– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘The Rebel Heiress and the Knight’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a guest post written by its author, but b
About the Author :
Growing up in Richmond-Upon-Thames, Melissa Oliver used to walk past the old Mills and Boon offices as a teen, and wistfully sigh that one day her dream of writing for them will come true. Amazingly, after all these years, it finally has…& now she can bring all those stories out onto the pages of her books. Melissa lives in south-west London with her gorgeous husband and equally gorgeous daughters, who share her passion for castles, palaces and all things historical.
She must marry the knight
By order of the king!
Widow Eleanor of Tallany Castle knows her people are broken by the taxes demanded by King John. So when she’s ordered to marry Hugh de Villiers, a knight loyal to the king, she’s furious—even if he is handsome! As gallant Hugh begins to heal the scars of Eleanor’s abusive first marriage, she’s even more determined to keep her secret: she is the outlaw the king wants to send to the gallows!
Guest Post :
I knew I wanted to write a medieval romance, set against a back-drop of real historical events- and the spring of 1215 certainly had that.
With bitter divisions between King John and the Barons; civil unrest and lawlessness- the country was on the brink of civil war. Strangely enough; Brexit- which polarised opinions and divided the U.K recently, actually helped in making me understand the depth of anger and frustration felt by both sides. Only, back then, there was a real and palpable danger that the situation could spiral out of control, spectacularly…which it later did.
To set a tender romantic story at this tumultuous time was just too delicious for me to resist. I wanted to create that element of intrigue, adventure, and even hope.
This is one of the reasons why I love medieval historical romance- it has that excitement- that tangible, urgent immediacy about it that for a hopeless romantic like me, not to mention as a writer- is just too good to pass up. There are endless possibilities.
However, I’m conscious that this is also a period in history that occurred a long time ago, meaning that the availability of credible resources are limited. For instance, much as I like to keep the story and characters rooted in historical accuracy, it isn’t always possible. If that was the case, then my characters would have had to speak in ‘old’ French, since (middle) English wouldn’t have been spoken in court at this time. It does, however, need to feel authentic and believable.
I always start with a what if… scenario, with the emergence of characters forming in my head, adding more and more detail and layers as I go along. The plot may twist and turn as many times but ultimately it’s my characters that drive the story forward.
I create them, with the hope that they jump out of the page, and know that they inhabit a world that, much like ours, isn’t perfect and can be quite harsh at times. However, both my hero and heroine have no choice but to rise to any challenges in a, sometimes, unexpected way.
In terms of themes, there’s a nod to the legend of Robin Hood, which some historians believe, took its inspiration from the real-life story of Fulk FitzWarin III.
My heroine- Eleanor had been abused in her first marriage but uses that experience for a force of good, even though it’s a difficult experience to put behind her. She’s quite empowering really and yes women like Eleanor Tallany really did exist at that time. The hero too, Sir Hugh de Villers, is patient and kind- a powerful warrior with a big heart. I really love them both.
Eleanor and Hugh had sparks of attraction almost from the outset but they had to overcome standing on opposing lines when it came to the Baron’s conflict. At the heart of this book are two people who are drawn together, despite their differences and their difficulty to trust. There are variant shades between the light and dark elements here too, so I loved injecting humour into the story.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds