Exclusive Interviews

Author Interview With; Harriet Springbett | #BlogTour #Interview #TreeMagic #lovebookstours | @HarriSpringbett @impress_books @lovebooksgroup

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the massive pleasure to be today’s stop on the blog tour for; Tree Magic by Harriet Springbett. I am super excited to be bringing you an exclusive author interview with Harriett and to be sharing her fascinating book with you all, I hope you love it as much as I do. Firstly, thank you to Kelly at Love Books Tours for inviting me to join this tour and thank you to Harriet for answering my questions today, it’s was such a pleasure!

Tree Magic by Harriet Springbett

Thirteen-year-old Rainbow discovers she can communicate with trees.

But that’s just the beginning. Her magic hands can shape trees at her will, but her gift is dangerous and has fatal consequences. An accident that leaves Rainbow unconscious leads her mother to make a confession that will change Rainbow’s life forever. Are her abilities a gift or a curse? Can Rainbow really trust her mother? From England to France, through secrets, fears and parallel worlds, Rainbow’s journey to understand her powers takes her beyond everything she’s ever known.

To find the truth, she must also find herself.

Amazon

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Hi Harriet, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Hi there, and thanks for inviting me. I suppose my five would be: simple, optimistic, perceptive, pensive and quiet.

Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

Sure. Tree Magic is a story about a teenager called Rainbow, who discovers she can communicate with trees. She has to decide what to do about her unique gift – which alienates her from her peers – and in doing so must face tragedy and a move to a foreign country (France). I’m told it’s quite philosophical.

When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

I like running and cycling, reading and watching films. Running is great for solving character and plot problems. I nearly always come back from a run with an idea for how to tackle a scene. Of course, my friends don’t believe me when I say I’m working as I run.

If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

In the Pyrenees mountains, in France. I love the way mountains change with the seasons. I love their silence, the sheer size of them and the way they seem to beckon me to explore them.

If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead characters?

It’s my dream for one of my books to be adapted for film. I wouldn’t care who played the roles or which book it was: I’d just love to see the actors becoming the characters that were born from my imagination. It would be interesting to see the changes the director made too.

When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

I do a bit of both. I like to plot the overall arc and the sequences, but I leave the scene-plotting and character development until I’m actually writing. If a book is too tightly plotted during the first draft, it takes away the fun of seeing characters making unexpected choices.

What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Firstly, learn all about the craft of writing but don’t try to apply all the rules, only those that seem right to you. I’d also suggest that it’s essential to make headspace to write regularly – that’s much more important than having a place to write in. And, finally, don’t be put off by empty pages. i have a post-it on my laptop reminding me that bad writing can be edited, but that an empty page can’t.

If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

I’d love to meet Rob Macfarlane, since he’s into nature, mountains and writing. And Greta Thunberg, because I believe she’s key to the planet’s future. My third choice would be either someone to help me cook or someone to make me laugh.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

I wish I could say it was lettuce. But I’m a sucker for Cadbury’s chocolate.

Thank you, Harriet, for chatting with me today! x

***

About the Author

Harriet Springbett’s childhood on a small farm in West Dorset gave her an early exposure to nature, which continues to inspire her writing.

She qualified as an engineer but, during a Raleigh International expedition in Chile, she realised she preferred words to numbers. She abandoned her profession, moved to France, studied French and then worked as a project manager, feature writer, translator and TEFL teacher. She now lives in Poitou-Charentes with her French partner and their teenage children.

Since her first literary success, aged 10, her short stories and poetry have been published in literary journals and placed in writing competitions, including a shortlisting in the 2017 Bath Short Story Award.

Harriet leads writing workshops, has judged the Segora international short story competition and blogs at https://harrietspringbett.wordpress.com

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She Wears The Mask by Shelly Stratton | #BlogTour #AuthorInterview #SheWearsTheMask #HFVBTBlogTours | @HFVBT

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Hello, Sunshines, Thank you for stopping by! I have the massive pleasure to be today’s stop on this brilliant blog tour for; She Wears The Mask by Shelly Stratton, not only will I be telling you all about this book, but I have an amazing exclusive interview with Shelly. Go on and have a look, I hope you love it as much as I do!

She Wears the Mask by Shelly Stratton

Publication Date: August 11, 2020
Format: Paperback & eBook; 262 pages

Genre: Historical/Women’s Fiction

 

 

No one can ever really know what lies behind the mask . . .

Gripping and moving, She Wears the Mask is a novel about two women from two very different worlds, both burdened with secrets from their pasts, who form an unexpected bond…

1950s Chicago: Angelique Bixby could be one of many fresh-faced sales girls working along the Magnificent Mile, but she’s unique. She’s a white woman married to a black man in 1950s Chicago, making her stand out among the tenements on the South Side where she lives. Despite the challenges the couple faces, they find comfort and strength in their love for one another. Angelique is content, as long as she has her Daniel by her side and their baby in her arms, until she loses them both—one to death and the other to dire circumstances.

1990s Washington, D.C.: Angelique Crofton is a woman of privilege. A rich, aging beauty and mother of a rising political star, she has learned to forget her tragic past. But now that she is facing her own mortality, she is finally ready to find the daughter she left behind, remember the young woman she once was, and unearth the bittersweet memories she had long ago buried.

Jasmine Stanley is an ambitious lawyer—the only black woman at her firm. She is too busy climbing the corporate ladder to deal with her troublesome family or their unresolved issues. Tasked with Angelique’s case, Jasmine doesn’t know what to make of her new client—an old debutante with seemingly too much time and money on her hands. Jasmine eagerly accepts the challenge though, hoping if she finds Angelique’s long-lost daughter, it will impress the firm’s partners. But she doesn’t count on the search challenging her mentally and emotionally. Nor does she expect to form a friendship with Angelique, who is much more like her than she realizes—because Jasmine is harboring secrets, too.

Available on Amazon

***

Hi Shelly, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Tall, intelligent, creative, diligent, and loving.

Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

My latest book, She Wears the Mask, is a dual-timeline novel set in 1950s Chicago and 1990s Washington, DC. It is about two very different women from different worlds who are bonded by their buried secrets and the stress they’re under trying to keep those secrets hidden from those around them. It deals with familial relationships, racism, and the sacrifices we make to obtain the American dream.

When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

I wouldn’t call it relaxing, but I like to distract and challenge myself by running. I’ve been doing it a lot more now since the shutdown due to COVID-19 and being stuck at home. While I run, I’ve started listening to podcasts and books on Audible. It makes the runs a lot easier.

If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I know it sounds crazy . . . most people would probably say some faraway, isolated island with wide open beaches or a chalet in the snowy mountains, but I’d get bored easily in those places. I really love New York City. I love it for the people, the energy, the microcosm of cultures, and because there is always something to do and see. Christmas in New York is pretty awesome as well.

If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead character’s?

I’d love for She Wears the Mask to become a movie and I could see either the actress Nicole Beharie play the main character Jasmine or maybe, Simone Missick. For the main character Angelique, I’d have to think about that more. I could see Jodi Balfour playing the younger Angelique in flashbacks, but not sure who would play the older version of her.

When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

I do a combination of both. I usually prefer to write a few chapters free flow to get a feel for the characters and the story. It’s my way of saying, “Hey, I’ve never met you before. Tell me a little about yourself!” And then once that’s done, I do a rough synopsis of the story. I write more based on that synopsis and sometimes, especially if I hit a wall or if the novel is particularly twisty in plot, I end up doing chapter-by-chapter outlines to make sure it all falls together.

What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

  1. Write what you want to read rather than what you think readers will want. Writing by committee is painful and honestly, you can never please everyone.
  2. Even if you have a contract with a publisher, be prepared and be comfortable with self-promotion. Your book is your baby, so you’re going to have to be its biggest advocate and be your strongest supporter.
  3. Once a book goes out into the world, it takes on a life of its own. You can’t control how people perceive your work—and don’t try to. I’m amazed at what readers what insights readers take away after reading the text and how invested they can become in the characters and story that make me see my books in new ways. Conversely, some readers and reviewers have strong negative reactions that for my own sanity I have to disregard. Try not to take any of it personally.

If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite? 

My great grandmother, godmother, and my daughter. They aren’t famous but these three have been some of the most important people in my life. Unfortunately, my great grandmother and godmother died before my daughter was born. They never got to know each other and I think they would have loved each other’s company dearly if given the chance. Together, they would have been a hoot.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Butter popcorn. I can finish an entire bag and not even realize it until the last bite.

Yummy, thank you, Shelly!

***

About the Author

As long as she could remember, Shelly Stratton (who also writes under the penname Shelly Ellis) has wanted to be an author. In college, she studied journalism and started out as a crime reporter for a small local newspaper. Now she is an editor at a trade journal.

She became an author when she was selected as one of four finalists in the BET Books First-Time Writers Contest when she was 19 years old. The prize was having her first short-story romance published in an anthology.

Since then, she has authored ten books and has been nominated for various awards, including a NAACP Image Award® in the Literary Fiction Category, an African American Literary Award in the romance category, and a RT Reviewers’ Choice Award.

Shelly lives in Maryland with her husband and their daughter. She loves to paint, read, and watch movies.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page

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Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 17
Review at Books, Writings, and More

Tuesday, August 18
Feature at I’m All About Books

Wednesday, August 19
Interview at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Thursday, August 20
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Friday, August 21
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

Monday, August 24
Review & Excerpt at Robin Loves Reading

Tuesday, August 25
Interview at Bookish Rantings
Excerpt at The Caffeinated Bibliophile

Wednesday, August 26
Feature at Reading is My Remedy

Thursday, August 27
Review at Passages to the Past

Friday, August 28
Guest Post at History from a Woman’s Perspective

Monday, August 31
Interview at Jorie Loves a Story

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Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please use the Gleam form here – She Wears the Mask

The giveaway is open to US residents only and ends on August 31st. You must be 18 or older to enter.

#BlogTour | A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder by Dianne Freeman #ALadysGuideToMischief #AuthorInterview #HFVBTBlogTours @Difreeman001 @HFVBT

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Hello, sunshines, I am super excited to be today’s stop on this amazing blog tour for; A Lady’s Guide To Mischief by Dianne Freeman. I can’t wait to share this fabulous book with you all, plus I have an exclusive interview with Dianne and there is a little giveaway at the end. I hope you love it as much as I do.

A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder by Dianne Freeman

Publication Date: July 28, 2020
Publisher: Kensington Books

Genre: Historical Mystery
Series: A Countess of Harleigh Mystery, Book 3

 

 

In Dianne Freeman’s charming Victorian-era mystery series, Frances Wynn, the American-born Countess of Harleigh, finds her sister’s wedding threatened by a vow of vengeance.

London is known for its bustle and intrigues, but the sedate English countryside can host—or hide—any number of secrets. Frances, the widowed Countess of Harleigh, needs a venue for her sister Lily’s imminent wedding, away from prying eyes. Risings, George Hazleton’s family estate in Hampshire, is a perfect choice, and soon Frances, her beloved George, and other guests have gathered to enjoy the usual country pursuits—shooting, horse riding, and romantic interludes in secluded gardens.

But the bucolic setting harbors a menace, and it’s not simply the arrival of Frances’s socially ambitious mother. Above and below stairs, mysterious accidents befall guests and staff alike. Before long, Frances suspects these “accidents” are deliberate, and fears that the intended victim is Lily’s fiancé, Leo. Frances’s mother is unimpressed by Lily’s groom-to-be and would much prefer that Lily find an aristocratic husband, just as Frances did. But now that Frances has found happiness with George—a man who loves her for much more than her dowry—she heartily approves of Lily’s choice. If she can just keep the couple safe from villains and meddling mamas.

As Frances and George search for the culprit among the assembled family, friends, and servants, more victims fall prey to the mayhem. Mishaps become full-blooded murder, and it seems that no one is safe. And unless Frances can quickly flush out the culprit, the peal of wedding bells may give way to another funeral toll…

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

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Hi, Dianne Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Thank you. It’s lovely to be here!

Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Devious, diabolical troublemaker—when writing!

Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder is the third book in the Countess of Harleigh mystery series. My sleuth, Frances Wynn is a former American heiress and now widow to the Earl of Harleigh. She needs a venue outside of London to hold a speedy wedding for her sister. When her own fiancé offers his family home in Hampshire, she thinks her problems are solved. All she has to do is route the guests to Risings, join a shooting party which is already in progress, organize a small wedding for the end of the week. What could possibly go wrong?

I couldn’t resist the lure of a country house party and only wish I could attend one myself. Instead, I created one for my characters to enjoy. Eating, drinking, and flirting are the main attractions. In Mischief and Murder, it’s October, so, of course, the gentlemen are shooting, but there’s no shortage of amusements for the ladies either—riding, a visit to the village, rambling across the extensive grounds, or challenging the maze. There are picnic luncheons and archery competitions, mysterious accidents, and murder! After all, what’s a country house party without a murder?

This book sounds amazing, thank you, When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

I read quite a bit. I also enjoy long walks and working in the garden—I can be active while my mind gets to wander in its own direction.

If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I’m going to cheat on this one a little and say it would have to be a time-share so I can keep going somewhere different. There are just too many places I haven’t been or want to visit again to choose just one place. I would start with Paris since I’ve been trying to get there for the past two years and it just hasn’t worked out.

If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead character’s?

Since I write a series, I’d hope to start at the beginning with A Lady’s Guide to Etiquette and Murder. I have to admit I had to get assistance with choosing an actress to play Frances—and the popular answer is Saoirse Ronan. After seeing her as Jo in Little Women, I agree!

When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

I am definitely a plotter, which doesn’t mean I don’t deviate from that plot once I start writing, but I do want a structure to start with. Because I write crime fiction, I also plot the crime—the who, what, where, when, why, and how—before doing anything else. That way I know what motivated the criminal and what type of person my protagonist is up against.

What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Make sure you really love writing. There are so many easier ways to make a living and so many ways this career can break your heart. If you find joy in writing, that won’t matter. You get to do what you love.

Read, read, read!

Find your tribe—a group of like-minded people who really understand this writing thing you do.

Those are brilliant tips If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

This could go so many ways, but I think I’ll stick with literary dinner companions and choose Jane Austen, Edith Wharton, and Janet Evanovich. I’ve often thought if the latter two had ever collaborated, they’d have come up with a character like my Frances. It would be interesting to find out if I’m right. Jane Austen, just because!

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Diane. I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Anything I can pick up one at a time with my fingers—generally peanuts or popcorn.

Thank you, Frankie x

Thank you, Dianne, it was lovely chatting with you!

***

About the Author

Dianne Freeman is a life-long book lover who left the world of corporate finance to pursue her passion for writing. After co-authoring the non-fiction book, Haunted Highway, The Spirits of Route 66, she realized her true love was fiction, historical mystery in particular. She also realized she didn’t like winter very much so now she and her husband pursue the endless summer by splitting their time between Michigan and Arizona. She’s been nominated for an Agatha and the prestigious Mary Higgins Clark Award, and won the 2019 Lefty Award for Best Debut Mystery.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 3
Review & Excerpt at Probably at the Library

Tuesday, August 4
Interview at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Wednesday, August 5
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Thursday, August 6
Feature at The Lit Bitch

Friday, August 7
Review at Bookish Rantings

Monday, August 10
Review at History from a Woman’s Perspective

Tuesday, August 11
Review at Bookworlder
Feature at The Book Junkie Reads

Wednesday, August 12
Review at Hallie Reads

Thursday, August 13
Review at Book Bustle

Friday, August 14
Review & Excerpt at Gwendalyn’s Books

Monday, August 17
Review & Interview at Jorie Loves A Story

Tuesday, August 18
Review at YA, It’s Lit

Wednesday, August 19
Review at Books and Zebras

Thursday, August 20
Feature at I’m Into Books

Friday, August 21
Review at A Darn Good Read
Review at Passages to the Past

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Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder + a $10 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please use the Gleam form here – Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder

The giveaway is open to US residents only and ends on August 21st. You must be 18 or older to enter.

 

#BlogTour | Spies by Ellie Midwood #Spies #AuthorInterview #HFVBTBlogTours @hfvbt

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Hello, Sunshines, I hope you are all well?! I have the massive pleasure to be today’s stop on this brilliant blog tour for; Spies by Ellie Midwood. I am super excited to be sharing this gorgeous book with you all, and I also have the most amazing exclusive interview with Ellie. I hope you love it as much as I do!

Spies by Ellie Midwood

Publication Date: May 15, 2020
Format: Paperback & eBook

Series: Metropolis, Book 2
Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

Weimar Berlin, 1927

Having recovered from the hyperinflation, the decadent metropolis is prospering against all odds. Unbothered by the turbulent events of the previous years, Berlin plunges into an orgy of life, entirely oblivious to the dangerous signs of an upcoming catastrophe.

Much like the rest of Berlin’s artistic elite, Margot von Steinhoff is too preoccupied with her work on the set of the infamous Fritz Lang, to pay attention to the dark shadow of the nationalistic threat hanging over the city. When Ernst Weniger, her former lover and now an official NKVD officer, asks for her help in aiding the German communists, she refuses at first, choosing to stay apolitical, just like Lang. However, when the new Gauleiter of Berlin, Joseph Goebbels, arrives in the city and begins his relentless campaign of harassment and misinformation, Margot realizes that staying neutral is no longer an option. Playing on the wrong side can cost her not only her career but her freedom, yet Margot has never been more certain of her choice.

“I don’t read political newspapers, Margot. I only want to make my films… I don’t want to have anything to do with all those politics.”

“I don’t want to have anything to do with them either. But the sad fact is that sometimes politics wants to have everything to do with us, regardless of our desires. At some point, all of us will have to take sides. The good news, Fritz, is that I’ll always be on yours.”

Dark, gritty, yet full of hope, “Spies” is the novel of the doomed Weimar Republic and the last generation of free-thinking artists who lived and created their masterpieces in a city, on the verge of collapse.

Available on Amazon

***

Hi Ellie, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me, it’s so lovely having you on the blog! – thank you so much for having me!

Firstly, can you tell us all a little about yourself?

I’m a USA Today bestselling and award-winning historical fiction author. I owe my interest in the history of the Second World War to my grandfather, Junior Sergeant in the 2nd Guards Tank Army of the First Belorussian Front, who began telling me about his experiences on the frontline when I was a young girl. Growing up, my interest in history only deepened and transformed from reading about the war to writing about it. After obtaining my BA in Linguistics, I decided to make writing my full-time career and began working on my first full-length historical novel, “The Girl from Berlin.” I’m continuously enriching my library with new research material and feed my passion for WWII and Holocaust history by collecting rare memorabilia and documents.

In my free time, I’m a health-obsessed yoga enthusiast, neat freak, adventurer, Nazi Germany history expert, polyglot, philosopher, a proud Jew, and a doggie mama. I live in New York with my fiancé and our Chihuahua named Shark Bait.

Your new book; Spies looks amazing, it has gone straight on to my wish list, for those who haven’t heard of it yet, could you tell us a little about it?

Basically, “Spies” is a story of dual plot lines. One deals with the filming and the second, with the antifascist activity and my main protagonist Margot is involved with both. The story takes place in Weimar Berlin in the late twenties, which at the time was an incredibly liberal and cosmopolitan city with a vibrant cultural life. As the Nazis try to muscle their way in, Margot joins forces with Ernst Weniger, a German communist, in their effort to upset the newly-arrived Gauleiter Goebbels’s plans to win the Reichstag elections and also, to prevent the nationalistic ideology from overtaking the UFA – a film company Margot works for. Along the way, she finds an unexpected ally in Fritz Lang, Germany’s most celebrated director and her immediate boss. There’s plenty of intrigue, plotting, real historical figures taking unexpected sides and half of it all takes place right on the set of “Spies.”

