Posts Tagged ‘historical romance’

Guest Post

Guest Post: Amalie Howard and Angie Morgan on Writing Dual Timelines

My Darling, My Disaster Amalie Howard and Angie Morgan

When we decided to tackle a dual timeline for My Rogue, My Ruin (MRMR) and My Darling, My Disaster (MDMD), we were so excited for the chance to write about two different couples falling in love under their own sets of circumstances, but over the same course of time. We had no idea what we were signing up for, but the challenge of making each story stand alone and yet having each one thread into the other was equally intriguing. We were especially delighted to write Gray and Lana’s story, and their belowstairs, secret master-servant relationship.

That said, doing a dual timeline story opened up a whole can of worms we did not anticipate. First, we created a document which included all of the days and hours we had to play around with for Gray and Lana to develop their relationship. In other words, if Lana was attending to Brynn as her lady’s maid in MRMR, she couldn’t be canoodling with Gray in MDMD. And since we know that our savvy romance readers would hold us to task, we had to be extremely careful to make sure those timelines were carefully aligned.

The second challenge we encountered were the few overlapping scenes. A couple of these scenes were relevant to both books, so we simply had to include them. While MDMD has a couple scenes drawn straight from MRMR, they’re from a totally different perspective—which was so fun to write. For example, one scene from MRMR shows Gray being a complete jerk. But in MDMD, the scene is shown from Gray’s perspective and the reader is given valuable insight as to why he’s being such a pain in the arse.

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Essential Beginnings Kennedy Layne
Q&A

Q&A: Interview with William Danbury of ONCE A COURTESAN

Once a Courtesan Liana Lefey

Love the Beauty and the Beast remake? (Those costumes, that character design, that uncomfortably attractive candelabra) Get a taste of that courtesan charm with the ever-so-dashing William Danbury of Once a Courtesan!


Physical description: 6’1”, slender build, wavy brown hair, dark blue eyes, age 29

Occupation: Officer of the Crown, Westminster Special Constabulary (AKA “Gonson’s Boys”) in the year 1727

Hello, Mr. Danbury.

Please, call me Will.

All right, Will. Thanks so much for granting us this interview.

The pleasure is mine, madam.

You’ve just played a significant role in what is being touted as London’s first major triumph over the rampant crime that has plagued the city in recent years. Tell us a little about yourself. Why don’t we start with your family?

Very well. I’m my mother’s only son and the youngest of eight children—

Wait, you have seven sisters?

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Portland ME Freya Barker sale July
Guest Post

Guest Post: Linda Broday on the Stellar HEA of TEXAS REDEMPTION

Texas Redemption Linda Broday

Sometimes a story comes along that sets you back on your heels and makes you think about how fate (or God if you will) often gives you a second chance. This story was Texas Redemption and it showed me just how strong the power of love is. And how much you ache when it’s a love you can’t claim.

This is the kind of story that ties your stomach in knots and you see no way to a HEA. But hold on. Don’t give up.

Brodie Yates (Shenandoah) first met Laurel James during the Civil War in a brothel. She was only fifteen or sixteen but they fell in love. He promised to go back and get her but the war got in the way. Then at war’s close, he’s hunted for being an infamous rebel spy. Laurel waited for him but had to conclude that he’d either been killed—or that he didn’t want her.

Desperate to escape the brothel where she’d been taken at fifteen after being kidnapped, she enlists the help of the cook. They make their way to Redemption, Texas where she can hide from those who are looking to take her back. Her family lives near but she’s too ashamed to go to them. Even though it wasn’t her doing, her soul is stained. She and her friend open a café and she becomes engaged to the town mayor. She burns with determination to find redemption and respectability.

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Sisters in Love Melissa Foster
Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: Tamara Gill’s ONLY A DUKE WILL DO

Only A Duke Will Do Tamara Gill

We’re back from a holiday weekend and there are only two things keeping us alive right now: Spite and this amazing excerpt from Tamara Gill‘s Only A Duke Will Do!


“I’m sorry you feel that way, but you cannot stop Isolde from marrying. She will marry one day. It may not be me, but it will be someone. And if the reports around London are correct, she is looking for a husband.”

“Damn you to hell.” Merrick left Wardoor, grabbed a half-filled bottle of whisky from the pavilion, and started toward the Italian Walk. He found a secluded grassy spot within the trees. The sweet-smelling scent floating on the breeze did little to lesson his ire.

