We are ecstatic to have the lovely and spontaneous Hetty Avebury, heroine of Only a Hero Will Do, here to chat today.

Thank you for visiting with us. Why do you think Susan Lodge choose you to represent her?

Susan knows I am far more garrulous then she is and I did ask if I might attend. I was curious to meet you. I have an inquisitive nature — it is one of my many faults, according to my father. 

Susan did warn me to think carefully before I answer your questions, as I am prone to talking and acting on impulse. I have been told I must not reveal too much of the plot. 

Tell us a little about yourself? 

My name is Hetty Avebury and I reside in Hampshire, England. My life has always been comfortable financially, being the daughter of Sir Henry Avebury. But since my mother died of scarlet fever, five years ago, things have not been so pleasant.

I have acquired a stepmother who likes to spend money—so much so that she has now landed the Aveburys in debt. So, something has to be sold to raise funds - and unfortunately it is I. 

Lord Stark is to be my betrothed. However, as his title is the only good thing about him, I have no intention of marrying the awful man. 

What do you wish people would know about you? 

That when I attend the card tables - covertly of course - it is for the best intentions. I do not see gambling as a terrible vice, but a useful way to earn funds for unexpected events. Do you know that I have never lost a game! 

What is your birth date? 

1788—I am two and twenty—virtually on the shelf, although I may well have been married by now, if I had been permitted to select my own suitor. 

Where have we seen you before? 

The last ball I attended was Lady Bertram’s. Unfortunately, I was involved in an incident in the rose arbor. I haven’t been invited to any functions since then. 

What really pushes your buttons? 

Annie, my maid of course. What an odd question!

 What’s you biggest turn ons? 

(Frown and turns to confer with Susan).

Ah! Now I understand. 

Gambling I find exhilarating, reading I enjoy and there is a certain Doctor I know who has the most impressive thighs…I mean eyes. An exquisite green, even though they are often quite scolding.

Do tell us more about him. 

Well, he does frown rather a lot and can be rather sarcastic. I suppose that could be because our first introduction was not of the conventional type - or the second as I recall. (Blushes) – But I really wasn’t responsible for being picked up by the press gang. 

What is your most embarrassing moment? 

Let me see - there have been so many lately. Suffering from sea sickness was quite mortifying. Vomit stains terribly, but Doctor Withington did say it was only his second best coat.

What is your biggest turn off? 

That has to be Lord Stark—he dresses like a buffoon. And he can be cruel at times – quite cruel indeed.

Is there anything you wish Susan Lodge had kept their mouth shut about? 

I think it was rather unkind to mention the slight tilt to my nose, after all we can not all be blessed with bucketfuls of beauty. And it was very bad form to reveal that I had read someone’s private correspondence. It was purely an accident. I would never have done so had I realized it was of a personal nature.

What is your biggest fear? 

A loveless marriage. I am a romantic optimist, despite being constantly reminded by my father that ‘love has nothing to do with a good marriage’—but really, that is such nonsense.

Will we be seeing more of you or are you stepping out of the lime light? 

I have a habit of finding myself in strange situations. I have plans for my future but it is up to Susan of course. She is always tap, tapping away on that strange instrument which sits in front of her.

Why should the readers be interested in your story? 

Well, apart from learning more about my ruthless family and the hazards of sailing on a ship of the line —there is a lot more to discover about Doctor Withington.

Also, things get a lot more disturbing back at Avebury Hall when... Ouch! There is no need to swat my arm so forcefully, Susan, I was not about to divulge anything. Really authors—they are so bossy! 

Available for download and papaerback