Medieval Monday with Daryl Devoré

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Welcome back to another Medieval Monday. It’s our third week in our First Kiss theme and today I have another new author to introduce you to. Daryl Devoré has a snippet for you from The Last Dragon! Happy reading and enjoy, my lovelies!

Snippet:

Hawkyns’ face lit with joy as he talked about his childhood. Derry tried to mask the sadness she felt not being able to remember any of hers. With forced playfulness, she asked, “Frogs or snakes?”

“Both. I once slipped a frog into the pocket of Cook’s apron. It took the most inappropriate moment to hop out and startled her. She claims she screamed so loud that she curdled the cream.”

Derry smiled. “I once watched Pariset set a snake loose among a group of girls. They squealed like pigs and ran about in circles.”

From the contented smile on Hawkyns’ face, Derry knew he was relieving past moments of devilish pranks. 


The Last Dragon
by Daryl Devoré

A prince. A sorceress. And a heart-breaking secret.

What do dragons, knights and romance have in common? Grab a copy of multi-published author Daryl Devore’s medieval fantasy romance – The Last Dragon and discover the answer.

A sorcerer craving dominance merged with a dragon, the power overwhelmed him causing him to split into three dragons. Demora ruled thought, but was lost in time. Yidithe offered protection, shining like the light of the sun. Ayrradex craved chaos, revelling in destroying souls. 

Many knights died, attempting to slay the devil beast. One knight, Prince Hawkyns, did not fear death. He’d lost everything. Away on a mission when Ayrradex attacked his father’s kingdom, Penrythe, Hawkyns returned to find his noble father – feeble and defeated. His wise mother – crazed. His beautiful wife and unborn child – dead. Only a pile of ashes remained for him to bury. He knelt before his King and vowed to slay the devil-beast or be slain. 

Derry was born with powers that terrified her parents. They delivered her to a nunnery to be raised in secret. Jathe, a wise sorceress, discovered the young girl and trained her to one day use the secret hidden in her soul.

Legends spoken around campfires hinted the sole way to destroy Ayrradex was when the hearts of a knight and a golden dragon became one. But after a vicious battle with Ayrradex, the golden dragon was thought to be dead. 

Can Prince Hawkyns’s bravery and Derry’s powers end the reign of the devil-beast’s terror?

Buy Links:

Amazon – ebook – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08QPW4CVF
Amazon – print – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08QRVJ59P
Books2read – universal link – ebook – https://books2read.com/The-Last-Dragon
Books2read –universal link – print –  https://books2read.com/The-Last-Dragon-

See last week’s snippet on Ruth A. Casie’s blog – www.RuthACasie.blogspot.com
Follow along next week on Judith Sterling’s blog – https://judithmarshallauthor.com/blog/

First Kiss Friday with Sophia Nye

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Welcome to my First Kiss Friday blog! I’m so happy you’ve stopped by and if you’ve been joining in on our Medieval Monday blog you’ll have seen posts from author Sophia Nye. Sophia is joining us today with a fist kiss scene from her story A Wild Winter. We hope you enjoy this excerpt. Happy reading, my lovelies!

Scene Set-Up: Gemma and Aidan are being pursued by English knights intent on taking custody of Gemma. Gemma decided that Aidan was being foolish, so she left him to hide on her own. But, as she’ll soon realize, her relentless rescuer doesn’t give up quite so easily…

Excerpt:

At the bottom of the ravine, Gemma found precisely what she’d hoped. A deep overhang, and with it the promise of protection from anyone looking down from the road above. Such low areas of the forest held water, which made them the most densely foliated places, even in winter. Piles of leaves and six foot high stands of bramble safely hid her from the dangers lurking nearby. She wagered there was enough cover to hide even a horse for a short time.

The knights had come upon Gemma early that afternoon while patrolling the forest and recognized her. Concerned over her state of disarray after traveling on foot through the Kingswood for the better part of the night, they were insistent on accompanying her home. Had she been left to her own devices, Gemma knew she could have convinced them to leave her be. Then the Highland trio had turned up, done battle with the king’s men, and generally mucked up the situation.

The sound of shuffling leaves drew Gemma’s attention sharply from her thoughts. Something was approaching the ravine from the bottom, directly in front of her. In the dark, ‘twas difficult to see until Aidan was so close she could almost grab him. He hadn’t spotted her yet.

Conflict wracked Gemma. Her instincts told her to pull him into the safety of her hiding spot. Her mind observed that this was the perfect opportunity to be free of him and continue alone toward freedom. She could reach Banesberie and shelter there until she decided what to do next. And there wouldn’t be a Highlander to interfere.

Aidan led his horse along on foot, clearly searching for her. White moonlight bounced off his wild head of dark waves. Then he turned so that she could clearly see the expression on his face. He was worried. His narrowed eyes scoured the bottom of the ravine, a deep frown etched into his face. 

Gemma relented, filled with pity for this man trapped in unexpected peril, tracking down a woman he hardly knew to make good on a promise to a friend. Though she still had every intention of abandoning him as soon as possible, her heart ached at the look on his handsome face. He was worried about her.

Quick enough that she couldn’t change her mind, Gemma reached out of her hiding spot to grab him. Taking the reins from him yet again, she settled his horse into the bramble, tying it to a fallen log. When she looked up, Gemma realized that Aidan’s head was sticking out of the top of the bramble. Nothing was ever easy with him. She gave his arms a good yank to pull him lower.

