Leigh Michaels: Review, Interview & Giveaway THE WEDDING AFFAIR

>> Sunday, September 11, 2011

THE WEDDING AFFAIR is Leigh Michaels' new release as well as the first of her historical romances that I've read. I received the book from Soucebooks for review and so thrilled I did--as I've found another fantastic historical romance writer to follow!

The Duke of Somervale's sister is getting married in the wedding of year -- but the wedding guests are in the mood for affairs, not vows!

The Duke needs the help of beautiful, stubborn Olivia Reyne to fight off the debutantes who have taken over his country estate. Olivia's willing to help -- at a price which will secure the future for her small daughter.

Penny Townsend sees the wedding as her last chance to salvage her arranged marriage and turn it into something more than a matter of convenience.

And vicar's daughter Kate Blakely needs a job -- and fast -- before she gives in to the tempting presence of her first love!

MY REVIEW:  This novel was such a treat to read. One of the elements I loved most was its three storylines. Yes -- three. Three heroes, three heroines, three stories. Each woven into the same setting, timeframe and plot so that they weave efforlessly together. I felt as if I was watching a movie rather than reading a book. Leigh's ability to juggle three romances so fluidly turns me a tad green, as I find adding a secondary romance challanging while all three of her romances stand alone and carry equal uniqueness and weight without overshadowing the others.

The technique made the the novel fly by because there are of course three times the troubles, three times the conflicts, three times the risk and of course three times the romance *blush*.  (Tip: When you read this, make sure you've got a Big Gulp of ice water nearby.)  Just as one couple reaches a conflict pinacle, Leigh switches to another couple, another situation, equally as troublesome, equally as intriguing, and all the time in the back of my mind I'm wondering...but what about the others? What's going to happen with them? The result was an eveloping page-turning read where I found myself both enthralled with the characters I was reading about, yet dying to know what happened with the others.

I enjoyed Leigh's humor, unique with each character or set of characters true to their relationships and situations, as well as her effortless and rich character development.

THE WEDDING AFFAIR was a fun, intruiging, fast read and I'll be watching for Leigh's future books!

Tell us about your upcoming release.
In The Wedding Affair, the Duke of Somervale’s sister is getting married, but the guests who have gathered for a house party leading up to the wedding are much more interested in their private affairs – and I do mean affairs! – than in the bride and groom.
What’s your favorite thing about the book featured here today?
Like my previous two historicals, Just One Season in London and The Mistress’ House, this is a triple story – three heroes, three heroines, and three romances which are woven together into one book. I love writing triple stories because there’s so much action that even I never quite know what’s going to happen next.
Tell us something unusual about this book (i.e. in its creation, execution, production).
The archery scene which appears in the last fourth of the story was at the beginning of chapter two in the first draft. That’s what’s called a heavy revision.
Do You Have Any Undiscovered Or Hidden Talents?

I’m sure I do, but I’m still looking for them.
Favorite Midnight Snack?
Very dark chocolate chips, melting slowly on the tongue, one by one…
Are You An Introvert Or An Extrovert? 
Introvert pretending to be an extrovert.
Are You A Window Person Or An Aisle Person?
Ever Hit A Jackpot On A Slot Machine?
No, but I have hit the jackpot in a couple of other areas, like (1) selling my first book despite the worst synopsis and sample chapters in the history of the world, and (2) being asked to flat-sit one summer in London, about a mile from Buckingham Palace.
Are You Afraid Of Heights?
Only if I’m looking down!
How many pillows do you like to sleep with?
Just one. The other two are to prop me up so I can read in bed.
Do you believe in snipes?
Of course; doesn’t everyone? (Please don’t tell me Wesley’s a mythical character like Santa – it would break my heart!)
Which do you like more—rainy days or snowy days?
Snowy, because I can sit in the bay window in my living room and feel as though I’m in a silent snow globe. Also, because of my childhood in an isolated rural area, snow days are always kick-back-and-read days – even though, with my office in my house, I really have no excuse not to work no matter what the weather.
Where can we find you online?
My website is www.leighmichaels.com, on Facebook look for Leigh Michaels, and on twitter I’m @leighmichaels.

