Beverley, Jo 1947-
BEVERLEY, Jo 1947-
PERSONAL: Born September 22, 1947, in Morecambe, Lancashire, England; daughter of John (a hotel owner) and Mildred (a hotel owner) Dunn; married Kenneth Beverley (a research scientist), 1971; children: Jonathan, Philip. Education: Graduated from Layton Hill, 1966, and University of Keele, 1970.
CAREER: Writer. Vocational guidance counselor, 1971-76; affiliated with Staffordshire and Nottinghamshire County Councils.
MEMBER: Romance Writers of America, Canadian Romance Authors Network, Writers Union of Canada, SF Canadam, Novelists, Inc.
AWARDS, HONORS: RITA Awards, 1990, for Emily and the Dark Angel, 1991, for An Unwilling Bride, 1992, for both Deirdre and Don Juan and My Lady Notorious, and 2000, for Devilish; inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame, 1993; Two Career Achievement awards for Regency Historical, Romantic Times; member of Romance Writers Hall of Fame.
"traditional regency" romance novels
Lord Wraybourne's Betrothed, Walker (New York, NY), 1988.
The Stanforth Secrets, Walker (New York, NY), 1989.
The Stolen Bride, Walker (New York, NY), 1990.
If Fancy Be the Food of Love, Walker (New York, NY), 1991.
Emily and the Dark Angel, Walker (New York, NY), 1991.
The Fortune Hunter, Walker (New York, NY), 1991.
Deirdre and Don Juan, Avon (New York, NY), 1993.
"regency rogues" romance novels
An Arranged Marriage, Zebra (New York, NY), 1991.
The Christmas Angel, Zebra (New York, NY), 1992.
An Unwilling Bride, Zebra (New York, NY), 1992.
Forbidden, Zebra (New York, NY) 1994.
Dangerous Joy, Zebra (New York, NY), 1995.
The Devil's Heiress, Signet (New York, NY), 2001.
The Dragon's Bride, Signet (New York, NY), 2001.
Hazard, Signet (New York, NY), 2002.
St. Raven, Signet (New York, NY), 2003.
medieval romance novels
Lord of My Heart, Avon (New York, NY), 1992.
Dark Champion, Avon (New York, NY), 1993.
The Shattered Rose, Zebra (New York, NY), 1996.
Lord of Midnight, Topaz (New York, NY), 1998.
"malloren" romance novels
My Lady Notorious, Avon (New York, NY), 1993.
Tempting Fortune, Zebra (New York, NY), 1995.
Something Wicked, Topaz (New York, NY), 1997.
Secrets of the Night, Topaz (New York, NY), 1999.
Devilish, Signet (New York, NY), 2000.
Winter Fire, Signet (New York, NY), 2003.
Forbidden Magic, Topaz (New York, NY), 1998.
Also contributor of novellas to anthologies, including The Fruit Picker, in Writers of the Future IV, Bridge, 1988; Twelfth Night, in A Christmas Delight, Zebra (New York, NY), 1991; If Fancy Be the Food of Love, in A Regency Valentine, Fawcett (New York, NY), 1992; Lord Samhain's Night, All Hallows' Eve, Walker (New York, NY), 1992; The Demon's Bride, in Moonlight Lovers, Avon (New York, NY) 1993; A Mummer's Play, in A Regency Christmas VI, Signet, 1995; A Gift of Light, in The Christmas Cat, Berkley, 1996; Forbidden Affections, in A Spring Bouquet, Zebra (New York, NY), 1996; The Determined Bride, in Married at Midnight, Avon (New York, NY), 1996; and The Lord of Elphindale, in Faery Magic, Zebra (New York, NY), 1998; The Wise Virgin in The Brides of Christmas, Harlequin (New York, NY), and Day of Wrath in Star of Wonder, both 2000; The Demon's Mistress in In Praise of Younger Men, Signet, 2001; and The Trouble with Heroes in Irresistible Forces, Roc (New York, NY), 2004.
Beverley's work has been translated into Spanish, Chinese, Dutch, German, Czech, Russian, Norwegian, Polish, Italian and Bulgarian.
SIDELIGHTS: Jo Beverley is a well-known and award-winning author of popular romance novels set in her native England during the Regency, Georgian, and medieval periods. Beverley is a five-time RITA Award winner, and in recognition of her contribution to the genre, she was elected a member of the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. She was a keynote speaker at the 2003 National Conference of Romance Writers of America in New York, and is in demand around North America as a speaker on romance fiction and writing.
