Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Scandal Of It All by Sophie Jordan




A passionate story of newfound desire

Graciela, the Duchess of Autenberry, has dedicated her life to raising and caring for her daughter and step-children. It is a duty she takes most seriously, especially since they are all that give her life meaning. A widow, she has convinced the world that her husband was a wonderful man, but the truth isn't nearly as dazzling as she likes to present it. Now, after a close friend's death and seeking to remind herself of the youth she squandered on an unappreciative man, Graciela visits a scandalous club - an outing that leads her directly into the arms of her stepson's best friend, Lord Strickland.

Colin is seven years younger than Graciela, but that has not prevented him from secretly wanting her since the first time he saw her. Over the years, he's tried to ignore his desire. After all, nothing could be more wrong than wanting not only a married woman, but his best friend's step-mother to boot. But when a chance encounter with her makes him her rescuer, the kiss that follows reminds him of the illicit yearnings he's tried so hard to bury. Shockingly, it also reveals that she might not be as immune to him as he would have thought, but rather ready to welcome an affair, if he can only convince her that risking scandal would be worth every delicious second.

Sophie Jordan's books are marvelous and The Scandal Of It All is no exception. It's the story of a woman's struggle to maintain her reputation and preserve her family's good opinion of her while she also longs to welcome the passion she's otherwise been denied. A wonderful story I'd definitely recommend.

Lady Be Bad by Megan Frampton



An entertaining story about self-discovery and daring to live life to the fullest.

Lady Eleanor's marital fate is sealed. She will wed Lord Carson, a perfectly amicable gentleman with whom she can expect a comfortable life. The union will save her family's reputation while giving Lord Carson the fortune he needs. It's the perfect marriage of convenience, crafted by the parents. Until Lady Eleanor stumbles into a devil-may-care scoundrel during a visit to a book shop, responding to him and the wicked book he's buying, in a way she's never responded to any man before. Which leads to a tricky situation when she discovers that the man in question is in fact her intended's brother.

Lord Alexander Raybourn loves his brother and wants nothing more than to see him happy. A disappointment to their father, Alexander knows no one expects much of him, least of all after he gambled away a large chunk of the family fortune in an effort to fix his father's poor business decisions. So when his very busy brother tasks him with spending more time with Lady Eleanor in his stead, he agrees, even though he knows it's a terrible idea. Because there can be no denying his attraction toward her - an attraction that only grows by leaps and bounds when he also agrees to help her live a little before facing the dutiful state of matrimony looming before her. 

This was a lovely story of two people torn between doing the 'right thing' and their own happiness. It's about taking a leap of faith, of risking it all for love and a chance at a better future than anyone could have predicted. Megan Frampton's writing is wonderfully witty and this new book in The Duke's Daughters series is definitely worth picking up.



Monday, July 3, 2017

Video reading of A Most Unlikely Duke

Want to get a feel for how the characters from A Most Unlikely Duke sound in my head? Here's me reading an excerpt from chapter two.





He never thought he'd become a duke, or that the secrets of his past would cost him his greatest love...

Raphe Matthews hasn’t stepped foot in polite circles since a tragedy left his once-noble family impoverished and in debt. The bare-knuckle boxer has spent the last fifteen years eking out an existence for himself and his two sisters. But when a stunning reversal of fortune lands Raphe the title of Duke of Huntley, he’s determined to make a go of becoming a proper lord, but he’ll need a little help, and his captivating neighbor might be just the woman for the job…

After her sister’s scandalous match, Lady Gabriella knows the ton’s eyes are on her. Agreeing to tutor the brutish new duke can only lead to ruin. Although she tries to control her irresistible attraction to Raphe, every day she spends with him only deepens her realization that this may be the one man she cannot do without. And as scandal threatens to envelop them both, she must decide if she can risk everything for love with a most unlikely duke.












Monday, June 26, 2017

A Most Unlikely Duke - Giveaways

There are three major giveaways happening online right now for A Most Unlikely Duke which releases tomorrow. Check them out for a chance to win print copies of this fresh spin on Pygmalion.

1.

