Renee Rosen, author of "Dollface: A Novel of the Roaring Twenties" (available November 5th) answers 10 questions about her favorite time period in history, her favorite figures from history, and the age old question of coffee or tea.
1. If you could go back in time and be any figure from history, who would it be?
Bertha Palmer. She was a feminist, a woman of great style and conviction. She was a super smart businesswoman and the closest thing we had to American/Chicago royalty. She was also credited with bringing French impressionist works to the United States and later on her collection was donated to the Art Institute.
2. What year in history would you have liked to live in?
1925—smack in the middle of the Roaring Twenties. I can’t think of a time in history that was more vibrant or more alive. It was a liberating time for women, too. Everyone was pushing boundaries, experimenting with everything from illegal alcohol to fashion.
3. You're having a dinner party and you can invite 5 people from history, who would they be?
Sigmund Freud, Benjamin Franklin, Oscar Wilde, Dion O’Banion and Dorothy Parker. I think Dorothy could hold her own with these dudes, don’t you.
4. What castle from the past or present would you like to live in?
I’ll take a room or two at the Highclere Castle in England, mostly because they film a lot of Downton Abbey episodes there.
5. Two fellow historical fiction authors you'd like to go on a history themed tour of the world with?
I’m going to take creative license with this question and make it three people. Plus me,that makes it four and that’s better for traveling. So here we go: Leo Tolstoy, Herman Wouk and F. Scott Fitzgerald because you just know he’d liven things up!
6. Who was more dashing and interesting, King Henry VIII of England or King Louis XIV of France?
I’m going to have to go with King Henry VIII. He liked the ladies and I just find his personal life fascinating. Plus, he was a man who wasn’t afraid to commit—again and again and again (times two).
7. Which of the six wives of King Henry VIII is your favorite?
Who else but Anne Boleyn? She was a strong, independent woman ahead of her time. Even Henry couldn’t keep her in line.
8. English monarchy or French monarchy?
The French of course. Drama drama everywhere!
9. What three novels could you read over and over?
"Rules of Civility by Amor Towels, "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald and "Sister Carrie" by Theodore Dreiser
10. Tea or coffee when writing?
Coffee with a drop of cream.
Renee Rosen's official website: