New Release Tour: The Last Word by Samantha Hastings and Meet the Author

Curious, curious.

The Last Word by Samantha Hastings releases tomorrow in the Historical, Romance, Young Adult genre.

1861. Miss Lucinda Leavitt is shocked when she learns the author of her favorite serialized novel has died before completing the story. Determined to learn how it ends, Lucinda reluctantly enlists the help of her father’s young business partner, Mr. David Randall, to track down the reclusive author’s former whereabouts.

David is a successful young businessman, but is overwhelmed by his workload. He wants to prove himself to his late father, as well as to himself. He doesn’t have the time, nor the interest, for this endeavor, but Lucinda is not the type to take no for an answer.

Their search for the elusive Mrs. Smith and the rightful ending to her novel leads Lucinda and David around the country, but the truths they discover about themselves—and each other—are anything but fictional.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, The Last Word by debut author Samantha Hastings is a fun yet intellectual romp through Victorian London—the perfect book for book-lovers.

Set against the smoky, gaslit allure of Victorian London, this sweetly romantic historical debut is full of humor and stars a whip-smart female heroine ahead of her time.


Samantha Hastings has degrees from Brigham Young University, the University of Reading (Berkshire, England), and the University of North Texas. She met her husband in a turkey sandwich line. They live in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she spends most of her time reading, eating popcorn, and chasing her kids. The Last Word is her debut novel.

Unfinished Books by Some of Your Favorite Authors

by Samantha Hastings

When I read Wives and Daughters for the first time, I didn’t know that Elizabeth Gaskell had died before completing the novel. I eagerly turned the massive Victorian tome’s pages and was concerned as I got closer to the end that there was too much to wrap up and not enough pages to do it. Then I turned the final page and I saw the editor’s Concluding Remarks stating that Mrs. Gaskell had died and these were her intentions for the conclusion. I felt cheated. Upset. And I wondered what it would have been like to be reading it serially (a few chapters at a time over a span of years).

Elizabeth Gaskell is not the only nineteenth century author who died while writing a book. Jane Austen never finished Sanditon and Charles Dickens was in the midst of writing, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, when he died. Dickens’ son and a friend claim that he told them that the murderer was the uncle. But I think that after the amazing twists in Great Expectations, that Dickens would have chosen a less obvious candidate. I like to think of the book as a cold case, literary murder mystery, yet unsolved.

Tragically, even today, authors have died before completing the final books in their series. Elizabeth Peters, died while writing the last book in the Amelia Peabody series, The Painted Sky. Sue Grafton wrote A is for Alibi all the way to Y is for Yesterday, but she died before she was able to write a letter Z novel. Robert Jordan’s famous series, The Wheel of Time, not only needed another author to finish the final book, but the last three volumes!

My sad experience reading Elizabeth Gaskell’s final book gave me the inspiration for The Last Word.

Author links:

This stop is part of a Tour. You can find the schedule here (

Tour-wide giveaway (US/CAN)

  • Print copy of The Last Word


Xpresso Book Tours


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.