Guest Author & Giveaway: Grace Burrowes featuring The Heir

Thursday, December 9

How many of you think that romance novels that are being published today are becoming too short? And I'm not talking about the category Harlequin romances either. My feelings on this waiver back and forth...and is usually dependent on the book I am currently reading.  

Some authors can tell a beautiful story in a little over three hundred pages...and in other books sometimes if feels like there should be more pages to tell the story fully, but for whatever reason it didn't happen.  I think back to those long, sumptuous romances that were at times epic, that I read many years ago by authors such as Bertrice Small, and I lament that the cost of producing books sometimes(oftentimes) dictates the length /plot of current romance novels.  

I am currently reading the debut historical romance by author Grace Burrowes, The Heir, which surprisngly is close to five hundred pages long (approx 480 pages) and from the reviews I've read of it, it seems that this love story is the perfect length....kind of the Goldilocks of romance novels if you will...not too short, not too long, but just right to tell the hero and heroine's love story.  Grace Burrowes is my guest today to share her novel, The Heir and a little bit about the way she writes her books.  Read and enjoy!

Books emerge from my imagination one scene at a time, sometimes one snippet of dialogue at a time, but if I get a strong opening scene, it can propel the whole book along at a smart pace.

In the opening scene of The Heir, Gayle Windham is enjoying some fine libation in the solitude of his baronial library when a mute chamber maid comes in to water a bouquet of flowers gracing the andirons of the cold hearth. She gets her bodice buttons caught in the screen of the fireplace mesh and his lordship moves to assist her. The housekeeper comes upon this scene and misconstrues the situation badly, and lo, we have an inciting incident.

As a child, I read, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, by Rachel Carson. In one scene, a young girl gets her blouse buttons caught in the mesh of a rotating fan, and John Singer, a deaf tenant is the only person on hand to help her. I took the buttons caught in the mesh, an inability to communicate, and the only person on hand to help being an awkward source of aid, then added somebody misperceiving a man bent over a woman, his arms around her, his fingers working at her bodice, and created Mischief with it.

Being a writer is nothing if not fun.

THE HEIR is also inspired by my own life circumstances. I’m of an age where I’m still my parent’s daughter, and yet I have a grown child of my own. I can feel the cross currents at work when a parent has ambitions a grown child does not share, just as Gayle Windham does not share his ducal father’s determination to ensure the succession immediately. His Grace has lost two sons, though, so his fixation can be forgiven by the reader, even if his own children are not as patient with him.

Then too, when I was casting around for some external conflict to bother my heroine with, I decided family troubles with a legal edge would suit nicely. I’m a practicing family law attorney and I’ve seen first hand how even the thought of litigation can fracture a strong person’s composure.

But most of all, the books I write are inspired by a belief that if you take responsibility for your own shortcomings in this life, if you pull your share of the load and bring as much courage and integrity as you can to your relationships, then love will find you, and a happily ever after is sure to follow.

An earl who can’t be bribed...

Gayle Windham, earl of Westhaven, is the first legitimate son and heir to the duke of Moreland. To escape his father’s inexorable pressure to marry, he decides to spend the summer at his townhouse in London, where he finds himself intrigued by the secretive ways of his beautiful housekeeper...

A lady who can’t be protected...

Anna Seaton is a beautiful, talented, educated woman, which is why it is so puzzling to Gayle Windham that she works as his housekeeper.

As the two draw closer and begin to lose their hearts to each other, Anna’s secrets threaten to bring the earl’s orderly life crashing down—and he doesn’t know how he’s going to protect her from the fallout...

Read an excerpt from Ch. 1 & an additional excerpt here

Congratulations Grace on your debut!  The Heir was listed as one of the Best Books of 2010 by Publishers Weekly, and received 4 stars from Romantic Times.  If you'd like to learn more about Grace Burrowes and the books she writes you can find her at her website, her blog, Facebook, and she is also a contributing author to the website Blame It On The Muse.  Her next book in the series, The Soldier, is scheduled to release next summer (June 2011)

To celebrate the release of Grace Burrowes' debut novel, The Heir, which is the first book in this new series, her publisher, Sourcebooks would like to giveaway a copy of the book to TWO Musings followers.  Here's how you can enter to win...

