Monday, October 19, 2009

A Mystic Ending

Today award-winning author Patricia Rice returns to the lair. In addition to being a three-time RITA finalist and gracing numerous best-seller lists, she has won the Romantic Times Career Achievement and Lifetime Achievement Awards, and her paranormal historical, Merely Magic, was one of the Romantic Times reviewers' 200 all-time favorite books. Pat joins us today to discuss Mystic Warrior, the final book in her wonderful Mystic Isle series.

Welcome, Pat! For readers new to the series, what's the Mystic Isle, and how do these books fit together?

The Mystic Isle is invisible to the human eye, hidden behind illusion to protect the valuable Chalice of Plenty. The inhabitants have lived there for centuries, developing into a race with physical and psychic powers not found elsewhere on earth. In the first book of the series, MYSTIC GUARDIAN, the Chalice leaves the island in the hands of a half-human, half-mystic mermaid. Without the Chalice, the island begins to deteriorate, so the islanders must seek it out. In each book of the trilogy, one of the most powerful people on the island must set out in search of the elusive Chalice, unaware that the Chalice has a purpose in leaving the island.


How did you come up with this concept?

Hear me laugh! Not easily is the fastest answer. Characters tend to come to me first, in rather vivid images. I knew the heroine of the first book was a form of mermaid desperate to save her home and family in Brittany, a country on the brink of revolution. And the hero needed to be a golden god. Very strange characters lurk in my subconscious! I can’t remember how the invisible island came to be. It sort of emerged from the mists, as it were. From there, a lot of head to desk pounding ensued, accompanied by some extremely creative and often hilarious brainstorming sessions.

The French Revolution is an unusual setting, but you've woven it into the character conflicts in all three books. How does it play into this last one?

You are either very perceptive or an English major, Nancy. In my character-driven mind, people are more important than battles or politics. In romance, one needs “inciting incidents” to drive the protagonists out of their normal world. By the time the trilogy reaches the last book, MYSTIC WARRIOR, my Mystic Isle is mirroring the same sort of class revolution happening in France. My heroine isn’t a “queen” per se, but she’s the next in line of the powerful leading family. And she can’t stop her country from self-destructing. She needs the aid of a man who has been banished from the island years before, a man of essentially peasant extraction who is intent on changing the world, who has joined the revolutionaries on the Continent. Lissandra has never left the island, she’s too valuable, but she must step into the human world for the first time to find the revolutionary renegade she once loved because Murdoch has powers greater than her own that her family failed to recognize. So there’s revolution in a nutshell—the desperate versus the status quo.

You're now selling ebooks of your Magic series, which I loved. Can you tell us a little about those books?

Oh, the Magic books are wicked fun! The Malcolms are descendants of a long line of psychics and metaphysically challenged women . Although, since these are Georgian historicals, the women barely escape being called witches, usually by marrying powerful lords. Their nemeses are the extremely logical, scientific Ives’ men who aren’t about to believe that one can paint the future or smell danger. I had entirely too much fun writing those books and had so many people ask for the earlier books to complete their set, that I asked Belgrave House to issue them as e-books.

If you’re interested, here’s the link.

Could we have a peek inside Mystic Warrior?

As if a fire-breathing dragon lurked in the shadows under the trees, a cloud of smoke engulfed her, and Lissandra coughed harshly. Curse the gods, but this was worse than climbing the volcano’s slope. She could feel the heat through the soles of her shoes.

A rabbit dashed across her foot. She tripped and caught her balance on a tall standing stone. The rock was so hot, she quickly withdrew her palm before it burned.

She dragged her gown up from where it tangled her feet, and held the fabric in her hands, using her Aelynn strength to stride faster. She doubted anyone could see her abnormal speed in this murk, and her lungs would appreciate a hasty departure.

A geyser of fire flamed upward through the layers of decaying vegetation on the side of the road. Startled, she halted. Was Murdoch out there, warning her to leave?

The devil she would.

