I’m turning the Round Pen over to author Jill Hughey today! Grab a coffee or tea, or whatever chills your heels and let’s have fun.
A New Setting for Historical Romance
Ever heard of Charlemagne? Of course you have.
Every heard of The Carolingian Empire? Probably not. The beginning of the Carolingian Empire is the date of Charlemagne’s crowning as emperor, in the year 800. The end is somewhere in the same century, though the date depends on which historian you study.
The Carolingians believed in dividing wealth equally among their sons. This is an interesting distinction from Britain where the rule of primogeniture – eldest male heir takes all – provides so much fodder for historical romance conflict.
In reality, primogeniture gives stability, by keeping vast land holdings and wealth intact, which is why you’ve heard of the British Empire but not the Carolingian one.
Charlemagne ruled over a vast territory that now includes France, Germany, and Italy. After his death in 814, his son Louis the Pious, as the only surviving son of Charlemagne, inherited the empire as a whole. He very quickly acted to divide it into three kingdoms, with each of his three sons becoming managers of a piece of the pie, though, as emperor, Louis was still the big boss.
Louis’s wife then inconveniently died. He remarried, and, in 823, the marriage yielded son number four for Louis. In 829, he partitioned off a piece of the empire for little Charles. Suddenly, what had been divided in thirds was divided in fourths.
All hell broke loose.
The first civil war of the decade was fought almost immediately. Louis was deposed for a brief period after this uprising, but quickly regained his throne early in 831. The Carolingian Empire endured two more civil wars during Louis’s reign. I’m sure that was no fun for him, but all of this conflict makes a wonderful backdrop for historical romances, which is why I set my series smack in the middle of it.
The first book in the Evolution Series. Unbidden, begins in autumn 831. We briefly see the emperor at the palace in Aix-la-Chappelle. He is nervous and fractious and not particularly sympathetic to the young noblewoman, Rochelle, who wants to continue running her estate with impunity instead of accepting the man Louis has chosen to be her husband. Her interview with him is her first exposure to a world much larger than she previously occupied.
The books in chronological order are Unbidden, Redeemed, and Vain. Tired of England? You might want to give the Evolution Series and the Carolingian Empire a try, and it is pretty painless to do so because Unbidden is only 99 cents and is available at most ebook vendors. It is also available in print at Amazon and Createspace.
Amazon – http://viewbook.at/unbidden
Jill Hughey has loved historical romance since sneaking peeks at her mother’s library years ago. She has enjoyed writing just as long, and taking her readers on long, satisfying journeys to places they have probably never been in a book before.
Jill lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two sons. Her hobby is singing lessons, in which she studies classical soprano and some lighthearted works.
Great covers! Thank you for visiting and sharing, Jill!