New Release! Booker: No Ma`s! Book Tour

New Release….

No more deception.

Brought to the Caribbean island of Dominican Republic on the premise that he could finally close the chapter on the darkest moment of his life—and rid the world of a cold-blooded killer—Booker T. Adams instantly finds a far different scene. Set against the backdrop of a city consumed by the rising fear of terrorism and a brutal drug lord, a woman, seemingly with two lives and even two faces, uses her hypnotic charm to get what she wants, sending Booker on a mission to rescue a teenage boy held hostage.

No more lies.

Befriended by a fired cop and a homeless kid with nothing to live for, Booker struggles to understand fact versus fiction, while staving off wild bores, snakes, terrorist traps, and a past that has haunted him for almost thirty years. Is he dealing with people believing their own hypocrisy, or have they simply perfected the art of betrayal and treachery?

No more killing.

The all-powerful rule with brute force, killing women and children like they’re swatting flies. It’s a savagery that Booker can’t comprehend, let alone defeat. With the smell of death stuffed down his throat, the man with everything to lose puts everything on the line—because he can stand…

No more.

Available to buy at…

Amazon.com    Amazon.co.uk    Barnes and Noble    iTunes   Kobo

Check out the other books in the series

 
 

About the Author

A veteran of the corporate wars, former journalist, and true studier of human and social behavior, best-selling author John W. Mefford has been writing novels since he first entered the work force twenty-five years ago, although he never put words on paper until late 2009.

John writes novels full of intrigue, suspense, and thrills, but they also evoke an emotional connection with the characters.

When he’s not writing, he chases three kids around, slaves away in the yard, reads, takes in as many sports as time allows, watches all sorts of movies, and continues to make mental notes of people and societies across the land.

John lives in Frisco, Texas with his beautiful wife, three opinionated kids, and a feisty fat cat who rules the world.

Follow the author on the following sites…

Website   Facebook   Twitter   Google+    Goodreads   Amazon Author Page

Follow the book tour

I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.

NOW FOR THE AUTHOR’S GIVEAWAY

Win John W Mefford’s NINE ebook Library!
4 Winners!!
Ending on Sunday 27th September at 11.59pm CST

Open Worldwide

Enter HERE

Good Luck !!

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Kelly Bowen’s You’re The Earl That I Want! Interview and Giveaway

Bowen_You're the Earl That I Want_MM[3]
Kelly Bowen. ..
Why did you chose to write in the Historical  Romance  genre?
KB: I chose the historical genre simply because I love history.  From an early age, (I’m pretty sure I was about 8 when I picked up my grandfather’s copy of National Geographic and was riveted by the article on Pompeii) my bookshelves have always been crammed full of history books. And to be able to partner that love with my enjoyment of story telling is awesome.
Who  most influenced your writing career?
KB:I can’t say there was any one person.  If I had to name those who influenced my career, I would have to say the wildly talented authors of all sorts of genres who, over the years, captured my imagination and made me a voracious reader and a lover of fiction.  Without those two things, I would not be a writer myself. 
How do you spend your spare time?
KB:I ride (horses, that is), I love to fish and camp in the summer, and in the winter I coach volleyball.
What’s  next for you in your writing career?
KB: I’ve got a new Regency series coming out in 2016 called Season for Scandal. The first one, Duke of My Heart, will be released in January. ( Think Jane Austen meets Olivia Pope.)  I’m having a lot of fun writing these!
How do you decide which character(s) will be the hero/heroine?
KB: My H/H’s have to be imperfect, they have to have an interesting past, and they have to be strong.  They also have to weather the off-the-wall plots I throw them into…

Let’s play a Game…
Fruit? Apple, grapes or oranges
KB: Oranges.  The Chinese Mandarins that get imported to Canada around Christmas time.  Pretty sure I eat my weight in oranges in December.

