About Jaclyn

I'm a total bookaholic! Fiction, non-fiction, mysteries, YA, science fiction, I read practically anything and everything. I also love talking about books, and chatting about books with people who love them as much as I do!

Author Q&A | Come from Away, Genevieve Graham

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Today, as part of Simon and Schuster Canada’s #TimelessTour blog tour of historical fiction, I’m interviewing Genevieve Graham, author of Come from Away.

1. If you lived during the time period in your book, how do you think you would have fared and why?

Before Come From Away, I’d written four books based in the 1700s, and considering those harrowing living conditions—I can’t even camp, really—I think I’d fare pretty well in the 1940s! As a woman I’d not only live a million times more comfortably than we did two hundred years before that, I’d have a vote, basic equality, and more job options. I’d have electricity and running water and indoor plumbing. I’d wear those cute pin-up dresses and dance to big band music whenever it played!

2. If you lived in the future and were to write historical fiction about 2018, what do you think you would write about and why?

It’s impossible for me to think about writing anything like that, because as I have with all my books, I would base the story on an event during that year rather than on a political mindset. I believe I know where this question is coming from, and though I have my own, quite strong opinions on today’s politics (which I prefer to keep to myself), I have no interest in writing about them.

3. What was it like revisiting the characters from Tides of Honour and imagining how Audrey and Danny would have changed after 20 years?

Bittersweet, I suppose. No one likes to think about getting older, do they? I missed the two of them so much after I finished Tides of Honour. Mostly Danny, actually. I connected so closely with him it was if I’d lost a brother when the book was done. So I was really happy to work with him again for Come From Away. He’s the same man he’s always been, but he’s stronger now. Seasoned, I guess. Still a man of honour, still a man haunted by memories and fighting back every day. A man who loves his family with a fierce sense of responsibility. And still a man passionately in love. Every time he and Audrey looked at each other I felt the same energy buzzing between them.

Celebrate historical fiction with the Timeless Tour, from April 16 – May 4!

For more information, visit www.timelesstour.ca.

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Thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for the invitation to participate in this blog tour.

Author Q&A | Bachelor Girl, Kim van Alkemade

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Today, as part of Simon and Schuster Canada’s #TimelessTour blog tour of historical fiction, I’m interviewing Kim Van Alkemade, author of Bachelor Girl.

1. If you lived during the time period in your book, how do you think you would have fared and why?

In 1920s New York City, I like to think I would have been an independent Bachelor Girl like Helen wanted to be. There were women pursuing careers in the theater, women were at the forefront of many of the labor movements at the time, and there were many jobs for women in commerce. Because most colleges were only for men, women who did pursue higher education didn’t have to compete with them in the classroom, and many women forged life-long connections with each other. In my first novel, Orphan #8, I explored what life might have been like for a woman who realized she was a lesbian during those years. I hope I could have settled down with someone I loved and had a fulfilling life and career!

2. If you lived in the future and were to write historical fiction about 2018, what do you think you would write about and why?

Looking back at 2018 as historical fiction, I think it would be a challenge to explain how pervasive technology and social media are in our lives, but that’s a theme I’d be interested in. I can imagine writing about a band of people who reject the prevailing technology and try to live off the grid, and how the world around them keeps intruding on them no matter what they do. So, apparently, I would try to make the future more like the past!

3. What was it about Jacob Ruppert’s story that caught your interest?

Col. Jacob Ruppert was so enigmatic. Despite the many available details about his life, his personality remains a bit of a mystery. I liked being able to imagine how the events of his life might have impacted his personality, such as the way his parents shunned his sister for marrying a divorced Jew. He also was friends with so many famous people, and had such public accomplishments, that it was easy to envision him in historical situations. His life brought together so many different strands of American history—from immigration to Prohibition to baseball, from the Gilded Age to the Great Depression—that his biography allowed me to explore a wide time period while staying centered on one character.

Celebrate historical fiction with the Timeless Tour, from April 16 – May 4!

For more information, visit www.timelesstour.ca.

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Thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for the invitation to participate in this blog tour.

The Timeless Tour: Where History and Hearts Entwine

 

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I’m excited to be part of the Simon and Schuster Canada Timeless Tour, which celebrates historical fiction and kicks off today! Keep an eye on this blog over the next few weeks for a series of posts about some of the hottest historical fiction reads this spring.

