An Interview with Bronwen Evans

978-0-553-39117-6-300x400Bronwen will be giving away an ecopy of her book, A Kiss of Lies book #1 in the Disgraced Lords series

  1. What inspired your latest book?

My latest book, released 24 March is A TOUCH OF PASSION, a Regency historical romance. It’s book #3 in my Disgraced Lords series. The Disgraced Lords are a bunch of school friends, nicknamed the Libertine Scholars, whose fathers were—not very nice—is putting it mildly.  They have an unknown enemy who is revisiting the sins of the father on the sons. The series has an over arcing villain, as well as a different villain in each standalone book, so I had to plot the series really well before I started. I plotted out a series books, one for each of the six men.

M y six heroes are:

  1. A Kiss of Lies, book #1 – Christian Markham, the Earl of Trent – wounded war hero, the gorgeous rake who is faced with confronting who he is, now that he’s been badly burned at Waterloo. He reminds me of Mel Gibson’s character in The Man Without a Face. A man whose world has been turned upside down as he struggles for a new identity. He can no longer use his beauty to glide through life. He has to look deeper inside himself and find out what’s at the core of him as a man. What can he find within himself to make his way in the world?
  2. A Promise of More, book #2 – Sebastian Hawkestone, the Earl of Coldhurst – is a very popular and handsome rake who has the ability to understand and empathize with people. He notices seemingly insignificant details about them and their lives, and easily gets inside people’s heads. He’s able to draw conclusions from them and use the information to his own advantage – especially where woman are concerned. He’s the ultimate seducer. A bit like Jake Gyllenhaal’s character in Love, Drugs, and other Things.
  3. A Touch of Passion, book #3 – Grayson Devlin, Viscount Blackwood – A big, gorgeous rake with a heart of gold. The man who tries to look tough on the outside but is in fact marshmallow inside. He’d do anything for anyone and fiercely protects those he loves with his life. He reminds me of Stefan Salvatore from The Vampire Diaries. Silent and intense.
  4. A Whisper of Desire, book #4 – Maitland Spencer, the Duke of Lyttelton – he’s a masculine version of Temperance Brennan from Bones. He’s a mathematical genius, making him England’s most successful card player. But he is deemed cold and distant, emotionally withdrawn, and due to his intelligence he has trouble connecting with people.
  5. A Taste of Seduction, book #5, – Hadley Fullerton, younger brother of the Duke of Claymore – he has, what we term in the Regency period ‘the spare’ syndrome. His only role in life is to be ready to step up if anything should happen to his elder brother. He has little if any self-worth and does everything he can to put himself in harm’s way.  Danger is his middle name. He sees no purpose to his life, so doesn’t value it. Like Christopher Chance in Human Target.
  6. A Night of Forever, book #5 – Arend Aubury, Baron Labourd – a French exile with a huge chip on his shoulder. His family fled France in 1789 during the revolution and they lost their estates and wealth. Upon reaching manhood, he’s not had the luxury to be the playboy rake. He had to work hard to restore his family’s wealth and standing in England. He’s serious and determined. He still doesn’t feel accepted here, and with the war with Napoleon, feels like an outsider in the country he’s spent most of his life in. He longs for acceptance. I’ve pictured Olivier Martinez for this character.
  7. Where do you get the ideas for your stories?

I’ve always had a vivid imagination. Romance is about human emotions so therefore I do get ideas from people around me, things I read, news, etc. I’m always amazed at how modern day issues can provide great plots and emotional stories for a Regency historical book. In some areas things haven’t changed that much over the centuries. People still want to be loved and accepted for who they are.

  1. Do you have a view in your writing space? What does your space look like? 

I have a really bad back and neck so I find sitting at a desk kills my ability to write for long periods of a time. If my neck goes, I get headaches which incapacitates me. A friend of mine put me onto lap-desks. I sit on the couch or on my bed against the bedhead and use my laptop. So I can pretty much write from most rooms in my house. I live in New Zealand in a pretty area called Hawkes Bay. It’s an agriculture and wine region with a hot summer and a mild to coldish winter (no snow but gets frost in the mornings). Here’s a picture of my view. I’m in a seaside vineyard and have an amazing view.  I’m very lucky.

  1. How likely are people you meet to end up in your next book?

LOL – if they are interesting enough perhaps. I tend to create characters that are a combination of many people I meet. I love a hero or heroine with deep-seated emotional issues that are usually there due to something that has happened in their lives. People I meet often have seen or been involved in certain incidents and they are what I sometimes use.

  1. Tell us about your hero. Give us one of his strengths and one of his weaknesses.

Grayson Devlin, Viscount Blackwood is a victim of loss. His family died around him in a carriage accident. His guardian becomes Lord Flagstaff, my heroine’s father. Lord Flagstaff has five sons and Grayson and Robert (the eldest son) became firm friends. Then, at Waterloo, he has to cradle Robert in his arms, as he lies dying on the battlefield. Grayson begins to shelter his heart – to love someone leads to pain. Life is too uncertain to open yourself up and to love is too great a risk. He’s honorable, loyal, and completely loveable if he’d let others in.

  1. Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?

It’s really all about the story. When you have so many characters in your head you just enjoy the process of telling their story. I’d be a liar to say I didn’t love it when readers enjoy my books. I also realize I’ll not be to everyone’s taste. I’m no Jane Austen. My stories are sensual and action packed.

