Wednesday, December 18, 2013

An Exclusive Interview with Julie Anne Long + Giveaway (Thank you, Authors! Thank you, Fellow Readers!)

It amuses me to remember that the book that made me love Julie Anne Long is How the Marquess Was Won, which, I still refer to as "How this Reader Was Won (Over)" -- after reading it, it was, quite literally, a moment when I exclaimed "ohmygodwherehaveyoubeenallmylife?" -- and then I went through backlist frenzy and ordered everything from her Pennyroyal Green series. The books didn't come in order but I didn't care -- I devoured each book as it came and loved each one in the process.

Yes, I went through all the stages of fandom. (Including sending out a fan letter and hyperventilating/squealing when I received a reply) -- so you can imagine how wondrous and phenomenal this moment is for me. (Yes, this is a week of superlatives for me. Because Courtney Milan. Because Julie Anne Long.)

Eight books into the Pennyroyal Green series and Long continues to impress me with her creativity and her wonderful vision for Pennyroyal Green. Each story is a world of its own but it also adds to the greater picture of this charming, albeit fictional, place with two rival families who can only be compared to the Montagues and Capulets in enmity (and in their own set of starstruck lovers: Olivia and Lyon).

Always, her stories, her writing, her characters leave me breathless and exhilarated, so, welcome to my blog, Julie Anne Long! ^_^

LStW:  The Redmonds and the Everseas are both distinct and incredibly complex families. What was the inspiration behind their creation?
Julie Anne Long:  I'm so glad you feel that way about them! I don't know that there was a single inspiration—the scene of Colin Eversea going to the gallows sort of came to me, and the Pennyroyal Green series idea sort of spiraled from there. I DID have one overaching goal: I wanted a premise that was big, rich, flexible, panoramic and compelling, both for me as a writer and for readers. The Everseas and the Redmonds are fertile creative ground fo rme as an author.

LStW: (Halloween) If you could dress up as any character, real or fictional, who would it be?
Julie: Prince Leia in the gold bikini? Grace Slick? One of the Brontes? A unicorn? Joan Crawford in Double Indemnity? A writer? (that way I could wear my yoga pants and an old sweatshirt).

LStW: (Thanksgiving) As a writer, what are three things that you are most thankful for?
Julie:1. The fact that I get to make up stories for a living. HOW COOL IS THAT??

2. The fact that writing stories for a living brings the most wonderful people into my life -- readers who write wonderful letters, participate in my Facebook community, invite me to do guest blogs, other writers, professional associates ...

3. The fact that I can work independently, setting my own hours —- and this is such a blessing, since I'm often at the mercy of the muse, who likes to whisper to me REALLY late at night. And I get to indulge so many of the skills I acquired throughout my more orthodox working career: graphic design, promotion, financial analysis, staring at the ceiling at night, obsessing about various things ...

LStW: (Christmas) Do you have a favorite thing to gift friends for Christmas?
Julie: Three guesses: it starts with a “B” and ends with an “s” and there's an “ook” in the middle. LOL. All my favorite people are voracious readers, and it's such a pleasure to share books we love with each other.

LStW:  (New Year) What's next for Julie Anne Long in 2014?
Julie: BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND IAN EVERSEA will be out in April! I'm working on a number of things right now, all of which are fun, none of which I'm quite ready to mention. ;) I'll make sure readers know about them when the time comes!

* * *

The Pennyroyal Green series by Julie Anne Long

A rescued rogue ...

Scandal has rocked the city of London. Colin Eversea, a handsome, reckless unapologetic rogue is sentenced to hang for murder and, inconveniently for him, the only witness to the crime disappears. Then again, throughout history, the Everseas have always managed to cheat fate in style: Colin is snatched from the gallows by a beautiful, clever mercenary.

A captivating captor ...

Cool-headed, daring Madeleine Greenway is immune to Colin's vaunted charm. Her mission is not to rescue Colin but to kidnap him, and to be paid handsomely for it. But when it becomes clear that whoever wants Colin alive wants Madeline dead, the two become uneasy allies in a deadly race for truth. Together, they'll face great danger -- and a passion neither can resist.

Now or Never ...

