Loyal and True

LOYAL & TRUE

Hearts of Caledonia, Book 1

by Laura Strickland

Genre: Historical Fantasy Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

In defiance of her father, Caledonian tribeswoman Barta leads a daring raid against invading enemy warriors. But the fight goes badly, and her beloved war hound, Loyal, is killed. Unable to imagine existing without her dearest companion, she nevertheless must return home and accept blame for her terrible blunder.

For the first time in his life, Loyal is unable to rise and follow his mistress. When he appeals to the Goddess for mercy, she grants him leave to return on one condition: it must be in the form of a man. And only if Barta recognizes him for who he truly is will he be permitted to stay.

Loyal never suspects that, as a man, his connection with Barta will deepen, becoming passionate enough to transcend nearly any change. Will Barta recognize him before he’s lost to her forever?

Why could he not rise?

He remembered the battle—he could see it all now in patterns of black and white. Violence had its own aura as did so many things in the world, a combination of sight and smell. People smelled different when angry or afraid.

He’d fought at Barta’s side as he always had and always would, and taken a number of wounds. They didn’t matter; only her welfare mattered, and his presence at her side.

For him, battle felt like a game, a violent one. So long as Barta remained with him and protected, he cared little what else happened, even to him. He existed to be with her, to protect her—nothing more.

But now she arose from the place where they’d both gone down—where he’d thrown his body in defense of hers—and he could not follow.

For the first time in his life he could not follow.

Oh, unbearable agony. For, faintly, he could still feel her, smell her tears, sense her touch. And he could feel her starting to move away from him, feel her spirit tug at his. They were bound together, always had been, by a silver cord stronger than leather and more potent than magic.

Love.

Do not leave me here, Mistress. I cannot rise. I cannot follow you.

Like hers, his spirit howled at the sky.

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Award-winning author Laura Strickland delights in time traveling to the past and searching out settings for her books, be they Historical Romance, Steampunk or something in between. Born and raised in Western New York, she’s pursued lifelong interests in lore, legend, magic and music, all reflected in her writing. Although she enjoys travel, she’s usually happiest at home not far from Lake Ontario, with her husband and her “fur” child, a rescue dog. Author of numerous Historical and Contemporary Romances, she is the creator of the Buffalo Steampunk Adventure series set in her native city. Loyal and True. Is the first book in her new historical Hearts of Caledonia series.

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Lady of Steel

LADY OF STEEL

Medieval Ladies series

by Mary Gillgannon

Genre: Historical Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

One rapturous hour sparks unforgettable passion between Lady Nicola and Fawkes de Cressy. The memory of their time together enables Fawkes to survive the horrors and perils of the Crusades and gives Nicola the hope and strength to endure a brutal marriage.

Fawkes returns to rescue the woman of his dreams and finds Nicola enmeshed in a dark web of castle intrigue. Fawkes is so altered by the hardships and cruelties of war, that Nicola fears to trust him with her secrets or her heart.

Surrounded by enemies, the battle-hardened knight and the aloof, wary woman must rebuild the bond between them. Only if they dare let the soul-stirring magic their bodies share grow into love can they escape the sinister plot that threatens to destroy them both.


The tower room seemed much too small. It was like being caged with a wild creature.

He left the table and approached her. Nicola fought the urge to draw back. He seemed to sense her apprehension, for his fierce expression softened. “I don’t want you to fear me, Nicola. Unlike some men, I don’t believe in striking women. Or children. Or anyone smaller and weaker than myself. If I were ever to feel the need the discipline you, I would choose other, more civilized means.”

Discipline her? What did that mean? His words sounded reasonable and reassuring, but there was an edge of warning there. She must find some way to convince him she wasn’t his enemy. She must make it clear she would never deal with him as she had with Mortimer.

Body rigid, her heart pounding wildly, she said, “Milord, you must understand. Mortimer was a brute. There were many times I feared for my life at his hands. Whatever you may have heard of me…” Her hands trembled as she gestured and this time she was glad he saw. “I did what I had to do to survive.” And for Simon to survive.

His expression softened. His dark eyes again flared with violent emotion. “You forget. I knew Mortimer. He tried more than once to kill me. I have no sympathy for him. None at all.”

She let out her breath. Perhaps now they could begin again, and he would stop playing this game of cat and mouse with her. She nodded. “I’m very grateful you understand. I’d worried you might have heard tales of me, stories meant to portray me as wicked and manipulative.”

He watched her intently. “Aye, I have heard tales. ’Tis good you saw fit to reassure me. Perhaps now, perhaps we can…” He let his words trail off and the atmosphere between them shifted. His dark eyes no longer seemed stern and implacable, but smoldered with frank sexual desire. The tension between them changed, erupting with blazing arousal.

Fire started in her loins and spread outward, making her skin ache for his touch. She tilted her head, awaiting his kiss.

He hesitated, as if even now he feared to take this final step and give into what his body obviously desired. Observing his forbearance, she thought for the dozenth time of how different he was from Mortimer. Mortimer had been a slave to his emotions. This man sought control at all times.

But at last he brought his lips to hers. The blaze took them both.

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Mary Gillgannon is the author of eighteen novels, including romances set in the dark age, medieval and Regency time periods. She’s been married to her real-life hero for over thirty-five years. Her two children are grown, so now she indulges her nurturing tendencies on five very spoiled cats and a moderately spoiled dog. Her day job is working at the local public library where she has the gratifying task of overseeing the adult fiction collection. Besides writing, she enjoys gardening (a serious challenge in Wyoming) reading, and travel.

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The Dolan Girls

THE DOLAN GIRLS

by S.R. Mallery

Genre: Western Romance

The Dolan Girls by S. R. Mallery has it all. Set in Nebraska during the 1800s, whorehouse madams, ladies of the night, a schoolmarm, a Pinkerton detective, a Shakespeare-quoting old coot, brutal outlaws, and a horse-wrangler fill out the cast of characters. Added to the mix are colorful descriptions of an 1856 land rush, Buffalo Bill and his Wild West Show, Annie Oakley, bank/train robberies, small town local politics, and of course, romance. Two, in fact!

…The two sisters shifted into their usual standoff poses: Cora annoyed, self-righteous, her hands on her hips; Minnie, wiry, know-it-all, breathing hard.

Just then, one of their ladies entered. “Mrs. Cora, Miss Minnie, there’s a problem out on the floor.”

Cora sighed. “What now, Marlena?”

The soiled dove gulped before answering. “One of our customers, the old geezer one, is having a fit. Gettin’ real ornery, too.”

In recognition of a regular happenstance, the two sisters looked at each other and grimaced.

“Need any help?” Minnie asked Cora as she stood up.

“Nope, I have it under control. Thanks, Sis,” Cora replied and headed out the door, Ellie and her homecoming temporarily forgotten.

Out in the main parlor, the girls had already formed a wide circle around old Pete. Corsets, bustles, crinolines, pantaloons, and camisoles intermingled with a whiskey-stained suit, a grimy vest, and mud-caked boots. He was no match for them. As they gleefully shoved and tickled him, his fury rose with each breath, while his face ripened into the color of raw meat. Finally, when he could take it no longer, he sputtered, “She-devils!” which produced gales of laughter.

“Ladies, ladies. Enough. Leave the man alone,” Cora said, placing a concerned arm around the smelly habitué. “There, there, Pete. They meant you no harm.”

As Mercutio proclaimed in Romeo and Juliet, …’tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church door, but ‘tis enough, ‘twill serve. Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man. All I wanted was a little love, Cora. I swear it!” He sniffled pathetically as the girls giggled.

With a dirty glance aimed at the group’s ringleader, Charity, Cora turned back to Pete. “You did produce some money, right, love?”

He looked down.

“Now, Pete, you know the rules.”

“I just wanted a little love. As Henry David Thoreau said, There is no remedy for love but to love more. He also said…”

“Now, Pete, enough about Thoreau,” she interrupted, gently angling him toward the door. As soon as he left with a snort and an “After all we’ve been through together,” Cora shook her head and turned back to face her employees.

“Ladies, she said, “some women in this town may look down on us, but I do have my standards. Gentility is most important, above all else. I thought I had made myself perfectly clear.”

A few head nods and corset scratching was all she got before Marlena stepped forward. “Ah, Mrs. Cora?”

Placing one hand on her hip, Cora sighed. “Now what?”

“He was full as a tick, that one was. He almost fell down twice.”

