Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Kym Roberts | Cozy Corner: Break Away with a Mystery
Author Guest / March 29, 2021

Everyone needs a break, including authors. I’ve been on a personal hiatus for several months from everything but family, and I have to say it was nice. Like all good things, however, my recess had an end date. Now I’m back with fresh a perspective, and a whole bunch of books to talk about! (No reader actually takes a break from cracking open a new book, do they?) While away I found several new authors that made me wonder what rock I’ve been under the past few years. (No, it wasn’t Dwayne.) I mean seriously, these are good books, how did I miss them? One series in particular just rocked my world, the Veronica Speedwell Mystery series by Deanna Rayburn.  And this series has the added bonus of audiobooks performed brilliantly by Angele Masters. I was hooked with the first book A Curious Beginning and lucky for me, book six, An Unexpected Peril, was released March 10, 2021—Yay! So yes, since December I have listened to books 1-5 and have thoroughly loved the characters and the mysteries and I’m totally thrilled to have this latest release in cue for this weekend! An Unexpected Peril  A Veronica Speedwell Mystery by Deanna Rayburn 3/10/2021 A…

Deanna Raybourn | Exclusive Interview: AN UNEXPECTED PERIL
Author Guest / March 3, 2021

Hi, Deanna! We are so happy to have you back on Fresh Fiction. Please introduce yourself to our readers.  I’m a 5 foot, 5 inch-tall Gemini, I like long walks on the beach and men who aren’t afraid to cry. (Okay, I’m a 52-year-old 6th-generation Texan married to my college sweetheart with one child and a starter pack of Australian Labradoodles. I am currently working on my 17th novel and I have a mild addiction to Twitter.) The Veronica Speedwell historical mystery series is such a fun premise and has been enthralling readers for the last few years. What do you love about the character of Veronica?   Veronica is one of the most enjoyable characters I’ve ever written because she is–like Molly Brown–unsinkable. Nothing ever seems to get her down for long. We know she’s been through volcanic eruptions, shipwrecks, kidnapping by brigands, yet she’s irrepressibly optimistic. She’s very secure in her own sense of purpose, and I love that she is so thoroughly grounded in who she is. I suspect she might be a little tiresome in real life–she’s an absolute bulldozer to poor Stoker sometimes–but on the page, she delights me.   One of my favorite aspects…

Deanna Raybourn | 20 Questions: A MURDEROUS RELATION
Author Guest / March 11, 2020

1–What’s the name of your latest release?  A MURDEROUS RELATION, the fifth Veronica Speedwell mystery. 2–What is it about?  My Victorian butterfly hunting sleuth, Veronica Speedwell, joins with her detecting partner, Stoker, to investigate a potential royal scandal during Jack the Ripper’s reign of terror in London. 3–What word best describes your heroine?  Intrepid. Veronica has a zero-tolerance policy for other people’s nonsense and she is never afraid to seize an opportunity or take on a foe. 4–What makes your hero irresistible?  Stoker is a walking contradiction; he’s big and fit and dangerous, but he’s also the guy who needs a constant supply of candy and who reads French romance novels and cuddles stray dogs. 5–Who are the people your main characters turn to when they need help?  My characters are always adding to their found family. They have a mentor–an elderly noblewoman who is the power behind the English throne–as well as a resourceful female reporter, a Black master pastry chef from Martinique, and a police detective who is just as likely to arrest them as take a bullet for them. But, always and above all, they turn to each other. 6–What do you love about the setting of…

Deanna Raybourn | Keeping a Book With You
Author Guest / October 2, 2010

Recently I had a chance to chat with a charming book club in Ohio about my last novel, The Dead Travel Fast. They mentioned that they love to extend their reading experiences by taking field trips that somehow relate to their book club selections. They talked about visiting Washington DC after reading Night, and I jokingly asked them if they were planning a trip to Transylvania after reading my book. (I would not have been at all surprised if they said yes. They were one of the most dynamic groups I’ve chatted with, and if any club organizes a trek to the Carpathians, it will be them!) I also had a lovely tweet this week from a reader who is planning an entire dinner party around the release of my newest book, Dark Road to Darjeeling. She’s inspired by the Himalayan setting, and I made her promise to send details of every course—I only wish I could be there too. (It is always a good idea to feed a writer. We sometimes forget to forage for ourselves.) But my intrepid book group and my gourmet reader got me pondering all the different ways you might celebrate a book. I usually…

Deanna Raybourn | How A Book Gets Titled
Uncategorized / February 11, 2010

One of the questions I am most often asked by readers is how I come up with titles for my books. The short answer is that I don’t! Sometimes the book seems to title itself. A single phrase, usually a snippet of a quote from a poem or play, will settle down on the title page and I cannot bring myself to think of it as anything else. My March 2010 release, The Dead Travel Fast, was one such book. I had the idea for the novel some five years ago, and started researching it and compiling notes. It is the story of a Victorian novelist who leaves the security of her Edinburgh home for the grim castles of Transylvania and meets up with an aristocrat who may or may not be a vampire, and as part of my research, I read Dracula. I knew as soon as I came across this passage what the title of my book had to be: As he spoke, he smiled, and the lamplight fell on a hard-looking mouth, with very red lips and sharp-looking teeth, as white as ivory. One of my companions whispered to the other…‘Denn die Todten relten schnell.’ (‘For the…

Deanna Raybourn | Writer’s Passion
Uncategorized / September 19, 2008

As a writer of historical fiction, I am frequently asked about research. Specifically, readers—and aspiring writers—want to know if it is necessary for me to visit the sites I write about. On this point I always give a firm and unequivocal yes. And no. Contradictory, I know, but hear me out. Developing a historical novel means creating a dual setting; it means creating a specific time and place for your reader to inhabit. They are a tourist in your world, and you must give them a guidebook of essential details to help them get around. In order to do that, you have to know the neighborhood at least as well as they do—and preferably better! In preparation for writing Silent in the Grave, I traveled to England. (Technically, I tagged along on a school trip as a chaperone—a maneuver I only recommend to the truly desperate or masochistic.) I had planned that Grave would be a Regency effort, light and sparkling and frothy as a syllabub with just a spot of murder to spice the pot. But once I began writing, I realized the book needed Victorian London, a city of foggy streets, shadowed by industry and populated by Jack…