Every story has a story behind it, and my debut novel, The Peculiar Princess, is no different.
I wasn’t looking for a story to write, I was actually on vacation at a Florida theme park. On that particular day, my husband and I were walking through a queue made up to look like something out of the Middle Ages, when the thought struck me: what if we turned the corner and ended up in the Middle Ages?
Once the question popped into my head, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Days after arriving home, I sat down at the computer and began writing what would become The Peculiar Princess.
There had been a time when she’d gone for early morning walks on a regular basis. In college it’d been a habit started by Cara. Breathing in the moist, heavy air, Lexy was filled with longing for her dear friend. Cara should be standing with her on her wedding day, the way they planned years ago.
Walking around a large oak tree, she almost ran into Lukas.
“Oops. Sorry,” she said, stopping short and putting out a hand to catch her balance.
He stood wrapped in a black cloak, obviously returning to the house from his own early morning walk. She hid a smile. Maybe he’d been denying the inevitable as well.
“My lady.” He nodded. His hair hung loose around his face, framing the strong, angular jaw. Two full lips tightened into a firm line.
“This can’t be good,” she joked, nervous energy bubbling up. “It’s supposed to be bad luck for the bride and groom to see each other before the wedding. I bet you were outside wanting time to yourself and here I come almost running you over. Probably the last person you wanted to see.”
He didn’t deny it.
“Let’s just forget it happened. You go back inside, and I’ll come in a few minutes. No one has to know.” She must be nervous—she was babbling. She hated it when she babbled. “See you at the church. I’ll be the one up front in the fancy dress.”
He didn’t return the smile. No surprise there. He never smiled, why would today be any different? Turning, she moved to continue her walk.
“I beg you.”
His words were raw, tinged with an urgency that chilled her blood. She spun to face him.
“I beg you,” he repeated. “Cease this madness now. Before it becomes too late.”
He was afraid.
But it made no sense. He had no reason to be afraid. “The wedding?” she asked.
He gave a curt nod.
“I can’t. I don’t have a choice.”
“Nor do I.”
She left quietly, not looking back, shaken to the core. Behind her came an explosive noise sounding suspiciously like someone hitting a tree.
Lexy knows she’s adopted, but someone forgot to mention her birth parents are sixteenth-century monarchs who sent her to the future to escape certain slaughter. Now Lexy is back in the past, living an unusual fairytale. She’s not the normal storybook princess – she’s used to electricity, comfortable clothing, and equal rights. Lord Lukas Reynard, the nobleman responsible for restoring her as rightful heir to the throne of her homeland, Dresdonia, isn’t a charming prince by any stretch of the imagination. He believes women should be seen, preferably in a restrictive corset, and not heard.
Lexy can overlook their differences for the good of Dresdonia, but she cannot overlook the growing attraction she feels for Lukas. Only to her does he show glimpses of the fragile soul beneath his chilling façade. Soon she becomes torn between the place she knows in the future and the place she was born to rule in the past. If she leaves the sixteenth century, she may lose a love she only dreamed of. If she stays, she may lose her life. For Lukas has a secret so shocking, it could topple the hopes of Dresdonia and shatter her heart.