THE MARQUESS AND THE MAIDEN~~ROBYN DEHART~~BLOG TOUR with #Giveaway, #Excerpt + #review

 

Meet the Author:

National Bestselling author, Robyn DeHart’s novels have appeared in the top bestselling romance and historical romance lists. Her books have been translated into nearly a dozen languages. Her historical romantic adventure series, The Legend Hunters, were not only bestsellers, but also award-winners, snagging a Reader’s Crown and a Reviewer’s Choice award. She had three releases in 2013 and 2014 will see four more, all set in the popular historical romance Regency and Victorian eras.

Known for her “strong dialogue and characters that leap off the page” (RT Bookclub) and her “sizzling romance” (Publishers Weekly), her books have been featured in USA Today and the Chicago Tribune. A popular writing instructor, she has given speeches at writing conferences in Los Angeles, DC, New York, Dallas, Nashville and Toronto, among many others.

When not writing, you can find Robyn hanging out with her family, husband (The Professor) a university professor of Political Science and their two ridiculously beautiful and smart daughters, Busybee and Babybee as well as two spoiled-rotten cats. They live in the hill country of Texas where it’s hot eight months of the year, but those big blue skies make it worth it.

 

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About the Book:

 

Harriet Wheatley is the mastermind behind the Ladies of Virtue’s quest to rehabilitate the gentlemen of the ton. So when it comes to selecting her own target, she knows who to choose: Oliver Weeks, Marquess of Davenport—the most extravagant wastrel in all of London.

Known for his opulent lifestyle, Oliver isn’t surprised by Harriet’s confrontation. It’s obvious Harriet longs for any way to take him down a notch. She says she’ll help him find a bride, but he knows it’s only because it gives her the excuse to chastise his indulgent ways.

Oliver has good reason for his flagrant overspending, but Harriet will hear nothing of it. So he has no choice but to teach the lady a lesson, even if it means risking his heart to the hard-headed and fiery woman.

 

Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

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Excerpt:

His eyes took in the length of her. There was only one reason why a lady such as herself would want to have use of an unoccupied townhome—a lovers’ rendezvous. Anger surged through him. He didn’t want to think about another man having his hands on Harriet’s beautiful body. That was ridiculous, though, as he certainly held no claim over her. “Who is he?”

Deep crevices furrowed her brow. “I beg your pardon?”

“Your lover, Harriet. What’s his name?”

Confusion marked each of her features.

“There is no other reason you’d need such a property,” he said.

Her shoulders rounded, and her chin tilted upward. “I, uh, yes, that is why I want the house. To, uh, fornicate with my lover.” She stumbled over several of the words, and her cheeks now glowed a deep crimson.

He nearly drowned on the relief flooding him, also ridiculous. He needed to do something soon about his unreasonable attraction to this woman. If she didn’t have a lover, then she had another reason to use the townhome. If she thought to play at deception, he would certainly oblige her. He stood and moved to sit next to her on the settee. She was the one who’d dismissed her chaperone.

“Are you saying you are a woman of loose morals?” he asked, leaning close to her face. She smelled delicious…like ripe cherries and cloves. He resisted the urge to inhale deeply.

Her eyes widened, and she sucked in a breath but nodded swiftly. “Yes, I am very much that. Very loose morals, indeed.”

He bit back a smile. “And you wish to fornicate inside my property?”

“I do. Fornicate, yes.”

He stared at her face, his eyes dropped to her lips again. She was so damned pretty.

“I can’t very well do it here,” she said.

“Of course not.” He was now so close he could see the pupils of her eyes widen at his nearness, the black swallowing the warm brown of her irises. “Loose morals,” he whispered.

“Yes,” she breathed.

