Category: Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

Author Guest Post | From Sting to Success: Using Rejection to Improve Writing by the author of the Biblical Historical Fiction saga about King David – Janice Broyles!

Posted Sunday, 12 January, 2020 by jorielov , , , 3 Comments

Guest Contributor and/or Reviewer of JLAS banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

Happy New Year, for those who are just returning to visiting book bloggers and blog tours this January! It has been a unique beginning to 2020 I must admit – as the tides of current of events took its toll on my reading life these past few weeks of the New Year. It was hard to see a lot of positivity in the mix when you had so much weighing on all our minds & hearts each time we tried to see if anything new had emerged – especially in regards to the weather patterns affecting America right now or the bushfires affecting all areas of life in Australia.

I’ve been returning to blogging at a bit of a slower pace this month – selecting the stories I want to be reading, sorting out topics to explore during #TopTenTuesday and launching my chat @SatBookChat this weekend as well – kicking off the start of our sixth year chatting about books & finding ways to unite the reading & writing community of Twitter.

When it came time to select a topic for this blog tour – I inadvertently sorted out the topic a bit too late to turn in and was thankfully blessed by a topic of interest provided by the author herself. I think all of us who are writers have this topic come up in our hearts time after time – especially as the journey towards publication & the journey towards better self-confidence in our own writings can be a longer journey than most people realise.

Broyles shares an honest glimpse into how this series reached publication & the ways in which she used those months & years ahead of seeing her stories in print. We are each given our own trials to transition through – none of us are free of dreams being placed on hold or having to take a harder road to see them realised. The beauty of the post she’s given me to share today is how uplifting & encouraging it is to read for anyone who is seeking to turn their writings into a publishing career.

I hope this topic encourages your writerly pursuits inasmuch as it let’s you take a second look at what goes into writing the stories you enjoy reading.

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The Saga of David and Secret Heir series series:

The Secret Heir by Janice BroylesThe Runaway Heir by Janice Broyles

The Secret Heir (book one)

The Runaway Heir (book two)

→ The Anointed Heir (book three) *forthcoming release!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Published by: Heritage Beacon Fiction (@heritagefiction)
an imprint of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas (@LPCTweets)

Converse via: #HistFic or #HistNov; #KingDavid
+ #Biblical #HistoricalFictionand  #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

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Posted Sunday, 12 January, 2020 by jorielov in Author Guest Post (their topic), Blog Tour Host, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, History

A #blogmas of Austen Book Review during #SaturdaysAreBookish | “The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen” (Vol.3) by Collins Hemingway

Posted Saturday, 21 December, 2019 by jorielov , , 2 Comments

#blogmas 2019 badge created by Jorie in Canva.

This #blogmas I knew I wanted to be reading a select few after canon sequences focused on Jane Austen’s narratives and/or of her life – lateron this afternoon I’ll be posting a special post announcing how I’m taking the weekend to be with Jane and the writers who have written stories which excite me as a reader who is chasing after her after canons with a heart full of giddy joyfulness! However, this morning I wanted to focus on my ruminative thoughts and musings for having read & finished the finale of this beautiful trilogy given to us by Mr Hemingway!

I have been dearly appreciative to have hosted this entire trilogy as it has toured the book blogosphere via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours – it has been an incredibly lovely experience and having this trilogy in my personal library has become a treat of joy. I have loved his instincts for how he told this story and how he crafted a realistically compelling narrative about a writer we all long to read & to understand better as we do.

As a Janeite whose approached reading this trilogy with an open mind and heart – it is a mark of joy to feature this third installment as one of my final #SaturdaysAreBookish reviews for 2019. As you know – this was my new featured showcase of reviews for Romance & Women’s Fiction which launched in January 2019. I look forward to seeing where those journeys take me in the New Year of 2020 and beyond – whilst it is lovely to end this year with a trilogy I’ve loved reading. Be sure to return next Saturday as I feature my final review for this sequence of featured reviews as I say ‘goodbye’ to 2019 and all the beautifully lovely Romance & Women’s Fiction stories which have graced my life this bookishly happy year.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours whereupon I am thankful to have been able to host such a diverse breadth of stories, authors and wonderful guest features since I became a hostess!

