Posts in the Historical genre

Guest Post

Guest Post: “A Fairytale Romance” by Laura Trentham

A Brazen Bargain Laura Trentham

Reimaging fairytales is nothing new. In fact, I’d argue that every time a fairytale was told around a campfire or to children trying to fall asleep, the storyteller would add embellishments. Fairytales’ very timelessness lends to the endless possibilities. The only limitation is your own imagination. After all, authors have been taking these stories and adding twists and layers since the first fairytale was told over a thousand years ago.

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Exclusive Excerpt, Q&A

Q&A: Christy English of the BROADSWORDS AND BALLROOMS Series

How to Seduce a Scot Christy English

Today we have Christy English answering our questions about her Broadswords and Ballrooms series! The first book, How to Seduce a Scot came out in December, and the second, How to Wed a Warrior will be out on February 2nd!

Thank you so much for hosting me. I love talking about writing and books…and I am so excited to do it here on EverAfter Romance. My latest Regency romance series is called Broadswords and Ballrooms, about two Highland brothers who bring their wild, sword-wielding sister down to London to marry her off, and end up falling in love themselves.

1. Tell us three fun facts about yourself.

  • I adore waterfalls. I did not know this until about three years ago when I first moved to the Western North Carolina mountains, but I have a waterfall outside my back window, and when I sit on my porch in the spring and write, I can hear it flowing. It is the most soothing sound. I truly have moved to heaven.
  • I have soda for blood. I love Coca-Cola and Dr. Pepper, and I drink one every morning as I roll into my day job at the bank. Soda is my companion whenever I need an extra boost to get the words down on paper, or in my computer. The sugary sweetness adds to my joy whatever I’m doing.
  • I can’t go to the movies without getting popcorn and chocolate. I am a story junkie. Whether in a book or on the silver screen, I love hearing and seeing a good story. And whenever I go to see a movie, I hunker down with popcorn and chocolate. Sometimes I am good, and get the kiddie size, which satisfies me but also makes me feel virtuous.

2. How would you describe your writing style? Are you more of a pantser or a plotter?

I have a flowery, descriptive style of writing, and a distinctive voice on the page which I have had to tone down in favor of character and plot in revisions. For many years I was a serious plotter, writing fifty page outlines of my novels before I even began them. But now that I am writing Regency romance, especially romance comedies, I have started to become more of a panster, in which the characters give me the starting point of a book and the major events of the first act, and then I go to town. Now the characters hand me each act as it comes up, so I have a good idea of where I’m headed as I go, but I can still be flexible for any new mayhem that might ensue. And when I am writing about the Waters family, mayhem is always close at hand.

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TV Recaps

TV Recap: Downton Abbey Series 6, Episode 4

Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey 6x4Last night’s episode of Downton brought the series full circle, bringing back a character from the 1st series, reminding us once again that the times, they are a changing. Even Branson has come around to thinking that capitalism is a good thing.  His time in America has brought home one thing, that a man, no matter his social class, can rise to the top, if he has ambition and the drive to succeed.  Mary points out that still isn’t so easy in England. One wonders if Branson will feel the same way about capitalism in 1929 when the stock market crashes. In the meantime, he’s happy to let Mary continue to be the estate’s agent, while he figures out exactly what it is he wants to do with his life.

Carson and Mrs. Hughes are off on their honeymoon in Scarborough, much to Lady Mary’s disgust. She wishes that something better could have been found for them, even though Lord Grantham points out that it was the honeymoon Mrs. Hughes and Carson wanted. Thomas is now in charge as butler while they are gone.  After moping around the house for the past three episodes, moaning about getting the sac, Thomas is eager to prove his worth, bossing the staff around, reminding them who is in charge if only temporarily. Unfortunately Thomas doesn’t have Carson’s touch with the staff.  He wishes that he had Baxter’s ability to make friends.  Baxter returns the compliment, she admires him for not caring about other people’s opinions.  “You’re wrong about me,” he says. “I mind what people say.” That’s the problem. He cares too much.

Downton Abbey 6x4b

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Veronica Roth, Candace Camp, and Karina Halle

Our second deal alert of the day offers books from Veronica Roth, Candace Camp, and Karina Halle! Grab them today before it’s too late!