And then he lowered his mouth to hers

 

~~~~~

 

The Marquess and the Maiden Blog Tour
date, blog, name blog.

9/10/2018
Once Upon a Book Blog www.onceuponabookblog.com Promo
tfaulcbookreviews tfaulcbookreviews.wordpress.com Promo
SOS Aloha sosaloha.blogspot.com Promo
Magic Beyond The Covers facebook.com/MagicBeyondTheCovers Promo
Bookish Jottings bookishjottings.wordpress.com Promo and Review
9/11/2018
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Buried Under Romance www.buriedunderromance.com Promo
WTF Are YouReading? wtfareyoureading.com Promo and Review
Robin Loves Reading www.robinlovesreading.blogspot.com Promo and Review
Books 2 Blog facebook.com/Books2Blog Promo and Review
9/12/2018
The Tired Buyer thetiredbuyer.wordpress.com Promo
Stacking My Book Shelves! stackingmybookshelves.blogspot.com Promo
Becky on Books beckymmoe.com Promo and Review
9/13/2018
Hearts & Scribbles jenniferfaye.com/hearts-scribbles Promo
Punya Reviews… punyareviews.blogspot.com Promo
My Book Addiction and More mybookaddictionandmore.com Promo and Review
What Is That Book About www.whatisthatbookabout.com Promo
9/14/2018
bookworm2bookworm bookworm2bookworm.wordpress.com Promo
Teatime and Books www.teatimeandbooks76.blogspot.com Promo
Aubrey Wynne: Timeless Love www.aubreywynne.com Promo
Romance Reviews Today Blog romrevtoday.blogspot.com Promo
Underneath the Covers underneaththecoversblog.com Promo

 

Giveaway:
$15 Amazon Gift Card!

 

Presented by:

 

 

****My thoughts ****

THE MARQUESS AND THE MAIDEN by ROBYN DEHART is book 2 in her “Lord’s Vice” series, but cam br read as a stand alone. A steady paved, quick and fun read. Well written although. I wanted to learn more of the Ladies of Virtue a mysterious, crime fighting team composed of women, including Harriet, our heroine.  Follow, Harriet Wheatley, one of the Ladies of Virtue and Oliver Weeks, Marquess of Davenport, on their adventure to love, and finding a HEA. Ms. Dehart has a way with her character conceptions, her development, her execution of the romance, mystery with a bit of humor and wit.

I did feel, the ending was a bit abrupt,  and left a few unanswered questions, hopefully, leading into the next book. Overall, a really great book with charming characters and an enjoyable and entertaining storyline.  #NetGalley,#TheMarquessandtheMaiden

“I voluntarily received a complimentary copy, however,  these are my honest opinions. I was in no way required nor compensated to write a review.”

Rating: 4

Heat rating: Mild 

Reviewer: AprilR 

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EXCERPT & REVIEW TOUR * HARD TRIGGER * S.L. HANNAH with #Giveaway **Mature Content**

 

In HARD TRIGGER by S.L. Hannah, Victoria finds herself entwined with a lover on the opposite side of a bloody feud. Seeking revenge to stop the flow of opiates that are killing her mother—she must spill the blood of her lover’s family to do it. Fans of RUIN by CD Reiss and SIN WITH ME by JA Huss & Johnathan McClain will devour this dark and sexy enemy to lovers tale where loyalty is in the eye of the beholder.

Title: Hard Trigger
Author: S.L. Hannah
Release Date: August 28, 2018
Publisher: AOH Publishing
Genres: Romantic suspense
Word Count: 30K
Format: Print and digital

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Synopsis:

“Your mother’s opiates are coming from Jose Herrera’s distribution network.” My pulse races as my stepfather speaks these words. Because taking on the Herreras also means taking on Diego.

Reckless, and hardened by a volatile past, Victoria does not see a future with Diego Herrera as a realistic option. As their childhood friendship ignites, they find themselves on opposite sides of a bloody feud between the two most powerful families in Mexico City. And she’s a Moreno now—brought up to be the secret weapon nobody suspected.

But Victoria can’t deny the attraction. Diego’s commanding muscles, the coarse, dark hair of his solid chest, that rugged scar above his sensuous lips…

Loyalty is in the eye of the beholder.

Add to Goodreads → http://bit.ly/2M6NzzQ

Buy Now:

GOODREADS → HTTP://BIT.LY/2M6NZZQ

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Check out the trailer:

On YouTube: Hard Trigger – A Rogue RomanceOn

Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/282917427

 

Enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card + HARD TRIGGER eBook! Plus, NINE runners-up will win a HARD TRIGGER eBook!

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HARD TRIGGER Excerpt
Copyright © 2018 S.L. Hannah

My body is spent. I want to feel him release inside of me. I want to collapse on top of him. I want to keep f**king like two animals that want to survive a wilderness that is both beautiful and vicious. Our chests heave in a unison that signals it’s not over and he starts pumping into me…
Except I’m not just an animal. I turn my head towards the end table, lean over and grab his cell phone.
“Call them off.” I shove the phone into his palms. “All of them. Tell them I’m not here. That they made a mistake.”
Still pumping into me, his eyes grow wider. “Don’t be f***ing crazy. Let me walk you out of here and make everyone believe that you’ve disappeared. At least for a little while.”
He’s hitting that spot. That warm and sensitive spot that makes me second-guess every decision and every goal. That makes me curl up and want to be swept away and taken care of even though I’ve never wanted it to be part of my long-term plan because I’ve seen everything that my mother has gained and lost by…being taken care of.
He searches my face for a place to reason. “What I’m offering…they’re going to catch up to you eventually. And before you catch up to my uncle again. He’s the second-in-line to a multi-national business. You killed one of his men last night. You almost killed him. You think no one noticed? This would give…us a chance.” he pleads. Even though he doesn’t say it, it’s the same proposal that he made on our trip, except without the ring. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t tempted. I’d always been tempted.
I freeze. He’ll never know how many times I ran over the circumference of the diamond band on that night stand before I drove off, deciding on a different destiny. I knew the moment I stepped in the old Peugeot that the tread would be forever imprinted on my fingers.
“I can’t.”
The admission makes him choke on whatever he was about to say and roar in frustration, because he’s not the type of man to accept defeat.
His fingers fumble on the screen. Awkwardly he holds the cell against his ear, spitting in Spanish. He’s done what I’ve asked him to do.
He throws the phone, and then locks his forearms around my neck, leading me closer to him. His c*ck is still stiff, and it throbs inside of me, reminding me of why we’re even in this position.
Cursing, his lips find mine, biting, absorbing, demanding. And I reciprocate. I’m not unwilling. I never have been. Our tongues tangle as our bodies begin to move in unison again.

 

 

About S.L. Hannah:

S.L. Hannah was born in Poland, grew up in Canada, and moved to Southern California to pursue her love of single-engine airplanes. Her latest rogue romance, Hard Trigger, will be published on August 28th, 2018. Visit her online at www.slhannah.com to learn about her other books, to get updates about her new release, and to connect through social media. S.L. Hannah lives in Los Angeles, CA with her husband and garden of succulents. When she’s not writing fiction, she continues to solve the aviation problems of the world.

 

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RELEASE BLITZ**UNTAMED HEARTS**COLLEEN O’CONNELL **with #Giveaway + Excerpt

Untamed Hearts
UNTAMED HEARTS
Colleen O’Connell
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Publication Date: June 4, 2018
Two destinations lead to one destiny
Fleeing her wavering feelings for her fiancé, Taryn Ashford boards a westbound train to visit relatives. Her journey awakens unbridled passion with the dangerously handsome, Jared King. When Jared is accused of murder, she is faced with providing him an alibi at the risk of her own reputation. Did he use her to save himself or can she trust her heart – and him – to discover the truth? A truth they must work together to reveal.
Gunman, shooter, the brand is Jared King’s life. His skill with a gun creates an existence forever searching – searching every face for the bounty hunter in constant pursuit, for the settled life he is certain he will never find and for one woman’s love. Taryn Ashford jeopardizes his need to remain emotionally detached. She represents the happiness denied him, but if he pursues her, will he risk both their lives?

Purchase Links

Excerpt

“Jared please…don’t.” The contact consumed her, chipping away her control.
He kissed her cheek, then pulled back. He encircled her waist with both arms, drawing her body slowly to his. “Why do you deny your feelings?”
She tilted her chin upward. “I’m not feeling anything.” She wanted her words to sound indifferent, a pathetic attempt when her breathing was so pronounced.
His brow shot up in question. “No?” His mouth swooped down over hers to prove her wrong, to entice her.
She pushed him, trying to disengage his hold before she allowed the feeling to take complete control. He would have none of it. Passionate and demanding, he continued to kiss her. When she would turn her head away, his hand reached up, his fingers holding her jaw. Her heart pounded wildly, her senses reeling as she felt herself weaken. She must resist. She should think of Brad. He was her fiancé. In one final attempt, she shoved him hard staggering back herself as the support of his arms fell away. Righting herself, taking deep breaths, she returned his gaze, shaking her head. “I don’t want you to kiss me.”
“You want more than kisses from me, Taryn.” His eyes blazed with passion. “If there were a decent bed to be found, I’d show you how much you want.”
“How dare you! I don’t want anything from you, including your kisses.”
A muscle in his jaw tensing, his eyes narrowed. He caught her chin holding it firmly in his hand. A slow smile formed on his face. “As I said once before, you lie extremely well.”
He turned, walked back down the aisle, leaving her to consider his words. She never experienced such an arrogant and insolent lack of manners. Stomping on each rung of the ladder back into her berth, she mumbled her irritation with him. Her fury prevented sleep. Punching her pillow, she tossed and turned. How she despised him. The words raged repeatedly in her mind, but her heart felt the truth.

Book Tour Schedule

Join our upcoming book tour from June 12 – 25, 2018.
Join us and visit each tour stop daily as we share more features, excerpts, reviews, interviews, fun facts and and other extras about the book! To check the latest tour schedule, visit the Untamed Hearts Book Page at Book Unleashed.
Untamed Hearts Tour Graphic

About Colleen O’Connell

Colleen O'Connell

Colleen has been an avid reader her entire life and has a particular love of the historical romance genre. Having enjoyed reading romances early on, she began writing them herself when she wanted the stories to take a different turn and determined the only way to achieve it was to craft her own. She currently lives in Northern Kentucky and has a background in Human Resource Management.

Giveaway

WIN $25 GIFT CARD AND MORE
Untamed Hearts Giveaway Graphic
Prizes up for grabs:
1) $25 Amazon Gift Card
2) Bookmark of Untamed Hearts
Contest runs from May 17 – June 25, 2018.

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***********
My Thoughts 

Untamed Hearts by Colleen O’Connell is an interesting and satisfying Western Historical read.  A wonderful and talented debut author, in my opinion.
This is the story of Taryn Ashford. headed westbound to visit relatives, while fleeing her fiance and Jared King, handsomely dangerous, branded a gunman, and shooter, looking over his shoulder for bounty hunters.
Steady paced with engaging and charming characters.  Danger, murder, adventure,  love, risks to the heart and learning the truth, will keep readers turning  pages well into the night. A satisfying and enjoyed Historical Western Romance.  I look forward to reading more from this author.

“I voluntarily received a complimentary copy, however,  these are my honest opinions. I was in no way required nor compensated to write a review.”

Rating: 4

Reviewer: AprilR 

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NEW BOOK RELEASE! ADDICTED TO THE DUKE~~BRONWEN EVANS with #Excerpt, #Giveaway and #ReviewS

NEW BOOK RELEASE
From USA Today Bestselling Author
Bronwen Evans
A Thirst for Revenge Challenges a Need for Love
Addicted to the Duke
ADDICTED TO THE DUKE
Bronwen Evans
Series: Imperfect Lords Book 1
Genre: Regency Historical Romance, Victorian Romance
Publisher: Random House Loveswept
Publication Date: June 13, 2017
A lovestruck lady charms the duke of her dreams during an expedition on the high seas in this sexy, swashbuckling novel from USA Today bestselling author Bronwen Evans.
Alexander Sylvester Bracken, Duke of Bedford, has a mission: sail to the Mediterranean and track down Lady Hestia Cary’s missing father. It is a straightforward task, but for two rather vexing complications. First, the sea holds painful memories; second, for her own safety, Hestia is to accompany him. As Alex battles the demons of his past, he must also resist Hestia’s surprisingly skillful attempts at seduction. After all, Alex has sworn to leave her untouched, and he intends to honor that vow—until he can properly ask the Earl’s blessing.
Ever since His Grace rescued Hestia from the arms of a Turkish pirate six long years ago, her heart has belonged to Alex. So when he agrees to help find her father, Hestia is thrilled. Although Alex tries to hide it, there’s passion in his eyes—and a frisson of desire in the air—whenever they meet. On board ship, miles from home, Alex won’t be able to deny her any longer. But with scoundrels lying in wait, she may not live to tell the tale of her conquest.
Addicted to the Duke eBook
Bronwen Evans continues to write, a brilliantly and masterfully work of romance! Such feelings and emotions shown throughout this powerful and compelling story, are hard to convene to readers. But she managed it, beautifully.
– April, Goodreads Reviewer
An epic drama of love, lies, self-control, suspense, surprises and secrets. It’s a captivating storyline that keeps you turning the pages.
– Mary Lynde, Goodreads Reviewer

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Available now. Grab your copy today.
Addicted to the Duke Teaser

Giveaway

WIN FABULOUS GIVEAWAYS
May 30 – June 30, 2017
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TOUR WIDE GIVEAWAY
One Lucky Winner:
A Garter Lingerie Bag and a Collection of Historical Romance Books
ON EACH TOUR STOP
A book in the highly praised Disgraced Lords series by Bronwen Evans
Be sure to visit each tour stop for more chances to win.
Check the tour schedule below.

Excerpt 2.

“I should never have asked Alex to help me. It’s too dangerous. I should have simply hired someone to find my father and deliver a message, telling him what Fredrick was up to. Don’t you see, I’ve put all of us in danger, and if you help me I can hire someone in Palma, and then Alex can go back to England. I can see what returning to the Mediterranean is doing to him. He’s worried about me, about my father, and it’s not his responsibility.”

“You want me to go behind Alex’s back and help you hire someone else?”

“Alex is far too gallant to consider calling off the search. I have already tried to convince him to return home. But if we both persuade him that my father will be warned by the men we hire, then he might listen.”

He looked away before asking, “How can we trust anyone we hire in Palma?”

“I know Governor Crespo and his wife, Emilia, from my previous visits here with my father. They could help me find a reputable ship and men. They might even know what my father’s plans were.” She pleaded with him. “Won’t you help me try?”

David stood and moved to stand right in front of her, looking down at her for an age. On a sigh he said, “It would not change Alex’s plan. He would still sail to the Mediterranean.”

Something began to build inside. The cold dread of fear wrapped talons around her insides. “There would be no need for him to continue on to Greece.”

“He’s not going to Greece for your father. Or for you. Not entirely.”

Her legs began to buckle under her, and it was only David’s strong arms that stopped her from sliding to the floor. “Oh God, he’s going after Murad.” And she fainted.

About Bronwen Evans

Bronwen Evans

USA Today bestselling author, Bronwen Evans grew up loving books. She writes both historical and contemporary sexy romances for the modern woman who likes intelligent, spirited heroines, and compassionate alpha heroes. Evans is a three-time winner of the RomCon Readers’ Crown and has been nominated for an RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. She lives in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand with her dogs Brandy and Duke.
You can keep up with Bronwen’s news by visiting her website: http://www.bronwenevans.com/
Get a FREE Book by signing up to Bronwen Evans’s newsletter.
Connect with Bronwen Evans on social media: Facebook | Twitter

Book Tour Schedule

Addicted to the Duke Tour Graphic
Follow the book tour from June 14 – 27, 2017.
Discover more features, excerpts, reviews, interviews, fun facts and other extras on the tour.
To check the latest tour schedule, visit the Addicted to the Duke Book Page at Book Unleashed.

In partnership with
Book Unleashed Logo
~~~~~~~~~~~
My thoughts:

Addicted to the Duke by Bronwen Evans is #1 in what promises to be an intriguing new series, “Imperfect Lords”. Bronwen Evans continues to write, a brilliantly and masterfully work of romance! Such feelings and emotions shown throughout this powerful and compelling story, are hard to convene to readers. But she managed it, beautifully. Very impressive!

I loved Alex, his desire to survive, his revenge was well deserved, and his feelings of not being worthy was honest, and true feelings. I understand how people who have been or seen such abuse, could face such feelings. It addresses the inner turmoil of such things and how love can heal their wounds. Well done! It also addresses the issues of drug abuse and disabilities, tactfully and honestly. Alex defintely deserved a life of love and happiness. He did not deserve to feel shame for his misfortune, especially, since it was not his fault. To live in captivity for two years and survive, made him a better man, and helped to shape him into the man became.

