Today Historical Heartbeats welcomes Author Cynthia Owens. Cynthia is introducing a new release, Wishes of the Heart, and telling the story behind the story. Wishes of the Heart is set in the romantic, intriguing, mystic country of Ireland. You will enjoy reading the love story of Tom O’Brien and Neave Devereux.
Thanks so much for having me! I’m so excited to be here today to talk about Wishes of the Heart, the 7th book in my Claddagh Series! This story is full of Irish mist, lore and superstitions (better known as piseogs), dusted with intrigue and just a little bit of magic.
Please tell us about your latest or upcoming release.
He’ll never be the true heir…
Tom O’Brien is trapped in the distant shadow of his rebel brother. Heir apparent to Ballycashel, his hands are bound by the fetters of the past and his father’s reluctance to take the estate into the future it so desperately needs.
She lived under a cloud of suspicion…
A wise woman suspected of witchcraft, Neave Devereux spent most of her life scorned by the superstitious village folk. Alone in her tiny cottage, she yearns for acceptance, friendship…and love.
Can Tom and Neave unite to save their village from ruin? Or will superstition and old enemies destroy Ballycashel forever?
What inspired this story?
Wishes of the Heart was actually inspired by the story of Cinderella…with an Irish twist, of course! My Cinderella is Neave Devereux, the lonely young woman whom everyone thinks is a witch! Her Prince Charming, Tom O’Brien, has a wonderful way of turning up just when she needs him, and rescues her from those same village folk on numerous occasions. Neave even gets to go to the ball—Tom’s sister’s coming-of-age ball—and though she flees before the ball is over, she leaves behind, not a glass slipper, but a Galway shawl.
What is the story behind the story?
Tom O’Brien is the second son, heir apparent to Ballycashel since he was a lad of twelve and his older brother Sean (the real heir, or so Tom thinks), fled Ireland for America just ahead of the British soldiers. Tom loves Ballycashel, as his brother never did, and is determined to keep their tenants in Ireland, despite financial and agricultural hardships. But how can he effect the changes Ballycashel needs when his father is totally opposed to change?
Why do you write romance?
I love writing romance because I love the idea of soul mates, two people who are destined to be together and who find love and a happily-ever-after. And I love writing historical romance because I love history—especially Irish history! It’s the next best thing to time travel!
What inspires you? What motivates you?
Ireland inspires me. A friend of mine once told me I’d picked the best time-period to write about, because there are so many stories, so much political and social upheaval happening in 19th-Century Ireland. Well, he was right to a point. The time period is so fertile there are at least a dozen more stories floating around in my head! But I didn’t actually pick it; rather, it picked me! I knew I had to write a story about Ireland, and that first story (my first novel, In Sunshine or in Shadow) occurred to me. After that, I was hooked!
Please tell us about your other books.
The Claddagh Series, historical romances set in Ireland and beyond
The Wild Geese Series, the Irish heroes return!
I believe I was destined to be interested in history. One of my distant ancestors, Thomas Aubert, reportedly sailed up the St. Lawrence River to discover Canada some 26 years before Jacques Cartier’s 1534 voyage. Another relative was a 17thCentury “King’s Girl,” one of a group of young unmarried girls sent to New France (now the province of Quebec) as brides for the habitants (settlers) there.
My passion for reading made me long to write books like the ones I enjoyed, and I tried penning sequels to my favorite Nancy Drew mysteries. Later, fancying myself a female version of Andrew Lloyd Weber, I drafted a musical set in Paris during WWII.
A former journalist and lifelong Celtophile, I enjoyed a previous career as a reporter/editor for a small chain of community newspapers before returning to my first love, romantic fiction. My stories usually include an Irish setting, hero or heroine, and sometimes all three.
I’m the author of The Claddagh Series, historical romances set in Ireland and beyond, and The Wild Geese Series, in which five Irish heroes return from the American Civil War to find love and adventure.
I’m a member of the Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, and Celtic Hearts Romance Writers. A lifelong resident of Montreal, Canada, I still live there with my own Celtic hero and our two teenaged children.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Cynthia-Owens/e/B003DQ1V2E