Tuesday Book Club with BJ Scott
I have a confession to make… I accidentally omitted BJ’s title in the Pirates of Britannia wrap up in the most recent edition of the Love’s Great Adventure Magazine. But the good news, I get to learn more about BJ and her wonderful new title, Laird of the Deep.
Welcome to my blog BJ! Tell me a little about you. What were you like at school?
While you would not know it now, when I was in school, I was on every sport team except Basketball. Not much call for players that are five foot-three lol. When I was not in the gym, on the playing field, or studying, I was reading or doing a variety of crafts…many of which I still do today.
What inspired you to write?
A true Gemini, I was born with the gift of gab and need to tell a story. I have always loved jotting down stories.
My mother was a Gemini and she loved books too. Which writers inspire you?
There are many authors I admire, but my first love was CS Lewis. I adored the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.
What inspired you to write this story?
I generally write Scottish Historical Romances set in the 1300s and 1400s, but when I was approached by the publishers of Dragon Media and asked to write a book for the Pirates of Britannia series, I thought it would be a nice change, yet still allowed me to stay in my genre.
How much research do you do?
It all depends of the book. When writing sequels to my initial books, most of the research is done at the beginning, so the books that follow do not take as much. However, each of my books have something new or a battle that needs to be researched accordingly. This is my first venture into the pirate realm, so it took a lot of research to make sure the book stayed as true as possible.
Can you give us a blurb to let us know what the story is about?
Kendrick MacCallum never dreamed he would trade his life as a highly respected Highland warrior–slated to someday take his place as laird–for a one of danger and deception, but the harsh reality of a recent attack on his beloved clan taught him that desperate times really do call for desperate measure. Left with no other choice, he must face his own personal demons, choose between honor and piracy, vindication and love, if he wishes to save his clan, keep the promises made to his father, and rescue a precious cargo he discovers while onboard ship.
Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
Kendrick MacCallum is a strong Highland warrior, raised on a strict code of honor and duty to his clan and country. He is a passionate man, who is not without flaws, but when his father is killed in an attack on their stronghold and he suddenly finds himself a laird, burdened by the responsibility of saving his clan and seeing his enemy punished, he must make some lifechanging decisions. Kendrick is prepared to do whatever is necessary Even if it means pushing aside his own, fears, wants and desires for the good of the clan.
What book/s are you reading at present?
Unfortunately, my writing plate is very full right now, so I have little time for pleasure reading. I have a long TBR list but right now am busy with writing and trying to fit in time for my husband and pets.
What writing project are you working on next?
I have several works in progress. I am nearing completion of the first book in a new series Highland Challenge, that is a sequel series to my bestselling Fraser Brothers Trilogy and bestselling series Blades of Honor. I am also working on fleshing out two novellas that I wrote as part of boxed sets and hope to release them soon as full novels. Highland Covenant and A Rose Among Thorns. There are several others waiting in line and I am considering another pirate book as well.
Tell us something unique about you that they wouldn’t guess from just looking at your photograph?
Not sure you could tell from a photo or not, but when I am stuck in writers block, I have been known to take to my clawfoot tub and spend hours working through chapters.
Oh my, a clawfoot bath! How wonderful!
What is your favourite movie and why?
I have many movies I adore. I love any that are historically based in either Medieval Scotland and am also fond of movies about the American Civil War, or Native American history. So on my list would be, Braveheart, Dances with Wolves, Last of the Mohicans, The Patriot, Legends of the Fall.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Author-BJ-Scott-308663055834706/
- Twitter: @BJScott3
- Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/B.J.-Scott/e/B006NSQR9G
- Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4938076.B_J_Scott
Would you like to share an excerpt from your book?
Crinan, Scotland 1499
Kendrick MacCallum never imagined he would find himself lurking in the shadows outside a seedy establishment like the Pirate’s Lair. The waterfront tavern was an infamous gathering place for scoundrels, murderous cutthroats, brigands, and thieves. Honorable men avoided the inn, aware if they dared to enter, leaving unscathed was highly unlikely—if they left at all. Not even the king’s warriors charged with apprehending known pirates dared enter, fearing they would disappear without a trace.
There was still time for Kendrick to forgo his plan and depart before anyone noticed him, but right now, his estranged cousin, privateer Findlay MacAlpin, was the only person he could ask for help.
Chilled to the bone, exhausted, and hungry, he huddled beneath his heavy woolen cloak, then turned his back to the cold north wind and driving rain that pummeled him. His legs numb from standing in the bushes for what seemed like an eternity, Kendrick shifted his weight from one foot to the other, while rubbing his icy palms together. The idea of going inside and warming himself by the fire tempted him. The aroma of roasted meat and what he suspected was freshly baked bannock, wafting from the inn each time the door opened, caused his empty stomach to growl so loudly he was certain anyone passing by would hear it. Yet, he stood his ground and waited. He wanted to be sure Fin was in the tavern before he entered.
He swiped a hand across his beard-stubble chin and blew out a heavy sigh. Four summers had passed since Fin last set foot in MacCallum Castle, and Kendrick greeted the prospect of a reunion with an unsavory mix of anticipation and dread. The bad terms on which his cousin departed, and how he might react to this unannounced visit, gave him cause for concern. But after the devastation and horror he witnessed during a recent unprovoked attack on his father’s castle by their neighbors, Clan Lorland, he had nowhere else to turn.
Despite the animosity between his father and Fin, Kendrick cared what happened to his cousin, so he relied on gossip bandied about the castle to track his whereabouts over the years. Now he needed to find him, he hoped the stories were true.
When not at sea, amassing a great fortune from ill-gotten gains, Fin was rumored to spend most of his time on the Isle of Scarba—a notorious haven for Scottish pirates. However, Kendrick also learned that when his cousin returned to mainland Scotland, he frequented the Pirate’s Lair. Some claimed it was to quench his insatiable lust for whisky and disreputable wenches who lifted their skirt for coin. Yet others swore Fin was a silent partner of the tavern owner, Scurvy Dan. Knowing his cousin, both reasons made sense, but regardless of why he came to Crinan mattered not. Finding him was all that Kendrick cared about, and he figured it was a logical place to start.
Upon arriving at the outskirts of Crinan a little before sundown, he was relieved to spot his cousin’s vessel, the Bana-Mhara—the Sea Witch—anchored in a small secluded inlet on the outskirts of the village. Hoping his fortune was about to change for the better, he offered up a quick prayer of thanks.
It was common knowledge that pirates seldom anchored their ships where the king’s men or other scoundrels might spot them and confiscate the cargo. Not even when they needed to make repairs following a battle did they dock in plain sight. But if what he’d heard was true, his cousin was no ordinary pirate and feared nothing.
When they had been young lads, Fin spent a great deal of time at MacCallum Castle and the two were as close as brothers. Unfortunately, as time passed, they grew apart and each followed their own path, inevitably leading them in opposite directions.
The oldest bairn and only son of Laird Ronald MacCallum, Kendrick prided himself on being an honest, brave, and a highly respected warrior slated to be the next clan chieftain. Fin chose a darker path, following in the footsteps of their mutually shared ancestor, Arthur MacAlpin—once known as the Pirate King, a ruthless demon who struck terror in the hearts of all he met.
Kendrick would never forget the flare of his father’s nostrils, bulging neck veins, and contorted expression of fury when he first learned his nephew chose to seek his fortune at sea, or the tirade that followed. Ronald called Fin an outlaw and an embarrassment to the clan before he banished him from the castle and forbid him to ever return. A dutiful son, Kendrick seldom challenged his sire’s decisions, but was about to do so now.