Welcome to Julie LeMense!
A Georgetown University graduate with a degree in English Literature, I have been a Regency romance addict since I read my first deliciously bad Barbara Cartland novel. These days, I prefer the complex characterizations and plotting of Julie Anne Long, Sherry Thomas and Meredith Duran. A member of the Romance Writers Association of America, I am currently working on my next two novels, as the ghosts who live in my haunted, gilded age-era home try to sneak their way into my stories.
Why the Regency Era?
I’ve always loved romance books. In fact, I recall writing an essay on the subject for one of my college applications (and the school let me in, so it was obviously an enlightened institution!) I started with Harlequin romances, which were set in the present day, and invariably fell in love with the hero/ceo/millionaire/philanthropist/movie star/race car driver right along with the heroine.
Somewhere along the way, however, my older sister introduced me to an author named Barbara Cartland. It’s nearly impossible to find her books these days, but back then, she was the rather infamous godmother of Princess Diana. She was also a British aristocrat with more than 700 romance books to her name.
Talk about an adventure! Her heroines were always beautiful, and had a remarkable skill, say fluency in Sanskrit, even though they’d never left their small English village. And of course, the heroes were handsome and titled (usually only a Duke would do). There were kidnappings, explosions and villains in dark capes. Unfortunately, nobody ever kissed until the very end, but the world her characters inhabited seemed so fascinating, with its traditions steeped in history. I was fairly certain, even then, that I’d never get to take a carriage to a fancy dress ball, but I began to imagine what it might be like…to have a white gloved hero ask me to dance; to swirl around a candlelit room, cloaked in satins and silks; to steal a kiss in the moonlight.
And of course, the idea of living in a mansion with 125 rooms was also appealing.
Looking back, Cartland’s novels lacked the depth (and the passion!) that I’m now drawn to, but she was a wonderful introduction to a strange new world, Regency-era England. I’ve been hooked on the genre ever since.
These days, you can’t go wrong with any Regency novel by Sarah MacLean, Meredith Duran, Sherry Thomas or Julie Anne Long. And hopefully, you’ll find time for “Once Upon A Wager” as well, my debut novel from Crimson Romance.
I remember reading my mum’s Barbara Cartland novels at a teen …
When Lord Alec Carstairs returns from war, hailed as a hero, only Annabelle Layton knows the sort of man he really is. They’d been friends before a passionate kiss changed everything, before a reckless wager left her broken and bloodied, and he abandoned her.
Hardly the actions of a hero.
But shocking lies have distorted the past. Can Alec uncover its painful truths, and still keep his distance? Can he deny his forbidden desire, even as it flares hotter than ever?
Once Upon A Wager is going on tour!
|9th June||lil Miss Vix Reads|
|11th June||Brook Cottage Books|
|12th June||Carole’s Book Corner|
|13th June||Imagine a World|
|16th June||A Novel Thought|
|17th June||Curling up with a Good Book|
|17th June||Deal Sharing Aunt|
|19th June||Book Freak|
|20th June||Compelling Reads|
We hope you’ll follow the tour!