Prism Book Alliance would like to thank Elin Gregory for taking the time to talk with us today.
Title: A Taste Of Copper
Author: Elin Gregory
Publisher: Love Lane Books
Cover Artist: Meredith Russell
Genre/Sub-Genre: Fantasy, Historical
Your master has the field for today, but his name, whatever it might be, is without honour.
Olivier the squire worships the Black Knight and takes a fierce joy in his prowess as he defends a bridge against all comers. Olivier only wishes that his master loved him as much in return instead of treating him as a servant and occasional plaything.
Then word comes that the King desires to cross the bridge. With an army approaching, a bright eyed archer enticing him to desert and the first cracks beginning to show in the Black Knight’s gruff demeanour, Olivier is left wondering if his honour is worth more than a chance for happiness.
Many thanks to Prism Book Alliance for so kindly hosting me today in my first stop in a short tour to promote my book A Taste of Copper.
This story is set in a kingdom loosely based on the warring European petty kingdoms, dukedoms and principalities of the Middle Ages, in a time when might was right and the strength on ones hands and the size of ones army was of more importance than justice or mercy. The atmosphere is as accurate as I have been able to make it – that a man’s word was his bond, that his integrity should be defended even to the point of bloodshed – but there isn’t a single accurate historical fact, not a name not a date and I’ve taken horrible liberties with geography too!
It is, of course, a fantasy – though without any elves dwarfs or magic – and the decision to write something fantastical, but with some attention to historical detail, was quite deliberate. To be honest, I wrote the story just for the sheer fun of it. I like men in armour, I like horses, I have attended several tourneys, or what passes for tourneys these days, and they are huge fun. It might have been possible to make a story out of one of the accounts of knightly duels of the middle ages – like the time a French squire held up two opposing armies by challenging any Englishman who was in love to defend the name of his ‘lady’ – but I was writing for relaxation and didn’t want to spend hours winnowing information out of piles of books. Much better to dip into books between watching videos of Full Metal Jousting.
No horses were injured during the making of that video. The men took their chances.
There never was a knight called Maheris the Black, nor a squire called Olivier Brand. This means I could do pretty much as I pleased with them, and they benefitted from it I think. Circumstances were tweaked, bent and distorted to allow Olivier to love his knight with all his heart and few harsh words said, apart from those uttered by Maheris who finds it difficult to express himself. Why allow them to be together? Because some years ago I saw a plaintive comment on a fiction forum from a gay man asking for historical and adventure stories that allowed gay couples a happy ending. That there weren’t any, that in most historically accurate books they had to part, seemed very unfair to me and I decided to write a few. Since then the number of historical romances has boomed so that man has plenty to choose from but just one more can’t hurt, can it?
That there were same sex couples in the Middle Ages is well known. There was no concept of gayness as an identity – loving someone of the same sex as oneself was something one did, not something one was – and reactions were mixed. The Church, of course, was disapproving in public while carrying on as they pleased in private. The rich, as usual, could do as they pleased but someone who was quiet, well behaved and useful could get away with quite a lot. But those who tried to be out and proud courted disaster.
Probably the best known medieval couple was an English king and his knightly lover, subjects of a play by Christopher Marlowe that was made into a stunning film directed by Derek Jarman. Click on the image to watch it, though I warn you, it may break your heart.
Maheris shifted his left arm, glancing down at the bandaged wound, testing the range of movement, then closed both fists, white knuckled, on the arms of his chair. Olivier let out a shaky sigh, part relief and part regret, and sat back on his heels. He rolled the scraps of linen bandage and tucked them back into their box, stowed the needle and thread, then reached for the bowl of bloodied water.
Maheris’s sudden movement made him flinch, the bowl rocking, but the big hand seized his shoulder. “God’s teeth,” Maheris groaned, and Olivier’s apprehension turned to excitement.
Maheris leaned back in his chair, spreading his armoured thighs, and guided Olivier between them. Heart hammering, Olivier stooped to mouth the thick dark hair thatching Maheris’s chest. He didn’t need to see to untie the points of Maheris’s hose and open the front of his braies.
About the Author:
Elin Gregory lives in South Wales and works in a museum in a castle built on the edge of a Roman fort! She reckons that’s a pretty cool job. It certainly provides more than enough inspiration for her writing.
“The button from a military jacket found in an orchard, a 16th century Venetian coin found between the cobbles of a Welsh street, a carnelian from a Roman signet ring – one can’t handle them without wondering who lost them, how much they regretted it and what kind of disaster was sparked off by the loss.”
Although Elin usually writes on historical subjects, she has also written contemporary and historical paranormals, science fiction, crime and a Western, none of which have, as yet, been published. She likes her heroes hard as nails but capable of tenderness when circumstances allow.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|