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Author Chat with Laura Frantz!

Tue, 2018-01-02 13:07 -- Jocelyn Green

Happy Release Day to my friend and fellow author, Laura Frantz, for her new novel, The Lacemaker! I'm tickled pink that today of all days, I received my copy of my February release, A Refuge Assured, as well. (Don't they look fantastic side-by-side?) The reason I love seeing them together is that our heroines are related! 

Laura's story is set in colonial Williamsburg on the eve of the American Revolution. Mine starts in Paris during the French Revolution and quickly moves to Philadelphia in 1794. The connection between the lacemakers was easy to imagine, because lacemaking is typically a tradition passed down from one generation of women to the next. Laura and I had a great time creating a family tree with roots in France, and determining where the branches reached to England before spanning the ocean to America. Our heroines don't interact with each other in either book, but eagle-eyed readers will catch the mention of great-grandmothers they shared in each one. You can read the books in any order--the family connection has no bearing on either plot. It's all just fun for the two of us authors, and hopefully for readers, too.

We hope you enjoy reading the tales of both lacemakers! I'm reading and loving The Lacemaker right now. Here's the book blurb:

When colonial Williamsburg explodes like a powder keg on the eve of the American Revolution, Lady Elisabeth "Liberty" Lawson is abandoned by her fiance and suspected of being a spy for the hated British. No one comes to her aid save the Patriot Noble Rynallt, a man with formidable enemies of his own. Liberty is left with a terrible choice. Will the Virginia belle turned lacemaker side with the radical revolutionaries, or stay true to her English roots? And at what cost?

Historical romance favorite Laura Frantz is back with a suspenseful story of love, betrayal, and new beginnings. With her meticulous eye for detail and her knack for creating living, breathing characters, Frantz continues to enchant historical fiction readers who long to feel they are a part of the story.

I'm so happy to have Laura on the blog to chat with us! Here goes:

Jocelyn: I love the names of your characters in this book! Liberty and Noble are so full of meaning, and I know you take great care in naming your characters in each novel you write. Can you tell us a little bit about how these two characters fit their names? 

Laura: Love that these names resonate with you! Noble was simple as it so embodies this hero’s character though it took me quite a while perusing Welsh records for a surname that felt masculine and handsome enough. I’ve always liked the name Libby and felt it might be something her hero calls her outside the drawing room when not using the formal Lady Elisabeth. Naming characters can be tricky so I try to be very careful to the time period while not using the standard Marthas and Janes. Recently, I did a major switch in my heroine’s name for this next frontier novel. I’d begun using Rosemary but found something else far more unique yet historical that fits her far better. So out the window went Rosemary though I still find it lovely!

Jocelyn: Ooh! Now I can't wait to find out the name you chose instead of Rosemary. (I do love that name, too.) What surprised you the most as you were doing your research for The Lacemaker?

Laura: How far we have come from the handwork of the 18th-century and how different our machine-made lace is today! I’m afraid our 21st-century selves don’t have the patience for true lacemaking. Personally, I don’t have the patience for such detailed work and would probably have to give up everything to devote myself to making it. But it’s truly exquisite and I love the fact that even the humblest women saved for and dreamed about owning even a scrap of lace.

Jocelyn: Oh my goodness, I'm no good with needles, even the one in my sewing machine. I can knit a scarf, and that's about it. If you could choose one truth or theme for readers to hang on to after finishing your novel, what would that be?

Laura: That no matter how our world is upended through disease, divorce, death, change, etc., God is always working for our ultimate good and that circumstances are temporal but He and heaven are eternal. Romans 8:28 is only one of these promises!

Jocelyn: What a timeless and timely reminder. That truth is always in season! Do you have any routines while you write that help get you in the creative mindset? A certain snack or drink, music, a lighted candle or fire in the hearth, time of day, anything like that?

Laura: Funny that you ask as I’m writing this by the fireplace with a candle burning! I do reward myself with a 6 oz. Coke Life made with Stevia most afternoons as I’m trying to get away from diet soda. I used to write to music (The Colonel’s Lady  was written to the Master and Commander soundtrack) but haven’t done that the past couple of books. Maybe I’ll return to that now that you mention it!

Jocelyn: Great soundtrack! I sometimes write to music, too (Braveheart and The Last of the Mohicans among them). What books are on your nightstand right now?