I received a complimentary copy of “The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen Volume 3” direct from the author Collins Hemingway in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Why I was interested in the premise behind this novel:

I am not entirely sure if everyone who reads my blog is aware of my admiration for Jane Austen or the fact, I consider myself a #Janeite. I have loved the author’s style of narrative for many years, in fact, I wrote an Essay about it during 2017’s #AustenInAugust and couldn’t help but gush over the reading of the first novel in this trilogy as well.

What implored me truly to read this after canon selection on a theory of Jane Austen’s life is my affection for the author herself. I love reading after canon works based on her collective works but I also like to entertain readings of stories which relate directly to the writer, herself. Previously, I have explored this through the Jane Austen Mysteries a series I look forward to re-visiting this year, as I hadn’t had the time to re-read the first novel nor continue with the rest of the stories which followed suit. This was initially my goal whilst reading the first volume in this series – however, in the past few years, my readings of Austen Literature has taken a few interesting hiatuses.

Whilst noting this is a novel of an evolving theory based on what ‘could have been’ in accord to Ms Austen’s life, I felt it warranted exploring because after all, how much do any of us know about the Classical authors we love to read? In this, I had a curious thought – what if this novel had a foundation of grounding based on one of the author’s own works? This is something which came into better clarity as I read the novel directly and one in which, I had wondered if other readers on the blog tour had noted themselves.

Directly though – I was dearly curious to continue reading this series due to these
ruminative thoughts I had shared after finishing Volume Two:

As I re-entered Jane’s life as a married woman, I was happy to find Cassandra was beside her, news of the Napoleonic War held good news for her family (especially in regards to her brother) whilst her new life was still one she was settling into accepting. Ashton provided a step-up in social standing for Jane, including how they lived and what they had within their environs. You can see her a bit uncertain how to handle the luxuries of this life compared to what she was used to previously with the Austens, who lived a humbled existence.

Jane is the newly minted Mrs Dennis in the household – a duty and station which comes with a litany of obligation, responsibility and a foresight of understanding for social trademarks for a hostess. It is here where we first start to notice how Jane’s own upbringing fell short of what she would have to endure as a married woman. How her mother-in-law wouldn’t hesitate to point out her faults and where her sister Cassandra would provide a moral anchour to her nerves. It is here we find Jane attempting to do the biding of her husband but without the fuller knowledge of what a disaster it could become if she would blindly follow his advice without taking into consideration the suggestions of his mother, the other ‘Mrs Dennis’.

It is interesting to see how Jane would approach married life – how she is open to discussing things with Ashton or of finding ways to engage him in the romantic gestures she endeavours to instigate. Nothing is seen as this was inspired by Jane Austen and thus, Hemingway happily kept her style of narrative intact without deviating out of the tastefulness of a romance which made her infamous for the genre; yet what was interesting is how he gave a bit of freedom of expression to both Jane and Ashton. They were happily enjoying their married lives – all facets of it but most importantly the ways in which they were endearing each other in their more intimate moments.

There is a bit of cheeky humour threading into the backbone of this installment – how Jane is reflectively musing about how she’s surprised at how natural being a married woman has come to her and how she enjoys being with her husband. There are other sides to Jane as well, such as the woman who is not yet ready to lead a household but of whom, is attempting to remain outside her comfort zone if it means improving her connection to her husband, her staff and her mother-in-law. This is a story of growth – of seeing Jane move away from her years of youth and of embracing this new chapter where she is writing the hours as they arrive.

As Jane started to see how marriage loomed ahead of her, her one regret truly was the lack of hours in which to be creatively engaged with her pen. She spoke of this to Ashton, of whom did not see why she was upset (not really, though he attempted to try) as she had chosen to be with him, to be a wife and to have responsibilities that would naturally come out of the union. Quite a typical response, except that it fell short of realising from a husband’s perspective, how sometimes a woman in a marriage was not realising they were sacrificing a part of themselves for the sake of being with the man they loved. I think in this instance, Jane had become caught inside the romance and hadn’t fully thought about how her life might become altered if she followed course.

A lot of truth in those worries of Jane as I readily observe how not all husbands are supportive of their wives (especially if their writers) and how it would appear that women are still even now needing to defend why they write or why they want to be economically engaged outside of their marriage. This was a moment of reckoning for Jane, as it wasn’t just putting aside her desires to write which plagued her conscience but certain aspects of marriage itself; which also acted as a conflict with how she was raised and the more sheltering views of being a clergy’s daughter.