  1. Tell us about your heroine. Give us one of her strengths and one of her weaknesses.

Lady Portia Flagstaff almost died of influenza when she was sixteen so she decides she owes it to herself to live her life to the full. Unfortunately, what she wants to experience and society’s norms don’t always align. The one things she does no is that she wants to experience love and passion before she dies. Her problem is she’s in love with Grayson but Grayson doesn’t see her as anything other than a substitute little sister. What I love about Portia is how she is so true to herself. Grayson compromises her, but she refuses to marry him unless he gives her his heart. Can you see a conflict there?

  1. Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract?

I know its cliché but keep writing. Even when you sell your first book, a career it does not make. You usually have to have at least 6 + books published before you start to get a bit of a following.  Honestly, if you really love telling your stories keep polishing your craft. I’ve taken and still take massive on romance writing course, (anything by Patricia Kay is fabulous), I also make sure to read all the top sellers in my genre so I understand what readers love. I also read the books and analyze them. What has this top-selling author done that makes the story good? I go through each book, chapter by chapter, and look at the character arcs. You will usually see why the book is a success.

  1. What is your next project and when will it be released?

I’m currently writing book #4 and book #5 in the Disgraced Lords series and trying to pull together some outlines for my editor who is chasing more historical romances, but she also wants me to try writing another contemporary. I have a meeting with my agent next week to discuss where to from here.

  1. Give us an elevator pitch for your book.

I hate elevator pitches but all good writers should have them at the ready, you never know who you’ll meet in a lift as us kiwi’s call them.

A vivacious thrill seeker clashes with her dutiful defender—causing irresistible sparks to fly.

Here is my excerpt:

“What the blazes do you think you’re doing here?” Portia winced at the familiar sound of Grayson’s voice.

She glanced up to find his handsome features clouded in anger. He probably had no idea that his scolding tone set her heart racing—and not in fright.

“Merely observing. Unlike you, I suspect.”

He was looking up and down the corridor. “I should tell Robert and let him wring that pretty neck of yours.”

She smiled. He’d said pretty neck. “How did you recognize me?”

Grayson stepped closer and pulled her cloak tightly around her shoulders. She pressed back into the wall. His hand reached beside her ear, and a finger wound around a stray curl and tugged. “I’d recognize hair this vibrant red anywhere. So would many others.”

Breath…She struggled to think as her body reacted to his proximity. His light fragrance sent her senses reeling. “I should have known you’d attend this event.”

A growl rumbled deep in his chest. “Well, I had no bloody idea you would. What would Robert think if he saw you? It would break his heart. He has enough to worry about without his wayward sister causing another scandal.”

What had Robert to worry about? Before she could ask he added, “Your selfishness knows no bounds. First it was your cider business, which you flaunted in society’s face, and now you’re at a Cyprians’ Ball.” He couldn’t seem to look her in the eye. “Why Robert hasn’t seen you married off, I’ll never know.”

“I have no intention of being married off to be a nobleman’s baby maker. I will not marry unless it is to my heart’s desire.”

“Is that why you are here? Are you here to meet a lover?”

“No.” Her anger was aroused by his sanctimonious words. “But if I were, it would be none of your business. I don’t condone one standard for men and one for women.”

“The world is full of inequalities. These are the rules we live by. Robert needs to leave knowing his family is protected. He can’t have his mind filled with worry over his—”

“Leave?” She put her hand up to her mouth to stop the nausea rising. “He’s going to war, isn’t he?” Grayson’s lips firmed, and his curse was her answer. “No.” She shook her head. “He’s the eldest, the heir. He can’t.” She looked at Grayson with wide eyes. “Oh, God. You are both going.”

Grayson could not look her in the eye. “I’m going to fight Napoleon because of Robert, to protect him.”

She pushed her mask off her face. “Why is Robert going? You are the last of your line. You can’t go,” she said crossly.

“Robert is going to watch over your brother Philip. He’s scared the young hothead will try to do something heroic but stupid and get himself killed.”

Portia slumped against the wood. Philip was only a year younger than Robert and four years older than her. Robert and Philip were very close. Philip had been declaring his intention to fight the French. She was sure that if women were in charge of this world, there would not be any war. A woman who bore a child would never want him to fight.

“Can I appeal to the small part of you that is a Flagstaff and ask that you give Robert no reason to worry? At least until this war is over. Then you can go back to your scandalous ways.”

Crestfallen and feeling thoroughly chastised, she nodded. “Of course.”


To celebrate the release of A Touch of Passion this month, Random House Loveswept are giving away a $25 Gift Card, Mug and Lipstick

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Bron_300x421-2USA Today bestselling author, Bronwen Evans grew up loving books. She writes both historical and contemporary sexy romances for the modern woman who likes intelligent, spirited heroines, and compassionate alpha heroes. Evans is a two-time winner of the RomCon Readers’ Crown and has been nominated for an RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. She lives in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand with her dog Brandy.

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A Touch of Passion Blurb and Buy Links:

Independent and high-spirited, Lady Portia Flagstaff has never been afraid to take a risk, especially if it involves excitement and danger. But this time, being kidnapped and sold into an Arab harem is the outcome of one risk too many. Now, in order to regain her freedom, she has to rely on the deliciously packaged Grayson Devlin, Viscount Blackwood, a man who despises her reckless ways—and stirs in her a thirst for passion.

After losing his mother and two siblings in a carriage accident years ago, Grayson Devlin promised Portia’s dying brother that he’d always watch over his wayward sister. But having to travel to Egypt to rescue the foolhardy girl has made his blood boil. Grayson already has his hands full trying to clear his best friend and fellow Libertine Scholar of a crime he didn’t commit. Worse still, his dashing rescue has unleashed an unforeseen and undesired consequence: marriage. Now it’s more than Portia he has to protect . . . it’s his battered heart.


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