Before I hand things over to Stephanie I want to tell you all about Moontangled though:
Add a secret betrothal, a family scandal, and a heaping of dangerous fey magic in an enchanted wood...and watch the sparks fly!
For just one moonlit, memorable night, Thornfell College of Magic has flung open its doors, inviting guests from around the nation to an outdoor ball intended to introduce the first-ever class of women magicians to society...but one magician and one invited guest have far more pressing goals of their own for the night.
Quietly brilliant Juliana Banks is determined to win back the affections of her secret fiancée, rising politician Caroline Fennell, who has become inexplicably distant. If Juliana needs to use magic to get her stubborn fiancée to pay her attention...well, then, as the top student in her class, she is more than ready to take on that challenge!
Unbeknownst to Juliana, though, Caroline plans to nobly sacrifice their betrothal for Juliana's own sake - and no one has ever accused iron-willed Caroline Fennell of being easy to deter from any goal.
Their path to mutual happiness may seem tangled beyond repair...but when they enter the fey-ruled woods that border Thornfell College, these two determined women will find all of their plans upended in a night of unexpected and magical possibilities.
The Harwood Spellbook Series:
(Click the links to read my reviews)
Spellswept (Prequel Novella)
Buy-links for Moontangled:
Now please help me give a very warm welcome to Stephanie!
Writing for Comfort and Joy – a guest post by Stephanie Burgis
Eleven years ago, just after I’d sold my first three books and had my first baby, I signed up for an online marketing course. Sadly, with a brand-new baby in my arms (almost non-stop!) and an average of four hours of sleep on a good night, I ended up dropping out of that course after just a few sessions…but the very first worksheet I filled out for it included a question that changed my whole career.
The question was: What is your mission statement as a writer?
Honestly, that would have been a challenging question to answer even if I hadn’t been sleep-deprived and hormonal at the time! But I finally figured out the true answer…and ever since, I’ve come back to it again and again. It’s formed the true north on my internal compass every time I’ve ever needed to figure out which projects I should work on next.
I want to write books that provide escape, comfort, fun and empowerment for my readers.
It’s a simple truth, but for me, it’s been a powerful one – and it’s never been more relevant than with my Harwood Spellbook series, which I first sank into as my own escape when I was feeling overwhelmed with despair about real-world politics.
Snowspelled, Spellswept, Thornbound, and now Moontangled, too, are all stories set in my world of 19th-century Angland, which is ruled by a powerful Boudiccate of women. They’ve traditionally left magic to the gentlemen…but of course, even when gender binaries are flipped, they’re still not good for everybody. So a succession of fabulous, strong-minded heroines have stepped forward in my Harwood Spellbook stories to question all of those established certainties in a series of romantic fantasy adventures full of elves, trolls, dangerous fey, comedy, and - of course! - sweeping and joyful romance, every time.
The characters of Juliana Banks and Caroline Fennell first appeared in Snowspelled and Thornbound as a couple whose secret betrothal inspired the creation of Cassandra Harwood’s groundbreaking Thornfell College of Magic for Young Women. They were originally intended to be side characters, but I absolutely fell in love with them both as their arc progressed behind the scenes of Cassandra’s story - and over and over again, I heard from readers who wanted to read Juliana and Caroline’s story.
I knew from the beginning that they both needed and deserved a happy ending. I also knew, though, that two such strong-minded and brilliant women, with different but equal skills in their own areas (magic and politics, respectively) were certain to strike sparks at some point in their relationship – so my only remaining question was: where would be the most fun setting for those unresolved differences to finally explode?
Why, in the midst of a magical outdoor ball, of course! It’s full of fabulous dresses, literal fireworks, and an enchanted woods where powerful fey lurk off the established paths.
I had so much fun tossing Caroline and Juliana off their own safely established path and into a wildly romantic adventure that tests their relationship and all of their astonishing skills as well. I really hope my readers will have fun reading about it, too!
Over and over again in my life, I’ve been saved in my own darkest times by the books that have given me comfort, joy, escape when I needed it, and a sense of hope.
My greatest hope for my own books is that they can give those same gifts to my readers.
Stephanie Burgis was born in Michigan but now lives in Wales, surrounded by castles and coffeeshops. She writes wildly romantic adult historical fantasies, including the Harwood Spellbook Series and also Masks and Shadows. She also writes fun, funny fantasy adventures for MG readers, including the Dragon with a Chocolate Heart trilogy and the Kat, Incorrigible trilogy. You can find out more (and read excerpts from all of her books) at: www.stephanieburgis.com
I'd like to say a huge thanks to Stephanie for stopping by my blog today with such a fabulous guest post! I definitely think it shows when authors write the kind of books they love to read and your stories are just magical.