Congratulations to my winners!

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Last month I went to my first RT Booklovers convention in Reno, Nevada. Let me just say that I had so much fun I didn’t want to return back to the day job.

I love to collect swag and then turn around and have giveaway contents for those who are in my Facebook street team or my newsletter subscribers. Congratulations go out to those in my team who were randomly chosen as the winners of my giveaways: Sandra N., Sheila M., Jonni C., and Faye Ann C.! I also offer my congratulations to Sandra M. who was also randomly chosen as the winner of a Vera Bradley purse, a signed copy of my novel Nothing But Time: A Family of Worth, Book One, and other swag from conference. Special thanks to my marvelous critique partner, Tricia Linden, for donating the purse! I hope everyone enjoys their goodies!


Not part of my Facebook street team? Join Sherry Ewing’s Timeless Knights & Maidens here!

Not a newsletter subscriber? You can keep up to date with what I’ve got on my plate by subscribing here.

 

First Kiss Friday with guest Jude Knight & a FREE eBook

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Welcome, my lovelies, to another First Kiss Friday with my friend Jude Knight. We’ll be turning up the heat with this excerpt and be sure to get your #FREE copy because everyone enjoys a freebie and Jude’s writing is exceptional! Take it away, Jude!

Thank you, Sherry. This excerpt is from The Prisoners of Wyvern Castle. My hero and heroine met for the first  time a few hours earlier, at their wedding. They’ve been forced to marry, and threatened with dire consequences if they do not immediately consummate the marriage. (His sister and her brother want an infant they can control to be the holder of Rupert’s title.

Rupert and Madeline are both virgins, so they need to follow their instincts and whatever information they’ve picked up from breeding animals (he breeds farm horses, she breeds dogs). Plus Rupert’s vague memory of some naughty pictures he saw when he was eleven, before the accident that made him blind.

Excerpt:

Madeline hardly noticed the chill of the night air bringing goosebumps to her arms as she gaped at her new husband. She had known, of course, that men were different than women. He was angular where she was curved, his shoulders broad and muscular, his chest tightly defined planes. Where her skin was smooth and bare, his bore dark hair in the shape of a rough cross, the horizontal reaching from side to side, the vertical arrowing down to…

Her mouth dried as her eyes followed to where the line pointed. More dark curls, and among them, thicker and longer than she expected, his…  Her kennel master called it a pizzle, but no dog had one that size! Of course, dogs were smaller altogether, and puppies, too, much smaller than a human child, and some people clearly enjoyed what was about to occur if the scandalous behaviour at harvest time could be taken in evidence.

Lady Wyvern, too, undoubtedly allowed Graviton… So it wasn’t just the lower orders, and why would it be? A pedigree showed no more discretion than a mongrel when in heat, and the kennel hands needed to be alert to keep a determined bitch confined so she didn’t…

He was reaching for her again, and all the words chattering on in her head tumbled to silence when she dragged her fascinated gaze upward to his intent face.

“May I?” He was asking for permission to touch her, and his courtesy was reassuring. Suddenly bold, she moved forward so his hands encountered her left arm and her right breast, and she put her own hands deliberately on his chest. Husbands could touch wives, of course. But surely wives could also touch husbands?

***

Rupert froze. She had her hands on him, resting softly on his body, just above his nipples. Would she move them? Would she explore him as he did her? Oh, he hoped so! He set the example, stroking his hand down her arm to the elbow and then inward, to curve around her waist and draw her nearer, at the same time cupping whatever his other hand had fallen upon. Her breast, it must be. It filled his hand beautifully, and the skin was soft, like warm satin, like the nose of a new-born foal.

The scent of citrus teased his nostrils again, and he bent closer to inhale. Yes. It was her hair. “You smell of lemons and violets,” he murmured, hardly aware he was speaking, with so much of his mind absorbed in documenting the feel of her skin, of her curves, and revelling in the slow, halting movements of her hands as she shaped the muscles of his chest, his shoulders, his upper arms, then back to his chest.

Where would she touch next? His own hand traced the flare of her hips, then reached further to curve his long fingers around one buttock, as his other hand continued to stroke the breast, brushing over the… did they call it a teat in a woman? No. Nipple. It was a nipple. He took it between two fingers and rubbed gently, and Madeline squirmed, rubbing up against him.

She spoke, her voice sounding as distracted as he felt. “My hair.”

“Mmmm?” What about her hair? He reluctantly let go of her breast and felt his way up the side of her face to run his fingers into her hair. It was silky and fine, and stray tendrils clung to his skin, escaped from the tight plait.

“I perfume the soap with oil of violets and use lemon verbena in the rinse water,” Madeline explained. His question. She was answering the question he had forgotten asking.

He let his hand drift down to her breast again, and she shivered as it ran over her naked skin. He should tell her what he wanted, but if he asked her to take his shaft in her hands, she might be offended. He should be more subtle, perhaps. “Do you like that? I like the way you are touching me.”

“I like it,” she repeated.

Coaxing her to describe what she liked, asking her specific questions, telling her how her hands felt on his chest, his flanks, his arms—it excited him further but, paradoxically, helped him to keep from flinging himself on top of her. Mating had its own rhythm, just as music did, and his wife was not a mare to correct him with her teeth and hooves if he rushed her. He would need to repeat the same motifs in all their variant forms until the symphony reached its exposition, the fulfilment of the primary melody.

At his gentle urging, she became bolder, and firmer in her strokes, her hands tending closer to what he hoped would be their goal.

As he caressed her, he formed an image in his mind. She was small, much smaller than he, and curved in interesting ways, from her soft arms to the globes of her breasts, bigger than he expected, but still small enough for him to cup with one hand. Below the breasts, her body narrowed to a tiny waist he could span with his long fingers, and then flared out again. He brushed his hand across the soft curls he found in the spot he yearned for. He had curls in the same place, but otherwise, she was completely different.

Kissing her behind the ear, which made her squirm with what he hoped was pleasure, he dipped a finger down from the curls into the one part of her body he had not explored. She was warm and wet, and he was fascinated by the folds of skin he found. Completely different.

She pushed herself against him when he found the place he would soon be filling. The part he would use was throbbing and twitching with eagerness. He would spend if he did not soon enter her, and his tutor had always assured him that spending, except as God commanded¾in marriage and in one’s wife¾was a wicked sin that would send him to hell. Well, now he had a wife, and she was ready, surely?

“Are you ready?” he asked, just to be certain.

“Rupert,” she answered, pushing herself still harder, and he took that as a yes, lifting himself over her. He guided his tip to her entrance and then could wait no longer. With a surge, he was fully seated, and it felt wonderful. Better than he had imagined.

He had plunged several times before he realised she was not moving. With a mighty effort, he froze in place. “Madeline? Are you all right?” She was rigid below him, and though the tightness felt wonderful, he did not think she was enjoying it.

“It hurts,” she said, voice trembling with tears.

“I’m sorry.” He made to pull out, cursing the ignorance that had caused him to hurt this little wife he had somehow acquired. But she held onto him, both hands gripping his hips.

“No. It is feeling better now. I am not… Stay. Please.”

And because he wanted to, he let himself be persuaded, but held as still as he could while he kissed her, horrified to find her cheeks wet under his searching lips.

“I hurt you,” he grieved, and again tried to pull away. Again, she held him in place. “I am better, Rupert. It feels good. Please stay.”

He rested his weight on his elbows, caged her face with his hands, and covered her with kisses, trying to focus on the meeting of their lips while his hips trembled with the need to surge and pump.

She met him with her own lips, pressing little kisses all over his face, and after a long moment, he could feel the tension in her ease. Slowly, cautiously, ready to clamp the iron control back over the animal within, he eased slightly away and then back. Again. And again.

When she began tentatively lifting her hips to meet his thrusts, he could hold himself in check no longer. His body took over as his mind, his sensations, his whole universe narrowed to the heaven of the elusive, approaching, present, completed release.

Hand-Turned Tales

The Prisoners of Wyvern Castle is a novella in Jude’s free book of lunch-time reads, Hand-Turned Tales.

Hand-Turned Tales is designed so that readers can try Jude’s story-telling before they buy her other books. Or, if you already like her books, enter her fictional world again in four different situations

In The Raven’s Lady, Felix returns home in disguise after 13 years. He plans to catch a smuggler then take up his viscountcy. He does not expect the smuggler to be Joselyn, his childhood sweetheart. (Short story: 5,500 words)

In Kidnapped to Freedom, Phoebe is stolen away from her plantation by a handsome masked pirate. (Short story: 5,100 words)

All that Glisters is set in New Zealand in the 1860s, a time when gold miners poured into the fledgling settlement of Dunedin. Rose is unhappy in the household of her fanatical uncle. Thomas, a young merchant from Canada, offers a glimpse of another possible life. If she is brave enough to reach for it. (Short story: 13,000 words)

The Prisoners of Wyvern Castle is a gothic historical romance set in the world of my novels and novella. Rupert has been imprisoned by his wicked sister, and forced to wed. His new wife, Madeline, has likewise been threatened into saying her vows. Forced into marriage, they find love, but can they find freedom before it is too late? The Prisoners of Wyvern Castle is a prequel to Revealed in Mist.  (Novella: 23,500 words)

Links and more information: https://judeknightauthor.com/books/hand-turned-tales/

About Jude Knight

Jude Knight’s writing goal is to transport readers to another time, another place, where they can enjoy adventure and romance, thrill to trials and challenges, uncover secrets and solve mysteries, delight in a happy ending, and return from their virtual holiday refreshed and ready for anything.

She writes historical novels, novellas, and short stories, mostly set in the early 19th Century. She writes strong determined heroines, heroes who can appreciate a clever capable woman, villains you’ll love to loathe, and all with a leavening of humour.

Website and blog: http://judeknightauthor.com/

Subscribe to newsletter: http://judeknightauthor.com/newsletter/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JudeKnightAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JudeKnightBooks

Pinterest: https://nz.pinterest.com/jknight1033/

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Jude-Knight/e/B00RG3SG7I

First Kiss Friday with guest Ashley York & a Giveaway!

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Welcome to another First Kiss Friday. Today’s guest is Ashley York who has been one of the featured authors on Medieval Monday. Ashley is sharing the first kiss scene from Daughter of the King. In fact, she’s also offering an eCopy as a giveaway to one lucky winner who leaves her a comment! Happy reading, my lovelies, and enjoy.

