Winner of My Regelence Rake Contest

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I said I would be announcing it on Friday so here it is.  The winner of the free copy of My Regelence Rake is K Anderson.  K, I have your email address.  Please look for an email from me shortly that will tell you how to get your copy from Samhain.

Thanks to all who commented.  This was a great week.  My next contest will be as a part of the Howloween Blog Hop Tour.  How I love October!

JL’s Sci-Regency Series Review

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JL Langley’s Sci-Regency series is such a wonderful creation. In it Langley  combines the extremely formal social rules, etiquette, manners, and dress of Regency England with science fiction’s space and galactic travel to create a universe both familiar and removed from our experiences. And she did it so well, so convincingly that it become a genre beloved by many.  I found  Regency England early on in my teens with Georgette Heyer, creator of the Regency romance genre and her fabulous heroine, The Grand Sophy. I loved her books and the world they presented. Heyer wrote books full of humor, delightful dialog, and of course romance. Her  women were strong willed and intelligent, trying to find their way in the very masculine world of England in the Regency Era (1795-1830).  Lord Byron was making women (and some men) swoon with his dark romantic poetry and sexy brooding image he projected. The fabulousBeau Brumnel was busy defining and shaping fashion in his own image, the Dandy promenaded through the balls, and authors like Jane Austen, Charles Dickens started writing works of social commentary in their fiction.

The Regency Era saw the rise of Almack’s as a marriage mart, Tattersall’s was the place to purchase  exquisite horse flesh, gentlemens clubs like Boodles, Brooke’s. the Four Horse Club and of course White’s were the places to be seen and heard.   There were duels on the Commons and the aristocratic young were strictly chaperoned in accordance with the rigid societal rules of the day.  To be discovered in flagrante meant a run to Gretna Green and a quickie marriage. Considering the short length of the Regency Era, it still projects a profound influence to this day upon so many areas of literature and society.  The gambling hells and with its rakes, the opera singers and Covent Gardens, the clothes, and oh the poets and artists creating then.  It is no wonder that era captures the hearts of so many authors and  readers to this day.

H.G.Wells was born in 1866 and helped usher in thoughts of time travel and alien worlds.  Science Fiction novels in every sense of the word and from almost every author you can imagine fills my bookshelves as well.  Alien societies, space travel, and yes, alien romance captured my imagination and my heart  too.  I love each and every new universe a author creates and the beings they fill it with.

So just consider the heart palpitations I experienced when I found JL Langley and My Fair Captain, the first in her Sci-Regency series. I had no idea what awaited me beyond that unbelievably sexy cover.  It teased us with a glimpse of a young man in Regency dress in back of a masterful, naked torso who dominates the design.  How perfect as submission to those older and higher in society was a given during the Regency Era.  My Fair Captain, published in 2008 by Samhain Publishing introduces us to the world of Regelence and it’s ruler King Steven and his Consort Raleigh, their four sons and ward.  Intergalactic Navy Captain Nathaniel “Nate” Hawkins has been chosen by the Admiral to act as an undercover agent investigating the disappearance of a huge cache of arms on the male oriented planet of Regelence.  On Regelence, male/male coupling is the norm with children born by genetically combining their parents DNA. Nate Hawkins comes from a planet where the opposite (m/f) holds true and homosexual acts are disgraceful to the point of disownment.  A youthful indiscretion with another young man ended in a duel and a death and saw Nate escaping his father’s influence as heir to his dukedom by entering the Navy. To go undercover, Nate must use his aristocratic background to get close to the rulers of Regelence  and their world caught up in political intrigue and suspence. What Nate doesn’t anticipate is falling in love with Prince Aiden, the middle son of King Steven. Prince Aiden is consumed by his art, and the thoughts of marriage to another well born son, as expected of him, leave him cold.  Then he falls literally into the arms of Nate Hawkins, and Aiden can think of no one else.  Amid court intrigue and intergalactic murder mystery, can a rakish Navy Captain and a virginal Price  find love among the stars?

