Posts Tagged ‘International-Giveaway’



To celebrate the forthcoming release of MARRYING WINTERBORNE (The Ravenels, #2) on 31st May, I have a signed copy of COLD-HEARTED RAKE (The Ravenels, #1)  to give away.

The Giveaway is open Internationally and to enter just leave a comment. The Giveaway will close at midnight(GMT) on Saturday 28th May and the winner will be announced on Sunday 29th May.


A twist of fate…

Devon Ravenel, London’s most wickedly charming rake, has just inherited an earldom. But his powerful new rank in society comes with unwanted responsibilities . . . and more than a few surprises. His estate is saddled with debt, and the late earl’s three innocent sisters are still occupying the house . . . along with Kathleen, Lady Trenear, a beautiful young widow whose sharp wit and determination are a match for Devon’s own.

A clash of wills…

Kathleen knows better than to trust a ruthless scoundrel like Devon. But the fiery attraction between them is impossible to deny—and from the first moment Devon holds her in his arms, he vows to do whatever it takes to possess her. As Kathleen finds herself yielding to his skillfully erotic seduction, only one question remains:

Can she keep from surrendering her heart to the most dangerous man she’s ever known?


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I have read and loved THE PARFIT KNIGHT (you can read my review HERE ) and today I’m spotlighting the recently released audiobook.

The Parfit Knight Spotlight - cover.jpg
(Rockliffe, #1)

Genre: Historical Romance (Georgian, 1762 and 1774)

Cover Blurb:

When the Marquis of Amberley’s coach is waylaid by highwaymen and his coachman shot, he is forced to take shelter at the first house he finds and is subsequently trapped there for a week by a severe snow storm.

Oakleigh Manor is the home of Rosalind Vernon who lives alone but for her devoted servants and an ill-natured parrot, cut off from the outside world by the tragic result of a childhood accident. But Rosalind is brave and bright and totally devoid of self-pity – and it is these qualities which, as the days pass and the snow continues to fall, touch Amberley’s heart.

On his return to London, the Marquis persuades Rosalind’s brother, Philip, to bring her to town for a taste of society, despite her handicap. But the course of Amberley’s courtship is far from smooth. Philip Vernon actively dislikes him; Rosalind appears to be falling under the spell of the suavely elegant Duke of Rockliffe; and worse still, Amberley is haunted by a dark and terrible secret that, if revealed, may cause him to lose Rosalind




Stella Riley

Stella Riley is a British author of historical novels. Having trained as a teacher and worked as a primary-school music and drama specialist in London, she has lived in various UK locations but has now settled in Sandwich, Kent. She enjoys reading, dancing, theatre and travel.

Her preferred period is mid-sventeenth century England and her Civil War novels reflect this in their vast historical detail. She is also author of the Rockliffe trilogy of Georgian romances which she claims to write ‘for fun’ and which she is currently having transformed into audiobooks, narrated by Alex Wyndham.

Her writing has been described as “exciting, often funny, romantic,poignant and intelligent” and her books have received numerous five star reviews.

Alex Wyndham

An Oxford University and Royal Academy of Dramatic Art graduate, Alex Wyndham has voiced everything from Apple TV campaigns to fertilizer instructions. He’s starred in numerous BBC 4 radio plays, and narrated documentaries for Channel 4 and The Discovery Channel. He started recording audio books a couple of years ago – and fell in love with it. Alex also has a successful screen career and has starred in several BBC and HBO shows including the Emmy winning Little Dorrit and Rome, and in various films including Kenneth Branagh’s As You Like It. Most recently he played a louche surgeon in The Crimson Field mini-series and has just had his first stab at starring in a video game – We Happy Few – about a dystopian 60s England.



Stella is giving away an Audible download (you must have an Audible account) of THE PARFIT KNIGHT. To be eligible to enter, just leave a comment. The Giveaway will run until midnight (GMT) on Wednesday 27th January. The winner will be announced on Thursday 28th January.


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(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 the battle commence – but will the best man win?


Once again, Anna Campbell lives up to all my expectations with this captivating love story. Even though a novella, it still packs plenty of passion, romance and drama.

I really felt sympathetic towards Marianne. She had weathered the storm of being jilted by the Duke of Sedgemoor with dignity, despite the nasty gossip that circulated about her. Now her father has issued an ultimatum that she must marry one of her two suitors.

I disliked her father intensely. He has always demanded unquestionable obedience from his daughter, caring nothing for her own wishes or happiness.

Her martinet of a father had done his best to teach her unquestioning duty, to bring up a compliant doll.

He sees her simply as a means of furthering his own financial and political ambitions through a marriage to the influential Lord Desborough. Marianne hides her insecurities and unhappiness beneath a veneer of impeccable manners and exemplary behaviour.

Elias is such a wonderful hero. When he and Marianne first met, he glimpsed a warm, intelligent woman with a generous heart and not the “cold fish”, society perceives her to be. It’s refreshing to see a hero who is head over heels in love with the heroine and willing to fight for her whatever the obstacles. With a family that’s a byword for scandal and an older brother who was a complete wastrel and died leaving the Thorne estate in dire financial straits, the dice seem firmly stacked against Elias. He has to overcome a belligerent Marianne…

Her lips curled with scorn. “We can all be jolly together, me with my handsome fortune hunter and you with all my lovely golden guineas.”

as well as her angry father and his rival suitors.

I enjoyed watching Marianne discover what she really wants in life and finally acknowledging her feelings for Elias and cheered her determination to defy her father and marry Elias.

Anna Campbell’s love scenes are always steamy but they are far more than just sex. She conveys the deep emotional connection between the characters and I love the tenderness and obvious love that shines through in moments like this.

“Are you all right?” He brushed her tumbled hair back from her face with a tenderness that made her bare toes curl.

She managed a weary, contented smile. “Absolutely wonderful.”

Elias dipped his head and kissed her with a sweetness all the more profound for the passion that preceded it. When he pulled away, she looked into his eyes and wondered how she’d ever questioned that he loved her.

I really like Lord Desborough. He’s a good man and I wholeheartedly agree with Sidonie…

“He needs to find a nice woman past first youth who will appreciate his qualities as a man, rather than his appeal as a marital catch.”

When Lord Tranter finally shows his true colours, what a truly nasty piece of work he is!

Jonas and Sidonie and Richard and Genevieve, characters from the previous books, make a welcome appearance and play an active role in bringing Elias and Marianne together. I also love the banter between Richard and Jonas.

The Epilogue provides a delightful glimpse of Elias and Marianne with their children and ties up some of the story threads most satisfactorily.

My Verdict: Another worthy addition to this excellent series. Definitely recommended!



Read July 2015

The Sons of Sin series (click the covers for more details):
Seven Nights in a Rogue's Bed (Sons of Sin, #1) by Anna Campbell A Rake's Midnight Kiss (Sons of Sin, #2) by Anna Campbell What a Duke Dares (Sons of Sin, #3) by Anna Campbell A Scoundrel by Moonlight (Sons of Sin, #4) by Anna Campbell Three Proposals and a Scandal (Sons of Sin, #4.5) by Anna Campbell

My sincere thanks to Anna Campbell for sending me a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review




Anna is generously giving away 3 ebook copies of THREE PROPOSALS AND A SCANDAL. Just leave a comment to enter the Giveaway.

The Giveaway will close at midnight (GMT) on Sunday 19th July.




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I am so addicted to Elizabeth Hoyt’s Maiden Lane series that, whenever a new book is released, I’m like a child at Christmas excitedly waiting to open that special present. I’ve always had lots of questions buzzing about in my head that I wanted to ask Elizabeth about this amazing series. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when she agreed to do this interview. I was literally jumping up and down and, if you have never seen a 67 year old jumping up and down, it is not a pretty sight!

Welcome to Rakes and Rascals, Elizabeth. It is such a pleasure to have you join me here today.

Thank you for inviting me, Carol!


R&R: First of all, I’ve always wanted to know how the idea for the Maiden Lane series came about?

Elizabeth: It was several things coming together at once: I wanted to write books in a more complex world—one that readers would want to stay in for more than just a trilogy. I wanted the time to develop characters and plotlines over several books while at the same time keeping each book squarely focused on the romance of the couple in that book.

Then I read about the gin craze in early eighteenth century London. That gave me a time and place. I started thinking about swashbucklers such as Scaramouche by Rafael Sabini and Dr. Syn the Scarecrow (a Disney movie from the 1970s about a hero who disguises himself with a scarecrow’s mask.) I wanted that same sense of sweeping adventure and intrigue. That got me the Ghost of St. Giles and I suppose everything evolved from there.

R&R: Why did you choose the early 18th century as the setting for the series and what aspects of that period particularly appealed to you?

Elizabeth: Swords. Basically swords, wigs, big dresses and swashbuckling. Also, London was really rich in change and upheaval at this time period. It was the largest city in Europe with a lot of people coming into it from all over Britain and beyond. There was a huge gulf between the very rich and very poor. And it was the time of the Enlightenment—the ushering in of modern thought and civilization. I find it endlessly fascinating.

R&R: The notorious St. Giles area of London features predominantly in the books and you have always brought it so vividly to life.  I’ve often wondered if you consulted any contemporary documents in your research and whether William Hogarth’s etchings might have been a useful resource?

Elizabeth: I’ve read some stuff from the time period—newspapers articles, death and birth records, diaries, etc, but I have to confess that I love visual documents like Hogarth’s engravings. I have several books of his engravings and I can spend hours examining them—his artwork, especially his crowd scenes, are so very rich in information.

R&R: When you started writing the series what was foremost in your mind, the story or the characters?

Elizabeth: I always start with character and then work outward: what makes this person the way they are? Who would challenge them most?

R&R: Do you work with any sort of storyboard to keep track of all the different threads and characters running throughout the series?

Elizabeth: No, not really. I have a spread sheet with statistics for each character—eye and hair color, which books they appeared in—very simple, and I have a timeline I keep for significant events like birth and deaths, but most of it is in my head.

R&R: Did you always have in mind which hero and heroine would be paired together or have there been some surprises along the way?

Elizabeth: Usually I know, sometimes for a long time in advance. And sometimes things change at the very last minute. I sent an email to my editor a month ago, telling her I had a new idea for Asa Makepeace’s heroine (two books after DARLING BEAST.) The heroine I had picked for him was just too close in personality to him—and also a new character suddenly popped into my head. 😉

R&R: Is there any line you would not cross when writing a love scene?

Elizabeth: LOL! Well, I’m writing mass market romances and as my editor, the very, very smart Amy Pierpont once said to me, the point of mass market is that it appeals to a large pool of people. It’s not niche. So, while I have nothing against the sex that would appear in erotica, that’s not the type of book I write.

R&R: What has been the most challenging aspect of writing the series?

Elizabeth: Keeping each book interesting and different and as good as I can make it. Actually, that kind of pertains to any book I write. 😉

R&R: What has been the most fun aspect of writing the series?

Elizabeth: I really like setting up a long plotline—one that plays out over several books. It’s intellectually stimulating. And some characters are just fun to write. The Duke of Montgomery in Darling Beast is an example.

R&R: In the latest book, DARLING BEAST, I think Apollo is possibly the most tortured hero so far in the series. What aspects of writing his character did you find the most rewarding?

