#Review | The Captain And The Squire (Captivating Captains Series ) by Catherine Curzon and Eleanor Harkstead #TheCaptainandtheSquire #CaptivatingCaptains @e_harkstead @MadameGilflurt @PridePublishing
Hello my wonderful Sunshines, on this grey and blustery day! I am soooo excited to be sharing my review of the next Captivating Captains novel….squeals!!! Not only will I be boring you silly with my babble which after reading the review back does seem to focus a lot of bottoms, but I also have an exclusive excerpt for you all to devour, so settle in grab that cuppa and cake, and enjoy!!
A sexy city boy and a country squire will set the countryside alight!
Tarquin Bough is a tweedy squire with an ambitious fiancée who controls his every move. He’s also the owner of the finest collection of saucy artefacts in the world. From Christine Keeler’s eyelash to the Virgin Queen’s dildo, they’re all safe in Tarquin’s care.
Christopher Hardacre is a city-slicker with the tightest jodhpurs and the most smackable bottom in London. He’s given up the rat-race for a country life as captain of the village rowing team. The only trouble is, he’s lost his money to a ruthless scam and Bough Bottoms is his last hope of a home.
But Chris hasn’t reckoned on his late uncle’s will. The house comes with a sitting porcine tenant and if Chris can’t look after his newly-acquired pet pig, he’ll lose his inheritance and his last chance at happiness.
When Tarquin sees Chris it’s lust at first sight, but dare he be honest about his feelings in a village where being gay is bound to be a hot topic? As soon as Chris and Tarquin get together, it’s the hottest summer this little corner of England has ever known.
With a scheming local hotshot out to turn the beloved pig into sausages, can the captain and the squire save everybody’s bacon?
Tarquin yawned and stretched in his deckchair. Although most of the blossom had gone from the orchard, blown away by the storms in late spring, it was still a beautiful place to sit in the evening. He took a mouthful of brandy and scratched the head of the pig who was snuffling at the grass beside his chair.
“Now look here, Oracle!” Tarquin held up the length of carved wood that he had been nursing on his lap. “The craftsmanship is second to none.”
The Oracle seemed to be listening, even if she was still busy hunting for truffles. But over the contented snorts of the pig, Tarquin heard the music from next door rise in volume and yet another car revved in the private lane outside his house.
His new neighbor had arrived.
The car doors slammed and the sound of braying laughter carried on the breeze as yet more visitors arrived to greet—who? Who was it who was moving into the Hardacre house anyway? Who was it who’d had removal vans and tradespeople coming and going for weeks to the empty house? Who was responsible for the smell of fresh paint and the sound of hammering and drilling from that tottering, crumbling pile where the late Beardsley Hardacre had lived for his one hundred and three years? Who had landscaped that wild garden?
Who was it who had arrived by nightfall not quite twenty-four hours earlier and was apparently already throwing a party?
And why had this interloper made no effort to claim the Oracle of Delphi?
“Your new mummy and daddy have arrived, my friend,” Tarquin told the pig, his voice soft. But as another toot and another bray of laughter reached him in his formerly tranquil orchard, he rose from the chair, fire in his tone as he declared, “And I’m going to have words!”
Tarquin ran across the orchard and, his brandy in one hand and the carved wooden length in the other, took the fence in a single bound like a steeplechaser.
The evening air was torn by that most dreadful of sounds—the cry of ripped corduroy trousers.
Now in the Hardacre garden, Tarquin cast a glance back at the fence, where a ragged square of golden-colored corduroy waved back at him like a tiny flag. It must’ve caught on a nail, but instead of going home to change, Tarquin was too inflamed with rage to turn back, and instead plunged on through the garden.
And what an improvement it is!
What had once been a tangle of brambles amid a sea of grass that would have hidden an army was now a manicured lawn so flat that it could have been a golf course. Bright bursts of color sprang from well-tended borders and for the first time in years Tarquin could actually see the banks of the river that ran along the bottom of their neighboring gardens. How strange it was to think that such a beautiful view had been hidden all these years, but the cantankerous old gentleman who had lived here far longer than Tarquin had even been alive’d had little time for gardening. He had been too busy with wine, women and song for that.
And whoever was now in his house seemed to be of similar appetites, Tarquin realized, as he rounded the corner and froze on the edge of the patio.
Everyone appeared to be in swimwear, or something resembling it. Tall, elegant women wearing sarongs and high heels with their jewelry chatted with handsome young men in shorts and little more, each of them holding a fizzing glass of champagne, each of them exuding money and confidence and…the city.
A huge hot tub that bubbled on the patio contained yet more of the incomers, tan and braying and so bloody loud and one of them, he knew, must be the new master of Hardacre Grange.
It had to be the man whose braying laughter was louder than anyone else’s. The man who seemed to be holding court in that absurdly overstated hot tub.
The only one wearing sunglasses on an evening that required no such thing.
Tarquin strode straight up to the hot tub and bellowed, “Which of you ruddy coves is in charge here?”
The chatter fell silent but the thump of the music, of course, did not. The man in sunglasses took a leisurely sip from his glass of champagne and said, “That would be me, squire. Why don’t you grab a glass and hop on in?”
Tarquin shook with fury, the brandy slopping up against the brim of his glass. “Hop in? Hop bloody in? The bally cheek of it—I don’t bathe in public with strangers!”
“Oh, you’ve brought your own booze, I like it!” He lowered his sunglasses just a little and peered closely at Tarquin’s other hand. “And you appear to have also brought a large wooden penis. Is that a traditional welcome in Bough Bottoms? Hello, old man, here’s a penis from all of us on the parish council!”
The partygoers guffawed that braying laugh, every eye now focused on Tarquin’s hand.
“Penis?” Tarquin thundered. Then he recalled the antique object in his hand. “This? This is a Tudor dildo! It belonged to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth I herself!” Tarquin wagged it under the nose of the man in sunglasses, because surely the man couldn’t see properly wearing Ray-Bans in the dusk.
Although Tarquin could see his new neighbor very well, smarmily grinning at Tarquin from under his arrogant flop of blond hair. Tarquin wasn’t going to admit it, but the fellow was in exquisite form, with swimmer’s shoulders and toned arms that Tarquin would have happily spent hours squeezing like a shopper deciding on a grapefruit. And that angular jaw was worthy of a statue, finished off with a square chin that Tarquin would never tire of nibbling on.
Not that he would. Tarquin threw a furious glance at the woman chortling at his new neighbor’s side.
Married. Has to be. Bugger it.
Or sadly not.
“A Tudor dil— oh, just a minute!” The man pushed his sunglasses up into his hair, his welcoming smile evaporating. “You’re Bough! You’re the man who did Great-Uncle Beardsley out of Prince Albert’s ceremonial Prince Albert!”
“No, I bloody didn’t! It’s mine!” Tarquin stamped his foot. Oh, my dander’s most definitely getting up! “And besides which, you could at least extend the courtesy of pronouncing my surname properly. It’s Boff, to rhyme with cough, not Bow as in bough as in part of a tree! It’s bloody Anglo-Saxon and if my ancestors weren’t conquered by the Normans, I won’t be conquered by a bloody blow-in Yuppie like you, accusing me of theft, who’s got a bath on his patio like a peasant!”
A collective intake of breath sounded around the patio. And where had the patio come from anyway? The last time Tarquin had glimpsed the back of the neighboring house before the brambles had claimed it, this had been a mud pit.
But the man who now rose from the water of the hot tub was certainly not an eyesore.
Bloody hell, he’s no old Uncle Beardsley.
“Uncle Bea said you were a Bow,” he said in a plummy sneer. Then he grinned and held out his hand, as though Tarquin weren’t juggling a glass of French brandy and Queen Elizabeth’s favorite dildo. “Christopher Hardacre. You can only be my new next-door neighbor. You’re exactly like Bea said you were in his letters. I feel like I already know you!”
Tarquin shoved the dildo into his pocket, its curved end poking out like a rhino horn. He held out his hand. “Your Uncle Beardsley was a dreadful old git—never got on with him, and he always pronounced my name wrong just to rile me. I’m Tarquin Bough, as in cough, and that’s the end of it. Christopher Hardacre, eh? My new neighbor!”
As Tarquin shook Christopher’s square hand, his gaze wandered down the planes of Christopher’s dripping chest, down to his muscular stomach and those wet shorts that clung to his every contour.
My other dander’s up now, blast it.
**Excerpt provided via the publisher’s website**
I love, love, love, love this book!! Can I put anymore ‘loves’ in that first sentence? I know, I know, I say the same every single time I read a Captivating Captain book, but I can’t help myself this series is just…..well, I am unable to say, as I think I have used every word that has been listed under amazing in the thesaurus…hmmm, went slightly off subject.
Anyway, Just when I think that this series has peaked and it can’t possibly get any better, and I have found my new love and favourite, then boom! The ladies-only go and pull out another winner and turn me into a melting, withering and babbling wreck, yet again, but this is too damn good!! It is in times like this when I need my heart-eye emoji’s to say what I can’t seem to put in words. Honestly, I don’t think that I have the adequate vocabulary to really do this amazing book the justice it deserves, but I’ll give it a darn good shot.
There are so many things that I want to say about this, and yet I don’t want to give away too much – I would rather hint and intrigue then give spoilers. But like all of the Captivating Captains series, this has everything that I look for in a good romance, it has the perfect mix of enigmatic character’s, sizzling chemistry, lots of fun and laughter, love to hate villains, a wonderfully original plot, plus the sharp, clever and very English wit which we have all come to know and love about this series.
When his elderly neighbour dies, Tarquin Bough – alias the very naughty ever so slightly kinky Squire – meets the new Hardacre to grace their little village of Bough Bottoms, Tarquin is all set to hate his new neighbour as there had been a small neighbourly war going on between the Hardacre’s and the Bough’s, but when our Squire meets sexy, confident and constantly unbuttoned Christopher Hardacre sparks fly and trousers rip (literally). For Tarquin it is an instant attraction, he feels proper raging lust for the first time, yet with his fiancée Petunia back at Bough Towers and who insists on wearing the trousers for him, his secret lust and desperate yearning to really get to know their new neighbour may not be as easy to accomplish as he hopes.
