Interview & Contest: Cathy Maxwell

Cathy Maxwell talks about how Daphne du Maurier helped her write WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE, her upcoming THE CHATTAN CURSE trilogy, and the fun of escaping to another world…
Jen: Cathy, thanks for joining us and congratulations on the republication of WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE. First, when was WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE published? And why does a publisher “re-release” a book?

Cathy: WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE was first published in 1998, almost fifteen years ago. Publishers re-release because the public is interested in the author and want to read those classics. It’s a wonderful compliment.

Jen: The novel is set in the Regency era—your specialty!—but it’s far from the ballrooms of London. Why did you choose a remote village and estate as a setting? Where is Cornwall, anyway?

Cathy: Cornwall is a peninsula located in the most western part of England. Eden would not be able to hide her past if she was in London, but here, surrounded by kind village people, she can be whomever she wishes. I also like the dynamic of country life. It truly is the heart and soul of England, even today.

Jen: The village, Hobbles Moor, and Penhollow Hall are a world onto its own, with most of the story taking place there. What is it about stories set in this sort of microcosm that appeals so much to so many readers? Is it that it can be so entertaining to read about characters such as villagers, servants and the “local gentry” can be so entertaining to read—as well as a change of pace?

Cathy: Don’t we all love escaping to another world? Leaving the bills, the cares, the car pools? We all have our “villages” in real life. Our peeps. And I think recognizing them in literature is grand fun.

Jen: There’s a bit of magic in WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE as the villagers cast a spell to bring the Earl of Penhollow a bride. Do you believe in magic? Is this something you’ve used as a plot device in other books? Which ones?

Cathy: I believe that when people come together for one shared purpose, great forces are set to work. Is that magic? Do we have the ability to will what we desire? Or is it Higher Power answering prayers? I’m open to everything. That being said, I’ll be using the mysteries of life again in my upcoming The Chattan Curse trilogy. The first book is LYON’S BRIDE and it will be released this May.

Jen: Trained as a courtesan, the beautiful and innocent heroine, Eden, is destined to be part of a harem. Did her blend of knowledge and innocence make her a difficult character to write?

Cathy: Eden wasn’t any more difficult than the others. And perhaps easier. After all, she had a secret. She isn’t innocent . . . whereas Pierce was more complex. He is the character with a decision to make.

Jen: Was including the harem a tip of the hat to the breakout romances of the late 70s from authors such as Johanna Lindsey, Rosemary Rogers and Kathleen Woodiwiss?

Cathy: I wasn’t thinking of them at all. Actually, I wanted to turn the tables. Eden is the one with “experience.” In many ways, Pierce is the innocent and I liked that thought of a “pure” knight.

Jen: Which, if any, of your other novels is similar to WHEN DREAMS COME TRUE in terms of being set outside of London and the immediate concerns of the ton?

Cathy: Many of them—BECAUSE OF YOU, TEMPTATION OF A PROPER GOVERNESS, THE SEDUCTION OF AN ENGLISH LADY, IN THE HIGHLANDER’S BED, FALLING IN LOVE AGAIN . . . titled people for titled people’s sakes are not interesting to me. I like the dynamic of a society.

Jen: It’s been fourteen years since Pierce and Eden got together. Surely one of their children will be old enough in a few years to have a romance of his or her own. Do you think you’ll ever return to Penhollow Hall?

Cathy: I don’t know about revisiting Penhollow Hall, although I suspect I’ll be returning to Cornwall again. For the research on this book, I read Daphne du Maurier’s Vanishing Cornwall. Cornwall was the setting for many of her books and her travelogue is wonderful reading for an armchair traveler.

Jen: How can readers get in touch with you with questions and comments? And are you on Facebook?

Cathy: I have a website at Yes, I’m on Facebook. Isn’t everyone? Readers can find me at if they want to yak at me. To sign up for my mailing list or just post a quick comment, I have a fan page at

Jen: What have you got in store for us next?

Cathy: This is a Maxwell packed spring! The first of The Chattan Curse books is out in May, LYON’S BRIDE. Then, in June, Avon Impulse is releasing an e-anthology titled FOR LOVE AND HONOR. Lynne Hinton and Candis Terry are the book’s other two authors. We were each given the theme of “a soldier” and turned loose from there. I adore my contribution The Bookish Miss Nelson. It is set during the Peninsula Wars in the early 1800’s.

