We are very happy to welcome author Meljean Brook to Book Lovers Inc today. Her latest novel The Iron Duke was released this week and is the first full length novel in her new steampunk series The Iron Seas. She’s here to talk about her new series and she also has a great giveaway in tow, so be sure to stay tuned till the end of the interview. Please give Meljean a warm welcome.
The Geeky Lover: Meljean can you please tell us a bit about yourself?
Meljean: I’m one of those geeky-nerdy types who got lucky enough to make a living doing what I love. And, ha! –that’s about all there is to me.
The Geeky Lover: Describe a typical day of writing? Are you a planner or pantser?
Meljean: I get up early, and work for a little while before getting the kid ready for school. Then I work until I have to pick her up…and then work until I go to sleep. It’s a pretty simple schedule.
I’m a pantser, mostly. I usually know a few plot points that I want to hit, but getting to each of them is something that I figure out along the way.
The Geeky Lover: What do you think is the difference between a reader and a real Book Lover?
Meljean: A reader, I guess, is someone who simply reads – road signs or cereal boxes or the Sunday funnies. Once in a while a reader will pick up a book and enjoy it … but a Book Lover has a book with her all the time, is always looking for more books, and loves nothing more than losing herself in a story.
The Geeky Lover: Why did you decide to jump into the Steampunk genre? what is it’s appeal for you?
Meljean: I’ve wanted to write steampunk for years and years – I didn’t think I ever would be able to, but my editor is amazing and let me give it a shot. The appeal to me is multi-layered – I love being able to play with the historical aspects, but to give them a twist. I love the combination of raw and dirty technology with the beauty and elegance of the Victorian period. And I love the sense of adventure that goes hand-in-hand with the genre.
The Geeky Lover: Could you tell us some more about the world your new series, The Iron Seas, is set in? I read on your website that you included Nanotechnology, too. How does this all fit together?
Meljean: It’s an alternate history where Genghis Khan’s descendents – the Horde – didn’t stop at the edge of Europe (as they did in real history). With the use of their technology, which was more advanced than anyone else’s at the time, they conquered all of Europe and Africa. After several hundred years, the Horde tech advanced enough to create nanotechnology, which they used to infect the people of England and to enslave them, physically and emotionally.
But after two hundred years of the Horde occupation, pirate captain Rhys Trahaearn (the Iron Duke) destroyed the tower that the Horde was using to control England, and freed them. The story begins nine years later.
The Geeky Lover: The first story in your new Series is Here There Be Monsters in the Burning Up anthology. What happens in this novella and can we read The Iron Duke without having read it?
Meljean: The novella stands alone, so you don’t have to read either story to understand the other. Here There Be Monsters is about a blacksmith, Ivy, who is on the run from London – and she’s desperate enough to make a bargain with Mad Machen, the pirate captain, for passage on his ship. What she doesn’t know is that Mad Machen has been in love with her for quite some time, and there’s no way he’s going to let her go….
The Geeky Lover: What can we expect of The Iron Duke?
Meljean: Romance, first and foremost. But there’s also fun technology, a new world, danger and adventure, monsters and zombies, a conspiracy to unravel and centuries of prejudice to fight. It’s a great time.
The Geeky Lover: Your hero, Rhys Trahaearn is the Iron Duke and he created a mighty merchant empire. In the blurb he sounds a bit intimidating. How would you describe the man behind the title?
Meljean: If there is one word to describe Rhys, it’s “driven.” Once he’s set his mind on having something, it WILL be that way. And he won’t stop – when the world prevents him from having Mina, he is determined to *change the world* itself, just so that they can be together.
The Geeky Lover: Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth has much to lose with getting close and personal to the Duke. Her background seems to be rather complicated. What do you think made her the person she is?
Meljean: Although Mina is very happy in her family, she’s also the product of a rape – and she looks like the people who enslaved England for two hundred years. And even though England has been freed, the population’s backlash of resentment and hatred affects her very deeply.
The Geeky Lover: Is it a coincidence that your heroine’s last name is Wentworth (like Captain Frederick Wentworth from Persuasion by Jane Austen) and we find sea adventures and pirates in your series?
Meljean: Very much a coincidence, ha! –in truth, I just like the name Wentworth, and the rhythm of it.
The Geeky Lover: Will there be more books in this series?
Meljean: There will be at least one more book in the series, HEART OF STEEL, coming in November of 2011.
The Geeky Lover: Do you already know how this series will end?
Meljean: No. It will all depend on whether the series continues.
The Geeky Lover: What is next on your schedule?
Meljean: I have the next Guardian book coming up in August, and then the final Guardian book – Michael’s story – will be on shelves a few months after that.
The Geeky Lover: Now can you tell us 3 reasons why people should read your books?
Meljean: Because they are always full of romance, adventure, and a lot of heat (and steam).
The Geeky Lover: Can you summarize your different series Twitter style (140 characters or less)?
Meljean: The Guardians: Brave men and women with the abilities of the angels fight demons and fall in love in this dark romantic series.
The Iron Seas: In this gritty world, steampunk adventure and gadgets are the backdrop for steamy, emotional romance.
The Geeky Lover: Thanks so much for taking the time to answer our questions.
Meljean: Thank you!
Meljean is offering 2 copies of The Iron Duke to two lucky commenters.
All you have to do is ask Meljean a question or just leave a meaningful comment about the post.
Please leave us a way to contact you
(email in blogger profile or twitter name is okay-
no way to contact you – no entry).
This giveaway is open Internationally!
Giveaway ends on Saturday, October 23rd and we will announce the winners on Sunday.