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Archive for February 11th, 2008

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I’m utterly delighted to be here today as a guest on Fatin’s blog—thank you for the invitation.

 

I thought I’d talk a bit about some of the fun bits of research that we did for the Diamonds Down Under series. One of my favourite aspects of the research was reading up about diamonds. Valuable diamonds. Pink diamonds. Flawless diamonds. Let’s face it, diamonds have something. Not are they only so implacably hard. They’re also scintillatingly gorgeous. A bit like my characters in Pride & A Pregnancy Secret, the second book in the series—Ryan and Jessica.

 

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The starting point for the research was Australia’s Argyle mine where over 90% of the world’s pink diamonds come from. Yes, those pinks in the series really are mined in Australia! And there’s a lovely contrast between the rough diamonds that are mined out the raw red earth of Janderra and the polished pink gems that appear in the Blackstones’ showroom in Sydney where Jessica works.

 

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Then of course there was all the research required to learn about cut and colour and clarity. Trust me, I had to closely scrutinize LOTS of pictures of diamonds to learn about that! The histories of some of the famous diamonds make compelling reading. This was fun fun fun! It was on stones like the Pink Sun Rise Diamond that we based the legendary Heart of the Outback, the diamond that lies at the heart of the feud between the Blackstones and the Hammonds. The Sun Rise is over 29 carats of flawless pink stone. Rare and exceptionally valuable. Isn’t it glorious?

 

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Even though Jessica is a store manager…not a designer or diamond cutter…I soon discovered that she passionately loved the diamonds that Blackstones’ Jewellers stock and sell. She’s incredibly knowledgeable about the diamonds and about the cuts and colours of the stones. And her knowledge and love for fancy coloured diamonds comes out in several scenes in the book—one of the most fun to write was a scene with Petra and Colin, a couple buying an engagement ring. There’s a bittersweet irony in this scene because Jessica knows that the one thing she will NEVER get from Ryan is a diamond ring. Of course, he always swore there would be no kids and no cats either…

 

Can Jessica save this hard-as-diamond man from himself? That was the question that faced me all the way through the book…and I’ll leave it to you to discover what happens.

 

I do hope those of you who read the Diamonds Down Under series get as much pleasure as I received from researching and writing Pride & A Pregnancy Secret.

 

Prizes galore! I’ll draw a random person from the comments to receive a signed copy of my trilogy Billionaire Heirs. I’m running a contest on my website http://www.tessaradley.com too, so pop past and enter. And don’t forget to pop over to www.diamonds-downunder.com. Check out that blog—there are heaps of prizes to be won!

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Tessa

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