Cora squinted her eyes, assessing her new employee. “I don’t care how drunk he was. He, Miss Minnie, and I go way back.”

“But you tossed out a feller from Fanny’s bed just the other night. I reckon he wasn’t half as likkered up as that ol’ coot.”

Cora frowned. “I could tell the man with Fanny was going to be big trouble.”

“Yes, zat one very, very scared me,” Suzette, the resident French girl affirmed. “I zink Mrs. Cora maybe saved Fanny’s life.”

“Trust Mrs. Cora,” Rosie interjected. “She’ll always watch your back, or at least your backside!” There was an explosion of laughter.

“All right, all right. Get a wiggle on, ladies,” Cora continued, her eyes sweeping over them. “I heard a group of cowboys are ridin’ through town, maybe even this afternoon. Now, go, go!”

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1) “At times rollicking, at times poignant, but always authentic, well- researched and a beautifully told story.”

2)“A compelling read, perfect amount of romance, with a wonderful ending. With Mallery’s warm writing style, you will be immersed in cast, time, and place.”

3)“S.R. Mallery’s words thunder off the page like a cattle stampede… her sharply written characters demonstrate that truly it was WOMEN who tamed the American West.”

4)“It’s a rip-roaring, nail-biting, heart-throbbing ride…my Stetson is off to S.R. Mallery, five stars all the way.”

5)”What a marvellous story… A well-researched book of historical value for this reader–entertaining and very warmly written. Highly recommended.”

6)“Mallery has done it again. THE DOLAN GIRLS leads you on a trip that is sometimes painful and sometimes loving. You are taken from innocence to womanhood. From love to heartbreak… Definitely 5-stars!”

7) “As a history buff, I just loved this whoppin’ good tale set in the old west…From the first word to the last, the pages couldn’t fly fast enough. Highly recommended!”

8)“S. R. Mallery gives us a colourful view of America’s wild west of the 1800’s… The characters are endearing and the action is fast paced … Looking forward to more from this talented writer.”

9)“If you’re a fan of the old west, strong women, and enjoy a great read, this book is for you. Recommend highly!”

10)“The Dolan Girls is simply a wonderful book. It brings the West alive in a way that is not only historically interesting, but one can’t help but become fascinated with how the story is going to play out.”

11) “S.R. Mallery knows how to write historical fiction in a way that hooks the reader…”

12) “I loved The Dolan Girls. It was easy to get interested in from the start. I recommend that anyone wanting a good read of a clean historical western romance give this book a try.”

Let’s face it. S. R. Mallery is as eclectic as her characters. Starting out as a classical/pop singer/composer, she next explored the fast-paced world of advertising as a production artist while she simultaneously dipped her toe into the Zen biosphere as a calligrapher. Having started a family and wanting to work from the home, she moved on to having a long career as an award-winning quilt artist and an ESL/Reading instructor before settling on her true love––writing. Her short stories have been published in descant 2008, Snowy Egret, Transcendent Visions, The Storyteller, and Down In the Dirt. Her quilt articles have appeared in Quilt World and Traditional Quilt Works.

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Let’s face it. S. R. Mallery is as eclectic as her characters. Starting out as a classical/pop singer/composer, she next explored the fast-paced world of advertising as a production artist while she simultaneously dipped her toe into the Zen biosphere as a calligrapher. Having started a family and wanting to work from the home, she moved on to having a long career as an award-winning quilt artist and an ESL/Reading instructor before settling on her true love––writing. Her short stories have been published in descant 2008, Snowy Egret, Transcendent Visions, The Storyteller, and Down In the Dirt. Her quilt articles have appeared in Quilt World and Traditional Quilt Works.

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A Highland Moon Enchantment

A HIGHLAND MOON ENCHANTMENT

A Tale from the Order of the Dragon Knights

by Mary Morgan

Genre: Scottish Historical Paranormal Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Irish warrior, Desmond O’Quinlan has never surrendered his heart to any woman. He has no wish to have his soul tortured by love. Yet, the moment he locks gazes with Ailsa, his fate is destined for an adventure he never fathomed. He may have battled alongside a Dragon Knight, but his greatest challenge will come from within his own heart.

Ailsa MacDuff, a warrior among her clan, has no desire to have a man chain her to a life of obedience. However, that is before she meets Desmond. The temptation to allow this warrior inside her heart is a risk she dares to take, but one that could lead to a future of emptiness and sorrow.

