Author Barbara Monajem Inspired While in Lancashire, England

A fascinating story of history, travel and inspiration.

Booktalk with Eileen: Journaling a Journey -- Learning the Art of Crafting a Novel

Portrait of King Charles II courtesy of John Michael Wright or studio

  Barbara-Monajem-300I visited Gawthorpe Hall in Lancashire a few years ago, mostly because I happened to be in the area and knew that my favorite portrait of Charles II was there. I’ve always wanted to write a Restoration-era romance, so I wanted to see a portrait of Charles first-hand. It’s amazing to me how seeing a portrait painted from the living, breathing man made him seem so much more real. Charles certainly looked impressive in the painting, with heavy-lidded eyes and an expression into which the imagination can read almost anything. I can see why he was as popular with the ladies as they were with him!

I haven’t written that Restoration-era romance, but


Gawthorpe Hall provided inspiration for another story. It’s a beautiful Elizabethan building, but part of it was built much earlier. In the 14th…

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