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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wednesday Regency: Battles and Romance

The Battle of Lissa...What? Never heard of it. It's true. As with most historical romances, very little is known about the little battles that go on around our main story.

Now if you've ever read Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe series, or have seen the delectable Sean Bean in the movies, then you know those are not historical romances but historicals...historical war novels? Historical fiction? Not sure, but though there's a definite element of romance, it can never be classified as such.

However wars, or specific battles, often play an important part in a romance. For instance, in Seduction of a Proper Lady, I named several battles (that weren't Waterloo since most Regency readers have heard of that one). I used slightly more obscure battles because I could. No other reason than that.

In this instance, I used them to show where Ethan received his wounds but not much else about the specifics of the battle. Readers know what happens in war; in a romance, it's not really what we want to read about.

  • Ethan's burns were so severe they scarred a good portion of his body

  • Hence the reason he put about that he was not a fully functioning man

  • Which led to the reason he lived with Major Braedon Sinclair, his commanding officer, who's life he saved

  • Braedon is also his lover

  • And Ethan's wounds (preventing him from being considered a serious match in the ton) allowed him to form a closeness with Lady Laurel Westfield the ton allowed because they believed nothing untoward could happen. Oh how wrong they were!

The Battle of Lissa (the March 13, 1811 one, not the July 20, 1866 one) was a naval battle that saw Captain Sir William Hoste...led four British frigates into action flying the signal 'Remember Nelson', and shattered a Franco-Italian frigate squadron nearly twice his own strength.

See? You still don't care about that battle. But that's the point isn't it.

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