He didn’t budge. The look of shock at his quick change of scenery gave way to anger.

“Are you mad, woman?” he hissed much too loudly. “You could have been killed!”

Gemma couldn’t care less about his tirade. She needed to get him sitting down or they’d be caught in minutes. Though she continued pulling his arms down at his elbows, a motion she thought should be perfectly clear, he persisted in his monologue.

“They might have found you before me! Gemma, are you even listening?” he paused a breath as though he might let her get a word in, but then he kept speaking. 

During the brief moment of quiet, Gemma heard hoof beats approaching on the road atop the ravine. She was running out of time.

“And we are going to have words about you stealing my horse, lass,” he began.

Out of ideas and unable to talk over of him, Gemma placed her hand on his lips. 

Instantly, he grew silent.

Gemma leaned closer to him, knowing the English would be nearly above them by now. “You must lower yourself,” she whispered in his ear, keeping her hand over his lips until she knew he understood. “They’ll see you.” She looked upward without moving her head, indicating the road just above them.

Aidan’s eyes followed hers, and she could see the understanding in them. He knelt before her, now only several inches taller than her instead of half a person. His piercing blue eyes held her gaze. A change came over his face, a look she had not seen before in those eyes. A look so unfamiliar it took her several seconds to place it. Desire.

Gemma’s heart thundered louder than the horses overhead. She realized with surprise that she liked it when he looked at her that way. She also realized that her fingers were still on his lips. Her hands slid down to his chest, resting there on the rough linen of his shirt. Their breath mingled in wisps of steam in the cold night air. Before she gathered the courage to look into his eyes again, his lips were on hers.

The searing kiss melted away any lingering chill in the frosty winter night. All of the tension, all of the fear, all of the frustration of the last day evaporated. Only this kiss remained. Aidan’s hands gripped her waist, bringing her up against him with an urgency that thrilled her.

Gemma grabbed the edges of his heavy woolen cloak, pulling it around the two of them like a blanket. She matched his passion with her own. As icy moonlight poured over their stolen kiss, deep within Gemma a fire ignited.

Aidan broke the kiss at the sound of voices from above. He checked to be sure they were safe before looking at Gemma again. Then he swallowed hard, his eyes straying over every inch of her as she stood before him.

When Cadwal had looked at her in her cottage, Gemma felt as though she would empty the contents of her stomach. As Aidan’s eyes roved her, a fluttery feeling erupted within her, and she thought she herself might be able to fly.

Gemma’s fingers traced the chiseled lines of his square jaw, working from one side to the other as she studied his masculine beauty.

“You’re going to be the death of me, lass,” he whispered.


A Wild Winter
By Sophia Nye

A Highland rescuer, a runaway princess, and their journey to escape a royal problem…

Aidan MacMaster has never felt at home in his Highland clan. Always on the lookout for excuses to leave his family in search of adventure, Aidan gets more than he bargained for when he agrees to go off in search of a missing woman.

Gemma FitzRoy, illegitimate daughter of King Henry and a Welsh princess, finds herself standing face to face with her worst nightmare: an arranged marriage to a monster of a man. After an unpleasant encounter with her would-be betrothed, Gemma takes off into the wilderness in search of a new future.

Swept away together on a journey of discovery and intrigue, Gemma and Aidan must decide between the pasts they left behind and the future they imagine together. Will one wild winter together free them from the past or freeze their hearts forever?

Buy link for book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08WC78772

About the author:

A historian and archaeologist turned writer, Sophia has been making up stories since she could talk. When she isn’t working on her next novel, you can find her in the garden. Sophia lives in Indiana with her husband, two children, and their menagerie of pets.

Website: https://sophianyewrites.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SophiaNyeWrites
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SophiaNyeWrites
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sophianyewrites/

New Release from Veronica Crowe!

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Hello, my lovelies. It’s always a pleasure when I can introduce my readers to a new author. Today I have a special treat when I share a new release from my dear friend, Veronica Crowe. The Wrong Prince released today. Read on for the blurb and if you’re in Kindle Unlimited, you’ll find it there. Enjoy and congratulations Veronica on your release. May your sales soar!

The Wrong Prince
Book #1 in the Heirs of Cornwall Series

By Veronica Crowe

Will her childhood knight come charging in on a white horse and rescue her?

Richard Christopher Radcliffe, the Marquess of Sunderland, the man Miss Cassandra Carlyle has loved since she was a little girl, has returned—with his betrothed in hand. Lady Desiree was the picture of grace, beauty and perfection, everything that the naive, unsophisticated, young Cassandra was not.

Dejected and brokenhearted, Cassandra asked her family to take her to London for her first season. With the aid of her friend, Jeremiah Devlin Huntington, Marquess of Waterford, she soon found herself touted as the darling of the ton.
Cassandra could not be more pleased with her success, newfound popularity, and impressive list of eligible suitors.

Will Richard take notice and come charging in on a white horse? Or will she find love where she least expects it—but is too blind with her childhood infatuation to notice all along?

Buy Link or Read FREE in Kindle Unlimitedhttp://bit.ly/TheWrongPrince

About the Author:

Veronica Crowe is the author of the Heirs of Cornwall series for Dragonblade Publishing. If you like laugh-out-loud Regency romance full of romantic entanglements, hilarious misadventures, profound, heartfelt moments, and grand happy endings, this series is for you!

