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Friday, July 5, 2013

Taking tea with...Anna Campbell (and a Giveaway!)

Welcome to this week's Taking Tea with Ms. Stuart.

I am delighted to welcome one of my most favourite writer pals with whom to share a good cup of tea and the odd cucumber sandwich -- the marvellous award winning, regency writer Anna Campbell.

It is my particular pleasure to set out my best china and silver tea pot for Ms. Campbell to talk about her new release, DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES (love the title, Ms. C.!) but wait there's more...she's offering a GIVEAWAY of her new book so read on...

Hi Alison! Thank you so much for having me as your guest today.

I’ve got a new North American release this week (hoping to get it into Australia and New Zealand in the near future). My e-novella DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES from Grand Central Forever Yours has been billed as “Sons of Sin” 1.5. I think this is so cute – like it’s trying to squeeze in on the sofa.

Hey, I’m a writer, I don’t get out much! And in a way this novella is trying to squeeze in – it’s the delicious little appetizer between two big feasts, the gothic drama of SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUES’ BED and the (hopefully) sexy games of A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS which comes out at the end of August.

Here’s the Amazon link for DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES.  It’s available at the bargain price of 99 cents!

And here’s the blurb:
Lady Lydia Rothermere has spent the past decade trying to make up for a single, youthful moment of passion. Now the image of propriety, Lydia knows her future rests on never straying outside society's rigid rules; but hiding away the desire that runs through her is harder than she could have ever dreamed. Now as Lydia prepares for a marriage that will suit her family, but not her heart, Lydia must decide what's more important: propriety or passion?

Simon Metcalf is a rake and adventurer. But for all his experience, nothing can compare to the kiss he stole from the captivating Lydia Rothermere ten years ago. Simon can scarcely believe he's about to lose the one woman he's never forgotten. The attraction between them is irresistible, yet Lydia refuses to forsake her engagement. With his heart on the line, will Simon prove that love is a risk worth taking?

You can read an excerpt on my website here:

This story is unashamedly romantic. It’s about the reunion of star-crossed childhood sweethearts, Lady Lydia Rothermere and Simon Metcalf, after ten years apart.

I think the title’s very romantic. Even more, that gorgeous pink cover really conveys the lush emotions of this book. Look at the scattered roses and the melting body language. If he doesn’t kiss her in the next five seconds, I think we’re ALL going to combust!

I’ve had some beautiful covers in my time, but I think this is one of the nicest. I love how the people at Grand Central Publishing really try to match the tone of the books – and the colouring of the characters too. Lydia is my first redhead and Simon is one of those golden blonds, a bit like Anthony Andrews in THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL movie.

In fact, Simon will make it two blond heroes in a row – up until now, my only blond hero was the Marquess of Ranelaw in MIDNIGHT’S WILD PASSION. Sir Richard Harmsworth, the very Scarlet Pimpernelish hero of A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS, my next release, is another blond.

Clearly, I’m going to be working my pictures of Anthony Andrews hard for the next few months! And again, it’s a beautiful cover!

So do you like your heroes dark and dangerous or blond and shiny? Do you have a favorite blond hero from a romance? Who’s your favorite blond man? Robert Redford? Brad Pitt? Baryshnikov? Do blonds have more fun?

Anna has a download of DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES for a commenter from North America today and as a consolation prize for our international visitors, a download of her ghostly romance THESE HAUNTED HEARTS for a commenter from outside America. Please let us know where you’re from when you comment and good luck! 


(Interesting topic, Anna...I am not immune to the charms of the blonde haired hero - Sean Bean as Richard Sharpe won me over completely as the tall, blonde and dangerous to know guy and let's not forget David Wenham in Sea Change or (be still my fluttering heart) Rupert Penrys-Jones in anything...but most particularly in Sense and Sensibility as Captain Wentworth. Tall, blonde AND wearing a stock and riding boots!)


  1. I'm very partial to Daniel Craig in Skyfall who manages to do dark and dangerous while being blond.

  2. Wonderful interview, ladies.
    Anna, you already know my tastes from your previous books - dark, dangerous, and sexy as hell.
    BUT...I'm more than willing to give your blonde hero a chance. See if he can persuade me to change my 'sexiest coloring' vote.

  3. Hi Anna and Alison

    I do so love your stories Anna and I can fall for a hero no matter what colour hair they have but I must say the Robert Redford has always been a favourite of mine :)
    I am not sure if blondes have more fun because I do think that most of the heroes I read are tall and dark

    Congrats on the release Anna

    Have Fun

  4. Hi Alison! Thank you for that lovely welcome! I'm just making a cup of tea as it happens - in a good old RWAustralia mug!

