Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Most Eagerly Ours - Allison Chase!

hosted by Donna MacMeans


I've been looking forward to bring Allison Chase to the lair. After sharing a couple of emails, I feel like I've found a kindred spirit. I think you'll feel the same. We're talking today about Allison and her latest novel MOST EAGERLY YOURS. Romantic Times Magazine calls this "A smart mystery with slight gothic overtones, this romance has an intelligent heroine and sexy hero, plots against the queen, intriguing twists and surprises at many corners." My kind of book!

So let's get to know Allison. Do you have a dreaded day job? Any interesting hobbies? What got you started into writing? Who are your influences?

Thanks Donna. I've been looking forward to spending a day with the bandits. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I don't have a day job. I have in the past, usually some form of writing, either editing for a reference book publisher, or ghost writing for a little company that published memoirs -- which is kind of ironic when you think about it, since I went on to actually write ghost stories in my Blackheath Moor books.

LOL, I'm guessing that explains the "gothic overtones".

Right now I'm writing full time and loving it, although knock on wood because you never know what the future will bring. But even when I had a day job and my kids were young, I found, or rather made, time to write. I remember getting up before dawn to write for an hour before getting my daughters up for school. That's dedication, because I am SO not a morning person.

But I digress. What got me started writing? Well, learning how, for one. Seriously, as soon as I learned how to make sentences, I started writing stories, usually romantic ones. At least as romantic as my little fairytale-infused mind could conjure! Luckily, I got over the fairytale thing, but not the romance. Although having said that, I wasn't really a "romance reader" until after my first daughter was born. Confession: I was once one of those college-bred literary snobs who believed there was nothing of substance to be found in a romance novel.

I know!! What a dope! But don't worry, a good friend finally set me straight and my love affair with the genre began -- as a reader and as a writer, because suddenly I'd found my focus and my passion. I've never looked back! Some of my favorites over the years have included Teresa Medeiros, Laura Kinsale, Julianne MacClean, Connie Brockway, Mary Balough, Judith Ivory -- to name a few. Their amazing talents have inspired me to always push myself and dig really deep to produce my best work. You can never stop learning. There's always room for improvement.

Hobbies, you ask? History nerd here! Yes, I am a historical version of a Trekkie (I'm actually kind of one of those, too), and I do things like collect period costumes and occasionally find excuses to wear them. We also collect period weapons (replicas - I'm afraid of the real thing!) and on nice days we'll take our bows and arrows out to the backyard for a little target practice. Just my way of keeping things historical. Other than that I love nothing more than reading a good book.

You've written some great historicals as Lisa Manuel and, of course, the Blackheath Moor books, so why switch to Victorian?

I decided I needed a new challenge. So I went time-shopping! Victorian made a fabulous fit.

The Victorian Age has the reputation of being staid and boring, but not so! Enormous changes were happening during those years -- economically, socially, politically, you name it. This was a society in flux, in ways the world really hadn't seen previously. A lot of it had to do with the major shift from farming to industry, which started spreading the wealth around a lot more, as well as to the revolutionary notion that it might be a good thing to start educating more
than just the very wealthy. The result was a surge in business and technology -- and tons of material for subplots and setting. How could I resist?

But to really understand the age, I started off reading about the person who gave it its name: Victoria herself. As I learned about her childhood, my heart completely went out to her. If you saw the movie, The Young Victoria, you'll have an idea of how alone and under her mother's thumb she lived, but there's even more to the story. Initially not expected to wear the crown, she grew up forgotten and neglected in cramped apartments in Kensington Palace, amid shabby furnishings and often less-than-adequate food. She had NO friends to speak of -- her mother simply didn't permit it. The Duchess of Kent was determined to keep her daughter emotionally dependent only on her, in the hopes that if Victoria ever did wear the crown, she -- Mom -- would have full control over royal policies. Often at odds with her mother, the only person Victoria considered a true friend was her governess, Louise Lehzen. How sad is that?

So this inspired your series?

As I read, I thought, Oh! This lonely little girl needs some real friends, confidantes she could depend on through thick and thin. But how? She wasn't even permitted to speak to the servants who waited on her. All right then, they would have to be secret friends...with some kind of connection to her family, yet not important enough to be openly acknowledged once Victoria became heir apparent.