Hestia was loveable, feisty, fearless, admirable, and very stubborn, albeit a bit naive, but she was determined to get her man. She also understood Alex, for what he was, not what he thought he should be, for people to respect him, and love him for himself. I think her love for Alex made her a bit reckless, at times. I liked how Hestia stood by Alex at all cost, even at her own risk. She was very determined to save her man.

I loved how Alex and Hestia, managed to push past their fears, insecurities, and their past to find healing, love, and just maybe a HEA.

I think “Addicted to the Duke” was an emotionally charged tale. One that deals with issues of sexual and drug abuse, as well as, opium addiction. Ms. Evans did a wonderful job writing about tough issues that are quiet common in today’s world. Readers will be able to connect to Alex and Hestia’s story. I certainly did! I know people who faced the same issues as Alex, some gave into the addiction for the oblivion it brought, others was overcome and couldn’t let it go. Sexual abuse, rather, male or female is devastating to all.

I read “Addicted to the Duke” in one day. I couldn’t put it down. I was glued to the pages of Alex and Hestia’s story, from the first page to the last. A must read Historical Romance. I can’t wait to read the book 2 in the “Imperfect Lords” series, they are certainly going to be, imperfect, flawed but oh so lovable. A must read Historical Romance.
I received a complimentary copy.

 

Rating: 5
Heat rating: Hot
Reviewed by: AprilR

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Review & Excerpt Bliz~~Order of the Sicari Series By Monica Burns




Ancient Rome Collides with Present-Day and Only Love Can Save an Empire’s Collapse and Ensure Another’s Downfall! 
Assassin’s Honor 
(Order of the Sicari #1)
Only love can save a telekinetic assassin’s honor in a world where Ancient Rome never fell. Passion abounds in this award-winning series.
The Roman Empire never collapsed for Ares DeLuca and other Sicari. Ares comes from an ancient bloodline of telekinetic assassins who have lived in the shadows for two millennia. The Sicari are honor bound to kill only in the name of justice, but Ares broke the Order’s code and used his sword for revenge. Love cost him dearly once before, and he’s not willing to pay the price again. At least not until hot, sweet, delectable Emma enters his world. Not only does she have the ability to save an ancient empire’s collapse, she holds the key to a valuable Sicari relic and quite likely the key to his heart.
Archeologist Emma Zale sees the past when she touches ancient relics. It’s how she uncovered evidence of an ancient order of assassins—the Sicari. When a sinfully dark stranger shows up on her Chicago doorstep, he drags her into a world where ancient Rome still rules, and telekinesis and empaths are the norm. But someone wants her dead, and her only hope of survival is an assassin who’s every bit as dangerous to her body as he is to her heart.
Ancient Rome Collides with Present-Day Chicago and Only Love Can Save an Empire’s Collapse and Ensure Another’s Downfall
This award-winning series (reissued for the first time) starts off with a bang with an exciting combination of romance, suspense, sexy paranormal assassin heroes, and extraordinary world-building.
Available for purchase at
            

 

Assassin’s Heart 
(Order of the Sicari #2)
Can the truth of the soul Conquer the pain of its ancient past.
Unlike other Sicari, Lysander Condellaire has telepathic and telekinetic powers. Not until the night a Praetorian tortured him and left him for dead did he understand why. Now, the half-angelic, half-demonic face he sees in the mirror is a reminder of the monster he must keep hidden or face expulsion from the order of assassins known as the Sicari. But his dreams of ancient Rome hint at a destiny difficult to accept, especially when it involves the woman he loves, but can never have.
A gifted healer in the Order, Phaedra DeLuca witnessed her mother’s murder when she was a little girl. The haunting memory makes her loathe everything Praetorian. When she travels to Rome in search of an ancient artifact, she must work alongside a man who once cruelly rejected her love and healing touch. But her dreams of ancient Rome tell of an irreversible and possibly dangerous future. For the distant past and present are about to collide–with the one man she is destined to love.
Available for purchase at
            

 

Read Four Chapters Now

 

 

Inferno’s Kiss 
(Order of the Sicari #3)
The Sicari brotherhood is back and this time they’re taking no prisoners when it comes to protecting the Order as warriors and lovers are torn between duty and desire.
Dante Condellaire, heir apparent to the Sicari Lords, knows that being a true leader means sacrifice. For Dante it was relinquishing all erotic pleasures. But he never expected his willpower to be tested so fiercely by Cleopatra Vorenus, expert assassin of the Order, and daughter of the man he is positioned to succeed.
Cleo prefers working alone—until she meets Dante who shares her goal: to destroy a Praetorian stronghold where Sicari women are imprisoned for devious purposes. Bringing the mission off without a hitch pumps up more than their resolve. It sets off a sexual spark too combustible to ignore.
As their attraction flares like an inferno, the stakes are raised. So are the risks. Before the mission is over, Dante and Cleo will be plunged into a dangerous conspiracy where a traitor threatens the very foundation of the Order, as well as the fiery bond between Dante and Cleo—warriors and lovers now torn between duty and desire.
“WOW! A kick-ass self-confident heroine and an alpha male with a side order of vulnerability practically guarantee a mind blowing reading experience.” — Fresh Fiction
“I loved that Cleo is the experienced lover while Dante is the virgin. Hallelujah and pass the cornbread. The sexual tension in here had me on edge, waiting to see if Dante would succumb or abstain.” — Smexy Books

 

Available for purchase at

 

            

 

Read Three Chapters Now 

 

The Order of the Sicari Series

 

 About the Author
Monica Burns is a bestselling author of spicy historical and paranormal romance. She penned her first romance at the age of nine when she selected the pseudonym she uses today. Her historical book awards include the 2011 RT BookReviews Reviewers Choice Award and the 2012 Gayle Wilson Heart of Excellence Award for Pleasure Me.
She is also the recipient of the prestigious paranormal romance award, the 2011 PRISM Best of the Best award for Assassin’s Heart. From the days when she hid her stories from her sisters to her first completed full-length manuscript, she always believed in her dream despite rejections and setbacks. A workaholic wife and mother, Monica is a survivor who believes every hero and heroine deserves a HEA (Happily Ever After), especially if she’s writing the story.

 

You can find Monica at
                  
Presented by
****
MY THOUGHTS:
Assassin’s Honor by Monica Burns is a fantastic Paranormal Romance. #1 in “Order of the Sicari”, which is being  re-issued,  for the first time ever.
This is a story where two worlds collide, Ancient Rome and present day Chicago. Ares DeLuca, an telekinetic assassin and Archeologist Emma Zale, who sees the past when she touches ancient relics. This is how she found evidence of an ancient order of assassins—the Sicari. And thus the story begins……
“Assassin’s Honor” starts off fast and never let’s up until the very last page, and it lingers in your mind for some time after, what if….
The sensual tension is such that it keeps the reader on edge, waiting to see who sucumbs to whom.
Definitely fast paced, with wonderful mythical world building, mixing modern civilization with an ancient world of sexy assassins, a paranormal hero, and kick butt heroine with a cast of characters that only enhances the reading experience, rounds off this amazingly unique tale.  Mix in a combination of exciting romance, suspense, intrigue, passion, adventure and a deadly long standing ancient feud between Praetorian Guard and the legendary Sicari assassins, what the reader finds is an fantastic read. Whew, talk about excitement and adventure, “Assassin’s Honor” has it all and so much more.  Bravo, Monica Burns!! Well done! A definite must read for fans of paranormal romance, ancient feuds, mythical worlds, and sizzling romance. I look forward to reading “Assassin’s Heart”.
Rating: 4.5
Heart rating: Steamy/hot
Reviewed by: AprilR
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ROGUES TO RICHES ON TOUR~~LORD OF PLEASURE~~ ERICA RIDLEY

In the Rogues to Riches historical romance series, Cinderella stories aren’t just for princesses… Sigh-worthy Regency rogues sweep strong-willed young ladies into whirlwind romance with rollicking adventure.”

 

http://www.ericaridley.com/images/covers/EricaRidley_RTR-2-LOP.jpg

 

EXCERPT:

Breathless, Camellia gazed up into Lord X’s fathomless black mask. She could not see his eyes. Even his brow was hidden. There was no way to know what expression he wore. Nothing to go on except the words he spoke. Yet there could be no other answer to his query.

Bolder. She had longed to be bolder, yearned to be someone else since the moment she realized it was too late to change her personality. Dahlia was forceful, Bryony was fearless, but Camellia watched from the shadows. Looking out for her sisters. Being a good girl. A proper young lady. Minding every one of high society’s interminable rules as if the price for bending them was death. Perhaps the cost of denying her own desires was just as dear.

She was tired of being perfect. The only way to never break a rule, to avoid disappointing anyone’s expectations, was to never do anything at all. That wasn’t life at all.

Yet who was at fault? If she was nothing more substantial than a music box, nothing but a dutiful automaton respectable enough to possess an Almack’s voucher and too terrified to use it, then it was because she had let herself be programmed that way.

She wanted to change. Needed to. Perhaps it wouldn’t be for the better, but it would be more authentic—she would be more herself—if once in a while she did what she wanted, instead of molding to the wishes of everyone around her.

“Bolder,” she repeated. “I want to be bolder. It’s the one thing about my life I would alter.”

“I can grant you that wish.” He pushed his goblet away and sprang to his feet. “Be fearless here. Tonight. With me.”

He held out his hand.

Simultaneously hopeful and nervous, she placed her fingers in his.

“Whatever it is that you want, you need only be bold enough to ask.” He pulled her to him.

Her heart pounded so loudly, she feared he could feel it through his layers of shirt and waistcoat.

“What do you want?” he asked softly. “Be bold. Let me give it to you.”

What did she want, here, with him? She closed her eyes and let the night be her guide.

Now that they were no longer nestled on a woolen blanket, the breeze was cool against her bare upper arms… but not overly so. The warmth from Lord X’s body heated her whether they were lying prone or standing chest-to-chest beneath the moonlight.

The scent of his breath so close to her lips was as sweet as the wine they had shared. The sounds of the night—if indeed there were any other than the thundering of her heart—were eclipsed by the siren call of the orchestra, whose seductive waltz spilled out through the open doorways and up from the balcony overlooking the garden to kiss their feet, even out here on the roof.

She opened her eyes. There was only one answer. One thing among the many she’d never done that he alone could give her. Without scandal. Tonight.

“I want to waltz,” she admitted hesitantly. “But…”

He shook his head. “With me, you never have to justify yourself or your desires. I will never say no.”