Just thinking about this book makes me fan myself rapidly.  Langley’s characters are so utterly realistic, so believably hot and sexy that my pulse jumps just thinking about them.  And she sets them in a world that any fan of Regency fiction would recognize accompanied by elements any Science Fiction fan can identify, such as space ships and communication devices. But as great as her world building is, it is J.L. Langley’s characters that claim your affections, clamor for your attention, and grab onto your heart, never to let go.  And I am not talking about just the main characters either, although they are fantastic and sexy.  It not just Nate and Aiden (a favorite couple of mine), no it is all Aiden’s siblings, and their ward.  It is their fathers Steven and Raleigh who have a fan club as big as many of Langley’s other creations, and then there are the sons friends and well I am sure you are getting the picture.  No cardboard cutouts here, no  one dimensional portraits to spoil the reader’s enjoyment.  No, just a complete world occupied by addictive, compelling characters the reader just can not get enough of.  Lucky for us, JL Langley has promised each son a book as  well as one for their fathers and several of the other characters I have mentioned.

After My Fair Captain, we had a small wait until JL finished with other characters yelling for attention in her mind (they do that, you know) but April 2008 found the release of The Englor Affair and our love affair continued with Steven and Raleigh’s pack of boys, their friends and the continuing mystery behind the political shenanigans that threaten the stability of Steven’s rule.  The Englor Affair finds us transported to the planet Englor, birthplace of Nate Hawkins and the origin of much of the troubles occurring on Regelence.  Englor, another Regency oriented society is more typical of the times, and has just barely accepted some homosexuality.  Nate Hawkins returns to Englor after the events of My Fair Captain saw Aiden kidnapped by the conspirators behind the arms theft.  That kidnapping and Aiden’s rescue opened up the investigation to reveal a much larger conspiracy then anyone had imagined.  Now an Admiral, Nate works for Steven and Raleigh after his marriage to Aiden and he had returned to Englor to further their investigations as to who is directly behind the threat to Regelence.  Accompanying him is Payton, third in line to the throne of Regelence.  Payton is a genius at computers and Nate needs his gifts to break into the files on Englor.  Payton is hiding his true identity as he pretends to be the Admiral’s assistant.  A simple assignment turns complicated when Payton meets  Englor Marine Colonel Simon Hollister.  A virgin, as are all artistocratic youth, Payton is unprepared for the feelings Hollister engender in him.  A chanced kiss turns into something more and hidden identities are revealed to both young men’s horror and consternation.  For Simon Hollister is none other than the heir apparent to Englor.  His future mapped out for him as Englor’s future King.  He will marry a women and have the children needed to continue the line.  Into the murky waters of political intrigue and possible galactic war, two princes try to find love and the road to HEA.

With The Englor Affair, Langley delivers an outstanding story that furthers the theme of interplanetary conspiracy and subterfuge while giving us memorable characters that engage our affections from the very first page.  Nate, Aiden, King Steven and Consort Raleigh are back as are all their fascinating brood.  Payton is the focus here and we come to love him as much as Aiden.  A slight build hides a passionate nature and a quick highly intelligent mind.  Payton loves going undercover as he finds the limitation of being a crown prince repressing.  For all that, Payton is still sexually native and unpreparing for the lustful reactions he feels when meeting Simon Hollister.  Holliston is also attracted to Payton but thinks him just an Admiral’s assistant, perhaps the son of a lesser noble. So Simon acts upon his attraction and kisses Payton to Payton’s utter astonishment, for a such bold and disrespectful act would have heavy consequences would it be known.  Princes do not act that way nor do they receive such attention without the benefit of marriage or engagement bans on Regelence.  Their actions have far reaching consequences and are one of the real joys of this book.  We watch as sexual attraction grows into something much larger and Simon has to adjust his thinking not only about homosexuality but about himself as well.

One of the things that so impresses me about JL Langley’s stories is that all the elements are juggled perfectly throughout the story.  The focus may be temporarily on the romance contretemps of the couple but the mystery and mayhem of the terrorist group is never forgotten.  All threads are woven beautifully within the novel so we end up with a rich, colorful, and complex tapestry to enjoy.  And return to time and time again.

Lucky again for us that today sees the release of My Regelence Rake, the third in the Sci-Regency series.    It is the reason this post came out later than expected.  I couldn’t put that book down long enough to finish writing this.  My review will be up later in the week, but trust me, this is a 5 star read.  My Regelence Rake stars Prince Colton and you are going to love him as much as the others, I promise.

