December 7th, 2016

The winner of the signed copy of The Mischief of the Mistletoe is…

… Heather! (Of Comment #4.)

Congrats, Heather! If you let me know where to send it, I’ll pop your book in the mail to you.

More fun coming up soon!


December 5th, 2016

Happy December! In honor of the season, today’s give away will be… a signed copy of The Mischief of the Mistletoe!

Here’s the official blurb:

Mistletoe Updated Arabella Dempsey’s dear friend Jane Austen warned her against teaching. But Miss Climpson’s Select Seminary for Young Ladies seems the perfect place for Arabella to claim her independence while keeping an eye on her younger sisters nearby. Just before Christmas, she accepts a position at the quiet girls’ school in Bath, expecting to face nothing more exciting than conducting the annual Christmas recital. She hardly imagines coming face to face with French aristocrats and international spies…

Reginald “Turnip” Fitzhugh—often mistaken for the elusive spy known as the Pink Carnation—has blundered into danger before. But when he blunders into Miss Arabella Dempsey, it never occurs to him that she might be trouble. When Turnip and Arabella stumble upon a beautifully wrapped Christmas pudding with a cryptic message written in French, “Meet me at Farley Castle”, the unlikely vehicle for intrigue launches the pair on a Yuletide adventure that ranges from the Austens’ modest drawing room to the awe-inspiring estate of the Dukes of Dovedale, where the Dowager Duchess is hosting the most anticipated event of the year: an elaborate 12-day Christmas celebration. Will they find poinsettias or peril, dancing or danger? And is it possible that the fate of the British Empire rests in Arabella and Turnip’s hands, in the form of a festive Christmas pudding?

For a chance to win a copy of The Mischief of the Mistletoe, here’s your question: what’s your favorite holiday read?

The winner will be announced on Wednesday.



Teaser Tuesday: Coming Next
November 29th, 2016

I don’t have exact dates yet, but here’s the rough schedule for my upcoming book releases:

— July, 2017: a personal essay in A Paris All Your Own: Bestselling Women Writers on the City of Light, a non-fiction anthology about Paris, edited by the lovely Eleanor Brown.

— January, 2018: THE ENGLISH WIFE, hardcover.

— Summer, 2018: The Lusitania Book (aka the new Team W Book, aka We Don’t Have a Proper Title Yet), hardcover.

I’ll post more on all of these soon!


Weekly Reading Round-Up
November 25th, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving! (Or really, Happy Black Friday!)

I was in an epic mood this week, so I revisited a very old favorite: Joan Wolf’s Born of the Sun, about a sixth century Saxon king of Wessex and his British wife, Niniane. There are court intrigues, family strife, battles– and, of course, a wonderful love story, spread out over a long marriage and a long reign. This is one of those books that never goes stale for me.

What have you been reading this week?


November 23rd, 2016

The winner of Ann Leary’s The Children is…

… Maria! (Of Comment #14.)

Congrats, Maria! If you let me know where to send it, I’ll put your book in the mail to you.

Wishing everyone a wonderful, safe, happy Thanksgiving!


Teaser Tuesday: A Paris All Your Own!
November 22nd, 2016

If you can’t go to Paris, Paris will be coming to you this summer, in the anthology A Paris All Your Own: Bestselling Women Writers on the City of Light.

I’m so thrilled to get to revisit one of my favorite cities in such wonderful company!

Here is the tres snazzy cover:


Et voila! The official blurb:

A collection of all-new Paris-themed essays written by some of the biggest names in women’s fiction, including Paula McLain, Therese Anne Fowler, Maggie Shipstead, and Lauren Willig, edited by Eleanor Brown, the New York Times bestselling author of The Weird Sisters and The Light of Paris.

“My time in Paris,” says New York Times–bestselling author Paula McLain (The Paris Wife), “was like no one else’s ever.” For each of the sixteen bestselling authors in this warm, inspiring, and charming collection of personal essays on the City of Light, nothing could be more true.

While all of the women writers featured here have written books connected to Paris, their personal stories of the city are wildly different. Meg Waite Clayton (The Race for Paris) and M. J. Rose (The Book of Lost Fragrances) share the romantic secrets that have made Paris the destination for lovers for hundreds of years. Susan Vreeland (The Girl in Hyacinth Blue) and J. Courtney Sullivan (The Engagements) peek behind the stereotype of snobbish Parisians to show us the genuine kindness of real people.