Heirs of Cornwall Books:
The Wrong Prince
The Viscount’s Heir
My Only Earl

Social Media: https://www.facebook.com/Veronica-Crowe-107641207752085

Medieval Monday with Sophia Nye

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It’s week two for Medieval Monday, my lovelies, and I have a new author to introduce to you. Please welcome Sophia Nye who has a snippet from her novel a Highland Autumn. Isn’t the cover just lovely? Happy reading and enjoy!


Snippet:

He paced the small solar. Once, years ago, he had spent hours in this room with his sister. The morning before she birthed his niece, she had sat in the corner chair. The sun had streamed in just the same as it was this day. He continued his walk across the room. Back and forth, over and over, as though he could walk his troubles right out.


A Highland Autumn
Seasons of Scotland Book 1

A murder, a mix-up, and a midnight missive make for one unforgettable Highland romance…

When a fiery, red-haired Englishwoman falls for the laird’s charming, off-limits son, their passion ignites a fire that threatens to engulf the clan.

Ronan Calder, eldest son of Clan Calder’s laird, is going to stay as far away from marriage as he can get. After losing his mother and beloved sister during childbirth, Ronan knows there is no way he could ever inflict such a fate upon any woman. Things get a little complicated when he meets the enchanting new scholar and mistakes her for his future bride.

Adelina Matheson has every intention of becoming the first female scholar at Oxford, and the quick wit to prove it. The only thing she’s missing is permission to attend lectures. When the masters challenge Adelina to serve as advisor to a Highland laird in exchange for entry, she is left with little choice. She agrees to the challenge – surely she can manage such a simple task to prove herself.

Except that once Adelina arrives at Calder Keep, she realizes that nothing about her task is simple. She must battle her alarming attraction to the laird’s handsome son while enduring the laird’s beastly temper. The only other Englishwoman is also her competition for Ronan’s affection, and the entire clan is under threat of attack at the upcoming Samhain celebration. Can Ronan and Adelina put aside their personal troubles and save Clan Calder, or will they doom the entire clan?

Buy link:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08L8PRG18

See last week’s snippet on Sophia Nye’s blog: https://sophianyewrites.com/blog/
Follow along next week on Judith Sterling’s blog: https://judithmarshallauthor.com/blog/

Hop along for a chance to win a gift card for $75!

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Welcome to our Valentine’s Day Blog Hop. I’m so happy that you stopped by. Thank you, Ruth A. Casie, for sharing your book, Knight of Runes, and for offering a giveaway. Today I’m sharing a bit of flash fiction with my character Miss Miranda de Courtenay… but more about her story later in this post. Be sure to keep reading to find out what my giveaway is and don’t forget to comment here on my blog to go into the drawing for the Grand Prize of a gift card (US$75 value). So let’s get to that bit of flash fiction I promised you!


Miss Miranda de Courtenay entered the Assembly Rooms in Bath for a charity Valentine’s Day Ball. Her eyes surveyed the already crowded room while her brother-in-law took her pelisse.

“It’s quite the crush,” her sister Grace mentioned as she took Miranda’s elbow steering her towards the ballroom.

Miranda squeezed her sister’s arm, offering her a bright smile. “I’m just glad our brother at last forgave me for the part I played in his current state of wedded bliss and allowed me to attend.”

Grace laughed. “Adrian was just being stubborn, although I must admit you do tend to go a bit overboard in your quest for a title, Miranda.”

“Why should I be the only one in this family without a title?” she fumed before masking her face to not show how upset this particular conversation always made her. She had gone too far on one or two occasions, not that Gracie ever faulted her for her mishaps. “Besides, everyone could see how much Adrian and Celia were in love with one another. And before you say anything, Celia didn’t want the Marques. I thought to take advantage of the situation but it’s certainly not my fault he turned out to be a cad.”

Grace leaned forward to kiss Miranda’s cheek before whispering in her ear. “You were lucky to not have your heart involved with Wyndham, dearest sister. He was only a man with a title and obviously not husband material. Love will find you when the time is right. Perhaps try to not be so impatient and let Cupid find your mystery man when he’s ready to show you the way.”

“I could only be so lucky to stumble into someone like you did, Gracie,” Miranda said fondly knowing how happy her sister was with her second husband Nicholas.

Grace’s laughter burst forth. “I was lucky, wasn’t I?”

Before Miranda could respond, Nicholas came as if they conjured him up with a magic wand and swept Grace away to join the dancing. Miranda surveyed the room again trying to figure out her best options to pursue a possible relationship with one of the titled gentlemen who were present. There were plenty of men here that she had already been introduced to so that formality wouldn’t be a problem. She only needed to find someone who would be willing to forget her past mistakes since the two major ones she had made were public knowledge much to her regret.

She was thankful when she was asked to dance by a man she had met during the previous season. An Earl … but she couldn’t remember his name and she reminded herself she needed to be better at remembering people’s names. But he at least asked her to dance and it was better to be seen dancing than to be a wallflower sitting alone on a chair against the wall. She swore if she didn’t get a proposal soon, she’d be on the shelf for sure.

The dance continued and she briefly caught a glimpse of her brother talking with a man she had never seen the likes of. Good heavens, where had he come from and why on earth had she never been introduced to such a divinely handsome man? She continued to stare at him when the opportunity presented itself and she wondered what color his eyes were. It was hard to tell from this distance and from the hundreds of candles casting a soft glow upon the room.