Tasty Tours - 50+ bloggers are participating in this. Visit them for excerpts, reviews, interviews and to enter for a chance to win the print copy Avon Romance is giving away.
You can find the tour schedule and links HERE

2.

Come hang out with me on Facebook tomorrow, June 27th. There will be fun posts for you to participate in and 10 prizes up for grabs. The party will run from 9:00 am - 6:00 pm and is open internationally. Click HERE to join.

3. 

Friday, June 23, 2017

Love With A Scottish Outlaw by Gayle Callen



I don't read many highland novels so it's refreshing to do so from time to time, especially when the story is written by an author like Gayle Callen. She paints a vivid picture of setting, characters and the rough life people endured in 18th Century Scotland. I loved the earthiness of the story, devoid of lavish balls and expensive embellishments. This was real, the love that develops a struggle between trust and forgiveness.  

When Duncan Carlyle finds Catriona Duff wandering along a dirt road, he recognizes her as the daughter of his enemy. To his surprise, she claims to have no memory of who she is or anything else relating to her past. Taking her with him, Duncan uses this opportunity to seek revenge on her father. He wants the cruel laird involved in kidnapping children to know what it feels like to have his own daughter taken. But the situation is not as simple as Duncan believes - least of all when his attraction for Catriona begins to grow and he realizes how deeply he cares for her. Because he knows she will eventually discover his deception and that there bond will be broken the moment she does.

Catriona Duff quickly adjusts to her new situation, offering to help the women of Duncan's clan with the daily chores to show her appreciation for all they have done for her. And the more she gets to know Duncan himself, the more she starts wanting a life entirely different from the one she's left behind. He is her rescuer - or so she believes - a man who saves helpless children. How can she not love this brave man who's been nothing but kind toward her? The question is whether she will continue to love him  or not when she finds out how much he has lied.

A wonderful story, beautifully written and hard to put down once you get started.



Friday, June 16, 2017

The Day Of The Duchess by Sarah MacLean



An achingly beautiful story of heartache and sorrow and a love strong enough to overcome both.

When Seraphina, Duchess of Haven, returns to London after years in exile, it is to demand a divorce from her philandering husband, Malcolm Bevingstoke. She wants her freedom from him and from their destructive relationship so she can build a new life for herself - a life that cannot be hers as long as she is married. But conquering her emotions is harder than she imagined - most of all when she has to face the handsome duke. Because even though so much has changed between them, everything is still the same. There is no denying the attraction she feels for him when he is near or the love still trapped inside her heart.

The last place Malcolm expects to see Seraphina again after searching for her for years, is on the floor of parliament. But there she is, publicly demanding her freedom from him. Except in spite of her conviction that he wants nothing to do with her, Malcolm has never stopped loving her. He knows he made mistakes and that he hurt her, but letting her go is the last thing he's prepared to do. So he invites her to stay at his country estate. She believes she's there to help him find a new wife. But Malcolm has other plans. He intends to win her back by showing her how wrong she is to think he never cared.

What an incredible romance! Sarah MacLean delivers one of the greatest love stories ever written. The Day of the Duchess is wrought with pain and suffering until hope begins to bloom, carving a new path toward the future. A highly recommendable read for anyone looking to see how an unlikable man can become the most swoon-worthy hero. Brilliantly done!




Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The Girl With The Make-believe Husband by Julia Quinn



A charming tale of good intentions gone awry and a love strong enough to span the Atlantic.

When word arrives that her brother, Thomas, has been injured in the Colonies, recently orphaned Cecilia Harcourt travels to Manhattan Island with the intention of nursing him back to health. But as it turns out, Thomas is missing in action, and the only person who might be able to help Cecilia, is his friend, Edward Rokesby. The only problem with this is that (a) nobody will let her see him because (b) he's unconscious, prompting her to (c) tell the doctor and his commanding officer that she is his wife.

