Brandy, You’re a Fine Girl

Coming February 8, 2022! I am so excited to be published by Histria Addison & Highsmith!

If you know the song, you know Brandy’s sailor loved the sea more than her (The bastard.). Brandy, You’re a Fine Girl is historical fan fiction, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the 1972 hit song. Brandy’s story doesn’t end when the music stops–her destiny is filled with adventure!

Crum, England, mid-1800s: 
“‘Brandy, ‘ he told me, ‘you’re a fine girl, ‘ he said. ‘You’d make a good wife.'”

Barmaid Brandy seizes on a plan to become that good wife and escape her life of drudgery. A pregnancy would be just the thing to get him to marry her. When that doesn’t work, she crosses paths with Elliot, a nobleman in need of a wife and heir by his fast-approaching 30th birthday, or else his inheritance will go to his scheming cousin Clarence.

Once married, Elliot’s problems appear solved, and Brandy has a kind husband and a warm and comfy new home, even if it is full of Elliot’s odd band of friends. Everyone tries to get along and put up with Brandy’s strange cravings and profanity-laden drama, until they discover she was never really pregnant.

She fears she’ll be kicked out, but not to worry–there’s still time for Elliot to fulfill his husbandly duty and save the day. Or is he… up to the task? When Elliot’s handsome — and virile — best friend Beau shows up, Brandy promptly falls head over heels. She becomes pregnant, but will it be too late? Swearing she can live on love, Brandy dreams of running off with Beau, until she discovers a shocking secret about her husband and his best friend.

Will the baby arrive before Elliot’s 30th birthday? Will it even be a son and therefore true heir? And who is the mysterious one-armed carpenter from Brandy’s past? Fear not — Brandy always has a back-up plan. From the tarnished silver locket (that turned her neck green, but may hold a pirate’s map), to a secret passageway containing hidden treasure, Brandy is determined to get by on her wits and her tits.

The #1 hit song, Brandy, You’re a Fine Girl, was written and composed by Elliot Lurie and recorded by his band, Looking Glass. Dee DeTarsio is an award-winning writer living in southern California. She hopes Elliot Lurie enjoys Brandy living her best life and enjoying fine adventures!

Behind the Scenes:

5 stars to Brandy (which I wrote, but hear me out) mostly because of the brilliance of the song itself, which is celebrating its 50th Anniversary! I was able to track down Elliot Lurie, singer/songwriter, who is as lovely as his voice! He gave me his blessing for continuing Brandy’s story in my novel, (though he is not endorsing it—and I can’t help but agree with his reasoning—his Brandy is the perfect story set to song at 3:00 minutes long). I hope he’s OK with the liberties I took with Brandy, because I couldn’t resist finding out what happened to her. I mean, come on, poor Brandy, wandering those dark streets alone, waiting for that rotten sailor who wouldn’t marry her? (His life, his lover, his lady is the sea?) Wearing a locket on a silver chain that bears HIS name? Rejoice! Brandy is about to change her destiny.

I hope Elliot Lurie (and his fans) enjoy Brandy living her best life and enjoying fine adventures!

Check out the amazing a cappella version of Brandy that Elliot Lurie performed during the pandemic, with Yonge Guns Quartet.

I Spy Something Splendid!

images-1India Black and the Shadows of Anarchy is number trois in the clever Carol K. Carr’s historical fiction series (set in Victorian England), and as I always say, this one is my favorite.

From Mrs. Drinkwater, who’s name somehow highlights both her lack of cooking skills and fondness for stealing India’s liquor, to the stinky Vincent, who’s still not allowed on the cushions due to his eau de filth, India is at her smartest, most sarcastic self. Through twists and turns among the villainous anarchists, India reveals just enough to let us wonder what she’s up to.

The spy stuff is brilliant, but those tantalizing personal pieces of the puzzle—moments with French, the mystery surrounding her mother, and oh, those notes to and from the Marchioness Tullibardine, (which could be a short story itself!)—tie the whole adventure together. We are amused.