It's the last chance for Cynthia Brightly, the ton's most bewitching belle. Driven out of London by a secret scandal, she must find a grand husband at the Redmonds' house party before word of her downfall spreads all over England. Unfortunately, someone at Pennyroyal Green is already privy to the whispers of broken engagements and dueling lovers: Miles Redmond, renowned explorer and -- thanks to his brother's disappearance—heir to the family's enormous fortune.

Miles set his sights on Cynthia once, at a time when the ambitious beauty thought herself too good for a second son. But now he's heir apparent, relishing his control. He strikes a bargain with her: he'll keep Cynthia's steamy secrets and help her find a husband among the guests -- in exchange for a single kiss.

What could be the harm in a simple kiss? Cynthia is about to discover that it's enough to unleash fierce passion -- and that Miles Redmond is most certainly like no other lover in the world.

A man of action ...

Fearless. Loyal. Brilliant. Ruthless. Bold words are always used to describe English war hero Captain Chase Eversea, but another word unfortunately plays a role in every Eversea's destiny: trouble. And trouble for Chase arrives in the form of a mysterious message summoning him to a London rendezvous ... where he encounters the memory of his most wicked indiscretion in the flesh: Rosalind March -- the only woman he could never forget.

A Woman of Passion ...

Five years ago, the reckless, charming beauty craved the formidable Captain's attention. But now Rosalind is a coolly self-possessed woman, and desire is the last thing on her mind: her sister has mysteriously disappeared and she needs Chase's help to find her. But as their search through London's darkest corners re-ignites long-smoldering passion and memories of old battles, Chase and Rosalind are challenged to surrender: to the depths of a wicked desire, and to the possibility of love.

Violet Redmond's family and fortune might be formidable and her beauty and wit matchless -- but her infamous flare for mischief keeps all but the most lionhearted suitors at bay. Only Violet knows what will assuage her restlessness: a man who doesn't bore her to tears, and a clue to the fate of her missing brother. She never dreamed she'd find both with a man whose own pedigree is far from impeccable.

"Savage" is what the women of the ton whisper about the newly styled Earl of Ardmay -- albeit with shivers of pleasure. Born an English bastard, raised on the high seas, he's on a mission to capture a notorious pirate for vengeance. But while Violet's belief in her brother's innocence maddens him, her courage awes him ... and her sensuality finally undoes him. Now the man who once lost everything and the girl who has everything to lose are bound by a passion that could either end in betrayal ... or become everything they ever dreamed.

For years, he's been an object of fear, fascination ... and fantasy. But of all the wicked rumors that shadow the formidable Alexander Moncrieffe, Duke of Falconbridge, the ton knows one thing for certain: only fools dare cross him. And when Ian Eversea does just that, Moncrieffe knows the perfect revenge: he'll seduce Ian's innocent sister, Genevieve -- the only Eversea as yet untouched by scandal. First he'll capture her heart ... and then he'll break it.

But everything about Genevieve is unexpected: the passion simmering beneath her cool control, the sharp wit tempered by gentleness ... And though Genevieve has heard the whispers about the duke's dark past, and knows she trifles with him at her peril, one incendiary kiss tempts her deeper into a world of extraordinary sensuality. Until Genevieve is faced with a fateful choice ... is there anything she won't do for a duke?

The Scandal Sheets call him Lord Ice.

Ruthless, cold, precise, Julian Spenser,Marquess Dryden, tolerates only the finest -- in clothes, in horseflesh, in mistresses. And now he’s found the perfect bride, the one whose dowry will restore his family’s shattered legacy and bring him peace at last: the exquisite heiress Lisbeth Redmond.

She's about to play with fire ...

But one unforgettable encounter with Lisbeth’s paid companion, Phoebe Vale, and the Marquess is undone. This quiet girlwith the wicked smile and a wit tomatch is the first person to see throughthe icy façade to the fiery man beneath. But their irresistible attraction is a torment as sweet as it is dangerous, for surrendering to their desire could mean losing everything else they ever wanted.

She rose to spectacular heights ...

From Covent Garden to courtesan to countess, beautiful, fearless, shamelessly ambitious Evie Duggan has riveted London in every role she plays. But the ton never could forgive her scandalous -- if shockingly short -- marriage, and when her star plummets amid gleefully vicious gossip, the countess escapes to the only legacy left to her: a manor house in Pennyroyal Green.

He never expected to fall so hard ...

