The Dressmaker’s Duke, by Jess Russell, was recently published! It has received many accolades and came in first in the Fool for Love contest, Golden Apple Awards’ Secret Craving contest, the Indiana Golden Opportunity contest, and finaled in the Great Beginnings, Emerald City opener, and Lone Star contests. Jess was kind enough to answer a few questions and provide a few of her favourite authors too.
Do you remember the last time you said to someone: you really must read this book now?” and the book was? Gone Girl.
Are you part of a book club? I belong to a very small book club at our mountain house community. (if so how do you pick your books?) One member works at Random House and she often suggests books. Also we have read several books on the history of our particular little town and the Catskills in general.
What is your favorite line from a book? “Words are the source of all misunderstanding.” (The Little Prince)
A favorite first line or quote? “The mantua-maker’s (dressmaker’s) customers are not easily pleased; they frequently expect more from their dress than it is capable of giving. The mantua-maker must be an expert anatomist; and must, if judiciously chosen, have a name of French termination.”–The Book of English Trades.
A recent Book you bought just for the cover? A Reliable Wife. I liked the title too.
Have you heard any good books lately? All the Light We Do Not See.
Will there be an audio version of your book? I have been listening to Roy Dotrice read, Game of Thrones. I am a visual person, so it is hard for me to process just by listening. I prefer to read. However, an audible book sure makes a drive go faster and saves your eyes. :o) I HOPE there will be an audio version of my book. I would love to do the reading myself. I am an actress as well as a writer, so it would be very cool to do my own book. I must say, I have stopped “reading” an audio book because I couldn’t stand the reader.
Do you have a genre to beach read? ROMANCE! Especially Historical romances. I tell myself I’m “doing research”. Do you have a favorite literary adaptation on TV or film? Of course! Andrew Davies Pride and Prejudice with Collin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. What book is on your nightstand? The Fault in our Stars. Paper or electronic? Do you take notes? Paper. But I use my e-reader generally. As far as notes, sometimes a passage will prompt an idea for one of my own WIP’s and I will riff on that.
Do you read plays or poetry for pleasure? Not generally. I act in plays and love to perform Shakespeare. I recently did David Ives, School for Lies, which is entirely written in rhyming couplets. Fun! H
ave you memorized any poems? Lots of Shakespeare and a few poems. I recently came across, The Highwayman, which I hadn’t read in years and I memorized the first few stanzas. Very sexy, that highwayman.
What were your most cherished books as a child? James and the Giant Peach. A. A. Milne’s, When We Were Six. Nancy Drew. Do you have a favorite character or hero / heroine from one of those books? I loved the ladybug from James and the Giant Peach. She was so motherly to poor, terrified James. I remember being alternately scared and drawn in by those fantastical insects.
Is there one book you wish all children would read? The Little Prince.
Is there one book you would like adults to read? The Little Prince.
If you could meet any writer dead or alive, who would it be? what would you want to know? Well, my answer is not very original, I would imagine, but I would like to have met the man who wrote “Shakespeare’s” plays.
Is there one book you wish some one else would write? A uber-easy picture book on how to navigate social media and technology in general. The Dummy books are too involved for me. Do you tend to keep books, lend them out or give them away? All of the above.
Do you have a favorite question that you are often asked about your writing? a favorite question that was only asked once? My niece said, “Aunt So So, (they call me So So b/c I said I didn’t want to be a Grand Aunt. My sister said, so you just want to be a “so so” Aunt?) Anyway, my niece said, “are you writing one of those toe-wiggler books?”
Any guilty reading pleasures? Every month or so I will dip into my trove of “Favorites” and re-read the dog-eared delicious bits.
Which romance authors would you recommend? Some Mary Balogh-Slightly Dangerous, is an all-time favorite. As is Loretta Chase’s, Lord of Scoundrels. Laura Kinsale’s, Prince of Midnight, Shadow and the Star, Flowers from the Storm. Julia Quinn, When He was Wicked. Judith Ivory, Beast. Jo Beverly, Devilish. Joanna Bourne’s Spymaster series. Her Rogue Spy is coming out soon. Can’t wait!