Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Blending History With Fantasy

I love all the pomp and beauty and sometimes downright wickedness of history. Medieval, Tudor, Victorian or Georgian, there’s something both elegant and mysterious about every era that draws me in.

Although my books are primarily romances and therefore much of the research I do doesn’t wind up in my books, I still have to really have a sense and a feel for the era. When I start researching I’m often drawn to new topics, and have to force myself to stick with the subject that I need an answer to, or I’d never finish my next book. And some of the information I find may be historically accurate, but if my readers aren’t familiar with the concept, or that particular development in technology, I don’t use it, although I do try to be as accurate as possible. There’s also a certain style when writing historicals that I adhere to. Whenever I run across a word that seems too modern, I check it as often as possible.

I admire historians because there’s so much conflicting information, even from one reference book to another. I often have to choose which fact seems more likely. In many instances it’s a matter of not enough information surviving for a historian to make a judgment on, and they’re forced to come up with the best theory. And it seems like the more research I do, the more I realize I don’t know.

There’s a particular research book I used for the Victorian era that I think both readers and writers would enjoy. Filled with gorgeous photos, it presents factual information in a lively and entertaining manner. It’s titled, To Marry an English Lord, by Gail MacColl and Carol McD. Wallace.

In historicals you can have the uncertainty of an arranged marriage. Gentlemen were, for the most part, bound by morals and codes of conduct, a perfect recipe for dashing heroes. Ladies were raised to a certain standard of behavior, and women who rebelled or stepped out of this concept of what a woman should be make for an unusual heroine. Historicals provide the best setting for a Cinderella story (one of my favorite themes) where a poor woman can rise to the ranks of the rich.

The system of nobility makes for interesting conflict between the hero and heroine. And where else do you have such a plethora of nobility who make pleasure an art form? The balls, the fetes, the dinner parties. The elaborate clothing of silk and satin and gowns that transformed a lady into a princess. Tea and silver and crumpets and doilies. The horse races and garden parties and seaside resorts. Mansions glittering with gilt, marble floors, paintings of master artists, and sweeping staircases. There’s so such romance and elegance to the historical era that makes for great fantasy.

And when you’re writing what you love, and researching what fascinates you, it feels like magic.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Join me today at: http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/

I was thrilled to have the opportunity to blog at Borders True Romance, hosted by the incomparable Sue Grimshaw! Join me today for an interview and...my publisher will be giving away five copies of THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER. Yes, five! I'm sure we will have a great time, so come on by:

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Win a copy of THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER at http://keithpublications.com/blog/

Stop by, leave a comment, and you're entered to win!
(And yes, I thought my blog tour was over, but when someone is kind enough to ask me to guest blog, it's hard for me to say no. :)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Because I'm goofy about my dogs...

I wanted to share some recent pictures of them today, and one of my favorite stories. The long-haired Chihuahua is Precious, and the short-haired is Baggins (think Lord of the Rings).

Both Precious and Baggins were on our large patio when a pigeon dared to enter their domain. Please keep in mind that this particular pigeon topped them by at least four inches. They both tore off after the bird, barking up a storm, little nails clattering on the cement. Unfortunately, the pigeon didn’t realize he was supposed to be frightened and fly away. He just stood there cocking his head at my dogs. When Precious and Baggins realized the bird wasn’t running away from them (and the look on their faces at that moment will be burned into my brain forever), they both put on the brakes, little legs trying to backpedal as fast as they could. I swear there are still skid marks on my patio. Then the pigeon finally got wise, and flew away. My dogs let loose some triumphant barks, stuck their noses and tails in the air, and proudly sauntered away. But it was touch-and-go for a moment there.

I hope my girls bring you a smile today, as they always manage to do with me.

Monday, September 13, 2010

THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER is a Fresh Pick at Fresh Fiction!

THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER is the Fresh Pick for September 14, 2010

Your cover and a link to THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER will appear on every page of FreshFiction.com on September 14, 2010 and mailed to the subscribers of the Fresh Pick newsletter on September 14, 2010. We'll also Twitter and post on our Facebook Fan page about our selection on September 14, 2010. Feel free to reTweet or link.

The Fresh Pick is chosen by a group of readers and is never a purchased advertisement or promotion. We've chosen your book because it appeals to us and we like to share our diverse tastes in reading and hope other readers will give it a try.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Some more five star/rave reviews for THE FIRE LORD’S LOVER!

Since I don’t always get the opportunity to thank each one individually, I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to all the readers and reviewers who worked so hard on their reviews for THE FIRE LORD’S LOVER:

“LOVED it! If only it could be in hardback with silver gilded pages it would sit on my shelves forever for later re-reads.”~

“I will be trolling the next book like a rabid fangirl.”~ http://bibliophile23.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/the-fire-lords-lover-kathryne-kennedy/

“This was easily one of my favorite books of the year!”~ http://debsbookbag.blogspot.com/2010/07/review-fire-lords-lover.html

“I don’t think I can say this enough…I love love love this book.”~ http://book-lovers-inc.blogspot.com/2010/08/review-fire-lords-lover-by-kathryne.html

“Outstanding Book That Will Stay On My BookshelfFor Rereading!”~

“This author proves she’s got what it takes to magically weave a story that will leave you spellbound.”~ http://goodbadandunread.com/2010/07/13/review-the-fire-lords-lover-by-kathryne-kennedy/

“The plot was fresh and riveting and designed to keep you turning page after page even though you should be in bed asleep.”~

“The first book in the series entitled The Elven Lords by Kathryne Kennedy, The Fire Lord’s Lover, proved to be an enchanting, provocative story that blended all the best elements of the fantasy and romance genres.”~ http://luxuryreading.com/thefirelordslover/

“This is a superb Georgian romantic fantasy that effortlessly merges facts of early eighteenth century London with a mythical spin.”~

“Be warned as you won’t want to put this book down until the last page.”~ http://cherylsbooknook.blogspot.com/2010/07/fire-lords-lover.html

“I love THE FIRE LORD’S LOVER, Ms. Kennedy is onto a winner.”~

“Any story in the hands of a true storyteller can work for almost any reader if delivered in the right way. I have seen that again and again with other people but rarely with myself until The Fire Lord’s Lover.”~

With Appreciation,

Friday, September 3, 2010

Booklist Reviews THE FIRE LORD'S LOVER

Booklist Online Exclusive: August 25, 2010

The Fire Lord's Lover.
Kennedy, Kathryne (Author)
Jul 2010. 384 p. Sourcebooks/Casablanca, paperback, $7.99. (9781402236525).

In an alternate Georgian England divided into seven realms by evil elves who had left the peaceful Elfhame, their offspring are tested and those who have inherited strong magical powers are sent to Elfhame while those who have lesser powers often become slaves. General Dominic Raikes, the Champion and bastard son of Mor’ded, the fire wielding Elven ruler of Firehame returns to London after winning a battle against a neighboring Elven lord resulting in custody of King George and his court. His reward, or possibly his punishment, is to marry Lady Cassandra who seems mousey and unlikely to earn his love. Cassandra, however has been secretly trained as an assassin utilizing her magical dance skills. Dominic has good reason for his aloof coldness but Cass wins him over placing both of them as well as all the humans in Firehame in peril. The unique world Kennedy has created and the underground rebellion of humans against their cruel magical rulers is enticing. Readers will be eagerly anticipating the sequels to experience the other six unique realms and follow the epic conflict between humans and elves that is just beginning as well as enjoying the sexy romantic intrigue.

— Diana Tixier Herald