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  • Writer's picturecaitlyncallery9

There's always a story behind the story

Nobody lives in a bubble, untouched by the rest of the world. Things happening around us affect us, colour our judgements and inform the actions we take, the opinions we adopt and the decisions we make. I like fiction that reflects that.

Therefore, romance stories that are ONLY about the relationship between the two main characters, with nothing else going on around them and affecting them, are not for me. There has to be a story, a reason for them to come together, to interact, and behave the way they do. Their feelings for each other may be paramount, but they are not the whole.

Adam Mason and Catherine Ashton, whose story is told in "The Smuggler's Daughter," are clearly caught up in something bigger than themselves.

In my research into the Regency period, I discovered that there were people in the UK (and probably elsewhere) who admired Napoleon Bonaparte, and thought it would be a good thing if he were to rule over us. These people seemed blind to his cruelty, his greed, and his delusions of grandeur - which nowadays we might call narcissism. They took no heed of the way he saved himself by abandoning his troops after the Battle of the Nile, nor did they seem to notice that, although he demanded complete and unquestioning loyalty from his underlings, he gave absolutely no loyalty to them in return. He was happy to sacrifice anyone and everyone to his own ends.

His followers simply ignored all these things and worked feverishly to ensure his victory, through fair means or foul. Even after Waterloo, they dreamed of him rising from the ashes of his Empire and taking control again.

A group of these Bonapartists is working in the area near Rotherton in Sussex, where "The Smuggler's Daughter" is set. Adam Mason has been sent in to root them out and ensure they don't succeed. Of course, his quest is complicated by his feelings for the daughter of his prime suspect...

Catherine Ashton jilted Adam Mason two years ago. At the time, she was persuaded it was for the best, though she has regretted it ever since. Now Adam is back in her social circle, and he is working to prove her father a traitor. Catherine sets out to prove him wrong, and show him that her father is innocent, despite any evidence to the contrary. At the same time, she must ignore the feelings she still has for him, and accept that he is part of her past, not of her future.

Meanwhile, the traitors will stop at nothing to get their way...

"The Smuggler's Daughter" is released into the wild on 29th January 2024, and can be found here.

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