When Edward finally wakes up in hospital, Cecilia's presence makes his amnesia a little more bearable. He already feels as though he knows her from all of the letters she's been sending her brother, some of which have included little notes for him. What he did not know, however, is that he and Cecilia - according to her - were married by proxy. Parts of her story don't quite add up, but on the other hand, why would she lie? 
As the days go by and they move in together, Edward becomes increasingly pleased with how things have turned out, while Cecilia grows increasingly concerned about how he'll react when the truth eventually comes to light.

This story has all the humor and wit that makes Julia Quinn's novels so entertaining and unforgettable. It is definitely on par with other Bridgerton favorites like, Romancing Mister Bridgerton and On The Way To The Wedding. Historical romance lovers will fall in love with this wonderfully romantic treat - a story that I would highly recommend diving into.




Friday, May 12, 2017

Three historical romance recommendations for the weekend

Mother's day is on Sunday, so why not treat yourself to some delicious reads? I'm going to recommend three books that have stuck with me over the years because of how memorable they were. One was even written by a man! So dive on in and take a look before heading on over to your favorite online retailer.

1.

When a woman who's ready for love meets a dangerous, passionate man, she can easily get Swept Away....

Bestselling, award-winning author Marsha Canham's breathtaking new novel transports readers to Regency England as a young woman rescues a mysterious man, only to find love, danger, destiny....


"They have to know the truth. Before it is too late." Those were the half-naked stranger's only words as he opened his eyes, looked into her soul, then lost consciousness in the shallow tidal pool. Annaleah Fairchilde, heiress and noblewoman, soon learned the identity of the man she saved: Emory Althorpe, adventurer, accused traitor, and Napoleon's spy. Even as she bound the dangerous scoundrel's wounds, she fell deeper under the spell of a man handsome as the devil, sent to her by fate.


He remembered nothing. Only the need to escape. Emory Althorpe was wanted for treason, yet his only hope was a shadowy memory hovering just beyond his grasp, and beautiful Anna, who aroused unexpected passions. He had no choice but to abduct her, needing her to gain access to London's ballrooms, where he could prove his innocence. Together they raced into the face of danger, determined to find the key to his past and live--or die--together, as destiny decreed....





2. 

"The bluest of blood, the boldest of hearts; the de Montforte brothers will take your breath away."

England, 1776: Lord Gareth de Montforte is known as an irresponsible rake with a heart of gold. When he takes a bullet for boldly thwarting a stagecoach robbery, he is stunned to discover that the beautiful young woman he has heroically rescued, Juliet Paige, is his deceased brother’s American fiancée, accompanied by her infant daughter. Despite his brother the duke's refusal to acknowledge Juliet, Gareth is determined to do right by the courageous woman who crossed an ocean to give her baby her rightful name. But Juliet is wary of marrying this black sheep aristocrat, even while she is hopelessly charmed by the dashing devil. Never has she met anyone who embraces life so thoroughly, who makes her laugh, who loves her so well. And, even when it seems the odds are against them, Juliet has absolute faith that Gareth will go beyond the call of duty, risking his life itself to give her and her daughter a home — and a love that will last a lifetime.




3. 

Brett Westbrook knew he wanted Kate from the moment she stumbled into the room, her nightgown barely concealing her stunning curves. Kate’s youthful innocence and womanly sensuality awoke a passion within him, which only intensified when he witnessed her brother’s callous treatment. Horribly betrayed by her brother, Kate was offered to Brett as payment for his gambling debts. Brett accepted the golden-haired beauty with good intentions, but soon found himself under the spell of her sapphire eyes, wondering if they may truly belong together.

Kate believed that Brett was her savior, sweeping her away from her brother’s torment. While her headstrong nature found against the idea of belonging to a man, her body was slowly won over by his gentle touch, awakening new desires she had never dreamed of. Rather than protest Brett’s advances, Kate became more than willing to fulfill the Seductive Wager.



Monday, May 8, 2017

Sweepstake - Win more than 25 historical romance novels!

I’ve teamed up with more than 25 fantastic historical Regency romance authors to give away a huge collection of novels to 2 lucky winners, alongside a number of bookstore gift cards, PLUS a Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet to the Grand Prize winner! 

You can win my novel His Scandalous Kiss, plus books from authors like Collette Cameron and Christi Caldwell.

