Today we have a guest blogger with us, author Jessica Dotta. I hope you enjoy getting to know more about her debut novel Born of Persuasion (Price of Privilege#1) by Tyndale House Publishers. It’s an amazing read. You can find my review on Goodreads.
I love doing character interviews so sit back and meet the characters of Born of Persuasion.
What is your current state of mind? Have you ever realized that all has been for naught? That you’ve built a temple but it was to the wrong god? What is my state of mind? Would you have me damn you too with my thoughts? Leave me to them, and I’ll not disturb your peace by asking for yours.
What is your most treasured possession? And bring pain by speaking of it? I think not. You would do well, too, never to reveal your heart, for therein lies your greatest vulnerability.
When and where were you the happiest? Here’s a rub. My choicest hour was also my blackest. Only I could not know it then. All happiness has betrayed me. All adventure has gone. No, I will shun even this thought.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? Need you ask? Is it not plain that I deplore all that I am and have become? There are no parts of me left that are less deplorable. I am a sum total and all is lost.
On what occasions do you lie? What is truth? What hasn’t been a lie? What in this life hasn’t proven false? To speak is to lie. To lie is to speak.
What is your current state of mind? Focused. If I am very careful, much damage can be undone and much loss can be restored. Yet in ways I hadn’t expected, I find myself curious about this girl; my thoughts wander in her direction. At times, I even feel suppressed impatience to meet her ahead of schedule—the sensation is akin to excitement. What a fantastic change of fortune I offer, a true reversal of fate, if ever one existed.
What is your most treasured possession? Eastbourne, my estate. It was little than a ruin when I took possession of it. Yet countless hours has been poured into its transformation and more energies have gone into securing it than into any other project or effort. I am safer there than anywhere else.
When and where were you the happiest? I never have difficulty finding amusement.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? What? And ruin the conversation by taking such a melancholy turn? I dare say, go ask John. I’m sure he’d be happy to supply you with such morbid conversation.
On what occasions do you lie? How curious these questions become. What need have I for lying? Lest you think I’m diverting, I’ll be plain. You’ll find me straightforward.
What is your current state of mind? Well, I am glad that someone has enough sense to finally inquire about me! I dare say, no one else has. My very dearest friend has died. But why should any one bother to ask about me? How easily Julia overlooks the fact that I had a longer acquaintance with her mother than she did. But was I asked to the deathbed?
And now there’s this nonsense with a guardian. Of all the nonsense. Not giving a name. I’ve never heard of such a thing in all my days! It is more than flesh and blood can bear.
What is your most treasured possession? Now here is a handsome story! The next time you are at Am Meer, have the goodness to view the roses directly beneath the dining-room window. They are the only roses in the entire neighborhood cultivated to re-bloom three times in a season. The seller was only in market for one day. Nettie, who always brags about how her garden is the most modern, had not the foresight to bring extra money that day. While she ran home, I purchased every plant.
When and where were you the happiest? To be sure the day I wed Mr. Windham, bless his soul. Never mind the gossip that he put a bold face. Such rubbish. I ensure can you, he was quite pleased with the match.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? Humph. Well, we all can’t maintain our girlish figure. How very rude you are to comment on it. I warrant you ate more for breakfast than I did this morning.
On what occasions do you lie? I dare say when you have a daughter and are responsible for her future happiness, you will put such notions behind you. You would do much better, missy, to worry about when you are telling the truth than when other people are lying.
What is your current state of mind? I have never been more vexed. Of all the nonsense! Who can even entertain this idea! The girl is little more than a scarecrow. Certainly nowhere near worthy of the honor. The very notion is unhallowed. In all my days, I never heard of such a disadvantageous match. The only thought that tempers me is that this must be a grand jest.
What is your most treasured possession? By the time you reach my age, one only treasure is their health.
