|A Gentleman's Folly|
Daisy Banks, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. Let's talk about your book, A Gentleman's Folly.
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books
Cover artist: Valarie Tibbs
Heat rating: Spicy
Tagline: A marriage of convenience brings unexpected consequences: love, betrayal, and a hope for happiness.
Katherine Bescell, courtesan and member of a secret order, thinks the offer of a marriage in name only to Charles Leverret, heir to a large fortune, will solve all her woes.
Charles Leverret believes his hired wife will ensure his inheritance. He might even enjoy her company if she'll let him anywhere near her. Charmed by his bride, Charles breaks their original bargain and falls in love. Betrayed by a trusted lawyer who withholds Katherine's promised fee, Charles struggles against evil chance to persuade Katherine his love is real.
Lust and love, truth and trust, each makes demands on them both, but though Charles has captured her heart, Katherine can't bring herself to admit they belong together.
Masked and robed in the rites in the
where only truth is
told, Charles makes his stand to claim the woman he adores. West Wycombe
Liquid Silver Books http://bit.ly/1eXJOcx
What are your main characters' names, ages, and occupations?
Katherine Bescell is a courtesan, she is twenty one.
Charles Henry Leverret is a gentleman and therefore has no set occupation. He is rather good at cards. Charles is twenty five.
Today is the release day of my story and I must say I enjoyed every minute of writing 'A Gentleman's Folly' and hope readers will enjoy the story too. This is my first full length historical romance and has given me chance to hone my research skills to create an 18th century back-drop to the story of this couple. From my initial visit to the
caves that prompted the idea of the story, to all the research into the 18th century,
visits to venues with 18th century decor or furniture to help me get a feel for
the period, this story has evolved and grown.
Katherine made her way up to the open church door where the clergyman and Mr. Charles Leverret stood.
"Mr. Knox, my bride, Katherine Bes... Katherine," he mumbled.
He swayed unsteadily on his feet as they walked into the small nave. He was unshaven and his neck-cloth wrinkled and barely tied.
He's good for nothing!
She held her courage tight. "Good morning to you, Mr. Knox. My name is Katherine Julia Bescell."
Leverret leaned down so far, peering narrow-eyed, that she put out a hand to steady him in case he might fall. The elaborate, heavily embroidered, brocaded blue coat could not be more offensive stained with wine as it was. When, at the cleric's word, Charles fumbled in his pocket and placed a ring on the book, Katherine saw the white lace of his cuff was purpled too. She shrank from the prospect of his touch and glanced back at Chloe, whose horrified expression brought tears to her eyes.
There had been no scent of wine, cheap gin, or the stink of putrid perfume when they met. Not for a second had she thought him such a man.
She'd tried to dismiss the tales Chloe had told of his gambling debts and the wenching with the strumpets from
to the drabs from
the inns on the riverfront. But the other follies that Chloe had related just last
night made Katherine fearful. Leverret had been lucky to escape a charge of murder
at merely nineteen. He had dueled three times since, and he always won. Few gentlemen
would call him friend or accept his invitation to the card table after his first
few months in Vauxhall
Had he improved in the years since? Sir Francis had seemed to doubt it. Somehow
she'd make sure Charles Leverret got his inheritance and she received the agreed
sum, even if she had to fight with every bone in her body for it. She peeked up.
Leverret's dark eyes were so narrowed by lack of sleep or drink she wondered if he could see anything at all.
Mr. Knox spoke the first words of the ceremony. Rather like a racing horse, the clergyman got into a rhythm, and he charged on. The only pause came when he spoke her name. Sir Francis, lips pressed tight together, squeezed her hand before he placed it in Leverret's.
Charles lisped and mumbled his way through his vows, hardly waiting the time to hear hers, and before her senses ceased to reel, he crammed the token on her finger, and Mr. Knox announced them wed.
Leverret, swaying like a reed in a storm, bent to kiss her at the clergyman's command, but she tilted her face so the stink of his drink-laden lips found only her cheek. Nowhere in their agreement had she given permission for him to kiss her, and despite his handsome, dark features, she'd have none of the sodden rogue today.
Once they'd signed the clergyman's book, they walked down the path, her hand on his arm. Twice Leverret stumbled, once almost shoving her to the ground lurching as he did. They were greeted with cheers, wails, and sighs from the onlooking assembly.
"Farewell, my Charlie," one of the women screeched and swooned away, thrashing into the arms of her friends.
Katherine yanked on his deep cuff to get his attention as he gawped, smiling at the commotion the woman caused. "Get us out of this caterwauling rabble, sir."
He swept off his hat and bowed, more theater than good manners. "Certainly, my bride. Fare thee well, my dear friends, I go to a better world," he called like a convicted felon before handing her clumsily into a hired closed-coach.
She waved farewell to Chloe, Mr. Knox, who gawped open-mouthed at his busy churchyard and didn't respond to her, and a stern-faced Sir Francis, who glowered toward her husband. The coachman stowed her valise with a thump, and Charles half stumbled up into the coach. He gave a small laugh as he fumbled before he managed to yank the door closed and then sat with a grin.
Despite the reek from his wine-soaked coat, she stood and tugged the window up to shut out the yowls from the swarm crowding about.
The coach lurched forward, and her stomach churned. Leverret lounged opposite her. Eyes closed, he nodded with his hat and white wig askew. Before they'd gone a half-mile and lost the most persistent yells of those following, his head lolled, and jaw slack, he slept.
She took the slender wedding band from her finger and bit it. The sharp metallic taste proved it brass, not gold. Vaguely disappointed, she shook her head. She could have been touched he'd bothered with such a trifle had it been genuine, but the ring was a mere part of the sham and meant nothing to either of them. She searched in her petticoats for one of her pockets and dropped the offending item inside, took out her small vinaigrette, and sniffed. The soothing vapor brought back memories of more pleasant moments.
Leverret gave a loud, expansive snore.
This would be the last disgraceful day of his conniving she'd endure.
Folding her hands on her ribbon-trimmed stomacher, she rested her head against the thinly padded seat back and closed her eyes as the coach lurched and bounced along. Her bridal morn had not been the sort most women would dream possible. But, no matter how ridiculous, the morning's indignity brought her a step closer to a fortune, enough to make her quite independent for life.
"Brass ring indeed, Charles Henry Leverret. I'll turn you into a man of some merit before I'm done with you."
What is the most important thing you do for your career now, as compared to when you first started writing?
Promotional work. Though I do find it a challenge in many ways I am more focused on promoting my stories than I was when I first began writing.
What do you enjoy most about writing?
I love letting ideas flow and develop. I enjoy having my own private cinema in my head as I see scenes unfold. I enjoy letting a story grow and discovering the resolution to the problems my characters face.
If you could give the younger version of yourself advice what would it be?
I'd tell myself to take up writing sooner. I wrote as a child and a teenager but stopped when I became a teacher and didn't write for some years. I'd also tell me to travel more.
What is your work ethic when it comes to writing?
I don't think of writing as work because it is something I love doing. I write every day I possibly can. I have spent more time on promotional work this last few months but I try to keep a big chunk of my day for writing.
How do you cope with stress as an author?
I don't get stressed when writing, or in edits as I enjoy the process. I do find the promotional work can be stressful. At one time blogging made me feel physically ill. I've cured myself of that, mostly.
Do things your family or friends do ever end up in a book?
Not usually, though events involving them have sometimes sparked ideas. There is one phrase I use in A Gentleman's Folly a good friend will recognize when she reads the story.
What are some jobs you've done before (or while) you were a writer?
I have been a teacher of special needs students. I once worked in a Newspaper office. As a student I worked a holiday job in a pharmacy. I've been a bar maid too but was useless at pouring Guinness from the tap.
Which of your books would you recommend to someone who doesn't normally read your genre, and why?
I'd recommend A Gentleman's Folly because it is fun as well as a romance.
What was the proudest moment of your life so far?
This is very hard to pin down to one moment. The birth of my boys has to rank the top. I am very proud of both my sons. I was very proud of myself when I passed my driving test and when I gained my degree.
Imagine you get to go on a dream vacation, but you have only one hour to pack and leave, and it starts as soon as you finish this interview. What will you take with you and where will you go?
I would visit one of the islands in the
I would take my husband. I'd pack my laptop, my passport, medication, purse, toiletries,
my favorite perfume, swimwear, shorts and tops, my favorite evening gown, three
or four sarongs and some sandals. I usually travel light and as I know where everything
is I could easily be ready in an hour.
What is your favorite holiday and why?
Some years ago I had a holiday in
while there I visited a geothermal pool fed by a waterfall. My husband and I swam
together in the warm water and it has to be the most romantic swim of my life. That
memory stays with me as something very beautiful and I have used it several times
in my stories. I would love to return to the island some day and enjoy another swim
in the pool and a catamaran trip around the bay.
Where were you at midnight, on December 31st when the new century started?
I was at a family party with my husband. We had a lovely evening and drank champagne while watching fireworks as the new century begin.
What do you like to do when you're bored?
If I am stuck somewhere with nothing to read I think of story ideas or think of how my latest story can progress. I'm not often bored but if I am waiting for an appointment or something like that I let my mind wonder.
If you were a color, what color would you be?
I would choose to be the same color as bluebells.
Please underline which statement is more like you:
"I am a vacation spa because I am laid back and relaxed."
"I am a ten-countries in ten-days tour vacation, because I do things as fast as possible."
Please complete the sentences
I love pizza with – I don't love pizza I'd rather have a pasty and a pint.
I'm always ready for a trip to somewhere I've not been before.
When I'm alone, I talk to myself a great deal.
You'd never be able to tell, but I once danced the Cancan in front of a large audience.
If I had a halo it would be crooked.
If I could fly like I can in my dreams I'd do it every day.
I can never stick to a shopping list because all the savory snacks lure me to buy them.
Your Heart My Soul with Liquid Silver Books
Timeless with Lyrical Press
Fiona's Wish with Lyrical Press
A Matter of Some Scandal with Lyrical Press.
Books Coming Soon
I have a short story in the First Frost anthology with Lyrical Press.
I am awaiting a reply from Liquid Silver Books about my latest submission to them.
Hopefully the sequel to Timeless will be accepted by Lyrical Press.
Find Me Here