October 11, 2013

Historical: Unexpected Gift | Interview @AuthorKayGrey

An Unexpected Gift 
Katherine Grey, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. Let's talk about your book, An Unexpected Gift.
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Cover artist: Rae Monet
Length: 276 pages
Heat rating: Spicy
Tagline: Two wounded souls find happiness in the most unlikeliest of places, with each other.
Known only as Lazarus to the band of cutthroats and thieves he leads, William Prescott will do anything to find his missing sister, even blackmail a fragile young woman into helping him. But he never plans to fall in love with this mysterious woman with a troubled past.
Haunted by the memories of war, Olivia St. Germaine wants nothing more than to live a normal life. But when her brother, a doctor, suddenly leaves town without a word, she is forced to use her medical knowledge to help an injured man who puts her life in danger. Can she keep herself safe as she tends Lazarus, or is her heart more vulnerable than she realizes?

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What are your main characters' names, ages, and occupations?
Olivia St. Germaine is 26 years of age. She has no formal occupation.
William "Lazarus" Prescott is 28 years of age. He leads a band of thieves.


Removing her hat, Olivia crossed to the dressing table and pulled the
pins from her hair, letting it tumble down around her shoulders. She massaged her scalp, then ran her fingers through the thick strands.
"Watching you do that could give a bloke ideas."
Olivia whirled around, her hand pressed against her chest. Her heart stuttered for a moment, then began racing like a runaway horse. She reached behind her and grabbed her hairbrush. As a weapon, it was the best she could do. She scanned the shadows for the intruder.
Lazarus lounged in her favorite reading spot, his feet crossed at the ankles while he rested his elbows on the arms of the chair. Situated as it was near the window, his dark clothing blended in with the shadows among deep blue drapery. He watched her over his linked fingers.
"Aren't you going to ask why I'm here?"
She didn't answer; the warning she'd received earlier replayed itself in her mind. Fear ran its fingertip down her spine.
"Shall I tell you then?" He stood with slow careful movements, then advanced on her until there was no more than a hair's breadth between them.
She took a step back and banged into the dressing table, setting the small collection of bottles jangling.
Olivia shook her head. "Of course not."
"You should be."
Uncertain, she posed the question uppermost in her mind. "What are you doing here?"
"Here in your house or here"—he gestured to the room in general—"in your bedroom?"
Determined to quell the rising sense of panic and what it would lead to, she pushed past him. She brushed against his side, heard his sharp inhalation of pain, but
kept moving, needing space between them. "If you don't leave, I shall have Jennings call the constable." She headed for the door.
"And how will you accomplish that?"
Olivia halted in mid-step.
"Yes, I know there are no servants in residence." He sauntered closer. "Did you play the benevolent mistress and give them the night off?"
Eager to keep him at a distance, she scooted around him and stood at the end of the bed. "What do you want?"
"What do you think I want?"
"Why don't we dispense with the games, and you just tell me?"
Lazarus closed the space between them in two strides. He pushed her backward onto the bed. Olivia bounced against the soft mattress. She dug her elbows
into the thick counterpane in an effort to scramble backward away from him.
Grabbing her ankles, he pulled her toward him in one quick jerk. He leaned over her. His hand closed over her hip, freezing her in place. The warmth of his hand burned through her clothes to her skin.
Feeling truly terrified for the first time since he'd announced his presence, she searched his gaze for some kind of sign this was all a great joke. No, it was no
game. His eyes were as hard and cold as glass. "What do you want?" she repeated, her voice a near whisper.
"Stop asking questions about me. Forget you ever heard the name Lazarus."


