Thursday, May 2, 2013

Lady Vivian Defies a Duke Launch Party & Giveaway!


Posted by Samantha Grace

When I started writing Lady Vivian Defies a Duke, I knew I wanted an adventurous hero, and Luke Forest, Duke of Foxhaven, met my requirements nicely. I’ve always had a case of wanderlust too, but not as much opportunity to indulge in world travel. I did, however, take a trip after I graduated college that changed my outlook on life. I had the chance to visit Zambia, Africa for 9 weeks. (My mom lived there for three years with her husband who was working for a British company keeping their equipment running.)  

It was such a different lifestyle. Everything was slower and you had to find enjoyment in the little things like going to the open market for veggies and playing games together. And there weren’t as many choices for anything – soda, chocolate, etc. You know, the important things. LOL. I learned to appreciate what was available.

Top left: Guards allowed people in & out of the home. Broken bottles were imbedded in the cement on top of the wall to discourage trespassers. Top right: The houses were made of flame resistant materials. All windows & doors had bars because of "bandit" raiders from Zaire. I never saw any. Bottom left: Two of the sweetest kids who were at the house every day while their parents worked. Bottom right: After 5 pm, the water plant closed. Big tanks on the side of the house held water for after hours. 

We dined with friends, had tea in the afternoons, and read. A LOT. We talked about life and dreams. We also played a few rounds of golf and didn’t do too bad considering the hole was marked with a tall stick that blended in with the tall brown grass. 

We also made a trip to Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and went on a safari, but just to shoot pictures. We came across a large truck with men piled in the back all holding rifles. The guide told us the men were looking for poachers and would shoot them on sight. That was a surreal moment, as was the elephant that flapped his ears and threatened to charge our vehicle.


Not the best photos from Zimbabwe, but it gives you an idea 

There are so many memories from the trip, but the thing that stayed with me was a desire for a simplified life and appreciation for everything I have. Like the Duke of Foxhaven, I’d love to see more of the world, but I know I don’t have to go anywhere to find happiness. It’s already inside of me. This is something Luke must discover as well. He doesn’t have to chase after his destiny. And thanks to Vivian, he may find what he’s been searching for most of his life has been in front of him all along.

Unfortunately, I can’t offer an exotic trip to two lucky commenters today, but I can offer a different kind of escape. Two readers will win a copy of Lady Vivian Defies a Duke. Just answer this question and include your email address so we can contact the winners. (US and Canada only.) Is there an exotic place you’ve always dreamed of visiting, or are you content to stay at home?    

43 comments:

  1. I'm so disappointed that you didn't do my idea. Maybe for one of jake & Daniel's brother. Anyways, I'm happy staying stateside. Maybe I would like to go Europe or Britain. However, I'm not big on flying so it might never happen.
    countessofmar@yahoo.com

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  2. There are any number of places I wish I had the money to visit. But the big reality check is that I have some very serious food allergies.Asking what's in one's food is bad manners when you're a guest. But since it's either that or risk the ultimate social faux pas of dropping dead in mid bite; travel will remain a dream.

    vlettel@ cox.net

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  3. What a wonderful story, Samantha! And so true. I'd love to visit more of Scotland, England, Germany, France, Fiji Islands, Prince Edward Island, Australia, I could go on and on. :)

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  4. I have always wanted to go to Australia. :)
    Crystal816[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  5. Love, love your post! What an adventure and what a story it brought about...life research is the best! My back yard is my escape. Well, that and numerous trips all over Texas to research places my cowboys might live! But I'm a hermit by nature so the back yard is my haven!

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  6. Melody,
    You had a great idea to roast the duke, but he's so particular and you do NOT upset a duke. ;)

    Wouldn't a reader trip to England be awesome? Thanks so much for stopping by today.

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  7. Virginia,
    I don't blame you for being leery of travel. Food allergies are life and death. I don't think everyone realizes how serious it can be. It sounds like you keep a healthy sense of humor about it, though. There's no place like home anyway. :)

    Thanks for stopping by today!

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  8. Terry,
    I think a trip around the world is in order! How amazing to see all those places. When you make it to some or all of the places on your list, you have to share your pictures and experiences. :)

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  9. CrystalGB,
    Me too! I have a friend in Australia and I'd love to visit her some day. :)

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  10. Carolyn,
    I love when a back yard is a sanctuary! I could spend all summer outdoors if not for those pesky blood-sucking mosquitos! Grr... :)

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  11. There's a few places that I would love to visit. Bora Bora, is top of my list, then the Seychelles, Hawaii, New Zealand and Australia.

    I can't wait to read "Lady Vivian Defies a Duke".

