Tag Archives: A Day of Fire

A Few Questions with Ben Kane about A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii

I’m sure you’ve heard by now, if you’re a historical reader or consistent reader of this site, about the *ERUPTION* A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii has made this month!

However, in case you haven’t, six top historical novelists have joined forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. It’s a combined novel by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter, with an introduction by Michelle Moran, in which each takes on a character and intertwines them into the story.

In celebration of the book, and all the time this clan put into it, I’ve been doing this “Ring of Fire” series where I toss the fire torch to each of the authors every Wednesday or so for SIX WEEKS in order for them to answer a few quick questions about the book. All of the authors were given the same questions! Follow along and see what each says! We’ll be going in order based on where their part of the story falls within the book. My review will be posted during the six weeks as well.

We’ve heard from Vicky, then Sophie,

and next up is Ben Kane……take it away Ben!

Q1 : What did your character bring to the volcano gods for the book (i.e. what voice did they bring to the volume)?

Ben: With luck, the voice of a man whose fortunes have been bad for years, getting even worse. And that was before the eruption started…

Q2: What is one of your favorite moments from the collaboration?

Ben: Without doubt, the hilarity and degree of embarrassment that erupted (!) after one of the others – during an online discussion – called me British. I’m Irish. You can do the math on the rest. 😉

Ben Kane, Biography~

BEN_KANE_HADRIANS_WALL_3‘History is more than facts on a pages. It’s the sounds, the smells, the people, the passion. History should make you think: “I was there.” My books are born from my obsession with Roman history. I’ve followed Spartacus’ trail across Italy. I’ve stood at Cannae and imagined Hannibal’s army meeting the massed legions of Rome. I’ve watched the sea lapping against the fortifications of Syracuse, which were besieged by the Romans for almost two years. I’ve walked Hadrian’s Wall in full Roman military dress, including hobnailed boots.

To find out more about Ben Kane, his world and his novels visit: http://www.benkane.net
Twitter @BenKaneAuthor
Facebook.com/benkanebooks

A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii released on November 4, 2014. Order now!

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NI5CBXI</

pre-order cover ElizaKnight_ADayofFire_HR

A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii, Information~

by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter,
with an introduction by Michelle Moran

Genre: Historical Fiction

Release Date: November 4, 2014

Six top historical novelists join forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. You will meet:

Pompeii was a lively resort flourishing in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius at the height of the Roman Empire. When Vesuvius erupted in an explosion of flame and ash, the entire town would be destroyed. Some of its citizens died in the chaos, some escaped the mountain’s wrath . . .these are their stories:

A boy loses his innocence in Pompeii’s flourishing streets.

An heiress dreads her wedding day, not knowing it will be swallowed by fire.

An ex-legionary stakes his entire future on a gladiator bout destined never to be finished.

A crippled senator welcomes death, until a tomboy on horseback comes to his rescue.

A young mother faces an impossible choice for her unborn child as the ash falls.

A priestess and a whore seek redemption and resurrection as the town is buried.

Six top historical authors bring to life overlapping stories of patricians and slaves, warriors and politicians, villains and heroes who cross each others’ path during Pompeii’s fiery end. But who will escape, and who will be buried for eternity?

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Sophie Perinot Talks About Working on A Day of Fire with Her Writing Friends

If you haven’t heard, six top historical novelists have joined forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. They have called it A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii. It’s a combined novel by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter, with an introduction by Michelle Moran, in which each takes on a character and intertwines them into the story.

In celebration of the book, and all the time this clan put into it, I’m doing this SERIES. Yes, some sort of “Ring of Fire” series where I toss the fire torch to each of the authors every Wednesday or so for SIX WEEKS in order for them to answer a few quick questions about the book. All of the authors were given the same questions! Follow along and see what each says! We’ll be going in order based on where their part of the story falls within the book. My review will be posted during the six weeks as well.

Sophie Perinot is next on the list. So, take it away Sophie……

Q1 : What did your character bring to the volcano gods for the book (i.e. what voice did they bring to the volume)?

A: My characters brought love to the volcano gods: both imagined love and the real thing. The tricky part for my main character, Aemilia, was recognizing the difference. Aemilia is only fifteen, an age at which infatuation is common. She is a very smart young woman but she can’t be wise—because that is something that generally comes with age. Alternately, extreme circumstances can lead to tremendous personal growth. What if you were a young woman on the cusp of a major life event—your wedding—and suddenly your process of growing up was accelerated and focused by a shaking (quite literally) of the world as you knew it? What might you become? That is the situation Aemilia experiences.

Q2: What is one of your favorite moments from the collaboration?

A: Writing can be a solitary business which is a shame because most of the writers I know are a heck of a lot of fun. “A Day of Fire” took the loneliness out of being a novelist. Because “A Day of Fire” is a continuity—a collection of stories that overlap and build a larger plot arc—a tremendous amount of back-and-forth was involved between participating authors. We got to hang out, both virtually and in real life. I think my favorite moment was our first in-person get together. Four of us (Eliza Knight, Stephanie Dray, Kate Quinn and I) gathered at Kate’s house for a day long planning session. Our number one goal was to finalize the book’s timeline and start a “bible” full of characters and details that could continue to grow as the project did. Most of us arrived with a sense of who our characters were and where our story fit in the overall destruction of the city. But as we sat together around a table (see picture) ideas began to catch fire. There was so much energy and discussion. It was fantastic! I felt like I was watching my own story and the stories of the others take solid form right in the air between us. I believe all of us left that session feeling our work had been changed for the better by the encounter.

And here are some pictures of the women of the Pompeii novel working away….they don’t look like they are having fun at all, do they? WINK!

head 2

L-R: Kate Quinn, Sophie Perinot, and Eliza Knight working on A Day of Fire.

pompeii ladies

The ladies of Pompeii: L-R Kate Quinn, Sophie Periot, Stephanie Dray, and Eliza Knight

Sophie Perinot, Biography~

Sophie Perinot writes historical fiction. Her debut novel, The Sister Queens,(March 2012/NAL), was set in 13th century France and England and wove the captivating story of sisters, Marguerite and Eleanor of Provence, who both became queens. Perinot’s next novel, Medicis Daughter, (late 2015/Thomas Dunne) travels forward three-hundred years to the intrigue-riven French Valois court, spinning the tale of beautiful princess Marguerite who walks the knife edge between the demands of her serpentine mother, Catherine de Medicis, and those of her own conscience.

Ms. Perinot has both a BA in History and a law degree. She left the practice of law to pursue artistic interests, including writing. An avid reader, especially of classic literature, and life-long student of history, it seemed only natural that Sophie should write historical fiction. As someone who studied French abroad and a devotee of Alexandre Dumas, French history was a logical starting point. An active member of the Historical Novel Society, she has attended all of the group’s North American Conferences and served as a panelist multiple times.

When she is not visiting corners of the past, Sophie lives in Great Falls Virginia with her three children, three cats, one dog and one husband. To learn more about Sophie and her work, visit http://www.sophieperinot.com.

The FIRST STOP on the RING OF FIRE, and she survived, was Vicky!

The THIRD STOP will be Ben Kane, so stay tuned!!

 A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii released on November 4, 2014. Order now!

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NI5CBXI</

pre-order cover ElizaKnight_ADayofFire_HR

A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii, Information~

by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter,
with an introduction by Michelle Moran

Genre: Historical Fiction

Release Date: November 4, 2014

Six top historical novelists join forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. You will meet:

Pompeii was a lively resort flourishing in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius at the height of the Roman Empire. When Vesuvius erupted in an explosion of flame and ash, the entire town would be destroyed. Some of its citizens died in the chaos, some escaped the mountain’s wrath . . .these are their stories:

A boy loses his innocence in Pompeii’s flourishing streets.

An heiress dreads her wedding day, not knowing it will be swallowed by fire.

An ex-legionary stakes his entire future on a gladiator bout destined never to be finished.

A crippled senator welcomes death, until a tomboy on horseback comes to his rescue.

A young mother faces an impossible choice for her unborn child as the ash falls.

A priestess and a whore seek redemption and resurrection as the town is buried.

Six top historical authors bring to life overlapping stories of patricians and slaves, warriors and politicians, villains and heroes who cross each others’ path during Pompeii’s fiery end. But who will escape, and who will be buried for eternity?

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Filed under Feature Articles, Q and A with Authors

Talking with Six Historical Authors in New RING OF FIRE Blog Series About A Day of Fire: Pompeii

Today, I have a BLOG SERIES ANNOUNCEMENT, something fun I’m doing, so I hope you’ll follow along!! And I have the first segment of the series below, too (so stay tuned and keep reading). It all coincides with the *fiery* launch of A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii!

Back in September of this year, I noted in a book announcement the following:

“In historical book circles, we’ve been waiting impatiently for news of a certain book’s arrival from a group of tremendous historical fiction authors who’ve been working to release their newest endeavor called A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii! It’s a unique way to pen a book, so you don’t want to miss it! It’s on FIIIIIIIRE!!! (Yep, you can sing that in your best vocally loud and unharmonizing voice, I just did *wink*).”