Elizabeth: You know, aside from his tortured past, Apollo is kind of a regular guy. A really nice guy. But he’s also pretty self-aware (which not all my heroes are) which was kind of refreshing. I liked writing about him working through who he was now after years of enduring Bedlam. Because at the beginning of the book I’m not sure he knows who or what he is.

R&R: Lily, the heroine, is a comedy actress and very different from your other heroines. Did you base her on any real actress of the time?

Elizabeth: I’m glad you asked that! I did quite a bit of research into theatre, playwrights, and actresses of the time period–I was surprised at how many female playwrights there were. I didn’t base Lily on any one actress—although she’s a breeches role actress like Nell Gwyn.

Her writing process, however, is quite similar to mine (although I don’t act out my dialogue) and I have cursed trying to write wittily on several occasions. 😉

R&R: Finally, I’m dying to know whether the intriguing Valentine Napier, Duke of Montgomery will be getting his own book.

Elizabeth: I hope so! I am having problems trying to figure out his heroine though. And he’s going to be one of those characters with a bit of a long arc…


Elizabeth, it has been a privilege to have you on Rakes and Rascals today and thank you so much for answering all my questions.

Thank you, Carol—it’s been fun!




(Maiden Lane, #7)

Genre: Historical Romance (Georgian)

Cover Blurb


Falsely accused of murder and mute from a near-fatal beating, Apollo Greaves, Viscount Kilbourne has escaped from Bedlam. With the Crown’s soldiers at his heels, he finds refuge in the ruins of a pleasure garden, toiling as a simple gardener. But when a vivacious young woman moves in, he’s quickly driven to distraction . . .


London’s premier actress, Lily Stump, is down on her luck when she’s forced to move into a scorched theatre with her maid and small son. But she and her tiny family aren’t the only inhabitants-a silent, hulking beast of a man also calls the charred ruins home. Yet when she catches him reading her plays, Lily realizes there’s more to this man than meets the eye.


Though scorching passion draws them together, Apollo knows that Lily is keeping secrets. When his past catches up with him, he’s forced to make a choice: his love for Lily . . . or the explosive truth that will set him free.


.  Amazon
· Barnes & Noble
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· Blackwell’s (UK)
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· IndieBound
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· BAM!
· eBooks.com
· iBooks
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· Nook




Caliban—no, Lord Kilbourne—was coming toward her and Lily wasn’t entirely certain what to do. She’d been aware of him this entire time, for his eyes seemed to burn into her back no matter where she moved in the room. It really wasn’t fair: it was he who had disappeared into thin air without so much as an explanation or word to her whether he was all right or not. And now he’d turned up at a house party of all things, still using that ridiculous name, Mr. Smith. Had he even invented an appropriate Christian name to go with Smith? A thought struck her, low and terrible. Dear God, she didn’t even know his proper Christian name! She’d let him kiss her and yet didn’t know the first thing about him. The realization made her bitter and a little unwise.

“What’s your real name?” she demanded as he made her side, and if she had to blink back wetness from her eyes, she told herself it was tears of anger.

He glanced around, presumably making sure no one could overhear him. Fortunately, Mr. Phillip Warner had moved away to flirt with his own wife and no one was within earshot.

He replied in a very low voice, “Apollo Greaves, Viscount Kilbourne.”

Apollo? Apollo? She nearly goggled.

Well, he certainly couldn’t use Apollo with Smith—what an entirely inane name. Almost as bad as Caliban when one considered it. What mother looked down at an infant son and thought, god of light? No one could live up to a name like that. Especially since he had a twin sister…

Lily’s brain stuttered to a stop and she realized simultaneously both who Apollo-the-god’s twin sister was and who Apollo-the-man’s twin sister must be.

“Your sister is Artemis Batten, the Duchess of Wakefield,” she hissed.

“Hush,” he muttered.

“Your sister’s a bloody duchess.”

“Yes?” He looked at her oddly, as if everyone had a duchess as a sister.

“Which means the duke is your brother-in-law.”

“He’s rather an ass, if that makes any difference.”

“It doesn’t,” she said decisively. “It truly doesn’t. Why are you even talking to me? I’m the blasted help.”

“You are not and you know it,” he said impatiently. “I need to talk to you. To explain—”

“I’m paid to be here,” she said with as much dignity as possible under the circumstances. “And you’re born to all this”—she waved her hand at the room, which, ill-lit though it was, still had a gold ceiling—“and more. You and I have nothing—absolutely nothing in common. I don’t know why you’re here, but I’ll thank you to stay away from me.”

She pasted a smile on her face and moved away from him as gracefully as she could. There was no need to cause a scene, just because her heart was breaking. Ridiculous, really. When he’d been a penniless workman in a garden, shabby and mute, he’d been well within her reach. Now that he was cleaned up and dazzling in his expensive clothes—that waistcoat alone must have cost more than she’d make in a half a year—he was as high above her as the sun itself.

Apollo, indeed. Perhaps his name really did fit him.



The author of the New York Times bestselling Maiden Lane series and the Legend of Four Soldiers series as well as the Prince Trilogy, Elizabeth Hoyt writes “mesmerizing” (Publishers Weekly) historical romances. She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in central Illinois with three untrained dogs, two angelic but bickering children, and one long-suffering husband. Central Illinois can be less than exciting, and Elizabeth is always more than happy to receive missives from her readers. You can write to her at: P.O. Box 17134, Urbana, IL 61873.

Connect with Elizabeth:




I will be picking THREE winners and each winner will receive a signed copy of DARLING BEAST together with a copy of Elizabeth’s contemporary romance HOT, written under her alternative name, Julia Harper .