Oh, goodness me, that first meeting between Chris and Tarquin is hilarious, I was up most of the night giggling away with that first chapter which is full ripped trousers, lot of bottom showing, super tight swimwear; which leaves very little to the imagination and a squire brandishing an Elizabethan dildo; that alone ensures for some very tongue in cheek, hilarious and very, very cheeky banter between our boys, something which carries on throughout. These two are the best, I love their instant attraction, the trust they place on one and other, I love their chemistry it doesn’t just sizzle it steams up the windows with a mere peacocking, cheeky glance… I will never look at a simple barn or a shower cubicle in the same way again….phew!
City boy and newly named Captain of the rowing team; Christopher has moved to Bough Bottoms with the hope of making a whole new life for himself, a slower life, unfortunately, our golden-haired, fine bottomed Christopher has been through t’mill, after being caught in the snare of terrible con he is now broke, Bough Bottoms is his saving grace, Well it would be if it wasn’t for a certain clause in his late uncle’s will, basically, there is a pig and said pig has Christopher’s fate and future happiness in her trotter, because if Christopher and the cute as a button Oracle of Delphi don’t get along then its goodbye Christopher.
The Oracle of Delphi, what a brilliant addition to the story, I love that a pig is such an important part of the plot, there are some very funny and very touching moments where the Oracle is concerned, especially with Christopher. But, it’s not all sweetness and sexy jodhpur clad bottoms, there is a dastardly villain in the village, one with a plan and whom wants to serve our Oracle with apple sauce….the absolute cheek!!
There is a slight different feel to this one that the previous ‘Captivating Captains’ didn’t have, nothing bad just a little different, it’s a lot more saucier then the other’s that’s for sure. I love how it’s written predominately through Tarquin’s point of view, I really liked the way that Tarquin’s personal story is written how he knows he is gay yet for his own reasons won’t actually come out and say it openly, he doesn’t want scandal or to be the only gay squire in Bough Bottoms, I think he just lacks the confidence to actually be himself, and this is what Christopher does so perfectly, he shows Tarquin how happy he can be if he just allowed the saucy Squire to come out and once he does, there is no locking him away again.
The Captain and the Squire is an excellent, gloriously funny and sexy romance, the tongue-in-cheek humour, great banter and brilliant interaction between all the characters is perfect. The writing is as you’d expect from Catherine and Eleanor strong, witty, immensely clever and entertaining. Even the villains are brilliantly written – there is one that in particular, which I just loved hating – this character definitely mad me want to ‘boo’ and ‘hiss’ every time they were in a scene – which makes it all sound very pantomime-ish, but this is far, far better than sitting through another version of Aladdin for a start there are far more cheeky winks, pig wooing and well-shaped thighs and bottoms (Its official, I have a perversion for fine rear ends, someone help me)
I don’t think I have to say how much I loved this book, do I? Because I did, I thought that I was ruined with Guy the Pilot in The Captain and the Best Man and of course my beloved Captain Thorne from The Captain and the Cavalry Trooper, but this has galloped in right to the top.
If you love a jolly good ride through the country with two scandalously seductive gent’s then you need to read it!
This was an Arc copy via the authors, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you, Catherine and Eleanor. Xx
The Captain and the Squire is available from today, do go and grab yourself a copy, it’s definitely worth it!
#Review | His Countess For A Week by Sarah Mallory #HisCountessForAWeek @SarahMRomance @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello, my festive little Sunshines! I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of this gorgeous book; his Countess for a Week by Sarah Mallory. This book is so wonderful ad I have been so looking forward to sharing my thoughts with you all, so settle in, grab that cuppa, plus a snack and enjoy!
A pretend marriage to the Earl
Sharing everything—except a bed…
To uncover a ruthless killer, Arabella Roffey masquerades as the Countess of Westray—never expecting her ‘husband’ suddenly to appear! He could expose her, but instead he agrees to continue her ruse for a week. Randolph is brooding, handsome, and Bella likes him more than she should. Pretending to be his wife, she shares everything with him—except a bed—but the temptation to do so is becoming all too real…
It’s always like opening a Christmas gift whenever I start a new Sarah Mallory book, you know it’s going to be a great love story, but because Sarah is such a dynamic and imaginative writer, you never know what sort of adventure you will go on, I have yet to be disappointed by the journey and this beautiful book is no different.
I am so pleased that Sarah wrote Ran’s story, the last time we met him he was a bit of a bad ‘un, yet as much as you wanted to dislike him, I really wanted him to redeem himself with a story of his own. I am over the moon that he gets his happily ever after too, but it’s not an easy journey for him, there are certain things that are associated with his past that does impede his way to happiness, and I thought his little flaw’s and vulnerabilities make him all the more lovable and fascinating.
After five years living in Sydney Cove after being transported for Murder, Randolph the newly named Earl of Westrey is now back on English soil and ready to finally step up and take responsibility for his life, he knows he did wrong and he is ready to be a man. He may not be comfortable with coming back with a title especially as a convicted criminal, but he has grown up a lot and ready to step up, but he is rather taken back that when he reaches one of the estates he now owns and finds a ‘wife’ already in residence. Well to say he is a tad shocked to discover a strange woman masquerading as his countess, but who is this mysterious and incredibly beautiful woman? And why on earth is she living in his home as the new Countess of Westray?