From book club favorites Paula McLain, Therese Anne Fowler (Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald), and anthology editor Eleanor Brown (The Light of Paris) to mystery writer Cara Black (Murder in the Marais), historical author Lauren Willig (The Secret History of the Pink Carnation), and memoirist Julie Powell (Julie and Julia), these Parisian memoirs range from laugh-out-loud funny to wistfully romantic to thoughtfully somber and reflective.

Perfect for armchair travelers and veterans of Parisian pilgrimages alike, readers will delight in these brand-new tales from their most beloved authors.

A Paris All Your Own: Bestselling Women Writers on the City of Light will appear in bookstores near you on July 4, 2017. (Not quite Bastille Day… but close!)


Monday Give Away
November 21st, 2016

There’s been a bit of a give away gap– apologies! To make it up to you, I have a particularly good one for you today: a hardcover copy of Ann Leary’s The Children.

Here’s the official blurb:

the-children From New York Times bestselling author Ann Leary comes the captivating story of a wealthy, but unconventional New England family, told from the perspective of a reclusive 29-year-old who has a secret (and famous) life on the Internet.

Charlotte Maynard rarely leaves her mother’s home, the sprawling Connecticut lake house that belonged to her late stepfather, Whit Whitman, and the generations of Whitmans before him. While Charlotte and her sister, Sally, grew up at “Lakeside,” their stepbrothers, Spin and Perry, were welcomed as weekend guests. Now the grown boys own the estate, which Joan occupies by their grace―and a provision in the family trust. When Spin, the youngest and favorite of all the children, brings his fiancé home for the summer, the entire family is intrigued. The beautiful and accomplished Laurel Atwood breathes new life into this often comically rarefied world. But as the wedding draws near, and flaws surface in the family’s polite veneer, an array of simmering resentments and unfortunate truths is exposed.

With remarkable wit and insight, Ann Leary pulls back the curtain on one blended family, as they are forced to grapple with the assets and liabilities – both material and psychological – left behind by their wonderfully flawed patriarch.

What could be more appropriate for Thanksgiving week than a book about a dysfunctional family?

For a chance to win a hardcover copy of Ann Leary’s The Children, here’s your question:

— What’s your favorite Thanksgiving tradition? (Edible or otherwise.)

Happy holiday, all! Winners will be announced on Wednesday.


Weekly Reading Round-Up
November 18th, 2016

This week, in between working on the outline for the new Team W book with Beatriz Williams and Karen White, I treated myself to two new books: Naomi Novik’s Uprooted and Sherry Thomas’s A Study In Scarlet Women.

Although very different, both are takes on earlier stories: Uprooted builds off previous generations of fairy tales (so many echoes of Robin McKinley!) while A Study in Scarlet Women is a new look at Sherlock Holmes, imagining Holmes as a woman in an era that wasn’t particularly hospitable towards female enterprise.

Now, I’m plunged into a research refresher for my next stand alone novel (more on that soon!).

What have you been reading this week?


The Three Ws Write Again!
November 16th, 2016

If there’s been some radio silence here on the website recently… it’s because Karen White, Beatriz Williams and I were off at our Top Secret Undisclosed Location thrashing out the outline of the new collaborative novel!

three-ws-working three-ws-new-book

How Top Secret was it? Let’s just say that every good lair needs a spooky old tunnel.


Also someone to guard our drinks while we work.


The new Team W book is set during the final voyage of the Lusitania and will probably be coming your way at some point in late 2018. We’re very excited to share it with you– once we actually finish writing it.


Weekly Reading Round-Up
November 11th, 2016

Sometimes, you just need a fairy tale. This week, I revisited one of my all time favorites, Robin McKinley’s Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast.


It’s a beautiful re-telling of Beauty and the Beast– with certain elements in common with the Disney version that followed, like Beauty being a bookworm and an amazing library filled with more books than the world could possibly hold.

From there, it was an easy jump to Naomi Novik’s Uprooted, which I’ve only just started– but the voice reminds me a great deal of Robin McKinley. I’ll be bringing Uprooted with me tomorrow as I fly off to meet Karen White and Beatriz Williams at our designated top secret location to begin working on the next tri-book.

What have you been reading this week?