Friday, January 28, 2011

Cara Elliott!

Get Lost in This Story…


Kate Woodbridge has spent most of her life sailing to exotic ports around the globe, acquiring an expertise in botany, along with a few less ladylike skills. So when a deathbed promise to her parents brings her to London to seek a reconciliation with her grandfather, the imperious Duke of Cluyne, she feels like a fish out of water in Polite Society. Her outspoken views and fiery temper tend to set off sparks—especially with the arrogant Conte of Como.

The man has a knack of getting under her skin, And if he gets too close, he might uncover her scandalous past . . .

A devil-may-care rogue, Marco finds Kate a tempting target for his flirtations. But when murder strikes at the duke’s country house, he suspects she’s hiding a dark secret. He has his own clandestine reasons for helping to prove her innocence . . . which leads them on a perilous journey from London to the glittering ballrooms of Vienna.

Sumptuous pleasures and gilded lies. The city is aswirl in decadence and deception, and they find themselves waltzing on a powderkeg of hidden passions and dangerous desires. For Kate and Marco must duel with a deadly villain—and confront their own explosive attraction.


Today it is my pleasure to host historical author Cara Elliott! Welcome!  Cara, would you like to take a moment to introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your writing?  



I began my writing career at age five with a number of lavishly illustrated Westerns, which were lovingly preserved for posterity by my first fan (Thanks, Mom!) As you can see, I believe in immersing myself in the mood and character of my stories!


I have since moved on to Regency England, an era that has fascinated me ever since I picked up a copy of Jane Austen’s Pride And Prejudice. (Sorry, no picture of me in my ballgown and tiara!)

Books have always been an important part of my life. I’ve always been a voracious reader, and I’ve always had a very vivid imagination . . . so much so that I think at times it worried my parents that I was so happy in my own little world, drawing pictures and creating stories. My teachers will also tell you that I was the class history geek, even in grade school. I don’t really know why, but I have always been fascinated with the past.

As an undergrad at Yale, I majored in art and went on to get a MFA in Graphic Design. So storytelling got put on the back burner for a while. But The Muse kept whispering in my ear, and one day I sat down at the keyboard . . . and realized that writing is what I love.

I hope you enjoy my books!


Thanks so much, Cara!  And our thanks to your mom for the fabulous visuals!  Now, let’s dig in and get to know you even better...

Heather:  How often to you get lost in a story?
Cara:  Almost every day. I’m an avid reader and always have a book going.

Heather:  What’s your favorite kind of story to get lost in?
Cara:  Oh, I read all sorts of genres—lately I’ve been trying steampunk and some Noir crime. But I have too say my favorite books are historical romance and historical mysteries.

Heather:  What was the first story you remember writing?
Cara:  It was a Western, featuring cowboys and horses. I was five years old and my mother lovingly preserved it in her scrapbook.

Heather:  Who’s your favorite villain?
Cara:  Sethos in the Amelia Peabody books by Elizabeth Peters. He’s such a rakish rogue, but of course turns out to be a hero by the end of the series because he’s redeemed by the love of a worthy lady!

Heather:  What’s the first thing you do when you finish writing a book?
Cara:  Unwrap a BIG bar of chocolate. My current favorite is Lindt dark chocolate with a hint of sea salt.

Heather:  What do you do to unwind and relax?
Cara:  When I’m not glued to my keyboard, I really enjoy being outdoors—walking, biking running, golfing (my game is not exactly up to par, but I find walking a lovely course is a great, relaxing way to think about plotting and my characters!)

Heather:  What soundtrack or playlist do you recommend for your current release?
Cara:  Handel’s Music for Royal Fireworks was one of my favorites tracks when I was writing the scenes set in Vienna!

Heather:  Tea or Coffee? And how do you take it?
Cara:  Coffee in the morning to jumpstart the day, and then tea in the afternoon, both with a generous splash of light cream (my decadent indulgence, but a girl’s got to have a few, right?)

Heather:  What is your favorite cheese?
Cara:  Oh, I’m a total cheese freak. I love all sorts of varieties, and am always willing to try a new taste. I was in Wales this past summer and had a ball sampling all the local artisanal ones.