So if you haven’t already found this series, start with My Fair Captain.  It will introduce you to a cast of characters who breathe, bleed, love, and cause trouble across the galaxy.  You will have a universe you will never want to leave and a horizon of people whose stories are clamoring to be told.  What a wealth awaits you between the pages of these books.  Go and get them.  You will love them all.

Author Spotlight: An Interview with J.L. Langley

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Author Spotlight is on J. L. Langley.

I first wandered into JL Langley’s world with a story called With Love from the Hearts With The Ashes anthology.  Here I met her shifters Laine Anderson and his mate Dev and encountered JL’s wonderful blend of humor, vulnerablilltiy, angst and above all, heart that she  imbues in all her characters for the first time.  I read it once, and then promptly turned back and read it all over again.  I laughed and cried as much at the second reading as I did at the second and wanted so much more.  I wanted more of her shifters, more of JL Langley’s worlds.  Thank goodness there are plenty out there to  discover and journey through.

Next up came The Tin Star and JL Langley’s cowboys. Sigh.  How i loved them too.  You will hear more about them later on.  They will have their day, no worries.  My next love came with the wolf shifters.  That would be the  With and Without series.  Their fame has spread far and wide. Don’t speak too loudly or you will encounter the Sterling and Rhys bandwagon that careens around wildly, full of loud  fans screaming for Sterling and Rhys to be the next couple to get their own book.  One of them might even be me, uh hem.  And yes,  we will be talking more about all of them later in the week, so no fretting on the shifter front please!

Today is the day that My Regelence Rake is being released from Samhain Publishing so I know they are being bombarded by JL’s fan for theircopy of her latest  Sci-Regency novel.  Sci-Regency, what an unusual genre to be  sure.  Only JL would have thought to blend science fiction and the English Regency world and make it not only successful but downright addictive.  It all started with My Fair Captain and that delicious droll worthy cover.  This novel has remained a steadfast favorite of mine as it’s worn, dog-eared pages can attest to.

So this week, it’s all about the worlds of JL Langley and I will be giving away one copy of My Regelence Rake to one lucky commenter during the week.  The winner will be announced on Friday.  So to start off our week, let’s begin with a chat I had about how the term Sci-Regency came about.

MM:

Thank you, JL, for coming here today and participating in my first author interview. I have always been fascinated by the term Sci Regency.  Did you coin that  phrase?

JL:

“I did come up with the term and series name Sci-Regency. I’ve always loved Regency romance but wanted something different, unique. With the laws in the 1800’s being gay was punishable by law therefore it would’ve been very difficult to live openly as a gay couple. That seems so bittersweet to me. I wanted to be able to have my cake and eat it to, so to speak, so I combined Regency with Sci-Fi and wa la a truly happy ending was possible. Not to mention some cool technology and a way to bend the rules of society ever so slightly.”

MM:

I have a hard time picking out favorite characters of yours, I just love them all.  Do you have favorite characters?

JL:

“I love all the characters in this series but I have to say Steven and Raleigh, the King and King-Consort, are my favorites. I plan on doing a sort of prequel for the two of them eventually.”

MM:

My start with Regency fiction was Georgette Heyer and The Grand Sophy, a fondness that continues to this day. Do you have favorite Regency authors?

JL:

“I have several favorite Regency authors, but if I had to name one it would be Julia Quinn.”

MM:

I have to admit Georgette Heyer was my first introduction and I still love her. I love the way you blend such Regency mainstays such as horse racing, fencing, Tattersalls, and Regency dress with a science fiction setting. I love the way Regency social niceties and rules are given a m/m twist to them in your series. Here young unattached men are not allowed out without suitable escorts or chaperones. Do you ever find yourself just laughing out loud as you turn old ways on their heads in your stories? It’s such a great blend that you have achieved.

JL replies:
“I don’t know about laughing but I do love it. I really enjoy writing this series, it’s hands down my fave. I joke that I could gladly write this series and in this word for the rest of my life and be a happy woman, I really do love it.”

MM

I know you have told us but I can’t remember. Of course quite a few of us are shouting Trouble and Rexley at you! But I have to say I agree with you about Steven and Raleigh. I love their relationship and look forward to every scene with them in it. And you introduce a Cousin in this series, hmmm. Lord Demon? I know you had a recent excerpt with his name in it. Who is next in line for a book in this series?

