Marry in Scarlet! An Interview with Anne Gracie

Interviewed by Mary Jo

Marry in Scarlet, the long awaited final book in Anne Gracie's Marriage of Convenience Series, has arrived, and it's great.  As Publishers Weekly says in its review, "George is an admirable heroine and the chemistry between her and Hart is magnetic."

Lady Georgiana, the wild child niece of the Rutherford clan, has come to value the family she didn't know she had, but she still prefers to be called George and likes her giant wolfhound, Finn, and her magnificent stallion Sultan more than most humans.  She also has no desire to lose her independence by marrying, but the social pressure is building MarryInScarlet-1

Anne, you've included clever and appropriate quotes from Jane Austen as chapter headers (how do you find such perfect snippets?), and as I read Marry in Scarlet for the second time, I realized that it could easily be named Pride and Prejudice. What do you think?

AG: It hadn't occurred to me, but you're right; like Jane Austen's classic, both pride and prejudice play their role in the hero and heroine's attitudes. He doesn't trust women, she doesn't trust men. And they both have their fair share of stubborn pride. 

Not that the plot is in any way similar. Unlike Austen's heroines, Lady George has no need to marry — she will come into a handsome fortune when she turns twenty-five, so the only pressure on her to marry comes from society — and her elderly, interfering great-aunt.

As for the Austen snippets at the start of each chapter, over the years I've made a collection — pages and pages of possible quotes sorted under headings. I also have all of Austen's novels and a collection of her letters on .pdf, and so I can search them easily using keywords. It's quite a lot of fun, finding a snippet to go with the events of each chapter.


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Anne Gracie and Marry in Secret

MarryInSecret307by Mary Jo

I've loved Word Wench Anne Gracie's Marriage of Convenience series, and I pounced on Marry in Secret, which has just been released, along with an audiobook version.  Today Anne is here to talk about the book and the series.   

MJP: In a brief recap of the series, Book 1, Marry in Haste, features Cal Rutherford, Lord Ashendon, an intrepid army officer who finds himself terrorized by a gaggle of uncontrollable young females for whom he is ARRATrophies1responsible.  The book won the Holt Medallion for best historical romance, and won three awards from ARRA, the Australian Romance Readers Association: best historical, best historical couple, and Anne was named the Favourite Australian Romance Author. 

Book 2 is Marry in Scandal, and it was nominated for ARRA's Favourite Historical and Favorite Ongoing Series.  The heroine is Lady Lily Rutherford, Cal's gentle younger half sister.

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Quiz—Marry In Secret

Anne here, and here is a #giveaway and a fun little quiz on a book not yet out — MARRY IN SECRET — which will be published on 30 July. All your answers, therefore, must be guesses. Keep note of your answers, and at the bottom of this post there's a link to the answers. Check your results, then come back here and let us know how you went.
I'll choose one commenter to win a copy of MARRY IN SECRET.
I hope you enjoy it. MarryInSecret307

1) The story opens with Rose about to make a convenient marriage with a handsome duke. Why a convenient (ie. loveless arranged) marriage?
a)  Because she doesn't want to be the last Rutherford girl to get married.
b)  Because she's about to turn 21 and is worried she'll be on the shelf.
c)  Because she's secretly in love with him. 
d)  Because she believes that love is too painful.

2) When Rose fails to marry the duke, Aunt Agatha is:—
a)  delighted. 
b)  thrilled. 
c)  ecstatic. 
d)  none of the above.

3) When Thomas turns up at the church, who says “Throw the dirty beggar out!”
a)  Aunt Agatha
b)  Rose
c)  Cal, Lord Ashendon
d)  The duke

4) When Rose's secret husband turns up how does Rose react?
a)  She slaps him.
b)  She faints.
c)  She  yells at him.
d)  She bursts into tears.

5)  What word best describes the duke's reaction to Rose's long-lost husband turning up?
a)  Irritated.
b)  Jealous.
c)  Relieved.
d)  Furious.

6) Why did Rose get married In secret?
a)  It was an act of defiance against her strict father. 
b)  Because she was worried she might be pregnant.
c)  Because she was young and wild and in love.
d)  To get away from boarding school.

7) Who did she marry?
a)  A soldier.
b)  A sailor.
c)  A gambler.
d)  A spy.

8) Why did Rose's husband disappear in the first place?
a)  He was on the run from the law.
b)  He was already married.
c)  He was shipwrecked.
d)  He was imprisoned by the French.

9) What was Rose's husband doing in the years he was away?
a)  Writing letters. 
b)  Fighting.
c)  A variety of jobs.
d)  Being a pirate.

10) Why has Rose's husband returned?
a)  To revenge himself on Rose for her infidelity.
b)  To get control of Rose's fortune.
c)   Because he loves her.
d)   Because he never breaks a promise.

Now, pop over to this site and check your answers, then come back and let us know how you did. Did any answers surprise you?  I always enjoy these quizzes — coming up with the various possibilities makes me so aware of the different stories I could have written, but didn't. I hope you had fun, too. Thanks for playing.

House Hunting

Anne here, and no, I’m not looking for a new house for myself. I’m searching for one for my characters. I do it with every book, and because I live so far from the UK I can’t afford to fly to the UK to research every location. And the part of Australia I live in (Victoria) was colonized in the 1830’s which is too late for any buildings to be useful for for my period (Regency, 1811-20)  So my location scouting is mostly done on line, with maps, and with books. And sometimes with a photo taken by a friend in the UK (Thank you CC Coburn). This one I used for the colors in the sky at a particular time of year, not the location.PearlySunsetCC

For my just-finished novel, Marry in Secret, I needed two houses, one a small London house, and the other the country seat of an Earl.

The first one was relatively easy — I really only had to choose the street, because I didn’t want one of the big ultra-expensive fashionable houses, but a smallish house in a smallish street on the edge of Mayfair. 

For London streets I usually use the Richard Horwood map of London or else this one, William Faden’s update of the Horwood plan, because it’s only one year after the date in which this book is set. Both plans have wonderful detail showing the houses, the back yards, the gardens and all kinds of lovely detail.

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