She missed a step in the dance and mumbled an apology to her partner when she stepped on his shoe. She was hard pressed not to crane her neck to further inspect the man who had caught her attention. She generally didn’t care for men with blond hair but in his case she just might make an exception!

The dance ended and the Earl began talking about the weather of all things, and Miranda tried not to appear bored at such a mundane conversation. She looked up only to see Adrian was no longer standing next to her handsome stranger who was looking directly at her. He raised his champagne flute in a silent toast causing Miranda’s eyes to widen. Goodness but he was a bold one and clearly she should stay as far away from him as possible.

Unsure of herself for the first time in her life, she fled the dance floor, leaving the Earl without even a polite thank you for the dance. She headed to the buffet room hoping she could partake of something to calm her nerves. No man had ever had her this flustered and Grace’s words rambled inside her head making Miranda wonder if perhaps Cupid had shot his arrow in Miranda’s direction.

***

Captain Jasper Rousseau observed the beautiful woman as she left the dance floor. She intrigued him, not that he was used to dealing with a young lady who was probably only interested in finding a husband. But there was something about her that had him following her. It must be this damn ball meant for happy couples. If his mother had not requested he accompany her to this event, he would be at his manor getting ready for tomorrow’s business appointment.

He had a new ship to run and didn’t have time to dally with a woman, especially one so obviously young as he guessed her age to be around twenty-three give or take a couple of years. Yet he still found himself following her to see for himself what caused him to become so infatuated with a lady he hadn’t even spoke to as yet. Afterall… what could it hurt to have a short conversation with a beautiful woman?


Storm & Shelter

When a storm blows off the North Sea and slams into the village of Fenwick on Sea, the villagers prepare for the inevitable: shipwreck, flood, land slips, and stranded travelers. The Queen’s Barque Inn quickly fills with the injured, the devious, and the lonely—lords, ladies, and simple folk; spies, pirates, and smugglers all trapped together. Intrigue crackles through the village, and passion lights up the hotel.

A collection of eight all-new novellas. One storm, eight authors, eight heartwarming stories. Special preorder price of only $0.99! Learn more on the Bluestocking Belles’ website at https://bluestockingbelles.net/belles-joint-projects/storm-shelter/

My contribution to the Storm & Shelter box set is Before I Found You: A de Courtenay Novella (Book three).

A quest for a title. An encounter with a stranger. Will she choose love?

Miss Miranda de Courtenay has only one goal in life: to find a rich husband who can change her status from Missto My Lady. But when a handsome stranger crosses her path at a Valentine’s Day ball, her obsession with titles dims. Might love be enough?

Captain Jasper Rousseau has no plans to become infatuated during a chance encounter at a ball. He has a new ship to run, passengers to book, and cargo to deliver. But one look into a young lady’s beautiful hazel eyes, and he becomes lost. Does love at first sight really exist?

Their paths continue to cross until they are both stranded in Fenwick on Sea. Their growing connection is hard to dismiss, despite Miranda’s childish quest for a title at all cost. But what if the cost includes love?


My Giveaway for our Valentine’s Day Hop!

I’ll be giving away an eCopy of A Kiss For Charity & The Earl Takes A Wife. They’re books 1 & 2 of my De Courtenay series. I’ll randomly choose a winner from all the comments right here on my blog! You’ll have plenty of time to read them before Miranda’s story releases in the Bluestocking Belles’ box set Storm & Shelter on April 13, 2021.

Go in the drawing to win a gift card

The contest is open for Valentine’s day—from sunrise on 14th February in New Zealand (noon on February 13 U.S. EST) until midnight on 14th February in Hawaii (or 5 AM February 15 U.S. EST). When the contest ends, we’ll collect all comments on all 15 blogs in the hop. We’ll draw one at random, and then announce the winner on our blogs and contact him or her with a gift card to the value of US$75. Good luck! 

Did you miss Ruth A. Casie’s blog?

If you happened to miss Ruth’s blog and the giveaway she’s offering, you can find her blog at https://ruthacasie.blogspot.com/

Next up, Alina K. Field

Thank you again for joining me today. Your next stop is with the wonderful Alina K. Field. Although Alina is one of our guest authors who contributed a novella in the Storm & Shelter box set today she’s sharing some flash fiction from Fated Hearts. You can find Alina’s blog post at https://wp.me/p2YGUG-1Zj.

Happy reading and I hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day, my lovelies. Good luck in all the giveaways! 

First Kiss Friday with A Second Chance At Love!

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Welcome to my First Kiss Friday blog! With the release of A Second Chance At Love this week, I thought it would only be fitting to give you a scene from this Frost Fair Regency romance. I hope you enjoy Digby and Constance’s journey to finding love and their first kiss! Happy reading and enjoy, my dearest readers!

Excerpt:

Constance waited in the foyer while a servant went to fetch her pelisse. Her aunt had stayed behind in the meeting room to finish up a few details, and Constance hoped this would give her some additional time alone with Digby. Her heart leapt when she saw him leaving the front parlor. She could barely contain her breathing as he came ever nearer to her side. How she loved this man.

“Your aunt—” he started to say, bowing over her hand.

“—is momentarily delayed,” she finished with a smile.

He leaned forward to whisper in her ear. “Come with me,” he urged, while gently taking her elbow.

She gave a quick glance around and nodded. None of the other people gathering in the foyer paid any attention to them. They were too preoccupied with their own conversations or going on about the details of the event to follow next month.