Excerpt:

When she finally turned back, her expression had softened. “I do not normally prevaricate.”

He crossed his arms about his chest. “If ye say so.”

“I do say so. Ugh!” She blew an irritated breath. “I canna convince ye when ye won’t believe what I say.”

Brighit’s nose flared in irritation just before she shook her head in a most defeated way. The idea came to him in a flash, and Darragh smiled at his own thought before sharing it.

“A kiss. A kiss will convince me.” He half expected her to slap his face for even suggesting such a thing.

Only she didn’t. Her eyes widened, and she glanced at his lips before wetting her own. She was excited by the idea. Could it be she’d never been kissed before? He’d bet his favorite horse she had not, not with Sean as her father.

“Ye are willing then?” Her look told him she was not only willing but eager. With the slightest movement, he slipped his hands beneath the mantle to graze his open palms up her arms until they rested on her shoulders. Her lips glistened and the vein in her neck throbbed. With a low voice, he asked, “Would ye seal our agreement with a kiss?”

The sharpest tip of her head, barely a nod at all, but Darragh would not quibble. He slid a hand from beneath the heavy material to tunnel it under her thick, silky hair and cup her neck, the skin there still cool from her swim.

She leaned in, meeting him halfway. His mouth slanted across hers, a gentle caress, before he slipped his tongue between her parted lips. She gave as good as she got, deepening the kiss to where he was no longer certain who was doing the kissing. He was glad he hadn’t wagered his horse on her inexperience, though mayhap she was simply an extremely fast learner.

Without warning, she released him and backed out of his hold, wiping the back of her hand over her mouth. Her heaving chest matched his own.

He reached for her. “Brighit, I—”

She raised a hand, shaking her head, and put more distance between them. It was a long time before she spoke again. “We will wait the fortnight.”

Daughter of the King Blurb

A mistaken identity. A gruesome murder. The uniting of two powerful clans.

Trained as a warrior…

Brighit of Clonascra is the only daughter of the fearsome overking, Sean, but despises the trappings and demands of womanhood. She’s far more comfortable training for battle than preparing a meal. Long held alliances require she set aside selfish dreams and take Darragh as her husband. The union intended to promote peace between the clans is interrupted by the shocking murder of a neighboring king and she quickly discovers there are far worse things than being wed.

Trained to be king…

Darragh of Drogheda has no wish to follow in the path of his father, Tadhg, but he is an obedient son and supports his father’s plans. His marriage to Brighit, however, will be no hardship at all since he finds her most intriguing especially when she fights him at every turn. A she-warrior indeed. Her persistent dismissal of him merely blows the fire aflame and sets him down the path to discovery of all her most tightly held secrets.

When she stands accused of the murder, can they finally come to an agreement that will give them each what they truly desire?

Buy Links:

AMAZON  |  Barnes & Noble | iBooks  |  Kobo


Bio:

Aside from two years spent in the wilds of the Colorado mountains, Ashley York is a proud life-long New Englander and a hardcore romantic. She has an MA in History which brings with it, through many years of research, a love for primary documents and the smell of musty old libraries. With her author’s imagination, she likes to write about people who could have lived alongside those well-known giants from the past.

Connect with her online at:

Website: www.ashleyyorkauthor.com

Email: ashleyyork1066@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ashleyyorkauthor/

Twitter: @ashleyyork1066

First Kiss Friday with guest Elisabeth Hobbes

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Welcome to another First Kiss Friday! Today’s guest is the fabulous Elisabeth Hobbes who has been here a time or two especially with our Medieval Monday blog hop. Today Elisabeth has an excerpt from Beguiled by the Forbidden Knight. Happy reading, my lovelies, and enjoy!

 Excerpt:

They watched each other, eyes locked in challenge. They were standing closer than they had been in the river. Much closer. He could smell the slight scent of lavender, which made him want to bury his face in the soft spot behind her ear to see if she was the source of it. The room seemed to grow hotter as the intensity of her gaze held him fast.

‘What would happen to you if I told the prioress?’ Gui asked. ‘You really didn’t want me to admit to having met you, did you? I think you weren’t supposed to be there.’

It was not a threat, but her eyelids flickered. Long and pale, her lashes framed those almost colourless eyes of watery blue. He remembered how he had considered she might be a simpleton when he first saw her, but her eyes blazed with a fierce intelligence that made him draw a sharp breath. She licked her lips nervously. They were wide and soft, made for kissing. He’d bedded women since coming to England, but he never kissed them, too conscious of his scarred lip. He wanted to kiss this sprite more than he’d wanted anything for a long time. Perhaps he should do it and risk the consequences. Let Gilbert return and find his bride for himself.

‘If you kiss me now, I won’t tell anyone how we met,’ he said daringly.

‘Why would I do that?’

Gui was pleased to note it was surprise rather than disgust that sang in her voice.

‘So you can say you kissed a dweorgar and lived to tell the tale.’

She covered her mouth to hide a smile, then quick as lightning lifted on to her tiptoes, put her hands on his shoulders and pecked at his cheek. He turned his head and their lips met. It did not last more than a couple of heartbeats, but their mouths melded together, her warm lips moving in unison with Gui’s and slightly parting with an eagerness that hinted at the promise of what she could offer. He sighed with longing when she broke away.


Blurb

He’s her enemy…

…and she must not fall for him!

When her mistress is taken as an enemy Knight’s betrothed, handmaiden Aelfhild knows it would be too dangerous for her Lady – she must go in her place! But there’s more to the scarred Knight than she first thought…she isn’t expecting to fall for him! As the line between friend and enemy blurs, Aelfhild realises she might be protecting her mistress, but not her heart…

Buy links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077XWLX2M

Apple https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/beguiled-by-the-forbidden-knight/id1321352874?mt=11

B&N https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/beguiled-by-the-forbidden-knight-elisabeth-hobbes/1127581333?ean=9781335522764

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/beguiled-by-the-forbidden-knight-mills-boon-historical

About Elisabeth:

Elisabeth’s writing career began when she entered her first novel into Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest in 2013 and finished in third place.  She was offered a two-book contract and hasn’t looked back.  Since then she has published six Medieval romances with Harlequin Mills & Boon and doesn’t have any plans to stop!

Elisabeth works as a Primary teacher but she’d rather be writing full time because unlike five year olds, her characters generally do what she tells them.  When she isn’t writing, she spends most of her spare time reading and is a pro at cooking one-handed while holding a book.  She loves historical fiction and has a fondness for dark haired, bearded heroes.

Elisabeth enjoys skiing, singing, and exploring tourist attractions with her family.  Her children are resigned to spending their weekends visiting the past.  She loves hot and sour soup and ginger mojitos – but not at the same time!

She lives in Cheshire with her husband, two children and two cats with ridiculous names because the car broke down there in 1999 and she never left.

Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/ElisabethHobbes/

Twitter https://twitter.com/ElisabethHobbes

Blog  https://elisabethhobbes.co.uk

 

First Kiss Friday with guest Caroline Warfield

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Today on First Kiss Friday I’d like to welcome back my dear friend, Caroline Warfield who will be sharing an excerpt from her upcoming release, The Unexpected Wife. Before this scene, Charles has gone missing inside the city of Canton, forbidden to foreigners, for three days. Happy reading and enjoy!

Excerpt:

One other thing took shape and came into focus so sharply she couldn’t turn away. She loved Charles Wheatly, heart and soul. A desperate laugh, half sob, half hysteria escaped her at the thought. She finally fulfilled her mother’s fondest wish and found a man she could respect and love—one that offered little hope of a respectable future. She had no idea what to do with the thought. As it turned out she had little time to consider it.

“Who is here?” Charles demanded. He stood outlined in the light from oil lamps in the corridor behind him. Caught between love and fury over the fear he caused, she flung herself from the chair.

“Thank God!” She didn’t know whether she would hug him or slap him until she threw herself into his arms and was being kissed senseless.

He pulled his lips from hers and kissed his way down her neck. “What is this foolishness?” he asked against a tender spot beneath her right ear. His gentle hands began to roam.

She captured his mouth again, invading before he could object. “Where have you been?” she asked between moans of pleasure, “Don’t ever frighten me like that again.”

He shifted and pulled her closer, kissed her more deeply. She felt one of his hands, warm against her skin, slip under her lose jacket.

Zambak melted against him, but reality intruded as the initial heat subsided. “You stink!” She pulled back a few inches, his arms still holding her, and wrinkled her nose.

“I slept behind a tannery last night, in an alley ridden with some dubious substances. I meant to clean up before reporting to you.”

She pulled away reluctantly, one hand clinging to his, and picked up a candle from his bedside to light it from one of the oil lamps in the hall. She looked him up and down with disgust, put the candle down, and began undoing the heavy robe. “Let’s get you undressed,” she said setting words to action.

“Lady Zambak Hayden how inappropriate—and how utterly delightful,” he said allowing her to have her way with him. The outer robe hit the floor and she kicked it to the corner. She began undoing the fasteners on his shirt, but he brushed her hands aside and pulled it over his head. “I’ve ordered a bath, will you help me with that too?”

Heat surged through her at the image he conjured. Her face burned momentarily, but the sight of the seeping bandage on his arm sent ice water through her. “My God, Charles, you’re hurt!”

“It probably needs to be looked at, but I wanted to clean up first.”

She unwound the filthy strip of cloth, cringing at the seeping wound running almost the length of his upper arm. “Cow slop! This can’t wait. You spent the night in filth.” She punched his shoulder then.

“Ow! What was that for?”

“Stupidity. This could fester and I’ll have to fear for you all over again.”


About the Book: The Unexpected Wife

Children of Empire Book 3

Crushed with grief after the death of his son, Charles Wheatly, Duke of Murnane, throws himself into the new Queen’s service in 1838. When the government sends him on an unofficial fact finding mission to the East India Company’s enclave in Canton, China, he anticipates intrigue, international tensions, and an outlet for his frustration. He isn’t entirely surprised when he also encounters a pair of troublesome young people that need his help. However, the appearance of his estranged wife throws the entire enterprise into conflict. He didn’t expect to face his troubled marriage in such an exotic locale, much less to encounter profound love at last in the person of a determined young woman. Tensions boil over, and his wife’s scheming—and the beginnings of the First Opium War—force him to act to rescue the one he loves and perhaps save himself in the process.

