I'm interviewing the author... Web of Deceit by Catherine Lanigan (Blog Tour Interview & Giveaway)


On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

I've worked with Catherine for over a year now in promoting her books, but this was the first time I got to actually ask her some questions. Check out the interview, book, and giveaway below...

Web of Deceit
Web of Deceit
by Catherine Lanigan
Adult Historical Romance
ebook, 462 pages
June 4th 2016 by Cat Nolan Publishing

Summary

A Passion she could not deny—A lie she could never escape—

From the depths of a London slum, Amanda Granger created an illusion of wealth and breeding that became her passport into New York society. With her dazzling beauty and the ease with which she lived her lie, Amanda captivated an adoring public and drove men to bold and dangerous passions.

But for all her fierce ambition, all her daring dreams, Amanda Granger knew that her heart’s desires were held together by the fragile threads of deception and secrets. Triumph would always be elusive until she escaped from her web of deceit.

  
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Author Interview

Welcome, Catherine, to my blog today!

What inspired Amanda’s story?

Amanda is one of those heroines who came to me in the middle of the night and started telling me her story. I’d been doing research for another book and a simple bit of information about “step girls” in the late 1800’s in London fascinated me. These were the lowest paid jobs for young girls usually ten or eleven years old, orphans, many of them. Their job was to wash the front and back steps of houses. It doesn’t sound like much today, but back then when the streets were constantly filled with muck, mud and horse dung, this was vastly important to keep the steps clean so that the dirt and grime was not brought into the house. Though Amanda was a servant’s daughter and companion to the wealthy daughters of Lord Kent, I wanted Amanda to always be humble about her position in life. Though she was far from aristocracy, she was aware that there were those who much lower in life and yet, the “step girl” she meets and talks to has more courage and more hope for her own future than Amanda does at that same young age. I wanted Amanda to always be wise and learn from every person she meets in her life.

What did you like most about Amanda’s character?

It was her risk-taking. When she is no longer a child and begins to eclipse Lord Kent’s daughters in beauty, Lady Kent is wary and jealous. She will do anything to get rid of Amanda and does. Amanda’s mother, Harriet, devises a scheme to send Amanda to New York, to stay with her American friend, Sylvia Hendrickson, who was very connected to New York Society. Amanda’s mother has amassed enough money for the voyage by becoming a prostitute.

Once Amanda has told lies about her age and English background, she wisely uses her fabulous beauty to ease her way into a suitable and fame-building marriage to an ambitious painter, David Simon, who lusts after Dana Gibson’s fame. David believes he can make Amanda Granger, Now the “Granger Woman” into more of an Icon than Dana Gibson’s “The Gibson Girl.”

Though Amanda dreams of being loved for herself, she quickly realizes that her husband is only using her for his fame and career.

What I admired about Amanda was that this kind of situation could have been heartbreaking and embittered her for life. But it didn’t. Amanda continues to take more risks and starts her own magazine. She isn’t the first woman editor of a woman’s magazine, but she is the first owner and editor. Her stories are always cutting edge and topical. She speaks out for women’s rights at a time when few men or women were listening, but because of her fame and beauty, she gets attention and respect.

What was most challenging about setting Amanda’s story in this time period?

I wanted a very career minded woman who was ambitious in all the right ways. Going back over a hundred years to the late 1880’s and 1890’s was like donning a corset myself. There were so many society restrictions. There were women in the work force, but only in sweatshops and no job had any respect from men or women. However, it was the beginning of the rise of the suffragettes. Women were speaking out and New York was the place where it all began. Magazines and underground pamphlets, newspapers and flyers were being printed everywhere. It was fascinating to me.

Do you have a favorite line or scene from the story that you could share?

My very favorite is the Christmas scene. Amanda has been having an affair with married Matthew Wade for months. They have come to realize that his scheming and manipulative wife, Sydney, will never give him a divorce as she’s promised. Amanda can’t live a lie any more, though she loves Matthew beyond reason. She’s refused to see him any longer and for the sake of his little daughter, whom he loves desperately, they’ve decided to end the affair.

Though they pray that Sydney will change her mind, they both yearn for the time when they can be married.

This scene still brings tears to my eyes.

On Christmas Eve Amanda stood outside Wade’s looking at the mannequins in the enormous window displays. There were red suede sleighs with silver runners, filled with brightly wrapped packages. Next to them stood groups of beautifully dressed mannequins caroling. In the next window was a Santa Claus surrounded by a sea of toys. Amanda hugged her bundles to her chest and walked away into the snowy night. She stood on the street corner beneath the lamplight wondering what would happen if she went in, knowing she didn’t dare.

Streams of shoppers poured out the doors, loaded down with purchases. She still wanted something special for Sylvia. She’d found a rich mauve woolen scarf, but it seemed such a practical gift. It wasn’t enough for the one woman who’d seen her through the worst six months of her life.

Amanda gathered her courage and entered the opulent, extravagant world of Wade’s.

Enormous green trees rose from platforms placed above the counters. They were decorated with glass balls of frosted pink, green, and blue. Swags of gold satin encircled the trees and rippled at the base in a puddle of gold material. Amanda was dumbstruck. She hadn’t seen the store since May, when she’d waded through sawdust, nails, and pieces of scrap lumber. Everything that had been said about Wade’s was true. There was nothing like it on earth.

Amanda went from counter to counter searching for Sylvia’s gift. She sniffed exotic perfumes, fingered delicate silk scarves, and marveled over Belgian linen handkerchiefs. But it was the delicately hand-painted Limoges box that caught her eye. It was edged in gold and had a tiny gold clasp. Smiling at the salesgirl, she waited while her gift was wrapped in silver foil and tied with an enormous green bow.

