Robinson, Lauri, Unwrapping the Rancher’s Secret

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Robinson, Lauri, Unwrapping the Rancher’s Secret,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Unwrapping the Rancher’s Secret

Author:  Lauri Robinson

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Gendered Expectations (Women); Revenge

Blurb:

A ghost of Christmas past…

Heiress Sara Johnson is shocked when the stepbrother she believed was dead returns to Colorado to claim his inheritance! It might be the season of goodwill, but Crofton Parks seems determined to destroy his late father’s empire.

Sparks fly as Crofton and Sara are forced to work together, and soon she begins to uncover the secrets behind his disappearance and need for revenge. But a far more unsettling discovery is the desire he awakens in Sara. This roguish rancher might just claim her heart by Christmas!

Author Note,

Ideas for stories come to me in many ways.  I dedicated this book to one of my granddaughters because she was the inspiration for Unwrapping the Rancher’s Secret.  While she was at our house one day, we watched a cute cartoon about a little girl whose mother married a king, turning the little girl from a commoner to a princess overnight.  I found that concept intriguing, and that gave birth to Sara Johnson Parks, a girl who was born in a dirt dugout in Kansas and didn’t own a pair of shoes until she was five, when her mother married a lumber baron.  Upon the death of her stepfather, Sara becomes the richest woman in Royalton, Colorado, but that is also when Crofton Parks appears.  The stepbrother she believed had died as a child.

I hope you enjoy Sara and Crofton’s story!

Lewis, Sherry, Her Secret Family

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Lewis, Sherry, Her Secret Family,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2006).

Title:  Her Secret Family

Author:  Sherry Lewis

Imprint:  Superromance

Issues:  Gendered Expectations (Women); POC; Prejudice; WOC

Blurb:

Detective Jolene Preston has the right to expect backup from her partner, but the sexist attitude from the rest of the force is something the narcotic squad’s lone woman fights on her own. Until she discovers a thirty-year cover-up, exposing her Cherokee heritage — and a prejudice she can’t take on alone.

Mason Blackfox grudgingly helps the rookie trace her family history because he knows personally that lies cause only hurt. But then his own daughter demands to know the truth about her grandparents, and Mason needs the lady cop. She’s the only one who can possibly understand.

Dear Reader,

From earliest childhood, most of us get our clues about who we are from our families.  We create our own identity based on the way our parents, siblings and grandparents look at us.  Some of us come to believe things about ourselves so deeply, we never stop to question whether they’re true or not.  We become the quiet one, the smart one, the shy one or the silly one because that’s what we’ve been told we are.

Jolene Preston has accepted what she’s been told all her life.  So when she stumbles across evidence that the “truths” she has always accepted about herself aren’t true at all, it throws her into turmoil.

Her Secret Family is the story of Jolene’s struggle to discover who she is after all the comfortable childhood labels are ripped away.  It is also a story about finding, recognizing and keeping love when it finds you.  Along the way she meets Mason Blackfox and his twelve-year-old daughter, Debra, who are facing struggles of their own.

I’ve come to care a lot about all three of them.  I hope you will, too.

Sherry Lewis

P.S.  I love to hear from readers.  You can reach me through my Website at www.sherrylewisbooks.com or by email at sherry@sherrylewisbooks.com.

Lane, Elizabeth, The Ballad of Emma O’Toole

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Lane, Elizabeth, The Ballad of Emma O’Toole,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2013).

Title:  The Ballad of Emma O’Toole

Author:  Elizabeth Lane

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Gambling; Gendered Expectations (Women); Orphan; Parenthood; Revenge

Blurb:

High-stakes marriage..

After he shoots a man, the stakes for gambler Logan Devereaux have never been higher. On trial for his life, he’s offered a shocking alternative form of restitution…marriage to his victim’s pregnant sweetheart!

Beautiful Emma O’Toole has sworn vengeance against him – and when a newspaper man puts her tragic story to song the whole nation waits to see what she’ll do. Their marriage is the riskiest gamble Logan’s ever taken, but he’ll put everything he’s got on the line for a chance at winning Emma’s heart.