Divergent by Veronica Roth

This first book in Veronica Roth’s #1 New York Times bestselling Divergent trilogy is the novel the inspired the major motion picture starring Shailene Woodley, Theo James, and Kate Winslet. This dystopian series set in a futuristic Chicago has captured the hearts of millions of teen and adult readers.

Perfect for fans of the Hunger Games and Maze Runner series, Divergent and its sequels, Insurgentand Allegiant, are the gripping story of a dystopian world transformed by courage, self-sacrifice, and love. Fans of the Divergent movie will find the book packed with just as much emotional depth and exhilarating action as the film, all told in beautiful, rich language.

One choice can transform you. Beatrice Prior’s society is divided into five factions—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). Beatrice must choose between staying with her Abnegation family and transferring factions. Her choice will shock her community and herself. But the newly christened Tris also has a secret, one she’s determined to keep hidden, because in this world, what makes you different makes you dangerous.

Treasured by Candace Camp

Love is in the cards for a young Scottish heiress in the first book of a delicious new trilogy of historical romances, Secrets of the Loch, from New York Times bestselling author Candace Camp.

A family legend of hidden treasure mingles with the mist over the shores of Loch Baille… But it’s not the cache of gold dating back to Culloden that Jack Kensington claims when he arrives in the Highlands; it’s the house he won in a London card game from a luckless Scotsman.

Stunned to learn that her wastrel brother wagered their family estate, Isobel Rose must find a way to save her home and the people she loves…even if it means accepting a loveless marriage. Or perhaps not so loveless? Isobel unlocks the secrets of desire in the arms of the mysterious and handsome Englishman, but a series of “accidents” makes her fear that she will soon be a widow instead of a wife. As their hunt for lost riches turns into the search for a killer, Isobel fights her attraction to the man who stole her birthright…but can Jack convince Isobel that he can provide a home for her heart, and a love to treasure?

Sins & Needles by Karina Halle

There’s a Fine Line Between Sin and Salvation . . .

Ellie Watt is a woman on the run. Raised by a pair of thieves who taught her the art of the grift-and pursued by a mobster who fell for her con-she hopes to find refuge at her uncle’s farm in quiet Palm Valley, California. Ellie swears she’s through with her life of crime. But before she knows it, she’s right back in the game when she meets an easy mark who’s too good-and too hot-to be true.

His name is Camden McQueen. A master tattoo artist and a total inked stud, Camden is nothing like the awkward kid who crushed on Ellie back in high school. Now, as owner of the wildly successful Sins & Needles, he’s got tats to kill for, muscles to die for, and money to burn. Ellie can’t believe the transformation-and can’t resist pulling off one last con. But when Camden catches Ellie red-handed, the tables are turned. The mark becomes the master. And when the ultimate player gets played, you never know who’s going to end up on top . . .

Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
TV Recaps

TV Recap: Downton Abbey Series 6, Episode 3

Downton Abbey

This week we had a wedding and a return of a family member from abroad.  This episode was an improvement over the first two episodes which seemed a bit like the show was treading water instead of giving us a jam-packed final season of drama! I mean, Matthew Goode hasn’t even showed up yet and we’re almost half-way through the season.  A great deal went on in the episode but a lot of just seemed to be retread of what previous episodes.

Denker vs. Sprat Round Two:  Denker notices that Spratt is acting more squirrely than usual, so of course, she spies on him in a not very subtle way.  When Sergeant Willis stops by, Spratt’s secret is out. It turns out that his nephew has been in prison, and is now on the lam, and Spratt has been hiding him in the woodshed.  Instead of selling him out to the po-po, she decides to tortures him instead, and might even be blackmailing him. I’ve decided that these two are secretly hot for each other and need to throw caution to the wind and make-out immediately while the Dowager’s back is turned.