Her breath caught at his words. “Why?”

“Because I want to be the reason for the sparkles in your eyes.” His husky voice was intoxicating. “You want to waltz? We waltz.”

He took her hand and turned toward the stairs.

She held her ground.

He looked over his shoulder. Though the expression behind his mask was a mystery, every inch of his posture asked a silent question.

“Here,” she said. Boldly. “I want to waltz here. Where it’s just you and me and the stars.”

He stepped forward and took her into his arms without another word.

At first, she thought he might kiss her. Her heart thumped. She was pressed tight against him, her lips tilted up toward the sensual line of his mouth.

And then he took her hand in his and swung her in time to the music.

Her pulse thrilled at his touch. Never had a moment been so magical as dancing across a rooftop in the arms of a dashing stranger. The wind whipped through her hair, tugging tendrils free from her careful chignon, fluttering the ruby silk of her skirt about her legs.

None of that mattered. All she cared about was the hand holding hers. The warmth of his fingers against the small of her back. The strength in his arms, his body, as he whirled her from one stunning night view of London to another.

The night was crisp but his embrace heated her to her core. She could no longer feel her feet flying across the roof to their private rhythm, or the whispery material of her gown fluttering against her silk stockings in the breeze.

All she could feel were her trembling fingers tucked against his warm palm, the strength of his arm tucked about her waist, her lips curving into the widest, most unabashed smile she’d ever experienced.

This was life!

Every part of him was danger and romance and adventure. He transported her not just from one soaring section of the roof to another, but to an alternate world. One in which she was exactly the woman she pretended to be. Carefree and wild and bubbling with joy at the consuming, heady sensation of being truly, completely, wonderfully alive.

Being in his arms stole her breath, yet gave her strength. He did not look through her as so many men had done throughout her life, but rather as though he could not look anywhere else. As if the sight of her in his embrace was so entrancing, so intoxicating, that he too had forgotten everything and everyone until all that remained was the two of them. Their bodies entwined in a waltz that found its music in their very souls.

Tonight she wouldn’t run away at midnight. She would dance in his arms until dawn.

 

Breathless, Camellia gazed up into Lord X’s fathomless black mask. She could not see his eyes. Even his brow was hidden. There was no way to know what expression he wore. Nothing to go on except the words he spoke. Yet there could be no other answer to his query.

Bolder. She had longed to be bolder, yearned to be someone else since the moment she realized it was too late to change her personality. Dahlia was forceful, Bryony was fearless, but Camellia watched from the shadows. Looking out for her sisters. Being a good girl. A proper young lady. Minding every one of high society’s interminable rules as if the price for bending them was death. Perhaps the cost of denying her own desires was just as dear.

She was tired of being perfect. The only way to never break a rule, to avoid disappointing anyone’s expectations, was to never do anything at all. That wasn’t life at all.

Yet who was at fault? If she was nothing more substantial than a music box, nothing but a dutiful automaton respectable enough to possess an Almack’s voucher and too terrified to use it, then it was because she had let herself be programmed that way.

She wanted to change. Needed to. Perhaps it wouldn’t be for the better, but it would be more authentic—she would be more herself—if once in a while she did what she wanted, instead of molding to the wishes of everyone around her.

“Bolder,” she repeated. “I want to be bolder. It’s the one thing about my life I would alter.”

“I can grant you that wish.” He pushed his goblet away and sprang to his feet. “Be fearless here. Tonight. With me.”

He held out his hand.

Simultaneously hopeful and nervous, she placed her fingers in his.

“Whatever it is that you want, you need only be bold enough to ask.” He pulled her to him.

Her heart pounded so loudly, she feared he could feel it through his layers of shirt and waistcoat.

“What do you want?” he asked softly. “Be bold. Let me give it to you.”

What did she want, here, with him? She closed her eyes and let the night be her guide.

Now that they were no longer nestled on a woolen blanket, the breeze was cool against her bare upper arms… but not overly so. The warmth from Lord X’s body heated her whether they were lying prone or standing chest-to-chest beneath the moonlight.

The scent of his breath so close to her lips was as sweet as the wine they had shared. The sounds of the night—if indeed there were any other than the thundering of her heart—were eclipsed by the siren call of the orchestra, whose seductive waltz spilled out through the open doorways and up from the balcony overlooking the garden to kiss their feet, even out here on the roof.

She opened her eyes. There was only one answer. One thing among the many she’d never done that he alone could give her. Without scandal. Tonight.

“I want to waltz,” she admitted hesitantly. “But…”

He shook his head. “With me, you never have to justify yourself or your desires. I will never say no.”

Her breath caught at his words. “Why?”

“Because I want to be the reason for the sparkles in your eyes.” His husky voice was intoxicating. “You want to waltz? We waltz.”

He took her hand and turned toward the stairs.

She held her ground.

He looked over his shoulder. Though the expression behind his mask was a mystery, every inch of his posture asked a silent question.

“Here,” she said. Boldly. “I want to waltz here. Where it’s just you and me and the stars.”

He stepped forward and took her into his arms without another word.

At first, she thought he might kiss her. Her heart thumped. She was pressed tight against him, her lips tilted up toward the sensual line of his mouth.

And then he took her hand in his and swung her in time to the music.

Her pulse thrilled at his touch. Never had a moment been so magical as dancing across a rooftop in the arms of a dashing stranger. The wind whipped through her hair, tugging tendrils free from her careful chignon, fluttering the ruby silk of her skirt about her legs.

None of that mattered. All she cared about was the hand holding hers. The warmth of his fingers against the small of her back. The strength in his arms, his body, as he whirled her from one stunning night view of London to another.

The night was crisp but his embrace heated her to her core. She could no longer feel her feet flying across the roof to their private rhythm, or the whispery material of her gown fluttering against her silk stockings in the breeze.

All she could feel were her trembling fingers tucked against his warm palm, the strength of his arm tucked about her waist, her lips curving into the widest, most unabashed smile she’d ever experienced.

This was life!

Every part of him was danger and romance and adventure. He transported her not just from one soaring section of the roof to another, but to an alternate world. One in which she was exactly the woman she pretended to be. Carefree and wild and bubbling with joy at the consuming, heady sensation of being truly, completely, wonderfully alive.

Being in his arms stole her breath, yet gave her strength. He did not look through her as so many men had done throughout her life, but rather as though he could not look anywhere else. As if the sight of her in his embrace was so entrancing, so intoxicating, that he too had forgotten everything and everyone until all that remained was the two of them. Their bodies entwined in a waltz that found its music in their very souls.

Tonight she wouldn’t run away at midnight. She would dance in his arms until dawn.

 

Breathless, Camellia gazed up into Lord X’s fathomless black mask. She could not see his eyes. Even his brow was hidden. There was no way to know what expression he wore. Nothing to go on except the words he spoke. Yet there could be no other answer to his query.

Bolder. She had longed to be bolder, yearned to be someone else since the moment she realized it was too late to change her personality. Dahlia was forceful, Bryony was fearless, but Camellia watched from the shadows. Looking out for her sisters. Being a good girl. A proper young lady. Minding every one of high society’s interminable rules as if the price for bending them was death. Perhaps the cost of denying her own desires was just as dear.

She was tired of being perfect. The only way to never break a rule, to avoid disappointing anyone’s expectations, was to never do anything at all. That wasn’t life at all.

Yet who was at fault? If she was nothing more substantial than a music box, nothing but a dutiful automaton respectable enough to possess an Almack’s voucher and too terrified to use it, then it was because she had let herself be programmed that way.

She wanted to change. Needed to. Perhaps it wouldn’t be for the better, but it would be more authentic—she would be more herself—if once in a while she did what she wanted, instead of molding to the wishes of everyone around her.

“Bolder,” she repeated. “I want to be bolder. It’s the one thing about my life I would alter.”

“I can grant you that wish.” He pushed his goblet away and sprang to his feet. “Be fearless here. Tonight. With me.”

He held out his hand.

Simultaneously hopeful and nervous, she placed her fingers in his.

“Whatever it is that you want, you need only be bold enough to ask.” He pulled her to him.

Her heart pounded so loudly, she feared he could feel it through his layers of shirt and waistcoat.

“What do you want?” he asked softly. “Be bold. Let me give it to you.”

What did she want, here, with him? She closed her eyes and let the night be her guide.

Now that they were no longer nestled on a woolen blanket, the breeze was cool against her bare upper arms… but not overly so. The warmth from Lord X’s body heated her whether they were lying prone or standing chest-to-chest beneath the moonlight.

The scent of his breath so close to her lips was as sweet as the wine they had shared. The sounds of the night—if indeed there were any other than the thundering of her heart—were eclipsed by the siren call of the orchestra, whose seductive waltz spilled out through the open doorways and up from the balcony overlooking the garden to kiss their feet, even out here on the roof.

She opened her eyes. There was only one answer. One thing among the many she’d never done that he alone could give her. Without scandal. Tonight.

“I want to waltz,” she admitted hesitantly. “But…”

He shook his head. “With me, you never have to justify yourself or your desires. I will never say no.”

Her breath caught at his words. “Why?”

“Because I want to be the reason for the sparkles in your eyes.” His husky voice was intoxicating. “You want to waltz? We waltz.”

He took her hand and turned toward the stairs.

She held her ground.

He looked over his shoulder. Though the expression behind his mask was a mystery, every inch of his posture asked a silent question.

“Here,” she said. Boldly. “I want to waltz here. Where it’s just you and me and the stars.”

He stepped forward and took her into his arms without another word.

At first, she thought he might kiss her. Her heart thumped. She was pressed tight against him, her lips tilted up toward the sensual line of his mouth.

And then he took her hand in his and swung her in time to the music.

Her pulse thrilled at his touch. Never had a moment been so magical as dancing across a rooftop in the arms of a dashing stranger. The wind whipped through her hair, tugging tendrils free from her careful chignon, fluttering the ruby silk of her skirt about her legs.

None of that mattered. All she cared about was the hand holding hers. The warmth of his fingers against the small of her back. The strength in his arms, his body, as he whirled her from one stunning night view of London to another.

The night was crisp but his embrace heated her to her core. She could no longer feel her feet flying across the roof to their private rhythm, or the whispery material of her gown fluttering against her silk stockings in the breeze.

All she could feel were her trembling fingers tucked against his warm palm, the strength of his arm tucked about her waist, her lips curving into the widest, most unabashed smile she’d ever experienced.