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory:  Meddling parents in real life....good or bad?  They say "mother knows best" does/did she?  Any stories you'd like to share?  AND leave a meaningful comment or question for the author. (good for 1 entry)
  • Mandatory: You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • If you have a blog, or even if you don't, you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they successfully enter to win and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries. You can blog about it with a link to this post, post it on Facebook, Twitter, email...or even word of mouth (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) . Please note that to earn the points they must mention your GFC name so that I can match you.
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment 
Rules and disclaimers:
  • This contest is open to US & Canadian addresses only
  • You must be at least 18 years or older, or of legal age in your country
  • The contest will end on December 13th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner(s) will be selected using
  • The winner(s) will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Winners will be subject to one copy per household, which means that if you win the same title in two or more contests, that you will only receive one copy of the title in the mail
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice
Good Luck!

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*I am an Amazon affiliate and receive a small (and I mean very small) referral fee for purchases made using a link on this blog. I don't use Amazon to earn money, I use it because the widgets are cool, easy to use, and serve my purposes to showcase books & such with minimal effort, but most importantly they have great prices and offer both new and used items. As a book addict I love that I can find just about anything I want in one place. If you are going to purchase a featured book anyway, and you know you won't pay more by using the links on this blog than you would by visiting Amazon on your own, I will be eternally grateful for supporting this blog by using the links, and don't forget that the referral fees from your purchases will sponsor the "Reader Rewards" giveaways :)


D.L. December 9, 2010 at 1:14 AM  

What bothers me more about novel length is when an entire story in wrapped up in the last 10 pages. I don't always need the story to be longer, just for the story arc to be better spaced!

Meddling parents? Bad. I love my mom and think she has some pretty good advice, I just wouldn't want her to take over my life!


stacey December 9, 2010 at 2:28 AM  

Meddling Parents Can be both Good and Bad Depending on What there Meddling in and How Far there Meddling in it.
I'm a GFC Follower

Christine H December 9, 2010 at 4:43 AM  

I think meddling Parents are a good thing, because I had the opposite and I know everything thing I did that they never would have approved of. But I must say my life has been and a lot of fun too. I was free to date at 13 and at 16 I was free as a bird, that's when I met my husband and we fell in love and got married 2 years later. But I would have been a meddling parent and expected my kids to get the best grades than could get and go on to college, a good school right after high school. And no Dating til 16!! Parents stay after your kids!!! Help them make something of themselves. I wish my parents had :)

I am a GFC follower


Jane December 9, 2010 at 4:45 AM  

Congrats to Grace on her debut release. I think meddling parents mean well and it's nice that you have people looking out for you, but that doesn't mean they always know best.

I'm a GFC follower.

Shirley,  December 9, 2010 at 4:48 AM  

I would say yes to meddling parents it's better than letting them make so many mistakes when they are to young to know the consequences. They need to be shaped and molded into a good person in their younger years and the learn Independence, and learn about life and job's and dating etc. But you have to start young. It won't work if you start to late.
I'm a Google Friend connect follower

Christina,  December 9, 2010 at 5:07 AM  

I'm rasing a 4 yr old and it's a hard job alone. I'm learning as we go. I think they need to be watch carefully until they are 18 & off at college and hope by then you taught them enough.

I'm a follower

debbie December 9, 2010 at 8:32 AM  

I never had parents that cared about me at all. In fact, I tell my mother very little, because she actually likes it when something bad happens to me. (I know she is a very sick woman). I did just the opposite with my son. I tried to be a good mom, respect boundaries, and meddle when it was appropriate.
I would love to read the book,it sounds really good.

Spring,  December 9, 2010 at 10:44 AM  

Thanks for the giveaway. I'm a GFC follower with the name Spring.

I'm against meddling parents and would never be with someone who's parent(s) stick their noses where they don't belong.

Grace, your book sounds really great and I'd love to read it!

I blogged,
Blogged here,
And at a third place,

comethespring at gmail dot com

Spring,  December 9, 2010 at 10:49 AM  

I forgot to mention I've got your button at the bottom of the page,

comethespring at gmail dot com

skyla11377 December 9, 2010 at 11:00 AM  

My mother is like my best friend. She is all up in my business and thinks she knows what is best for me but in the end 9 times out of 10 she really does know what is best even if I am resistant to it at the time. This book sounds readlly great. It is so going on my to be read pile. Thanks so much for introducing me to this book.

I am already a Google Friend Connect Follower (skyla11377).

I blogged about this giveaway on my blog (skyla11377).

I posted this giveaway on my Left Side Bar (skyla11377).

I posted this giveaway on my Facebook page (Raquel Vega-Grieder).