Constance and Digby did not go far and she was thankful he escorted her into an open room with no door, thus ensuring her reputation remained intact. A nook not visible from the hallway gave them a semblance of privacy and she could only wonder what this man who owned her heart would do next. She did not have long to wait.

“You may think this is too forward of me, Lady Constance,” he began.

She let a light laugh escaped her. “We have known one another far too long to be so formal, my lord, at least when we are alone together.”

He brightened her day with his smile and brought her closer. “Constance… you do me a great honor.”

“The honor is mine, Digby,” she breathed in a soft whisper, resting her hands lightly on his forearms.

“During my time away, a day did not go by that I did not think of you. The hurt I caused you at our parting has weighed heavily on my mind for two long years.”

“I have already forgiven you for all that, Digby.”

“Yes, I know, and I am most grateful you can forget my foolishness. This may be too fast, since we have only just reunited, but I wanted you to know I still care for you, Constance.”

She reached up to cup his cheek. “Digby, surely you must know you still own my heart?”

“You give me hope for a future together,” he said in a husky tone.

“Nothing would make me happier.”

She thought she was prepared for when Digby bent down to place his lips upon her own. The kiss was gentle at first, a testament to what they truly felt for one another. But as she stepped closer, wrapping her arms around his neck, everything changed. Digby pulled her into his arms and every fiber of her being burst in sheer joy. He deepened their kiss, and she was more than willing to follow his lead. Tingling sensations stole down her spine and Constance knew in this very instant that she had not lost his love. Surely, if Digby could kiss her like this then he would certainly wish for them to wed at some point in their future.

A low moan of desire escaped her and she felt his arms tighten around her waist.


A Second Chance At Love:
A Frost Fair Regency Romance

By Sherry Ewing

Can the bittersweet frost of lost love be rekindled into a burning flame?

Viscount Digby Osgood returns to London after a two-year absence, planning to avoid the woman he courted and then left. Surely she has moved on with her life; even married by now. A bit of encouragement from a friend, however, pushes him to seek the lady out. Can she ever forgiven him and give them a second chance at love?

Lady Constance Whittles has only cared for one man in her life. Even after he broke her heart, it remains fixed on him. Another man tries to replace him, but she soon learns she can never feel for him a shadow of what she still feels for Digby. One brief encounter with Digby confirms it; she is more than willing to forgive him. Can they truly take up where they left off?

Charity projects and a Frost Fair on the Thames bring them together, but another stands in their way. Will he tear them apart?

Buy Links:

Amazon US | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Books2Read

Amazon AU | Amazon BR | Amazon CA Amazon DE | Amazon ES | Amazon FR | Amazon IN | Amazon IT | Amazon JP | Amazon MX | Amazon NL | Amazon UK | Angus & Robertson

Happy Release Day!

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It’s always a wonderful day when you can release a new book into the world! Although A Second Chance At Love was previously released in the Bluestocking Belles’ box set Fire & Frost, I am now releasing my novella for individual sale. I’m pretty partial to this cover, since my lovely daughter is in the image. Thanks to all the readers who preordered this story. Here’s an excerpt for your reading pleasure and I hope you enjoy Digby & Constance’s journey to finding a second chance at love!

Excerpt:

A rush of air left his lips as though he had been holding his breath while awaiting her answer. He stepped up to the desk and reached for her hand, kissing the air between his lips and her knuckles as any proper gentleman would. “You are very gracious, Constance. I must admit I was afraid you would hate me, considering how I left things between us.”

She gave his hand a gentle squeeze. “I could never hate you, Digby.” A blush rushed to her cheeks at the tone of her voice. They had been on a first name basis two years ago and somehow it seemed right to call him by his given name. My word, she had missed this man.

“Then perhaps you would allow me to escort you to a meeting at the Duchess of Haverford’s residence next week on the third. I understand she is in the process of forming several committees to organize an event for The Ladies’ Society for the Care of the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Heroes and the Children of Wounded Veterans.”

Constance laughed. “You must be joking? Why, you will never get all that on any kind of a banner.”

Digby joined her and laughed. “I would never make up such a tall tale, my lady.”

“No one in their right mind would, although it does sound like a worthy cause.”

“I could not agree more, which is why I have offered my services to the gentleman’s auxiliary, whose responsibilities will include making sure you ladies are able to do your work in this dreadful weather. I knew this was just the sort of event that would be of interest to you.”

“You know me so well. I would be happy to accompany you, Digby.”

“Wonderful,” he replied with a smile. “If your aunt could join us and act as chaperone, then I could pick you both up around noon, if that is acceptable.”

“I will eagerly await next week, my lord.”

Digby took her hand again and bowed over it. “As will I, my lady.”

His gloved hand felt warm in hers. When Digby’s thumb gently caressed the back in a small circular motion, Constance’s heart leapt at the possibility that all was not lost. Her eyes went to his in a long lingering glance as pleasure swept across her entire being. She smiled, and he returned it with a smile of his own. Constance could not remember when she had ever been this happy…


A Second Chance At Love:
A Frost Fair Regency Romance

By Sherry Ewing

Can the bittersweet frost of lost love be rekindled into a burning flame?

Viscount Digby Osgood returns to London after a two-year absence, planning to avoid the woman he courted and then left. Surely she has moved on with her life; even married by now. A bit of encouragement from a friend, however, pushes him to seek the lady out. Can she ever forgiven him and give them a second chance at love?