For four years, play-by-the-rules bank teller Turner Hastings has brooded over her uncle’s wrongful imprisonment. But when two bumbling crooks stumble into her branch (barely disguised in Yoda and Sponge Bob masks) and hold up the place, she sees a chance to do something she’s never thought possible: get revenge. She takes advantage of the melee to pull a heist of her own, seizing info from a security box that will exonerate her uncle.

Sent to investigate a bank robbery in small town Wisconsin, Special Agent John MacKinnon discovers the robbers were two not-quite-so-bright thugs and one woman. Now, Turner is on the run. With SA MacKinnon on her trail, she’s breaking into the bank president Calvin’s house, kidnapping his Great Dane, and for the first time in her life, setting out to break a few rules. But when Calvin hires a hit-man, MacKinnon will have to decide between his career–and saving Turner.

The Giveaway is open Internationally and to enter just leave a comment or a question for Elizabeth. The Giveaway will run until midnight (GMT) on Sunday 9th November and I will announce the winners on Monday 10th November.


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I love Victoria Vane’s Historical Romances and I’m excited about reading her new Contemporary ‘Hot Cowboy Nights’ series.

Slow Hand

By Victoria Vane

Sourcebooks Casablanca

November 4, 2014



In rural Montana…

Wade Knowlton is a hardworking lawyer who’s torn between his small-town Montana law practice and a struggling family ranch. He’s on the brink of exhaustion from trying to save everybody and everything, when gorgeous Nicole Powell walks into his office. She’s a damsel in distress and the breath of fresh air he needs.

Even the lawyers wear boots…

Nicole Powell is a sassy Southern girl who has officially sworn off cowboys after a spate of bad seeds—until her father’s death sends her to Montana and into the arms of a man who seems too good to be true. Her instincts tell her to high tail it out of Montana, but she can’t resist a cowboy with a slow hand…

Buy Links:

Amazon | Apple | B&N | BAM | !ndigo | IndieBound



He went to work on his shirt buttons. His collar was soon wide open revealing a generous show of muscular chest that make her hands itch to rip it off him. She diverted her gaze and curled her itchy hands by her sides.

“Have no fear, cowboy,” Nikki replied in a tone meant to disguise the warm flush that had come over her. “I corralled all my wild impulses long ago.”

“Did you, now?” He still stood in doorway, head cocked. “Somehow, I think you may have missed a few strays.”

“Maybe I need to make myself clearer. I have an aversion to cocky cowboys.”

Just keep telling yourself that, Nikki. Maybe if you repeat it often enough it’ll become true.

“Is that so?” His brows flew upward. “I can’t say I ever met a woman with an actual aversion to me.”

“Don’t take it personally. It’s nothing against you in particular, but to your type.”

“And what do you think you know about my type?”

“Since I don’t have a pole handy, enough to keep you at arms-length. Besides that, this whole line of conversation is entirely inappropriate in light of professional ethics, don’t you think? You are my attorney, after all.”

“Well, darlin’,” he scratched his unshaven jaw, “there’s a little hitch to that.”

“What do you mean? You said you’d help me.”

“And I will, but you can’t engage my professional services until I know who you are.”

“I’ve told you who I am!” she insisted.

“Sweetheart, I’m a lawyer, and according to the law, your claim don’t weigh without authentication.”



“So what are you saying? That you don’t believe me?”

“I’m not saying that at all. Only that our professional relationship will commence once you get your I.D. In the interim,” His gaze slid over her in a way that threatened to melt her insides, “you’d best find yourself a nice, long, sturdy pole.”

About the Author:

Victoria Vane is a multiple award-winning romance novelist and history junkie whose collective works of fiction range from wildly comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Victoria also writes historical fiction as Emery Lee and is the founder of Goodreads Romantic Historical Fiction Lovers and the Romantic Historical Lovers book review blog.

Social Media:

Website | Facebook | @AuthorVictoriaV | Goodreads | Pinterest




Giveaway 1 – Two copies of Slow Hand (two winners, ends 11/7)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway 2 – Victoria Vane’s Cowboy Seduction Kit

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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I’m spotlighting Georgie Lee’s new book, THE COURTESAN’S BOOK OF SECRETS which is released today.



Genre: Historical Romance (Georgian)

Cover Blurb

Uncovered: a list of noblemen’s names—each one guilty of treason

To save his family legacy, Rafe Densmore must seize a courtesan’s infamous register. No one can ever know how his father betrayed his country! One person stands in Rafe’s way—the beautiful Cornelia, Comtesse de Vane.

In the card rooms of Paris, Rafe and Cornelia made an unbeatable… intimate team. Until, convinced of Rafe’s desertion, desperate Cornelia married an elderly comte. Now, returning to London an impoverished widow, she’ll do anything to possess the register.

Even if that means becoming Rafe’s partner once again….

Buy Links:




Barnes & Noble





Rafe brought his lips next to her ear, aching to slide his teeth over the tender lobe. ‘He won’t pay you.’

She turned her head, her almond-shaped eyes hooded and seductive as she peered over one smooth shoulder at him. Her lips parted, moving in a tantalising rhythm to form each whispered word. ‘He’s already agreed to pay me.’

The shock struck Rafe like cold water.

‘You met with him?’ More than one head in the audience turned and looked in their direction. He dropped his voice. ‘When?’

‘This very morning.’ Her lips, so tempting before, now chafed with the way they curled up in a triumphant smile. ‘By the end of the week, I shall have a tidy sum in my possession.’

He took her arm, the warmth of her skin beneath his fingers rattling him before he regained his focus. ‘You shouldn’t have met with him alone. It’s dangerous.’

‘As you can see, I escaped the meeting unscathed.’ She whacked his knuckles with her fan. He pulled back his hand, more annoyed by her flippant attitude than his stinging knuckles. ‘If all goes well tonight, I shall continue to prosper.’

She nodded across the theatre.

