Monday, August 17, 2020

The Footmen's Club - - Q&A and Giveaway with Valerie Bowman


I am so excited to welcome Valerie Bowman to the blog today. Valerie's The Footmen's Club trilogy has brought me three highlights of my summer romance reading. These stories, all set at the same house party, are filled with sparkling banter, steamy romance, a bit of danger (in the final book), humor aplenty, and heart-tugging happily ever afters. If you're looking for a historical romance that makes you laugh, sigh, and cheer for characters who deserve to find their happy endings, look no further than The Footman and I, Duke Looks Like a Groomsman, and The Valet Who Loved Me. I hope you love them as much as I have.

 Q&A with Valerie Bowman

Welcome to the blog, Valerie, and congratulations on your new series.

Thanks so much for having me, PJ!

What should readers expect from the books in The Footmen’s Club series?

Fun, fun, fun! I like to call my books Racy Regency Romps and that’s exactly what these are. One country house party and a whole lot of shenanigans.

Your current release, Duke Looks Like a Groomsman, is a second-chance romance. What is it about this trope that inspires you as an author?

Second-chance romance is my favorite trope, actually. I love to read it so I’m always looking for a plot to write it. In this case, the perfect plot fell into my lap. The hero is posing as a groomsman in the stables at his friend’s country house party and the hero’s former flame shows up, recognizes him immediately, and proceeds to give him hell. There’s just something about the shared history between the characters that I love to read about and write about.

In each of the three books, the hero is masquerading as a

servant. If you were to “go undercover” at a Regency house party, what position would you choose, and why?

Ooh, what a fun question! If household dog walker was an option, I would do that. If not, I’d choose lady’s maid. I’m not particularly good with clothes or hair, but I’d be close enough to hear the gossip. Ha!

The last chapter of Duke Looks Like a Groomsman sets up book three, The Valet Who Loved Me, and has me eagerly anticipating its August 25th release next week. From the scene in question, it appears our hero and heroine are headed to France. Is there a country you haven’t explored as a writer yet where you would like to set a romance?

Italy! It’s such a beautiful country. I have a book that’s ‘under the bed’ as writers say, which just means it needs work. I’d love to pull that out someday, fix it, and publish it. It involves a spy heroine and shenanigans in Italy.

Where’s the best place(s) for readers to interact with you online?

I’m on Facebook at 

or you can email me via my website at

Are you able to give us any insight into what you’re planning next?

Sure! I’ve already started writing another book in the Footmen’s Club series. It’s the story of Clayton and Theodora (who are the hosts of the infamous house party). I’m also about to publish my very first contemporary rom com called Hiring Mr. Darcy!

Oh, I'm so glad you're writing Clayton and Theodora's story! And I had no idea you were also writing a contemporary rom com. How exciting! 

Let’s play a quick round of “finish the sentence.”

If I had more time I would…watch TV.

My perfect breakfast would include…coffee with cream and sugar and an English muffin with butter and jam.

The last book that made me laugh was…Wow. I’ve been reading a lot of True Crime and World War II history lately. I just realized neither thing is funny. Thank you for reminding me I need a laugh!

My favorite show to binge watch is…I began bingeing Outlander and have yet to finish. I’d love to get back to it someday.

The characteristic a hero must have to win my heart is…intelligence and humor.


Thank you, Valerie! Would you like to add anything or ask my readers a question?

Well, apparently, I need to read something funny so I’m all ears for suggestions. What’s a funny book that you recommend?



One randomly chosen person who comments before 11:00 PM, August 18, will receive one e-copy of Duke Looks Like a Groomsman

Must be 18 or older


Valerie Bowman’s debut novel was published in 2012. Since then, her books have received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly, Booklist, and Kirkus. She’s been an RT Reviewers’ Choice nominee for Best First Historical Romance and Best Historical Romance Love and Laughter. Two of her books have been nominated for the Kirkus Prize for fiction.

Valerie grew up in Illinois with six sisters (she’s number seven) and a huge supply of historical romance novels. After a cold and snowy stint earning a degree in English Language and Literature with a minor in history at Smith College, she moved to Florida the first chance she got. Valerie now lives in Jacksonville with her family including her mini-schnauzers, Huckleberry and Violet. When she’s not writing, she keeps busy reading, traveling, or vacillating between watching crazy reality TV and PBS.


  1. Don't enter me in this giveaway since I have already read the book, and loved it BTW. Just wanted to say how much I enjoy Valerie's work and look forward to many more good stories from her pen. You mentioned Second chance romance and Italy and as it happens, I'm reading a book that covers those bases. Just started The Courtesan Duchess by Joanna Shupe. It is set in Italy and so far is a real 'trip'...loving it. I recommend it.

    1. Thank you for the recommendation, Karen! I love Shupe's Gilded Age romances but I haven't read her earlier books. I see I'll need to correct that. :)

    2. Hi Karen, Thank you! I've read Joanna's book. It's excellent! Her newer stuff involving the Gilded Age is fabulous too!