I tweeted about this giveaway on Twitter (@skyla11377).


alba December 9, 2010 at 11:12 AM  

The last book was like that though I enjoyed the story it took me longer to read. the Last 3 chapters were where it all happened.
As for the Question Does Meddling SISTER count. I am 50+ and she Constantly at it so much so that it has become a real issue with our relationship.

I am a GFC,
posted on my Blog
have a wonderful day Ann.

Anonymous,  December 9, 2010 at 11:28 AM  

Sounds like an ambitious and well done debut offering. I have noticed many books lately do a fine job of developing plot and characters, then rush through the last fourth of the book. It has resulted in some disappointing reads. Liked the book, but the ending fell flat. I am glad you have taken the time and space to write the story the way it should be written. It really is too bad publishing industry pressures are causing part of the problem.

Mother knows best - maybe, but you have to be willing to listen. Our daughter fell in love and planned to marry. I had qualms about the young man and even his own mother told her not to marry him - that is TWO mother knows best pieces of advice she ignored. The marriage didn't last very long. The only good thing that came from it was her son who is a sweetheart.

I am a GFC Follower - librarypat.

chey December 9, 2010 at 2:48 PM  

Meddling parents. It's easier to take If they aren't controlling.
This book sounds fantastic!
old gfc follower

Maureen December 9, 2010 at 3:03 PM  

This story sounds intriguing. I would not appreciate meddling parents so I'm very glad that my parents don't do it.
mce1011 AT aol DOT com

Estella December 9, 2010 at 3:39 PM  

If you are an adult I don't think your parents should meddle in your life-----advice, sure.
Mother doesn't always know best!

I love the longer books.

GFC follower

Danielle Gorman December 9, 2010 at 6:57 PM  

Congrats on the release. I've actually had this on my wishlist for a few months now. Can't wait to pick up a copy when it comes out.
I'm a little on the fence when it comes to meddling parents. I don't mind them as long as they are too controlling and over the top.
I am so glad your book is so long. For me the longer the better. I hate picking up a short book. I always feel like some things were left out and I want to get my money's worth. Also, I read pretty quickly so I want to read something that is going to take more than a few hours.
gfc follower

Scorpio M. December 9, 2010 at 7:44 PM  

I think well-meaning meddling parents can be a good thing. I do believe in wisdom and experience, some lessons are best not learnt first hand!

The premise of THE HEIR reminds me a little of Hoyt's, The Raven Prince. I'm intrigued!

GFC Follower.

Jessica December 9, 2010 at 8:08 PM  

I'm a GFC follower :)

I think meddling parents can be helpful, depending on how and why they are meddling. I would hate it if my parents weren't involved in my life at all.

thejoyofthejoyofcooking at hotmail dot com

Asylumgirl December 9, 2010 at 9:22 PM  

I kind of have to ride the line on this one and say good and bad. We live next door to my parents, which is nice a lot of the time. Sometimes it can be a real pain though, like when you are trying to discipline your children and their grandparents don't think they've done anything wrong. Our oldest in particular has learned how to manipulate my parents very well.

deidre_durance at hotmail dot com

Robin K December 9, 2010 at 9:26 PM  

Meddling parents are bad BAD! I think parents needs to know when to back off and how to choose their fights. We all need to grow up someday after all!

I am a follower.
robin [at] intensewhisper [dot] com

Carol L. December 10, 2010 at 4:33 AM  

Congrats Grace on your Debut book. It sounds great. Loved the excerpt.
How about meddling brothers. Always meddling in my life at 16 and made no apologies for it. God help the guys who dared as me out. :) The good thing was that none of the guys would go up against my brothers. :) They tried to protect a 16 year old from the wolves as they called them. :) They are both gone now at far too young an age. But I loved them then and now for how they tried to protect me. Because truthfully no 16 year old can see the reality of the situation. I'm a GFC follower under Lucky47.
Carol L

+5---old follower

mbreakfield December 12, 2010 at 9:35 PM  

I usually enjoy books with meddling parents, as long as it is done with love.
GFC follower.

Pam S (pams00),  December 13, 2010 at 6:06 PM  

Congrats on The Heir Grace. It looks fabulous! Really enjoyed the excerpts. I think meddling mamas or relatives/friends in general can be both a positive and a negative. Depends on circumstances I suppose. I know sometimes we are to close to the dilemma going on and need the third perspective. I do love stories that features these - whether it is done loving, in access or otherwise :).

Pam S
gfc follower pams00
pams00 @

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