Reading? Fiction or non-fiction
KB: Fiction, with a non-fiction event as a backdrop or part of the plot. (This is probably why I adore historical fiction/romance as much as I do!)
Movie? Braveheart or Highlander
KB: Braveheart.  I adored the portrayal of Isabella of France as strong, intelligent, and clever.  And the story was so beautifully written and so well acted that the historical inaccuracies didn’t matter.  It is still one of my most favorite movies of all time.

Snacks? Popcorn  or chips
KB: Chips. Every time.  

Chocolate?  Light or dark
KB: Since chocolate is a food group in my world, this is a difficult question.  But if I must choose, I will have to say dark. Especially if it is dribbled over strawberries.

Where do you see yourself in 10years?
KB: Hopefully still writing! And it would really, really, really nice if I could do it from a little beach house on a tropical island… Or, alternatively (read: more likely), from the snow banks of Winnipeg in between hockey games.

Anything you’d like our readers to know about this book that might surprise them?
KB: I’ve visited the little chapel that shows up at the end of this book, and if ever a building could inspire one’s imagination, this would be it!
Bowen_You're the Earl That I Want_MM[3]About YOU’RE THE EARL THAT I WANT
THE EARL DOTH PROTEST . . .
For businessman Heath Hextall, inheriting an earldom has been a damnable nuisance. The answer: find a well-bred, biddable woman to keep his life in order and observe the required social niceties. But it’s always been clear that Lady Josephine Somerhall is not that woman. Once a shy slip of a girl, Joss is now brilliant, beautiful chaos in a ball gown.

. . . BUT THE LADY KNOWS BEST
In her heart, Joss has always loved Heath, the one person she’s always been able to count on. That doesn’t mean she wants to marry him though. Without a husband, Joss can do as she pleases-and now, it pleases her to solve the mystery of an encoded file given to Heath by a dying man. It’s put Heath in peril once, and Joss won’t let that happen again. She’ll do what she must to ensure the earl’s safety. And to remind him that what she lacks in convention, she makes up for in passion.

Kelly bowen[3]About the Author
Kelly Bowen grew up in Manitoba, Canada. She attended the University of Manitoba and earned a Master of Science degree in veterinary physiology and endocrinology.  But it was Kelly’s infatuation with history and a weakness for a good love story that led her down the path of historical romance.  When she is not writing, she seizes every opportunity to explore ruins and battlefields. Currently, Kelly lives in Winnipeg with her husband and two boys, all of whom are wonderfully patient with the writing process.  Except, that is, when they need a goalie for street hockey.
*Giveaway*
Thanks so much Kelly for being our guest today! We at MBA would like to offer up a giveaway. Just comment below to be entered to win ONE ebook copy of any previously released title from Kelly Bowen, does NOT include You’re the Earl That I want. So just comment on this post for your chance to win one ebook. One winner, one book.
Thanks Kelly for stopping by!
*WendyK*
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Sue-Ellen Welfonder’s To Desire a Highlander: Release Day and Giveaway

Welfonder_To Desire a Highlander_MM[1][1]About TO DESIRE A HIGHLANDER
AN UNWILLING BRIDE
Proud, passionate Lady Gillian MacGuire is known as the Spitfire of the Isles. She can take care of herself and hasn’t yet met a man who could impress her . . . especially not Donell MacDonnell, the man she was promised to five years ago. She’s been dreading his return, but when her intended comes back to claim her, she’s stunned at how different he seems. The man she swore she would spurn forever now invades her thoughts, her dreams, and her heart.AN UNEXPECTED DESIRE
When Roag agrees to assume the identity of the recently deceased MacDonnell chieftain, no one warns him that the man was betrothed. As a member of the King’s Fenris Guard, he is oath-bound to embark on whatever mission the crown gives him. Of course, he was expecting a battle-not a bride. Yet after sharing one kiss with Lady Gillian, the powerful Highlander becomes the one seduced and captivated. Now giving in to temptation could ruin them both.
Sue-Ellen_Welfonder[1][1]About the Author

SueEllen Welfonder is a Scotophile whose burning wish to make frequent trips to the land of her dreams led her to a twenty-year career with the airlines.

