Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Guest Post & Giveaway: Magical Heroine, Sexy Warrior ~ A Love Forbidden-Author Christina Phillips talks Roman/Druid History!

Okay, everybody. Let's give a warm welcome to author Christina Phillips, who will be hi-jacking the blog today in honor of her newest release, Forbidden (available TODAY). She's going to school us all in Roman/Druid history and answer the question: What is an ancient historical romance? 
Magical Heroine, Sexy Warrior ~ A Love Forbidden~
Thank you for having me on [Not Another Romance Blog] today, Rita! I’m very happy to be here to help celebrate the release of my debut ancient historical romance, Forbidden.

"He was a master of seduction - but no match for the magical allure of the woman he wanted most...
Carys knew from the moment she first spied on Maximus in his naked barbarian glory that he was a dangerous Roman centurion-his taut, battle-scarred flesh marking him as a fearless warrior. But her desire for him was as undeniable as it was illicit. 
Charged by his emperor to eliminate a clan of powerful Druids in Britain, Maximus never expects his mission to be thwarted by the clan's ethereal princess, Carys. Falling under her spell, he doesn't realize her true heritage-until he captures her heart as well as her body. 
Now Carys and Maximus must overcome the devastation of war and face the ultimate sacrifice if their forbidden love is to survive."
So what exactly is an ancient historical romance? 
Well, ancient history is the period known as Classical Antiquity, the beginning of recorded Greek history in about 776 BC. It also roughly coincides with the traditional founding of Rome in 753 BC. Western scholars use the fall of the Roman Empire in AD 476 as the end of ancient European history and the start of the Middle Ages.

Book Trailer:
Forbidden is set in AD 50 in Cymru (ancient Wales). The Romans invaded Britain in AD 43 and it took them seven years before they invaded the western peninsula, where they faced fierce resistance from the local tribes. But Rome wanted the gold and other precious minerals Cymru had to offer – and Rome wasn’t going to let a primitive province of the Empire get away with rebellion.
My hero, Maximus, is a Roman Centurion, a patrician and loyal to his Emperor and Rome. When he discovers his heroine, Carys, (who’s been spying on his bathing rituals for the last three months!) he’s instantly captivated. Who is this woman and why hasn’t she been seen in any of the villages the Legion has vanquished?  

Goddess Picture
Carys is, in fact, a Druid princess and acolyte of the Goddess of Wisdom, Cerridwen. She and the rest of her clan of Druids escaped into a magical enclave before the Romans invaded, and are waiting for a sign from their gods before they attack their enemy. But despite knowing this Roman would strike her dead if he knew who – what – she is, Carys can’t stop thinking about him.
Claudius, the Roman Emperor at the time, hated Druids with a passion and wanted all trace of them wiped out across his Empire. This couldn’t be better for the purposes of my plot! I now had historical back up for my Romans’ determination to hunt down and eliminate any Druid who had escaped them during the initial invasion.

But why was Claudius so determined to eradicate the Druids? 
Unfortunately, while there’s plenty of written and archeological evidence when it comes to the Romans, there’s not so much when it comes to the Druids. Caesar explains this lack of documentary evidence when talking of the Gaulish Druids: “they consider it improper to entrust their studies to writing.” And the contemporary written accounts we do have of them are invariably from the Roman viewpoint – the victors – so there’s likely to be some prejudice going on there!
 Druid Priest preforming a ritual
But here’s what we do know about them. They were widely respected as the priests of Celtic society, held responsibilities for lawmaking, were the keepers of knowledge and wisdom and were known as magicians. They were also, according to the Romans, the rallying force behind the rebellious tribes that inhabited Cymru and the Druidic stronghold on the Isle of Mon (now known as the Isle of Anglesey, off the west coast of Wales).
The Romans saw Druidism as a serious menace against the might of their Empire, and Claudius was convinced that as long as Druids remained in Britannia then rebellion and resistance would continue to flourish among the tribes.

This period of history is so rich with inherent conflict that as a romance writer I find it hard to resist! In Forbidden, Maximus has been charged by his Emperor to eliminate all Druids. And Carys, the woman he falls in love with, is one of Rome’s bitterest enemies. 