Enter the giveaway by clicking here: http://bit.ly/rsm-may17




Good luck, and enjoy!

Saturday, April 29, 2017

The Truth About Love and Dukes by Laura Lee Guhrke



I think this book contains the best ending I've ever read. It was so satisfying and well thought out, bringing the whole story together in a few brilliantly written pages.

When Henry, Duke of Torquil discovers that his mother plans to marry an Italian painter, he's not the least bit pleased. When he finds out that she has been advised to do so by an agony aunt named Lady Truelove, he decides to seek the woman out and give her a piece of his mind. But the newspaper publisher he encounters, and whom he suspects to be Lady Truelove herself, is anything but the older, plump, redheaded, velvet-clad woman he expected to encounter. Rather, she's young, independent and beautiful. And she is not about to cower when faced with Torquil's wrath. These qualities, when combined, provoke a passionate response in the duke, prompting him to forge a plan that forces the publisher to spend one week under his roof.

Having taken over the running of her father's newspaper publication, Irene has implemented a gossip column and an advise column, both of which have become immensely popular. But when the Duke of Torquil shows up in her office, furious with her involvement in his mother's affairs, she suddenly faces an ultimatum: stop the dowager duchess from marrying her Italian painter or lose her beloved newspaper to the duke who threatens to buy it from her father. Incensed by the arrogant aristocrat, Irene refuses to notice how handsome he is or how irresistible he can be, because to do so would be detrimental to her plans. But when a private moment in the library leads them both into temptation, she begins to wonder what an entire night might be like in his arms.

The working class meets the aristocracy in this wonderful story with well-crafted characters. I fell in love with the hero and the heroine - both were fantastic - and I look forward to reading the next book Laura Lee Guhrke has to offer.




Monday, April 24, 2017

Goodreads Giveaway

The first of several awesome giveaways celebrating A Most Unlikely Duke opens today on Goodreads. It is available worldwide!!! 




Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Tall, Dark & Wicked by Madeline Hunter



I loved this story just as much as I loved the first book in the Wicked series. Madeline Hunter's plots are so intriguing with twists and turns that just keep the pages flying into the early hours of the morning. 

With her father charged with fraud against the Crown and imprisoned in Newgate, Padua seeks out the best barrister she can find, only to discover that he is not the old and gray-haired man she expected, but rather a very attractive rogue with a wicked gleam to his eyes - the sort of man who sends her pulse racing at a most inappropriate pace. Unfortunately, it turns out that he is also the man the Crown has asked to serve as prosecutor in the case. 

Ives is a man of principle. He never strays from duty or honor. Why then, is he suddenly acting out of character, engaging in spontaneous rendezvous with the daughter of a criminal and, worse yet, helping her save the man he is meant to condemn? Perhaps because there's just something about Padua Belvoire...something he has't been able to resist since she set foot in his study, tempting them both to embark on a passionate affair that could cost them everything they both hold dear: her father's freedom and his honor.

As clues begin to emerge, the unlikely pair embarks on a mission to find the truth behind Padua's father's conviction, but the more time they spend together, the more difficult parting will be once the trial begins. 
This is a beautifully written love story full of passion and a touch of adventure. Madeline Hunter is an exceptional author and since I cant wait to read more of her stories, I'm off to grab the third book in this delicious series: The Wicked Duke.




Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Southern Writers Magazine - The Re-Write



A little over a month ago on March 1st, I was approached by the communications director for Southern Writers Magazine with an invitation to write a post for their blog. Always ready to grab a publicity opportunity that comes my way, I readily agreed to do it, and since it had just been decided a couple of days earlier that my most recent manuscript would have to be re-written, I even had a subject ready to go.
So if you're a writer who's facing a similar situation and you'd like to be assured that you're not alone, or if you're a reader/fan who would like a bit of insight into my writing experience, just head on over to Suite T and take a look at my post. And if you find it interesting, please take a second to share :)



Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Highwayman by Kerrigan Byrne



This is the first book that I've read by this author and boy was it good! Kerrigan Byrne's skillful use of metaphor lifts the story off the page. Her characters are incredibly well-developed and real. I believe she's made it onto my auto buy list and I will definitely grabbing the next books in this delicious series!

