Friday, April 15th, 2016
Because every Pinkorama this year was, without doubt, a winner, the dominant theme in the voting being, “But how? How can you make me choose?”
The Convent of Peepsino edged out slightly ahead (Miss Gwen preens and blows a speck of dust off the tip of her parasol), but it was such a close-run thing all around that I’m just declaring it a group win.
Take a bow, Kayse, Colleen, Candace, Cassandra, and Rachel!
For anyone who missed them and would like to admire sugary artistry in action you can find (in the order in which they were submitted:
— The Convent of Peepsino by Kayse
— Amy and Richard’s Spy School Meets the Phantom Peep (plus video!) by Rachel
— Happily Peep After by Candace & Cassandra
— The Unpeepable Truth by Colleen
by clicking on either the title or the picture.
So many thanks for these amazing productions! Kayse, Colleen, Candace, Cassandra, and Rachel, if you email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know whether you’d prefer The Forgotten Room or Fall of Poppies (or one of the other books), I’ll send your prize your way!
The winning judge is… Maria! (Of Comment #20.) Congrats, Maria! Email me and I’ll send your book your way.
And now a word about Pinkorama to come: although the Pink series has officially wrapped up (although there may be some offshoots), I would be thrilled to keep the annual Pinkorama the, well, the annual Pinkorama as long as you’re still willing to Pinkorama with me.
What do you think? Shall we make a date for Pinkorama 2017?
Wednesday, April 6th, 2016
It’s time for a blast from Pinks past: a scene from Pink II, The Masque of the Black Tulip!
My Pinkorama is based on The Masque of the Black Tulip, Chapter 24: Amy and Richard’s Spy School Meets the Phantom Peep!
First, the Phantom Peep steals through Richard’s study… With Henrietta hot on his trail, candelabra in hand! She just misses the Phantom, but Miles shows up (with a typically untidy cravat) and they have a big falling out about their kiss. And the fact that Miles disappeared soon after. Hmph.
Everyone convenes in the parlor later to appear “normal” in case they are being spied on. The Tholmondelay twins suggest chasing the spy (Richard firmly disagrees); Hen suggests charades; Mrs. Cathcart says they need more tea; but Amy finally decides that Henrietta should sing while Miss Grey accompanies her. The rest is Pink history!
Find that Phantom Peep!
Henrietta: always just that moment too late to catch the villain…. But who is that handsome blue Peep with the floppy lock of sugar? Are those ginger biscuit crumbs on his beak?
Eight Angry Peeps– oh, wait, that’s another show. Henrietta sings, Miles pines, Richard sulks, and Amy is Amy.
Don’t you love Selwick Hall?
Thanks so much, Rachel, for bringing to life one of my very favorite scenes! It’s such fun to get to revisit the Tholmondelays– and, of course, Miles and Hen.
But I’ve been saving the very best bit for last…. Rachel made a video! Which absolutely cracks me up. You can check out the inner thoughts of the Peepwicks and Dorringpeeps as we cycle through the scene. Just click here to view!
Thank you, Rachel!!
Pinkorama #3 coming up tomorrow….
Wednesday, February 24th, 2016
It’s the final contest… of Black Tulip Anniversary Month.
As we bid Miles and Henrietta temporarily farewell (they’re heading off on a tenth honeymoon, since Miles is still trying to make up for botching the first one), it seemed only right to look to the future of the Dorrington family.
As some of you know, one of Henrietta and Miles’s descendants, Nicholas Dorrington, decided to take over a large chunk of my second stand alone novel, That Summer.
Not only did Nicholas have his great-great-great-great-grandparent’s love of ginger biscuits and perpetually floppy hair, he was a fount of information about the quirky characters who had inhabited his family, including the great-grandfather who had lived in sin with an actress (a Shakespearean actress, mind you, not a Gaiety Girl) and eventually married her.
So, for our final contest, here’s your question:
If you could see Dorringtons in either a prequel or sequel, what era would you choose? A medieval Dorrington? A Jazz Age Dorrington? A Dorrington in outer space? (“Luke, I am your ginger biscuit!”)
Two people will be chosen at random to receive a hardcover copy of That Summer. Ginger biscuits not included.
Wednesday, February 17th, 2016
Over the past decade, The Masque of the Black Tulip has made its way around the world, masking itself in a new cover for each new appearance.
US hardcover/ US paperback:
The UK/ French cover (which are surprisingly similar….):
The German/ Dutch covers:
The Russian/ Japanese covers:
The Spanish/ Portuguese covers:
(I’ve only put them in pairs to save space on the page, not out of any grand, organizational scheme.)
Which one do you like best?
One person will be chosen at random to receive a signed copy of The Temptation of the Night Jasmine, because Henrietta likes that book. (She gets to give love advice. It’s kind of her thing.)
Monday, February 15th, 2016
Thanks so much to everyone who participated in the second Black Tulip Anniversary Month contest! Henrietta and Miles very much appreciate everyone’s assurances of their happy (and gingery) future. They would fill you in on those ten years themselves, but Miles’s mouth is currently full of biscuit crumbs.
The winner of the signed hardcover of The Masque of the Black Tulip is…
Congrats, Mary! If you email me at email@example.com, I’ll put your prize in the mail to you.
