Review: THE HIGHLAND ROGUE by Amy Jarecki

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Title: The Highland Rogue Lords of the Highlands, Book 7
Author: Amy Jarecki
Genre: Historical Romance
Story Setting: 1714, Scottish Adventure
Pages: 368
Published by: Forever
Published Date: March 24, 2020
Sold by: Hachette Book Group
ASIN: B07V336ND8

 

Publisher’s Summary:

A courageous Highlander falls for a strong-willed lass on the treacherous high seas in this action-packed Scottish romance.
After a vicious attack on his ship, Sir Kennan Cameron washes ashore on a deserted Scottish island, nearly dead. But he soon finds he’s not as alone as he thought. Kennan knows he can’t stay on the island, but neither can he leave the brave and bonny lass who has nursed him back to health — even if she is from a rival clan.

Abandoned by her family, Divana Campbell is both terrified and relieved when a rugged Highlander drags himself from the surf. Trusting Kennan is her only chance for survival — and by the time they arrive at his castle, she can barely imagine life without him. But as the heir to a powerful chieftain, Kennan could never marry the likes of her.

Together, they’ll brave tempests, pirates, betrayal, and ruin. But soon Kennan must decide what matters most: his thirst for vengeance or the woman who’s won his heart.

5-STAR READ

My Review:

As in real life, as we experience these days, calamity does not differentiate between the station of man or class. Destiny simply pulls you in. It’s how you deal with the cards you are dealt, your inner strength and your will not to give up which makes the difference!

Author Amy Jarecki tells a tale where both the hero and heroine do their best to survive in an amazing, fast-paced, heart-thumping adventure, both having to face death.

Sir Kennan Cameron, in one moment captaining his ship the Highland Reel in a serene state of mind, to the next fighting for his life in a battle of fierceness and cruelty. The British pirate, Jackson Vane had struck. That day Kennan lost many men. After the slaughter, who was left, walked the plank to face death in the icy, shark infested waters. With his midriff sliced, hands tied, Kennan opted to take control of the situation. He ran the plank, willing to face the icy waters rather than to experience what further damage the pirates could do him before killing him. At least he had a chance.

So reader, where I had have just witnessed a terrible battle, horrific wounds and with unbelievable odds of living, the author sets you up to realize that hope can be possible if one is determined to succeed and prepared for the worse. Kennan was determined to live, to get back his ship and his wealth in the cargo. His need for revenge for the traitor who told Vane about his cargo, helped provide the herculean strength necessary to save himself.

Kennan washes up on an island, deserted except for a young woman, Divana, who also has a story of depravity, and hardship for two long years, but with her strength to survive she does.

Jarecki weaves a story of suspense with emotional scenes. Kennan is saved by Divana. As he heals, he learns about Divana, and she him. As long as they exist on this island, station in life does not matter. But soon fate, once again, changes their circumstances. Are they strong enough to survive wounds of the heart?

I hope you have a chance to read this book. I highly recommend the author and series.

Posted in Action/Adventure, Book Reviews, Highland Romance, Highland Stories, Historical Romance, New Book Release | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: THE TASTE OF LOVE, book 3 from the Book of Love series penned by Meara Platt ~ a great book to curl up with!

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Title: The Taste of Love Book of Love, Book 3
Author: Meara Platt
Genre: Historical Romance, Regency
Pages: 202
Published by: Dragonablade Publishing, Inc., 1 edition
Publication Date: August 30, 2019
Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
ASIN: B07VQ93S98

The Book of Love Series
Book 1 – The Look of Love
Book 2 – The Touch of Love
Book 3 – The Taste of Love
Book 4 – The Song of Love
Book 5 – The Scent of Love (Approx. March 2020)
Book 6 – The Kiss of Love (Approx. June 2020)

 

Publisher’s Summary:

Will the mysterious Book of Love lead Penelope to her true love?

Lady Penelope Sherbourne is not – absolutely not – going to fall in love with Thaddius MacLauren, Laird of Caithness, even if he is a big, handsome Scottish brute and ridiculously protective of her. But now that the Book of Love has fallen into her hands, Thad is the only one she trusts to test out the sensations she must explore in order to find the perfect husband. She wants a mild-mannered English earl, one who lives near her family, and who will not make her heart leap or her bones melt as Thad does every time he looks at her.

Thaddius MacLauren intends to claim a kiss from Lady Penelope Sherbourne and nothing more. No, not a thing more, even though he’s loved the sharp-tongued, vexing lass forever. She’s also been kinder to him than anyone else alive, and for a boy who never felt loved by his family, Penelope’s kindness has come to mean everything to him. How can he ever tell her how he feels? She’s the daughter of a powerful earl and all he can offer her is a tumble-down holding at the northern tip of Scotland. It will take a miracle to win her heart.

Is it possible the Book of Love holds the magic to bring it about?

My Thoughts: A historical romance read for someone who enjoys laughing with characters who end up in very precarious situations and hot love scenes!

Who wouldn’t like to be a test frog for a pretty little gel?

Lady Penelope needed a test frog, you know, a guy who can teach her what kissing is all about. She knew she was safe with Thaddius—brawny, handsome Thad. With the Book of Love passed to her by her two best friends who found their true loves, hers was to test what love was all about. A girl needed to be ready with the necessary tools available to measure the man she intended to marry, didn’t she? Who better than her longtime friend, Thad? Thaddius was only a test frog. This thought was hard to keep utmost in her mind because her test frog was simply delicious!

Poor man!!

Poor man indeed, because he’d always been in love with her, but he hadn’t the title necessary to even contemplate a possible union. He couldn’t let her choose another test frog because she’d never be safe with them. His protection streak was a mile long when it came to Lady Penelope.

Being a test frog was torture. He had a hard time controlling certain parts of his anatomy!It was also confirmation of just how much she affected him. Unbeknownst to him, Penelope was having a difficult time separating frog from man!

Lady Penelope went about ‘testing’ very methodically. Thad soon found out she gave as much as she was given.

The situation was funny and led to some rather (fanning myself) hot scenes.

I haven’t read the others in this series, but if Penelope’s story is any indication of the rest, I’m sure to enjoy them.

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Historical Romance, Regency Romance, Romance | Leave a comment

Book Review: HIGHLAND JEWEL authored by husband-and-wife team with pen name May McGoldrick

 

Title: Highland Jewel Royal Highlander Series, Book 2
Author: May McGoldrick
Genre: Historical Fiction
Setting: 1820 Scotland
Pages: 313
Published by: St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Published Date: September 24, 2019
Sold by: Macmillan
ASIN: B07PBLFV1K

 

Royal Highlander Series:
Highland Crown   Book 1
Highland Jewel     Book 2
Highland Sword   Book 3

 

Publisher’s Summary:

A REBEL AT HEART
Maisie Murray’s sweet, docile exterior masks the courageous spirit of a firebrand determined to champion women’s suffrage with like-minded friends. But fighting for her principles has swept her directly into harm’s way—and into the arms of a man she cannot resist.

A WARRIOR BY BLOOD
A trained officer with the Royal Highland Regiment, Niall Campbell has spent his life serving the Crown. Battle-weary and searching for peace, he nothing to do with trouble—until he meets Maisie. But unless Niall and Maisie can find a way to stand up to the destructive forces that threaten to divide them, long-buried secrets and political schemes are destined to stand in the way of the glorious love they’ve found…

5-Star Read

My Thoughts: I’ve had the pleasure of reading from the beginning of the series and most certainly will continue reading the rest. The stories are entertaining with just the right amount of intrigue. Coupled with the rich fodder of historical events which the characters play their parts, I was caught up in the utter turmoil of their circumstances. Concerned for their well-being, I was compelled to keep flipping the pages!

The author told the story using three strong women of spirit and determination who wish to make the world a better place for all. Isabella, who was the main heroine in book one, Maisie and Fiona, taking the stage in book two, and Maggie in book 3, The Highland Sword, publishing March 2020.

Fiona and Maisie are heavily involved in changing the conditions women work under. They start a branch of the Female Reform Society. These societies actually existed. The author captures the sentiment of the times when grassroot efforts of women like Fiona and Maisie are spread throughout England.

When the government decides to curb these so-called disturbances of society, they attack unarmed men and women such as what happened at the Peterloo Massacre. Take time to Google and learn about the massacre. They then enacted The Six Acts, further fueling the outrage of the people. With a heavy hand they beat people suspected of involvement and imprison them.

Fiona and Maisie, our heroines, print material to inform the people what is happening and lead rallies. On several occasions they were almost caught, once saved by Niall, Fiona’s brother. Romance is afoot when Niall and Maisie are drawn to each other, but it is questionable whether a burgeoning love can keep danger at bay.

This chaos was a perfect cover for the undergoing of powerful people who had a different agenda, an agenda to weaken Scotland through killing the man known as The Son of Scotland.

Niall, Fiona’s brother, loves his sister and her two children very much and tries his best to protect her, yet give her the freedom she deserves. He understands her motives and sympathizes with her. When a good man has a weakness, his enemies will use it to get what they want. Niall is snared into a plot to harm the queen. He has choices. All are risky and dangerous. Which does he choose?

A remarkable story and clearly one I will remember long into the future.

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Highland Romance, Highland Stories, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, New Book Release | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Continue Reading the Delightful Series from Cynthia Wright: Rakes and Rebels with HER HUSBAND, THE RAKE

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Title: Her Husband, the Rake Rakes and Rebels: The Raveneau Family, Book 2
Author: Cynthia Wright
Genre: Historical Romance
Setting: Connecticut, 1788
Publisher: Boxwood Manor Books (January 25, 2020)
Publication Date: January 25, 2020
Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
ASIN: B08379RB1T

 

Publisher’s Summary:

From a New York Times bestselling author comes a Raveneau Family novella you’ll savor!
“And they lived happily ever after…”
Or did they?

Can a rake like André Raveneau truly be tamed into a domesticated husband and father…or will he remain a pacing tiger, destined to break free of his cage?

Come into the Raveneaus’ Connecticut home, as Devon struggles to balance the needs of her little children with the demands of a restless, hot-blooded husband. When two people reappear from the past, long-suppressed fears ignite, and St. Valentine’s Day becomes a time of reckoning for André and Devon Raveneau.

Can this marriage, between two passionate and stubborn people, be saved?

Rakes & Rebels: The Raveneau Family series:
1 – Silver Storm (André & Devon)
2 – Her Husband, the Rake: a sequel novella (André & Devon)
3 – Smuggler’s Moon (Sebastian & Julia)
4 – The Secret of Love (Gabriel & Isabella)
5 – Surrender the Stars (Ryan & Lindsay)
6 – His Make-Believe Bride (Justin & Mouette)
7 – His Reckless Bargain (Nathan & Adrienne)
8 – Tempest (Adam & Cathy)

 

5-STAR READ

My Thoughts:  The character development of each major player  in Cynthia Wright’s work is superbly crafted.  I quickly become attached to the characters, concerned for their well-being.

This is reaffirmed in Her Husband, a Rake.  Book one introduces Andre and Devon. If you haven’t read it, try to before you read this one. If you can’t, it is also fine. Each of her books are standalone, but I think you’ll enjoy book two even more if you are introduced to the rake Andre (his background) and how he captured Devon’s heart.

I’ve also listened to the audiobook of book one and books two’s audio is already out, so if you prefer to listen to Tim Campbell narrate the novella, you are in for a treat.  He has a divine way of telling the story. Incidentally, I love his voice for Andre (French accent). Sample of audio

Wright must have a wonderful sense of humor because I can always anticipate scenes which will have me smiling. Andre and Devon are both characters you will love as Devon is challenged with doubts about her relationship with Andre, or more succintly put, his love for her and the children.

Marriage can be rocky at times with the demands of child rearing. They can be made worse with an unexpected visit from a manipulative mother who isn’t very pleased with her daughter’s choice of a husband. Deborah Lindsay Nicholson will have you rolling your eyes!

Deborah Lindsay Nicholson, brings with her an agenda of her own, reintroducing to her daughter her previous beau who has become a very rich man and still pines after Devon. Divorce for women who marry the wrong man is easily done in the states since the rules became lax after cutting with the Mother country, or so she puts to her daughter.

Morgan Gadwin, the fortunate or unfortunate beau in question, tries his best to woo Devon. It can’t come at a worse time because Andre hasn’t been very attentive to Devon as of late. He spends more time than usual away from the house, late hours in the library alone, and doesn’t often remember to kiss the children goodnight. All of this has Devon questioning whether he has fallen out of love. Her heart is vulnerable.

I like the characterization of Morgan Gadwin. He has many points to his favor. But Andre has a hard time not smashing his face when he sees him with Devon. Andre’s flaw is he hides the depth of his feelings for Devon and has guarded his heart from the possible pain love can inflict.

In the outcome, Deborah, Devon’s mother, understands her son-in-law better than before. Morgan finally realizes he is still runner up to reach Devon’s heart. Andre lets his guard down where Devon is concerned and claims his rightful place within his family. Devon learns the biggest lesson of all—the doors of communication should never be closed.  But it’s how they all arrive to these conclusions which will keep you entertained and bewitched!

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Historical Romance, New Book Release, Novella, Regency Romance, Romance | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Memory Lane (2016) My choice of Book of the Year ~ it absolutely traps you, beats you down with tragedy and still the human spirit endures. Review: IN THE DREAMING HOUR by Kathryn Le Veque

via My choice of Book of the Year ~ it absolutely traps you, beats you down with tragedy and still the human spirit endures. Review: IN THE DREAMING HOUR by Kathryn Le Veque

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Mary Morgan’s holiday release: TO WEAVE A HIGHLAND TAPESTRY! Discover her glorious series!

Traveling in Mary Morgan’s world is not for the weak of heart. It’s for the dreamer in us, the one who reaches for the unbelievable just to find reality within her grasp.

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Title: To Weave a Highland Tapestry a tale of the Dragon Knights
Author: Mary Morgan
Genre: Historical Romance/Time Travel/Fantasy
Pages: 196
Published by: The Wild Rose Press, Inc.
Published Date: December 9, 2019

Publisher’s Summary:

Patrick MacFhearguis, hardened by battles won and lost, desires what he can never have—peace within his heart and soul. Yet, the ever-meddling Fae weave a new journey for him to conquer—a task this Highlander is determined to resist.

When skilled weaver, Gwen Hywel, is commissioned to create a tapestry for the MacFhearguis clan she embraces the assignment. While seeking out ideas, she finds herself clutching the one thread that can alter the tapestry of her heart and life.

A man conflicted by past deeds. A woman with no family of her own. Is it possible for love to unravel an ancient past in order to claim two badly scarred hearts? Or will the light of hope be doused forever?

My Review:

There are so many reasons why Mary Morgan’s work speaks to me.

Morgan’s world-building is phenomenal. She has tied two exhilarating series (Order of the Dragon Knight’s and Legends of the Fenian Warriors) together letting me revisit characters that are dear to me. – Beam me there Scotty!

She combines my favorite genre into some really classy writing! Time travel, medieval historical settings, and a fantasy world of Fae. It’s entertaining, imaginative, and credible.

The characters have their flaws, merits and secrets! Some are bold, daring to break rules, others are confused and scared. She has a delightful cast of emotions and conflicts which will either anger or endear. She knows what buttons to push to totally, 100% engage me!She ties family, love and passion into the mix. What is not to like about all that?

Styling and pacing unfold the story naturally, while leaving threads of unanswered questions to gnaw at my curiosity!

Traveling in Mary Morgan’s world is not for the weak of heart. It’s for the dreamer in us, the one who reaches for the unbelievable just to find reality within her grasp.

Her series are the kind where a reader gladly rereads the story and the series, many times over. Very worth it to listen on Audible, too.

You will be charmed with To Weave a Highland Tapestry. This story is somewhat pivotal providing the reader hints of what challenges face the world, spanning time.

A little about the story:

Gwen Hywel is a woman a bit out of step with her present life. She loves medieval history and tapestry weaving. When she has the opportunity to create a mural for the MacFhearguis, she jumps at the opportunity. The MacFheargius are not the ordinary family. They are time travelers themselves, coming from the past. (their story is in her earlier series)

One day as she’s trying to decide what to weave, circumstances send her whirling into the past. Can she cope with her new world? Can she return to her own time? What about her promise to make the tapestry?

Posted in Book Reviews, Fantasy, Fantasy Romance, Highland Romance, Highland Stories, Historical Romance, Medieval Romance, New Book Release, Romance, Time Travel | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

Meara Platt releases her 14th book in WICKED EARLS’ CLUB — Earl of Kinross

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Title: Earl of Kinross Wicked Earls’ Club Book 14
Author: Meara Platt
Genre: Historical Romance, Regency
Pages: 117
Publication Date: October 8, 2019
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
ASIN: B07XZLZ6CX

5-STAR READ

Publisher’s Summary:

Marcus Brayden, Earl of Kinross, thought fighting Napoleon on the battlefield was dangerous. But it is nothing to the upheaval caused by Lara Le Brecque, his best friend’s sister, when she climbs over his townhouse wall shortly before Christmas and attempts to sneak into his London home. Lara ought to be on the marriage mart, enjoying her London season and the holiday festivities, but when she confides the Le Brecque family problems to him, he knows he must do all he can to help…even if it means marrying Lara.

Lara Le Brecque is facing another difficult Christmas with her family in disgrace and under threat of losing all their holdings. Lara has no one else to turn to but Marcus Brayden, who has just returned home from the Napoleonic War and been awarded the Scottish earldom of Kinross for his heroism in battle. With her father under house arrest and suspected of treason, and her brother condemned as a pirate and a murderer, she must expose the villain behind this plot to destroy her family and needs Marcus to help her bring this culprit to justice. Marcus has told her to hide in his rooms at the Wicked Earls’ Club if ever she is in danger, but as she finds herself falling in love with Marcus, she realizes the greatest danger of all is to her heart.

My Thoughts:

A quick, yet engaging story with humorous moments of a woman left to fend for herself. Her brother’s good friend comes to the rescue when her life is close to hitting rock bottom. But is that what she wants?

Lara Le Brecque is a character easy to love (just a tad bit wicked!) She didn’t let her gender detour her from trying to solve her problems. She’s a character who uses humor to get through rough times. But watch out for her temper! You will love her boldly innovative means of ‘getting the job done!”

Lord Kinross, her childhood playmate has grown to be quite the hero. With Lara’s morning call by climbing over a wall to his townhouse and the hilarious scene of finding Marcus in dishabille, we discover even though this is a light moment between the two, she has big problems. The first scene had me captivated from its first paragraphs.

Her brother, Hugh, once the Visount Brixham is running as a fugitive, while her father, Earl of Stratton, is under house arrest. All these challenges throw up so many questions needing to be answered.

Marcus clinches my interest in the story when he says he’ll marry Lara if he can’t clear her father and brother’s names. Subsequently Lara throw a plate of eggs across the room.

The story sparks laughter as Lara and Marcus spar on most points–great dialogue. It gets heated with Lara’s response to the man her playmate has become (very sensuous).

I hope you pick up the book. Meara Platt’s style is her own. I highly recommend her work.

Posted in Historical Romance, New Book Release, Regency Romance, Romance | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

JUST RELEASED How to Heal a Highland Heart by Julie Johnstone ~ an all-around great read!

 

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Title: How to Heal a Highland Heart Highland Vows: Entangled Hearts Book 9
Author: Julie Johnstone
Genre: Historical Romance
Pages: 228
Published by: Darbyshire Publishing LLC
Published Date: August 29, 2019
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
ASIN: B07W37QBPR

Entangled Hearts Series:

When a Laird Loves a Lady
W
icked Highland Wishes
Christmas in the Scot’s Arms
When a Highlander Loses His Heart
How a Scot Surrenders to a Lady
When a Warrior Woos a Lass
When a Scot Gives His Heart
When a Highlander Weds a Hellion
How to Heal a Highland Heart

Published Summary:

Fate bound them together, but love will set them free.

With no chance of escape…

When Patience Kincaide learns she’s being forced to wed for a third time, she’s desperate to compel her husband-to-be to stay away from her. Both her previous husbands were shockingly cruel, and she holds no hope this time will be different, especially since the man is known as the Savage Slayer. Her plan is simple: pretend she’s crazy. But what happens when the man she thinks she wed turns out to be hiding behind a facade cleverer than her own, one that conceals passion she didn’t believe possible and tenderness she never dreamed existed? What’s a lass to do when the very man she successfully drove away is the only one she’s ever wanted near?

The best laid plans…

A second son relegated to life in the shadows, Highlander Brodee Blackswell left home to serve as the enforcer for the King of Scots, longing to one day govern his own lands and castle. And now that Brodee has become a legendary warrior, the king grants him exactly that. But even rewards have a price. The castle comes with a broken, albeit beautiful, lass he must wed. Yet for a man with no desire to marry, a woman lost in her own world might just be the best possible option. Except Brodee quickly discovers who Patience truly is, and the complicated, caring lass is awakening parts of himself he’d rather leave dead.

May be their undoing…

The potential of a dazzling future dangles just within reach for Brodee and Patience, but dangers they never conceived consume them, threatening their fragile, newfound trust. Their only hope of survival is to shed their meticulously crafted masks and relinquish the pain of the past to embrace the promise of healing, enduring love.

*If you love romantic, page-turning books set in the mysterious, rugged Medieval Highlands that are about honorable, alpha Scottish warriors and the brave heroines who capture their hearts, then this is the perfect novel for you!*

Secrets, seduction, and romance sizzle in the Highlander Vows: Entangled Hearts novels from USA Today bestselling author Julie Johnstone. 

My Review:

Both hero and heroine carry baggage as most relationship do. In this case, neither truly want to wed, but the command of the king and Brodee Blackswell’s need to have a keep of his own, a dream which normally doesn’t happen when a male is not first born, is most powerful.

Patience wants to avoid marriage because she’d been in two other marriages where neither were bliss. Why would she put herself into a position to be ridiculed and abused again?

But marry they must and marry they do. Brodee is a gentleman and tries to give his bride some space to get use to the idea. Hence a marriage in contract, but easily dissolved if not consummated.

Danger lurks close at hand and forces are ready to prevent a true marriage. The author writes the story in a style where the reader knows who the antagonist is, but Patience and Brodee do not. On the contrary, she thinks this individual a friend. Brodee at first suspects evil everywhere because he’s taken over the keep, killing the previous laird and has his hands full.

The story has enough danger to give it a good edge. Of course, as I got more attached to Patience, I was ready to kick Brodee in the head!

Hope you enjoy the story as much as I did!

