa: Why is Julia Midwinter the perfect foil to Alec?

Julie: Julia is a bit reckless, flirtatious, and difficult. But like many people in real life, there is more going on beneath the surface—and in her past—that has made her who she is. As the story unfolds and secrets are revealed, Alec begins to see the vulnerable, wounded soul beneath the brash exterior. He learns to understand her and becomes fond of her, especially as she begins to grow and change, and I hope readers will follow his lead.

Vanessa: Growing and changing. Sigh. I know I’ve made a few mistakes on that road. What spiritual truth would have made a difference to Julia, if she had realized it at the beginning?

Julie: All her life, she had been seeking a father’s love and approval. And if she could not have a father’s love, then any man’s approval would do. She had strived so long and so hard to gain attention in the wrong ways and from the wrong people…. If Julia had realized earlier that even though her earthy father failed her, her heavenly father loved her and highly valued her–she might have avoided some of the foolish things she did to try to fill the void left by the absence of a father’s love.

Vanessa: After reading Julia’s and Alec’s story, what else do have for us. There will be more cold nights in Atlanta.

Julie: I am currently working on rewrites for my next Regency-era novel with Bethany House Publishers. It’s a mysterious romance called The Secret of Pembrooke Park, and is due to be released December 2014.

Vanessa: Julie, The Dancing Master, is an amazing book. Asking this of any author is unfair, but if you could sum up the spiritual journey in one word what would it be?

Julie: Grace. I enjoyed weaving in grace in its many forms–social graces, grace in dancing, and most importantly, God’s grace—and I hope readers will be reminded of His amazing grace for us all.

Vanessa: Thank you for being a great sport and sharing this special book with us.

Julie: Thank you for having me here!

Julie Klassen is going to give away a paperback or e-book copy of The Dancing Master to one lucky commenter. Share with us your favorite dance, dance scene, or dance disaster.  Mine took place at last year’s RWA conference when I tried to do a reel. There’s video….

Any way, here’s an excerpt from The Dancing Master:

 “May I help you with something, Miss Midwinter?” Alec said officiously, hoping to chase the self-satisfied grin from her face.

“Yes, actually.” She clasped her hands. “I’ve come for a dancing lesson. Here—since Lady Amelia would never allow it in the house.”

He licked dry lips and felt his pulse rate quicken. Part of him relished the notion of being alone with Miss Midwinter. Enjoying her company and her undivided attention. Taking her hand in his to lead her through a private dance in a deserted churchyard . . . His chest tightened at the thought.

But he knew all too well the possible consequences of such stolen moments. Such seemingly innocent beginnings.

She took a step forward, and he stepped back. She performing the chassé, and he performing the dance of retreat.

He said, “Miss Midwinter. Before we proceed any further, I must tell you that I have a strict policy against any romantic involvement with my pupils.”

She blinked, momentarily taken aback. “In that case, perhaps I ought to reconsider becoming a pupil of yours.”

“Perhaps you should.”

You can purchase your own copy at: Amazon BN Christianbook.com

Julie s Images-Julie Edited Images-0007JULIE KLASSEN loves all things Jane—Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. Three of her books have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. She has also won Christian Retailing’s BEST Award and has been a finalist in the Romance Writers of America’s RITA Awards. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Find Julie at: Her Blog or FaceBook

Originally posted 2014-02-13 10:00:00.

Author Interview with Jennifer Hudson Taylor

Hi Everyone!

We’re honored to have a special guest with us today, Regency author Jennifer Hudson Taylor. Jennifer will be giving away one free kindle version of her newest novel, Awakened Redemption to a commenter, so be sure to say hi in the comment section below.

1. Jennifer, what drew you to write during the Regency Time JHT-2012-HeadshotPeriod?
I have never seen a movie or read a book in this time period that I didn’t enjoy. I wish there were more stories in this era and decided I would write one.

2. Tell us what year your book is set in and why you chose that particular time.
1815. It had to be after the war since my hero was returning from the war at the beginning of the story. His history in the war provides the back story needed to set stage in Awakened Redemption.

3. What’s your favorite, unique Regency aspect of the novel, something you wouldn’t be able to include in a novel set in another place or time?
The clothing and fashion of the time period

4. Historical clothing is always fun, isn’t it? What are the biggest challenges to writing in the Regency Period?
Getting all the titles and rules correct

5. I’m laughing at that because there are certainly a lot of both titles and rules! Who is your favorite Regency Author?
It would be too difficult for me to choose just one

6. What is your favorite Regency food, aspect of dress, and/or expression?
Stuff and nonsense

7. What is your favorite Regency setting; e.g., London, country house, small village?
This is hard since I prefer a variety of settings. In Awakened Redemption, the story is set in Cambridge and they live in a country cottage, but the setting changes to London.

8. What makes your hero and heroine uniquely Regency?
The way they talk, dress and act. I don’t think it is any one unique thing about them, but everything about them.

Thanks so much for being on Regency Reflections, Jennifer! I wish you well with the release of Awakened Redemption. It sounds like a fun story, but then, who could complain when you’ve got murder and betrayal twined into a Regency novel? To enter the giveaway, be sure to leave a comment below. Contest will end at midnight on Saturday, Feb 1.

AwakenedRedemption-Cover-3DAwakened Redemption
Preston Mallory hires Elyse Brigham as a nursemaid for his son. Recovering from an abused past, she begins to open her heart to him until she discovers Preston’s true identity. Betrayed, she flees to London and Preston follows hoping to mend things. His plans are thwarted when his former fiancée is murdered. With plenty of motive and no alibi, he’s arrested. How will he prove his innocence and convince Elyse to forgive him?
Elyse has nowhere to turn and believes the Almighty has forsaken her. As her life unravels, a new foundation and path are laid before her if she has the courage to forgive and cling to a forgotten faith.

Jennifer Hudson Taylor is an award winning author of inspirational fiction set in historic Europe and the Carolinas. She gives presentations on the publishing industry, the craft of writing, building an author platform and digital marketing. Her first six novels were contracted through Abingdon Press and her other published by Barbour Books, Guideposts, Heritage Quest Magazine, RT Book Reviews and USAir Magazine. Jennifer graduated from Elon University with a B.A. in Communications. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and visiting historical sites.

Originally posted 2014-01-27 10:00:38.