Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Come on by for some giveaways!!

I am doing a couple visits to other blogs this week!  First, Kat from Forever Book Lover graciously interviewed me for her In the Spotlight post today.  I have a $10 gift card giveaway over there so stop on by and say hello!

And tomorrow (March 1st) I will be on Elise Rome's website for the start of her fabulous March Madness Blog Party!  31 historical romance authors, 31 contemporary, 31 paranormal and also 31 indie authors!!  Plus a Readers & Bloggers page, where I will be :)  I will be giving away a copy of Sarah MacLean's A Rogue By Any Other Name so please stop by and leave a comment to be entered there as well!

Hope to see you there!

Edited:  The Elise Rome giveaway has ended but the gift card giveaway is good until Tuesday! :)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Happy Release Day!!

Here are some of the wonderful books out today!  Enjoy :)

When a Scot Loves a Lady (Falcon Club, #1)The Husband Hunt (Madison Sisters, #3)The Tattooed Duke (The Writing Girl Romance, #3)

Between the Duke and the Deep Blue Sea (Royal Entourage, #1)A Rogue By Any Other Name (The Rules of Scoundrels, #1)Blame It on Bath (The Truth About the Duke, #2)

I have had the pleasure of reading four out of this six and really enjoyed them all and I will be picking up When A Scot Loves A Lady and The Husband Hunt today to add to my collection!  And I have my signed copy of A Rogue By Any Other Name on its way from Sarah MacLean's local indie store, yay!!

Touch of a Rogue (Touch of Seduction, #2)Lessons in Loving A Laird

 These two titles are also going on to read list.  I have received an ARC of Touch of a Rogue so I am anxious to see how I like it since it does have a touch of paranormal, which I usually stay clear of.  And I am slowing building my own Highlander collection to read someday in the not to distant future.

Which books are you most looking forward to reading today?  If nothing has caught your eye (and I find that hard to believe!) we can expect some new releases in just a week from Jade Lee, Madeline Hunter and Renee Bernard.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Lord Midnight by Donna Cummings

Marisa Dunsmore is on her way to her betrothed's home, Lord Westbrook,  to get better acquainted with him and she is in deep despair over the forced union but has been blackmailed by her father into the marriage to protect her loving aunt.  She is praying for any sort of distraction to force the engagement to end when her carriage is suddenly stopped by a highwayman!  Marisa believes her prayers have been answered, especially when a deep attraction between herself and the mysterious highwayman is ignited.  But as she and her brother are allowed to continue unharmed, but minus some valuable jewels, Marisa begins to feel the despair creep back in.   However, the highwayman recognizes the crest on the carriage and a plan begins to form in his mind.

Gabriel DeVault has a very personal, deep reason for wanting to extract vengeance against the current Lord Westbrook.   When he learns that the beautiful angel, Marisa, is his uncle's intended he decides to seduce her as nothing would devastate his uncle more than not having a pure, young wife to bear his heirs.  But a few mysterious meetings in her bedroom, where he only goes by Lord Midnight, cause him to alter his feelings as he knows he can not deceive Marisa in that fashion.  As Marisa pleads for Lord Midnight to help her escape this betrothal, he come up with a radical plan that Marisa is at first overcome with joy about but as Gabriel's truth about his past finally comes to light, the happiness of this couple is at a breaking point.

Overall, this was a well written, enjoyable story.  I did feel parts were a bit hard to imagine (Gabriel hides under the bed covers at one point when Lord Westbrook checks in on Marisa) but even with that, the characters were enchanting.  I really liked Marisa who is bold and clever but at the same time sweet and innocent.  Gabriel had his life turned upside down when his parents died and he ended up being raised by a Scottish man and you can feel his anger and need for revenge but can really see him wrestle with his feelings for Marissa and how he can accomplish both goals without compromising either thing.  His relationship with his crew of bandits was enjoyable and added some nice secondary characters.  Marisa has a difficult relationship with her father and I do wish we had seen more of a reason why but she does have a close relationship with one of her brothers that gets put to the test and I found the resolution to their differences well done.  And our villain, Lord Westbrook, is one of the ones that you feel for and want for him to turn good but in the end, he has his own justice for his behavior.  Again, a very enjoyable story and sexy romance despite a few bumps for me.  I am eager for more from Donna Cummings!  Recommended for fans of mysterious highwayman who have a decent heart who falls for a beautiful angel that he will do anything for and whom the angel will also do anything for the highwayman even without knowing the whole truth.  A wonderful romance with touches of despair, craziness, humor and passion!