~*~Giveaway Details~*~
Christina Phillips has generously offered to giveaway a copy of 'Forbidden' to (1) one lucky commenter (International)! Follow the guidelines below and comment for your chance to win. The giveaway will end on Tuesday, September 21st, 2010 at 11:59:00 PM. The winner will be announced and contacted via email on Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010.

Giveaway Guidelines: To be entered in the giveaway, all you have to do is leave a comment stating what you found interesting about Chistina's guest post/or leave a question for Christina. [include your email address!]

For Extra Entries (do one or more of the following for extra shots at winning):
+2 'Like' Christina's Facebook Fan Page and/or leave a nice message on her wall.
+2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook
+3 Visit Christina's blog and leave a comment on any post you like.(state/link-to that post in your comment-entry here)
+4 Spread the word: Tweet on Twitter, Post a Facebook status, or blog about this interview and giveaway (provide a link to where/what you did)
+5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower
+6 Comment on my Coffee Shop Conversations Interview with Christina

(How-to guide for providing links to a specific facebook or twitter status': here)

IMPORTANT-Tell me in your comment which extra entries you are entitled to and include the necessary links so that I can verify what you did, or they will not count!

*INTERNATIONAL-this giveaway is open to residence all over the world (*wherever the Book Depository ships* You can check if BD will ship to your country: here)


  1. Forbidden really caught my eye. I'm a big fan of all things Celtic, especially Welsh history. I've often wondered just how influential women were in the Druidic religion. The last ancient historical romance I read was Joy Nash's Celtic Fire, which I really enjoyed. Looking forward to reading Forbidden!

    Diana ♥ Book of Secrets
    +2 Like Christina on FB (Diana Bookofsecrets)
    +2 Like NARB on FB (Diana Bookofsecrets)
    +5 Old follower

  2. Sorry if you get confused when you don't see a follower named Becca on your list. My name through my blogger gmail account is Becca, but when I follow someone, I follow through Yahoo, which has my name as Becky. Again sorry for the confusion.

  3. This book sounds so great because it's set in the unique time period of ancient Wales, and because the hero is Roman.

    +2 Like Christina's page
    +2 Like blog FB page
    +5 blog follower


  4. Repost! My computer spazzed and deleted my comments. Grrrr!

    Christina it's awesome that you included Druids in your book. Celtic Mythology has always been a passion of mine, but there aren't many books that incorporate it into them.


    +3 Visited Christina's blog and commented
    Link: http://christinaphillips.blogspot.com/2010/09/day-three-cari-quinn.html

    +5 Became a followers

    +6 Commented on your Coffee Shop Conversations Interview with Christina.

  5. Christina's post is one of the most interesting I have ever read. Seriously. The richness of the history woven around the romance is pretty enchanting. I am a history and romance buff, ancient civilizations are rarely covered in romance. I have my eye on this one! Thank you for highlighting this book. I would never have found it on my own.

    +2 Like NARB on FB
    +3 Visited Christina's blog, commented on Day Six post
    +5 GFC follower of NARB
    +6 Commented on interview w/ Christina

    jenma76 at hotmail dot com

  6. Hi Diana, thanks for stopping by! I'm fascinated by the Druid culture, and what really intrigues me is the lack of our knowledge. This meant when it came to the women and their status I decided to weave in the ancient goddess culture. By doing that, I gave the women of my ancient Druidic world equal power with their menfolk, something that wasn't usual for the time period in, say, the Roman world :-)

  7. Hi Jenna! I really enjoyed writing about my Roman hero, Maximus. It was so much fun having him meet and then fall in love with a woman who was so different to every other woman he'd ever met.

  8. Hi Becca! The goddess culture has always intrigued me, and by choosing this era in history, and the mystical Druids, I could explore how one ancient pantheon of gods and goddesses were in danger of being annihilated by another. Great fun :-)

  9. Scorpio, thank you so much!! I love history and enjoyed exploring the world of my Romans and Druids. I also loved weaving through the gods and goddesses of the time, a mystical aspect that impacted deeply on my characters' everyday lives.



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