Author Note,

This is a ‘Book of My Heart’.  In the years that passed between its beginning and its publication the story never left me, and I never gave up on it.  Seeing it in print at last, and being able to share it with you, is a very personal joy.

Park City, Utah, is an hour’s drive from where I live.  Cradled by the beautiful Wasatch Mountains, its history is as spectacular as its setting.  My own pioneer great-great-grandfather directed the first settlement of the high valley – then known as Parley’s Park.  Its progression from farming community to silver mining boom town, from crumbling backwater to world-class ski resort and home of the Sundance Film Festival, is a true American saga.

The Ballad of Emma O’Toole is set amid the silver boom of the 1980s that brought wealth-seekers from all over the world.  Young Emma O’Toole is determined to make a better life for herself, but her beauty is offset by every possible strike against her.  She’s orphaned, impoverished, and pregnant by a nineteen-year-old boy as poor as she is.  Fate and tragedy intervene to thrust her into the reluctant arms of gambler Logan Devereaux, a cynical man with a dangerous past.  Can such an unlikely pair find happiness together?  I hope you’ll be cheering them on, as I was, all the way to the end of their story.

I offer you this book with a piece of my heart.  Enjoy.

Landon, Juliet, Taming the Tempestuous Tudor

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Landon, Juliet, Taming the Tempestuous Tudor (At the Tudor Court, Book 2),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Taming the Tempestuous Tudor (At the Tudor Court, Book 2)

Author:  Juliet Landon

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Gendered Expectations (Women); Parenthood

Blurb:

Passion and peril in the court of Elizabeth I…

Henrietta Raemon, illegitimate daughter of Henry VIII, longs to go to court to be closer to her half sister, the queen. The last thing on fiercely independent Etta’s mind is marriage—until newly ennobled merchant Baron Somerville leaves her no choice!

But the attractions of court turn perilous when Etta’s resemblance to Elizabeth makes her some powerful enemies. Her husband is there to protect her, if only Etta can conquer her pride…and surrender.

Author Note,

Eighteen years on from Betrayed, Betrothed and Bedded, Sir Jon and Lady Raemon are now the middle-aged parents of Henrietta, the lovely stepdaughter whose natural father is King Henry VIII.

His mistresses are well-documented, so I have used some artistic license to invent Henrietta’s mother, though in fact several of his offspring resembled his daughter Elizabeth quite closely.  Lady Catherine Grey was one of those – a young woman who unfortunately did not share the characteristics of her brilliant older sister, Lady Jane Grey.  By including some factual characters in Taming the Tempestuous Tudor I hope to create enough reality to make the fiction sound plausible:  men like Lord Robert Dudley, Dr. John Dee and Lord Howard of Effingham, and Queen Elizabeth herself.

The miniaturist Levina Teerlinc actually did live at the Tudor court, working for both Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth, and her father was indeed the artist Simon Benninck.  Whether she had a brother or not I have been unable to discover, so I have taken the liberty of inventing one for her.  She painted Elizabeth on several occasions, and Lady Catherine Grey too.  Dr John Dee did go to live in Mortlake, near the church, where he had a vast library of scientific books, and the site of Mortlake Manor, once lived in by Thomas Cromwell, was eventually demolished and built on by the brewery.

Landon, Juliet, The Rake’s Unconventional Mistress

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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

James, Sophia, The Dissolute Duke

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James, Sophia, The Dissolute Duke (Wellinghams, Book 4),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2013).

Title:  The Dissolute Duke (Wellinghams, Book 4)

Author:  Sophia James

Imprint:  Historical

Issues:  Child Abuse; Gendered Expectations (Women)

Blurb:

The rumor is up and the banns are read….

