Monday, March 16, 2015

Character Interview & Giveaway ~ Sword of Forgiveness by Debbie Lynne Costello

I'm delighted to introduce Royce and Brithwin from debut novelist Debbie Lynne Costello's Sword of Forgiveness. Debbie Lynne is also offering a copy to one of my readers, so be sure and read the interview and follow the giveaway instructions at the end.


Here's the background on the novel, which officially released in Feb 2015.

After the death of her cruel father, Brithwin is determined never again to live under the harsh rule of any man. Independent and resourceful, she longs to be left alone to manage her father’s estate. But she soon discovers a woman has few choices when the king decrees she is to marry Royce, the Lord of Rosencraig. As if the unwelcome marriage isn’t enough, her new husband accuses her of murdering his family, and she is faced with a challenge of either proving her innocence or facing possible execution.

Royce of Hawkwood returns home after setting down a rebellion to find his family brutally murdered. When all fingers point to his betrothed and attempts are made on his life, Royce must wade through murky waters to uncover the truth. Yet Brithwin’s wise and kind nature begin to break down the walls of his heart, and he soon finds himself in a race to discover who is behind the evil plot before Brithwin is the next victim.

Sounds pretty good, huh? Now let's see what those two are up to today.

Royce, where do you go when you need to blow off steam? 
“To the practice fields to hone my skills. My men hate to see me come in one of those moods because they know they don’t stand a chance of beating me.”

Brithwin, what about you? Where do you go? 
“That depends.” She cut a quick glace Royce’s way. “If Royce doesn’t have a say in it I like to go to my favorite place down in the woods by the river. It’s so peaceful and I can just feel the magnificence of God. It’s humbling and always calms my soul. But if Royce has a say in it I can’t go alone so the chapel is where you’d find me.”

What makes you laugh? 
Royce: “When Brithwin gets that stubborn look on her face and lifts that cute little chin of hers I can’t help but chuckle.”
Brithwin: “Lots of things make me laugh. Lucas and his antics are forever making me laugh and of course whenever Royce decides I need ‘the treatment’ and he tickles me unmercifully.”

What do you feel is your greatest achievement?
Royce: “Marrying Brithwin.”
Brithwin: “Standing up to Royce before we married.”

Royce, What is Brithwin’s best trait?
“She has so many, but if I have to narrow it down to one, it would have to be her love for others. She has a heart like no other I’ve seen. She is always doing things for others and helping the needy. But her big heart goes further than people. She even has a tender spot for critters.”

Brithwin, What would you say Royce’s best trait is?

“His fierce sense to protect. He can roar like a lion when he’s protecting but it’s because he has this soft heart more like a house cat. He wants to protect but it is because he cares.”

Royce: “A common house cat? Did you have to compare me to a cat?”

What is your most treasured possession?
Royce: “Brithwin.”
Brithwin: “Royce, you can’t keep using me as your answer! That is almost like cheating.”
Royce: “It’s the truth so it’s not cheating. What’s your most treasured possession, dearling?”
Brithwin: “I won’t say you, Royce, because you are not a possession! So, I will say the knife that was my mother’s. I treasure it because it is all I own of hers.”
Royce: “Ach! I stand corrected, My Lady. You are not my possession, but you do possess my heart.”

What is a trait you dislike in people most?
Royce: “I’d have to say people who take advantage of or deliberately vex another.”
Brithwin: “I think I’ll agree with Royce on this one. I don’t like to see people mistreated.”

What do you regret most in life?
Royce: “That I wasn’t at Rosencraig to protect my family.”
Brithwin: “I can’t tell my greatest regret because I don’t want give a ‘spoiler’ but I do wish I’d been able to know my mother.”

What do you most value in your friends? 
Royce: “That my friends would fight beside me at risk of death.”
Brithwin: “Honesty.  I want to hear the truth from my friends even if it isn’t what I want to hear it.”

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would that be?
Royce: “I’d like to be the kind of lord my father was. He was a strong, but kind and fair man, and I would like to be like that.”
Brithwin: “You are like that Royce. You are your father’s son.”
Royce: “I’m glad you see me that way, my dear. What would you change about yourself? I can’t think of anything I’d change.”
Brithwin: “Oh, most definitely I’d be stronger so that when Royce gets in one of his tickling moods I could show him no mercy.”
Royce: “I shall remember that, My Lady.”

