Author Interview: The Last Word

The Last Word will be in stores tomorrow, and I am so excited for debut author Samantha Hastings! To celebrate, Samantha is stopping by the blog today to answer some questions and recommend some historical romances!

Interview with Samantha Hastings

Tell us a little bit about the book—describe The Last Word in five words:

Banter, Romance, Feminism, Mystery, History

The Last Word is set in Victorian London. What kind of research was involved in writing this time period?

My bachelor’s degree is in History. My focus was British history, specifically the 19th century. My first master’s degree was an interdisciplinary program between the history and English departments from the University of Reading in England. So, I have been interested in the Victorian time period for a long time. In addition to my educational background, I research for each book that I write by checking out lots of books from the library. There is always something new and interesting to learn about a time period. While researching for THE LAST WORD, I came across and event that I’d never heard of before…it’s now a part of the book (no spoilers). You’ll know what it is when you read it.

In The Last Word, Lucinda tries to track down the ending of her favorite series after the author dies. What series would you travel across the country for to find its rightful ending?

The Agency by Y. S. Lee. I adored Mary Quinn from the first chapter of the first book (she was nearly hung as a thief) and then she became a lady spy during the Victorian era. She is smart, strong, resourceful, and an utterly charming heroine.

Lucinda teams up with her father’s young business partner, David, for this journey. How would they describe each other?

Lucinda is smart, beautiful, and bossy.

David is a pigeon-livered fopdoodle.

What historical romances do you recommend your readers check out after they read The Last Word and want more from the genre?

Dangerous Alliance by Jennieke Cohen (Coming December 3, 2019)

The Agency: A Spy in the House by Y. S. Lee

All Is Fair by Dee Garretson

The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller

Within These Lines by Stephanie Morrill

Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George

Love, Lies, and Spies by Cindy Anstey

Wait for Me by Caroline Leech

What’s up next? Can you share anything about what you are currently writing?

Yes! I am currently editing THE INVENTION OF SOPHIE CARTER which is coming out in 2020 from Swoon Reads. It’s another historical fiction novel set during the Great Exhibition of 1850. Twin sisters pretend to be one person during a visit to their aunt in London. They both find the perfect suitor, but both young men think they are in love with Sophie Carter. It has double the romance and double the fun.  

22718738About The Last Word

Release Date: July 9, 2019
Find it here: Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble

Set against the smoky, gaslit allure of Victorian London, this sweetly romantic historical debut is full of humor and stars a whip-smart female heroine ahead of her time.

Where one story ends, another begins.

1861. Miss Lucinda Leavitt is shocked when she learns the author of her favorite serialized novel has died before completing the story. Determined to learn how it ends, Lucinda reluctantly enlists the help of her father’s young business partner, Mr. David Randall, to track down the reclusive author’s former whereabouts.

David is a successful young businessman, but is overwhelmed by his workload. He wants to prove himself to his late father, as well as to himself. He doesn’t have the time, nor the interest, for this endeavor, but Lucinda is not the type to take no for an answer.

Their search for the elusive Mrs. Smith and the rightful ending to her novel leads Lucinda and David around the country, but the truths they discover about themselves—and each other—are anything but fictional.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, The Last Word by debut author Samantha Hastings is a fun yet intellectual romp through Victorian London—the perfect book for book-lovers.

About Samantha Hastings


Samantha Hastings has degrees from Brigham Young University, the University of Reading (Berkshire, England), and the University of North Texas. She met her husband in a turkey sandwich line. They live in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she spends most of her time reading, eating popcorn, and chasing her kids. The Last Word is her debut novel.

More Reading

Post navigation

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *