Saturday, September 18, 2010

Author Interview: Jeannie Lin

Please join in welcoming author Jeannie Lin to My Reading Room today.  Her books The Taming of Mei Lin was released by Harlequin Undone on September 1 and Butterfly Swords will be releasing on October 1.  

How did you come up with the title?
The Taming of Mei Lin was actually brainstormed by my publisher. They wanted something sexy that would immediately invoke the Asian setting. It worked out perfectly, as it also alludes to The Taming of the Shrew elements in the story. My original title was Warrior Bride, which didn’t have as much zip.
Butterfly Swords was a title that came to me at the same time I envisioned my heroine. I wanted her to use a martial art that I was familiar with and so I armed her with butterfly swords. The name immediately struck me as having a soft romance-y element as well as a hard action element.
How much of the book is realistic?
Can I plead the fifth? *grins* Historical romance is itself a bit of historical fantasy. The Taming of Mei Lin and Butterfly Swords flows in the tradition of Asian historical storytelling, which tends toward the romantic and the fantastic if you consider works like The Ballad of Mulan and The Romance of the Three Kingdoms.
That being said, it could happen. In The Taming of Mei Lin, a woman has been trained in martial arts by a rebel. There are many stories of female practitioners of martial arts and the story itself is an homage to the origin legend of Wing Chun Kung Fu. Also women in the Tang Dynasty enjoyed a higher degree of independence than many people realize.
Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
No, not directly. But I did want to bring the heroic stories I loved as a child to a mainstream English language genre. The stories come from the perspective of being Asian American and growing up a mix of popular culture from the East and West.
What books have most influenced your life most?
It’s hard to narrow that down. I’ve always been so receptive to books. It’s hard not to be affected and changed by what I read. I would say speculative or science fiction books have influenced my life the most, because they’ve made me reflect and think upon the world by removing the familiar and obvious arguments and rationalizations. “What if” is a very powerful tool.

Jeannie Lin writes historical romantic adventures set in Tang Dynasty China. Her short story, The Taming of Mei Lin from Harlequin Historical Undone is available September 1. Her Golden Heart award-winning novel, Butterfly Swords, will be released October 1 from Harlequin Historical and received 4-stars from Romantic Times Reviews—“The action never stops, the love story is strong and the historical backdrop is fascinating.”
Join the launch celebration at for giveaways and special features. Visit Jeannie online at: