Monday, May 22, 2017

Why Mary Morgan Loves to Write Medieval Romances

Happy Medieval Monday. My Medieval Monday friends are eager to tell you why they love this era. Today I'm hosting Mary Morgan. She'll tell you where her heart belongs!

I’ve often been asked this question, “Why Medieval romance? Why not Regency, Victorian, or Western?” In truth, I love them all, but my heart belongs to one. It started when my fingers opened a book about the great Irish King, Brian Boru (941-1014A.D.). His story is legendary, especially with the people of Ireland. King Brian led the Irish to the peak of their Golden Age—from poetry, arts, saints, and scholars. A spark ignited within my soul for more.  

I sought out tales of knights in shining armor and folk heroes, delving into a life teeming with richness, though at times harsh and violent. Yet, it wasn’t until I devoured the history of Brian Boru that I became immersed in medieval life. From there, I treasured tales of life in castles, traveling on horseback, studying foods and herbs. My list is endless and always growing on medieval ways. Yes, there are even days when I long to travel back in time and explore the history, lore, and beliefs. 

Therefore, when it came time to pen my own stories, it only made sense for me to place them all in a medieval setting. One might say I live vicariously through my characters. It’s a love affair with all things medieval.  

For more about my stories, please visit my book page: http://www.marymorganauthor.com/books

Author Bio:
Award-winning Scottish paranormal romance author, Mary Morgan, resides in Northern California, with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.


 Mary's passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn't until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling—writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Books, Chocolate, and Wine with Cindy Tomamichel

Action, Adventure and Romance in Roman Britain
A portal closed for 2,000 years.
An ancient religion twisted by modern greed.
A love that crosses the centuries.
An ancient druid pendant shows archaeologist Janet visions of Roman soldier Trajan. The visions are of danger, death, and love – are they a promise or a curse?
Her fiancé Daman hurts and abandons her before the wedding, her beloved museum is ransacked, and a robed man vanishes before her eyes. Haunted by visions of a time she knows long gone, Janet teeters on the edge of a breakdown.
In the shadow of Hadrian’s Wall and 2,000 years back in time, Janet’s past and present collide. Daman has vowed to drive the invaders from the shores of Britain, and march his barbarian hordes to Rome. Trajan swears vengeance against the man who threatens both his loves - Janet and the Empire.
Time is running out - for everyone.
Excerpt:
All day she had replayed the vision over and over in her head like a film, trying to tease out the meaning. Danger and death. A warning for her, or someone else? And love? How could those be connected? 
Author Bio:
Cindy Tomamichel is a writer of action adventure romance novels, spanning time travel, sci fi, fantasy and paranormal genres. They all have something in common – swordfights! The heroines don’t wait to be rescued, and the heroes earn that title the hard way. 
Cindy’s recent published work includes winning a fractured fairy tale competition with a twist on the Rapunzel story. The fundraising event Madwomen Monologues has presented two of her monologues on stage. She also has poetry and short stories in two anthologies by Rhetoric Askew.
Contacts

Monday, May 15, 2017

Why Lane McFarland Writes Medieval Romance Stories

I hope you're enjoying finding out about my Medieval Monday Maidens and we LOVE to write stories in this era. Today my guest is Lane McFarland.
My passion is writing historical romance novels. Throwing my imagination into years gone by, researching dark periods of strife and violence, justice and quests for freedom, and dreaming of what it might have been like to live and survive during these hostile periods have been the most rewarding aspects of writing historical romance. 
I’m fascinated with medieval history and can get quite sidetracked in my research, absorbed in reading about the goings on at the time from the political climate and issues of the period to what foods people ate, the clothes they wore, the pastimes they enjoyed. I can get lost reading about the era and have to limit the time I spend immersed in history.
My Daughters of Alastair MacDougall Series begins in May 1297, a time of unrest between Scotland and England. It has been such fun to delve into this period and imagine living amongst the clans. The Turnberry Legacy Series picks up in 1301 with Robert the Bruce vying for Scotland’s crown, much like other power-hungry nobles who fought for control.
Bio:
My name is Lane McFarland and I write historical romance, spanning the early Middle Ages through the American Civil War. While my books are fiction, each one is based on historical facts, and you will often see known figures such as William Wallace, Robert the Bruce, or The Red Comyn make guest appearances. All my books revolve around human struggles, sacrifices survivors are forced to make, and their resilience to live and thrive.
I’m a southern girl living on top of a mountain in North Georgia, and I’m most happy when surrounded by family and friends. If I am not writing, you can find me hiking with my husband, or fiddling around in my flower and vegetable gardens, feeding the birds and watching black bears and deer. I am blessed to have a wonderful son—my pride and joy, my buddy who, along with my husband, have made my life complete.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Why Judith Sterling Writes Medieval Romance

Welcome to the next round of Medieval Monday. For months you’ve been reading excerpts from some pretty amazing medieval romances. We’d like to tell you a little bit about ourselves. What better way to do that than explain why we love to write medieval romance and a little about ourselves.
This week my guest is Judith Sterling.
Why Judith Sterling writes Medieval Romance
Some of the first romances I read as a teen were set in medieval England. I loved the passion of the period—the High Middle Ages (11th – 13th centuries) in particular—and the lure of the British Isles. Ultimately, that love led to a degree in history and a minor in British Studies.
During college and grad school, I studied in England, Scotland, and Sweden. I jumped on every opportunity to explore castles, monasteries, and other medieval buildings throughout Europe. The older the structure, the better! In ruin after ruin, the whispers of the past seduced me. I hear their voices still. With any luck, they add a magical twist to the medieval romances I feel compelled to write and give my readers a world they’ll want to enter again and again.
More About Judith Sterling
Judith Sterling's love of history and passion for the paranormal infuse everything she writes. Flight of the Raven and Soul of the Wolf are part of her medieval romance series, The Novels of Ravenwood. The Cauldron Stirred, the first book in her young adult paranormal series, Guardians of Erin, will be released soon. Written under Judith Marshall, her nonfiction books—My Conversations with Angels and Past Lives, Present Stories—have been translated into multiple languages. She has an MA in linguistics and a BA in history, with a minor in British Studies. Born in that sauna called Florida, she craved cooler climes, and once the travel bug bit, she lived in England, Scotland, Sweden, Wisconsin, Virginia, and on the island of Nantucket. She currently lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and their identical twin sons.
Judith’s Link

Visit me on Facebook @judithsterlingfiction. You can find my books at https://judithmarshallauthor.com/my-books

Monday, May 1, 2017

Medieval Monday Blog Hop - Ruth A. Casie


This has been a wonderful tour, leaving you snippets of the story and finishing it up back here. I hope you enjoyed reading about Jamie and Laura.

