THE HIGHLANDER'S IRISH BRIDE by Vanessa Kelly - Interview - "Passion and Humor"
Vanessa Kelly joins us with The Highlander's Irish Bride, a novel in her deliciously passionate Clan Kendrick series. Highlanders? Yes, please!
The Highlander's Irish Bride
The latest in bestselling author Vanessa Kelly’s intoxicating Clan Kendrick series shines a light on the most respectable member of the Kendrick clan—and the independent woman who stole his heart . . .
Miss Kathleen Calvert may be the daughter of an Irish aristocrat, but she has no intention of acting like one. All she desires is to return to her family’s estate to raise horses and manage her father’s magnificent gardens. But when a scandal threatens her reputation, her parents order her to a remote Scottish estate, hoping she will finally learn to behave like a proper lady. To make matters worse, her escort is a handsome Highlander who just happens to be the most boring man in all of Scotland . . .
After a youth of dangerous and wild escapades, Grant Kendrick surprised his family—and himself—by becoming a successful businessman and the most respectable Kendrick brother. But does that matter, when the beautiful and free-spirited Kathleen deems him a stodgy bore? Luckily, he gets the chance to prove her wrong when their carriage is ambushed by thieves. But it will take all his ingenuity to protect the beautiful lass who has stormed her way into his heart—and to convince her that a life with him will be a love-filled adventure . . .
Q&A with Author
What makes The Highlander’s Irish Bride special or unique to you?
It’s part of my Clan Kendrick Series, which features the adventures—romantic and otherwise—of seven Highlander brothers. Although I enjoyed writing all my books, this series is a true high point for me. It has captured my creative soul, and the characters are now a real part of my life—they feel like family to me! In The Highlander’s Irish Bride, I take the quiet Kendrick brother (Grant), the one who has focused his life on devotion to family and duty to work, and send him on a grand adventure. As a person who has always felt a strong sense of obligation to my family and work, the character of Grant spoke to me. I wanted him to break out of the mold, experience LOTS of feelings, and fall madly in love with a woman who will bring love and joy into his life. Grant is a total sweetie, but he’s a guy who doesn’t think he’s very lovable (I think a lot of us feel the same about ourselves). So I wanted to give him the kind of love and romance that he so richly deserved!
What do you hope readers will take away from this book?
That adventure and love are waiting just around the corner, but sometimes you have to push past the boundaries of your comfort zone to find them. My hero and heroine are people of courage and heart, but both have also gotten stuck in a certain ways of thinking and living. Sometimes you have to do the opposite of what feels comfortable to get the life you want!
Do you share any personality traits with Grant or Kathleen?
I definitely lean more toward Grant than Kathleen. He’s very organized, responsible, and duty bound. I relate to that. I’m the kind of person who wants everything organized and all questions answered. I’m also a person who has trouble saying no, and that’s totally Grant. In his case, it’s because he never wants to disappoint anyone, or let her/him down. Kathleen is more of a free spirit; I was a bit like her when I was younger, but now I’m a Grant kind of person—which I suppose means I should go on a few more adventures!
What books are you currently reading? Why did you choose them?
Right now I’ve got two books on the go. The first is Plain Jayne, by Hillary Manton Lodge, and the other is Star of Persia, by Jill Eileen Smith. A few years ago I read Lodge’s Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility, which is a contemporary version of Sense and Sensibility. I loved the author’s writing style and her ability to tell an updated Austen story in a way that was refreshing, charming, and still totally modern. So I’m now going through Lodge’s backlist. Star of Persia is historical fiction about Queen Esther. I love fiction about Biblical characters, and the story of Esther is fascinating, dramatic, and inspiring. So both books are keeping me entertained and up at night!
Do you consider your books plot-driven or character-driven? Is that how you naturally write, or do is there a purpose for what you chose?
I’d say my books are both plot-driven AND character-driven, although plot tends to help me focus in the early stages. I do a lot of pre-writing and research, which includes character biographies and temperament profiles, and I also outline and write a comprehensive plot synopsis for my editor. By the time I actually start writing the story, I have a pretty big notebook full of materials that guide me. I am naturally a plotter and an organizer, so doing a lot of work up front gives me a level of security through any rough spots. If I am hitting a wall, I can fall back on my synopsis or my notes to pull me through the tricky bits. Then I clean up and clarify plot and character issues in the revision stage. I try to just plow ahead with the first draft, ignoring any problems that might cause me to freeze up. One problem I do have is that I write VERY long. Sometimes my first drafts are so long that it’s kind of ridiculous. The charitable term for this process is “discovery writer.” I guess that’s accurate. Sometimes I have to write a lot of words, circling a problem, until I figure out what’s going on. So I always end up cutting A LOT of words in the revision process. It can be an annoying process, but it seems to be the one my brain likes to do. :)
Vanessa Kelly is a USA Today Bestselling, award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.” Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated in a number of contests, and she has won multiple awards, including the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance. Her books have been published in nine languages.
Vanessa’s first Clan Kendrick book, The Highlander Who Protected Me, was a USA Today, Barnes & Noble, and BookScan bestseller. The Highlander’s Christmas Bride, her latest book, hit the top 50 on both the Barnes & Noble mass-market bestseller list and on BookScan. The Renegade Royals Series was a national bestseller, as was The Improper Princesses Series. My Fair Princess was named a Goodreads Romance of the Month and is a USA Today and BookScan bestseller.
When she’s not dreaming of plots for her next Regency novel, Vanessa is writing USA Today Bestselling books with her husband, under the pen name of V.K. Sykes.
You can find Vanessa at vanessakellyauthor.com or at vksykes.com. For all of Vanessa’s latest news and contests–and to receive a free story–please sign up for her newsletter on her website.
Genre: Historical Romance
Release: July 27, 2021
Publisher: Zebra Books (Kensington)
Content Rating: 5 Hearts
During the Blog Tour, the author is giving away a paperback copy of The Highlander’s Christmas Bride & The Highlander’s English Bride & a $20 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please click the button below.
The giveaway is open internationally and ends August 13, 2021. You must be 18 or older to enter. Void where prohibited by law. This giveaway is sponsored by the author and hosted by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours.
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