When and where were you the happiest? I could tell stories of escapades and liaisons that you could only dream about. At the very center of the scandals were the most luminous names of the age. Gone are those days, but they live well in my memory.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? Ha! There is a trap in which I’ve never fallen. Why should I deplore myself? If I wish to break from societal norms, why should I not delight in my very ability to be free from the shackles of convention? I will never rue my actions.
On what occasions do you lie? The truth is ever so much more wicked than lies, especially when you’re not afraid to tell it.
What is your current state of mind? I fear for my future, so much so, that I have nightmares and my stomach feels as though it is set adrift like strands of milkweed in the wind. There is such a short span of time to secure any hope of future happiness. My entire childhood I believed if I could just reach adulthood I would be safe and be allowed to create my own life. I never expected my hopes would be snatched away so suddenly. Yet, I am desperate enough to risk all.
What is your most treasured possession? Mama’s locket. She gave it to my on the morning of my seventeenth birthday. Inside, painted on ivory, is a portrait of her and my father. They look about my age. It is the only likeness I have left of my parents.
When and where were you the happiest? My childhoods were spent at Am Meer—the Windham’s cottage. Those were the most golden hours of my life. Our foursome– Edward, Henry, Elizabeth and myself, spent hours playing in the forest, ambling through fields and splashing in brooks. I love them with fierceness, but none more so than Edward himself.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? I am hard and unlovable. I readily admit that it is my own fault, for it is not without effort that I accomplished this hard shell about my heart.
On what occasions do you lie? Since Mama’s suicide, I’ve told more lies than I ever imagined in order to protect my only chance of securing a better life.
What is your current state of mind? My duties require to both God and the parish require that I remain sober minded and serious.
What is your most treasured possession? In order to remain free of the love affair with wealth and position, I have renounced all worldly possessions so that I may be fit for the use of God; therefore I have but a few necessary items. I would feel remiss, however, to lose my Bible. Countless hours have been spent studying and correlating verses.
When and where were you the happiest? My happiest hours took place during the summers of my childhood, though those memories are too cherished to speak openly about with anyone, save one.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? Everyone thinks I have laid down all—yet in truth, I know there is one area of my life not truly surrendered to God. The fondest dream of my childhood, the plans I laid with another for the future.
On what occasions do you lie? I have put deceit behind me. It is far worse to hide one’s sin than to confess them.
Born of Persuasion (Price of Privilege #1) is currently available in eBook, paperback, and audiobook formats on Amazon and Tyndale House Publishers.
Genre: Historial Fiction, Christian Fiction, Gothic
Description: The year is 1838, and seventeen-year-old Julia Elliston’s position has never been more fragile. Orphaned and unmarried in a time when women are legal property of their fathers, husbands, and guardians, she finds herself at the mercy of an anonymous guardian who plans to establish her as a servant in far-off Scotland.
With two months to devise a better plan, Julia’s first choice to marry her childhood sweetheart is denied. But when a titled dowager offers to introduce Julia into society, a realm of possibilities opens. However, treachery and deception are as much a part of Victorian society as titles and decorum, and Julia quickly discovers her present is deeply entangled with her mother’s mysterious past. Before she knows what’s happening, Julia finds herself a pawn in a deadly game between two of the country’s most powerful men. With no laws to protect her, she must unravel the secrets on her own. But sometimes truth is elusive and knowledge is deadly.
Author Bio: Born in the wrong century‚ except for the fact that she really likes epidurals and washing machines‚ Jessica Dotta writes British Historicals with the humor like an Austen, yet the drama of a Bronte.
She resides lives in the greater Nashville area‚where she imagines her small Southern town into the foggy streets of 19th century London. She oversees her daughter to school, which they pretend is an English boarding school, and then she goes home to write or work on PR. Jessica has tried to cast her dachshund as their butler‚ but the dog insists it’s a Time Lord and their home a Tardis. Miss Marple, her cat, says its no mystery to her as to why the dog won’t cooperate. When asked about it, Jessica sighs and says that you can’t win them all, and at least her dog has picked something British to emulate.