Lilac Girls, Lost Roses, Sunflower Sisters

The Animals of Lilac Girls, Lost Roses and Sunflower Sisters, the Best Part

The animals, clockwise from upper left: Psina the pet chicken from Lilac Girls, Felka, Nadia’s dog from Lilac Girls, Jarushka from Lost Roses, Tum-Tum, Agnella’s Russian toy dog from Lost Roses, Saint Joan from Sunflower Sisters and Pico, the Woolsey’s mixed breed dog from Sunflower Sisters.

A lovely silver lining to the COVID cloud has been the huge numbers of pet adoptions from shelters. This just underscores what so many of us already know, that animals are the best parts of our lives. So I thought I’d round up all the animals from my three novels (or at least the photographic inspiration for them) and put them all on one page. Saint Joan the Siamese cat and Pico (real dog who belonged to Caroline Ferriday’s great grandmother) are from novel number three, to come next spring, Sunflower Sisters. Hope you enjoy hanging out with these lovely pets as much as I have while writing about them. They’re sweethearts, all.

P.S. Do you have a favorite literary animal? Leave it in the comments…

Lost Roses

Woohoo Going on the Road Again, This Time With the LOST ROSES Paperback.

Just can’t wait to get on the road again, this time for LOST ROSES, the prequel to LILAC GIRLS that tells the story of Caroline Ferriday’s mother Eliza Mitchell Ferriday and her fight to help Russian women who’d lost everything in the Bolshevik Revolution. It’s out in paperback March 3rd and can’t wait to criss-cross the country once again, sharing the true story behind the book AND disclosing what’s to come in the third book in the series. Hope I’m coming to your hometown–I will post links to the events on my website marthahallkelly.com under events.

Lost Roses

The Arrival of Seventeen Pounds of LOST ROSES Paperbacks Brightened Up This Snowy Connecticut Day.

This was a fun box to open, LOST ROSES paperbacks hot off the presses. Love seeing the photos they chose for the paperback author’s note! Can’t wait to get out on the paperback tour in March to spread the word.

 

Lost Roses

How Visting Rue Chabonais in Paris Helped the Brothel in Lost Roses Come Alive

When I was researching Lost Roses, spending time in Paris was a wonderful necessity and I visited Rue Chabanais, former site of the infamous brothel, since it features prominently in the book. Once, the five-story townhouse was decorated as a grotto, with toadstool tables, faux rocks and a noisy waterfall, the most sumptuous house of pleasure in Europe at the time. Opened and operated by Madame Kelly starting in 1846 close to the the Louvre, Le Chabanais entertained high-society visitors who spent time in the arms of thirty black-stockinged courtesans in residence.

The Le Chabanais courtesans were famous for their black stockings.

Every room at the brothel had a theme. The Louis XVI room provided decadent royal nostalgia, and the Moorish room was a favorite of poet Guy de Maupassant, who made his own replica of the room in his home. A frequent guest of Le Chabanais, King Edward VII had a sphinx copper bathtub made for his favorite suite to provide champagne skinny dips, while Toulouse-Lautrec, another famous visitor, donated sixteen oil paintings featuring centaurs in the throes of passion.

King Edward’s tub

Today there is little trace of the brothel, which shuttered in 1946. It exists as an exotic footnote in French history and in the pages of Lost Roses, where Sofya is forced to live for a while, along with former aristocratic Russians forced to work as courtesans, and where she ends up working as an accounts collector.

The former home of the brothel as it is today, no trace of the sumptuously decorated place.
The street today.
Lost Roses

So Excited Lost Roses is an Earphones Award winner from Audiofile Magazine

This makes me so happy, given all the hard work on the part of Kelly Gildea of Random House Audio and the incredible voice actors. I love Kathleen Gati and her work on Lilac Girls as Kasia and she is absolutely amazing on this one, playing Russian aristocrat Sofya, along with three incredible¬† voice talents, Tavia Gilbert as Caroline’s mother Eliza, Karissa Vacker as peasant girl Varinka and Catherine Taber as Sofya’s little sister Luba. Brava to all! Here is the link to the article: ¬†https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/156801/lost-roses-by-martha-hall-kelly-read-by-kathleen-gati-catherine-taber/