I received a copy of this ebook from the author, thanks!

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Runaway Countess by Leigh LaValle

Mazie Chetwyn has gone and gotten herself captured.  She is not innocent of the crime of thievery brought against her but as she she has a connection to the mysterious Midnight Rider, she is not sent straight to the gaols.  However, she refuses to divulge any clues as the whereabouts of the notorious highwayman as she has a close, personal connection to the man.  Mazie also believes that they are just correcting the wrongs inflicted upon the tenants of the Earl of  Radford.  Unfortunately, the Earl does not quite see it that way.

Trent Chadwick, Earl of Radford and Lord Lieutenant of Nottinghamsire, believes in the law and to enforce it as such.  There is no grey area, just black and white.  He is stunned by Mazie's accusations against his fathers treatments of the tenants but she is able to plant the seed of suspicion just enough that he starts to notice some clues that eventually reveal a painful secret.  But when the truth of Mazie's past also comes to light, he is forced to alter his plans.  Even as the attraction burns between Trent and Mazie, Mazie can not fully trust Trent with the secret of the Midnight Rider.  Will she follow her heart and be able to trust Trent or will her pride cost her a chance at pure happiness finally after years of disappointment?

Another debut and yet another winner in my book!  Leigh LaValle has delivered an intriguing twist on the 'Robin Hood' tale with The Runaway Countess.  It grabs you from the first page and for the most part, never lets go.  It starts out strong but the middle was a bit slow for me--I just wanted Mazie to tell the truth finally or for the Midnight Rider to return...something...but then the action quickly picks back up and I was engrossed with the book until the end.  Watching the smoldering attraction between the couple...phew!  But underneath the passion you can see the love growing...albeit a bit reluctantly on both sides.  I enjoyed watching Trent come to grips with his father's deception as it wars greatly with Trent's sense of justice.  I do wish Mazie could have trusted Trent with the truth before she did but I really felt the situation as a whole was resolved very well.  The banter and barbs between Mazie and Trent add in just a touch of humor which is always appreciated!  The secondary characters add a nice layer without overshadowing the main story (I do hope Trent's sister Cat is going to have a story though!).  Overall, a fantastic debut and another author to add to my must-buy list!  For an exciting retelling of Robin Hood, mixed with humor and a generous amount of steaminess and action, please grab The Runaway Countess and settle in for a delicious treat!  4 stars

I received a copy of the ebook from the author, thanks!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

New Covers

A few new covers to admire!

Sigh, I love Courtney Milan and she released all her upcoming covers in her Brothers Sinisters series which is to start with the novella, The Governess Affair, out sometime in spring.  There is more infor here about the entire series and I know I am eagerly looking forward to each one!!  Crossing my fingers she is able to get them all out this year :)  Ok, I will admit I am a little on the fence about the orange cover though...I mean did they really have that bright of orange then?  This is an updated cover than the first one that was out and I kind of liked the other one better.  But I really like the three full length novel covers!  Lovely dresses worn by strong women!

This next cover is from a new to me author and is the start of a new series called Wylder Sisters.  Isabella Bradford is a pseudonym for Susan Holloway Scott whose name I am not familiar with either.  But, When You Wish Upon a Duke sounds like it is going to be good!  (Three Wylder sisters--unruly county girls whose passion for life leaves their  London suitors breathless).  I really like this cover as well--lovely dress and I love the addition of the fan.  Look for this title July 31st. 

Oh, Sherry Thomas. You have some gorgeous covers for your upcoming trilogy this year.  Love them all. Tempting the Bride is the third book in the Fitzhugh Trilogy and I am anxious to read them all.  This one releases in October.  

I know, I know--you are wondering why there is a contemporary cover on here?  I read mainly historical romance but there are still a few contemporary authors on my auto buy list and one is Toni Blake.  She revealed her new cover this week and it is lovely.  I am a cat person so I love the cat on the cover and I know cats are always a part of her Destiny series.  Look for Willow Springs June 26th...just in time for a nice summer day!

Well, another passel of lovely covers!  Don't you wonder how the art departments come up with all these gorgeous covers?  What a fun job!  Too bad I am very un-creative, lol!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Tatooed Duke by Maya Rodale

Eliza Fielding knows her writing career will be over if she can not deliver a scandalous story.  So when the globe-trotting Duke of Wycliff finally returns home after his fathers death--and no one wants to work for a Wicked Wycliff-- she knows she has found her story.  She just needs to go undercover as a maid and find out some delicious secrets.  Eliza easily lands a job but soon finds the work tedious and her subject oh so distracting.  She quickly learns a few interesting titbits to feed London's society and she is beyond pleased to finally have a successful column, The Tattooed Duke.  But as her feelings start to grow, she is torn between getting the story and helping Sebastian gain his proper footing in society.

Sebastian, Duke of Wycliff, wants nothing more to come home from him travels, get his ducal affairs in order and gather the funds necessary to pursue his dream--discovering Timbuktu.  He is aggravated when he learns the estate is broke and he can not quite get his sassy housemaid out of his mind.  When The Tattooed Duke brings even more problems upon him, he is determined to find out who the snitch is and while his mind keeps going to Eliza, he dismisses her many times.  However, the truth is soon revealed and deep secret of Eliza's is brought to light as well that will threaten this couples happiness.

This is the third book in Maya Rodale's Writing Girls series and I felt it could be read as a standalone.  Yes, the previous characters are present and you see a bit of their futures but not anything major is missed.  I was drawn to this book first because I have read the previous and enjoyed them but also the interesting title and I like the undercover maid storyline :)  I really enjoyed Sebastian...and not just because of his tattoos.  He doesn't want to be a duke, he just wants to go out and explore the world and make his impact through that.  He is instantly attracted to Eliza but beyond a few stolen kisses and one very steamy encounter, our couple is forced to stay apart.  That part was a bit of a bummer--there is no major action until the very, very end.  Boo.  Eliza is smart and spunky, but her role as a maid forces her to act less smart and then she has to deal with her guilty conscience.  Yes, I felt Sebastian should have followed through with his gut feeling about Eliza being the writer sooner than he did but the fun cat and mouse type game they play with each other at the end was a delight.  Overall, another wonderful addition to the Writing Girl series and I am very anxious for Annabelle to finally have her story!  If you enjoy a hero and heroine who are a bit different than many books out there and have a smoldering attraction with a bit of mystery, deceit, and smartness mixed in, this is one delicious book to read!  4 stars

I received an eARC from the publisher via edelweiss.

The Writing Girls
A Groom of One's Own (The Writing Girl Romance, #1)A Tale of Two Lovers (The Writing Girl Romance, #2)

Seducing Mr Knightly Nov 2012 (Title and release date subject to change)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Brooding Beauty by Jillian Eaton

I really enjoyed the premise of this story--a couple at odds with each other within their marriage.  Lady Catherine married her ideal man at eighteen, Marcus, Duke of Kensington to enjoy a few blissful months together and then he heads off to America to increase his fortune.  Well, this upsets Catherine and she decides to stay in London and attend balls and whatnot and enjoy life even though her husband all but deserted her.  Upon arriving home, Marcus hears rumors of infidelity and it infuriates him and the couple become distant and sharp with each other--just passing each other in society a few times a year.  Catherine finally decides a divorce is in order and naturally Marcus says no as that is just not done but he still loves his wife.  Catherine stills loves Marcus as well even though she believes he has a mistress and cares naught for her.

