It’s another First Kiss Friday and it’s my pleasure to welcome back my dear friend, Caroline Warfield. I had the chance to beta read The Reluctant Wife and just loved it. We hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt of Fred and Clare’s first kiss. Happy Reading!
Get control of yourself, Clare, a small part of her brain urged, dimly aware that exhaustion and relief made her foolish. She didn’t care. Just that moment his arms around her back and his shoulder firm beneath her cheek felt solid. Safe. Dependable.
“Easy, easy. It’s only a tent,” he soothed, one hand making gentle circles on her back.
“You thought about us. No one ever—” He had looked after her, she realized, from the moment he found her at the inn in Calcutta comforting his children. No man ever took care for my comfort before.
She took a shuddering breath. Dependable? This is Fred Wheatly holding you, the man who— She didn’t remember what just then. She felt his kiss on her head, then her ear.
She raised her head and his mouth came down on hers. The gentle kiss made no demands, forced no response, and asked only trust. No man had ever kissed her like that. She couldn’t resist him. When he withdrew to look down at her, she closed the distance and kissed him back, tasting sweat, sand, and male.
“Papa? Are we there?”
He broke off the kiss and tipped his forehead to hers, silent laugher rocking him. “We have come to a place. That much is certain,” he responded. Clare didn’t think he referred to the way station.
The Reluctant Wife
Children of Empire, Book 2
Genre: Pre Victorian, Historical Romance
Heat rating: 3 of 5 (two brief -mild- sexual encounters)
Page count: 334 pages
Pub date: April 26, 2017
Three cousins, torn apart by lies and deceit and driven to the far reaches of the empire, struggle to find their way home.
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, and with 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 failed so often in the past. Can two hearts rise above past failures to forge a future together?
Buy Link: Amazon
About Caroline Warfield
Traveler, poet, librarian, technology manager—award winning author 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 has an active blog and her newsletter list recently zoomed past 3000. She is a RONE award winner and has five star reviews from Readers’ Favorite, Night Owl Reviews, and InD’Tale. 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.
Amazon Author http://www.amazon.com/Caroline-Warfield/e/B00N9PZZZS/
Good Reads http://bit.ly/1C5blTm
Join the 2017 Spring Blog Tour and enter to win a prize page here
In addition, Caroline will give a kindle copy to one randomly selected person who leaves a comment.
The prequel to this book, A Dangerous Nativity, is always **FREE**. You can get a copy here: http://www.carolinewarfield.com/bookshelf/a-dangerous-nativity-1815/