It’s Hard Out There For a Butler:  Thomas has yet another job interview in the county.  For some reason, he prefers to stay in Yorkshire where there are probably no underground gay bars, and no chance of him actually meeting anyone. Sir Michael Reresby lives by himself in a large house that has seen better days with only a housekeeper.  His wife has passed and he lost his sons in the war.  Despite everything, he believes that one must keep up appearances because better days are coming.  He worries that Thomas is a Republican, and Thomas wonders how he’s supposed to keep 50 rooms filled with clutter clean all by himself.  The job interview is not a success. He’s back to square one.  And his efforts to make friends with Andy keep being thwarted.  Baxter, like Mrs. Patmore, thinks he’s trying to get a leg over but Thomas assures her that he just wants to be friends with the lad.  I really don’t like seeing Evil Butler so defeated. It makes me sad.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “Writing Sexy Alpha Heroes with Disabilities” by Lauren Smith

Her Wicked Proposal Lauren Smith

Bad boys are my specialty. Whether they’re contemporary, historical, gothic, or paranormal, I love my heroes when they’re strong, occasionally stubborn, and undeniably sexy. But writing a sexy hero isn’t just about the looks. Sometimes it’s how a hero handles himself in situation that makes him sexy. In my historical League of Rogues series, I set out to challenge myself with the hero in my third book. Where the series premise has always centered around the sexy English lords who were all strong, powerful men physically and mentally, I crippled one of them at the end of the second book by making him blind during an accident when saving his sister.

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Jennifer L. Armentrout, Sabrina Jeffries, and Katee Robert!!

Today we’ve got deals for books by Jennifer L. Armentrout, Sabrina Jeffries, and Katee Robert! Be sure and grab them before they’re gone!

In the irresistibly sexy series from #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout, two free spirits find their lives changed by a one-night stand…

Some things you just believe in, even if you’ve never experienced them. For Stephanie, that list includes love. It’s out there. Somewhere. Eventually. Meanwhile she’s got her job at the mixed martial arts training center and hot flings with gorgeous, temporary guys like Nick. Then a secret brings them closer, opening Steph’s eyes to a future she never knew she wanted—until tragedy rips it away.

Nick’s self-assured surface shields a past no one needs to know about. His mind-blowing connection with Steph changes all that. As fast as he’s knocking down the walls that have kept him commitment-free, she’s building them up again, determined to keep the hurt—and Nick—out. But he can’t walk away. Not when she’s the only one who’s ever made him wish for forever . . .

The first novel in the Sinful Suitors series by New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries! At St. George’s Club, guardians conspire to keep their unattached sisters and wards out of the clutches of sinful suitors. Which works fine…except when the sinful suitors are members!

American artist Jeremy Keane refuses to return home and take over his father’s business. He’d much rather sample bevvies of beauties abroad, in search of a model for the provocative masterpiece he’s driven to paint. When he meets Lady Yvette Barlow at a London wedding, he realizes she’s perfect for his work—and determines to capture the young heiress’s defiant spirit and breathtaking sensuality on canvas.

No stranger to scandal, Yvette agrees to be Keane’s subject—in exchange for his help gaining entry to the city’s brothels he knows intimately, so she can track a missing woman and solve a family mystery. But when their practical partnership leads to lessons in the art of sinning, can they find a bold and lasting love?

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katee Robert begins a smoking hot new series about the O’Malley family-wealthy, powerful, dangerous and seething with scandal.

Teague O’Malley hates pretty much everything associated with his family’s name. And when his father orders him to marry Callista Sheridan to create a “business” alliance, Teague’s ready to tell his dad exactly where he can stuff his millions. But then Teague actually meets his new fiancée, sees the bruises on her neck and the fight still left in her big blue eyes, and vows he will do everything in his power to protect her.

Everyone knows the O’Malleys have a dangerous reputation. But Callie wasn’t aware just what that meant until she saw Teague, the embodiment of lethal grace and coiled power. His slightest touch sizzles through her. But the closer they get, the more trouble they’re in. Because Callie’s keeping a dark secret-and what Teague doesn’t know could get him killed.

Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Cora Carmack, Cecilia Tan, and Kathleen E. Woodiwiss!

Today we’ve got titles by Cora Carmack, Cecilia Tan, and Kathleen E. Woodiwiss! These are some great steals so grab them before they’re gone!