Merrick clung to the tree branch above his head and fought not to snap it off, imagining it as Wardoor’s neck. He flung back a good portion of the whisky and welcomed the burn to his throat. How could his closest friend do this to him?

The thought of Isolde welcoming his attentions was like a physical blow.

Damn them. Damn him.

“Moore!”

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Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Guest Post

Guest Post: “Wonderful World of Words” by Heather McCollum

Thee Beast of Aros Castle Heather McCollum

Thanks for having me on EverAfter Romance to celebrate the release of the first book in my new Highland Isles series, The Beast of Aros Castle! I’m Heather McCollum, and I am a Word Nerd. I love words, history, and writing romance. I often lose myself in etymology: the study of the origin of words.

As a writer, there are millions of words from which to choose. Yet the wrong word, or the right word said by the wrong person, can completely throw a reader out of the world I’ve created. Nooo! Therefore, I must choose wisely when writing.

The word “wow” was first used in the 1510’s. It was a Scottish exclamation to show astonishment and has apparently stood the test of time. In my Scottish romance, set in the year 1522 when King Henry VIII was still on his first wife, it would be historically accurate for my Highlander to say “wow, lass, ye look lovely, spread naked across my bed.” But how many of you would stop and wonder whether he would really say “wow”? That word could completely throw you out of the scene (and this could be a scene you really don’t want to miss!).

Then there are the cuss words. In the late 16th century, the F-word was not considered a swear word, but a word to describe, in a straightforward way, sexual intercourse. It first showed up in a manuscript written in the early 1500’s by a monk writing about his moral-lacking abbot. The word became increasingly thought of as crass and was considered taboo by the late 18th century. The word “swive” was defined the same way as the F-word in the 16th century, and considered just as crass.

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Guest Post

“Why Being a Rake is a Total Bore: The Incredible True Confession” by Ingrid Hahn

To Covet a Lady's Heart Ingrid Hahn

Mistress Hahn was supposed to entertain you today, but she sent me an urgent message begging for help.

The timing could not be more perfect. I have been longing to set the record straight on a number of matters pertaining to what is really involved in maintaining a less-than-sterling reputation. I most certainly am not soliciting your sympathy. I simply wish for you to understand that it’s not as effortless as it seems.

Carousing. Everyone uses that word. Does anyone know what it actually entails? Making merry is all well and good. Lively company is a fine thing. To a certain extent. But a man reaches a certain age, and the lure of a good book by the fireside with a fine glass of wine becomes more appealing. I know. It was a strange realization for me, too. At the age of eighteen, nothing sounded more dull. At twenty-five, I was more compassionate toward the old men who found pleasures in such things. A few years later—I won’t say how many—and I became that old man myself, decades earlier than anticipated. Or I would liked to have done, had I not had a reputation to maintain.

 

Which brings me to what it takes in maintaining one’s reputation with women. Let me think. All right, I won’t lie. I can’t find any downside to this one. If a woman seeks my company with certain expectations of what I might provide for her…never mind, let’s skip this one.

 

Horseflesh. You must have an intimate knowledge of all the fastest horses in the country. You must be able to detail who owns which animals, who bought which horse when and for what price, and all the particulars therein. I myself like horses very much. Not so much as my dear friend, the Earl of Corbeau, but I do like them. But sometimes a man wants to enjoy the company of his animals without being surrounded by young Corinthians in their finest, carefully appointed plumage who want the opportunity to try besting you to prove themselves.

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Q&A

Q&A: Nicola Davidson of THE DEVIL’S SUBMISSION

The Devil's Submission by Nicola Davidson

Hard day? We’ve got exactly what you need, because Nicola Davidson is back! Don’t miss our Q&A, or The Devil’s Submission, out now!


 

What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

I’d have to say Love Actually, Emma, The Notebook, Braveheart, and Pride and Prejudice.

 

Love Actually: I adored all the characters in this movie, but especially liked Jamie (Colin Firth) and Aurelia (Lucia Moniz.) So many sweet, funny scenes as they attempted to communicate, getting it wrong but still unable to deny the growing attraction to each other. My favorite scene is when he leaves the awkward family Christmas and instead flies back to her, making his declaration in the restaurant in broken Portuguese. SO romantic! And then it turns out she took English lessons ‘Just in cases’. Swoon. Love conquers all – even the language barrier.