I love Ran – in fact, the word ‘love’ doesn’t really cover how much I adore this young, beautiful and charming man if I was a debutante from the regency era, I would have to pull out the virginal white feathered fan and begin to flutter it with gusto (I know, I’m a little long in the tooth to be classed as any kind of deb, but you get the idea) He is a complete surprise not at all how I thought him to be, he is really cheeky and enigmatic there is a smooth confidence about him that makes the heart a flutter around him, and yet hidden beneath that twinkly-eyed charm there is a fragility, a secret that could prevent his happiness.
After the death of her husband, Arabella rather scandalously masquerades as the Countess of Westray to infiltrate the coven of the group she thinks is behind the death of her husband. She had heard all about the new Lord Westray, she never thinks for a moment that the convicted criminal and new Westray will turn up at the same country house as her, but alas there he is large as life, impossibly handsome and full of surprises, for instead of exposing her as a fraud he remarkably decided goes go along with her charade.
Arabella is a really good woman she isn’t one for games and falsehoods, she is far too honest and caring for that, yet she will do all she can to find the truth about her husband. There are inner depths to Arabella, not just her need for justice and truth, but the more she uncovers the more she realises, that she has lived her life under an illusion as you will find out as you read, there is a deep sadness about her that I picked up from the moment I met her and I absolutely loved the way that without even trying Ran brings out the inner sparkle which she keeps hidden so well.
As they work together under the guise of man and wife, to uncover what happened to Arabella’s late husband, the chemistry between them is hard to resist and soon both are beginning to feel the pull of their desire for the other, but can they hold off their feelings and wade through the sexual tension that lingers in the atmosphere around them long enough to find out the truth?
I have to mention that ending, oh, my word!! Talk about edge of your seat, I was completely gripped by the intricate and daring finale, I absolutely refuse to give details (as always there will be no spoilers coming from me) but it’s a real doozy, it’s unexpected, thrilling, ridiculously romantic, the perfect ending for Ran and Arabella.
I loved every part of this; the story is not your stereotypical romance it’s original and I loved the edgier feel to it which pulls the reader in. Its full of tantalising banter, fabulous character’s are brilliantly written, Arabella and Ran are wonderful to get to know, they sizzle with tension, the atmosphere between them crackles with lust, each scene is like a battle of wills who will cave in and lunge at the other? I even love the baddie’s, they have such great personalities that you really love to hate them – there is one, in particular, that does make you want to boo and hiss whenever they appear.
This book has every thing you would ever want from a historical romance; history, two challenging characters, a coupe of villains, an explosive plot, a beautiful romance and it is all tied up with that unmistakable Sarah Mallory flare and style.
This was an Arc copy via the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Sarah! Xx
His Countess for a Week is to be released on 26 December and can be pre-ordered.
#Review | The Secrets Of Lord Lynford (The Cornish Dukes #1) by Bronwyn Scott #TheSecretsOfLordLynford @Bronwynscott @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello, my festive sunshines! I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of the first book in this brilliant new series; The Secrets of Lord Lynford by Bronwyn Scott. So settle down, grab a cuppa and a piece of cake, and enjoy!
He’s destined never to marry
She might change his mind…
Eaton Falmage, Marquess of Lynford, is an expert at distracting himself from the painful truth which means he’ll never wed. Seducing mining widow Eliza Blaxland seems the perfect diversion. Until he learns Eliza guards her heart as fiercely as her hard-won independence. He longs for more, but that would mean confessing his secret…and risk losing her forever!
To say, I have been looking forward to this brand new series is an understatement, and oh, boy Bronwyn Scott has yet again shown just what a master story teller she is, and how you open a series, one that I know is going to go from strength to strength and I cannot wait to devour each one and meets these seductively charming Cornish Dukes.
After the death of the father of a good friend – who also happens to be one of the Cornish Dukes, who the series will be following – Eaton returns back home to pick up where he left off with opening his new school with his good friend Cade Kitto – who some of you may remember him from; Unwrapping his Christmas Temptation, it’s so lovely to see him back again. While getting ready for his big grand opening and for the students to settle in, he meets one of his patron’s; Mrs Blaxland, a mining widow who literally makes Eaton look twice, this beautiful and secretive woman stirs something within him, she makes him want things that he has been determined never to have. Our Eaton has a secret, one that is keeping him from pursuing his destiny and doing his duty for the title. A secret that has led him to follow a different path, one that doesn’t involve him ever getting married but e is determined to throw himself into other endeavours to seal his legacy to the world.
Well, that is until he sets eyes on Eliza, a woman who makes his once closely sealed off heartbeat again!
Eaton! Oh, Eaton, I went through such with him, he made me swoon with his enigmatic charisma, he made me want to pull him close and want to hug him, especially when his secret is revealed. Like Eliza he has real passion for improving peoples lives with education, this is why Eliza and Eaton are perfect for each other, they both have secrets and vulnerabilities that they keep well hidden behind their well-worn masks but put them together and they each slowly chip through those brick walls to the real person within and that is so beautifully done.
Since the death of her husband, Eliza knows that she is in a precarious situation, she knows she needs to be tough, she needs to show the world that she is very much in charge of her own fate. She has seen with her own eyes what can happen to women when they lose that control over their lives, they end up being walked over and in some cases destitute as men have the ease to do as they wish, even with a wealthy powerful widow. She is determined that she will not suffer the same fate as many other women, she will not sit by being idle and ignorant as men control her very life. So she took over her husband colliery when he died, she was determined she would be seen as the one in power the one whom others looked up at and more than that she wouldn’t be taken for granted and she wouldn’t be controlled by a man.
I know what you are thinking that she sounds like a right dragon, but our Eliza has very good reason to be cautious and protective over her life, as she isn’t only trying to make a good life for herself but that of her daughter too. I really like Eliza, I respect and admire her strength and determination to not be used and I love her idea’s for change, she is a woman who is thinking the way in front the era she lives in. She is determined that all of the miner’s children should be educated so that they have the skills to make choices other than to do as expected of them.
I really love her passion for education, her passion for helping the mining community, her passion for all working class, not just men but women too to be able to have those skills to be able to go out and try to improve their situations really spoke to me. She is feisty and confident in her ability to run the mine, she is loyal to those workers who support her and she is fiercely protective of those she loves.
My goodness the ending, I won’t give anything away, but it is a heart in your mouth ending that will have your literally perched at the edge of your seat, this is what Bronwyn does she takes what is essentially a charming, emotional and simple love story and throws in a little surprise which make you sit up and go; Oh, well I didn’t see that coming.
The Secrets of Lord Lynford is a dynamic, vivid and richly enchanting love story. An intricate and fast-paced plot, brilliantly engaging characters, stunning scenery and detail, plus huge amounts of tantalizing and seductive emotion makes this book a definite must-read!
I am so excited about getting to know the other Cornish Dukes, we briefly met them in this which gave a glimpse of three complex and fiercely loyal gents who I know are going to ruin me.
This was an Arc copy via the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Bronwyn! Xx
The Secrets of Lord Lynford is available from 27th December.
#Review | The Inconvenient Elmswood Marriage ( Penniless Brides Of Convenience #4) by Marguerite Kaye #TheInconvenientElmswoodMarriage @MargueriteKaye @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of; The Inconvenient Elmswood Marriage, which is the fourth and final book in the gorgeous Penniless Brides of Convenience by Marguerite Kaye. So settle in, grab that cuppa and some biscuits – believe you’re going to need them with the babbling I’m going to put you all through – and enjoy!
Their marriage was a solution…
Until passion turns it into a problem!
Lord and Lady Elmswood’s convenient marriage has allowed them to live separate lives for years. Until larger-than-life Daniel almost dies and Kate must nurse the husband she barely knows back to health…and discover how maddeningly attractive he is! With the clock ticking on his departure, they disagree on everything – except the impossibility of resisting each other!
The fourth and final book in what has been an amazing series is a beautiful and very fitting ending, I definitely think that this is my favourite of the four. Throughout the series I have had questions about Daniel and Kate floating around in the back of my mind; why do they live apart? What were the reasons for their convenient marriage? And why did Daniel leave, never to return? And, I was wondering how Marguerite was going to bring Daniel and Kate back together again after so many years apart, and if they could ever fall in love after living separate lives since the day they married. Really I was worrying over nothing, if there was one person who could write a reunited love story, then it is the queen of historical romance herself and this is so good – really the word good doesn’t do this book justice if I was more eloquent with words I would be able to say in much finer terms exactly how wonderful this book is.
To say that Daniel’s story was a surprising one, was an understatement but I loved his story. I had real difficulty writing this review, I wanted to say so much about this glorious book, but because I really didn’t want to give too much away about Daniel and his career and the reasons why he left and why he returned, to me that would be a huge spoiler and if you follow the blog, you will know I hate to give away spoilers.
Kate and Daniel have lived separate lives, they married for convenience basically Kate needed security, she desperately wanted to stay at Elmswood estate and make it as beautiful as it once was and Daniel who for his own reason hated the place and the title and wanted neither in his life and couldn’t wait to get away as soon as humanly possible needed someone trustworthy to look after the pile of bricks and mortar, so he can hop off to who knows where doing who knows what.
Fast forward eleven years and Kate has word that her husband is at deaths door and he is to finally return to Elmswood to recuperate, because of what he was doing he must stay on and play the doting husband for the next three months, once that period is up he will fly out the door as soon as humanly possible to return to what he was doing before, but in the meantime, he must stay and make polite conversation with the woman who he doesn’t know and in a way doesn’t want to become attached to her, or his nieces he is frustrated and wants to leave, yet his treacherous body and emotions keep pushing him in Kate’s direction. But, will he fully allow himself to fall into this new- to-his-life and follow his heart? Or will he follow his mind and his decades set in hatred of the very place he is being forced to stay in?