Thanks for being with us today Royce and Brithwin. We’ll look forward to seeing you in Sword of Forgiveness.

Debbie Lynne is offering a choice of paperback or Kindle version to a reader in the 48 continental states, and outside of that a Kindle version only. To be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment for Debbie Lynne asking her something about her writing or herself. Please enter me will not get you entered. Leave your email address in this format - joe{at}there[dot]com. Giveaway ends March 20th. Winner announced March 21st.


Debbie Lynne Costello has enjoyed writing stories since she was about eight years old. She raised her family and then embarked on her own career of writing the stories that had been begging to be told. She and her husband have four children and live in upstate South Carolina. She has worked in many capacities in her church and is currently the Children's Director. Debbie Lynne has shown and raised Shetland Sheepdogs for eighteen years and still enjoys litters now and then. In their spare time, she and her husband take pleasure in camping and riding their Arabian and Tennessee Walking horses


You can connect with Debbie Lynne at any of the links below:

Website: www.debbielynnecostello.com
Blog: www.theswordandspirit.blogspot.com

Blog: http://www.hhhistory.com/ 
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/marisadeshaies/medieval-times/  






 

58 comments:

  1. Oh my....I am definitely intrigued by this one! I love that in this brief snippet, it is quite evident how much Royce and Brithwin treasure each other. I want to learn more about them as well as what happened to Brithwin's mother. Thank you for the giveaway. I am certainly keeping my fingers crossed!

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

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    1. Hi Melanie, I know, this one sounds SO good!!! Hope you're doing well. :)

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  2. Hey Melanie! Thanks for coming by! Royce and Brithwin do love each other but it wasn't always that way. LOL

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  4. Odd question to ask- but do authors have any say over the cover image? I ask because it gave me the impression that the book was set much earlier than it actually is because the armour is more 12th century style than late 14th century.

    I'm from the UK and my email is medievalgirl01(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Hey Medieval Girl. The answer is yes and no. Yes I had lots of say, no in the fact that getting ones hands on correct armour costumes is not easy. Remember here in the states there was no armour. IN the UK I imagine you have more access to such things. Philly does have a museum here that has a room full of armour. I guess maybe with you studying medieval history you would notice the armour but I think most are not that studied on armours and so we look at armour as medieval and not necessary screaming a time period. If that makes sense.

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    2. Thanks for stopping by Medieval Girl. Chain mail is pretty timeless in its use. I realize that plate armor became more widespread in the 14 th century but mail was still used, so I wouldn't worry too much about that. Maybe Royce lives in a less industrious region. :-)

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    4. Still- I guess 'don't judge a book by its cover as they say'.........

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    5. Yes, apologies for the pendantry- I guess we don't always remember that the same resources are'nt always available to others.

      Anna- If I were to be picky, I would be a little concerned about someone wearing chain maille on top of bare skin like that...incomfortable and potentially reducing the protective purpose. They usually wore something underneath....

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    6. He does have a black shirt on, Medieval girl. It was a short sleeve and so she fixed that which I imagine wasn't easy with all the tiny wholes of chainmail. She went lighter rather than darker but if you look at his chest you will see black beneath the mail.

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    7. Debbie Lynne, I saw the difference in the skin tone under the maille on the arms versus the chest when I first saw the cover. I think they did a great job. It's called artistic license. ;)

      Medieval Girl - Don't take this the wrong way but really, if you only have criticisms I would appreciate you not leaving anymore comments. This is a no criticize zone, unless it's me writing a review!

      Thanks and have a blessed day.

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    8. Yes, black shirt duly noted. I'm not trying to be over critical really, but covers can sometimes perhaps give a different impression to that intended.......

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  5. Hi Debbie. What are your horses' names?

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    1. myfacebookemail23 at yahoo dot com

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    2. Awe, You won my heart with that question, Kim! OUr Arabian horse's names are Remington and Magnum. And our Tennessee Walker's names are Ruger and Trigger. And our miniature donkey's name is Winchester!

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    3. These are great names, Debbie!!! I am so glad you asked this question, Kim :)

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    4. Oh, and Debbie, I would love to come down one day and take pictures of your horses and barns, if it's allowed!

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    5. It is!!! Would love to have you, Anne. Do you ride?

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    6. I do not ride! I am appreciative of the beauty in a horse but have no desire to get back on one. :)

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    7. LOL! Okay, come see our horses then. You don't have to ride!

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  7. Sounds like an intriguing tale! I know I for one would *hate* being told I had to get married, and to be told *who* I'd have to marry would be unbearable. I'm glad they made the best of their situation and everything worked out for them. The interview was interesting.

    What inspired the author to start writing when she was 8 years old?

    My email is sunrisesoloist(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Bethany, I'm not sure what inspired me. I just loved to tell stories and draw. It was in me from a very young age. But my parents always encouraged me.

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    2. Hi Bethany, It is hard to imagine living in that era and being told whom to marry and not to marry. But as a parent, there have been times when I wished we could still do that today ;)

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  8. This sounds like a really interesting and unique book. Based on the character interview, the characters sound intriguing, strong, and well-written. I also like the mystery aspect of the plot.
    My question for the author is: How do you get past Writer's Block?
    My email is: haleyrscully(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. You mean beside bang my head on the wall? LOL. Writer's block is a terrible thing. It's so frustrating. I find prayers, stepping back and maybe reading an author I really like gets my mind off it and helps the creative juices start to flow again.

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    2. That's a great question, Haley! And I'm always fascinated in the answer given. Debbie, Do you ever just go out and take a nice long ride on one of those magnificent horses to clear your head?

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    3. Yes! I told my husband that even though I feel overwhelmed it helps to just go for a ride. Things just seem better then.

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  9. I am looking forward to reading this. My question is: What was the most surprising thing you learned during your research for this book and did you use it in the story? Thanks for the "getting to know" of the characters and giveaway. momrain{at}aol[dot]com

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    1. One of the most surprising things was that people had waterclosets! I just didn't expect that even though I knew that Roman had running water and indoor plumbing. It was just a big surprise to me.

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    2. That is pretty interesting. I thought they only had outhouses back then, and chamber pots!

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    3. They had waterclosets that dropped the sewage down into the water (Moat, river).

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  10. Debbie, do you find any of your own personal characteristics in Brithwin? What did she teach you as you wrote?

    I am so excited to read this! It sounds excellent! Thank you! kathrynlvoss(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. What a great question, Kate! I didn't deliberately put any of me in Brithwin but its hard for it not to happen when I write her! If there is a characteristic maybe a little bit of that stubbornness that "I can do this myself". I tend to take too much on feeling like I can do it without help. One of the greatest lessons I think I learned from this is how GREAT forgiveness really is! Whether it is something small or someone who we have to constantly forgive it make our lives much more peaceful when we are obedient and do as as the Lord commands.

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    2. I'm going to get along great with Brithwin because I am like that, too! :)

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  11. What a fun interview! Thanks for sharing. I look forward to reading more of this story.

    Is writing your full time job?

    pattymh2000(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. Yes, and taking care of my 2 grandchildren. But writing really can take up more than full time with research and marketing added into the equation.

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    2. Debbie Lynne, I don't know how you do it! You must be uber organized. :)

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    3. Well, once upon a time I was super organized but a 4 year old and an 18month old have a way of throwing chaos into organization. LOL. Seriously!!!

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  12. Debbie do you write as a full time career ? If yes, what would you be doing if you had not had the calling to become a writer ?

    Cnnamongirl(at)aol(dot)com

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    1. I was writing close to 15 hours a day for quite a while. But since I keep my grands, I have had to scale back. If I wasn't writing full time I'd be more active in another ministry probably. I am children's director at our church. It's small so it isn't terribly time consuming. And I'd also be riding and spending more time with my horses.

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  13. I can not way to read this story. Just from their interview these characters sounds like people I would want to know. Are Royce and Brithwin characters written as a tribute to someone in your life?
    My dream is to learn how to ride a horse. I would like to ride a dark brown or black horse with a shiny coat on the beach at sunrise.

    How you balance what you believe with what your publisher would want to publish?