Now a full-time writer, she’s quick to admit that she much prefers wielding a pen to pushing tea and coffee. She makes annual visits to Scotland, insisting they are a necessity, as each trip gives her inspiration for new books.

Proud of her own Hebridean ancestry, she belongs to two clan societies: the MacFie Clan Society and the Clan MacAlpine Society. In addition to Scotland, her greatest passions are medieval history, the paranormal, and dogs. She never watches television, loves haggis, and writes at a 450-year-old desk that once stood in a Bavarian castle.

SueEllen is married and currently resides with her husband and Jack Russell terrier in Florida.

Q&A Time

Q:  How many books will be in this new series?

SEW:  Once Upon a Highland Christmas (novella), To Love a

Highlander, and To Desire a Highlander.

Q:  How do you spend your spare time?

SEW:  I love animals and nature, and enjoy getting out in the

natural world as often as possible.  Doing so clears my mind and

relieves stress.  So I take daily walks, cycle often, and make sure

every day includes ‘nature breaks.’  I’m an Audubon Society

volunteer and really love ‘giving back’ to nature by helping the

local shorebirds.  A lot of my time this spring and summer was

devoted to monitoring and helping to safeguard a colony of

protected seabirds through their mating, nesting, and hatching

season. I enjoy reading and am a total yoga enthusiast, practicing

daily.  I also spend plenty of quality time with my ex-feral cat,

Snuggles.  

Q:  How does the use of Scottish mythology, Folklore and legends

come to fruition in your tales?

SEW:  Scotland, like all Celtic lands, is rich in legend, lore, and

myth.  The medieval period, in particular, was a time when folk

really did believe in magical stones, sacred wells, mythical beasts,

the evil eye, miracle cures, ghosts, and all manner of other

fantastical things.  Toss in the Norse influence, and you have a

whole new layer of wondrous elements.  Yes, there was

Christianity, but scratch the surface, and the trust in the old ways

was there, rampant and alive.  

To this day, it is hard to find a stone in Scotland that doesn’t have a

history – some amazing tale attached to it.  For a writer already in

love with the land and people, this cultural heritage is a great well-

spring of story ideas.  Along with the atmospheric settings I give

my books, I love weaving mystical threads into each story.  I see

them (along with the setting) as the ‘stage and foundation’ of my

books.  Take that away, leaving only dialogue and ‘action,’ the

words are only ink on the page, lacking heart, soul, and the

richness and depth I believe should go into a Scottish medieval

romance.

So this is a very important part of my writing.  To leave it out

would be (to me) to ignore a very colorful and fascinating part of

Scotland’s past.  

Q:  Who was the author who was most influential in your writing

career?

SEW:  Becky Lee Weyrich, the Time Travel Queen of the 80s.  

She was a personal friend, and back in my flying days, I’d send her

long letters detailing my travel adventures in far-flung corners of

the globe.  She would tell me that reading my letters made her feel

as if she’d been along with me during my trips.  Eventually she

also told me she felt I should be writing books.  I wasn’t interested

at all – flying was my dream job and I loved being a stewardess.  

But Becky kept after me and I finally caved and wrote a book.  I

did so, more or less, to get Becky to stop bugging me.  When Devil

in a Kilt sold, I was astonished.  And so I sort of slid into a career I

never really sought.   

Q)  What genre do you read for pleasure?

SEW:  Lots, but to choose a fiction fave: cozy mysteries.

Let’s play a Game…

Fruit? Apple, grapes or orange

SEW:  Apple  (eat at least one daily)

Reading? Fiction or non-fiction

SEW:  Non-fiction (if I have to choose, I LOVE research books)

Movie? Braveheart or Highlander

SEW:  Braveheart (though the inaccuracies drive me nuts)

Snacks? Popcorn  or chips

SEW:  Chips  (I am a potato zealot)

Chocolate?  Light or dark

SEW:  Light (milk chocolate)

Where do you see yourself in 10years?

SEW:   Hopefully in a place of less stress and worry – the last few

years have been difficult.  I would love to do more volunteer work

– for needy animals and nature/the environment.

Anything you’d like our readers to know about this book that might

surprise them?

SEW:  This book is a milestone book for me on many levels.  A

personal one is that it is the first book I have completed without

my beloved Jack Russell terrier, Em, sharing my desk chair.  He

was my constant companion throughout the writing of all my

books, but I lost him during the writing of this one.  He was my

muse – he’d either curl on my lap, or sprawl across the chair seat

behind me, pushing at me with his little legs until I’d be perched

on less than an inch of the chair.  I would keep on writing, not

having the heart to disturb him as he snored away behind me.  I am

still grieving his loss.

Thank you Sue-Ellen for being our guest today. For those who know me, (WendyK), they know that I simply adore Scottish romances (historical or contemporary), but what you might not know is that I’ve read Sue-Ellen since that first book, DEVIL IN A KILT. The world of publishing is changing and has changed a lot from Sue-Ellen’s first book, but I can always count on Sue-Ellen to give me many hours of joy, time away from the reality of life, characters I’ll adore and stories I’ll fall in love with. If you are new to Sue-Ellen, I suggest you be prepared once you find her books you’ll want them all! If you are an old friend who like me has read them all, then sit back and enjoy. Either way there’s a treat to be had.
Thank you again Sue-Ellen for being our guest today! We are honored to have you here and to count you among our Friends.
scottish saying
Giveaway:
This giveaway is from My Book Addiction and more! We are offering up one e-copy of any previous title from Sue-Ellen Welfonder. We will have ONE winner who will get one ebook from Sue-Ellen Welfonder, all titles are available except To Desire a Highlander. Giveaway is open anywhere I can gift an ebook. To win just comment below, you may ask Sue-Ellen a question, tell us your favorite thing about reading romance or Scotland, or just say Hi. We’d love it if you share the post but honestly just comment and you’re entered to win.
Winner will be picked September 1st!
Good Luck and enjoy!
*WendyK*
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Blood Rose: Blog Tour and Giveaway!

Blood Rose Tour GraphicAmazon

Top five best T.V. shows for 2014-2015.

I am completely obsessed with television and movies. I spend a lot of my “free time” re-watching my favorite shows (I just finished re-watching Charmed, and I’m currently re-watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel.) or attempting to fit in all the currently airing shows that look too good to pass up. I’ve narrowed down that list to five of the best shows to watch during the 2014-2015 season:

  1. The Walking Dead: Need I say more? We’ve got zombies, romance, crazy action scenes, life and death scenarios, and on-the-edge-of-your-seat badassness. Please tell me you’re watching this show!
  2. Fear the Walking Dead: This one premieres August 23rd, so I can’t say it’ll be as great as its predecessor. I’m more than willing to give it a chance, though! This series will dig deeper into The Walking Dead’s most asked question: where did all these walkers come from?!
  3. The Originals: Three words—Elijah and Klaus. They’re fantastic actors, unbelievably sexy, and the world’s original vampires (on the show). Mix in a homicidal upbringing and badass witches, and I’m there. (You should be, too.)
  4. The Vampire Diaries: With one of the main actors leaving the show, many have questioned if this series will say goodbye after season seven. Personally, I don’t think it will, which is why I’m recommending you stop everything you do and watch this show—especially before watching The Originals since that was a spinoff.
  5. American Horror Story: I will admit that I didn’t watch all of last season—mainly because Freak Show didn’t live up to my expectations—but I can’t wait for Hotel! I really enjoyed the first three seasons of this anthology series, and with three-to-one odds, it has a lot of potential.

