Royal Wedding Invitations

Royal Wedding Invitations

About the Series

Late last year Anne got call from Sophie Weston inviting her to join in writing a four-book series about couples whose stories grew out of an English village wedding. To say she was thrilled to work with such stellar writers as Sophie and Jessica Hart and Liz Fielding is an understatement. She could hardly wait.

But she had to, because about a week after she signed on, she broke her wrist. Then Liz, in a fit of entirely unnecessary oneupsmanship, broke her arm! Things got put off. The holidays came and went. There were weeks when no one thought the books would see the light of day. But in March, with broken bones knitted and casts removed, all four writers got together in Castle Combe, often called the 'prettiest village in England' where they went to work out the final logistics and details, while soaking up the local village atmosphere, sharing an elegant lunch, and, not least, enjoying each other's company. Anne loves research anyway, and this was the best kind of all.

The stories have come together at last, all revolving around the wedding that took Combe St Philip (which, let's face it, owes a lot to the beauty of Castle Combe) by storm because it wasn't just a wedding, it was a royal wedding -- the royal wedding of Prince Jonas of San Michele and local girl, Hope Kennard, who was not royal at all. Hope did, however, have a backbone, and when she said she wanted to get married in her village church, even though the San Michele royals were not pleased, Jonas, having finally found the love of his life, was determined to make that happen. How they got to that point you can discover in Sophie Weston's charming, The Prince's Bride.

Hope's decision had a huge impact on her older brother, Max. He was not expecting Hope's friend Flora to take over his kitchen -- or his life. But in Jessica Hart's The Baronet's Wedding Engagement, she does. It is great fun. The first of the four books to be finished, Jessica's book set the bar very high. Liz Fielding met it. Her story, The Bridesmaid's Royal Bodyguard, is a delight. Her characters, Ally and Fredrik, jumped off the page. They jumped into Anne's story, too.

The Best Man's Bride, Anne's story, grew out of conversations she and Sophie had about a book they considered writing together long ago. In it they had ghosts and parrots and grumpy old earls. They had a young dashing hero and the woman he was going to sweep off her feet, and for once, far too much plot. Trouble was, too, Anne had written a scene with the heroine's ex in it and, frankly, he kept hijacking the story.

She and Sophie never wrote the book. The ghost wouldn't cooperate. Neither would the ex, Jack. He wouldn't go away, either. And he turned up the minute Sophie invited Anne to join the series. She barely got off the phone with Sophie when she looked around and there he was, leaning against the doorjamb, looking supremely satisfied. "About time," Jack said. "Now you can finally write my story."

Anne knows when she's been beaten. She wrote Jack's story. She wrote Celina's story, too. Celina wasn't the heroine from the first story. She was quite different. Jack had changed a bit, too. He wasn't giving up, that was for sure. He loved Celina. He needed to make her understand that. Anne thought he needed to shape up a bit, too. They had some discussions over the course of the book. Celina had some input, too. That's what heroines are for, she reminded them: to make heroes realize they can be even better than they already are.