Interview Author Bronwen Evans + Giveaway

Filed in Bronwen Evans , Giveaways , Interview , The Latin Lover , The Smutty Lover Posted on February 25, 2011 @ 7:00 am 31 comments
We are very happy to welcome Regency Romance author Bronwen Evans here at Book Lovers Inc today. Her debut novel Invitation to Ruin was released this week and she is here to tell us a bit about her love for Regency and what her books are all about. She will also come over and answer any questions you might have and she got a prize in tow. Please give Bron a warm welcome. 

BLI: Bronwen can you please tell us a bit about yourself?

Bronwen: I’m a born and breed Kiwi (New Zealander) who cannot live without a book being in her hand. In particular romance books. I live in Wellington, New Zealand and I have four sisters, one is my twin! We used to have a lot of fun at school with confusing teachers and boyfriends – not so much now we are older.
I have worked in big corporates most of my life (both in NZ and in the UK where I lived for almost 8 years) and have been screaming to escape. Now that my first books are due for release, I’ve dropped down to part-time work in order to hopefully focus on a romance writing career – my dream career. Can you think of a better job – dreaming up dashing heroes and clever, smart, sassy heroines, and creating their HEA (happy ever after)? What a job!
When not writing I enjoy playing golf (if the weather’s fine – I’m not a wet weather golfer) and I also play bridge (card game). I am also a very social person. I love coffee mornings with the girls, lunch with friends, and nights out to the movies etc. My favorite movies fall into various categories. Like romance, I enjoy various types of movies – The English Patient, Casino Royal, Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont, Meet the Fockers etc
Being single I’m often called on to baby sit for my sisters. I love my nieces and nephews. My eldest nephew has recently turned 16 and wants to read my book – hmmmm – I’m a bit nervous about that as it’s a bit raunchy. Perhaps I’ll let him when he reaches twenty-one. I have two sisters who live in Wellington near me (one is my twin), one is in Sydney and one in Germany (she’s just got married to a German). When I lived in England I travelled extensively. My favorite country is Italy – fashion, food, culture and of course the men – dark and handsome and the ultimate charmers. The whole country screams romance.

BLI: Describe a typical day of writing? Are you a planner or pantser?

Bronwen: I have a definite writing routine. I write Monday afternoons, all day Tuesday and all day Friday – and probably a few hours at the weekend if I’m not too busy socializing. I always start my morning by making a cup of tea and piece of toast. I answer emails for about an hour then I start to write. I break to make lunch and then I usually work until around 3pm when I take a walk or swim (my local pool is just around the corner). Then I work again until around 6pm.
Sunday afternoon’s are for reading my latest romance book purchase – this weekend coming is Nalini Singh’s, Archangel’s Consort. There is nothing like settling in with a cup of tea, macaroon biscuits and a fabulous romance novel.
I’m a planner. I’m like that in my life too. I like to know where I’m going and I set myself goals all the time. I’m also one of these people that can’t stand to be late – for anything.

BLI: What do you think is the difference between a reader and a real Book Lover?

Bronwen: A reader reads a book. A real Book Lover finds books are a necessecity of their life – like the air they breathe. A Book Lover would never be caught without a book and I bet they have a very large ‘Keepers’ bookcase.

BLI: Why is Regency your favorite of all the romance sub-genres?

Bronwen: I love the genre because there was so much happening in this period – The Prince Regent, smuggling, Napoleonic wars, the beginnings of anti-slavery, American Revolution and India uprisings against the colonial rulers, England. On top of all this, the period was very promiscuous. I love alpha heroes. The warm hearted, hot blooded rake is so very enticing.

BLI: Do you remember what book introduced you to the (historical) romance genre/Regency romance?

Bronwen: Wouldn’t everyone say Georgette Heyer? I also remember loving Johanna Lindsey’s early books. I know I loved the Scottish Highland lord’s stories too. But in the 90’s I fell in love with Stephanie Lauren’s and once Devil’s Bride was published I never looked back. The Cynster’s series is still my all time favorite series.

BLI: And what is your favourite thing/custom/tradition/detail about that period?

Bronwen: I think the ‘honor code’ with which the gentry in the early 1800’s lived. If you made a pledge or promise you kept it no matter the cost.

BLI: What can we expect of Invitation to Ruin?