  5. Suzi, I've got a feeling both of us are going to have fun trying on that particular subject! LOL!

  6. Helen, in my teenage years, Robert Redford was the absolute bee's knees. I had a very good friend at school who used to swoon over him like she was going through oxygen deprivation. Thanks for saying you love the stories!

  7. My preference is dark (coloring not character!) but I don't mind either way as long as the story is well written.

    That is one awesomely pink cover!

    I'm an international reader.

  8. Linda, I think that's about it. It depends on the story. I would have said my preference was dark too - but it seems I'm changing (whoo-hoo!).

  9. Keziah, not sure what happened to my response to your comment yesterday - might be still caught up in moderation! Thanks for swinging by. I think Daniel Craig is an excellent example of a sexy blond man. I remember thinking he was really something years ago when he turned up in a couple of BBC dramas!

  10. I LOVE the Dark and Dangerous ones - although I do love Brad Pitt in Interview with a Vampire -

    Thank you so much for this great interview!

    Felicia from Pennsylvania in the USA

  11. I prefer tall, dark, and handsome. An Alpha who is all those things is even better!

  12. Hi Felicia! Brad definitely is easy on the eyes. I think the first thing I saw him in was A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT but the one that really alerted to me to what a fine form of a man he is was the DEATH TAKES A HOLIDAY remake which I think was called MR. BLACK.

  13. Hi Betty! Tall, Dark and Handsome definitely gets all the press. I feel I'm just being equal opportunity, LOL!

  14. Hi ladies! Just wanted to stop by and tell you how much I am loving this book!

  15. I've always liked the dark and dangerous hero. I can't think of any favorite blond romance heroes, except a few Vikings here and there. :D My favorite blond man has to be Brad Pitt, although Robert Redford was pretty handsome in his day. I don't know if blondes have more fun, since I'm a brunette and have had plenty of fun.
    I'm from Florida, USA

  16. There is quite a crowd in my parlour and my kettle is boiling off the hob. I'm really enjoying this discussion. It still looks like the preference is for dark, doesn't it, Anna? Barbara I do remember having a crush on the young Robert Redford (The Sting!) but Brad Pitt has never done anything for me - too "pretty'. I know he's not an actor but what about David Beckham???

  17. I have read, and written, both dark and blond heroes. But I think I prefer the dark ones.

  18. Ki, what a lovely thing to say! So glad you're enjoying DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES. Thanks for swinging by and letting us know!

  19. Ha ha, Barbara! I'm a blond - I used to be a natural one although age caught up with me there somewhere in my 30s. And we have plenty of fun too!

  20. Alison, I can certainly see the visual appeal of David Beckham. Who couldn't? I can't say he gets me going, if you know what I mean. I'm a bit like that with Brad, although he's very easy on the eye. On the other hand, I had/have a huge crush on Anthony Andrews in his heyday. Sadly, I don't think he's aged particularly well. Sigh.

  21. Interesting, Michele. I'm currently writing book 3 in the Sons of Sin series, the Duke of Segemoor's story. He's definitely tall dark and handsome a la Cary Grant so I'm getting back to my alpha heartland, I think!

  22. Alison, I think I'd better go out for more milk! That teapot is working overtime!

  23. I've always had a special thing for the tall, dark, and dangerous ones but sexy men come in many varieties. I think my favorite blond is the Absolute Vodka guy from Sex in the City. Do you all remember him? Yum!

    No need to put my name in the drawing as I have both of these books! I haven't been able to get to DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES yet, but THESE HAUNTED HEARTS is lovely!

  24. Is the kettle still going? Apologies for coming in very late here Anna and Alison (just got back from a 2 week holiday with no wifi!). Tall,dark and handsome is usually my cup of tea...although I do have a 'list' of fair-haired male muses...Chris Evans (aka Captain America) and Alex Pettyfer (I am Number 4, Magic Mike) are certainly appealing...and then there's Alexander Skarsgard (True Blood)...Daniel Craig (my favourite)...

    I can't wait to read DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES Anna so I can add another blond to my list! Love the cover too. It should tide me over until A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS comes out!

  25. Laurie, is that the gorgeous guy who ended up with Samantha? He was very handsome. Actually Sex and the City featured one of my favorite blonds, Mikhail Baryshnikov. I think he's such an attractive man! And thanks for saying you've picked up the books and you enjoyed THH! Lovely to see you!

  26. Jennifer, for you we'll put on the kettle again! Hope you had a lovely holiday. Hmm, lots of nice blondies there. Actually I realised who my current fave blondie is and I didn't even mention him - Chris Harmsworth. I find him really appealing - although he's absolutely nothing like any of my blond heroes!