Hi all! Today, we'd like to welcome Leigh Michaels. She's written nearly 100 books, including 80 contemporary novels and more than a dozen non-fiction books. More than 35 million copies of her romance novels have been published by Harlequin. She's here today to tell us about her latest - and to give you a chance to win a copy!
Thank you to this glorious group of wicked ladies for the invitation to guest-blog on Something Wicked – it’s lovely to be here.
Though my new book, The Mistress’ House, isn’t paranormal, it does involve a house which has an odd effect on the people who live there. They start off expecting – wanting – to have love affairs, but they end up falling in love.
“It’s this house,” says one of the heroes when for the third time a perfectly-reasonable sexual fling turns more serious and the lovers end up married. “It makes people do strange things. They begin acting different – irrational, even – the very moment they take up residence.”
The idea of house-as-character occurred to me after I’d already started writing the book, when I came flat up against the logistics of getting my Regency lords and ladies together in a private enough spot to actually do the deed. It wasn’t so difficult for the gentlemen, of course, but how did a lady of quality escape her family and friends? She couldn’t invite her lover home with her unless she lived entirely on her own – rare, at that time. She couldn’t just dash out to an inn without doing some fancy explaining. I suppose she could borrow a friend’s house, but leaving herself open to gossip and blackmail wouldn’t have been wise.
So what’s the point of being a wealthy earl if you can’t buy privacy for a love affair? If there was a convenient little house just reserved for that purpose…
The Mistress’ House is located at Number 5 Upper Seymour Street, in London, and the time is 1815, smack in the middle of the Regency period. There really was a house on the site at that time; it appears on old maps, complete with the outline of the house and the garden. Though there aren’t any photos or drawings in existence, the house would have been largely as I describe it – the end unit of a row of connected houses, right next to Berkeley Mews. (It’s now the site of the Hyatt Regency Hotel – an amusing coincidence, no?)
Would you like to win a copy of The Mistress' House? "Yes, yes!" you say? Then leave a comment for Leigh and we'll do a drawing on Monday!