When betrayal looms from within, the battleground of love is no match for these two warriors. Can the power of a Highland full moon be strong enough to unite or destroy them?

His mind screamed to stay rooted in his chair, but his body betrayed him. Standing, he reached for her hand. “I will escort ye to your chamber.”

She eyed him with curiosity and stood. “Nae. Take me to the north wall. I hear the view of the loch is one that steals the breath from your lungs.”

“Done.” When her fingers slipped into his, Desmond fought the urge to crush her to his chest.

Placing her soft hand in the crook of his arm, he led her quickly out of the hall and up the stairs. Bending to the left, he took her along a corridor and up a narrow circular pathway. The torches flickered as he approached the door leading to the north wall.

A cold draft blew by them, and she shivered. Instantly, regret filled him realizing he had not considered to bring a cloak for her.

Desmond paused by the door. “Ye should not venture out into the biting cold without a cloak.”

Her eyes narrowed. “I simply wish to capture a quick look, not spend the night sleeping out there.”

Shaking his head, he pushed open the massive oak door. Brittle air slapped at his face while they made their way up along the wall.

“’Tis cold,” she muttered, but chuckled softly and hugged his arm. “But ye are warm.”

“We shall not tarry long,” he assured her and placed a warm hand over hers.

“Oh, sweet Goddess. Look at the moon, Desmond. Her light shimmers over the water. I have now witnessed the charm of the loch in sunlight and moonlight. Though our rivers are stunning on their own, they cannae rival this view. As I have told ye, our island is shrouded in mists, so ye cannae see verra far out into the sea.”

Desmond’s focus was not on the moon, but the beauty standing beside him. To take what he dared not possess. He marveled at her delight of the striking scene.

Ailsa turned toward him. “Thank ye, Desmond, truly.”

Her nearness was overpowering, seducing him in a way he had never known. Desmond cupped her chin. Her eyes widened, and her lips parted in invitation. Moonlight and lust danced within her eyes. No longer did he battle with his mind and body, and he slowly lowered his head.

And under the silent whisper of a full moon, Desmond captured her soft lips within his own. He could taste her sweetness mixed with the wine, and desire shot through his veins. His hands shook as he placed them securely on her waist. As he deepened the kiss, she placed her hands around his neck. Desmond groaned, crushing her body against him.

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Order of the Dragon Knights: The Complete Series

Dare to journey with the Dragon Knights of Scotland!

They were an ancient order descended from the great Tuatha De Danann, a tribe from the Goddess Danu. Half human and half fae, each blessed with mystical powers. They were also given holy relics and guardianship over the dragons.

With the dawn of Christianity, the dragons were systematically hunted down and slain leaving only one. The Dragon Knights took her from Ireland to a land across the sea, settling in the Great Glen near Urquhart. The clan was known as the MacKay clan, descendants from the MacAoidh.

Yet, there were those who deemed the Order had too much power, and they tried to possess it for themselves. They were evil and twisted, and their plan succeeded one fateful night. A battle was fought and their sister was killed.

The Clan Mackay is no longer.

The Dragon Knights scattered across the land.

Yet out of the darkness, they will each fight for redemption.

Scottish paranormal romance author, Mary Morgan resides in Northern California, with her own knight in shining armor. However, during her travels to Scotland, England, and Ireland, she left a part of her soul in one of these countries and vows to return.

Mary’s passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn’t until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling–writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories.

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Birthday Bash – Romance

Magic of Books Promotions hosted its first tour during the month of November three years ago.

The company was created from the passion and desire of its owner, Tami Adams, because of her experiences as an author. From her struggles to have her books viewed and appreciated she knew there had to be another way.

Three years later Tami no longer writes but is determined to show the world the magic that lies within the pages of all books.

The following authors are helping Magic of Books to celebrate its birthday. Enjoy.

Message from Tami:

The last three years have been an incredible journey. I’ve made so many friends who began as bloggers, readers, and authors. I have been privileged to present and showcase new and old books from seasoned and new authors. I’ve learned so much I didn’t even realize I should know prior to getting into this business. And after three years I can honestly say I’m still learning, I’m still growing, and I’m still making friends. I love and appreciate all of you who have supported my little slice of heaven. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

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ROMANCE

Romance in traditional literary terms is a narration of the extraordinary exploits of heroes, often in exotic or mysterious settings. The term romance has also been used for stories of mysterious adventures, not necessarily of heroes. These adventure romances usually are set in distant places.

