Please welcome Maire Claremont to the Book Nook. Maire writes about the darker side of the Victorian Era.
Did you always want to write?
Nope. I wanted to be a singer when I was little, but when I was twelve or so I started writing Gargoyle fan fic. I loved that cartoon. And then I discovered Johanna Lindsay thanks to my mom, and I knew I wanted to write those.
Why historical romance instead of historical fiction or mysteries?
I love the structure of historical romance in the sense that it ends happily. If I wrote historical fiction or mystery set in the Victorian period, I’d have a lot of corpses in my books and they wouldn’t just be bad people. I like the fantasy of romance.
Why the Victorian era?
Its so deliciously dark and romantic. I love Alice in Wonderland, and Edgar Allen Poe. I adore the rich romantic paintings of the era and the dresses. Those ladies got to wear some FABULOUS dresses. I’m also really drawn to the huge social dichotomy of wealth and poverty and the rise of industry.
Please tell us about the first novel in your Mad Passions series, The Dark Lady.
The Dark Lady focuses on Eva, a character who literally barged into my head one night and insisted I tell her story. She’s been put in the madhouse by her brother-in-law after the death of her husband and son. Over come with grief and guilt, and now addicted to laudanum, her childhood friend, Ian comes back from service in India and rescues her. Together they fight to prove her sanity to society. They both have a lot of pain to overcome but they get a great big happily ever after.
Your latest LADY IN RED in 30 words or less.
Dark, angsty, and passionate, Lady in Red is a romance driven by revenge where brutality often wins, but where love in the end drives back the darkness.
Lady Mary Darrel in 20 words or less.
Fierce, determined, and seeking revenge, Lady Mary will do whatever it takes to save herself from a life in the madhouse. Edward Barrons,
Duke of Fairleigh in 20 words or less.
Nearly broken, jaded, and riddled with guilt, Edward is longs for redemption and a chance at love.
Both have to do with asylums and the series is Mad Passions, why the focus on madness?
In the Victorian era, sentimentality was popular, but any real display of passion was a very bad thing especially amongst women. Passion led to desire, and desire let to moral depravity. Many women were considered mad when really they were simply discontent or suffering depression. They were so often trapped after all by their limited existence. I really wanted to explore how a woman’s power could be taken and how she could get it back.
Have you read anything lately you’d highly recommend?
I really enjoyed Lady of the Rivers by Phillipa Gregory, but if you’re looking for historical romance, I absolutely loved Delilah Marvelle’s most recent release Romancing Lady Stone. Its just so full of happy.
Is there a WIP or any news you can share with us?
Yes! A few weeks ago, I turned in Powers book, The Dark Affair. He’s a deliciously dark fellow with a penchant for snark. I can’t wait for his heroine to teach him a thing or two.
I’ve enjoyed your visit Maire and look forward to reading your Mad Passions series.
Thank you so much for having me.
Maire is giving away a copy of LADY IN RED, print for U.S. or Canada & digital for international, to one (1) lucky commenter. What do you think of the Victorian era? Giveaway ends @12am est 10-15-13 with the winner announced shortly thereafter. Good luck!
The Victorian era was full of majestic beauty and scandalous secrets—a time when corsets were the least of a woman’s restrictions, and men could kill or be killed in the name of honor…
Lady Mary Darrel should be the envy of London. Instead, all society believes her dead. For Mary holds a secret so dangerous, her father chose to keep her locked away…and have a grave made for her near her mother’s. Driven to the edge of desperation, Mary manages to escape the asylum, only to find that her fate yet again rests in the hands of a man…
Edward Barrons, Duke of Fairleigh, longs for some way to escape the torment of his father’s crimes. In Mary’s warrior spirit and haunted gaze—which so mirrors his own—he finally sees his path to redemption. He will stop at nothing to keep her safe, even as she seeks revenge. But will the passion they discover in each other be enough to save them from their demons?
2011 Golden Heart winner Máire Claremont first fell in love with Mr. Rochester, not Mr. Darcy. Drawn to his dark snark, she longed to find a tortured hero of her own… until she realized the ramifications of Mr. Rochester locking his frst wife up in his attic. Discovering the errors of her ways, Máire now looks for a real-life Darcy and creates deliciously dark heroes on the page. Oh, and she wants everyone to know her name is pronounced Moira. Her parents just had to give her an Irish Gaelic name.