That's how Her Majesty's Secret Servants were born! The four Sutherland Sisters, Laurel, Ivy, Holly and Willow, have
known Victoria since she was a toddler, due to their fathers' military connections. Even after the fathers died, Victoria's mother continued to allow occasional visits, until it was finally revealed to Victoria, at age 11, that she was next in the royal sucession. That day the sisters swore their allegiance to their distraught future monarch, pledging to be her secret servants if ever she needed them. The Sutherlands saw little of the princess after that, until one rainy night shortly before her coronation, when the young queen shows up at their modest London home with a huge favor to ask. A dangerous one...

In Book 1, MOST EAGERLY YOURS, Laurel, the eldest, is the first to be called. The Queen is threatened by her jealous cousin, George Fitzclarence, who is known for speaking treason. She asks Laurel to pose as a wealthy widow and use her charms to win George's trust, then find out what he might be plotting. Laurel is prepared for the risks of acting a part, but not for the formidable obstacle she encounters in the Earl of Barenforth -- George's friend and a notorious rake, whom Victoria has warned her to avoid...

An undercover agent for the Home Office, Aidan Phillips, Earl of Barensforth, is on the trail of a financial hoax involving alchemy, murder...and George Fitzclarence. When a lovely young widow wanders into his path and turns his well-laid plans on end, he senses she is hiding something. Aidan is no stranger to seduction, or to the wiles of beautiful women. And he intends employing a few wiles of his own to uncover the lady's secrets...

MOST EAGERLY YOURS is available now.

This really sounds awesome. I'd encourage everyone to check out an excerpt at www.allisonchase.com. So what comes next?

Next up will be Ivy's story in OUTRAGEOUSLY YOURS, where Victorian physics and the powers of electromagnetism bring her face to face with a dashing but reputedly mad scientist. Simon de Burgh's sister has stolen something of great importance from the queen -- and Ivy must get it back before anyone finds out! Ivy is willing to set propriety aside and risk all for her queen, but is she about to enter a laboratory of horrors, or discover her heart's desire in the arms of the Mad Marquess of Harrow?

OUTRAGEOUSLY YOURS will be out in December.

So now it's your turn. As this series involves childhood friends and secret clubs. Tell us about your childhood clubs. Did you have a secret club? Were boys allowed? Did you have a special name? Allison has offered a copy of MOST EAGERLY YOURS to one lucky commenter. Hopefully, she'll make her new release most eagerly yours (grin).

77 comments:

chelleyreads said...

hi!

Anna Campbell said...
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Anna Campbell said...

Chelley, you beat Lime! How did you do it? Congratulations!

Allison and Donna, thoroughly enjoyed the interview. Allison, congratulations on the release of the first of your Victorian stories. It sounds absolutely great! I agree with you about how sad Victoria's childhood and young womanhood was - not at all like a princess, really! Wasn't the Young Victoria a feast for the senses? Loved the clothes and the houses and all the art direction stuff.

Helen said...

Congrats chelleyreads have fun with him

Allison and Donna great post and Allison I love the sound of these books I do love books in a series and about childhood friends excellent I have added Most Eagerly Yours to my must have list.

As for childhood clubs I didn't have any although I loved reading about them some of my favourite books when I was a child were Enid Blyton's Secret Seven and Famous Five all about mystery adventure true friends and lots of fun maybe I spent too much time reading instead of creating childhood clubs.

Congrats on the release Allison and thanks Donna for inviting Allison along today so as we can get to "know" her.

Have Fun
Helen

Minna said...

The childhood clubs I was in tended to be extremely short lived.

Anna Sugden said...

Welcome to the Lair, Allison! And, thanks Donna for a great interview. Very much looking forward to reading your book, Allison - it sounds fascinating.

As one who collects autographs and memorabilia, and my hubby collects antique maps, I can understand your being a collector. Hubby actually studies the maps with a magnifying glass to learn the social history. He's having fun at Cambridge at the moment, learning all about our history too - after a lifetime as a scientist!