To kick off this blog tour, Simon and Schuster asked bloggers a series of questions.

1. What do you love about historical fiction?

I love that historical fiction gives us an escape into the past. The world we dive into is real, and the events the characters go through were things that real people in the past have experienced, so there’s the emotional resonance of that realization. But there’s also the safety and comfort of already knowing how things turn out in the characters’ worlds. So for example, we can read about characters experiencing the horrors of a real war, and even though there’s the suspense of wondering what will happen to these particular characters, there’s also the comfort of knowing that the world as a whole will survive that war. Conversely, there’s also the potential for knowing that despite everything the characters have fought for, and knowing that real people have fought the same battle, whatever it was they fought for was never won, and that the battle continues to this day.

2. If you could go back to any fictional (Outlander / Come from Away / Bellewether etc.) historical time, when would it be and why?

Part of me wants to go back to the era of Outlander, but only on the proviso that I’ll be able to make my way back to my time whenever I choose. Diana Gabaldon creates such a vivid, breathtaking world with such compelling characters that it would be amazing to see it all in person. That being said, Gabaldon is also very realistic about the circumstances in which people in that time lived, and Claire is all too aware of the limitations of healthcare and civil rights during that time, so I don’t think I’d like to live there forever.

Another fictional historical time I’d love to visit is the world of Downton Abbey. The show does such a great job of depicting a world on the cusp of change, and it seems like such a lush and exciting time. Even though the upper class is on the verge of losing the world they’ve built up for generations, their lifestyle still seems so lavish and wonderful to experience. And even though the servants have difficult lives, they seem to have formed such a community belowstairs, and all this new opportunity is beginning to be opened for them.

3. If you could have dinner, brunch, or coffee with three historical fiction characters, who would they be?

Tea with the Dowager Countess from Downton Abbey because she’ll just be wickedly witty and can possibly tell so many incredible stories about her life.

Dinner with Jamie Fraser from Outlander. Diana Gabaldon has created such a compelling world, and such a striking character in Jamie that I feel like he’ll have a lot of great stories to share.

Do Agatha Christie’s mysteries count as historical fiction? I’d love to have tea with Miss Marple. I prefer the Hercule Poirot mysteries, but he’s a bit too fastidious for me to enjoy having coffee or tea with. Miss Marple is such a keen observer of human nature, and so understated about her brilliance that I’d love to spend an afternoon with her in a crowded tearoom, and just have her tell me all the secret lives she can discern from the people around us. I’d also be curious to see what she comes up with about me!

The Timeless Tour Schedule 

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Timeless Tour features four historical fiction from Simon and Schuster Canada:

  • Bachelor Girl by Kim Van Alkemade – a career woman in Jazz Age New York City falls in love with her employer’s secretary and finds herself heiress to a tremendous fortune.
  • Come from Away by Genevieve Graham – a shopkeeper in Nova Scotia during World War II falls in love with a handsome stranger at a Christmas party, until she learns who he really is.
  • Bellewether by Susanna Kearsley – a museum curator uncovers the tale of the forbidden love between a woman and the French-Canadian soldier whom her family holds captive.
  • Songs of Love and War by Santa Montefiore – an upstairs/downstairs romantic drama in turn of the century Ireland.

Coming up on this blog:

  • April 18 – Q&A with Bachelor Girl author Kim Van Alkemade
  • April 19 – Q&A with Come from Away author Genevieve Graham
  • April 23 – Book review of Bellewether by Susanna Kearsley
  • April 24 – Guest post by Santa Montefiore, author of Songs of Love and War
  • April 25 – Book review of Songs of Love and War by Santa Montefiore
  • April 26 – Book review of Come from Away by Genevieve Graham
  • April 30 – Q&A with Songs of Love and War author Santa Montefiore
  • May 1 – Guest post by Kim Van Alkemade, author of Bachelor Girl
  • May 3 – Book review of Bachelor Girl by Kim Van Alkemade
  • May 4 – Q&A with Bellewether author Susanna Kearsley

Follow along online with #TimelessTour and @SimonSchusterCA!

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Thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for the invitation to join this blog tour and for advance reading copies of the books above.