Monday, January 3, 2011

Roseanna White's "Jewel of Persia"

We're happy to have Roseanna M. White with us today talking about her book, Jewel of Persia.

Title: Jewel of Persia
Publisher: WhiteFire Publishing

Cover blurb:How can she love the king of kings without forsaking her Lord of lords? Kasia grew up in a poor Jewish home with more siblings than luxuries. But when a chance encounter forces her to the palace of Xerxes, she becomes a concubine to the richest man in the world. She alone, of all Xerxes' wives, loves the man beneath the crown. She alone, of all his wives, holds the heart of the king of kings.
Traveling with Xerxes through Europe as he mounts a war against Greece, Kasia knows enemies surround her, but they’re not the Spartans or Athenians. The threat lies with those close to the king who hate her people. She determines to put her trust in Jehovah–even if it costs her her marriage.
Years of prayers are answered when Kasia's childhood friend arrives at the palace after the war, but even as she determines to see Esther crowned in place of the bloodthirsty former queen, she knows the true battle is far from over. How far will her enemies go to see her undone?
Combining the biblical account of Esther with Herodotus's Histories, Jewel of Persia is the story of a love that nearly destroys an empire . . . and the friendship that saves a nation.

1) How did this story come to you?
Well, as I was showering one morning I was trying to think of a way to turn my favorite Bible story—Esther—into a novel. But it had to be my kind of Biblical fiction, which means a fictional heroine. So as I debated and brainstormed, it hit me—what about all those other wives in the harem? What if one of them were also Jewish? Better still, what if one were Esther's childhood friend? And what if she was the favorite of the king before Esther arrived? And so Jewel of Persia was born.

2) Tell us about the journey to getting this book published.
Following the release of my first Biblical fiction last year, A Stray Drop of Blood, my agent recommended I follow it up with another bib-fic. I talked with my publisher about the possibility and my idea for an Esther story where Esther isn't the main character, and he was all in favor of it. So we chose a launch-date, set a deadline, and there you have it. =)

3) Tell me three things about yourself that would surprise your readers.
Hmm . . . first, that I'm addicted to romance. When reading, I'm generally disappointed if a book doesn't have a strong romance line. Yet the two books I now have out aren't romance, though there's certainly love stories within. Second, that I'm addicted to email. My kids have so fractured my attention span that I've become unaccustomed to long periods of focused work time, and on those rare occasions I find some, I still interrupt myself constantly with email checks, otherwise I go a little crazy. And third . . . hmm, I don't think I have any other deep, dark secrets. ;-) But people are often surprised to learn that I got married at 18, to my high school sweetheart. We were going to college at the same place and married after our freshman year. This year will be our tenth anniversary, and we don't regret a thing! (Not that I advocate teen marriage for everyone, mind you, but we weren't your average teens . . .)

4) What are you working on now and what's next for you?
Right now I'm working on a story set in 1783-4 Annapolis, during those six months when it was the nation's capital. It's penciled into a publisher's 2012 schedule—nothing's in writing yet, but they'll want to see it very soon, and I need to get cracking on it! That may very well be my next book out. But if that falls through, WhiteFire has expressed interest in several other ideas I have that I could hammer out in the next few months, in time for a 2012 release.

5) Parting comments?
Thanks for having me! I love getting to know readers and fellow lovers of Christian fiction—and really love chatting with them. Feel free to ask questions, y'all—I'm happy to answer them!

6) Where can fans find you on the internet?
My website is http://www.roseannamwhite.com/, and you can find there companion guides to my books, with all the fun historical facts—and where I diverge from them. My blog is http://www.roseannamwhite.blogspot.com/, where I have themed days 5 days a week. I'm a contributor at http://www.bellesandbuckskins.com/ too, which just launched. I'm also editor of http://www.christianreviewofbooks.com/. And of course, look me up on Facebook!

Options for the winner:
I have a couple options for the winner. She can have her choice of A Stray Drop of Blood in digital or paperback, Jewel of Persia in digital now, or receive a paperback of Jewel of Persia as soon as I get them in a few months.






36 comments:

  1. Thanks for the interview and telling me more about Roseanna's new book. LOVE the cover. I would really like to read her new book it looks very interesting.

    Thanks for putting my name in the hat for the digital book.

    Nora St.Laurent
    norafindinghope (at) gmail.com

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  2. Thanks for having me! I look forward to getting to know your readers.

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  3. I sooooo want JoP in paperback when it comes out!!!!

    angelmom1165@yahoo.com

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  4. Jewel of Persia sounds intriguing and I'd love to read it! Please put me in your drawing. Thanks!

    Gail Lewis
    windyrdg@frontier.com

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  5. Oh my gosh. After reading the summary I took it in to my mother and read it to her. Please enter me. We are both interested and would prefer a physical book.

    Sandra Stiles
    skstiles612@yahoo.com

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  6. I love biblical era fiction, so if Canadians can enter, please count me in!