Donna MacMeans said...

Chelleyreads! The rooster is flying out to your place. Congratulations! (he was getting tired of the lack of sun in Oho of late - I know).

Donna MacMeans said...

Anna - The lush photography of Young Victoria was fabulous - but I'd forgotten until I went searching for a good photo for the blog - about the sensuousness of her relationship with Prince Albert captured on film. Lots of smoldering there. They did a great job.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Helen -

I think you have your own childhood club with the brood of grandkids (grin).

I remember having a club of sorts with my girlfriends when I was little. Mostly it involved sleepovers and practicing our "yearning-to-be-teens" dance moves, but I do remember one year we tried to look like Christmas elves (as best as one could without specific costumes) and sang along to Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas carols. Fortunately, no one actually saw us (grins).

Donna MacMeans said...

Minna -

Even if the clubs were short-lived, I hope the friendships remained long.

I'm not sure what happened to my childhood friends, not even sure I remember all their names. Hmmm...maybe I'll have to explore facebook later.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Anna -

I swear one of these days I'm going to show up on your doorstep for that research trip - and part of the trip will be a tour of your husbands maps. (Better that than mapping your husband - I leave that to you!)

Caren Crane said...

Chelleyreads, congrats on snatching the chook!

Allison, how marvelous to have you hear. We most assuredly ARE eager to have you with us! This series sounds fantastic. I adore Regency and Victorian-era romances and ones with intrigues are always especially great reads.

As to secret clubs, my siblings and various neighborhood kids formed so many, it's hard to think of one that particularly stands out. Our favorite meeting place was either: a) the treehouse in a mock orange tree in our backyard; b) the mulberry tree in the creek behind our house; or, c) the tiny concrete storage bunker in an empty lot beyond our next door neighbor's house.

The clubs were always a matter of who was friendly with whom that day, who we were mad at or whose feelings we wanted to hurt. Kids are mean and we were no exception! My oldest sister was the worst of the lot. Love her dearly, but she had a mean streak a mile wide.*g*

I remember trying to have a quiet club meeting in the treehouse and her getting her best friend Robin (a stinky boy) to help her pelt the treehouse with half-rotten mock oranges. Good times, I tell ya.

We lived on a dead end street with an abandoned rock quarry at the end and a highway on the opposite side of the quarry. It made for interesting childhood adventures and dares, let me tell you!

Maureen said...

Congratulations on the new series Allison! It sounds very exciting. I remember there were a group of girls in our neighborhood and we were always coming up with some club or other but the one that I remember is the Donny Osmond club where you had to come up with a unique fact that no one else had said to join.

Christie Kelley said...

Hi Allison, welcome to the lair and congratulations on your release. Donna, the interview was great.

The book and series sound awesome and I hear the thud of yet another book landing on the TBR pile.

I don't really remember having any real secret clubs as a young girl. There weren't any boys my age that lived on my street and my brothers were much older than me.

Marnee said...

Hi Allison! This book sounds so interesting to me. I love a little gothic and I think the idea of secret servants is so cool. Can't wait to read.

As for secret clubs, I grew up so far in the country, we didn't have a lot of kids to play with. We couldn't afford not to include everyone. LOL!

Allison Chase said...

Good morning, ladies! Thanks for having me today. I see I'm among some wonderful talent in this group! Donna, thanks for a awesome job putting the post together! Sorry to be rolling in here so late - didn't I mention that I'm not a morning person?

Those childhood clubs sometimes only lasted that hour before everyone had to go inside to dinner - but that doesn't mean they weren't an important part of growing up! They were really about the bonds of best friends and sharing secrets. I have to tell you, just last week I was reunited, through facebook, with my very best friend from elementary school, and in some ways it's as if our friendship was never interrupted! So those early bonds are often stronger than we, as adults, think they were.

Allison Chase said...

Anna, I love maps, too! I have a book called The History of London In Maps, which traces the development of the city from the Middle Ages through the 1980s. I love poring over the pages with a magnifying glass and figuring out what existed when. Wow, that's pretty nerdy, isn't it?

Allison Chase said...

