Posts Tagged ‘Michelle Smart’

Let’s welcome Michelle Smart today, who’s turning our own words back on us in a brilliant guest post about her book, Talos Claims the Virgin. Look for a review to come, once Jett and I stop fighting over it and start reading. Thanks to Michelle for sending us a review copy!!

Talos Claims His Virgin
Guest Post by
Michelle Smart

“If you go by the title alone, this sounds like one of those really bad romances people make fun of…”

So said this very blog! And when I read this same blog, and saw the postscript asking if anyone knew anything about it, I couldn’t resist tweeting that I know a *lot* about this book. Because I wrote it! Alas, I didn’t title it. Nope, that’s one aspect of writing for Harlequin that’s completely out of the author’s realm of control. But I don’t care because I get total control on the best bit, namely the actual book itself!

Of all the books I’ve written, Talos Claims His Virgin is my absolute favourite. A lot of it is down to the hero, the aforementioned Talos, and much of it is down to the heroine being a violinist. I played the violin for years, learning it at school and making my way through the grades. I played for my school orchestra and when I left, I switched from classical to folk music, playing in Irish folk bands right until I had my eldest child. Now I play only for my own pleasure. I’d always wanted to write a book with a violin playing heroine and for a long time I’d had a story floating in my mind of a huge brute of a man bursting in on a shy violinist hiding herself away in a practice room and declaring that she’s the musician he’d been searching for. I just needed to figure out who this brute of a man was and who the violinist was.

So… Talos… my inspiration for him came from watching Game of Thrones. Khal Drogo anyone? For non-Game of Thrones peeps out there, do a search for Jason Momoa. Alternatively, visit my pinterest board where you will find many examples of his magnificence!

As for Amalie, I knew that even though she was seemingly shy, she had a core of steel that made her more than a match for Talos. Music is the medium that brings them together, and it’s through music that they first shag each-other’s brains out and then fall in love (after hating each other first, obviously – well, it is a romance!).

Indeed, music features heavily throughout the book. When Talos first meets her, she’s alone playing Massenet’s Meditation de Thais (there’s a clip of Sarah Chang playing it on my pinterest board too). Talos’s grandmother was a violinist and composer, and now that she’s died, he’s tasked Amalie with learning her final, unpublished, composition, and mastering it in time for his grandfather’s Jubilee celebrations. Did I mention that Talos is a prince…?

My thanks to Susan and Jett for hosting me here today – it’s been a joy! x

Michelle, you are awesome. Drop in here ANYtime. Seriously. You rock. And roll. And play violin. Lindsay Sterling, anyone?


If you go by the title alone, this one sounds like those really bad romances people make fun of. Nothing like what I actually read and usually like. But then take a look at the description:

Talos Kalliakis, the youngest Prince of Agon, has found the perfect gift for King Astraeus’s jubilee gala—the talents of exquisite violinist Amalie Cartwright. The warrior prince crossed Europe to find his perfect candidate, and he won’t take no for an answer!

But rumor has it that Amalie won’t perform, and now Talos has her hidden away in his villa, where sources suggest he’s claimed the most private of performances. With tensions running high, surely it can’t be long before they start changing their tune…to the royal wedding march!

So music plays a huge part in this book! (although if you look at the cover… ugh.)

But … Talos goes and finds this woman to be given as a gift. And that’s just kinda noxious. And while music is what brings them together, does it really play a role at all? Because, let’s face it: the most private of performances probably doesn’t mean she gets up on stage with her fiddle and an audience of one. Nope. Not in this one.

I’m curious. Anyone know anything?