Hello everyone! Welcome to another great day of guest blogging. I am so thrilled to have such wonderful guests this month. We get to read so much interesting items!! So, welcome author Michelle Miles. I will post the pcitures later, I can’t pull the pictures up right now. Im sooo sorry.
By Michelle Miles
I’d like to thank the lovely Ms. Dorough for inviting me here today!
I’m excited to talk about my latest release, One Knight Only. It’s an historical with paranormal elements set in the Middle Ages during a jousting tournament.
First, here’s the blurb, to get you familiar with the story:
A snarky Faery princess, a Scottish knight with a gambling problem, and a murderous earl all add up to one thing: Trouble. Maggie’s medieval education never prepared her for life in the Middle Ages!
Do-gooder Maggie Chase throws her thesis out the window when she wakes up in the arms of a hot Scottish knight. When she realizes she’s somehow ended up back in time, she embraces the persona of Lady Margaret. But she may be in over her head when she realizes she has to keep the sexy knight alive during a jousting tournament in order to get back to her own time.
Sir Finian “Finn” McCullough is a gambling man and owes a very large debt to an evil earl who is after his family estate. When the beautiful and outgoing Maggie arrives in his bed, he can’t remember tupping her the night before and thinks she’s a spy for one of his neighboring clans. He intends to find her kinsman and return her safely but he can’t resist her charms, her smart mouth or her sex appeal. Instead he keeps her close, taking her with him to an important jousting tournament—one he has to win or lose his castle forever.
I bet you’re wondering how I came up with the idea. It was actually born of my love of the Middle Ages and sexy knights who jousted. I mean, what is hotter than a man on a horse with a big stick?
So I set out to write this book back in, oh, 2005. You’d think it wouldn’t take five years to write a book but this one was special. Initially, it was a straight historical with a romance but when it wasn’t working for me for various reasons, I decided to ditch that idea and throw in a modern heroine and a faery princess that has magic.
But I digress. How the book came about is an entirely different post altogether. (
When I set the book during a jousting tournament, I scoured books on jousting and banquets and the Middle Ages. It was great reading. Because of the setting, I knew I wanted to actually write some jousting in the book. So I had to learn how to do it myself. Short of getting on a horse with a stick, that is.
Naturally, I watched A Knight’s Tale over and over. For research purposes, don’t you know. It was a hard job but someone had to do it.
Anyway, I found some great books on how to joust. My heroine is actually the one in the hot seat. You’re probably wondering how a modern heroine ended up in a jousting tournament but you’ll have to read the book for that. *grin*
Here’s a little snippet featuring Maggie, my heroine, jousting:
Glancing up at the wooden pole, it wiggled in the air, a direct result of her hand and arm muscles shaking from both angst and fatigue. With sweat rolling down her face, she turned her attention once again in front of her.
In the center of the lists near the tilt, the list marshal stood. Lord Litonshire himself, the vile beast. She scowled and stuck out her tongue, knowing no one could see her. It made her feel better.
Litonshire glanced from her to the opponent and back again. She waited agonizing moments until at last he snapped up the flag, signaling the beginning of the match. The knight three hundred feet away kicked his horse into a full charge.
And then the world seemed to pass into slow motion. Maggie was acutely aware of the knight and his twelve-hundred-pound horse charging forward, aware of the dirt clods his steed kicked up behind him, aware of the loud din of the crowd all around her, and very aware of the sudden sick feeling clenching her stomach. She swallowed the rising bile. She would not throw up. She could do this.
Firmly in the saddle, feet in stirrups, cling to the horse with your knees and for God’s sake, don’t fall off.
Geoffrey slapped the destrier’s rump and bellowed a roar of good luck as the stallion took off at a full gallop. With the lance wobbling in her right hand and the reins gripped so tight her left hand ached, she held her breath as her heart beat a wild tattoo. Her opponent lowered his lance, pointing it directly at her torso. It occurred to her she ought to do the same, but the lance wobbled in her hand. Her muscles refused to cooperate with her.
Grasping it in her hand and biting her lip, she did her best to lower the lance. It trembled in the air, back and forth, as she struggled to keep it steady. She managed to tuck the end under her arm, holding it close to her body. Every muscle tensed and she made sure she clenched her knees around the heavy beast under her. She was so intent on keeping her lance steady that when she looked up, she saw her opponent’s pointing lance only a few feet in front of her.
She gasped and squeezed her eyes shut as the lance struck her square in the chest, splintering and raining shards of wood all around her. With the reins gripped in her hands, she snapped backward, holding on for dear life. The horse reared, making his discomfort known and whinnying loudly. The blow was so hard she lost control of her own lance and it fell from her hand, unscathed. A loud cheer went up from the raucous crowd, only adding to the roar in her eardrums.
Gritting her teeth, she forced herself to release the reins, letting them go slack in her hand as the horse slammed his front hooves back on the ground, jarring every bone in her body and rattling her back teeth. She fell forward, panting heavily as fear coursed like acid through her. Leaning against the neck of the horse, she patted his mane, cooing soft words to calm him. What transpired in only a few seconds seemed like a vast eternity to Maggie.
Will Maggie live through the joust and save the day? You’ll have to read the book, available now from Ellora’s Cave!
Michelle Miles writes contemporary, paranormal and fantasy romance. She has always wanted to be a faery princess and finally married her very own knight in shining armor in December 2010. For more information about her and her books, visit her website at HYPERLINK “http://www.michellemiles.net”http://www.michellemiles.net where you can also sign up for her monthly newsletter, The Monthly Grind, follower her on Twitter, @MichelleMiles, and “like” her on Facebook at HYPERLINK “http://www.facebook.com/MichelleMilesRomance”http://www.facebook.com/MichelleMilesRomance.