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Swoon Author Samantha Hastings: Party Like It's 1861

Unlike Prince, I didn’t want to “party like it's 1999.”

For my book launch of The Last Word, I wanted to party like it’s 1861.

Fashion Accessories


To help transport my guests through time, I made pearl earrings and fascinators for them to wear.

  • How to Make Earrings Tutorial
  • How to Make Your Own Fascinator (if you don’t have Kate Middleton’s fashion budget)
    • Supplies Needed: an alligator clip, artificial flower, tulle, and a glue gun.
    • Directions: Tie the tulle into a double bow, then fluff. Glue tulle to the alligator clip. Glue flower to the tulle. Optional: Add feathers or gems.

Victorian Games


I was in conversation with author Mackenzi Lee, but if she’s not available, here are some book club questions to help you get talking. We also played a game where the audience guessed the title of the book from only the last line or two.

Party Foods

Alas, the bookstore did not allow food near their beautiful new books, but here are some Victorian food suggestions from The Last Word:

  • Pear-Drop Candies
  • Tea
  • Cake

I hope you and your friends will read The Last Word and party like it’s 1861!


Author spotlight

Samantha Hastings

Samantha Hastings has degrees from Brigham Young University, the University of Reading (Berkshire, England), and the University of North Texas. …

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