I’m so excited to feature award-winning novelist Juliette Lauber in this month’s Author Spotlight. Juliette’s latest book is a fascinating read, drawn from her rich and diverse interests, expertise, travels, and history. Juliette nurtures two careers – novelist and an international entertainment lawyer. Her latest book, The French Queen’s Curse, is part of a historical romance and mystical thriller trilogy – The Kikki Trieste Trilogy. French Queen won a Literary Titan Award for Fiction and was published by Indies United Publishing in 2022. Juliette’s successful international legal career led her to become European General Counsel for Time Warner/ Warner Bros. in Paris and London. She has lived in New York, London, Madrid, Santorini, Sante Fe, and she’s fluent in French, Spanish, conversational Greek and some Italian.
What is the book about?
Véronique “Kikki” Trieste – an international entertainment lawyer moonlighting as a time traveler and 21st Century High Priestess, answers a plea from the ghost of Queen Marguerite de Valois to break a 400 year-old curse. Two ancient secret societies are pitted against each other—one, the Knights of the Holy Swords of God and the Daughters of the Goddess Inanna. Kikki crosses time and dimension to the 16th century through past life visions to break the 400 year-old curse.
“A thrilling and mysterious fantasy saga filled with action and drama” – Literary Titan
“Cunningly plotted, filled with suspense and unexpected moments. Masterfully written” – The Book Commentary
Where did the idea of The French Queen’s Curse: In Queen Margot’s Gardens come from?
It came from the French Queen herself! I have lived in Paris for many years and beginning in 1993, I lived on the corner of rue de Verneuil and rue de Beaune, once the site of the early 17th century gardens of Queen Marguerite de Valois’s Rive-Gauche palace. I was literally haunted by the spirit of Queen Margot. She came up time and again through the old tunnels under the 17th century buildings where I lived and insisted that I listen and give her a voice. I became fascinated with her, and she compelled me to share her untold story.
Who is Kikki Trieste?
Kikki Trieste is a kick-ass fighter for justice who courageously walks the labyrinthian hero’s journey doing battle against darkness and evil. And, of course, she’s my alter ego. Kikki’s also a 21st Century High Priestess fighting to protect and empower Mother Earth, the Mother Goddess, and powerful women of history whose lives have been rewritten by the Patriarchy. The character of Kikki was born during Holy Week in Marbella, Spain, where I had gone for a master flamenco class. In the richly evocative ambiance of Andalucia, and as a flamenco dancer myself, I conjured a wildly free-spirited character who wanted release from the constraints of her professional legal career to explore her passions– a character who sought love, magic, adventure, and danger in equal measure. That eventful week inspired Kikki’s birth and her reunion with an old flame, Pepe Torres.
Who was Margot?
Marguerite de Valois, “Queen Margot”, was known as the Rebel Queen. She fought to rule as Queen and was denied agency. A brilliant and great beauty, poets called her the Pearl of the Valois Court. She fought to be heard as a woman in the treacherous patriarchal Valois Court of the High Renaissance—one of the most tumultuous and dark times in Paris’s history, during the French Wars of Religion. I believe Margot and I are kindred spirits – passionate, romantic, interested in magic, the spirit and natural world, drawn to the archetypes and beauty of Greek Goddesses. As one who has always been fascinated by past-lives, I was told by a psychic that I was Margot’s confidante, Gillone, who appears in past-life visions in the novel.
Why is Margot still relevant today?
Four centuries later, women are still fighting for agency. Margot is an exemplary hero/role model for the 21st century. While imprisoned in exile, she continued to fight for her place, for a return to the court and Paris, for a woman’s right to live as men did. She finally returned triumphantly to Paris and with the money from her divorce (annulment) settlement, shocked everyone by building her palace right across from the Louvre, home of her former husband, King Henri IV. She was the original “influencer” – a trend setter at the forefront of social change, the first to transform the Left Bank into the fashionable area it is today. She held the first “Salons” on the Rive Gauche, bringing together philosophers, poets and artists to mix with daring aristocrats.
What advice would you give a first-time, novice writer thinking about getting started with their first book?
To have fun with their writing, ideas, plots, characters, to let it all come out in glorious bloom. No editing on the first draft. Enjoy it! Get a good writing coach and editor as soon as possible to help shape the book after the first draft. It’s also important to develop a discipline, a practice that fits the writer’s personality and obligations. Read Natalie Goldberg’s books, “Wild Mind” and “Writing Down the Bones.” Respect the psychic privacy of your work. It is sacred and you are entitled to keep it private until you are ready to share it. Always be kind and patient with yourself as you write and revise.
What’s next for you?
I’m working on a sequel novella to Kikki and Torres’s adventures, The Black Queen’s Shadow. It takes place in Paris and Amboise, France in the Loire Valley, leading up to Winter Solstice, and features familiar characters as well as some new cast members—the ghosts of Leonardo da Vinci and Marie Stuart, Queen of Scots—in a quest to save and protect a powerful ancient treasure from the dark forces who seek to destroy it.
Buy The French Queen’s Curse on Amazon
This blog series celebrates writers, creativity, and the fantastic writing journey. If you’re a writer with a new book and you’d like to be featured in an Author Spotlight, reach out to me at: email@example.com.
Thank you for visiting, today, and I hope you enjoyed meeting Juliette Lauber!
3 thoughts on “AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT: Juliette Lauber”
What an interesting book and author! I better hurry up and read the book. It’s on my Kindle. Compelling interview Lisa and Juliette.
Thank you Ana!