Your new book is the second book in the Metropolis series, can you tell us a little more about this series?

Metropolis” will be a multiple book series. It starts with 1924, during the time of hyper-inflation and cultural and social revolution in Weimar Berlin (think Women’s Lib, sexual liberation, the development of psychoanalysis, expressionism, iconic silent movies etc etc) and will end only in 1945. The protagonist Margot von Steinhoff, who starts off as an apolitical photographer, gets more and more involved with the Berlin political scene and the further into series, the deeper that involvement will grow. I don’t want to give away too many spoilers, but there will be plenty of spying going on when the Nazis come to power in 1933 and plenty of close calls for Margot, who will be walking a very dangerous line as she plays a silent collaborator and works for the German underground at the same time.

When not writing or researching for your writing, what do you to relax?

Yoga, reading horror or psychological thrillers, watching old noir movies.

When you first sit down to write a new story, do you research before or during writing the book? and how much of the historical detail you find in your research ends up in the finished book?

Before and during writing and even during rewrites to insert additional scenes or descriptions that I could have missed out during the initial phase. To me, research is extremely important, so I stick to real historical events, lingo, historical figures etc as much a possible. I would say, about ninety percent of real history ends up in the finished product. For instance, in “Spies” the whole movie production process, the relationship between the actors, the conflicts with the UFA, the historical background (such as Goebbels’s arrival in Berlin and the following clashes with the German communists) – it’s all true to fact. The supporting characters, such as Fritz Lang, Thea von Harbou, Leni Riefenstahl, Max Reinhardt, Theodor Wolff are all real historical figures. I only had to insert the main protagonist, Margot, in the middle of all this, create her own plot line that fit into the historical frame and have her interact with all of these real people. So yes, to me personally, the more historical accuracy and sticking to the fact, the better. You can not overdo research when writing historical fiction. After all, it’s the historical details (and I’m talking contemporary cigarette brands they smoked, books they read, social issues they had to deal with) that make a good, authentic historical fiction novel. Without such details, it’s just fiction.

It is so obvious that the WW2 era is real love and passion of yours, could you share with us what caught your attention and drew you into this era?

My family history. Many of my family members fought in the war and some perished. I grew up listening to my grandfather’s war stories (he was among the troops that took Berlin) and I guess they impressed me to such an extent, I began actively reading and researching the war and the events leading to it later in life and ended up writing about it. I guess, the main reason why I will never get tired of writing about it is because I want people to understand how hellish the war is, how dangerous racist and xenophobic rhetoric is, how important it is – and particularly now – to stand up to tyranny and fight for what is right. In general, how to prevent yet another war and another Holocaust from happening.

If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead characters?

Right now, I would love “Metropolis” series to be made into a Netflix series maybe, but it’s because I have just finished the second book and I’m still too emotionally involved with the project and excited about it. Weimar Berlin would look amazing on film – all that glitter and glamour and the ominous political cloud in the background. I think it would look fascinating. As for the actors, I would leave it to the professionals – producers and directors. They know their business better.

Are there challenges you face while writing and researching your books, and if so what do you do to work through these issues?

I can’t really come up with any challenges; once I get into the project, it pretty much writes itself. All I have to do it to sit before my laptop, let my characters talk, and type after them. The biggest challenge is the days when the words sometimes refuse to assemble themselves into coherent sentences, but that’s usually a sign that I overworked myself and that my brain needs a rest (I usually work 10-12 hours a day, so it’s easy to imagine how it can short-circuit sometimes, haha!). On days like these, I usually let myself recharge, listen to an audiobook, do some yoga, take a walk with my pup, watch some old classic movie and by the time I wake up the next day, I already have the entire new chapter in my head, ready to be written.

Your books are predominantly set during the twenties and WW2, would you ever write a story set during a completely different era?

As of now, I would say no. That is, it is not in my immediate plans. But you know what they say – never say never – so, maybe, someday, I’ll write about Louis XIV’s court intrigues or about Viking warrior women.

If you were hosting a dinner party which three people would you invite?

Living or dead? If living, it would be Stephen King, Johnny Depp, and Natalie Portman. All three are extremely talented individuals but they’re also very interesting people (impo) and I think it would be very interesting to just sit there and talk about social issues, art, literature, history and whatnot with them. If dead, it would be Erich Maria Remarque, Fritz Lang, and Albert Einstein – all three for the same reason.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Cherries, bananas, or nectarines. I’m a health nut lol Thank you so much for having me! I really appreciate it!

It was a real pleasure having you visit the blog today, Ellie, Thank you!

***

About the Author

Ellie Midwood is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning historical fiction author. She owes her interest in the history of the Second World War to her grandfather, Junior Sergeant in the 2nd Guards Tank Army of the First Belorussian Front, who began telling her about his experiences on the frontline when she was a young girl. Growing up, her interest in history only deepened and transformed from reading about the war to writing about it. After obtaining her BA in Linguistics, Ellie decided to make writing her full-time career and began working on her first full-length historical novel, “The Girl from Berlin.” Ellie is continuously enriching her library with new research material and feeds her passion for WWII and Holocaust history by collecting rare memorabilia and documents.

In her free time, Ellie is a health-obsessed yoga enthusiast, neat freak, adventurer, Nazi Germany history expert, polyglot, philosopher, a proud Jew, and a doggie mama. Ellie lives in New York with her fiancé and their Chihuahua named Shark Bait.

For more information on Ellie and her novels, please visit her website. You can also find her on Facebook, Amazon, and Goodreads.

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Blog Tour Schedule

Saturday, June 6
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Monday, June 8
Review at A Chick Who Reads

Tuesday, June 9
Review at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, June 10
Excerpt at What Is That Book About

Friday, June 12
Interview at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

Monday, June 15
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Tuesday, June 16
Review at Nurse Bookie
Excerpt at I’m All About Books

Friday, June 19
Review at YA, It’s Lit
Review & Excerpt at Robin Loves Reading

Monday, June 22
Review at Donna’s Book Blog

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Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of Spies by Ellie Midwood! To enter, please use the Gleam form here – Spies

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on June 22nd. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

#BlogTour | Rakes And Roses by Josi. S. Kilpack #RakesAndRoses #AuthorInterview #BookFeature @JosiSKilpack @ShadowMountn @austenprose

Posted on Updated on

Hello Sunshines, I hope you are all safe and well? I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on this amazing blog tour; Rakes and Roses by Josi. S. Kilpack. Not only will I be sharing this gorgeous book with you all, but I have an exclusive author interview with Josi; which is amazing! I hope you love it as much as I do.

Rakes and Roses by Josi. S. Kilpack

A standalone novel in the Mayfield Family series with an unusual premise and an uplifting ending.

Lady Sabrina endured an abusive marriage, a miscarriage, and early widowhood to emerge as a smart, successful, confident woman who found a way to make her mark in a man’s world. She has friends and purpose, but cannot hide from the emptiness she feels when the parties are over and the friends have gone home to families she will never have.

Harry Stillman may be charming and handsome, but he’s a gambler and a rake who has made a mockery of his privileges. He turns to the mysterious Lord Damion for financial relief from his debts, but still ends up beaten nearly senseless by thugs and left in an alley.

When Lady Sabrina comes upon Harry after the attack, she remembers the kindness Harry once showed to her six years ago and brings him to her estate to heal. Though their relationship begins on rocky footing, it soon mellows into friendship, then trust. But Lady Sabrina needs to keep Harry at a distance, even if he is becoming the kind of man worthy of her heart. After all, she is keeping a secret that, if exposed, could destroy everything she’s so carefully built.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | DESERET BOOK | BOOK DEPOSITORY INDIEBOUND | AUDIBLE | GOODREADS

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Praise 

“Uplifting…Kilpack flips the typical Regency romance script, with the heroine rescuing the hero. Kilpack’s strong, upright heroine who finds a way to claim her power in Regency society sets this love story apart. This magnetic tale will appeal to fans of emotional romance.”—Publisher’s Weekly 

Kilpack takes traditional regency roles and challenges them. She shows how one person can make an impact in the world. I found the story and premise unique.”—Heather Gardner, Fire and Ice

This is a story of redemption above all else…the ending was perfect.”— Lucinda Whitney, author of Rescuing the Prince

***

Hi Josi, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Thank you for having me! I’m excited to be here and talk with you and your readers.

Can you tell us a little about your latest Regency romance, Rakes and Roses?

You bet. Rakes and Roses is the third book in my Mayfield Family series. Like the other books in the series, it stands alone so you can read them in any order. The premise of the series is that an Uncle returns to England after spending thirty years trying to save the family coffers only to find that it was the family connection that has suffered the most. With his brother and sisters passed away, he creates marriage inheritances for his nieces and nephews if they will marry well, settle down, and live respectable lives he hopes will give better foundation to the future generations. Rakes and Roses follows one of the nephews, Harry Stillman, who has squandered his privilege and inheritance in the gaming hells of London and is desperately in need of rescue.

What are the strengths and weaknesses of your main characters?

Harry starts our story as a bum, out of money, friends, and options. His charm and good looks haven’t done him the sort of favors to give him stability. Over the course of the story and as he dries out, we get to see the things in him that even he hasn’t seen before—that he’s smart, that he’s determined, and that can care about other people.

Sabrina is a strong and independent woman. She works hard to live above reproach and make the world a better place. She’s compassionate, generous, and optimistic. However, she’s also insecure and lonely and has a bit of a temper that Harry is really good at triggering.

What are the dominant themes in Rakes and Roses?

Redemption for themselves and trust for each other. There’s a strong theme of family connection, as there are in all the books in the series, and how that strengthens the individual. At the same time, everyone’s journey is not meant to be the same as anyone else’s.

If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead character’s?

I would love to see any of the Mayfield Family series made into movies—I’ve already chosen Sean Connery to play Uncle Elliott, though he may have aged out of the role by now. If Rakes and Roses were made into a movie, I would love to see Harry played by a blonde Zac Efron—I’m sure he could pull it off—and Lady Sabrina played by Scarlett Johansson. I mean, why not?

When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

I plot a little bit, but not a lot because when I spend too much time plotting, I feel beholden and my creativity works best when I let the story grow as I go.

What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

1—Attend writing conferences

2—Learn your craft

3—Read!

When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

I love to watch TV and movies, and it is the Golden Age of all things on the screen. I’ll often watch the same movies over and over, dissecting plot and character and dialogue. I love the true-crime series that have been popping up too.

If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Aberdeen Scotland. Gorgeous!

If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

That would come? I’m going to assume they would come if I invited them—Michelle Obama, Meryl Streep, and Ed Sheeran. Man, that would be fun.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Josi. I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Peanut M&Ms and almonds are eaten with a spoon, 1 M&M and 3 almonds per spoonful. 

Mmmm, that’s a huge thumbs up from me, thank you!

***

About the Author

Josi S. Kilpack is the bestselling author of several Proper Romance and Proper Romance Historical series and a Cozy Culinary Mystery series. Her books, A Heart Revealed and Lord Fenton’s Folly; were Publishers Weekly Best Romance Books of the Year. She and her husband, Lee, are the parents of four children.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

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Blog Tour Schedule

Do visit all of the other amazing blogs which are participating in this epic blog tour and do show them some love.

May 04 My Jane Austen Book Club (Guest Blog)

May 04 Historical Fiction with Spirit (Review)

May 04 Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

May 04 All About Romance (Guest Blog)

May 05 Timeless Novels (Review)

May 05 Literary Time Out (Review)

May 06 For Where Your Treasure Is (Review)

May 06 Courtney Reads Romance (Review)

May 07 Fire and Ice (Excerpt)

May 07 Gwendalyn’s Books (Review)

May 08 History Lizzie (Review)

May 08 Wishful Endings (Review)

May 09 Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Spotlight)

May 09 Relz Reviewz (Character spotlight)

May 10 Book Confessions of an Ex-Ballerina (Review)

May 10 Delighted Reader (Excerpt)

May 11 Frolic Media (Guest Blog)

May 11 A Bookish Way of Life (Review)

May 11 Bringing Up Books (Review)

May 12 Lu Reviews Books (Review)

May 13 English Historical Fiction Authors (Guest Blog)

May 13 Adventure. Romance. Suspense (Review)

May 14 Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals (Interview)

May 14 So Little Time…So Much to Read (Spotlight)

May 15 Storybook Reviews (Excerpt)

May 16 The Book Diva’s Reads (Review)

May 16 The Fiction Aficionado (Review)

May 17 Inkwell Inspirations (Spotlight)

May 17 Half Agony, Half Hope (Review)

May 18 Romance Junkies (Guest Blog)

May 18 Christian Chick’s Thoughts (Review)

May 18 The Lit Bitch (Review)

May 19 The Caffeinated Bibliophile (Interview)

May 19 Heidi Reads (Review)

May 19 Bookworm Lisa (Excerpt)

May 19 Laura’s Reviews (Review)

May 19 Katie’s Clean Book Collection (Review)

May 20 The Silver Petticoat Review (Excerpt)

May 20 Joy of Reading (Review)

May 20 Austenesque Reviews (Review)

May 21 The Calico Critic (Spotlight)

May 21 Getting Your Read On (Review)

May 21 From Pemberley to Milton (Excerpt)

May 22 Wishful Endings

#Exclusive Author Interview with Julie Stock #BookPromo #TheBistrobyWatersmeetBridge @wood_beeze48

Posted on

Hello Sunshines, I hope everyone is safe and well. I have the huge pleasure to welcome the wonderful Julie Stock, author of feel-good contemporary romances, we are talking about relaxing with a good book, writing and Kit-Kats – you know me, chocolate must be involved 😉 So sit back, grab a cuppa and enjoy.

Frankie: Hi Julie, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Julie: Thanks so much for having me on your lovely blog, Frankie.

Frankie: Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Julie: Romantic; Friendly; Passionate; Organised; Hard-working.

Frankie: Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

Julie: My latest release is The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridge, a feel-good contemporary romance set in a bistro beside the sea in Devon.

Here’s the blurb:

When Olivia goes to manage Finn’s failing bistro, will they end up sharing a table for two, or will it be a recipe for disaster?

Olivia Fuller longs to manage one of the restaurants in her father’s chain and to break free to live the independent life she’s wanted for so long. When her father finally puts his trust in her and sends her to a failing restaurant in Devon, she’s confident she can prove herself capable of doing the job.

Finn Anderson is about to lose his beloved seaside bistro, unless the bank can find a buyer to dig him out. When George Fuller offers Finn a deal, he has no choice but to accept if he wants any chance of getting his bistro back one day. And then the new manager arrives…

Even after meeting the prickly chef and discovering his complete lack of business skills, Olivia is confident she can turn the struggling business round. But as Olivia and Finn start working together, a mutual attraction develops between them, and soon, nothing is going according to Olivia’s plan. 

When there’s a real chance that the bistro might be sold off, Olivia and Finn determine to fight for it, united by their hard work and their growing feelings for each other.

But can they save the bistro and be together, or does destiny have a different path in mind?

You can up pick up your copy here.

Frankie: When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

Julie: My favourite relaxing thing to do is to read. I love reading romance of all kinds, but I enjoy reading other genres too, including women’s fiction and thrillers.

Frankie: If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Julie: This is something I’ve discussed with my husband a lot! It would probably be in France or Spain. We’ve travelled across most of France so it would be hard to pick one place, but we really love Alsace in eastern France (and I set another of my books, The Vineyard in Alsace, there so that would make sense!), and we also love the Vendée/Charente regions of western France. If we were going to live in Spain instead, we loved Valencia when we went there a couple of years ago and would be very happy to settle there.

Frankie: If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead characters?

Julie: I’d love for any of my books to be made into a film, but I’d really like to see my début novel, From Here to Nashville on the screen. When I wrote it, I imagined my main female character, Rachel, being played by Emma Watson, and my male lead, being played by country music singer, Sam Hunt.

Frankie: When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

Julie: When I wrote my first book, I was definitely a ‘pantser’, writing by the seat of my pants, as writers call it, but over time, I’ve realised that it helps me to plot a little before I start writing so that I don’t get stuck along the way. I really only outline the plot in the loosest way so that there’s room for me to explore where the story might go but it’s very helpful to have that outline to turn to as I write.

Frankie: What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Julie:

  • Make time for your writing. As someone once said, you can’t edit a blank page. If you can write 300 words a day, you’ll have 10,000 words by the end of a month.
  • Be prepared to accept help. Join an organisation like The Romantic Novelists’ Association or one for your genre. The RNA has a great New Writers’ Scheme and that will help you gain confidence in the early days of your writing career.
  • Remember that this is a marathon, not a sprint. It takes time to find your voice as a writer, and to find the path to publishing that suits you. Try not to worry if it doesn’t all happen overnight. Just keep writing and keep improving, and you’ll get there.

Frankie: If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

Julie: I would have to invite Barbra Streisand because she’s my favourite singer of all! I’d also invite Matthew Goode because he is just gorgeous but also I imagine he’d be a great conversationalist. Finally, I’d invite someone who could make us all laugh, so I think I’d invite Rob Brydon.

Frankie: Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Julie. I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Julie: I love most foods so this is hard, but I’m partial to cashew nuts, or pitta bread and hummus, if savoury. If something sweet, I love a Kit-Kat!

Frankie: Oooh, yes!! Bread for me in any form and I will never say no to a Kit-Kat 😉 Thank you, Julie!

Julie: Thanks so much again for having me on your blog, Frankie. I loved answering your questions.

***

About the Author

Julie Stock writes contemporary feel-good romance from around the world: novels, novellas and short stories. She published her debut novel, From Here to Nashville, in February 2015 and her second novel, The Vineyard in Alsace in March 2017. Over You (Sam’s Story) and Finding You (Jenna’s Story), her follow-up novellas to From Here to Nashville were published in 2018, making the From Here to You series complete. She has also published a boxed set of the From Here to You trilogy of books.

The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridge was published in August 2019, followed by Bittersweet, a collection of 12 Short Stories for Modern Life in September 2019.

If you’d like to sign up to her newsletter list, you can do so here: NEWSLETTER. As a thank you, you’ll be able to download Before You, the prequel story to the; From Here to You series, for free.

Website / Twitter / Facebook Page / Instagram

***

Book Promo

The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridge

A feel-good contemporary romance, set in a bistro beside the sea in Devon. 

When Olivia goes to manage Finn’s failing bistro, will they end up sharing a table for two, or will it be a recipe for disaster?

Olivia Fuller longs to manage one of the restaurants in her father’s chain and to break free to live the independent life she’s wanted for so long. When her father finally puts his trust in her and sends her to a failing restaurant in Devon, she’s confident she can prove herself capable of doing the job.

Finn Anderson is about to lose his beloved seaside bistro, unless the bank can find a buyer to dig him out. When George Fuller offers Finn a deal, he has no choice but to accept if he wants any chance of getting his bistro back one day. And then the new manager arrives…

Even after meeting the prickly chef and discovering his complete lack of business skills, Olivia is confident she can turn the struggling business round. But as Olivia and Finn start working together, a mutual attraction develops between them, and soon, nothing is going according to Olivia’s plan. 

When there’s a real chance that the bistro might be sold off, Olivia and Finn determine to fight for it, united by their hard work and their growing feelings for each other.

But can they save the bistro and be together, or does destiny have a different path in mind?

Pick up a copy here.

