Mysterious Jane

Imagine you are fifteen, you are the daughter of a duke, the year is 1553 and the king – who is the same age as you – has died and named you his successor.

You’ve bowed to the wishes of your parents all your life, even marrying a man you do not love, and though you are fourth in line to the throne, you’ve never dreamed you’d be in a position to sit on it. The young king scratched out a will on his death bed, a will Parliament never saw. And neither did you. Only powerful men on the king’ s council saw it. These were the same men who for three days didn’t tell England their king was dead, who worked secretly on the details of getting you on the throne, and who bypassed two princesses and even your own mother to do it.

You are the queen they want because you are young and Protestant and able to bear children, a boy specifically. They think you will name the man you married King simply because they ask it of you. They think because you are young and female and obedient that you will do this. They think they can rule through you. Despite you. Because why else would they go to all this trouble?

Lady Jane Grey, whose story I weave through my upcoming release Lady in Waiting, is this very same young woman. And the photo of the above painting is maybe, perhaps, what she looked like. Truth is, no one is really sure. Hers was a story so tragic and compelling I had to find a way to layer it into a present day novel. I’ve long been intrigued by her story, and I naively figured this one would be an easy one to write. Instead, this book has challenged me on all kinds of levels; I’ve never felt so unequal to the task as I have felt with this book. I have been stretched as a wordsmith and storyteller, but all the writing and rewriting and rewriting and rewriting will be worth the effort in the end. I am counting on it. I am finally starting to feel confident that it’s going to be a story that people will like.

I’ll keep whetting your appetite as the months tick by. We’re looking at a September release for Lady in Waiting. In the meantime, I am setting my sights on Virginia and the echoes of the Civil War. Should be an interesting ride. . .

Author: Susan

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