Published by: William Morrow/HarperCollins
Visit Author: http://www.janetmullany.com/
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Ms Mullany's Previous Novel
Prequel to "JA: Blood Persuasion"
Janet Mullany has generously offered to giveaway
a copy of her book!
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WINNER ANNOUNCED Feb. 29th
Summary of "Jane Austen: Blood Persuasion"
It is 1810, and the Damned are out of favor—banished from polite society. Jane Austen’s old undead friends have become new neighbors, raising hell in her tranquil village just in time to interrupt Jane’s work on what will be her masterpiece. Suddenly Jane’s niece is flirting dangerously with vampires, and a formerly respectable spinster friend has discovered the forbidden joys of intimate congress with the Damned (and is borrowing Jane’s precious silk stockings for her assignations). Writing is simply impossible now, with murderous creatures prowling the village’s once-peaceful lanes. And with the return of her vampire characteristics, a civil war looming between factions of the Damned, and a former lover who intends to spend eternity blaming her for his broken heart, Jane is facing a very busy year indeed.
Meet the Author:
The author of Jane and the Damned, Janet Mullany was reared in England on a diet of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer and now lives near Washington, D.C. She has worked as an archaeologist, waitress, draftsperson, radio announcer, performing arts administrator, proof-reader, and bookseller.
The Dame's Interview with Ms Mullany:
Hi, Janet, I'm so happy you've agreed to an interview! I loved "Jane Austen: Blood Persuasion" and can't wait to find out more about you. It's always fun to pick an author's brain! Have some questions for you...
Thanks so much for inviting me! Ask away …
1) First of all, please tell us a special something about what makes you "tick." When you aren’t writing, what are you doing?
I read. I think it’s the most important thing a writer can do when not writing. I usually have something I’m reading on my kindle on the commute to the day job and something else I’m reading at night before I go to sleep. I also like music, particularly opera and baroque music although I don’t go to nearly as many live performances as I’d like.
2) You chose a specific genre, a place and time to write about, what made you choose it?
Laziness. I thought I knew a lot about the Regency period, which in some respects I do, but for my Austen-vamp books I had to do a lot of research.
3) Please share with your readers where you like to write. Do you have a particular space or desk? What can you see from your desk? Do you have props you use to write from? What about special "charms?
I have an office that faces south west and gets a lot of light. It is also warm in the winter and cool in the summer—in other words, it’s the best room in the house! I share it only with the cat. I can see what’s going on outside in the street and there’s a large oak tree outside. I think the only item that qualifies as a prop or charm, other than the cat who inspires by sleeping, is my kitchen timer, which I use when I really have trouble getting going.
4) In your opinion, what makes a book a great one? A book you can reread and find something new in every time. Like Austen!
5) Which author(s) most influenced your love of books from childhood? C.S. Lewis—as I grew older I recognized the Christian symbolism but it didn’t bother me particularly (see the next question), Kipling (ditto the jingoism, but he’s such a great wordsmith), Rosemary Sutcliff, Edith Nesbit. They’re all writers I’ve reread as an adult.
6) Read any good books in the past 6 months? "To End All Wars" by Adam Hochschild, which is about the first world war; "The Magician’s Book" by Laura Miller about C.S. Lewis, "The Mysterious Death of Miss Austen" by Lindsay Ashford, and a reread of "Sense & Sensibility."
7) Please share with us the underlying message of your book. What would you like your readers to take away after having read the book?
I’m very uncomfortable about fiction having messages. If a reader learns an important life lesson from my books I don’t even want to know because that would make me feel under some sort of moral obligation for future works. I’m writing mass market fiction and the goal is to entertain. I hope I’ve done that as well as leave readers fainting away from the beauty of my prose and urging their friends and family to buy a copy or two.
8) Were you able to keep your original title? What was it, if not?
My original title was "Charms of Flesh and Bone," a line from a poem Austen wrote, "Mock Panegyric on a Young Friend," addressed to her niece Anna, who is one of the characters in the book: Another world must be unfurled,
Another language known,
Ere tongue or sound can publish round
Her charms of flesh and bone.
Oh, that is so absolutely charming, Janet! It fits so well with your book. Perfect!
9) Is there a song or music in general that might best represent your book as a theme song?
Not really. I listened to quite a lot of opera and Bach while I was writing it, and I find choral music excellent for love scenes. Not quite sure why.
I agree with you. Something about Vampires and their gothic beauty is operatic. I've often wondered if Bach were a vampire! ;]
10) If you could write your book again, what would you change?
I would hate to have to write this book again! It was very hard to write. I think what I would do is spend more time in Chawton. There’s a lot of educated guesswork and peering at maps and I did visit Austen’s house and the Great House, but I should have spent a lot more time in the area.
11) What was the worst distraction you had to fight through while writing your book? My natural inclination to laziness and the siren call of the internet.
12) What did you feel or think when you held the first copy of your book in your hands?
I find once I have the book in my hands the emotional connection isn’t really there. It’s become a product. It’s nice to touch the cover and to flip through and recognize what you wrote: at the same time it’s really the point of no return. I do, however, get very excited about seeing my books in libraries.
That's very interesting, Janet. No one has said that about seeing their book in a library before!
13) Tell us a secret about your book we wouldn’t otherwise know, please! I think it’s one of the sexiest books I’ve written. There’s very little explicit material but a lot of yearning and desire.
I agree! I didn't really understand that en sanglant when I first read that Jane experienced it in close connection with the "Damned" vampires. But, I soon got the full intention! It's a very sexy addition to an Austenesque book! :]
Thank you for bending to these busybody questions, Janet! It’s been a pleasure from my end of things!
Thank you for having me visit
.The Dame's Review:
Exceptionally good reading, this novel of Jane Austen, her sister, Cassandra; her feisty little niece, Anna; her mother and their close friend and housekeeper, Martha, is set in the sleepy little village of Chawton. What shakes up an otherwise pleasant but routine existence for them is the new neighbors...renting Jane's brother's house. A family of vampires including Jane's creator, Fitzwilliam/Fitzpatrick, the handsome vampire who became Jane's "maker" when the French and English were battling and the help of the "Damed," those recognized as vampires, was required to win against the forces of Napoleon. Jane's worried about the safety of her family given the hunger and lack of morality of most of the vampires she knows! It's the push-pull of these gorgeous creatures, their blood lust ways and their enticings of the innocents vs. Jane's eagerness to protect and not fall back into her own vampiric ways that makes this a wonderful read. Not to mention Jane's love interests... :]
Janet Mullany's research is impeccable. But, more than that, she writes with such believability. Every scene is beautifully rendered; so much so that you can hear the china tea cups clink in Mrs. Austen's drawing room, and the see the crystal chandeliers gleam in the gothic ballroom of Fitzpatrick's house. I felt like swooning myself as she describes the dazzling vampire men. Who could resist them? I have such a weakness for dark and mysterious, dangerous men...especially vampires! Mullany knows how to create them, and she places them like gems in her Georgian vignettes. I love Jane Austen, but dress her up with a struggle over three main, gorgeous vampires of the "Damned" and I'm there for the asking every time!
Anything Mullany writes should be a must read for those who love "mash ups" of Miss Austen. In this case, the book is so entertaining, engrossing from the start, including a beloved cast of characters that all Janeites will be familiar with. It's not possible to be anything other than delighted to be reading "Jane Austen: Blood Persuasion." I loved it, and tried to read it in one sitting. Would have accomplished that, if it hadn't been for a grandson who wanted to go swimming all day!
5 stars for this brilliantly vampirish Jane!