Thursday, January 21, 2016

#Interview - Dangerous Gentlemen by Beverley Oakley

Dangerous Gentlemen 
Daughters of Sin Book 2
By Beverley Oakley

Beverley is giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Certificate and 1 ebook of Her Gilded Prison (Book 1 in the Daughters of Sin). Please use the RaffleCopter below to enter. Remember you may increase your chances of winning by visiting the other tour stops. Those locations may be found here


Crystal: I have a real treat for all of you (and myself) today . Beverley Eikli is here to celebrate the release of her new book Dangerous Gentlemen. Welcome Beverley!! I am thrilled to have you here today. Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?

Beverley: Hi Crystal! Thank you so much for inviting me to chat today. Especially about my favourite topics – books. So a bit about me? I’ve been a writer pretty much since the age of seven and a pilot’s wife for the past 20 years. I completed my first romance when I was 17 and was crushed when the editor to whom I sent it said that drowning the heroine on the last page was not in line with the expectations of romance readers.
So I became a journalist. A very lucky one because an unexpected holiday to Botswana’s Okavango Delta resulted in my receiving a job offer to manage a luxury safari lodge for two months, which led to my meeting a gorgeous Norwegian bush pilot the night before I was to return to Australia. There was no doubt he was ‘the one’ after he asked if I’d give him a floppy disk containing my novel so he could read it during the long and lonely nights in the Delta.
Well, after a whirlwind courtship we married in Norway and I worked with him in Botswana and later in the airborne geophysical survey business. We had two beautiful daughters and finally, in 2009, my first novel was published, possibly because I saved the heroine from drowning on the first page :)
I’ve now written fourteen historical romances set in Regency and Georgian England, often with a flawed heroine, usually with lashings of mystery and intrigue as Beverley Eikli, or hotter historicals as Beverley Oakley.

Crystal: What are you currently working on?

Beverley: With November being National Novel Writing Month, known as NaNoWriMo, I started two new novels on November 1. One is book three in my Beautiful Brazen Brighwtwells series (a Regency romance written under my Beverley Oakley name) in which two beautiful sisters must use all their wits and cunning to secure advantageous marriages for themselves and their cousins. This involves a lot of devious footwork such as inferring that one of them has only six months to live. The current story is based on my heroine uncovering a horse betting scam in which her betrothed is the villain and the contender for her affections is potentially about to be swindled by her betrothed.

The other book I’m writing is a romantic suspense/murder mystery set in Botswana in 1989 in which a couple are forced to leave Australia due to the Pilot’s Dispute of that year which devastated the airline industry. My heroine goes, kicking and screaming (metaphorically) as she’s just secured her dream job as a magazine editor. Now they’re running a luxury safari lodge in the Okavango Delta where she uncovers a murder which has been passed off as a shooting accident some years before. Suddenly, her life is in great peril. This is the second in a new Africa-set series with an aviation theme as I’m originally from Lesotho, a tiny African mountain kingdom landlocked by South Africa, and of course I married the pilot I met while working in a safari lodge in Botswana. So I’ve lived the background to my story – and I just can’t resist using a handsome pilot for a hero.

Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for either your current release or your current WIP?

Beverley: The Africa-set stories are heavily influenced by real life. I remember Dad telling me a story that occurred in the 1940s in Botswana when my grandfather’s cook secretly borrowed my grandfather’s rifle to shoot a goose and left the cleaning rag inside so that when my grandfather used the rifle during a subsequent hunting expedition it exploded. Fortunately he wasn’t injured, but that was only good luck. Anyway, I thought I’d put something similar in my book with four friends going on a hunting expedition in Botswana, and make the motivation something like professional or romantic jealousy with death being the unfortunate consequence, and then have my heroine stumbling upon evidence years later when the remaining three are amongst her new circle of friends.

Crystal:Do you have a favorite snack that like to munch on while writing? If so would you mind sharing what it is with us?

Beverley: I love my cup of English breakfast with whole milk every morning at 6am when I start my writing day. For an hour I can work, in silence, before I wake the children at 7am and my world gets very chaotic for a while before I can fondly farewell them to school and get back to work again for a few hours. 

Crystal: Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?

Beverley: Ooh, yes, I would love to give you the scene in my Georgian Romantic Intrigue, Wicked Wager, where Celeste discovers, to her great shock, the identity of the stranger she’d secretly kissed at Vauxhall Gardens two nights previously. Here she is, with her aunt, both of them guests at Lord and Lady Cowdril’s estate. Celeste is soon to marry her cousin, Raphael, though she has begged to be released, having learned Raphael’s secret and become reluctantly implicated in a plot to help him.

‘It’s time to take a turn about the gardens. Come, Celeste.’ With an imperious nod of her head the older woman rose and put her hand on her niece’s forearm. ‘You are young and beautiful with the world at your feet, if you only knew how to engineer matters to your own pleasing. Do not make too much of your objections to Raphael. If he’s formed other interests, disregard them. It’s a wife’s duty to turn a blind eye, but do not forget that it also bolsters your own position when can follow your own interests after the line is secured.’
Celeste cast a horrified look at her aunt but was prevented from responding by the arrival of Lady Cowdril.
‘The weather is smiling on us, ladies. Come, let us walk. Cowdril is with the gentlemen, no doubt settling up after last night. I’ve been assured the damage is not too dire, though my husband declares he’s determined to win back what he lost at the whist table. Not that I have any great hopes on the matter, especially with the arrival of our new guest. Lord Peregrine is a notable player.’
Celeste froze. Lord Peregrine. The brother of the woman Harry Carstairs was to marry? Here? Her heart began to hammer and her throat closed up. She’d never met the gentleman who was considered a prize catch and a notable philanderer, and she never wanted to. Especially not now, for what if his sister had indeed recognised Celeste as the woman who’d rushed into the night with her betrothed, Harry Carstairs?
‘My dear, you look pale,’ remarked Lady Cowdril with furrowed brow. ‘Perhaps you’re not up to a walk.’
Celeste shook her head. ‘I think a walk is just what I need,’ she replied faintly. She certainly didn’t want to be indoors, where the gentlemen would be on hand to greet their anticipated guest. Perhaps she could find some excuse to miss dinner. Though surely if the viscount had been made aware of Celeste’s role in his sister’s predicament, he’d have 
called her to account by now.
It was all she could take comfort from.

