I am very pleased to be joining in with Erica Brown’s East Of India blog tour today 🙂
First of all, here’s the book info for you…..
East of India
Previous Books (if applicable):
Daughter of Destiny, The Sugar Merchant’s Wife and Return to Paradise (Strong Family Saga)
Exoctic Saga, Historical Fiction
16th April 2018
India, 1940. When Nadine learns that the Indian woman she thought her nanny is, in fact, her mother, she rebels against her English father and he arranges for Nadine to be wed to an Australian merchant many years older. She whisked off to his plantation in Malaya but as the Second World War rages throughout the East, Nadine is taken captive by the Japanese. She is held at a camp in Sumatra with other women and forced to provide sexual favours for the soldiers. In the most unlikely circumstances, Nadine finds an ally and protector in a Japanese-American general, caught up in the war. The two bond over the conflicted identities and gradually fall in love. But can Nadine survive long enough to find happiness?
Don’t miss this emotional and powerful saga about a women’s determination to beat the odds, perfect for fans of Renita D’Silva, Dinah Jefferies and Julia Gregson.
Erica Brown is the pseudonym of a very successful author of women’s fiction and crime. She lives in Bath and has one daughter and twin grandchildren one of whom is dead set on becoming a writer.
Author Social Media Links – Twitter:
Many thanks to Ellie Pilcher, at Canelo, for arranging the following interview with Erica Brown.
Where did/do you get your ideas from?
That’s always the first question when I’m giving a talk. The truth is I don’t know. They just happen like little fluttering butterflies that suddenly grow into eagles. A bit over descriptive I know, but that’s how it is. A brain full of butterflies!
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know?
Everyone in the world. I create a basic character then add on attributes that appeal to me (or don’t, depending on the character.) To avoid being accused of creating cardboard characters one has to go beyond basic description i.e. colouring, height and taste in clothes. How speech is delivered, how somebody walks, what is their attitude to children, men, animals or old people. Do they bury their noses in the perfume of flowers or are they forever staring at some far off horizon that nobody else can see. We all know people like that; it’s just mixing the bits we know up with the bits we imagine.
How do you pick your characters names?
I pick characters names to match the period of the story. i.e. I wouldn’t use the names Wayne and Tracey in a historical novel or one set in WW2. I’m also careful not to use names beginning with the same letter especially of close characters who appear in a number of scenes together.
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell?
Yes. Don’t worry about the grammar, punctuation, spelling or historical fact. Get on with the story and do all the factual stuff at the end.
Who are your top 5 favourite authors?
Charles Dickens, H G Wells, C J Sansom, Neville Shute and Homer.
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them?
Homer. I would be interested in knowing more about the basis of Greek legends.
Were you a big reader as a child?
Hugely so. I used to curl up in a chair with a book and a packet of custard creams. My mother gave up buying me dolls for Christmas and settled for a mountain of books.
When did you start to write?
I wrote as a child, but began writing professionally about 25 years ago.
If you could re-write the ending to any book what would it be and what would you change?
Gone With the Wind. I think the ending was a bit of a cop out. I get the impression Margaret Mitchell didn’t know quite how to wind it all up.
Is there a book you wish you had written?
The Shardlake series.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be?
Me and Our Street.
If you could invite any fictional character for coffee who would it be and where would you take them?
The Mad Hatter. A wine bar. Chaos!
What are you working on right now?
I’m working on a new series set in the fifties, plus a fantasy, plus a children’s book/script.
Tell us about your last release?
The Strong trilogy beginning with Daughter of Destiny, The Sugar Merchant’s Wife and Return to Paradise are set in the West Indies. Blanche is the daughter of a slave on a sugar plantation and one of the Strong brothers, conceived one drunken night. She’s taken to England where she thinks she will be accepted by the family, but instead is relegated to being a servant. Strong willed and defiant, she’s determined to discover the identity of her father. Some members of the family are hostile, especially Horatia, the strong minded daughter of the house. One in particular, a sea captain adopted as a boy, is in love with her, but marrying him is out of the question. Other decisions are made in order for her to establish a life in the sugar city of Bristol.
Do you have a new release due?
East of India comes out on the 18th of April and is a story about Nadine who finds out that her recently deceased nurse is also her mother. Angered that her father kept the news from her, she willingly marries the Australian owner of a Malayan rubber plantation and is in Singapore when it surrenders to the Japanese. From there she finds herself in the Bamboo House where, in order to survive, she dances as her mother taught her, entertaining the enemy officers. In time she is expected to do more than that. All the women there are doing all they can to survive, to live another day. It is here she meets a Japanese/American officer who has also been caught up in a war he wants nothing to do with. In time it becomes obvious that their lives are in danger and they must flee or perish.
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day?
A glass of wine is usually in order.
How can readers keep in touch with you?
I think I’m available via Canelo, and also as Lizzie Lane on Facebook and Twitter.
Is there anything else you would like us to know?
I appreciate hearing from my readers. Without I would have no one to share my stories with.
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Erica 🙂
Check out the rest of the blog tour for reviews, and more, with these awesome book bloggers…..