Romance Lives Across the Ages with Morgan O’Neill’s Time Travel Stories

Morgan O’Neill’s books will draw you in and hold you prisoner until you read the last word. This award-winning dynamic duo, made up of Cary Morgan Frates and Deborah O’Neill Cordes, creates magic with every book they write. Welcome, Cary and Deborah. Please tell us a little about yourself.

DeborahCordesCaryFratesWe’ve worked as a writing team for about thirteen years. We have seven published time travel novels and one work-in-progress: the Roman series, the medieval Italian series, and our current release with Entangled/Macmillan, the Elizabethan series.

Cary – I have two grown children and a pair of English setters. I live in a home built in 1892, and besides writing I paint with oils and strive to recreate Rembrandts, Renoirs, and Vermeers, among others—because I can’t afford the originals. 🙂

Deb – I love beachcombing on the wild Pacific coast for agates and Japanese glass floats. My husband and I also have a great time traveling to far-flung destinations—some of our experiences end up in my novels (keep that in mind as you read the Buckingham Palace scene in Begun by Time). We adore terriers, particularly Cairns and Westies, who also show up in many of my stories (Duffy!).


What Renaissance women you are! Talk about your newest release. What was the first seed of an idea you had? How did it develop?

The Thorness Rose_1600The idea for Begun by Time came to us after we completed The Thornless Rose. We thought readers would enjoy the story of a young Catherine Hastings and her two great loves, Jonathan Brandon and Arthur Howard, in 1940s and post-war England.


They both captured my heart. How did writing this book change you or change how you look at the world?

It deepened our profound gratitude for the greatest generation as they confronted and eventually overcame their Axis enemies in World War II.


Was there a scene that was more difficult than others? One that you pondered whether or not to include it?

Begun by Time is not a traditional or category romance in that we tell the tale of Catherine’s two great loves, the first one vanishing without a trace. We also have other characters who die during the course of the story. We wrote each scene of loss with great care, and we hope our readers will feel the same compassion and grief we did. That being said, we strove to give Catherine a truly wonderful happy ever after ending, exchanging her tears of sorrow for those of joy.


Your compassion comes through beautifully, and your concern for your readers makes your books so relatable. What are you currently working on?

Our work-in-progress is the sequel to The Thornless Rose, titled Ever Crave the Rose. It is also an Elizabethan time travel novel and a continuation of Anne and Jonathan Brandon’s tale as they face life and death struggles in sixteenth century England. This novel will bring all story lines from Begun by Time and The Thornless Rose to a full circle conclusion.


I look forward to reading Ever Crave the Rose! I wish you all best.


Thank you to Meyette’s Musings for hosting us today, and thanks and happy reading to everyone who stops by ~ Deborah and Cary.


The Elizabethan Time Travel Series – Morgan O’Neill


The Thorness Rose_1600The Thornless Rose

An Elizabethan Time Travel Novel

Morgan O’Neill

Publisher: Entangled/Macmillan Select Historical

Publication Date: December 29, 2014

Genre: Historical/Time Travel Fiction


About the Book:

No one ever knew what really happened to Dr. Jonathan Brandon back in 1945. He simply disappeared from a London pub, leaving behind an unsolved mystery and his fiancée—Anne Howard’s grandmother. Seventy years later, Anne herself is haunted by the strange tale, along with inexplicable hallucinations straight out of Elizabethan England. Including a scarred, handsome man whose deep blue eyes seem to touch her very soul….


Anne wonders if there isn’t something more to the story. Is it even possible that Jonathan disappeared into England’s dark past? And why does Anne keep hearing him whisper her name? Because now she too feels the inexorable pull of the past, not to mention an undeniable attraction for a man she doesn’t even know.


It’s just a matter of time before Anne will step back into history, and face a destiny―and a love―beyond imagining…









BegunbyTime_MorganONeill_1600x2400Begun by Time

The Prequel to The Thornless Rose

Author: Morgan O’Neill


Publisher: Entangled/Macmillan Select Historical

Publication Date: August 24, 2015

Genre: Historical/Time Travel Fiction


About the Book:

In 1945, a man disappeared into thin air…

In the final days of World War II, Catherine Hastings meets the man she wants to marry. Flight surgeon Jonathan Brandon isn’t just handsome—he’s everything Catherine could hope for in her betrothed. But her dream of a happily ever after is shattered when Jonnie disappears shortly before their wedding…leaving Catherine bereft, broken-hearted, and with a lifetime of unanswered questions.

Arthur Howard is smitten with the lovely Catherine the moment he sees her. He’s certain he’s found the woman he wants to marry. Yet behind Catherine’s sparkling green eyes is a haunted look—the look of a woman who has known loss. But can he love a woman who still grieves the loss of her fiancé? Now Arthur wants answers about the man Catherine intended to marry.

But the truth about Jonnie’s disappearance is far stranger than fiction…








About the Authors:

DeborahCordesCaryFratesA chance meeting at a writers’ conference brought Cary Morgan Frates and Deborah O’Neill Cordes together, two award-winning authors who connected because of a mutual love of time travel fiction. Collaboration ensued, the search for a pen name the first step in their working relationship. Their maiden names provided the solution – and “Morgan O’Neill” was born.

Cary and Deborah’s backgrounds are uniquely suited to writing stories steeped in atmosphere and history: Deborah has a Master’s Degree in history and is a dedicated genealogist; Cary is a talented linguist in French and is currently a student of Latin. They’ve traveled to Europe’s ancient and medieval sites many times, with Cary living on the Continent for five years.

The Morgan O’Neill time travel novels have received a number of literary awards, including two finalist wins in the Booksellers’ Best Awards, two semifinalist wins in the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition, first, second, and third place wins for the Mainstream Novel with Strong Romantic Elements category of the Golden Rose Contest, a top ten finalist award in the Pacific Northwest Writers’ Conference Zola Awards Literary Contest, and a top ten finalist win in the Orange Rose Contest.

Author Links:












4 thoughts on “Romance Lives Across the Ages with Morgan O’Neill’s Time Travel Stories

  1. Thanks so much for hosting us today, Betty. We hope your readers enjoy the interview and the insight into our Elizabethan Time Travel series. We worked hard to put out a quality product, and we’re excited for everyone to meet Catherine, Jonathan, and Arthur in their prime in Begun by Time. Best to all!

    • Elizabeth Meyette says:

      You’re most welcome, Cary. I love when you visit my blog – and so do my readers! Your hard work pays off. I am always so impressed with the research that goes into your books and how rich the details are. Now there’s another one to love 🙂

  2. Thank you for hosting us on Meyette’s Musings. I love visiting with you! Begun by Time is very precious to me, in that many of my own experiences have been woven into the novel— and Arthur Howard is based on my darling husband! <3 Happy reading, everyone! ~ Deborah, the O'Neill half of Morgan O'Neill.

    • Elizabeth Meyette says:

      It’s always such a delight to have you on my blog, Deborah. Thanks for sharing why this novel is so special for you. I love that Arthur is based on your hubby 🙂

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