Lord Cowdril’s family seat dated back to Elizabethan times, with neat gravelled paths and formal gardens providing a charming venue for gentle exercise. Lady Cowdril, who was easily exerted, never went beyond the second tier of rose bushes, she declared, due to her palpitating heart. The opening lines of her sentence, suggesting a return to the house, however, was truncated by clear delight and a volte-face.

‘Perry will give me his arm,’ she declared in robust tones, and they all turned to observe a figure issue from the front portico and down the steps, advancing towards them.
Perry? Celeste raised her eyebrows in a silent question regarding the identity of their new visitor, but as he was nearly upon them she followed the cue of the rest of her party: curtseying as she inclined her head in greeting of the arrival whose tall frame was coming into focus. Though to be sure, no one’s heart could be pounding as fiercely as hers, even Lady Cowdril’s in the midst of one of her palpitations.
She ventured a glance from beneath lowered lashes. He was impressive, even from this distance. Unusually, he wore his dark hair naturally, tied in a queue at the back, with informal country attire: knee breeches and knee boots with a dark wool coat. Yes, even from afar she saw his eyes were very piercing.
Swallowing with difficulty, she was alarmed to observe, as he approached, that they were focused on her. Could it be that this gentleman, whose features were gaining greater distinction with every step, did indeed know her for her role in his sister’s distress?
She frowned as she noticed his full lips were curved in a smile; a smile that seemed only for her; and her heart did a skittering dance at the clear interest of this inimitable Viscount Peregrine as he rounded the rose bushes and finally came to stand in full view before them.
Dear Lord. Cognisance was like a stone dropping to the pit of her stomach. Those lips had covered hers not two nights before in a secluded arbour at Vauxhall Gardens. Those arms had held her against him in a lust-filled moment of abandonment. Sweet mercy, but Perry—whoever he really was to Lady Cowdril—was Celeste’s handsome stranger.”

Crystal:When you are not busy writing wonderful stories to keep us lucky readers entertained, what do you like to do? Do you have a hobby?

Beverley:I love making historical costumes. Earlier this year at the Australian Romance Readers Convention I made several that were worn in a Regency Fashion Parade with an hilarious script by MC Jennifer Kloesters (who did her PhD on Georgette Heyer and wrote Georgette Heyer’s Biography and “Georgette Heyer’s Regency World”). The gown I wore was a 1780s polonaise while the other costumes were from various dates right up to 1820. I buy pure silk second hand saris to make my Regency gowns and use Janet Arnold’s costuming books with real patterns of the day, but I learned early on that I had to first make the corsets and underpinnings to get the right effect. I’ve now made three corsets using original patterns from 1780, 1815 and 1880.

Regency costume line up at RWA 2015. I am on the far left. I also
made the gown second from the right
Crystal:Do you have a favorite background noise you like to having going while you write (TV, Music, kids playing)?

Beverley: Actually, I love silence. Just adore it. After the girls come home from school it’s in short supply, so I make the most of it during the day.

Crystal: Thanks for visiting. It has been a pleasure having you visit today. Can you think of anything else you would like to share with us today?

Beverley: With Christmas ​just behind us and a shiny new year ahead, I hope everyone
​is excited by what 2016 has in store. I saw the New Year in with my wonderful Norwegian in-laws - ​14 of us aged between 3 and 60 - having a late night picnic beneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge ​as we were treated to the most amazing fireworks. My husband is the youngest of five very close siblings and after I met him in Botswana he took me to visit Norway where we spent nearly a year living with his parents in the town of Hamar,​just over an hour north of Oslo. I became quite fluent but I’ve grown rusty;​ so this recent visit has been a great opportunity to brush up on that lovely sing-song language.​

So​ have a​ fabulous ​2016, ​and you, too ​Crystal! Thank you so much for inviting me here today.

So what do overseas visitors do when they visit Victoria, Australia? Get dressed up in gold-mining costume from the 1850s, of course

Shy, self-effacing Henrietta knows her place—in her dazzling older sister’s shadow. She’s a little brown peahen to Araminta’s bird of paradise. But when Hetty mistakenly becomes embroiled in the Regency underworld, the innocent debutante finds herself shockingly compromised by the dashing, dangerous Sir Aubrey, the very gentleman her heart desires. And the man Araminta has in her cold, calculating sights.
Branded an enemy of the Crown, bitter over the loss of his wife, Sir Aubrey wants only to lose himself in the warm, willing body of the young “prostitute” Hetty. As he tutors her in the art of lovemaking, Aubrey is pleased to find Hetty not only an ardent student, but a bright, witty and charming companion.
Despite a spoiled Araminta plotting for a marriage offer and a powerful political enemy damaging his reputation, Aubrey may suffer the greatest betrayal at the hands of the little “concubine” who’s managed to breach the stony exterior of his heart.

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for inviting me here, Crystal, and for the lovely interview. I really appreciate it :)