Sarah Granger – A Minor Inconvenience book tour

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In A Minor Inconvenience, Hugh’s sister Sophia is rather taken with a gentleman whom Hugh scornfully dismisses as modelling himself after one of Lord Byron’s heroes. The gentleman in question bears all the hallmarks of being misunderstood, brooding and mysterious, with a disdain of social norms. To Sophia’s dismay, the whole concept of a darkly handsome romantic hero is quite lost on Hugh (at least, until Theo Lindsay turns up).

Although that reference to the Byronic hero is the sum total of Lord Byron’s connection to the book, I stumbled across some rather fun facts about him in the course of my more general research, which I thought others might find as interesting as I did.

As well as the whole tempestuous affair with Lady Caroline Lamb and suspected incestuous relationship with his half-sister, he had a more redeeming feature—his love for animals. Forbidden by college rules from keeping a pet dog in his rooms at Cambridge, Byron instead had a tame bear. When his favourite dog, Boatswain, was ill with rabies, Byron nursed him. Given that Boatswain was a Newfoundland—not exactly a small dog—and rabid dogs can become vicious, that seems to me to be taking affection to extremes. I suppose it might be accounted for by the ‘mad’ element of mad, bad, and dangerous to know. Byron intended that they be interred together. As it happened, they weren’t, and Boatswain’s tomb is larger than Byron’s.

Byron apparently travelled with a menagerie. Percy Shelley reported the following when visiting Byron in Venice:

Lord B.’s establishment consists, besides servants, of ten horses, eight enormous dogs, three monkeys, five cats, an eagle, a crow, and a falcon; and all these, except the horses, walk about the house, which every now and then resounds with their unarbitrated quarrels, as if they were the masters of it. . . . [P.S.] I find that my enumeration of the animals in this Circean Palace was defective . . . . I have just met on the grand staircase five peacocks, two guinea hens, and an Egyptian crane.

Lord ByronOn a slightly less whimsical note, there’s the enduring tale that Byron used to drink from a human skull that was found in the grounds of his home, the half-ruined Newstead Abbey, and thought to be that of one of the monks who had lived there. He celebrated the idea in his poem, suitably titled “Lines upon a cup formed from a skull”.

Byron engaged his valet, William Fletcher, after seeing him ploughing a field. Which is always a good skill to have in a valet, of course. One never knows when it might be necessary to leave off blacking boots and starching neckcloths and engage in some agricultural activities. One of Mr. Fletcher’s duties was to rub Lord Byron down after exercise. What with this and the shenanigans of Byron’s muscular young gondolier, I’m quite surprised more of his exploits didn’t end up finding their way into the book. Another time, perhaps!

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Sarah’s Official Tour Page:

http://authoressentials.virtualwritersinc.com/2014/03/a-minor-inconvenience-by-sarah-granger/

About Minor Inconvenience

  • Title: A Minor Inconvenience
  • Author: Sarah Granger
  • Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
  • Release Date: 14th January, 2014
  • Genre: M/M Historical Romance

A_Minor_InconvenienceDuty, honor, propriety…all fall in the face of love. 

Captain Hugh Fanshawe returned from the Peninsular War with a leg that no longer works properly, thanks to a French musket ball. Now his fight against Napoleon is reduced to quiet, lonely days compiling paperwork at Horse Guards headquarters.

His evenings are spent dutifully escorting his mother and sister to stifling social engagements, where his lameness renders him an object of pity and distaste. But his orderly, restricted life is thrown into sudden disarray with the arrival of Colonel Theo Lindsay.

Theo is everything Hugh is not-a man of physical perfection and easy yet distinguished address. Surprisingly to Hugh, Theo appears to be interested in making his acquaintance. Lindsay turns out to be a most convivial companion, and Hugh finds great pleasure in his company. Their friendship deepens when they become lovers.

In spite of himself, Hugh falls desperately in love. But when a French spy is suspected at Horse Guards, Hugh discovers nothing is as it seems.and the paper he shuffles from day to day could be the instrument of his lover’s death.

Warning: Contains gallant English officers in love, dastardly French spies, skintight pantaloons (sometimes on the floor) and gleaming tasselled Hessians.

Excerpt:

Hugh was so turned about by the time the next set of dances ended that he had lost sight entirely of Lindsay. He retreated to the edge of the room, seeking a wall to stand against, only to find a hand placed in the small of his back and Lindsay’s voice close against his ear. “Escaping already, Fanshawe? I cannot permit that. We must present a united front if we are to prevail.”

Smiling, he turned his head. Lindsay looked even more handsome than Hugh had remembered, the silver buttons on his uniform coat sparkling in the light and his grey eyes filled with warmth along with the lazy amusement they so often showed.

“Does your united front permit a strategic regrouping?” Hugh asked.

“Music to my ears, Fanshawe. What have you in mind?”

“I was thinking a glass of punch and perhaps some cool air in the hall.”

“With a tactical brain like that, I can’t think how you have not yet been gazetted as general.”

Procuring a glass of cold punch each, they escaped to the hall that ran the length of the house. It proved to be a busy thoroughfare, used by those seeking to move to the card room or the dressing room, or simply to take some cooler air. In unspoken agreement, they moved to the far end and the large window onto Grosvenor Square, where they would not be disturbed. As Hugh turned to speak to Lindsay, he spied a familiar and extremely unwelcome figure reaching the top of the stairs. Stanton was here, and although Hugh thought he cut a most peculiar character in his striped waistcoat, he was fairly sure Sophia would be less discriminating in her taste.

“Damn it,” he said, momentarily forgetting he was in company.

Lindsay followed his line of sight. “Ah,” he said. “I had the impression the other night that Stanton was dangling after your sister.”

“In a manner of speaking,” Hugh concurred grimly.

“I suspected as much. Perhaps what gave me the first clue was when he likened her eyes to the beauty of stars sparkling like bright diamonds in a sky of black velvet and her smile to the sunrise that graced the dew of Eden’s first dawn.”

Hugh turned a revolted eye upon him. “No,” he begged. “No, for God’s sake, even he would not be so—so—”

“Lost in the poetical throes of passionate romance?” Lindsay suggested.

“I was about to say making a cake of himself,” Hugh said. “But Sophia—I am sure that no matter how handsome she might think him, she would never hear such nonsense without succumbing to giggles.”

“It’s possible I exaggerated his words a little,” Lindsay confessed. “Perhaps he merely mentioned how prettily her eyes shone and that her smile could light the room.”

“Well, that’s bad enough,” Hugh said indignantly. “What sort of a fellow spouts such claptrap?”

“I take it you have never courted a lady,” Lindsay said. “At least, not successfully.”

Hugh choked on his punch. And then something, whether honesty or some inner demon, prompted him to answer. “No, I never have.”

Lindsay fastened his eyes on Hugh’s suddenly, and the look in them was such that Hugh found it difficult to breathe.

Praise for A Minor Inconvenience

“…this romance is one of the best period pieces I’ve ever read.” Rainbow Reviews

“Sense and Sensibility meets A Minor Inconvenience ~ I just loved the way this book read; like reading a gay Jane Austen.In the best tradition of a sweeping historical background, Sarah sets the scene for a great romance with all the trimmings and style of the regency era…. The story is intricate and beautifully written.” Sinfully Sexy Book Reviews  (A Minor Inconvenience was one of the site’s Hotpicks for January)

“The writing is beautiful, some of the wry, clever speeches laugh-out-loud funny, and throughout the whole there is such a sense of time and place that you forget that this mundane world of ours isn’t one of breeches and Almacks, Vauxhall gardens and opera dancers.” Anna Butler

“.the humor in this story is a treat!… I applaud the author for delivering a fresh, captivating plot and such wonderfully unique characters as Hugh and Theo. If you are fancying a highly entertaining historical story – you can’t go wrong here.” Live your life, buy the book 

“I loved this book..I think anyone who loves historical romance written in the style of its setting and who likes a plot based story will love it too.” Mrs Condit & Friends Read Books

Purchase Links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Minor-Inconvenience-Sarah-Granger-ebook/dp/B00FSDBKJ4/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1397655814&sr=1-1

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-minor-inconvenience-sarah-granger/1117165789?ean=9781619217669

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/a-minor-inconvenience

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18670544-a-minor-inconvenience

About Sarah Granger

Sarah Granger is a sucker for a happy ending. She believes, however, that characters will only fully appreciate their happy ending if they’ve suffered along the way.

Sarah lives in the Cotswolds, an idyllic part of the English countryside with gently rolling hills, dry stone walls of golden stone and fields dotted with sheep. She has shamefully broken with local tradition by not having a rose growing around her front door. When she isn’t writing, Sarah enjoys walking in the countryside with her elderly black Labrador.

Social Links: Website | Goodreads  | Facebook


Christopher Hawthorne Moss – The Pros & Cons of Historical Fiction

The Pros and Cons of Historical Fiction: A Conversation with Character(s)

By Christopher Hawthorne Moss, author of BELOVED PILGRIM

Assembled: Christopher Hawthorne Moss; Frankie Deramus, the riverboat gambler from WHERE MY LOVE LIES DREAMING;  KING LAWRENCE, the title character of AN INVOLUNTARY KING; and ELISABETH/ELIAS, the protagonist of BELOVED PILGRIM.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  What are we talking about this time?

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  The Pros and Cons of Historical Fiction.

ELISABETH/ELIAS: As opposed to what?

CHRISTOPHER MOSS: Actual history.  You are all fictional characters.

KING LAWRENCE: That’s not true.  I’m factual.  I was the King of Crislicland.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  Don’t you remember that one review where she said she looked it up and could not find a KING LAWRENCE?

KING LAWRENCE:  Oh yeah, that’s right.  But I lived in a factual time and place.

FRANKIE DERAMUS: Mais non, mon roi.  The time perforce was real, but there is no Crislicland, never was.  There was, and is, a New Orleans and a Mississippi River.

ELISABETH/ELIAS: “New” Orleans?  What was wrong with the old one?

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  We talked about it, you guys.  You know, the New World and all that.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  Chez moi.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     I knew some real people.  Actually, several.  A Margravina, some dukes, some counts, even an emperor or two.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  I knew some Confederate generals.  I told Johnny I knew Stephen Foster, but my author had his dates wrong on that one.

KING LAWRENCE:  And I met King Offa of Mercia.  In fact, my fictional son married one of his factual daughters…

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  All right, all right.  Let’s focus here.  Some people don’t like historical fiction.  Why do you think that is?

KING LAWRENCE:   I suppose they think they can’t believe it.  History is one thing, but fiction is by definition all made up.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     Except history isn’t always fact.  The Crusade I was on was never recorded by an eyewitness.  The three people who wrote about it were a monk who didn’t come with us, another monk who asked some people who did ten years later.  And the emperor’s daughter, who stayed comfortably sitting on her velvet throne while we all sweated and starved our asses off.  Facts have never been my friend.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  I know what you mean, madame…. I mean monsieur.  Mine is the only romance Christopher here wrote, yet historians would question my romance with another man ever could have taken place.  Pure merd.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:   Or that our “Beloved Pilgrim” here would have an identity we now call “transgender”.  They would say she’s a woman and no women fought in the Crusades.

KING LAWRENCE:   I don’t see why.  We had Saxon women warriors.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     The Church made a rule you couldn’t tell about the women in the Crusades, even though the Paynim wrote about them.  Besides, I am not a woman.  Not in my heart and soul.  I am a man.  Is that what you called transgender, Christopher?  Why would I need an “identity” as that?  I know myself.  I know who and what I am, and that’s a man.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  Exactly.  So what you are saying is that since history has lots of holes in it, we should make the rest of it up?

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  Certainemnet.  But it must be plausible.  You can’t just make things up willy nilly.

KING LAWRENCE:   I’m surprised you knew that expression, “willy nilly”.  You speak Creole French, right?

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  Oui, but I speak English as well, and, more important than that, I am fictional.  I mean, neither of you spoke English, not in your real time.  Christopher had to translate everything you said, in a manner of speaking.  I can say whatever I want, except in the book.  In the book we all have to at least sound like we fit our time.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  Frankie, you said some historians don’t believe there was same sex love in the past.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:  Not exactly.  They know there were men who loved men and women who loved women.  They just get squeamish when writers like Christopher suggest that there were any people who saw themselves as part of an identity.  All because of that Foucault fellow.  But he had his own, how do you say, agenda.  He was trying to prove some theory about power.  Frankly, I never quite understood what he was going on about.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     You know what I think?  I think they believe same sex loving people are only about sex.  They think there were men who just liked to have sex and would have it with anyone and anything.  They don’t seem to understand that love is about two people who meet, fall in love, and stay together.  It’s like you always say, Christopher.  You can’t pass laws against people falling in love.  Whether they grew up looking forward to the day they would fall in love with someone of their own sex, when the time came, they felt the emotional attraction.  You can’t stop that from happening.

KING LAWRENCE:   Tell me about it.  It seemed like half the male population of the British Isles fell in love with my wife.  But I see what you are saying.  And how would they know, anyway?  Like whether there was a Crislicland?  They weren’t there.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     But there was no record of a Saxon kingdom called that.