Determined, she marched on, coughing harder in the thickening smoke. She would have this confrontation done with. The setting might be ominous, but it was certainly fitting—

A demon shot through the smoke at inhuman speed. Lissandra glimpsed only a blur of broad, filthy bare chest before iron arms tackled her waist. She shrieked as the creature tore her heels from the ground and tumbled with her into the ashes on the far side of the lane.

Another fiery geyser spewed into the air on the spot where she’d just been standing.

Muttered curses assaulted her ears. With bare arms propped on either side of her head and muscular thighs pinning her legs, the demon prevented her escape. In shock, Lissandra closed her eyes and screamed at this smothering male proximity. Her attacker covered her mouth with his hand.

Refusing to surrender, she locked her mental shields against any emotional assault and shoved at broad—naked—shoulders, with the intent of flinging her assailant into the air with her superior strength. Beneath her palms she encountered the grit of soot and ash and the powerful play of muscles, but no matter how much strength she applied, her attacker merely beat the ground with his fist.

The ground trembled. She opened her eyes in terror.

And watched the geyser of fire die.

Cursing tonelessly in several languages with phrases so vivid they scorched her ears, her attacker trapped her between his bulging arms, glared down at her through the smoke, and, after only a moment’s hesitation, covered her mouth with his.

Stunned by this invasion of her sacred person, Lissandra grabbed the monster’s arms and tried to pry him away. She kicked and struggled, but her screams were smothered by lips so commanding she almost forgot to fight.

She did forget to fight. Senselessly, she clung to the strong support of his arms and kissed him back. Or maybe not so senselessly. This kiss lived inside her heart …

…… and her memories. She had dreamed of this kiss so long… …

His mouth tasted of strong wine, his beard bristles chafed her skin, and the heavy desire consuming them erased rational thought. She parted her lips at her assailant’s insistence, drank his breath into her lungs, mated her tongue with his, and almost burst into flames .

Wow! I love that. And I love what comes after it, too.

You've had a long and varied career. Have you ever seen the market go through a cycle like this one? Do you have any advice for weathering it?


Oh wow, my crystal ball cracked with this cycle! Yes, I have seen “down” cycles caused by events over which we had little control. The worst one was when all the independent distributors were bought out, collapsed, or went bankrupt in a single summer back in the 90s. It took a year or more for the market to stagger back to recovery, and we lost a lot of wonderful authors in the process. Oddly enough, writers must eat, too, and if they can’t get contracts, they have to move into the salary-paying world.

This cycle is different, driven by the world economy more than anything in publishing. Before, the publishers survived. This time, I’m not sure they will, not as we’ve known them in the past. Yes, we’ll have big NYC publishing houses for a long time to come, because print books aren’t going out of favor in my lifetime. But I suspect the bigger publishers will eventually be spun off from the conglomerates that own them and will survive on “brand name” authors and niche markets. It will be the smaller publishers who provide us with our mass market reading “fix.” They’re more flexible and their overheads aren’t as high, so they may be able to weather the storm.

That said, I don’t see the big money for midlist authors that was once there. Not until this newly emerging market settles. The new platform should allow for tons of wonderfully inventive books, but they will have to be on the market for years before they become profitable. It should be very interesting.

Where do you see the market going? Have you read other books about the French Revolution? Would you rather visit Paris (without a revolution) or a tropical refuge, and what influences your choice?

Pat's giving away a couple of copies of Mystic Warrior to commenters today.


84 comments:

Virginia said...

Mine!

mariska said...

Hah : ) congrats Virginia!

s7anna said...

Hi Patricia,

I haven't read very many books set in the time period that you've framed the Mystic series in...I wonder though...are the books stand alones or do they need to be read in the order they were published?

Happy Reading!!!
Anna Shah Hoque
s7anna@yahoo.ca

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

I'm definitely going to have to get these Mystic books. They sound like so much fun. Great to have you here today, Patricia.

Keira Soleore said...

Well, I didn't get the GR, though it isn't often that I show up within the first five comments at The Lair, so that in itself is an accomplishment. For a Wench, anything's possible. Off to actually read blog.

