November 30th, 2015

I have another The Other Daughter cover to share with you!

This time? It’s Czech. And very, very Gothic.

Other Daughter Czech

Is it just me, or does it remind you a bit of those old Mary Stewart covers– only with Big Ben in the background rather than an ominous chateau on a cliff?

So far, all of the Other Daughter covers have provided very different looks:

The Other Daughter Other Daughter large print Other Daughter Germany Other Daughter Czech

Which do you like best?


The Updated 2016 Publication Schedule
November 30th, 2015

Since I’ve had some queries recently about what’s coming out when, here’s the 2016 publication schedule!

— January 19, The Forgotten Room (hardcover).
— January 26, “The Record Set Right” (e-short).
— March 1, Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War (anthology).
— July 12, The Other Daughter (trade paperback).

FR_options_type.indd FallofPoppiesREV2 The Other Daughter

My next stand alone novel (working title: Stand Alone #4) is currently slated to appear in summer 2017. I’ll have more to share with you about that one as soon as the books above are safely out in the world!


Weekly Reading Round-Up
November 27th, 2015

After the traditional turkey coma, there’s nothing like a comfortable chair and a good book. For me, this week has been mainly about mysteries, all of very different kinds: a 1920s ghost story (or, rather, “ghost” story), a modern Scottish police procedural, and a Victorian with the suggestion of a paranormal element.

— Georgette Heyer’s Footsteps in the Dark, in which three siblings inherit a “haunted” house, and, in the company of their eccentric aunt, attempt to move in, despite the ghostly– or just ghastly?– phantom monk determined to roust them out. I wanted to love this book. An old abbey! Ghosts! Heyer! While it wasn’t bad, it felt like it fell uncomfortably between drawing room comedy, mystery, and ghost story, and never quite made up its mind which it wanted to be. I think, had I gone in thinking of it as a mystery rather than as a ghost story, I would have liked it much better.

— Peter May’s The Blackhouse, in which a policeman returns to his home island to solve the gruesome murder of a man who bullied him as a child and is forced to confront the suppressed remnants of his own past. If you like the darker sort of police procedural, this is for you. It’s brilliantly done, unraveling the pieces bit by bit as you get deeper into the hero’s tangled past, which turns out to be the key to the murder in the present. It’s also an evocative picture of island life in one of the more remote parts of Scotland.

— Barbara Michael’s The Wizard’s Daughter, in which an orphaned girl adrift in 1880s London is swept up by an eccentric duchess on the theory that the girl is the daughter of a missing medium and the inheritor of his psychic powers. This was never one of my favorite Barbara Michaels novels (it’s a bit too self-mocking), but re-reading it brought home to be me that there are times when even a lesser Barbara Michaels can be better than the best of anything else. There are so few people who write with such entirely engaging prose.

What have you been reading this week?


Happy Thanksgiving!
November 26th, 2015

Safe travels to all who are traveling; good cooking to all who are cooking. May your bird be crisp but not burnt, your potholders sturdy, and your kitchen timers timely.

On this day of thanks, I am particularly grateful for everyone here on this website. Thank you so much for coming with me through the various ups and downs and adventures of Napoleonic spies and tortured Pre-Raphaelite painters, Harvard grad students and 1920s flappers. Thank you for recipes and book recommendations, for suggestions and support, and for amazing creations made of Peeps.

Happy Thanksgiving, all!


November 24th, 2015

More fun with foreign covers! The Other Daughter comes out in German as Die fremde Schwester on March 11, 2016.

Other Daughter Germany

Very different from the U.S. covers, no? Here’s the U.S. hardcover and the large print edition:

The Other Daughter Other Daughter large print

Which do you like best?


November 24th, 2015

… for being so AWOL recently. It’s been busy times with Forgotten Room, Fall of Poppies, and the next stand alone, which has been taking some unexpected twists and turns.

I’ll be posting more about The Forgotten Room and The Record Set Right as we get closer to January, but, in the meantime, what would you like to see on this page going forward? Are there types of posts (reading round-ups, give aways, book background, historical fun facts, what have you) that you prefer?

Any and all input much appreciated!


FORGOTTEN ROOM– Double the fun!
November 20th, 2015

Penguin is holding a sweepstakes for advance copies of The Forgotten Room!

In this case, it’s double the fun: winners will each receive two books, one for the entrant and one to share with a friend.

FR_options_type.indd FR_options_type.indd

The contest runs from now until November 29. Just click here to enter– and tell a friend!


November 20th, 2015

The winner of the advance copy of Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War is…

Urjona Dai! (Of Comment #2.)

Congrats, Urjona Dai! If you email me at and let me know where to send it, I’ll pop your book in the mail to you.

Thanks so much to everyone for participating! My reading list just got a great deal longer….


FALL OF POPPIES– falling onto your doorstep!
November 18th, 2015

Look what came in the mail yesterday!

Fall of Poppies ARCs

A generous box of advance copies of the World War I anthology, Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War, featuring stories by Jessica Brockmole, Hazel Gaynor, Evangeline Holland, Marci Jefferson, Kate Kerrigan, Jennifer Robson, Heather Webb, Beatriz Williams, and me.

All of the stories revolve, in one way or another, around the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month: in other words, Armistice Day, 1918.

My story, “The Record Set Right”, opens in 1980 in Kenya as eighty-two year old Camilla Frobisher, the widow of the war hero known popularly as The Aviator in the Iron Mask (although, as Camilla would point out to you, the mask was really tin, not iron), is drawn back to England and forced to confront a past that may not be exactly what she thought it was.

One of the things I love about this anthology is how different all the stories are, each with a different setting, a different window on the experience of the Great War.

For an advance copy of Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War, here’s your question:

What’s your favorite book or movie about World War I?

The winner will be announced on Thursday.

Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War appears in stores on March 1, 2016. It is available for pre-order in print or e-book from B&N and Amazon, or in print from Indiebound, Books-A-Million, Powell’s, and wherever else books are sold.

My story, “The Record Set Right“, is being pre-released as an e-short. If you pre-order “The Record Set Right” on Kindle or Nook, it will be magically whisked to your device on January 26, 2016– over a month before the anthology release date!


Teaser Tuesday: Fun with Covers
November 17th, 2015

There’s more Forgotten Room cover fun! Our editor just sent us the cover for the large print edition of The Forgotten Room:

The Forgotten Room Large Print

I love the way it echoes the key from the hardcover cover… as though someone plucked the key off the first cover and is using it to open the door to that forgotten room.

FR_options_type.indd The Forgotten Room Large Print

Only two months left until The Forgotten Room appears in stores!