She's back! Anna Campbell joins us today to answer a few questions about her newest novella, Winning Lord West. It releases April 30th, which means I'll be stalking my Kindle tomorrow morning. I've loved the first two Dashing Widows novellas and can't wait to see what this newest story will bring.
Welcome, Anna! Your new historical romance, Winning Lord West (with yet another stunning cover) will be released April 30th. What can readers expect from this third novella in your Dashing Widows series?
Hi PJ! So glad to be back with in old stamping grounds, the Romance Dish! Thank you for hosting me today.
Winning Lord West is a reunion story – Helena and Lord West were childhood sweethearts before she
The story starts at the fateful picnic at Richmond that plays such an important part in The Seduction of Lord Stone. Lord West tells Helena that things are about to change, and he intends to pursue her in earnest. Then to his frustration, he gets sent to Russia on a diplomatic mission so poor Helena is left fuming all alone, with only his letters to keep her company.
The bulk of the story takes place at the country house party leading up to Caroline and Silas’s wedding, with lots of chances to catch up with old friends. And West and Helena have lots of chances for… you know! This couple made me laugh – sometimes you have to hit your characters with an ax to get them into bed. NOT with these two!
So what to expect? Obviously plenty of steam! And plenty of sparky dialogue (well, at least I hope it’s sparky!). Appearances from Caro and Silas, and Fenella and Anthony. A couple of subtle hints for future Dashing Widows stories. A wedding for our first Dashing Widow. And a blissfully happy ending. Oh, and an epilogue for this particular trio of widows that I hope will wrap everything up in a nice big bow for the readers.
And, yes, isn’t that cover gorgeous?
Oh, that sounds lovely! Winning Lord West is a first love – second chance romance. What is it about this trope that appeals to you as a writer?
As a reader, I love reunion stories. It’s interesting – I haven’t written that many of them. Previous reunion stories of mine are Days of Rakes and Roses and The Winter Wife, both novellas. I think reunions are amongst the most optimistic of romantic tropes – and let’s face it, romance is already a terrifically optimistic genre. Reunion stories say that you get the chance to try again and succeed this time, using the wisdom that you’ve gained in the time apart. They also have this lovely circular structure of returning to where you started out and seeing the place/person with fresh eyes. For novellas, I think reunions work particularly well because it means you don’t have to do insta-love (although sometimes insta-love is great fun and I’m certainly not dissing it!).
Like you, I adore second-chance, reunion stories. I enjoyed both that you mentioned with The Winter Wife being a particular favorite.
Here in the U.S., spring is in the air and colorful flowers are beginning to bloom. Aside from the allergies, it’s one of my favorite times of the year. Which season is your favorite? What makes it so?
Oh, I so envy your Northern Hemisphere spring, PJ. I’ve been lucky enough to be in Europe for a couple of springs and I adore the explosion of life and color after drab winter. You can see why it’s such a powerful symbol of hope, can’t you? I live in a subtropical part of Australia which is nice pretty much all the time (think Florida with koalas). We’re heading into winter here (brrrr, I might have to wear long sleeves in a month!). This is my favorite time of the year on the Sunshine Coast. Autumn here is glorious – clear days and crisp nights.
What writing projects are on your schedule this year? Will there be more dashing widows?
As you’ve probably gathered, at the moment, I’m madly in love with novellas. I have plans to go back to full-lengthers, but right now, getting my characters to a happy ending in 150-odd pages suits me down to the ground. When I started the novella craze, the plan was six, then it became 10. And I think at the moment, I’m planning another two on top of that (Carey and Brandon from Tempting Mr. Townsend are heroes in the making!). The next release is a cute and funny stand-alone (I hope readers agree with me) called Stranded with the Scottish Earl which will be out 30th June. Then I’m going to start another Dashing Widows trilogy, with the first book featuring Amy, Silas’s little sister, who makes a brief appearance in Winning Lord West. Then I’m involved in a top secret Christmas project. Ooh, mysterious.
Oh, I would love to eventually see stories for Carey and Brandon!
I have an Amazon gift card that’s burning a hole in my pocket. Have you discovered any books that should be on my reading radar?
Ooh, so glad you asked. As some of you know, for a few years, I did a column here called Second
A couple of romance standouts from the last six months or so are Susan Sey’s Blake Brothers series (I think they would be my favorite reading from last year) and The Shadowy Horses by Susanna Kearsley which is a wonderful time slip novel with a great romantic relationship at its heart.
I love to snack on a mixture of raisins, chocolate chips and cashews while losing myself in one of your stories. Do you have a favorite snack that you nibble on while writing?
Oh, now I have a lovely picture of you snacking away while you read Winning Lord West. I approve! I’m a sucker for potato chips. The myth is that writers love chocolate (and obviously I like chocolate – who doesn’t like chocolate?), but any potato chip that crosses my threshold is immediately under threat!
You’ll be traveling to the U.S. later this year. Will you be attending any conferences or book signings where readers will have the opportunity to meet you in person?
I’m coming to Spokane in September for the Historical Romance Retreat where I’m so excited that I’ll get to catch up with you, PJ – and a lot of other dedicated historical romance fans. Here’s the website: http://www.historicalromanceretreat.com/ There’s a huge signing open to the public there on Saturday, 24th September. At this stage, I can’t confirm any other appearances – partly because I haven’t worked out my travel arrangements! That’s a task for the next week or so! Watch this space.
I'm so excited to see you in person again, Anna. It's been six years!
Thanks for visiting with us. Would you like to ask our readers a question today?
Thanks again for hosting me, PJ. I always love visiting the Dish.
PJ asked me what my favorite season is. I’d love to know yours and why. People who leave a comment are in the running for 2 Kindle downloads of Winning Lord West. Good luck!
All rakes are the same! Except when they’re not…Spirited Helena, Countess of Crewe, knows all about profligate rakes; she was married to one for nine years and still bears the scars. Now this Dashing Widow plans a life of glorious freedom where she does just what she wishes – and nobody will ever hurt her again. So what is she to do when that handsome scoundrel Lord West sets out to make her his wife? Say no, of course. Which is fine, until West focuses all his sensual skills on changing her mind. And West’s sensual skills are renowned far and wide as utterly irresistible…
Vernon Grange, Lord West, has long been estranged from his headstrong first love, Helena Nash, but he’s always regretted that he didn’t step in to prevent her disastrous marriage. Now Helena is free, and this time, come hell or high water, West won’t let her escape him again. His weapon of choice is seduction, and in this particular game, he’s an acknowledged master. Now that he and Helena are under one roof at the year’s most glamorous house party, he intends to counter her every argument with breathtaking pleasure. Could it be that Lady Crewe’s dashing days are numbered?
Aussie Anna Campbell is a self-confessed bookaholic and is very proud of her shady past as a regular contributor to the Romance Dish. Her historical romances have won numerous awards, including the 2015 Australian Romantic Novella of the Year.
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