Posts Tagged ‘Eloisa James’

I’m thrilled to welcome New York Times Bestselling Author ELOISA JAMES to Rakes and Rascals today for an exclusive interview.

Thanks for inviting me, Carol!


Could you tell us where you were born and what it was like growing up there?

I grew up on a farm in Minnesota, a couple of miles outside a town of 2,000. My dad was a poet and my mother a short story writer, so we had a house full of books and no TV. I had an intensely creative childhood, in which writing was emphasized above anything else. My mother didn’t care much about grades, but she was always interested in my progress on a novel or play—whatever I was writing. It was an excellent way to raise a writer.

Eloisa James Interview -Young Eloisa
Me with my sister and one of my brothers (I’m the red head in the middle)

How would you describe yourself – temperamental or easy-going?

I’d love to say that I’m easy-going, but the truth is that I’m extremely high-wired. I like to do things fast and I’m a perfectionist. I ask a lot of others and myself. I’m trying to calm down but meditation doesn’t work for me; I start with ooom and end up plotting a new scene.

When it comes to food do you like sweet or savoury or both?


What is your most treasured possession?

My children. It’s inaccurate to label them possessions, because they are so wildly, completely themselves. But they started out mine, for 9 months at least, and I treasure that memory.

If you were able to afford a second home anywhere in the world where would you choose and why?

Paris. My family lived there for a year, and we all loved it. I would buy a 19th century apartment with beautiful bones and a Parisian street down below.

Eloisa James Interview - Parisian Street near her apartment
The Parisian street near the apartment where we lived for a year

Finally, what has been your most embarrassing moment?

Sorry! Some things should be taken to the grave.


Thank you for taking time out to be here today, Eloisa and sharing these fascinating facts about yourself.

You’re welcome! Thanks for having me.

If you would like to find out more about Eloisa and her books, here are the links:


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Source: Gift from a friend

(Desperate Duchesses by Numbers, #2)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

As a young girl, Emilia Gwendolyn Carrington told the annoying future Duke of Pindar that she would marry any man in the world before him—so years later she is horrified to realize that she has nowhere else to turn.

Evander Septimus Brody has his own reasons for agreeing to Mia’s audacious proposal, but there’s one thing he won’t give his inconvenient wife: himself.

Instead, he offers Mia a devil’s bargain… he will spend four nights a year with her. Four nights, and nothing more. And those only when she begs for them.

Which Mia will never do.

Now Vander faces the most crucial challenge of his life: he must seduce his own wife in order to win her heart—and no matter what it takes, this is the one battle he can’t afford to lose.


Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

Genre: Historical Romance

Cover Blurb:

One family. One Legend. One chance to reverse the tides of fortune.

Welcome to a multi-genre collection unlike any other historical romance collection. Six of the top authors in their respective genres bring you this powerhouse collection, WITH DREAMS ONLY OF YOU. Join the de Reyne family as they grapple with a family legend that follows them through centuries of hope, heartache, adventure, and romance in seven amazing segments:

Roman Scotland – The origins of the Theodosia Sword.
Medieval England – The legend begins.
The Scottish Highlands – The legend takes a twist.
Tudor England – A new dimension to the legend.
Georgian Era – The legend upon the high seas.
Regency England – The legend has new life.
Contemporary Times – The legend concludes.

Seven unique and powerful stories take the legend of the gladius, the Theodosia Sword, through the ages. Discover how each era of the family finds their own love, peace, and happiness. The sword that can tear them apart is also the one that binds them.

One family. One legend. One chance to reverse the tides of fortune… will each generation of the family take that chance?


Source: Purchased from Amazon Kindle

Genre: Historical Romance Anthology (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Bluestockings and wallflowers seek happily-ever-afters. Only handsome, respectable and deeply romantic persons need apply. Dukes and marquesses will be given special consideration. Apply within.

This anthology contains nine fun, heart-tugging, and wholesomely romantic Regency novellas that are as sigh-worthy as they are sweet, brought to you by USA Today and national bestselling, award-winning authors.

Deceived by a Duke by Erin Knightley, USA Today bestselling author

When strangers meet during a summer sojourn to the continent, love soon blossoms under the Spanish sun. But things aren’t all what they seem. When Libby discovers her English gentleman isn’t at all who she thought he was, can their new relationship survive the shock of being . . . Deceived by a Duke?
(Originally published May 2014)

Captivated by the Wallflower by Aileen Fish, USA Today bestselling author

Finding the perfect husband for wallflower Lady Susan is a means to an end for Viscount Knightwick. Falling in love is not part of his plan. Can he keep his heart safe while making hers happy?