Stay tuned for another Black Tulip Anniversary Month contest coming up on Wednesday….
Sunday, February 14th, 2016
Since it’s Black Tulip Anniversary Month, Henrietta and Miles (and I) would like to wish you a very happy Valentine’s Day, filled with hearts, flowers, and lots of love, in all its many and varied forms.
As our Valentine’s Day gift to you, here is a short story that I wrote four years ago as a Valentine’s Day gift to my readers: Bunny & Biscuits: A Very Dorrington Valentine’s Day, a quick look-in on Miles and Henrietta on their first Valentine’s Day, as spies once again threaten to disrupt the festivities….
(With many thanks to Miss Eliza for picking the title!)
Just click here to read the (free) story!
Happy reading and happy Valentine’s Day!
Wednesday, February 10th, 2016
Here it is, our second Black Tulip Anniversary Month contest!
It’s been ten years in real time since The Masque of the Black Tulip was first published, but it got me thinking. When we left Henrietta and Miles in Black Tulip, it was summer of 1803 and they were both in their early twenties.
What would life be like for Henrietta and Miles ten years on, in 1813?
Are they still stumbling over French spies in the shrubbery? Has Henrietta managed to redecorate Loring House as an exact replica of Uppington House? Did Miles’s parents ever return from the Continent? (And, if so, did they survive their initial encounter with Lady Uppington, who is still exceedingly cross over their abandonment of young Miles?) And has Miles finally succeeded in wresting that ginger biscuit recipe from Cook? Inquiring minds want to know.
So here, should you choose to accept it, is your challenge:
What do you think Hen’s and Miles’s life is like in 1813?
Your answer can be as short or as long, as serious or as silly as you like. Just post in the comments section below. One person will be chosen at random to receive a first edition, signed hardcover of The Masque of the Black Tulip. The winner will be announced on Monday.
Monday, February 8th, 2016
Miles is trying to persuade Cook to make ALL the cookies, so while he’s otherwise occupied (and Hen is busy gloating over STILL being everyone’s favorite heroine), I’m here to tell you that the winner of the first of the Black Tulip Anniversary Month Contests is…
Alexandra! (Of Comment #138)
Congrats, Alexandra! If you email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’ll put your books in the mail to you.
More Black Tulip Anniversary Month fun (including another contest) coming up soon!
Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016
Look what I found when I moved earlier this year?
Two original ARCs of The Masque of the Black Tulip!
But they looked rather lonely by themselves, so I decided to pair them with a few friends: the section of the Pink series I tend to think of as “Henrietta and Co”, Pink III up through Pink VI.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a pile of books must be in want of a reader, which means… it’s time for our first Black Tulip Anniversary Month contest!
When I decided to hold a series of contests to celebrate the tenth anniversary of The Masque of the Black Tulip, one contest idea leaped out at me. (No, not you, Turnip– you’re a character, not a contest. And, please, take off that tulip costume!)
If there’s one thing anyone thinks of when they think of the hero of The Masque of the Black Tulip, it is….
“My manly physique? My floppy lock of hair?”
Okay, Miles. I know it’s your anniversary and all that, but you’re meant to stay in the book, remember? Ix-nay on the commentary.
As I was going to say, before I was so rudely interrupted, the one thing I associate most with Miles Dorrington is….
“His utterly brilliant and beautiful wife who really does far more to thwart French spies than some flower-named siblings one could mention?”
Has my book sprung a leak? Now it’s Henrietta playing peanut gallery. I knew I should have booked them on that tenth anniversary cruise….
In any event, when I think of The Masque of the Black Tulip, I think of… ginger biscuits. (Also French spies, but they’re less scrumptiously delicious.)
So, for your first anniversary month contest, here’s your question:
— What’s your favorite kind of cookie?
Also, if you feel like contributing a ginger biscuit recipe, please do! I’ll do a biscuit recipe round-up on the website later this month, including the one contributed by Christine for her Pink Carnation Cookery series last year.
One winner will be chosen at random to receive a vintage 2004 advance review copy of The Masque of the Black Tulip, plus copies of The Deception of the Emerald Ring, The Seduction of the Crimson Rose, The Temptation of the Night Jasmine, and The Betrayal of the Blood Lily.
I’ll also be running this same contest on my author Facebook page for an identical pile of books– so feel free to double your chances by entering both places!
Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016
In all of the Forgotten Room excitement, I completely missed Miles’s and Henrietta’s tenth anniversary! It’s been ten years now since The Masque of the Black Tulip, the second book in the Pink Carnation series, appeared in print.
Over the course of those ten years, Miles and Henrietta have won every single popularity contest ever held on this website (stop smirking, Henrietta!); they’ve appeared, in one way or another, in ten of the twelve Pink Carnation novels; they’ve starred in their own Valentine’s Day novella, Bunny & Biscuits; and they have consumed untold numbers of ginger biscuits.
Happy Anniversary, Henrietta and Miles!
To make it up to them, I’ve decided to declare this February Black Tulip Anniversary Month. I’ll be posting the first of four contests (one per week) here on the website later today. I’ll also be posting some outtakes and other tidbits, as time permits.
Stay tuned for the first Black Tulip Anniversary Month event later today!