What shows are you dying to watch this year?

Blood Rose promo 5

a Rafflecopter giveaway

AmazonBook Blurb:

There’s no wrath like that of a witch scorned.

 

Avah Taylor has been given a death sentence: as one of the only spirit users in her coven, Avah has been chosen to wield The Power, the ultimate weapon against the immortal vampire species witches have been at war with for centuries. The Power, given by the gods to one witch of each generation, is considered a great honor, but every witch before has died trying to master this all-too-powerful gift, one that the shell of a mortal can’t contain for long.

 

On the night of her birth rite, Avah’s coven is attacked, and Avah is left for dead. Confronted with a terrible choice, Avah must decide to either die or save herself by becoming like her enemies. Forced to seek refuge among the very beings she has sworn to kill, Avah vows revenge on those who took her former life from her.

 

As Avah slowly transitions into a life of blood and war and battles her own feelings for a man she is supposed to hate, she realizes everything she’s been told is a lie.

Blood Rose Full Wrap

Purchase links:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1J3z764

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1LdEgKk

 

Blood Books Series

Blood Rose (Blood Books 1) – August 2015

Blood Bound (Blood Books 2) – December 2015

Blood Books 3 – June 2016

Blood Books 4 – December 2016

Blood Books 5 – June 2017

Blood Books 6 – December 2017

 

**Novels to possibly continue based on story arc.

 

Danielle Rose headshotAuthor Bio:

Danielle Rose is writer of fiction and travel, as well as the owner of Narrative Ink Editing LLC. Danielle currently resides in the Midwest, where she spends her days at a local coffee shop planning her next vacation or plotting her next novel.

 

Danielle holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast program. In addition to her Master of Fine Arts, she also holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and certification in professional writing from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

 

When not writing, traveling, or writing about traveling, Danielle enjoys being outdoors, cheering for her favorite football team (Go Packers!), and spending time with her husband and their furbabies: two dogs and a cat. For more information about Danielle Rose, visit her website: www.Danielle-Rose.com.

 

Places to find Danielle Rose:

Website: www.danielle-rose.com

Blog: www.danielles-destinations.com

Amazon: www.amazon.com/author/daniellerose

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/DanielleNRose13

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DanielleNRose13

Twitter: www.twitter.com/DanielleNRose13

Instagram: www.instagram.com/daniellenrose13

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/daniellenrose13

Google+: www.plus.google.com/u/0/+DanielleRose13

Narrative Ink: www.narrativeinkediting.com

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Taming a Highland Devil by Kimberly Killion: Release Blitz & Giveaway

Devilbanner1

Taming A Highland Devil

by Kimberly Killion

~Available 08/09/15

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giveaway

 

KimberlyKillion_TamingAHighlandDevilTitle: Taming A Highland Devil

Author: Kimberly Killion

Genre: Historical Romance, Erotica

Release Date: August 9, 2015

Publisher: Killion Publishing

Synopsis:

A CHOICE…

Laird Magnus Sutherland loves women. His prowess in the bedchamber has earned him the name Devil of

Dunrobin, but no woman has ever stirred his heart. Magnus needs to provide his clan with an heir, which is

the only reason he agrees to marry the neighboring chieftain’s sister. When his betrothed arrives, he discovers

the chieftain has two sisters. If Magnus must bind himself to one woman, he intends to discover which is best

suited to be his wife, for he wants more than a body to plant his seed. He wants a mate for life.

A CHALLENGE…

There are three reasons Lady Effie Reay refuses to vie for Laird Sutherland’s affections…

For one, she is thirty-two and would surely lose a competition to her beautiful, younger sister. Secondly, Laird

Sutherland is a well-reputed rake, and she holds no desire to wed another faithless man. And thirdly, the sight

of him makes her tingle, shiver and ache.

Will Effie be successful in thwarting Magnus’ advances, or will her body succumb to a temptation that can only

lead to heartbreak?

Get More information at: Goodreads  | Amazon

Kim1_HR-lilAbout Kimberly Killion:

Internationally published author, Kimberly Killion, writes sexy historical romances. Her debut book was

nominated for the romance-publishing industry’s highest award of distinction, the RITA® Award.

BEYOND WRITING CREDENTIALS, Kimberly is also the Owner/Creative Director/Photographer of The Killion

Group, the umbrella company over Hot Damn Designs. With 24+ years of experience in marketing,

communications and design, Kimberly holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts, a Certificate in Web Design, and is an

Adobe Certified Expert. The Killion Group has designed 5,000+ book covers and has 2,000+ clients, including

Kensington Publishing, Amazon Publishing, Sourcebooks, Samhain, Trident Media Agency, Kristen Nelson

Agency…and many, many more.

Connect with Kimberly at: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads |Amazon

Excerpt:

They were perfect for one another, Effie decided as Laird Sutherland entered the Great Hall. Four of his

kinsmen trailed him, all braw and thickly built, but none possessed the chieftain’s dominating presence. Hair,

black as a raven’s eye, lay disheveled about his shoulders with a braid falling from each temple to mark his

status. A sea-green and pale blue plaide, perfectly pleated, draped over a clean léine shirt, but what impressed

her most was the arsenal he wore on his person—a basketsword hung from his hip, two daggers sheathed at

his waist and the black handle of a sgian dubh poked out the top of deerskin boots.

He was a good match for Effie’s younger half sister, as well as Clan Mackay. Their union would make their

clans a fearsome beast to behold. Clan Sutherland was known for their prowess in battle. They were powerful

enough to protect themselves as well as Effie’s clan. The truth of the matter was, Clan Mackay needed Clan

Sutherland more than Clan Sutherland needed the Mackays. And her brother knew it, which is one of the

reasons Ian had traded their sister for an alliance after Da died.

The other reason was simple—Ian was as eager as Effie to see Vanna wed. Effie had taken over Vanna’s

tutelage after Da ousted Vanna’s mam from the clan four years past. At nineteen, Vanna knew her letters and

could manage a household, but Effie feared her sister might be a wee bit loose with her legs. Given Laird

Sutherland’s lascivious reputation, Effie suspected he might find such a quality agreeable, so long as the girl

took care not to spread her legs for his kinsmen.

’Twas a mistake Vanna’s mam had made.

Effie shook the thought out of her mind. Vanna was not to blame for Besse’s transgressions.

“Think ye the chieftain will like me?” Vanna swished long black hair over her shoulder and fiddled with the

brooch pinning the heavy wool of her arisaid.

“The man agreed to the union in writing six months past. It matters naught if he likes ye.” The worry stitching

Vanna’s thin black brows together made Effie wince. She would do well to remember Vanna was the daughter

Da had coddled throughout her adolescence, unlike Effie who’d had two bairns in the nursery by nineteen. “I

suspect ye will have Laird Sutherland feeding ye roasted almonds before dawn.” Effie gave her sister’s cold

fingers a reassuring squeeze then stepped into her brother’s shadow where she belonged.

“Laird Mackay, welcome to Dunrobin.” The chieftains embraced in a fierce hug, smacking one another heartily

on the back. “Ye must forgive my tardiness, but in my defense, ye are more than two months early. I didn’t

expect ye and your retinue until the first thaw.” Laird Sutherland glanced down a line of Mackay warriors, all

huddled in furs with melted snow beading their beards. He made a gesture toward one of his housecarls.

Moments later, the fire burning in the hearth roared to life.

“A wee bit o’ snow cannot contain the young and impatient.” Ian’s cracked lips split into a wide smile beneath

his thick copper-colored beard.

A wee bit o’ snow? Effie contained a snort. They’d traveled four days through a bleating blizzard, risking their

horses’ health, as well as their own, because of Vanna’s impatience. Effie feared her toes would never thaw

inside her worn leather brogues.