Dorian Blackwell has survived a hellish existence and it has made him brutal and vengeful. There is no room in his life for love. In fact, he knows he is both incapable and unworthy of that particular emotion although a kind-hearted woman with golden hair soon tempts him in other more dangerous ways.

Farah Mackenzie leads a busy and somewhat monotonous life as Chief Inspector Sir Carlton Morley's employee at Scotland Yard. She doesn't expect to find her life threatened or to be abducted by England's most notorious villain and whisked off to his castle in the Highlands. As it turns out, the two have a common foe and the most expedient way for them to thwart this individual, is to marry. But Farah isn't about to agree to such an arrangement without any demands of her own. 
As desire threatens to consume them both and the past begins to catch up with the present, Dorian finds himself facing his worst fears and may perhaps discover that love can be his after all.

A great read that I found impossible to put down.



Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Scottish Duke by Karen Ranney



This plot captivated me from the very beginning. I absolutely LOVE a good Cinderella trope so this turned out to be the perfect read for me :)

Lorna Gordan is a servant at Blackhall Castle and she's been smitten by the dashing Duke of Kinross for years. She knows he's out of her reach, but wouldn't it be nice if he'd at least notice her for once? Dressed in an old gown and wig, she attends the costume ball that he's hosting. There, she finds herself engaged in a passionate tryst which goes completely awry when the duke finds out that he's bedded a virgin. This eventful evening will determine Lorna's future as she decides that the duke is not the man whom she thought him to be, and that she must make a new life for herself somewhere far away from his castle.

Alex Russell is convinced that Lorna was trying to entrap him. Why else would an innocent young woman lure him with sensual kisses and more? But when she vanishes from his life without a trace, he cannot seem to stop thinking about her or the insults that she threw his way when they parted. What he hadn't counted on was the possibility that he might have gotten her with child, so when news of her pregnancy reaches him, he sets out to find her, offering her a cottage on his estate so he can ensure her well-being. The only problem is that Lorna doesn't want anything from him and she certainly doesn't want him to take care of her.

Alex's inability to trust and Lorna's stubborn demand for independence, made this an interesting read. Throw in a villain for intrigue and you have a story that is well worth diving into. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! 



Sunday, March 5, 2017

Put Up Your Duke by Megan Frampton



Another lovely offering from Megan Frampton!

Perfectly groomed Isabella has accepted the fact that she is to marry the Duke of Gage. It will be a typical society wedding in which she will gain an impressive title while her husband to be will have his debts settled. Love isn't up for consideration since such a sentiment won't be playing a part in the negotiations. But then the unthinkable happens! It is discovered that the Duke of Gage isn't really the Duke of Gage at all but that the title belongs to someone else - a man so devastatingly handsome that Isabella can barely take her eyes off of him.

Nicholas is unprepared to be a duke. He's also unprepared to give up his bachelor ways and inherit another man's fiancée - which is what he must do if he's to save the dukedom he just inherited from ruin and protect the tenants who now rely on him. Plus, whatever would the queen say if she found out that he'd turned down his birthright? As he begins looking forward to his wedding night, however, Nicholas discovers that his bride to be is not at all eager to share his bed - in fact, she's terrified. Determined to make her want him, he chooses to pull back, rather than rush ahead, leading to a sensual seduction that leaves them both breathless with increasing frequency. 

This was a wonderful story about a woman accustomed to a strict upbringing who finally breaks out of her shell and gains confidence through her husband's eagerness to discover who she really is beneath her perfect facade. It's a story of two people tossed together by circumstance and their growing appreciation and affection for each other as they face the ups and downs of high society. I found it to be extremely enjoyable and satisfying. A book that I would highly recommend!



Monday, February 13, 2017

Valentine's Day Regency Romance Book Sweep



Today, I have a fun surprise that I’d like to share with you.

In celebration of Valentine's Day, I’ve teamed up with 45+ fantastic Regency romance authors to give away a huge collection of novels, PLUS a Kindle Fire to one lucky winner! 

