Christy English is celebrating the release of How to Tame a Willful Wife, the first book in her Shakespeare’s in Love series. She recently dropped by the virtual offices to answer a few questions.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Christy] Brave, resourceful, a Geek. I love to dance, to sing, to roller skate, to tell stories, to lose myself in the written word, to celebrate
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about How To Tame a Willful Wife?
[Christy] My latest book is basically a re-telling of The Taming of the Shrew…I might even say a re-writing of it. Because in my book, the so-called “shrew” is the one who tames her husband. I was never satisfied with the play. I always felt the need to focus on the chemistry between Kate and Petrucchio, and to take their connection farther. Instead of starving Caroline into submission, Anthony and his “shrew” find a middle ground, where they can live together as equals.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?
[Christy] Anthony and Caroline came to me in a dream in 2007. The first chapter of the novel unrolled in the theatre of my mind, and when I woke up, I wrote it down. Originally, they were Italian, but Regency England suited the story much better, especially once I had fleshed it out and discovered that it was The Taming of the Shrew I was re-telling.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Caroline?
[Christy] Brave, beautiful, strong-willed…is that three words or four?
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three activities would Anthony never engage in?
[Christy] Macramé, bowling, dueling. He would never sit still for the first, the second would be too undignified, and the third would be pointless. If he wanted to kill someone, he would just shoot him between the eyes and be done with it.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Anthony had a theme song, what would it be?
[Christy] Bad to the Bone (LOL)
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Caroline’s most prized possession?
[Christy] Her throwing knives. Until Anthony gives her the pearl, anyway. I would say Hercules, her stallion, but she does not see her horse as something she owns as much as a friend who has her back no matter what.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Christy] Mary Renault and her novels about ancient Greece. She is truly a genius.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Christy] Coca Cola, a computer that works, and a table and chair…wait, that’s four things again.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Christy] WHEN YOU GIVE A DUKE A DIAMOND by Shana Galen. It was the first time I had read her work, and I adored it. Very clever and charming. A great read.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Christy] GONE WITH THE WIND when I was in the seventh grade. I had been a reader before then, but that was the first time I committed to a novel that long and involved. In spite of the historical inaccuracies and the racism, that novel brought Scarlett O’Hara to life. I learned a lot from reading it before I ever knew that I was going to be a real writer. A real writer, by the way, is anyone who commits to their characters and stays in the chair.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Christy] I love to read, eat out with friends, go to the theatre, act in the theatre, roller skate, dance.
[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?
[Christy] People can find me on my blog http://www.ChristyEnglish.com
on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/ShakespeareInLoveSeries
and on Twitter https://twitter.com/ChristyEnglish
[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!
You can order How to Tame a Willful Wife from your favorite bookseller or by clicking the links below:
More about the book:
How To Tame A Willful Wife:
1. Forbid her from riding astride
2. Hide her dueling sword
3. Burn all her breeches and buy her silk drawers
4. Frisk her for hidden daggers
5. Don’t get distracted while frisking her for hidden daggers…
Anthony Carrington, Earl of Ravensbrook, expects a biddable bride. A man of fiery passion tempered by the rigors of war into steely self-control, he demands obedience from his troops and his future wife. Regardless of how fetching she looks in breeches.
Promised to the Earl of Plump Pockets by her impoverished father, Caroline Montague is no simpering miss. She rides a war stallion named Hercules, fights with a blade, and can best most men with both bow and rifle. She finds Anthony autocratic, domineering, and…ridiculously gorgeous.
It’s a duel of wit and wills in this charming retelling of The Taming of the Shrew. But the question is…who’s taming whom?