Shaw, Chantelle, Sheikh’s Forbidden Conquest

Shaw, Sheikh's Forbidden Conquest.jpg

Shaw, Chantelle, Sheikh’s Forbidden Conquest (The Howard Sisters, Book 1),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2015).

Title:  Sheikh’s Forbidden Conquest (The Howard Sisters, Book 1)

Author:  Chantelle Shaw

Imprint:  Presents (Modern)

Issues:  Class Differences; Interracial Relationship; POC

Blurb:

Taming the playboy prince!

Sultan Kadir Al Sulaimar may be Europe’s most notorious playboy, but since his bride-to-be finally came of age, he’s sworn to be faithful to the princess he’s never met.

Yet when feisty helicopter pilot Lexi Howard saves his life, she turns Kadir’s regimented world upside down. His first duty must be to his country, but avoiding the sensual pilot is becoming increasingly difficult…especially now that she’s working for him!

Lexi’s disregard for his command is somewhat…refreshing. Can the desert king resist making her his final—and most forbidden—conquest?

Dear Reader,

Sisters often share a special bond of love and friendship – as I do with my own sister.  I am fascinated by this unique relationship, and decided to write a duet featuring two sisters.

However, when I thought of Lexi, the heroine of Sheikh’s Forbidden Conquest, I realised that her relationship with her younger sister Athena was complicated because Lexi was adopted.  A year later her adoptive parents had a much longed for daughter of their own, and made it clear to Lexi that they preferred Athena.

Lexi has demonstrated her bravery as an RAF pilot, flying rescue missions in Afghanistan, but sparks fly when she goes to work for Sultan Kadir Al Sulaimar in his desert kingdom of Zenhab.  The cultural differences between them are just one barrier they face, and they know they must resist the sizzling chemistry that ignites whenever they are near each other!

In my second book, shy Athena wishes she was as confident as her fiery sister.  Athena has been named after the Greek goddess of wisdom, but she feels she is a disappointment to her academic parents, who hoped she would follow them into a medical career.

At least her parents are pleased that she is engaged to English aristocrat Charles Fairfax.  But mysterious Italian playboy Luca De Rossi has other plans for Athena!

I hope you enjoy reading about the sisters’ journeys to finding true love!

Best wishes

Chantelle

Advertisements

Landon, Juliet, The Rake’s Unconventional Mistress

Landon, The Rake's Unconventional Mistress.jpg

Landon, Juliet, The Rake’s Unconventional Mistress (Ladies of Paradise Roade, Book 3),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2009).

Title:  The Rake’s Unconventional Mistress (Ladies of Paradise Roade, Book 3)

Author:  Juliet Landon

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Class Differences; Gendered Expectations (Women)

Blurb:

Miss Letitia Boyce didn’t begrudge her sisters their fun with the pick of London’s available bachelors. She’d chosen her path and knew book-learning and marriage rarely mixed. Her proof was Lord Seton Rayne, who had made it abundantly clear that an unmarried schoolma’am was of no interest to him–no matter her good connections.

Wealthy and titled, one of the most notorious rakehells in town, Seton had every heiress hurling herself at him. So his sudden kissing of captivating, unconventional Letitia took them both by surprise…

Dear Reader,

If you take a peep at the first pages of any Mills & Boon book you’ll see (perhaps with a smile) that the address in England really is medieval palace stood beside the River Thames.  So I made this romantic address the setting for my Regency trilogy, of which this story is the third part, because I felt such an appropriate name ought to be celebrated for the 100th Anniversary.  There is, in fact, a previous story – One Night in Paradise – concerning the distant ancestors of my Regency characters, set in Elizabethan times when the palace was still in use.

What do my Mills & Boon editors think about my using their address for such a romantic purpose?  Well, I know that if I were to set a story around the royal manor of Shene (the original name for Richmond) in Anglo-Saxon times, they’d be as enthusiastic about the eleventh century as they have been about all the other periods.  They are, of course, as unashamedly romantic and imaginative as their writers and readers – just one of the reasons why working with them is such a joy.

Happy Anniversary, Mills & Boon!