Similarly, Hemingway was not shy to highlight the other tensions in their marriage – such as the blunderment Ashton made in deference to Jane in private conversation. It shows how he was effectively examining their marriage from an outside vantage point which had the pleasure of seeing the more intimate moments of their private hours. In thus, he pulled back the layers of what was shielding them from the outside world – drawing them out, letting them reveal their raw emotional thoughts and to speak plainly how they felt about not just one another but the topical issues of their era. They were together for most things but they struck a chord apart on deeper issues I think bemused both of them to notice they truly were two passionate souls who each had their own individual mind. To which end, there were some aspects of their disagreements which were worth owning and there were others worth realising they would never agree on the finer points which separated them.

They do remain united in their ability to draw back together after their differences are shed – for they have a strong marriage built out of trust and truthfulness. It is through their discussions they realise certain aspects of their business and their personal lives are coming to a head of discourse. They cannot continue to engage in partnerships which go against their own minds and hearts which reflect the current events – from slavery to the promise of war, they are keeping on the fringes of what is reflective in the papers. This causes disruptions for them naturally but at the heart of their marriage is a union sparked out of love and united in a fond respect for each other, the world at large and the auspicious emblems of living a life with ethical morals.

As we peer more into Jane and Ashton’s world as a married couple, we start to see how difficult it is for both of them – how they must learn to yield to one another and draw a closer circle of strength to tackle what is awaiting them. There is a joyful revelation in this installment – one that further enlarges our scope of understanding for how Jane is fully lit alive by her experiences as a wife and how by embracing these subtle changes she is finding herself radically new and altered. Jane is happily introspective throughout the story – owning to her pursuit to understand herself and her environment but also, to acknowledge how each new year of a life lived is a chance to see the milestones of the experiences you’ve gained.

This particular installment ends on a happy note but one which is guarded for the future – for not everything is certain and there are a few key reasons for Ashton and Jane to feel as if the future yet to come might prove to be far more taxing than the hours that they have just passed through. It is a keenly intriguing series and one I hope more Janeites discover as it truly is a unique testimony about how a modern writer can re-tap into the life of Jane and bring her out so wholly original and true of her person to give us a near-living testimony of how she would have lived had she taken the paths and passageways he’s explored in this trilogy.

It is hard to put into words how much this trilogy has taken up a cosy niche of joy in my heart – as I first started reading this beautiful sequence of Jane Austen’s life in January 2018. The past two years has given me a lot of heartfelt joy to reconnect to Austen in a plausible and believable way of re-introducing myself into her world and the ways in which this sequence of her life could have been lived. I have felt from the start, Hemingway himself was channelling a special entreaty into her life and world – the ways in which he instinctively knew how to write about her innermost thoughts, the way he tucked in letters and correspondences into the trilogy and how he captured the heart of the Regency as an era and background to the story itself.

His capacity to tell this story has been a heartwarming experience for me and I am truly thankful I could close out 2019 with reading the finale installment which brings our experiences with Jane in this beautiful trilogy to a close.

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A #blogmas of Austen Book Review during #SaturdaysAreBookish | “The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen” (Vol.3) by Collins HemingwayThe Mariage of Miss Jane Austen
Subtitle: Volume Three
by Collins Hemingway
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

The Stunning Finale to Jane Austen’s Saga

In the moving conclusion to “The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen,” Jane and her husband struggle with the serious illness of their son, confront a bitter relationship with the aristocratic family who were once their friends and face the horrific prospect of war when the British Army falters on the continent. The momentous events of the Napoleonic wars and the agonizing trials of their personal lives take Jane and Ashton to a decision that will decide their fate—and her future—once and for all.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781979472760

Also by this author: The Mariage of Miss Jane Austen : Volume One, The Mariage of Miss Jane Austen : Volume Two, The Mariage of Miss Jane Austen

Also in this series: The Mariage of Miss Jane Austen : Volume One, The Mariage of Miss Jane Austen : Volume Two


Genres: After Canons, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Re-telling &/or Sequel


Published by Self Published

on 4th November, 2017

Format: Trade Paperback

Pages: 338

The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen trilogy:

The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen by Collins HemingwayThe Marriage of Miss Jane Austen Vol II by Collins HemingwayThe Marriage of Miss Jane Austen Volume 3 by Collins Hemingway

Converse via: #HistFic, #HistoricalFiction, #HistRom + #JaneAusten

About Collins Hemingway

Collins Hemingway

Whether his subject is literature, history, or science, Collins Hemingway has a passion for the art of creative investigation. For him, the most compelling fiction deeply explores the heart and soul of its characters, while also engaging them in the complex and often dangerous world in which they have a stake. He wants to explore all that goes into people’s lives and everything that makes tThe hem complete though fallible human beings. His fiction is shaped by the language of the heart and an abiding regard for courage in the face of adversity.