Lady Constance Whittles has only cared for one man in her life. Even after he broke her heart, it remains fixed on him. Another man tries to replace him, but she soon learns she can never feel for him a shadow of what she still feels for Digby. One brief encounter with Digby confirms it; she is more than willing to forgive him. Can they truly take up where they left off?

Charity projects and a Frost Fair on the Thames bring them together, but another stands in their way. Will he tear them apart?

Buy Links:

Amazon US | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Books2Read

Amazon AU | Amazon BR | Amazon CA Amazon DE | Amazon ES | Amazon FR | Amazon IN | Amazon IT | Amazon JP | Amazon MX | Amazon NL | Amazon UK | Angus & Robertson

Medieval Monday with To Follow My Heart

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Hello, my lovelies, and welcome back to Medieval Monday! Our spring theme this year is the first kiss between our hero and heroine. I’ve decided to take you back to two of my favorite characters in my medieval/time travel To Follow My Heart: Fletcher & Jenna. In this scene and in the coming weeks, Fletcher is called home while Jenna learns she is to stay at Berwyck Castle. I hope you enjoy these upcoming snippets and happy reading!

Snippet:

Fletcher made his way to Jenna’s chamber, hesitating before he gave a firm knock upon the portal. She opened it faster than he had anticipated, almost as though she had known he was heading in her direction. He saw her take only one look at him before worry became etched upon her lovely face.


To Follow My Heart:
The Knights of Berwyck, A Quest Through Time (Book Three)

By Sherry Ewing

Love is a leap. Sometimes you need to jump…

After a gut wrenching break up with her fiancé, Jenna Sinclair heads to the coast to do a little soul searching. To say everything is subject to change is putting it mildly. Her world is not only turned upside down, but pretty much torn asunder when she is pulled through a time gate on the beach beneath the Cliff House and transported more than eight hundred years into the past.

Fletcher Monroe, captain of the garrison knights at Berwyck Castle, has wasted too much time pining for a woman who will never be his. When he finally decides to move on with his life and focus on his duties, he is suddenly confronted with a woman who magically appears at his feet. This could either be the best thing that has ever happened to him or another cursed event in a string of many.  He soon finds he is wildly attracted to her, but she’s scared to death of him – not a very encouraging beginning.

From the shores of California to twelfth century England and back again, Jenna and Fletcher must find a way to reconcile their two different worlds before Time forever tears them apart.

Buy Links:

Amazon US Barnes & Noble | Apple Books |  Kobo

Follow along next week and find my snippet on Sophia Nye’s blog: https://sophianyewrites.com/blog/


If you’re on Facebook, be sure to join our Medieval Romance Lovers group where you’ll find snippets to all the other Medieval Monday blogs. You just might find a new author to love!. Find the group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1401384450126130

First Kiss Friday with Jessica Cale & a Giveaway!

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Hello, my lovelies, and welcome to my First Kiss Friday blog. Today’s guest is my friend Jessica Cale who has a new story out in The Nightingale and the Lark, featured in the Regency in Color anthology. Isn’t this cover just heavenly? Read on for Jessica’s excerpt and be sure to read all the way to the end for her giveaway. Happy reading and good luck on her giveaway!

Excerpt:

“You look so panic-stricken.” Frank smiled at her in the moonlight. “I knew you were a lady the moment you walked in the door.” 

Oddly, that didn’t calm her a single bit. “You did?” 

He stopped hiding his laughter. “Obviously. How many fishwives do you think look like you?” 

Andie folded her arms. “What do you mean by that?”

Frank snorted. “Beautiful. Elegant. Queenly.” He rolled a hand as if making a bow to a monarch. “Your borrowed clothes aren’t fooling anyone. I’ve known opera singers my whole life, and not one of them brought the light with her when she walked into a room like you do.” 

Her breath caught. “You think I’m pretty?”

This was usually the part when tonnish lords fell all over themselves to quote sonnets and praise her with flowery, impersonal cliches. 

“Pretty?” Frank emitted an ungentlemanly snort. “No, darling. I’m saying you’re the goddamned sun.” 

Andie didn’t know what to say. No man had ever said anything like that to her and meant it. She’d gotten her fair share of awful poetry over the years—as it happened, nothing rhymed with Archambault—but none of it meant half as much as knowing that Frank Creighton saw her like that.

“You just swore,” she said dumbly, kicking herself as soon as it was out. 

“I blame the rum.” He stubbed out his cigar. “I blame the rum for this too.” Frank stood abruptly and crossed to the other doorway. He opened it a crack, and music from the theater spilled out into the night. He grabbed the bucket beside the door and brought it back to where Andie was sitting. “How do you feel about birds?”

Andie sat back, bewildered. She’d thought he might kiss her, and now he was talking about birds. “I beg your pardon?”

Frank finished his rum in a single gulp. “Sunflower seeds.” He tipped the bucket in her direction so she could see the contents. It was indeed filled to the brim. “Take a handful. I want to show you something.” 

She looked at him with suspicion. What was wrong with this man? “All right…” She reached into the bucket and filled her hand with seeds. 

Satisfied, Frank took two great fistfuls for himself. “Hold your hand a little loose and shake them so they rattle. Are you ready?” 

Andie wasn’t at all sure about this, but at the joyful urgency in his eyes, she acquiesced. “Ready.” 

She followed his lead as he shook the seeds for about five seconds, then they both tossed them toward the edge of the roof. 