Juliet

Kaye, Marguerite, The Highlander’s Return

Kaye, The Highlander's Return.jpg

Kaye, Marguerite, The Highlander’s Return (Highland Brides, Book 2),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2011).

Title:  The Highlander’s Return (Highland Brides, Book 2)

Author:  Marguerite Kaye

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Class Differences; Parenthood

Blurb:

Return of the prodigal highlander!Banished for daring to court the laird’s daughter, Ailsa, it’s been six long years since Alasdhair Ross set foot on Munro land. Gone is the rebellious youth – years of hard work have shaped Alasdhair into a fiercely intense man, one set on returning to his homeland and claiming what’s rightfully his…Bitter experience has taught Ailsa Munro that her exuberant wilfulness gets her into trouble. But one glimpse of Alasdhair’s sinful eyes – and the once-experienced-never-forgotten pleasure they promise – and Ailsa knows a reckoning is irresistibly inevitable…

Author Note,

Highland Scots have a long and successful history of emigration to North America.  Jacobites on the run, impoverished lairs and dispossessed crofters alike sought fame and fortune in the New World in their droves during the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries in a bid to escape persecution or poverty.  Some failed, some returned home, but many, like Alasdhair my hero, carved out a very successful life for themselves.

At the same time entrepreneurial Glaswegian merchants were taking advantage of the favourable Trade Winds to cross the Atlantic quicker than their English counterparts.  Their clippers laden with consumer goods difficult to obtain in the New World, these canny Scots willingly granted the plantation owners credit with which to buy their goods – something their English counterparts were reluctant to do.  Returning with a cargo of tobacco (and, sadly, in many cases slaves), the Tobacco Lords, as they came to be known, became rich on the proceeds, and by the middle of the eighteenth century completely dominated the trade.  It was a logical step for plantation owners such as Alasdhair to enter into a business deal with these distributors, ensuring the best price for his own produce.  It was actually the research I did for an article about Glasgow’s Merchant City, home of the Tobacco Lords, which planted the seed for Alasdhair’s story.

As a historian and writer of historical romances, authenticity matters a lot to me.  As a Scot, evoking the true ambience of the Highlands is also something I’m passionate about.  Through Errin Mhor, where this story is set, doesn’t actually exist, I know exactly where it is:  on the west coast, near Oban.  All the surrounding places mentioned in Alasdhair and Ailsa’s story are real places in my native Argyll.  The Tigh an Truish, a drovers’ inn on the Isle of Seil, so called because it was where Highlanders going any further south swapped their plaids for trews, is still there today, as are many of the little ferry and drovers’ inns which would have provided my hero and heroine with shelter on their journey.  They visit Inverary at the time the present-day castle was being built.  In order to secure the view, the Duke of Argyll really did have the original fishing village ‘moved’ a few hundred yards along the banks of Loch Fyne, where the town, with its Palladian frontage, remains to this day.

If you visit Argyll you won’t find Errin Mhor, but I hope that you’ll discover for yourself the essence of it, which is far more beautiful than anything I could ever describe.

Justiss, Julia, Stolen Encounters with the Duchess

Justiss, Stolen Encounters with the Duchess.jpg

Justiss, Julia, Stolen Encounters with the Duchess (Hadley’s Hellions, Book 2),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Stolen Encounters with the Duchess (Hadley’s Hellions, Book 2)

Author:  Julia Justiss

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Class Differences; Infidelity; Orphan

Blurb:

She would rather burn in his presence than pine in his absence

Faith Wellingford Evers, Duchess of Ashedon, is tired of society’s endless gossiping about her failings and her late husband’s infidelities. Seeking escape one night, she’s attacked by ruffians, but is saved by an unlikely figure from her past!

Having risen from penniless orphan to Member of Parliament, David Tanner Smith is no longer the quiet boy Faith once knew. With the first spine-tingling kiss, their old friendship is transformed. And in its place is an explosive mix of illicit encounters and forbidden desire…

Author Note,

For both readers and writers, sometimes secondary characters get stuck in our heads.  Intrigued by the  glimpses we’ve been given of them, we want to know their whole story.  Where did they come from and what will happen to them?

