Author Chats | Nicola Cornick’s New Release | The Forgotten Sister

The fascinating story of Amy Robsart, first wife to Robert Dudley and rival to Elizabeth I for his affection is retold in Nicola Cornick’s brilliant new release, The Forgotten Sister. Join us as we chat about literary pilgrimages (Haworth, for one) the special inspiration of walking in Amy’s footsteps, and Nicola’s favourite books.

New Release | Henry, the King’s Cavalier

Thrilled to release the latest COUNTERPOINT Novelette this weekend, a companion book to Written in Their Stars.
A man may think his life is only measured by battles fought for the king. Until he meets a woman worth fighting for.
Henry Wilmot. Cavalier. Seasoned soldier. Grieving widower. On the eve of battle he is sent by the king to requisition arms. What he did not expect was that the supplies were a gift from a feisty and attractive widow who was hiding her own Royalist beliefs in plain sight. Even more alarming was that his quest took him into the heart of an enemy Parliamentarian household. Will Henry survive the fight of his life? And will Nan remember him if he does?
A counterpoint is a melody played in conjunction with another, or an opposing viewpoint in an argument. Our lives are complex, and each one of us carries within us a counterpoint to another’s story.
Here is a counterpoint to Nan Wilmot, from Written in Their Stars.

Crusader’s Path | A journey with Mary Ann Bernal

Today on Author Chats, I’m delighted to welcome Mary Ann Bernal, whose work spans some of the more fascinating periods of history – from Vikings and the dark ages, to the knights templar and the crusades. Discover more about Mary Ann’s research, the kind of music she listens too (very atmospheric, I must say) and the writing of Crusader’s Path.

Eyewitness to History

“Engrossing. Reading the complete trilogy could likely prove irresistible to lovers of family sagas. Recommended.”
A recent review from The Historical Novel Society of Written in Their Stars prompted me to create “Eyewitness to History” banners. Lucy Hutchinson observed and wrote about so many life-changing events in 17th-Century England, and inspired my series “The Lydiard Chronicles.”

Meet Betsy Brand – 17th Century Actress and Sleuth

On Author Chats today I’m talking with John Pilkington, who has recently re-released his 17th Century series featuring Betsy Brand. A captivating actress and sometimes unwilling sleuth, Betsy comes to life through John’s scrupulous research and attention to detail. Come and join me to find out all the behind-the-scenes work that goes into writing historical fiction, and John’s inspiration for recreating the sights and sounds of Stuart England.

John Pilkington | 17th Century Sleuth

Profiling a Debut Historical Fiction Novel

That moment of truth, when you’ve finished your novel and now it’s out on a query journey around the world. Today, Emma Lombard shares why even though she suffers from acute seasickness, she was compelled to write a seafaring historical fiction adventure (with a dash of romance). She also explains why Africa is so important to her, and what it’s like to write with four boys in the house.

Emma Lombard | Sailing Away on an Historical Adventure

Author Chats Honours WWII with The Road to Liberation Anthology

Today on Author Chats, I have the privilege of hosting four USA Today, international bestselling and award-winning authors who have collaborated on a collection filled with courage, betrayal, hardships and, ultimately, victory over some of the most oppressive rulers the world has ever encountered.
By 1944, the Axis powers are fiercely holding on to their quickly shrinking territories.
The stakes are high—on both sides:
Liberators and oppressors face off in the final battles between good and evil. Only personal bravery and self-sacrifice will tip the scales when the world needs it most.

The Road to Liberation | An Inspiring Anthology

Read about a small child finding unexpected friends amidst the cruelty of the concentration camps, an Auschwitz survivor working to capture a senior member of the SS, the revolt of a domestic servant hunted by the enemy, a young Jewish girl in a desperate plan to escape the Gestapo, the chaos that confused underground resistance fighters in the Soviet Union, and the difficult lives of a British family made up of displaced children..
2020 marks 75 years since the world celebrated the end of WWII. These books will transport you across countries and continents during the final days, revealing the high price of freedom—and why it is still so necessary to “never forget”.
Stolen Childhood by Marion Kummerow
The Aftermath by Ellie Midwood
When’s Mummy coming? by Rachel Wesson
Too Many Wolves in the Local Woods by Marina Osipova
Liberation Berlin by JJ Toner
Magda’s Mark by Chrystyna Lucyk-Berger

Written in Their Stars Awarded BRAG Honour

Thrilled that Written in Their Stars received this prestigious readers appreciation award. All three of my novels in The Lydiard Chronicles are now BRAG Award Winners. That makes me very happy! Check out more information about BRAG on its website, and browse through the great collection of books that have received awards over the years.

Here’s a snippet where Henry Wilmot reveals his wife, Nan Wilmot, is setting up a spy ring for Charles II, exiled King of England.

Each time Henry returned home, Nan noticed a small change in him: a new crease on his forehead, silver at his temples. Yet still his rugged demeanour captivated her, and the scar puckering the corner of his sensual mouth charmed her. Nan touched the tender place on her smooth neck, the love blemish left by a man’s rough beard and sweet lips. How delicious to have her husband in her bed again after so long apart. And yet she could not keep him, for he would arise one morning and leave, the call of his king and his troops transcending her love.
“You realise we fight on multiple fronts.” Henry turned to Allen and Frances, motioning with the wine flagon he’d clasped since they’d first strolled into Ditchley’s pleasure garden. Frances gestured her refusal; Allen waved his glass for more.
Nan’s favourite arbour beckoned, and they sat close in the June dusk, the rosy light turning the garden a radiant pink and the plaster of the house a mellow gold. The sudden shrill piping of a blackbird stirred the peacefulness. Nan wanted to hold this moment forever.
“What mean you?” asked Allen. “Surely those who declare for the king have all made their way to the Continent by now. You must have formed a sizable army.”
Henry nodded. “True. And we have men, supplies, arms, ships at our call. But there is still much to be done to coordinate our efforts on both sides of the Narrow Sea. King Charles now seeks the queen’s official support to invade. We are readying ourselves.” He stood suddenly and paced in front of them. Nan recognised his restlessness; her man despised sitting still.
“You are well-organised. What more do you need? We have no money.” As was her way, Allen’s wife came directly to the point.
“Henry, my love, tell them the truth.” Nan caught her husband’s hand, caressed the familiar calluses on his palm. “Allen and Frances can be trusted.”
Allen turned to Nan. “Trusted with what?”
Henry poured another glass of wine for himself, frowning slightly as he realised he’d drained the flagon.
“Our fight does not begin with swords,” he replied. “The great need is for information. Intelligence. Numbers, locations, attitudes. Security and defence. Where we might be exposed. Where Cromwell is vulnerable. And, God help us, where England’s safe houses are hidden in the midst of our enemies. When we return with our army, we can afford no mistakes.”