The Dissolute Duke has finally wed! With a name synonymous with sin and debauchery so shocking it is spoken of only in whispers, Taylen Ellesmere, Duke of Alderworth, is more surprised than anyone when he finds himself forced to marry! Before the ink is dry on the register, he turns his back on this sham of a marriage and leaves.

Three years later, having barely survived the scandal, Lady Lucinda has placed one delicately shod foot back in the hallowed halls of the ton when her husband returns. He has an offer she can’t refuse. And in exchange? Their wedding night!

Author Note,

So many people have written to me and asked if I was going to write the story of Lucinda, the last sibling of the Wellinghams.

Well, here it is.  Lucinda has featured in Asher’s story, High Seas to High Society, Taris’s story, One Unashamed Night, and Cristo’s One Illicit Night.

Falder has been like a second home to me for so many years  -it is quite sad to have to say goodbye.  I hope you love the way Lucinda’s man is no pushover and, as the dissolute Duke who has seemingly ruined their sister, is causing mayhem for the Wellingham brothers.

Hoffmann, Kate, The Mighty Quinns: Rourke

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Hoffmann, Kate, The Mighty Quinns:  Rourke (The Mighty Quinns, Book 25),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2013).

Title:  The Mighty Quinns:  Rourke (The Mighty Quinns, Book 25)

Author:  Kate Hoffmann

Imprint:  Blaze

Issues:  Bipolar Disorder; Bullying; Gendered Expectations (Women); Injury; Suicide

Blurb:

Her hero. Her savior.  And her undoing. Rourke Quinn found her on the storm-tossed shores of  Cape Breton. The woman in his arms was unconscious and bleeding. And Rourke knew her. Annie MacIntosh was the  town outcast—a wild thing. And as untamed and beautiful  as the Atlantic itself. This storm was just the thing to keep  Rourke as close to her as he dared….

Annie grew up fiercely independent. She was a survivor, needing no one and nothing. She cut herself off from the town and society, relying only on her raw need for survival. But Rourke unleashes a hunger she never knew existed. This man—this stranger—satiates an appetite she hardly dared imagine. It’s more exiting and more turbulent than that storm that rages outside. And Rourke has only one chance with the wild girl he can’t live without…before losing her to a world he can never be part of…

Dear Reader,

One of my favorite things about writing books for Harlequin is the opportunity to explore interesting new places.  When I decided to do this latest quartet of Mighty Quinn books, I was excited to have the chance to choose four very different settings, in various parts of the world.  Of course, the final book had to be set in Ireland, but for this book, I played with the settings of Central America and Africa before deciding on the island of Cape Breton in Canada.

With its vibrant Celtic culture and old lighthouses, I knew right away that this was the perfect place for a Qunn to fall in love – with the countryside and the heroine!

So, for all my Canadian fans, this one’s for you.  I hope I’ve represented this beautiful corner of your country well.  I think it’s the perfect place for Rourke and Annie to find their happy ending.

Enjoy!

Kate Hoffmann

Hill, Donna, Love Becomes Her

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Hill, Donna, Love Becomes Her (Pause for Men, Book 1),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2006).

Title:  Love Becomes Her (Pause for Men, Book 1)

Author:  Donna Hill

Imprint:  Kimani

Issues:  Gendered Expectations (Men); Gendered Expectations (Women); POC; WOC

Blurb:

Fate has one last zinger in store for Barbara Allen. His name is Michael Stevens, he is a basketball millionaire, he’s little more than half her age and he wants to spend the night!

Does Barbara dare throw convention to the wind and enjoy her very own boy toy?

It’s a decision she’ll need the help of her three best friends to make. But as the trio weighs in on whether Barbara should or shouldn’t, they come up with an outrageous plan that will mean a life change for them all.

Dear Reader,

Thank you so much for choosing Love Becomes Her, the first book in the Pause for Men series.  I do hope you enjoyed meeting Barbara, Stephanie, Ann Marie and Elizabeth and the men who love them.  Whoever said that moving past forty was time to turn in your pumps, haven’t met “the girlz”!

