I want the ballroom denizens to be the first to see the cover of my next book, CONFESSIONS FROM AN ARRANGED MARRIAGE, coming Match 27, 2012. It’s a really good depiction of Minerva and Blake except, perhaps, Minerva looks a bit meek. I think she’s plotting something (she usually is).
CONFESSIONS is the fourth volume in the Burgundy Club series, though that may be a misnomer. Neither Minerva nor Blake is a member of the club. A complete lack of interest in rare books is one of the (few) things they agree on. I’m moving on to a new series, with brand new characters but in the meantime….
Lady B: Miranda. Three young ladies have arrived and I don’t recognize them. I believe they must be friends of yours.
Miranda: I was just getting to that. I’d like to introduce some of the secondary characters from previous books. You see, heroes and heroines have siblings and friends and they can’t all get their own book. Yet we would like these agreeable people to find their HEA so I’ve invited them to The Ballroom for a spot of matchmaking.
Lady B: Splendid news. There’s nowhere better than a Ballroom for meeting one’s future spouse, even though my authors ladies insist on having their heroes and heroines meet in Unsuitable Places like ships, moors, country lanes and the tops of ladders. And there’s no one better at assessing a couple’s compatibility than I. And darling Albert of course.
<squawk> Tea and crumpets <squawk>
Miranda: Allow me to present Lady Felicia Howard. A pretty girl with a slightly vacant expression comes forward and curtsies. You may be acquainted with Lady Felicia’s older sister Lady Georgina Harville.
Lady B: Unfortunately, yes. I remember her Season. Georgina was thwarted in her pursuit of various peers and settled for a mere baronet
Miranda: I should have known you’d remember, Lady B. She transferred her marital ambitions to Felicia, who is, to put it politely, a little on the dim side. She was not up to the weight of hunting and bagging a major prize, especially not Lord Blakeney, however much Georgina pushed her in his direction (See The Dangerous Viscount). But not every heroine has to be super smart and Felicia is sweet natured. She was one of the few ladies who was kind to Celia at the Mandeville house party (The Amorous Education of Celia Seaton). If she escaped from her bossy sister I believe she would flourish.
Lady B: Poor girl. We must see what we can do for her. Who is the young lady in the very startling costume? You know I like bright colors, but a gown of purple and fuchsia trimmed in scarlet is not suitable for a young gel.
Miranda: You will have to forgive Lady Esther Godfrey. She was brought up by very strict religious parents and as a result she has the desire to Behave Badly. (Ever heard of convent girls run wild?) She now lives with her brother, Lord Chase (formerly known as The Wild Marquis) and his wife Juliana, who is a much better judge of a book than a gown.
Lady B: Clearly the girl needs a match. And a chaperone with better taste. Perhaps I shall take her in hand. Does she like parrots?
Miranda: History does not record her opinion of the Psittacidae family but she is fond of bulldogs.
Lady B: Speaking of Unsuitable, that lady, I would venture to say, has not been a debutante in many years and her garments have a distinctly Parisian air. She must be foreign.
Miranda: Countess Julia Czerny. Very chic, as we say these days. She was born English but her late husband was Hungarian. Besides her extreme beauty and elegance, she is clever and charming and gentlemen find her very alluring. She makes her own living buying and selling antiquities and jewels.
Lady B: I am intrigued. With Christmas approaching, Lord B will be shopping.
Miranda: Julia may have some exceptional gems on hand but I warn you, she strikes a hard bargain.
Lady B: On second thoughts I shan’t introduce her to Lord B. He’s much to susceptible. I’ll just have to find her a husband.
Perhaps our visitors can help. We have three ladies – Felicia, Esther, and Julia – in need of heroes. What kind of man would suit each of them? No promises, but I may even write novellas for one or more of them in the future.