A Most Suitable Match by Lily George, national bestselling author

Can confirmed bluestocking and matchmaker Louisa Bradbury compose her own happily ever after with Thomas, the wallflower of the rich and powerful Wright family?

Stealing the Duchess by Marie Higgins, national bestselling author

When Julian Stratford seeks out to steal the duchess as an act of revenge, he mistakenly steals the wrong sister–a wallflower, no less. As they work together to try and solve the mystery, they soon discover that not only are their lives in danger, but so are their hearts.

First Impressions by Elizabeth Johns, national bestselling author

A widower earl, still in need of an heir, reluctantly sets off for London in search of a wife. He infinitely prefers the role of recluse to that of dashing beau. The Season’s Incomparable prefers books to balls, and cannot wait until the Season is over. Their initial prejudices prevent them from feeling they would suit, but an unlikely source may give them another chance…

Treasure Beyond Words by Heather King

Having trusted the wrong man, bluestocking Amelia Burcott is forced to seek employment as a governess in order to support herself. Little does she realize, when she joins the household of the Earl of Raftesbury, that he has a secret as great as her own and needs the right woman to help him conquer his past.

The Earl’s Beloved Match by Bess McBride, national bestselling author

Bluestocking Cora Prentice has no intention of marrying…ever. Tobias, the Earl of Momford, has no intention of marrying…ever. But Aunt Mimi has other plans for them as she sets out to make a match between her goddaughter and her adopted nephew!

Save the Last Dance for Me by Cora Lee, award winning author

When Lady Honoria Maitland reunites with her old friend Benedict Grey, she proposes an arrangement: a faux courtship that will smooth wallflower Benedict’s re-entry into society and appease her dying father. But Honoria’s clever plan failed to account for Benedict’s heart…or her own.

The Third MacPherson Sister by Susana Ellis

Rebecca’s older sisters took the ton by storm while she herself has failed to attact a suitor in four Seasons. Miles is pondering his urgent need for a wife when Rebecca lands in his lap in the nave of Bath Abbey. A match between them seems ordained by the heavens… except for the little matter of his past history with her sisters.


Source: Received from the author in return for an honest review

(Sons of Sin, #4.5)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

Whose hot kisses will melt the ice princess? All London is agog to know!

As the season reaches its brilliant climax, three very different men pursue beautiful Lady Marianne Seaton. She’s the marriage mart’s greatest prize – even if cruel and unjust gossip paints her as a woman cold and glittering as any diamond.

Lord Desborough is her father’s choice – rich, powerful, safe. Lord Tranter is society’s darling – handsome, dashing, charming.

Then there’s the dangerous, compelling man nobody in their right mind calls eligible. Elias Thorne, son of scandal, reputed deceiver, possessing a rakish fascination no woman can resist. A lady might choose Elias as a lover, but as a husband, he’s too risky a bet. Even if Marianne’s forbidden yearning for him threatens her future and her reputation.

When Marianne’s suitors pursue her to the year’s most glamorous house party, there will be proposals and passion, rivals and revelations, secrets and scandals.

Let battle commence – but will the best man win?


Source: Free on Amazon Kindle

(Clan McDunnah, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (14th Century Scotland)

Cover Blurb:

Rumor has it the water on Clan McPherson lands is magical…

Clan McPherson has known peace amongst their neighboring clans for more than one hundred years. That peace is threatened when Fiona McPherson is made chief after the death of her husband.

Known more for her fighting skills than her beauty, Fiona refuses the multiple proposals of marriage that begin to seemingly arise from nowhere. She may be the chief of her clan, but she’s still a woman. It isn’t Fiona they want, but her land and she’s willing to fight to the death to keep it.

Rumor has it Caelen McDunnah has lost his mind…

Called McDunnah, the chief of Clan McDunnah, has no desire to remarry. He’s perfectly content to still mourn the loss of his first wife and babe, even if it has been sixteen years. Until he meets the beautiful and feisty Fiona McPherson.

Known to start a fight out of sheer boredom or madness — no one is ever truly sure which — Caelen suddenly finds himself in the middle of battles he has no desire to fight, but fight them he will if it means he can have Fiona McPherson as his own.

There is always a wee bit of truth in every rumor.


