Today’s guest has a fascinating bio. Not only has she spent 25 years in a really cool career, but she’s traveled so extensively it blows my mind. And if that’s not awesome enough, she brought with her a set of e-books to give away, so hang with us until the end of the interview to find out how you can win. But first, dear readers, please welcome Chris Karlsen!
**GIVEAWAY CLOSED** Congratulations to winner Kathryn Ann Merkel!
Welcome, Chris! I stalked your bio a bit, and I have to say it’s amazing. Twenty-five years in law enforcement, and you’ve been to some of the most storied places in the world. Which stand out the most in your memories?
There are several. The Tower of London, Canterbury Cathedral, Gloucestershire, Paris, Loire Valley, Istanbul, Ephesus ruins in Turkey, Bodrum, the ruins of Troy, Rhodes, Malta. I could go on and on but those are a few.
*Jaw on ground.* I feel like I just saw all the cool brochures at a travel agency! What a life experience unmatched by any other. That’s just astounding! (Yes, I like to travel, LOL.) Moving the focus to your book: JOURNEY IN TIME sounds like a fascinating read, and the reviews have been wonderful. Can you introduce our readers to the story?
Shakira, the heroine, is a mysterious woman. Alex, the hero, dances with at a charity ball in London. He tracks down her identity and finds out she’s an attorney with respected firm. Through a misunderstanding he becomes her client. Because of that she refuses to date him for awhile. Eventually she agrees to go horseback riding in the countryside near the cottage he owns. They’re caught in a freak storm and transported back to medieval England, an England preparing to go to war with France.
Alex has a strong tie to the time, which comes as a shock to Shakira. He’s thought to be Baron Guiscard, a baron who was killed in battle during the war with France. If they can’t return to the modern world, he will sail with the army in place of the baron and to certain death. History can’t be changed and history doesn’t care which man it takes. Without Alex, Shakira will be left in a medieval world without a protector or means to care for herself.
In spite of the terrible problems they must struggle with, and the obstacles thrown in the way, they discover how much they love each other. They find that their love is stronger than all the good and bad in the world around them and everything that threatens to tear them apart.
That’s a really cool plot! Having him destined to die is such a clever was to add urgency to the story, which goes really in depth. How did you research 14th century England? Were you able to find any personal accounts of the time period?
I’ve had a fascination for medieval English history most of my life, along with a few other time periods. Over the years, I’ve collected many books on the subject. I had much of what I needed in my library to begin with but I also bought additional books on armor and clothing and the Hundred Years War.
I did find a book called, “The Life and Campaigns of the Black Prince,” from contemporary letters, diaries and chronicles, including Chandos Herald’s—“The Life of the Black Prince.” This book was edited and translated by Richard Barber. Chandos Herald was the Black Prince’s official chronicler and I thought myself very lucky to find Barber’s book.
In some of the books I have, I found lists of kitchen stock or household records from various nobles, which was interesting.
Wow, how COOL! I’d love to see that collection. ;c) What might readers be surprised to learn about the plot or characters of JOURNEY IN TIME?
I think they’ll be amused by Shakira’s arranging a medieval rendition of Fleetwood Mac’s “Tusk” and Cole Porter’s “The Way You Look Tonight,” using instruments from the time. I also believe they will be pleased with how much of a fighter she is, especially when she’s attacked by a royal favorite.
I hope they’ll be moved when Alex reveals a private torment and the source of a repeating nightmare.
I think they’ll be surprised and pleased with the scene where the science of time-travel and a possible theory for Shakira and Alex’s experience is discussed.
This sounds like such a thorough plot! I love how many layers you’ve portrayed to us. Let’s get to know JOURNEY IN TIME a bit better with some fun questions. What’s the first sentence?
“It’s late. I’d like to go,” Alex said.
That immediately draws me in, wondering where he is. *Grin.* What’s your favorite line in the book?
“You’ve no idea how medieval I can get, especially with what’s mine,” he whispered against her lips.
Oh, wow. I love that possessiveness! How about an excerpt … three sentences long! Yep, that’s it. Three!
“No.” She refused to move. “I want to go home.”
He looked ill, green around the gills, like he was sea-sick.
Enticing excerpt, Chris! Which scene of JOURNEY IN TIME was most difficult for you to write? Why?
The scene in his bedchamber in the castle where he explains they’ve gone back in time and how he’s connected to the time. I had to find the language and attitude for Alex that I would need to see and hear if I was in Shakira’s place that would convince me he was telling the truth. I couldn’t gloss over the situation or treat the scene with a light hand. As much as I might be attracted to someone, they’d have to go a long way to make me believe a story like the one Alex is relating.
I second that! And I have a lot of respect for the thought you put into such a difficult — and significant — situation. Which scene of JOURNEY IN TIME would you most like to experience for yourself? From whose POV?
Wow, difficult to choose. I really liked the love scenes and her POV there but I have my real life hero. Having said that, I would like to experience the jousting scene and from her POV. I’d love to try jousting.
Now *that* is an original answer, LOL! Okay, give us the scoop. What are you currently working on?
I just started book 3 of my “Knights in Time,” series. “Journey in Time, “ was book 2 and book 1 was “Heroes Live Forever.” Book 3 is titled, “Knight Blindness,” and the hero is the knight Stephen from “Journey in Time.”
Next month I have “Golden Chariot,” coming out. It is book 1 of a new series called “Dangerous Waters.” It is a romantic thriller set off the coast of Turkey, near Troy.
I *so* love your exotic settings! And you bring such unique experience to your stories through your travels — I bet it really shows through your work. Let’s take a closer look at today’s featured title, shall we?
JOURNEY IN TIME | blurb & links
Journey in Time—Right woman…right man…Trapped in the wrong place and the wrong time.
London attorney, Shakira Constantine, finally agrees to spend the day with her handsome client, Alex Lancaster. While riding in the countryside, the couple finds themselves caught in a time warp and transported back to the 14th century, and an England preparing for war. Everyone believes Alex is the Baron Guy Guiscard…a baron who died in the upcoming battle.
If they can’t find a way to return to the 21st century, Alex will have to sail with the army to certain death. Shakira will be left alone to survive in the alien and terrifying medieval world.
CHRIS KARLSEN | bio & links
I’m a retired police detective. My father was a history professor and my mother was and is an avid reader. I grew up with a love of history and books. After I retired, I finally had the time to pursue writing, something I longed to do since I was a teen.
I’ve traveled extensively wanting to see the places I read about. I’m an animal lover. My husband and I live with four rescue dogs and have one rescue Thoroughbred.
As promised, Chris comes with a VERY generous giveaway! She’s offering one e-set of her books — HEROES LIVE FOREVER and JOURNEY IN TIME — in PDF or as a gift from Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Is that incredible or what? If you’d like a chance to win, please comment with your e-mail address. A winner will be chosen at random. Your tweets and shares of this post are greatly appreciated, so please tell your friends. Chris, it’s been an honor getting to know you today. Readerly types, thank you all so much for joining me today, and good luck!