Thursday, February 1, 2018

New interview with novelist Linda Weaver Clarke

I’m happy to welcome mystery novelist Linda Weaver Clarke back to Reviews and Interviews. Today we’re chatting about her new historical mystery with a touch of adventure and romance, The Fox of Cordovia (Book 3 of The Rebel Series).

Linda Weaver Clarke was raised among the Rocky Mountains of southern Idaho and now lives among the red mountains of southern Utah. She has traveled throughout the United States, giving lectures and teaching people how to write their family histories. Linda is the mother of six daughters and is the author of over 22 books: historical romances, romantic cozy mystery series, mystery suspense series, and a children’s book. All her books are family friendly.

Welcome back to Reviews and Interviews, Linda.

Please tell us about your newest release.
The Rebel Series is a mixture of romance and adventure. Each book, set in the late 1700s, is a love story with mystery and intrigue as a young couple and their rebel friends strive to help their country. The romance in this series can be enjoyed by young and old alike. For those who enjoy strong women characters, all three books have this in common. They are independent women who have an opinion and are not afraid to express it. The heroes in this series are rebels with a sense of justice. They are chivalrous and their feelings run deep for the young women they’re in love with.

The third book in this series, The Fox of Cordovia, has adventure and mystery along with a “second-chance” love story. A sinister plot has just been uncovered and its up to a former patriot and a young nurse to discover who is behind it. Caroline is engaged to the future mayor of Laketown, a man of influence and greatly respected. But all that changes when she overhears a conspiracy behind closed doors. After being discovered, she runs for her life. Caroline needs to report her findings, but whom can she trust? When she asks Jesse Conover for help, the adventure begins.

What inspired you to write this book?
The idea of a country that had to fight for its liberty stayed in my mind for a long time until I created The Rebel Series. I love historical romance. This series was inspired by the stories of the American patriots who fought to be free from the dictatorship and tyranny of a king. Liberty is something that I cherish. So, I decided to write about a small country that struggled to be free. In book 3 of this series, the country of Cordovia has had its liberty for 3 years, but there is a plot that threatens this freedom.

What is your biggest challenge when writing a new book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
This is a great question. My favorite genre to write is a mixture of romance, mystery, and adventure. I absolutely love stories that are page-turners, which have some mystery and suspense. To make a story that is a page-turner is a real challenge. When I’ve finished the book, I will sometimes go back and add something more if I feel it doesn’t have enough intrigue.

I love a romance where the man and woman know they are meant for one another, and even though there are trials along the way they never give up on the other. Because I don’t care for drama between a couple who is in love, I need to have enough drama in the plot of the story.

If your novels require research – please talk about the process. Do you do the research first and then write, while you’re writing, after the novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
I love research and I do it before I begin writing. When I did some research about the “waltz” for The Highwayman of Cordovia (Book 2), I was surprised by what I found. The peasants were the first to dance the waltz. It was such fun that bored noblemen would sneak out and go to the country-dances. The Oxford English Dictionary back then called the waltz “riotous and indecent.”

In a 1771 German novel, someone complains about the “newly-introduced waltz” among the aristocrats. He wrote: “When he put his arm around her, pressed her to his breast, cavorted with her in the shameless, indecent whirling-dance of the Germans and engaged in a familiarity that broke all the bounds of good breeding—then my silent misery turned into burning rage.” I was so intrigued by this description. The waltz finally became fashionable when the wife of a Russian ambassador endorsed it.

I learned some interesting facts about lamplighters for The Fox of Cordovia. The city is careful about who they hire because lamplighters also act as night watchmen and need to be trustworthy. I also learned that the job is usually handed down from father to son and kept within the family.

In The Fox of Cordovia, they make their getaway in a pirate ship, so I had to research what pirate ships were like so I could describe it adequately.

While writing the first book, The Rebels of Cordovia, I found out that they referred to “dresses” as “gowns.” The word “dress” refers to dressing for dinner and used as a verb rather than a noun. I love research.

What authors do you enjoy reading within or outside of your genre?
This is an easy question. My daughter, Serena, is my favorite author and I love reading her books. She has written a fantasy romance series set back during the medieval times. It has castles, adventure, heroes, romance, action, and intrigue. The second book in this series is my favorite because it’s about an arranged marriage. It’s so intriguing to see two totally different people come together who were raised in different countries with completely opposite mannerisms and learn to understand one another. Here is The Isian Series in order: The Treasure of Isian, The Alliance of Isian, and The Secret of Isian by Serena Clarke.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers today?
When I sent The Fox of Cordovia to a reviewer in Ireland, I was delighted with her review. I would love to share it with you. Inishowen CailĂ­n wrote on her blog: I loved this book. It is full of adventure, drama, intrigue and suspense. We've got kidnapping plots, pirate ships, daring rescues and romance. The author weaves an exciting tale and a sweet romance together in a way that will appeal to all readers.”

Book Trailers:

Thank you for coming back to Reviews and Interviews!

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