    Thank you for this opportunity Samantha.

    dpd333 (at) aol dogt com

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  12. Diane,
    It's great to see you here today! Bora Bora sounds amazing! I'd love to go there too. :)

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  13. I've always wanted to go to Tahiti. I'm sure it is built up a little now, but that's ok.

    smulholland62@msn.com

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    1. Hi, Sheila! The Carribean is beautiful. I'm sure Tahiti would be great! :)

      I'm so glad you stopped by.

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  14. What an awesome post, Samantha! There are so many places in the world I'd love to visit...perhaps the Caribbean. Or an island in the South Pacific. Alas, due to lack of funds and 4 kids, the only vacation I get is in my mind while I'm reading wonderful stories of faraway places while I'm sitting in my minivan (the only peaceful place in my house isn't even inside my house). Ah well, my imagination will have to do for now! :)

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  15. There are soooo many places I wish I could visit. When first married we traveled whenever we could and did for 15 yrs. then we had kids and so much for traveling lol. I want to see Australia, Japan, Alaska, Africa and oh so many places. My husband was an air force brat and lived in some of these places as a child and it would be great to go back now!

    catslady5(at)aol.com

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  16. Tahiti

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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  17. Oh that is so cool! And I absolutely adore your title! I love defiant ladies. :)

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  18. I like to travel in the USA--because I refuse to fly! But I would love to see Jane Austen's house...no, no exotic vacations for me. I love home! :) smrgrl@gmail.com

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  19. There are so may places I would love to visit. One of them being the cloud forest in Monteverde in the mountains of Costa Rica.

    Aneelync@ gmail.com

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  20. LOL! At least I got my interview with him.

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  21. Ireland and Australia would be at the top of my list, if I had the money to travel!!! Oh well, maybe I'll win the lottery one day..
    Thanks for the chance to win.

    mlawson17 at hotmail dot com

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  22. I am totally content to stay at home. My sister travels all over the world, but for me, just flying to Kansas City is tiring. Sad, I know.

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  23. I would love to visit New Zealand.
    jmcgaugh (at) semo (dot) edu

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  24. I sort of did that when we went to Ireland last year. Wouldn't mind going back if it weren't for that horrific flight! Great pics and congrats on the launch!

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  25. Sandra,
    Lack of funds and time often are barriers to us traveling too. But the imagination is a wonderful thing.

    Still, the Caribbean is beautiful. I hope you get there some day. :)

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  26. Catslady,
    How great that you had the chance to travel before you had kids. It does get more difficult once the little darlings come along. :)

    I hope you get to mark all those places off your list some day.

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  27. Thank you, Brooklyn Ann! I love it too, even though I sometimes accidentally type Lady Vivian Defiles a Duke. LOL

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  28. Maria,
    The US has so many beautiful, interesting places to visit. And it is nice to be able to drive and stop to explore when you want. :)

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  29. Martha,
    Ireland and Australia are definitely on my list too. And now I'm off to buy my lottery ticket. ;)

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  30. Martha,
    Ireland and Australia are definitely on my list too. And now I'm off to buy my lottery ticket. ;)

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  31. Shana,
    That's okay because there's no place like home. :)

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  32. Jmcgaugh,
    All the pictures I've seen of New Zealand look incredible!

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  33. Thank you, Cheryl.
    Yeah, the long flights can be torture! :)

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  34. I apologize for the delay in responding. I'm at RT in Kansas City and my phone kept freezing up and wouldn't let me respond. :(

    I'll choose the winners when I return home Monday.

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  35. I have always wanted to see Australia but figure I never will. It seems like such an amazing continent. Thanks for the glimpse of a very different life.

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  36. Do I want to stay at home? Oh, gosh, no! I want to travel! I want to go to England, Scotland, Ireland, China... I want to see it all! :-)

    justforswag(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

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  37. My dream trip would be to visit Great Britain. Not the most exotic locale by most standards, but it would be a dream come true for me. The most exotic place I'd like to visit would be Australia and/or New Zealand.

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  38. I want to visit Scotland so much! I wish I could win the lottery so I could go. HA

    sheryll1974@netsscape.net

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  39. I just want to get out of my house... the four places I want to visit more than any thing are: Ireland, Greece, NYC, and Disney World... never been and only live three hours away. Isn't that something? Hope you had fun.

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  40. discombobulated.2006@yahoo.com

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  41. And the winners of Lady Vivian Defies a Duke are Diane D & Virginia E! Congratulations, ladies. I'll be sending an email notification in a moment.

    A big thank you to everyone who stopped by and shared their dream vacation destinations. I had a lot of fun reading through them. I had a great time at RT in Kansas City, but the internet was spotty. I'm sorry I wasn't able to respond to each comment even though I did read them all.

    Have a wonderful week!

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