Helen, I also read some of the Famous Five books. Five Go Out To the Mystery Moor comes immediately to mind. Maybe that's where I first developed a love for mysterious, misty moors like the ones in my Blackheath Moor books.

Gillian Layne said...

These stories sound so fun! I think the Victorian age is amazing--so complex and ever-changing. I'll be looking for your book today.

No real childhood clubs--but the local farm kids and I used to go werewolf hunting on foggy mornings in our woods. Werewolves of the Midwest...now there's a title for you. ;)

Allison Chase said...

Werewolve hunting on foggy mornings?? Sounds like a pretty edgy bunch of kids, lol! Ever find any?

Werewolves of The Midwest - that is SUCH a great title! I bet that would sell...

Kirsten said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
denise said...

I didn't have any secret clubs.

I would love your book.
csdsksds[at]gmail[dot]com

Donna MacMeans said...

Caren - Your childhood neighborhood with the quarry and all sounds like it could be the scene of some great adventures - and boys sure were stinky at that age!

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Maureen - so...what was your secret fact? Did it have to be real? Or just pretend real? Or was it really more like gossip. Hey - would that make you the original gossip girls? (grins)

Gannon Carr said...

Hi, Allison! It's great to see you here in the Lair, and as you already know I loved MOST EAGERLY YOURS (as my review at TRD showed). I can't wait for Book 2! I want to know all about the Sutherland sisters and more about young Victoria. :-)

I'm sure I had some clubs with my friends when I was younger, but I can't remember the specifics. My sisters and I had neighbors who had a fabulous playhouse that we all used to hang out in all summer...playing school! LOL Why is that when we couldn't wait for school to be over??

Virginia said...

Congrats Chelley on getting the rooster form lime today!

Hi Allison, your book sound great and I would love to read this series! I can remember having a club sort of with my girlfriend when we where young. We had our meetings in her dad's camper! I can't remember if boys were aloud but we did discuse the quite a bit!

Katharine Ashe said...

Allison, congrats on your new series! (and, oh my gosh, such a hunky hero on this cover, yum!) Please, never ever be embarrassed to admit you are a full-time writer. What most writers would give for that! And I'm so glad you came to your literarily high-brow senses and started reading romance--and writing it!

My sisters and I used to pretend we were the characters from Nancy Drew. We'd run around our yard, chasing clues and villains and being very blatantly clandestine about it. ;)

Caren, I love your description of your three clubhouse spots. So vivid!

Kirsten, Nancy Drew aside, I remember most summer days biking by myself to the old public library (in a Victorian-era gray stone house) and sitting in the damp, musty basement reading reading reading...

Blodeuedd said...

I was in a secret club, called Sulan, it means the bottom of the shoe. It was boys, my brothers friend who built tree house...how I managed to tag a long I do not know, I even climbed that huge tree. I just wanted to be in ;)

Pamela Cayne said...

Most Eagerly Yours is next in my TBR pile and that lovely cover is just urging me to hurry! I love the Victorian era and can't wait for all four books. Congrats, Allison!

Allison Chase said...

Blodeuedd, how cool that your club had a secert name no one else would understand!

I'm seeing something of a common thread here - reading! Sometimes best friends were definitely inside books, and their adventures were our secret escapades. Nancy Drew, the Famous Five...one of my favorites was A Wrinkle In Time, which even had a little romance. Unfortunately it didn't become a series until I was much older - oops, am I dating myself?

Allison Chase said...

A library in an old Victorian house? Katharine, I'm jealous!

Nancy J. Cohen said...

I love disguise stories...and mysteries combined with the Victorian age, how cool is that? I've been a fan of yours since your Lisa Manuel days and I'll certainly follow your new series. Secret clubs? I did have one but don't even remember the name. I vaguely recall meeting in a friend's walk-in closet as our club house. Obviously, I was a lot smaller. Nowadays we use our walk-in closet to cower in during hurricanes.

Becke Davis said...

Oh, Donna, I'm so excited to read about Allison's book! I'm really getting into these gothic-y historicals; I'll definitely check this one out.

Becke Davis said...

And Chelley, congrats on nabbing the GR! I hope you are feeling energetic - he's a real handful!

