April 6, 2018
News From Scarborough’s Faire
This is the cover of my book, Deception, the first in a series I am writing about a family loaded with secrets. It’s pretty obvious what the theme of the novel is; double agents, spies, and love between a Nazi and an M.I.5 agent. Wow!
The ‘how’ of this book is an interesting one. I had written a book entitled, Das Medallion (The Locket). The novel takes place in 1980 and is about a woman plagued by dreams of a little girl, and that little girl speaks a language Margaret can not understand. Margaret is a tough woman determined to get to the bottom of the dreams. The book was set in 1980 because Margaret turns out to be a war orphan of WWII. If the book were set any later, the heroine would be a tottering old woman. That was in 2009.
The title of the original novel was problematic for several reasons: folks thought the book was in German, the cover was too dark,(you can see the original on Amazon under Kathryn Scarborough), and a Jackie Chan movie named The Medallion came out that year. Problematic.
There is a scene in the book when five year old Margaret witnesses gold bars hidden in her Grandmother’s carriage house in Potsdam, Germany. When my son, Andrew read the book, he said, “Mom, you have to tell us about the gold.” So, I started a prequel, Deception,. In the book, I set up Margaret’s parent’s love affair and their marriage – AND the original scene about the gold.
Book Three, The Hidden Attic, is set in the present day and is about Ian, Margaret’s son. Ian goes to Potsdam and locates the gold, and his grandmother’s original journal. What’s in the journal and stashed away in a hidden part of the attic is wanted desperately by really bad guys. They can and will kill you without batting an eye. (Shiver). Stay tuned for The Hidden Attic. Hopefully it will be out this year!
A big thanks to my very talented son Ryan Gilmore, who designed the book covers. If you’d like him to design one for you: he can be emailed at The Wayward Traveler@ High Vibrations Studios.com
And my latest ! The Wild Mountain Thyme
Blog April 9, 2018
Oh The Summer Time is Comin’
I guess I missed my chance to write on St. Patrick’s Day three weeks ago; after all, The Wild Mountain Thyme, my latest from The Wild Rose Press, is all about Ireland.
Ireland, is a fascinating place, and a small as it is, is filled with natural treasures, poets, playwrights, writers of all types, and of course the mystical, magical things that can only be found in places where no man has yet to set his foot.
The setting for multiple scenes is Castle Pollard and the ancient monastery of St. Feichin. The monastery has several renowned sights, a backward running stream, The Holy Tree, and the monastery has not one, but two towers. I created a working monastery there. The brothers I created keep goats, make cheese, and sell their product over the Internet. I had to figure out some way to have a working community so Jim and Megan have a place to recite marriage vows in their minds; sorry, guys, gotta read the book if you want to know what happens!
The best thing to me about TWMT, is Seamus. He sings, plays the harp, and recites poetry. When I was a kid , my brother Bill and I sang together all the time. We loved the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem. They are an Irish folk group; four Irish men in Irish fishermen sweaters playing guitars, banjos, and singing in beautiful harmony. Bill plays the guitar like a master, and always has; it was easy to sing with him. I may have a few degrees in music, but he will always be a better musician than I am. We sang lots of places, open mic night during outdoor summer concerts, at school, a coffee house in NYC (don’t tell my parents), but mostly in his bedroom. A lot of Seamus’s spontaneous plucking the harp out of the air and singing reminds me of Bill.
I had lots of fun writing Seamus; the serial killer was a tough one, but again; you gotta read the book!
Have a grand time, as they say in the Emerald Isle, and keep music in your heart.
Check out The Clancy Brothers singing The Wild Mountain Thyme.
I will be giving away a free book or your choice: Deception ( a WWII thriller) or This Just In… ( a light, funny, romance)
The only thing you have to do is sign up for my newsletter, and , (if you so choose) write me a review on Amazon of either book.
Either way, you will be getting a free book!! Did I say FREE??? YES!!!!
Just send your name and email to:
with your choice of book and I’ll send you a pdf of the book.
My book was recently released from The Wild Rose Press, and I could not be happier with the way it has turned out. The Wild Rose Press is a publishing company filled with considerate, helpful, folks that want to make their authors books the best they can possibly be. My editor, Mary Harmony, I have to say, was long-suffering when it came to getting me to put the commas in the right places, and not over using words like that, or had, or any number of others. She made the process of editing for me as painless as it could be. When the time came to write the back blurb of the book, the few sentences that grace the back cover of a book to catch a reader’s attention, I found the process more difficult than writing the entire novel. There were days when Mary and I emailed back and forth probably half a dozen times to get the back cover blurb just right. When a writer has someone like Mary in their corner, how can they do anything but succeed?
Thanks Mary….YOU ROCK
You can check out The Wild Mountain Thyme and Mary’s awesome editing at :
The Wild Rose Press catalog
or at Amazon.com
A Funny Thing Happened On The Way to the Stables Office Supply Store
My husband and I had been talking for some time about getting a new laptop, so one rainy afternoon a few weeks ago, we drove down to our local Staples in Brier Creek, North Carolina. The young tech my husband was speaking to had his back to me. I was looking through some of their items, drooling over this or that, (oooo wouldn’t that look nice in my office! If only I had the room!). The first time I had a chance to look at the young man was when together, they brought the chosen laptop to the register. I felt my mouth open in surprise, and I think I stopped breathing. For low and behold the tech looked just like Jim O’Flannery. My book, The Wild Mountain Thyme had just been released from the Wild Rose Press a few days before, and Jim O’Flannery is the hero in the book. O’Flannery, is most likely a made up name. I have never heard it in all the my reading about Ireland, and I have had a real love for that island nation most of my life. But, Jim O’Flannery, just like his name, was a product of my own imagination. I haven’t spoken to writers that this has happened to; that you meet face-to-face with someone you’ve made up, someone who is living inside your head. To find someone in the flesh, as it were, is quite a jolt to the senses . I didn’t say anything at time, but I kept thinking about this tech who looked like someone I had made up in my head more than a decade before.
