Monday, May 17, 2010

Today's Guest: Jean Hart Stewart

I’m a research junkie. Pride myself on researching each book I write, CAREFULLY, and so far I’ve had no objections from fans or reviewers. Cross my fingers on that one. I thoroughly enjoy researching. I did more research for The Third Rose than any of my other books. Although I don’t start any book until I’ve researched the period. Sometimes I jot down a few lines to suggest the opening scene but no serious writing until I get anchored in the mood of the period. Since The Third Rose is an historical romance, the era it’s written in influences every scene and action. The year is 1815, and the book ends with the hero at the battle of Waterloo. I was pleased to read about and include the famous dance in Brussels the eve before the battle. Wellington attended, astonishing everyone. There’s also little of the actual battle where the hero is wounded.

This is only takes up the very last part of the book, but of course it had to be accurate. I found myself completely fascinated by the complex character of Napoleon, in fact am just reading a book saying that Napoleon’s hemorrhoids might have been responsible for the disastrous delay of the final battle which determined the outcome of the war. According to this account pain kept him from mounting his horse and so he spent hours reviewing his troops in hopes he’d feel better. This gave Wellington time to join forces with his allies and possibly allowed him to win the battle. Certainly Napoleon fled the scene in a carriage, not his horse. Interesting to speculate, isn’t it, and an example of what you can find when you start digging.

Another interesting thing about Napoleon is how differently he’s viewed. I have a French friend who thinks he’s the greatest hero France ever produced, so I tred carefully around her.

My Druid and Mage books all required extensive research into mythology and history and the powers these fantastic people were alleged to possess. My characters in the Mage books are direct descendants of Merlin and Lady of the Lake and inherit their powers. In the first series the Druids are descendants of a Druid priestess. I’m just finishing book seven in the Mage series and each of those series books have been fun.

But I LOVE reading and writing historicals.

Had a little leeway in my paranormal books, but in Third Rose I stuck strictly to history. Had to put my rather active imagination into the sex scenes. I’m now polishing another historical, called For Love and I are New, which I like a lot.
The Third Rose Blurb:

When Sara Coverly hides in Lord Wolverton’s bedroom to avenge him for the rape of her friend, she is determined to shoot him so he can never ruin another female. Instead she finds herself wondering if she’s picked the wrong man! Wolf decides he needs a token fiancée to cover his tracks as he searches for a spy, and soon Sara finds herself helping him. And falling deeply in love.

Wolf’s espionage duties bring danger to them both. When he
decodes a message threatening the assassination of Wellington at Waterloo, they both set out for Brussels to catch the villain.

Can their growing love endure through war, a desperate villain who is out to stop them, and Wolf’s determination to save Wellington at any cost?


At last. The bastard had come home. He must have lit more candles, as the room became brighter. She could see a large man, elegantly dressed, stride across the room. Double drat! He moved out of her vision, and she did not dare part the draperies any further. She waited, breath suspended, as he re-appeared and sat on the bed. He arched one long muscled leg, bending over to tug at his boot. His face was in shadow, but his build was powerful, that of a more than adequate sportsman. His size didn’t worry her. A gun was a great equalizer.

He meant to take his boots off himself? She was surprised he didn’t require his valet to wait up for him. An unusual bit of consideration for a servant, one she’d not expected. She’d thought she’d have to stay hidden until the valet had come and gone. Perhaps this was better, since at least he was decently clothed. Not that she’d let any missish tendencies deter her. Actually seeing a large nude male might be educational.

Now was the time.

She cocked the gun and stepped out in front of him, the barrel pointed directly at him.

“You will please rise, my lord. I do not intend to shoot a seated villain.” She felt pride in the composure of her voice. She’d worried a little about that.

Wolverton did not appear unduly upset, although his eyebrows arched upward. He bent the long leg stretched on the bed and clasped both hands around his knee.

“A woman. How interesting. I admit you make a very fetching young man dressed in those breeches, but your voice is definitely female. Might I inquire why you have your gun pointed at me?”

She had to give him his due. His tone seemed as cool as hers, and she certainly must have been a nasty surprise. Although come to think of it, he probably often found women accosting him in his bedchamber. But surely for more pleasurable purposes, cad that he was.

“Stand up, my lord.”

Neither her voice nor the hand holding the gun on him wavered, as Joshua Sinclair, Earl of Wolverton, slowly placed both his boots on the luxurious Aubusson carpet and rose to his feet.

“Is there anything I can do for you, madam?” he inquired, as politely as if he were asking her if she took milk with her tea.

She shook her head slowly, carefully lowering the gun a trifle. What a shame he was such a handsome devil, but then she should have expected no less from a despoiler of virgins.

She was pleased to see him blanch a little as he realized where she aimed.

“Can I persuade you to raise your gun a little? I don’t mind being shot in the chest nearly as much as if you hit the most valued part of my anatomy.”


  1. Hi Jean,
    I know I'm going to love reading this. My kind of story for sure. I'll have to follow you on your blog tour. :)
    Carol L.

  2. Hello Carol, thanks for stopping by. It does sound very interesting. I just love historical romances.

  3. Jean, your stories sound so intriguing! Historicals are a favorite of mine and I admire any writer who goes into as much research as you do!


  4. KJ, thanks for the wake-up call. And I mean literally, it's only a little after eight here on the west coast. The link for the Third Rose is Red Rose Publishing. My Druid and Mage books are under the Cerridwen Label at Ellora's Cave. Thnks so much for having me.....Jean

  5. Caorl, thanks for taking the time to comment. The Third Rose is definitely my personal favorite of all my books. At least for now, I reserve the right to change my mind. Happy reading, Jean

  6. Maya, thanks for commenting. I go crazy if I read a book a catch a historical inaccuracy. Anyway, I love the research. Not as much as the actual writing, but it can be fun. The same book I quoted before also says Napoleon swallowed poisoned after he first lost his empire, but got the hicccups and vomited the poison. The book is by Phil Mason, by the way.

  7. I really enjoy historicals, and am in awe of people such as yourself, who take the time to do such thorough research. It really makes reading the story magical, in the sense that your swept away into the time period.

    Great cover art too! I've added it to my TBR file.

  8. i love historical history has always been my fave in school.Looks like a good read.