He followed her gaze to Lord Edgemont. The square-jawed man sat in his box watching them, not bothering to conceal his interest. ‘No.It’s one thing to toy with your dolt of an Earl, but not Edgemont.’

‘You needn’t bother trying to protect me. My welfare is no longer your concern.’

‘You have the register. That makes you my concern.’ He leaned in close again, trying to ignore the way the heat of her skin heightened the notes of her verbena perfume. ‘I needn’t remind you what Edgemont is capable of.’

‘Which is exactly why he deserves to suffer,’ she hissed, her calm mask sliding. ‘I want to see him squirm.’

‘I agree, but when you threaten a man like him, you make him desperate. You can’t underestimate a desperate man.’

‘Like I underestimated you?’

Rafe jerked upright, surprised by the venom in her accusation. ‘What did I do in Paris to give you such a low opinion of me?’

‘I’m sure if you think very hard, you’ll discover the source of it. For the moment, I have no need of your assistance, so leave, or I’ll make such a fuss the whole theatre will rally to my defence.’ She shifted around to face the stage, raising her glasses to watch the performance.

Rafe moved to say something, but caught the glint of more than one lorgnette turning to study them from across the theatre, including Edgemont’s. Having no desire to set society’s tongue wagging with gossip, he rose and pulled aside the curtain, leaving the curtain rings to clank against the rail as he stormed into the hallway.

Impudent wench. He hurried along the upper level of the theatre and down the main staircase, banging the banister with his fist as he descended into the nearly deserted foyer. Whatever wrong she thought he’d committed in Paris, it’d taken a stubborn hold in her mind. For the life of him, he couldn’t say what he’d done except try to help her, and this was how she chose to repay him? Dismissing him like some servant and then blaming him for her actions in France.

He stepped outside, ignoring the hackneys waiting by the kerb and letting his anger carry him towards a less respectable part of London. Cornelia would be nowhere without him. He shuddered at the memory of her and Lord Waltenham in Lord Perry’s garden and what might have happened if he hadn’t followed them. After the old man insulted her, her father probably would have wagered her away again, or sold her to some moll for a few sovereigns. She certainly wouldn’t have become a Comtesse with a generous inheritance.

Rafe halted in the middle of the pavement, ignoring the inviting calls of a doxy lounging in a doorway across the street. Despite his former misgivings about her morals, it still seemed strange a rich widow would want to dabble in blackmail, not with all those diamonds dangling from her tender ears and caressing her pretty breasts. They’d twinkled with her current good fortune, or were they there to hide the lack of one?

No matter what Cornelia might have done to him in France, if the Comte’s riches were as rickety as his legs then it was a revenge not even Rafe could have designed.

He whirled around on one heel and headed back towards the theatre. If Cornelia wore her finest baubles to distract society from any scent of money problems, it might offer his last hope to reel her in and remove his father’s name from the register.



A lifelong history buff, Georgie Lee hasn’t given up hope that she will one day inherit a title and a manor house. Until then, she fulfills her dreams of lords, ladies and a season in London through her stories. The Courtesan’s Book of Secrets is her third Harlequin Historical.

When not writing, she can be found reading non-fiction history or watching any movie with a costume and an accent.

Please visit http://www.georgie-lee.com to learn more about Georgie and her books.

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Georgie’s Blog



Georgie is kindly giving away an eBook copy of RESCUED FROM RUIN and to be eligible simply leave a comment. The Giveaway will run for one week from 1st October to midnight (GMT) on 8th October. The winner will be announced on this blog on 10th October.

During the years since Randall Cheltenhsm, Marquess of Falconridge, last saw Cecilia Thompson, he has turned into a dissolute rake. Catching sight of her now, bittersweet memories threaten to shatter his carefully constructed façade.

Although in the eyes of the ton Cecilia is a wealthy widow, in reality she has barely a penny to her name. Randall seems to offer a safe haven, but how can she trust a man who has hurt her before and who seems to have only become darker with the passing of time?


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I’m thrilled to welcome the fabulous Anna Campbell to Rakes and Rascals today to delight readers with 5 Fun Facts about her new release WHAT A DUKE DARES, the third book in the Sons of Sin series.


Hi Carol! Thanks so much for having me as your guest today on Rakes and Rascals to talk about my new release WHAT A DUKE DARES which is out in Australia and North America today and in the U.K. in late October.

I loved writing this story – Cam and Pen are characters who lived with me for a long time so I was extremely happy to give them their happy ending. And there’s something fun about writing a duke, given his role as the historical king of the beasts!

So I thought today, I’d give you five fun facts about my latest release.

Fun Fact 1

This is book three in my Sons of Sin series (the other two are SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED and A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS). My duke in the title is Camden Rothermere, the Duke of Sedgemoor. If you’ve read the other books, you know that Cam is Mr. Cool, the guy who always knows exactly what to do, the man who observes his friends love affairs with a slightly sardonic amusement. For me as both reader and writer, it’s so enjoyable to pull the rug out from under the man who thinks he’s got life sorted out and send him on a wild trip to chaos when he falls in love. For this particular author, seeing Cam battle with the unexpected power of his emotions was great fun.

Fun Fact 2

If any of you are regulars on my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/AnnaCampbellFans?ref=br_rs), you’ll notice people referring to my very dignified – well, at least he is at the start – duke as the DUDE! This stems from a horrible typo I discovered on one of my rounds of edits and which I shared because it cracked me up. Lord Hillbrook’s very haughty butler announces Cam as the Dude of Sedgemoor. I’m sure there’s a sequel on the way where Cam hangs 10 and says cowabunga every time he opens his mouth!