Keira Soleore said...

Pat, great to see you here in The Lair. Do you see yourself continuing in the Mystic Isle and other magical tales for your next few books, or do you see yourself turning to other sub-genres?

Michelle said...

I love LOVE that little snippet of mystic warrior! I want to read more. Please count me in!

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Welcome back to the Lair, Pat!

HUGE thanx to Nancy for inviting you to join us again. It's such a treat to have you here. And LURVE that excerpt! Mystic Warrior sounds terrific!

I happen to LOVE Paris, so would pick it over very many other locations. The City of Light is just soooo beautiful... and the food is pretty darn YUM too! ;-)

AC
P.S. Congrats Virginia! Keep that chook out of trouble today.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Nancy! Great interview! Virginia, superb snag on the bird. I'm sure the GR will enjoy spending the day with his lady love...

Grins.

Now, on the the serious stuff...WELCOME Pat! We're delighted to have you in the Lair.

What a fabulous sounding series. I'm going to revisit tomorrow when I have brain cells and the ability to spell - i've retyped several words several times. I think I've stayed up too late! Ha!! :>

Anyway, I'll pop in again tomorrow, but in the meantime...WELCOME!

Michelle said...

sorry, i wanted to try going online from my phone and posted that last comment from it as a test. it was really hard to punch in all those letters...

hi miss rice! i hope you had a good weekend :)

hmmm... i don't recall reading any romance that was set in paris during the french revolution. but i'd pick paris to visit any day... i've never been there but it's on my list. living in hawaii most of my life i have enough of the tropical to last me a lifetime LOL

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Pat & Welcome. I've always been intrigued by the Mystic series and the disappearing island. I will hate to see this series come to an end.

Interesting observations about the publishing industry. I hope to be able to look back at some point and say "I remember when..."

Paris or a tropical refuge? I'd say either one works fine for me - take me away!

Blodeuedd said...

I'd go for Paris...no I changed my mind, we'll go with tropical.

Last thing I read about the French revolution must have been the Scarlett pimpernel

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

How far do you see this series going Patricia? I can't wait to get started and already worrying about when it is going to end.

Helen said...

Congrats Virginia have fun with him

This series sounds awesome I have heard a lot of great things about it I must get out and hunt the first one down and start reading them

I would love to see Paris one day one of my daughters has been there I think it only fair that I should go as well LOL.

Have Fun
Helen

Christine Wells said...

Pat, a warm welcome to the Lair and thank you, Nancy, for bringing Pat to talk to us today.

I was very interested in what you were saying about the future of the market, Pat, even though it gives me the shivers! Thanks for giving us your perspective.

MYSTIC WARRIOR sounds like a fantastic book. You do have an amazing imagination. To answer the question, I've enjoyed many books set in the French Revolution. One in particular, by Isolde Martyn, called Fleur de Lis, was a wonderful romance(and not a guillotine in sight!). As for settings, it's always what the author does with the setting that's the important thing, to my mind. I never understand people who wouldn't read a book just because it was set in x, y or z place. If I enjoy reading about the characters, they can take me anywhere.

Patricia Rice said...

I am always amazed at how many people are on the internet in the wee hours of the morning. Of course, others are amazed that I'm at work at this hour...
Thanks for having me back! It's always a treat to be here, chasing the chook around. "G"

The Mystic Isle books are a trilogy. I have hazy ideas for more but a far more demanding idea for a set of Regency historical romances that I want to write first. We'll see how the universe turns! Each book is a romance complete unto itself, so they stand alone. They do take place over a distinct period of time so you'll see the other couples and the Chalice will be in different places, depending on which book you pick up first.
Only MYSTIC RIDER sets foot in Paris, though, so you're far more likely to see tropical isle!

Didn't mean to scare you with the market crystal ball, Christine! It's just a matter of applying our creativity...

