Keep Calm and Read This: The Demon Duke by Margaret Locke

Keep Calm and Read This: The Demon Duke by Margaret Locke

This week I extend a warm welcome to romance author Margaret Locke, who’s celebrating the release of The Demon Duke. This is the first in her new series – a series with the best title ever – Put Up Your Dukes. Read on to find out more, and for a chance to win an autographed copy of her new book!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A man tormented by a painful secret meets the bookish miss who just might save him from himself…

Behind every good man is a great secret.

Banished to Yorkshire as a boy for faults his father failed to beat out of him, Damon Blackbourne has no use for English society and had vowed never to return to his family’s estate at Thorne Hill, much less London. However, when his father and brother die in a freak carriage accident, it falls on Damon to take up the mantle of the Malford dukedom, and to introduce his sisters to London Society-his worst nightmare come to life.

He never planned on Lady Grace Mattersley. The beautiful debutante stirs him body and soul with her deep chocolate eyes and hesitant smiles. Until she stumbles across his dark secret.

Bookish Grace much prefers solitude and reading to social just-about-anything. Her family may be pressuring her to take on the London Season to find herself a husband, but she has other ideas. Such as writing a novel of her own. But she has no idea how to deal with the Duke of Malford.

Will she betray him to the world? Or will she be his saving Grace?

Chapter 1

 

Blackwood Abbey, Yorkshire, England
Late October, 1813

Please come home. Your father and brother are dead. Carriage accident. You are Duke now. We need you. Come quickly, Damon.
– Mama

Damon Blackbourne, youngest son of Silas Blackbourne, Duke of Malford, stared at the note without seeing it. He didn’t need to; he’d read it a hundred times already. He balled up the paper and threw it to the floor.

“Home?” he snarled out loud, although the room, as usual, was empty. “Home, Mama?”

He had no home. None other than Blackwood Abbey, at least—the cavernous abode to which he’d been banished seventeen years ago. Seventeen years. More than half of his lifetime—nearly two-thirds, seeing as he was now twenty-seven.

He paced the room, a library brimming with books, a place he’d long claimed as his own. Not that he’d had competition, given his only company was a few servants.

And Hobbes. Thank God for Hobbes.

A fire crackled merrily in the fireplace, its warmth soothing him. It had turned unseasonably cold for October, a cold that now seeped into his bones, freezing his soul from the inside out.

He stopped in front of the flames, their flickering captivating him. What should he do? He hadn’t been to Thorne Hill, hadn’t seen his family since that awful day; the day he’d turned ten and his father turned him out.

“No son of mine shall exhibit such evil behaviors,” Silas had roared. “You are possessed by the devil. I cast you out. Do not show your face to me again. You are not my son.”

Not even the sound of his mother’s weeping had turned Damon around as he’d climbed alone into the carriage, numbness enveloping him. It was a welcomed state, the lack of feeling. It had dulled the pain of his back, which bore witness to the intense lashings his father had laid upon him, a desperate attempt to exorcise the demons Damon knew only too well.

His sisters had been mere babes in arms. They hadn’t even been present. But Damon would never forget the look on his beloved older brother’s face. It was the look of a boy torn—no, a man, perhaps, considering his brother at fourteen no longer had had the body of a child. Moisture had filled Adam’s eyes as their father had raged, but he’d raised no voice in Damon’s defense, made no attempt to stop the man. Adam had always been too dutiful for that.

Damon sighed. Should he go? Did he owe his mother—or anyone—that?

He’d never gone south, even though he’d come of age years ago. What would have been the point? And what would he have faced? More ridicule? Possibly Bedlam? His father never would have countenanced his return. Damon had been dead to Silas, dead to everyone, as far as he knew.

Except Adam and his mother, Felicity. She penned letters as often as she could, Adam less often, though both without his father’s knowledge. Silas certainly had never written. But Mama told the mundane details of life at Thorne Hill, of how his brother had fared with the estate’s management, how his sisters loathed practicing the pianoforte and hated their dance tutor.

He’d never had such things. A tutor came for a while—at whose bidding, he didn’t know—but Mr. Jensen had long since left, disturbed not only by Damon’s defiant manner but also by his rages.

For Damon had long struggled with his temper. It sometimes superseded even his odd body movements and frequently got him into trouble, which was one of the reasons he avoided company.

“Not like being exiled to Hell would assuage anyone’s anger,” he muttered as he reached for the glass of brandy he’d set on the side table.

Then it sank in. He was now the Duke of Malford. Unless his father had disinherited him. Was that possible? If so, his uncle, Fillmore Blackbourne, would be Duke.

And yet, his mother had written to him. Why?

Even if he were the legal heir, why would she want him back? Did she not fear he would be worse than before? Though he’d written her once, years ago, of how he’d mastered his demons, the physical ones, at least, in hopes of being called home. Had that been enough to convince her he could manage in polite society?

But he’d wanted the summons then. Not now.

He walked over to the window, staring out at the craggy moors glistening with snow. He knew in his heart what he had to do. For his mama, who’d done the best she could, he supposed, in circumstances beyond her control. For his sisters, whom he only remembered as tiny tykes who loved to pull his black hair. And for himself. To prove once and for all he was no devil. None beyond his own making, at least.

“Hobbes,” he bellowed.

A short man with thinning brown hair entered the room. Stiff-backed and with his nose in the air, he was the quintessential butler, who served also as Damon’s valet. Though his main role over the years had become that of friend. Despite the difference in age and status, they’d bonded, two lonely people bumbling about in this monstrous abbey, each with no family to call his own.

Still, the man loved to put on airs, to remind Damon both of his status as a ducal family’s servant—and Damon’s status as Lord. “Yes, my lord?”

“For Pete’s sake, Hobbes. It’s Damon. Damon.” Or rather now, Your Grace.

“I know.” The grin that cracked Hobbes’s cheeks softened his expression. “It merely amuses me to bait you.”
Damon smirked. “Ready the horses and coach.”

Hobbes’s eyebrows reached skyward. Damon nearly laughed out loud, which would have been quite the rarity, at the comical expression on the butler-come-valet’s face.

“We’re going to Thorne Hill.”

At that, Hobbes’s jaw literally dropped. He looked out at the snow-blanketed expanse of the abbey’s grounds. “In this weather?”

“Why not? If I’m going back home, it’s only fitting that Hell has frozen over.”

Grab your copy of The Demon Duke today!

 

 

 

Want to win an autographed paperback of The Demon Duke?

Just drop Margaret a line at AuthorMargaretLocke@gmail.com (please mention Renee Reynold’s blog so I know how you found me!) and you’re entered to win. Contest closes June 29th, 2017; winner announced on my Facebook page and contacted via email by July 1st, 2017.

 

As a teen, Margaret pledged to write romances when she was older. Once an adult, however, she figured she ought to be doing grownup things, not penning stories. Thank goodness turning forty cured her of that silly notion.

Now happily ensconced again in the clutches of her first crush (romance novels!), Margaret is never happier than when sharing her passion for a grand Happy Ever After. Because love matters.

Margaret lives in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley in Virginia with her fantastic husband, two fabulous kids, and three fat cats. You can usually find her in front of some sort of screen (electronic or window); she’s come to terms with the fact she’s not an outdoors person.

Connect with Margaret at her website, Facebook, Goodreads, GooglePlus, Instagram, Twitter, and Amazon, and sign up for her Newsletter.

She’s also been known to pin a thing or three over on Pinterest!

And don’t forget to always #ReadaRegency!

Keep Calm and Read This: The Reluctant Wife by Caroline Warfield

Caroline Warfield is over the moon to finally be able to release The Reluctant Wife into the wild. She joins me here today to share all about her newest release … and her Grand Prize Giveaway.!

Title: The Reluctant Wife
Children of Empire, Book 2
Heat Level: Medium
Genre: Historical Romance, Pre-Victorian

When all else fails, love succeeds…

Captain Fred Wheatly’s comfortable life on the fringes of Bengal comes crashing down around him when his mistress dies, leaving him with two children he never expected to have to raise. When he chooses justice over army regulations, he’s forced to resign his position, leaving him with no way to support his unexpected family. He’s already had enough failures in his life. The last thing he needs is an attractive, interfering woman bedeviling his steps, reminding him of his duties.

All widowed Clare Armbruster needs is her brother’s signature on a legal document to be free of her past. After a failed marriage, and still mourning the loss of a child, she’s had it up to her ears with the assumptions she doesn’t know how to take care of herself, that what she needs is a husband. She certainly doesn’t need a great lout of a captain who can’t figure out what to do with his daughters. If only the frightened little girls didn’t need her help so badly.

Clare has made mistakes in the past. Can she trust Fred now? Can she trust herself? Captain Wheatly isn’t ashamed of his aristocratic heritage, but he doesn’t need his family and they’ve certainly never needed him. But with no more military career and two half-caste daughters to support, Fred must turn once more—as a failure—to the family he let down so often in the past. Can two hearts rise above past failures to forge a future together?

The author dedicates this book to her father, the constant soldier, who understood duty and loyalty as few people do.

The ballroom at Government House, Calcutta, 1835

Clare had stopped listening. A prickle of awareness drew her gaze to the entrance where another man entered. He stood well above average height, he radiated coiled strength, and her eyes found his auburn hair unerringly. Captain Wheatly had come. The rapid acceleration of her heart took her off guard. Why should I care that he’s here?

“Clare? The lieutenant asked you a question.”

Lieutenant? Clare blinked to clear her head, only to see Mrs. Davis’s icy glare turned on Captain Wheatly. “Is that your strange captain from the black neighborhood?” she demanded in a faux whisper.

The lieutenant’s avid curiosity added to Clare’s discomfort. “Is that Wheatly in a captain’s uniform? I thought they might demote him after the business with Cornell,” he volunteered.

Clare forced herself to turn to the lieutenant. “Cornell?” she asked to deflect Mrs. Davis’s questions.

Collector at Dehrapur. Wheatly assaulted the man. Unprovoked, I heard,” the lieutenant answered.

She looked back, unable to stop herself. Merciful angels, he’s seen me. She watched the captain start toward them. At least Gleason could make introductions.

The lieutenant went on as though he had her full attention. “He was in line for promotion, the one that went to your brother instead. Philip posted over there right after it happened.”

Clare found it impossible to look away. The captain gave an ironic smile when he saw her watching. Mrs. Davis gave a sharp intake of breath when she realized Wheatly’s intent. “He’s coming here? Clare, I think I should warn you that a man who has been passed over as this one was—”

Before she could finish, Colonel Davis, who had been coming from the other direction, met the captain and greeted him with a smile. Clare couldn’t hear the words, but Captain Wheatly’s self-deprecating grin seemed to indicate at least a modicum of respect. The two men approached together.

“Captain Frederick Wheatly, may I present my wife, Mrs. Davis.” The captain bowed properly, and the colonel went on, “And our house guest, Miss Armbruster.”

This time the captain’s eyes held a distinct twinkle. “Miss Armbruster and I are acquainted. I met her when she visited her brother in Dehrapur.”

“Of course, of course! I should have remembered,” the colonel said jovially. He leaned toward Clare and winked. “He’s a catch, this one. Doesn’t like to boast of his connections, but earls and dukes lurk in his pedigree. His cousin stepped down from Under-Secretary for War and the Colonies just last year!”

Captain Wheatly looked discomfited by that revelation.

Gleason looked skeptical. “The Duke of Murnane?” he gasped.

Before anyone could answer, the small orchestra hired for the occasion began to play, and the captain cocked an eyebrow as if to ask a question.

“I think the captain wants a dance, Miss Armbruster. It’s your patriotic duty to see to the morale of the troops,” the colonel said coyly.

Captain Wheatly put out a gloved hand, and she put her equally gloved hand in his. Walking away from Gleason and the Davises, she admitted two things to herself. She was glad he came, and she planned to enjoy the dance.

 

 


The Reluctant Wife is book 2 in the Children of Empire Series ~ Three cousins, torn apart by lies and deceit and driven to the far reaches of the empire, struggle to find their way home.

The prequel to this series, A Dangerous Nativity, is always **FREE**. Click here for your copy.

 

Traveler, poet, librarian, technology manager—Caroline Warfield has been many things (even a nun), but above all she is a romantic. Having retired to the urban wilds of eastern Pennsylvania, she reckons she is on at least her third act, happily working in an office surrounded by windows while she lets her characters lead her to adventures in England and the far-flung corners of the British Empire. She nudges them to explore the riskiest territory of all, the human heart.

Caroline is a RONE award winner with five star reviews from Readers’ Favorite, Night Owl Reviews, and InD’Tale, and an Amazon best-seller. She is also a member of the writers’ co-operative, the Bluestocking Belles. With partners she manages and regularly writes for both The Teatime Tattler and History Imagined.

You may find Caroline at her website, Facebook, TwitterAmazon, and Goodreads. Or drop her a line via email.

And now for the Giveaway!

Caroline is sponsoring a Grand Prize Giveaway in celebration of her release. To enter, click here

And don’t forget to always #ReadaRegency!

Keep Calm and Read This: A Wedding Code by Jacki Delecki

Keep Calm and Read This: A Wedding Code by Jacki Delecki

This week I’m honored to have best-selling romantic suspense author Jacki Delecki visit. She has a new release coming out next week on April 25th ~ book five in The Code Breakers Series. Not only can you pre-order now, but there’s a giveaway…


Title: A Wedding Code
Heat Level:  Medium
Genre: Regency Romance Suspense

 
 
 
 

As a renowned arbiter of fashion and design, Miss Amelia Bonnington’s upcoming nuptials to Lord Derrick Brinsley have become the most anticipated event of English society. Her plans to create the perfect wedding must be cast aside, however, when her best friend’s brother, a member of England’s top code breaking family, disappears.

When his fiancée meddles in dangerous spy activity, Derrick, an undercover agent for His Majesty, must intervene. Now, it’s up to Amelia and Derrick to safely locate the missing brother, prevent another abduction, and thwart an assassination. Can they outwit the French spies and still have Amelia’s fairy tale wedding?

Miss Amelia Bonnington dropped the tangle of wedding ribbons and rushed into the morning room to assist Lady Henrietta Rathbourne. Amelia winced in sympathy at Hen’s valiant but unsuccessful attempts to adjust her very large and very pregnant abdomen into a comfortable position on the settee.

Grabbing a pillow from a chair, Amelia tucked the cushion under Hen’s swollen feet. “Darling, does this help?”

Not wanting to burden her best friend’s sensitive feelings, Amelia tried hard not to stare at the massive round hump straining against Hen’s morning gown. Amelia wasn’t sure she wanted her body to ever grow and distort in such an uncomfortable manner. “Would another pillow behind your back help?”