FRANKIE DERAMUS:   Just because there was no record doesn’t mean the thing never was.  Maybe with a huge kingdom, but lots of things and people did not get recorded.  Like men like me.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     And men like me.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  Back to what you said about a story needing to be plausible.  Even for example if there was no riverboat called Le Beau Soleil, there could have been.  It doesn’t matter if a novel doesn’t read like a transcript of real events, so long as it is within reason that events and people like that might have existed.  Enough to make up stories about.

KING LAWRENCE:   In fact, that’s what is so good about historical fiction.  The stories.  People think of history as dry and flat.  They know what happened and who was there but they don’t usually know what the majority of those who lived through it felt about it.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS:  That’s one of the two points about historical fiction that I think makes it every bit as important as history.  That it humanizes the events of history.  The second is that it can present stories that are overlooked, erased from history.  For example, there are lots of records of people who were punished for being caught making love.  The only reason is that it was against the Church or civil authorities.  First of all, that is hardly the whole story of what we now call gays and lesbians.  And by thinking about what it would be like to live at such a time and have that punishment hanging over your head all the time, you can write a plausible story that is broader in concept, and by definition important to human understanding.

ELISABETH/ELIAS:     The only people you seem to find more detailed about are rich people.  Aristocrats.  Like me.

KING LAWRENCE:  And me.

FRANKIE DERAMUS: Et moi!  You know, I just realized something.  Christopher always writes about the uppermost classes.  He needs to come up with a commoner to write about.

KEVERN TREVELYAN:  I’ll be there as soon as I can.  It’s a long walk from Cornwall to Winchester.

CHRISTOPHER MOSS: Kevern’s in my next novel.  Thanks for popping by, and thanks to you all for enriching my life.

KING LAWRENCE:   Thank you, Christopher, for giving us life.

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Blurb for BELOVED PILGRIM, 2nd Edition

By Christopher Hawthorne Moss

At the time of the earliest Crusades, young noblewoman Elisabeth longs to be the person she’s always known is hidden inside. When her twin brother perishes from a fever, Elisabeth takes his identity to live as a man, a knight. As Elias, he travels to the Holy Land, to adventure, passion, death, and a lesson that honor is sometimes found in unexpected places.

Elias must pass among knights and soldiers, survive furious battle, deadly privations, moral uncertainty, and treachery if he’ll have any chance of returning to his new-found love in the magnificent city of Constantinople.

Buy link:
http://harmonyinkpress.com/coming-soon-beloved-pilgrim-by-christopher-hawthorne-moss/

AUTHOR BIO

Christopher Hawthorne Moss wrote his first short story when he was seven and has spent some of the happiest hours of his life fully involved with his colorful, passionate and often humorous characters. Moss spent some time away from fiction, writing content for websites before his first book came out under the name Nan Hawthorne in 1991. He has since become a novelist and is a prolific and popular blogger, the historical fiction editor for the GLBT Bookshelf, where you can find his short stories and thoughtful and expert book reviews. He lives in the Pacific Northwest with his husband of over thirty years and four doted upon cats. He owns Shield-wall Productions at http://www.shield-wall.com. He welcomes comment from readers sent to christopherhmoss@gmail.com and can be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Website: http://www.shield-wall.com
email: christopherhmoss@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kitmoss2012 

OUR STORY GLBTQ HISTORICAL FICTION
http://bookworld.editme.com/Our-Story-GLBTQ-Historical-Fiction-Edited-by-Nan-Hawthorne-0

Additional Links:
WHERE MY LOVE LIES DREAMING
http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4126

Artwork (cover, author, publisher logos)
https://www.dropbox.com/home/Public/Beloved%20Pilgrim

harmonyinklogo

Author Christopher Hawthorne Moss: Where do you get your ideas?

Authors get this question all the time.  Well, so I hear.  I’m an author, of GLBT novels and stories, so just in case anyone ever asks me that, I’m ready.  I discovered with my first novel precisely where the ideas originate.

My own experience?  Or perhaps  my fertile imagination?  Those were what I thought at first, writing as I did a novel taken from stories an 11 year old friend and a 12 year old me wrote and turning them into a novel.  (I decided when I was much – much — older that since I had had sex now, I could write about it.)  It appeared to me that since the characters were good friends from pre-teenhood, I was writing through at least their experience and my imagination.

By the time the 600+ page tome was in print I began to realize something, pretty  much a spiritual vision, you could say, about just how that process came about – both times – that only providentially had anything to do with my experience or even my imagination.  I am here today, sisters and brothers, to share with you what I discovered.