Zambak Hayden seethes with frustration. A woman her age has occupied the throne for over a year, yet the Duke of Sudbury’s line of succession still passes over her—his eldest—to land on a son with neither spine nor character. She follows her brother, the East India Company’s newest and least competent clerk, to protect him and to safeguard the family honor. If she also escapes the gossip and intrigues of London and the marriage mart, so much the better. She has no intention of being forced into some sort of dynastic marriage. She may just refuse to marry at all. When an old family friend arrives she assumes her father sent him. She isn’t about to bend to his dictates nor give up her quest. Her traitorous heart, however, can’t stop yearning for a man she can’t have.

Neither expects the epic historical drama that unfolds around them.

The Unexpected Wife, will be released on July 25.

Here’s a short video about it:

https://www.facebook.com/carolinewarfield7/videos/924791187669849/

About the Author

Traveler, would-be adventurer, former tech writer and library technology professional, Caroline Warfield has now retired to the urban wilds of Eastern Pennsylvania, and divides her time between writing and seeking adventures with her grandbuddy. In her newest series, Children of Empire, three cousins torn apart by lies find their way home from the far corners of the British Empire, finding love along the way.

She has works published by Soul Mate Publishing and also independently published works. In addition she has participated in five group anthologies, one not yet published.

For more about the series and all of Caroline’s books, look here:

https://www.carolinewarfield.com/bookshelf/

RT Booklovers Convention & a couple of sales!

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If you’ve never gone to the RT Booklovers Convention, then you have been missing out as an author or a reader. Let me just say these people know how to put on a conference and several parties! By Saturday everyone was exhausted including yours truly!

I also had the extreme pleasure of finally meeting fellow Bluestocking Belle Elizabeth Ellen Carter and her wonderful husband Duncan who came all the way from Australia! One lucky winner won this book filled basket from the Belles!

Although the couple who ran this marvelous conference are retiring much to our dismay, a lot of the people who worked with them will be picking it up. Booklovers Con will be held in May 2019 in New Orleans of all places. Now that will be one heck of a party!

If you stopped by my table at the book fair or got some of my swag at the FAN-tastic Day event last Saturday, I offer you a big thank you! I’m always thrilled to meet my readers and even get to introduce myself to those who have never read my books.

With that being said, in case you weren’t aware, I had a sale going on with two of my books for RT that I’m going to extend through the upcoming Memorial Day weekend. Nothing But Time: A Family of Worth, Book One is currently free at all online retailers and I’ll keep it that way through Monday, May 28th. You can find more info along with the buy links on my website here.

When I wrote Gwendolyn and Neville’s story, I had no idea of where it was going and how I could delicately touch the taboo subject of infidelity. And in case you didn’t notice, Gwendolyn Worthington is a descendant (several generations removed of course) to Amiria and Dristan from If My Heart Could See You. I had a lot of fun linking my Knights of Berwyck to my Regency series. I hope to have book two out this summer!

And speaking of my medieval romance If My Heart Could See You, I still have this novel (along with the whole series) #FREE in Kindle Unlimited. The good news is I also will keep this book up for sale at $0.99 through May 28th. If you haven’t read my books, this is the place to start! You can find the links on my website here.

So until the next time, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend. Happy reading and thanks for all your suppor!

First Kiss Friday with Sherry Ewing

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Hello, my lovelies. Today on First Kiss Friday I’m hosting myself and Nothing But Time: A Family of Worth, Book One. In case you haven’t seen this recently on Facebook or Twitter, I currently have Gwendolyn and Neville’s story as a #FREE eBook. I’m celebrating being at my first RT Booklovers convention this week and getting reading to release One Moment In Time: A Family of Worth, Book Two, this summer. So sit back and happy reading. Enjoy!

 Excerpt: “Tell me of yourself,” Neville asked, before taking a sip of his wine.

“What is there to tell? I had a normal upbringing, most likely similar to your own. Being the daughter of a duke does have certain responsibilities or opens many doors if you have need of something.”

“And what do you stand in need of now?”

Gwendolyn sighed. “That is a difficult question to answer, for there are many things I wish were different in my life. I know I should not speak of it, but my marriage is a shambles and hardly one you read about in a romance novel.”

“I would not have our conversation upset you, Gwendolyn. You need not speak of your marriage,” Neville replied, reaching across the table for her hand.

“How can I not? I do not mean to be a bore, but you must understand that for me to be here with you, alone, is completely out of character. I do not make a habit of late night trysts with men I barely know. Betraying my husband will surely land me in hell.”

“Then we will go there together. Let me also confess I do not make a habit of stealing another man’s wife. Yet, you must admit there is something between us that cannot be explained. I know you feel it, too.” Neville pushed back his chair, took her hand and led her to a settee. She began to move to one side but he would have none of it. “Do not go so far away. I would have you close to me. You are mine… at least for as long as this night will allow us.”

His hand continued to hold onto hers and she gave up any further protests that may have spilled from her lips. They would have been falsehoods and there was no sense lying to the man who was tearing down the last defenses to her heart.

She raised her eyes to meet his. There was so much promise hidden within the depths of those piercing hazel orbs. “I can never truly be yours, Neville, just as surely as you can never be mine.”

“We have nothing but time this night, Gwendolyn,” he murmured, leaning forward he pressed a kiss upon her temple.

“Time… this evening will pass too swiftly, and then I will once more be returned to the nightmare of my life.”

“Then do not think of what the morrow will bring. Tonight, I will keep you safe at my side.”

