Monday, March 29, 2010

Guest Author -- Christie Kelley

Christie Kelley was born and raised in upstate New York. As a child, she always had a vivid imagination and the bad dreams that go along with it, or perhaps the dreams were caused by the five brothers and three sisters she lived with. After seventeen years working for financial institutions in software development, she took a leap of faith and started her first book. Seven years later, EVERY NIGHT I’M YOURS was bought by Zebra books. The third book in Christie's popular historical Spinster Club series, SOMETHING SCANDALOUS, will be released April 6th.  Please give Christie a warm Romance Dish welcome!


I’m thrilled to be here today with my friends, Andrea, Gannon, PJ and Buffie! I love this blog and am so happy about its success. Thank you all so much for having me today.

Have you ever discovered something about your parents that shocked or surprised you? I can honestly say I really haven’t. The biggest thing I discovered when I was young was that my parents had another son between two of my older brothers and the boy only lived two days. It wasn’t that they kept it a secret they just didn’t talk about it. I guess when you have 9 other kids, there are bigger priorities.

But what if you did discover something scandalous about your parents?

That was the premise I started out with for my April release, Something Scandalous. My poor heroine, Elizabeth discovers her father, the duke, isn’t really her father. To say she is shocked is an understatement. After all, her mother was the perfect duchess.

Or maybe she wasn’t.

Going into this story I didn’t want the basic story of a mother who had a short love affair with another man because her husband was unkind. I wanted to write a story about a woman whose daughter thought she was the perfect mother and wife. A woman who taught her daughter to always do the right thing and be a perfect lady in society. A woman whose marriage was completely scandalous but Elizabeth knew nothing about that side of her.

So when she discovers the truth about her parentage, Elizabeth is stunned and determined to find out who her father might be. She has no desire to confront the man. She just wants to know who he is. She is certain the secret must be in a hidden diary her mother kept but Elizabeth can’t find it. Time is of the essence when the new duke arrives and decides to sell everything he can and return to the United States.

And if I tell you any more about it, I’ll give too much away! Except to say, what Elizabeth discovers in that diary will change her life forever.

As I wrote this story, I couldn’t help but wonder how I would have reacted if I discovered my mother was the complete opposite of what she’d portrayed to me. Many of us grow up believing our parents are perfect. Then adolescence hits and we realize our parents know nothing and can’t be perfect. Hopefully, as we reach adulthood, we can then move on to adult relationship with them.

What do you think? Have any of you discovered a secret your parents kept from you? You don’t have to tell us what the secret was just how it changed your life and perception of them. One random commenter will winy a copy of SOMETHING SCANDALOUS!

Raised as the youngest daughter of the Duke of Kendal, Elizabeth learns a devastating truth on his deathbed: he wasn’t her father at all. And because the Duke had no sons, his title and fortune must go to his only male heir: a distant cousin who left England for America long ago. Anticipating the man’s imminent occupation of her home, Elizabeth anxiously searches for her mother’s diary, and the secret of her paternity...

Arriving in London with his seven siblings, William Atherton intends to sell everything and return to his beloved Virginia farm, and his fiancée, as quickly as possible. But as Elizabeth shows William an England he never knew, and graciously introduces his siblings to London society, it becomes clear the two are meant for each other. Soon, Elizabeth finds herself determined to seduce the man who can save not only her family name, but her heart...

70 comments:

  1. Hello Christie!! Something Scandalous looks like a great read. A book where secrets are discovered is always interesting.

    My parents revealed a secret to me that I already had previous knowledge of, so it didn't really change my perspective of them. I love them for who they are now, not who they were before I was even born.

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  2. Congrats on the upcoming release, Christie. I love reading books where secrets are part of the plot, but I'm not sure I would like to experience it. I don't know of any secrets my parents kept from me and hope it stays that way. Will Sophie's book be next?

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  3. Hey Christie :-) What a gorgeous cover!! Something Scandalous sounds fab - I love secret books.

    You know, I sort of wish my parents had kept secrets from me. The were painfully open about darn near everything and anything, meaning I knew WAY more than I needed LOL.