Ask Leigh a question or leave a comment to enter for 1 of today's 2 prizes:
1) An ARC of THE WEDDING AFFAIR and matching bookmark
2) 1 of 5 handmade custom bookmarks

**MUST** leave a contact email to WIN

BIO:  Leigh Michaels is the author of nearly 100 books, including 80 contemporary novels, three historical romance novels, and more than a dozen non-fiction books. More than 35 million copies of her romance novels have been published. Six of her books have been finalists for Best Traditional Romance novel in the RITA contest sponsored by Romance Writers of America and she has received two Reviewer's Choice awards from Romantic Times.

Leigh is the author of non-fiction books such as WRITING THE ROMANCE NOVEL, a step-by-step workbook, and CREATING ROMANTIC CHARACTERS and she teaches romance writing on the Internet at Gotham Writers--Workshop, www.writingclasses.com.


Raonaid Luckwell 11:13 PM  

Fellow introvert! Sometimes I wish I was extrovert! Agree with you about heights. If I don't look down I'm fine. That's what I did when we visited the Sears Tower in Chicago. I didn't look down. LOL.

Monikarw,  1:06 AM  

Great interview Joan!;)
I enjoyed Just One Season in London and I like books that have more than one story line, though I suppose they must be more challenging and difficult to write! aren't they?8-)
And this books sounds great, I'll be looking forward to it!;)
thanks for the review, Joan!=)
and as always, thank u for keeping ur giveaways international!;)


Anonymous,  4:16 AM  

Love the intereview :) This book sounds like something that will be perfect for me.

How hard is it to keep up with three story lines? In some ways I would think it would make the story flow faster. When does the WEDDING AFFAIR come out?


Gloria Richard 4:34 AM  

Totally intriqued with the concept of three romances "seemlessly woven" into one. MUST purchase your book to study your technique.

Snort! As I typed that, I realized that "studying the technique" on a great read is a lofty goal. I will lose myself in the story. I know, b/c I have numerous books with tabbed pages and margin notes--for the first fifteen pages--tops.

If your voice in your novels is as engaging as what came through in the interview, I will, no doubt, get lost in your stories, too.

Where do you find these awesome authors, Joan Swan? Popping over to LIKE Leigh Michaels on FB pages.

kissablesweet1 6:06 AM  

If you could have one character from your books come alive..who would it be and why?

macladie25 at yahoo dot com

Leigh Michaels 7:38 AM  

Thank you for inviting me to visit, Joan. I got my sneak peak at the bookmark – and it’s beautiful!

Raonaid, I had exactly the same reaction at the Sears Tower – and if you want another wild experience, check out the Hancock Tower (also in Chicago) because it has one of the fastest elevators anywhere. I was just glad I couldn’t see outside to know how quickly I was leaving my stomach behind!

Monikarw and Anonymous – In one way the triple books are more difficult to write – keeping each story unique while interweaving them and keeping each voice distinctive. But they’re so much fun that I don’t mind – and I also love the fact that I never get bored because no matter which couple I’m following, I, too, am wondering what the other ones are up to. THE WEDDING AFFAIR released September 1, so it should be in bookstores everywhere.

Gloria, I know what you mean about trying to study technique – but if I read the book a second time, I can occasionally focus on the way the author did it. :-) And thank you for the LIKE on FB!

Kissablesweet1, if I could have one character from my books come alive... oh, wow, that’s a tough one. I really, really love Simon, the Duke of Somervale... he can eat crackers in my bed anytime. But then I love all my heroes – and I’d like to be friends with all my heroines. So I guess it would be pretty crowded!

Thank you, everyone -- I look forward to your comments and questions...

Joan Swan 8:20 AM  

Yep, I second that comment on reading a second and third time for technique. I've noticed that reading the second time is even more fascinating because you know what happens and you can then "see" how the author creates the shifts, but it's the third time, in my experience, when you can really step away from the book and analyze.

KJ 8:38 AM  

Hi Leigh,

What would be the best order to read your books in? I am fairly new to romance stories. I usually read mysteries, though I do like romantic mysteries.