This is a classic misunderstanding story between our couple and you can't help but think to yourself--just talk to each other!  But even though the storyline isn't all that fresh, I really enjoyed the writing.  I always love to see stories of strife after the happy marriage because in reality, everyone can not live happily ever after all the time :)  I thought this novella had a wonderful blend of story, heat and love.  Catherine is sharp and plucky and Marcus is a bit brooding and together they make a lovely couple that I was happy to see get another chance at their happily ever after.  This is the start of a quartet and we get just a peek at the other friends that will make up the rest of the stories and I am very much looking forward to them!  I believe this is Jillian Eaton's debut and I thought she did a wonderful job and I hope she branches out into a full length novel someday as I think she could tell an engaging, longer story as well.  For a quick, sexy read mixed with some misunderstandings, A Brooding Beauty is sure to please!  4 stars

Wedded Women Quartet

A Ravishing Redhead  May 1st, 2012
Two more titles to be annouced

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Between the Duke and the Deep Blue Sea by Sophia Nash

Alexander Barclay, Duke of Kress, is on his way to his country estate to marry an heiress quickly to help squelch the public outrage over a very sordid bachelor party.  Unfortunately, none of the men involved in the bachelor party can really remember what happened and as Alex provided the drinks for the party, well, he is first up to feel the wrath of the Prince Regent (who was also at the party and now needs to repair his reputation).  As he is gazing at the cliffs a movement catches his eye and he is stunned to see a woman hanging there!  He quickly rescues the spirited Roxanne Vanderhaven and agrees to shelter her at his home.

Roxanne is flabbergasted that her husband tried to kill her!  All she was doing was looking over the cliff, slipped on the wet ground and he says he will go get help.  Only to never return.  How can this man that she provided so much for want her dead?  Her goal is to find out and extract a measure of revenge.  With no money and the need to stay hidden, she pleads to stay with Alex and the sparks and humor start to fly. 

This series was inspired by "The Hangover" movie and while I have not seen it yet, I can see how the inspiration was played out.  It looks like there will six books about these bachelors at this infamous party who will all have to do their part, ordered by the Prince Regent, to rise above the scandal.  I really enjoyed how this book started out quickly and just kept on moving.  Watching Alex slowly fall for the scandal ridden and currently penniless Roxanne all while trying to host a house party to choose a 'correct' wife was delightful.  I also really appreciated how Roxanne knew she was still married--though presumed dead--and tried to honor that commitment.  I won't go into much detail but to me, there was no 'total' cheating.  Plus, her husband tried to kill her so I was not going to hold passionate moments against them!  There is also a bit of humor through Alex 'befriending" Roxannes husband to help find out why he did what he did.  Yes, the ending did wrap everything up a bit neatly but then again, it needed to for our couple to find their own HEA.  Overall, I was happy with this book and I am anxious for the next book as there are just enough glimpses of a few of the other bachelors to make me ready for their stories.  It looks to be the start of a delightfully fun series!  4 stars

I received this eARC from Avon via

Royal Entourage series
The Art of Duke Hunting (Royal Entourage, #2)
     March 27th

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a a weekly blog hop hosted by Breaking the Spine where we all mention one upcoming book release we are waiting for.

This week my anticipated release is Wedded in Scandal by Jade Lee and releases March 6th.  Here is the summary from her website:

The dazzling wedding of fashions of A Lady’s Favor dress shop are guaranteed to make any girl the talk of the ton. But the brides aren’t the only ones falling in love….

Lady Helaine’s father was cast out of society as a liar and a thief—a scandal which renders her unfit for marriage. In order to provide for herself and her mother, she adopts an assumed name and runs a dressmaker’s shop that specializes in bridal wear for ladies of high society. Helaine is happiest immersed in silk and satin, but she lives in terror that someone will learn her true identity and she will lose everything…again.

Robert Percy, Viscount Redhill, is entranced with the mysterious Helaine and weaves a web of seduction sure to ensnare the delectable dress designer. Yet too late he learns the heartbreaking truth about who she used to be. Now he must find a way to overcome the past to claim Helaine as his own. But what chance has love when a secret mistress becomes a scandalous wife?

I really like stories where they involve dressmakers so this series sounds like it is going to be right up my alley.  There is also a novella that is currently out now and if you go to Jade Lee's website, you can download it for free.  Click here.  I'm not sure how long she will be offering this deal so grab it if it sounds good to you!  Here is the summary for Engaged in Wickedness:


Lady Gwendolyn is playing with fire. She has a habit of wandering into illicit places with gentlemen just to see how well they kiss. It’s dangerous, but she can’t seem to stop herself and no one in her family is up to the task either.

