Posts Tagged ‘The Body at the Tower’

Ready – set – LAUNCH!

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

This week, Walker Books publishes The Body at the Tower in the UK! Here’s the gorgeous new cover.

Perfection, non? This is the UK/World edition so if you’re an Australian or New Zealand reader, this is the cover you’ll see in November when it’s released by Walker Books Australia.

Also, plans are taking shape for an actual, real-world, come-see-me-face-to-face-if-you-dare launch party. The details?

Wednesday, September 29

7 pm

Novel Idea Books

156 Princess St, Kingston, Ontario

(click here for a map)

Shall I see you there?

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Notorious Victorians, farewell

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

This is it, the last post in the Body at the Tower blog tour, and it features the Edinburgh Seven. Sound like a group of revolutionaries of some sort, doesn’t it? And they were. They were rich, educated young ladies who had the nerve to decide that they wanted to study medicine. Obviously, trouble ensued. You can read more about their story at Booksmugglers.

Then, Booksmuggler Thea reviews Body, calling it “another winning, impeccably well-written historical mystery”. Huzzah!

Thanks so much for joining me on this blog tour. Regularly scheduled blogging returns on Thursday, when I continue my English adventures. See you then!

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Victorian rebels

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

The Notorious Victorians blog tour stops today at Laura’s Review Bookshelf to consider Victorian Rebels. Florence Nightingale was a lady who defied her parents, got her hands dirty during the Crimean War, and revolutionized modern nursing as a result. Not bad!

And over at Teenreads, I’m dispensing bad advice. Ever wondered How Not to Be a Writer? I’ve got tips for you!

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The whole Mary & James thing

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Okay, so the #1 question I get from readers – and this is by a long shot – is, “Will Mary and James get together?” Naturally, I don’t have a simple yes-or-no answer for you. James is back in The Body at the Tower but the path of true love is never entirely smooth, know what I mean? I go into a bit more detail in an interview with Cecilia at the Epic Rat, but it contains some spoilers for both Spy and Body. If you can’t stand spoilers, feel free to email/tweet me your questions and I’ll do my best to answer them in a discreet and tantalizing manner.

Cecilia also reviews Body. It’s a great review but it, too, contains spoilers for Spy. It’s a cruel world out there for innocent readers.

I’ll see you tomorrow for more Notorious Victorians!

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Happy bookday, Body!

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

I will refrain from gag-inducing metaphors of birth & infancy. Suffice it to say that today, the second Agency novel, The Body at the Tower, is published by Candlewick Press. I’m one-third disbelief, one-third out of my mind with excitement, and one-third “Stop it, Ying, you’re such a nerd”.

Fortunately, it’s not all about me. The Body at the Tower blog tour is at Steph Su Reads today, where I guest-post about Notorious Victorian Joseph Merrick – aka the Elephant Man – and the way he used celebrity as a survival strategy. His is a tragic but also smart and fascinating story.

Steph then reviews Body: “damn if the pages didn’t nearly catch on fire…” *evil cackle from smug author*

There is no real-world launch party today, but stay in touch: I’m planning an online launch party in September. Details to follow.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to celebrate.

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Notorious Victorians, celebrity edition

Monday, August 9th, 2010

Welcome to the second week of The Body at the Tower blog tour. My theme for the next 2 days is the idea of celebrity and today I’m guest-blogging at A Reader’s Adventure about one of the most notorious of Victorians: writer, dandy, aesthete, and scandal-magnet Oscar Wilde. Once again, the Victorians seem oddly contemporary in their adoration and hatred of the limelight.

Mariah also reviews Body. As she warns, you’re in for “slight spoilers for first book. And possibly some fangirling.”

I’ll see you tomorrow – which is, by the way, the OFFICIAL PUB DATE for Body! – at Steph Su Reads with part 2 of Victorian Celebrities.

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Notorious Victorians, days 2-5

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Hello, friends. On Tuesday, the Body at the Tower blog tour stops at Bookworming in the 21st Century. There, I talk favourite books and writing challenges in an interview with Kristen. And Body gets a 5-star review!

