<i>Shacking Up</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Shacking Up: Exclusive Excerpt Helena Hunting "Oh God. I’d like to experience his not polite all over this condo." <i>The Untamed Vampire</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Untamed Vampire: Exclusive Excerpt Kate Baxter "The wild wolf inside him howls for her..." <i>Falling for the Billionaire Wolf and His Baby</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Falling for the Billionaire Wolf and His Baby: Exclusive Excerpt Sasha Summers "Black skirt that hugged an amazing ass and killer legs." <i>Once Bitten</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Once Bitten: Exclusive Excerpt Heather McCorkle "The gentle nips at my neck grew harder."
From The Blog
April 25, 2017
Kristan Higgins & Lexi Blake E-Deals!
Heather Waters
April 25, 2017
The Greatest Love Songs Don't Exactly End Happily
Laura Lee Guhrke
April 21, 2017
Mariana Zapata and the Art of the Slow Burn
Jen Wattley
April 20, 2017
Cover Thursday: Exclusive Reveal from Donna Grant
Team H & H
April 20, 2017
The Real Life of a Dominatrix in Jenny Nordbak’s The Scarlett Letters
Nicola R. White
Showing posts by: Maggie Boyd click to see Maggie Boyd's profile
Thu
Apr 6 2017 2:00pm

10 Fantasy Romance Novels You’ll Want to Read This Spring

Inclusiveness is the name of the game in this column’s fantasy novels. As Michael Scott once said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” The last few months have seen the publication of some unique fantasy romances which embrace this ideal; they encompass a wide range of people, places and dreams.

Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys

In Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys  (Amazon | B&N | Kobo) we learn that Earth has a rich species history:

This is the litany of the people of Earth. Before the first, there was blackness, and there was fire. The Earth cooled and life arose, struggling against the unremembering emptiness. First were the five-winged eldermost of Earth, faces of the Yith . . . sixth are humans, the wildest of races, who share the world in three parts. The people of the rock, the K’n-yan, build first and most beautifully, but grow cruel and frightened and become the Mad Ones Under the Earth. The people of the air spread far and breed freely, and build the foundation for those who will supplant them. The people of the water are born in shadow on land, but what they build beneath the wave will live in glory till the dying sun burns away their last shelter.

Aphra Marsh is part of  “the people of the water.”  Her folk have been hunted and all but obliterated by the people of the air but she has found friends and family in San Francisco who overlook her peculiarity and support her. Most especially Charlie Dav, book store owner and a student of the occult. Together Charlie and Aphra are attempting to rework the ancient magics of her people. But what will they find along the way?

Trouble! An unusual story with love of family and friends woven throughout it this book examines what it means to be human in a world where people are persecuted for being the least bit different. From the Japanese internment camps of WWII to the hunt for alien others in the following years, this story is an emotional look at how it feels to be a stranger in your own land.

[Read more...]

Thu
Mar 2 2017 4:00pm

An Uncommon Courtship’s Ode to Love and Breakfast

An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter

They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and that is certainly true for the hero of Kristi Ann Hunter’s latest Regency inspirational romance novel An Uncommon Courtship. One meal in particular holds the key to his affection.

Lord Trent Hawthorn was convinced that breakfast was one of God’s greatest gifts to humanity. What better way to celebrate the Lord’s new mercies and fresh beginnings than rejoicing in the day’s new opportunities by eating a crispy rasher of bacon?

Amiable, affable Trent (younger brother to the Duke of Riverton) finds his life turned upside down by what he discovers in the ruins on his brother’s property. Expecting trouble he encounters instead a young lady of quality, Lady Adelaide Bell, hunting for mushrooms. Thanks to a faulty floor (which breaks and plunges them into an inescapable basement) and an isolated location, the two find themselves spending a very uncomfortable night in the abandoned building with nothing but mushrooms to eat. While the proprieties had been observed and the two hardly interacted, Trent knows none of that matters. They were discovered and rescued and the whole village knows of their escapade.  Realizing that Adelaide’s reputation is on the brink of ruin, Trent offers marriage, it is gratefully accepted and shortly thereafter they find themselves wed. It is an alliance of complete strangers.

[Read more...]

Wed
Jan 11 2017 4:00pm

11 Memorable Moments from Unforgettable Fantasy This Winter

Albert Einstein tells us that “Imagination is everything.” The fantasy novels of winter 2016/2017 contain heart, love, and plenty of imagination.