Sir Edward Murray is the man who can tame her. He may be just a country baronet, in town for a spell then gone, but the vivacious Lady Gwen draws him as no other. So he devises a carefully plotted campaign to capture the lady as his own. But he never guesses the depth of the lady’s spirit or the power of her passion.

Why is Lady Gwen risking herself and her reputation with her scandalous forays? When Edward uncovers the truth, he is caught in his own stratagems. She figures out his deceit and may never forgive him. Can Edward convince her that some things aren’t as wicked as they seem? And that love is the wildest ride of all?

And one more bonus treat, there is a book trailer for you to enjoy too!  What about you?  Do you like book trailers?  I do :)  Do you like books where the heroine/hero has a profession?  I find it makes it a bit more fascinating during the Regency period.

Friday, February 10, 2012

New Covers

Some lovely new covers for your viewing enjoyment this week.  Well, this started with just four covers but I keep seeing more so it is a bit long now!  Enjoy :)

First up is a debut that I am eagerly awaiting, Secrets of a Wedding Night. It doesn't come out until Sept 25th (boo!) but Valerie Bowman shared her beautiful cover on Twitter this past week. Love the blue and that we get to see her garter.

These two covers are for the upcoming books from Jayne Fresina, who is a new to me author but looks like she has been self publishing and these could be her traditional print debuts?  I'm not positive about that though!  Based on the titles and the cuteness of the covers I am expecting these to be light-hearted fun and I am looking forward to reading them! The Most Improper Miss Sophie Valentine releases June 5th and I don't see a release date for The Wicked Wedding of Miss Ellie Vyne yet.  

I'm a little on fence about this next cover.  I love the color of the dress but I don't particularly like the dress itself.  I like the man peeking through her arm though.  Look for The Mad Lord's Daughter in August.

Michele Sinclair is another new to me author and hello gorgeous cover!  I will definitely be picking up A Woman Made for Pleasure in August!

Another debut! This one from Nina Rowan will be releasing in far away!  If you head over to her website, there is a great little video about the book.  I'm really looking forward to this one!

Here is the sexy cover for the second in Katharine Ashe's Falcon Club series.  I can't wait to see the step back!! (Well, if there is one)  How to Be a Proper Lady releases June 26th.

Gah!  LOVE!  I can not wait for this one!  Scandal Wears Satin also releases June 26th. 

Yes, yes another new to me author.  Where am I going to find the time to read them all? The Casanova Code looks to be the start of a new series called The Rake Patrol.  It should be out June 5th.  

And lastly, a gorgeous purple one from Mia Marlowe.  This is book three in her Touch of Seduction series and Touch of a Scoundrel looks be out July 31st.

Whew!  Quite a few covers popped up this week!  Which one caught your eye?  Are any of them new to you authors as well?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Blame It on Bath by Caroline Linden

Lady Katherine Howe is feeling quite a bit of pressure to marry her late husbands heir in order to forgive a large debt that must be repaid to her otherwise.  Her late husband squandered her entire dowry and her father gave him a loan that must now be repaid.  But Katherine does not want to be forced into another marriage not of her choice so she comes up with a rather bold plan.  She plans to propose to Gerard de Lacey--yes, that de Lacey of the wild rumors of illegitimacy--as she knows he will be in need of a large fortune if the rumors are true.  But her deeper reason for wanting this marriage to the bold captain has to do with one long ago rainy afternoon in which he kindly helped her--a plain, quiet young lady.

Gerard is stunned when he receives a most unique proposal from this rather unremarkable looking woman.  Kate, as Gerard grows to call her, is so careful with her wording and demeanor and he just can't understand why she wears such dull, drab clothing and as he is most intrigued to find out more about her, he agrees to her proposal.  He steals a kiss and is relieved to find there is a bit of passion hiding underneath her facade.  As Gerard was on his way to Bath to uncover clues as to who is blackmailing his family, he takes Kate with him as soon as they are married and together they try to find the right balance for their new marriage of convenience.

