Saturday, June 28, 2014

The History of the Legacy Series

I thought that I would take a moment to talk about The Legacy Series and how it came about. If you have not followed along at my Legacy Series Books Blog, you probably don't know the whole story.

The Price of Innocence was written in 2009. It is my debut novel.  I researched my fingers to the bone on that book, studying legalized prostitution in France, the infamous Chabanais brothel, and the challenges of the poor in 1870s Paris.  

Since its release, it has garnished a lot of criticism, most of which started when the book hit the #1 spot in historical romance on Amazon for three days in a row in May of 2012.  Great to be #1, but it's almost like having a target on your back.  It was edited in 2009 by Autumn J. Conley, a book editor, who has been in the business for 28 years. In addition, it has been subsequently proofed and updated a few times by additional editors afterward. 

Is it my best book?  No, but it was my first book -- the book that launched my career as a writer. Even though it may not be great, it did receive a favorable critique from organizations such as Writer's Digest and other good reviews from romance sites.  Like any other author out of the gate, you grow in your craft and learn.

The Price of Deception came about a few years later.  After release, I was hounded by readers to write the third installment. Many fell in love with the book, which frightened me that I would not be able to live up to the expectations for a third one.  Interestingly enough, I wrote it during a six-month period when I had huge challenges in my life.  I was caring for my eighteen-month-old granddaughter and working full time.  During those six months, I had pneumonia and then fell a few months later breaking my shoulder.  It made the best-selling paid list on Amazon a few times and the Movers & Shakers list, too, in 2012. It's times like these you take screenshots to keep the memories! 

As much as my fans wanted The Price of Love, I frankly felt stumped trying to figure out where to take the story. I made premature promises on its release and let people down, for which I'm very sorry.  However, if the inspiration isn't there for an author, writing a story is torture.  It took me longer than I anticipated to decide what to do with Jolene and Robert, plus the remainder of the dysfunctional family.

Now that is past, the emails continue from fans to keep the story going. The Price of Passion has begun, but I'm off right now working on a new release under a different pen name.  I will return to it shortly and am shooting for the end of the year.  However, I make no promises.

As the series continues to either enthrall or enrage readers, it has sold over 18,000 paid eBook copies, plus many print copies, since the first book was released. In addition, over 22,000 free copies of The Price of Innocence have been downloaded. What is even more amazing, is that my sales on Apple and Nook have skyrocketed in the last six months regarding the series since The Price of Innocence went perma free.  I have only 48 reviews on Amazon and 222 ratings on Apple. That is astounding.  I'm hopeful that the series will continue to do well in the years ahead. 

From the bottom of my heart, I thank those who have supported me as an author and sent some of the most moving and wonderful private emails letting me know your feelings about the series.  I've had a few comments that they'd love to see in a TV series.  Yes, in my dreams, too, but it takes getting noticed with substantial sales for that to happen. 

Remember, the best way to thank an author for a book you love is to write a review -- even if it's just a few words. 

Have a great weekend.  It's rainy and cool in Oregon, so I'm going to write to pass the time.

All my best,

Sunday, May 11, 2014

The Price of Passion - It Begins

I have decided, after much prodding, to get serious about writing The Price of Passion.  Off to the right, you'll see a tracker on my word count and goal of 75,000.  This goal is a guess and could be longer or shorter, depending on how the story plays out.  The next few weeks, I'm going to sit down and focus solely on this work and put aside my other for the moment.

In anticipation, I always need visuals. After looking around for an appropriate cover theme, below is a temporary, but not final, cover for the story.  For updates, make sure to either sign up for my newsletter or follow this blog.  I'll let you know how it's coming along and share with you some fun research along the way.

Monday, April 21, 2014

We're Such Romantics

Historical romance is a fantasy world for most of us in the 21st century, but in the 19th and early 20th century, it was a world of hidden dangers.

Recently, I stumbled across two very fascinating documentaries done by BBC about the hidden dangers in the Victorian and Edwardian home.  Since my last book is set in the Edwardian era, I thought I would post the video here about this fascinating series.

If you're more into the Victorian era, CLICK HERE for the video regarding Victorian life.  Frankly, they are both worth the watch.

I'll keep writing the fantasy, but after reading about the reality, I am thankful that most of these dangers no longer lurk in our homes.

Enjoy, Vicki

Thursday, April 3, 2014

"The House of Pleasures" - A Shocking Movie About a French Brothel

Written and Directed by Bertrand Bonello
Warning - Adult Content

A few months ago, I streamed this movie on Amazon Prime. I hesitated placing a review here, but have decided to relent. It is a graphically, shocking movie about prostitution in France in a mansion of tolerance, like the Chabanais where I set my book, The Price of Innocence. The movie is French ("L'Apollonide") with English sub-titles.

It has everything I researched for The Price of Innocence from registering as prostitutes with the Bureau of Morales, being indebted to mistresses and unable to leave their employ because of it, champagne baths with customers, selection parlors, global fashions worn by prostitutes, and opulent client bedrooms. It even had a scene where one prostitute in the movie said she had been a laundress beforehand, and prostitution was a better job compared to the horrible conditions in the wash house. (You would have thought they read my book!  It did confirm to me, though, that I got it right after months of reading about legalized prostitution in the late 19th and early 20th century France.)

The movie is filled with nakedness, sexually explicit scenes, etc., and not for the prudish or faint of heart.  In U.S. terms, think NC-17 rating.  There are scenes of abuse where one customer disfigures his purchase, which was difficult to watch.  Even though he gets his due in the end, it is disturbing.  However, it added to the reality of a life of prostitution, focusing on the sad and hopeless plight of women in brothels. The particular establishment depicted in this movie catered to aristocrats and rich businessmen, much like the Chabanais where I set my book. Even the mistress was as shrewd as my own character, Madame Laurent.

The movie is two hours, slow moving, and not the best flick you'll ever see. (Even though the critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 81% rating.) In fact, it's disturbing to see the sad lives of these poor women working night after night in the house of pleasure. It's a job, and most of the sexual scenes show the men enjoying their paid visits, while the women merely go through the motions void of emotion. As troubling as the scenes were, I found myself transported into the world I wrote about and came away shocked at seeing the reality portrayed on screen. (Perhaps that is how I would feel if The Price of Innocence ever went on film.)

The scenery inside the brothel fit closely to my book--the staircase to the rooms on the second floor, pictures of naked ladies on the walls going up the stairs, and the different quarters for the women who boarded and lived together at the brothel.

There is also a scene of the prostitutes waiting to be examined by the doctor and his report to the mistress of the house. It was the usual examination each had to endure to check for sexually transmitted disease. As far as their personal hygiene, it was pretty much as I described.  They kept cleaned, bathed, used creams, and perfumes.  The selection parlor was filled with beautifully clad women for the choosing, and also topless women who served the men.

Should you decide to watch it, you have been forewarned.  The sexual acts are openly displayed.  There are full naked scenes of women and men. The language is crude, but of course in English subtitles where the "F" word is often used.

Let's face it, being a prostitute wasn't glamorous.  It was a profession that many poor and unskilled women chose in order to survive.  It was a dangerous job where women died of syphilis, lived lives with no hope, and sold their bodies in order to eat and have housing.  It portrayed a society that found pleasure in sex, living a way of life where brothels were an acceptable form of male entertainment until they were abolished in the early 20th century.

How did the movie end? The director showed prostitutes in modern Paris, standing on the street soliciting customers driving by in cars. The job is the same, but the working conditions are now a far cry from the lavish houses of pleasure that once existed in Paris, France.


The Price of Deception on iTunes

The Price of Deception is available on audio at iTunes already, or you can listen for free at by merely opening up an account and using the 30-day free trial.  No strings attached, and they even have apps for iPad.  

Also, I still have a few redeemable codes for a free audio copy of The Price of Innocence.  Contact me if you are interested.

As of 4/4/14, The Price of Deception finally got posted on iBooks.


Monday, March 17, 2014

The Price of Deception Audiobook Released

I'm happy to report that The Price of Deception audiobook has been released.  It is currently available on, Amazon, and iTunes.

Yes, iTunes!  Where is the print version of The Price of Deception on iTunes?  It's still not loaded, and I have no idea why.  If it doesn't go up by April 1, I'll contact my distributor again.  Can you believe the book was sent to them November 30th?  I'm so, so sorry for the delay.  If you can't wait for the eBook, you can listen to the audio.

Once again, I was blessed with Steve Marvel's wonderful narration.  

Below are the links:




Okay, next to be recorded - The Price of Love.  Hopefully, I'll have that one out by mid-June.

All my best,

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Price of Innocence - Audio Freebies

As part of the promotion from, they have given me quite a few redeemable codes to the audio version of The Price of Innocence for free giveaways.  At this time, I'm willing to let go of 10 of them.

If you would like a copy, the first 10 readers who leave a comment below will be sent a redemption code.  Please leave me your email.  If you don't wish to leave it on the blog, just comment and then shoot me an email at with an email address where I can send the code.  