Being the daughter of the previous Earl’s estate manager, Kate has grown up around Daniel and has always secretly loved him, but she isn’t one to give in to her girlish fantasies she is practical and resourceful she, she is selfless to a fault, everything she does she does for the sake of others; first for her father, for Elmswood, for Phoebe, Estelle and Eleanor and then finally for Daniel. The only thing over that time she has really done for herself was the garden, her sanctuary, she is a resilient, kind and caring woman, a woman who has a passionate nature bubbling beneath the surface. She is confused at to what to do and how to act around Daniel, especially as he is all set to leave again, should she keep her distance? Or should she give in to what her heart desperately wants; to know her husband?
I really, really like Daniel, he is a highly intriguing man, a man who has many layers the more you peel away the more fascinating he becomes. At first, I found him to be cold and a little heartless, merciless and selfish, but as he heals his hidden vulnerability, good heart and cheekiness soon reveal’s itself, he is passionate and seductive with a hint of fragility underneath that cool and silky exterior. This will sound a little odd, but as soon as I met him and then as I got to know him, I saw Tommy Shelby from the Peaky Blinders in my mind whenever Daniel was in a scene – I said it sounded odd – anyone who knows me, knows how much I love that show so this is one of the highest compliments I can give a character.
The Inconvenient Elmswood Marriage is book four in the Penniless Brides of Convenience, even though they can all be read very easily as stand-alone’s, my personal opinion would be to read them in order, or at least read this one last as there are hints of what is going on with the couples from the previous books throughout. Really I wouldn’t wish for you to spoil your enjoyment of the series by skipping ahead and reading the last book, no matter how tempting it is, we’ve all done it, believe me.
I didn’t just enjoy this, I loved every moment of it, of being swept away in a raft of romantic longing, seductive glances and complex emotion. It doesn’t just live up the high expectations by being the final book in this series, but it just blows you away with its surprising and intricate plot. The character’s are wonderfully engaging, I love the blossoming romance between Kate and Daniel, who really are perfectly written and perfect for each other, they each their own crosses to bear, their own issues which stands in their way. As always, Ms Kaye’s writing is perfection, the passion for the characters and the story shines through, honestly, I can never say a bad word about her writing.
I honestly cannot say enough great things about this book and this series, It has been an absolute joy getting to know Kate and Daniel, I hope you all will go and pre-order a copy, this is not to be missed.
This was an Arc copy from the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Marguerite! Xx
The Inconvenient Elmswood Marriage is to be released on 26th December, and can be pre-ordered now.
#Review | Miss Amelia’s Mistletoe Marquess (Secrets Of A Victorian Household #2) by Jenni Fletcher #MissAmeliasMistletoeMarquess @JenniAuthor @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of this gorgeous books with you all; Miss Amelia’s Mistletoe Marquess by Jenni Fletcher. This book is so delicious, it really is the perfect partner for a good sit down and a cuppa.
The virtuous Miss Fairclough
Now faces ruin!
When Amelia Fairclough had sought refuge in a blizzard, a brooding stranger had given her warmth and shelter. She’d even tried to soothe him of his demons in return. But as she scurried home at dawn she was spotted! Now he’s in the parlour, offering to do the honourable thing. Surely she’d be a fool to turn down the new Marquess of Falconmore!
Jenni Fletcher has gone and done it again, easily one of the best, yet!! I utterly adored this books, Jenni has sent me out to sea on a raft of enchantment, longing and serious all-out ruination of a crush on the leading man, honestly, I may never be the same again, how could you do such a thing to me? I am ruined, plus I am sinking in the copious amount of tea that I consumed over the course of this book – really, I have guzzled enough to sink a submarine!
Hmmm, I think I must have strayed off topic a tad there….it’s all Cassius’ fault, I just can’t cope with how much I love this man, maybe cake will distract me from my devilish thoughts? 😉
Anyhow, I really must start talking about the book and not his lordships fine rear-end – so, this is the second book in the new multi-author series, and what a cast of fine writing minds with have on this series, we really are spoilt. I haven’t read the first book, yet but I didn’t think I missed out on anything, this is definitely a stand-alone.
Firstly, I felt a real connection with Amelia, she spoke to me on a level that most heroines don’t, I have only ever come across one other time in a book when the heroine spoke to me as Amelia did. I got her completely, I understood her completely. I understood yearning for adventure, her guilt that those traitorous thoughts have taken hold in her mind when her family needs her so, I understand her love for her family and her deeply ingrained need to do all she can for them even scarifying what she wants for them, I saw so much of myself in her, so to see her get her happily ever after was like a balm to the soul.