    Sonnetta_jones@hotmail.com

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    1. Sonnetta, I LOVE my horses! There is nothing more relaxing than riding my horse on a beautiful day. Although every once in a while something will spook him and he takes off giving me a merry ride! LOL> I hold on for dear life as I try to slow him down. heehee.
      No, Royce and Brithwin aren't written as a tribute. But it's funny you should ask that because I have an 19th century story that the hero is a descendant of Royce and Brithwin and his wife is a tribute to my great-grandmother and also her sister who died in the 1918 flu epidemic. Their names were Basha Bay and Icey May. Basha left my grandmother and went to be with the Lord when my grandma was only a year old. Right before she died she asked to be sat up and she sang THE LITTLE BROWN CHURCH IN THE DELL. Then she laid back and died. Chokes me just thinking about it.

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    2. Debbie Lynne, That is an amazing story about your great grandmother! And I have to say I love both their names. Do you think you would ever use them in a story?

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    3. Awe, Anne, You don't know how much that means to me! Yes, I have them in the 19th century story that has Brithwin's and Royce's decendant in it, Duncan. Basha is the heroine in it and Icey is her sister. I plan a sequel to that story with Icey as the heroine. I was told by many that the names needed to be changed, but my heart won't let me! Maybe if I give a background of the names in the beginning of the book, those who don't like the names will be able to get past it.

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    4. I think a little background would be lovely in the beginning and make somuch more personal. My husband's grandmother's name was Eulala Mae, so that's kind of an odd one too, but cool at the same time!

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    5. OH I like that name, too! It is different but I like it.

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    6. Names can be......interesting......especailly in historical fiction, but I have encountered some that just seemed a little...odd for the time period. There was one with novel a 16th century English knight called 'Stafford'- which didn't seem a very likely first name, because Stafford is the name of English City. It would make sense as a Surname, or if there was some background it it, but without context it just didn't work for me. I saw it as a place name- it would be like calling your son Liverpool, Lancaster or Portsmouth.

      Brithwin and Royce work as real names though.......perhaps its funny though that the most popular names in Medieval England turned out to be Alice and William- though there were some more unusual ones too....

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  14. I enjoyed the interview of Royce and Brithwin. My question is how did you come up with their names? In reading the comments above, I noticed you mentioning the name Icey. I just wanted to say that I had a great aunt that was called Icey. Her given name was Ica, but for some reason they pronounced it differently or maybe Icey was her nickname. She was born in the very late 1800"s.

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    1. Oops, I forgot
      may_dayzee(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    2. KAY!!!! You are the first person who I've heard of that knew someone with the name Icey! I am so excited!! That is awesome! I did a medieval name search, trying to find names that were popular in the 14th century. Then I narrowed them down until I got what I liked. Royce's name was almost Rauf. But I just have a soft spot for Royce. It sounds nicer. LOL

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    3. How do you pronouce Icey? I would say it as Ice-y, but that's probably not right.....is it more like Issy?

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    4. LOL, No it truly is Ice-y. Some people hate it others love it. I love it. Probably because she was my great-great aunt. There were 9 in the family and many of them had less than usual names. Basha (my great-grandmother) named my grandmother Delitha.

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  15. Let me just say that even after I finished the story I couldn't stop thinking about it! I am a very fast reader, so when I can get my hands on an amazing, *clean*, longer-than-usual novel it's like a dream come true. :) I'm curious how long it took from the time you first had the idea to finish the story?? Was this an idea you had from a long time ago, or more recently developed?

    kaylee [dot] jarvis09 {at} gmail [dot] com

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  16. Kaylee, This is a story I wrote 8 years ago! But no one was buying medievals. They wouldn't even look at them. And going indie wasn't a good option at the time. So I wrote 19th century and my agent shopped those around. But my heart has always loved Sword of Forgiveness and I couldn't get it off my mind. I've done edits on it several times, like most authors. But as far as how long it took me to actually write the story, I had the idea and sat down to write it. 4 months later I wrote, THE END. But that was the first draft and there have been many drafts since. :o) Goodness I don't even know if I could look at that first draft without cringing. LOL>

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  17. I rode a horse 4 or 5 times when I was younger and I believe I could do that for relaxation too if I had a chance! Oh and of course I would have to be a little younger! Lol! This book seems to be very good with the reviews and the things I read about it! I hope to win a copy!

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  18. Good Luck, Brenda! I hope you win a copy, too! And I'm with you! I wish I was a little...well, maybe a lot younger. ;o). I'm off to go horseback riding now. Blessings!

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I am so delighted that you've taken time to come by and comment. Blessings for a joy-filled day!

1 Corinthians 1:3 ~ Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

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