As a nonfiction book author, Hemingway has worked alongside some of the world’s thought leaders on topics as diverse as corporate culture and ethics; the Internet and mobile technology; the ins and outs of the retail trade; and the cognitive potential of the brain. Best known for the #1 best-selling book on business and technology, Business @ the Speed of Thought, which he coauthored with Bill Gates, he has earned a reputation for tackling challenging subjects with clarity and insight, writing for the nontechnical but intelligent reader.

Hemingway has published shorter nonfiction on topics including computer technology, medicine, and aviation, and he has written award-winning journalism.

Published books include The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen trilogy, Business @ the Speed of Thought, with Bill Gates, Built for Growth, with Arthur Rubinfeld, What Happy Companies Know, with Dan Baker and Cathy Greenberg, Maximum Brainpower, with Shlomo Breznitz, and The Fifth Wave, with Robert Marcus.

Hemingway lives in Bend, Oregon, with his wife, Wendy. Together they have three adult sons and three granddaughters. He supports the Oregon Community Foundation and other civic organizations engaged in conservation and social services in Central Oregon.

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Saturday, 21 December, 2019 by jorielov in #SaturdaysAreBookish, 19th Century, After the Canon, Blog Tour Host, Bookish Discussions, Christianity, Family Drama, Family Life, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, Historical Romance, Inspired By Author OR Book, Jorie Loves A Story Features, Mother-Daughter Relationships, Pride & Prejudice Re-telling, Second Chance Love, Siblings, Sisters & the Bond Between Them, the Regency era, Women's Fiction, World Religions

Book Spotlight with Extract | “Diamond in the Rogue” (Lords of Chance series, No.3) by Wendy LaCapra

Posted Monday, 25 November, 2019 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts,

I recently discovered a new publisher (Entangled) whilst featuring a guest for my Romance and Women’s Fiction book chat @SatBookChat Vivian Conroy (writing as Viv Royce for Entangled) as well as another author I highlighted via HFVBTs which was Lynn Winchester. When I saw this novel going on a blog tour, I thought it might be a rather interesting read and a more traditional Regency Romance series in which to seek out – as typically the past several years I’ve been reading lighter Regencies and/or the cosy comforting Regencies either mainstream and/or INSPY publishing houses.

This one of course felt to be a bit more traditional in the sense of what most people are expecting out of a Regency Rom and that made me smile a bit as its been half an age (at least!) since I’ve read the more traditional Regencies which are a bit more colourfully written and descriptively sensual in how they elude towards or outright describe the romantic bits of the story. They’re a fun read to have in your reading queue and this one was a bit more interesting due to the tongue-in-cheek bantering that seems to be going on between the lead characters! I love when lead characters aren’t quite an exact match in the opening of a novel – they might be opposites, they could be enemies or they could simply be people who are more oil and vinegar than a combination of personalities which lend well to romance!

Either way – sometimes those kinds of romances are interesting to read because of the tension and the quick-witted dialogue sequences which follow suit. This is my first time finding the writings of Ms LaCapra and I am hoping I can eventually read this series through my local library as the print edition was not available for the tour itself.

I happily had the chance to host an extract for this Regency Romance and although I made a few edits due to how I felt the context of the extract might not be in-line with what I regularly feature on Jorie Loves A Story – the overall message within the extract remains intact and you can gather quite a bit of what is happening between the two characters who are featured. If anything, it will either entice you to pick this up to read or it will confirm if its outside your readerly wanderings. I, for one, felt it sounded like a light read with a heap of humour and dashingly brilliant cheek!

