Guest author Grace Burrowes tells all, ‘Secrets I’ve Kept’
Historical Romance Author Grace Burrowes references the secrets in her life compared to those of her heroine and ultimately how they interfere with your happiness.
Lady Maggie Windham, the heroine of Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal, is keeping secrets, from her family, from Benjamin Hazlit the investigator she’s hired to find her some answers, and from herself. Her situation has made me think of the secrets in my own life, and how secrets often work to undermine happiness.
Early in my career, I worked for a Defense contractor who dealt with classified information. Part of the process for earning a security clearance was a thorough background check, the aim of which, was to uncover secrets that might make a person a security risk. What sorts of secrets are these?
Illegal activity for one (aka recreational drug use, violent crimes); addictions problems for another, particularly “legal” addictions like gambling or sex because these can be kept below the radar indefinitely; and—probably the most common—lapses in judgment not quite rising the level of crime or emotional pathology, such as extramarital affairs.
The problem with these secrets is not that they label us as bad people—everybody has problems and takes missteps—but that they can make us so ashamed, we may make more missteps to keep them private.
In other words, secrets, or the shame they carry, can make us vulnerable.
The lesson was a good one to come across early in life, and I’ve tried not to keep secrets as a result. The easiest way to achieve that end is to live by those rubrics we’ve all heard, “Don’t do anything you couldn’t tell your loved ones about,” being one.
Lady Maggie, by contrast, has painted herself into quite a corner, with secrets that cut both ways: She can’t tell her ducal family some things, she can’t tell her maternal family other things. By trying to protect each from the other, she’s made herself vulnerable to both. Time for a hero to swashbuckle into her life, I’d say.
And of course, not all secrets are toxic! For example, not many people know I’ve kissed the Blarney stone—an undignified undertaking, and probably silly according to most. My favorite big girl drink is a white Russian, in which I indulge at least twice a year—gotta have my dairy! It’s also not exactly public information that one of the reasons I have long hair is because when I was seven years old, I cut off my braids and wore my hair very short. People thought I was boy, and I guess I’m still over-reacting.
I try to save all the really juicy secrets for characters like Lady Maggie and Benjamin Hazlit!
If you were going to give a character a really difficult secret, what would it be? Answer this question in the comments, and 4 commenters will win a copy of Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal (US and Canada only). Good luck! Winners will be announced in this post by the end of the day –
LADY MAGGIE’S SECRET SCANDAL BY GRACE BURROWES – IN STORES MAY 2012
Lady Maggie Windham Has Secrets…
And she’s been perfectly capable of keeping them…until now. When she’s threatened with exposure, she turns to investigator Benjamin Hazlit to keep catastrophe at bay. But Maggie herself intrigues Benjamin more than the riddle she’s set him to solve. As he uncovers more and more of her past, Maggie struggles to keep him at a distance, until they both begin to discover the truth in their hearts…
Praise for Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal
“Delicious… Burrowes delivers red-hot chemistry with a masterful mix of playfulness and sensuality, and her themes of healing and familial strength give this page-turner unusual depth. Charming and original with superb characters ready to walk off the page, this is a splendid addition to any Regency fan’s bookshelf.” —Publishers Weekly Starred Review
“An unconventional tale of strikingly unique characters with realistic emotions and exciting antics. It’s always a delight to read one of Burrowes’ creations…” —RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Grace Burrowes is a prolific and award-winning author of historical romances. Her debut, The Heir, received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist, and was selected as a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year for 2010 in the romance category. Both The Heir and its follow-up, The Solider, are New York Times and USA Today bestsellers. She is a practicing attorney specializing in family law and lives in a restored log cabin in western Maryland without a TV, DVD player or radio because she’s too busy working on her next books.
Please visit Grace on her Website| follow on Twitter |Facebook
WINNERS!! Congrats ladies – Sourcebooks publishing will notify you regarding your book: