Thursday, August 1, 2013

A Beauty So Rare Photo Shoot, Pt 2

Here are a few more behind the scenes pics of the photo shoot Bethany House Publishers coordinated for the cover of my next novel, A Beauty So Rare, the second Belmont Mansion novel (releasing April 2014).
The photo shoot was held at the Como Park Zoo and Conservatory in Saint Paul, Minnesota (read about its history) in the conservatory area, of course (not with the gorillas). It certainly is lovely, and is the perfect setting for the cover since we spend a lot of time in Adelicia Acklen's conservatory (pictured below) in A Beauty So Rare

Adelicia Acklen, mistress of the Belmont Mansion in Nashville, TN,
built a lavish 19th century estate which included this glass conservatory (nicknamed the Crystal Palace)
in the foreground, and the water tower in the background (which still
stands today and is Belmont University's Bell Tower).

Checking out the lighting

Love how they "shoot" in front of the blank screen

Checking views in the monitor

Lots of details––and hard work––go into making a cover

Strolling through the conservatory

Paul Higdon, Art Director, Bethany House Publishers at Como Conservatory

Gorgeous flowers
Adelicia Acklen had over 2,000 species of plants, shrubs, and trees
from all over the world in her Belmont conservatory

Personally, I love the more serious look on the model's face (as that fits
the character of Eleanor Braddock). But alas, a "cheerier" expression
attracts more readers.

And one last shot...

I'm grateful to my publisher for all the work and time that went into making this cover. Now, to finish the rewrites on this story and put it to bed.

About the book: 

Pink was not what Eleanor Braddock ordered, but maybe it would soften the tempered steel of a woman who came through a war--and still had one to fight.
Available for pre-order
Belmont Mansion, book 2 (of 3)

Eleanor Braddock, a spinster at 30, has long since dismissed any hope of marriage. But when a dying soldier whispers his final words, she believes her life can still have meaning and determines to find his widow. But this compassionate deed takes a harsh turn, and Eleanor finds herself dependent upon the richest woman in American and the most despised woman in Nashville--her aunt, Adelicia Acklen, mistress of Belmont Mansion. A clandestine act of kindness leads Eleanor to an unlikely path for her life--building a home for destitute widows and children from the Civil War. And while Eleanor knows her own heart, she also knows her aunt will never approve.

Rudolf Marcus Gottfried, Archduke of the House of Habsburg and fourth in line to the Austrian throne, arrives in Nashville in search of a life he determines, instead of one determined for him. Collaborating with botanist Luther Burbank, Marcus seeks to combine his own passion for nature with his expertise in architecture. But his plans to incorporate natural beauty into the design of the widow's and children's home run contrary to the wishes of practical, frugal Eleanor, who sees his ideas as costly nonsense.

Yet as the construction project continues, Marcus and Eleanor find common ground--and a love neither of them expected. But Marcus is not the man Adelicia has chosen for Eleanor to marry, and even if he were, someone who knows Marcus's secrets is about to reveal them all.

Belmont Mansion, book 1 (of 3)

I'm excited to share this story with you and am really enjoying being back in Adelicia's home and on the estate of Belmont that serves as the setting for all the Belmont Mansion series novels.

Do you have an affinity for Southern history like I do? 

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