Book Description via Goodreads
In 1908, on a mission to find a new breed of ape in central Africa, an unfathomable thing is discovered – a wild, white man, living amongst gorillas. Local villagers call him matokeo ya utafutaji kwa, the untamed one.
Joining the team of hunters and trackers searching for matokeo ya utafutaji kwa is Arianna Day, the 21-year-old niece of the expedition’s leader. She catches the untamed one’s eye and, believing she is meant for him, he takes her captive and claims her for his own, body and soul.
When Arianna is rescued, the untamed one is captured, and they are sent their separate ways: the wild man to learn language and social skills he’d long forgotten, Arianna back home to England to try to fit back into her old life. A promising marriage proposal awaits, but thoughts of the untamed one haunts her.
Amidst the backdrop of London in the summer of 1908, as the Olympic Games are hosted and the Franko-British Exhibition is held, the now-civilized wild man returns home, with his original name restored: Sebastian or ‘Zan' Shaffer. He and Arianna are drawn together again only to be ripped apart by social convention and Marshall Derringer, the man determined to have her as his wife. But Zan is not the only one with an untamed heart…
Tell us a little about you : )
Originally from Indiana, I’ve lived in North Carolina for the last twenty years. I have three young adult daughters and work full-time in real estate. The day I know I can support myself exclusively on my writing will be a happy day. It’s my fondest desire.
What inspired you to write Untamed?
I don’t remember exactly what put the idea in my head, but it was a fun notion to play with. I’m a writer who usually figures out the story as I go, but, in this case, a lot was predetermined. Early on, the scene where the ‘Tarzan’ story is leaked to Edgar Rice Burroughs came to me … and it was funny. By that point, I really wanted to write this book.
How long did it take to write?
The first rough draft of a manuscript takes anywhere from two to four months, if I’m able to work on it a lot. But then it’s worked and reworked, worked and reworked. I try to always shelve a manuscript for awhile so that I can come back to it with fresh eyes. As the writer, not only do I know the story but I actually tend to memorize it. The problem with that is that rather than reading what’s right in front of me, I’m reading what I know or what I think is right in front of me. That’s how mistakes get looked over.
Which part of your novel was your favorite to write? Why?
I love the scenes where main characters Zan and Ari are together. In the book, I never claim they’re soul mates, but … they are. When they’re together, there is a connection, a oneness. When he first takes her, she’s is frightened, of course, but it’s so quickly apparent that he doesn’t want to hurt her. Then … uh … everything else happens that happens and both their lives are changed forever.
Back in London, after his reformation and after she’s tried to return to the life she knew, the very second they’re around each other, it’s that electrifying, breath-stealing connection thing again. She sees him from a distance (dancing with another woman) and is barely able to hold herself together. She flees and then immediately falls apart. She doesn’t want to feel all she does – but nor can she stop it. In the meantime, he senses her. He never sees her, but his senses are keen after decades spent in the jungle. He breaks away and goes after her. I love the scene where they finally see each other again. I really love all their scenes together.
Will you write another book including these characters or is this a stand-alone?
This is a stand-alone. I do have a historical, action-adventure series with romance, that begins with a novel titled Ammey McKeaf. J
Did you have to research, and if yes, how was that process?
Oh, my! Yes. There is always a lot of research even in deciding where to begin a story. Once I have the time period, I have to learn what was happening in the world. Then there’s fashion, speech and manners to get right, the basics of everyday life. With historical fiction of any sort, it’s vital to get facts right. With Untamed, I really wanted the story to have a logical explanation based on an actual historical event. It took a lot of digging, but I found it.
What do you want readers to get from your story?
I want them to be completely and utterly removed from their real life and transported into an alternate universe of our making. I say ‘our’ because I’ve done the basic architecture, but it’s the reader who fills in the world with color and life and their own imaginings. No two people will picture Zan or any character exactly the same.
Is there a place you especially like to write?
There are a few places I usually gravitate to, but once the computer screen is in front of me and my fingers find the keyboard, where I’m working isn’t important since I’m into the scene. I do need certain conditions, though. I work in silence. I can’t have noise or music around me. I could edit with soft classical music as background music, but really prefer silence. I need to be comfortable and have some back support. That’s it. I’m not hard to please.
What are you currently working on?
I’m perfecting a historical, action-adventure with romance that reads a lot like a western. It’s set in Virginia in 1881, so it’s not a western, but it has that feel. My agent has read it (and loves it!) but isn’t crazy about the title, so it’s still to be determined. This was a formerly released book that’s been totally reworked. It was almost a novella at first, and is now a full sized novel. (90,000 words.) But the main characters and the main story line are still the same. When it was first released in 2005, (as Wright and Wrong, ecataromance named it one of the best historical romances for the year. It’s one of my two personal favorites and it has my all-time favorite male character. I have high hopes for it!
What are your favorite genres to read?
I enjoy action-thrillers, historical fiction of all sorts, mysteries and more. The only genre I really don’t read is horror. I’m always reading something; it’s one of the few ways to get my own voice out of my head. But I try to mix genres from book to book. Occasionally, I’ll stumble onto an author and want to read another and another of their work, but I usually bounce from genre to genre.
Favorite films that you can see endlessly?
Sense and Sensibility (with Emma Thompson) and Pride and Prejudice. There’s a drama/romance called Firelight that I love and I enjoyed the remake of 3:10 to Yuma. I was dazzled by Lincoln and greatly entertained by Silver Linings Playbook. I want to own both of those.
Location of place you have never visited, but really want to go to someday?
I want to tour Europe. Scotland, England, France, Italy and Germany. I’ve never had the opportunity to go and I really want to experience it.
Thanks for answering these Qs! :)
It was my pleasure! Thanks for asking.
Originally from Southern Indiana, (born in Evansville, grew up in Newburgh,) I now reside in Greensboro, North Carolina. My day job is that of a real estate agent, although the goal is become a full time writer … who actually eats regularly and pays the bills. I’m exceedingly proud of my young adult daughters, Mackenzie, Allyson and Hayley. They’re lovely and wacky and smart and basically my favorite people on earth.
If I had to describe myself . . . I’d say upbeat, highly imaginative, passionate, restless, easily bored, humorous, stubborn, spiritual and truly blessed.
I love writing. I love getting caught up in another time and place. Honestly – it’s often a disappointment to have to return to reality. My favorite genre tends to be whatever I’m working on at the moment. I write historical fiction, action/adventure, suspense, fantasy and more, all of it with an element of romance to it.
Jane Shoup's Website: http://janeshoup.com/
Jane Shoup on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jane-Shoup/338170666219714
Diversion Books: http://www.diversionbooks.com/ebooks/untamed (we respectfully request all tour stops link directly to Diversion's site. This link can be in addition to any affiliate links you use.)
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