Lydia Dare said...

Allison -

The series sounds awesome! I haven't yet seen Young Victoria yet, but I intend to soon. They were filming it at Arundel castle when I was there a few years ago.

Allison Chase said...

Nancy, meeting in the closet reminds me of The Witch, The Lion, And The Wardrobe. I remember hoping - wishing - to find that secret door into Narnia!

I want to thank everyone so far for their congrats and support for this release! It's been exciting, but never more so than when friends and colleagues are sharing in the fun. Hey, wanna form a secret club...? :-)

Allison Chase said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jo robertson said...

Hi, Allison, welcome to the Lair and a big thanks to Donna for bringing you!

Your series sounds delightful. I love stories that involve real people and imagined happenings about them. Can't wait to read MOST EAGERLY YOURS!

Congratulations on the release of this new series.

jo robertson said...

Childhood friends and clubs. My little brother is only seventeen months younger than I, so we were always in league to do "secret" things and keep them from my sister who's two years older. I was a bit of a tomboy so our adventures were always pretty daring and dangerous!

Donna MacMeans said...

Gannon -

LOL on playing school - we did that as well. As the youngest in the group, I was always the designated pupil and the subject always seemed to be math. (Hmm...do you think that's why I ended up in Accounting?)

Donna MacMeans said...

Lydia -

Did you get to see the filming of Young Victoria? How very cool!

Pat Cochran said...

Great interview, ladies!

No secret childhood clubs for me!
I was too busy being the eldest in
a family with nine children. Of course, with my sibs and all the
cousins (my Dad's family had ten
children!) I guess we made up our
own clubs! LOL!!

Pat Cochran

p226 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
p226 said...

We had a "formal" secret club or two. The first was one for which we actually constructed a "clubhouse." The rules for membership were pretty simple. You had to be able to fight. We allowed no wimps in our "secret club," nor for that matter, into our circle of friends. We played rough. If no one went home bleeding at some point in the day, it was probably a boring one.

We allowed one girl to be in the club, because, well, she could (and often did) kick all of our asses. She was a beautiful creature, too. In fact, I think she was my first "girlfriend." My first kiss ever was in that "clubhouse," though it was really just plywood weakly nailed together and tied to an old fence. It basically turned into a sauna in the North Carolina sun. Dusty, sandy, and hot as hell, but we stayed in it anyway. Hahah, man, that was one tough chick. No clue what happened to her.

After I moved to WV our "secret clubs" wound up moving from backyard lots to impenetrable brier thickets deep in the woods. Unless you knew the path into these thickets, you weren't getting in without shredding your clothes and skin. Over time, however, our "clubs" started less resembling clubs in function and behavior, and more resembling gangs. This was well before the modern "gangsta" culture. But in retrospect, functionally, we were pretty damned close to the modern definition. Ahhhh, the bad ole days.

Signed,
-P226, the banditas' resident reformed thug.

p226 said...

I sure wish Blogger let you edit your own comments. :P I hate catching an error five seconds after I click "publish comment."

Joan said...

Allison, welcome to The Lair!

Your book sounds wonderful and the cover....(fans self)

Looking forward to reading it!

Anna Campbell said...

P226, I always love your posts! Gangsta or not. And yeah, I agree about being able to fix a typo!

Allison Chase said...

P226 - sounds like you had the original Fight Club. Rule #1: Never talk about Fight Club!

Pat, I wonder if your family could have taken on P226's gang...

Ooh, watching The Young Victoria being filmed...now that's cool!

Helen said...

Donna

The grandkids are an awesome club especially when they are all here at my place I am sure they think Nana's place is and adventure for them LOL no 5 is due in about a week can't wait to give her a cuddle

Have Fun
Helen

Donna MacMeans said...

Pat - It was probably just as well you guys didn't have a clubhouse - you all couldn't fit!

As one of five kids living in a small Baltimore row house, I understand how family members can form their own sort-of clubs. My brother and I were the readers in the family. We were also the closest in age. There were lots of times I remember us hiding out reading.

Donna MacMeans said...