I’m going to have patchy internet access for the next few days, but the blog tour rolls on. Do check in at GreenBeanTeenQueen on Wednesday for my essay on Notorious Victorian activist Annie Besant and Sarah’s review of Body.

On Thursday, I’ll be talking about Charles Darwin as a Reluctant Revolutionary at Cornucopia of Reviews. There, Lizzy also gives Body a glowing review. Yay!

Friday’s guest post is about women’s rights campaigner Lady Caroline Norton, over at Reading in Color. Ari’s review is a beautiful one, but beware – it contains minor spoilers for Spy.

I’ll post next week from Vancouver, when the blog tour continues with four more Notorious Victorians and an interview. Can’t wait!

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Notorious Victorians

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

Welcome to the first day of the Body at the Tower blog tour! My theme this time round is Notorious Victorians and today, I’m guest-posting over at the Story Siren about the scandalous Victoria Claflin Woodhull, aka the first woman to run for president of the United States. Woodhull’s life was even juicier than that sounds.

Kristi at the Story Siren also reviews Body, giving it 5 stars! She praises its “Spectacular characters… superb writing… awesome storyline. It’s easy to read, fun and just plain ole’ entertaining. I can’t wait for another adventure with Mary in book three!” I’m thrilled to hear it.

I’m also chatting with Sara at the Hiding Spot, where we discuss favourite scenes, novels, and words. Right now, mine’s “quiddity”. What’s yours?

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A deleted scene from Body

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

Hello friends and readers! The second Agency novel, The Body at the Tower, hits stores in North America in just over a month. That really sneaked up on me. To celebrate, I thought I’d offer you a deleted scene from the novel.

Context: When James Easton goes to India, he catches a severe case of malaria. On the voyage home, still just recovering from his illness, he becomes acquainted with Jeremy and Sybil Alleyn, a brother-and-sister duo who were raised in India. Sadly, Body became very long and one of the things I had to cut was the Alleyns’s appearance. I do, however, have high hopes for them. This won’t be the last time you see them.

There’s nothing spoiler-ish here, so you can read with impunity. When you’re done with this scene, read the official excerpts from the finished novel, if you haven’t already!

Click here for the deleted scene from The Body at the Tower

Click here for an excerpt from Body

Download the prologue & first chapter from Candlewick Press

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Marriages, births, deaths

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

The next couple of weeks hold, for me:

1) A family funeral,

2) The wedding of a dear friend, and

3) My first meeting with a nephew who was born last year.

Being confronted with Major Life Events always makes me reel, but don’t worry – I’m not going to wax overly philosophical. What struck me this evening is how very Victorian this triad of events is, yet how much our expectations have evolved over a century.

The nineteenth century was an age of high infant mortality, lower life expectancy, contagious diseases, and relatively primitive medical care. As a result, death was a frequent and familiar sort of terror. A Victorian person of my age would likely have known multiple deaths within her family and circle of friends, through both accident and illness. I’m downright insulated in comparison, something I never think of without a shiver of relief.

Marriage is still an important rite of passage but once again, it’s changed so much. Women and men think hard about whether they want to marry, and whom. They create and dissolve contracts as they choose. And the word “spinster” is seldom heard anymore, except in legal documents. Much as we agonize about relationships, they’re so easy now because we have such freedom of choice. In contrast, when a young Victorian woman entered into marriage, she was transferred from the legal power of her father to that of her husband. She couldn’t own property in her own name, until 1882. And if her husband was abusive or negligent, it was extremely difficult for her to obtain a divorce.

Childbirth is incredibly safe, in the year 2010. In affluent countries, maternal death in childbirth is rare. Newborns generally live. And when babies are born ill, our first question is, “How can we heal them?” rather than, “Will they live?” Once born, we expect healthy babies to thrive; the first year is no longer a gamble.

So while I’m feeling bruised by this sudden confluence of turning points, I’ve got nothing on the Victorians.

This week in reviews:

The first blog review for The Body at the Tower is up! Librarian Jennifer Rummel (aka YA Book Nerd) says, “I ADORE this series… I just want MORE (and quickly!).” Body will be published in the US/Canada by Candlewick on August 10, and in the UK by Walker Books on 6 September.

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