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(Lords of Anarchy, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:


Heartbroken by the loss of her brother, Miss Leonora Craven vows to uncover the truth about his “accident,” which seems to have been anything but. Jonathan Craven was involved with the Lords of Anarchy, a notorious driving club, and Leonora can’t help but suspect foul play. But the only way she can infiltrate their reckless inner circle is to enlist the help of Jonny’s closest ally, Lord Frederick Lisle. If only he didn’t also happen to be the man who broke Leonora’s heart…


Frederick isn’t surprised to find gorgeous, headstrong Leonora playing detective, but he knows that the Lords of Anarchy mean business—and he has no choice but to protect her. A sham engagement to Leonora will allow Frederick to bring her into the club and along for the ride. But it isn’t long before pretending to be lovers leads to very real passion. With everything to lose, is their tempestuous affair worth the risk?


(Desperate Duchesses by Numbers, #2)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb:

As a young girl, Emilia Gwendolyn Carrington told the annoying future Duke of Pindar that she would marry any man in the world before him—so years later she is horrified to realize that she has nowhere else to turn.

Evander Septimus Brody has his own reasons for agreeing to Mia’s audacious proposal, but there’s one thing he won’t give his inconvenient wife: himself.

Instead, he offers Mia a devil’s bargain…he will spend four nights a year with her. Four nights, and nothing more. And those only when she begs for them.

Which Mia will never do.

Now Vander faces the most crucial challenge of his life: he must seduce his own wife in order to win her heart—and no matter what it takes, this is the one battle he can’t afford to lose.


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I spotted this gorgeous stepback for her book A KISS AT MIDNIGHT on Eloisa James’s Facebook page.



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My auto-buy books for May have now been added to my bookshelves.

I have amended MY AUTO-BUY BOOKS FOR MAY 2013 (posted on 2 May 2013) to exclude THE SUM OF ALL KISSES by Julia Quinn. I can only think that I must have suffered a mental aberration when I prepared this post because the expected date of publication is 28 October 2013!

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(Spindle Cove #4)

Official Blurb

What’s a duke to do, when the girl who’s perfectly wrong becomes the woman he can’t live without?

Griffin York, the Duke of Halford, has no desire to wed this season—or any season—but his diabolical mother abducts him to “Spinster Cove” and insists he select a bride from the ladies in residence. Griff decides to teach her a lesson that will end the marriage debate forever. He chooses the serving girl.

Overworked and struggling, Pauline Simms doesn’t dream about dukes. All she wants is to hang up her barmaid apron and open a bookshop. That dream becomes a possibility when an arrogant, sinfully attractive duke offers her a small fortune for a week’s employment. Her duties are simple: submit to his mother’s “duchess training”… and fail miserably.

But in London, Pauline isn’t a miserable failure. She’s a brave, quick-witted, beguiling failure—a woman who ignites Griff’s desire and soothes the darkness in his soul. Keeping Pauline by his side won’t be easy. Even if Society could accept a serving girl duchess—can a roguish duke convince a serving girl to trust him with her heart?


This is the next book in Tessa Dare’s highly successful Spindle Cove series and I love the ‘Pygmalion’ inspired premise.

(expected date of publication 28 May 2013)

(Fairy Tales #5)

Official Blurb

Once upon a time… 

A duke fell in love 

Gowan Stoughton of Craigievar, Duke of Kinross, values order and self-control above all else. So when he meets a lady as serene as she is beautiful, he promptly asks for her hand in marriage.

With a lady 

Edie—whose passionate temperament is the opposite of serene—had such a high fever at her own debut ball that she didn’t notice anyone, not even the notoriously elusive Duke of Kinross. When her father accepts his offer… she panics.

And when their marriage night isn’t all it could be, she pretends.

In a tower. 

But Edie’s inability to hide her feelings makes pretending impossible, and when their marriage implodes, she retreats to a tower—locking Gowan out.

Now Gowan faces his greatest challenge. Neither commands nor reason work with his spirited young bride. How can he convince her to give him the keys to the tower…

When she already has the keys to his heart?


I have a bit of catching up to do with this series because I’ve only read the first two books. 

(expected date of publication 28 May 2013)

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Official Blurb

Miss Linnet Berry Thrynne is a Beauty . . . Naturally, she’s betrothed to a Beast.

Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, lives in a castle in Wales where, it is rumored, his bad temper flays everyone he crosses. And rumor also has it that a wound has left the earl immune to the charms of any woman.

Linnet is not just any woman.