(from current Gotham class)


Leigh Michaels 8:50 AM  

Hi, KJ -- Each of my three historicals (so far) is a stand-alone book. It was complicated enough to put three romances in each book, without connecting all the books as well! So it really doesn't matter what order you read the books in.

There's only one character -- a secondary character by the name of Lady Stone -- who appears in all three books. If you're a purist, The Mistress' House happens in 1815, Just One Season in London in the spring of 1816, and The Wedding Affair in the autumn of 1816. :-)

KJ 8:55 AM  

Thanks Leigh...I still a bit left brain, so I'll start with "The Mistress' House"

Karen J

KJ 9:01 AM  

Do you have any say in the book's cover?

Leigh Michaels 9:42 AM  

Good question! I was fortunate that my agent negotiated cover approval in my contract, so yes, I was able to have quite a lot of input into the design, colors, models, etc.

KJ 10:03 AM  

Well, you certainly grab my attention. Just wish we could really (physically) step into the books...pure escapism!!

Linda McDonald 12:44 PM  

I love the idea of the three storylines! Congrats on your new release. Leigh, how much of a plotter are you versus a pantser?


Sheree 3:07 PM  

Congrats on your latest release!

You're afraid of heights but want window seats? I stick to the aisle ones myself.

ironss [at] gmail [dot] com

Anne R 3:08 PM  

Love the interview! The book sounds great. I agree about snowy days, they are the best for cuddling up with book and hot cocoa. Plus, it is so pretty outside.

Areeths @ new DOT rr DOT com

Anonymous,  4:24 PM  

Thanks for the interview, I always love discovering new authors to add to my watch list. I have recently discovered that I love historical romances almost as much as I love paranormal romances and I am in the process of adding to my collection. The Wedding Affair sounds like it belongs on my shelves. Thanks for the giveaway.


Leigh Michaels 5:15 PM  

I'm pretty much a pantser -- I know the basics when I start writing, but the stories unfold in front of me, and as I go along, I get ideas for scenes down the road and jot them on bits of paper. So by the time I'm halfway into a book, my desk looks like a blizzard hit it -- and then gradually the mess goes away as I use each note and drop it in an envelope for storage. And sometimes I don't know the theme of the book until after it's all written.

Yeah, afraid of heights and love window seats. There's no rhyme nor reason to me!

Anonymous,  6:18 PM  

Great interview! I'm also an introvert pretending to be an extrovert...sometimes with goofy results.

Thanks so much for the giveaway!


Linda 7:13 PM  

3 stories for the price of one! Who wouldn't want to read this :)

Thanks for the giveaway & especially for making it international.

Anonymous,  8:34 PM  

Would love to go snipe hunting with you, you have the right idea! lol
Now that I know you have a hand in picking the covers I don't feel so bad for having picked up more than one of them for the covers, of course the stories have proven that good things come in pretty packages.
I have this one on my wish list and would love to win.

ms (dot) laurel1 (at) mac (dot) com

Robin 9:14 PM  

This looks like a great book! I like the three storyline concept!

Robin D
robindpdx (at) yahoo (dot) com

SiNn 10:00 PM  

tthis book sounds awesome and i deff like the three story line concept

mortalsinn (AT)yahoo(DOT)com

Karen H,  7:58 AM  

I haven't tried a lot of historical romances, but the three intertwined stories makes this one I will definitely have to pick up.

claddagh64 at yahoo dot com

Obscured Vixen 8:48 AM  

Great interview. And what an awesome giveaway! Those handmade bookmarks are gorgeous!

holls 3:06 PM  

Great blog interview!!! Thanks so much for the fun questions.

Hollybwright at comcast.net

*yadkny* 7:33 PM  

Hi Leigh!
CONGRATS on your newest release! Sounds and looks fabulous! Great review too! Great answer to the question of rainy days or snowy... I feel the same way and still live in a rural area where reading is exactly what we do on snow days.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Joan Swan 9:44 PM  

WINNERS chosen by random.org:

A WEDDING AFFAIR: Obscured Vixen

Karen H
Karen KJ

Congrats and thanks for coming everyone!

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