Heather:  What sound or noise do you love?
Cara:  Ocean surf splashing over sun-kissed rocks

         
Heather’s GOTTA ASK – Cara’s GOTTA ANSWER  J
So, in “To Tempt a Rake”, your characters travel to Vienna of 1814, where you’ve said the parties were wild and the pastries decadent…  Tell us the most interesting thing you learned about Vienna at that time during your research and did you use it in your book?

Cara:  I discovered LOTS of fascinating things while researching the history of the Congress of Vienna. But one of the most fun little facts was that an Austrian by the name of Herr Stuwer was the world’s foremost expert in fireworks, and his displays were renowned throughout Europe as being really spectacular. He apparently designed an amazing “over the top” program for Prince Metternich’s outdoor Peace Ball—imagine dancing in lantern-lit gardens under a night sky ablaze in shimmering colors! So of course I couldn’t resist setting one of the final scenes in TO TEMPT A RAKE at the party

GOT A QUESTION YOU’D LIKE TO ASK YOUR FANS?

Are you a wild party person? Or do you prefer a quiet dinner with friends?

WILL YOU HAVE A DRAWING FROM THOSE LEAVING COMMENTS?**

Yes, Grand Central will offer a copy of To Tempt A Rake as a prize.

Thanks so much for being with us today, Cara!  Where can your fans learn more about you on the web?

Cara:  You can find me at http://www.caraelliott.com/. One the home page I have links to follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

**Note: Offer void where prohibited. Prizes will be mailed to North American addresses only. If an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) is available, the author may utilize that option for International participants. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

8 comments:

  1. At big parties I am a total wall flower. I don't drink alcohol so there isn't any point in me going to a wild party where everyone just wants to get hammered. I much prefer a quiet dinner with friends. Good food & good conversation.

    Cara I totally approve of your dark chocolate with sea salt reward for finishing a book! One of my favorites is Vosges Barcelona Bar: milk chocolate, sea salt & hickory smoked almonds!

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  2. Hi Cara, thanks for joining us today. I'm a sucker for a Regency with a hot guy and your book sound really interesting. I especially like that you move out of London for part of the book. The Congress of Vienna has always struck me as a fun place to set a book. Lots of intrigue going on during that event.

    I'm afraid I'm a quiet dinner with friends girl. I enjoy parties with people I know, but I'm not the sort that goes around introducing myself to others. I had a boss that never met a stranger. I always admired his style.

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  3. Hi Cara! Thanks so much for visiting us here at GLIAS today. I very much enjoyed interviewing you and learning you, too, are a cheese freak! Can't tell you how many nights in our house dinner has just been wine and cheese/grapes/crackers/sopressato. I LOVE trying new ones.

    As for parties, I've always been the dinner with friends type. Party girl has never really been my personality.

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  4. Welcome to GLIAS Cara ! Great interview. Love the first books! But I have to admit, I'm missing the ballgown and tiara. (Are you sure there aren't pictures?)

    We're a 'lottsa-games' couple. Dominoes, Farkle, B.S., kareoke...socializing, BYOB... lots of laughter, fun, and talking.

    Thanks for joining us today.
    ~~Angi

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  5. Welcome, Cara. And that excerpt from your very first Western is quite thrilling. I'd like to know how it ends :)

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  6. Cara, I was so excited to see you mention Sethos! I adore the Amelia Peabody series, and thought Sethos was the perfect "villian". An entire set of stories from his POV would be marvelous.

    I have no wild party skills at all. My husband would laugh himself silly at the thought of it. But I do love sitting in a corner and watching others cut loose.

    I met you briefly at Nationals this year and you were so gracious. Thanks for your kindness and encouragement to an aspiring historical romance writer. :)

    I'm intrigued by the chocolate you all are mentioning. I'm not much more exotic than Hershey's and Ghirardelli.

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  7. Hi Cara!

    I am not a party person. It takes me a long time and a good strong cocktail (preferably a mojito) to get me out of my shell. If the party turns out to be a good one, it is usually because I discovered some really interesting new friends to talk to!

    And I am intrigued by To Tempt A Rake!

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  8. Kate, I am so late posting, but your heroine sounds like one I should meet. Off to download To Tempt a Rake! I much prefer a quiet dinner with friends than a boisterous crowd. I like to think it's because as writers we're avid listeners. Thanks for letting us get to know you on Get Lost in a Story!

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