Blog Bites with Anna Jacobs

 I would like to introduce  Anna Jacobs today who has kindly and let’s not forget, generously offered the first book, ‘The Trader’s Wife’ in her latest series.

 I write: alternately, historical sagas and modern relationships novels, romantic fiction rather than ‘pure’ romances. I am totally addicted to story-telling, which is how I think of what I do. Sometimes my characters wake me in the night to show me scenes. I don’t get angry, I watch carefully. They get some great ideas.

 At home I cook: reluctantly I have to do it because I have food intolerances and can’t buy many types of take-away. It’s infuriating because I still love the foods I can’t eat. I’ve never found a good recipe for gluten-free pastry. I do miss apple pie with ice cream. Luckily I do have a great recipe for gluten-free chocolate cake. Thank goodness! What is a birthday without a chocolate cake?

My worst habit is: diving enthusiastically into research and leaving my desk strewn with open books, files and papers as I rush back to my story to get the details right. At the moment I have a pile of papers about three books high waiting to be filed. I will get round to it . . . sometime. But I have to write this story first and my characters are nagging me to get on with it . . .

 My first job: was being office girl in a haunted office at the top of a very old building. I was forever thinking someone had walked up the stairs. I’d jerk round to see who it was because I had my back to the stairs. And no one would be there. (Insert spooky music here) I stuck it out because I needed the money. Others saw or heard the ghost too. It was well known, not a figment of my imagination – whatever my mother said.

 My favourite author is: Georgette Heyer. She introduced me to both romance and historical novels and when she died, that gave me the impetus to write a story of my own – like hers. I’ve moved on since then to my own sort of story, but I’ll always be grateful to her. And I still re-read her books.

 Current reading: I chuckled at this question. I read three novels a week, so I’ve just finished one story and am about to start another – and by the time this goes live, I’ll probably have finished that one, too. I’ve been loving the wacky cosy mysteries written by Donna Andrews and have just finished ‘Revenge of the Wrought Iron Flamingos’. I’ve just started ‘The Summer Garden’ by Sherryl Woods, and after that comes ‘The Mortsafe’ by Lillian Stewart Carl. What is a mortsafe, you might ask? It’s a cage put over a dead body in Scottish graveyards in the 18th/19th centuries to stop grave robbers. Carl certainly gets some strange ideas, but I love her detailed research.

Thank you Anna for joining us today and I wish you success with your new release –  number 2 in the series – ‘ The Trader’s Sister’

If you would like to find out more about Anna and her books go to her website

For your chance to win a copy of The Trader’s Wife, merely leave a comment and the lucky winner will be drawn by 8:30pm EST Sunday 20.

Good Luck!

RWA members can take a bite. Contact Kerri Williams to schedule your Blog Bite feature on

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  1. Sue Rees

     /  April 20, 2012

    Hi, Anna.
    I, too, read Georgette Heyer and love to re-read her work. Things like mort-safes are fascinating, and this sort of detail, well handled, endears an author to me. I often have three different books on the go at the same time so I can read to suit my mood, or degree of tiredness. Currently, I’m reading Jay Bahadur’s “Deadly Waters” for both research and interest.
    What about rice flour pastry with cinnamon and nutmeg for your apple pie?

  2. Hi Anna, your first job sounds interesting, there could be a story in that experience!
    I share your gluten free dilemmas. I use The Pastry Pantry pastry sometimes which is really good, but can be hard to find.
    All the best!

  3. shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

     /  April 20, 2012

    Agreat interview. I am fascinated by the idea of a mort safe!

    Shelleyrae @ Book’d Out

  4. Thank you for your interest – and the gluten free suggestions. Sue, rice flour pastry comes out like concrete, and Juliet, most gluten free products contain maize. I’m intolerant of all cereals except rice.

  5. rosannedingli

     /  April 21, 2012

    What beautifully unusual questions… and fascinating answers. I’m afraid my own ‘bad habits’ reply would have been about four times the length of yours, Anna.

    • Thanks for your interest, Erin. I’m so glad you’re enjoying my stories. Yes, there is a book to follow Cherry Tree Lane and Elm Tree Road . . . Yew Tree Gardens comes out at the end of July, which is Renie’s story.

  6. Erin

     /  April 21, 2012

    Anna Jacobs, what wonderful surprise. Would you believe I’ve just finished reading ‘The Corrigan Legacy’ on my Kindle? What a wonderful book with each page the story matures like fine wine in an oak barrel.

    It feels as though I’ve been waited an eternity to get my hands on ‘The Trader’s Sister.’ Only five more sleeps. — I fell in love with your, ‘Swan River Series’ and was over the moon to discover ‘The Trader Series’ borrowed many of the characters and themes to continue the saga forward.

    A question, if I may. Is another adventure on the way for the Wiltshire Girls? I’ve read ‘Cherry Tree Lane’ and ‘Elm Tree Road’ and enjoyed them both. Yet I can’t help worrying about the youngest sister, Renie, somewhere in France with war looming.

    Thank you for the hours of reading Pleasure.


  7. Rosanne, I try to be concise. Actually, answering these questions brought back a lot of memories, eg of working in the haunted office. I’d forgotten that.

  8. hi, anna. i am brand new to the romance writers’scene but having a tonne of fun! i may get to meet you at the rwa conference in august!

  9. I’m another Georgette Heyer fan. I have the majority of her books on my shelf & began reading her in my early teens. I enjoyed her crime novels too. Will look out for Donna Andrews (like cozy mysteries, too), and am sorry to say, have not heard of this writer – so thanks. There could be a story there in your first job! Makes mine in a forklift factory, really mundane :). Loved learning more about you and good luck with the next book.

  10. Hi, Maggie. Sadly (or not totally sadly!) I’ll be in the UK in August. But I hope you have a great time at the conference.

    Suz, apart from the ghost it was a really boring job in the office. I stuck receipts into big old ledgers, for example. Not fascinating with old-fashioned glue! Try Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series too – but make sure to start at the beginning. It’s a richly layered read. Dh and I were both engrossed. We can’t wait for the next book to come out.

  11. In my early teens I discovered Georgette Heyer and Geoffrey Farnol, and wonder how they would read a half century on. Apparently you find that GH stands the test of time. I think your ghost story is fascinating; do you have any explanation? Margaret Sutherland

    • For me, Farnol hasn’t stood the test of time. Heyer definitely has. I think she’s better than Austen.

      I don’t know who the ghost was, Margaret. I was too busy freaking out. It was a very old three-storey building in the town centre, so who knows what had gone on there over the decades. Imagine spooky music playing us out here . . . .

  12. Congratulations Maggie Brooke, I’ll be in contact with you shortly.
    Thank you Anna for being a wonderful guest.

  13. They were definitely interesting questions and answers.

  14. Erin

     /  April 23, 2012

    Congratulations Maggie (Brooke). I know you will enjoy Anna’s book. Though you should be warned reading The Trader’s Wife will in all likely-hood develop an addition. —– Erin

  15. Natalie Moress

     /  April 24, 2012

    Hi Anna
    Thanks for this interesting interview. What an interesting introduction you had to the world of work. Sounds like something out of a book!
    I’m off to look up Donna Andrews on Goodreads now, and add her to my TBR list.
    Smiles, Natalie

  16. I’m late commenting – as usual! It is now too many years since we met again, Anna, and I see by your answers we share many of the same “likes” in reading. I still enjoy any old Jeffery Farnol books but of course Heyer is the greatest. I certainly do enjoy your books and looking forward tso much to reading this latest one.


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