    Like I said, I love secrets *g*

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  4. Hi Christie - Congratulations on Something Scandalous. Ooh secrets! I love a good plot where the secrets are revealed and lives are changed. I'm intrigued and looking forward to reading it.

    My life has not been so interesting. My parents have been pretty straight forward with me. However the longer I live the more I learn about them and it's been such a great wonder to know more and more about their childhoods.

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  5. Hey Christie!! We are SO happy you are with us today. And thanks for all the support you give us. Smooches to you!

    Yes, my parents did reveal a secret to me while I was in my teens. I felt devasted at the time (much of which was just teen angst), but looking back (and with years of perspective) I can see that secret didn't change anything.

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  6. Hi Christie! Love the premise of your new book. Looking forward to it!

    No big secrets here either--at least none that I have heard about so far. :-) There were though, some painful episodes that I know about, but no one really discusses.

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  7. Hello and welcome, Christie!! We're so happy to have you join us today. Huge congrats on your newest release!! I'll be picking it up next week. ;-)

    Personally, I don't like secrets but I don't mind reading about them.

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  8. Hi Trish,

    I think having previous knowledge of the secret takes the "scandal" out of a secret.

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  9. Jane, I feel the same way. I think that's why when someone does find out a huge secret about their parents, it such a shock.

    Victoria's story is next and speaking of secrets, she has a whopper she's keeping from all her friends. Scandal of the Season is an October release. Then in June 2011, the final book in the series will be Sophie's. It doesn't have a title yet.

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  10. LOL, Tawny! It might be interesting to find out some secret but I don't think I'd want to find out that my father wasn't my father. (And why he wasn't my father!)

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  11. Good Morning, Everyone!

    Christie, we're delighted to have you with us today. Congrats on the upcoming release of SOMETHING SCNADALOUS!

    I'm running out the door to a meeting but I'll be back later this morning to play. :)

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  12. Thanks, Marisa! I love listening to my mom talk about her childhood years. Her dad was in the army air corp (before there was an air force) before and during WWII. My mother tells some very interesting stories about that. She ended up going to 9 high schools because of all the training her dad was doing.

    I love to hear about it!

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  13. Thanks for the smooches, Buffie!

    Hmm, divulging a secret to a teenager might not be the best thing. It's probably better to either tell them before or wait until their late teen years. After they return from wherever their brains go during the 13-16 years. My oldest will be 18 in July and I love talking to him now. It's like speaking with an adult! On the flip side, I have one turning 13 in May, so here we go again.

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  14. Hi Deb! Thanks for stopping by and congrats again on your well-deserved RITA nod.

    I'm actually quite happy there were no secrets in my family,

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  15. Hi Andrea,

    I'm with you. I don't want secrets but I love reading about them. Interesting that both of this year's release have secrets involved in them.

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  16. Hi, Christie! Thanks for coming to dish with us today. Can't wait to read SOMETHING SCANDALOUS.

    I can't think of any big secrets that my parents revealed. Makes me wonder if they have some they'd rather not divulge. ;-)

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  17. Gannon, that made me chuckle. I don't think my mom has any more to hide from my family.

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  18. Hey Kristie!

    I can't stop looking at that cover, WOW!
    No big secrets here, my parents are perfect, LOL!
    Ok, not really, but I have to say things have been secret free, at least, as far as I know! hmmmm. Now you have me thinking!

    All the best for you release, it really sounds wonderful!

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  19. Hi, Dishers! What a great site you have! I love the concept behind SOMETHING SCANDALOUS, Christie. It's often funny and scary at the same time to discover our parents had a secret side.

    I was married and long gone from home when my mother told us she'd lost a baby when five months pregnant before she married my father. I always feel bad for the young woman she was to have gone through that tragedy.

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  20. Hi Christie, congrats on the release and I'm looking forward to this one! I'm one of Christie's crit partners so I know all of HER embarrassing secrets, altho I think I was on hiatus from the group when she was writing Something Scandalous.

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  21. LOL, Drew. I know you've been drooling over that cover! It's really hard to go wrong with John DeSalvo.

    Glad to see you have perfect parents too.

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  22. Hi Jo!!

    It can be fun to discover interesting things about our parents. Not so much for my heroine, but most secrets aren't this big.