Fun Fact 3

Penelope Thorne, the heroine and Cam’s childhood bugbear, has spent the last nine years wandering around Europe in the company of an independent-minded aunt. Intrepid female travelers weren’t unknown in the Georgian era and the Regency so Pen’s scandalous adventures are based in fact. Women like Mary Wollstonecraft and Lady Mary Wortley Montague ranged far and wide, often through war zones. Mary Wollstonecraft, the mother of feminism, got as far as Sweden after living through the worst of the French Revolution, and Lady Mary Wortley Montague spent years in Turkey and wrote some terrifically entertaining reminiscences of her travels. A really enjoyable book about these brave, interesting women is LADIES OF THE GRAND TOUR by Brian Dolan.

Mary Wollstonecraft

Fun Fact 4

I’ve always loved the poem TARANTELLA by Hilaire Belloc (you can find it in full here: http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/tarantella/). WHAT A DUKE DARES starts out as a road trip romance (most of it is set in London high society but it begins with a trip over the Italian Alps).

When I was writing the flea-bitten hostelries where our hero and heroine are forced to find shelter, I kept remembering these lines.

Do you remember an Inn,
Do you remember an Inn?
Of the straw for the bedding,
And fleas that tease in the High Pyrenees,
And the wine that tasted of tar?

As you can imagine, Cam is used to much better accommodations! The ratty inns gave me plenty of opportunities to write snappy dialogue between my hero and heroine. Always a fun bonus!

Fun Fact 5

Sometimes it’s not what you know, it’s WHO you know! There’s a very eventful boat trip that results in scandal and a marriage of convenience. The problem is I’m not a sailor. Luckily, I have a very good friend, Australian author Helene Young (www.heleneyoung.com) who lives on a yacht. I set Helene the task of plotting the journey from Genoa to England and she came up trumps!


So let’s talk boat trips. Are you a sailor? Have you been on a long ocean voyage? If not, would you like to go on one? If so, where? I’ve got a signed print copy of WHAT A DUKE DARES for one commentor (open internationally) today so good luck!




(Sons of Sin #3)

Genre: Historical Romance (Regency)

Cover Blurb


What woman in her right mind would say no to marrying the dashing Duke of Sedgemoor? Miss Penelope Thorne, that’s who. She’s known Camden Rothermere since they were children-and she also knows she’d bring nothing but scandal to his name.

Cam can hardly believe Penelope turned down his proposal. But if she wants to run off to the Continent and set the rumor mill ablaze, he can’t stop her. Then her brother’s dying request sends him to bring home the one woman he thought he’d finally gotten over.

The only way they’ll both get back to London without their reputations in tatters is to pretend they’re married during the journey. That means kissing like they mean it and even sharing a bed-until it becomes hard to tell where the game ends and true desire begins . . .

Buy Links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/What-Duke-Dares-Anna-Campbell/dp/1455557900/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1387328558&sr=1-1-catcorr&keywords=what+a+duke+dares

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/what-a-duke-dares-anna-campbell/1117543455?ean=9781455557905

The Book Depository: http://www.bookdepository.com/What-Duke-Dares-Anna-Campbell/9781455557905



ANNA CAMPBELL has written nine multi award-winning historical romances for Grand Central Publishing and Avon HarperCollins and her work is published in sixteen languages. Anna has won numerous awards for her Regency-set stories including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice, the Booksellers Best, the Golden Quill (three times), the Heart of Excellence (twice), the Aspen Gold (twice) and the Australian Romance Readers Association’s favorite historical romance (five times). Anna is currently engaged in writing the “Sons of Sin” series, which started in 2012 with SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED and now continues with book 3, WHAT A DUKE DARES. Anna lives on the beautiful east coast of Australia where she writes full-time.

You can find Anna online at:

Website: www.annacampbell.info

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnaCampbellFans?ref=br_rs

Twitter: @AnnaCampbellOz

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/296477.Anna_Campbell


Anna,  thank you so much for taking the time out to be my guest on Rakes and Rascals and brightening our day with your fun facts about WHAT A DUKE DARES.





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(Eternity Gambit, #1)

Genre: Romantic Comedy with Paranormal Elements

Cover Blurb

Being the Devil is a job no one wants. The hours are terrible, the workload unbelievable and frankly, customer service is a nightmare. You’re blamed for everything and liability is no joke when you’re the Lord of Darkness. As a result, turnover for the position is fairly high. The current Lucifer is the seventh lucky one to lose the ultimate lottery and land the title.

Truthfully, there’s very little evil to be instigated. Free will and a bad history of twisted mythology takes care of all of it–so the guy behind the black onyx desk is generally just the unhappy Archangel left filling out paperwork and doing his best to keep the Big Boss happy. And for Lucifer, forget about dating. It’s a long, dry run, unless you’re into the women that might be into you–and frankly, the current Lucifer isn’t too turned on by ladies wearing spider web stockings and red Jell-O in their hair. Not that he blames a few of his predecessors with embracing the Goth hooker thing, but–an Angel has to be true to himself.

So when Lucifer accidentally bumps into a mortal woman who makes him rethink the wisdom of not applying for that maintenance position in Purgatory, it’s a roller coaster ride. Love can make anyone crazy. And Lucifer is determined to see if he can make it snow in Hell if it will polish up his wings enough to win the girl and get himself fired.


Buy Links:






She nodded her head slowly, not trusting her voice. It’s official. I’m the worst sales professional walking. Unprepared. I let my nerves do the talking and now I’m crushing on the man and have forgotten how to talk. Yeesh!

“I don’t usually partake in the middle of the afternoon,” he went on as if there was nothing out of the ordinary going on. “But I think today is going to be an exception.”

“May I ask, what is your business, Luke?” Jayne followed him to the bar where two black leather half couches faced each other across from a low stone cube table. She perched in the middle of one of them as he took the seat across from her.