After the death of her father ten years ago, Amelia’s life and her whole personality has changed dramatically, gone has the adventuresome, fun-loving and carefree Millie and in her place has stepped serious, dutiful, practical and always reading to do all she can; Miss Amelia. Responsibility of her new role within the Faiclough Foundation, which was founded by her parent’s many years before is now pressing down on her slender shoulders. Her life goes from bad to worse when Amelia reluctantly attends a house party her usually restrained temper gets the better of her – good on ya’ lass! – which is one thing but when the carriage she is waiting for leaves without her she chooses to walk home rather than plead help from the very woman she insulted. The snow falls, she becomes ridiculously lost and ends up knocking at the door of a cottage for shelter, an action which will change the whole course of her life, when a growling, dishevelled bear of a man opens the door – not an entirely bad thing to be faced with, I can assure you 😉
Gorgeous, captivating and brooding Cassius Whitlock – oh, be still my rapidly beating heart!! How much do I love this guy? I have the real weakness for fragile and tormented heroes, I love them, they are like Jaffa cakes to me, I can’t get enough of them and Cassius is right up there with the very best yet. He is not just a brooding, damaged, fragile and growling beast…but my goodness, is he as sexy as hell…with a fine firm rear end *coughs, I am becoming obsessed*
He is hiding from the world in his little gatehouse, hoping that life and responsibly will pass him by as he sinks deeper and deeper into his own fragile and guilt-ridden mind. He doesn’t want anyone to know of the darkness that lurks within him, that appears in his nights as terrors, which wakes him and leaves him feeling further guilt and embarrassment then he did before, so being in the gatehouse he thinks himself safe. That is until he hears the gentle and constant tapping on the door, as much as he wants to be alone he is a gentleman through and through, he is a thoroughly decent chap even if his very mind is clouded, he can’t leave ‘Just Millie’ out in the cold so an act of kindness turns into an act of honour.
I really love that night in their little sanctuary of the gatehouse, where they get to know aspects of the other that not even their nearest and dearest know. This is writing at it’s very best, there is no denying that there is something very special happening between the two of them, those scenes are heartfelt, emotional and very funny – coming to rescue with a brolly wearing not a lot more then your undergarments will always be a winner for me 😉
After their shared night in the gatehouse, they are unfortunately discovered which results in our hero doing the thoroughly decent thing and proposes a marriage of convenience, which is where Jenni Fletcher’s remarkable writing really comes into his own. As what follows is a journey of discovery as they walk into married life with shadows hanging over them both, they each have their own issues which they must overcome, they find their way to allowing themselves to let go of their own reservations and just be happy.
I loved everything about this, the entire cast of character’s are brilliant, each fits perfectly within the story, I adore the banter between Millie and Cassius, they just gel together like two broken peas in a pod, their journey to their happily ever after is beautiful. The whole book is so enchanting and hugely enjoyable.
There really is no denying that Jenni Fletcher has a real gift, she is a tremendously talented writer, with every book which she adds to her rapidly growing CV, she pushes the boundaries of her writing and every time she creates a piece of perfection.
This was an Arc copy via the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Jenni and huge apologies for the lateness of this review. Xx
Miss Amelia’s Mistletoe Marquess is available now and I cannot say too many time just how much you need to read this book.
#Review | A Deal With Her Rebel Viking by Michelle Styles #ADealWithHerRebelViking @MichelleLStyles @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of this stunning book, which is as perfect as you can get from a Viking Romance; A Deal With Her Rebel Viking. I honestly cannot put into words how much I am in love with this book, be warned there is a fair amount of swoons and babbling in this review. So settle in, grab that cuppa and enjoy.
Her terms: free her family
His terms: seduction?
Defending her home, Lady Ansithe captures outlaw Viking Moir Mimirson. The prisoner will be the ideal ransom for her father, held hostage by the Danes. Yet Moir’s flirtatious negotiations exhilarate practical Ansithe as much as they surprise her… Can she be sure that this hardened warrior will work with her, and not betray her? And what of his stolen kisses…can she trust those?
Oh, my goodness!!! This is soooo good, I am a melting, overly excitable wreck after reading this, the only word I can use for this is perfection! I am a huge Michelle Styles fan, I utterly adore her writing, there is always something very raw and real about her stories, each one I have read I have loved, but this one is easily the very best yet, there are not enough words within my limited vocabulary to fully say how much I am in absolute love with this book.
With her father and brother-in-law in the clutches of the enemy Danes, Lady Ansithe is desperate to find something to use as a bargaining chip for their safe return, so when a hoard of brusque and burly Viking literally fall into her lap after she successfully captures them when defending her home, she may have found the very bargaining chip she has been seeking. The capture of them is ingenious, she really shows what she is made of, no wonder Moir and his men nickname her lady Valkyrie she is quite ferocious when she wants to be.
Moir Mimirson has been tasked with transporting the son of his Jaarl safely home, only the young whipper-snapper has over idea’s and likes to flaunt his status, he and the other’s in their party mount a raid on a nearby farm, oh how wrong they were to do that! The raid goes all wrong and they all find themselves at the mercy of the beautiful, Valkyrie who has captured them. Moir now must find a way to escape before she hands him and his men over to the man who would have them all killed, he has a black mark on his history one that he needs to erase away and to do that he must return his men and the Jaarls son back to court. Something which is far easier said than done as he cannot help but be fascinated by the striking young woman who hovers above them with a bow and arrow.
