Thursday, 29 April 2010

Character Spotlight ~ Siri Mitchell's Clara Carter with giveaways

Clara Carter

The brilliant Siri Mitchell is back with another wonderful story of fashion, romance and social constraints in She Walks in Beauty. If you enjoy your historical fiction with exceptional characterisation and plenty to ponder, Siri's books are for you!


Brief physical description

Embarrassingly tall (for the 19th century) and slightly clumsy, Clara has an unfashionable boyish figure. She has dark hair and pale, consumptive-looking skin with lips that are both too large and too wide.

Actor/famous person

For my historicals I’ve been making character collages. I tack them up on a bulletin board beside my computer so that I can see them as I write. A brief rundown on the characters in this collage. Clara is the main character. Her father and her aunt have tasked her with winning the hand of Franklin. Her best friend Lizzie—a sunny, cheerful soul—has also been given that goal. Though Clara tries to be a dutiful daughter, her heart is captured by Franklin’s younger brother Harry. Katherine, a baroness with melancholy eyes, is Franklin and Harry’s older sister who becomes a good friend to Clara through the course of the novel. Mr. Douglas is the ambitious journalist hired to catapult Clara to fame through the pages of his newspaper gossip column.

Strengths and weaknesses

Clara has an abundance of intelligence and good sense, although in her particular era, those were considered weaknesses and, in fact, turn out to be her fatal flaws (in her father’s and aunt’s opinions). She is also extremely loyal which has its drawbacks once she realizes she’s competing with her best friend for the hand of the season’s most eligible bachelor.

Quirk (if any)

She loves green apples and the poetry of Byron, preferring to consume them together.

Your inspiration for the character

Like my two previous historicals, I wanted to include a fashion element in this book. Corsets were an obvious choice. But I wanted to portray not just the wearing of corsets, but the before-and-after story. The loss of freedom and self that would come from surrendering the substance and spirit of your person to a rigid ideal. To do that, I needed a rather reluctant ingénue. And so, Clara was born.

Background to the story

As the story opens, Clara is feeling a bit beleaguered. She’s trying to be good and do what’s expected, but none of it really makes much sense. When she tries to be herself, she gets applauded, but for the wrong reasons. She’s vaulted to celebrity by misinterpretation of her own mistakes and self-consciousness. But that’s good right? She’s just starting to discover that marriage means the beginning of the end and she’s not at all sure that she wants to marry the man her father and aunt have picked out. But if not him, then whom? Surely if she just does what’s expected, everything will turn out right in the end. Won’t it? That’s what everyone keeps insisting…

And just for you, here's a snippet from Siri about her next novel:~

A Heart Most Worthy is another historical set in 1918 Boston among a group of Italian immigrants.

Thanks Siri for a really personal look at Clara and especially sharing your character collage ~ loved it!S

On Monday the spotlight shines on Lena Dooley's Madeleine Mercer from Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico.

Relz Reviewz Extras

Exclusive RBC Book Club Interview with Siri

Reviews of A Constant Heart, Chateau of Echoes, The Cubicle Next Door & Moon Over Tokyo

Character spotlight on Love's Pursuit's
characters and A Constant Heart's Marget & Lytham

Visit Siri's

Buy Siri's books at Amazon or Koorong

I'm trying something new here with my giveaways with this form. Let's see how it goes! Please note, the US copy will be a signed copy from Siri :)


Laura Frantz said...

I love Siri's work and this book is high on my list of must reads, competing with all that 18th-century stuff, of course:) Wishing Siri many happy hours of reading and writing. You too, Rel!

Scrappy quilter said...

I love her books too. I can't wait to get a copy of this one.

Scrappy quilter said...

I forgot, is there suppose to be a form there? All I have is a little red X

Rel said...

You can't see the form???? Oh dear, I can......

Deborah said...

i see the form!

Tracy said...

I had the form ~ if there's a red X there instead you might need to refresh or walk away and try again in a little bit. The page just isn't loading properly.

Not that I need anymore books, but Siri is always welcome to adorn my shelf with her books!

Leola said...

Sounds like another great book - and the form to enter is cool!
thanks Rel

Jen said...

Good form Rel.Would love to win this book as I love Siri's books. Tahnks again to you and Siri.

nolene said...

I also really enjoy Siri's books and this ones sounds great!

Laetitia :-) said...

I got the form.

Laetitia :-)

Tales of Whimsy said...

Fun! I love the yellow gown.

The Tri Road said...

I love the idea of the character collage! What a great way to keep track of character personalities and traits while writing. T

Merry said...

She Walks in Beauty sounds terrific, love the cover!

Lourdes said...

Great cover! I always look forward to her books.

Sherrinda Ketchersid said...

I've heard sooo much about Siri's books and haven't had the privilege to read one! She is on my list for sure!

I love the character collage!!!

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