Blogger is being obnoxious again and telling me I don't exist. If I disappear into the ether, you'll know it's right.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Mornin' Pat! Again, welcome. I realize in my punchy state last night I forgot to answer the questions. :>

I've read Roxanne St. Claire's French Kiss - NOT set in the revolution - but that's the last France-set book I've read. I think. :> I'd rather visit France because I'm not a beach/heat girl. So, totally, France. :> Besides, I want to spend a week just exploring the Louvre.

Anna Sugden said...

Welcome to the Lair, Pat! Your series sounds fascinating. I'm in awe of those of you who can develop such detailed worlds - I have enough trouble with my small contemporary settings!

Being the resident Brit, I'm afraid I'm not a fan of the French *g*, but I do find the French Revolution an interesting period. I haven't read many romances with French settings, though have seen several plays - Les Miserables and Madam de Sade, to name two. I think any period of turmoil and passion lends itself well to romance and intrigue - yes, even if it's French. LOL. There's something in the air, isn't there?

I can't stand Paris and I'm not fond of the Parisians (had one of the worst experiences of my life there), so I'll pick the tropical setting every time.

Nancy said...

Virginia, you were quick off the mark this morning! Congrats.

Mariska, better luck next time. :-)

Joan said...

Ok, real quick before I head out to the dentist (Sorry Minna :)

Do NOT tell me Mystic Warrior is the LAST one of this series!!!!

Therea are still warriors who need their story told!

Arghhhhhhhh

I think you did a wonderful job with these books and I devoured them like Halloween candy, Pat. I ESPECIALLY applaud you and your publisher setting a historical in a different time setting.

Now....hopefully...no cavities

Nancy said...

Anna, I see Pat has addressed your question about reading in order. Thanks for stopping by!

Nancy said...

Hi, Trish. These books are, indeed, fun to read. You know I'm a huge Anglophile, which means I'm not so keen on all things French. But I loved the way Pat worked the French Revolution into these books. It's a setting and a problem, but it's not what the books are about.

Nancy said...

Hi, Keira--As someone who's almost never in the first 5, I salute you for hitting that. Better luck next time on the GR!

Nancy said...

Hi, Michelle--thanks for stopping by!

Nancy said...

AC, I'm not the least surprised you've been to Paris. You've been to so many fabulous places. Just out of curiosity, where does Paris rank, over all, on your favorites list?

Nancy said...

Duchesse, I was about to make a flip comment about brain cells, and then I saw the time stamp on your post. Definitely up too late! I always figure it's time to go to bed when I can't type anymore.

Nancy said...

Michelle, you've lived in Hawaii? I've wanted to visit ever since seeing Magnum, P.I. (I was a huge fan of that show). I can see why a getaway would mean not tropical to you.

When the dh and I were in England before the boy was born, we stayed at a B&B, near Market Bosworth, with a couple of guys who were trainers for British Telecom. We went out to dinner with them, to a pub on a country lane we never would've found on our own. One of the guys was a history buff. He couldn't understand why I found the Wars of the Roses so fascinating or cared about visiting the battlefields.

"Five hundred years, it changes," he said. "Doesn't look anything like it did."

Which is probably true, but I have a strong imagination.

Anyway, the point of this lengthy digression is that he was fascinated by the American Civil War. He urged us to go see those battlefields, partly on grounds they wouldn't have changed all that much.

The dh and I marveled at the fact we'd gone to English battlefields because they intrigued me and met this British man who was dying to come here and see our battlefields, neither of us being interested in what was closer to home.

Nancy said...

Hi, Donna--some days I just want to be taken away, too! I think I'd pick the tropical island. Not only have I long wanted to visit Hawaii, but I don't really care about much in French history. Though the Louvre would be a powerful draw--the Mona Lisa and the Pieta under one roof, not to mention all the other fabulous things there!

Nancy said...

Blodeuedd, I LOVE The Scarlet Pimpernel! I found a DVD of the Leslie Howard/Merle Oberon version, and it's wonderful! Grainy, but wonderful. Howard may be best known on these shores as Ashley Wilkes, but his Percy Blakeney was great!

Then there was Anthony Andrews, with Jane Seymour and, marvelous as Chauvelin, Ian McKellan. Hallmark Hall of Fame, I think that might've been.

Anthony Andrews was everywhere for a while--the Pimpernel, Ivanhoe (I think), and Brideshead Revisited, not to mention a lot of other TV movies.

I also stayed glued to the Richard E. Grant version a few years back. I forget who else was in it.

And I do own, and have read, the book by Baroness Orczy. :-)

Nancy said...

Hi, Dianna--I love these books, so I naturally think you'll enjoy them. I hope the universe turns in a way that brings Pat back to them.

Nancy said...

Helen, I like your theory that since your daughter has been to Paris, you should get to go. I think I should get to visit every place the boy goes.

Nancy said...

Hi, Christine--I love Isolde Martyn's work, and Isolde herself is a lovely person. But I don't remember seeing that book. I'll have to look for a copy. Her Wars of the Roses medievals were wonderful, and so full of historical detail!

We met at the last DC National conference, not this most recent one. I think that was the year Isolde won Best First Book.

Nancy said...

Pat, blogger frequently tells me I've typed in the wrong password. And maybe I did. But it's still annoying when that happens.

Nancy said...

Jeanne, back already? That's not much sleep. You're acting like a writer on deadline. :-)

The dh would join you in choosing Paris. He's also not much for beaches and heat. However, as we headed out in a damp 50 degrees yesterday, he had no jacket because "it's not cold here." Hmph!

Nancy said...

Hi, Anna--you are confirming my reluctance to visit Paris. Aside from the Louvre, there just isn't much to draw me there.

Many years ago, the dh and I saw Les Miz from nosebleed seats in the West End. We loved it. But I confess I haven't read the book. Though I did read the Dumas Musketeers books.

Nancy said...

JT--here's hoping no cavities! Glad you could pop in before you left.

MsHellion said...

The only other book I've read about the French Revolution is A Tale of Two Cities, and I didn't so much read it as watch the movie...and I was greatly disturbed by it.

I think I would find other books interesting that featured it--because history is very fascinating to me, and that era was very interesting to read about. I would never want to live there.

Would I prefer to live in Paris or a tropical locale? Easy: the tropical locale. The influence? Because Paris would have French people and I prefer not to be sneered at for being one of those yokel, touristy Americans I am. In fact I'd rather basically any other country in Europe than France just because I'm pretty sure the people are nicer.

Nancy said...

MsHellion, a high school friend of mine lived in France for a year, for his job, and says he and his family all loved France, including Paris. But the city does have this snooty image. And Anna mentioned having a bad experience there. So I tend to view my old friend's report with some skepticism.

I haven't read A Tale of Two Cities, but I find the concept very disturbing (I did read the Classics Illustrated comic book in grade school, and I saw the TV movie years ago).

Anna Sugden said...

MsHellion - just want to say that you're spot on about those Parisians!! *g*

Come see us in England instead.

Patricia Rice said...

Joan, I'll admit it's hard to leave those superheroes behind! But that's the problem with writing only one book a year--it gives me way too much time to be distracted.

I'll certainly take the tropical island to Paris because I'm not a city girl and I love warmth. I've not spent a great deal of time in Paris, but city people are often a different breed, no matter what country you're in. At the time I was there, I found the French people we met to be as understanding of the teenagers and eccentric teacher we were chaperoning as anywhere else. We might have lost the teacher several times without their aid!

Cybercliper said...

The last novel I read that used the French Revolution was Abundance: A Novel of Marie Antoinette by Sena Jeter Naslund. It was a great book; little romance, lot of political intrigue, court shenigans, her life from 14 up to her demise. I usually don't read much from this time because frankly it was a fairly depressing time period.

The Mystic Isle series sounds like a wonderful tale and I'm looking forward to giving it a read. Thanks...

Janga said...

I'm another reader who hates to see the Mystic series come to an end. They are wonderful, distinctive books.

Most of the romances I can think of that make use of the French Revolution do so by having émigrés/ émigrées in England. I've read lots of those. MJP's Lady of Fortune is one of my favorites among the many. I love Tracy Grant's books, and she often uses threads that connect to the French Revolution without actually setting her books in that period.

Victoria Holt's The Devil on Horseback is set during The French Revolution, as are Roberta Gellis's The English Heiress, Pam Rosenthal's The Bookseller's Daughter, and Deborah Simmons's Silent Heart--not many among all the romances I can remember.

Paris has never been a place I dreamed of visiting, but Eloisa James's charming vignettes of her year in Paris are changing my mind.

Nancy said...

Pat, that teacher sounds as though she needed a keeper. That must've been quite a trip!

Nancy said...

Cybercliper, that book about Marie Antoinette sounds interesting.

Nancy said...

Janga, that's quite a list of books with French settings or characters. I didn't realize there were so many.

Those Duchess books of Eloisa James's are wonderful, aren't they?

catslady said...

Your books sound fascinating. Love the covers and love the titles even more!!! I pick Paris. I was lucky enough to visit years ago for a few days but I would love to go back. My husband was actually born in Paris (air force brat lol) and he is a big history buff). I love hearing and seeing the history of such "old" countries. Historicals are usually my first choice of genre but I also like mystery and paranormal - sounds like your books have them all!

Beth said...

Welcome back to the lair, Patricia! I love, love, LOVE the excerpt and HAVE to get these books *g*

But first, I have to get this book done so I'm heading to the writing cave :-)

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Morning everyone!

UGH! It is rainy and depressing here. I'd MUCH rather be in Paris or a tropical isle.

Nancy, to answer your question Paris rates pretty high on my list of cities I LURVE to visit. On my first visit, I was prepared to NOT like it at all but the city is just so beautiful, and I found the people to be no better or worse than other big city dwellers.

It definitely would take a week to thoroughly go through the Lourve, Duchesse. I also love, LOVE, LURVE the d'Orsay and the Rodin sculpture garden. The Eiffel Tower, Sacre Coeur, Notre Dame, Arc d'Triomph, La Defense, I could go on and on. And one of the BEST things about Paris is the Metro, which makes getting around so very easy. Plus it is color coded so you don't have to understand French.

Now, having gushed all that, there's NO WAY I would ever LIVE there. But then, I wouldn't live in NYC or San Francisco either! :-P

I've been dregging ye olde brain for romances set during the French Revolution and the only one I could think of, I will not mention title nor author because it was AWFUL! And it could have been set in ANY era for all the LACK of details the author failed to include. Very disappointing.

AC

Minna said...

Your books seem interesting!
I can't remember the last time I read a book set in France.

Nancy said...

AC, I'm glomming onto the "color coded so you don't have to understand French" bit. Definitely a tourist-friendly feature.

The dh much prefers the London Underground to the NY subway system. The Underground has a map on the platform, much as the DC Metro does, of all the stops in the direction you're going. So you can see at a glance whether this is, in fact, the platform you want. New York, OTOH, expects you to figure it out. This is my job when we travel together.

Nancy said...

Hi, Minna--

Thanks for stopping by!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Nancy said: Jeanne, back already? That's not much sleep. You're acting like a writer on deadline. :-)

Hahahah! Well...yeah. :>

BTW, recently caught a late night showing of the Leslie Howard, Merle Oberon version of the Scarlet Pimpernel. Magnificent. Just Magnificent.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Pat said: I found the French people we met to be as understanding of the teenagers and eccentric teacher we were chaperoning

Funny, Pat, I had this experience too! Ha!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Janga, I had forgotten the Victoria Holt Devil on Horseback. (Not just that it was set in Paris but forgotten it totally. Thanks for a reminder of a great book!)

Pat, the eccentric teacher we chaparoned throughout France was obsessed with wine labels. She collected them. So she would let us order wine at dinner. (Yep, that was cool!) Then she'd make us collect all the bottles and soak the labels off.

