MASK OF DUPLICITY by Julia Brannan
Series: Jacobite Chronicles, #1
Genre: ‪‎Historical Romance‬


‪New Release:


Following the death of their father, Beth’s brother Richard returns from the army to claim his share of the family estate. However, Beth’s hopes of a quiet life are dashed when Richard, dissatisfied with his meagre inheritance and desperate for promotion, decides to force her into a marriage for his military gain. And he will stop at nothing to get his way.

Beth is coerced into a reconciliation with her noble cousins in order to marry well and escape her brutal brother. She is then thrown into the glittering social whirl of Georgian high society and struggles to conform. The effeminate but witty socialite Sir Anthony Peters offers to ease her passage into society and she is soon besieged by suitors eager to get their hands on her considerable dowry. Beth, however, wants love and passion for herself, and to break free from the artificial life she is growing to hate. She finds herself plunged into a world where nothing is as it seems and everyone hides behind a mask. Can she trust the people professing to care for her?

The first in the series about the fascinating lives of beautiful Beth Cunningham, her family and friends during the tempestuous days leading up to the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745, which attempted to overthrow the Hanoverian King George II and restore the Stuarts to the British throne.

Join the rebellion of one woman and her fight for survival in…

The Jacobite Chronicles.

ADD TO GOODREADS:…/show/25671063-mask-of-duplicity

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Meet the author:  JULIA BRANNAN

Julia Brannan
Julia has been a voracious reader since childhood, using books to escape the miseries of a turbulent adolescence. After leaving university with a degree in English Language and Literature, she spent her twenties trying to be a sensible and responsible person, even going so far as to work for the Civil Service. The book escape came in very useful there too.
And then she gave up trying to conform and resolved to spend the rest of her life living as she wanted to, not as others would like her to. She has since had a variety of jobs, including telesales, teaching and gilding and is currently a transcriber, copy editor and proofreader. In her spare time she is still a voracious reader, and enjoys keeping fit and travelling the world. Life hasn’t always been good, but it has rarely been boring. She lives in rural Wales with her cat Constantine, and her wonderful partner sensibly lives four miles away in the next village.
Now she has decided that rather than just escape into other people’s books, she would actually quite like to create some of her own, in the hopes that people will enjoy reading them as much as she does writing them.



MASK OF DUPLICITY by Julia Brannan is an exciting new Scottish Historical Romance set during the 1740’s. Book 1 in this new and fantastic series of “The Jacobite Chronicles” and what a beginning.

“The first in the series about the fascinating lives of beautiful Beth Cunningham, her family and friends during the tempestuous days leading up to the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745, which attempted to overthrow the Hanoverian King George II and restore the Stuarts to the British throne.”

Meet Beth Cunningham, her brother Richard, Sir Anthony Peters, and a wonderful, albeit,  treasonous cast of characters, where some have a mask of duplicity.

Fast paced, tale that is well written, with passion, action, fights, sensual tension, duplicity, treason, and finding a HEA for Beth. A must read for Historical Romance fans who enjoy action, adventure, and yes, treason. The Jacobite Rebellion pitted brother against brother, committed many treasonous acts all in the name of restoring the Stuarts to the British throne.

The cast of characters is long, but a necessity to help carry the story forward. The reader is easily caught up in the story, the lives of the characters and the depth of the story.

Ms. Brannan is a new author to me, but I look forward to reading more of her “Jacobite Chronicles”. While, “Mask of Duplicity” had a satisfying conclusion, I would say it is a continuing tale, as many questions are left unanswered. Not necessarily a cliffhanger, but a continuing storyline, I look forward to finding out Beth’s fiance’s true identity and issues this will cause between her and others.

Well researched. I would strongly recommend “Mask of Duplicity” to fans of Scottish Historical, The Jacobite Rebellion and uprising, Historical Romance fans, and fans of Scottish-British history. A fascinating story with a long cast of characters who will capture your interest and hold your attention. A true treasure! An enjoyable and satisfying read and one I would strongly recommend.

*Received for an honest review*

Rating: 4.5

Heat rating: Mild

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








Checkmate My Lord - FINAL-300


Tracey Devlyn_088HighCloseCropMBA&M: Good morning, Tracey, and welcome to My Book  Addiction and More. Now, tell our readers a little about yourself?

TRACEY DEVLYN: Thanks so much for having me on My Book Addiction and More. I look forward to chatting with everyone!

I write historical romantic thrillers and my debut novel, A Lady’s Revenge, released last year. There are two other novels in the Nexus romantic spy series—Checkmate, My Lord hit stores this month and A Lady’s Secret Weapon makes an appearance in October.

As for me, I grew up in a small town in southern Illinois, but have been living in the Chicago area for nearly two decades. I’m married to a wonderful loving and supportive husband and we adopted an annoying, but sweet-hearted, red Dobe two years ago.

MBA&M: What made you decide to write historical romance with a bit of danger?

TRACEY: I’ve been a big fan of historical romance since I picked up The Raven and The Rose by Virgina Henley. Somewhere along the way, I started wanting to mesh the rough, dangerous edge of Medievals with the light, humorous Regencies. After reading several romantic suspense/thrillers, I got the urge to add a dash of death and dismemberment. J

MBA&M: What do you feel the allure of historical romance is to readers today?

TRACEY: Likely pure escapism. The Regency era is similar enough to modern times that readers can identify with the period, but different enough for readers to yearn for a whirl around the ballroom in a slightly aloof, gorgeous, insanely wealthy earl’s arms.

MBA&M: What was the inspiration for “Checkmate, My Lord”?Checkmate My Lord - FINAL-300

TRACEY: Readers met Lord Somerton, Sebastian Danvers, in my debut novel, A Lady’s Revenge. I knew I wanted to move Sebastian’s story to the country and then the idea of his beautiful neighbor spying on him—England’s greatest spymaster—came to mind.

MBA&M:  What was your favorite scene to write?

TRACEY: One of my favorite scenes took place outside the churchyard, near a privy (outhouse). Readers will see Catherine’s motherly instincts kick in, Sebastian’s is in full spymaster mode, and one of the villain’s makes an appearance. It’s a suspenseful and oddly endearing scene.

MBA&M: Who was your favorite secondary character,and will they have a story of their own one day?

TRACEY: My favorite secondary character was seven-year-old Sophie Ashcroft. She’s a horse-mad, castle-building, full-of-life girl who has no concept of personal space. More than likely, she won’t have her own story, but she does make an appearance in A Lady’s Secret Weapon, where she commences torturing Ethan deBeau. You can catch a glimpse of her here. It’s her first love letter to her hero, Teddy.

MBA&M: What do you feel is the most important quality of an author?

TRACEY: Determination. It’s a quality that helped me get published, build professional relationship, and connect with readers. There are SO many more qualities that complement and bolster an author’s determination, though.

MBA&M: With the cyber world today so vast and you being a newer author, do you feel,it is easier for readers to connect to authors or harder than years ago? And, Do authors turn off their inner feelings to connect to so large an audience,with little privacy today?

TRACEY: Great questions. I think it’s TONS easier to connect with readers. By and large, writers are introverts. So, they might be a little shy in person. Social media provides introverts a means of connecting with readers that is comfortable. Plus, social media allows authors to touch readers in other countries. I’ve had Facebook conversations with a reader from Indonesia. Without the Internet, I would be connecting with a much smaller group of readers.

Privacy is a concern for everyone Internet—not just authors. Speaking from personal experience, I’m a fairly private person by nature, so much of my personal life remains behind closed doors. However, when it comes to my books/characters/writing career, or authors I’ve read and love, I’ll chat you up all day long!

MBA&M:  What three words would you chose to describe “Checkmate, My Lord”?

TRACEY: Romantic. Thrilling. Endearing.

Checkmate My Lord - FINAL-300MBA&M: Please tell our readers where to connect to you and where they may find “Checkmate, My Lord”?

TRACEY: Readers can find me lots of places!

Buy Links:

PaperbackAmazon | Barnes and Noble
| B-A-M | Booktopia | Google | IndieBound | Powell’s | Sourcebooks | The Book Depository

eBookAmazon | Apple | All Romance | Barnes and Noble | B-A-M | Sourcebooks


MBA&M: Thank you for spending time with us and our readers today. Do you have anything else you would like to add?

Thanks again, My Book Addiction!




What a fascinating and rewarding Q&A! Thanks again!

Tracey Devlyn_088HighCloseCropOnline:  |   Dangerous Darlings Street Team  |  Newsletter  |   |  |  Discover a New Love

In the Flesh Appearances:

Barbara Vey’s Reader Appreciation Luncheon

April 26-27, 2013

Book signing & Table Sponsor

Crowne Plaza Hotel – Milwaukee Airport

6401 South 13th Street,

Milwaukee, WI 53221

Romance Writers of America

July 17, 2013, 5:30-7:30 pm

Book signing – 400 authors

Atlanta Marriott Marquis

265 Peachtree Center Avenue,

Atlanta, Georgia 30303

Thank you for spending some time with us and our readers today. What a fascinating and rewarding Q&A!




Checkmate My Lord - FINAL-300

Romancing history one defiant woman at a time




A desperate mother falls in love with the spymaster she’s forced to betray.




Catherine Ashcroft leads a quiet life caring for her precocious seven-year-old daughter, until a visitor delivers a startling ultimatum. She will match wits with the enigmatic Earl of Somerton, and it’s not just her heart that’s in danger.




Spymaster Sebastian Danvers, Earl of Somerton, is famous for his cunning. Few can outwit him and even few dare challenge him–until now. After returning to his country estate, his no-nonsense neighbor turns her seductive wiles on him–but why would a respectable widow like Catherine risk scandal for a few passionate nights in his bed?



Available February 5, 2013

Sourcebooks Casablanca

ISBN-13: 978-1402258251


PaperbackAmazon | Barnes and NobleB-A-M | Booktopia | Google | IndieBound | Powell’s | Sourcebooks | The Book Depository


eBookAmazon | Apple | All Romance | Barnes and Noble | B-A-M | Sourcebooks



“Devlyn’s seamless writing will entice readers and keep them eager for the next installment.”  Publishers Weekly, STARRED review

“Devlyn delivers an emotional, powerful read.” ~ RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars

“Devlyn’s edgy and sexy series is gaining momentum, and historical-romantic suspense fans, particularly those who enjoy Brenda Joyce, will delight in this.” ~ Booklist

“Love the characters, lots of mystery, murderers, spies and lots of romance!!!!!!!! CHECKMATE MY LORD is an edge of your seat exciting read!” Fresh Fiction




Tracey Devlyn_088HighCloseCropSHORT BIO:


Tracey Devlyn writes historical romantic thrillers (translation: a slightly more grievous journey Toward the heroine’s happy ending). She’s a co-founder of Romance University, a group blog dedicated to readers and writers of romance, and Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville, Chicagoland’s exciting new reading salon devoted to romantic fiction.


An Illinois native, Tracey spends her evenings harassing her once-in-a-lifetime husband and her weekends torturing her characters. For more information on Tracey, including her Internet haunts, contest updates, and details on her upcoming novels, please visit her website at:
  |   Dangerous Darlings Street Team  |  Newsletter  |   |  |  Discover a New Love  (Street Team)


Checkmate My Lord - FINAL-300GIVEAWAY ALERT!

(Sponsored by the publisher)

*Mailed directly to the winners from the publisher*

Thanks to Sourcebooks, we are offering 1 lucky commenter a print copy of “Checkmate,My Lord”. Sorry, open to U.S. residents only. No P.O. Boxes,please. Giveaway will run from today February 26 until March 6,2013.

*Please remember to leave a valid email address*



Don’t forget to check out “Our Thoughts” on this title. And if you get the chance,please leave a comment.


Thanks everyone for visiting with us and our guest today!








About Me(from the author’s website)

Born in England, I grew up amongst artists and authors and started writing at a young age. I published numerous short stories and articles, and worked as an editor, book critic and reader for publishers and television companies. My first marriage produced my three lovely daughters but ended with the death of my husband.
Many adventures later, I met an Italian, fell in love, and spent 16 glorious years with him exploring Europe and sailing the Mediterranean. When he died I needed a place of solace, came to live in rural Australia, and began writing full length novels for the first time. My solace has now become my passion.
With a delight in medieval history dating back to my youth, I now began to research the wicked King Richard III, but quickly discovered the fascination of looking past Tudor propaganda to discover the real man. I now write principally on this era, setting my fiction in 15th century England.
I also write fantasy, though this tends to be dark and adult, not fitting the mould of those fantasy genres popular today. No elves, fairies, vampires or evil wizards attempting to overthrow the empire.

Of course writing tends to be a solitary business, so it will be sheer pleasure to gain contact with other book lovers and everyone else online.



Anyone who claims to have a book addiction is a friend of mine, so it is with great pleasure that I introduce myself on April’s fascinating blog.

I‘ve been writing since I was very young. I probably started as soon as I could hold a pencil. In my teens and twenties I wrote and published mainly short stories and articles in magazines and newspapers in England, and I also worked for publishers as an editor and reader for both books and TV scripts. But then my career lapsed when I got married and had three children including identical twins – rather a handful and kept me permanently exhausted. Later I expanded my horizons and lived on a boat sailing the Mediterranean for many years. It was only after my partner died that I came to live in Australia to try and start a new life. Now for the first time I write full length novels, inspired by the rural peace, bird song and beautiful scenery.


Publishing each new book is – as all authors know – a matter of the greatest excitement, and the greatest worry. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned bestselling writer, or a tentative new self-published author, the joy and the pain are exactly the same for both. So it is with pleasure and pride – but also with those lingering nerves – that I introduce myself and my new historical novel SUMERFORD’S AUTUMN.  

It is almost ten years now that I have been researching the English medieval period and in particular the latter half of the 15th century. This does not make me an expert by any means, but the researches have become a passion and I feel alive walking the dark alleys, cobbled streets and crowded markets of those long gone landscapes. I can smell the rancid waters of the polluted rivers, I can feel the bustle of the crowds around me, I can enter their candle lit deep beamed houses, dine with them and join their gossip. I know the troubled politics of their times and I try to understand the practises and standards. They enter my dreams. It is a period I adore and therefore it is largely within those shadowed memories that I set my novels.

I have always loved history, but I actually chose to begin my specific research into the 15th century because I wanted a colourful setting for the book I planned writing. Having once been fascinated by Shakespeare’s most dastardly villain, I decided Richard III and his era would make a rich background to my intended crime adventure. However it was only once I began my researches that I realised the villainous king was a nonsensical exaggeration. The more I delved, the more I understood. Indeed, even a simple interest in human nature was sufficient to bring greater insight. There was no logical sense to the rather absurd picture some historians and authors try to paint of the wicked Richard. He just didn’t ring true. Original documentation is scarce but sufficient survives to tell a far more intriguing and believable story. So over the intervening years I have discovered a very different Richard – a real man of faults and virtues who would logically follow certain courses of action – and probably not others.


My new novel SUMERFORD’S AUTUMN (available now on Amazon Kindle) leads directly from these researches, for it is set in the early years of the Tudor reign which followed after Richard III’s death in battle at Bosworth (1485). My book is therefore concerned with the turmoil of the changing politics, the new king’s distrust of all those who supported the previous regime, and in particular the appearance of a young man who claimed to be one of the so-called ‘Princes in the Tower’ (their death was never proved nor ever conclusive) – and who the king, Henry Tudor, called ‘Perkin Warbeck’. I follow his eventual fate, and the fate of those who believed in him and tried to help him claim the throne.

But my novel is certainly no history lesson.  The plot concerns the family of Sumerford, four sons of the earl and his countess who live in a great draughty castle in Somerset. It is the various diverse adventures of these four brothers which comprise my story, and in particular those of the youngest son who is the book’s hero. As well as politics, there is considerable mystery and intrigue with all the danger of treason and treachery, piracy, conspiracy, torture and execution – and, of course, plenty of romance! I love to sketch the details of medieval life, the amazing differences of everyday existence from cottage to palace, and create believable characters of that era.

One of my own more interesting peculiarities is my dream life – my dreams are incredibly vivid and complicated – and I always remember them. So would anyone care to enter my dream world, and walk hand in hand with me?    ————–


Thank you Barbara for taking the time out of your busy day to spend with us and our readers. What a wonderful dream!




SUMERFORD’S AUTUMN(from the author)

          Chapter one

The boy died at once, one quick smash to the skull, another to the chest. His bones caved in, his life went out. An hour after the boy was killed, they found the bramble thorns; one spike still wedged up hard into the horse’s hoof. Another had been kicked free and was found later in the straw.

Ned and the under groom were sweeping up bloody shards of bone as the late September warmth oozed like melted butter over the hills beyond the castle turrets, steaming across the stable door and amongst the soap bubbles where Ned had scoured. But an old man’s cataracts blur corners and the dew still bled where his mop had missed.

Just ten days out from the skirmish at Exeter with Turvey only back in his stable since last night, orders had been relayed for the old charger to be treated with reverence, scrubbed down, well fed, watered and rested. Instead the horse had taken to his huge hind legs, bared tooth and gums, thundered like Prince Harry in a tantrum, and kicked the new stable boy into splinters.

“Turvey’s a war horse,” the earl objected afterwards. “The damned animal’s trained to kick and gouge. Am I expected to ride a damned palfrey into battle? I assume the groom was an inexperienced fool.”

“The new apprentice. Little more than a child.”

“He will therefore not be missed. Go and make sure Turvey’s not fretting.”

The horse, mountainous mottled grey, rolled huge eyes and shivered like a baby. The chief groom held the bridle hard to the bit and wedged his heels against what was left of the stable door, holding firm. Little scarlet beads sprigged the straw. The boy’s corpse was dragged away. It took four strong men to control a rearing destrier, and the apprentice should never have stood so close. A kick from both front legs had crushed the boy’s skull like a tin cup. Flecks of brain pooled in the sunshine.

They had reported first to Lady Sumerford, the yellowing bruise across her left temple and cheekbone another reminder of his lordship’s return, the horse normally less irascible than the master. Her ladyship said, “Hamnet, get the remains cleaned up and take the body back to its parents. I presume it had parents? Tell them the Sumerford estate will pay for the coffin and the priest. And you’d better take a purse with you to keep them quiet. Make it two marks. No – give them a sovereign. A little generosity is better than encouraging back stairs gossip.”

“Indeed, my lady. But I have been informed – his lordship’s personal groom is convinced, my lady – that the horse was purposefully enraged.” Hamnet’s voice faded; a murmur as unconvincing as the story. “Even tortured. Thorns inserted into the hooves, my lady.”

The lady laughed. “What nonsense. Who could get close enough? Who would want to get close enough? They are lying, to cover their own ineptitude.” She clicked her fingers. “Hamnet, do we employ anyone else from the same family?”

The Steward didn’t think so, but a recent attack of the gout hindered memory.

“Hamnet,” barked the countess, “don’t gawp. Go and find out.”





SUMERFORD’S AUTUMN is available for download on Amazon Kindle:-



*Sponsored by the author*

We are offering 1 lucky commenter an e-book copy**Amazon gifted copy only* of “Sumerford’s Autumn” by Barbara Gaskell Denvil.

**You must answer the following question-Would anyone care to enter my (Barbara’s) dream world, and walk hand in hand with me?If so what would that dream be??** 

Giveaway will run from today May 21 until May 28,2012.

*Remember to leave a valid email address*



We hope you have enjoyed our vistor today as much as we have!!!



Check out our “Thoughts” on “Sumerford’s Autumn” by Barbara Gaskell Denvil…..


Thank you for spending time with us and our guest today!!