MBA&M IS THRILLED TO HAVE WITH US TODAY, BRITISH ROMANCE WRITER…..
So without further ado,please give Helena a big MBA&A welcome……
Hi all, and thanks so much for having me on MBA&M. I’m really thrilled to be here!
My name’s Helena Fairfax. I’m a British romance writer, and I live in an old Victorian mill town in the north of England.
Many years ago I spent some months working as an au pair in the beautiful city of Lyon, France. This period of my life made a lasting impression on me. My home in England is in a pretty bleak location, on the edge of those Yorkshire moors which the Brontë sisters made famous. You can imagine the contrast for me as a teenager, arriving in a wonderfully colourful city in the south of France, with its vibrant night-life and café culture, its heat and the two magnificent rivers that run through it.
When it came to writing my first romance novel, The Silk Romance, I just knew that the historic city of Lyon had to be the setting. And since my own part of the world is famous for its woollen weaving, I decided to utilise my knowledge of the weaving industry and make my hero the owner of a silk-weaving mill.
At one time Lyon was the centre for silk-weaving in the whole of Europe. In many parts of the world, sadly, weaving is a dying industry. Jean-Luc, the gorgeous French hero of The Silk Romance, makes a moving statement about its decline:
‘We have a saying that there are three rivers at the heart of Lyon. There’s the river Rhône, the river Saône and there’s the river of tears left by the silk workers.’
Although silk-weaving is now a dying industry in France, I have revived it in my modern-day sweet romance novel. My hero, Jean-Luc, is just the dynamic sort of character to bring silk back to life, and I have made him the owner of a thriving silk mill in the historic silk-weaving district of the Croix-Rousse.
The Croix-Rousse district of Lyon is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you visit, you’ll still find many covered stone passageways in Lyon known as traboules. These covered passageways enabled the weavers to carry their silk protected from the rain. The houses in the Croix-Rousse also have very high-ceilings, necessary to accommodate the tall looms.
It’s a fascinating story and a beautiful city. As for the final product – well, what’s not to love in the glamorous sheen and feel of genuine silk?
The Silk Romance is released on May 24th by MuseItUp Publishing
~Happy pre-“Release Day”,Helena~
Thank you so much for stopping by today!
About the author:
Helena Fairfax was born in Uganda and came to England as a child. She’s grown used to the cold now and that’s just as well, because nowadays she lives in an old Victorian mill town in Yorkshire, right next door to windswept Brontë country. She has an affectionate, if half-crazed, rescue dog and together they tramp the moors every day—one of them wishing she were Emily Brontë, the other vainly chasing pheasants. When she’s not out on the moors you’ll find Helena either creating romantic heroes and heroines of her own or else with her nose firmly buried in a book, enjoying someone else’s stories. Her patient husband and her brilliant children support her in her daydreams and are the loves of her life.
She loves to meet new people J
The Silk Romance
Published by MuseItUp Publishing May 24th 2013
14878 James, Pierrefonds, Quebec, Canada, H9H 1P5
Cover Art © 2013 by Charlotte Volnek
Edited by Marni McNiff
Copyedited by Jessica Naccari
Layout and Book Production by Lea Schizas
eBook ISBN: 978-1-77127-321-3
First eBook Edition *May 2013
Production by MuseItUp Publishing
Category: Sweet contemporary romance
The Silk Romance Blurb
Jean-Luc Olivier is a courageous racing driver with the world before him. Sophie Challoner is a penniless student, whose face is unknown beyond her own rundown estate in London. The night they spend together in Paris seems to Sophie like a fairytale—a Cinderella story without the happy ending. She knows she has no part in Jean-Luc’s future. She made her dying mother a promise to take care of her father and brother in London. One night of happiness is all Sophie allows herself. She runs away from Jean-Luc and returns to England to keep her promise.
Safely back home with her father and brother, and immersed in her college work, Sophie tries her best to forget their encounter, but she reckons without Jean-Luc. He is determined to find out why she left him, and intrigued to discover the real Sophie. He engineers a student placement Sophie can’t refuse, and so, unwillingly, she finds herself back in France, working for Jean-Luc in the silk mill he now owns.
Thrown together for a few short weeks in Lyon, the romantic city of silk, their mutual love begins to grow. But it seems the fates are conspiring against Sophie’s happiness. Jean-Luc has secrets of his own. Then, when disaster strikes at home in London, Sophie is faced with a choice—stay in this glamorous world with the man she loves, or return to her family to keep the sacred promise she made her mother.
The Silk Romance extract
“Sophie,” he began again huskily. “Sophie, this is not what I want.”
“Isn’t it?” In that moment, a hollowness rushed to fill her, so that she could barely bring herself to speak. She turned her own face away in bewilderment. Outside the window, the black waters of the river Rhône could be seen as they crossed the bridge, orange lights bobbing and rippling on its surface. She let her curtain of hair swing forward to hide the misery in her expression and pressed her forehead unseeing to the glass. She felt Jean-Luc move to take her hand, his fingers gentle now, the strength in them subdued.
“This mustn’t end the way it did before,” he said gently. “We need to know each other better. I don’t want you to run away again.”
Sophie said nothing. For a few moments, there was a deep, ominous silence. The timeless silence that falls before the surge of a tidal wave, before the swell reaches its peak to come crashing down blindly on the rocks.
Then an unstoppable anger surged through her. She whirled her head round. “You think we need to get to know each other better?”
Jean-Luc reached one hand up to touch her face, taken aback by what he saw there, but she jerked back.
“What does that mean? I don’t know you at all,” she cried. “All I know is, everything you set your heart on, you get. First of all, you railroad me into coming to work for you. Then when I get here, you talk me into going out with you, and you ask me all about myself, and you say nothing about you. And you insist on bringing up that night when I’m trying to forget all about it. And then I want you to kiss me, and you tell me you’re not going to kiss me, like what I have to say doesn’t mean anything!”
The rush of jumbled words left Sophie panting for breath, her face up close to Jean-Luc’s in anger. He began to speak, but she broke in before the words could leave his mouth.
“I’m glad I left you in that hotel room, because you deserved it.” She jabbed one finger at his chest in violent confirmation. “And I’m sorry I apologised before because, actually, I’m not sorry.”
Her final sentence spilled out incoherently, but she was beyond caring. For a few moments, the only sound in the astonished silence was her rapid breathing as she forced for mastery of herself. She sank back again into her own corner, still not beaten.
“You’re completely single-minded,” she added bitterly. “And if it’s any consolation, I’ve never known anyone like you.”
Her anger was stoked still further by Jean-Luc’s reaction. In the half-light of the car, the street lamps lit up his face one after another in a regular pattern.
“Are you smiling?” she asked incredulously.
“I’m sorry I made you angry,” he said gently. “When I want something, I don’t always see what’s in my way.”
“No, I’ve noticed. You’re like a dog with a bone!”
“A dog with a bone?” he repeated, and now the smile on his face was unmistakeable. “Is that a dog with no flies on him?”
“Oh, you’re impossible.” Sophie snatched her hand out of his grasp and turned her face towards the window.
The Silk Romance
Will be published in e-format on 24th May by MuseItUp Publishing. It will be available from Amazon, Kobo and other major e-tailers. You can pre-order the The Silk Romance now from the Muse Bookstore. It will be available in print later in the year.
“My Thoughts” on “The Silk Romance” by Helena Fairfax
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