He has the face of a fallen angel and a smolder the devil would envy, but Vicar Adam Sylvaine walks a precarious line: resisting temptation ... and the wild Eversea blood in his veins. Adam's strength is tested when scandal, aka the countess, moves to Sussex. But when a woman who fiercely guards her heart and a man entrusted with the souls of an entire town surrender to a forbidden desire, will the sweetest sin lead them to heaven ... or make outcasts of them forever?

More than one beautiful woman's hopes have been dashed on the rocky shoals of Jonathan Redmond's heart. With his riveting good looks and Redmond wealth and power,the world is his oyster -- until an ultimatum from his father and a chilling gypsy prophecy send him hurtling headlong toward a fate he'll do anything to avoid: matrimony.

Intoxicating, elusive Thomasina de Ballesteros has the bloods of London at her feet. But none of them knows the real Tommy -- the one with a shocking pedigree, a few too many secrets,and a healthy scorn for rakes like Jonathan.

She's everything Jonathan never wanted.But on one fateful midnight, he's drawn into Tommy's world of risk, danger ... and a desire he'd never dreamed possible. And suddenly he's re-thinking everything ... including the possibility that succumbing to prophecy might just mean surrendering to love.

To read my reviews of all the published books in the Pennyroyal Green series, click here.

* * *

Meet Julie Anne Long --

Julie Anne Long originally set out to be a rock star when she grew up, and she has the guitars and the questionable wardrobe stuffed in the back of her closet to prove it. When playing to indifferent crowds at midnight in dank clubs lost its, ahem, charm, she realized she could incorporate all of the best things about being in a band -- namely, drama, passion and men with unruly hair—into novels, while at the same time indulging her love of history and research. So she made the move from guitar to keyboard (the computer variety) and embarked on a considerably more civilized, if not much more peaceful, career as a novelist.

Julie lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with a fat orange cat. (Little known fact: they issue you a cat the minute you become a romance novelist.)*

To find out more about Julie Anne Long and her books, click below:

*Short bio copied from the author's website.*

* * *

It's a week from Christmas! This is my way of saying "Thank you" and, hopefully, sharing the good cheer to all the wonderful authors and to all the wonderful romance readers in the world by giving away books!

Image from

For this week, as support for the authors, I'm hosting a giveaway for winner's choice of any one (1) book in Julie Anne Long's Pennyroyal Green series (e-book copy via Kindle or paperback copy via The Book Depository)

*This giveaway is via Rafflecopter and is open to International Readers.
*This giveaway will run until December 24.
*One entry per household per IP.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

* * *

Drop by again on Monday for the next feature!


  1. The Pennyroyal Green Series is one of my absolute favorite series. There has not been one book of the eight that I did not LOVE.

    Julie, do you have a favorite character in this series? Or do you love each of them equally like children? Has there been any character who kept bothering you to tell his/her story?


  2. Hi, Julie! Does your cat sit with you while you write? I am a Certified Crazy Cat Lady and love it when my cat sits by me while I read. It’s so cozy!

  3. Janet—I'm so delighted you love the series!! There's nothing I love hearing more from readers. :) And truly, I have a soft spot for all the characters. My favorite hero right now might be Adam Sylvaine, (the vicar in A NOTORIOUS COUNTESS CONFESSES) but it might be a tie between him and Jonathan Redmond (who gets his story in IT HAPPENED ONE MIDNIGHT). When I write a character, no matter how minor, I feel like I know their back stories. And all those stories are eligible to be told! ;) I'll be writing Lavay's story (from I KISSED AN EARL), and I'l be working on a prequel telling Isiah Redmond and Isolde Eversea's story. And I just wrote a short scene for an upcoming guest blog involving Lyon Redmond and the spy who makes a brief appearance in I KISSED AN EARL.

  4. Connie—so nice to know your kitty keeps you company when you read. Mine is always nearby when I write! Cats make terrific muses. Or maybe they know that my writing is what keeps them in cat food. LOL.

  5. I've heard such good things about this series but I'm afraid I've not tried it yet but I have enjoyed her other books!

  6. I love this series. I got What I Did for a Duke and was hooked. I have since gotten all the others in the series except It Happened One Midnight.

  7. Yay! So glad you love the series, Mary! And you know I can't give any spoilers! LOL. But I think you'll really like Lavay's story.

