Brianna Labuskes (Author Interview)
Please tell us something unique about you we can’t learn from your bio.
I am an absolutely horrible singer — completely tone deaf — but I love to do it so much. If you’re a passenger in my car, you will be subjected to loud, off-key renditions of any and all songs. Beware around Christmas time, too, because no one is safe.
What’s your favorite part of writing?
I absolutely adore finding the perfect word for a sentence. I’ve played tennis for years now, and there’s this moment when the racket connects with the ball in exact right place and you can just feel it. In your swing, in your hand, in your arm. The sweet spot. And you get to have that feeling a lot when you’re writing.
Do you make up settings or use real places and why?
A little mix of both. I love Regency London. It becomes its own character in the book — all foggy streets and sun-bathed parks and dilapidated docks. But sometimes, if I want to convey an idea more than a location I will create a fictionalized setting. I wanted my heroine to be from the country — very much not London. So the location added to her character development rather than becoming a character itself. If I used a real one, it could possibly engender memories or feelings in the reader about a place that really does exist.
Which of your heroes would you most like to date and why?
Definitely Lucas. He has such a soft spot for his sister, and that’s so important to me. He would do anything for her, including burying his pride. He also appreciates Gemma for who she is, without trying to change her. She’s very independent and stubborn, but instead of trying to control that aspect of her, he embraces it as part of what he loves about her. There’s something seriously hot about a powerful man loving an equally powerful woman, and them finding a way to allow space in the relationship for both of them.
What stories do you have in the works right now?
I’m currently revising another Regency romance. This one is set on the wild coast of Cornwall. There’s a smuggling ring run out of my heroine’s village and she is not happy about it. She takes matters into her own hands. In that way, she’s like the heroine of One Step Behind, but in many other aspects she’s very different. There’s a lightness and recklessness to her. She can be careless and naive. But the courage that’s such a strong part of Gemma is there, too. It was fun to create another complex and layered character that’s so different than Gemma.
About One Step Behind
Vengeance never dies …
When the unconventional Imogen Lancaster embarked on a mission to infiltrate high society and avenge her beloved cousin’s murder she never would have guessed she’d end up in the arms of a thief. At least, that’s what she assumes when she discovers Lucas Stone breaking into a private safe.
Lucas Stone, the Earl of Winchester, has a reputation for arrogance and a soft-spot for his sister, which is how he ends up in the predicament of hiding behind a curtain at midnight with the dreadfully dull Miss Imogen Lancaster. But he soon discovers appearances can be deceiving when the country mouse turns into a spitfire in front of his eyes and she makes it clear she wants nothing to do with him.
Though one is chasing a blackmailer and the other a murderer, they quickly realize they are on the hunt for the same villain. Now they must work together, which would be fine, if they could decide if they’d rather fall in love or kill one another.