Thursday, August 22, 2013

Welcome Guest Author Kieran Kramer to the Ship!

 
My love of Kieran Kramer books goes back to her debut - it seriously rocked my reading world! When Harry Met Molly was one of my favorite books that year and as a reader I read it over and over again.

As a writer, Kieran's book offered me much in way of writing lessons. To this day, I still find the prologue to that book to be the exception to the rule you always hear about never including a prologue. It was perfection for me as a reader and it made the writer side of me take notice right off the bat.

Secondly, Kieran is not a slave to historical accuracy in her writing. Yes, I know many of my fellow pirates would make her walk the plank for that but to me, she does it so well, so seamlessly that it again proves a writing rule - if the characters are amazing and the writing soars then you can get the reader to suspend disbelief and just fall in love with the flow of the story.

Lastly, Kieran gives good laugh. That book really wooed me with it's wit and charm, plus genuinely funny characters that could not be ignored.

So what I want to know is have you ever run across a book you loved a reader and that taught you lessons as a writer? What book was it (come on we all need to know!)? If you are a historical purist, is there a point where a book could speak so much to you that you'd be willing to overlook the inaccuracies? Why or why not? Lastly, anyone else read a fantastic prologue?

Today, we're hosting Kieran as part of her blog tour for her latest book Say Yes To The Duke which I have no doubt I will devour as quickly as I can get my hands on it. Don't forget to enter to win the huge prize pack Kieran is offering as part of the blog tour! Click Here To Enter The Rafflecopter Giveaway.

Say Yes To The Duke:
CAN A SCANDALOUS BEGINNING…
Janice Sherwood wants to marry for love, but she’s failed to make a match after two Seasons. Her parents, the Marquess and Marchioness of Brady, arrange to send her to the Duke of Halsey’s country estate as a short-term guest of his grandmother, the dowager, in hopes that she might win the duke’s affections. What they never could have imagined is that Janice would fall for the ruggedly handsome servant Luke, who lives in the stables and carries an air of mystery and temptation.

LEAD TO A FAIRY-TALE ENDING?
When Luke Callahan learns that he is the legitimate heir to a dukedom, he will stop at nothing to claim what is his. But first, he must begin a game of disguise to secure his rightful inheritance. Janice isn’t part of his plan. But by engaging her in this dance of deception, might he lose her forever?

Raves and Reviews for Say Yes To The Duke:  
“Kramer’s gift is her innate ability to tell a story with unerring honesty, deep emotion and humor. Readers will laugh, cry and deeply sigh from beginning to end of this beautifully told, enchanting love story.” —4 1/2 stars RT Book Reviews Top Pick!

“The third book in Kramer’s “House of Brady” series offers everything this author’s fans have come to expect including a sinfully sexy romance between two perfectly matched protagonists, a richly amusing cast of unconventional secondary characters, and a lively plot that doesn’t take itself too seriously.” —Booklist

Kieran also The Revenge this sneak peak of Say Yes To The Duke to share:

Yet he was a servant doing a servant’s job. How could he be as enthralling a figure as a duke?

He’s not. He’s a groom.

But when she was very young, she’d been a shop girl. And you always will be, you fool, if you can’t keep your eyes off the help.

The crowning moment came when Mr. Callahan finished his chore and walked purposely down the steps. “All finished, Your Grace.” He stood at relaxed attention, his gloved hands dangling at his sides, while the dog stared avidly at him, their tongues lolling.

He was a Very Bad Man, Janice thought. And, God help her, she couldn’t look away.

Except she must when seconds later, she walked past him. Even with snow pelting her cheeks, she felt his heat. And his gaze. Yet she wouldn’t look at him. That wouldn’t be proper. Kissing him wasn’t proper, either. But what was done was done. She could be proper starting now. She would behave as a real lady should.

But as she cautiously ascended the freshly cleared steps to the front door with the duke—finally!—his unremarkable friends following behind in much the same way the hounds were, she had an odd craving. Considering how fortunate she was to be with His Grace—she wished a wayward groom were escorting her up these stairs instead.

Was it exhaustion or desperation that made her think this way? Every woman in London would like to trade places with her right now. The duke’s grip was firm and his body next to hers intimidating. Beneath his coat, his calves strained with muscle, and his belly was flat as a washing board. He was clearly in the prime of his life.

And he was without a wife.

Excerpt from Say Yes To The Duke  ©2013 by Kieran Kramer . All rights reserved.

