Please welcome Anne Cleeland to the virtual offices this morning! Anne is here to talk about Tainted Angel, and after, you can enter for a chance to win a copy of your own!
[Manga Maniac Café] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
[Anne Cleeland] Mild-mannered lawyer and mother of four writes stories about ordinary people swept up in extraordinary events. Also likes chocolate.
[Manga Maniac Café] Can you tell us a little about Tainted Angel?
[Anne Cleeland] The heroine is an agent for the Crown, but her spymaster suspects she is “tainted”—a double agent working for Napoleon. Her love interest has his own dark secrets—unless his affection is feigned and he is actually setting a trap to reveal her own treason. There are twists and double-crosses as the attraction between the two spies becomes more powerful than their mutual distrust—and England’s future hangs in the balance.
[Manga Maniac Café] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?
[Anne Cleeland] The story is a Regency version of Mr. & Mrs. Smith. I loved that movie.
[Manga Maniac Café] What three words best describe Vidia?
[Anne Cleeland] Beautiful, vulnerable, steely.
[Manga Maniac Café] If Lucien had a theme song, what would it be?
[Anne Cleeland] Let’s go with a James Bond theme, and say “The Spy Who Loved Me.”
[Manga Maniac Café] Name one thing Vidia is never without.
[Anne Cleeland] The dagger she keeps in her garter. She learned a hard lesson, once.
[Manga Maniac Café] What three things will you never find in Lucien’s pocket?
[Anne Cleeland] A miniature portrait of his late wife, his signet ring, or state secrets. He learned a hard lesson once, too.
[Manga Maniac Café] What are your greatest creative influences?
[Anne Cleeland] Gosh, I wish I was that deep! Mainly I just sit down with a laptop and try to keep up with the characters as they run around and say things. I love action movies and adventure stories, so I suppose that has been my greatest creative influence. There’s nothing like a book or a movie that starts out with a slightly ominous scene, and then allows things to get worse from there.
[Manga Maniac Café] What three things do you need in order to write?
[Anne Cleeland] A laptop, a spiral notebook and a diet Dr. Pepper! It doesn’t matter where I am or what’s going on in the background; I’m lucky that way.
[Manga Maniac Café] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
[Anne Cleeland] My good friend Laura Drake writes a great cowboy story—The Sweet Spot just came out.
[Manga Maniac Café] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
[Anne Cleeland] Brace yourself; I loved Tarzan of the Apes and then I read everything Edgar Rice Burroughs ever wrote. Did I mention I love adventure stories?
[Manga Maniac Café] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
[Anne Cleeland] I do a lot of lurking in blogs like this one. What did we do with ourselves before blogs? Or Goodreads? I could lurk around Goodreads all day.
[Manga Maniac Café] How can readers connect with you?
[Anne Cleeland] I hope they do, I’d love to hear from them! My website is Annecleeland.com, and I have a Facebook page and a Goodreads page. For your readers who are mystery fans, I have a contemporary mystery series starting in August with Murder in Thrall. Then the second historical will come out in November—Daughter of the God-King. Thanks so much for giving me the opportunity to introduce myself!
[Manga Maniac Café] Thank you!
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About the book:
A deadly game of deception
A notorious beauty with a shadowy past
In the time of Napoleon, Vidia Swanson appears to live a gilded life of ease and luxury. Beneath this façade, however, she works for the Home Office as an ‘angel,’ coaxing secrets from powerful men who may or may not be traitors to the Crown. In the course of her latest assignment, matters take an alarming turn when she realizes that her spymaster suspects that she is the one who is tainted–a double agent working for the enemy.
Lucien Carstairs is a fellow agent with his own dark secrets–unless he is setting an elaborate trap to reveal her own supposed treason. Backed into a corner, she can only hope to stay one step ahead of the hangman in a race to stop the next war before it destroys them–and destroys England.
Tainted Angel offers up a compelling game of cat and mouse in which no one can be trusted–and anyone can be tainted.