I don’t usually do this.
Only because Jane Hunt can’t get her reviews on Amazon. Thank you. Now do we want the Cleanser here, or not…
And as Destiny, my high functioning depressive heroine says
“Really? And I’m the Man in the Moon. I go out at night and I fly up into the sky in a pair of silver breeches and shine me light on the world.”
Indeed it is Friday the 13th, not the best day in the world to release a new book on BUT then again, it is about a curse. It is also a book about two emotionally bereft people and features a heroine who is what is called a high functioning depressive. She will be along next week to talk more about that.
I made the decision many years ago that I didn’t want to write about people–hamsters either before you interrupt–whose lives were perfect.
Which of us, in reality, has that kind of life? But, as today approached and after the many hair tearing moments I had on this book, especially trying to get in humour that was respectful to an emotional state…well… humour I know my readers expect, let’s just say there were plenty times I thought sometimes the path less chosen is indeed less chosen for a purpose.
That is why it was wonderful this morning to step online to a DM Facebook message from Jane Hunt, an author and reviewer who had an ARC rough copy and who does not shrink from pulling her punches. I want to thank her for that message AND also her review. This is my seventh book and my day, unlike when I released my first two, was to be spent getting on with my present WIP, the household tasks etc. But now I AM going to at least treat myself to a wee pre-Fri evening drink with my Mr. Oh obvi by pre I mean pre Friday nite meal with wine back here. But special days should be celebrated. I think Jane’s review has encouraged me…
…because I felt she got my leads AND after what I said the other week about this being the shortest on secondaries book I have written, she still felt the story was inclusive, the world of the two leads. So yep, I am sharing this review AND the post I wrote for her about the things that inspired Destiny You can look away now if you don’t want to know the score.
‘Cornwall in 1801 rife with smugglers and excise men trying to catch them is the setting for this clever, passionate and witty novel. Destiny Rhodes is cursed, everything she touches turns to dust. All she has left is Doom Bar Hall, her ancestral home, and now even this is in jeopardy.
Divers O’Roarke is a man with an agenda and so many secrets. He left Cornwall in the wake of tragedy, but not before he’d cursed the young woman he thought responsible. Now he’s back, the victor, but what he finds is not what he expected. What he feels is not what he thought, but he has a mission, and being turned to ashes by a cursed woman is not part of it.
The setting for this story is atmospheric and authentic. The subtle use of historical detail, lets you visualise nineteenth-century Cornwall. The sinister smugglers, the close-knit community, the rugged beauty of the coast, and the ethos of danger and suspicion, Amidst the roaring sea and windswept coastline, the story of two people, both emotionally bereft, and driven unfolds.
The dialogue is sharp and amusing, and the internal musings even more so. You spend a lot of time in Destiny and O’Roake’s minds, and they are both full of confusion and conniving.
The plot is pacy and twisty. Just trying to work out who O’Roarke is, keeps you guessing. Then there’s the exciseman Lyon, who becomes increasingly sinister. This story is inclusive, you feel part of the deadly game Destiny and Divers are playing, experience their anger, bewilderment, fear, and the passion they cannot hide. The intriguing plot comes to an intense conclusion, revealing who Destiny and Divers O’Roake are in more ways than you can imagine.
O’Roarke’s Destiny’, is historical romance for the twenty-first century. Complex mind games, passionate, sensual romance, and a fast-paced riveting plot that rides the waves of time. I’m looking forward to meeting the next ‘Cornish Rogue.’
Guest Post – Shehanne Moore – Inspiring Destiny
Firstly Jane, thank you so much for inviting me here today to your wonderful book review blog, which is such a help to authors and for your continued support. Always appreciated.
I actually got the idea for O’Roarke’s Destiny the night we sold our house back in 2014. Yep, a while ago and I actually started it when I finished the Viking and The Courtesan in 2015 and put it aside because other scheduled books got in the way. I’d lived in this particular house for almost 30 years and it was a hard house to leave for many reasons, nor was this necessarily a chosen thing. Although looking back now I don’t know what I was worrying about. Anyway, the first night the house was on sale, the second viewer arrived—the dad of one of my pupils who lived along the road. I thought they’d come about something to do with the lessons. Anyway, he soon dashed that hope when he said, ‘I will make you a good offer tomorrow morning first thing. I have already put my house on sale in the hope and prayer of this one. But I know this must be upsetting for you, so don’t show me round, I was burned on the house sale three doors along a few months ago, so you don’t have to.’ And he was as good as every word. Well, as I joked to a friend a few days later, I should have said, ‘And I come with this house. I just need a room.’ Then I thought … bingo, idea for a book there.
Ideas, mind you, are nothing like what ends up on paper. This book started as a frothy battle over a house that only starts a few years later when the hero brings home another woman, a fiancée and the heroine housekeeper doesn’t like this and she discovers her own feelings for the hero. While this had its merits, another idea—a stronger one–formed, that was to start the book at the point where the house has been lost in a card game to a man where there’s past history. But, this seemed a little contrived, given this man has been sort of lost to the world for years. What was he even doing back in the neighbourhood? So I suppose my next piece of inspiration was in the books of Daphne DuMaurier, the smuggling, piratey books I’ve long loved. Having tackled, pirates, Highlanders, Vikings, I’d wanted to do a book about smugglers. Where better to do that than in Cornwall? Why not make that world the backdrop to the story.
Books aren’t just nothing like the idea that you start with—well mine never are, alas–they are about keeping the story going. There’s only so many times two people can argue about the choice of dining room wallpaper for example or the fact that that’s the best antique dishes sitting out at the bin, so while this starts out as a battle over a house, that is only a first layer, with lids to be lifted on a couple who are slogging it out over so much more within themselves and where they are in their lives when the story opens. And that’s not actually the house at all.