Please enjoy these books that focus on romance and all the sub-genres. The list is available in alphabetically order by title.

Don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter.

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Season of Seduction by Multiple Authors

Romance. Winter/Christmas theme (multi genre romance (contemporary and PNR))

Ring in the holidays this year with this collection of steamy to sexy scintillating reads from today’s hottest bestselling authors. Whether you’re looking for a romance by the warm glow of the fireplace or a passionate romp on a bear skin rug, there is something for all readers, for every taste, desire, and whim.

Come and join us, won’t you? This is sure to be a Season… of Seduction.

Silver Bells by Jacquie Biggar

Contemporary Holiday Romance

Will a Christmas wish give a lonely author a family?

Mystery writer, Joel Carpenter, has no time for romance. He has a deadline to meet, and too many skeletons in his closet to trust the slightly spinny artist renting his house.

Christy Taylor has her hands full dealing with an ailing business and a diabetic daughter, she doesn’t need the temptation that is her landlord, Joel Carpenter.

Can a Christmas wish bring two stubborn souls together and give a little girl the gift she wants most?

Sultry Nights by Multiple Authors

Contemporary Romance

Love, passion, romance and desire… No matter what your preference, this set of 22 hot and sexy reads has just what you need. From surprise love affairs to bad boys that we can’t help but fall for, and couples that were meant to be, this compilation from Romance Collections is sure to please your every single need.

Sunshine & Lightning by Grace Harper

Romance

The six stories are set in the fictional town of Jackson’s Bay that only comes alive once a year. Ipris Magazine has its gala ball at the Imperial Estate on top of the cliffs, and this year they are celebrating 140 years of publication.

The town is basking in an usually long heat wave. Clothes are coming off, and inhibitions are being lost. We follow twenty-two people throughout the week leading up to the party. Secrets, revelations, ambitions and desires will come to the forefront. Will the men and women overcome inhibitions, stigma and blackmailers by the time they attend the Gala celebrations that will have over a thousand people in attendance?

Sunshine and Lightning is the first of six books.

Karl Spencer walked out on Rebecca Patterson ten years ago and has regretted it ever since. There wasn’t a week that passed by that he didn’t regret running away from her that night. Karl spent a lot of time hating himself for not fighting for their relationship.

Rebecca used her broken heart to fuel her determination to achieve her career goal, Editor-in-Chief of Ipris Magazine. She ignores that she had never had a relationship last more than three months. An enforced week off lands her in Jackson’s Bay at the same time as Karl Spencer.

No matter what, Karl is determined to find out if she still feels anything for him.

Will Karl win Rebecca back?

Unchained Melody by R.E. Hargrave

Military Romance (contemporary)

Marshall Chandler is a true American who grew up wanting nothing more than to serve his country to the best of his ability, by becoming a fighter pilot in the United States Air Force. On the eve of his first assignment, he meets the woman that will haunt his dreams and change his life.

A single night to connect, but a decade to realize it… when one man is torn between the love of his country and what might have been the love of his life, how does he stay sane? How does he cope? And will he ever get a second chance at love?

Sometimes fate works in mysterious ways.

(Available in Kindle Unlimited and on Audio via Amazon, Audible, & iTunes)

Unwrapping Noel by Jennifer Theriot

Romance / Short Story

**2017 Reader’s Favorite Gold Medal Winner: Fiction/Short Story-Novella**

Noel Calabrese hates the holidays as much as she hates her life. Overweight, insecure and heartbroken, she retreats into a world of misery.

While in the Silicon Valley on a business trip, she meets Leon Hallas. Could he be her ticket to happiness? Can she learn to trust men again? Are second chances at happiness even remotely possible?

Unwrap this steamy little contemporary romance, complete with a palindrome about second chances, discovering self-worth and watch as the sexy silver fox falls for the full figured beauty just in time for the holidays. Is Leon Hallas Mr. Right and will he and Noel find their happy ever after?

This short story contains adult language and situations, and is intended for readers over the age of 18.

