I am pleased to welcome Stephanie Burkhart who will present her new released book, The Count's Lair and give us an idea about life in the early 1900.

I'm excited to be here at Fuzzy Pink Slippers today. Thanks so much to the ladies, and Mona, for having me.

Just a little about me: I was born in Manchester, New Hampshire. After graduating from Central High, I joined the US Army. I spent 11 years in the military, 7 in Germany. While in the military, I earned a BS in Political Science from California Baptist University in Riverside, CA in 1995. I left the Army in 1997 and settled in California, but my favorite football team is still the New England Patriots. I work for LAPD as a 911 dispatcher. I've been married for 19 years. I have two boys, Andrew, 8, and Joseph, 4.

What was life like in 1901?

"The Count's Lair" is set in 1901 Hungary. So, what was life like in 1901? It was an interesting blend of old and new and a time of quick change.

Motor cars, or autos, as I refer them to them in novel, were beginning to make an impact, but most of the transport on the roads were horse and buggy. Mercedes was a popular model of car in Europe on the continent. Daimler and Benz each built autos in the mid 1880's. The Benz Velo and Mercedes became popular European model cars. During this time, it was usually the nobility who had motor cars, and those who couldn't afford it used the horse and buggy.

Married women stayed at home with their families. It was acceptable for single women to work. Poor married women usually worked. Households that could afford employed domestic servants, even a modest household, had a maid.

Interestingly, a lot of people did have indoor plumbing. Flush toilets had been invented in the 1880's, but most people did not have adequate drainage, and outdoor facilities were still popular. Electric lights and telephones were also available, but not everyone had them. In fact, only two percent of homes had electricity. Usually the nobility did and those who made a modest living. There were phonographs, but there were no airplanes, radios, or washing machines.

The movies were in their infancy. Usually the films were short and silent. Berlin, Germany had a burgeoning film industry, as did Hungary.

Over the counter remedies were popular in 1901. They included laudanum, which was opium based. In fact, there were a lot of opiate based pain killers, much more so than there are today. Working people relied on herbs and roots to help them.

This was a monarchic union between the crowns of Austria and Hungary. It was formed in 1867 and lasted until the end of World War I. There were two capitols, Vienna and Budapest. The two nations maintained separate parliaments with their own prime ministers.

He was a Hungarian pianist who lived between 1811-1886. He was well known for his skill and his contemporizes thought he was a technically advanced pianist.
In the story, you'll see Anton use an auto, the telephone, and Esmé using herbs and roots in a medicinal setting. You'll see electricity and central heating used in the story as well as trains.

This reference link, has a video of a London street in 1902. Note the mix of autos and horse and buggys.

Reference: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/pathways/census/living/move/horse.htm

We've come a long way since 1901, haven't we?

About The Count's Lair: The Count's Lair is Book Two in the Budapest Moon series. It's a paranormal romance that takes place during Christmastime in Budapest, Hungary, 1901. Count Anton Varga has a dark secret, but he's in love with a beautiful and talented pianist, Lady Amelia Andrassy. He'll give her 3 clues to help her figure out his secret. Can she accept him as he is or will his secret drive them apart?


The Count's Lair is avail as ebook for Kindle, B&N Nook, Sony Ereader, and Kobo. You can also download a copy from the Publisher's Website at:


You can find me on the web at:




Good Time: Leave me a comment and I'll be back tomorrow to give away a PDF copy of The Count's Lair.

Steph Burkhart


  1. Autumn Jordon // February 9, 2011 at 8:03 AM  

    Stephanie, Welcome to the Fuzzies. I'm drawn to this time period for some reason. Love reading about it and looking at pictures. It was such an innocent time.

    Liked your trailer. Beautiful scenery and yummy Count. Love your cover too!

  2. Tamara LeBlanc // February 9, 2011 at 8:38 AM  

    I loved this post! Thank you so much for giving us a peek into turn of the century life. That time period happens to be one of my favorites and the book sounds soooo compelling. I watched the YouTube trailer, loved the music and the word bites. The whole video really sets the tone of your story and makes me want to read the novel even more!!
    Good Luck with the book!! I'm sure it will be a winner.
    Have a great morning:)

    oh, and I'd like to friend you on Facebook...that okay?

  3. Maggie Toussaint // February 9, 2011 at 10:00 AM  

    Hi Steph! It's always fun to visit the Pink Fuzzy Slippers - such a cool vibe here.

    And hooray for flush toilets. I'm so glad they were invented.

    Your book sounds excellent. I love stories set in foreign locals.


  4. StephB // February 9, 2011 at 11:03 AM  

    I just want to thank the ladies at Fuzzy Pink Slippers for having me here today. :)

    Autumn, thank you for the welcome. I love this time period, too. I agree, there was an innocence to it. Thanks for checking out the trailer. I love the cover. Jenifier Ranieri did a wonderful job with it.

    Thanks so much for sending me a FB request. :) I made the video myself. It was a fun project and I think it captures the essence of Anton & Amelia well.

    I'm sure they were pretty happy about flush tiolets too. hehe


  5. jude // February 9, 2011 at 11:38 AM  

    Mona and Stephanie,

    I enjoyed this post and like the concept of your blog too! I've a passion for historical stuff and have a 1926 book of quotes written by an author who uses 'Mrs' and her husband's name for the front cover. How interesting is that, but maybe usual in 1926. Don't know.

  6. Mona Risk // February 9, 2011 at 11:39 AM  

    Steph, good to have you here. I love stories set in that period when so much changes took place too fast. Your book is so interesting.

  7. Nightingale // February 9, 2011 at 12:05 PM  

    I love the cover of The Count's Lair and am dying to know what his secret is. And I'm a great fan of Franz Liszt, of the piano in general. I'd probably really like your heroine.

  8. StephB // February 9, 2011 at 12:08 PM  

    Thanks for popping in. That does sound unusual. Thanks for sharing.

    That's one of the reasons why I love the time, too. So many changes in a quick time period.

    Oh, how cool - I don't know many who have heard Liszt! I really loved Amelia & Anton in this story. They hold a fond place in my heart!

  9. Cheryl Pierson // February 9, 2011 at 1:06 PM  

    Hi Steph,
    Great post--I really enjoyed this! you must have done a ton of research for your books. Very interesting time period. BTW, I love the cover -- those eyes!

  10. Jillian // February 9, 2011 at 3:52 PM  

    Love the name of this blog AND I have a pair of those exact slippers except mine look horrid and ratty!!

    Love this little history lesson, Steph!

    I already have the book so leave me out of the drawing. Great story!!

  11. Nightingale // February 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM  

    Had a chance to watch your trailer. Very haunting and beautiful.

  12. liana laverentz // February 9, 2011 at 4:31 PM  

    Hey Steph and Mona! We have indeed come a long way from 1901. Enjoy your blog tour!

  13. StephB // February 9, 2011 at 4:36 PM  

    Cheryl, thank you for popping in. I love Anton's eyes - they're very unusual because of his secret.

    Jillian & Liana, nice to see you pop in, Sweeties.

    Nightgale, thanks for watching the trailer. I enjoyed making it. hehe


  14. Mary Marvella // February 9, 2011 at 5:11 PM  

    Welcome, Stephanie! I always enjoy your blogs! Reading historical novels makes me think those times and places would be wonderful to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there or then!

    Good job and interesting book I'll have to go get!

  15. LK Hunsaker // February 9, 2011 at 6:59 PM  

    Steph, you write and watch the history channel at the same time? I'm impressed. ;-)

  16. StephB // February 9, 2011 at 11:44 PM  

    Mary, I have to admit, having a flushing tiolet would be a requirement for me! LOL!!

    Loraine, The History Channel is my guilty little pleasure when I can catch a show!

    It's 840 pm PST and I'm off to work. I'll be back tomorrow to announce a winner for my giveaway.

    Sleep well


  17. Celia Yeary // February 10, 2011 at 8:28 AM  

    Steph--I love history and enjoyed reading about life in Europe in 1900.The same was true in 1900 in the USA, cities more modernized than country. I have a book set in 1901--well, two, actually--but they're in Texas and in the country.
    Congratulations on the release of your newest book! Celia

  18. StephB // February 10, 2011 at 10:56 AM  

    I just want to congratule Nightingale - the winner of my PDF drawing for a copy of The Count's Lair! Please email me at Botrina_buchanan@yahoo.com or sgcardin1@yahoo.com so I can deliever that to you.

    Thank you to everyone who posted.

  19. Patrice // February 10, 2011 at 12:28 PM  

    I enjoyed hearing about this era too. Thanks, Stephanie, and I wish you the very best of luck with your beautiful book. You've led an interesting life.

  20. Joanne // February 10, 2011 at 12:37 PM  

    Hi Stephanie,
    Welcome to the Pink Fuzzies blog and thanks to Mona for hosting.
    I am a piano teacher, and it's especially interesting that you feature a heroine pianist in your story. In fact, the entire novel and setting sound fascinating. Best wishes for your continued success.

  21. desitheblonde // February 10, 2011 at 3:46 PM  

    wow the post is great and so are the slipper cool you ware one of the lucky one and i like the idea you have here

  22. Anonymous // February 10, 2011 at 4:00 PM  

    Stephanie, welcome to the pink fuzzies. Thanks for reminding me of the beauty of Vienna. It is one of my favorite cities. I look forward to you book.


  23. Judy // February 10, 2011 at 4:22 PM  

    Welcom, Stephanie! Your book sounds fascinating but I have to say I'm glad I live in this period! But you must have had fun researching the book and uncovering interesting facts. Good luck with your launch!!

  24. Mary Ricksen // February 10, 2011 at 4:34 PM  

    Hi Stephanie, thanks for a great blog! Boy, life was so interesting at that time. I don't know if I'd have made it! They couldn't take me and I can't imagine deferring to the man!!!

  25. Scarlet Pumpernickel // February 10, 2011 at 9:47 PM  

    Wow, I'm late for the party. Rushing around trying to get things done had a late day at school we had a school dance, middle schoolers, joy.

    Great blog, enjoyed the mini history lessons.

  26. StephB // February 11, 2011 at 10:13 AM  

    Thanks for stopping in. Do you think there was a difference in the way of living between how Europeans lived and how they lived out West? Did they have autos or were they still using horses? How popular were trains?

    Patrice & desitheblonde,
    thanks so much for popping in.

    Oh, I would have loved to have picked your brain when it comes to the piano!! I really enjoyed Amelia's character and how she expressed her emotions through her playing.

    I've been to Austria, but not to Vienna. I've always wanted to go. I spent time in Innsbruck and I enjoy Mozartkrugels. hehe

    Judy and Mary
    Life was definately interesting. I'm glad they had running water and tiolets. LOL!! I did a lot of research on European cars, the different makes and models of the time since Anton likes to drive cars. It was very fascinating. Benz named the Mercedes after his 10 year old daughter.

    Scarlet, glad to see you pop in. I hope you had fun with the history.