Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Author Guest Post: A Kiss at Christmastide by Christina McKnight

A Kiss at Christmastide by Christina McKnight
Release: September 27th, 2016
Romance Subgenre: Historical Romance, Holiday

Lady Pippa Godfrey has suffered the most ruinous London Season. She escapes to her Somerset estate for a quiet Christmastide holiday with her family, away from society’s prying eyes. But before her parents can join her, a storm crashes down on Somerset to destroy any hope of Pippa’s white Christmas dream. The roads have flooded and travel is impossible, leaving her stranded and alone. But a muddied, angry and devilishly handsome lord appears at her door demanding shelter.

Lucas Hartfeld, the Earl of Maddox, has been summoned by his parents, the Marquis and Marchioness of Bowmont, to attend a holiday party in the wilds of the country, far from his London townhouse. He suspects they command his attendance for far different reasons than a simple country party. When a storm strands his carriage, he’s forced to seek shelter at the only home for miles around, a local manor called Helton House.

When Lady Pippa is reluctant to admit him, he does what he’s been raised to do—demand she provide him and his servants with shelter until the storm passes. But the beautiful woman draws his interest far more than he’s willing to admit. Can Lucas find a way out of the predicament his parents are planning?

As Lady Pippa scrutinizes another arrogant, demanding lord, she is bombarded with memories of betrayals in her past. Can she forget those difficult life lessons to claim a Christmastide kiss from a perfect stranger?

Author Guest Post
I'm excited to have author Christina McKnight on the blog today to discuss her Regency Christmas novella, A Kiss At Christmastide. Thanks for sharing, Christina!

I love the thought of putting together a list of songs to accompany my book. When I sat down to write A Kiss At Christmastide it was the beginning of August—and it was 110 degrees here in California. I was listening to the kids in the backyard swimming and throwing water balloons at each other. Certainly not the ideal mood and setting for writing a Christmas story.

When in doubt, I always call my mom. Her advice always helps solve my problems. What was her advice? Watch WHITE CHRISTMAS with Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney. My mom will watch this movie in February, July, September, and December. Well, I didn’t have the movie nor any idea if I could buy it in August. She had three copies, one being a VHS if I wanted to drive to her house and borrow it. I needed inspiration and I needed it right then and there—so I turned to www.youtube.com and the White Christmas soundtrack released by Delta Music in 1992 that featured all of Bing Crosby’s songs.

The first song to play was I’ll Be Home For Christmas. Now this song hit home. I knew I wanted a story set in the English countryside, far from London and society. And so I had the beginnings of a story starting. Lady Pippa is awaiting her family at their country manor in Somerset, unfortunately a storm rages outside, delaying their arrival to spend the holiday with her. Next song I played was, Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow. Yes, Lady Pippa wanted her Christmastide season to be like all the rest, her family lands covered in a beautiful blanket of snow, however, the storm only brought torrential rains, making the local road impassable. When a knock sounds at her door, Pippa is filled with joy knowing her parents have arrived. They must have braved the unsafe conditions to be with her.

When Pippa throws her front door wide to allow her parent’s entrance from the storm, she comes face to face with a drenched and angry, yet devilishly handsome, man. As a proper woman with the manners befitting her status, she offers Lucas, the Earl of Maddox, and his servants shelter until the storm passes and they can repair their carriage, damaged by the storm. Pippa continues her duties, preparing for her family’s traditional holiday feast by decorating the halls and making the sweet treats her local villages love. Deck The Halls fits this scene perfectly as Lucas steps in to help Pippa decorate her family home—and their affection for one another blossoms!

Finally the storm passes and the temperatures drop as snow begins to fall, blanketing her estate with a white snowflakes. White Christmas captures Pippa’s emotions as she awaits her parents’ arrival but also knows she must say good bye to Lucas as he travels on to the Holiday party he is expected to attend.

You’ll have to read A Kiss At Christmastide to find out the song that inspired the final scene from the book, but I’ll give you a hint…Bells!

I hope you enjoy listening to the White Christmas soundtrack as much as you love A Kiss At Christmastide.

About Christina McKnight

Christina McKnight is a book lover turned writer. From a young age, her mother encouraged her to tell her own stories. She’s been writing ever since.

Christina enjoys a quiet life in Northern California with her family, her wine, and lots of coffee. Oh, and her books…don’t forget her books! Most days she can be found writing, reading, or traveling the great state of California.

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