Rubes that we were, neither my roomie nor I knew what the bidet was for. Other than soaking off wine labels.

SNORK!

Patricia Rice said...

Soaking off wine labels in a bidet! I'm glad I wasn't drinking when I read that. "G" Our French teacher spoke a peculiar form of Western KY French, apparently. No one understood her but her students, so when she asked for directions, we could end up in sewers.

And I'll admit, I'm a Pimpernel fan. Saw the play, all the movies, and have the book. Honor or love, sigh...

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Virginia! Whoo hooo to the chook! Mariska, an honorable second!

Patricia and Nancy, what a great interview. And congratulations, Patricia, on the books. I've heard such good buzz about them.

I was really interested in your take on the market.

Actually I'm just reading Julia Child's memoir about learning to cook in Paris in the late 40s and early 50s. So at the moment, I'm drooling at the idea of a trip there. Having said that, when I visited Paris in the 80s, I didn't like it at all! But I suspect I'd feel differently about it now - for a start, I wouldn't be staying in a stinky youth hostel with unisex bathrooms that were utterly putrid. Amazing how that stuff can impact upon your experience!

Anna Campbell said...

Oh, the Pimpernel, be still, my beating heart! I thought Anthony Andrews was to die for - sink me! And Leslie Howard was pretty darn good in the old black and white one too.

Nancy said...

Jeanne wrote: BTW, recently caught a late night showing of the Leslie Howard, Merle Oberon version of the Scarlet Pimpernel. Magnificent. Just Magnificent.

Indeed. As my buddy Teal'c would say.

Trish introduced me to some Teal'c fans at M&M, not exactly the place I expect to meet them. :-)

Jeanne--Soaking off labels in the bidet? there was no sink? I mean . . . then you have to, you know, handle the labels.

D'you think the teacher maybe didn't know what the bidet was either?

Nancy said...

Pat, you saw the Pimpernel play? Is the soundtrack good? I thought about buying it but didn't want to do so "blind."

Nancy said...

Hi, Beth--Glad you could pop out of the cave for a minute. Good luck in there.

Nancy said...

Anna C., I hear you about the youth hostel. On my first trip to London, the toilet paper in the public bathrooms resembled the waxed paper in my mom's kitchen. It supposedly was "medicated." We didn't ask, against what.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Anna said:I wouldn't be staying in a stinky youth hostel with unisex bathrooms that were utterly putrid. Amazing how that stuff can impact upon your experience!


Ewww! That would color the view of it a bit. Well, more than a bit. :> Do go back. I'll bet you'll like it. Grins.

Pat, was LOL about the Western KY French and ending up in the sewers. We ended up in a not-so-nice part of town at one point when our somewhat tipsy chaperone told the cabbie the wrong address. It's funny now...

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Nancy said: Jeanne--Soaking off labels in the bidet? there was no sink? I mean . . . then you have to, you know, handle the labels.


Yep. But again, in our total teen ignorance...

Karin said...

I haven't read very many books set in Paris, but I prefer it to the tropical refuge. Not being much of a beach fan, I find I enjoy reading books about places I want to go to or have been to.

Anna Campbell said...

Nancy, my primary school used to have that toilet paper. Ugh! Not to put too fine a point upon it, but NO ABSORBENCY!!!!! This unisex bathroom even had urinals out in the open. Yuck! I got as sick as a dog and spent three days throwing up - I feel these two facts are not unconnected.

Nancy said...

Hi, Karin--My dh doesn't much love beaches, either. He'd pick Paris without having to think about it.

I also enjoy reading about places I'd like to visit someday. Like Iceland. And Norway. And Australia.

Nancy said...

Anna, the absorbency issue would be pretty much critical. Ick.

Not sure what you mean by "urinals out in the open," but it doesn't sound pretty. And being sick never helps!

Anna Campbell said...

Nancy, they basically had a boy's bathroom that girls could go into - so nothing was hidden away ;-) At least there were doors on the showers - there weren't on a hostel I went to in Switzerland. Now, that was scary! Oh, youth hostels! Not my cup of tea. Oh, five star hotels! Gimme, gimme, gimme!