The codes are redeemable for residents in the United States only from  If you have an Amazon account, you can log in at OR you can set up an account.  It costs nothing.  You can download the book to a variety of devices and listen - Smart Phone, Kindle, iPads, PC, or use the Audible Cloud player.

This post will be up until I fulfill the ten spots.  Come and get it!  The Price of Innocence on audio.  After listening, if you feel inclined, ratings and reviews are welcome. 

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Price of Deception is Finished on Audio

I am happy to report that the narration of The Price of Deception has been completed.  I've approved the audio and it's gone to quality review.  It should be up for sale in a few weeks.

I was fortunate to engage Steve Marvel to record the story.  He was the winner of the 2013 Audiobook Narration Contest and does excellent work. I hope that in the years ahead, I can use him once more.

Next, The Price of Love.  It's up for auditions, but that may take a while to get on audio.  I'll keep you advised.

In the meantime, below is the retail demo sample that will be posted with the audiobook.  I hope you enjoy.

Your grateful author,

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Price of Deception Audio Update

Today I had the opportunity to listen to the first six chapters of The Price of Deception, narrated by Steve Marvel.  You can find out about Steve on the popular website with his bio and previous and current acting performances.

I am very pleased with Steve's rendition of the characters.  It was a difficult decision whether to tell the story through a female or male's voice.  Since book one of the series is really Suzette's story and book two is more through the eyes of Robert, I decided on a male.  Steve's British accent is spot on, and Robert sounds like the typical aristocrat.  Jacquelyn is coming across as the mentally ill, obsessed woman I created her to be.  Suzette and Philippe are well done, too. 

As stated in my previous post, the final work is due March 9.  Then it's a matter of my listening to the book, asking for changes, if needed, and approving.  After I do so, it goes through a quality check, then heads to retail where it could take a few weeks to get up.  I'm thinking it will be for sale no later than April 1, but will keep you informed.

In the meantime, enjoy The Price of Innocence!


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Price of Innocence Audio is Up for Sale

Well, I cannot contain my excitement.  The Price of Innocence has come alive due to the wonderful narration of Stevie Zimmerman and her talented portrayal of each of the characters.  Her rendition of Suzette was absolutely perfect.  The brothel scenes have come alive.  Hearing Madame Laurent, Nadine, and the other girls makes you feel like you're there in the Chabanais.  Lord Holland and the dashing Philippe are fantastic, too.  

I cannot say enough about Stevie's work on this audio.  She was prompt, communicative, and a pleasure to work with.  I'm hoping to get her to do The Price of Love and eventually The Price of Passion, if she can fit me into her busy schedule.

What's happening with The Price of Deception?  It's in production, but I haven't received any audio yet to review.  The finished book is due to me by March 9th for my evaluation.

In any event, I hope you enjoy The Price of Innocence.  Remember, setting up an account at is a breeze.  Your first book is free, and membership is only $14.95 per month.  You can cancel at any time.  There are numerous ways to download the audio on your phone, iPad, computer, etc.

So if you want to transport yourself back into 1870 and hear Suzette's story come to life, you can do so by clicking the icon below for  In the days ahead, you'll be able to purchase the audio on Amazon and iTunes, as well.

An extremely excited author....

The Price of Innocence Audio - Book One of the Legacy Series
The Price of Innocence Audio

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Price of Innocence Headed to Retail

It won't be long before The Price of Innocence on audio is up for sale.  It's passed quality control and is being prepared for Audible, Amazon, and iTunes.  Below is the retail sample for your listening enjoyment!  Stevie Zimmerman, Narrator.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Good News Bulletin

Stevie Zimmerman, my talented narrator, has finished recording The Price of Innocence on audio. It turned out absolutely fantastic.

Her talent brought the story to life in a way I never imagined, especially with the scenes at the brothel.  It's one thing to read the printed word, it's another to hear the lines acted out with emotion.  I am so glad I decided to put my books on audio.

Once the chapters are all loaded at ACX, they will go through a round of quality control, then be prepared for retail, and then distributed to, Amazon, and iTunes.

If you love the series and want to get on board listening to it come alive, now is the time to take out a membership at Audible.  You'll be able to listen to your first book for free.

Second news bulletin, I just signed off on the print version of The Price of Love.  I received my proof print copy in the mail today, and it came out great.  Watch for it to slowly appear on Amazon, B&N, Book Depository, and the rest of the world by the end of the month or early March.

As soon as I can, I'll post a sample of The Price of Innocence for your listening enjoyment.

All my best,