***

If you are a Romance and/or Historical author and would like a free Book Promo which will feature on the blog and across Chicks, Rogues and Scandals social media, then do get in touch via the Contact Me page quoting ‘Book Promo’

#Exclusive Author Interview with Kiley Dunbar #BookPromo @KileyDunbar @HeraBooks

Posted on

Hello Sunshines! I have the huge pleasure to welcome lovely author; Kiley Dunbar to  Chicks, Rogues and Scandals, in an exclusive interview. We are chatting books, writing, Midget Gems and Sam Heughan…what more could a person want? Plus Kiley will be telling us all about her up and coming new book; Summer at the Highland Coral Beach. So sit back, grab that cuppa and enjoy!

Summer at the Highland Coral Beach by Kiley Dunbar 

Series: The Port Willow Bay Series

Publisher: Hera Books

To be Released: 27 March 2020

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Escape to the Highland Coral Beach – where broken hearts can be healed…

Beatrice Halliday needs a break from life. Booking a trip to the Highlands on a whim, Beatrice hopes learning Gaelic in a beautiful Scottish village might help her heal her grief after losing her baby, her husband and her much loved job in a space of months.

But Port Willow Bay isn’t exactly as the website promised. Instead of learning a new language, she’s booked in to learn the ancient skill of willow weaving, her hotel room is Princess and the Pea themed (with a stack of mattresses for her bed!) and worse still, her tutor is Atholl Fergusson, grumpy landlord of the hotel where Beatrice is staying – and she’s the only one doing the course.

But as Beatrice finds herself falling in love with Port Willow Bay and its people, and as she discovers the kind heart beneath Atholl’s stony exterior, can she really leave?

Escape to the beautiful Scottish Highlands with this utterly romantic, feelgood book; one visit to Port Willow Bay and you’ll want to come back! Fans of Sarah Morgan, Carole Matthews and Holly Martin will be captivated.

***

Praise for Kiley Dunbar

‘I would easily give this book hundreds of stars’ Little Miss Book Lover 87

‘this book was just sheer gorgeousness from the first page to the last, and I loved every moment…A really special book, and an author to watch for the future’ Being Anne

‘What an adorable, emotional, and beautiful read!!…This is certainly one of my favourite holiday reads and a book that will stick with me’ Diary of a Book Fiend

‘I just adored this book…This is a perfect book to chase away the winter blues and make you dream of love in the summertime. I cannot recommend it highly enough.’ A Little Book Problem

‘This was one of those books that you smiled reading from the very first page. It is such a feel-good rom-com’ Kelly’s Book Space

‘A heart-warming and uplifting romantic read about
love lost and found, second chances and new beginnings…will leave you with a great big smile on your face.’ Bookish Jotting

‘a glittering feast of love and happiness that I simply couldn’t put down… I urge you all to add this stunning book to your TBR pile immediately.’ Stacy Is Reading

‘a warm, feel good and uplifting read with some unforgettable moments and gorgeous descriptions.’ On My Book Shelf

***

Frankie: Hi Kiley, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Kiley: Hi Frankie, thanks so much for having me! I’m so chuffed to be here.

Frankie: Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Kiley: Scottish, romantic, smiles at dogs.

Frankie: Ditto! That could be me, except for the Scottish part 🙂 Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

Kiley: Summer at the Highland Coral Beach is out on 27th March 2020 and it is a book with themes very close to my heart.

The story follows Beatrice Halliday after her whole life falls apart. Her marriage has broken down after she loses her job and goes through the trauma of a miscarriage. This has all occurred months before readers meet her at the start of the book. She doesn’t know how to process her grief and ends up running away to the Scottish Highlands. Port Willow proves to be the perfect place to begin her recovery and rebuilding as she makes new friends and finds a community who need her own special brand of organisational zeal and meddling. Port Willow is a magical place, a little lost in time and with a big dose of kaleyard nostalgia, more akin to the nineteen fifties than the twenty twenties.

I wanted to write a book that dealt with baby loss and the strains it puts on couples (often invisible strain because we’re discouraged from talking about miscarriage), and I wanted to write about some of the different ways of being a mother: mothers to lost babies (Beatrice and Mrs Fergusson), lesbian mums raising a baby conceived with assisted insemination (Angela and Vic) as well as featuring characters who choose not to have children (Kitty and Gene).

The book may deal with difficult themes but there’s lots of fun and laughter too and plenty lightness and romance. I hope you love Beatrice’s matchmaking; sexy, grumpy Atholl Fergusson and his dopey, romantic brother Gene; the romantic date at the fairy pools on the Isle of Skye; the big finale ceilidh; and the towering fairy-tale bed at the Princess and the Pea Inn!

Frankie: When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

Kiley: I read a lot to relax. I love Jenny Colgan and Daphne du Maurier. I’m also really into Ruby Lang and Helen Hoang at the moment. And I walk Amos, my Bedlington terrier. He’s always curled up at my feet when I’m writing and is a lovely wee boy!

Frankie: If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Kiley: No question, it’d be Plockton in the Scottish Highlands. It’s the picturesque coastal village which (very loosely) inspired Port Willow in Summer at the Highland Coral Beach. It’s stunning! All palm trees, pretty gardens, Victorian hotels and a lovely sweeping bay, and just along the coast there’s a hidden coral beach with crystal clear turquoise waters to rival the prettiest tropical bay. Oh, I wish I was there now!

Frankie: If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead characters?

Kiley: I’d definitely pick Sam Heughan (Jamie from Outlander) to play Atholl Fergusson as Sam’s Barbour clothing adverts (Google them, you won’t be disappointed) helped inspire Atholl’s whole aesthetic. Phoebe Waller-Bridge (from Fleabag) would make a brilliant Beatrice with her mix of heartbreak, inner depths of strength and all her daring humour.

Frankie: You have me hooked the moment you said, Outlander 😉 When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

Kiley: I don’t start writing until I have the plot all set out. It often changes as I write, and sometimes again in edits, but I’m definitely a planner in all aspects of my life, not just writing. What I’m saying is, I’m a control freak.

Frankie: What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Kiley: Join the Romantic Novelists’ Association if you can.

Talk to other writers on Twitter and find your writing family.

Subscribe to lots of book lovers’ blogs and follow bloggers on Twitter to keep you up to date with reading tastes, make new pals and get loads of good book recommendations.

Frankie: If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

Kiley: I’d have Kim Namjoon from BTS (yes, I’m a 41 year old ARMY), and I’d love to meet Marian Keyes – she’d be brilliant at any dinner party – and Miriam Margolyes because she’s a legend and lots of fun. That would be a pretty interesting dinner party!

Frankie: Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Kiley. I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Kiley: Midget Gems are my writing snack of choice! Nom! Probably should have said something healthy but seriously, they’re so good!

Frankie: Haha, Midget Gems work for me too, I do love a bag of sweet. 🙂 Thank you!

Kiley: Thanks so much for chatting with me, Frankie! It’s a huge honour to be on your blog, love, Kiley, x

***

About the Author

Kiley Dunbar is the author of heart-warming, escapist, romantic fiction set in beautiful places. JOAN HESSAYON AWARD FOR DEBUT NOVELISTS FINALIST 2019 FOR ONE SUMMER’S NIGHT.

Kiley is Scottish and lives in England with her husband, two kids and Amos the Bedlington Terrier. She writes around her work at a University in the North of England where she lectures in English Literature and creative writing. She is proud to be a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and a graduate of their New Writers’ Scheme.
Kiley’s third novel, Summer at the Highland Coral Beach (coming 27th March 2020) The first of the Port Willow Bay series is on Pre-order right now!!

One Summer’s Night was Kiley’s first novel (published by Hera Books) and is on sale now!
Don’t forget there’s also a fabulous audible audiobook narrated by Eilidh Beaton.

Kiley’s cosy, sexy-swoony, very snowy festive romcom Christmas at Frozen Falls is on sale NOW too!

Twitter / Amazon

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If you are a Romance and/or Historical author and would like a free Book Promo, which will feature on the blog and across Chicks, Rogues and Scandals social media, then do get in touch via the Contact Me page quoting ‘Book Promo’

#BlogTour | Whitsborough Bay Series by Jessica Redland; Feature, Excerpts and Exclusive Author Interview #WhitsboroughBaySeries #BoldWoodBlogger @JessicaRedland @BoldwoodBooks

Posted on

Hello Sunshines!! Have got a mega post for you all today? I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on this epic blog tour for the whole; Whitsborough Bay series by Jessica Redland. Not only will I be sharing exclusive excerpts for each of the books, but I also have an exclusive to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals interview with Jessica, where will be chatting all about books, writing and my favourite topic; chocolate. So pull up a seat, grab that cuppa and enjoy.

Frankie: Hi, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Jessica: Thank you so much for having me

Frankie: Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Jessica: Snuggly, imaginative, caring, fun, organised

Frankie: Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

Jessica: Coming Home to Seashell Cottage is the final part in my ‘Welcome to Whitsborough Bay’ series. The series is made up of four books, each centring around one main female protagonist:

Book 1 – Making Wishes at Bay View – This is a prequel to the series, introducing Callie who works in a care home and tends to make very poor relationship choices involving much older men. Her favourite resident, Ruby, thinks Callie would be better off with her grandson, Rhys, but Callie is worried that Rhys might be a figment of Ruby’s imagination. It’s a lovely story of intergenerational relationships and how it’s never too late to give up on a wish for a happy ever after.

Books 2-4 are set chronologically, each one picking up where the last one left off, and they follow three friends – Sarah, Elise and Clare. Each book is a complete story with one of the women as the protagonist but we get to know and find out about the others.

Book 2 – New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms – This is Sarah’s story. After being unexpectedly gifted her auntie’s florist shop, Sarah returns to her hometown of Whitsborough Bay, licking her wounds after a bad relationship. When packing to move, she finds a clairvoyant reading from when she was 18 and everything has come true except one prediction: she’s about to meet the man of her dreams. And his name is Steven. Best friend Elise is convinced it’s going to come true but her other best friend, Clare, thinks it’s a load of rubbish. Who’s right?

Book 3 – Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove – We’re focusing on Elise now. Her 12-year marriage has unexpectedly broken down and she’s facing a divorce yet has two weddings to attend as bridesmaid. Not easy! Gary was her one and only relationship so she decides that she needs to get back out there and recently-divorced Daniel may be just what the doctor ordered. Or is he?

Book 4 – Coming Home to Seashell Cottage – The final part of the series is Clare’s story. So much has changed for the three women that the dynamics of the friendship have shifted massively. We find out why Clare is so cool and spiky and why she doesn’t talk about her past. There are lots of secrets and demons to face as Clare discovers that she can run from the past but she can’t hide from it.

Frankie: When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

Jessica: I really wish I had an interesting answer but I’m afraid I don’t get any time to relax. I have a full-time day job so I fit writing around that on evenings and weekends. Hopefully one day I’ll be able to write full-time and have a bit more me-time. In rare moments off, I enjoy watching romcoms or reading, and spending time with my family and dog, but these moments are definitely too few!

Frankie: If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Jessica: I’d want it to be somewhere close enough to home that I could visit regularly. Last May, we had a family holiday in Portugal. It’s the first time we’ve been there and we absolutely loved it. The scenery was stunning and the people were so friendly. We’re going back this May because we loved it so much.

Frankie: If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead character’s?

Jessica: I would love the whole of the series to be made into a Netflix series! If it was just one book to be made into a film, I’d probably say The Secret to Happiness which is a standalone novel which was released last September. It’s the story of three women – Karen, Alison and Danniella – who need to say goodbye to someone/something but are struggling to do so. When they meet at a bootcamp run by Karen, can the power of friendship give them the strength to do what they’ve been unable to do alone? I would struggle to say who the main characters would be, though. I have a Pinterest board with inspiration for my characters but they’re not necessarily famous people. I struggle with picking celebs because I watch so little TV (back to earlier question about never having time to relax!)

Frankie: When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

Jessica: Pantser. All the time. I know my characters very well and I know where the story is going to end but I let the journey unfold as I write.

Frankie: What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Jessica:

  1. If you want to write, write. You may not be great at it but you’ll never know unless you try
  2. Learn how to write. Being good at writing in day to day life v writing a book are two very different skills. There’s a lot to learn but there are some amazing self-help books, courses, and qualifications out there to help. I spent ten years learning my craft whilst writing my debut. To be fair, I had a lot of years where I didn’t write anything as I married, had a baby, opened and closed a business and changed job several times during that time, but I never lost sight of that goal and never stopped learning
  3. Take the NaNoWriMo approach of just getting on with it. You can edit it later. You might ditch a lot of it later. But if you don’t get the words down in the first place, you’ll have nothing to edit

Frankie: If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

Jessica: The famous person answer would be Dawn French, Chris Hemsworth and James Corden.

The non-famous answer would be my good friends Susan, Jackie and Catryn who I hardly ever get to see because we live so far apart.

Frankie: Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Jessica! I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Jessica: Chocolate. Nom nom. Specific favourite at the moment are Teasers (Maltesers). Ooh, salivating right now!

Frankie: Oooh, yes!! You are certainly talking my language with Teasers, thank you! xx

Jessica: Thank you so much for your fabulous questions. Jessica xx

***

Whitsborough Bay Series

Making Wishes at Bay View: The perfect uplifting novel of love and friendship for 2020 (Welcome To Whitsborough Bay Book 1)

This book was previously published as two novellas – Raving About Rhys and Callie’s Christmas Wish.

Never give up on a wish for a happy ever after…

Callie Derbyshire has it all: her dream job as a carer at Bay View, finally she has found the love of her life. Everything is perfect.

Well, almost.

Ex-partners are insistent on stirring up trouble, and Callie’s favourite resident, Ruby, hasn’t been her usual self.

But after discovering the truth about Ruby’s lost love, Callie is determined to give Ruby’s romantic story the happy ending it deserves. After all, it’s never too late to let love in again. Or is it?

A heartwarming and uplifting novel of finding love and friendship in the least expected places from top 10 bestselling author, Jessica Redland.

Amazon

****

New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms: The perfect uplifting page-turner for 2020 (Welcome To Whitsborough Bay Book 2)

Sometimes love can bloom where you least expect it…

For Sarah Peterson, it’s time for change. Coming out of a dead end relationship and having had enough of city life, she just needs to escape and have a fresh start – a new job, a new home and a new lifestyle.

So when her Auntie Kay unexpectedly offers her the opportunity to take over her flower shop, Seaside Blooms, the timing could not be more perfect. She could escape to the beautiful seaside town of Whitsborough Bay, start a new chapter in her life – and learn how to run a business!

But, as she packs up her life in London, she isn’t prepared for the discovery of a clairvoyant reading that’s been missing for twelve years. All of the predictions have come true, except one: she’s about to meet the man of her dreams. Oh, and his name is Steven…

As she prepares for the biggest move of her life, Sarah can’t help but wonder if Seaside Blooms could be a new beginning for love too?

A warm, uplifting novel of love, friendship and destiny from top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland.

New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms is a new, revised and updated edition of a novel previously published as Searching For Steven.

Amazon

New Beginnings at Seaside Blooms; Excerpt

Come on, Jason. Ring.’ I frowned at my iPhone as I paced up and down in the lounge, my stiletto heels echoing on the wooden floorboards. ‘Or text. I don’t care which. Just make contact. Please.’

My heart leapt as the phone beeped, but the text was from one of my best friends instead.

From Elise

Happy birthday Sarah! Last year in your twenties so make the most of it. Wish you weren’t so far away so I could give you a birthday hug so sending one by text instead. I’ve hopefully timed your present to arrive today. Hope Jason’s got you a fab gift… proposal maybe? Have a great evening xxxxxxx

I stretched out my arm to admire the sparkly silver bracelet she’d sent.

To Elise

Just got home and your parcel was waiting. Way too generous as usual… but absolutely gorgeous! Thank you so much. Not sure where he’s taking me but hopefully it’s somewhere nice this time. I’m all dressed up with nowhere to go! Would be lying if I said a proposal hadn’t crossed my mind. EEEEEEKKKK!!!! You’ll be first to know if he does xxx

My hands shook slightly and I felt a flutter in my stomach as I typed in the words. Could tonight really be the night? Maybe. The timing felt about right and he’d been talking about making plans for the future. We’d been together for two years and two months and had lived together for most of that time. Aside from occasional bouts of thoughtlessness on his part and a tendency to drag me to the gym or on a twenty-mile hike way more often than a person should have to endure in a lifetime, we were very happy together and I assumed that a proposal wouldn’t be too far away.

Another text arrived but it still wasn’t Jason.

From Clare

Sorry for not texting earlier. Dim Daz borrowed my phone then drove to Essex with it. Bloody muppet. Anyway, better late than never… happy birthday you old fart. Can’t believe you want to spend the evening with your eejit flatmate rather than me. Hope it’s not McDonalds this time! Maybe he’ll really treat you & do Pizza Hut?! Keep Saturday night free if you want your card & gift or I’m keeping them xx

She’d added several laughing emojis to the end of the text.

Your Auntie Clare is being very rude, as usual,’ I said to one of our kittens, Kat, who’d appeared to demand a fuss. ‘Flatmate indeed.’ But I couldn’t help smiling. Only Clare could get away with a comment like that.

To Clare

Thanks. Was beginning to think you’d forgotten me! I promise to keep Saturday free for you. Dread to know what sort of abuse I’d get if I don’t. Not sure where MY BOYFRIEND is taking me. Still waiting to hear. McDonalds was a misunderstanding and you know it! Laters xx

From Clare

Misunderstanding my arse! My final guess of the evening… The Griffin

I shook my head. So our two-year anniversary hadn’t gone quite to plan, but it was my fault really. I should have known that saying, ‘I’d love to go out for a meal to celebrate; how about The Kam Po? I could meet you in The Griffin after work,’ was far too vague for Jason. I ended up nursing the same glass of Pinot Grigio for ninety minutes before finally accepting he wasn’t coming. Trudging home, I found him in his gym kit playing on his Xbox. ‘You been working late?’ he asked. ‘You should’ve texted me. I got you a McDonalds on the way home, but it’ll be cold now and there’s nothing else to eat.’ He returned to his game and I went to bed hungry. I kept hoping he’d realise his mistake but he never did and, by then, it felt too late to say anything.

I checked my phone again now. Nothing. It couldn’t happen twice, could it? No. It had been his idea this time. Some of my friends from work had suggested a birthday meal, but Jason had insisted on taking me out himself. I’d gently reminded him a couple of days ago and he’d assured me it was in hand and I wasn’t to quiz him any further or I’d spoil the surprise. He said he’d contact me last minute with a location to meet him so I could enjoy the excitement of speculating about where we were going. This was certainly last minute and excitement wasn’t quite the feeling I’d describe.

It was now after half six. Sod it! I couldn’t do this anymore.

To Jason

This is killing me! Where are you taking me? I’m all ready and awaiting my instructions! Please tell me you haven’t forgotten xx

***

Finding Hope at Lighthouse Cove (Welcome To Whitsborough Bay Book 3)

When it feels like everything is against you, sometimes you just need a little bit of hope…

Married to her childhood sweetheart for over twelve years, Elise feels like starting a family is the next natural step. However her husband, Gary, has other ideas…

Suddenly single, Elise is completely heartbroken and struggling to start over on her own. But when she’s enlisted to be bridesmaid to her best friend, Sarah, she has to put on a brave face, put her own feelings aside and find a way to get over Gary. Fast.

So when she meets handsome, recently-divorced, Daniel, she thinks he could be just what she needs. But why can’t she shake the feeling that he must be too good to be true?

Will she ever be able to take that leap and trust again?

An uplifting read of love, loss and finding yourself from top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland.