“It’s…a little of everything,” he answered, looking down at his hands, then stood to cross over to the shelves, opening up one of the dark glass cabinets to survey the bottles. “Or a lot of everything depending on your viewpoint.”

“Well, if I had to guess, I’d say you were into weapons manufacturing or some kind of high end military technologies, am I right?”

“Why would you say that?” His expression was pure curiosity as he pulled out a bottle of port.

“Well. Black isn’t exactly the color of a toy company and no one would be this hush-hush unless they really didn’t want the public to even notice they were there.”

“Good point.”

“Not that the “Men in Black” thing doesn’t have a certain appeal,” she added shyly.

“So, is it weapons or something…scary?”

He filled two crystal glasses with tawny port and came back to join her. “I don’t make weapons, Jayne.” He held out one glass to her. “As for scary, that’s a little trickier.”

“Okay, no more guessing games.” Jayne took the delicate glass from him. “Let’s have it.”

“I’m not sure where to begin,” he admitted then took a sip from his glass.

“How about telling me what H.E. stands for?”

“Hades Enterprises.”

She blinked twice, waiting to see if he was joking. “Seriously? What do you manufacture? Brimstone?”

He smiled; that potent bone melting smile that made her hips shiver with a wicked thrill. “No. I’m afraid we don’t manufacture anything.”

“Well, before I even hear what you do, I’m telling you that you need a name change. Luke, there’s nothing positive associated with Hades. Do you have a parent corporation that’s Greek or something? Maybe they didn’t understand the cultural implications when they shifted to the States?” Jayne took a sip from her glass and was momentarily distracted by how good it was. But she set it down to do her best to hold her own.

Let’s not add alcohol to the mix of weird and wonderment I’ve got cooking.

“Jayne,” he took a deep breath and mirrored her choice by setting down his drink. “I didn’t mean to invite you back under false pretences. We’ve never worked with a public relations firm. Ever.”

“Clearly.” She nodded. “But Luke, you can’t be a corporation with that name. And the abbreviation—it’s worse. You know this, right?”

“I know, but it was a challenge to come up with anything better, Jayne. Gehenna, Inc. was taken believe it or not and there’s actually a software company that designs games called Satanic Ventures. It’s not like I can just throw a dart at a board. I thought it was fairly clever, H.E. LLc.”

Jayne leaned back against the leather cushion and tried to take in what he was saying but her brain refused to keep up. “Luke. It’s not like you’re… You are not actually…”

“Lucifer?” he prompted gently
She nodded.

“But I am.”

Game on.


Renee Bernard is an award winning and USA Today bestselling author of historical romance and recently, contemporary romantic comedy. She won RT’s Reviewer’s Choice award for “Best Debut Historical” in 2006 and never slowed down (she missed the memo). By the end of 2014, she will have fifteen books out there in the world. She has published with Simon & Schuster and Berkley as well as branching out into independent publishing, audio books and comic books. For over four years she has been the host of “The Romance Bookmark” (formerly “Canned Laughter and Coffee”), a weekly internet radio show with between 80-100K registered listeners via Readers Entertainment. From wine wrangling to stand-up comedy and public speaking, there’s nothing off the table. (No really. Nothing. Except anything involving a pole. She’s past that now.)

Renee lives in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains with her husband and daughters, and an adequate number of cats to qualify as a romance writer.

Where to find Renee:

Renee’s FB Fan Page

Renee’s Website

Renee’s Twitter



Renee is kindly giving away an ebook copy of DEVIL TO PAY. To be eligible for the Giveaway just leave a comment together with your name and email address.

The Giveaway will close at midnight (GMT) on August 19th and the winner will be announced on August 20th.

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Congratulations to you both! I have passed your email addresses to Violetta so that she can arrange for your copy of Blind Redemption to be sent.

Happy reading, ladies!


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I am spotlighting BLIND REDEMPTION, the third book in Violetta’s Rand’s exciting Viking Blind series, which is released today.


 (Blind series, #3)

Genre: Historical Romance (Viking – 11th Century)

Cover Blurb…

The past is something he’d sooner forget…

Aaron McNally hates his past. Banished for betrayal, he trades his tartan for a Norwegian title and sword to win back his honor.

She has a warrior’s heart…

It’s difficult for Kara Dalgaard to act like a lady, even when her father demands it. After the handsome Jarl Aaron McNally arrives at her home recruiting for the king’s army, she’s forced to participate in a cruel deception to humiliate him. She quickly regrets what she’s done.

However, duty comes before happiness.

Aaron wants a second chance at life—and Kara is everything he’s dreamed of. But the past always has a way of catching up.

Will Kara trust or condemn him to a life of loneliness?

Buy Links:







 No voice had ever sounded so enchanting, so potent. Could this be a walking dream? The spirit-woman turned. Christ’s blood … the last person he wished to see again … Erik’s daughter. Bright blue eyes pierced him the same way they had in the hall.

Here in the moonlight, dressed in little more than a shift, she resembled a goddess. Their gazes met. Fire fueled fire. Although he wanted to touch her, he feared what would happen. He’d never be able to stop.

“Why are you here?” she asked.

Her words pulled him out of his dark thoughts. “I have no answer,” he admitted. “Something tempted me to swim across that lake. Or someone…” For a moment the world spun slowly around Aaron. Everything he wanted stared him in the face. The peace of nightfall, trees, water, and a fiery temptress who didn’t know when to shut up.

“Tempted?” she scoffed. “Perhaps my father outwitted you again and you came here to lick your wounds in private.”

What he’d give to be able to crawl back into that lake and swim out of Kara’s life forever. There was a better chance of Odin splitting his skull in half. “Who have you been talking to, lass? The tides have turned—your father no longer opposes me. And this chance meeting has nothing to do with your sire.”