While the chieftains introduced their kinsmen, Effie peeked around her brother’s shoulder to study Laird

Sutherland more closely. The man was as braw as they came. Black stubble shadowed his jaw but didn’t hide

the strong angles of his chin and cheekbones. Silver-blue eyes the color of shallow seawater glittered beneath

thick black brows. His nose, slender and straight, directed her gaze to sharply-defined lips.

Simply put, the man was…well, he was certainly easy to look upon.

Effie decided her sister had been blessed with good fortune, until Laird Sutherland turned toward his

seneschal. A scar trailed a sinister red line from in front of his ear, down his thick neck and into his léine shirt.

Vanna sucked in air, her spine straightened.

Effie wanted to scold her. The girl slept peacefully night after night beneath the blanket of protection the

Mackay warriors provided. War was essential to the security of their borders. No one knew this better than

Effie. She had her own scars, though none marred her skin.

“Wake the servants and warm ale for our guests,” Laird Sutherland issued the order to no one in particular for

his attention was now on Vanna. He added instructions to prepare their accommodations, then set himself

before his betrothed.

“If this is your sister, then ye did her no justice in your missives.” Laird Sutherland eyed Vanna from tit to toe

and awaited introductions.

Ian angled himself toward Vanna. “May I present Lady Vanna Mackay.”

Vanna’s smile could weaken any man’s resolve, and she knew it. She glossed her full lips, batted her curled

black lashes and dipped low as Effie had taught her. “’Tis a pleasure to finally meet ye, m’laird.”

His bow was deep, reverent, but his eyes darkened with lust. ’Twas how men looked at Vanna. She possessed

uncommon, exotic beauty, unlike Effie, who resembled every other green-eyed lass in the Highlands with

unruly copper-colored curls and pale skin. The one physical attribute Effie had to her favor was her firm round

breasts. Not that anyone ever noticed them.

Laird Sutherland noticed. His gaze flitted over Effie’s person then lingered long seconds on her breasts.

Her heart skidded, but she quickly pulled the seams of her mantle tighter around her bosom and tucked

herself farther behind Ian.

“And who, pray tell, is this bonnie creature?”

Ian had to follow Laird Sutherland’s eyes before he replied, “This is Euphema Reay—”

“Effie, m’laird,” she corrected quickly and stepped forward beside Vanna to curtsey. As she stood upright, she

glared at Ian. At four years her junior, Ian had the bitter disposition of a man twice his age. “I am my brother’s

other sister.”

Laird Sutherland’s brows perked up, his head tilted, then his eyes shifted back to Ian. “I was not aware ye had

two sisters.”

Ian scratched his beard. “I saw no point in mentioning it during our negotiations.”

Laird Sutherland’s gaze swept over her like a gust of heat before he met her eyes. “Are ye married, lass?”

“I’m widowed, m’laird.” She hated those words. Had hated them for two years.

“And past her years.” Ian’s callousness spiked her temper.

“I just turned two and thirty. I’m hardly dead.”

“Do ye still bleed?” Silence hummed in the wake of Laird Sutherland’s inquiry. The fire cracked in the hearth,

raising the short hairs at her nape.

She considered herself keen, but it wasn’t until he asked his blatant question that she fully understood the

path of the conversation. She held no desire to take another husband, much less take a husband from her

sister. Staring wide-eyed at the rushes scattered about the floor, she felt almost ashamed when she answered,

“Aye.”

Effie swore she heard Vanna’s teeth grind as Ian attempted to remedy the situation. “Forgive me, but ye

agreed to marry Vanna in exchange for an alliance.”

“We’ll have our alliance.” He locked eyes with Ian. “But I’ll remind ye that I agreed to a union with your sister.”

Laird Sutherland’s attention shifted between Vanna and Effie. “I’ll need a fortnight to decide which one is best

suited to be my wife.”

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