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Book Spotlight with Extract | “Diamond in the Rogue” (Lords of Chance series, No.3) by Wendy LaCapraDiamond in the Rogue (Book Spotlight w/ Extract)
Subtitle: Lords of Chance series | What a lady wants...
by Wendy LaCapra

In an act of revenge, Lord Rayne kissed Lady Julia and was sent packing to America. But now he’s back to settle his affairs and give away his sister in marriage, until he meets up with the alluring yet innocent Lady Julia again. He doesn’t regret their first kiss, but he was never good enough for her.

Lady Julia had two years to forget the moody and mercurial Earl of Rayne. But one look, and she knows they’re meant to be together. Be damned with his and her brother’s objections, she’ll just jump on the back of Rayne’s departing carriage and compromise them both thoroughly.

Only, Julia never expected her forbidding Lord to be so good at resisting temptation...

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1-70592-289-7

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Published by Entangled : Scandalous, Entangled Publishing

on 5th November, 2019

Format: Trade Paperback

Published by: Scandalous
an imprint of Entangled Publishing (@entangledpub)

Converse via: #HistoricalRomance and #Regency
+ #HistRom and  #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Wendy LaCapra

Wendy LaCapra

Wendy writes Historical Romance with a touch of intrigue & suspense. Her debut series, a trilogy about three Ladies who refuse to play by society's rules, was released by Entangled Scandalous in 2015. Her first indie, Her Duke at Daybreak, finaled in Romance Writers of America®'s RITA® contest.

Wendy was born a Jersey Girl, though most of her extended family lives in Maine. Trekking up and down the Northeast coast in the backseat of a car gave her plenty of opportunity not only to fight with her sister, but to read, to listen to her dad tell stories from history, and to dream up stories of her own.

She lives in NYC with her husband. Things she loves besides writing and reading and being an aunt to seven nieces and nephews include travel (50 states and all 7 continents), old things, pine trees, wine and pasta.

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Posted Monday, 25 November, 2019 by jorielov in 19th Century, Blog Tour Host, Book | Novel Extract, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, Historical Romance, Romance Fiction, the Regency era

Book Spotlight with Notes | “The Emperor’s Assassin” by Autumn Bardot

Posted Friday, 15 November, 2019 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

Book Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva

Acquired Book By:

I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours whereupon I am thankful to have been able to host such a diverse breadth of stories, authors and wonderful guest features since I became a hostess! HFVBTs is one of the very first touring companies I started working with as a 1st Year Book Blogger – uniting my love and passion with Historical Fiction and the lovely sub-genres inside which I love devouring.

It has been a wicked fantastical journey into the heart of the historic past, wherein I’ve been blessed truly by discovering new timescapes, new living realities of the persons who once lived (ie. Biographical Historical Fiction) inasmuch as itched my healthy appetite for Cosy Historical Mysteries! If there is a #HistRom out there it is generally a beloved favourite and I love soaking into a wicked wonderful work of Historical Fiction where you feel the beauty of the historic world, the depth of the characters and the joyfulness in which the historical novelists brought everything to light in such a lovingly diverse palette of portraiture of the eras we become time travellers through their stories.

I received a complimentary of “The Emperor’s Assassin” direct from the author Autumn Bardot in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I wanted to read “The Emperor’s Assassin”:

I have had a keen curiosity about the Roman Empire for quite a long while and have longed to dig further into reading more about Ancient Civilisations. I’ve had a few hits / misses along the way – one novel in particular I had trouble adjusting to which I hope to get the chance to finally settle inside in the New Year (don’t worry, you’ll know which one once it comes along!) – however, when I heard the premise behind this lovely, the girl who grew up watching forensic science, detective series & all manners of police procedural or mysteries of suspense on television was giddy happy!

Mostly as who even *knew!* there was an original serial killer (supposedly) from the Roman Empire who set a new standard for all to follow suit when it came to seeking a way to cause death by poison? The curiosity I have for Forensic Science and the methodologies of deduction from forensic practices and by modern day medical examiners is what led me into seeking this out from a readerly perspective! I’ve quite literally watched Quincy, ME, Crossing Jordan, Rizzoli & Isles; & NCIS (Duckie & Abby) for the forensic teams!

A part of me was also hopeful this might prove a changing of the guard – of being able to read epic stories of more ancient times whereas previously I struggled to connect inside them as readily as I could say the 18th or 19th Centuries. I have been wanting to reach further into the past more frequently and hoped this might be one of the lovelies that points me more in that direction rather than relying on my regular haunts whenever I go to seek out a new Historical to read!