Then, Pocket Books will be re-e-releasing (did you catch all of that?) a novella I wrote for them a decade ago titled, In a Moonlit Garden. It will be out in July. Long time fans will know this is from the TEA FOR TWO anthology I did with Liz Carlyle.

Finally, the second book of The Chattan Curse trilogy, THE SCOTTISH WITCH, will be out in November of this year. The third book, THE DEVIL’S CURSE, should be out next spring.

I have my nose to the grindstone!

Contest details:

  • The prize is a print copy of When Dreams Come True.
  • The contest is open to US and Canadian residents only.
  • You must leave a meaningful comment for entry.  This means your comment needs to be more than “please enter me in the contest”.
  • A valid email address needs to be included in your comment.  If you’re worried about spam, please modify your address, such as admin.bookblog AT  You can also send a message to this email after your comment has been posted.
  • While following the blog isn’t required, it is appreciated.
  • The contest ends on Sunday, April 29.
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13 thoughts on “Interview & Contest: Cathy Maxwell

  1. Diane D - Florida says:

    I loved this interview and review of your book “When Dreams come True”. There’s just something about this type of romance that really engages me. I love to follow the journey of the Hero and Heroine from the beginning of their story right upto their Happy Ever After. I also have to say that I really enjoy a story when it’s set in Cornwall. When I lived in England, we used to go to Cornwall regularly on holiday. There’s just something about the wild Cornish moors (Bodmin) that draws me in. I’ve even been to Jamaica Inn for lunch, and I was over the moon about this. I’d read the novel, “Jamaica Inn” and had always had a yearning to go there. Sorry for getting so carried away. I’d love to read “When Dreams Come True” by Cathy. Thank you for this opportunity. dpd333 (at) aol dot com

  2. Diane D - Florida says:

    I should have mentioned that “Jamaica Inn” was written by Daphne du Maurier. dpd333 (at) aol dot com

  3. Barbara E. says:

    I’m not sure how I missed When Dreams Come True the first time around, I was definitely reading historical romance in 1998, but I’m happy it’s being rereleased so I have another shot at it. I’m definitely looking forward to reading it. Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  4. jbcweiss says:

    Great interview – I learned alot. I also missed When Dreams Come True the first time around and will have to give it a try. Always wanted to visit Cornwall where so many authors set their books. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Carol L. says:

    An informative interview. I enjoyed reading it. When Dreams Come True is on my TRL.I’m also anxiously looking forward to Lyon’s Bride. Thank you for the chance. Carol L Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  6. erin says:

    Thanks for a great interview and giveaway! I feel like I’ve been under a rock. Haven’t had the pleasure of reading any of Cathy’s books. This newest re-release looks fabulous 🙂

  7. Maureen says:

    Congratulations to Cathy on all her releases this year. It sounds like a charming story with a different setting from other Regency era stories. I do like small town stories and this might be similar. mce1011 AT aol DOT com

  8. Lauren Mackesy says:

    Wow, this doesn’t sound like just a romance. Thanks so much for the giveaway! Lmackesy @

  9. Maria D. says:

    I always love finding out what inspires an author to write a certain book and I loved Daphne Du Maurier’s work. I think it’s also really interesting that Ms. Maxwell chose to make the woman the “experienced” one and the male hero the innocent, that doesn’t happen too often – especially in a Regency historical. Thanks for the giveaway! junegirl63 at gmail dot com

  10. Jen B. says:

    I recently read a book where the woman was experienced and the man wasn’t. It really is a different sort of dynamic. Thanks for the wonderful interview. I look forward to reading the book. It’s right up my alley! jepebATverizonDOTnet on

  11. Jen @ RtB says:

    More comments from Blogger:

    From May: I love Daphne Du Maurier’s books! The Frenchmen Creek was one of my favorites… (not Rebecca surprisingly…)

  12. Jen @ RtB says:

    Many thanks to everyone who stopped by this week. Our contest winner is Maria D. An email is on its way to her with directions on how to claim her prize.

Comments are closed.