Posted in Action/Adventure, Book Reviews, Highland Romance, Highland Stories, Historical Romance, Medieval Romance, New Book Release, Romance | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Blog Tour: HOW TO LOVE A DUKE IN TEN DAYS by Kerrigan Byrne released August 27, 2019

Synopsis:

These men are dark, bold, and brave. And there is only one woman who can bring them to their knees…

Famed and brilliant, Lady Alexandra Lane has always known how to look out for herself. But nobody would ever expect that she has darkness in her past—one that she pays a blackmailer to keep buried. Now, with her family nearing bankruptcy, Alexandra strikes upon a solution: Get married to one of the empire’s most wealthy eligible bachelors. Even if he does have the reputation of a devil.

LOVE TAKES NO PRISONERS

Piers Gedrick Atherton, the Duke of Redmayne, is seeking revenge and the first step is securing a bride. Winning a lady’s hand is not so easy, however, for a man known as the Terror of Torcliff. Then, Alexandra enters his life like a bolt of lightning.

When she proposes marriage, Piers knows that, like him, trouble haunts her footsteps. But her gentleness, sharp wit, independent nature, and incredible beauty awakens every fierce desire within him. He will do whatever it takes to keep her safe in his arms.

DEVIL YOU KNOW SERIES, BOOK ONE

Chapter One

Maynemouth, Devonshire, 1890 Ten years later

Alexander,
Accept the invitation to Castle Redmayne. I’m in danger. I need you.
—Frank

Alexandra Lane had spent the entire train ride from London to Devonshire meticulously pondering those fourteen words for two separate reasons.

The first, she had been unable to stop fretting for Francesca, who tended to give more than the appropriate amount of context. The terse, vague note Alexandra now held was more of a warning than the message contained therein.

The second, she could no longer afford a first-class, private railcar, and had, for the last several tense hours, been forced to share her vestibule face-to-face with a rough-featured, stocky man with shoulders made for labor.

Alone.

He’d attempted polite conversation at first, which she’d rebuffed with equal civility by feigning interest in her correspondence. By now, however, they were both painfully aware she needn’t take four stops to read two letters.

It was terribly rude, she knew. Her carpetbag remained clutched in her fist the entire time, except when her hand would wander into its depths to palm the tiny pistol she always carried. The sounds of the other passengers in ad- joining vestibules didn’t make her feel safer, per se.

But she knew they would hear her scream, and that provided some relief.

For a woman who’d spent a great deal of the last ten years in the company of men, she’d thought these painful moments would have relented by now.

Alas, she’d become a mistress of manipulating a situation so, even if she had to endure the company of men without a female companion, there would be more than one man. In the circles she tended to frequent, people behaved when in company.

It had worked thus far.

Alexandra braced herself against the slowing of the train, breathing a silent prayer of relief that they’d finally arrived. She’d been terrified that if she’d glanced up once, she’d be forced into conversation with her unwanted companion.

Rain wept against the coach window, and the shadows of the tears painted macabre little serpents on the conflicting documents in her hands. One, a wedding invitation. The other, Francesca’s alarming note.

A month past, she’d have wagered her entire inheritance against Francesca Cavendish’s being the first of the Red Rogues to capitulate to the bonds of matrimony.

A month past, she’d assumed she’d had an inheritance to wager.

Their little society had seemed destined to live up to the promise they’d once made as young, disenchanted girls to never marry.

Until the invitation to an engagement masquerade— given by the Duke of Redmayne—had arrived the same day of her friend’s cryptic and startling note.

The invitation had been equally as ambiguous, stating that the future duchess of Redmayne would be unveiled, as it were, at the ball. Included in Alexandra’s particular envelope was a request for her to attend as a bridesmaid.

The subsequent plea for help from Francesca—Frank— had arrived in a tiny envelope with the Red Rogue seal they’d commissioned some years prior.