You have heard of dimensions.  We talk about the three dimensions, this way, that way and up or down.  I seem to remember someone talking about a few more, of time and min.  I don’t know about those, but I do know about the one that is the source of fiction.  I don’t know what it’s called, but does that really matter?  Labels, labels, labels.  We don’t need no stinkin’ labels.

The dimension I speak of is where characters live.  They wait around from time immemorial for their author first to come into existence and then to get on the stick and draw them out into our own world.  Sad to say most characters are still in their dimension, waiting perhaps for the whole cycle to restart so they get another stab at an author.

Their recompense for all this waiting is that they get to stay once liberated from their Giant Waiting Room in the Ether.  Once an author frees them from Obscurity, they live as long as there are readers, or at least listeners and viewers.  The author shuffles of this mortal coil, but the characters and their stories are forever.  Or for a freakin’ good long time anyway.

I am surprised I did not realize this at first.  You see, the very reason I wrote my first novel at 56 is that I had revisited what my friend and I had called “The Story”.  Since the so-called friend had zero interest – zip – goose eggs – nada – in returning to the story, about which I learned she had never told a single soul – horrors – I’d better write them up and publish them as a novel or they would go the way of all flesh, including brain cells when said flesh was no more.  I fooled myself into thinking that I was the intelligence behind that decision.  Nuh-uh.

I mean, think about it.  Which is stronger: protective instincts or self-preservation?  These characters had once used my adolescent smash on my friend to get a toe in the literary door, only to see that they would slip back out through the same door.  They had tasted liberty, so they had more incentive to clamor for another chance and most characters do.  They found another way to get me, their predestined author, to start writing them again.  And it was then that realized my greater age this time meant they got to have sex.

I had one more reason to have figured this out.  Sometime through the writing of that novel I realized I was at a dead end with the plot.  It occurred to me to ask the characters what should transpire.  They helped wonderfully, at least until the conversation, a sort of panel discussion, inevitably deteriorated into a fist fight between the two rivals for the heart of the lady fair.

This crowd was lucky.  They grabbed my attention before I realized I was gay.  So the flagrant heterosexuality slipped in before I switched to nothing but gay fiction.  Ironically my second book was written when I still thought I was a straight female.  As such I wrote about a woman who felt more like a man, wanted to don a knight’s armor and live as a man.  Oh.  I see.  She’s me.  So now I know I am a gay man, transgender.  It seems like my characters have been writing me as much or more than I have been writing them.

I guess I must be doing justice by them, since they never act smug about my temporariness.  And I am grateful to realize that whatever crumbled pile of ashes I become they will always be here in the minds and, in the case of fan fiction, will continue to live as long as there are humans – or maybe uplifted cats and dogs – to read and write about them.

In other words, I don’t get ideas — they got me.

 

Christopher Hawthorne Moss lives with his husband and their godlike cats in the Pacific Northwest.  His books are:

 

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Loving the Goddess Within, under the name Nan Hawthorne, 1991 https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/135121

 

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An Involuntary King, the novel aforementioned, under that same author name, 2008,  http://www.amazon.com/An-Involuntary-King-England-ebook/dp/B0029U0X5G/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1381790545&sr=1-1&keywords=an+involuntary+king  You can find his pre-teen stories at An Involuntary King: The Stories http://aninvoluntaryking.blogspot.com

 

Beloved Pilgrim, formerly under the name Nan Hawthorne but soon to be released as a transgender historical novel by Christopher Hawthorne Moss, 2011 and 2014 Harmony Ink Press TBA

 

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Where my Love Lies Dreaming, by Christopher Hawthorne Moss published in July 2013 by Dreamspinner Press.  Frankie and Johnny are thrilled to be finalists in the 2013 Rainbow Books awards.  http://www.amazon.com/Where-My-Love-Lies-Dreaming-ebook/dp/B00E99LCMI

 

He reviews one book after another for That’s All I Read http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com and is an editor/reviewer for GLBT Bookshelf www.glbtbookshelf.com .  You can find a few short stories of his about, including in the anthology Closet Capers, 2013

ClosetCapers

http://www.amazon.com/Closet-Capers-ebook/dp/B00CGU3T1Y/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1381790364&sr=1-1&keywords=closet+capers.

 

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Learn more about Christopher Hawthorne Moss at www.shield-wall.com and contact him at Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/kitmoss2012 .