“Nothing helps. I’m the size of a whale. It’s not surprising that I’m having a big baby, since Cord is such a large man.” Hen could barely wrap her arms around her middle.

Amelia didn’t want to think about the imposing size of her fiancé, Lord Brinsley, and how large Derrick’s babies would be. Although Amelia was inches taller than Henrietta, Derrick was a giant, the tallest and broadest man of her acquaintance.

Hen fanned her flushed face. “The entire family and staff are tiptoeing around me as if I might explode at any moment, like a Guy Fawkes firecracker.”

It was true. The usually calm and composed Hen would tear up at the most unpredictable moments, leaving everyone around her baffled as to how to respond.

Amelia squeezed her friend’s hand. “Everyone is concerned. And it’s obvious that you’re uncomfortable now that your time is near.”

Henrietta stroked her abdomen in a protective, soothing circular motion. “Cord is constantly monitoring my growth. Every time he looks at me, I see him estimating the size of the baby. My enormous expansion has cracked his impenetrable confidence. He doesn’t say anything, but I can see he is worried that the baby is too big for my small frame. And when my husband, the bravest and most fearless leader of our country, appears fearful, I feel a need to shelter him from what comes next.”

Amelia shook her head. “But my dearest, you know Cord likes to be in control of everything and everyone. I’m sure he is struggling with this birthing business.”

“My husband is used to bending all of England, even the king, to his will. His inability to control nature is driving him mad.” Hen shifted on the settee, looking miserable.

Amelia jumped back up from her chair and repositioned the pillow under Hen’s feet. “Does that help?”

Hen winced when Amelia moved her feet. “And Michael,” she continued. “You know my brother can’t hide a blasted feeling. It’s all there on his face—fear and worry.”

“It’s normal for the men to worry. Besides, what other part can they play in the pregnancy?”

Hen rolled her bright green eyes toward the ceiling. “Well, we know what part Cord played in the onset of my condition”

The childhood friends laughed together. And Amelia was relieved to see Hen able to muster some semblance of her usual wit.

“I still have days before the birth, according to Dr. Oglethorpe, which means I’ll be able to attend your wedding.”

Amelia didn’t want to think about her best friend missing her wedding, which was but two days away. Hen refused to follow convention, and planned to attend despite her pregnant state, and Amelia supported her decision. She and Hen always planned to play a part in each other’s weddings. They had shared their fantasies of romance, their future husbands, and dream weddings since they were eight years old.

“I’m so very weary of discussing the size of my abdomen and ankles. How are all the wedding details coming?”

“You don’t have to pretend interest. I know you couldn’t care less about colors, fabrics, or flowers.”

“True. I was prodigiously grateful when you did everything for my wedding. How is Derrick faring with your need for perfection?”

Amelia had orchestrated Hen’s, then Gwyneth’s, and, most recently, Gabby’s weddings. The brides were all dramatically in love and could scarcely be bothered with the kind of details that could turn a simple wedding into a glorious affair.

Their weddings were the talk of all London because of Amelia’s eye for design. After Beau Brummel, Amelia was considered the highest arbiter of women’s fashion. Although she hated the image of herself as another boring society woman whose only interest was fashion. She was an artist who saw color and shapes in everything around her.

Amelia grumbled. “I really don’t need to have everything perfect.”

Hen shifted on the settee and raised both eyebrows, accenting her round emerald eyes. “You changed the ribbon on my wedding dress at least five times to get the exact color of green moss. And the color of the hydrangeas and the candles… Should I go on?”

Amelia resisted pointing out that Hen looked magnificent on her wedding day because of Amelia’s meticulous attention to every aspect of the event.

Hen fingered the sleeve of her gown. “And your protégé is worse. He couldn’t be more persnickety.”

“Pierpont is a wonderful help. He knows a great deal about fabrics, flowers, and proper etiquette.” Amelia wanted to bite her tongue. She sounded like the snobbish society ladies she detested.

“I can’t like him. There is something very cagey about him,” Hen added.

“You’ve been listening to Derrick, haven’t you?”

Hen shook her head. “Derrick hasn’t said a word to me.”

Amelia raised her eyebrows. “Are you sure?”

“Derrick barely speaks to me. I think he’s intimidated by my size and my waddle.”

Amelia snickered. “You might be right. It is rather startling to think that the two bravest men in England are afraid of one pregnant woman.”

 

 

 

Jacki Delecki is a Best-Selling, Romantic Suspense writer. Delecki’s Grayce Walters Series, which chronicles the adventures of a Seattle animal acupuncturist, was an editor’s selection by USA Today. Delecki’s Romantic Regency The Code Breaker Series hit number one on Amazon. Both acclaimed series are available for purchase at JackiDelecki.com.

To learn more about Jacki and her books, and to be the first to hear about contests and giveaways, join her newsletter found on her website. You can also follow Jackie on Facebook and Twitter.

 

And now for the giveaway…

Bouquets are a wedding tradition that have been around for a long time, including in Regency weddings. What is your favorite type of wedding flower?

Drop your answer in the comments below to be entered for a chance to win an ebook copy of A Wedding Code and a $10 Amazon gift card!

 

And don’t forget to always #ReadARegency!

 

Keep Calm and Read This! Guest Post by Shanna Hatfield ~ The Christmas Vow

Keep Calm and Read This! Guest Post by Shanna Hatfield ~ The Christmas Vow

2015-Cowboy-Christmas-Blog-Tour

Welcome to the 2nd annual

Cowboys and Christmas

Blog Tour!

Raising funds and awareness for the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund

Ring in the Holidays with a Helping Hand

JCCF logoNovember 1 through Dec. 24, 10 percent of the net proceeds from all Shanna Hatfield book sales will be donated to the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund. The JCCF is a non-profit organization that assists rodeo athletes who’ve sustained catastrophic injuries and are unable to work for an extended period. Every book purchased during this promotional period adds to the donation total. Don’t forget to add books to your Christmas lists!

 An Interview with Three Cowboys

Today, Shanna Hatfield brings together the heroes from her sweet contemporary Rodeo Romance series.

Tate Morgan is a saddle bronc rider out to claim a championship title and the girl he loves in The Christmas Cowboy, the first book in the series. Wrestlin’ Christmas, the second installment, shares Cort McGraw’s story as a sidelined steer wrestler who falls for a widow down on her luck. In Capturing Christmas, Kash Kressley is a rodeo stock contractor who barely has time to sleep. Then he rescues a feisty rodeo photographer at a rodeo and life will never be the same.

Welcome. Tell us a little about you.

 
Tate: I live on the ranch that my grandfather started back in the early 1900s. We’re about thirty miles from Kennewick, Washington, where we primarily raise beef cattle, wheat, and hay.
Cort: I used to live near Boise, Idaho, until my sister shanghaied me and dumped me at Tate’s door. Now, I live on a ranch about fifteen minutes away from the Morgan place with my wife and son.

 
Kash: My family recently moved from Arizona to Twin Falls, Idaho, so we could expand our rodeo stock business. I don’t spend much time there, since I’m on the road most of the time, heading to the next rodeo.

 

Tells us about your involvement in the rodeo?

 
Cort: A year ago in April, I did a number on my knee when I jumped off my horse to wrestle a steer at a rodeo. I knew the moment I hit the ground I wasn’t walking out of the arena. The doctors all assured me I either stop competing or cripple myself for life. Since I like the ability to walk, I’m now happy to be a rancher.

 
Tate: It wasn’t the end of the world, man. After all, your injury is what led you to your lovely wife. As for me, I competed as a saddle bronc rider until I fell in love with a beautiful girl. Technically, I competed one year after that, and finished my career as a world champion. (Tate looks to Kash) In fact, I think it was on one of your horses.

 
Kash: Yeah, it was. You put in a great ride that night. I’m the behind the scenes guy who brings broncs, bulls and roping steers to the rodeos. My grandfather started the rodeo stock business back in the 1950s. There isn’t a single thing I’d rather be doing.

 
Cort: (Snorts) Except making calf eyes at my sister.

 

What’s your favorite holiday tradition?

 

Kash: It’s three bachelors at our house. We don’t do much of anything, except warm up the turkey dinner our housekeeper leaves in the freezer for us before she heads off to spend the holidays with her daughter.

 
Tate: (Shakes his head.) That is just pathetic, man. You have to at least string lights or something this year.

 
Cort: Watch out or the Christmas cowboy will drive all the way to your house to spread his special brand of Christmas cheer. As for me, my favorite holiday tradition is eating. (Chuckles and rubs a hand over his flat stomach.) I do enjoy all the treats that seem to accompany the holiday season, but I think Christmas Eve is my favorite part of the holiday. My family goes to church, then we sit around a crackling fire and visit before my Dad reads to us. It’s just a nice time to connect and unwind with the people I care about most. And my beautiful wife and I will celebrate our first anniversary that evening.
Tate: It’s the time spent connecting with those we love that make the holiday special – and the treats. I never turn down a good holiday cookie.

 
Cort: Or cake, or pie. Or…

(Tate slugs his arm)

 

Can you tell us a little about the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund?

 
Tate: It’s an amazing organization that steps in to help injured rodeo athletes when they’ll be out of work for while and are facing financial hardship.

 
Cort: Both of us were fortunate not to require assistance, but the JCCF is a lifesaver for some rodeo families.

 
Kash: I see cowboys injured all the time. JCCF really is a blessing for the athletes who face a long recovery time.

 

Thank you for joining us. Any parting words for our readers?

 
Tate: If you enjoy, sweet western romances, I hope you’ll consider reading our stories in The Christmas Cowboy, Wrestlin Christmas, and Capturing Christmas.

Here’s an excerpt from The Christmas Cowboy
“Dewdrop, I didn’t think you’d be able to make it.” He took her hand in his and squeezed her fingers. The warmth in her eyes as she gazed at him made his heartbeat kick into overdrive. Maybe she cared about him more than she wanted to admit.

The jubilant smile on his face made her glad she raced through her presentation, ran through the hotel as if the building was aflame, and pleaded with the taxi driver to put some hustle in it so she’d arrive at the rodeo on time.

Wrestlin-Christmas-promo-Amazon-1

From Wrestlin’ Christmas
Tall and brawny, Cort McGraw happened to be one of the most handsome men she’d ever seen. From his silvery-gray eyes rimmed with black eyelashes to the dimple in his all-too-attractive chin, she wished Kenzie had given her some warning. If she’d known what he looked like, that he was so young, rugged, and hunky, she would have told Tate not to bother sending Cort to her place.

Mercy, he smelled good, too. Even now, his manly, musky fragrance filled her senses. Annoyed with herself for savoring his heady scent, she brushed at her nose, hoping to chase away the lingering aroma of his aftershave. 

Capturing Christmas 1

 
And from Capturing Christmas
Kash Kressley was a fine male specimen in his cowboy gear, but dressed in a black tuxedo, he looked like he belonged on a movie screen. The simple lines of the tux outlined his broad shoulders and chest while highlighting the length of his legs. Without a hat on his head, she took in his thick brown hair, cut short with a tousle of finger-tempting waves on top.

His scent infiltrated her senses, scattering her thoughts in the direction of crisp mountain air, soft snowfall, and a winter fire. There wasn’t a man alive she found half as handsome and appealing as Kash Kressley.

~*~

New Releases

To kick off the second annual Cowboys and Christmas Blog Tour and the JCCF campaign,
two brand new holiday romances will release Nov. 12!

 

Capturing Christmas Cover Capturing Christmas is the third installment in the sweet holiday western Rodeo Romance series.

Life is hectic on a good day for rodeo stock contractor Kash Kressley. Between dodging flying hooves and babying cranky bulls, he barely has time to sleep. The last thing Kash needs is the entanglement of a sweet romance, especially with a woman as full of fire and sass as the redheaded photographer he rescues at a rodeo.

Determined to capture the best images possible, rodeo photographer Celia McGraw is fearless and feisty. Not one to back down from a challenge, her biggest risk isn’t in her work. Danger lurks in the way her heart responds to one incredibly handsome stock contractor. Will Kash and Celia capture the spirit of the season?
Pre-order your copy today! http://amzn.to/1FC8ZQj

Rodeo-Romance-Block-for-web
Get all three books in the Rodeo Romance series!

 

The Christmas Vow CoverThe Christmas Vow is the fourth book in the Hardman Holidays sweet Victorian romance series.

Columbia River Pilot Adam Guthry returns to his hometown of Hardman, Oregon, after the sudden death of his best friend. Emotions he can’t contain bubble to the surface the moment he sees the girl who shattered his heart eleven years ago.

Widow Tia Devereux escapes her restrictive life in Portland, returning to the home she knew and adored as a girl in Hardman. She and her four-year-old son, Toby, settle into the small Eastern Oregon community, eager for the holiday season. Unfortunately, the only man she’s ever loved shows up, stirring the embers of a long-dead romance into a blazing flame. When her former father-in-law, a corrupt judge, decides he wants to raise Toby, Adam may be the only hope she has of keeping her son.
You can pre-order your copy today for only $2.99! http://amzn.to/1KQHhvI

Hardman-Holidays-block for web
Don’t miss out on the Hardman Holidays series!

 

Guest Author Sign

You’re Invited to PARTY!

You’re invited to join in the online Cowboys & Christmas Facebook Party, Thursday, Nov. 12 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (PST). Drop in anytime during those four hours to enter to win great prizes, chat with guest authors, and more (many of the giveaways will stay open until the following morning)!

Here’s the link to the party: http://tinyurl.com/cowboychristmasparty2
 

The talented guest authors joining in the celebration include: 
10 a.m. – Carmen Peone 
10:30 – Kayla Dawn Thomas 
12:30 – Rachel Rossano 
1 p.m. – Author Kristin Holt 
1:30 – Dani Harper
Grand Prize Photo

Enter to Win Prizes!

To enter the drawing for an Amazon gift card, Wrangler Tote Bag, Rock & Roll Cowgirl T-shirt, autographed books, chocolates, and more fun goodies, fill out this form. Winners will be randomly drawn and announced Nov. 16. http://tinyurl.com/cowboychristmasprizes2

Where to Find The Books

The Christmas Cowboy Cover
Start the Rodeo Romance Series with The Christmas Cowboy.
 
christmas bargain cover
Travel back to a time of grandeur in the old west
with the Hardman Holidays series.
The Christmas Bargain begins the popular series
and is available free for a very limited time!

 

About Shanna Hatfield

Shanna Hatfield 2Convinced everyone deserves a happy ending, hopeless romantic Shanna Hatfield is out to make it happen, one story at a time. Her sweet historical and contemporary romances combine humor and heart-pumping moments with characters that seem incredibly real.
When she isn’t writing or indulging in chocolate (dark and decadent, please), Shanna hangs out with her husband, lovingly known as Captain Cavedweller.
This USA Today bestselling author is a member of Western Writers of America, Women Writing the West, Romance Writers of America, Sweet Romance Reads, and Pioneer Hearts.

Find Shanna’s books at:

Amazon | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | Apple

 

Shanna loves to hear from readers! Follow her online:

ShannaHatfield | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads | You Tube | Twitter
Make sure you sign up for her newsletter to get the latest on new releases and exclusive giveaways!

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Keep Calm and Read This! E. Ayers ~ A Rancher’s Dream

Keep Calm and Read This! E. Ayers ~ A Rancher’s Dream

E. Ayers has a new novel in her Creed’s Crossing Historical series, A Rancher’s Dream, coming out on June 16 – but she wants to give a free copy  away to her fans!  So what do you need to do?

Just tell me in the comment section below that you want a copy.

Seriously. That’s it.

I’ll randomly draw a winner on Wednesday, June 10.

But let’s find out more about A Rancher’s Dream.

 

Widowed and raising a young daughter by himself,
Tiago has only one goal – to work a ranch of his own and build a
future for his small family. When fate deposits a young woman in
his path, he believes he has found the help he needs to care for his child
as they journey to their new home in Creed’s Crossing.

On the run for her life, Ingrid needs to get as far
away from Texas as she can. Her brother and father have
been murdered, and those responsible would see her dead, too.
Desperate, she accepts an offer to help Tiago with his daughter,
but Ingrid’s past can destroy everything Tiago is working for.
Worse – her very presence places him and his daughter in peril.

Amid secrets and danger, a single father
and an orphaned woman on the run must fight all odds to fulfill A Rancher’s Dream.

 

A Rancher’s Dream is a Victorian Western set in 1898, and it’s clean enough for you to read with your kiddo looking over your shoulder (and why exactly do kids do that, by the way?!).

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Now, if you don’t win a free copy – don’t fret! A Rancher’s Dream is available for pre-order right now at:

Amazon

Authl.it

 

 

But don’t forget the  GIVEAWAY!   One free ARC (Advance Reading Copy) in PDF, Mobi, or ePub format, will be awarded to one randomly-drawn winner who comments below.  Just tell me you want a copy.  You can even be so bold as to tell me what format you prefer.  Include your email so I can share the good news with your inbox next Wednesday!

Keep Calm and Read This! Lynne Barron ~ Unravelling the Earl

Lynne Baron - Unraveling the Earl Book Tour

Welcome to Sensuous Promo’s UNRAVELLING THE EARL Book Tour.

Watch for the Giveaway below!

 

Unravelling the Earl ~ Book 3 in the Idyllwild series

Unraveling the Earl Book Cover

The Earl of Hastings’s reputation as London’s greatest gift to the ladies has taken on a life of its own, one he is only too happy to live up to in one Mayfair bedchamber after another. Until he encounters a lady more interested in poking around his country estate than sampling his lauded charms.

Georgiana Buchanan is possessed of murky morals, skewed notions of right and wrong, a talent for dancing around the truth, and a penchant for crashing weddings, funerals and charity balls.

When Georgie catches Henry’s roving eye, she turns the tables on the arrogant scoundrel, introducing him to a world of sensual delights and unraveling his vaunted control before fleeing into the night.

Henry is determined to make the elusive Georgiana his mistress while the lady wants only to use his desire to further her own schemes. When they find themselves marooned at Idyllwild during a summer storm, they will both discover they’ve gotten more than they bargained for.

Let’s take a peek inside:

Georgie drew in a ragged breath and lifted her head from his shoulder, peeking up at him from beneath her lashes, her feather waving in the air.

Henry angled his head to look into her face, expecting to find trembling lips, blotchy skin and eyes swollen nearly shut.

Georgie’s skin was a touch pink on the crests of her sharp cheekbones but her eyes were bright and quite large. Her lips trembled for a moment before lifting in a smile that began at one corner and slowly worked its way to the other.

“Gracious me, but your uncle is a fearsome man,” she said, her voice laced with laughter as she smacked him lightly on the shoulder. “But I could have handled him. There was no need for you to play the gallant and whisk me up in your arms.”

“You were crying.” Except her eyes were bright and clear. And dry.

“I thought to faint but I never did master the art of the elegant swoon.”

Henry only stared at her, certain he must have misunderstood her words and the smile that had reached her eyes, setting them to twinkling.

“With my luck, no one would have caught me,” she continued, scrambling from his lap and plopping down on the seat across from him. “To be sure, I’d have gone tumbling to the marble floor, likely cracking my chin and biting clear through my tongue.”

“You were faking,” he accused.

“Were you fooled?”

“Damn it, Georgie.”

“Huh, I thought for certain you knew what I was about when you caught me up in your arms, all bellowing, masculine temper.” She reached up and pulled the feather from her hair, tossing it to the seat beside her. “You ought to have carried me back to the parlor so everyone could fuss over me while Lord Somerton stewed in his guilt.”

“It was all part of a strategy?” Henry asked, trying to keep up with her agile, and alarmingly cunning, mind.

“Somerton would have been begging my pardon within three minutes, and offering up all of his considerable resources to find the elusive Connie.”

“You lied to my family.”

“Faking a crying fit is lying?”

“They must think I’ve lost my mind,” Henry muttered, an image of the stares from the dining room and Olivia’s fluttering hands filling his mind.

“They’ll still love you,” she replied cheerfully.

“Of course they will but that is not the point.”

“Will they seek guardianship over your estate?” she asked, kicking off her slippers and wiggling her toes. “Marry you off to some bossy miss in hopes she might control your erratic behavior? Lop off your bollocks to prevent you from breeding, thereby putting an end to the madness that courses through your blood?”

“Madness does not course through my blood.”

“Then what has caused your sudden madness?”

“You have caused my sudden madness,” he answered, unable to hold back a smile as he watched her tug at the buttons of one lace glove.

Buy Links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Where to find Lynne:

Lynne’s Website

Facebook

Twitter

Giveaway

 

 

 

 

 

Click here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway!

Keep Calm and Read This! J.C. McKenzie ~ The Shucker’s Booktique

LON RIDES THE WAVES, LIVES BY THE TIDES, AND NOTHING CAN HOLD HIM DOWN, BUT WILLA MAY BE THE ANCHOR HE NEEDS.

Obstinate Headstrong Girl ~ Author Renée Reynolds: Guest post by author J.C. McKenzie and her new release, The Shucker's Booktique

WILLA MAY BE THE ANCHOR FOR LON’S SOUL. WILL HE SACRIFICE HIS MOST PRECIOUS GIFT FOR HER?

After her fiancé dumps her and her beloved Aunt Jenny goes missing, Willa Eklund travels to Lobster Cove with a broken heart to search for Jenny while running her bookstore. When a mysterious man visits the Shucker’s Booktique on a stormy night, drenched in rain and covered in mud, Willa’s heart melts under his stormy gaze. She wants Lon and the answers he may have, but he also has a secret. Can Willa trust him?

Lon Devlin is a Tempest, a water sprite who can only take a human form during stormy nights. He rides the waves, lives by the tides, and nothing can hold him down, not even a beautiful woman. When he visits his mortal friend, he discovers she’s missing, and her intriguing niece has taken her place. He wants Willa, but he also wants answers. What happened to Jenny?

Thump! Thump! Thump!

No! She gasped. It couldn’t be. The banging on the front door of the booktique had to be a figment of her imagination. She couldn’t will Lon into existence. Why would he come back? Especially if he was involved. Unless…cold ice prickled up her spine…unless he needed to eliminate her to take care of loose ends.

No. Crazy thoughts, Willa. He could’ve taken care of her the night before. No, her heart hammered against her chest for a different reason. But it didn’t matter. The knocking on the door wouldn’t, couldn’t be him.

Thump! Thump! Thump!

Could it? She clutched her hot mug in both hands and turned toward the doorway leading to the bookstore. From the kitchen in the back room, she had a clear view through the store to the front door, but not who stood on the other side.

Willa!” Lon growled. “Wake up and let me in!”

Willa gasped and almost dropped her cup. The tea sloshed around and some spilled over her hands. It burned, but she didn’t move. She couldn’t breathe. Somehow the air got trapped inside her throat. Why was he here? What did he want?

Oh God, let it be me!

lobster cove series

Grab your copy of The Shucker’s Booktique at:

Amazon

Wild Rose Press

 

Obstinate Headstrong Girl ~ Author Renée Reynolds: Guest post by author J.C. McKenzie and her new release, The Shucker's Booktique

Born and raised on the Haida Gwaii, off the West Coast of Canada, J.C. McKenzie grew up in a pristine wilderness that inspired her to dream. She writes Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance.  To catch up with J.C., please visit:

Website:  http://www.jcmckenzie.ca

Blog:  http://www.jcmckenzie.blogspot.ca

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/j.c.mckenzie.author

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

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/author/jcmckenzie

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/JCMcKenzie

Giveaway

J.C. is hosting a fantastic giveaway to celebrate her new release – a $25 Amazon Gift Card, 5 e-copies of The Shucker’s Booktique, and 3 copies of Shift Happens .  Click HERE for your chance to win!

 

Title: The Shucker’s Booktique

Series Name: Lobster Cove

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Editor: Lara Parker

Cover Artist: Debbie Taylor of DCA Graphics

Theme(s): Shapeshifters, supernatural

SubGenre(s): Paranormal/Urban Fantasy

Rating: Spicy (PG13)

Keywords: Shifter, Paranormal, Fae, Urban Fantasy

Page Count: 115

Word Count: 27346

Digital Price: 2.99

Digital ISBN 978-1-62830-659-0

COPYRIGHT © 2014 by J. C. McKenzie