Alexandra hadn’t even known Francesca had returned from her romps about the Continent. Last she’d heard, the countess had been in Morocco, doing reconnaissance of some sort. Nothing in her letters had mentioned a suitor. Not a serious one, in any case. Certainly not a duke.

Francesca had a talent for mischief and a tendency to interpret danger as mere adventure.

So, what could possibly frighten her fearless friend?

Marriage, obviously, Alexandra thought with a smirk.

A risky venture, to be sure.

From How to Love a Duke in Ten Days. Copyright © 2019 by Kerrigan Byrne and reprinted with permission from St. Martin’s Paperbacks.

Buy-book link:
https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250243270

I am reading this book right now and can’t seem to turn the pages fast enough!  Watch for my review in the next couple of days.

 

Author Bio:

Whether she’s writing about Celtic Druids, Victorian bad boys, or brash Irish FBI Agents, USA Today bestseller Kerrigan Byrne uses her borderline-obsessive passion for history, her extensive Celtic ancestry, and her love of Shakespeare in every book. She lives at the base of the Rocky Mountains with her handsome husband and three lovely teenage girls, but dreams of settling on the Pacific Coast. Her Victorian Rebels novels include The Highwayman and The Highlander.

 

Posted in Action/Adventure, Highland Romance, Highland Stories, Historical Romance, New Book Release, New Book Release Tour, Romance, Romantic Suspense | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Is Jack Shadow Stirling’s Days of Plunder Over? Review: SEDUCED BY THE PIRATE by Maggi Andersen

Seduced by the Pirate: Pirates of Britannia Connected World

Title: Seduced by the Pirate Pirates of Britannia Connected World
Author: Maggi Andersen
Genre: Historical Romance
Pages: 143
Published by: DragonMedia Publishing, Inc., 1 edition
Publication Date: June 25, 2019
ASIN: B07T24CYN3

Publisher’s Summary:

When a hardened pirate meets a proper English rose…

A bitter man, pirate Jack Shadow Stirling cares for little but his ship and his crew. But disaster strikes the Golden Orion; driven leagues off course in a storm, his men begin dropping like flies from typhus. Forced to anchor in a bay on the West Africa coast to see to his men and mend damage to the hull, Jack and three of his crew go in search of fresh water and meat to shore up their dwindling supplies. What he finds surprises him – an English lady, whom he likens to a rare orchid, is treating the sick from a nearby village, while her botanist brother, Alexander Bromley, searches for specimens.

Startled by pirates invading her small camp, Lydia Bromley snatches up her pistol and aims it at the tall, dark-haired, handsome devil who leads them. Unfazed, he grins at her and warns her that should she shoot him with a muff pistol, she would fail to kill him. But he would be annoyed.

Thus begins Lydia’s journey, discovering the love and romance she’d thought denied her… with a pirate!

 5-STAR READ

My Review:

I love to read something where the good guy isn’t all that he should be, slightly tainted and doesn’t measure up, while the bad guy impressively steps up to the plate and wows me. Such is the case when comparing Alexander Bromley, brother and protector of his sister, Lydia, and Jack Sterling, captain of a pirate ship.

It’s also fun to watch a hardened pirate basically melt at a woman’s feet. Lydia has been much the shadow for her brother, a botanist in a place he should never be and who’s been there for two years! She doesn’t have any wiles, outwardly make of stern stuff. Jack’s interest is sparked, but dare not do his usual grab and take.  This time his heart is held captive. He wants her. Such a gentleman! Who would have thought!

Circumstances show the reader the passionate and understanding woman Lydia is and destiny gives her a way out, albeit a very wet one! Destiny also provides Jack with some very valuable information. And hope.

Author Andersen kept me on the edge of my chair, thoroughly watching the antics between Jack and Lydia. Dialogue sets the tone between these two, with subtle undertones of I-wish-it-were-different.

If you are reader of the Pirates of Britannia Connected World, you’ll find Andersen’s contribution to this Dragonmedia Publishing series equally as exciting as the others.

 

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