Bronwen: There is no doubt that Invitation to Ruin is a dark romance. My hero, Anthony, has had a terrible childhood and is not going to be a cheerful, happy rake. But that is what makes the book so appealing. He has such a struggle to come to terms with his past, but he has the biggest heart imaginable, and rises above his background to overcome the emotional torture his early life was. Melissa helps him unlock his heart, and ultimately he learns to forgive, and love himself and her. I’d like to think the reader experiences a dichotomy of emotions in this battle of good versus evil, forgiveness versus revenge and love versus hate.

BLI: On your website you describe your heroine, Miss Melissa Goodly, as “the ahead of their time feminist”. What makes her so ahead of her time and what does it say about her as a person? Is she that open minded in all her views?

Bronwen: Melissa is a head of her time because she thinks about the Society she lives in, and tries to change it for the better. She understands that ownership of a human being is wrong, and that ‘marriage’ for most women is a form of slavery. She has no rights of her own, has no way of supporting herself on her own, and she is trapped in a life she has little ability to change. Her self-awareness is what makes her who she is. She fights against Society’s bindings however she can, and then, when she has no choice, she decides to make her life over to one she wants – given her circumstances.
BLI: Do you plan a book on the hero’s brother Richard? We like the dichotomy of the good twin and bad twin, will Richard’s heroine, if he has one, be a heroine who can match him?
Bronwen: I can’t wait to write Richard’s story – it will be book 3 in the ‘Invitation to’ series. The heroine in Richard’s story is Rufus’s sister, Madeline (Rufus is a character in Invitation to Ruin. His story, Invitation to Scandal is due out early 2012). I love Richard because he tries to help everyone because he failed to help his twin while they were growing up. When trying to help Madeline, Richard ends up married to her. Madeline has no idea that marrying her best friend could lead to such passion, and she no longer wants a marriage of convenience. But everyone knows the only woman Richard has ever loved was Lady Sarah, a woman Richard was forbidden to marry. Now that Sarah s a widow, will Richard regret his marriage to Madeline? And how will Madeline win Richard’s heart?
Needless to say, two elder brother’s make this match complicated. Anthony is nervous his brother is marrying Madeline for all the wrong reasons, and Rufus is angry that Madeline is marry a consummate rake and is worried Madeleine will be hurt.
BLI: On your site we have seen you plan the Invitation series to be a trilogy. What can you tell us about the next books? What is their relation to the first? Will we revisit previously encountered characters as heroes this time?
Bronwen:  The ‘Invitation to’ series are all stand alone books but characters from each book will appear in various roles across the series. I’ve mentioned Richard’s book above. A character briefly mentioned in Rufus’s story, Invitation to Scandal, is Alexander Montford. In Rufus’s story Alex is on his way to Devon to answer the SOS call of a woman he has been tasked to help. Alex’s book, book four, will introduce the fifth and final hero, Grayson, in the ‘Invitation to’ series.

BLI: What does romance mean for you?

Bronwen: Romance can blossom in the midst of a real world. It’s real, tangible and it’s about the little things. A quick kiss each morning before he heads off to work. A smile that is special to only you. A wink that makes your stomach fill with butterflies. And a hug that sets your heart pounding.
BLI: You write “dark, gritty, sensuous romance”, and after reading Invitation to Ruin I agree. What compelled you to stretch the boundaries of the genre and introduce darker ideas and storylines (slavery, sado-masochism, etc.) into a romance novel?
Bronwen: I am fascinated by human nature. I thought about being a woman in the early 1800’s and I immediately rebelled at the unfairness of their lives. I likened it to a form of slavery. I thought ‘wouldn’t it be fascinating to have the hero involved in slavery and to show how one man can rise above it while others are consumed by it’. The villain’s sado-masochism seemed to fit with a person capable of selling slaves and treating them as he did.
Totally gratuitous (The HEA Lover)

BLI: Do you have a favourite time period and if you could choose which one, would you like to have a time travel trip to visit and experience it?

Bronwen: I love reading about the Regency period, but I wouldn’t want to travel there in person. I have a wonderful imagination and I can vividly picture what it would be like, and for a woman I suspect it was mostly bad. Romance glorifies the period. I suspect in reality it was not so appealing.

BLI: What is next on your schedule?

Bronwen: I’m busy working on a new six book series called ‘The Disgraced Lords’ which my agent Melissa Jeglinski of The Knight Agency wants the first book of ASAP. I’m also looking forward to the results of the RT and Brava Writing with the Stars Contest, as my mentee, Meredith Simmons is a finalist with her historical Indentured Hearts. I may have to pack my pages and head to LA for the RT Book Review conference where the finalist is announced in April. I have the RWNZ conference coming up in August too.

