Pat McDermott brings us A Band of Roses

Born and educated in Boston, Massachusetts, Pat McDermott grew up in a family full of music and inspiring Irish tales. Before the kids came along, she had fun in between real jobs as a singer and guitarist in an Irish-American band. She has attended various writing classes over the years and studied science fiction writing with the late Harry Clement Smith (Hal Clement). Besides creating rousing adventure stories, Pat enjoys reading, cooking, gardening, hiking, and traveling—especially to Ireland. She lives and writes in New Hampshire, where she is currently working on her next novel.

Vonda Sinclair: Welcome, Pat! Congratulations on your new release from Tiger Publications! What a beautiful cover! Please tell us about your book, A Band of Roses.

Pat McDermott: A Band of Roses is an alternate history set in modern day Ireland. The story’s “what if” premise supposes what Ireland would be like today if King Brian Boru hadn’t perished at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014 AD. I’ve created an Ireland that’s still a monarchy, one where the present King Brian is a descendant of the first Brian Boru, and his daughter Talty is a princess in trouble.

Talty Boru becomes a pawn not only in the high-stakes gamble for offshore oil, but in a scheme to seize the throne of England that escalates into murder and treason. From Japan to California to an eleventh century Ireland preparing for the Battle of Clontarf, she finds romance and adventure and brings back a discovery worth more than any oil well. Yet all she wants is to return to her family and her lifelong friend and protector, Neil Boru, the adoptive cousin she secretly loves but can’t have—or so she thinks. Talty’s warrior cousin has a secret of his own, one that emerges as the Boru clan scrambles to thwart an invasion of Ireland and bring Talty home..

VS: Sounds exciting, full of adventure and action! What is the story behind the story?

PM: I’m blessed to have two wonderful aunts who happen to be devotees of Irish history. When I was a little girl, they entertained me with all sorts of legends and assured me that we were descended from Irish royalty. (Isn’t everyone who’s Irish?) From one of their trips to Ireland, they brought me a gift of a copper statue of Brian Boru, and I wanted to know more about him than I already did. Everything I found said how sad it was that Brian didn’t survive Clontarf, as Ireland would be a very different place today. So, I started thinking . . . what if he had survived?

VS: How fascinating! Isn't it amazing how things like this from our childhood can influence our adult lives so much. What element of this story was hardest for you?

PM: Writing the chapter where Talty visited the aftermath of the Battle of Clontarf. Weaving the historical details around the characters without bogging down the story was a challenge.

VS: That does sound difficult. Please tell us about your favorite character in this book.

PM: “Roses” has quite a cast of characters, and I love them all, even the villains. To answer the question, I’ll choose Neil Boru. Being an adopted member of the royal Boru clan causes Neil to feel less than worthy of his noble station in life. He’s an Air Corps pilot and a warrior sworn to protect his cousin, Princess Talty. When she comes to harm, he feels a failure. He loathes himself for falling in love with her, as she is his adoptive cousin and such feelings are forbidden. Neil’s struggle to choose the honorable path shows a nobility that transcends bloodlines.

VS: Forbidden love is one of my favorite elements. When did you know you wanted to be an author?

PM: Getting stories on paper has always been a sporadic hobby for me. For years, those pesky ideas and characters made me drive by my exit on the highway. My kids were away at college when I finally enrolled in writing classes to deal with my imaginary friends, and I made some wonderful flesh-and-blood friends along the way.

VS: I'm glad you decided to pursue writing seriously. What's next for you?

PM: I’m currently finalizing a sequel to A Band of Roses, and the third book in the “Roses” trilogy is in the works. For me, the sound of a fiddle in a real Irish pub often helps the writing process along. A trip or two to Ireland may be in order . . .

VS: Wonderful idea! That would inspire me too. Would you like to ask blog readers a question?

PM: Yes! Does knowing too many personal details about an author interfere with your enjoyment of a story?

VS: Interesting question. Thanks again, Pat, for being here to talk to us today! Everyone, please visit Pat's website

To purchase A Band of Roses please visit:


Barnes and Noble


Eliza Knight said...

Congrats on the release Pat! Great interview. How did you come up with this story, it is fascinating.

I think it would depend on how much personal info you're talking about. I read all my friends books and knowing them doesn't bother me. However "when" I get published, I will attempt to keep my family life to myself from readers, but I don't mind sharing other things with them.

Anonymous said...

Hey Pat! Wanted to stop by and congratulate you on your release. We Tigresses must stick together! I'm like you now, and clueless about how much information is too much. We'll share as we go!

Christine London said...

Yah, Pat. What a wonderful tale and story that inspired it. Thanks for sharing.
As far as personal details, I think any influences that have gone into the birthing of a story make it all the more fascinating. Generally, and from an authorly perspective, I have been counseled by many an author to keep family in the shadows. Most people out here on the 'Net are friendly and wonderful. It is the one in ten thousand that might have other than godd intentions that all surfers must protect against. Those personal details that might leave you too accessible don't enhance a story and are best left untold for safety's sake.
Sending many good wishes for big success with this book and its sequels!
Your fellow Tigress
Christine London

Lexi said...

Great interview, Pat and Vonda. Pat, the story sounds great! Thanks for sharing.

Pat, in answer to your question, I feel I enjoy a story more when I know more about the author. Only once was I seriously disappointed by what I heard about/ from an author, but it didn't stop me from loving her work.

Anonymous said...

I loved hearing how you developed and wrote the story, Pat! Can't wait to read it!! Congratulations!

In regards to your questions, it doesn't make any difference to me if I know something personal about a writer or not -- for me, it's all about the story. EXCEPT when those writers happen to be friends. THEN, it's all about them!! :) Clear as mud, right?

Julie Moffett

Holly Greenfield said...

Great interview Pat & Vonda.

To answer Pat's question: I like to know mini details. Like that the author is human like me. :-) Kids, family etc. I do find that when I know an author personally I look at the book I am reading differently. It doesn't change my opinion of the story. A good story is always good. I just tend to hear their voice in my head as I'm reading. Especially from our local chapter. You get to know their mannerisms and gestures. After while when you read what they write you almost see them writing it. Makes for a different reading experience.