Mackenzie “Max” Miller has a problem. Her parents have arrived in town for a surprise visit, and if they see her dyed hair, tattoos, and piercings, they just might disown her. Even worse, they’re expecting to meet a nice wholesome boyfriend, not a guy named Mace who has a neck tattoo and plays in a band. All her lies are about to come crashing down around her, but then she meets Cade.

Cade moved to Philadelphia to act and to leave his problems behind in Texas. So far though, he’s kept the problems and had very little opportunity to take the stage. When Max approaches him in a coffee shop with a crazy request to pretend to be her boyfriend, he agrees to play the part. But when Cade plays the role a little too well, they’re forced to keep the ruse going. And the more they fake the relationship, the more real it begins to feel.

The hot new, New Adult title from New York Times bestselling author of Losing It, Cora Carmack.

He pushes her sexual boundaries . . .

From the moment waitress Karina meets him in a New York bar, she knows James is different. Daring. Dominating. Though he hides his true identity from her, the mysterious, wealthy businessman anticipates her every desire and fulfills her secret fantasies. Awakened by his touch, Karina discovers a wild side she hadn’t known existed and nothing is off limits.

She aches for more . . .

What begins as an erotic game soon escalates to a power play that blurs the line between pleasure and pain. Even as she capitulates to James’s sensual demands, Karina craves more. She wants his heart, his soul. She wants his love . . . and she’ll break all the rules to get it.

The Flower

Doomed to a life of unending toil, Heather Simmons fears for her innocence—until a shocking, desperate act forces her to flee. . . and to seek refuge in the arms of a virile and dangerous stranger.

The Flame

A lusty adventurer married to the sea, Captain Brandon Birmingham courts scorn and peril when he abducts the beautiful fugitive from the tumultuous London dockside. But no power on Earth can compel him to relinquish his exquisite prize. For he is determined to make the sapphire-eyed prize. For he is determined to make the sapphire-eyed lovely his woman. . .and to carry her off to far, uncharted realms of sensuous, passionate love.


Exclusive Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt: HOW TO RESCUE A RAKE by Jayne Fresina

How To Rescue a Rake Jayne Fresina

Today we’ve got an exclusive excerpt from Jayne Fresina’s latest release, How to Rescue a Rake, which is the third book in her Book Club Belles series! We hope you enjoy this excerpt and pick up a copy of How to Rescue a Rake today!

They were about to go in to dinner when more guests arrived and were shown in by the footman.

The group of three entered the drawing room—first a small elderly lady in mourning ribbons and a younger woman displaying abundant cleavage, too much jewelry, and hair a suspiciously bright shade of copper.

But behind them, tall, lean, and magnificent in a dark green evening coat with an ivory silk cravat was none other than…a man the very image of Nathaniel Sherringham.

How could it be?

Diana felt stuck to her chair.

His gaze swiftly traversed the room and stumbled to a halt when it found her.

There was a moment of confusion, which assured Diana that he had not come there on purpose to follow her, and then he blinked and looked away.

What was he doing at Wollaford? Oh Lord. Had ever a woman been so abused by fate?

Diana wound her fingers together in her lap and finally remembered to breathe. She was a new woman today, a brave woman. Not sitting in a corner, hiding in shadow.

The lady in mourning—Mrs. Ashby—explained in a faint, sad voice, “This gentleman was good enough to escort my niece to Bath. I persuaded the two of them to join me this evening. I do hope you don’t mind.” She directed this last sentence at Mrs. Plumtre, who hastened to assure her that it was no trouble at all to accommodate two more at her table.

“We always have room at Wollaford Park, do we not, Jonty?”

“Of course, Mama. Plenty of room at the trough, what ho?”

Diana saw her cousin Elizabeth wincing as if someone had stood on her foot and belched in her face.

While Nathaniel bowed to each lady in the room, Diana’s pulse skipped and danced. She almost didn’t dare look up at him, but she had to. How could she not? How could her eyes ignore his male beauty?

Each time she saw him, it was as if his looks had improved yet again—or perhaps it was simply because she dared look longer. His manners certainly had changed for the better since their first meeting ten years ago. He did not fidget restlessly the way he once had when he entered a room. He now exuded a quiet confidence, that demanded attention.