This was life!

Every part of him was danger and romance and adventure. He transported her not just from one soaring section of the roof to another, but to an alternate world. One in which she was exactly the woman she pretended to be. Carefree and wild and bubbling with joy at the consuming, heady sensation of being truly, completely, wonderfully alive.

Being in his arms stole her breath, yet gave her strength. He did not look through her as so many men had done throughout her life, but rather as though he could not look anywhere else. As if the sight of her in his embrace was so entrancing, so intoxicating, that he too had forgotten everything and everyone until all that remained was the two of them. Their bodies entwined in a waltz that found its music in their very souls.

Tonight she wouldn’t run away at midnight. She would dance in his arms until dawn.

 

 

Pick up your copy today!

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******

Author Bio

 

 

Erica Ridley is a USA Today and New York Times best-selling author of historical romance novels.

In the new Rogues to Riches historical romance series, Cinderella stories aren’t just for princesses… Sigh-worthy Regency rogues sweep strong-willed young ladies into whirlwind rags-to-riches romance with rollicking adventure.

The popular Dukes of War series features roguish peers and dashing war heroes who return from battle only to be thrust into the splendor and madness of Regency England.

When not reading or writing romances, Erica can be found riding camels in Africa, zip-lining through rainforests in Costa Rica, or getting hopelessly lost in the middle of Budapest.

 

Get free stories and 99¢ new releases: http://www.EricaRidley.com/club99

 

Website: http://www.EricaRidley.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EricaRidley

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/EricaRidley

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/EricaRidley

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/EricaRidley

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ericaridley

Street Team: http://www.ericaridley.com/street-team

 

***

Rogues to Riches series . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

****

Lord of Night (Rogues to Riches Book 3) by [Ridley, Erica]

Take a journey with the “Rogues of Riches” characters by pre-ordering the next grand adventure:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06XV6SXCW/ref=series_rw_dp_sw

****

MY THOUGHTS:

LORD OF PLEASURE by Erica Ridley is another pleasurable Historical Romance from this author. #2 in her exciting “Rogues to Riches” series, but can be read as a stand alone. See, “Lord of Chance”.

Miss Camellia Grenville, the “good girl”, and Michael, Lord Wainwright, the infamous and rakish “bad boy”, have chemistry that simply sparks off the pages of this  irresistible story.  A whirlwind relationship to be sure.

The characters are well-rounded, well-developed, and very engaging.  The plot flows smoothly and continuously, with a little bit of naughtiness, a scandalous masquerade party and of course, a rake who needs redeeming. I was pulled into “Lord of Pleasure” from the first page and continued throughout this amazing story. Cinderella has nothing on Camellia. I absolutely loved Camellia and Michael. While, I can’t say their story is one of purity, I can say it was engaging and beautifully written. The reader will find the “Lord of Pleasure”, to be entertaining, engaging, interesting and scandalously intriguing. You gotta love an amazing and fantastic Historical Romance. I can’t say enough about Ms. Ridley, her writing is masterfully and brilliantly written, to hold readers entrapped and enticed in the pages of a good romance. A must read!! Another well done story by the amazing Erica Ridley!

I can’t wait to read the next “Rogues to Riches” story, “Lord of Night”, coming June 23, 2017.

Rating: 5

Heat rating: Mild

Reviewed by: AprilR

 

 

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SAMANTHA HOLT~~WHEN A ROGUE LOVES A WOMAN ~~#Giveaway & #Review

When a Rogue Loves a Woman
Rogues of Redmere book 2

Notorious rogue, Lord Nathaniel Kingsley always tended to leap without thinking. Becoming a smuggler, adopting a sheep, getting engaged to Miss Patience Grey….
Patience has no need for a fiancé, or a husband. For once in her life, she wants to prove she’s just as good as a man and she does not need Nathaniel Kingsley getting in her way. With her brother injured, it is up to her to continue her family’s work…and that means tracking down a French spy and ensuring said spy will turn.
Unfortunately, no one believes she can do it alone. Which is where Nathaniel comes in.
Nate is happy to be of service. Why pass up the opportunity to repay an old friend, especially with a little intrigue along the way? Find the spy, play escort to Patience, return home to continue smuggling. Easy.
Or at least it would be if the stubborn Patience would let him do his job. The breeches-wearing woman is determined to do it all alone and, he has to admit, there’s something quite distracting about a woman in men’s clothes.
Can he keep his attention from her long enough to complete their mission and persuade Patience to let him do his job and protect her? A job he’s beginning to find he’s enjoying a lot more than he thought he would…

Available from Amazon and all other vendors for 99c for release week.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2jQOfOJ

Other vendors:

books2read.com/ http://books2read.com/u/4N1lL6

 

Excerpt

“There would have been many a heartbroken lass had you really been engaged,” Drake said. His grin grew wicked. “I was looking forward to offering my comfort and condolences.”
Nate shook his head and ignored his friend’s jest. Instead he turned his attention to the ale in his hand. It would be his last for a while. He’d need a clear head for what was to come, especially if he was to keep that minx under control. If her own mother could not make her wear a dress, what chance did he have?
Either way, he was looking forward to the challenge. Smuggling was all well and good but they had only gone out once in the past month and all had been quiet. No excitement to be had. He was rather looking forward to the chance to indulge in some espionage and adventure.
Of course, Jacob Grey was aware of their illicit activities. Being a government agent had meant they had helped him before. He was one of the few residents of Penshallow who quite understood who was behind all the smuggling that took place in their small fishing village. Most thought Knight the face of it—the big, brooding, scarred hulk of a man opposite who spoke only when absolutely necessary.
At present, Knight’s attention was on something near the bar. Nate flicked a glance over but could see nothing of interest. Only the usual overly drunk patrons gathered while Louisa, the innkeeper, worked her hardest to keep up with demand.
Other patrons littered the room, gathered around small tables. Some had cards in their hands while all had drinks. The Ship Inn was not the most savory of places but it was out of the way and the food was good. Not to mention Louisa was uncannily good at ensuring the customs men never came near the place. She had saved their skin many times and they repaid her help generously, ensuring she had a good supply of excellent French wine.
“You were a damned fool, signing up for this,” Nate’s brother said, thrusting a finger at him.
“What was I to do? You were off enjoying yourself with Hannah. Far too much it seems.” His brother’s gaze darkened and Nate immediately ceased any idea of talking of Red’s fiancée. Hannah was currently installed in lodgings in the village while they awaited the license for their marriage and to finalize all the details. His brother was, unbelievably, utterly in the love with the woman. It was not such much the woman he had fallen for that surprised Nate but that his brother had the ability to fall so heavily for her. Red had always been too busy to think of love or even marriage.
Drake leaned in. The captain fixed Red with a slight smile on his lips. “Face it, Red. While you were distracted by petticoats, Nate held down the fort. I don’t blame him for offering to help, after all, are we not in this to help the crown?”
“Since when are you so noble?” Red demanded.
“Since I have a pocket full of coin,” Drake said smugly. “Things have been going uncommonly well of late. I don’t see why Nate cannot help Jacob Grey and be back in time for our next outing.”
“Uncommonly well?” Nate’s brother lifted a brow. “After Knight’s illness and the storm that near tore your ship in half, you were complaining of curses. Now you think things are going uncommonly well?”
Knight glowered. The giant of a man sat with his arms folded, a great scowl etched upon his face that in some lights looked as though it could be made of granite. Were it not for being friends with him, Nate would give him a wide berth. The man looked like trouble and, potentially, he was. No one really knew anything about him apart from the fact he was useful muscle and a damned hard worker. Though Nate suspected there was something more under that silent exterior. What that was, however, he was not sure.
“It was not an illness,” Knight protested.
Drake laughed. “You vomited on my boots, Knight. What would you call it?”
Knight fell back into silent mode and glowered some more.

 

 

About the Author 

 

Samantha is a full-time author who lives in England with her twins girls and a dachshund called Duke. When not writing, she loves to explore stately homes and castles around the country.
Find Samantha on her website http://www.samanthaholtromance.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Hosted by:

Samantha Holt

~~~~~

MY THOUGHTS 

When a Rogue Loves a Woman by Samantha Holt is an amazing Regency Romance.  While, Book 2 of “Rogues of Redmere , it can be read as a stand alone. 

Not only will readers find everything a Romance reader desires, it has desire, spies, friendships,  smuggling, a French Spy, and an adopted sheep, who yes, acts like a treasured pet, which it certainly is treated as such.

Lord Nathaniel Kingsley, a notorious rogue and a sometime spy, when needed, by his friend. As a second son he must find his own way. Miss Patience Grey, is a fiesty, bluestocking, sister to Nate’s friend and spy master. Wishs to make this trip into France alone to encounter the French spy and get the information she has for the British, she also wishes to prove a point to her overbearing brothers and her mother…She can perform her duty alone.  But her brother insist Nate’s accompany her on this mission,  as her husband. But no believed the plan would work. Can the lovely Patience,  win her true love and her match? Will Nate finally meet his match, with Patience? Can they find what both are seaching for, a HEA?

Fast paced, well written, with engaging characters,  a few laughs along the way and a great storyline.  And absolutely masterfully and intriguing story. “When a Rogue Loves a Woman”, will have you glued to the pages as you find these characters are simply irresistable. I enjoyed the interaction between Nate and Patience, they had that pull of attraction from the beginning.

Once again, Ms. Holt has written a heartwarming, as well as, a stimulating tale of challenges,  intrigue,  romance and love. Ms. Holt has never disappointed me with her stories.  I can’t wait to read more of this exciting series,  “Rogues of Redmere”, the ladys who tame them and the adventures in their futures.

Highly recommended for fans of  Regency Romance,  spies, friendships,  mesmerizing stories, a adopted, cute, sheep,  and a written tale, are sure to adore this story.  Well done, SamanthaHolt! ! A definite must read Regency Romance!

Rating: 4.5

Heat rating: Mild

Reviewed by: AprilR

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BLOG TOUR~THE BLACK MORASS~BARBARA DEVLIN~


The Black Morass
(Pirates of the Coast Book 1)
By
Barbara Devlin

 Forever glancing over his shoulder, Jean Marc Cavalier is a ruthless pirate with the blood of countless souls on his hands and a price on his head, but he is a lonely man. In exchange for a chance at redemption, pardons for his crew, and a peaceful life, he accepts a pact that could result in liberty or death, if only he can survive the terms, but at least he will be free. When he rescues a young woman in distress, and vows to return her to her family, he is torn between his natural instincts born of violence and the honorable bargain he struck. What will Jean Marc choose?
En route to Jamaica to join her father, after her guardian dies, Lady Madalene Davies departs Boston in anticipation of a new life in a foreign land. When her ship is attacked and set afire, she is left for dead, until an unlikely savior comes to her aid. Brash and bawdy, her flawed hero defies the conventional ideal, as he is no knight in shining armor and seems forever intent on shocking her, yet she cannot resist the lure he presents. What happens when danger lurks in unexpected places, faith is broken, and Madalene must rely on Jean Marc to stay alive?

Atlantic Ocean
March, 1816
Virtue was a highly overrated characteristic in his estimation.  In truth, he ranked it in the miserable depths of humanity comprised of respectability and righteousness.  For the strong and fearless, the glorified traits of honor and integrity functioned as an impenetrable barrier to the excitement of the worldly existence filled with violence and debauchery in which he once reveled on a daily basis.  In exchange for societal approval, grown men surrendered their dignity, and their whore’s pipe, he would argue, to abide by a set of rules in which most had no say, and for what?  High principles?  Prestige?  Indeed, such noble qualities sucked dry the marrow of life, leaving naught but the simple pleasures to enjoy, as the Black Morass rode the waves.
Sunshine glittered on the ocean, as a sea of precious diamonds, and a cool breeze sifted through his long black hair, as Jean Marc Cavalier directed the helmsman.  Restless and yearning for stimulation, something to feed the hunger that gnawed at his harrowed soul, he approached with caution what appeared to be a burning schooner that he might offer aid, in accord with the pact he signed in a moment of weakness or perhaps insanity.
“No movement on deck, Cap’n.”  Tyne, the bosun, lowered his spyglass.  “Should we continue our advance?”
“We will maintain course and heading, just to be sure there are no survivors in need of rescue.”  For some strange suspicion he could not quite shake, Jean Marc surmised all was not as it seemed, given the nearest vessel disappeared below the horizon before he could inquire after the circumstances of the misadventure.  For a seaman, naught struck fear in the heart more than fire aboard ship, which could send an entire crew to Davy Jones’s locker.  And he had given his word to perform meritorious deeds for a full year, in trade for an unconditional pardon.  At the end of twelve months, Jean Marc and his men would be free of past crimes, beholden to none.
But at what price had he bartered his autonomy?
It was for that reason Jean Marc refused to sail past the doomed lady.  And then he spied activity at the stern rail, on the quarterdeck.  “Come about.”
“What is it?”  Peering over his shoulder, Tyne narrowed his stare.  “Is that a white flag?”
As they drew closer, Jean Marc smiled, and a familiar itch in his palms had him flexing his fingers.  The lure of conquest burned bright in his loins, and he struggled with a craving for fresh meat, if only to reassert authority over his life.  “It is a woman.”  He laughed.  “And she waves her undergarments.”
Perhaps fate smiled upon him, as the chit might be just the balm to ease his unrest and allow him to regain a measure of control.  Obligated to the Crown, and no longer the master of his destiny, he thirsted for the power of ultimate domination, and nothing compared to the supremacy inherent in seduction.
“Bloody hell, she is a tasty bit o’ fluff.”  Tyne licked his lips.  “And a bottle of Jamaican rum says she is unspoiled, too.”
“I believe you are correct in your assertion, mon ami.”  That tempered Jean Marc’s ever-growing arousal, as he never claimed virgin’s blood, because he preferred experienced whores who knew what he wanted and gave it to him, without complaint or inconvenient emotional attachments.  Then he got a good look at the boon, in question, as the Morass glided to a halt, and full-blown lust threatened to consume him.  Maybe it was time to sample the tender flesh of an innocent.  “Ahoy, dear lady.  Jean Marc Cavalier, most definitely at your service.”
“Kind sir, I would be grateful for passage to Port Royal.”  Behind her, the masts collapsed, and she shrieked.  How he ached to make her squeal with enthusiasm, as he would wager she could scream much louder with the right inducement.  “As you can see, my current accommodation is about to sink, and I am in dire need of new transportation.”
“Lower the plank.”  He signaled the crew.  “As I am certain we can strike a mutually beneficial bargain.”  With a lush figure made for sin, and of that he could envision committing many with her, and alabaster skin he fully intended to explore in more intense inspection, once he got her alone, she presented a delightful distraction.  “How is it your ship fell into such misfortune, and where is the crew?”
“They are dead.”  Tears pooled in her vivid blue eyes, and she emitted a soft sob, but he cared not for her sad tale.  “We were attacked by pirates, and I hid in the captain’s cabin, in a small compartment beneath a concealed floor panel, which he revealed he previously used for smuggling, thus I was spared.”
“Come here, mon chou.”  As the bow dipped below the surface of the water, he slipped an arm about her hips and whisked her aboard the Morass.
“Oh, do collect my bundles, as they hold irreplaceable personal items, including some of my mother’s keepsakes.”  She pointed to two pillowcases, knotted at the opening.  “Please, sir.  I cannot lose them, and I shall ensure you are handsomely compensated, when I reach my destination, as I hail from a family of means.”
“Is that so?  Then your every wish is my command.”  And she would compensate him, all right, but not in the coin she proposed, as he had something else in mind for the delectable brown-haired wench.  In seconds, Jean Marc jumped to the now high-pitched stern, grabbed the belongings, glanced into the waist of the doomed vessel, and discovered the remains of a massacre, which made no sense.  At the very least, the sailors could have been sold into slavery, so why would anyone surrender such valuable cargo?  A large crack in the boards indicated the ship yielded its last breath to the force of the ocean, and he took a running leap to safety.  When he gained his footing, the woman flung herself at him and wept.  “Now, now, none of that, mon chou.”
Guileless and genteel, his unwitting prize had no idea of the scheme he would enact to reclaim a portion of his pride, as the King stipulated naught in regard to conquest of the fair sex.  Indeed, she possessed no means of defense against his provocative persuasion, and he would employ everything at his disposal to well and thoroughly invade every inch of her.  Before he landed the little angel on Jamaica’s shore, he would instruct her in the art of pleasure, such that she would perform, at will, what even some professionals considered obscene, and render her quim raw.  And then he would leave her, unharmed but a bit worn about the edges, without so much as a backward glance, as was his way.
“I thought I was going to die, and you saved me when all seemed lost.”  Well, he was not so sure he saved her, inasmuch as he delivered her from one precarious position to another, though she knew it not.  Whimpering, she hugged him tight, and he savored her soft and feminine curves.  “How can I ever thank you?”
Oh, he had plenty of suggestions.  With a slight bend at the hips, she assessed her things, and he admired her round bottom.  Then and there, he decided to first defile her arse and sail her windward passage, as he relished the compelling contradiction between the vulgar act and the pristine virgin, given she was no short-heeled lass or three-penny upright.
“You may start by telling me your name.”  Of course, buccaneer or not, Jean Marc required no such formalities to seize the treasure between her thighs, and he would feast on her honeypot soon enough, but he did not want to frighten her—at least, not yet, as fear could be quite provoking.
“Lady Madalene Davies, sir.”  An exemplar of perfection, her mouth posed an unparalleled enticement, and how he would engage her aristocratic, plump red lips about his stiff cock.  Then she stared at the crew, released Jean Marc, and retreated a step.  “Is this a passenger-for-hire ship or a privateer in His Majesty’s Navy?”
“Not usually, and I am no longer a pirate.”  He advanced, as her chin quivered, and desire surged in his veins.  “Thus I am willing to negotiate terms, if you are amenable.”  With a shrug, he trailed a finger along the gentle curve of her jaw.  “Else I can return you to the sea.”
“I beg your pardon?”  Lady Madalene blinked.  “You are no longer a pirate?”  She made another perfunctory study of his men and gulped.  “Am I in danger?  Did you kill the Trident crew, and am I to suffer the same fate?”
“Mon chou, you insult me, as I would have taken them captive were that my work.  And never would I waste something so lovely.”  Swift and sure, he caught her in his arms, and she screamed, just as he claimed a lengthy kiss, to ribald hoots and hollers.  When she wrenched free, pounded his chest with her fists, and prepared to protest, he nodded and thrust her into Tyne and Randall’s waiting escort.  “Take her to my cabin.”

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-black-morass-barbara-devlin/1123825730?ean=2940153165813

 Bestselling, Amazon All-Star author Barbara Devlin was born a storyteller, but it was a weeklong vacation to Bethany Beach, DE that forever changed her life. The little house her parents rented had a collection of books by Kathleen Woodiwiss, which exposed Barbara to the world of romance, and Shanna remains a personal favorite.
Barbara writes heartfelt historical romances that feature flawed heroes who may know how to seduce a woman but know nothing of marriage. And she prefers feisty but smart heroines who sometimes save the hero, before they find their happily ever after.
Barbara earned an MA in English and continued a course of study for a Doctorate in Literature and Rhetoric. She happily considered herself an exceedingly eccentric English professor, until success in Indie publishing lured her into writing, full-time, featuring her fictional knighthood, the Brethren of the Coast.
 


Download Enter the Brethren for free: http://barbaradevlin.com/free­ebook­etb/

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LOVE’S FURY BLOG TOUR + EXCERPT~ VIOLETTA RAND~

Love’s Fury (Viking’s Fury Book 1)
 
By
 
Violetta Rand
 
Biography

Bestselling author Violetta Rand was raised in Corpus Christi, Texas and spent her childhood reading, writing, and playing soccer. After meeting her husband in New England, they moved to Alaska where she studied environmental science and policy before attending graduate school. Violetta then spent nearly a decade working as a scientist, specializing in soil and water contamination and environmental assessments.
Violetta still lives in Alaska and spends her days writing romance. When she’s not reading, writing, or editing, she enjoys time with her husband, pets, and friends. In her free time, she loves to hike, fish, and ride motorcycles and 4-wheelers.

Violetta is traditionally published through Random House for her contemporary MC line as well through small press for her Viking’s Fury series with Dragonblade Publishing.
Links to Violetta Rand’s Amazon page:
Violetta Rand on Amazon:


About the Book:



Link to  Love’s Fury, Book One of the Viking Fury Series:
Love’s Fury by Violetta Rand on Amazon:

Synopsis for Love’s Fury
Caught between duty and passion…
After losing a drinking wager with his eldest brother, Konal the Red finds himself drafted by the Danish prince and fighting in Northumbria. Once his military contract expires, he intends to return to Norway where he belongs. But his exploits have earned him respect, lands, and a few enemies. Rewarded with a Saxon beauty who inspires more than simple passion, he’s determined to win her trust and body.
Caught between a heart locked on revenge and seduction…
Silvia, the only child of the church undersecretary, vows to avenge her beloved father after he’s killed in a siege. It doesn’t matter which Viking wielded the axe—an eye for an eye is the only thing that will satisfy her. When Konal claims her as a spoil of war, she sees it as the perfect opportunity for revenge. She never expects to discover a pure heart buried beneath Konal’s barbaric exterior.
As Konal slowly rekindles a spark of life inside her, their fates become hopelessly entwined. Not only must they withstand the violence of the envious lust-mongers who threaten them, Konal and Silvia must choose what’s most important—tradition or love that cannot be denied.
Excerpt:
Silvia clutched a dozen scrolls to her chest as she raced through the scriptorium searching for somewhere to hide. She covered her mouth and coughed violently. Smoke filled every corner, diminishing the afternoon sunlight that typically filled the high-ceilinged room. Shelf after shelf of manuscripts had been obliterated by the steel axes these heathen occupiers hefted. God’s breath… She halted. A man-beast of mythological proportions stood nearby, his attention focused on the table before him. The place where the monks passed their long days studying.
“No!” She couldn’t remain silent—couldn’t stop herself from screaming as he tipped the torch he held, the loose parchments providing the kindling the flames needed to spread.

She clung more desperately to her precious cargo, texts her father specifically requested she grab before he was cut down. She closed her eyes for a brief moment, stifling tears that threatened to spill, ones she’d held back so she could think clearly. But nothing helped now. How could she keep the harrowing memory of her sire’s death out of her head? The answer came as goosebumps crept up her flesh like a cold wind.

She felt the weight of the intruder’s stare and opened her eyes. Had the heathen heard her yell? Or was he simply in search of something else to burn?
“Jeg er glad for å se at det er mer enn bøker i denne forlatt stedet.”

His words were not lost on her. Her father had taught her enough Norse to communicate with the filthy invaders. This was no Dane, but a Norwegian. The bloody animal dared to humor himself whilst devastating her home.

“Brenn i helvete,” she cursed him. Burn in hell.

He laughed riotously, then turned his attention back to the room.

Fool. He obviously underestimated the threat of a woman. Panic gripped her heart, but she had to remain focused. The secret tunnel running along the north wall came to mind. If she could reach it … her gaze searched for a clear route. Unfortunately, she couldn’t see three feet in front of her. Nor did she know how many men were still inside. Her greatest chance of survival depended on getting out, now.

Silvia ran for the main entrance. She’d spent a happy childhood here—growing up exploring the buildings while her father worked. If the fire wasn’t extinguished, all would be reduced to pile of smoldering rubble. A part of her soul was dying, consumed by the same flames destroying the only scriptorium in the north.

Outside, conditions weren’t much better. Bodies littered the ground. Saxons—men of honor who risked their lives to reclaim their city were dead or dying. It was too late, in any case, to fight. Now mere survival would have to do. Amidst the agonizing screams and sounds of clashing metal, she hunted frantically for a place to stash the scrolls. Somewhere no one would look.

The ancient cemetery came into view. Who disturbed the dead when a city was under siege? She knew she’d done everything possible to help her father. Fulfilling his last request was all she had left to give him.

By some miracle, there was a half-dug grave nearby. It hadn’t rained in days and the soil was dry. There was time to retrieve the scrolls later. She reverently laid them on the ground, unpinned her thin cloak, then knelt, wrapping the delicate papers in her mantle. Her heart pounded as she placed the bundle in the earth, then spread loose soil over it.

Satisfied they were safe, she scrambled to her feet, noting her exact location. God would lead her back here if she forgot. And if he didn’t, she’d sacrifice her life trying to find it. But what now? The sanctuary appeared unharmed. If the Vikings weren’t trying to purge the northlands of holy sites, why were they targeting just the repository? She didn’t understand.

The sounds of battle grew louder…

She must find shelter. The cottage she had shared with her father was on the edge of the extensive church grounds, nearly a mile away. Vikings left nothing unsearched, no one alive—no woman untouched.

“Ikke flytt.”

The deep voice cut through her like a blade and she didn’t move. She should have never let her mind wander. Something sharp and hard stabbed her in the back.

“I accept your invitation.”

Accept her invitation? She gasped upon remembering where she’d told him to go. 
To hell.

“Face me.”

Legs as heavy as lead, she did as he demanded, dreading the moment she’d see him clearly. In the smoke filled scriptorium, he had been little more than a nightmarish shadow. But in the light, truth hit her harder than anything. Despite the soot and ash covering his face, nothing could mask his exquisite features. Full lips—high cheek bones—a straight nose. Bronzed skin. His stark blue eyes impossible to avoid. And his hair, long and dark with coppery streaks. If she didn’t stop staring, he’d misinterpret her intention, possibly rape her. Silvia tried to avert her eyes.

His axe rested against his left leg. She swallowed hard, overwhelmed by the magnitude of his presence. When he pointed across the field, toward the courtyard, she shook her head, adamantly refusing to go anywhere with him. “I’d rather die than follow you.”

He growled, grabbing the top of her gown, her refusal obviously igniting his anger. The garment ripped, exposing her flesh. He gazed at her hungrily, a wicked grin splitting his face. Then his hands were on her arms, his filthy fingers digging into her skin as he shook her into submission. “Fail to obey me again and I’ll strip you.” He let go, shoving her backward.

She stumbled but didn’t fall. If he wanted her dead, she’d be dead. If he wanted to ravish her, she would have been flailing helplessly on the ground already with her skirt hiked over her waist. Hatred flowed as freely inside her as blood. But she didn’t know how to take his lack of violence.

He again pointed in the direction he wanted her to go. “Walk.”

Head held high, Silvia remembered the lessons her father had painstakingly taught her over the years. Hard lessons meant for people who lived in occupied lands. Her father had said subjugation doesn’t mean you must abandon pride. Christ instructed slaves to love their masters. She gritted her teeth. She’d never love a blasted Viking.
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Top 10 settings for Historical Romance~ LIBERTY~ KIM IVERSON HEADLEE …with #Excerpt and #Rafflecopter Giveaway

libertyTop 10 settings for Historical Romance.

For me, romance in any era is less about the “where and when” and all about the “who.” But here goes! For the record, some of these are based on books I’ve read, some are based on books I’ve written or plan to write, and some that I have no intention to write but would love to read!
1) 18th C or earlier Scotland (buff men in kilts)
2) 12th C Sherwood Forest (buff men in tights) (sorry, couldn’t resist!)
3) 7th – 11th C Scandinavia (long-haired blond buff men in horny helmets)
4) 18th C Caribbean (scruffy men in tricorner hats & dreadlocks, with or without rum; bonus for a deserted moonlit beach)
5) Ancient Rome (efficient men who wear their bed linens)
6) Pompeii before AD 79 (smokin’ hot men in bed linens)
7) Renaissance Venice (men with long poles)
8) 19th C Tsar’s court in St. Petersburg at Christmas (impeccably mannered men with a sexy accent)
9) Victorian London at Christmas (impeccably mannered men with a different but no less sexy accent)
10) London in any yesteryear that doesn’t feature a Great Fire, plague, famine, drought, deep freeze, religious turmoil, regicide, invasion, insurrection, or blit

***

BOOK INFORMATION

TITLE – Liberty, second edition
AUTHOR – Kim Iverson Headlee
GENRE – Historical Romance (ancient Rome)
PUBLICATION DATE – Dec. 2014
LENGTH (Pages/# Words) – 462 pages/118K words
PUBLISHER – Pendragon Cove Press
COVER ARTIST – Natasha Brown
BOOK INFOhttp://kimiversonheadlee.blogspot.com/p/liberty.html

BOOK SYNOPSIS

They hailed her “Liberty,” but she was free only to obey—or die.

Betrayed by her father and sold as payment of a Roman tax debt to fight in Londinium’s arena, gladiatrix-slave Rhyddes feels like a wild beast in a gilded cage. Celtic warrior blood flows in her veins, but Roman masters own her body. She clings to her vow that no man shall claim her soul, though Marcus Calpurnius Aquila, son of the Roman governor, makes her yearn for a love she believes impossible.

Groomed to follow in his father’s footsteps and trapped in a politically advantageous betrothal, Aquila prefers the purity of combat on the amphitheater sands to the sinister intrigues of imperial politics, and the raw power and athletic grace of the flame-haired Libertas to the adoring deference of Rome’s noblewomen.

When a plot to overthrow Caesar ensnares them as pawns in the dark design, Aquila must choose between the Celtic slave who has won his heart and the empire to which they both owe allegiance. Knowing the opposite of obedience is death, the only liberty offered to any slave, Rhyddes must embrace her arena name—and the love of a man willing to sacrifice everything to forge a future with her.

BUY & TBR LINKS

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Liberty - Book CoverEXCERPT

FINGERS CRAMPING AND shoulders aching from having wielded the pitchfork all day, Rhyddes ferch Rudd tossed another load of hay onto the wagon. Sweat trickled down her back, making the lash marks sting. Marks inflicted by her father, Rudd, the day before because eighteen summers of anguish had goaded her into speaking her mind.

Physical pain couldn’t compare with the ache wringing her heart.

She slid a glance toward the author of her mood. He stood a few paces away, leaning upon his pitchfork’s handle in the loaded wagon’s shade to escape the July heat as he conversed with her oldest brother, Eoghan. She couldn’t discern their words, but their camaraderie spoke volumes her envy didn’t want to hear.

Her father’s gaze met hers, and he lowered his eyebrows. “Back to work, Rhyddes!” On Rudd’s lips, her name sounded like an insult.

In a sense, it was.

Her name in the Celtic tongue meant “freedom,” but the horse hitched to the hay wagon enjoyed more freedom than she did. Her tribe, the Votadini, had been conquered by the thieving Romans, who demanded provisions for their troops, fodder for their mounts, women for their beds, and coin to fill the purses of every Roman who wasn’t a soldier.

If those conditions weren’t bad enough, for all the kindness her father had demonstrated during her first two decades, Rhyddes may as well have been born a slave.

She scooped up more hay. Resentment-fired anger sent wisps flying everywhere, much of it sailing over the wagon rather than landing upon it.

“Hey, mind what you’re doing!”

Owen, her closest brother in age and in spirit, emerged from the wagon’s far side, hay prickling his hair and tunic like a porcupine. Rhyddes couldn’t suppress her laugh. “’Tis an improvement. Just wait till the village lasses see you.”

“Village lasses, hah!” Sporting a wicked grin, Owen snatched up a golden fistful, flung it at her, and dived for her legs.

They landed in the fragrant hay and began vying for the upper hand, cackling like a pair of witless hens. When Owen thought he’d prevailed, Rhyddes twisted and rolled from underneath him. Her fresh welts stung, but she refused to let that deter her. He lost his balance and fell backward. She pounced, planting a knee on his chest and pinning his wrists to the ground over his head.

Victory’s sweetness lasted but a moment. Fingers dug into her shoulders, and she felt herself hauled to her feet and spun around. Owen’s face contorted to chagrin as he scrambled up.

“Didn’t get enough of the lash yestermorn, eh, girl?” Rudd, his broad hands clamped around her upper arms, gave her a teeth-rattling shake.

When she didn’t respond, he released her and rounded on Owen. “As for you—”

“Da, please, no!” Rhyddes stopped herself. Well she knew the futility of pleading with Rudd. Still, for Owen’s sake, she had to try. Her father’s scowl dared her to continue. She swallowed the lump that had formed in her throat. “’Twas not Owen’s fault. I—” Sweat freshened the sting on her back, and she winced. “The fault is naught but mine.”

“Aye, that I can well believe.” Rudd grasped each sibling by an arm and strode across the hayfield toward the family’s lodge. “Owen can watch you take his lashes as well as yours. We’ll see if that won’t mend his ways.” The thin linen of her ankle-length tunic failed to shield her from his fingers, which had to be leaving bruises. Rhyddes gritted her teeth. Rudd seemed disappointed. “I doubt anything in this world or the next will make you mend yours.”

“You don’t want me to change. You’d lose your excuse to beat me.” Sheer impertinence, she knew, but she no longer cared.

“I need no excuses, girl.”

The back of his hand collided with her cheek. Pain splintered into a thousand needles across her face. She reeled and dropped to her hands and knees, her hair obscuring her vision in a copper cascade. Hay pricked her palms. Owen would have helped her rise, but their father restrained him. Owen blistered the ground with his glare, not daring to direct it at Rudd for fear of earning the same punishment.

Not that Rhyddes could blame him.

Rudd yanked her up, cocked a fist… and froze. “Raiders!”

Rhyddes whirled about. Picts were charging from the north to converge upon their settlement, the battle cries growing louder under the merciless afternoon sun. One of the storage buildings had already been set ablaze, its roof thatch marring the sky with thick black smoke.

Rudd shed his shock and sprinted for the living compound, calling his children by name to help him defend their home: Eoghan, Ian, Bloeddwyn, Arden, Dinas, Gwydion, Owen.

Every child except Rhyddes.

She ran to the wagon, unhitched the horse, found her pitchfork, scrambled onto the animal’s back, and kicked him into a jolting canter. The stench of smoke strengthened with each stride. Her mount pinned back his ears and wrestled her for control of the bit, but she bent the frightened horse to her will. She understood how he felt.

As they loped past the cow byre, a Pict leaped at them, knocking Rhyddes from the horse’s back. The ground jarred the pitchfork from her grasp. The horse galloped toward the pastures as Rhyddes fumbled for her dagger. Although her brothers had taught her how to wield it in a fight, until now she’d used it only to ease dying animals from this world.

But the accursed blade wouldn’t come free of the hilt.

Sword aloft, the Pict closed on her.

Time distorted, assaulting Rhyddes with her attacker’s every detail: lime-spiked hair, weird blue symbols smothering the face and arms, long sharp sword, ebony leather boots and leggings, breastplate tooled to fit female curves . . .

Female?

The warrior-woman’s sword began its descent.

From the corner of her eye Rhyddes saw her pitchfork. Grunting, she rolled toward it, praying to avoid her attacker’s blow.

Her left arm stung where the sword grazed it, but she snagged her pitchfork and scrambled to her feet. Unexpected eagerness flooded her veins.

As the Pict freed her weapon from where it had embedded in the ground, Rhyddes aimed the pitchfork and lunged. The tines hooked the warrior-woman’s sword, and Rhyddes twisted with all her strength. The Pict yelped as the sword ripped from her hand to go flying over the sty’s fence. Squealing in alarm, the sow lumbered for cover, trying to wedge her bulk under the trough.

With a savage scream, the warrior-woman whipped out a dagger and charged. Rhyddes reversed the pitchfork and jammed its butt into the Pict’s gut, under the breastplate’s bottom edge, robbing her of breath. She reversed it again and caught the raider under the chin with the pitchfork’s tines. As the woman staggered backward, flailing her arms and flashing the red punctures that marred her white neck, Rhyddes struck hard and knocked her down.

The warrior-woman looked heavier by at least two stone, but Rhyddes pinned her chest with her knee. She dropped the pitchfork and grasped her dagger, yanking it free. Grabbing a fistful of limed hair, she wrestled the woman’s head to one side to expose her neck.

The Pict bucked and twisted, trying to break Rhyddes’s grip. ’Twas not much different than wrestling a fever-mad calf.

Rhyddes’s deft slice ended the threat.

Blood spurted from the woman’s neck in sickening pulses.

Rhyddes stood, panting, her stomach churning with the magnitude of what she’d done. ’Twas no suffering animal she’d killed—and it could have been her lying there, pumping her lifeblood into the mud.

Bile seared her throat, making her gag. Pain lanced her stomach. Bent double, she retched out the remains of her morning meal, spattering the corpse.

After spitting out the last bitter mouthful and wiping her lips with the back of her hand, she drew a deep breath and straightened. As she turned a slow circle, her senses taking in the sights and sounds and stench of the devastation surrounding her, she wished she had not prevailed.

The news grew worse as she sprinted toward the lodge.

Of her seven brothers, the Picts had left Ian and Gwydion dead, her father and Owen wounded, the lodge and three outbuildings torched. She ran a fingertip over the crusted blood of her scratch, and she couldn’t suppress a surge of guilt.

Mayhap, she thought through the blinding tears as she ran to help what was left of her family, ’twould have been better had she died in the Pict’s stead.

The surviving raiders were galloping toward the tree line with half the cattle. The remaining stock lay stiffening in the fields, already attracting carrion birds.

Three days later, the disaster attracted scavengers of an altogether different sort.

 

CHARACTER BIOS

I am Rhyddes ferch Rudd, which in your tongue means Freedom daughter of Red. The blood of ancient Celtic warriors flows in my veins, though I am a farmer’s daughter by the circumstance of my birth. My life spans much of the reign of the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, one of a very few men ever to claim that title who did not abuse his power for personal gain—but I care not who rules and who dies in this gods-cursed empire.

More than anything—even more than my freedom—I yearn to be my lover Aquila’s equal. As a foreign slave in an empire where citizenship stands paramount, where an arena fighter such as I can only be considered the equal of other gladiators, actors, undertakers, and whores, this goal seems impossibly remote. Although Aquila is the son of a powerful Roman, he has declared that he would renounce his aristocratic status, wealth, and power for me, but I cannot in good conscience allow him to destroy himself on my account.

And yet the gods have granted the impossible to other mortals. I pray that I am worthy to receive such a boon from them, for surely divine assistance is the only way for Aquila and I to bridge the vast social chasm that separates us from enjoying a future together.

 

Mornings Journey - Author Photo AUTHOR BIO

Kim Headlee lives on a farm in southwestern Virginia with her family, cats, goats, and assorted wildlife. People & creatures come and go, but the cave and the 250-year-old house ruins—the latter having been occupied as recently as the mid-20th century—seem to be sticking around for a while yet.

Kim is a Seattle native (when she used to live in the Metro DC area, she loved telling people she was from “the other Washington”) and a direct descendent of twentieth-century Russian nobility. Her grandmother was a childhood friend of the doomed Grand Duchess Anastasia, and the romantic yet tragic story of how Lydia escaped Communist Russia with the aid of her American husband will most certainly one day fuel one of Kim’s novels. Another novel in the queue will involve her husband’s ancestor, the seventh-century proto-Viking king of the Swedish colony in Russia.

For the time being, however, Kim has plenty of work to do in creating her projected 8-book Arthurian series, The Dragon’s Dove Chronicles, and other novels under her new imprint, Pendragon Cove Press.

 

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GIVEAWAY PRIZES

– 5 e-copies of Liberty
– 10 note cards
– 1 autographed print copy of Liberty

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Liberty by Kim Iverson Headlee

MY THOUGHTS:

LIBERTY by Kim Iverson Headlee is an enticing Ancient Romance Historical Romance set around 160 AD Rome. *This is the second edition*

This is the tale of one woman’s struggles, Rhyddes (aka-Liberty) a glaiatrix-slave, sold by her father for a debt owed to a Roman tax collector. “Liberty/Libertas” is the tale of betrayal, intrigue, sacrifice, survival, lust, romance and unrequited love.

Also, meet Marcus Calpurnis Aquila is the son of a Roman governor, “Aquila” or “Eagle” who is falling in love with the noble, Celtic Warrior, Liberty.

While, an interesting tale, some of the language felt a bit out of place for the era, overall, an interesting and satisfying read. Liberty had a hopeless, helpless life, but though it all she kept her soul intact. “Liberty” is a story with many facets, and characters. Well written with an interesting cast of characters. The storyline is rather unique in the premise of young love, lovers who can never be together, for a Gladiators’ life is to “obey or die”. Interesting and intriguing, but at times very frustrating as well. This story is NOT for the faint of heart, some parts of the story was hard to read. This story is at times hard to follow, not easy to read, but overall a unique and entertaining read.  If you enjoy Ancient Rome, Historical Romance, a story with many facets, than I would recommend picking up “Liberty”.

*Please be warned, this story is NOT for the faint of heart as it does have scenes which includes violence and sexual assault**

 

*Received for an honest review*

Rating: 4

Heat rating: Hot (involves violence and sexual assault)

Reviewed by: AprilR, courtesy of My Book Addiction and More

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