History Hoydens


Historical Romance Writers Dishing the Dirt on Research

25 May 2010

The Devil She Knows

Hurrah! THE DEVIL SHE KNOWS is published today!

It's my last book with Kate Duffy, too, God bless her soul. I hope she's up there smiling.

I tried to come up with something clever to talk about for today's post. But all I can think about is Kate thinking long and hard when I told her I wanted my heroine to swear she'd committed adultery, during a high-profile divorce trial in the Old Bailey. (So very not the thing to do, according to all the romance tropes!)

Then she looked me in the eye and said, "We can handle that. Go for it."

Thank you, Kate! This one's for you.

Even a devil deserves the good love of a woman...

After avenging the murders of his family, Gareth Lowell headed west to put his demons to rest. Though several years have passed, he still carries the weight of his sins and doesn't believe he deserves to be loved - even by the beautiful Portia Townsend. He's known Portia since she was a young girl, and though she's blossomed into a voluptuous woman, he resists the deep longing she stirs in him.

When Portia realizes Gareth will never see her as anything more than the feisty, silly girl she once was, she decides to move on. Trouble is, Portia has once again gotten herself into a dangerous situation, and the only way out is to marry Gareth - if only temporarily. Turns out getting hitched was the easy part, while giving up a scorching passion is the last thing either are willing to admit...

Have you ever come up against a "rule" in romance or fiction that you wished somebody would take on?

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Blogger Kathleen O said...

Again Diana I cannot wait to get my hands of this book...
I think the one thing that has not been done a lot is Assisted Suicide..not that I have read much anyway... I know this must seem like a strange topic, but one I think of more and more. I have watched too many people I love, have to through such painful sickness and I have prayed to God each night to just please put them out of their pain. I am a great beliver in if there is no hope, then let them go on to a better world.. One that is free of pain and suffering..

5:22 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I'm always amazed that no woman in a contemp has ever had an abortion (esp considering that at least 75% of the women I know who are over 25 have done so).

7:36 AM  
Blogger Diane Whiteside said...

Thank you, Kathleen! I do hope you'll enjoy THE DEVIL SHE KNOWS.

I think I agree with you about assisted suicide. It would be good to see a book examine that subject, especially where you trusted the author about the plot's ending.

Kalen - even though it's an admittedly very sensitive subject, you sure hit the nail on the head! That's the real measure of just how touchy the subject is, that nobody's ever put it in a book.

But if we can work through some really nasty stuff in books (child abuse, anyone?), surely we can also deal with other topics.

10:37 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I'd like to think so, but I swear the heroines of contemps often seem to live in some strange 1950s alternate reality where abortions never happen and premarital sex is still a no-no. Lots of secret babies though. It just blows me away that among all those heroines who were kicked to the curb by their Italian Boss while knocked up, nary a one thought: Hey, I don’t have to ruin my life and tie myself to that @-hole for life. I have a Constitutional right to choose something else for myself . . .. It’s a simple fact that 25-30% of American women have had at least one abortion (I’d say it was much higher, but maybe that’s because college educated women are much more likely to take that route for an unplanned pregnancy in their 20s and most of my friends fit that profile), so it’s not like doing so is taboo. Guess such a choice in fiction makes the heroine too selfish?

11:45 AM  
Blogger Miranda Neville said...

The book sounds great, and a good cover too. Congratulations.

Don't you think, Kalen, that the first rule of romance editors is "don't offend anyone if you can possibly help it"? Romance eschews politics in anything but the wishy-washiest who-can-argue-with that fashion.

Writing historicals it amuses me how we make our aristocratic heroes wonderful liberals by having them polite to the servants and good to their tenants. Also against slavery and child labor and sympathetic to the tenets of Mary Wollstonecraft.

It's a pity, because a topic like abortion provides some really meaty emotional fodder.

Re. assisted suicide: I believe as the baby boomers age that's an idea that's going mainstream. Remains to be seen if the death panel types will have the same stranglehold they do on abortion.

2:16 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Don't you think, Kalen, that the first rule of romance editors is "don't offend anyone if you can possibly help it"?

I do, but I'm offended by how freaking stupid some of those heroines clearly are, having babies they can't support or care for, by men they are afriad of or hate. TSTL IMO.

2:44 PM  
Blogger Kim in Baltimore said...

Congrats, Diane, on your newest release! No doubt that Kate is smiling at you ... and RWA for quickly relocating the convention to Orlando. When the new location was announced, I remembered Bertrice Small's reflection of Kate last fall in RT's tribute, "I asked Kate why RWA booked the conference in Orlando in August, Kate responded, 'Because Purgatory was already booked.'" Perhaps we should have a few cold drinks in honor of Kate!

3:23 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I have been seeing this book on some of the blogs and I want to read it so bad! I have been hooked on westerns lately and always want to try and new author!

3:55 PM  
Blogger Diane Whiteside said...

Miranda - it's amazing to see how heroes get cleaned with modern ideas. IMHO, somehow it denigrates the struggle our ancestors went through. In watching that genealogy show on TV, I'm deeply touched by the ex-slaves who succeeded in little things like keeping their families together to reach freedom or simply managed to buy land. Having an alpha male smile sweetly and fork things over because it's the PC thing to do in today's novel cuts down on just how much those people fought and risked to get those little triumphs. (Okay, so it's one of the areas I like my novels to be more historically accurate than politically correct. LOL)

Thanks, Kim! Thanks also for the reminder of Kate's quip about Orlando in August. We must definitely raise a cold drink in her honor.

Thank you, Virginia! I do hope you enjoy Gareth and his story. I did have such fun researching the battles against Victorio in Arizona.

6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm looking forward to reading this book. Sounds like a good story line.
I was a bit surprised RWA relocated the convention to Orlando. Not because it didn't make sense, but because it will be so hot. It is probably the one place that could have accommodated such a large event on such short notice. Unfortunately I have non-refundable reservations for Nashville and the place says they will be reopened. Too bad, we could easily have made Orlando and visited family.

9:09 PM  
Blogger Tracy Grant said...

The book sounds fabulous! It's so great when editors let authors tell the story they want to tell. Historical divorce was difficult and complicated, but there are so many wonderful story possibilities there.

12:00 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I was a bit surprised RWA relocated the convention to Orlando. Not because it didn't make sense, but because it will be so hot.

It's pretty much hot wherever we go in July/Aug, LOL! When it's in Dallas I want to die. Reno wasn't any better. Luckily you’re basically in an air-conditioned hotel the whole time.

11:31 AM  

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