Okay, business first.
My Beautiful Enemy releases today! Yay! But very importantly, if you haven’t yet, please read its prequel/companion volume, The Hidden Blade, first. You can absolutely read MBE on its own. But because I love you and want you to have the best of everything, I am telling you that you will thank me to have read the two in order–it’s just even richer and more multi-layered that way.
Besides, The Hidden Blade is only 99 cents right now. It will go up to its regular price of $3.99 in two weeks, so get it cheap while you can!
The Hidden Blade: Kindle | Nook | Kobo | Google | iBooks
My Beautiful Enemy: Kindle | Nook | Kobo | Google | iBooks
Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon meets Downton Abbey, that’s what we have in this duology.
Okay, now a few pictures from my summer.
Confession time. Until this past June, I’ve never been to the UK. But His Hawtness had a business trip there and we decided to make a vacation out of it. When I have more time I’ll do a more complete picture post, but let me just say, the highlight of our trip was the southwest coast of England.
I learned about the beauty of it during my research for His at Night. And the coast of Devon–specifically, the stretch around the Hangman Cliffs–was absolutely spectacular. I started to scheme how I can go back even before I’d left–and I haven’t stopped scheming since. I mean, look at this:
Is that not magnificent? And of course photos don’t do the scale of the place justice. Not to mention Nick and Rachel, our hosts at Blair Lodge Guest House in Combe Martin, were absolutely marvelous. If you are ever in the area, I cannot recommend them highly enough.
In July I had the good fortune of being invited to participate in a couple of events by the Irving Pubic Library in the Dallas Forth Worth area. I don’t expect big crowds at library events, but oh boy, the Irving Public Library certainly proved me wrong. Their YA events were jam-packed, and their afternoon tea for grown-up readers boasted some of the best table decorations I’ve ever seen.
Alas, my picture fails to convey the intricacy of the Sherlock Holmes-themed table–you can barely see the stickman alphabet and other intricate items that had been drawn on the tablecloth. And you can’t see at all the tweed coats that were draped over the back of each chair.
And of course, there is also the RWA national conference in San Antonio. I finished The Hidden Blade in the nick of time for me to pack for nationals–and had just a phenomenal time there. I attended a lovely dinner thrown by the fantastic Rachel Hollis of The Chic Site, witnessed my first ever game of Cards Against Humanity, and hugged more people than I can count–I have totally become a hugger in my middle age.
Wish I had more time for a more detailed post but for now I’ll just leave you with this, the gorgeous Emily McKay and I in our fine frocks for RITA night–gold glitter eyeliner all the way!
I hope you enjoy The Hidden Blade and My Beautiful Enemy!
8 thoughts on “The Hidden Blade, My Beautiful Enemy, and Summer 2014”
Congratulations on two new releases. I was going to start My Beautiful Enemy first, but I may have to re-think that.
It must be a bit surreal to research and write about a foreign country in earlier era, then see it in all its modern glory. Did it match your research or was it totally different because of the passage of time?
Well, when I saw Somerset House, I had a minor panic attack. In pictures its court had looked absolutely grand. But in reality, not quite so big. So I was freaking out until I remembered I had edited out the passage in My Beautiful Enemy that took place at Somerset House, so therefore no one in that book was admiring the tremendousness of a building that isn’t quite as tremendous as all that. 🙂
Dear Sherry, My Beautiful Enemy is the book you were destined to write. I love the others but this one was stunning. Lyrical prose, depth of characters, crazy adventures – soooo great! Congratulations on such a wonderful creation!
Thank you! I am absolutely THRILLED the book worked well for you.
Just finished your “Hidden Blade” – “Beautiful Enemy” dyptich. Excellent story cycle, hope you see fit to continue this story world/line. Leighton and Ling-Ling seem much too intriging characters to merely retire into wedded bliss, they’d both go nuts from boredom. I ‘spect it would be a challenge to write an “already married romance…
There’s also children and or associates to explore in so rich a story world.
You write the subtlties of imperial Chinese domestic life better than most, without making it the least bit tedious. I also found your England quite believable, more so than some romances I’ve read.
I’m an author as well and I appreciate your style. The “flash forward / flash back” device you used was risky, but you made it work exceptionally. I think it enhanced the story. Your storytelling voice is engagingly transparent. I appreciated the sections you wrote from the male POV, they were well done and quite believable.
I particularly liked the tasteful way you handled your love scenes. I read a fair number of romancese, research for my own female characters, and I appreciate not having to skip pages of boringly same-same descriptions of phyical mechanics to follow the uniqueness of the emotional story line.
Are you planning any romances set in modern China?
Thanks for the lovely words! So glad you enjoyed the books and thank you very much for taking the time or this wonderful note.
These two books were originally book 1 of a trilogy, back when I thought there was a market in traditional publishing for such things–and there might have been, for all I know, since I believe the manuscript was rejected nearly a decade agonot for its ambitions, but its messy execution. 🙂 I have a vague idea of what could happen to drive future stories, but am not sure at this moment when I would be able to schedule the actual writing of them.
Never thought about setting stories in contemporary China, actually, which is now probably as foreign a country to me as any other place in the world. Ancient China, now that’s a different matter. 🙂
Cheers and thanks again,
I just finished My Beautiful Enemy and loved it! Loved both Ying-Ying and Leighton and their love and vulnerability for each other – just beautiful.
I didn’t read Hidden Blade but it’s next ;0) I wondered if there was going to be volume 2 to the prequel.
Sorry didn’t see your comment for a bit–it got lost among the spam. There is no volume 2 to the prequel–lol, the prequel is already longer than My Beautiful Enemy. But so glad you enjoyed MBE!