Within seconds, they were surrounded by a whirlwind of black feathers. It was so sudden and overwhelming that Andie screamed. Dozens and dozens of crows swooped around them in circles until they settled on the seeds, seizing them from the floor and picking them out of the thatch. 

Andie doubled over in fits of laughter, tears streaming down her cheeks as she struggled to catch her breath. “I thought you were joking!” 

Frank chuckled at her response, looking a little too natural surrounded by a hundred crows under the full moon. “I never joke about crows.” 

Andie playfully swatted his shoulder, and Frank caught her hand and held it to his chest. When she didn’t pull away but stepped closer, he wound an arm around the small of her back and led her around the roof in a sort of improvised waltz to the music coming from inside. Her cheeks ached from smiling as he spun her under the moon, crows fluttering away to avoid her feet. As he caught her in his arms, she met his gaze and she knew. 

She curled her fingers into his crisp white shirt and whispered, “You are quite mad, Frank Creighton.” 

His eyebrows drew together, and she was treated to a slow, crooked smile. “You have no idea.” 

Grasping his collar in her hands, she stood on her tiptoes and kissed him. 

It was a bad idea, the worst idea—she couldn’t have explained why she did it other than that she had to. He was the most exhilarating, infuriating, impossible man, and every nerve in her body was screaming at her to kiss his ridiculous face. 

Frank didn’t seem to mind. Gathering her up in his arms, he returned the favor with interest. His kiss was like his music—instinctive, passionate, and casually skilled. Though Andie had very little experience with men—and certainly no one like Frank—kissing him felt as easy and essential as breathing. 

The chill of the night seemed to disappear as she pressed herself against the heat of his chest, burying her fingers into the unruly waves of his hair. He tasted of salt and rum, the heady scent of good tobacco still hanging in the air. 

In the back of her mind, she was acutely aware that this was expressly forbidden; ladies of her class had been compelled to marry for less. If anyone caught them up here, her reputation would be ruined along with her sister’s marriage prospects. Worse, if things went wrong, her career could be over before it truly started. 

She knew. She knew, but for now, just for this moment, none of it mattered. 

After a lifetime of sacrificing her own wants for the comfort and convenience of others, kissing Frank Creighton felt like a radical act, the first and only time she had not only expressed what she wanted but had outright taken it. 

The heavens opened, moonlight spilling over them. She heard the sound of angels’ wings—or perhaps that was still the crows—followed by the sudden end to the music and a deafening roar of applause. 

It was the applause that finally pulled Frank away. He held her gaze, the dreaminess in his eyes giving way to mortified horror. “Oh, shit.” 

With one last lightning-fast kiss, Frank took off running. Andie had never seen someone move so fast. He flew down the staircase, jumping over the last several steps, and thundered to the central staircase. Andie followed at a rather more sedate pace, reaching the top balcony just in time to see him skid to a stop on the stage below. 

Frank straightened his shirt, pulled a brace back up on his shoulder, and ran a hand through the mess of his hair. “The Spider Dance, everyone!” 

Clearly knowing exactly what he’d been up to, the cheer that closed the show was at least half whistles and raucous laughter. Frank made a face and laughed at himself, spreading his arms wide and taking a bow. He looked up and met her gaze, and Andie could see his face was red. 

She didn’t think it was possible, but she’d managed to fluster Frank Creighton. 


The Nightingale and the Lark, by Jessica Cale
featured in the Regency in Color anthology

Andromeda Archambault has it all. An heiress and daughter of a French marquis, London is her oyster, but to pursue her dream to sing professionally—and free of her family’s influence—she’ll have to leave the West End for the bright lights of…Shoreditch? 

The Crow’s Nest is a crumbling Elizabethan behemoth owned and operated by the eccentric Frank Creighton, a director with more than one skeleton in his closet. He knows Andie’s talent when he sees it, but if his Phantasmagoria doesn’t scare her away, his reputation and his relatives surely will. 

Will Andie make a name for herself before her mother figures out where she is? Has Frank finally met a woman more interesting than his piano? And crucially, will they be able to get their act together before the re-enactment of the Battle of Waterloo at Vauxhall Gardens? Find out in The Nightingale and the Lark  

Link:

Regency in Color is available on Amazon and via Kindle Unlimited: https://www.amazon.com/Regency-Color-Collection-Gabrielle-Carr-ebook/dp/B08NSYMBY8

About the author:

Jessica Cale is a romance author, editor, and historian based in North Carolina. Originally from Minnesota, she lived in Wales for several years where she earned a BA in History and an MFA in Creative Writing while climbing castles and photographing mines for history magazines. She is the editor of Dirty, Sexy History, and you can visit her at http://www.dirtysexyhistory.com.

Social Media 

Website: www.dirtysexyhistory.com

Facebook: facebook.com/authorjessicacale

Instagram: @caleisafourletterword and @dirtysexyhistory

Giveaway! Comment for a chance to win an e-book copy of Sleeping Evie, a Victorian reimagining of Sleeping Beauty set in the Pre-Raphaelite art scene of 1870s London. You can also find it on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited here: https://www.amazon.com/Sleeping-Evie-Lady-Gooseburys-Tales-ebook/dp/B085DD9J4V

First Kiss Friday with Jo-Ann Power

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Welcome to my First Kiss Friday blog. Today’s guest is my friend Jo-Ann Powers who has an excerpt from Heroic Measures. Isn’t the cover just lovely? Happy reading and enjoy, my lovelies.