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  7. This caught my eye when she said Xerxes, I knew this was taken from the Bible, as I read further she clarified it came from "book of Esther". I'd like to win a copy, sounds like a historical romance fiction that I love to read. I read a previous author who wrote about the book of Esther called Haddiah (sp.). and loved the first book and second book was not as intriguing but well-written.

    adriennaturner@earthlink.net

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  8. Addicted to romance story lines, me, too!!!!
    I look forward to reading your writing!
    Thanks for the opportunity to win this book, or choice of books!
    chakasa58 at gmail dot com

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  9. I would love to win a copy of your book!
    I'm a subscriber.

    dancealert at aol dot com

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  10. I have A Stray Drop of Blood on my wish list and would chose this book in paperback should I be the lucky winner. Great interview Roseanna.
    I am adding Jewel of Persia to my wish list.
    Please enter me in the giveaway.
    I am a subscriber

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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  11. What a great thought, that maybe there was another Jewish wife in the harem. Would love to read it. i subscribe to your blog.

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  12. I would love, love, love to read this book!
    joyfulhutch[at]msn[dot[com]

    I like both paperback and digital. So depends on how fast you would want a review. I tend to read books sooner in paperback format, but I also read e-books all the time.

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  13. I have been reading about this book and it is on my 'to-read' list since I love the story of Esther. I find it very interesting to read about how Roseanna has developed this story. Thanks for the chance to win this book. If I am the lucky winner, I would prefer to wait for the paperback copy to arrive.


    janmarien[at]embarqmail[dot]com

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  14. Esther is one of my favorite Bible characters, but I've never read any Biblical/historical based fiction before --the summary sounds so intriguing and such a lovely cover too!

    Thank you for the chance to win!

    I'm an e-mail subscriber: jafuchi7[at]hawaii[dot]edu

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  15. I love the story of Esther, what a great idea for a story. Please include me in this giveaway. Thank You!

    alekee02[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  16. We don't know who's going to win this contest, but we know who isn't...private inside joke:) I read an excerpt from this novel and Roseanna is an extremely talented author. If you don't win it you must buy it...you will be hooked from chapter one!

    dianalflowers@aol.com

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  17. I'm a huge fan of the story of Esther, and your idea is incredibly fascinating! Your cover is beautiful - very striking. Would love to be entered for a chance to win. Thanks for the opportunity!
    -Emily
    hendrickson_emily(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  18. I loved A Stray Drop of Blood. I know I will love Jewel of Persia! If I win, I'll wait on the paperback when it's released :) I was married at 19...just gives us longer to grow old together ;)

    homesteading[at]charter[dot]net

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  19. Well, I never got past chapter one b/c it was an excerpt but I'm hooked and need to win so I can continue...lol

    dianalflowers@aol.com

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  20. I LOVED A Stray Drop of Blood so I would love to win this book. If the digital version is kindle, I would take that, otherwise I would wait for the printed version.
    I am so excited this book is coming out.
    wsmarple/at/gmail/dot/com

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  21. Wow, guys, I take off for Story Time with the kiddos and come back to all this activity! =) Makes my day.

    I'm glad to see so many lovers of the Esther story on here! It's a beautiful one, isn't it? I still worry about whether I did it justice, LOL.

    Thanks, everyone, for all your encouragement and sharing in the excitement about the story. Does an author's heart good! (And Diana, you make me chuckle.)

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  22. What an interesting and yet emotional life this girl must have had. I would love to read this book! Thanks for the chance.

    freda.mans[at]gmail.com

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  23. I'd love to rad this fascinating book! I am a subscriber.

    seizethebookblog(at)gmail(dot)com

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  24. Really nice interview and I'm so happy to be able to register for Roseanna's new book, Jewel of Persia. Her Stray Drop of Blood is one of my favorites of 2010 and by her interview, I can see that her new story is just as exciting, if not more than her first novel. I am looking forward to reading this one. Her 2012 release sounds very different than the biblical stories. Thanks for this giveaway and for the chance to win it. I hope I win!

    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

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  25. will love to win
    nakiassgeorge@yahoo.com

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  26. Great interview! I would love a hard copy of Jewel of Persia, I've read Stray Drop of Blood and loved it!

    natalie_mclean1@yahoo.com

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  27. Thanks for entering me too!

    twinwillowsfarm at gmail dot com

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  28. i've been (patiently) waiting to read roseanna's latest...i LOVED her first novel :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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  29. I'd love to read Jewel of Persia in paperback when it comes out.
    pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

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  30. I would love to read Jewel of Persia when it's available! (paper form)

    meredithfl at gmail dot com

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  31. sounds like an interesting book.
    thanks for chance to win
    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

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  32. Carman sent me.

    I would love your take on Queen Esther. Please enter me. Thank you.

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

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  33. Thanks, everyone! It's great to see some familiar faces stopping by. =)

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  34. Cool! We just studied Esther in Coffee Break. Had great fun with the study and I'd love to read the novel.

    sdeeth at msn dot com

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  35. Or to see my familiar name stopping by...haha

    dianalflowers@aol.com

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  36. This book looks amazing! Please enter me - I subscribed!

    Kait
    knownasjane(at)yahoo(dot(com

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