Carolyn Miller launches a new Regency era series with a story about second chances
Historical romance novelist Carolyn Miller made waves with her first Regency series, Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace. She kicks off a brand-new series with Winning Miss Winthrop (Kregel Publications), set in the sumptuous salons of Bath, Regency England’s royal breeding ground for gossip. Fans of the wholesome and richly drawn first series won’t want to miss this new set of characters. From her home in New South Wales, Australia, Carolyn compares her two Regency-era series, shares which historical detail she fudged for her new novel, and how she uses her characters to wrestle with her own faith…
This interview is from the Collector’s Edition Christian Romance Special. Download the issue FREE!
Carolyn, you recently wrapped one Regency romance trilogy (Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace) and are now starting a brand-new Regency romance trilogy (Regency Brides: The Promise of Hope). What are the similarities / differences between the previous set and the new novels?
The first series focused around those connected with Lavinia Ellison (The Elusive Miss Ellison), such as her cousin (the title character of The Captivating Lady Charlotte) and her rival (The Dishonorable Miss DeLancey), with each story showing an aspect of understanding grace.
This new series concentrates more on Lavinia’s friend, Catherine Winthrop, around whom the first novel (Winning Miss Winthrop) is based, with her sister and sister-in-law the focus of the subsequent stories, all of which explore elements of hope. While most of the characters are different, in the second series there will be some revisiting of some characters from the first book, which is always fun to see how their lives work out.
Readers can also continue to expect to see interesting locations (like Bath & Derbyshire) and Regency-era language, as well as a strong spiritual thread as various characters learn about faith and its practical outworking in their lives. And there will also be more of the wit and romance readers have enjoyed in previous stories!
What can readers expect from Winning Miss Winthrop?
Winning Miss Winthrop is a story about misunderstandings and second chances, with settings that vary from rural Gloucestershire to Bath and London. It’s a little like Jane Austen’s Persuasion (my fave book), with its portrayal of class differences and tender slow burn romance, while it also shows the effects of the reversal of family fortunes—and an Assembly Rooms Masquerade.
What can you tell us about your protagonists?
Catherine Winthrop is almost at her last prayers, rejected years ago by the man who stole her heart. The elder daughter of a Baron whose unscrupulous dealings have sent the family into turmoil, she struggles with social expectations and helping her family through their pain whilst dealing with the torment of lost love.
Jonathan Carlew might be handsome and wealthy, but the mystery surrounding his birth has shadowed him throughout his life. His business dealings mark him as something of a “Cit” [contemptuous term for a member of the merchant class]. But his kind-hearted upright nature and wry humor mark him as rather more honorable—something he needs to remember when faced with the gossip and speculation of Bath society.
Which character surprised you writing this novel?
I enjoyed getting to know Jon’s friend Lord Carmichael more. The Viscount’s blend of witty charm and smooth sophistication hides a keenly observant eye and insightful nature, which was great fun to write about. Especially in the exchanges he has with his friends—so much so he needed his own novel (Miss Serena’s Secret, which releases mid-2018).
Click to find out what it is about the Regency era that keeps Carolyn coming back!