About Kieran:
Double Rita®-finalist and USA Today bestseller Kieran Kramer writes Regency historical romances and now contemporary romance for St. Martin’s Press. THE EARL IS MINE, the second in her House of Brady series, is her latest release. SAY YES TO THE DUKE premiers in August 2013. SWEET TALK ME, set in present-day South Carolina, comes out in March 2014. A former CIA employee, journalist, and English teacher, Kieran’s also a game show veteran, karaoke enthusiast, and general adventurer.  She lives where she grew up--in the Lowcountry of South Carolina--with her Naval Reserve commander husband and their three children.

Author Site: http://www.kierankramerbooks.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/KieranKramer1
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/kierankramer
Follow Kieran on the rest of her blog tour here.

30 comments:

Marnee Bailey said...

Hi Kieran!! Welcome to the ship!

I love the idea that she's going to fall in love with the groom who turns out to be the duke. I'm going to preorder this right now.

Kieran said...

Thanks so much, Marnee!!! And thanks for hosting me here on Romance Writers Revenge!!! Aaargggh and it's a fine day to be a pirate's guest!!!

:-)

And I'll fight to the last breath anyone who tries to make me walk the plank for supposed historical inaccuracies!! I do want everyone to know that I research tirelessly to make my books historically accurate when it comes to period clothing, transportation, manners, etc. Perhaps you're referring to the fact that Prinny didn't actually create a bet for the Impossible Bachelors? Yes, I took that creative license, but only after researching Prinny's personality--such a licentious bet would fit perfectly within the realm of possible hedonistic things he might do in a fictional world.

That's the key--I'm writing fiction, folks, and as long as my historical figures "behave" in ways they're purported to have behaved, according to historical records, documents, etc., I'm okay with using them as characters in my books and having them do what I believe they'd do in my story world.

Also, there were some Christmas trees in Regency England--they tended to be found only at duke's houses or in the homes of the internationally connected and wealthy (which is why I dared to put one in the prologue of WHEN HARRY MET MOLLY). Of course, they didn't become popular in England until Victorian times.

I also watch my Regency language--I look up words all the time to make sure they were used at the time. I did make one exception in MARCIA, but I talked to my editor about it first: the word CHEEKY didn't appear in print during the Regency, but we felt that it was such a recognizably English-sounding word that we'd use it.

There will always be people who disagree with the amount of license one may take with history when writing fiction. I have a healthy respect for it and choose very carefully when to "bend" the rules. It's a very rare occasion, indeed, such as the time I chose to use the word CHEEKY.

As for my women, I know that in every time period, there have been outspoken ladies with minds of their own. So they are the characters I choose to write about--not the insipid ones. I try to motivate my fiery ladies well when they break social rules!

I hope this little insight into my writing process not only entertained you but made you pull in that blasted plank. I certainly have no plans to stop writing Regencies, but guess what! My next book is a contemporary...

SWEET TALK ME.

Heather Ashby said...

This looks great, Kieran. Can't wait to read it. Love those strong women! I'm anxiously awaiting your contemporary next spring too. Love your voice, so can't wait to read SWEET TALK ME!

Terri Osburn said...

I think we all need to stand down a bit. We've never actually made anyone walk the plank. (Truth be told, we don't even have a plank!) Welcome to the ship, Kieran! We hang out all the time over on ReFab but it's nice to see you over in my neck of the seas. :)

This does sound fun. It's been so long since I've read a book in which the titled hero doesn't start out that way. And now I want to find out how she ended up kissing the groom.

And now you're wading into my contemporary waters, eh? How did I miss that?! But first, where in the world did you get the idea to use the Brady girls in your books?

Haleigh said...

Welcome Kieran! I'm a huge Regency fan, and this is right up my alley. I too am super curious how she ended up kissing a groom!

MsHellion said...

The premise of this book does sound like fun. No one wants you to stop writing Regencies. There are Regencies for every kind of reader: those of us who like cheeky heroines and those of us who like insipid ones. (I do tend to like the insipid ones more, more angst for me. I'm not an overt fan of a character who is so sure of herself that of course everyone loves her. *LOL*) Anyway, the point being, there is no plank and the more wonderful books out there, the better! Congratulations!

Kieran Kramer said...

Thank you so much, Heather, and Terri, it's great to see you here! It's okay about that plank--I like a little merry battle every now and then!

The truth is, I've always written both contemporary and Regency, but the Regency is the one that was out on the market and sold. So I told my editor and agent from the very beginning that I had plans to do contemporaries, too, and now is a great time to jump in.

As for the Brady idea, it just came to me that I'd love to see Marcia back in the Regency period. I wondered what kind of deb she'd be, and she turned out to be nothing like what I originally expected! It's very much an organic Regency tale. The whole series is. I decided Lady Janice would definitely be an out-of-the-box kind of Regency girl, so her hero wouldn't be found in a London drawing room.

I like strong women as heroines, but they don't have to be big extroverts, either. My favorite Regency heroine, Elizabeth Bennett, wouldn't be called an extrovert, I don't think. My favorite sort of female character uses not only words wisely but silences as well. She's intelligent, thoughtful, and when someone else is in need, she'll go to bat for that person. She's not all willy-nilly--although I tend to enjoy when they have a huge character arc to travel. Damn the perfect heroines. They're dull! (I can say damn, right? I'm among pirates!!)

;-)

Kieran Kramer said...

Thank you so much, Heather, and Terri, it's great to see you here! It's okay about that plank--I like a little merry battle every now and then!

The truth is, I've always written both contemporary and Regency, but the Regency is the one that was out on the market and sold. So I told my editor and agent from the very beginning that I had plans to do contemporaries, too, and now is a great time to jump in.

As for the Brady idea, it just came to me that I'd love to see Marcia back in the Regency period. I wondered what kind of deb she'd be, and she turned out to be nothing like what I originally expected! It's very much an organic Regency tale. The whole series is. I decided Lady Janice would definitely be an out-of-the-box kind of Regency girl, so her hero wouldn't be found in a London drawing room.

I like strong women as heroines, but they don't have to be big extroverts, either. My favorite Regency heroine, Elizabeth Bennett, wouldn't be called an extrovert, I don't think. My favorite sort of female character uses not only words wisely but silences as well. She's intelligent, thoughtful, and when someone else is in need, she'll go to bat for that person. She's not all willy-nilly--although I tend to enjoy when they have a huge character arc to travel. Damn the perfect heroines. They're dull! (I can say damn, right? I'm among pirates!!)

;-)

Terri Osburn said...

Let fly with the damns. We say much worse around here. LOL!

I have the problem of making my heroes perfect, and there's no where for them to go. Sigh. It's a struggle for me. My heroines are almost always stubborn (like me!) so a lack of perfection there is no trouble at all. LOL!

And good for you on the contemporaries. I've adored historicals forever, but can't imagine writing one. Still, never say never. I go with the characters who show up in my head, so if a Duke plopped onto my mental couch, I guess I'd have to figure it out.

librarypat said...

I like historical fiction to as accurate as possible. That being said, I still enjoy a good story that may let accuracy slide a bit, just as long as things don't get too far out of what is reasonable for the period. What I appreciate is a good sense of humor and it sounds like SAY YES TO THE DUKE fits that perfectly. [Even very dark and serious books need humor. Those who are in occupations that deal with such things daily (first responders, medical, military, etc.) use humor to break the tension and lighten the seriousness of their duty.] We should never take ourselves or life too seriously.
I look forward to reading this book and hope it does well for you.

Kieran Kramer said...

Terri, I know what you mean about the hero. It's asking a lot to give Alphas believable flaws--really believable. And then when you create that flaw, you have to make sure he doesn't lose his 'Alpha-ness' when he confronts it. My editor is incredibly demanding on that point.

LibraryPat, I love a well-told story, any that doesn't pull me out of it. And I agree, humor is paramount. We need the ebb and flow, the ups and downs--humor provides relief from a preponderance of angst.

My whole motive for writing is to entertain people, and I feel really blessed that I've been able to do so. Having come from a family that believes in service, this is one small way I bring light to the world and I'm proud and happy to do so.

Kieran Kramer said...

Terri, I know what you mean about the hero. It's asking a lot to give Alphas believable flaws--really believable. And then when you create that flaw, you have to make sure he doesn't lose his 'Alpha-ness' when he confronts it. My editor is incredibly demanding on that point.

LibraryPat, I love a well-told story, any that doesn't pull me out of it. And I agree, humor is paramount. We need the ebb and flow, the ups and downs--humor provides relief from a preponderance of angst.

My whole motive for writing is to entertain people, and I feel really blessed that I've been able to do so. Having come from a family that believes in service, this is one small way I bring light to the world and I'm proud and happy to do so.

regencygirl01 said...

love your books. I like a strong and sassy heroine and an Alpha male that hides a sensitive side

Terri Osburn said...

Well, my heroes are more beta for the most part, but my editor has yet to see a problem with that. :)

Add me to the must have humor club. I write blurbs for my books that are all serious and angsty and my agent says, "Is it not funny?" Then I go back and rewrite to reflect the humor, because it's always on the page but I forget it in the blurbs.