This book was previously published as Getting Over Gary

Amazon

Finding hope at Lighthouse Cove; Excerpt

Li! Are you ready yet?’ Gary shouted up the stairs. ‘I thought we were meeting them at seven.’

I glanced towards the digital alarm clock: 18:28. Still twelve minutes till we needed to leave. I took a deep, calming breath then called, ‘Just a few more minutes. We won’t be late. I promise.’

Squirting another mist of hairspray on my loose auburn curls, I blew a few flecks of make-up off my new teal dress, then pulled on a pair of black strappy, sparkly shoes. Grabbing a black pashmina and clutch bag off the bed, I took a quick glance in the full-length mirror on the wall. Not bad. Perhaps a little over-dressed for a meal at The Bombay Palace with my sister and her fiancé, but surely Gary would be impressed with the effort, especially as the dress was his favourite colour on me. Maybe he’d even pay me a compliment. I shook my head at my reflection. I wouldn’t get my hopes up on that one. I’d be lucky if he managed the ultimate cop-out non-compliment of, ‘You look nice.’

I paused at the top of the stairs and gazed down at my husband tapping something into his phone, a deep frown creasing his brow. Even in a mood, he was still irresistible with his dark hair, dark eyes and tall, athletic build.

I’m ready,’ I called, preparing myself to do a little twirl so he could appreciate the tightness of the bodice clinging to all the right places – a daring move for someone who normally wore long skirts and maxi-dresses – but he barely managed a cursory glance as he pocketed his phone.

About time too,’ he said. ‘I’ll get the car started. Can you lock up?’ Without waiting for an answer, he went outside.

I reached for the banister and clung onto it as I took a few deep, shaky breaths and willed myself not to cry. It was fine. Timekeeping stressed him out and, even though we weren’t actually late, he was understandably tired and irritable. He’d been working long hours with the surgery expansion recently and seemed to be permanently on edge. He’d likely skipped lunch again so was bound to relax when we ate.

Would you like me to drive back tonight so you can have a drink?’ I asked as Gary backed his Lexus off the drive. I reached across to give his thigh a gentle stroke but withdrew my hand when I felt him tense under my touch.

I’m fine, thanks. We’ll stick to the rule.’

Okay.’ Gary’s ‘rule’ was that if it’s your family or your friends, you drink and the other drives. I rarely drink so was happy to be the designated driver most of the time, but Gary refused to deviate.

I stared out of the window as he drove along Abbey Drive then guided the car out of the small new-build housing estate where we’d lived for the past six years. Glancing across at his tight jaw as we joined the main road into Whitsborough Bay, he certainly looked like a man who could do with a relaxing drink. Perhaps I’d have one more try at breaking the rule.

Are you sure? You know I’m never bothered about drinking when we’re eating.’

We stopped at the traffic lights, but Gary still didn’t look at me. His hands tightly gripped the steering wheel. ‘I’ve already said I’m fine. She’s your sister so I’m the driver. Can we just drop it, Li? Please?’

Okay. Sorry.’ I turned to look out of the window again, blinking back tears. He’d come round when he saw Jess and Lee. He loved their company, even if he didn’t seem to love mine at the moment.

***

Coming Home To Seashell Cottage (Welcome To Whitsborough Bay Book 4)

*Winner of Chill With a Book Book of the Year 2019 Award as Dreaming About Daran*

For Clare O’Connell, home is where the heart aches…

Since the age of sixteen, Clare O’Connell has lived her life by four strict rules:

1. Don’t talk about Ireland

2. Don’t think about Ireland

3. Don’t go to Ireland

4. Don’t let anyone in

And so far, it’s worked well. She’s got a great career, amazing friends, and she’s really happy. The future is all that counts, isn’t it?

However Clare is about to realise that you can run from the past, but you can’t always hide from it…

When her boss insists she travels to Ireland for work, Clare finds herself drawn back to the village of Ballykielty – the home of her family, and the home of her secrets. The one place where vowed never to return to again…

With the door to her past now wide open, the first three rules have gone out of the window. Will Clare stick to rule number four?

Can she be brave and face up to her family and the demons of her past?

An emotional novel of family, friendship and dealing with your past from top 10 bestseller Jessica Redland.

This book was previously published as Dreamg About Darran.

Amazon

Coming Home to Seashell Cottage; Excerpt

Late September

What the hell is that in the fruit bowl?’ I cautiously leaned forward on Ben’s sofa to get a closer look, hoping it wasn’t an enormous spider about to scuttle over me.

Apples, pears, kiwis and bananas,’ Ben said. ‘Don’t tell me that you’ve reached the grand old age of thirty-three and you still can’t identify your basic fruits.’

I raised my eyebrows at him. ‘Ha ha! You’re hilarious. You should be on stage, so you should.’ I reached my hand out towards the object.

Argh!’ yelled Ben as I was about to touch it.

I snatched back my hand, screaming.

Sorry. Couldn’t resist.’ He rolled around on the sofa, laughing hysterically.

You eejit!’ I whacked him with a cushion. ‘You scared the life out of me! Is this what it’s going to be like living with you? Because if it is, I can check into a hotel for the next few months instead. Are you ready to say goodbye to that new kitchen?’

I worked for a company called Prime PR, managing public relations campaigns for large corporates. Having recently been promoted, I needed to relocate from London to Leeds. Ben – or Saint Ben, as I called him – was the brother of my best friend, Sarah, and he lived in Leeds so I’d adopted him as my meal buddy for the past few years every time I visited on business. Meeting up with a friend for some good craic was far more appealing than dining in a hotel restaurant surrounded by suits staring into space, eating meals for one. On my last trip, I’d moaned about the prospect of living in a hotel for a month or two while I found somewhere to rent and, being the saint he was, Ben immediately offered me his spare room. Grand idea. It meant I could pay Ben rent using my allowance for not staying in a hotel, giving him the funds to refit his prehistoric kitchen. Win-win. Of course, he refused to accept payment, but I wore him down eventually.

Ben put his hands up in surrender as I lifted the cushion to whack him again. ‘Sorry. But you’d have done the same if it had been the other way round. You know you would.’

Perhaps.’

Definitely.’

I smiled. He was right. ‘So, what is it, then?’

Ben reached into the fruit bowl, then held out the black object in the palm of his hand.

It’s a chess piece,’ I said, looking at the black king. ‘Why’s there a chess piece in your fruit bowl?’

He shrugged. ‘I came home from work last Tuesday and, quite randomly, it was on the front doorstep.’

With a note?’

No note. Just the king on his own.’

And it’s yours?’

Nope. I don’t play chess.’

Oh. Very random. But do you know what’s even more random? Why the hell it’s in your fruit bowl instead of the bin.’

It seemed like a good place for it.’

But you don’t know where it’s been. It could have been peed on by a dog. Or worse.’

Ben looked at the king thoughtfully. ‘Good point. Just as well it was between the bananas and kiwis, then, wasn’t it? They’ve got skins.’ He leaned forward and put it back.

Ben! Put it in the bin.’

No.’

Ben!

I reached forward but he grabbed me and started tickling me, which he knew was a pet peeve of mine. I squealed, leapt to my feet and darted past him into his kitchen. Thankfully, I was saved from another attack by the arrival of our Indian takeaway.

Get your hands washed before you touch that food,’ I ordered Ben.

He winked at me. ‘I love it when you’re bossy.’

I dug out some plates and we busied ourselves dishing up the food.

Shall we watch a film while we eat?’ Ben asked. ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’s on TV and I’ve never seen it. My mate Pete said it’s really good.’

Is that the one with Jim Caviezel in it?’

I think so. And Guy Pearce.’

Ooh, two hotties. Grand. Count me in.’

***

About the Author

Jessica Redland is the author of nine novels including The Secret to Happiness, which are all set around the fictional location of Whitsborough Bay. Inspired by her hometown of Scarborough she writes uplifting women’s fiction which has garnered many devoted fans.

Website / Instagram / Facebook / Newsletter

***

Blog Tour Schedule

A Chat With. . .Author Faye Hall #Exclusive #AuthorInterview #AChatWith @FayeHall79

Posted on Updated on

Hello my lovely readers! Today I have the huge pleasure to welcome historical romance author, the very lovely Faye Hall to the blog for an exclusive chat, we will be talking all about her latest release; Envy and Favour, writing and oodles more, plus I have an exclusive excerpt for you all to devour. Take a sea, grab a cuppa and enjoy.

About The Author

Faye Hall spent her early years listening to stories about the families – including her own – who settled townships in and around her hometown in North Queensland, Australia. The local townspeople, including her own parents, told her stories of corruption and slavery, along with family secrets and forbidden love.

Desperate to remember what she’d been told, along with her already growing love of writing, Faye began to write about the history of her local area. Never could she have imagined the history of her small home town in Australia would become a growing list of published books.

Faye’s passionate stories combine controversial subjects and provocative encounters as her characters struggle to survive the lifestyle in early rural townships throughout Australia. She explores slavery and abortion, drug addiction and murder, as well as forbidden love and passionate affairs of the heart.

When she’s not writing, Faye enjoys sharing a bottle of wine with her husband in their ever-growing garden, and encouraging the varied interests of their combined family of nine children.

Explore the world of Faye Hall, Australian Historical Romance Author at her website.

Website / Facebook / Twitter / BookBub / Tumblr / Pinterest / Instagram / Youtube

***

Interview

Frankie : Hi Faye, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Firstly, what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Faye : Quirky, Tattooed, Mother, Quiet and Introvert.

Frankie : Can you tell us a little about your latest/up and coming release?

Faye : My latest release is Envy & Favor, and it’s the sixth book in my Sins of the Virtuous series. Even though it’s part of a series though, it can be read as a stand-alone book.

It’s the story of Atol, a chap hard on his luck who wants to move to North Queensland with the woman he loves. When a situation presents itself that he can finally move north, he finalizes his family business and goes to collect Anna, the woman he loves. He finds her gone without a word. Desperate to be reunited with her, he travels to where he’s certain her father has moved them, only to find the man who murdered his father trying to force Anna into marriage.