With only thirty minutes until closing time, Matthew had locked his office and gone to the mezzanine railing to check the number of customers that still remained. He’d thought that by now people would be anxious to be home for dinner, prepare for parties or midnight services. But Wade’s was just as busy now, at seven-thirty, as it had been at noon. No one seemed ready to leave.

Working his way down, he checked each floor and found people standing in line at every counter. Since Christmas represented more than fifty percent of his retail season, Matthew was assured that Wade’s would make a healthy profit its first year. He was nearly giddy with his success.

He checked his watch. Sydney was to have met him over twenty minutes ago. He’d wanted her there to help him present his Christmas bonuses to his office staff. There had been plenty of champagne, and he wanted Sydney to be involved with his employees. To his surprise, she had agreed. He wondered now if she had lied and had no intention of coming.

Matthew sighed. He didn’t know why he expected anything from her. Sydney hadn’t been with him on opening day. Her feelings about his store would never change.

On the second-floor mezzanine, Matthew signed his initials to a register count for the linen department. It was only fifteen minutes to closing. He leaned over the wrought-iron balcony and watched the last of the hectic shopping come to a close.

And then he saw her.

She wore a dark maroon wool coat trimmed in black. There was a small black lamb’s wool pillbox hat to match. Her cheeks were still red from the cold. She smiled happily as the salesgirl handed her a silver-wrapped box.

He wanted to shout to her, alert her to his presence, but he didn’t. He stood there bolted to the floor, knowing he had nothing to say to her, nothing to give her.

“Thank you,” Amanda said to the salesgirl and turned toward the doors. Suddenly she stopped. She had the oddest sensation someone was watching her. She continued forward, knowing she must leave—now. She felt the hairs on the back of her neck prickle. She stopped, turned, and looked up into the rotunda.

She saw him leaning over the rail watching her.

“Matthew,” she breathed. She felt cold chills cover her skin. He didn’t move. It was if he was locked inside an invisible box. She knew she could not go to him. “I love you,” she whispered to herself.B
He saw her mouth the words and he knew what she’d said. He watched as she blew him a kiss and mouthed the words, “Merry Christmas.”

“Merry Christmas, my beloved,” he mumbled to himself.

Amanda turned away from him and continued through the doors.

If you were to sum up the story in a sentence, what would it be?

Desperate, never-ending hope-filled love triumphs over deceit and evil.

What are you working on now?

I’m working on three books for Heartwarming in my SHORES OF INDIAN LAKE SERIES. DANGER ZONE, WEDDING FOR ISABELLE and A BRIDE FOR MICA are next up for 2017.

Exciting stuff! Thanks for answering my questions, Catherine!

About the Author

Catherine Lanigan is the international bestselling and award-winning author of forty published titles in both fiction and non-fiction, including the novelizations of Romancing the Stone and The Jewel of the Nile, as well as over half a dozen anthologies, including “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living your Dream”, “Chicken Soup for the Writer’s Soul”, and more. Ms. Lanigan’s novels have been translated into dozens of languages including German, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Portuguese, Chinese, and Japanese. Ms. Lanigan’s novels are also available in E-books on Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com, Apple Store, Mobi and Kobo. Several of her titles have been chosen for The Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Clubs. Her Vietnam war-based novel, The Christmas Star, won the Gold Medal Award Top Pick from Romantic Times Magazine and has also won Book of the Year Romance Gold Award from ForeWord Magazine as well as Book of the Year Romance from Reader’s Preference.

Lanigan is the author of a trilogy of non- fiction books regarding angelic intervention in human life: Angel Watch, Divine Nudges and Angel Tales published by HCI and Cedar Fort.

Skyhorse published Lanigan’s “how-to” book on writing: Writing the Great American Romance Novel.

Lanigan was tasked by the NotMYkid Foundation to write a non-fiction book addressing teen addictions. Ms. Lanigan’s first Young Adult adventure novel, The Adventures of Lillie and Zane: The Golden Flute, was published by Cedar Fort.

Currently, she has published six novels in the Shores of Indian Lake series for Harlequin Heartwarming: Love ShadowsHeart’s DesireA Fine Year for LoveKatia’s Promise and Fear of FallingSophie’s Path pubs July, 2016. She has recently contracted for three more in the series: Danger ZoneWedding for Isabelle and A Bride for Mica.

As a cancer survivor, Ms. Lanigan is a frequent speaker at literary functions and book conventions as well as inspiring audiences with her real stories of angelic intervention from her Angel Tales series of books. She is an outspoken advocate for domestic violence and abuse and was honored by The National Domestic Violence Hotline in Washington, D.C. (THE EVOLVING WOMAN). She has been a guest on numerous radio programs including “Coast to Coast” and on television interview and talk show programs as well as blogs, podcasts and online radio interview programs.


Tour Schedule

September 6th: Launch
September 7th: Falling Leaves
September 8th: Bloomfield of thoughts
September 9th: underneath the covers
September 11th: Rockin' Book Reviews
September 12th: Nicole's Book Musings
September 14th: Mel's Shelves
September 15th: Wishful Endings
September 16th: Becky on Books
September 18th: Colorimetry
September 19th: My Devotional Thoughts
September 20th: Thoughts of a Blonde
September 21th: EskieMama Reads
September 22nd: Book Lover in Florida
September 25th: Harlie's Books
September 26th: Grand Finale

Tour-Wide Giveaway

$50 Amazon eGift Card
Open internationally
Ends October 1st

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