JL:
“Blaise and Raleigh’s nephew, Dalton, (He’s the cousin “Lord Demon”), is next. After them will be Blaise’s little brother Bannon and then Rexley and Trouble. There are several guest appearances in this book by not only Steven and Raleigh, but Aiden and Nate and Rexley, Trouble and Muffin.”

Do you outline your books or have a story arc in mind when you start a new one? You are balancing so many elements in your Sci-Regency series from marriage proposals, intergalactic intrigue, and perhaps even genetic manipulation yet you still give us scenes full of passion, humor, mystery and love. What gives you the inspiration for each book?

JL:

“I do outline,but I loosely outline and leave room to change. In fact the last half of Colton’s book does not resemble the original outline at all. So it’s more of a guide than an actual outline because things are subject to change. Each book is a little difference. This one for example has less of the series plot with the IN than the others. It sort of depends on what the characters give me. For example in Dalton’s book, there is a pretty good look into Regelence government as well as Raleigh’s background. In Bannon’s book it’s very much back into the series plot. I do have an outline of sorts for each book in the series, but I am very character motivated in my writing, so things can and do change on occasion.”

Thank you, JL. I can’t wait to hear from you. I really appreciate your participation in my contest and Author Spotlight.

From the author’s website:

JL has been talking since she was about seven months old. To those who know her it comes as no surprise, in fact, most will tell you she hasn’t shut up since. At eighteen months, she was speaking in full sentences. Imagine if you will the surprise of her admirers when they complimented her mother on “what a cute little boy” she had and received a fierce glare from said little boy and a very loud correction of “I’m a girl!” Oddly enough, JL still finds herself saying that exact phrase thirty-some-odd years later.

Along with the motormouth, JL also displayed a very vivid imagination and artistic ability. The artist first surfaced in way of drawing and painting, then became more apparent with dance. JL was a member of the National Art Honor Society in high school and has won several regional and national titles in dance, specifically tap and jazz. In college she majored in Graphic Art, but chose to make dance her profession. She taught tap, jazz and ballet for fifteen years before settling into her career as a writer.

Today JL is a full-time writer, with over ten novels to her credit. Among her hobbies she includes reading, practicing her marksmanship (she happens to be a great shot), gardening, working out (although she despises cardio), searching for the perfect chocolate dessert (so far as she can tell ALL chocolate is perfect, but it requires more research) and arguing with her husband over who the air compressor and nail gun really belongs to (they belong to JL, although she might be willing to trade him for his new chainsaw).

This author also writes (m/f) under the name Jeigh Lynn.

JL Langley’s website is under construction but you can follow her through her  yahoo group, The Yellow Rose.

And her free short stories can be found at Fiction with Friction.

September’s Over, and The Week Ahead includes an Author Spotlight and Book Contest!

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The last day of September is here and once again it seems as though the month just flew by along with the Canada geese overhead.  I haven’t seen any hummingbirds for several days now and wonder if the last of the summer migrants have passed by as well.  I will leave the feeders up until next week just to be sure but the autumn wreaths are on the doors and the various maple trees have already started to turn glorious colors so the feeders I am steadily filling now are the ones that contain sunflower seeds.

My favorite month is a day away and so much is happening.  My fish are getting a deeper pond for winter and the work starts tomorrow.  Several family birthdays and celebrations are happening so I am busy with new dishes and desserts to try out.  I love new recipes and will be passing on the ones I find most successful.  October is also bringing new releases in books that I have been waiting for and closure to the Lost Gods series by Megan Derr.  I have loved my journey through the books that are the Lost Gods saga and now await the last, Chaos. Andrea Speed’s anti hero Roan get another installment too on the 5th, a date circled many times in red to make the occasion.

The first day of October starts out with a bang of a new release.  That would be My Regelence Rake by JL Langley.  JL Langley produces about one book every year.  So to celebrate the latest in her Sci Regency series, I will be giving away one copy of her book from Samhain Publishing to a lucky person who comments during the week.   It will be a great week ahead as we talk cowboys, shifters, and of course how did Regency end up in Space?  The winner of the book will be picked by Kirby on Friday!

Monday:                   Author Spotlight: J.L. Langley

Tuesday:                   Sci Regency Series Review

Wednesday:             With or Without Series Review

Thursday:                 Cowboys with JL Langley

Friday:                       My Regelence Rake  and winner of the Contest

Saturday:                   The Tin Star and why I love it.