There are morphine addicts, and stolen orange sapphires and drama that threatens to tear Anna and Atol apart for good.

Frankie : That sounds amazing, it is definitely going on to my towering TBR,

When not writing, what do you like to do to relax?

Faye : Relax is a foreign word in my house with 5 school age children still at home! That said, I do try to find time to unwind in our garden, or sitting under our pergola sharing a bottle of wine with my hubby.

Frankie : My goodness, you certainly have your hands full, If you could have a holiday home anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Faye : Ireland – my mother’s family comes from there and I just love the country and history there.

Frankie : If you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead character’s?

Faye : I’d love to see Heart of Stone made into a film because it’s quite gritty and scandalous what with it’s story line involving slavery and forced marriage. I think Josh Lucas (Sweet Home Alabama) would be perfect as my hero Ruben and the heroine Bella should be played by Aviva Baumann (NCIS).

Frankie : When writing, do you plot or do you go with the flow?

Faye : I always try to start with some kind of a plan that’s usually handwritten. Then I type that into the computer and wait for the characters to tell me where to take the story from there. I usually don’t know the ending until I write it though.

Frankie : What three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Faye : Have broad shoulders as the writing industry can be quiet cruel at times. Write from your heart so then every word you put down is pure. And love what you do otherwise it will just become a ‘job’ like everything else and the words will lose their appeal.

Frankie : That’s brilliant, thank you! If you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite?

Faye : Sherlock Holmes, Dame Judy Dench and Agatha Christie – should prove to be some interesting conversation around the table haha.

Frankie : Now that would be tea party I would love to attend!

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, Faye, I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun; What is your favourite snacking food?

Faye : I love cheese and onion potato chips!

Frankie : Yay, one of my favourites too, Thank you Faye, it has been so lovely chatting you with today. X

***

Exclusive Excerpt

Damn it, Anna,” Atol cursed. Hurrying to mount his horse, he flicked the reins on its rear and sped off after her.

As he closed the distance between them, he knew he was being a fool running after this woman yet again. He needed to stop dropping everything every time she beckoned him. He needed to, but he couldn’t. Anna was everything he could ever want in a woman, and he would follow her to the ends of the earth should she ask him to.

His heart ached as he reminded himself how pointless such a sacrifice would be. Their fathers would never allow any kind of relationship to eventuate between them other than the friendship he had insisted they keep.

It wasn’t just her friendship that he wanted though. He wanted… His fingers brushed against his lips, remembering her soft kiss moments before. It was one of only a few he had been blessed with since they’d moved to Rockhampton, but he treasured them all, fearing this was all

He would ever be able to share with Anna.

Remembering how easily this most recent show of affection had come about, he again began to wonder if he shouldn’t just defy their fathers and confess his true feelings to her. After all, a woman didn’t give a man such affections unless she desired—

Hurry up, Atol,” she yelled to him from up ahead, interrupting his thoughts.

Looking in the direction of her voice, he saw her dismounting and tying her horse up before undressing down to her chemise and drawers. Captivated by the image she made, he slowed his horse to a walk and approached the swimming hole.

He dismounted and tied his horse near Anna’s, then he slipped off his shoes and removed his shirt, throwing it over a branch of a nearby bottlebrush tree. Strolling toward the bank of the creek, he stalled and rolled up the legs of his jeans before entering the cool water.

You took your time getting here,” she chided him in a playful tone. “I was starting to think you’d changed your mind.”

He waded toward her, suddenly forgetting the distance he usually insisted stay between them. “If a beautiful woman asks you to go for a swim, only a fool would refuse.”

Will Father really be mad when he finds out you didn’t finish those papers?” she asked.

He shrugged, no longer caring about where he should be right now. All he cared about was this woman and how she was making him feel. “No doubt he will be furious, but I’m certain he’d be more furious to learn where I am with his daughter right now.”

She held his gaze. “But we’re just swimming. There’s nothing wrong with that.”

He studied her, unsure if she meant what she was saying. “Surely you know there’s nothing so innocent about a man and woman sneaking away to swim. The assumption would be that any man left alone with a woman of your beauty would be unable to control himself.”

Yet you seem to have ample control.” She waded toward him, stopping a breath away. “I’ve invited you to swim with me so many times and never once have you touched me inappropriately.”

His hand cupped her cheek, his thumb brushing her lips. “Even you must know every man has their limits.”

***

Book Spotlight

Envy and Favor by Faye Hall

What happens when a resentful man is determined to win the favor of the one you love?

For years Atol Livia has desired only one thing—to move north, far from the corruption of his father’s business, and start a life with the woman he loves. That is if Anna Jenel can look past his poverty and will agree to marry him. When Anna informs him that she gave her heart to him long ago, never once caring about any wealth he might have, he’s elated. But their plans are delayed when Atol’s father is found murdered. Once Atol has finally settled his obligations and is able to leave town, he goes to collect Anna but discovers that she is gone.

Anna doesn’t understand why her father whisked her away in the middle of the night to travel north. When they arrive, she finds a fully operational cattle station, and an associate of her father’s willing to do anything to gain possession of it—even marry her.

When Atol arrives up north, all he can think of is being reunited with Anna. But he soon discovers that the man who murdered his father now has his eyes set on Anna and will do whatever is necessary in order to have her as his wife. This man is determined to gain possession of Anna’s cattle station and the orange sapphires hidden there.

Will Atol and Anna be able to protect each other from a murderer, or will they fall victim to the envy of this man and lose each other forever?

Content Warning: contains sex, strong language, and some violence

Genre(s): Historical Romance

Beech Walk Press / Amazon / Itunes / Barnes and Noble

 

A Chat With….Author Charlotte Brentwood @charbrentwood, #Exclusive #AuthorInterview #AChatWith

Posted on Updated on

Hello my lovely readers! Today I have the great pleasure to welcome Charlotte Brentwood; author of The Hearts Of Amberley series to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals for an exclusive chat.

About Charlotte

Charlotte developed serious crushes on a series of men from age fifteen: Darcy, Knightley, Wentworth and Brandon. A bookworm and scribbler for as long as she can remember, Charlotte always dreamed of sharing her stories with the world.

Earning a degree in communication studies, she was seduced by the emerging digital world and has since worked with the web and in marketing. She is a member of the Auckland chapter of RWNZ. 


Now mother to an adorable human tornado, Charlotte is trying to find the time for reading, seaside walks, warbling at the piano and quaffing far too many hot chocolates.

Author website / Goodreads / FacebookTwitterPinterest

Interview

Frankie – Hi, Welcome to Chicks, Rogues and Scandals! Thank you for taking the time to chat with me today.

Firstly what five words would you use to describe yourself?

Charlotte Mother, writer, music-lover, speed-walker, fast-talker

Frankie – If you could take a holiday in any era and place, When and where would it be? And Why?

CharlotteI would love to travel back to Regency England so I could see what it was really like! Was it as elegant and beautiful as the period dramas would have us believe? What was it like to go to a ball or ride through Hyde Park? And did men really look as handsome as our favourite heroes?

Frankie – Can you tell us a little about latest release? This can be your most recent or up-and coming release.

CharlotteMy new release (out April 20th) is GLOVED HEART, a sweet regency romance. This is the second book in the “Hearts of Amberley” series but it can be read as a standalone. As a new mother, I poured my heart into writing about Amy Miller, who is coming to terms with having a newborn in less than ideal circumstances. Now afraid of men, can she open her heart to Henry, who has loved her all along?

FrankieWho was your childhood hero?

Charlotte – I think the people I looked up to the most were my parents.

FrankieIf you could have one of your books made into a film, which book would it be and who would play your lead characters?

Charlotte If GLOVED HEART was made into a film, I would have Toby Stephens play the hero Henry, because he’s a redhead and he looks hot in period clothing! The female lead is harder (and not so fun to spend hours dreaming about on Pinterest). I always think she looks like the lady on the book cover.

Frankie – Out of all your work, who is your favourite character and why?

Charlotte – At the moment, my favourite would be my hero Henry. He is so selfless and giving, and he never gives up on Amy, the heroine. Plus he’s a farmer, so he’s big and strong 

Frankie – Where does your inspiration for your books come from?

Charlotte From my imagination! Stories, characters and situations fly into my brain from all kinds of places. It could be when I’m doing some historical research, when I’m watching a movie, or when I overhear a conversation. Quite often ideas come from a mishmash of other things I’ve scene – what would happen if that person had to deal with this other thing?

FrankieWhat three tips would you pass on to an aspiring author?

Charlotte Write what you want to write. Write often. Read widely.

FrankieIf you were hosting a dinner party what three people would you invite? (They can be real/fictional, from any era)

Charlotte Jane Austen, Jo March, Anne Shirley

FrankieThank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with me today, I have just one more cheeky question, just for fun . . . What is your all-time favourite naughty but nice food?

Charlotte – Tiramisu – creamy, chocolatey, spongey and coffee-flavour… what’s not to like?

Mmmm, Yummy! Thank you for chatting with me today, Charlotte.

 About the Book

Gloved Heart by Charlotte Brentwood

Can she ever trust again?

Amy Miller is struggling to come to terms with her new life as a mother, while being a reluctant guest in a rigid gentry household. A victim of abuse, she is determined to never trust a man again.

Henry Russell has loved Amy for as long as he can remember, but his family want nothing to do with her. A chance encounter with Amy rekindles a friendship which might save them both.

The discovery of a secret which holds the key to Amy’s past will change them forever, and jeopardise any chance they have for happiness. Can Henry show Amy that true love will give her everything she could ever need?

Note, although this is a ‘sweet’ read, there is some subject matter that may offend sensitive readers, including mention of a rape and very mild violence and coarse language.

Gloved Heart Can be Purchased from Amazon