Laura: Yours! You’ve always been top of my list and I don’t exaggerate, Jocelyn. I admire your research and the way you layer a novel to lift it above the common historical to name just a couple of things.  I also collect Joanne Bischof, Lori Benton, Joan Hochstetler, and too many others to mention here. Plus I’m over the moonbow about Amanda Dykes debut with Bethany House coming up. Anything she touches is magical so I’m thrilled for her and future readers!

Heartfelt thanks to you and readers here for your heart for Christian fiction. So blessed by that!

Jocelyn: Thank you, Laura!! And I absolutely agree about every other author you mentioned. I collect books by Joanne, Lori, and Joan, and I'm sure I will with Amanda, too! I was fortunate to be able to write a novella in the same collection as Joanne and Amanda last year, along with Heather Day Gilbert and Maureen Lang! Fantastic writers, all. Thank you for being here today, Laura!

Get to know Laura Frantz at her Web site here. Find The Lacemaker at Amazon(link is external)Goodreads(link is external), and BarnesandNoble(link is external).

 

About the Author: 

Jocelyn Green

Jocelyn Green inspires faith and courage as the award-winning and bestselling author of numerous fiction and nonfiction books, including The Mark of the King; Wedded to War; and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition, which she coauthored with bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman. Her books have garnered starred reviews from Booklist and Publishers Weekly, and have been honored with the Christy Award, the gold medal from the Military Writers Society of America, and the Golden Scroll Award from the Advanced Writers & Speakers Association. She graduated from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana, with a B.A. in English, concentration in writing. As a speaker, Jocelyn inspires faith and courage in her audiences. She loves Mexican food, Broadway musicals, Toblerone chocolate bars, the color red, and reading on her patio. Jocelyn lives with her husband Rob and two children in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Visit her at www.jocelyngreen.com.

Comments

Submitted by Brenda Murphree on
I enjoyed this interview of Laura! I know these two books are going to be wonderful!

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Thank you so much, Brenda! You have many happy hours of reading ahead of you!

Submitted by Laura Frantz on
Brenda, So happy you're here and ready to read! Love this bookish excitement - 2018 looks like a wonderful year for historical fiction!

Submitted by Laura Frantz on
Really thrilled to be on your beautiful site and share a lacemaking lineage with you through our heroines. Thanks for making release day extra bright, Jocelyn! Counting down till A REFUGE ASSURED!

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Thank you Laura! It's a thrill to share this lacemaking connection with you. I'm excited for your readers as they dive into colonial Williamsburg!

Submitted by Nancee Marchinowski on
I really enjoyed this interview and an introduction to Laura Frantz. I haven't had the pleasure of reading her books yet, but you have now piqued my interest! Thank you for gleaning such wonderful information from Laura.

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Oh! This makes my day that you are now introduced to Laura Frantz, Nancee. She is just absolutely top-notch in historical fiction. I re-read her books and love them just as much the second time as the first. I'm sure you'll enjoy her work.

Submitted by Laura Frantz on
Nancee, Thank you for wanting to try a new to you author! That's the wonderful thing about book sharing and why I appreciate Jocelyn so much - she has such a heart for other authors! Thrilled to meet you here:)

Submitted by MH on
Thank you for the wonderful interview! I actually did read Message in a Bottle Collection where I was introduced to all the wonderful authors whom I’m following now. Can’t wait to read both books!

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Oh how lovely! Novella collections are great for discovering new authors. So glad you found us! Thank you!

Submitted by Amanda Dykes on
Oh, seeing these two books (and your two beloved names!) side by side just fills my book-loving heart! Thank you both, Jocelyn and Laura, for this beautiful glimpse into your new stories. I LOVE that your heroines have a common ancestry-- what a creative thought! You are both such an inspiration and example to me. Hugs!

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Amanda, it's a joy to have you here! I'm almost halfway through The Lacemaker right now, and I can tell you that you are going to just LOVE it. It's just beautiful on so many levels.

Submitted by Lori Benton on
I am looking forward to reading both of your books, Laura and Jocelyn! Such a fun idea to have the main characters linked like that.

Submitted by Jocelyn Green on
Hello Lori! Thank you so much for being here, and for wanting to read our books! Hope your new year is off to a great start, friend.

Submitted by Anonymous on
Oh my! These covers though! They are just exceptional. I can not wait to get both of these in my hands! I love Laura's books and I loved The Mark of the King!

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