Gwendolyn leaned her head upon his shoulder and he put his arm around her. Safe. He was like a boat anchor keeping her grounded whilst the waves crashed against the shore, attempting to pull loose the ropes that would keep her moored to a dock. Yet, the reality of her life remained with her and her conscience would not let go of the values she had adhered to all her life.

She leaned back to look up at the most handsomest man she had ever beheld. “I cannot become your mistress, Neville,” she confessed. He stroked his hand through her hair so gently she almost burst out into tears at the injustice of it all.

“I know,” he whispered, before leaning down to give her their first kiss.

How could she have known just one taste would make a simple kiss so meaningful? How could she have known a kiss could be so pleasurable? How could she have known her life would change forever in the instant their breath mingled as one? She had changed, and she now knew what everyone spoke of when they said they were in love. Love… she had fallen in love with Neville the moment she had first seen him. However in the world would she live without him? More importantly, how was she supposed to return home to a husband she could not help but hate?

***

Neville held Gwendolyn in his arms and swore he wished never to let her go. He deepened their kiss and a fire erupted in his loins he would be hard pressed to put out. If she only knew what she did to him with the simple gesture of cupping his face, she would have run from her brother’s house and never looked back. What had they gotten themselves into?

He broke off their kiss and disappointment flashed in her eyes. “Do not stop, Drayton,” she murmured seductively.

Neville smiled knowing from the use of his title she was miffed at him. “I cannot take much more, my sweet Gwendolyn.” He pressed forward to nibble on her pouting lower lip. “I am only a man after all, and your sweet charms will be my undoing if we continue.”

She put her arms around his neck and pulled. “Just one more. Make me forget everything else but you.”

Neville groaned and gave in to her demand. How could he not, when she begged him for another kiss? He pressed her down so she was lying on the settee, but when their bodies molded together as one, her eyes flew open wide. There was no way to hide his arousal pressed intimately against her.

The grin he gave her must surely appear wicked. If he did not know better, he would have said her reaction was virginal, but surely that could not be the case? She was a married woman and must know what she was doing.

Unless… he had never heard of Sandhurst keeping a mistress, and thought the first Lady Sandhurst had died in childbirth, there were rumors that she had a lover.

Yet the tiny whimpers he heard deep in Gwendolyn’s throat suggested she was familiar with passion. Or was that merely her reaction to being with him?

Neville pressed himself against Gwendolyn once more to test his theory. A gasp escaped her and she pushed against him until he sat up.


Nothing But Time: A Family of Worth, Book One
On sale for #FREE for a limited time!

 They will risk everything for their forbidden love…

When Lady Gwendolyn Marie Worthington is forced to marry a man old enough to be her father, she concludes love will never enter her life. Her husband is a cruel man who blames her for his own failings. Then she meets her brother’s attractive business associate and all those longings she had thought gone forever suddenly reappear.

A long-term romance holds no appeal for Neville Quinn, Earl of Drayton until an unexpected encounter with the sister of the Duke of Hartford. Still, he resists giving his heart to another woman, especially one who belongs to another man.

Chance encounters lead to intimate dinners, until Neville and Gwendolyn flee to Berwyck Castle at Scotland’s border hoping beyond reason their fragile love will survive the vindictive reach of Gwendolyn’s possessive husband. Before their journey is over, Gwendolyn will risk losing the only love she has ever known.

Buy Links:

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2ouE2qO 
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First Kiss Friday with Jude Knight

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Welcome to another First Kiss Friday. I’m always excited when my guest Jude Knight has a new book out (currently up for pre-order) and we get a look into the incredible world she creates. This excerpt is from The Realm of Silence. Gil and Susan are pursuing Susan’s missing daughter up the Great North Road. This morning, they are having breakfast in the garden of the inn before resuming the chase. They are discussing where to stay when they reach Edinburgh. Happy reading and enjoy!

Excerpt:

“Best we take rooms at the coaching inn our runaways are headed to,” Gil agreed. “If Mademoiselle Cornillac follows her usual practice, she’ll talk about the next day’s destination to the ostlers, and we’ll know where to head.”

“Unless Edinburgh is her destination.”

“Even so. Someone at the inn may have overheard something, or your clever daughter may have found a way to leave a message. We start at the inn.” The pie Gil had chosen was filled with eggs and cubes of ham, potato, and carrot. He savoured the flavours then took another bite, relishing the crispness of the pastry.

Susan was washing her turnover down with a swallow of ale, shifting impatiently as her hands inched towards the knife and fork she had placed on her plate between mouthfuls, as proper table etiquette required. Her inclination to rush the meal and be on her way was clearly at war with her training in manners.

“Relax, Susan. A few minutes will make the world of difference to your digestion, and very little to our arrival time.”

What a valiant creature his Goddess was. She managed a smile, though it didn’t reach her eyes. “I know you are right, you annoying man. I will try not to worry and to be patient.

“You are thinking I have no notion what you are suffering, and you are right. I have never been a father and have never had to wait and worry about a child of my flesh.” Gil almost left it at that, but then he took a deep breath and spoke the rest of his thought. “But I have been an officer with men I loved and who loved and trusted me, and I have had to send them into danger knowing that some of them will be killed and others wounded. That perhaps gives me a small inkling of your feelings, Goddess.” He winced as the last word slipped out. She hated when people called her that, but it was how he felt. He had worshipped her from the moment he met her as a boy; carried a candle before her image in his heart since that day; held her as a beacon of the best of English womanhood through a thousand engagements on four continents and any number of islands.

