Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Straight Talking from the Library: Jessica Jefferson

Welcome to Jessica Jefferson, author of TAMING MISS TISDALE, as she stops by The Library as part of her virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.


I’ve been an avid reader since childhood. My mother had shelves lined with books from Louis L’ Amour, Judith Krantz, Judith Michael, and Kathleen Woodiwiss. I consider myself fortunate to have been raised by a woman who valued reading. Today, I encourage my own children to read. Both have shelves and stacks of books, as well as e-readers. I’m a sucker when it comes to buying them books – if they want one, I let them have it.

I actually keep a book journal – something I started in high school. There, I record the titles and authors of all the books I read, with the exception of e-books. I consider my Kindle to be enough of a record already not to necessitate all that rework.

As difficult as this was, I’ve somehow been able to come up with a list of my top ten favorite books. They are in no specific order, and are likely to change the day after this post goes live.

1. Paradise by Judith McNaught – I reread this one at least once a year. It has everything one could wish for in a romance. My tastes have always leaned toward historical romance, but this contemporary gave me everything and more. Poor boy meets rich girl, boy loses girl by horrible misunderstanding by evil father, girl and boy meet years later while she’s engaged and he’s rich and powerful. I can’t put it down once I start reading.

2. The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde – This collection of Wilde’s work gives me everything from his poetry to his essays, as well as his novel – The Picture of Dorian Gray. I started reading Wilde in high school and I’ve always enjoyed his poetry. I find him to be incredibly witty, and a bit snarky – my favorite qualities in a writer.

3. A Rose in Winter by Kathleen Woodiwiss – This beauty and the beast story turns out not to be. The hero in this is cocky, self-assured, and could easily seduce any woman – my perfect idea of a book boyfriend. Woodiwiss was a gifted writer and keeps me reading and interested for hundreds and hundreds of pages (her books are pretty long).

4. Perfect by Judith McNaught – I hate being unoriginal, but I love this author. Perfect is another contemporary featuring a small town girl and rich and hunky actor on the run. It’s actually a little more suspenseful that I’m used to in a romance novel, but it moves me to tears. Actual tears.

5. Goddess of the Hunt by Tessa Dare – This book introduced me to Tessa Dare, and I can safely say I’ve been hooked ever since. She’s a hilarious author and her books keep me laughing.

6. Smooth Talking Stranger by Lisa Kleypas – My aunts Robin and Judy referred me to this book. They said it was “comforting”, one of those books you go to after you’ve had a bad day. They were right. This book is like chicken and noodles – comfort food for the soul. It’s a tender story with sexual tension, hot love scenes, and makes me say “awww” every time.

7. If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones – Part of her Inside Out Trilogy, this book introduces Chris Merit – the sexiest book boyfriend out there. He’s a tortured artist on a motorcycle – need I say more?

8. How the Marquess was Won by Julie Anne Long – This is another in the Pennyroyal Green series, even though it deviates from the others in that the H and h are not actually Redmond’s or Eversea’s. Julie Anne Long is another one of those authors who writes historical romance that could easily be rewritten as a contemporary and uses humor well.

9. The Crucible by Arthur Miller – Technically, a play. I think this is one of those high school required readings that’s a rite of passage, much like Catcher in the Rye. I get so excited when I read it and the characters are written so well. I’ve never seen it performed on stage, but I’m so happy with just reading it straight through, I can’t imagine liking it anymore than I already do.

10. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell – I read this at a pretty young age, but it wasn’t until I learned more about the author herself that I truly appreciated the book. There are pieces of her scattered throughout that book, and it’s fascinating to find them.


Miss Tamsin Tisdale believes herself to be completely unsuitable for London life. After a myriad of social mishaps, and the potential ruination of her family name, she’s shipped away to her cousin’s northern estate. Only after she comes to her senses will she be welcomed home.

Marcus Winston, the Duke of Grayson, has a lackluster reputation. The last in a dying line, he’s endured a protected life—rank with privilege, encumbered by isolation. After a brief encounter with rebellion, he learns the devastating consequences of his carelessness and willingly accepts living life from inside his gilded cage.

However, a chance meeting with the brazen Miss Tisdale gives Marc the opportunity to reinvent himself into the man he’s always dreamed of being. When his deception comes to light, and ghosts from both their pasts threaten to unravel the intimacy they’ve come to cherish, will either of them set their fears aside long enough to embrace love? Or will Miss Tisdale’s stubbornness divide them?


Jessica Jefferson makes her home in northern Indiana, or as she likes to think of it—almost Chicago. She is heavily inspired by classic sweeping, historical romance novels, but aims to take those key emotional elements and inject a fresh blend of quick dialogue and comedy. She invites you to visit her at and read more of her random romance musings: and Like her at Facebook and follow at Twitter. Buy the book at Amazon.


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  1. I know a lot of the books you mention, being Kathleen Woodiwiss one of my favorite with her book Shanna. And your book sounds like a good historical romance, I'd like to read it too.
    Thanks for the giveaway!

    1. I love Shanna!! Good luck in the giveaway!

  2. Intriguing list of books--I'll need to look into a few!


    1. I hope you do- I'd give them all five stars!

  3. I am a huge fan of Judith McNaught and Kathleen Woodiwiss. My bookcase is full of their books. Love your list.


    1. I was a little nervous about putting this out there - books can be so polarizing, so thank you!

  4. Love your book list. Looking forward to reading TAMING MISS TISDALE.

  5. I like your list of favorite books. But what about Lisa Kleypas and her historical romances? They are probably the best historical romances I've ever read.

  6. The list of your favorite books are all great books. I can't say that I have read any of them though since all I really read is sci-fi & fantasy. I wish you well with your book.