Winning Cait by Zoë Mullins

Romance (Contemporary Romance)

After more than a decade, Cait has returned home to St. Augustin and the Dom she left behind. A pampered sub, now widowed, Cait has adjusted to making decisions for herself for the first time in years. With some help from her friends, she’s begun a new life.

Then Jackson walks into her studio it’s as if their years apart never happened – as if she hadn’t left him for his best friend. He never stopped loving her and he’s not going to give up this time. He’s determined to win her back, not only as his sub but as his wife.

(Reader Advisory: Grab a glass of wine, and put the kids to bed. This story has one hot Dom and a sub willing to make up for lost time. Graphic sexual language and scenes are to be expected.)

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Missing My Heart

Title: Missing My Heart
Author: Tina Susedik         
Genre: Historical Romance/Mystery
Blurb:
Time: 1975. Place: Bourbonville
After the death of the grandmother Ellie Farrell had lived with since she was sixteen, she is tasked with the job of cleaning out the over-packed house. When Ellie begins to find love notes and money from a Burt to Randi spanning over four decades, she sets out to find out who these people are and what they have to do with her. An unexpected check for $100,000 dollars delivered to her house, ramps up the mystery – especially when death threats begin to arrive.
Patton Trullinger, an investigative reporter, comes to Chandler County to research bootleggers for a book he’s contracted for. As a Vietnam veteran, he’s dealing with PTSD. When he meets Ellie, he finds her mystery too good to pass up.
Who are Burt and Randi? Who is sending death threats? Will Ellie and Patton’s love bloom as the mystery deepens?
As a child, Tina Susedik always had stories floating around in her head, but had no idea those stories could be put down in book form as writing stories wasn’t taught in her classes. One day her brother (yes, her brother) introduced her to Kathleen Woodiwiss’ The Flame and the Flower. Tina was hooked and a love of reading, and eventually writing romance, began. Besides her romances, she is also a non-fiction writer with seven history books in print. She also has written and published two children’s books. She also writes under a pen name.
Tina has been married for forty-four years and lives in Northwestern Wisconsin. She has two children and five grandchildren. After careers in accounting and teaching (not necessarily at the same time), she found her career in writing is what fulfills her the most. When not writing, she loves camping, hiking, photography, reading, and playing with her five grandchildren.
She is a member of Romance Writers of America, Wisconsin Romance Writers of America, Sisters in Crime
Author Links:
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The Lady and Mr. Jones

THE LADY AND MR. JONES

A Spy in the Ton series, Book 4

by Alyssa Alexander

Genre: Historical Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Entangled Publishing

She can never be his…

Born in the rookeries, the hard life is something Jones is all too familiar with. Saved as a young boy, he was trained to be a spy, one of the best–elite, in fact. He now spends his days serving His Majesty in espionage, hunting rogue spies. His latest assignment, though, has him tracking a fellow spy…

Cat Ashdown is a baroness. Nothing is more important than protecting five hundred years of heritage. She knows every detail of every estate that commands the largest income in Britain— yet her father placed her inheritance in trust to her uncle who is forcing her to marry a man she has no desire for. The baroness’s battle against law and convention leads her to Jones and results that are surprising … and possibly unwanted.

“Are we finished under the desk? I would like to stand, please. My legs are aching.”

There was a dry humor to her words, and he wondered if she were amused by their situation.

Certainly the two of them hiding beneath a desk, one after the other in order to avoid discovery, would be comical to witness.

“It’s probably safe.” Etiquette warred with protection in his mind, as he debated allowing her to leave the cubbyhole in advance as a lady should, or leaving before to ensure her safety.

She did not wait for his direction. She solved the dilemma by shifting to her hands and knees amid the swish of linen.

“This is so odd,” the baroness muttered as she crawled from beneath the desk. Her nightshift caught beneath her knees and she wrestled to free the fabric. He was treated to the most delightful pulling and stretching of thin linen over her bottom. “It’s also embarrassing,” she finished.

“I’m finding the view enjoyable.” The words fell from his lips before he could stop them. It was the most ungentlemanly comment he could make. Surely she would see, with a single statement, that he was nothing but a boy from the streets.

“I beg your pardon?” On her hands and knees, the baroness turned to look over her shoulder at him. She narrowed her eyes, but did not move. That lovely bottom stayed in front of him. Taunting him.