  2. I love all Valerie's stories they are so good! I have even re-read The Footman and I several times it is such a wonderful book that no I don't want to leave it! I don't read to many funny romance books though. The last one I read had lots of battles, lies and deception it was Lord of Sky by Kathryn Le Veque there is some humor there is a young squire who keeps getting in trouble so there is that.

  3. If you enjoy contemporary romance, I highly recommend The New Normal by Tracy Brogan. It had me laughing out loud numerous times!

    1. Ooh, I love Tracy's book and I haven't read that one. Thanks!

  4. I have not read this series, but am really looking forward to reading it. I too feel that a hero must have intelligence and a good sense of humor.

  5. I loved Valerie's, The Footman & would love to move on with the series! Thanks for your time today!

  6. I adore novels where the Hero is an overlooked Nice Guy, more than he appears. Julia Quinn does them well, and Valerie has decided to write some also. I'm looking forward to this.

    Susan in AZ

  7. The Footmen's Club sounds fabulous!
    I just read The Parfit Knight by Juliet Blyth - it was wonderful and the first book in a series.

    1. Hi Mary! I haven't read Judith Blyth. Off to check out The Parfit Knight. Thanks for the rec!

    2. Hi Mary. I haven't read Judith either. Thanks for the tip.

  8. I am soooo ready for the next book in the Groomsmen series. These books have made me smile at the delightful relationships. And actually, Ms Bowman seems very good at making me laugh.

    For laughs...Marry in Scarlet by Anne Gracie or Carla Kelly's Christmas Collection. Yes, I know, but I read Christmas books all year to make me smile. In the Anne Gracie book, the hero and heroine are very funny together. Both are oblivious about so much about a relationship.

    Thanks for the interview.

    I enjoy all Ms Bowman's books. And a contemporary....OK - I am ready.

    I hope everyone is taking care and staying safe.

    1. Thanks, Annette. Anne Gracie was one of my late mom's favorites!

  9. I read a mix of contemporary and historical romance. I just read an entertaining ARC of Christmas Ever After.


  10. I love any of Tessa Dare's humorous! And Grace Burrowes has a great dry wit too.

  11. I read contemporary and historical and have read some of your earlier books. This series is on my must read list.
    For rom com recommendations I have a few authors - Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, Jennifer Crusie, and Avery Flynn.

  12. I am so looking forward to reading this series. It is a perfect set-up for all sorts of misunderstandings, problems, needed explanations, and trying to stay out of trouble. The series is just what I need right now.
    No real suggestions for a funny book you could read. I have been reading mostly suspenses - Harlequin Intrigues because they are quick reads I can sneak in when I should be doing something else and they have some good authors writing for them. There was also some paranormal and christian fiction thrown in. If you want gentle escape with humor which is probably way out of what you usually read, try Mary Connealy. She writes historical westerns and has a wonderful, sometimes wicked sense of humor. It is christian fiction, but not the "hit you over the head with the Bible" every other page type. As with most authors, you have to try them to see if you like them. Everyone's taste is different. If you go to her Amazon page for The Husband Tree and read the first page of the book, it will show you her type of humor and tell you if you would enjoy her books.
    Take care and stay healthy.

  13. With this extended period of "staying in" I finally got to opening the last few boxes from moving house (it took a couple years, but better late than never). Two old comfort reads were in one of the boxes and I remember chuckling through them. They are older titles:

    Escapade by Joan Smith (Regency romance), heroine writes a gossip column under a pseudonym, is invited to a house party where the Duke whom she regularly pillories is expected to choose his Duchess.
    Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters (Romantic suspense set in Victorian era Egypt) This is the first book in the Amelia Peabody series.

  14. Hugs, Valerie! A couple recent contemporaries with humor that I adored are the Hot Cakes series by Erin Nicholas. A great balance of sweet heat with excellent dialogue that will leave you smiling if not laughing aloud :)

  15. Thanks so much for visiting with us, Valerie! Best wishes for the upcoming release of The Valet Who Loved Me!

    Readers, remember, the first two books in Valerie's The Footmen's Club series are available to purchase. You can pre-order The Valet Who Loved Me now or purchase it when it releases on August 25.

  16. Two recent favorites:

    To Have and to Hoax by Martha Waters - Historical where an estranged couple compete to upset one another and learn their true feelings. I had some suspension of disbelief issues around the length of time they were estranged but the story included some great rom-com moments.

    Party of Two by Jasmine Guillory - A couple goes to great lengths to hide their relationship because he is a Senator. She's one of my auto-buy authors because I enjoy the situations her characters get in and out of.

  17. I haven't read any funny books. Sometimes whilst reading a romance, I do find some funny lines that make me laugh. Carol Carr's "Madame of Espionage" series is great and has some funny lines in it.

  18. Don't enter me in the giveaway. I just wanted to pop in to say that I loved the first book, and I have the next one waiting for me on my kindle. Book #3 is pre-ordered.