    What a shame about your mother losing the baby. That must have been heartbreaking.

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  23. Hi Janet, you know all my embarrassing typos!! You did miss Something Scandalous and maybe if my author copies ever arrive, I'll get one to you!

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  24. Christie, Jeez, I spelled your name wrong, chalk it up to I haven't had my tea yet.

    And yes, John DeSalvo STILL looks good. Can't wait to read!!

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  25. Well, I found out through some pictures my brother found recently that my mother was somewhat of a fashion plate in her single years!

    And yes, saw that she actually wore nail polish on her toes!!!!

    Growing up, I NEVER saw that though she dressed well and never left home without lipstick.

    Can't wait for Something Scandalous!

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  26. Drew, I'm one of nine children. You can call me anything or misspell my name, it really doesn't matter. I've heard them all!

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  27. Joan, that's funny about your mom. My mother won't leave home without lipstick too. It has to be a special occasion for me to wear lipstick! It never feels right on my lips.

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  28. Hi Christine!
    Your book sounds wonderful ^^

    I really can't think of a time where my parents have kept a big secret from me. Mostly because my mother has a big mouth and likes to gossip. It's sort of the other way around here. It's hard pressed to keep a secret in this house. lol

    Melissa

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  29. Hi, Christie! I'm looking forward to SS!

    My parents have not kept any secrets from my sisters and me. My mom did say once she thinks she may have had a baby brother or sister that died from comments others had said, but her parents never said anything.

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  30. Hello,

    The new book sounds great - I have not had the opportunity to read any of your books, yet. As for secrets, no, my parents haven't keep anything 'scandalous' from me that I'm aware of.

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  31. Hi jedisakora, your mom sounds like mine! She is always talking. My kids used to get annoyed when she called because they knew I'd be on the phone for at least an hour.

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  32. Hi Deb, thanks for stopping by! I was sitting here this morning trying to think if I've kept any secrets from my kids. Yeah, I don't think so. We're pretty open with them.

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  33. Oh Jennifer, it's always those words, "that I know of" that will get you :)

    Thanks for stopping in!

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  34. I have always known my stepfather was not my biological father but I have never met my biological father. Both my mother and stepfather passed at an early age. I never ever asked my Mom about my real father for fear of bringing up bad memories for her. Now I don't know if there were bad memories because it was never discussed. So that is the secret that will always remain one.
    Love & Hugs,
    Pam

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  35. Oh, Pamela, that is sad. It's a shame you couldn't find out more before your parents passed.

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  36. To my knowledge, my parents haven't kept any huge secrets from us. The premise of your book is very interesting and I can't wait to read it. Thanks for visiting with us.

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  37. Hi Christie - I do love that cover!!

    I learned a few secrets about my parents after my mother's death a few years ago. Nothing earth-shattering or anything to suggest that they weren't totally and completely in love with each other. Just little things about how they met and what they thought of each other.

    The book's premise sounds great! Can't wait to get my hands on a copy!

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  38. Oooh - it sounds intriguing! Can't wait to dive in.

    My parents waited until I was in high school to tell me that my father was never 'officially' adopted - he was literally left on someone's doorstep as a 2 month old. My jaw hit the floor!

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  39. Hi, Christie,

    Something Scandalous sounds intriguing and fun. ... Though real-life secrets usually are not all that fun.

    I think I know the important stuff about my parents - and my husband and I have tried to be open with our kids.

    Can't wait to read your latest!

    Laura

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  40. Hi LSUreader, thanks for stopping by!

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  41. Hi Donna, I love learning little things about my mother or having her tell me more about my father and how they met. Reading comments like yours makes me realize I should be telling my kids more about how my husband and I met.

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  42. OMG, Christi, that's incredible! I read stories about babies being left at someone's doorstep but never thought it might actually happen. Especially in the 1900s. That sounds like a very Victorian thing to do.

    Thanks for stopping by!

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  43. Hi Laura,

    Something Scandalous is fun at least until she discovers the secret her parents were hiding. That changes every thing!

    Thanks!

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  44. Hi, Christie--An intriguing concept! I've never discovered anything scandalous about my parents. It sounds as though your heroine really is in for a bit shock, though. I'm looking forward to seeing how she deals.