She was oblivious to his preoccupation, considering what he had said. “I had not thought about it like that. Yes. I imagine you were a father, or at least an elder brother, to your men. My brothers are the same. It is similar, Gil. So, you know how hard it is.”

Susan called him Gil, he noticed, when she was moved, just as he slipped into calling her Goddess. He did not call her attention to the slip, but when he moved her chair back to help her rise, and she stepped to one side almost into his arms, he could not resist wrapping them around her.

He had intended a brief peck on her hair. She lifted her mouth as if she had been waiting for just such a move, and he was lost. She was all that existed. The elusive scent of her saturated his nostrils, her yielding curves filled his arms, and her lips and mouth consumed all of his thoughts as he tenderly explored them.

How long the kiss lasted he had no idea, but when she stiffened and pulled away, he let her go immediately, sense rushing back into his brain and berating it for the most arrant stupidity. She didn’t comment—wouldn’t even meet his eyes—but led the way out of the garden, almost running in her hurry.


The Realm of Silence

(Book 3 in the Golden Redepennings series)

Rescue her daughter, destroy her dragons, defeat his demons, go back to his lonely life. How hard can it be?

“I like not only to be loved, but also to be told I am loved…  the realm of silence is large enough beyond the grave.” George Eliot

When Susan Cunningham’s daughter disappears from school, her pleasant life as a fashionable, dashing, and respectable widow is shattered. Amy is reported to be chasing a French spy up the Great North Road, and when Susan sets out in pursuit she is forced to accept help from the last person she wants: her childhood friend and adult nemesis, Gil Rutledge.

Gil Rutledge has loved Susan since she was ten and he a boy of twelve. He is determined to oblige her by rescuing her daughter. And if close proximity allows them to rekindle their old friendship, even better. He has no right to ask for more.

Gil and Susan must overcome danger, mystery, ghosts from the past, and their own pride before their journey is complete.

Preorder links and more information: http://judeknightauthor.com/books/the-realm-of-silence/

About Jude Knight

Jude Knight’s writing goal is to transport readers to another time, another place, where they can enjoy adventure and romance, thrill to trials and challenges, uncover secrets and solve mysteries, delight in a happy ending, and return from their virtual holiday refreshed and ready for anything.

She writes historical novels, novellas, and short stories, mostly set in the early 19th Century. She writes strong determined heroines, heroes who can appreciate a clever capable woman, villains you’ll love to loathe, and all with a leavening of humour.

Website and blog: http://judeknightauthor.com/

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Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Jude-Knight/e/B00RG3SG7I

First Kiss Friday with guest Christine Harvey & a Giveaway!

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It’s First Kiss Friday and today I’d like to introduce you to a fellow San Francisco Area of Romance Writers of America author, Christine Harvey. Today Christine will be sharing an excerpt from her novel In Concert. Be sure to leave her a comment to be in the running for an eBook copy of her book. Happy reading, my lovelies!

Excerpt:

(After a day with cameras following him everywhere, all Luke wants to do
is escape with the date he set up earlier, and forget about the reality TV producer who’s constantly on his mind. But he has just found out Victoria and her crew are setting up to film that date.)

Luke stared at Victoria. He couldn’t believe she’d heard him dirty-talking Isabelle and planned to film their hookup like it was no never mind. “Call them off,” he said.

She looked up from her notebook. “I beg your pardon?”

“Call them off. There’s no date.”

“It sounded pretty definite to me.”

“And it felt pretty private to me.”

Victoria closed the notebook with a thump and tossed it on the table next to her. “You have no privacy, Mr. Tyler. It’s in your contract. I realize you’ve been reluctant to do this from the start, and I’ve tried to be patient, but it’s wearing thin.” She put her hands on her hips. “You’re on a reality show about your life, and the lives of your band mates. The audience won’t just want to see you practicing and playing at Tony’s Tavern. They’ll want to know what you eat for breakfast, what you wear, who you date, and everything in between. You’ve agreed to be filmed during all of these occasions, and you’re just going to have to suck it up and let it happen.”

Luke pointed in the direction of the door and the van outside. “You ever have those things turned on you? You know what it’s like?”

“I would imagine it’s intrusive at first, and fine eventually.” She reached for her bag and added, “Now, can we continue to the next segment?”

“That segment’s been canceled,” he said and turned for the stairs.

“Where are you going?” she called after him.

“To cancel my date.”

“You can’t do that.” She sounded irritated, and a touch anxious.

He turned at the base of the stairs. “You need to film it before you’ll believe it’s true?”

Her lips compressed and she dropped her bag on the table next to the notebook. She hobbled closer in her cast with a pained expression on her face; it took some of the fire out of him. He’d rather she could charge right over and at least keep the disagreement equal; he could tell she liked to pace, to move when she was thinking. Or angry. He liked that about her. He liked too much about her. Except for her damn cameras.

Before she could say anything, he said, “Would those cameras follow you if you were my date?”

She stopped in front of him, her head jerking back. “What? Why?”