If you read the previous book in this series, One Night in London, this book takes place during the same time as that one but with hardly any overlapping as most of the story is set in Bath versus London.  I was a bit surprised by this as the ending of One Night in London left me quite anxious for this one and I was a little disappointed that the reveal of what happened isn't almost until the end of this story.  I understand that the whole book leads up to the dilemma Gerard got himself into but I was hoping for a bit more scandalous reveal I guess.  *shrugs*  Once Gerard finally confesses the reason for being in Bath to Kate, they are able to uncover some clues about the blackmailer but overall this book seemed a bit light in the illegitimacy issues and I would have liked it to move forward in that direction more.

I really enjoyed our two characters.  I liked that Kate is not a raving beauty and is quiet and we get to see her emerge from her shell and transform into a lovely butterfly and I really enjoyed how Gerard saw her for her true self almost from the start.  He quickly learns that getting Kate to smile is one of the best things to do and he loves to watch her transform when she gives a rare smile.  Gerard for his part is brash, bold and a bit quick-tempered but he learns to curb this soon around his new wife as she divulges she suffered some abuse from her first husband.  Together, they mesh and this is a sweet yet hot romance of two people finding love where they least expect it.  Overall, I enjoyed this book for its uniqueness of no titles for the couple, a different location, an unassuming woman just waiting to be polished off a bit and a decisive hero.  There really is no major action or danger to take away from the romance so it truly is a lovely romance to watch emerge.  I know I am anxiously awaiting the final book in this series and the teaser already has me wanting it right now even though this book left me wanting a bit more from it.  3 1/2 stars

I received this eARC from Avon via

The Truth About the Duke
(This one could be read without reading the previous books but you will want to read them all in order before the last book to get a good understanding of all the scandal)
I Love the Earl (The Truth About the Duke #Prequel)One Night in London (The Truth About the Duke #1)
The Way to a Duke's Heart Sept 2012

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

To Dare the Duke of Dangerfield by Bronwen Evans

Lady Caitlin Southall can not believe that her home, her mothers home which is being held in a trust for her, was lost in a card game.  She becomes even more frustrated when she learns the most notorious rake and her neighbor, Harlow Telford, Duke of Dangerfield is the one that won her home and will not return it like a gentleman when he learns of her situation.  Oh no.  Caitlin's temper gets the best of her and she challenges Harlow to the best of three events to see who wins the home--but her loss will come with her losing herself in his bed.

Harlow is troubled when he hears that the home he won was being held in a trust but he has his own personal reasons for needing to own Caitlins home and he has no intention of losing the bet.  He knows what must happen after Caitlin loses and he hopes it will be a win/win situation for them both but in the process he needs to trump the lovely lady in cards, baking and horse racing all while trying to hold on to his heart.

This was my first experience reading Bronwen Evans and I really enjoyed it.  The story worked well with the length, about half the length of a full length novel, and I didn't feel like the romance was rushed.  There is a back story of our couple knowing each other previously and that always helps move a novella along for me.  I really enjoyed Caitlin and her passion for securing her future and her boldness but who I really enjoyed was Harlow.  I don't really want to give away much of the storyline as it came as a pleasant surprise, but I was really surprised at the decenty of him underneath his rakish persona.  Watching the sparks fly between this couple was fun and leads to some very steamy encounters until they finally seal the deal.  However, Harlow is still keeping quite a big secret from Cate and when it is finally revealed it leads to heartbreak and sets up for tragedy.  The only thing that sort of bothered me about the story was the ending.  It has a double whammy that is a bit over dramatic and I'm not sure it needed to be in there.  I understood the first punch but the second tied everything up a little to neatly.  This was the only part where I felt a longer story would have been welcome.

Overall though I really enjoyed this story.  It is fast paced and filled with sharp barbs between our couple and plenty of heated passion all while gradually falling in love with each other and learning to appreciate what the other had to offer .  The supporting characters (two of Harlow's friends whom I hope are the next two books) add a bit of humor to the story as well.  If you are looking for a great way to spend an afternoon, Harlow and Cate's romance is one that is sure to heat up your blood, make you laugh and end with a sigh.  4 stars

A fun quote:
 "Good God, how's a man to concentrate with those staring at him all night?  And I thought I preferred you in trousers.  Well, played Lady Southall."
Wicked Wagers
Two more novellas to come

Happy Release Day!!

Lots of wonderful books coming out today!!