I had a great time crafting their stories and hopefully bringing you some moments of entertainment and enlightenment.  Each of their stories is about taking a stand for yourself and not being afraid when confronted with the obstacles that life throws in your path.

Stay tuned for the next installment, Saving All My Loving, which will feature Ann Marie and her dilemma when her estranged husband, Terrance Bishop, wants to come back in her life.  There are more twists and turns in store for Barbara, Stephanie and Elizabeth, as well.  But, of course, I can’t give it away.  You’ll have to read the book!

Donna Hill

Griggs, Winnie, Texas Cinderella

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Griggs, Winnie, Texas Cinderella (Texas Grooms, Book 8),  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2016).

Title:  Texas Cinderella (Texas Grooms, Book 8)

Author:  Winnie Griggs

Imprint:  Love Inspired Historical

Issues:  Gendered Expectations (Women)

Blurb:

In Search of a Groom  

After a life of drudgery on her family’s farm, Cassie Lynn Vickers relishes her freedom working in town as a paid companion for feisty Mrs. Flanagan. When her father suddenly demands she come home, she has no choice. Unless she can find a husband. If only she could convince handsome town newcomer Riley Walker to marry her…

Riley is on the run. He’s desperate to keep his niece and nephew safe from his crooked half brother. But a delay in Turnabout, Texas, shows him everything he didn’t know he was missing: home, family—and Cassie Lynn. Can he find a way to become her Prince Charming…and build a real family with the children and Cassie Lynn?

Dear Reader,

I hope you’ve enjoyed Cassie Lynn and Riley’s story.  I knew as soon as Cassie Lynn popped up as a secondary character in The Holiday Courtship that she needed to have a story of her own.  She arrived on the scene and suddenly she was such a fully realized character in my mind.  There was so much I knew about her that I couldn’t show in that book.  It took me a while to figure out who her hero would be, but I think Riley worked out perfectly to be her forever match.

Both of these characters had some tough issues to work through, issues where it wasn’t easy to see what the “right” choice would be, issues that ultimately required them to take a hard stand, a stand they couldn’t have made without this journey they took together.

And if you enjoyed this book, I hope you’ll be on the lookout for the next in the series.  For more information on this and other books set in Turnabout, please visit my website at winniegriggs.com or follow me on facebook at Facebook.com/WinnieGriggs.Author.

And as always, I love to hear from readers.  Feel free to contact me at winnie@winniegriggs.com with your thoughts on this or any other of my books.

Wishing you a life abounding with love and grace,

Winnie Griggs

Gibson, Rhonda, A Pony Express Christmas Bride

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Gibson, Rhonda, A Pony Express Christmas,  (Richmond, Surrey:  Harlequin (UK) Limited, 2014).

Title:  A Pony Express Christmas

Author:  Rhonda Gibson

Imprint:  Love Inspired Historical

Issues:  Bereavement; Gendered Expectations (Women); Orphan; Parenthood;

Blurb:

Mistletoe marriage of convenience…

When Jake Bridges suddenly finds himself the guardian of his orphaned niece, he knows he needs a wife. What does a stock tender at a pony express station know about raising little girls? A marriage of convenience to the child’s caretaker is the most practical solution.

A mail-order marriage seems like Leah Hollister’s last chance to know the simple joys of family life. But then she receives word that her would-be groom is dead. Now Jake proposes she marry him. She knows love isn’t necessary. Yet the more she learns of sweet Molly’s kindhearted uncle, the more she dreams of a true partnership with the man who has unexpectedly captured her heart.

Dear Reader,

When I was researching the Pony Express, I came across a letter from a little girl who asked if there were any girl Pony Express riders.  The gentleman who answered her letter said, “not that history recorded but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t one.”  that got me to thinking, and Josephine’s story was born.  I enjoyed telling Thomas and Josephine’s love story.

Thank you so much for reading Pony Express Christmas Bride.  I hope you are enjoying reading this miniseries as much as I am writing it.

Warmly,

Rhonda Gibson