The final excerpt from The Highlander’s English Woman by Ruth A. Casie
Jamie turned to the family sitting around the hearth. Wesley slouched in his chair staring at the fire, grief still raw on his face. He had aged over the year. His gray hair thinned, his eyes rimmed red and dulled with pain.
“He’s been like this since we buried... the burial.” Laura, Richard’s sister, was next to him. “Father tires easily and stays locked up inside himself. Mother is the sole person who can reach him, although I have hope. Alex did make him laugh.”
Jamie’s focus turned to Laura, the younger of the two sisters. Laura and Lisbeth were alike from their slender, petite size bodies, long auburn hair, and large green eyes with a fan of thick lashes. The sisters may be similar in appearance, however, not in temperament. Lisbeth was the deep thinker. Laura was head strong and outspoken, the feistier defiant sister.
“How are you and Lisbeth faring?” He gazed back at Wesley.
“It’s a challenge keeping everyone’s spirits up. At times, I succeed.” She shrugged. “Other times, I fail miserably. Lisbeth stayed at the Keep for a while then left for the hunting lodge to be alone.”
Jamie turned to her. Her drawn ashen face disturbed him.
“The rain has stopped. Would you care to take some fresh air in the garden?” Jamie presented his arm. Laura answered by looping her arm through his and drew him out the door.
He went willingly. Her warmth chased away any lingering chill from his journey. She’s Richard’s little sister, a warning voice whispered in his head. He took a breath and led her to the garden door.
“I understand you’re skeptical of Lisbeth’s gift, but she told me she saw Richard’s death before Bryce carried... brought Richard home. Now, she blames herself for not taking action.” Laura sighed heavily. “Everyone blames themselves. Father shouldn’t have let him go, not that he could stop Richard. Mother should have seen this coming, not that she could. And Lisbeth...”
“I understand all too well. I berated myself for not being with him, protecting his back.” They reached the stone porch.
Formal gardens sprawled before them with raised flower beds, neat hedges, and bare trellises waiting for next year’s roses. He waited with her in silence, willing her his strength.
“Is it wise for Lisbeth to be alone?” Jamie finally asked, and gazed past the lawn to the well-worn path on the other side of the garden gate.
“She’s not unaccompanied. John escorted her to the hunting lodge at Ann’s request, over Lisbeth’s heated protest.” She turned to him. “I haven’t thanked you for coming to us. I know The Maxwell has his demands and travel is a hardship.”
He stilled her trembling hand. Her brows creased in pain over eyes that stared off without seeing. He waited.
“I find it difficult to comprehend we’ll not see Richard again.” Laura’s voice choked and she shrugged with resignation despite tears that threatened at the edges of her eye.
“Me as well,” Jamie said. He had the same thoughts.
“How long are you staying with us?” Her question was reasonable but he dreaded answering.
“I return to Caerlaverock tomorrow.” He took a deep breath and saw a momentary flash of disappointment in her eyes.
“Then we best return to the others. They’ll want to spend time with you, too.” They moved on toward the hall.
“I have no words, nothing to say to comfort you.” He could barely get the words out.
“Your presence is enough.”
He held back a nervous smile. He visited to give the family comfort. Instead, she comforted him.
“How are my Maxwell cousins?” Laura asked. Jamie guided her toward the great hall.
“They are well when I last saw them.”
“You’ll let me know your decision, Wesley.”
Jamie brought Laura to a halt. An exasperated male voice drifted out of the great hall.
“I want to make the announcement as soon as possible. With Richard gone and Glen Kirk so close to the Scottish border, you need someone strong to hold back the devils.” Lord Bryce Mitchell of Ravencroft, the manse next to Glen Kirk, stood with Wesley and Darla.
Standing at the great hall entrance, Jamie stiffened when Laura’s pulse skittered into a panic beneath his fingertips. Jamie’s free hand covered hers until the beat settled into a normal rhythm. If Bryce couldn’t feel sympathetic toward the family, couldn’t he at least curb his speech?
“You didn’t waste any time getting here.” The rude remark directed toward Jamie raised his temper even more. The man’s baiting tactics hadn’t changed since they served Wesley as squires. Surely he wasn’t foolish to pick a fight with him, at least not here.
When they trained, Bryce took aim at him whenever possible, most often urged on by Reeve. Richard and the girls rallied to his defense, but Bryce’s intolerance of Jamie’s Scottish background stayed near the surface.
Bryce gasped for air, seething after having lost a foot race to him.
“You’re nothing. A filthy Scot beggar. Go back to your tribe of mongrels. You’re not fit to be here.” Bryce pushed him hard.
Jamie didn’t go down. Not satisfied, Bryce rushed at him again, this time with fists. Jamie ducked and backed off. Bryce kept up the assault.
Jamie didn’t care for bullies or being baited by them. He wouldn’t fight.
“Here, here Bryce. That’s enough.” Richard grabbed his neighbor’s arm but Bryce shook him off. Reeve pulled Richard back.
“Enjoy the spectacle. It’s time he learned his place,” Reeve said.
“Stay out of this,” Bryce screamed at Richard, then turned to Jamie. “Fight, or are you a puny coward, too?”
Jamie said nothing. He held his fists at his side and stepped back again.
The fight started in the yard, progressed to the field, and finished near the pond. A small group of people followed and urged Jamie to defend himself.
The next punch caught the Scotsman in the chest. He didn’t flinch.
“You should be lying on the ground by now. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.” Jamie pulled up his arms to protect his face as best he could against the onslaught of punches. He didn’t retaliate.
His face cut and bloodied, he still didn’t strike back.
“Fight, damn you,” Bryce shouted and followed with a quick barrage of solid body punches.
He held his position and didn’t fight back.
In a close clinch, Bryce muttered for Jamie’s ear only. Jamie pushed his tormentor away. Years of restraint from insults and attacks disappeared with the maliciously whispered words.
Bryce threw his punch. Jamie caught the left jab in his palm mid-strike. Alarm and panic flashed in Bryce’s eyes. The bully stared at Jamie’s hand holding his fist.
Jamie almost tore Bryce’s arm out of its socket as he pushed it aside and set his stance, one foot in front of the other.
For a moment Jamie thought to stop the madness, but the idea quickly died. Bryce had no idea what he let loose.
Before Bryce threw his next punch, Jamie exploded with a rapid cannon volley of left jabs at Bryce’s jaw. Stunned, Bryce dropped his defenses.
Jamie’s right cross burst from his shoulder as he shifted from his back leg to his front, throwing all his weight into the swing. He caught Bryce squarely in the face. Blood exploded in an arc of fine spray as Bryce’s head snapped back. Droplets flew, the warm blood spattered across Jamie’s face.
Bryce’s head came forward. Jamie followed with a left uppercut and caught him under his chin. The solid strike lifted Bryce into the air, then sent him to the ground. To everyone’s amazement, Bryce laid unconscious at Jamie’s feet. No one said a word as he stood panting over the prone figure. Every ounce of him wanted to drag Bryce on his feet for another round. Instead, he marched away.
Back Cover Copy: The Highlander’s English Woman
Laura Reynolds is in love with her long-time friend, Jamie Maxwell Collins. She adores his playful sense of humor, caring nature as well as his strong sense of family and honor.
Jamie lives across the border in Scotland. Outwardly carefree, he hides a dark secret. He can’t involve Laura in this deception. He can’t give her hope for a future together.
Laura stumbles upon Jamie’s secret. In her heart of hearts she knows Jamie is innocent. Their relationship in tatters and with no hope of reconciliation, she plays a deadly game to exonerate Jamie, she agrees to a political marriage. She has no idea the entire game has been orchestrated by her future husband, Jamie’s greatest enemy.

Available at Amazon