The Rogue Pirate's Bride Not Wicked Enough (Seducing the Scoundrels, #1)The Duchess Diaries (The Bridal Pleasures, #3)A Scandalous Countess (Malloren, #12)

First up is the conclusion to Shana Galens Sons of the Revolution series and I loved this swash-buckling romance!  Carolyn Jewel is off to a wonderful start in her new Reforming the Scoundrels series with the charming Not Wicked Enough and I just looove the cover!  The Duchess Diaries has another gorgeous cover and is book three in Jillian Hunter's The Bridal Pleasures series and I really hope to get my first taste of her work with this one.  And finally Jo Beverly delivers book number twelve in her Malloren series and I have yet to read anything by Ms Beverly either but I really like the slightly sassy cover.

Miss Hillary Schools a Scoundrel (Beau Monde, #1)Sweet Enemy (Veiled Seduction, #1)

And there are also two wonderful debuts today as well!!  Samantha Grace makes her bow with the lovely Miss Hillary Schools a Scoundrel, which is the start of her Beau Monde series and I really enjoyed it! The other debut is from Heather Snow and she is also starting a new series, Veiled Seduction, with Sweet Enemy. This features a female chemist so that has certainly piqued my interest.

Hope you all get a chance to enjoy a few new books this week from these talented ladies!  Let me know what you get and what you think of them :)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Mad About the Earl by Christina Brooke

Lady Rosamund Westruther has no qualms about her arranged marriage to the Earl of Tregarth.  In fact, she has many grand romantic allusions in her mind but those are all quickly forgotten when she arrives at his estate to finally meet Griffin.  Rosamund is shocked that her betrothed is not waiting anxiously for her arrival and is actually in the stables.  Filthy and having no intention of cleaning up and meeting her properly, Griffin is big, gruff to the point of mean, and visibly scarred.  Hoping to scare her away, because, really, how can this beautiful woman love someone who is so clumsy and scarred, he gives the lovely Rosamund a searing kiss that neither can forget.  It steals Rosamunds heart and it shakes Grifiin to the core to be so affected.  Rosamund leaves and returns home to await word of her wedding.  And waits and waits for three years until a letter arrives telling her to arrive in due haste for the wedding.  Well, this puts all of Rosamunds feathers up and she refuses until Griffin returns to London and properly courts her.  As Griffin has no clue how to court a woman, he is beyond exasperated but as he needs this marriage to finally happen, he is reluctantly pulled into the world of London.

I was so happy with this Beauty and the Beast romance.  Rosamund starts off a bit childlike in her dreams of a perfect happily ever after, but the time apart has made her stronger and realize that even in a marriage of convenience, respect must be given and earned.  Griffin is a delightful 'beast'.  He grew up with an abusive grandfather and was always told how clumsy and unloveable he was so he finds it very hard to believe that someone can see past his scars and truly love him, to want to be around him.  I loved watching Griffin get cleaned up from his causal country living.  His shopping expeditions with Rosamunds cousin were quite fun to read!  I loved seeing more of the relationship between the cousins and how Rosamund came to be under the Dukes care was quite unusual I thought and added a bit of freshness to the storyline.  I really hope her brother has his own story coming soon as he seems like a tortured soul that needs his own HEA.

Overall, this was another wonderful book from Christina Brooke and as I was really excited to read this one, that makes me happy :)  I enjoyed how we got to watch Rosamund grow from a silly young lady into a more mature, realistic woman who knew just the thing to say to help her scarred hero believe in her and himself.  Griffin comes across very gruff and uncaring but underneath all that, he just wants to protect his sister and prove to Rosamund he is worthy of him.  The only thing that I would have liked a little more depth too was how Griffin got his scars.  It is mentioned a few times but I would have appreciated more flashbacks to his childhood to really get more of an understanding of his horrible childhood.  And even though this is book two in this series, it stands well on its own.  In fact, it will just make you want to read the first book if you have not already!  I am very eagerly anticipating the next book in the series and hopefully many more to come!  4 1/2 stars

Ministry of Marriage series (Hello gorgeous covers!!)

Heiress in Love (Ministry of Marriage, #1)A Duchess to Remember (Ministry of Marriage, #3) June 26th