Yes, six top historical novelists join forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. It’s a combined novel by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter, with an introduction by Michelle Moran, in which each takes on a character and intertwines them into the story.

pre-order cover ElizaKnight_ADayofFire_HR

Well, that awaited day is here, or really near!! It’s coming out Tuesday, Nov. 4! (And it did come to pass for lucky me, as the book has been sitting lovingly beside me, trying to catch my long hair on fire, but alas, still lapping with love for its attention–yes, I’ve been reading!)

In celebration of the launch, the book, and all the time this clan put into it, I’ll be doing a SERIES. Yes, some sort of “Ring of Fire” series I suppose where I toss the fire torch to each of the authors every Wednesday or so for SIX WEEKS in order for them to answer a few quick questions about the book. All of the authors were given the same questions! Follow along and see what each says! We’ll be going in order based on where their part of the story falls within the book. My review will be posted during the six weeks as well.

So, first up, catch the torch, Vicky…..

First Author: Vicky Alvear Shecter

Vicky Alvear ShecterQ1 : What did your character bring to the volcano gods for the book (i.e. what voice did they bring to the volume)?

A: My character, seventeen year-old Caecilius, brings a certain innocence to the story, mostly by virtue of his age and inexperience. He is in love with the wrong person and we learn right along with him just how wrong she is for him.

Caecilius does not live in Pompeii but is inexorably drawn to it. For him, the girl and the city become intertwined—one great big, sexy mess of a place, ripe with opportunity and danger. The choices he makes about the city shape his entire destiny.

His story attracted me because it allowed me to answer a question that has always dogged me about a certain witness’s behavior in the face of the disaster. Ancient history buffs will know what I mean when they get to the end of the story!

Q2: What is one of your favorite moments from the collaboration?

A: Can’t answer, because it’s impossible. There are so many! From having online conversations (or, more accurately, “bitch sessions”) about the ridiculousness of Roman naming conventions to the gross detailing the ancient brothel stalls, you just couldn’t have made up some of the online conversations I either participated in or witnessed. These included such gems as: “Okay fine. How slowly should I kill him then?” Or “Would a rich girl really be so insulted by the prospect of back-door sex?” Or, my personal favorite, “Could a guy really continue thrusting after hearing a boom like that?”

Seriously, it was priceless. And utterly awesome.

Biography:

Vicky Alvear Shecter is an award-winning writer of young adult historical fiction set in the ancient world and mythology for younger readers. Her novels include, Curses and Smoke: A Novel of Pompeii and Cleopatra’s Moon, the latter of which Atlantic online included in a list of “YA Historical Fiction Adults Should Read.” She is a docent at the Carlos Museum of antiquities at Emory University. Her newest non-fiction for children, Hades Speaks, recently released!

Learn more about Vicky and read her blog!

A Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii releases on November 4, 2014. Can’t wait? DON’T—make a date with destiny and don’t go down with the smoke. Make sure you receive your copy immediately on Nov. 4 by pre-ordering A Day of Fire in the format of your choice:

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00NI5CBXI</

pre-order cover ElizaKnight_ADayofFire_HRA Day of Fire: A Novel of Pompeii, Information~

by Stephanie Dray, Ben Kane, E. Knight, Sophie Perinot, Kate Quinn and Vicky Alvear Shecter,
with an introduction by Michelle Moran

Genre: Historical Fiction

Release Date: November 4, 2014

Six top historical novelists join forces to bring readers the stories of Pompeii’s residents—from patricians to prostitutes—as their world ended. You will meet:

Pompeii was a lively resort flourishing in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius at the height of the Roman Empire. When Vesuvius erupted in an explosion of flame and ash, the entire town would be destroyed. Some of its citizens died in the chaos, some escaped the mountain’s wrath . . .these are their stories:

A boy loses his innocence in Pompeii’s flourishing streets.

An heiress dreads her wedding day, not knowing it will be swallowed by fire.

An ex-legionary stakes his entire future on a gladiator bout destined never to be finished.

A crippled senator welcomes death, until a tomboy on horseback comes to his rescue.

A young mother faces an impossible choice for her unborn child as the ash falls.

A priestess and a whore seek redemption and resurrection as the town is buried.

Six top historical authors bring to life overlapping stories of patricians and slaves, warriors and politicians, villains and heroes who cross each others’ path during Pompeii’s fiery end. But who will escape, and who will be buried for eternity?

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Filed under Feature Articles, Q and A with Authors