I've now released the first of a two book series set in the Victorian era – also the same author name. This book was written eight years ago when I had an agent and Victorian books were the flavour of the year. It got as far as an acquisitions meeting at Orion but no further.
These are the only books that I've written that haven't been published. I'm known for my Regency and World War II books and I am concerned my readers won't enjoy something so different.
The heroine and hero in this book are brother and sister, rather than a romantic couple. Also, as you can see from the cover, they are not from the privileged class from which I usually take my characters.
I had the books edited and proofed and by the time "For Want of a Penny" was ready to go I had a further three stories in my head for Sarah and Alfie. It remains to be seen if I think it's viable to continue writing this series.
It would be interesting to know whether readers search more for a particular author rather than a genre. I certainly search author name first on Amazon and if I can't find anything new by one of my favourites then I look at the recommended list of similar books that are so helpfully provided. Christian Cameron has three series ongoing, all different eras, and I love them all. Bernard Cornwall has done the same but writes one series at a time. I would try a new genre/era from an author I like and I hope my readers feel the same.
For Want of a Penny is the first part of a two book Victorian saga –The Nightingale Chronicles and is set in 1840s Colchester and the east end of London. A family tragedy means Sarah is forced to go into service at Grey Friars House as an under nursery-maid. Meanwhile her younger brother Alfie, to avoid being taken into the workhouse, runs away to London to seek his fortune.
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Alfie arrives in London but is tricked and sold to work as a slave on a coal barge. However, eventually he prospers and begins to make himself a better life.
'One Good Turn' the second and final part of this series will be published in July.