The Favourite Heiress…
Once engaged to the future Duke of Strathmore, the beautiful Lady Clarice Langham now finds herself in the humiliating position of celebrating his marriage – to another woman. As a result of the scandal, it seems her reign as London’s most eligible debutante has come to an end. But things begin to look up when handsome and charming rake David Radley makes it clear that, at least as far as he’s concerned, she’s still the catch of the season.
The Illegitimate Son…
The eldest son of the Duke of Strathmore, David Radley has been raised alongside his father’s legitimate children. But while he is generally received as part of the family, not everyone thinks he should be, and especially not Clarice’s father, the Earl of Langham, who forbids her from having anything to do with him.
An Unsuitable Match…
David’s been in love with Clarice for years, and it isn’t long before the attraction between them develops into something deeper. Yet he senses Clarice is hiding something and until she reveals her secret, she won’t be free to follow her heart. Despite everything, David will not give up on Clarice, not even when another seems set to claim her…
Author interview: Sasha Cottman
This week on the blog I’m welcoming historical romance fiction author, Sasha Cottman. Last year I read her debut novel, Letter from a Rake, and loved it so much I asked her to come on my blog. I’ve invited her back because her new novel, An Unsuitable Match, has just been released. She’s here to tell us a little bit more about An Unsuitable Match and talk about all things historical romance.
An Unsuitable Match is the second book in the Radley family series, and tells the story of David and Clarice. Can you give us a taste of what we can expect from their story?
An Unsuitable Match picks up the story a few weeks after the events of Letter from a Rake. The two books can be read as standalone novels and you don’t need to have read the first one before reading An Unsuitable Match.
David Radley has declared his love to Clarice and being the alpha male that he is, expects that she will now reciprocate his affections. Unfortunately for them both, Clarice has a dark secret and because of this she feels she is not worthy of love. This story is very much her journey into the light.
An Unsuitable Match deals with the issue of having to face our inner demons before we grow as people and be able to choose our future. David Radley has to come to terms with his status of being the illegitimate son, while Clarice must overcome the circumstances of her mother’s death.
You’re a self-confessed history buff and take your research quite seriously. Give us an insight on the research required to write An Unsuitable Match.
I think the historical research part of writing is the attraction to historical romance authors. Regency period readers tend to be well versed in historical accuracy, so you have to do your homework.
Some of the things I had to research for this book were breeds of sheep, modes of transport and boxing. My detailed late 17th century map of central London has become integral to all my writing. You have to know important details such as the fact that Tower Bridge and Lambeth Bridge did not exist during the Regency period.
I had originally set part of the story in North Yorkshire, but decided the characters would have to spend too much time travelling for the story to really work. Even the Great North Road at that time had periods where it was impassable and I couldn’t have characters sitting by the roadside.
What did you enjoy most about writing An Unsuitable Match?
I loved being able to take two secondary characters from my first book and giving them their own complete story. I also enjoyed being able to take them out of London, away from the ballrooms and allow them the freedom to develop further as characters. Away from society’s prying eyes I was able to get the hero and heroine together.
The other aspect I particularly enjoyed writing this book was the villain, Thaxter Fox. I found myself wincing at the screen several times as I wrote scenes in which he was included. That said, he was great fun to write.
What did you find most difficult about writing An Unsuitable Match?
I think making sure that important facts of the first book were covered in An Unsuitable Match. I had to make certain that if someone read this book without having read Letter from a Rake that they could pick up the story. In several places a clear passage of exposition had to be made in order to get this right.
Why do you think readers will enjoy An Unsuitable Match?
I suppose it’s the case of the underdog finally triumphing. David Radley is the Duke of Strathmore’s eldest son, but due to the circumstances of his birth he will not inherit the title. To finally see him accept and be accepted for who he is was a heart-warming part of the story.
For the heroine Lady Clarice Langham, its seeing her come out of the shadows and be brave enough to claim David’s love.
Some other secondary characters such as Clarice’s grandmother, Lady Alice Langham is a delight. She is a feisty old lady who becomes Clarice’s champion, even suggesting at one point that her granddaughter elope with David. She is also rather handy with her walking stick when the moment requires.
What’s next? Any plans to take a break from historical fiction or is your love of history too strong?
I’m a long way into writing book 3 in the Duke of Strathmore series, which is Lucy Radley’s story. I love historical romance too much to consider writing anything else at this stage. I have a whole family tree of Radley cousins all clamouring to have their stories told.
An Unsuitable Match is available at the following places.
Born in England, but raised in Australia, Sasha has a love for both countries. Having her heart in two places has created a love for travel, which at last count was to over 55 countries. A travel guide is always on her pile of new books to read.
Sasha lives with her husband, teenage daughter and a cat who thinks sitting on the keyboard is being helpful. Her family have managed to find all but one of her secret chocolate hiding places. On the weekends Sasha loves walking on the beach while devising new ways to torture her characters.
Social Media Links
You can follow Sasha and find out more about her and her books on her website:
Follow her on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/sashacottman
Sasha’s newest release An Unsuitable Match is released through Destiny Romance September 2014.
An Unsuitable Match https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=af0ITmSQ5kQ