Such was the case with Davie in From Waif to Gentleman’s Wife.  An orphan taken in by an elderly widow, he comes involved in the lives of Sir Edward Greaves and Joanna Merrill, the penniless governess who ends up on Ned’s doorstep.  When Davie saves Joanna from danger, a grateful Ned takes him under his wing, impressed by the orphan’s courage, ingenuity and intelligence.

By the time I’d finished Waif I knew he would grow up to be a Parliamentary leader, instrumental in moving England towards a ore egalitarian future with the great Reform Bill.  I also knew that he would fall in love with Faith, the youngest Wellingford daughter – sister of Sarah, heroine of The Wedding Gamble – a girl far above his station.  But how could they find a happy ending?

In Stolen Encounters with the Duchess, Davie has become that leader, and is still in love with the girl he met when he was just beginning his career.  When they meet by chance ten years later he is an influential force, while Faith is a new widow, estranged from her family and Society.  Although painfully aware that she is still far beyond his touch, David vows to reawaken in her the joy, optimism and self-confidence years of being a scorned, neglected wife have crushed.  But love is a force that resists being contained…

I hope you will enjoy Faith and Davie’s story.

James, Sophia, One Unashamed Night

James, One Unashamed Night.jpg

James, Sophia, One Unashamed Night (Wellinghams, Book 2),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2010).

Title:  One Unashamed Night (Wellinghams, Book 2)

Author:  Sophia James

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Class Differences; Domestic Violence; Murder; Visual Impairment

Blurb:

Living in a gray world of silhouette, Lord Taris Wellingham conceals his fading eyesight from society. He has long protected himself from any intimate relationships.  Plain twenty-eight-year-old Beatrice-Maude Bassingstoke does not expect to attract any man, especially not one as good-looking as her remote traveling companion.

Forced by a snowstorm to spend the night together, these two lonely people seek solace in each other’s arms. The passion they unleash surprises them both. Then a new day dawns…

Author Note,

One Unashamed Night is the second book in a family trilogy about the three Wellingham brothers, Asher, Taris and Cristo.  Asher, the Duke of Carisbrook, appeared in High Seas to High Society, and I received many letters from fans who were fascinated by his younger brother, Taris, and wanted to read his story.

Well, here he is!  Lord Taris Wellingham is an intensely private man, and one who keeps the world at bay in order to preserve his greatest secret.

Cristo’s book is yet to come.  He has had only a vague mention so far, but as a spy for England in France he has his own demons and distance.

I’d like to dedicate this book to three wonderful women in my life:  Pat Rendall, for her insight into the world of darkness; my mother, Jewell Kivell, for enthusiastically reading the first draft; and Linda Fildew, my fantastic editor, for her patience with and belief in all of my books.

Hearon, Pamela, Out of the Depths

hearon-out-of-the-depths

Hearon, Pamela, Out of the Depths,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2012).

Title:  Out of the Depths

Author:  Pamela Hearon

Imprint:  Superromance

Issues:  Class Differences; Parenthood; Self Esteem

Blurb:

She isn’t going down that road again

Kyndal Rawlings thought she’d learned her lesson when Chance Brennan left her to pursue his Ivy League dreams. Yet here she is, in Kentucky, falling for him all over again. Maybe it’s being stranded in a cave with him…the same place they first became lovers.

Or maybe there’s still something between them.

Not that anything will change-even after four tense days of depending on each other for their very survival. Chance needs a certain kind of woman to help him with his career. And Kyndal will never be that kind. But something has changed. Something that will force the m to decide what they really want.

Dear Reader,

Perhaps you’ve heard of Mammoth Cave?  Kentucky, my native state, is littered with caves.  Mammoth Cave is the most famous, but smalled ones honeycomb beneath the surface of much of the land area.

Some of my high school friends happened upon a cave near Kentucky Lake, and four of us set out one day to explore it.  Armed with only two flashlights and the mindset of teenage invincibility, we were totally naïve to the dangers that might lurk there.  We thought it was a cool thing to do.  And it was!  Stepping into the total blackness of those new surroundings was like stepping into another world.  We squeezed through crevices and crawled through passages like giant earthworms, somehow managing to find our way back to the entrance at day’s end.