She is more than merely lovely: her wit and charm brought a prince to his knees. She estimates the earl will fall madly in love—in just two weeks.

Yet Linnet has no idea of the danger posed to her own heart by a man who may never love her in return.

If she decides to be very wicked indeed . . . what price will she pay for taming his wild heart?


I loved this book and it more than made up for my disappointment with A Kiss at Midnight! Ms James manages to put a refreshingly different spin on a much loved fairy tale.

Meet the Beast

Crippled Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, is a brilliant doctor but he is bad-tempered, sarcastic and to say his bedside manner leaves much to be desired is definitely an understatement. Now, unless you’ve been living in Outer Mongolia for several years, I’m sure you’ll already know that Ms James based Piers on the cantankerous Dr Gregory House. Well, here in the UK, we have a TV series called Doc Martin and I can assure you that Dr Martin Ellingham could give Dr House a run for his money any day!

“Why must I say things I don’t mean, be someone I’m not and mouth imbecilities?”

Although spoken by Doc Martin, I could just imagine Piers saying these same words. They seem to fit him perfectly.

Meet Beauty

Miss Linnet Thynne has more going for her than just beauty. She’s intelligent, strong-willed and witty and is more than a match for Piers even at his most bad-tempered.

The pacing of their romance was just perfect and they have great chemistry. I really love their amusing verbal exchanges and the sensuous ‘swimming lessons’ in the rock pool. What a teasing minx Linnet is in the guardroom love scene and the unusual conversation is certainly different, lending the scene a slightly erotic feel. I like how Ms James turns the traditional fairy tale on its head in the final chapters.

The secondary characters add depth to the story and my favourite has to be Prufrock (love the name), Piers’s butler. Their conversations are hilarious.

”Your father has written,“ Prufrock told him. “I took the liberty of putting the letter on your desk.”

“Took the liberty of steaming it open, more like,” Piers said. “What does he have to say?”

“He expresses some interest in your marital future,” Prufrock said cheerfully. “It seems the last missive you sent him, the one listing all your demands for a spouse, did not dissuade him. Rather surprising, I must say.”

“The one that called him an idiot?” “Did you read that one too, you pestilent polecat?”

“You’re quite poetical today,” Prufrock observed. “All that alliteration in the service of mopsies and mollishers, and now for your lowly butler. I’m honoured, I assure you.”

Living in Wales, I loved the unusual setting for the story and this is how I imagined Piers’s Welsh castle :

Harlech Castle


RATING: ★★★★★

[Read May 2012]

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Official Blurb

Miss Kate Daltry doesn’t believe in fairy tales . . . or happily ever after.

Forced by her stepmother to attend a ball, Kate meets a prince . . . and decides he’s anything but charming. A clash of wits and wills ensues, but they both know their irresistible attraction will lead nowhere. For Gabriel is promised to another woman—a princess whose hand in marriage will fulfill his ruthless ambitions.

Gabriel likes his fiancée, which is a welcome turn of events, but he doesn’t love her. Obviously, he should be wooing his bride-to-be, not the witty, impoverished beauty who refuses to fawn over him.

Godmothers and glass slippers notwithstanding, this is one fairy tale in which destiny conspires to destroy any chance that Kate and Gabriel might have a happily ever after.

Unless a prince throws away everything that makes him noble . . .

Unless a dowry of an unruly heart trumps a fortune . . .

Unless one kiss at the stroke of midnight changes everything…


After reading all the great reviews about this book, I was really looking forward to reading it. Unfortunately, I have to count myself amongst the small number of readers who found it disappointing.

I did enjoy the zany humour, the wonderful array of quirky secondary characters (particularly Kate’s ‘fairy’ godmother, Henry, with her deliciously wicked tongue), the royal menagerie and even the yapping rats. My problem was that I couldn’t seem to warm towards Gabriel and so the romance just didn’t work for me. Like some other readers, for me the love scene in the turret bedroom just seemed distasteful and it was more about like mutual lust than mutual love. Even Gabriel’s groveling came far too late to placate me.

Berwick, Gabriel’s half-brother, was the one who won my heart and I can’t wait to read his story in Storming the Castle.

Coco, Caesar and ‘Freddie’ – the three small, yapping, silky Malteses (aka the ‘rats’)

Overall, I was really disappointed with the first book in Eloisa James’s new series but I definitely want to read When Beauty Tamed the Beast.

RATING : ★★★½

[Read May 2012]

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