BLI: Now can you tell us 3 reasons why people should read your books?

Anthony – A wounded and deeply tortured alpha male, who’s as sexy as hell

Melissa -A woman who’s determined to make her husband face his demons

Philip – A villain who tries to have the ultimate revenge on his one time friend and now enemy

BLI: Which 4 characteristics should a perfect hero have in your opinion? Does Anthony fit the bill?

Bronwen: He has to be sexy – not necessarily handsome but he must have that certain something that sets a woman’s heart racing
He should have integrity
He should be self-aware
And his soul, personality and actions should make him loveable

Anthony has the above in spades!

BLI: In your opinion what is the most important in a heroine?

Bronwen: In the Regency world a heroine has to have a brain. She must be smart to capture, tame, and demand and receive the best of her hero.

BLI: Can you summarize Invitation to Ruin for us twitter style (140 characters or less)?

Emotionally tortured sexy Rake, refuses to bed his tempting wife, in order to stop his family’s tainted blood lines – wife has other ideas.


Bronwen has generously offered a signed copy of  Invitation to Ruin to one lucky commenter!

All you have to do is ask Bronwen a question or leave a meaningful comment about the interview
(You can read our full giveaway policy here)

Please leave us a way to contact you.
(Email in blogger profile or twitter name – no way to contact you – no entry).

This giveaway is open worldwide!
Giveaway ends on Saturday, March 5, 2011; and we will announce the winner on Sunday.
Good luck!

About Susi

Susi is a geeky vegetarian from Gemany. She just finished university and now works as a civil engineer in steel construction. Besides her reading addiction she also knits like a maniac while listening to audiobooks. Susi also blogs at the Secret HEA Society.

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Join the Discussion
  • Birgit February 25, 2011 at 7:42 am

    Great interview!

    My question: In a time where eBooks are all the rage, do you like reading eBooks or do you still prefer a "real" book?

    danaan at gmx dot at

  • GeishasMom73 February 25, 2011 at 8:32 am

    Hello Bronwyn!

    Anthony sounds like my kind of hero. I have a soft spot for wounded/tortured alphas. I like to see the heroine break down his barriers and prove to him that he deserves love.

    I will be at the RT convention too! I hope to see you there.

    GeishasMom73 on twitter

  • ClaudiGC February 25, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Hi Bronwen!
    Your first book sounds great. I have a soft spot for tortured heroes! 🙂 And I'm really intrigued about the "darker side" of your books because I'm a bit sick of these "happy" books all the time.
    Good luck with your book!

  • Mary February 25, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Hi everyone

    In answer to the eBook question – I'm dying to get an eBook device. I have read a few PDF eBooks but living in New Zealand, we have up until recently, been unable to buy the American e-readers. We can now, but not all books have the correct DRM for NZ and our choice is a bit limited.

    Thanks for liking dark tortured heroes. I loved writing Anthony and seeing his battle with himself and Melissa.


  • Bron February 25, 2011 at 10:08 am

    Sorry – my niece (ten years old) seemed to be logged on to Google on my PC – the last post was from me – not my niece.

  • Victoria February 25, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Hi Bronwen,

    Congratulations on your book!

    I love your name! It's so different. What does it mean and have you ever thought about using it in your writing?
    Also, when asked what time period I'd like to live in I always say now. I am so SPOILED I would never want to give up my creature comforts.

  • Bron February 25, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Hi Victoria

    Bronwen is Welsh and means 'Fair Breast'. I didn't get teased much about that!

  • Rebecca February 25, 2011 at 11:02 am

    Wonderful interview! I absolutely love a tortured hero…can't wait to read! 🙂

  • Kim Bowman Author February 25, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    Congrats Bronwen! Wonderful interview. You hero sounds wonderful.

  • Danielle Gorman February 25, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    I can't wait to read this book. I saw it online a few months ago and it quickly went onto my wishlist. I can't wait. This book looks so good.

  • Ciara February 25, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Your book sounds great, Bronwen. I can't wait to read it. I'm a fan of tortured heroes. 🙂

  • Estella February 25, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    I enjoyed the interview. Like getting to 'know' an author and their books.

    I enjoy Regency books, but don't think I could live in those times. I enjoy my showers too much!

  • Kylie Griffin February 25, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    Bron, I loved this interview! The detail about Anthony and the themes in your book were fascinating!

    I think one of the most interesting facets of writing for a non-writer is the amount of time authors spend on research for their books. And it sounds like you've spent many hours doing just that for ITR.

    Two quick questions – what's you greatest strength as a writer? Alternately, (besides your self confessed spelling/grammar weakness *grin*) what area do you find yourself having to improve the most during the editing process?

  • Kylie Griffin February 25, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    And it would help if I left a contact address, just in case, eh? Sorry!

    kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au

  • Amy February 25, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    I agree with you that romance is about the little things and it is real. It's often those little unexpected things, not the huge grand gestures like setting up an elaborate fancy dinner. Romance is about those little ways we show how much we care.


  • Margay February 25, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    Melissa sounds like a good character – I can only imagine the ways she gets under Anthony's skin! And Bronwen, I have a fascination for the Regency period, too!


  • Bron February 25, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    Thanks everyone for the lovely comments.

    Kylie – my strength, I hope, is my storytelling ability. The ability to make a world full of rich and interesting characters so that the reader can escape and enjoy the story.

    When I edit, I focus on strengthening the language used, both in terms of emotion, and the depth of connection.

  • Nicki J Markus February 25, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    Hi Bronwen
    Given your love of period romance writing, are you also a fan of filmed period drama (both TV and big screen)?
    If so, what is your favourite filmed adaptation of a period novel?

  • Bron February 25, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    Hi Nicki

    I'm a huge film and telly buff. I love any Shakespeare films, my favourite was Much Ado About Nothing.

    In terms of romance films, I loved the Jane Eyre 2006 Mini-series and of course I adored Becoming Jane about Jane Austen (and not just because James Mcavoy was in it).

  • LSUReader February 25, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    Bronwen–Your series sounds great and I'm interested in reading more.

    I like the premium you put on intelligence in a Regency heroine. Who are some Regency heroines that you admire in works by other authors? Thanks.

  • Bron February 25, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    I have so many favorite heroines I'm not sure where to start. One that springs to mind is Olivia in Loreta Chases book Last Night's Scandal (I've just finished reading it – loved it).I also loved the Cynster twins (Stephanie Laurens) – Amanda and Amelia.

  • Barbara E. February 25, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Invitation to Ruin sounds like a wonderful book. I've always enjoyed the dark, tortured hero, and your heroine sounds like just the woman for him.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  • winnie February 25, 2011 at 11:50 pm

    Thanks for the interview! Invitation to Ruin sounds like an intriguing read. The emotionally tortured hero part definitely piqued my interests!


  • Meredith February 26, 2011 at 2:56 am

    Great interview! Richard's story does sound complicated! I can't wait to read them!

    meredithfl at gmail dot com

  • Maureen February 26, 2011 at 6:18 am

    I do like a complicated hero and Anthony sounds like there are many sides to him.
    mce1011 AT aol DOT com

  • BooksforCompany February 26, 2011 at 10:58 am

    l so agree with the 4 characteristics! I would choose at least 3 of those!
    Thank you for the interview and giveaway! =)
    booksforcompany @

  • Tore February 26, 2011 at 11:14 am

    I am a follower and email subscriber.Please enter me in contest. What generes do you like to write about?

  • Bron February 26, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    Hi again – Tore asked me about the genres I like to write about.

    To me it's not so much the genre, I've found it's more the type of hero that suits my voice. I definitely like strong alpha males. The Regency period lends itself to strong alpha heroes, and I'm working on a new Regency series, of very strong alpha males in my new Disgraced Lord series.

    But I'm also working on a HMB Presents, with a very strong Italian Conte as the hero. I started this HMB with a man who passed away a few years ago and I’m determined to see it published.

  • Welzen February 27, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Great Interview

    Bronwen Congratulation on your book!

    I love a tortured heroe and I have a facination for the Regency period… I can´t wait to red your book.

  • Linda March 1, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    I think I'm going to like your books! Your description of the characters is exactly how I like my hero/heroine.

  • Diana Quincy March 3, 2011 at 9:50 am

    I just got "Devil's Bride" from the library. My first book in the series was "A Promise in a Kiss," about Devil's parents. I was seriously upset to learn that Sebastian, Duke of St. Ives (and one of my favorite heroes of all time) gets poisoned!

    As to heroes, I love the wounded hero – either emotionally, physically or both. I look forward to reading your book!

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