Setting the scene: We are in France, 1918, on the American front lines and Captain Adam Fairleigh, British Army officer, has come to take Nurse Gwen Spencer to lunch. The little cafe is in walking distance from the mobile hospital where Nurse Spencer is stationed and she has a few hours to spare. She has met Captain Fairleigh, who is attached to British Headquarters, previously when he was ill. This is the second time they have met, but the first since he danced with her at a reception given by General Pershing.

Excerpt:

“The gentleman’s name is Armand and he’s a very good cook,” she told Adam as he pulled out a chair for her to take the seat in the tiny cafe. No other patrons graced the place.

“What do you suggest?”

Jambon et fromage. Vin rouge. Salade verte. Du pain, glorious et crispy.” She shivered. Lovely du pain.”

“Ha! Remind me to feed you often. You look glorious in raptures.”

She wiggled her brows. “On occasion, he has offered cuisses, but I have not gotten the courage to try them.”

“Frogs legs? You should. They are as tender as chicken.”

“The idea that Armand might have recently caught them in his garden—” she made a face, “—disturbs me. Though my aunt raises chickens and I’ve had to kill and pluck and gut them. I shouldn’t be so finicky.”

Beneath the table, he reached for her hand and tucked it in his lap. His affection was addictive. “Be what you are, Gwen. If you don’t want frog’s legs, you don’t have to eat them.”

“Have you done many things you didn’t care to do?” she asked, thinking of his venture into No Man’s Land. What kind of dedication did it take to do that? What kind of cunning? “I’m sorry. That was ridiculous to ask. We all do things we don’t want to do.”

“I like my position with Pershing’s staff. Even that jaunt across the barbed wire,” he offered with a faraway look, “was exciting. I have been known to test the limits. That excites me. Does that make me a daredevil? Do you prefer men who are more ordinary?”

“I’ve never thought about who I prefer. I only know who I like.”

He seemed not to breathe for a long while as his gaze traveled her lips and her eyes. “Like me.” His words sounded like a plea.

“Can you doubt it?”

“I never want to.”

His words were balm to an open wound she had not bothered to tend. If she let him do that for her now, would she be foolish? Or couldn’t she permit herself to be charmed? Just for one small moment in her life. “You are doing very well. Shall I tell you if you ever disenchant me?”

“Do I enchant you now?”

“I’m afraid you do,” she whispered.

“Don’t be afraid. I’d never hurt you.”

She had the urge to fling her arms around him, kiss his lips and tell him she trusted him. “I don’t trust our circumstances. If we were home… But then, you live in England and I live thousands of miles away and…and this is not appropriate for me to even talk this way.” She covered her hot cheek with one hand.

Armand appeared and bid them Bonjour.

“Forget I said all that,” she told Adam when the proprietor had disappeared into his little shop with their wine order.

“I can’t. Look at me. We both know what we face. The possibilities. But I don’t care. If you’ll have me, I want to come back. Take you to lunch and buy you vin rouge and jambon et fromage. Anything you want. As long as you smile at me as you do now and blush and tell me with those extraordinary violet eyes that I am the finest man you’ve ever met.”

Choked with emotion, her throat burning with tears of delight, she could only nod at him.

“Shall I drive over and see you again?” he asked as minutes later, they stood before her barracks once more and their interlude was done.

“Yes. Soon.”

He raised her hand, turned it palm up and placed a tender kiss in the center. “Keep that for me, will you?”

Dissolved into a puddle of girlish need, she summoned a reply. “Will you want it back?”

He pressed her closed fist to her heart. “Many times over.”


Blurb:

For Gwen Spencer, fighting battles is nothing new. An orphan sent to live with a vengeful aunt, Gwen picked coal and scrubbed floors to earn her keep. But when she decides to become a nurse, she steps outside the boundaries of her aunt’s demands…and into a world of her own making.

But that world has gone to war.

Volunteering for the Army Nurse Corps, Gwen promises to serve until the end of the conflict, no matter how long that is. She leaves her small hometown with her friends and sails away in the dead of night, chased by German U-boats. Ashore she discovers her new world is dangerous and demanding, helping doctors heal thousands of sick and injured Doughboys in primitive conditions.

She’s determined to overcome the heartbreaks and the challenges. Becoming an expert at anesthesia, she volunteers to go to the front lines with an acute care team. Braving bombings and the madness of men crazed by pain and despair, she surprises herself when she falls in love with a man she admires—and should not want.

Amid the chaos, she learns the measure of her own bravery to bear any burden, pay any price and claim the one man she adores as she becomes all that she desires.

Buy Link: https://books2read.com/u/bzgaKn

About the Author:

Jo-Ann Power, an award-winning author of more than 40 novels, serves as the curator of the United States World War One Centennial Commission for the Army Nurse Corps. Researching the lives of those 22,000 valiant women who volunteered to save wounded Doughboys, Jo-Ann has spent weeks in dusty archives and years traveling throughout the United States and Europe to discover the facts of these nurses’ daily lives. 

In HEROIC MEASURES, she weaves a tale of a group of friends who decide to do the extraordinary and leave the safety of their garden gates to travel thousands of miles to the chaos of war to do the work they know will save lives.

Jo-Ann likes to tell others about these courageous women and speaks often about them to civilian and veterans’ groups. To learn more, please read her posts on her blog at: http://theyalsofought.blogspot.com and sign up for her informative newsletter on the Home page of her website: http://www.jo-annpower.com