Courting Cassandry by Joyce DiPastena

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Courting Cassandry
(Hearts in Autumn #2)
by Joyce DiPastena
Adult Historical Romance
ebook, 348 pages
February 17th 2016

Is it too late for second chances when the girl you loved in your youth comes back into your life?

Gerolt de Warenne became guardian to a child-heiress named Cassandry when he was only nineteen-years old. As he watched her grow into a lovely young woman, he found himself falling in love with her, but Cassandry viewed him as an older brother. So, burying his feelings, he gave permission for her to marry another.

Twenty-four years later Gerolt and Cassandry meet again. With the loss of their respective spouses, Gerolt hopes to finally court Cassandry, but she desires to remain a widow. Instead, they agree to a betrothal of their children.

Matters become complicated as their friendship begins to evolve into the romance Gerolt has always wanted. But by the law of the medieval Church, Cassandry and Gerolt can’t marry if their children do. Can they find a way to be together? Or must they sacrifice their future for the love of their children?

“Courting Cassandry” is a “Hearts in Autumn” romance, medieval romances revolving around heroes and heroines “in the autumn of their years.” Because love isn’t only for the young!

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The First Book in the Series

Loving Lucianna
(Hearts in Autumn #1)
by Joyce DiPastena
Adult Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 220 pages
October 11th 2014

Sir Balduin de Soler gave up long ago on love. He never had the means to support a wife until an unexpected advancement in his fifties allows him to reassess his future just as the lovely Lucianna enters his life.

Lucianna Fabio harbors a secret, painful memory from her past that has kept her unwed, as well. Now in her forties, she thought herself too old to marry until she meets Sir Balduin. Now suddenly their lonely autumn lives feel very much like spring again . . . until Lucianna’s brother appears without warning and threatens to revive the secret that will destroy Lucianna’s second chance at love.

“Loving Lucianna” is the first in Joyce DiPastena’s new “Hearts in Autumn” romance series, medieval romances revolving around heroes and heroines “in the autumn of their years.” Because you’re never too old to fall in love!

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Joyce DiPastena dreamed of green medieval forests while growing up in the dusty copper mining town of Kearny, Arizona. She filled her medieval hunger by reading the books of Thomas B. Costain (where she fell in love with King Henry II of England), and later by attending the University of Arizona where she graduated with a degree in history, specializing in the Middle Ages. The university was also where she completed her first full-length novel…set, of course, in medieval England. Later, her fascination with Henry II led her to expand her research horizons to the far reaches of his “Angevin Empire” in France, which became the setting of her first published novel, Loyalty’s Web (a 2007 Whitney Award Finalist).

When she’s not writing, Joyce loves to read, play the piano, and spend time with her sister and friends. A highlight of her year is attending the annual Arizona Renaissance Festival .

Joyce is a multi-published, multi-award winning author who specializes in sweet medieval romances heavily spiced with mystery and adventure. She lives with her two cats, Clio and Glinka Rimsky-Korsokov, in Mesa, Arizona.


Tour Schedule

February 28th: Launch
February 29th: The Written Adventure, Lampshade Reader, & Wishful Endings
March 1st: Bookworm Lisa, deal sharing aunt, & I Am A Reader
March 2nd: Letters from Annie Douglass Lima & EskieMama Reads
March 3rd: Getting Your Read On, underneath the covers, & Boundless Minds
March 4th: Singing Librarian Books & Zerina Blossom’s Books
March 6th: Grand Finale

Tour Giveaway

$20 See’s Candies Gift Certificate (if US) or $20 PayPal Cash (if international)
Copies of Loving Lucianna and Courting Cassandry (signed print if US, ebook if international)
Ends March 12th

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Guest Post

Medieval Entertainments, Part 1 – Dancing

by Joyce DiPastena

The curious thing about medieval dancing is that no one knows how medieval couples actually danced. Written descriptions of dancing in Europe didn’t appear until the mid-1400s, during the Renaissance. Nevertheless, we know people did dance during the Middle Ages because there are references to dancing in medieval poetry, as well as glimpses of dancing in medieval paintings and illuminated manuscripts.



(dancing scene from medieval manuscript)

There are documents from the Middle Ages referring to a dance called a “carole dance” that was apparently performed in a circle with people holding hands. Beyond that we have almost no details. However, this lack of descriptive information can be a benefit to an author, leaving a door wide open for the imagination.


(dancing scene from medieval manuscript)

While writing about dancing in my medieval romances, I considered it safe to assume that people wouldn’t have danced if they hadn’t found it enjoyable, and that dancing wouldn’t have been enjoyable if all they had done was walk around in a circle. So I freely confess to using my imagination to try to invent step patterns that might have been realistically performed within such a circle dance.

In Courting Cassandry, here is the dance I invented:

She allowed Gerolt to turn her slowly under his arm at the proper beat in the music, lead her three steps to the left in the circle, then set his hands at her waist to lift her off the floor. She almost forgot both Marion and Egelina as her fingertips brushed his wide shoulders, then slid down the muscles beneath his sleeves as he set her back on her feet. She had loved dancing once, with Antony, with Sir Ingram and Sir Payne, even with Sir Samson. But most of all with Gerolt.

 He released Cassandry’s left hand so that she could extend it to meet the other women’s in the circle’s center. They revolved around the circle with a slow marching step, the women’s colorful gowns flowing like petals fanning out from a flower’s disk.

 “I do not see how that led to the topic of—”

 He held up a finger on his free hand, curbing her impatience.

 “She then proceeded to explain to me, again very prettily, why she could not marry my son. She said she was meant for a convent, so I asked her why she wished to be a nun—”

 “I see.” This time it was Cassandry who cut him off. When the music changed, she nearly snapped her hand away from the other women’s she was so annoyed.

The music changed again. Their arms encircled one another’s waists while Gerolt’s free arm arched over his head and hers spanned out again, this time into empty air. They spun to the tune together, a hop, a pointed toe, a hop, another pointed toe …

What do you think? Could this pass for a medieval dance?


About bhillson


  1. Thank you so much for spotlighting my new book, Courting Cassandry, for my book launch tour, and letting me share a guest post on your blog!

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