Marnee Bailey said...

By the way, I agree with you, Kieran; I think that it's important for folks to remember this is fiction we're writing. I actually like that writers stretch the boundaries of fact. And I think EVERY historical writer does it to some extent. Their personal hygiene back then.... *shivers.* No one is going to write that accurately. Some of the medical field's behaviors? Abomination. Historical writers fudge those details all the time and no one squeals. I think the same should go all around. I'm totally fine with women who think like "modern women" and stand up for themselves and for men who are a little more progressive in their behaviors.

Diane said...

I absolutely love this series of books, can't wait to read the new one. Each character draws you in makes you feel like you are a part of that time.

Maureen said...

Tada! I'm here! No promises that I'll make any sense... Welcome to the ship Kiernan! I'm the bartender of the Revenge and the author of deliberately historically inaccurate books. WTH, I always figure why let the truth get in the way of a good story!

Not that I write historical. Too damned daunting.

And what the hell, I like prologues! I love this idea of the Brady Girls in the Regency... The Brady boy would be fun, too...

Chelsea B. said...

This novel sounds all that is terrific. I am so excited to read it!

Kieran said...

Hey, thanks, everyone, for more awesome comments! This blog is hoppin'! Maureen, I need a drink. Make it a double Cosmo. Without the vodka. Unless you want to see me karaoke. That happens when I drink Cosmos. I karaoked at RWA. Did any of you go? Up the street was that great diner??That's where I sang this time, with my editor, too. She's a great sport. The place was filled with good-looking Microsoft guys from the same hotel we were in. But I acted like their mother, even when I sang "Bitch" by Meredith Brooks. It was tons of fun!!!

So anyway, back to books and writing...I so appreciate the love from my readers. You GET me. You get my characters. We just want to have fun. Life is very stressful. Have you noticed? I need a laugh and a happy sigh wherever I can get them.

Right now SWEET TALK ME is coming along beautifully...I'm loving Harrison and True. We'll see what happens--will my historical readers follow me over? Will I gain new readers from the contemporary crowd? I don't know. I can't really control that, so I try not to worry. I just think about the book. And sometimes I think about the amazingly talented authors who've come before me, and I promise them in my head that I will do my very best to make them proud. Do any of you do that? Is it weird that I talk to an imaginary Susan Elizabeth Phillips or Mary Balogh in my office and totally ignore them at conferences? I've got that backwards!!! LOL!!!

Thanks again for having me here today, you wenchy women pirates. It's been a true pleasure.

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the excerpt for the book, Kieran. I can't wait to get it.

Marcy Shuler
bmndshuler(at)hotmail(dot)com

Terri Osburn said...

I missed the karaoke, Kieran. But I heard from many who enjoyed it. I somehow missed a lot this year.

I don't talk to imaginary authors, but I do think about giving the best for this genre. Romance authors are the most generous people and have given me so much. I feel a responsibility to represent them well and pay it forward.

Kieran Kramer said...

Thanks, Marcy!!! And Terri, I agree with you about paying it forward...we really do belong to a great international group of very caring people. We can be proud to call ourselves romance writers!!!

TGIF, everyone!

Kieran :-)

Kieran Kramer said...

Thanks, Marcy!!! And Terri, I agree with you about paying it forward...we really do belong to a great international group of very caring people. We can be proud to call ourselves romance writers!!!

TGIF, everyone!

Kieran :-)

June M. said...

I can't wait to read this book, I love the sound of it! As strictly a reader, I am not one who is so obsessed about everything being historically accurate. As long as it is believable, and nothing blatantly incorrect (no electricity in the Regency period, for example) I am fine. I do like for the authors to know about the time period that they write in, but they don't have to spend tons of time doing research, have binders and books full of information.

Cathy P said...

Hi, Kieran! I am really looking forward to reading SAY YES TO THE DUKE. I love your writing and enjoy your books very much.

Janice Hougland said...

As I've said before, I love your stories, Kieran. This reviewer really said it all for me. Your characters have wit and charm and there is humor too--a terrific combo for romances. And, of course, my fave genre is Regency. I ALWAYS will have that as my fave genre--started that way years ago and will continue this way. It comforts me, makes me laugh, and give me my fix for HEA's. :-) jdh2690@gmail.com

jmcgaugh said...

I love the premise; it sounds like a great book.
jmcgaugh (at) semo (dot) edu

penney said...

Great blog, I can't wait to read this I love the cover too
Penney

jmcgaugh said...

I enjoy Kieran's books and am really looking forward to reading this.

bn100 said...

Not a writer, so no to your question