You can win my novel His Scandalous Kiss, plus books from authors like Elizabeth Boyle and Mary Jo Putney.

Enter the giveaway by clicking here: bit.ly/regency-rom


Good luck, and enjoy!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Jane Austen Map of London

I received this as a gift for Christmas and I have to say that for the price ($8.26) - especially when compared to so many other historical maps available for purchase - this one's a great deal! When I write, I've always used Greenwood's online 1827 map of London, but moving from segment to segment in my browser can be tedious at times so I wanted a map that I can simply spread out on the table and take a proper look at. 
My initial concern was the size - I couldn't find out how big it would be or if I'd be able to read the street names. As it turns out, this wasn't a problem. The map is 27.5 inches x 39.5 inches and while the writing is small, it is legible. It's from 1806 and also features a lot of interesting references to buildings/places as they pertain to Jane Austen's books, plus the paper/print quality is excellent.
All in all, a good purchase for any Regency author or fan of that period.


Front Cover

Back Cover

Inside pocket for map

Map - 27.5 inches x 39.5 inches

Reverse side of map with references to locations used in Jane Austen's books


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kleypas




Another spectacular romance from an exceptional author!


I have yet to pick up a Lisa Kleypas novel that I didn't adore and this one was no different. The characters were splendid and the author's insight to the period shone through in her descriptions of carriages, medicine and other details that helped bring the pages to life.

Rhys Winterborne is a wealthy businessman - the owner of a huge London department store. He quickly becomes enamored with the sweet and innocent Lady Helen Ravenel as she tends to him after a train accident. The two become engaged, but a misunderstanding and other people's interference leave Rhys believing that Helen no longer wants him. So he is dumbfounded when she daringly shows up at his office alone, insisting that she still intends to be his. Fearing that he may lose her - that her brother might no longer agree to their union - Rhys suggests a scandalous plan intended to seal both their fates.

Shy and uncertain, Helen pushed Rhys away when he tried to kiss her. But not because she doesn't want him, as he and everyone else assumes, but rather because she finds him intimidating and far too handsome for her. Intent on having her way, she allows him to compromise her in order to assure marriage. But her family insists that a hasty wedding will lead to scandal and that there's no need for it unless there are signs of conception. Compromised and not yet wed, Helen soon starts to worry for her future as she discovers that her past will prevent Rhys from wanting anything to do with her.

Opposites certainly do attract in this riveting tale about endless love between a ruthless entrepreneur and a gently bred lady. I found both characters utterly delightful and I loved that they tried to do the right thing, supporting each other all the way to their happily ever after. A brilliantly written historical romance that I would highly recommend.




Sunday, January 8, 2017

The Viscount and the Vixen by Lorraine Heath



Another enticing read from Lorraine Heath.

Having spent his entire life witnessing the pain love has caused his father, Viscount Locksley knows that he will never allow himself to feel such deep emotion for any woman. So when his father announces that he is contractually bound to marry a woman who answered an advert he placed in the newspaper, Locke offers to save him from further heartache and from the fortune huntress his bride appears to be, by marrying her himself. After all, there's no chance he'll ever become emotionally attached to a woman who meant to take advantage of an old man, so his heart ought to be safe. What there is, however, right from the start, is a passion so overwhelming that Locke knows producing an heir will be no hardship at all.

Determined to save herself from a tragic life, Portia has fled from London with the intention of marrying the Marquess of Marsden - a man who supposedly went mad after the death of his wife thirty years earlier. He will offer Portia security in exchange for companionship with neither needing more from the other. But when she arrives at his estate, she encounters his son - a man intent on ruining her plans by marrying her himself. And since the terms of her contract with Marsden do not specify who she should marry, but only that she must, she is faced with no other option than to marry a man who will surely despise her if he ever discovers the truth about her past.

Once again Lorraine Heath made it possible to sympathize and root for characters who initially seemed cold and self serving. And just as with the previous book in this wonderful series, there was a moment when their happily ever after seemed impossible. I loved the way in which Heath resolved their conflict. She has proved yet again that she is an exceptional story teller.