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Olivia Hayfield Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Wife After Wife (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Olivia Hayfield is a historical fiction author best known for her debut adult novel “Wife After Wife.” Hayfield is the pseudonym of Sue Copsey who is a book editor and author of middle-grade fiction. As Olivia, she writes modern retelling of historical events and stories. She loves to think of Hayfield as a fairer and more glamorous version of Sue though her behavior is not that polished. Her writing is inspired by culture and history and she loves to use what she calls the “full immersion” method. This means that she spends a lot of time in historical places such as London and Scotland where she gets the inspiration for her fiction. She currently lives in Auckland, New Zealand, a subtropical city where the beach is usually no more than ten minutes from her home. Since she loves the rich history and culture of Europe, she splits her time between England and New Zealand. This means she gets to escape the relentless Auckland winters and the grim English ones. When she is not writing or working at her editing job, you can find Olivia with her nose deep in a fiction or non-fiction history work. She is a huge fan of Antonia Fraser and Philippa Gregory and while she also reads the takes on history by male authors, she prefers female insights on relationships and historical characters.

The inspiration for writing her debut novel “Wife After Wife” did not come from nowhere as she had always been a huge fan of Anne Boleyn. When she was in school, she got to see a play on “Anne of the Thousand Day” and the experience stayed with her since. She kept thinking of how and why a man would treat a woman that he said he loved so despicably. Olivia also comes from Warwickshire in England that is full of historical places that reference Anne Boleyn in the locality. As such the history of Henry and Boleyn was part of her upbringing which meant that she was fascinated by her story from very early on. She always found Boleyn to be a reformist with very liberal and forward-thinking views and perspectives. Nonetheless, while she was writing her novel, she wrote Catherine Parr as Clare, and by the time she finished writing her manuscript, she liked her best. She believes that Parr was a woman that knew what she was getting into and comes across as some type of wise owl figure. She also came to love Catherine Howard who she writes as Caitlin in her novel.

However, the huge kick in the butt that got Olivia Hayfield writing was the #MeToo movement. It got her thinking of all the attitudes to women, men in power, and how everything was changing as portrayed in the press. She had always been fascinated by the life of Henry VIII and she could not help but think what would happen to Henry VIII if he was living in the current dispensation. He would have had a hard time given his behavior as the #MeToo movement would have eaten him alive. Hayfield then thought that it would be fun to bring him back to life but in a different role in the modern world. She was certain that someone must have written something on Henry given that there are tons of Shakespeare retellings. However, once she started searching for stories on Henry and his wives, she could not find anything and knew that she had to do it. Once she got the ball rolling, it kind of wrote itself and in several months, she had written the entire manuscript for “Wife After Wife.” The novel follows the life of Harry Rose, a corporate mogul that over several years works his way through six marriages to Clare Barr, Katie Paragon, Caitlyn Howe, Ana Lyebon, Anki, and Janette Morrissey. Olivia plays with history and interjects her story with a lot of Easter eggs and in the process crafts a unique story of love, power, and karma. Hayfield has said that she was influenced by the likes of Alison Weir, Antonia Frazer as well as several history websites in the writing of her debut novel. She also includes many references to popular culture that gets one immersed in the culture of London during the 1990s and 1980s. Using her research, she translates historical context into a relevant and entertaining story.

Olivia Hayfield’s “Wife After Wife” is a historical fiction work that reimagines Henry VII as a modern-day man. He is reincarnated as Harry Rose, the owner and CEO of Rose Corp a magazine company that he inherited from his father. Harry and his siblings have lived a life of privilege having been born to a rich father who unfortunately did not have the time to enjoy the wealth he had built as he died while Harry was still a high schooler. He had lost his mother before his father and hence the siblings had to grow up without much guidance for much of their young adult lives. Harry had adapted well to the business world and had grown the business though he has not done so well in his romantic relationships. He gets married to a girl named Katie when she got pregnant but then he cannot seem to ever been faithful. She is five years his senior and while she has embraced motherhood Harry is more interested in making his empire bigger and cannot resist the beautiful women that he meets while he living the high life. Harry is one of the men that has been cursed with Robert Redford like looks and a charming manner. Soon an attractive employee named Anna gets Harry obsessed with her. He had first seen her at his most recent magazine launch and his desire for conquest has never been stronger though he initially seems uninterested. His quest has him doing ugly things to achieve his objective but he is soon neglecting his wife to be with Ana. Harry is a narcissistic sociopath that gets his readers to dislike him over time though he also has some emptiness and vulnerability in his life. The charm in the novel is in how Olivia reimagines historical figures and gives them interesting modern circumstances.

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