Likewise, you’ll be finding me focusing on the Tudors over the weekend which is also a keenly curious time slot in History but one in which I have been trepiderious about examining as I don’t find the Tudors to be as approachable as the Victorians, Edwardian’s or even the Regency! Truth to tell, I find Revolutionary France more keen to approach than the Tudor Court! Laughs.

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Book Spotlight with Notes | “The Emperor’s Assassin” by Autumn BardotThe Emperor's Assassin
by Autumn Bardot
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

History paints her as the first female serial killer…

Locusta is the daughter of a winemaker in the Roman province of Gaul. She enjoys the indulged childhood of the elite, her concerns only about the day’s amusements. She rides gentle ponies, attends parties, reads Ovid, and learns the herbal arts from her servant. But the day after meeting her betrothed, Locusta discovers the consequences of possessing such dangerous knowledge.

Ordered to leave her pastoral life, Locusta is thrust into a world of intrigue, scandal, and murder—where treason lurks behind every corner and defying an emperor means death. Locusta’s life changes forever when a young Emperor Nero requires her herbal expertise. And commands her to be his personal poisoner. Caught in an imperial web, Locusta must embrace her profession or die.

Or is there another way out?

History paints her as the first female serial killer. Or is she yet another maligned woman in history?

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9780988209299

Genres: Ancient Civilisation, Feminist Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction


Published by Flores Publishing

on 14th September, 2019

Format: Trade Paperback

Pages: 437

Published by: Flores Publishing

Converse via: #HistoricalFiction, #HistFic or #HistNov
+ #RomanHistory and  #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Autumn Bardot

Autumn Bardot

Autumn Bardot writes historical fiction and historical erotica. Her debut historical fiction is THE IMPALER’S WIFE. Her debut historical erotica is LEGENDS OF LUST.

Autumn, a pen name, has worked as an educator for more than sixteen years. She teaches literature, writing, and the magic of words. She has a passion for history and a special affinity for the unsung courageous females that history has neglected. Or misunderstood. Autumn lives in Southern California with her husband and every-growing family. She wishes she was one-tenth as brave as the women she writes about.

Historical Fiction:
(*) The Impaler’s Wife
(*) Dragon Lady
(*) The Emperor’s Assassin ( published Oct 1, 2019 )

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Friday, 15 November, 2019 by jorielov in 1st Century, Blog Tour Host, Classical Era, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, History

Author Interview featuring the debut war drama “Royal Beauty Bright” (A Novel of WWI) by Ryan Byrnes

Posted Friday, 8 November, 2019 by jorielov , , , 1 Comment

Conversations with the Bookish badge created by Jorie in Canva

Good afternoon, dear hearts!

I read a very stirring war drama set against the back-drop of WWI this week, wherein it hinges itself to the very real Christmas miracle those men experienced during the first Christmas season of the war. It has become a story etched through various outlets of how a story can be told – from novels to films, but Byrnes took a new approach – where he placed a man with special needs (he has Autism) on the front lines and showed how sometimes in the middle of a war, the people you grew up with in a small community might hold the keys to your survival.

Today, I am warmly welcoming this debut Historical Fiction novelist to my blog, as I had some questions to ask him about his writing craft and the story itself. I wanted to find out a few details ‘behind the debut’ which might also be of interest to my readers and those visitors who are following the blog tour route – to see what has inspired this story to be told in the way it was published. It was a rather unique read – you find yourself shifting points of view from the past when Luther was growing up with Rodney to the present, where they are in the height of the conflict in No Man’s Land.

It is gruelingly realistic from that perspective but Byrnes tempers what he visually shows you with the humanistic side of how brother to brother, those men helped each other through the worst of it. It is a character driven plot and you find yourself drawn into how their lives have remained interconnected despite the fact they each have grown up into their lives and careers.

To shift the perspective off the battlefield – Byrnes hugged us close to those who were living outside the battles but were closer still to the war than we were stateside. These were the families left behind in the ruts of what was left behind to be found in the townes, cities and harbours where supplies could be loaded and unloaded; where replacements could be housed or routed through – where everyday life was half stalled due to the war and progressively moving forward all the same. Byrnes gives out the smaller details – of how these communities had to harden themselves against the war itself and of making their children feel less fearful of the changes – as they constantly had to re-direct their focus and attention off what was happening round them into something resembling the normalcy their lives had lost. It was a humbling moment where a writer offset the front by showing what ordinary Mums and grandmothers were doing to do their bit in keeping the younger generations shielded as best they could be from the realities crowding into their childhoods.

The best moment I felt where Byrnes showed how Mums raising special needs children assert their power and strength to those in authority who do not respect them is how Mrs Baker (Luther and Jim’s Mum) gave that Doctor a bit of a run for his money! I would have hoped it would have affected his approach to his doctoring of others but something told me he was as closed minded as they come and given the era he lived, it might be expected but it is never easy to read.

The most gutting scene of course is what happened to Rodney in No Man’s Land and I was thankful for how Byrnes approached writing the scene itself. It could have become more visually graphic and more gruesome to read – but the way he depicted that incident – it was poetic in how it gave conscience thought to what your thinking about in those heightened moments of trauma and how if you were a person who felt obligated to protect someone – how in your own moment of crisis, your thoughts are not your own and there is something else protecting you from the pain which was surely buckling your resolve.

Rodney was raised in the same village as Luther – though the two were never quite close, their Mums were more distant themselves. Yet, here at war, Rodney had taken a kindness on Luther and had vowed to watch over the man – this is why this was difficult to read, as whenever you begin a war drama it is a bit like re-embarking through the Titanic exhibit – not knowing which ticket you’re holding in your hands – First Class or Third; what that foretells of your destiny had you been the person whose ticket is now yours for the day. You have to take it step by step and work through the story because that is what is pivotal – how everyone becomes connected to everyone else and how without understand the invisible lines which connect us, they are dearly important to respect.

The further you move into the context of Royal Beauty Bright the more you understand how this is a generational montage of persons who grew up in the same small community and found themselves at war at the same location of each other and all of them were inter-connected through Luther. They shared a similar history of knowledge of his character and in many ways, had interactions with him in a previous life before the war itself had overtaken their lives. In this regard, the novel is a time shift – where you move from the present moments at the front of the war itself and then you re-shift backwards by a few decades to reach into their past, to see how they first interacted with each other and how that laid down the foundation of how they would become reconnected in the future. To bridge into the theory that for every person you meet in life it is unknown whom of which might become the most important person you need to know lateron.

-quoted from my review of Royal Beauty Bright

As you can see, Byrnes has written a dramatic war drama which puts you close to the war but re-focuses your attention on the men and women who were directly afflicted by that war. It is also a partial Epistolary novel on the level that there are a healthy collection of letters and correspondences which are also important in the context of the story.

If you haven’t had the chance to read this novel, I am hopeful you might find interest in either what I’ve shared on my review and/or inside this insightful interview with the author. Be sure to brew yourself a cuppa and find a comfy chair to enjoy what we’ve conversed about in regards to “Royal Beauty Bright”!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Author Interview featuring the debut war drama “Royal Beauty Bright” (A Novel of WWI) by Ryan ByrnesRoyal Beauty Bright
Subtitle: A Novel of World War I
by Ryan Byrnes

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781943075607

Also by this author: Royal Beauty Bright

Genres: Historical Fiction, War Drama


Published by Blank Slate Press

on 5th November, 2019

Pages: 304

Published by: Blank Slate Press (@blankslatepress)
an imprint of Amphorae Publishing (@amphoraepub)

Read the story behind this women and veteran owned publishing company

Converse via: #HistoricalFiction, #HistFic or #HistNov
+ #WWI war drama and  #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Ryan Byrnes

Ryan Byrnes

Ryan Byrnes is a St. Louis native. His first foray into writing was founding the publishing imprint, Avency Press, where he wrote one illustrated chapter book, The Adventures of Wheatail, and four young adult fantasy novels in the Son of Time series.

Since then, he has worked with a publishing company, a literary agency, and various aspiring writers seeking to self-publish. Ryan now lives in Iowa as a student in mechanical engineering and English. Between work hours, he builds Mars Rovers with his roommates, plays with cats, and watches Wes Anderson movies.

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Posted Friday, 8 November, 2019 by jorielov in 20th Century, Blog Tour Host, During WWI, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, History, Mary Todd Lincoln, Military Families of the Deployed, Military Fiction, The World Wars, War Drama