“Because whenever I’m around you, all I can think of doing is throwing you over my shoulder, carrying you upstairs, pushing you against a wall, and screwing you senseless,” he said.

Her big eyes got bigger and he could see she’d lost her composure, but his speech had just made its way to his body, and his body took over. He stepped forward, took her face in his hands, tilted it up, and kissed her.

She held herself rigid at first, her mouth hard, but he ran his tongue along the seam and she gasped, her lips opening and softening under his. He pushed his hands into her hair, dislodging the clip and feeling the thick strands surrounding him, brushing against his skin, and he slipped his arms around her and pulled her up tight. Grabbing his belt loops, she moaned, and he darted his tongue in, brushing it against hers, tasting her, wanting more.

She pressed closer, her breasts crushed against his chest and he slid down, imagining her naked body sliding across his, kissing a path down his chest, her hair caressing his hips, her hands touching, grabbing, stroking. He groaned, kissing her harder, and wrapped his arms tighter to lift her up, get her as close as possible, bring her upstairs and—

“Victoria, we’re ready to—whoopsy,” said the sister from the doorway.

Victoria pulled away from him with a sharp inhalation, pushing her hands against his chest until he lowered her to the floor.

“What are you doing?”

“I reckon I’m kissing you.”

“Well, that’s obvious.” She brushed her hair back from her face and wouldn’t meet his gaze. “What I’d like to know is what you’re about. I mean…you…you’re…”

“I’m about frustrated to high heaven being attracted to you and not touching you, so I thought I’d see what that might be like.”

“Oh.” She stared at him, face flushed a pretty pink.

“And on my side, it was pretty damn nice. For both of us.” He leaned close. “Would you disagree?”

Blurb

What happens when you mix a reality TV producer who won’t take “no” for
an answer with a country western singer with a different goal in mind?

Hot shot reality TV producer Victoria Clausen loves only one thing:
creating hit shows. Luke Tyler’s two main goals in life are getting out
of the shadow of his famous father and being a successful country music
star in his own right. When Victoria convinces him that his band would
make a great subject for a reality series, Luke reluctantly agrees. The
cameras are everywhere as filming begins, and both of their lives change
in unexpected ways when Luke explores a new goal, and Victoria learns
real life is more desirable.

Buy Links

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZTJONDW

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1122163212

iBooks:
https://itunes.apple.com/ie/book/in-concert-thats-entertainment/id1008546285?mt=11

Kobo:
https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/in-concert-that-s-entertainment-book-two

Smashwords:
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/551302?ref=MeadowViewPress

Bio:

Christine Harvey has been a writer all her life: from a children’s book
at the age of eleven to novels in many genres. Both she and her
characters know that a pair of colorful cowboy boots can change your
life. Christine lives in California with her husband and far too many books.

Sign up for her newsletter at www.christineharvey.net and get updates on
new releases, giveaways, and special content, including an exclusive
deleted scene from /Take Two/, the first book in the That’s
Entertainment series. (The books can be read in any order)

Website: www.christineharvey.net

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/Christine-Harvey-Author-240904929405251/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CHarveyAuthor

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/charveyauthor/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14029852.Christine_Harvey

Medieval Monday with yours truly, Sherry Ewing

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Welcome to our last Medieval Monday for this round. This theme was Author’s Choice. If you’ve been following along for the past 13 weeks, were you able to guess at my theme? Be sure to leave me a comment to be in the running for this themes giveaway. Here’s the last snippet for Only For You: The Knights of Berwyck, A Quest Through Time Novel (Book 2).

Excerpt from Only For You:

 Katherine felt slightly miffed that he would be ordering her on what she could or could not do, but if it got her out of this room before she threw up, she was all for it. She tugged on his sleeve to get his attention, and he leaned down so she could whisper in his ear. “I don’t trust her, Riorden.”

She felt his lips as he kissed her forehead. “She is naught but a woman, my dear, and no longer has any hold on my heart. Rest assured.”

“I will not rest assured anything, darling, until you send her on her merry way,” Katherine huffed. “Be careful.”

“There is nothing for you to worry your pretty head about, my sweet.”

“Ha! You obviously haven’t heard about the fury of a woman scorned,” she replied sourly. She took one last glance at Riorden before she reluctantly left the hall without him. A feeling of unease overcame her. She had the notion the green eyed monster of jealousy would be rearing its ugly head to taunt her far sooner than she would have expected!


Blurb ~ Only For You:

Sometimes it’s hard to remember that true love conquers all only after the battle is over…

Katherine de Deveraux has it all or so she believes when she begins her life with her husband Riorden. But as she starts to settle into her duties as the Countess of Warkworth Castle, she finds that an easy life is not only difficult but downright dangerous to her well-being.

Consumed with the haunting memories of his father, Riorden must deal with his sire’s widow who just happens to also be his ex-lover. Yet how could he know just how far Marguerite is willing to go in order to have the life she feels they were truly meant to live?

Torn apart by circumstances neither Katherine nor Riorden could ever imagine, Time becomes their true enemy even while Marguerite continues her ploy to keep Riorden at her side. With all hope lost, will Katherine and Riorden find a way to save their marriage and have their happily ever after ending, or will Katherine be whisked back to where Time truly feels she belongs?

 Buy Links ~ Read for #FREE in Kindle Unlimited:

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1MLVECd

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