My memories of that day are vivid and still wildly exciting even these many years later, so when I started pondering a unique setting for a novel, the idea of the cave took over my imagination and wouldn’t let go.  Former high school sweethearts Kyndal Rawlings and Chance Brennan needed to get reacquainted.  The cave was the perfect place for their reunion.

Whether your preferences lean toward the outdoor recreation region of Kentucky Lake or the rolling hills around Lexington, the Bluegrass State is an enchanting place you’ll want to visit – along with my website, www.pamelahearon.com.

Until next time,

Pamela Hearon

Brisbin, Terri, Kidnapped by the Highland Rogue

brisbin-kidnapped-by-the-highland-rogue

Brisbin, Terri, Kidnapped by the Highland Rogue (A Highland Feuding, Book 3),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Kidnapped by the Highland Rogue (A Highland Feuding, Book 3)

Author:  Terri Brisbin

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Abduction; Class Differences; Revenge

Blurb:

The Highlander’s prisoner

There’s more to hardened outlaw Niall Corbett than meets the eye. Despite his merciless reputation, he’s on a mission he must defend with his life. One that means taking beautiful Fia Mackintosh prisoner for her own protection!

Fia may have dreamed of being swept away by a gorgeous Highlander, but never of being held hostage by a gang of outlaws! While her head screams for her to run, her heart beats a little too fast for her captor, a man she shouldn’t, yet can’t help but trust…

Author Note

I am so thrilled to bring you the third book in my A Highland Feuding miniseries – Kidnapped by the Highland Rogue!  I confess, I am finding such inspiration from the true history of these two Scottish families and their centuries-long feud.

If you’ve read the first two books, you’ve met the heroine, Fia Mackintosh.  She was a young girl caught up in the dangerous feud in Stolen by the Highlander, and then we saw her as an insightful girl in The Highlander’s Runaway Bride.  Now Fia is a young woman who thinks that the stories and experiences of Lady Arabella and Lady Eva are sooo romantic.  And she’s dreamed of a handsome Highlander kidnapping her and sweeping her into a torrid love affair that would lead to a happily-ever-after of her own.  But when it happens, it’s not at all how she thought it would be, and yet it’s so much more at the same time.

Using the disguise of Iain Dubh, Niall Corbett cannot help himself when he meets Fia in a dangerous situation – he kidnaps her believing it’s the only way to protect her.  As we romance readers know already, nothing is ever that simple or clear, and this situation goes from bad to worse quickly.  This hero is much, much more than he appears, and there is simply no way that Fia Mackintosh can ever be his.  Or is there a way for Fia to find her coveted happy ending with this enigmatic rogue?

A hint before you read this – my next hero appears in this book.  If you’ve read the first book, you’ve met him, too, but now he’s grown-up and in need of a heroine.  When he entered this book, he acted quite heroically, so I just know he’s ready fro his own story.

Webber, Meredith, The Sheikh’s Doctor Bride

24784401.jpg

Webber, Meredith, The Sheikh’s Doctor Bride, (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2015).

Title:  The Sheikh’s Doctor Bride

Author:  Meredith Webber

Imprint:  Medical

Issues:  Class Differences; Debt; Gendered Expectations (Men); Interracial Relationships; POC

Blurb:

Married to the Sheikh…

ER doctor Kate will do anything to save her family’s livelihood. So when the Sultan of Amberach offers her a lifeline in exchange for her working in his state-of-the-art hospital and marrying his nephew – gorgeous, brooding sheikh Dr. Fareed Faruke – it’s a deal Kate has to accept!

Fareed has always known he’ll never have a say in who he marries, but he’s shocked to see beautiful Kate behind the gold silk veil. She’s the one woman he shouldn’t want – and yet the only woman he can’t seem to resist…

Dear Reader,

Books come together in many ways – a little bit here and a little bit there.  One of the ‘bits’ this time has now become legend in my family.  Some forty years ago my mother-in-law went to see a woman who read cards to tell the future, and this woman told her that if she went away on a trip with her widowed son and his two teenage daughters she’d never have to worry about him again.

That night the son in question phoned her from interstate, where he lived, to ask her to go to India with him and the girls.  She agreed – here was the trip the cards had foretold!  I joined their flight in far-off Western Australia as the tour leader, and that’s how I met my husband and the two teenagers who have become my very loved daughters.

It still gives me shivers up the spine when I realise just how little we know of the part fate must play in our lives.  I do hope fate is kind to you.

Meredith Webber

Nichols, Mary, The Captain’s Kidnapped Beauty

19269562

Nichols, Mary, The Captain’s Kidnapped Beauty, (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2012).

Title:  The Captain’s Kidnapped Beauty

Author:  Mary Nichols

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Abduction; Class Differences; Gendered Expectations (Women)

Blurb:

Rescue from an unlikely source!

Abducted and taken aboard a merchant ship bound for India, Charlotte Gilpin desperately searches for ways to escape. The heiress certainly doesn’t expect rescue from the most unlikely of sources—Captain Alexander Carstairs, a man with whom she has crossed swords in the past.

Alex isn’t sure what to make of Charlotte’s claim to have been kidnapped—he wouldn’t put it past this spirited woman to have cooked up the whole thing to avoid her father’s matchmaking. But in the confines of the ship this confirmed bachelor unexpectedly finds Charlotte getting under his skin…again!

Author Note

This is number five in my Piccadilly Gentlemen’s Club series, in which club members solve crimes in Georgian society.  Previously I have featured murder, deception, coining and smuggling.  This one explores kidnapping – but it is an unusual kidnapping, which involves sailing the high seas.  Captain Alexander Carstairs, recently elevated to Marquis of Foxlees, being a Master Mariner, is just the man for the job.

The ‘kidnapped beauty’ is the daughter of a coachmaker.  It was fun researching the coachmaking business, which was once very lucrative; the best coachmakers would have been multimillionaires in today’s terms.  Anyone who was anyone needed a coach or carriage to get about, and the richest had more than one – just as today’s millionaires will have several different cars.

Henry Gilpin, father of my heroine, has become exceedingly wealthy in the coachmaking trade.  The trouble is that it is trade – and tradesmen were not admitted to the society of the nobility.  He is doing his best to find his daughter a titled husband when she is kidnapped.

I would like to acknowledge the help of Clive Gilbert, Chairman of The British Society of Portugal, in researching this book.

Lennox, Marion, Stepping into the Prince’s World

29502810.jpg

Lennox, Marion, Stepping into the Prince’s World,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Stepping into the Prince’s World

Author:  Marion Lennox

Imprint:  Romance (Cherish)

Issues:   Class Differences; Gendered Expectations (Men); Gendered Expectations (Women)

Blurb:

Falling for the secret prince

Claire Tremaine accepted the post as sole caretaker of a gorgeous island after a professional betrayal left her life in tatters. It’s the perfect place to heal, until her solitude is interrupted by a gorgeous solider who’s shipwrecked on her shores!

Raoul breaks down Claire’s barriers with his kindness and kisses, but she’s stunned when he’s revealed as Prince of Marétal. She believes they can’t be together…until Raoul whisks Claire to his palace! She’s stepped into the prince’s world—but can Claire capture this prince’s heart?

Dear Reader,

Stepping into the Prince’s World started life in my dentist’s waiting room.  The dentist surgery is understandably not my favourite place to visit, but with a lovely pile of glossies I can block out the thought of what’s ahead.  I flicked through the pages, looking at pictures of a certain soldier/prince and thought, what a combination!

And suddenly I was off and dreaming.  By the time I was escorted into the dentist’s chair I had my own soldier/prince in my head, and a heroine who deserved him.  I had shipwrecks and deserted islands, I had chandeliers and tiaras, I had my own kingdom – all I had to do now was get rid of one small dental cavity, escape the dentist and go write a book.

Welcome to Claire and Raoul’s world.  Enjoy.

Marion