Wealth & Privilege
by Jeanette Watts
Genre: Historical Fiction
Thomas Baldwin finds himself married to a woman he can't stand, while head-over heels in love with another woman he can't have. Talk about bad planning. He is something of a kite, buffeted by circumstances which blow him not only through personal crises, but also through some of the most significant events in Pittsburgh during the late 1800s, including the railroad riots of 1877, the creation of the Homestead Steel Works, the assassination of President Garfield, and the Johnstown Flood. Over time, and with the help of his muse, who dances maddeningly just beyond his reach, he takes control of his life, wresting it from the winds attempting to control him.
A carefully-researched historical novel about life among the privileged class of Pittsburgh during the Industrial Revolution.
He wasn’t everything his older brother Benjamin had been; quick and clever and charming and talkative. The entire Baldwin family – especially his mother, Eugenia Baldwin, aspiring family matriarch and his most verbal critic – admitted that Thomas was the much more handsome of the two. Then everyone shrugged. Pretty is as pretty does.
Thomas had to agree on that point. He gladly would have traded his bright blue eyes and much-admired dark hair for the ability to know what to say to people.
He stood at the entrance to the ballroom in his parents’ house, surrounded by giggling girls all wishing him a happy birthday with their dance cards not-so-subtly dangling from their wrists. Trying to smile, he offered his hand to accept the little pencils and sign the blasted things.
Brains & Beauty
by Jeanette Watts
Genre: Historical Fiction
Regina Waring seems to have it all: a loving husband, a successful business, and the most expensive wardrobe in town. But nothing is as it appears. Her husband is critical and demanding, the business teeters on ruin, even the opulent wardrobe is a clever illusion.
Regina's life is a delicate high wire act; one misstep and she will plunge to her doom. Attempting to keep her equilibrium, she appeases the husband, dresses the part, and never, never says what she's really thinking. That would get in the way of getting things done. And if there's one thing Regina does really well, it is getting things done.
Enter Thomas Baldwin: young and handsome and completely off limits. Regina is smitten at first sight. To her joy, and despite her caution, he becomes her safety net. Torn between her fascination with him and her desire not to ruin a marvelous friendship, she tries to enjoy each moment as it comes.
If only that were enough.
The eagerly demanded sequel to Wealth and Privilege is a carefully researched historical novel about life and love among the upper class of Pittsburgh.
“What’s going on back there? Have I been cut off at the waist?” she asked. Not being able to see what was wrong, or the progress they were having, was making her anxious.
“The next layer is completely wedged in. We can’t do this without tools,” Isaac told her.
Both men hurried away from her, making her worry for their safety. She had also found their company reassuring. What if neither one of them was able to find her again?
That’s when she saw the flickering orange glow in the distance. “No.”
Yes. It didn’t seem possible – but in the midst of water floating below, and pouring from above, something had caught on fire.
Regina started listing in her head all the accelerants that might be contained in a single drygoods store: tar, pitch, turpentine, kerosene. How many homes used all of them? How many gas lines were ruptured all over the city? How many wood stoves were knocked into them? There was no way this heap would NOT be set on fire.
And here she was, stuck, in the middle of it. No doubt about it, she was about to die in the same town in which she was born. It was a shame, really. She had such high aspirations.
Jeanette Watts couldn't help but notice that all romances seemed to be set in the American West or the South. A staunch Yankee girl, she asked what is unromantic about the North or the East? After living for four years in Pittsburgh, and falling deeply in love with southwestern Pennsylvania, she found it the perfect location for a love story.
Besides writing, she is also a dance instructor, an inveterate seamstress, the artistic director for several dance companies, an actress, and a history buff. Wealth and Privilege took her 10 years to write, because she felt the research needed to be thorough. Everything from big events and famous people to little details like dog breeds and city names (Minneapolis residents will be pleased to see that she acknowledges that the city was called St. Anthony's Falls in 1878) have been carefully researched.
Amazon: Wealth and Privilege: https://www.createspace.com/4352661
Brains and Beauty: https://www.createspace.com/5865403
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wealth-and-privilege-jeanette-watts/1115581019?ean=9781490934518