  8. I haven't read any in this series but I have heard great things about them.

  9. I have loved this whole series and look forward to more! I have the first four in print and the others on my Kindle. Looking forward to 2014! :D

  10. I loved the Pennyroyal Green series, especially Colin Eversea's story in The Perils of Pleasure. It was a wonderful start to this great series. I still need to read It Happened One Midnight, but I hope to pick that story up soon. :D

  11. I've enjoyed Julie's books as well. I'm glad to see her on your blog and enjoyed the interview. I always look forward to reading her books.
    Happy Holidays,

  12. Hi, Julie! Thank you so much for being here! (I became a cat person when I married my husband. ^_^)

    Hi, All!

    I love Adam! (But my favourite will always be Julian Spenser, the Marquess Dryden) and of the heroines, I have a soft spot for Violet.

    @Alyn -- I'm so glad to have you visit and discover a new author! Julie's books are lovely! ^_^

    @Lori and Julia -- Enter the giveaway! Winner get's their choice of any book in the Pennyroyal Green series. ^_^

    Have a great day!

  13. Ive heard wonderful things about the Redmonds and the Everseas! Really need to get my hands on them!

  14. Your books are on my wish lists, but sadly I haven't read them yet. They look great though!

  15. I know you have at least one more story to write in this series; did you plan to have this many books using this arc?

  16. I need to hurry & catch up. Just fantastic.

  17. Never read this series before

  18. Eeks posted a long comment and now is gone

  19. Well I said loved the Pennyroyal Green Series had a orange cat whose name was taco when i lived in the SF bay area he passed before i moved back here in iowa loved him to death i guess well my christmas present is supposed to be another orange cat as we have been taking care of the neighbors cats and she had babies during the summer no orange so he said he would almost a year later every weekend we go down with the chihuahuas and feed the cats our leftovers even my fish from fridays so they love sat and sun as we apear with hot food for them and give them loves , Back to books I have reviewed most of your books and will need to catch up on some of your books but i pass them to diff friends to get them hooked and they love them Happy Holidays if this posts twice its googles fault ....

  20. Hi Julie, I love the Pennyroyal Green series, and have hours of reading pleasure from them.

    Merry Christmas to you, and a very Happy New Year.

  21. Oh you are one of my favorite authors. I discovered you way back in 2004 with the Runaway Duke and have followed you ever since. I am so thankful that you have been able to share your great talent with us. Its been a blessing. Happy Holidays and I'm looking to the New Year.

  22. I haven't read this series yet, but I have read most of her other books and loved them.

  23. Hi Julie!

    I fell in love with your books as soon as I read The Runaway Duke back in summer of 2004 when it was released but have always wondered which of your books you enjoyed writing the most?

    Somehow when all the company we had visit us this summer that I just realized that I hadn't picked up a copy of It Happended One Midnight but fortunately I also discovered it was available at Amazon so I'm hoping that Santa will bring a copy down my chimney this Christmas Eve!

    I love your books and as long as you keep writing them I'll keep reading them!! Do you hate a title or the date yet for your next book?

  24. I own this series but haven't read them yet. I like to get all the books before I start to read, but I think I may have to break my rule and read them now because it's so hard to wait. LOL

    Marcy Shuler

  25. The Pennyroyal Green series is one of my favorites. What I Did for a Duke and Like No Other Lover are both so wonderful. The rest are darn good, too! Thanks for a fun post and great giveaway.

  26. This is great--I love new authors (new to me, at least)! I am looking forward to reading the Pennyroyal Green series. Happy Holidays to all.

  27. Since this series has been on my TBR list forever and on my nook, I don't know when I will get to it ever. I might just have to skip down to it because I really want to read it. Thank you for the giveaway

  28. I love the Pennroyal series. I love the closeness of family and that they will stand by each other. Loving forward to the next book in the series. Merry Christmas.

  29. This series has been fabulous! I, too, loved every book in the series. :-)

  30. Lol, I always think that romance authors ARE rockstars in their own right :D
    I have Lord Ice on my wishlist ;) Would love to read his story Julie!!!!!

  31. Thanks for offering a great giveaway & Happy Holidays!

    What would be your ideal fantasy Christmas?

  32. I can't wait to start reading this series!
    Great interview. Love her answer about Leia and the gold bikini :)
    Happy Holidays!

  33. I love this series, I haven't fully caught up but I'm happily making my way through it! I just love how real the characters are written and I wish I could actually visit Pennyroyal Green and make friends with them!



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