Lovely reader review!

I love hearing from readers, and yesterday I received the most wonderful note from a reader.

~::~

Helen wrote:

Donna:
 
I am reading and loving The Curse of the Gypsy.  I am torn between needing to know how it will end with Tony and Anne, and not wanting it to end because I am enjoying it so very much.  Hope to see some Lady Anne books in the future.  Your characters are so engaging and your language is so very elegant.  It is a real pleasure to read your books.  Many thanks.  Helen
 
PS  I have been hitting the dictionary and my wordpower increases by the day. 
~::~
She makes me chuckle… she previously wrote to me that while reading my Lady Anne books she was getting to use the Dictionary function on her Kindle, as she often did when reading Anne Perry novels… and I told her how humbled I was to be mentioned in the same sentence with Anne Perry, who writes the wonderful Charlotte and Thomas Pitt novels.
Thanks, Helen, for making my day!

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Lady Anne Books 2 & 3 – Now Available!

At long last, books 2 & 3 of the Lady Anne saga are now available as ebooks for the fabulous price of just $3.99 each!

I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time, and I am so proud and happy with these books, both for the content – this is some of the best work I have done – and the covers, which are exactly what I wanted from the beginning.

Both books are now available: see my website, http://www.donnaleasimpson.com for links where they can be purchased online!

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Lady Anne… the story continues!

Great news, to all who have been inquiring. The wait is over for the next Lady Anne book… almost.

Book 2 of the Lady Anne saga, now entitled Revenge of the Barbary Ghost: A Lady Anne Mystery, will be out from Beyond the Page Publishing on or before January 27th, 2012, and Book 3, now called Curse of the Gypsy: A Lady Anne Mystery, will be out February 13th, 2012!

I’ll have more information soon on blog tour stops and availability!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you to the Inspiration Gallery for the Damask background I am now using on this blog!

http://theinspirationgallery.com/

 

 

 

 

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Speaking of Audiobooks column – Love and Scandal

Hey, all… just thought I’d give a heads up… Vicky Hensley at Speaking of Audiobooks, an All About Romance blog column, has done a great interview with me concerning the audio version of Love and Scandal.

It was great fun. Thanks, Vicky!

Speaking of Audiobooks column: http://www.likesbooks.com/blog/?p=6428

Audible.com logoLove and Scandal Audiobook is available at Audible.com: http://www.audible.com/pd/ref=sr_1_1?asin=B0040HOP2S&qid=1305550924&sr=1-1

You can listen to a sample, so you can hear what I mean about Charlotte Parry – the narrator – and her lovely voice!

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Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre and Love & Scandal

Love & Scandal coverI was forcibly reminded this week of why I wrote Love & Scandal.

I am currently reading ‘Unquiet Soul‘, a fascinating biography of Charlotte Bronte, and remembered how the idea for Love & Scandal started.

When Charlotte Bronte wrote and published Jane Eyre, it became a huge hit immediately. It was overwhelmingly popular, but controversial, too. It was dark, and sexy, and melodramatic, and had a lot to say about a woman’s right to independence, and her equality of intelligence and depth of soul. George Lewes was fascinated by the book, as was Thackeray. Both praised the author, even while they had criticisms. Though Jane Eyre was published as if written by a man – even her publisher was supposed to think that – many speculated on the gender of the author.

A couple of years ago I was also reading about Charlotte Bronte. What if, I thought… what if someone else, a man, had claimed to be Currer Bell? As retiring at Charlotte was, she still had a true writer’s powerful ego. Would she not have charged off to London in search of the devilish gent who had presumed to pretend authorship of her master work, if her publisher offered her no aid to contradict such a falsehood? I think she would have.

At the Audible.com page for the audio version of Love & Scandal, one reviewer had this criticism: “This book is a classic case of an author trying to (sic) hard to please: Please their editor, their supposed fan base and even, no doubt, their misplaced desire to produce “something more then (sic) just the ordinary romance.” The mere fact that she felt the need to have almost every living author of the time make multiple appearances I think proves both points. I was very disappointed, and yet I think the author does have talent, it was just hidden behind the show she put on here.”

I understand where the reviewer was coming from; I have Trollope, Mrs. Gaskell, George Lewes and the future ‘George Eliot’, Maryann Evans, in the novel. But it was not out of some desire to produce ‘something more then (sic) just the ordinary romance’.  Perhaps I didn’t express it in a way that made it clear to the listener/reader, but my choices were made deliberately to explore the outcome had this ‘what if’ scenario happened to Charlotte.

I make no claims that she would have fallen in the sexual sense Collette does in Love & Scandal. But Charlotte had such a deeply passionate nature that if she had ever been met with someone who wanted her so badly, as Charles wants ColletUnquiet Soul coverte, you never do know. Charlotte’s one great love, for her Belgian teacher Monsieur Heger, was so all-consuming, I can’t help but believe she may have succumbed, had physical love been offered.

I was reminded of this as I read Margot Peter’s ‘Unquiet Soul’ a fascinating, if flawed (I think the author makes unfounded assumptions of the Bronte sisters’ internal, unexpressed feelings) biography. We’ll never know what would have happened had Charlotte gone to London in that first fiery furor over Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights (some folks thought the two ‘Bell brothers’, Currer and Ellis, were one and the same writer), but it was so much fun to speculate in my flawed, but hopefully interesting dive into the Victorian literary scene.

So… it is fascinating to look back and remember, for an author, where the ideas for a book came from!

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2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 4,500 times in 2010. That’s about 11 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 13 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 159 posts. There were 8 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 366kb.

The busiest day of the year was March 15th with 146 views. The most popular post that day was Awaiting the Magic.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were donnaleasimpson.com, en.wordpress.com, facebook.com, yandex.ru, and amazon.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for black wolf, donna lea simpson, princess diana and sons, black wolf with blue eyes, and black wolf pictures.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Awaiting the Magic June 2009
4 comments

2

Princess Diana – Ten Years Ago Today August 2007

3

Taylor Swift on CMA awards show… Georgian period dress? November 2008
2 comments

4

Publishing History May 2007
4 comments

5

About Donna Lea Simpson May 2007
9 comments

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Love & Scandal – Available NOW!

Love & ScandalI’m so happy about how Love & Scandal is being received; the Night Owl Reviews review is wonderful! Check out my homepage – http://www.donnaleasimpson.com – for an excerpt of the review and a link!

eBooks, I am convinced, really are the wave of the future. I’d like to urge everyone, all the skeptics about eBooks, if you’ve always wondered what an eBook looks like, download a free copy of The Last Days of a Rake, the companion book to Love & Scandal, and have a look! You can even download, at Amazon.com, a ‘Kindle for PC’ eReader software for FREE, and then check out The Last Days of a Rake and… here’s the great thing… there are loads of other books available for FREE online.

In the coming days I’ll provide links to some of the FREEBIE eBook sites I’m finding.

Until then… enjoy Love & Scandal, the book and the real thing! ;-)

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