“Oh?” She looked sharply at him. “Do you think I’ve been waiting for you?”

He shook his head. “The thought never crossed my mind,” he said. “Were you?”

“No. I come here to pray.”

“It’s a beautiful spot.”

“Aye,” she agreed. “Frequented by my mother, and now me.”

“You weren’t praying when I arrived.”

“No,” she said. “I enjoy the stars almost as much as the gods.”

“Odin’s universe is vast.”

“Odin’s?” she asked. “Don’t you mean God’s?”

“Whoever created the heavens,” he quickly corrected himself. “I often find myself mystified by its beauty.”

“What else interests you, milord? War? Politics?”


She cocked her head. “Are you a negotiator for the king or a soldier?”

“My responsibilities require many skills.”

“Including intimidating my father?”

He scooted closer. “Unfortunately, milady, your father threatened me first. I am a principled man, slow to temper, but protective of my honor.”

“Why does my sire mistrust you?”

“Who am I to know your father’s mind?” She asked too many questions. Questions he wasn’t ready to answer. Maybe someday.

 “Why does your father dress you in armor and train you to fight?”

She laughed. “For the same reason you held a dagger to my brother’s throat last night. For the sake of honor.”

He looked at her more closely. Endless beauty met his gaze, but there was something different about her. A quiet confidence. And her eyes…

Warm excitement flowed through him. He gazed heavenward again. “Look.”

“A shooting star,” she said excitedly.

“An omen.”

“From your prophets or Allfather?”

Aaron rested his right hand on her arm. “Why credit anyone?”

“You prefer mystery?”

“I prefer you,” he said.

She closed her eyes and placed her tiny hand over his. “I can’t stop thinking about you.”

 It took a moment for her words to sink in. By Odin, she’d declared her feelings. Only he wished she hadn’t. Every inch of his body screamed to get closer. “I’m trying very hard to control myself.”

A smile lifted the corners of her mouth, she opened her eyes. “What if I don’t want you to?”




Violetta Rand holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Policy and a master’s degree in Environmental Management. Serving as an environmental scientist in the state of Alaska for over seven years, she enjoys the privilege of traveling to remote places few people have the opportunity to see.

Violetta has been “in love” with writing since childhood. Struck with an entrepreneurial spirit at a young age, at five, she wrote short stories illustrated by her best friend and sold them in her neighborhood. The only thing she loves more than writing is her wonderful relationship with her husband, Jeff. She enjoys outdoor activities, reading whatever she can get her hands on, music, and losing herself in the ancient worlds she enjoys bringing to life in the pages of her stories.

You can connect with Violetta on:








Violetta is kindly giving away TWO Kindle copies of BLIND REDEMPTION and you will need to have an Amazon account.  To be eligible for the Giveaway just leave a comment together with your email address.

The Giveaway will run from June 25 – July 2.




This is the third book in Violetta Rand’s Blind series and Aaron McNally’s story. I admit that when I started reading this book, I had serious doubts that Ms Rand could adequately redeem Aaron in my eyes. I don’t want to spoil Blind Mercy for those who haven’t read it, but I’ll just say that Aaron’s acts of betrayal did seem unforgivable. Well, it’s confession time, because by the end of the book, Ms Rand not only redeemed Aaron but he became my favourite hero of the series.

Believe only in those things that draw you to his breast: strength, ferocity, magnitude, bravery, loyalty, victory, honesty, passion, and love.”

Aaron’s decision to renounce Christianity and follow Odin’s laws seems to symbolise a cleansing of his soul enabling him to turn his life around.  I began to see many redemptive qualities in him…his loyalty to King Olaf; his firm but fair treatment of his men; the way he rushes to aid Kara regardless of the danger; working on the improvements to his home; wanting to honour tradition and present himself to Kara’s father as a formal suitor. Aaron fears he will always be judged by his past sins when he faces the hostility and distrust of Kara’s father, Eric the Bold.

Erik’s eyes flashed. “I’ve worked side-by-side with just about every sort of man, Jarl McNally. Criminals and saints. Pagans and Christians. Do you know what kind of man I have no tolerance for? An outcast who betrays his kinsman out of jealously and hate. Do you understand?”

Kara has the strength, determination and heart of a true Viking warrior. I could just see her wielding that sword. It’s easy to see why she resents her lack of freedom and the need to conform to her father’s expectations. Her desire for independence and adventure sometimes causes her to act recklessly…

Tomorrow? What if Erling killed her today? Kara stared heavenward. Where was the man she truly wanted? Please Odin. Send Aaron McNally to rescue me…

I enjoyed how the romance develops allowing for some heated exchanges, a moonlight kiss, a touch of jealousy, a woodland tryst, bitter condemnations, a declaration of love, a romantic poem and a special wedding.

Tyr and Rachelle (Blind Mercy) play an important role in this story and I was pleased to see the rift between Aaron and his cousin, Tyr, finally healed.  The idea of a fierce warrior like Tyr playing matchmaker made me smile and the friendship between Kara and Rachelle was a nice touch too.

Once again, Ms Rand provides fascinating glimpses of the Viking world. I loved the reference to the Norse names for the constellations and the story of how earth was created. I was also fascinated by the details of the Norse wedding.

The plot had enough intrigue and action to keep my interest…kidnapping, betrayal, a dramatic rescue, a merciless villain and a revelation about one of the characters that I definitely didn’t see coming.

BLIND REDEMPTION is another worthy and enjoyable addition to this exciting series.

REVIEW RATING: 4.5 /5 Stars

The Blind series so far (click on book covers for more details):

Blind Allegiance by Violetta Rand Blind Mercy (Blind, #2) by Violetta Rand Blind Redemption (Blind Series Book 3) by Violetta Rand

I would like to thank Violetta Rand for kindly providing me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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