Q&A with M.J. Rose, Author of Tiffany Blues

by Heather Caliendo
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M. J. Rose is the author of more than a dozen novels, a founding board member of International Thriller Writers, and the founder of the first marketing company for authors, AuthorBuzz.com.

Her most recent novel is Tiffany Blues,  a well-written historical fiction novel full of romance and mystery. This novel is set in 1924 and twenty‑four‑year‑old Jenny Bell is one of a dozen artists invited to Louis Comfort Tiffany’s prestigious artists’ colony.  While she continues to try and move forward with her life, Jenny’s past has followed her to Long Island. Images of her beloved mother, her hard-hearted stepfather, waterfalls, and murder, and the dank hallways of Canada’s notorious Andrew Mercer Reformatory for Women overwhelm Jenny’s thoughts, even as she is inextricably drawn to Oliver, Tiffany’s charismatic grandson. For more about the novel, check out my review and book club questions.

Get to know M.J. with the below Q&A where she talks favorite novels, research process, preview of her next book and more.

Q: What are some of your favorite novels?

Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Possession by A. S. Byatt and Perfume by Patrick Suskind.

Q: When did you know you wanted to become a writer?

I actually really didn’t – I wanted to be a painter from the time I can remember.

Q: What inspired you to write Tiffany Blues

I went to a Metropolitan Museum  exhibition of the remnants of Laurelton Hall — the mansion and artists colony at the heart of the novel and was fascinated by the idea that the house had burned down and no had ever been able to solve why.

Q: Can you talk about your research process for the novel? 

I spent almost a year studying Louis Comfort Tiffany and his world, reading books and visiting many exhibits and museums to examine his work. Including going to see the largest collection of pieces from Laurelton Hall at the Morse Museum in Winter Park, FLa. I also spoke with and spent time with at least a half dozen jewelers who are experts in the period.

Q: One of the great aspects of historical fiction is learning something new. How did you find the right balance between fact and fiction when it came to this story? 

It’s not a great answer but it’s just very organic for me. I do all the research then put all the research books away and write the story. I don’t think about how much history I’m putting in or not, or the balance.

Q: What do you hope are some of the key takeaways of the novel?

How important beauty is the world and how important it is to take time to notice the beauty around us, to treasure it, respect it and preserve it.

Q: Can you give any hints about your next book and/or what you’re interested in writing next? 

Sure, the next book is called Cartier’s Hope and it is about the months at the end of 1910 that Pierre Cartier of the famous jewelry house, owned and tried to sell the Hope Diamond.

Q: What books are you currently reading and what’s on your to be read (TBR) list?

My pile is over 400 books but right now I’m reading The Romanov Empress by C.W. Gortner and then next is The Secret of Clouds by Alyson Richman (its coming out in Feb but I have an early copy).

Click here to buy Tiffany Blues on Amazon.

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2 comments

Sarah January 23, 2019 - 9:05 am

Love this Q & A. We have the same size TBR!

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Heather Caliendo January 27, 2019 - 3:30 pm

Thank you! And same here!!

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