Please welcome Janice Preston, the prolific and very successful writer of Regency romance for Harlequin Mills and Boon. Here are the three books which have helped shape her writing. Warning: there’s more cheating going on! 35 times over, to be exact!
Book One: which book most inspires you?
I think it has to be Pride and Prejudice, which I first read in my teens. It’s a wonderful romance, chock full of memorable characters and that classic Austen wit, but for me it serves as a reminder that human nature doesn’t change, even though our daily lives are so very different to Jane Austen’s. I only have to think of Lydia to know that she had the same teenage hormones swilling around her system as I had when I was in my teens, and it reminds me to make sure my characters react first and foremost as human beings, before factoring in the mores of the time.
Book Two: which book would you like to have written?
It’s a bit of a cheat, because this is a series! The Morland Dynasty by Cynthia Harrod-Eagles. It follows the Morland family (originally sheep farmers from York) through the generations, right from the 15th century and the Wars of the Roses (The Founding) up to 1931 and the post-crash depression, Hollywood and the talkies and Edward and Mrs Simpson (The Phoenix), which is book 35! I am in awe of the research involved. Characters throughout the series are involved with all the major issues and conflicts of the times. I’ve only read up to book 28, but I’ve read the earlier ones twice now. As an interesting way to follow history through the centuries, it’s great because you get the domestic trivia of the times alongside the momentous occasions (eg one character was lady-in-waiting to Anne Boleyn; another had a child by Prince Rupert) but I also like to see how CHE’s writing style matures as the series progresses. By the way – I say I would like to have written this but I know I would never have the patience to do that amount of research! I find it tricky enough to stick to one era!
Good heavens! Such writing stamina. And I agree, think about the research needed! This is one of the things I most love about this feature – I get to be introduced to lots of writers new to me. Off to order the WW1 books in the series!
And Book Three: what’s your latest release?
I am writing a series of romances set in the Regency era, all about the family of a duke – Leo Beauchamp, Duke of Cheriton. There are two linked trilogies (The Beauchamp Betrothals and The Beauchamp Heirs), although all the stories are standalone reads. Scandal and Miss Markham is the second title of the series and is out on October 1st.
Here’s a little bit about it:
Scandal and Miss Markham
Glassmaker’s daughter Thea Markham is devastated when her brother Daniel goes missing. Then a mysterious lord turns up asking questions about Daniel and offers to find him.
Unsure she can trust the handsome peer, Thea dresses up as a boy and follows him!
Lord Vernon Beauchamp feels his life lacks direction. Meeting Thea gives him a renewed purpose and when they are thrown together on their scandalous adventure, friendship soon gives way to desire…
And here’s some info about Janice:
Janice Preston writes emotional, sensual and satisfying Regency romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon. She grew up in Wembley with a love of reading, writing stories and animals and has worked as a dairy farmer, a police call-handler and a university administrator. She has two children, two step-children (all now adult) and a gorgeous, cheeky grandson. She now lives in the West Midlands with her husband and two cats and enjoys swimming, yoga and pottering about the garden when the sun is shining.
Janice’s Facebook page
Thanks so much for coming on and sharing your book choices with us Janice!