Karin said...

I knew there was a reason I never stayed at a youth hostel when I've been traveling. That just scares me.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Anna said: Now, that was scary! Oh, youth hostels! Not my cup of tea. Oh, five star hotels! Gimme, gimme, gimme!

I'm with you, Anna. 5-star. Yes. NO HOSTEL. That not only sounds icky, it sounds dangerous.

Wait...I could work with that...bwah-ha-ha!!

jo robertson said...

Hi, Patricia, welcome to the Lair. Your books sound intriguing. I do love any tie-in to revolutionaries and causes.

Thanks for your comments on the market. I think we're all a little worried about selling in this down economy. But I think people will always love a good story well told.

Virginia said...

I have not sure I have read any books set in this time period but your series sounds awesome. I think I would love to visit Paris, but not during this time period except in a book. I love the covers of your books by the way, their beautiful! You've got me intrigued by this series and I am going to have to look for it. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo said: But I think people will always love a good story well told.

Well put and well said, Jo. And really encouraging. :>

Nancy said...

Anna, you're making me really glad I never did the hostel thing. The B&B where we stayed before going to Oxford, the summer I was a student there, had communal rooms (5 to a room, 3 and 2 who knew each other) and a shower down the hall, with unlikely hot water. But the TP was decent.

If you and Jeanne are going the five-star route, I'll come, too. I've never actually done that.

Nancy said...

Hi, Jo--Good stories well told are the essence of fiction. Well put!

Nancy said...

Virginia, aren't those covers great? I wouldn't like to visit Revolutionary Paris, either.

Paris when there was a barge moored across from the Ile de la Cite, with a six-foot, dark-haired "immortal" guy shooting a TV show? Count me in!

Patricia Rice said...

Nancy, I saw Pimpernel the first year it was on stage, but I spent more time gloating over the costumes than the music, so can't give you a review, sorry!

What a wonderfully fun this group is! I always enjoy my visits here. Guess I really need to organize my dates for the next book so my ambitious younger son heroes have a proper sendoff.

Nancy, are you picking our winners?

Nancy said...

Pat, glad you had a good time! We always enjoy having you.

We can confer re: winners. I'll post the usual treasure chest after we do.

Nancy said...

We may also have some more people pop in tonight.

Carol L. said...

Hi Pat,
Oh I hate to see it end. I loved Mystic Guardian. I didn't put it down until I finished it. I love your imagination. :)Got my fingers crossed. I enjoyed that blurb from Mystic Warrior. A great tease. :)
Carol L.
Lucky4750@aol.com

Nancy said...

Hi, Carol--

I hate to see it end, too. I never thought anyone would pull me into a series that takes place partly in France, but Pat did.

ddurance said...

I expect the market to steadily keep gravitating towards more ebooks. As you said, the economy has much to do with it, therefore buyers will look for the cheapest books and they probably won't be hardbacks.
I don't think I've ever read much of the French Revolution. I would love to visit Paris either way, especially if someone else were paying. Poor economy, you know. lol

Deidre

Nancy said...

Deidre, I'd be happy to go to Paris--or almost anywhere else--if someone else paid!

I do think we're moving more toward ebooks but not quickly. A lot of my college students do not read for recreation. The boy doesn't read the way we did. He has a lot of reading for school, but I don't think he has read a novel just to read it since early in the summer.

Cassondra said...

Pat, welcome back to the lair. It's so nice to see you here again.

Thanks for the update on this amazing series, and for the interesting insights into your writing and the publishing world as you see it.

I must admit--and this is such a selfish admission--that it's actually comforting to hear the plotting process described the way you do. I'm certainly not glad about your struggle. It's just that it sounds an awful lot like mine (characters appearing and vague misty ideas followed by head pounding), and given your brilliant work, that's kind of encouraging. (grin)

Nancy, wonderful blog and thanks so much for bringing Pat to visit again.

Virginia, good job nabbing the bird!