It makes my heart happy to see good things happen to good people and Maggie Robinson is one of the best. This lovely lady - and hardworking writer - deserves all the success she's now enjoying as a published author. Maggie returns to The Romance Dish today to talk about a topic that's always intrigued me: islands! Maggie's no stranger to islands herself and has created a fictional one that figures prominently in Master of Sin, her new book from Kensington Brava that was released March 27th. Take it away Maggie! ~PJ
I’m so happy to be back at the Romance Dish to talk about my latest book from Kensington Brava, Master of Sin. It’s the final book in the Courtesan Court series, featuring tortured bad boy Andrew Rossiter and Gemma Peartree, the unlikely governess who heals his soul on an isolated island in the Western Isles.
Islands fascinate me. I’ve lived on four of them in my life, and each one has left an indelible impression. I love islands so much I made one up for MOS: Batter Island. It’s my mental combination of deserted St. Kilda, which is the furthest from the coast of Scotland, and Barra Head, now uninhabited except for “air so thickly crowded with birds as to produce the appearance of a heavy snowstorm.”(~H.J. Elwes, 1868) Isn’t that a gorgeous image?
I’ve been to Scotland several times, but never to any of the islands. But no problem—YouTube has a zillion gorgeous videos, most with haunting Celtic music. Here’s a clip of the St. Kilda heritage site for the “virtual tourist”:
Batter Island is almost as much a character as the hero and the heroine are. Its remoteness, its rugged weather, the fact that all the inhabitants speak Gaelic and Andrew and Gemma don’t all make the couple turn to each other. I’ve set them apart both geographically and culturally, and sparks inevitably fly to keep them warm during a wicked Scottish winter.
Here’s a snippet, after Andrew has caught a glimpse of Gemma too tempting to ignore:
A blast of wind nearly knocked him over. He’d come to the point overlooking where the Sea of the Hebrides met the Atlantic. Waves slapped together, sending spray high into the sky. A collision of forces too elemental to ignore. If he were at all fanciful, it resembled what would happen if he and the diminutive yet delectable Miss Peartree ever united in his bed.
It would never happen. It should never happen. He’d given all that up to raise his son. No more dallying, no more sneaking around, no more sin. He’d done his share for twenty-five years, both involuntary and voluntary. He was two-and-thirty now, the age when many men finally settled down and became leg-shackled. But marriage was forever beyond his touch. No woman could possibly ignore what he had been, what he had done.
This isn’t the usual Regency. RT Book Reviews says: “Robinson crafts an intelligent, powerful, emotional, highly sensual love story with a damaged hero and an exceptional heroine, moving the story beyond the typical and into the unconventional. Readers will become so invested in the characters that the fast pace and heated sexual tension only add to the delight. Fine storytelling.”
Are you an “island girl?” What’s your favorite unusual romance setting? I’ve got a signed copy of Master of Sin for one commenter!