Contemporary Fantasy:

Indelible by Adelia Saunders

Indelible by Adelia Saunders

Indelible by Adelia Saunders is the story of Magdalena, and Richard and Neil and how their fates intertwine. Magdalena sees people’s lives literally written on their skin. As a child, the sentences looked like funny markings but she can still remember when she first learned to read and blurted a horrible truth to her teacher. She was delighted when her vision blurred at a young age and uses her glasses only when absolutely necessary. Her battered shins may hate her but her soul, at least, finds a certain peace in this solution. When Richard sends a Christmas present to her mom, he uses his son Neil as a carrier. Magdalena is happy to pick up the package but less delighted when she is forced to put on her glasses and sees her own name clearly on his skin. What can that mean?

An interesting take on how magical gifts can come with high prices, Indelible offers a slow burn romance within a literary fantasy/paranormal novel.

Memorable moment: When Neil and Magdalena meet:

Suddenly, she leaned in, looking right at him with strange intensity. Either he had something on his face or she was going to kiss him. Neil thought he might pass out. But instead she smiled, like something there had pleased her.

[Read more...]

Tue
Jan 3 2017 10:30am

Dancing, Monsters, and a Slow Burn Unfold in Lauren D.M. Smith’s Enveloping Shadows

Enveloping Shadows by Lauren D.M. Smith

Love is like dancing. Often, all it takes is the right partner to turn a moment from mundane or difficult into magical. That’s certainly true for the characters of Enveloping Shadows by Lauren D. M. Smith. For Terrwyn, dancing with a blade is a joy but swirling about with a man to music in a crowded room is akin to facing an enemy without a sword. As bodyguard to the Princess she is honor bound to obey her orders though and one of those orders is to have a little fun at that evening’s ball. Terrwyn stoically hangs out in a corner near the windows, relieved to be able to get a little fresh air while keeping a close eye on the guests. It’s not hard to be alone, she’s used to it.

Most men in court avoided her, if they didn’t treat her like the other knights.

There is an especially good reason for them to keep their distance at a festivity.

[Read more...]

Wed
Nov 9 2016 4:00pm

12 Fantasy Romances to Take You Away

Lloyd Alexander once said that “Fantasy is hardly an escape from reality. It's a way of understanding it.” This autumn’s crop of fantasy novels give both a bit of escape and insight while mixing them with magic, adventure and of course, romance.

Contemporary Fantasy:

The Ferryman Institute by Colin Gigl

The Ferryman Institute by Colin Gigl has been hailed as a “stunning, fantastical debut novel.” In Greek mythology, the souls of the dead are rowed across the rivers Styx and Acheron, bodies of water that divide the world of the living from that of the beyond, by the ferryman Charon (aka Kharon). In this exciting novel, reminiscent of the comic books Rest in Peace Department by Peter M. Lenkov, Charlie Dawson is a ferryman. He helps the living cross to whatever is awaiting them on the other side. He’s the best there is but he has been at this a long, long time and is frankly burned out. Unfortunately, the afterlife doesn’t come with more career opportunities! Then Charlie keeps Alice Spiegel from killing herself and realizes that the afterlife can come complete with romance:

She interrupted him with a kiss. It wasn’t even remotely close to a good one: it was too short, she didn’t meet his mouth flush on, his eyes were still open, and his lips were still moving as he tried to speak. Frankly, she didn’t care.

There was something special about the way Charlie spoke, something Alice had trouble pinning down. Maybe it wasn’t one thing, necessarily, but some combination that when blended together exceeded the sum of its parts. There existed a spellbinding cadence in his words – yes, spellbinding, that was the right word, because what was it if not magic?- and understated rhythm that undressed the world, exposed it as nothing more than an illusion. He was the magician in reverse, the man who demonstrated with a flourish that his act was real – it was her pain and suffering, her reality that was the cheap trick she’d failed to see through.

His voice enveloped her in a tapestry of woven words while his eyes orchestrated the ebb and flow of his inflection, a conductor flicking the baton in seemingly careless strokes, yet driving a masterful symphony with them. Though doubt and fear and sadness all lingered in the back alleys of her psyche, his voice bore her back in time, back to when she was child capable of believing in impossible things. And in the dying moments of that first kiss, Alice believed in them anew.

[Read more...]

Tue
Oct 11 2016 9:30am

James Rollins Wrote... Romance Novels?! (And He Didn’t Even Know It)

Subterranean by James Rollins

James Rollins would probably be surprised to hear this but for much of his early career he wrote romance novels. Sure, the books were filled with action and adventure, mysterious discoveries and an exploration of metaphysical possibilities. At the heart of each of them, however, lay an amazing, not to be missed, love story.

Take for example his very first novel, Subterranean. On the surface, this is a story of an astonishing archeological find deep below the ice of Antarctica.  Benjamin Brust, ex-military and current spelunker extraordinaire has been called in to be part of a team exploring the breathtaking, inexplicable underground caverns found below Mount Erebus. When Ben first meets the dig supervisor he realizes that this adventure may have more going for it than just fascinating caves and rocks:

From behind him, he heard a woman’s voice. “Whiskey. Neat please.”

He turned to see who had similar taste in beverages. Whiskey drinking women were as scarce as hen’s teeth. He wasn’t disappointed.

She toyed with the drink set before her, long fingers, short nails, polished. No rings, no wedding band – good. She stood as tall as him, surprising for a woman. Her skin was bronzed, a coppery rich hue that spoke of days under the sun. But what most caught the breath in his throat was her black hair, trailing in lazy curls to her waist.

[Read more...]

Wed
Aug 10 2016 9:30am

Inspire Your Summer Reading with Summer Inspirationals

No Other Will Do by Karen Witimeyer

Matshona Dhliwayo said, “Love is sweet even when what you go through is bitter.” That’s a statement custom made for this summer’s bumper crop of sensational inspirational romances. There might be some trials and tribulations but the love stories are sweet as summer strawberries. No column could do all of them justice but here are a few reads you simply can’t miss:

No Other Will Do by Karen Witemeyer is a childhood-friends-to-lovers romance. Malachi Shaw was a boy with no options; Emma Chandler was a girl with a big heart. When Emma found Malachi freezing and half-starved in the family barn, she convinced her aunts to take him in.  Now Malachi is a grown man with a successful demolition job and Emma has founded a successful woman’s colony in Harper's Station, Texas. The two haven’t seen each other in years but when someone begins to systematically threaten and endanger the women in her care Emma knows there is only one man to call for protection.

When Malachi had been forced to leave the Chandler women to make his own way in the world, he hadn’t planned on returning. His feelings for Emma are powerful ones and unlikely to be returned by such a successful, intelligent and independent young lady. But when she’s in trouble he doesn’t hesitate to head back.

[Read more...]

Sun
Jul 31 2016 1:00pm

Experience Amish History Through Olivia Newport’s Amish Turns of Time Series

Wonderful Lonesome by Olivia Newport

Inpirational romances make up roughly twenty percent of the romance market and of that twenty percent a good thirty percent of the books published and sold are Amish romances. But while many of these books celebrate the close family ties, delicious treats and homespun culture of these fascinating people, few look at the history that formed them into the community they are today. Amish Turns of Time, a series of four books, bridges that gap by providing deep insight into key moments of history that formed the current day Amish and Mennonite churches.

The Amish Head West

The first novel, showcases the settlement aspect of the Amish past. Like many in the early 20th Century, the Amish were eager to expand into the west. Their lifestyle includes both large families and subsistence farming, which means families are often looking for cheap land in order for their growing brood to have acreage of their own. Wonderful Lonesome examines the lives of several people who moved to Colorado in the early 1910s in order to obtain what they were promised was good, inexpensive farmland.  Young Abbie Weaver, the heroine of our story, is excited that her family answered the call to help settle. However, as the years have dragged on and their small community has been without a minister, she sees the divides that have cropped up among the people.  Unfortunately, strife seems to be the only thing flourishing in this drought stricken territory.

The situation is especially difficult for Abbie because Willem Peters, one of the settlers, has been paying her court. Without worship services or singings that courtship has been unfamiliar to both, consisting mostly of buggy rides to and from town.  They know people have hopes of them becoming a real couple:

[Read more...]

Wed
Jul 27 2016 4:30pm

The (Many?) Lovers of Mr. Spock—It’s Not the Size of Your Starship That Counts

 

Spock & Uhura, Star Trek, 2009

Mr. Spock was my first crush. As a six year old watching a sci-fi program for probably the first time in her life, I totally fell in love with the enigmatic alien. That crush has stuck through the years and I still harbor a special place in my heart for this wonderful, cool, logical, intelligent character. I want the best for him. I want love for him.  I’m not alone. Fandom has long shipped Spock with the women who walk in and out of his life and in the 2009 J.J. Abrams reboot of the series many finally got their wish when Abram’s alternate reality universe had Spock and Uhura as lovers.

Naturally, there are nay-sayers who prefer to see this beloved character as a romantic loner, a man whose only close relationships are the platonic ones he has with Captain Kirk and Doctor McCoy. However, that idea of a Lone Ranger style Spock is in many ways a myth. A close look at the original Trek TV series shows that he did, in fact, have several romantic (or almost romantic) relationships over the course of that original five year mission. Here are just a few of the loves (and near loves) of First Officer Spock:

[Spock needs love, too...]

Tue
Jul 19 2016 4:15pm

Magic Hinges to a Magical World: Fantasy Romances You Should Be Reading

Withering Rose by Kaitlyn Davis

“The Bookshop has a thousand books,
All colors, hues, and tinges,
And every cover is a door
That turns on magic hinges.”

― Nancy Byrd Turner

Magic hinges to a magical world, that’s what a good fantasy romance novel provides. And fortunately for those of us who love them, fantasy romances are “in” right now. All of us have probably indulged in the more popular series like Patricia Brigg’s Mercy Thompson, Karen Marie Moning’s Fever novels and Ilona Andrew’s Kate Daniels books but what do you do when you’ve read all the big names and are still anxious for more?

Here are a few fantastic fantasy romances that might not have made it on to your radar yet:

[Get swept up in the magic!]

Wed
Jun 29 2016 5:00pm

Swedish Import: Simona Ahrnstedt’s All In

All In by Simona Ahrnstedt

Swedish author Simona Ahrnstedt makes something old new again in her contemporary romance All In. Set in the cutthroat world of Sweden's financial elite, this is a tale where the stakes are high and the greatest commodities are love and loyalty.

As a precocious tween I was a big reader of the epic romances of the Nineteen-eighties. Stolen from the bookshelves of my mother’s friends, these novels were stories with such scope and magnificence it took 500 sweeping pages to reach our HEA. They often involved rich, glamorous people leading dazzling, decadent lives. All In is just such a tale.

David Hammar is a self-made man. A corporate raider who has climbed to the very top of his profession, he is set to make the biggest hostile take-over of his life – Investum. A company owned by an old, aristocratic family whose home is a castle, this firm is ripe for the picking and David is determined to be the man to do it. However, one piece is missing from his perfect plan. He needs one member of the family to turn traitor. To that end, he arranges a meeting with Natalia De la Grip.

[High stakes romance...]

Mon
Jun 13 2016 4:30pm

“I Think I Need You, Too”: Pat and Tiffany’s Unconventional Love Story in Matthew Quick’s The Silver Linings Playbook

Sometimes great love stories don’t come packaged as romances. While the traditional route to the epic romantic novel is a female author spinning a tale of a hero and heroine charting the course to a happily ever after, sometimes a man will write a tale that tugs perfectly on the heartstrings. Such is the case of The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick. A book about lost souls and second chances, Mr. Quick takes hero Pat Peoples and heroine Tiffany on a bumpy, rocky, perilous trip to a happy right now ending that will leave the reader breathless, not from its’ perfection but its’ poignancy.

Both Pat and Tiffany have loved and lost before. Each of them had believed that the stars had aligned, the gods had been good and that their lives were on the course they were meant to be on. When tragedy strikes, their reactions are deep and scarring, destroying all they had built before the world spun on its axis and took everything they had ever dreamed of away from them. Damaged is a good day for them; decimated and destroyed is their average.

[But even in darkness there's a silver lining]

Wed
Jun 8 2016 9:30am

This Won’t Be the Best Day of Your Life: When Weddings Go Wrong in Romance Novels

Only Beloved by Mary Balogh

In the brilliant and witty How To Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran, the author assures us that wedding days are not the happiest days of our lives. “Weddings,” she tells us, “do women no good at all. They’re a viper’s pit of waste and despair.” While most romance novels celebrate perfect days, several recent books seem to highlight just what Ms. Moran is saying. These fictional brides might indeed wind up with Mr. Wonderful but getting through their special day is nowhere near as fun and easy as Brides magazine would have you think.

Ms. Dora Debbins from Only Beloved by Mary Balogh never expected to marry. A music teacher in a country village she is happy with the life she has built for herself. Then George Crabbe, the Duke of Stanbrook surprises her with a proposal. Dora is delighted to accept and soon finds herself in London, planning a society wedding and celebrating a deliciously warm and friendly relationship with George. Her wedding day dawns bright and clear and seems likely to be a wonderful experience. And then:

A voice broke the silence from far back in the church before the Bishop could resume –a male voice, distinct and loud and slightly trembling with emotion. It was a familiar voice, though George had not heard it for a number of years.

“I can show just cause.”

And somehow it seemed to George that he had been expecting this, that it was inevitable. There was a collective gasp of shock from the pews and a renewed rustle of silks and satins as the members of the congregation, almost as one body, swung about in their seats to see who had spoken. George turned too.

[Duh duh DUH]

Sat
Jun 4 2016 10:30am

Missing Downton Abbey? Try Doctor Thorne

Julian Fellowes’ Downton Abbey was an important part of my television life for the last six years. Always eager to know what was going to happen, I would read Naz’s recaps here at HeroesandHeartbreakers as the shows aired in England. This meant I knew what was going to occur long before the shows aired in America but I didn’t care. Downton is enriched by multiple viewings. On occasion a few of the important details of an episode are lost in the large story line. When you know that story line and focus on the background, a whole new level of magic shines through.  

Amazon Prime is now offering Fellowes fans a new experience in the pride and pomposity of the British upper classes.  Adapted for the small screen by Mr. Fellowes and directed by Niall MacCormick, Doctor Thorne, an 1858 novel by Anthony Trollope, is a Victorian era story which will feel familiar to any romance reader. Similar in style and tone to a Jane Austen novel, Doctor Thorne examines the role of money in marriage and whether or not love should be a part of that equation. This is a fabulous, not to be missed production, with all the beautiful settings, period charm, and fabulous costuming that Mr. Fellowes is known for.

[Pretty women in pretty dresses...]

Thu
May 19 2016 9:30am

First Look: Jeffe Kennedy’s The Pages of the Mind (May 31, 2016)

The Pages of the Mind by Jeffe Kennedy

Jeffe Kennedy
The Pages of the Mind (The Unchartered Realms #1)
Kensington / May 31, 2016 / $9.95 print, $7.99 digital

Jeffe Kennedy stunned me with her powerful tale of a magical people in her novel, Mark of the Tala. A story of promised mates and hidden sorcery, it is one of my favorite fantasy romances of all time. She returns now to that world with the first book in a new series, The Pages of the Mind, which introduces us to a beautiful tropical island, fated mates, and dragons.

Readers will remember quiet but strong castle librarian Dafne Mailloux from the author’s The Twelve Kingdom Series. When the story opens she is fretting over a prophecy regarding four armed men who are to appear before the newly crowned queen of the Twelve Kingdoms. They are harbingers of change but whether for good or bad the prophet didn’t know.

[We're guessing it's going to be easy to figure out, either...]

Mon
May 2 2016 11:15am

Here Comes the Baby Carriage: Mothers to Look Up to in Inspirational Romance

Anchor in the Storm by Sarah Sundin

We are doubtless all familiar with the playground chant that describes the road to maternity—first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes you with the baby carriage. While modern mothers may choose to forgo the second part of this childhood rhyme, most roads to motherhood do still start with the initial step: first comes love.

Reminding us of just how wonderfully fun and exciting that first step to parenthood is are some recent releases from Inspirational romance authors, just in time to celebrate Mom on her special day.

First Comes Love

Two people burned in the past find that love can be an Anchor in the Storm by Sarah Sundin’s latest novel. Lillian Avery is a woman in a man’s world. One of the few female pharmacists to graduate from her class she knows she only got a job because Pearl Harbor meant the men are all enlisting for the War. She heads to Boston determined to prove that the she may have gotten the position because the boss was desperate but she’ll keep it due to merit.

Ensign Archer Vandenberg went against his family’s wishes when he joined the Naval Academy and set out to sea. A rich man, he wants nothing to do with the trappings of wealth and is bitter that women seem more interested in his pocketbook than his character. Then he meets Lillian and begins to hope that not all women are gold diggers.

This woman wasn’t like the society girls angling for the best husband or the shopgirls digging for gold.

Not Lillian Avery. She’d gone to college to learn, not to snag a man. She had a career and plans and dreams and didn’t need Arch Vandenberg or his wealth. And his good looks and charm didn’t seem to affect her.

If he could win the heart of a woman like her, it wouldn’t be due to his name or looks or money, but due to who he was inside.

[Isn't that what we all want?...]

Sun
Apr 3 2016 10:00am

First Look: Simone St. James’s Lost Among the Living (April 5, 2016)

Lost Among the Living by Simone St. James

Simone St. James
Lost Among the Living 
NAL (Penguin Group) / April 5, 2016 / $15.00 print, $9.99 digital

Since 2012 Simone St. James has been the gold standard for gothic romance. Her novels—full of ghosts, ghouls and romance—always provide a sensual yet chilling read. With Lost Among the Living she cements her position as one of the top writers in this market.

There are several factors which make up a good gothic: a haunted house, a ghost with something to say, an independent, isolated heroine, and family secrets. Lost Among the Living takes that formula and makes it fresh and exciting by adding an unexpected twist.

Like many other women, Jo Manders lost her husband in the Great War. Unlike many of them, she has no benefits to make getting along without him any easier because Alex has never officially been declared dead, just missing. To make ends meet she has been forced to accept a job from his Aunt Dottie, who treats her with scorn, condescension and backhanded affection in equal measures. Jo had feared the job would last only the length of that esteemed lady’s trip through the continent so it is with a mixture of surprise, joy and trepidation that she receives the invitation to continue on as companion in Dottie’s home, Wych Elm House.

[Gothic romance golden award goes to ...]

Fri
Mar 25 2016 9:30am

1001 Nights with Scheherazade-Inspired Reads!

Alberto Vargas, Scheherazade (1921)

The song “Arabian Nights” from Disney’s Aladdin tells us “Arabian Nights, like Arabian days, are hotter than hot.” One of the hottest tales to come out of the desert is the story of Scheherazade, the storyteller who saved her own life by weaving tales of such enchantment that for three years the king spent just one more night with her so he could hear one more story. When she ran out of tales, she found she no longer needed them. The king who killed each wife at dawn after their wedding night had fallen in love with his enthralling word smith.

Of course the modern woman would have a lot of trouble finding this tale romantic. The “hero” of the piece is a mass murderer who holds his heroine’s life hostage to his whims. Fortunately, that is no stumbling block to a clever author! They look at the whole of the love story and see something which is worth cherishing: At the heart of the tale is a clever heroine who volunteered for a dangerous job, because she wanted to help her people and save her hero from himself. All of which is definitely the stuff of a romance novel plot.  Several books dealing with Scheherazade have been released recently. Here are some of the best:

[Arabian Nights with these beauties ...]

Thu
Mar 17 2016 9:30am

First Look: Sandra Byrd’s Bride of a Distant Isle (March 22, 2016

Bride of a Distant Isle by Sandra Byrd

Sandra Byrd
Bride of a Distant Isle
Howard Books/March 22, 2016/$14.99 print, $10.99 digital

Many dream of a handsome prince who will come to their rescue, a fantasy which is the impetus for Sandra Byrd’s Bride of a Distant Isle.

Born on the wrong side of the blanket, Annabel Ashton has spent her whole life being above reproach. Her mother’s family has grudgingly supplied a stipend for her that supplements what she earns as a teacher at the Rogers School for Young Ladies in Winchester but it has been ages since her cousin invited her to the family home, Highcliffe Hall at Milford-on-Sea. When she does visit it is for a sad occasion indeed; it seems her cousin is in deep debt and the house must be sold.

She quickly discovers, however, that this is not her cousin’s only plan to alleviate his financial problems. His good friend Mr. Morgan is at the house party as well and seems to be confident that he will be spending a great deal of time with Annabel.

He closed the costly gilt-edged book from which he’d read and handed it toward me. “A gift. You can read it as we travel to London.”

“Thank you.” I twisted the cameo ring on my first finger, as I often did when discomfited. “You will accompany us?”

He nodded. “Perhaps it will be better put to say that you’ll finally be coming with me.”

[Court me, Court me! ...]

Tue
Mar 1 2016 10:30am

First Look: Siri Mitchell’s Flirtation Walk (March 1, 2016)

Flirtation Walk by Siri Mitchell

Siri Mitchell
Flirtation Walk
Bethany House/ March 1, 2016 / $14.99 print &  digital

Growing up with a reprobate has left Lucinda Pennyworth looking out for a hero in Siri Mitchell’s Flirtation Walk. Her dad had worked every con there was, always promising her big riches and a new life after one last swindle. When she receives a letter while at finishing school advising of his death she is both frightened and relieved: Frightened because she has no money, relieved because she can do what she has always wanted to do and marry a respectable man and settle down into a mundane daily existence. Having no other recourse she heads to Buttermilk Falls, home of her mother’s people. She’s never met them but she’s hoping they will have mercy and take her in anyway.

She arrives just in time for Sunday lunch. And since her uncle teaches at West Point, she arrives just in time to meet two of the senior cadets.

[She needs him and he needs her ...]