Married; children: three.
Writer. Historical romance novelist.
Lord of Desire, Warner Books (New York, NY), 2005.
Lord of Temptation, Warner Forever (New York, NY), 2005.
Lord of Seduction, Warner Forever (New York, NY), 2006.
Laird of the Mist, Warner Forever (New York, NY), 2007.
Paula Quinn, an author of historical romances, told Romance Review Today Web site contributor Ann Cooke: "I—love medieval history, when men fought with swords and sometimes died for what they believed in. My favorite times to research and write about are the Conqueror era, when Duke William of Normandy became king of England." Cooke's first historical romance, Lord of Desire, was called "an exquisitely written and sensuous historical" by a contributor to Love Romances & More. The novel features Lord Brand "the Passioniate" Risande and Lady Brynnafar, whose father was defeated by Brand and must relinquish his castle to him. The novel follows Brynnafar as she decides that she will marry Brand to save the family castle but is surprised to find that she is falling in love with him. However, after his former lover cheated on him, Brand has vowed never to marry. John Charles, writing in Booklist, commented that the author provides "enough historical details to give a vivid sense of time and place." Nancy Davis noted in a review posted on Romance Reader at Heart: "Paula Quinn can pat herself on the back for coming out with such a marvelous debut romance. Rich in detail, filled with wonderful characters and a good plot, Lord of Desire is a delectable medieval treat."
Lord of Temptation contains "sharp repartee and [a] dramatic finale," according to a Publishers Weekly contributor. The story takes place after the Norman conquest of England and features wealthy warrior Lord Dante Risande who, though many women pursue him, cannot win the love of the only woman he wants, Gianelle, who has worked for cruel masters. When a previous master dies, Gianelle is suspected of murder and Risande sees his chance to protect her and win her love. "Attention to detail, story pacing and perfect rhythmic writing style make this a great second book for a new author," wrote a contributor to Fresh Fiction. Writing in Booklist, John Charles commented that the author's "second engaging historical romance … is an excellent choice for readers who like powerful, passion-rich medieval romances."
Gareth ap Owain wins a tournament and the right to ask for Lady Tanon Risande's hand in marriage in Quinn's third romance, Lord of Seduction. Lady Tanon, who had hoped to marry for love, is resigned to the marriage but soon has her hopes rekindled that love and marriage will coexist in her life. "Passion, peril, and plenty of medieval political intrigue are the primary ingredients" in Lord of Seduction, wrote John Charles in Booklist. Kim Atchue-Cusella, writing on BookLoons, commented that the author "crafts a story in which the details … make you feel as if you are there with her characters. I sighed over the gentleness of the hero and the charm of the heroine."
Quinn told CA: "Anything romantic influences my work. Whether it's a song, a painting, a movie, a couple I see on the street…. I'm a sappy romantic of the worst sort. History also has a strong place in my heart. I love it. When I first read about William of Normandy a dozen stories popped into my head almost immediately.
"Usually I do a complete character analysis before I begin a story. The characters have been living in my head for some time before I even begin their story, so doing the character analysis is easy. Still, I want to really get inside their heads and know what makes them tick. Sometimes I write the first draft of the story by hand. (Because of my crazy love for pens!) Most of the time I have the beginning, middle, and ending already established so I know where the story is going. Or where I'd like it to go. The characters change things along the way, though, so I'm always prepared for that.
"The most surprising thing I have learned as a writer is that people love my books as much as I do. An author's stories are like their children. I know they aren't perfect, but I like to believe they are. Each word, each sentence is wrought with a birth pang, and when a reader enjoys those words and sentences it's worth all the blood, sweat, and tears it sometimes took to write them.
"All my books hold a special place in my heart for different reasons. Some have characters I like a little more than others. Some were easier to write, while others have a storyline that I can relate to more. If I had to choose one that had a more profound effect on me while I was writing it, it would be Laird of the Mist. My favorite place in the world is Scotland, and who doesn't love a story about Highlanders? But it was very important for me to tell a little bit of the history of the MacGregor clan. To touch upon the sorrows of their time and the only thing that can truly mend a vengeful heart. Love.
"When I began writing professionally I remember wanting my stories to reach just one woman who was unhappy in a bad relationship. I wanted to somehow give her hope that there are knights in shining armor still out there. Sure, they're not easy to find, but they are out there and the search is worth it. Don't settle for less. Men of honor are not a fantasy. Happily ever afters do happen."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, August, 2005, John Charles, review of Lord of Desire, p. 2006; December 15, 2005, John Charles, review of Lord of Temptation, p. 30; December 1, 2006, John Charles, review of Lord of Seduction, p. 32.
Publishers Weekly, December 12, 2005, review of Lord of Temptation, p. 44.
BookLoons,http://www.bookloons.com/ (October 10, 2007), Marie Hashima Lofton, review of Lord of Desire; Kim Atchue-Cusella, review of Lord of Seduction.
Fresh Fiction,http://freshfiction.com/ (July 4, 2005), Angela Johnson, review of Lord of Desire; (January 9, 2006), Margaret Ohmes, review of Lord of Temptation; (November 17, 2006), Margaret Ohmes, review of Lord of Seduction.
Hachette Book Group USA Web site,http://www.hachettebookgroupusa.com/ (October 10, 2007), profile of author.
Historical Romance Writers,http://historicalromancewriters.com/ (June 9, 2005), review of Lord of Desire; (August 24, 2005), review of Lord of Desire.
Love Romances,http://www.loveromances.com/ (October 10, 2007), interview with author.
Love Romances & More,http://www.loveromancesandmore.com/ (October 10, 2007), reviews of Lord of Desire, Lord of Temptation, and Lord of Seduction.
Mystic Castle,http://www.themysticcastle.com/ (October 10, 2007), review of Lord of Seduction.
Once upon a Romance,http://www.onceuponaromance.net/ (October 10, 2007), Lori Graham, review of Lord of Seduction.
Paula Quinn Home Page,http://paulaquinn.com (October 10, 2007).
Paula Quinn MySpace Profile,http://www.myspace.com/paulaquinn (October 10, 2007).
Road to Romance,http://www.roadtoromance.ca/ (October 10, 2007), Julie Brown, review of Lord of Desire.
Romance Reader at Heart,http://romancereaderatheart.com/ (October 10, 2007), Nancy Davis, reviews of Lord of Desire and Lord of Temptation; Deana Monteleone, review of Lord of Seduction.
Romance Readers Connection,http://www.theromancereadersconnection.com/ (October 10, 2007), Deborah Hern, review of Lord of Desire.
Romance Review,http://www.aromancereview.com/ (October 10, 2007), reviews of Lord of Desire, Lord of Temptation, and Lord of Seduction.
Romance Review Today,http://www.romrevtoday.com/ (October 10, 2007), Ann Cooke, "Interview with Paula Quinn."
Roundtable Reviews,http://www.roundtablereviews.com/ (October 10, 2007), Tracy Farnsworth, review of Lord of Desire.