Welcome to the Name Before the Masses Tour and author Q&A for the Shadow and Silk Series by Sofie Darling. The author will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN gift card to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Follow the blog tour by clicking on the banner image above. Commenting on blogs increases your chance of winning. Please only comment once per blog (unless it’s active conversations with an author, multiple comments from the same person will be deleted.)
Three Lessons in Seduction
Genre: Historical Romance
Lord Nicholas Asquith needs his wife. Too bad he broke her heart ten years ago.
Can he resist a second chance at the love he lost?
When Mariana catches the eye of the man at the center of an assassination plot, Nick puts aside their painful past and enlists her to obtain information by any means necessary, even if it means seducing the enemy agent.
Even if the thought makes his blood boil.
Only by keeping his distance from Mariana these last ten years was he able to pretend indifference to her. With every moment spent with her, he feels his tightly held control slipping…
Can she trust the spy who broke her heart?
Mariana spent the last decade forgetting Nick. Now she has the chance to best him at his own game, an opportunity she can’t resist, even as her view of him begins to shift. Increasingly, she wants nothing more than to seduce her own husband . . .
It’s only a matter of time before mad passion ignites, a passion never convincingly extinguished. A passion that insists on surrendering to the yearning of the flesh and, quite possibly, of the heart.
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Tempted by the Viscount
Genre: Historical Romance
London, April 1825
Lord Jakob Radclyffe left his past behind in the Far East. Or so he thinks until a ruthless thief surfaces in London, threatening to ruin his daughter’s reputation. With the clock ticking, Jake needs the scandalous Lady Olivia Montfort’s connections in the art world to protect his daughter’s future.
Olivia, too, has a past she’d like to escape. By purchasing her very own Mayfair townhouse, she’ll be able to start a new life independent from all men. There’s one problem: she needs a powerful man’s name to do so. The Viscount St. Alban is the perfect name.
A bargain is struck.
What Olivia doesn’t anticipate is the temptation of the viscount. The undeniable spark of awareness that races between them subverts her vow to leave love behind. Soon, she has no choice but to rid her system of Jake by surrendering to her craving for a single scorching encounter.
But is once enough? Sometimes once only stokes the flame of desire higher and hotter. And sometimes once is all the heart needs to risk all and follow a mad passion wherever it may lead.
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From Tempted by the Viscount
His feet began a slow prowl forward, steadily erasing the distance between them, inch by deliberate inch. She should feel panicked, or, at least, unsettled, by his purposeful approach. But those feelings refused to take hold. The anxiety and anticipation of seconds ago flared into a single overwhelming sensation: desire, white hot, ravenous.
He drew within a foot of her and stopped. The only sound in the room the jagged in and out of her breath.
So this was what it was to be a wanton? Aching from the nearness of his withheld touch, excruciatingly delicious and exquisitely tortured all at once.
“Why are you here?” she muttered.
“How should I answer that question?” he returned, his voice a low, masculine register that quaked her to her core. His head lowered, lips hovering just above hers for one, two, three rapid heartbeats, his breath a whisper across her lips. “Like this?”
Please tell us a little bit about your book. What inspired the themes in your story?
Tempted by the Viscount is the second book in my Shadows and Silk series.
Jake is new in Town. He’s been a sailor all his life, but he recently inherited an English viscountcy that he didn’t really want. He has two goals: sort out the estate’s finances and find a wife. Well, mostly a stepmother for his daughter Mina. She has a mixed-race heritage and for her to succeed in English Society, she will need a proper stepmother of impeccable reputation to guide and protect her.
With her pedigree, Lady Olivia Montfort might perfectly fit the bill, except she’s a scandalous divorcée and has sworn off men entirely. What she really wants is her own townhouse and complete independence.
When Jake’s past in the Far East surfaces in London and threatens Mina’s future, Jake and Olivia must strike a bargain to help each other.
I was inspired by the idea of these people who must inhabit and navigate the English ton while not quite fitting into it. It only seemed natural that they might fall in love.
Do you outline before you write? or just dive right in?
I’m a plotter. There’s this misconception that plotting is drudgery, but, for me, it’s the opposite. First, I tape together several sheets of paper and draw a line across it lengthwise. Then I grab a stack of yellow stickies and start jotting down scene ideas, snippets of conversation, and whatever comes into my head that will go into the story. When I start arranging and rearranging the stickies on the line—voilà!—the story begins to form. For me, this is the most fun and free part of my writing process.
Who are some of your favorite authors? What are you currently reading?
A few of my favorite authors are Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, Graham Greene, Thomas Pynchon, Michael Ondaatje, Haruki Murakami, and David Mitchell. I have a few books going right now: A Little Folly by Jude Morgan, Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance, and The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf on audiobook.
If you could visit any setting from one of your books, which one would it be and why?
Although it’s part of the backstory in Tempted, so I’m not sure it counts technically as a setting, I’d love to visit Japan. I’d like to walk around Tokyo at night when it’s all lit up and Kyoto in spring when the cherry trees are blossoming.
Who are your celebrity inspirations? If you were to cast your characters, which actors would you choose?
When I was coming up with ideas for the physicality of Jake and Olivia, the hero and heroine of Tempted, an actor and actress immediately sprang to mind. For Jake, Michael Fassbender with his arctic blue eyes rimmed with navy. For Olivia, Kirsten Dunst with her cute crooked tooth.
How do you come up with the names of your characters?
I research names that are period and class appropriate. There are all sorts of useful name lists on the internet.
Name one item you can’t live without.
This is a tough one! It’s a dead heat between my running shoes and tea.
What are some of your hobbies?
Like most writers, I’m a big reader. Also, I like to run. Well, maybe “like” isn’t quite accurate. It’s more like I feel compelled to run. And I travel every chance I get.
If you were presented with the opportunity to travel through time, which period would you choose and why?
I’ve been a little obsessed with ancient Roman civilization since childhood. I would love to travel back to the Forum in Rome and see it operating in its full glory.
What’s next for you?
Book three of my series, Her Midnight Sin, is now in the hands of my editor, so I’ve started work on book four. Her Midnight Sin will release in April, 2019 and features the world-weary Captain John Nylander and feisty Lady Calpurnia Radclyffe, Dowager Viscountess St. Alban, as they vie against each other for the same Devon country estate. There will be pirates and apple brandy. 🙂
Thank you Sofie!