Beverley writes connected novels, including two Regency series. Among the most recent installments are St. Raven and Hazard. St. Raven's plot involves scandal, crime, social class dynamics, and scheming. Maria Hatton declared in Booklist: "Intrigue and adventure are impossible for Cressida [the heroine]—and Beverley's reader—to resist in this sensuous and captivating tale." A Publishers Weekly reviewer, however, had a lukewarm response to the story, commenting, "Beverley takes her readers through unsavory house parties and London ballrooms, but the journey meanders and lacks energy." The critic recommended the novel only to Beverley's dedicated fans.
Of her many novels, Beverley's Georgian series about the aristocratic Malloren family that is set in mid-eighteenth century—or Georgian-period—England, has particularly caught the attention of readers. My Lady Notorious, the first in the series, won a RITA Award and was voted one of the hundred best romances ever by readers of Affaire de Coeur. My Lady Notorious was followed by Tempting Fortune, which a Publishers Weekly reviewer described as "delightfully wicked" and "romance fiction at its best"; Something Wicked was a USA Today bestseller. The fifth installment in the series, Devilish, offers readers "a lively backdrop of international intrigue," according to a Publishers Weekly reviewer. The reviewer added that despite a disappointing subplot and a flat love story, the "large-scale appeal of Beverley's characters ensure a satisfying escape." In contrast, Ramsdell of Library Journal found the book completely engrossing. Ramsdell praised Beverley's characterization, setting, writing style, and pace. She concluded that this "exquisitely sensual story is one that readers won't soon forget."
Beverley has achieved acclaim in each of the three historical periods in which she writes. Her 1998 medieval historical romance Lord of Midnight received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, and a reviewer from the magazine called the author "arguably today's most skillful writer of intelligent historical romance." The critic went on to describe the novel as "an exploration of the medieval mind that succeeds on many levels." Added Beverley to CA, "Lord of Midnight is a book concerned with honor, scruples, and the nature of a warrior."
In Lord of Midnight Claire of Summerbourne grieves over her dead father, killed in a treasonous uprising against Henry I, and resents the man who has been given her family's estates. She consents to marry him, however, for the sake of her family. Just as her reserve towards her husband begins to thaw, Claire discovers that he is also the man who killed her father in a duel to the death. A Library Journal critic, who described Beverley as being known for her "fast-paced, wonderfully inventive stories, excellent use of humor and language, and vividly rendered characters and situations," declared that she had "created another gem."
Beverley once told CA: "I think I was born a romance writer. At sixteen, I wrote a historical romance in school notebooks. It just took me nearly forty years to believe that being a published author was possible. An Arranged Marriage, my sixth book published, was actually written in the mid-1970s, the only one of a number of attempts to be truly completed. And then I put it away on the shelf.
"Love stories fascinate me. Men and women are so out on the edge, so raw and vulnerable, when they're falling in love and courting one another. I call it the human mating dance and it's at times hilarious, at times heart-wrenching. Actually surrendering to love, and to the commitment of life-long bonding and intimacy, is probably the most momentous decision any of us make, even if we don't realize it at the time. No wonder the romance genre is so popular."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Romantic Hearts, 3rd edition, Scarecrow Press (Lanham, MD), 1997.
Booklist, September 15, 1998, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Forbidden Magic, p. 212; April 15, 1999, Diana Tixier Herald, review of Secrets of the Night, p. 1517; June, 2001, Maria Hatton, review of The Dragon's Bride, p. 1854; July, 2001, Maria Hatton, review of The Devil's Heiress, p. 1990; January 1, 2003, Maria Hatton, review of St. Raven, p. 857.
Library Journal, June 15, 1989, p. 76; July, 1990,p. 126; June 15, 1991, p. 102; December, 1994,p. 130; May 15, 1998, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Lord of Midnight, p. 75; November 15, 1998, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Forbidden Magic, p. 57; November 15, 1999, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Star of Wonder, p. 55; February 15, 2000, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Devilish, p. 148; May 15, 2001, Kristin Ramsdell, review of The Dragon's Bride, p. 106.
Publishers Weekly, February 20, 1995, review of Tempting Fortune, p. 201; May 26, 1997, review of Something Wicked, p. 82; March 9, 1998, review of Lord of Midnight, p. 65; March 6, 2000, review of Devilish, p. 89; February 19, 2001 review of In Praise of Younger Men, p. 75; July 2, 2001, review of The Devil's Heiress, p. 57; January 13, 2003, review of St. Raven, p. 46.
Racing Post (London, England), May 24, 2000, Tom O'Ryan, "Beverly: Jo Mell Shows the Way Home," p. 66.
All about Romance Home Page,http://www.allaboutromance.com/ (September 17, 2003).
SFF Net Home,http://www.sff.net/ (May 16, 2003).