Rating: Inhaled!

Still not convinced? Then check out her short story, India Black and The Rajah’s Ruby.

Happy Hula Days!

Mele Kalikimaka from Haole Wood! What a great year of reading—with some of my favorite books. BONUS: Cool author alerts—I am an adoring fan of each of these amazing, uber-talented writers, and they are all kind, fun, and funny!

imagesThe fabulous Carol K. Carr kicked off this year with the second historical romance in her series, India Black and The Widow of Windsor. We are amused! India Black (Tres) and The Shadows of Anarchy will be out in February. Go behind-the-scenes to see how it all started, with Carol’s eshort, (to be released New Year’s Eve) India Black and the Rajah’s Ruby!
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Off to the south Pacific, please meet the lovely Kiana Davenport who is as gracious as she is talented. Start with her Opium Dreams —one of the most beautifully imagined, well-written collection of short stories I have ever read. “Because love, the search for it, the failure of it, and especially the loss of it, is how we progress and mature, how we attain an inner nobility.” Mahalo, Kiana!

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I went all in early on when Apron realizes that “Laura Ingalls Wilder was the nicest girl I’d ever not known.” The heartache of middle school? Check: “But brains didn’t need bras, so boys never noticed me.” Girl Unmoored is a beautifully written, amazing read. And Jennifer Gooch Hummer better be working on a new novel!
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Three generations of women. Four secrets. One stage. (And a beautiful cover.) In Something New, Malena Lott expertly intertwines four romantic stories in this page-turning contemporary novel, for readers in love with love! I’m also checking out her other novels—le sigh!
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See Jane Date. See Jane Dine. See Jane Dash. In A State of Jane, see Plain Jane, as she finally listens to her heart in this very well-written chick lit tale.  Awesome author Meredith Schorr delivers, right up to the very last page!

mariankeyesGoddess Marian Keyes is working on a new novel, working title: Project Karma. Pinch me now!

Happy Hula Days to All!

History’s Sister…

As historical fiction transports us to places we can never know (until time travel is perfected), the genius of authors like Philippa Gregory, The Other Boleyn Girl, Geraldine Brooks, March, and Sena Jeter Naslund, Ahab’s Wife, magically transforms history with revelations from lesser-known counterparts of the day.

What if…

Suellen’s Side of The Story…
I haven’t talked to my sister for nearly ten years, though I hear about her from time to time, of course. Folks can’t seem to resist wanting to stir up that honeypot, trying to catch me out sharpening my tongue on vengeful stories of her excesses; hoping to be the first to hear she’s grown as wide as a pickle barrel, or all her hair fell out. They’ll learn none of that from me. “She’s doing as well as can be expected,” I always say.

My parents, especially Mother, would probably be most ashamed of me, her middle daughter, since I turned out to be what the God-fearing members of my family charitably call a bluestocking. The less kind, perhaps not having a big enough vocabulary and an even more limited imagination, infer malicious perversions about me. So-called friends wearing hound-dog expressions try to comfort me, repeating aspersions in exchange for a ringside seat to a drama of I don’t know what. Sometimes it takes all my willpower to not just start clucking like a chicken, pecking at their skirts, or maybe even kissing them right on their dumb bunny mouths to give credence to their shabby hopes of a mind gone ‘round the bend. I try not to preen like others I know would, but there is solace to be had upon growing up with no expectations; surely life could only turn out to be a pleasant surprise.

After my husband died, God rest his soul, I ran away from home; from all that I hurt and all that I hated. I loath the very ground that swallowed my babe, my sole chance for redemption, and care not which gates of hell I enter. As if reading a book backwards, I set out for the other side of the world, looking for a better ending that perhaps I had missed. That’s another story; one not even my sister could begin to imagine…

Which relative (from history or fiction) would you like to read about?