Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Interview with L.B. Joramo, author of The Immortal American

Today Flashlight Commentary is pleased to welcome author L.B. Joramo to discuss her latest release, The Immortal American. 

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Welcome to Flashlight Commentary. To start things off, please tell us a bit about The Immortal American.
I’ll give you a blurb of the book:

The first in the Immortal American series . . .

As black clouds gather for America in 1775 Violet Buccleuch transforms from simple colonial farmer to become the Immortal American.


While Boston roars with protests, Violet Buccleuch fights to survive. The lone provider for her mother and sister, Violet knows that soon enough she must surrender to the only option a woman of 1775 has: marriage. 

For two years she's delayed a wedding to Mathew Adams, her fiance. He's loved her since they were children, and Violet knows he will be a good husband. But he's gone and committed the most dangerous mistake a man can make: He's introduced her to his friend, Jacque Beaumont, a Frenchman and a spy, a dark , dangerous man Violet can't stop herself from wanting. 


Then Violet's life is shattered--brutality, death, and the threat of debtor's prison surround her. Both Jacque and Mathew come to her aid--one man rescues her farm, the other rescues her heart. As the Battle of Concord rages at her door, Violet is entangled between her loyalty to Mathew, even as she's drawn further into Jacque's shadowy, mysterious world--perhaps a world from which there's no return.

Who or what inspired you to write this piece? 
Violet, my protagonist came to me first. I saw her in modern times, and the more I got to know her, this two hundred plus year-old woman, the more I came to love her. She was bright and funny and so brave. And then she told me about her life. When I learned what happened to her right before and during the Battle of Lexington-Concord, I knew I had to write about it. 

What research went into the writing of this book and what, if any, challenges did you face in adapting your research to fiction?
Oh, research! Well, Violet told me the most basic facts about what had happened to her. But it was my job to fill in the gaps, and I hardly knew a thing about the American Revolution. I mean, being an American, I think I knew my very basic history, but not much beyond that. After a year of research, I realized that that wasn’t nearly enough. I’d always wanted to go back to school to get my Master’s in creative writing, but after a year of living in the eighteenth century, I decided why not get my Masters in History. Actually, I am earning my Master’s in US Military History, and my area of concentration is the American Revolution. I go to school only part-time, so I should graduate sometime when I’m close to 700, but I absolutely love my decision. I’m still having so much fun with research, and still feel like I might never get enough. 

What is your favorite scene in the novel?

The scene where Violet realizes that Jacque is a spy is probably my favorite. They both try so hard to rise above their feelings for each other, but can’t help feeling desire, yet they so conflicted about that. Here’s just a little tidbit from that scene: 

“You are a spy?” Although it was a question, I made it sound more like a statement.  
Monsieur Beaumont nodded and smiled brightly. “You are so clever. You have discovered one of my secrets. Does that mean I need to tell you another, to balance our confidence in each other?” 
“How can you make so light of such a thing? You’re a spy!” 
“I am not making light of this, as you say. Mathew does not even know what I am. If you told one person what I am, then I would hang in the gallows faster than you could say—” 
“I would never tell a soul. Never.” 
At that moment I gripped onto his other hand furiously, seeking for him to know undoubtedly he could trust me. The sensation of his callused hands against mine was enough to make me stop breathing. 
His voice was very low. “I thank you for that. I would hate for my neck to be  stretched to an ungodly length. ” 
“How can you jest so much?” 
“If I do not, I fear, I would be weeping, which then might lead you to question my masculinity.” 
“Men can cry. In fact, I find that I quite admire a man who can cry.” 
He pretended to boohoo, which got him a smack on his shoulder. He caught my hand that had jabbed at him, while he grinned at me— both my hands in his again. His smile slowly diminished, and he seemed to hold his breath.  

What scene posed the greatest challenges for you as an author?    Unfortunately, I’m not sure I can say. I’m scared I’d give too much away about the book if I did. But suffice it to say, there is a very difficult scene where Violet takes care of her sister one last time, and that was the very hardest scene to write in my life. 

Social patterns and expectations have changed dramatically since the 1700s. How did you approach getting into the mindset of an eighteenth century woman? 
Violet isn’t exactly a normal eighteenth century woman, so that helped when I needed to get into her mind. But she also has some universal problems that translate easily through time. For instance she doesn’t quite feel like she fits in, she falls in love with the wrong guy, etc. Violet’s father was a lecturer at Harvard before he married her mother, and as such Violet was very well learned. Many women in America were, in fact. When Thomas Paine became a bestseller in America after his publication of Common Sense it was many women who read the pamphlet that changed the course of the American Revolution. 

