Guest post by Susanna Fraser + Giveaway

Filed in featured , Giveaways , Guest Post , Susanna Fraser , The Latin Lover Posted on November 15, 2012 @ 7:00 am 16 comments

Today we are happy to welcome to Book Lovers Inc.  Susanna Fraser, who besides being a historical romance author is also fascinated by wars and battle strategies! Yep, imagine that! And that’s not all! She incorporates these aspects of life back then and gives you stories where love blossoms despite the war raging on. So please give a warm welcome to Susanna, and let her tell you about her latest release, An Infamous Marriage, released by Carina Press on November 5th, taking place in the era of the Napoleonic wars and featuring one of my favourite tropes: that of how a marriage of convenience turns into something much more… 😉 Read on to discover some of the behind the scenes secrets of Susanna’s writing and you could even win some fantastic prizes! *winks* 😀

Turning the Maps Upside Down

The “third act” of my new release, An Infamous Marriage, takes place during the Waterloo Campaign, so as part of my research I read multiple books on the battle to get a feel for what my hero would’ve experienced. All of the books featured maps with varying levels of detail, and most of those maps were oriented toward the north.

I’m more of a verbal learner than a visual one, so I squinted at the maps for a moment or two, then delved into the text. That is, until I picked up Jac Weller’s Wellington at Waterloo. Because Weller’s focus is exactly what his title suggests, his maps are drawn from a Wellington’s-eye view of the campaign–i.e. they’re oriented toward the south, toward the attacking French army.

At first Weller’s maps were discombobulating. Maps are supposed to face north, gosh darn it, and changing the perspective made what was by now familiar territory unrecognizable. But then I had a literal “Aha!” moment–I may have even exclaimed “Oh! I get it!” right there on the city bus where I was reading away my commute time–because I suddenly SAW why Wellington chose that spot to make his stand and why the battle turned out the way it did.

I won’t bore you with a long digression on just what it is I saw in those south-facing maps–though that night at dinner I treated my husband to an explanation that featured glasses and cutlery as battlefield landmarks. Suffice it to say that now every time I read a book with maps in it, I spin those maps around to help me put myself in the place of those who were there on the ground.

In a way, that’s what fiction at its best can do for a reader–put you in the head of someone unexpected, looking at the world from an entirely new perspective.

Over to you. Tell me about a time when your map of the world–literal or metaphorical–got turned upside down. I’ll be giving one copy of An Infamous Marriage to a commenter on this post in your choice of e-book format, and at the end of the tour I’ll be giving away a grand prize of a $50 gift certificate to their choice of Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Powell’s Books to one commenter on the tour as a whole. You get one entry per blog tour stop you comment upon, so check out my blog for the whole schedule! If you wish to be entered in the drawing, include your email address formatted as yourname AT yourhost DOT com.

An Infamous Marriage by Susanna Fraser

Northumberland, 1815

At long last, Britain is at peace, and General Jack Armstrong is coming home to the wife he barely knows. Wed for mutual convenience, their union unconsummated, the couple has exchanged only cold, dutiful letters. With no more wars to fight, Jack is ready to attempt a peace treaty of his own.

Elizabeth Armstrong is on the warpath. She never expected fidelity from the husband she knew for only a week, but his scandalous exploits have made her the object of pity for years. Now that he’s back, she has no intention of sharing her bed with him—or providing him with an heir—unless he can earn her forgiveness. No matter what feelings he ignites within her…

Jack is not expecting a spirited, confident woman in place of the meek girl he left behind. As his desire intensifies, he wants much more than a marriage in name only. But winning his wife’s love may be the greatest battle he’s faced yet.

Read an excerpt here

Buy at Amazon

Susanna Fraser wrote her first novel in fourth grade. It starred a family of talking horses who ruled a magical land. In high school she started, but never finished, a succession of tales of girls who were just like her, only with long, naturally curly and often unusually colored hair, who, perhaps because of the hair, had much greater success with boys than she ever did.

Along the way she read her hometown library’s entire collection of Regency romance, fell in love with the works of Jane Austen, and discovered in Patrick O’Brian’s and Bernard Cornwell’s novels another side of the opening decades of the 19th century. When she started to write again as an adult, she knew exactly where she wanted to set her books. Her writing has come a long way from her youthful efforts, but she still gives her heroines great hair.

Susanna grew up in rural Alabama. After high school she left home for the University of Pennsylvania and has been a city girl ever since. She worked in England for a year after college, using her days off to explore history from ancient stone circles to Jane Austen’s Bath.

Susanna lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and daughter. When not writing or reading, she goes to baseball games, sings alto in a local choir and watches cooking competition shows.

Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


 There are TWO giveaways going on!

Blog Giveaway

Susanna has generously offered an ebook copy of An Infamous Marriage to a lucky commenter!

All you have to do is answer Susanna’s question and tell us about a time when your map of the world–literal or metaphorical–got turned upside down

(You can read our full giveaway policy here)

Please be sure to include a valid email address in the comment form (need not be in the actual body of the comment).

This giveaway is open to all!

Giveaway ends on Saturday, 1 December 2012; we will announce the winner on Sunday.

Good luck!


And a Grand Prize Giveaway!

Susanna is giving away $50 gift certificate to the e-retailer of the winner’s choice (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Powell’s Books) to one commenter on the tour as a whole.

You get one entry per blog tour stop you comment upon, so the more blogs you visist and the more you comment the greater chance you’ll have!

If you wish to be entered in the drawing, include your email address formatted as yourname AT yourhost DOT com.

For more chances follow the tour HERE.

This giveaway is open to all!

About Stella

Stella is a proud bookaholic and a self-taught multilinguist in training. Besides reading, her other great passions are travelling and baking. When she is not globetrotting she lives in sunny Budapest, where she loves to spend her free time preparing (and feasting on) delicious cookies or devouring equally yummy books. Her favourite genres are urban fantasy and romance and she couldn't live without her daily dose of sunshine. Besides being the Latin Lover on BLI Stella also blogs about books and a bookish life on Ex Libris.

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Join the Discussion
  • Patricia Eimer November 15, 2012 at 9:19 am

    Sounds like a great book. I actually had to turn a map around when I was in China (well the nice man who took pity on the poor lost girl turned it around but I digress) because I was literally walking in circles around the building I was looking for.

  • JenM November 15, 2012 at 9:33 am

    I’m looking forward to reading this book! The first time I turned a map around was in London. I was hopelessly lost in those curvy streets and couldn’t figure out where to go until I oriented the map to face the way I was facing and went from there. It was a valuable trick to learn and I use it whenever I travel now, especially in Europe.

  • erinf1 November 15, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Thanks for a great post and congrats to Susanna on the newest release! Haven’t really had a “turn a map around” moment. GPS on the phones have kept me from getting hopelessly lost anymore 🙂

  • Suz Glo November 15, 2012 at 11:25 am

    Great post! I am always in awe of how much research goes into great historical fiction and I appreciate how much I can learn while being entertained, too! I have a love/hate relationship with maps. It’s a great comfort to have information about an unfamiliar place — unless it’s outdated information. Thanks for both giveaways. suz_glo (at) yahoo (dot) com

  • Cathy P November 15, 2012 at 11:54 am

    Hi Susanna! I am one of those people that can get lost in a wet paper sack, so I have to use a GPS. I have tried to use maps, but somehow I always got lost.

    kscathy AT yahoo DOT com

  • Tin November 15, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    I have a very bad sense of direction — I got lost inside my university on my first week there (and to think we already had a week of freshman orientation prior to that.)

    – khriscc (at) yahoo (dot) com

  • LSUReader November 15, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    I’m pretty good with maps and directions and traveling. Metaphorically, though, my life has turned upside down a couple of times and it’s definitely an uncomfortable feeling. I’d love to have had a map/compass then!

  • Susanna Fraser November 15, 2012 at 10:57 pm

    Patricia, that sounds like quite an adventure! So far I’ve only traveled in English-speaking countries, which certainly helps with maps. There was this one part of Quebec where not all the signs had English translations, but at least I knew the alphabet and could work out most of the words between speaking English and knowing a bit of Spanish.

    Jen, I was amazed by the twisty streets in most British cities. I’ve been lost in Edinburgh and regularly got turned around in Bristol the year I lived there.

    erin and Cathy, I do love my phone’s GPS, but I have to be careful when driving by it to pay enough attention to the road!

    Suz, yes on the problem of outdated information–I’ve been heartbroken a few times to discover some restaurant in a relatively recent guidebook managed to close between the time it was printed and my visit.

    Tin, in my experience college campuses are often confusing, especially when you’re not used to that environment.

    LSUReader, that’s a beautiful tiger there in your avatar. I’ve definitely had my share of metaphorical redirections, too.

  • Janie McGaugh November 15, 2012 at 11:39 pm

    I’m very good with maps and, in a car, always read them with the north side up, no matter which way I’m going. When I’m on the ground in a city, though, it’s a whole different issue. It’s easy to get turned around if you don’t get the map oriented correctly to where you are (and where you’re going).

  • Mary Preston November 16, 2012 at 2:34 am

    My whole life got turned around about 20 years ago. For a while I was ‘all over the map”, but then I found my direction.

  • Penni November 17, 2012 at 3:29 am

    I had my map moment when I took my first road trip by myself driving from mid Indiana to the US border in Michigan. I ended up hitting the border in 5 different places before I realized the road I was looking for was right in the middle it just didn’t have a sign because of an accident a few nights before someone plowed it down! I was so relieved to finally make my destination lol

    • Penni November 17, 2012 at 3:29 am

      oh my email is fantasy_angel381ATyahooDOTcom 🙂

  • Readsalot81 November 17, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Oh what a fabulous question. 😀 I used to work for AAA. My sense of direction SUCKS. So in California, our territory would cover southern California, New Mexico, Texas, Alabama, and Hawaii. I would get SO lost trying to ahem, “find” people in Texas. Especially when they were on the loops. It took my brain a long time to understand how you could be going east on the 610 North. I won’t begin to touch on Hawaii! 🙂 My email is readsalot81(@)hotmail (.) com

  • ab bokhari November 22, 2012 at 8:04 am


  • Liene November 22, 2012 at 11:37 am

    My husband was transferred to France for a two-year stint, and this was my upside-down map period! Different language, different food, different people, different world! The funny thing is, that it got turned upside-down again when we moved back to the US. Does that make it right-side up now? Thanks for the chance and happy Thanksgiving!

  • bn100 November 24, 2012 at 3:32 am

    when I traveled to a foreign country and didn’t speak the language


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