 

Emma: Ohhhh, Mr. Knightley (Jeremy Northam.) Both stuffy and sweet, a real gentleman’s gentleman Regency hero. It is equal parts annoying and sniffle-worthy as he drops subtle, awkward hints about his feelings for Emma that she keeps missing. But then comes the last scene in the movie with one of the truly great romantic lines: ‘Marry me, my wonderful, darling friend.’

 

The Notebook: What a perfectly cast movie. Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams) were just brilliant together as the working class man and his society princess trying to break free. Although there are SO many fabulous scenes, a random one sticks out for me. Again, near the end, when Allie has to choose between her fiancé Lon and Noah. She pulls up outside Noah’s house in her car, hops out with her suitcases, and gives him the big shrug. Not a word is said but it captures one of the key essences of love – the heart wants what it wants, even if on paper it seems like absolutely the wrong choice.

 

Braveheart: Before the patriotism and raging bloody battles, there was an incredibly sweet romance between William Wallace (Mel Gibson) and Murron MacClannough (Catherine McCormack) childhood friends reunited as adults. Their courtship is just delicious, tender yet full of wonderful crisp banter that says their minds are in accord as much as their hearts. The scene when they sit together on the rock and he offers to teach her to read is gorgeous enough, but when they arrive back at her home and he presents her with the thistle she gave him as a child at his father and brother’s funeral…oh my.

 

Pride and Prejudice: I love the dynamics between Lizzie Bennett (Keira Knightley) and Mr. Darcy (Mathew McFadyen). She is so smart and witty and outspoken. He is stuffy and rigid and honorable. They shouldn’t work as a couple, but they do—and it’s because both learn to look below the surface, and trust their hearts when circumstances around them make them doubt what they feel. The scene at the end where he strides toward her in the dewy grass, now slightly unbuttoned and purposeful, and she knows he has done her and her family the greatest of favors and is open to seeing the kind heart beneath his crisp exterior…SWOON.

I’d say I thought about all these movies a bit while writing The Devil’s Submission. Devil is kind of a raunchy hybrid Knightley/Darcy, in that he is rigid and reserved, a bookish man whose submissive need for pain with his pleasure weighs heavily on his heart. He is in desperate need of a strong, sassy lady to lure him out of his shell and show him the way to happiness. Eliza, his estranged wife has one heck of a battle on her hands. Luckily she is more than bold and brave enough for the task. I also love the fact that when their walls come down, they can really talk. I like my scorching hot lust with a large side of friendship, I think that is what ices the happily ever after cake. The knowledge that they like as well as want each other, which is a pretty strong foundation for lasting love.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: Lise Arin on Her Favorite Kinds of Stories

Matilda Empress Lise Arin

Among contemporary novels, my favorites are always set sometime in the past. I just can’t get interested if the setting is one that I recognize and can judge for myself. It doesn’t seem compelling to me to hear what my peers have to say about the world that we share. I consider myself to be an astute observer of human nature and of culture, of our current way of life. I don’t need to be inside my neighbors’ heads. Life would be unbearably noisy if I didn’t content myself with my own thoughts. Likewise, I consume the news, but never the op-eds. I form my own opinions. I watch movies and episodic television, but never read reviews. What I seek is an escape from the world that I know, as well as anybody can.

Historical fiction takes me on an incredible journey back in time, to the past – a foreign country, to be sure – where everything is mysterious, from the most enormous political questions of the day to the most minute quotidian realities. I enjoy descriptions of picturesque or sublime landscapes no longer extant on earth, food no longer eaten, clothing so luxurious it hurts, battles fought and won over issues easy to understand and empathize with. The cadence of obsolete speech charms me; the philosophical discussions of our ancestors weren’t mere parlor games, as they seem to be today, but genuine explorations of the human condition. The stakes seemed higher in the past, and people lived more viscerally, with a greater understanding of what it means to be mortal on this earth.

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Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DUKE by Kelly Bowen

Between the Devil and the Duke by Kelly Bowen

We’re about to do a groan-worthy play on words, so just deal with what’s about to happen to you.

It’s always the season for scandal here at EverAfter, which is why we’re totally thrilled for the latest from Kelly Bowen! Check out an exclusive excerpt of Between The Devil and the Duke (Season for Scandal #3) below and enter for a chance to win a copy of your own!


“I don’t suppose you’d be interested in a job?”

“A job?” Angelique was aware she was repeating him like a half-wit, but she couldn’t seem to wrap her head around the last minute of conversation.

“Yes.” Lavoie leaned forward slightly.

“Ladies don’t have jobs.” Angelique tried to put some conviction into that statement, knowing it was what she was supposed to say. Such knowledge had been drilled into her since she was old enough to walk. Ladies grew up and married well and became wives who lived out their lives in genteel comfort. They did not partake in industry. Or gambling.

At least they didn’t until they did not marry at all, much less well, and their parents died, their family fortune went missing, and their newly titled brother couldn’t stay sober long enough to look for it. Then ladies did what they had to do to hold their families together.

She glanced up at him, but her sharp reply, like everything else, had only seemed to amuse him.

“A strange thing to say for a lady who already treats my vingt-et-un table as her personal place of business.” Lavoie’s lip had curled, his scar making it look more like a smirk than a smile.

She looked away, despising the truth in his assessment. “I do no such thing. Ladies don’t have jobs,” she repeated, though it was a pitiable attempt at her defense.

“Ladies don’t have jobs that people know about,” he countered.

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Madeline Martin, Nicola Claire, and Kelly McClymer

It is unseasonably beautiful here, which means it’s time to share some unseasonably beautiful steals! Get these great books from Madeline Martin, Nicola Claire, and Kelly McClymer while they’re on sale!


Deception of a Highlander by Madeline Martin

“A promising debut.”—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

Scottish Romance doesn’t get much steamier—or more dangerous—than a spy hunting her quarry, and losing her heart to him instead.

To pay a seemingly impossible debt, Mariel Brandon has become a spy for Aaron, one of England’s deadliest minds. Aaron’s latest mission for the sharp-witted and daring Mariel is to find two people in a heavily fortified castle on the Isle of Skye, a castle headed by the clan MacDonald and the powerful Kieran. Mariel is to seduce Kieran and get him to take her to Skye. If she succeeds, Aaron promises to let Mariel’s young brother go, and to free both of them from their debt. If she fails, her brother will die.

What she doesn’t count on is craving Kieran MacDonald almost immediately upon meeting him. Now Mariel must keep a secret from Kieran—one that could get them both killed—as she tries to form a plan that will save her brother, get her out from under Aaron’s thumb once and for all, and keep her in Kieran’s strong arms forever.


Fearless by Nicola Claire

Nicola Claire’s captivating new Gothic romance series introduces a dark and sinister early settler New Zealand at the end of the nineteenth century – brightened by a fearless and talented heroine and a loyal and secretive police inspector…

Free spirit. Brilliant. A Liability?

Doctor Anna Cassidy has been trained by the best; the former Chief Surgeon for the Auckland Police Force. She knows how to dissect a body. She knows how to treat any ailment. And she knows how to find a cause of death.

But society is not ready for a female surgeon.

Fighting for what she believes in has been ingrained in Anna since she was a young child. But the battles she faces now are not all based on equality. A murderer stalks her fellow Suffragettes and the police inspector in charge of the case could be Anna’s downfall.

Experienced. Dedicated. Something to hide?

Inspector Andrew Kelly holds duty and honour in the highest regard. His role as a detective proves just that; he never stops until justice is served. Love is something he has forsaken, for reasons he’d rather you didn’t know.

But Anna is not a woman a man can ignore.

Fighting his instincts with cold determination is something Kelly has become accustomed to. But a murderer is loose in his adopted city, bringing memories to the fore of a killer who walked in the shadows of Whitechapel, and shining light on a dark past the Inspector is trying hard to forget.

A gritty, twisted, and authentic Victorian romantic suspense, sure to rip you apart… just like old Jack.


The Fairy Tale Bride by Kelly McClymer

From USA Today Bestselling author Kelly McClymer comes a tale of two stubborn hearts locked in a duel between honor and happily-ever-after.

“…filled with original, fresh characters, the necessary bad guy, an overbearing mother-in-law and love thwarted and restored.” — Savannah
“The uncertainty of what will happen next, the lies, the deceit all make this a book you don’t want to put down.” — Eileen

Miranda Fenster, known throughout society as the Fairy Tale Miss because she insists that happily ever afters are possible even amongst the arranged marriages of the Victorian aristocracy, is on a mission. Her goal? To rescue her brother. Her adversary? Simon Watterly, Duke of Kerstone. A man who almost offered for her five years before.
Simon has a mission of his own.

Furious with his late father and disillusioned by the honorable facade of society, he believes that family honor requires the ultimate sacrifice from him. Unfortunately, Miranda is determined to change his mind. Will Simon get his wish or will Miranda make him see he deserves a happily ever after?