P226 - I do love your posts. A sauna, huh. I can see that as a clubhouse for boys, not sure the girls would have tolerated staying in the heat. Not that they're wimps, just more sensible about bodily comforts (grin).

Why is it those typos are never so obvious until after one hits send? It's my own particular bugaboo, I admit. Glad I'm not alone.

Allison Chase said...

Donna and p226, you should see the typos my editor finds in my manuscripts. My eyes see what they want to see. Awful.

Deb said...

i wasn't in a club as a child, but when I first started teaching, there were 6 or 7 single teachers at my school. We would gather after school on Thursday nights at a local restaurant and have supper and sit and de-stress and talk. Eventually, married women also joined our group and we called ourselves the (Name of the supper club) Group. We seldom do this any longer because of kids and busy schedules.

Growing up, I always wanted to be in a group with Trixie Belden and her brothers and friend Honey. That would have been a fun group to join. :)

chelleyreads said...

that was pure luck my taking the GR away from Lime! but he'll be helping me do some spring cleaning :)

awesome interview allison and donna! i love the pretty yellow cover for most eagerly yours (i'm attracted to yellow covers the most so i LOVE anna's cover too). i love the queen victoria premise--she's definitely my favorite monarch! and i absolutely loved the movie Young Victoria with Emily Blunt.

as for secret clubs, my brother and i had one. my mom made a little lean-to using a broken link fence for her vines and was big enough that we could crawl underneath and used that for our club house.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hey Helen - forgot to say congrats on the impending No. 5!

Donna MacMeans said...

Deb -

Yum - love the idea of the adult club. My dh and I belong to a group of friends that meet for dinner every couple of months called the gourmet group. There's not much gourmet about our gathering, but food and wine does compliment our "catching-up." We've been meeting for a good twenty some years.
I guess some of us club-kids never grew up (grin).

Donna MacMeans said...

chelleyreads!

I wondered what happened to you! That's so sweet about the vines - what an ingenious mom (and one that probably enjoyed having you guys occupied). I used to throw a blanket over a card table on our front porch for my little ones. There's something special about having a place to hide or be secret, isn't there?

Linda Henderson said...

Your book sounds wonderful. We lived in the country when I was little so there wasn't anybody around but my two older brothers. My sister was 10 years older than me and married when I was 8 so she was to old to play with me. So no clubs when I was young.

Allison Chase said...

The old card table and a blanket, or two chairs and a blanket - I remember that! I did it, and my daughters did it. I guess it's one of those universal kid things.

catslady said...

Oh, your book sounds wonderful and what a gorgeous cover. No official club when I was young but we did have a group of us that did things together - except one and I found this out later - apparently they did the - I'll show you mine if you show me yours - they didn't ask me because they figured I wouldn't go along with it - they were right hahahahaha.

Louisa Cornell said...

Wow, Chelley! You got him! Good for you! Keep an eye on him though. He CAN be trouble!

Hello ALlison! I LOVED Dark Obsession!

What a great idea for a series! Isn't it interesting how research gives us these little serendipitous glimpses of history that grow into wonderful stories? I really love the sound of this series.

I was very fortunate to spend three years in England as a child. A group of us in the village formed our own club, about a dozen of us, and we were always getting into mischief - including investigating the local Norman era churchyard for ghosts after dark. We also raided the local squire's apple orchard and made ourselves sick eating green apples! It has been 40 years and my brothers and I still keep in touch with a number of those kids, all grown with kids of their own now. The internet has made that a lot easier!

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I love getting in on the start of a series, sounds like a great book Allison.

I was in a club when I was a youngster, totally cool were we. Uhh, I don't think the boys wanted to be in our club LOL Our treasury had a whole 50 cents and we thought we were uptown. I think one of the semi popular girls started it because she couldn't be in another "club".

Allison Chase said...

Catslady, that's too funny about the "Show me yours and..."!

Norman churchyards, squire's apple orchard, Louisa, I absolutely want to be a member of your club! Is it too late? (I'm glad you liked DO!)

Diana, to a kid, 50 cents was a pretty decent haul. Oops, I'm dating myself again!

Louisa Cornell said...

It's never too late, Allison! We have all laughed (online) about whether we could make it over the fence and the ha ha around the orchard in our 40 plus year old bodies! The challenge is that if we ever get to travel over to see them we and our friends will have a contest to see who can climb the conger (horse chestnut) tree the fastest. The trees in that field were 100 plus years old when we were kids. God knows how tall they are now. We will definitely have ambulances standing by!

And the legend was that if you walked around the ancient Norman church 13 times at midnight you would see ghosts. Fortunately we were too young to stay out that late. We tried it after dark a time or two and always got frightened by noises or movement and raced down the hill home!

Barbara E. said...

Loved the interview and looking forward to reading your books Allison.
This is telling my age, but when I was a kid the Beatles just came out and all of us neighbor kids came up with a Beatles fan club.

Donna MacMeans said...

Louisa -

Climbing that tree may not be as old as you thought - I wonder if trees (like parts of me) droop with age? (grins).

Hey - How could nobody is challenging Allison on her trekiness? Hmmm...let me see if I can roust Nancy...

Pissenlit said...

My girlfriends at the time and I were in a club based on a series of books that I'm too embarrassed to admit to right now. :D Oh and there were short-term "secret" clubs that I was a part of along with a bunch of boys(ya okay, I was a tomboy for a good long time) during the winter when there was enough snow to build snow forts on the playground.

However, like Helen, I was mad about Enid Blyton's Secret Seven and Famous Five series. Those were the types of clubs that my little kiddie heart longed to form. The problem was, I didn't know anyone else who read the books. :)

Mary Ricksen said...

Yeah Lisa!! Steampunk that second book is the one we talked about. I cannot wait to read it. It's next in Line!
I wish you many sales and good luck, but you 1are so good you don't need it!
Big hugs to one of the best ever!

Nancy said...

Allison, welcome! I love the story of your inspiration for this series. The books sound wonderful.

Chelleyreads, congratulations on the rooster!

Nancy said...

Helen, I loved the Famous Five. Five Run Away Together was my favorite.

Nancy said...

Anna and Allison, I have a map book like that about London, too. I love looking at the ways the city changed over the centuries.

Nancy said...

Hi, Katharine--I enjoyed Nancy Drew, too. I still have them, even though they're not the boy's thing. I just loved them too much to get rid of them.

Nancy said...

Donna, consider me rousted! I can't challenge Allison on her trekiness, though. For one thing, I'd love to have period weapons. For another, I don't own any costumes. *sigh*

Allison, I love A Wrinkle in Time, too!

Allison Chase said...

Don't we all want to know what those books were that Pissenlit won't admit to? C'mon, 'fess up!

Mary, Outrageously Yours isn't technically Steampunk, though there is steam and some strange goings on, but that's yet to come...

Nancy, are you a Trekkie? I'll state right now that there are no Star Fleet costumes hanging in my closet! No phazers, either! But I do love my Star Trek, when I'm not heading in the other direction and going back in time.

Anyway, wanted to say thanks to Donna and everyone here and all who stopped by to join in. I appreciate it so much, and I loved this little view into everyone's childhood. It's a great place to revisit from time to time, isn't it?

Donna is going to let me know when select a winner and how to post the name, right, Donna?

Good night for now. I am Most Eagerly and ever yours!

limecello said...

Hi Allison! Whoops - I'm a little late to the party, but I love the premise of your books/series!
As for clubs... yes I had them as a kid.
Most of them were girls only - the boys weren't smart enough to be in a club :P but they ran our "errands" etc. Heh. Also the boys had cub scouts and other such. They were fine.
I know a few of the clubs I was in had hilariously awesome names, but sadly I've forgotten them now. Sad.

Congrats on the GR, Chelley!

Laurie said...

We formed a secret girl's club in the 4th grade. We lived in Wisconsin so we met in each others basements. We had sleep overs, wrote notes with code words for whose house we'd meet up at . Oh this post brought back some great memories! The boys used to come around and talk to us through the basement windows. We really thought we were clever. We discussed BOYS, books,bands, songs, dance moves and life in general.

Charlotte said...

I didn't belong to any secert
clubs.

Would love to win this nice book give away.