Before I could change my mind, I hustled on down to the Staples and found the young man again working behind the tech counter. I went up to him with a tentative, ‘please don’t think I’m crazy, but you look just like the hero in my book.’ I had a few postcards I had made up with the cover of the book and a blurb on the back and handed him one. He said ,’wow I’ll look this up.’ I told him that he was probably the only real person I’d ever seen who looked just like the person in my head.
As a writer, you live in your head a lot, and to be faced with something that is three-dimensional , as I said, is quite a jolt.
Before I left the store, the tech came up to me and said,’ now who am I again? (in the book), I’m very flattered.’ I hope he didn’t think that I saw him last week and wrote the book and got it published in that small amount of time before I told him about it. After he told me that, I didn’t have the heart to tell him that when Jim O’Flannery first came into my mind he’d, the tech, had either been in grade school or hadn’t been born yet.
Jim O’Flannery, in The Wild Mountain Thyme, is a flawed character. He has warts just like the rest of us and puts his foot in his mouth more often than is good for him. But he sure is a grand, beautiful man, and to see a three-dimensional speaking person just like the one I made up in my head decades before was something that still makes my jaw slide south.
You can get The Wild Mountain Thyme, from the Wild Rose Press or from Amazon. And I have it on good authority, that there will soon be an audio rendition of the book.
The Wild Mountain Thyme:
I’d certainly love to hear what you think of the book.
Let me know, you can reach me at
As a writer, naming characters can sometimes be a daunting task. Does the name depict what the characters are like? Does the name depict what might happen to the character? Does the name depict just names you like?
Some years ago I wrote a time travel called,Test of Time. And guess what, it’s about a physicist.
The man in the book, the one who invented the time machine, I gave the name James Maxwell. I made up this funny little character who was a world-class mathematician, with big side whiskers, and just happened to be from Edinburgh, Scotland. About 35% of the book was finished when I put it aside for another project.
But this is the strange part; some months after I had put the book aside, I stumbled on the fact that there really was a 19th century mathematician named James Clerk Maxwell. The real Maxwell was a World-class mathematician and is considered the Father of Electromagnetics. Not only that, but when I saw a picture of James Maxwell he had big side whiskers.
Most writers I speak with, write what is in their heads. There are full scenes and acts of movies, plays, people, and real life taking place up there in the gray matter. Maybe it is the right side of the brain that rules creativity that tells us what to write and who to write about.
I know the story about Maxwell is a little creepy, and it stunned me.
Maxwell, the real Maxwell, had a dog, who was his constant companion. He spoke to the dog to try out his mathematical equations.(Nobody ever wrote that the dog answered him.)
Sometimes when I’m walking my dog Bitsy, I lean down and talk to her about a plot line I’m working on. But, she’s too busy sniffing around doing dog stuff to listen to me.
Maybe Maxwell’s dog was a genius just like his master.
I refuse to consider the possibility that Bitsy, lovable mutt though she is, somehow channels my IQ.
Since my books in The Locket series, Deception and The Locket, are rife with stories of secret agents, double agents, and their exploits, I thought it would be prudent to speak about America’s first spymaster.
When we are children in elementary school we get the story year after year, Presidents’ Day after Presidents’ Day, about George Washington and that ever love and cherry tree. If you don’t already know, that story was made up by a minister of an unknown denomination whose name I never knew to beef up the creds of George Washington, like he needs beefing up!
So, just to make this clear there was no cherry tree and George Washington was one of the best and most consummate liars in the history of our country. He started helping the Americans by using misinformation, much as Ian Richardson and the British did in the book Deception. One of his tricks was to make sure that the British intercepted information about how many barrels of gunpowder, how many sacks of flour, how many pairs of boots the Americans had.
This deliberate misinformation was a calculated risk taken by the upper echelons of the American Army during the Revolution. Because certainly it might have backfired and the British would have known the truth about the poorly provisoned Americans.
Gen. Clinton, one of the highest ranking of the British said in his memoir, “The American Army didn’t out to fight us, they out spied us.”
Above the door of the CIA in Langley Virginia is a quote from George Washington.
“There is nothing more necessary than good intelligence
to frustrate a designing enemy, & nothing requires greater pains to obtain.”
If you would care to see a middle grade book that I wrote about George Washington, the Culper Ring, and the beginning of a spy network in America, send your email to Kathryn @Scarborough books.com, and I will be delighted to send you a sample.
The title of my new book, Deception, came from the parallel plots of the novel itself.
My hero, Ian Richardson, is a control officer for the B. i.a section of the MI5 (WWII, the designations have changed in the modern era). The section dealt with capturing German spies and turning them to work for the British. Many of the stories I used for the novel of spies, intrigue, and misinformation, were taken from actual accounts that I’d researched.
Ian really takes it on the chin from his German wife, Elsbet. They marry in 1933, before all the mess in Germany becomes out of control. Elsbet leaves Ian to work for the Third Reich. One would not expect Ian and Elsbet’s romance to be anything but rocky and not to end well.
The book delves into how the misinformation the British used to fool the Nazi’s into believing that their ‘Vengeance Weapons’, the V-1 and V-2, pilot-less bombs, hit populated targets instead of meadows and fields. There are still V-2’s found today buried deep in the countryside.
And that’s the only spoiler I’ll give away for this blog post.
Deception is available on Kindle now.
Let me know what you think of it!
Write me at www.scarboroughbooks.com
and hit the contact link.