    I do love family secret plots.

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  45. Thanks, Nancy. I really had a lot of fun writing this story.

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  46. Nancy, I love secret family plots too...but only in my books!

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  47. Thanks, Nancy. I really had a lot of fun writing this story.

    I really had a lot of fun reading this story! My review of Something Scandalous will be posted here this coming Saturday.

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  48. Laura, I think it's great that you're so open with your kids.

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  49. Wow, Christi! That's quite a secret!

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  50. Donna, thanks for stopping by. I think you're really going to enjoy this book!

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  51. LSUReader, thanks for stopping by. I'm like you. To my knowledge, my parents didn't keep any secrets from us but who knows?

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  52. Pam, how sad that you'll never have that knowledge but I completely understand your hesitancy in asking your mom about that part of her life.

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  53. The new book sounds great - I have not had the opportunity to read any of your books, yet.

    Jennifer, you're in for a treat. Christie's books are wonderful!

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  54. Deb, I think many earlier generations were much more close-mouthed about that kind of thing than we are today. Or maybe, they just never thought future generations would have any interest.

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  55. It's hard pressed to keep a secret in this house. lol

    LOL @ Melissa!

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  56. Well, I found out through some pictures my brother found recently that my mother was somewhat of a fashion plate in her single years!

    Joanie, I found some photos like that of my late dh's mother. Apparently, she had done some modeling in her younger years. Who knew?

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  57. Hi, Dishers! What a great site you have!

    Thanks, Jo! Nice to see your smiling face here!

    How very sad for your mom but it speaks volumes about your relationship with her that she would share that with you.

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  58. Drew, I agree. That is one fine looking cover!

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  59. Deb said, There were though, some painful episodes that I know about, but no one really discusses.

    We had a few of those too.

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  60. Marisa, I'm so happy your schedule is allowing you more time to come out and play!

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  61. Tawny, sounds like you had TMI overload! ;-)

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  62. Jane, I've been eagerly anticipating Sophie's book too but, after reading Something Scandalous, I want Victoria's...NOW!

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  63. Christie, thanks so much for spending today with us here at The Romance Dish. Best of luck with the release of Something Scandalous!

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  64. Thanks so much for having me today! I really enjoyed myself.

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  65. No hidden secrets that I know about. We did have a surprise with my husband's mother. He is the oldest of 2 boys. His Mom's family was planning a reunion which we were going to be able to attend. His Mom called to tell us her ex-husband, their daughter and her family would be there. My DH was in his mid-40's and that was the first he had heard of it. She had married young and the marriage didn't work. She got a divorce and knew her prospects for being able to support a young daughter were poor. This was the 40's and women did not commonly give up custody. She did and must have made an agreement not to contact them, because her daughter had not seen her all those years. We all met at the reunion and have been in touch since.
    I loved his Mom. She was a strong woman and had the guts to make difficult choices doing what was best for everyone. His aunts and uncles all knew about his half-sister and her family and never said a word.

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  66. Hi Christie....Are there always skeletons in the family closet??? It seems to me that there are.

    I've been married over 35 years and I'm still discovering secrets about my mom/dad's families that I didn't know growing up....and most of them are not pretty.

    I can't wait to read your new novel Something Scandalous....and Thanks for all Your Wonderful Books!!! Best Wishes and Continued Success....And Keep them coming!!!

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  67. Wow, Pat! That's a huge secret. I'm glad that they were able to reunite after so many years.

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  68. Hi Mitzi! It seems that most families have skeletons in their closets. I found out about six years ago that my step-great-grandfather was a bigamist. Seems he was in line for a title in the UK, didn't want it and decided to move to the U.S., leaving his wife and children behind - something he neglected to tell my great-grandmother when he married her. It all came to light about seven years ago when two of his grandsons tracked down one of my uncles.

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  69. Something Scandalous sounds like a great story. I'll be looking for it next time I'm book shopping.
    I can't recall any secrets that I discovered, except the one where my mother told me she left me with my aunt for the first two weeks after I was born - I think she had post-partam depression or something. Way to make me feel loved, LOL.

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