Thursday, June 21, 2012

Guest Post & Giveaway: Author Carrie Lofty -Starlight Blog Tour

Where are the Kilts? 
By Carrie Lofty

Not everyone in Scotland wears kilts. Or wore kilts. Or belonged to a warring clan in the Highlands.

I was pleased to learn this because, frankly, so many romance authors write incredible, sweeping Highland Scots novels. No sense competing where the field is already packed, especially when I had a very different Scottish romance to write.

STARLIGHT, the second in my Christies series of Victorian romances from Pocket, is set in Glasgow. A city! In Scotland! But in the early 1880s, when STARLIGHT is set, Glasgow wasn’t any ol’ city. It was the fourth largest metropolis in the world, behind London, Paris and New York. Many of those famed Highlanders were like the rural farmers and frontiersmen in the United States during the same point in the Industrial Revolution. They headed to the cities in search of jobs.

The beginning of Glasgow’s rise to economic prominence began with weaving, until the deep harbor of the River Clyde made it the perfect place to build Queen Victoria’s massive naval fleet. Ships became king. Men who’d made a good living in the mills headed to the docks, hence transforming Glasgow into a heavily masculine city. If one didn’t work in the shipyards, one was not a real man.

So… Polly Gowan. She’s my heroine, you see. And a weaver. And the de facto leader of the weavers union. The girl knows how to handle men! She also knows that her industry is in need of protection, before it’s swamped by the tide of shipmaking. She also knows that none of the men in Glasgow will be an ideal partner. They’re simply too…unaccepting. She had a brain and ambition. Can’t have that!

Lucky, she found Alex Christie:

     She had expected some equivalent of a desk clerk, stooped and thin. Or just the opposite—a fat man with heavy jowls and a pocket watch worth more than her parents’ tenement flat. Instead, Mr. Christie was the worst sort of challenge. He had caught her off guard. 
     Where was his coat? And his neckcloth? She couldn’t remember the last time she had seen a gentleman so informally dressed—if ever. The shock of finding a hint of chest hair poking out from the collar of such a fine, expensive shirt was dangerously distracting. The contrast of wild and civilized was as pronounced as the stark white cloth lying against his tanned neck. 
     He wore that beautiful white shirt and finely tailored woolen trousers, yet the simmering anger pulsing from his robust body was anything but elegant. More like . . . brutal. There was no mistaking how his baser instincts would resolve matters. 
     Most masters left their dirty work to hired brutes. This Mr. Christie looked ready to knock heads. Polly shivered and returned her gaze to his face. But that was no help either. Breathtaking hazel eyes stared back at her, narrowed, fierce in his disconcerting blend of ire and intelligence.

He shows up just in time to save her from being unappreciated and unheralded as a sexy, clever, amazing picture of womanhood. She would’ve been left to fight and scrape and push to even be seen, let alone accepted and cherish forever.

Man, oh man, do I love writing romance. Even if there’s not a kilt in sight!

What’s next for me:

After RT BookReviews 4½ Star Top Pick STARLIGHT hits the shelves, I'll be looking forward to the release of HIS VERY OWN GIRL [http://carrielofty.com/HVOG.html], a historical romance set in World War II. It's not women's fiction. It's not literary fiction. It's a genuine romance, complete with sexy times and a happy ending. Look for it September 4th as a Pocket Star digital original novel. I cannot wait to see how readers respond!

I'll also be launching a new co-written pseudonym, Katie Porter, with my long-time friend and critique partner, Lorelie Brown. Our "Vegas Top Guns" series of contemporary erotic romances will launch from Samhain on July 31 with the release of DOUBLE DOWN, which is also a RT BookReviews 4½ Star Top Pick. Two more from the series, INSIDE BET and HOLD 'EM, will follow in August and September. You can learn more about these and future books at our website [http://katieporterbooks.com].

Where to find me: 
Twitter: @carrielofty

I'd like to give away a copy of STARLIGHT, and I'll ship anywhere. Just answer the question: How far are you willing to go for Scottish romance? Does an urban setting in that much-loved country appeal to you? (Please leave a comment with email address if you are interested in entering giveaway.)

Thanks again to Hanging with the Bells for having me!


Starlight
Book 2 in The Christies series
Author: Carrie Lofty
Genre: Historical
Publisher: Pocket Books
ISBN: 9781451616392 
Release date: 6/26/12 
Passion sparkles forever . . . in the shining eyes of a true love.

An esteemed astronomer, Alex Christie, the eldest and most steadfast of the Christie siblings, has never possessed his late father’s ruthless business drive. But to protect his frail infant son from his cruel father-in-law’s bid for custody, the young widower must undertake Sir William Christie’s posthumous million-dollar challenge: to make a Glasgow cotton mill profitable. At sea in an industrial world of sabotage and union agitation, Alex meets Polly Gowan, daughter of a famed union leader, who hopes to seize a mysterious saboteur without involving the police.

Because a sympathetic mill master would aid her cause, Polly becomes Alex’s guide to urban Scotland. From soccer games to pub brawls, Alex sees another side of life, and feels free for the first time to reveal the man—vital and strong—behind his intellectual exterior. Polly is utterly seduced. Their ambitions, however, remain at odds: Alex vows to earn the mill bonus to save his child, while Polly fights for the needs of her people. Is there strength enough in their sparkling passion to bind them together in their quests—and in a lasting love that conquers all?
Find Carrie Lofty online:
Goodreads

28 comments:

  1. Hmm... yeah, I think an urban setting does interest me! I'd like to see how it would be different from a book set in London, for example.

    rwschwarz11ATgmailDOTcom

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glasgow was a lot more...robust? Self-made men were prized, as opposed to the more genteel aristocracy in London. That's why I loved setting a cross-class romance there: romantic + plausible! Thanks for stopping by, Rebe.

      Delete
  2. I'd love any romance w/ a scottish setting; historical, contemporary, PNR! :)

    Congrats on the newest release! Definitely gotta get reading this series!

    efender1(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think Scotland is a magic word in Romancelandia.... :)

      Delete
  3. I really enjoy romance books with Scottish influence. It definitely makes the guys more appealing. I haven't read any historical romance with an urban setting but its something that definitely appeals to me, to read something different than the usual.

    danni0113(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad to hear that, Danni! We tend to take "London" for granted in historicals, thinking more about Hyde Park than Cheapside, but it really was the biggest urban populace in the world. I was just surprised that Glasgow was fourth largest!! Who knew?

      Delete
  4. It's taking place in Scotland what more do I need? I'd love to own the books.

    NoraAdrienne(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. See, there's that magic word again. Scotland! I should've learned that years ago ;)

      Delete
  5. I don't believe I've reached my limit of how far I would go for Scottish romance:) An urban setting does sound appealing and I would definitely read it. The Christies series sound like great stories and I can't wait to read them!

    yadkny@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wonder what your limit would be? Scottish zombies? *g*

      Delete
  6. I love that your book is set in a city! I do love the highlands, but it's nice to get a break from that. As for my limit to how far I'd go for Scottish romance? I don't think there is one. Not entering the giveaway, just wanted to say I liked your guest post. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! You happen to be of the Ohio persuasion? I'm on OSU grad... Buckeyes! :)

      Delete
  7. I love the Highlands, but I'd be willing to go anywhere in Scotland, including an urban setting - they still have that lovely brogue, the awesome kilts and the sexy men no matter where you go in the country. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If he'd had his way, my English husband would've put in my wedding vows something about "and I will not lust after Scotsmen." Heh. Too bad :)

      Delete
  8. I love romance books. Does not matter where set for me. I love Scotland and would love to visit. I love the accents and love to see a gorgeous man in a kilt. My question, do they wear anything underneath it. If they do, don't ruin it for me. In my head they wear nothing. The setting does not matter, it is what the story is about for me. A beautiful country and gorgeous men & women just add to the story. Thanks for the great giveaway. Carrie is a new author for me. I love to read and always looking for new stuff to check out.
    christinebails@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I kinda hope they wore something in the old days, if only to protect against brambles and horseback chafing! Now, I'm guessing it has to do with how proud a Scot is of his bagpipe.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  9. I love romances with a Scottish setting. It doesn't matter where. This book sounds great. Love the cover.
    Crystal816[at]hotmail[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Crystal. Glad you could be here!

      Delete
  10. It does not matter whether it's an urban setting or not. Scotland... what more is there to say. This book sounds fantastic. Can't wait to read it.

    e.balinski(at)att(dot)net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Joanne. I hope you enjoy it, with or without kilts *g*

      Delete
  11. I'd love to read a book set in a Scottish city! To me, Edingburgh or Glasgow (maybe even more) has a much more "rustic" feeling to it than London, for example. And the architecture is a bit different in Scottish cities, imo. More medieval buildings left.

    Thank you for the giveaway!
    claudigc at msn dot com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we forget how dirty and nasty parts of London were in the 19th century, simply because the fairy tale beauty of romance keeps the setting lovely. It appeals to our sense of majestic and calm within an urban setting. Glasgow had similar areas of calm, which Alex and Polly discover, but it had a rougher edge--dockworkers, pick-up games of soccer, etc. Or maybe we're just more willing to look at those things in a Scottish setting because our expectation of Scots romances are already skewed toward wildness and a little roughness with the love.

      Delete
  12. Hands down, yesss please! Gimme more Scottish! I have only read a couple of books about the Highlands but my favorite so far has been the Outlander series. So, yes, I'm willing to read everything about Scottish men no matter where they are, cuz that accent is oh so worthy! Thank you Carrie.

    ilepachequin(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So who's your favorite Scotsman, either in accent or in looks in both?

      Delete
  13. I like to stick with historical books, but I think the Scottish accent is rather hot. My favorite Scotsman is James McAvoy - such intense blue eyes!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    abbydillon16 AT yahoo DOT com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. McAvoy is so damn cute! The only time I've seen him in a role with his actual accent was LAST KING OF SCOTLAND. Otherwise he does an amazing English accent!

      Delete
  14. I like settings and characters that are different and this story looks like it has both. I do like the idea of an urban setting and I had no idea that Glasgow had a time where it was such an important city.
    mce1011 AT aol DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  15. I didn't either! That was such a surprise to me. I (gotta admit) didn't know anything about Glasgow. Kinda picked it out of a hat because it was a known industrial center. But once I read more about it, I couldn't help but get...ideas! And you know how pesky those are to ditch. Glad you stopped by, Maureen!

    ReplyDelete