And many years of research helped get into the eighteenth century mindset.


Violet is attracted to two very different men in your story. How does her relationship with Mathew differ for her relationship with Jacque? 
Mathew was Violet’s childhood friend. So Violet felt grateful a nice, sweet man proposed to her and offers to help her support her family. She accepted the proposal quite happily, for Mathew would claim her heart. 

But it was Jacque that intrigued Violet’s mind then her soul.  Both Jacque and Violet love poetry and philosophy, especially the French philosophes. It is in Jacque that Violet feels she can most be herself, but she can’t have him. 


It’s quite a conundrum. 

If you could sit down and talk with one of your characters, maybe meet somewhere and chat over coffee, who would you choose and why?
Oh my goodness! Jacque! Hands down I would love to meet Jacque! I love a guy with an accent, and a French accent happens to be one of my favorites. However, my French is horrible, and I always need an English to French dictionary, so I’d probably embarrass myself with trying to impress him with my horrible French. However, it would be worth it. He’s impossible not to fall in love with. 

What do you hope readers come away with after reading your work?
I hope to entertain my readers. No, that’s not quite it. I want to transport them. Not just back in time, but to feel lifted from their life just for a bit. Yeah, I do love historical accuracy, and if my readers feel impelled to do their own research, that would enthrall me. But mainly, I just want to have my readers fall in love all, have a great time, share in a cry, and laugh with my characters. 

Finally, what is next for you? Any new projects waiting in the wings? 
The second in the Immortal American series is scheduled to be released this fall. Violet meets several new people, as well as another immortal. She also transforms from a sniper to a spy. And not too far behind the release of second in the series, Jacque gets his own time in the limelight with a short story. Oh that boy finds himself in all sorts of fun trouble.  

Thank you so much for having me on your blog! I’m very honored to be here!


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About the Author: I live in the Big Sky state, where I write, research, and love watching my son grow. I do live a bit of a fairy tale right now. Even with all the stress of deadlines, I live in a home where birds serenade me every day, my son amazes me with his humor, and I am doing exactly what I want—writing. For more information, please visit L.B. Joramo’s website and blog.  You can also follow on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Book: As black clouds gather for America in 1775 Violet Buccleuch transforms from simple colonial farmer to become the Immortal American. While Boston roars with protests, Violet Buccleuch fights to survive. The lone provider for her mother and sister, Violet knows that soon enough she must surrender to the only option a woman of 1775 has: marriage. For two years she’s delayed a wedding to Mathew Adams, her fiancé. He’s loved her since they were children, and Violet knows he will be a good husband. But he’s gone and committed the most dangerous mistake a man can make: He’s introduced her to his friend, Jacque Beaumont, a Frenchman and a spy, a dark, dangerous man Violet can’t stop herself from wanting. Then Violet’s life is shattered–brutality, death, and the threat of debtor’s prison surround her. Both Jacque and Mathew come to her aid–one man rescues her farm, the other rescues her heart. As the Battle of Concord rages at her door, Violet is entangled between her loyalty to Mathew, even as she’s drawn further into Jacque’s shadowy, mysterious world – perhaps a world from which there’s no return.


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Check out all the stops on L.B. Joramo's The Immortal American virtual Book Tour


Monday, June 24
Review & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, June 25
Review at Turning the Pages
Interview at Flashlight Commentary
Wednesday, June 26
Guest Post & Giveaway at Passages to the Past
Thursday, June 27
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Friday, June 28
Interview & Giveaway at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!


5 comments:

7140c0c8-64a9-11e2-bcec-000bcdcb2996 said...

Thank you so much for having me on your blog! I love the pictures you posted with my interview!

Once more thank so much! And I wish you and everyone here has a lovely day!
Lanita Joramo

Ella Quinn - Romance Novelist said...

What a wonderful post, Lani. I tweeted.

Lana Williams said...

You have an amazing way of weaving in all that amazing history with the mystery and romance in the story! Loved, loved this book and can't wait for the next in the series! When will it come out?

Kiffer Brown said...

I enjoyed reading this blog interview! The excerpt from The Immortal American intrigued me to want to read more.

Kiffer Brown

Angela Adams said...

I enjoyed reading this interview and finding out more about "The Immortal American." Best wishes with your book.

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