Tell us about your story's world. What is it like in this period or place?
An Unexpected Gift takes place in London during the Regency period. It shows a side of life in London outside those of the aristocracy. Both Olivia and Lazarus live on the very fringes of Society.
What inspired you to write this book?
I was asked to write a novella for my publisher's Love Letters line. In writing that story, Lazarus appeared on the page larger than life. I had a hard time controlling him and keeping him from taking over the story. It only made sense that I tell his story as well.
Which character in your current book do you think readers will like the most? Why?
I think Lazarus would the favorite. While he does things that aren't necessarily legal and right, he does them with the best of intentions. He goes out of his way to protect those he considers his family and is loyal to a fault.
When you're not writing, what would we find you doing?
I love to bake bread. I find the whole process of kneading the dough to be very relaxing. It's also a great way to work out scene in my head while doing something constructive. Of course, the smell of freshly baked bread filling the house isn't a bad thing either.
Are you a plotter, or do you prefer to make it up on the spur of the moment?
I say I'm a combination of both. I write two to three sentence paragraphs detailing the main points of each chapter, but other than that, I let my characters have free reign and write where they take me.
What's your writing schedule like?
I write Monday through Friday for approximately an hour and half when I get home from my day job. I have a weekly goal of twenty-five pages of new material each week. It helps keep me on track and not lose the threads of the story.
When an idea hits you, what do you do to capture it?
I have a notebook where I jot down the idea, character names, plot points, any scenes or snippets of dialogue and anything else that comes to me. If I'm out, I have a small pocket sized notebook I keep in my purse for the same thing, though I have been known to write on the paper napkins when at a restaurant.
Which of your books was the hardest to write and why?
My novella The Muse was the hardest to write. It was the first short story I'd written and I had a hard time keeping it within the word count requirements to be a novella. I kept having to go back and delete subplots and the like.
What are you currently reading for fun? Anything for research?
I'm currently reading Fifth Grave Past The Light by Darynda Jones. It's the fifth book in her Charley Davidson series. If you haven't read any of them yet, I highly recommend them, but read them in order. For research purposes, I'm reading The Man Who Broke Napoleon's Codes: The True Story of A Forgotten Hero in Wellington's Army by Mark Urban.
Do you believe in luck?
I do believe in luck but at the same time, I think we make our own luck by taking advantage of opportunities presented to us.
What kind of music do you listen to while driving? Same question when writing?
When I'm in the car, I usually listen to whatever's currently popular on the radio station. When I'm writing, I listen to classical music.
Do you play any musical instruments?
I play the violin and a tiny bit of the piano. I would like to take formal piano lessons some day.
What's your favorite movie?
I have two favorite movies – Disney's Beauty and the Beast and I Am Sam. Sean Penn was amazing.

Please complete the sentence

I love pizza with cheese and pepperoni.
I'm always ready for a cup of cinnamon apple tea and a good book.
When I'm alone, I read my manuscript pages out loud. I like to hear the rhythm of the dialogue.
You'd never be able to tell, but I have five tattoos.
If I had a halo it would be slightly tilted.
If I could write full time, I'd be the happiest person on the planet.
I can never kill a spider because I'm terrified of them. I don't have any problem getting other people to kill them for me though.

Previous Books

The Muse (novella)

Find Me Here


  1. Wonderful blurb and interview, Katherine. I enjoy getting to know more about my fellow Roses. Tip- spray bug killer goes where you don't dare when your target has eight legs! *shivers* I have a couple of those buggers in my horse's barn I need to hit with spray today. I put off doing it yesterday but I think if I wait til tomorrow they just may be bigger than me!

    1. Morning, Calisa. :) Thanks for the tip. I hear vacuum cleaners work too, but then you have to wonder if they can get back out...

  2. Intriguing blurb, Katherine. I look forward to reading a 'Regency' that isn't set in the heart of the ton. It's on my Kindle, waiting for me. Barb Bettis

    1. Hi, Barb! I agree about that. A Regency set elsewhere is a refreshing idea.

    2. Hi Barb,
      That An Unexpected Gift doesn't take place in the heart of the Ton is one the things I try to stress when doing promotion. Most people think one Regency romance is pretty much the other so I wanted to focus on those people who weren't necessarily members of the aristocracy.

      I hope you enjoy Lazarus and Olivia's story. :o)

  3. Hi Calisa,
    I work in a building across from a huge open field. While I enjoy seeing the wildlife (deer, turkeys, foxes and such) through the window, we unfortunately get huge spiders in the building in the late summer and early fall. I'm forever encountering one of the things when I least expect them. Thankfully, the guys in the office will kill them for me without too much teasing. :)

    1. The perils of living on the fringes... like your characters. :)

  4. I love Regency books and think writing about those living on the fringes is necessary and an intriguing departure from the norm. Congratulations on your release!

    1. Welcome to RLF, Ashantay. :) Thanks for posting.

    2. Hi Ashantay,
      Thanks for the congratulations. :o) Writing about characters who aren't members of the Ton or the Beau Monde required some really interesting reading. I read quite a few accounts of thieves, gambling scandals, murderers, and of course, adulterous affairs that ended quite badly. There was definitely enough information to keep a writer's imagination churning.

  5. The setting sounds intriguing. I love the cover. I played (notice past tense) the violin and also tinker with the piano. Good luck with The Unexpected Gift and congratulations on your release.

    1. Hi Judy,
      Thank you for the good wishes. I don't play the violin as much as I used to. I need to keep it up so I don't lose the skill. It's so easy to do - lose the skill, not play the instrument. LOL. Thank you for stopping by.

  6. Thank you, Kayelle, for hosting me today. The interview questions were great fun to answer and I had a great time visiting with everyone.

  7. Sounds like a great read and enjoyed the interview. Maybe one of these days you can write about your tattoo's. I bet there's an interesting story there!

    1. Hi Debra,
      There's an interesting story about one of them -- I lost a bet. Thanks for stopping by. :o)


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