“This is my wife’s cousin,” Sir Jonty boomed pleasantly. “Miss Diana Makepiece came to us all the way from the wilds of Buckinghamshire.”

Her eyes met Nathaniel’s. A slight smile turned up one end of his lips. “Miss Makepiece, I am delighted to make your acquaintance.”

So he meant to pretend they’d never met.

She was relieved. They could act as if they were strangers. It would be a clean page for both of them.

Her cousin Elizabeth would not know of their connection. Although she’d met Rebecca Sherringham during brief visits to Hawcombe Prior, she would be unlikely to link the captain to his sister. Elizabeth was not the sort to remember names unless they were attached to nobility or great wealth, and she had considered Rebecca too uncouth and far below her notice.

In fact, Diana was amused now to watch Elizabeth inspect Nathaniel with transparent appreciation and flap her fan hard enough to be in danger of taking flight. Her cousin was not the only one instantly rendered breathless, of course. The young Miss Plumtres gazed up at him with enormous calf eyes and completely forgot to say anything for ten minutes, which was the longest they’d been silent since Diana arrived.

When Nathaniel introduced his companion as Mrs. Caroline Sayles, Diana realized this was the infamous adulteress. She tried not to care. After all, it was, as she’d said to him, none of her business.

The moment Mrs. Sayles’s name was spoken aloud it had an echo effect, speedily circling the room on a fraught whisper. The woman’s infamy must have spread far and wide because even the Miss Plumtres seemed to know of it. They glanced at each other and then at the colorful guest with unconcealed and lurid inquisitiveness. Diana hoped her own expression had not betrayed her too. It would be far more ladylike to pretend she did not know the things that were said about Mrs. Sayles. A proper lady never listened to gossip or let down her guard to stare in complete horror—the way cousin Elizabeth was currently doing.

Keeping her own composure as best she could, Diana felt Nathaniel’s wondering gaze touch her frequently. This coincidence of them being thrust together again must be just as bewildering to him as it was to her. However calm she kept her expression, Diana was bursting inside with startling and intense pleasure at seeing him. His company and his warm smile were unexpected gifts that caught her with her drawbridge and her defenses down.

Although he spoke with his usual self-assurance during the introductions, Nathaniel seemed subdued, as if he was making an effort to be less effusive. She couldn’t imagine why, because he should have been in his element, surrounded by heaving bosoms and pretty, adoring faces.

But a curious thing happened. He looked most often at Diana and saved his smile for her alone. It was tempting to imagine she was the only woman he saw tonight, but that would be foolish vanity.

That did not mean that Diana, the virgin goddess, shouldn’t smile back at him.

Hadn’t she made up her mind to be more sociable here, to venture out of her shell and be brave?

When he caught her responding smile, he looked askance, touching his cuffs with fingers that suddenly seemed endearingly nervous. She couldn’t think why he would be. It was only a smile, for pity’s sake, and he must be accustomed to many of those from women.

Testing her power, she smiled at him again, and he almost tripped backward over the edge of a rug.

Clearly he wasn’t prepared for the newly improved Bath and Somersetshire version of Miss Diana Makepiece.

Jayne Fresina sprouted up in England, the youngest in a family of four daughters. Entertained by her father’s colorful tales of growing up in the countryside, and surrounded by opinionated sisters – all with far more exciting lives than hers – she’s always had inspiration for her beleaguered heroes and unstoppable heroines.

Jayne can be found on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, and her website.

Guest Post

Guest Post: “A Writer’s Inspiration” by Jane Ashford

Heir to the Duke Jane Ashford

It was many years ago, in a small town Ohio public library, in the back where there weren’t any book jackets, that I first found Georgette Heyer. I was moving along the rows searching for something new to read. I pulled a volume down to investigate. And I was hooked.

I don’t remember which novel it was. Arabella? Faro’s Daughter? I do know I gobbled up every Heyer the library possessed in short order. I was entranced by her writing, her humor, her rich casts of characters, the wit and sophistication of the Regency society she so wonderfully portrayed. I also found, that day, a source of inspiration. I already longed to be a writer myself, and in Heyer I found so many things I wanted to learn.

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