“My apologies, my lady.”

She scooted out from beneath the desk, movements quick and sharp.

“My words were inexcusable.” He did not look anywhere but into her eyes as he crawled from beneath the desk, refusing to allow his gaze to stray to any other part of her anatomy. He hoped it would put her at ease and make him feel less like a clod.

“It was.” But she did not sound panicked or prudish, only drew in a long breath and let it out again. “You should not say such things.”

“No, my lady.” But time mattered, so he unfolded himself to his full standing height, leaving her sitting on the study floor and looking up at him. She hesitated, then began to struggle to her feet.

“Please, allow me.” He spoke softly, holding out a hand and hoping she would not be so disappointed by his lack of finesse as to refuse his offer of assistance.

She stared at his hand with an expression he could not read. He looked down, expecting to see something frightening or strange attached to him, but he saw only his hand, gloveless to ease his search. It was not smooth or elegant as a man of her station’s would be, but wide, with blunt fingers and calluses.

Still, she set her hand in his and let him assist her to stand. Soft and smooth skin moved against his hand with none of the roughness marking his own flesh.

He wondered if she could feel his base birth through his very skin.

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The Smuggler Wore Silk

“He went looking for a traitor. He found a wife.”

A thrilling, seductive adventure from award-winning author Alyssa Alexander…

After he is betrayed by one of his own, British spy Julian Travers, Earl of Langford, refuses to retire without a fight, vowing to find the traitor. But when the trail leads to his childhood home, Julian is forced to return to a place he swore he’d never see again, and meet a woman who may be his quarry—in more ways than one.

Though she may appear a poor young woman dependant on charity, Grace Hannah’s private life is far more interesting. By night, she finds friendship and freedom as a member of a smuggling ring. But when the handsome Julian arrives, she finds her façade slipping, and she is soon compromised, as well as intrigued.

As she and Julian continue the hunt, Grace finds herself falling in love with the man behind the spy. Yet Julian’s past holds a dark secret. And when he must make a choice between love and espionage, that secret may tear them apart.

In Bed with a Spy

Revenge has never been so seductive.

When her husband is killed at Waterloo, Lilias Fairchild takes up his cavalry sword and boldly storms the front, earning herself the nickname Angel of Vengeance. But there is another angel on the battlefield who is just as single-minded, and just as ruthless…

Alastair Whitmore, the Marquess of Angelstone, is a British spy. Code name: Angel. Still haunted by a first love felled by assassins, his mission draws him to Waterloo, where he is captivated by a beautiful and mysterious woman fighting amongst the men—a woman who becomes his most intoxicating memory of war.

Passion has never been so dangerous.

Two years later, Lilias and Angelstone lock eyes in a crowded ballroom and the memory returns in an exhilarating rush. The history they share, and hide from the world, is as impossible to ignore as the heat of their attraction. But it’s that very connection that spells doom for their scandalous affair. When someone from the shadows of their past proves a dire threat to their lives, passion might not be enough to save them.

A Dance with Seduction

She was the only code he couldn’t break…

Vivienne La Fleur is one of London’s most sought after opera dancers and one of England’s best weapons: the spy known as the Flower. When a French agent pressures her to change allegiance by abducting her sister, Vivienne is forced to seek the help of the only man in London who doesn’t want her.

Maximilian Westwood, retired code breaker, doesn’t like surprises or mysteries and the Flower is both. When she sneaks into his study in the middle of the night with a coded message, he’s ready to push her out whatever window she arrived through. Except Maximilian is unable to turn away a woman in trouble. Determined to rescue Vivienne’s sister, they engage in a game of cat and mouse with French spies that requires all of Vivienne’s training and Maximilian’s abilities. Bound together by secrecy, they discover there is more between them than politics and hidden codes, but love has no place among the secrets of espionage…

Despite being a native Michigander, Alyssa Alexander is pretty certain she belongs somewhere sunny. And tropical. Where drinks are served with little paper umbrellas. But until she moves to those white sandy beaches, she survives the cold Michigan winters by penning romance novels that always include a bit of adventure. She lives with her own set of heroes, aka an ever-patient husband who doesn’t mind using a laundry basket for a closet, and a small boy who wears a knight in a shining armor costume for such tasks as scrubbing potatoes.

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