I know, I’m surprising you with another blog post, but when you see Mimi Matthews is visiting, you’ll understand why I had to. 🙂
Grab a cup of tea (or coffee) and chat with us!
Toni: Thank you so much for joining me today! It’s always a pleasure to have you here. Now you’ve just released the last book in the Parish Orphans of Devon series. How does it feel to see a series end?
Mimi: It’s really bittersweet. Though I’m looking forward to new projects, I’m not quite sure I’m ready to say goodbye to the orphans yet. Part of me wishes I’d committed to a longer series!
Toni: I second that! I’m sad to see them go. Do you have plans for another series? Or a standalone? And if so, can you tell us a little about it?
Mimi: I do have a standalone novel coming up. It’s a swashbuckling second-chance Regency romance called Gentleman Jim. It will be out in November 2020. I’m currently serializing the first chapters through my author newsletter. The cover reveal is coming soon. I’m also working on a secret project, which is why it’s going to be awhile before I have another book out!
Toni: I’m so excited!! You often share fashion from the time period you write in. If you could go back in time, how would you dress and why?
Mimi: If I lived in the era in which my Parish Orphans of Devon series is set, I’d probably dress like Jenny Holloway from A Modest Independence—lots of plain skirts paired with a jacket bodice or caraco.
Toni: I love it! Something about them says elegant. What kind of research did you have to do for the series?
Mimi: I did a lot of research on private asylums for The Matrimonial Advertisement, and even more on 1860s railway and steamship travel to Egypt and India for A Modest Independence. For A Convenient Fiction, I learned about mid-century perfume-making practices, as well as perfumeries in the South of France. And for The Winter Companion, I researched traumatic brain injuries, ladies “shadow-attending” universities, and the plight of wild Dartmoor ponies. There were lots of other subjects I delved into for each story, but those were the main ones!
Toni: Wow! I know I learned a lot reading the stories, so thank you for being dedicated. Now, let’s talk about you. Do you have a day job? Tell us about it.
Mimi: I’m officially an attorney, but a cervical spine injury has made it difficult for me to practice. While recovering from my last neck surgery, I found my way back to writing novels. It’s consumed all of my time ever since, and has really helped distract me from my pain, and the loss of mobility I suffered after my injury. It’s been a blessing.
Toni: I’m so sorry to hear that, but so thankful writing has blessed you as well as us readers. What are your three favorite TV shows? Three favorite movies?
Mimi: Oh, gosh. This is difficult. I need TV shows that distract me, and right now only mysteries seem to be able to do that. I love British mysteries, especially Vera, Endeavour, and Foyle’s War. As for movies, I don’t think I can narrow it to a top three, or even a top twenty, but film noir classics like Gilda, Double Indemnity, and Laura definitely number among my all-time favorites.
Toni: I’ll have to check those out. What book is on your nightstand?
Mimi: I don’t have a physical book there, but The Landowner’s Secret by Sonya Heaney is the most recent add to my Kindle. It’s a historical romance set in Australia.
Toni: Oh, I love historicals in other countries. 🙂 And last but not least, how can we pray for you on your writing journey?
Mimi: Thank you so much for asking. I always pray that my health will hold up so I can continue writing. Additional prayers in that vein are always welcome.
Toni: We will be doing that. Readers, do you have any questions for the awesome Mimi Matthews?
About the Author
USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews (A Victorian Lady’s Guide to Fashion and Beauty, The Matrimonial Advertisement) writes both historical nonfiction and proper historical romances set in Victorian England. Her articles on nineteenth century history have been published on various academic and history sites, including the Victorian Web and the Journal of Victorian Culture, and are also syndicated at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes an Andalusian dressage horse, two Shelties, and two Siamese cats.
Oh. My. Heart!
I’ve been interested in Neville’s story since I read book one in the Parish Orphans of Devon series. And Mimi Matthews did not disappoint (but seriously, does she ever?)!
Neville has a wonderful heart and a protector’s heart! I loved seeing him come alive when he saw Clara. I loved seeing how his friends were able to view him in a new light because of Clara. All in all, I just plain loved Neville.
And Clara! Oh she deserved so much more than her mother and brother. I seriously had a few moments where I thought about slapping her brother upside the head. I’m so glad she had a champion in Neville. Those two deserved each other in all the best ways. And the ending…absolutely perfect.
My only compliant is that the series is over and I’ve finished reading Mimi Matthews’ backlist. Guess that means it’s time to restart the series over.
*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. My review was not required nor influenced. I would have read the book regardless because Mimi Matthews is a must-read author.
**Please note Mimi Matthews’ books are clean reads.
About the Book
A winter reunion for the orphans brings romance for Neville Cross in Book 4 of Mimi Matthews’ USA Today bestselling Parish Orphans of Devon series.
She Needed to be Seen…
As a lady’s companion, Clara Hartwright never receives much attention from anyone. And that’s precisely how she likes it. With a stormy past, and an unconventional plan for her future, it’s far safer to remain invisible. But when her new employer is invited to a month-long holiday at a remote coastal abbey, Clara discovers that she may not be as invisible as she’d hoped. At least, not as far as one gentleman is concerned.
He Wanted to be Heard…
Neville Cross has always been more comfortable with animals than people. An accident in his youth has left him with a brain injury that affects his speech. Forming the words to speak to his childhood friends is difficult enough. Finding the right things to say to a lovely young lady’s companion seems downright impossible. But Miss Hartwright is no ordinary companion. In fact, there may not be anything ordinary about her at all.
During a bleak Devon winter, two sensitive souls forge an unexpected friendship. But when Clara needs him most, will Neville find the courage to face his fears? Or is saying goodbye to her the most heroic thing he can do?