Today, we’re joined by Carla Simpson, the writer who has so deftly brought Angus Brodie and Mikaela Forsythe to life in A Deadly Affair, Deadly Secrets, and, as of yesterday, A Deadly Game. In celebration of that fact, Carla has treated us with an interview with another of her beloved characters, Mikaela’s aunt, Lady Antonia Montgomery! So without further ado, here is the force of nature herself.
How would you describe your family or your childhood?
My family first arrived in England with William the Conqueror, far older than the Queen’s. He was quite a bounder according to family stories, ruthless, and took over the entire place. My own childhood was… shall we say somewhat unusual. I was an only child and allowed a great deal of freedom, raised by my father.
What was your greatest talent?
Four languages, quite an expert with a saber… But I digress. It would undoubtedly have to be my ability to see through people and their machinations. I don’t have much time left and I won’t be bothered.
That is rather personal, don’t you think? However, if I were to be honest, there have been a few, but none who would let me live my life as I chose.
Biggest challenge in relationships?
I refuse to have them.
Where do you live?
At present I live at Sussex Square in London. I do spend time in the north of Scotland at Old Lodge and then there is my estate in Normandy–a rundown affair where my ancestor kept his mistress.
Do you have any enemies?
Undoubtedly, one doesn’t get to be this old without collecting a few, but I have adopted my ancestor’s means of dealing with them–off with their heads!
How do you feel about the place where you are now? Is there something you are particularly attached to, or particularly repelled by, in this place?
I am quite pleased with my life. I do however wish to travel. I have been planning a trip to the African continent however I injured my ankle. The jungle I have installed at Sussex Square will have to do for the time being until my ankle heals. I will need to go stand on my head when our interview is concluded–helps with the circulation I’m told.
Do you have children, pets, both, or neither?
Children! Good heavens! I never wanted them as a young woman, messy things, all that squalling. However, I acquired my nieces when they were quite past that messy, squalling stage. Fascinating creatures. I learned a great deal from them–Lenore, a pretty thing, refined, but there is a strong personality under that refinement. As for Mikaela, there are those who tell me that she is exactly like me, whatever that means; she can be stubborn, impetuous, and then there are these private investigations that she’s involved with. I have no idea where people get these ideas.
What do you do for a living?
A living? Good heavens, I don’t need to work. I’m richer than the Queen, all that looting and pillaging by my ancestor, and others in the family. There’s even a rumor that some distant relative was a highwayman, or possibly a highwaywoman? Wouldn’t that be delightful?
That I am running out of time and there are so many men and so many adventures yet to explore.
Greatest source of joy?
That would have to be my two nieces, two very different, very delightful young women.
What do you do to entertain yourself or have fun?
I am presently preparing for my trip to Africa, although both my nieces object, something about my age… Eighty-five? Whatever are they talking about?
What is your greatest personal failing, in your view?
I have none. I have lived exactly as I wished to live.
What keeps you awake at night?
My ankle; cursed thing. I was told however by my groomsman to put a poultice on it. I shall have to try that. There is something called acupuncture. Mikaela swears by it. In the meantime, I shall have another dram of whisky.
What is the most pressing problem you have at the moment?
It would probably be the monkey that has disappeared inside the jungle I had installed in order to prepare for my safari.
Is there something that you need or want that you don’t have?
Munro who manages my estates. He is so very Scottish (a secretive smile). I had considered taking him along on my safari, however, he seems occupied elsewhere.
Why don’t you have it? What is in the way?
I do not waste my time on those sorts of questions. There is too little time, too many adventures, and perhaps another man… Now, I really must have my groomsman bring me a poultice. I will have to find a way to keep it in place while I’m standing on my head.
About Carla Simpson:
Once upon a time… I was told by someone very wise that I had lived many lives, and the stories I write are from those lives. Many more books to write…
“I want to write a book… ” she said.
“Then do it,” he said.
And she did, and received two offers for that first book proposal.
A dozen historical romances later, and a prophecy from a gifted psychic and the Legacy Series was created, expanding to seven additional titles.
Along the way, two film options, and numerous book awards.
But wait, there’s more a voice whispered, after a trip to Scotland and a visit to the standing stones in the far north, and as old as Stonehenge, sign posts the voice told her, and the Clan Fraser books that have followed that told the beginnings of the clan and the family she was part of…
And now… murder and mystery set against the backdrop of Victorian London in the new Angus Brodie and Mikaela Forsythe series, with an assortment of conspirators and murderers in the brave new world after the Industrial Revolution where terrorists threaten and the world spins closer to war.
When she is not exploring the Darkness of the fantasy world, or pursuing ancestors in ancient Scotland, she lives in the mountains near Yosemite National Park with bears and mountain lions, and plots murder and revenge.
And did I mention fierce, beautiful women and dangerous, handsome men?
They’re there, waiting…