Lady Ansithe is a marvel, she has dreams of being in control of her own fate, she has grown up being criticized over every action and everything she does, she is never taken seriously and never respected for the brilliant woman she is. She doesn’t want to be pushed into another marriage he wants to prove her worth and that she can run a household. She is a feisty, independent, very open and forward-thinking young woman who just wants to live in peace and tend to her hives yet she cannot delay that there is something very alluring about him, he has a primal magnetism that draws her to him. Not that I am surprised because, my goodness Moir is hot, hot, hot!!!
Seriously this man could melt the ice caps with a mere glance, how much do I adore this man? There aren’t enough heart-eyed emoji’s in the world to fully convey how much I love this man!! Oh, be still my beating heart, I am ruined, I will never look at another Viking ever again without thinking of my luscious Moir. But, don’t just think he is all muscles nothing else, believe me, there is far, far more to this wonderful man (honestly, I am started to sound a bit perverse here) but he is determined, smart and loyal and will do whatever he can to protect those he cares about and to do his duty.
Another thing I really like about this is how Michelle has incorporated her own passion for bee-keeping into the story, I loved learning about the way they kept bee’s in the era and even then they knew the importance of them for the world, I really liked that touch.
The only other thing I will say and it isn’t anything to do with the story or Michelle’s writing because honestly, both are perfection, it is the cover and as gorgeous as it is – really the chap on the cover is a really hottie – but he isn’t how I envisioned Moir to be, but that is just my personal view, he just isn’t my Moir if that makes sense?
Michelle has always had this massive gift with words which transport the reader to another time, to entwine romance with history and a crate a stonking great love story, which is full of atmospheric scenes and brilliantly researched history. But she really has outdone herself with this one, it’s utterly mesmerising, I was enthralled with Moir and Ansithe from that very first page, the chemistry between these two proud and opinionated people is sizzling and perfectly dramatized for the era and the story, I cannot say anything more but I love it!
Overall, this is superb! Everything that you would ever want from a Viking romance is right here; sensual romance, heart-racing fast-paced plot, stunning historical detail and amazing character’s, the two leads are brilliant, both are so engaging and hugely likeable, this really is easily one of the best of the year.
This was an Arc copy via the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, Thank you Michelle and huge apologies for how ridiculously late this review is. Xx
A Deal With her Rebel Viking is out now and I cannot recommend it enough.
#Review | Naughty Or Nice by Rachael Stewart #NaughtyOrNice #DoYouDare @rach_b52 @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks
Hello Sunshines, I have the massive pleasure to be sharing my review of this unbelievably hot book; Naughty or Nice by Rachael Stewart. My goodness are you all in for a treat or what? This hugely anticipated Christmas story is going to blow your mind, so grab something cool – honestly, you will need the ice cubes – and enjoy!
She’s setting the terms…
In business and pleasure!
Lucas Waring was my brother’s best friend—before he broke my heart and betrayed my family. Yet one glance from those dark, intense eyes, and that bolt of aching need returns. Now Lucas wants my business. But the nice Eva he knew is gone forever and naughty Eva wants her cake, and a taste of deliciously hot Lucas, too. Only my heart’s about to pull the biggest betrayal of all…
Ouh, la la!! My goodness, Rachael Stewart, what are you doing to me? I am a melted puddle on the floor, you are a marvel, my dear! This isn’t just sexually scorching hot, but it has a beautifully written, gorgeous emotional story full of angst and real heart.
The story open’s with eighteen year old Eva who rather foolishly open’s up her heart and tells the boy she has loved since she can remember that she loves him, that boy just happens to be her brother’s best friend; Lucas, who isn’t just a friend but has been taken in by her family and is practically a brother – a fact that he reminded her off and in the process he breaks her heart and humiliates her, even though not intentionally but he points a few things out that hit home a little too sharply – that is of course after she has been ravaged by him. – She vows never again to be taken in by him, no matter how much her traitorous body tells her otherwise.
Ten years later, Eva has worked hard to rebuild her families failing business after a bit of a scandal, she has accomplished far more then anyone expected and revered in her own right. Gone is the awkward, starry-eyed eighteen-year-old and in its place is a sexy, no-nonsense businesswoman. Eva is an amazing woman, she is full of her own self-worth, she isn’t any man plaything and she is very much in charge of her own destiny, I do love and respect a woman who can take on the man’s world. She is confident and has the ability to take the company to great heights, but what she doesn’t bargain on is that the boy who callously broke her heart all those years ago, the young lad who caused such scandal in their family is back and he is wanting something. Her hard worked for business…and his wicked way with her, he still sees her as the naïve young miss whom he walked out on, oh what a surprise it is when he sees the now dominating and sexy woman she has become and it makes his wretched rampant heart and other parts of his anatomy want her all the more, but our Eva isn’t about to be lured back in unless it’s on her terms.
Lucas, darling, if Eva is playing hard to get, my door is open …in case you’re ever in the area 😉
If you are a fan of Rachael’s work and let’s honest, who isn’t? Then there is a difference in this then her previous Dare’s and that is it is so cleverly written in the first person. The story is essentially told through Eva’s eyes with a little hiatus to Lucas’ perspective and it is so brilliantly done, first-person novel’s can be a little hit and miss with me, yet this one is fabulous I was completely taken in by the story and the character’s, Eva really spoke out clear and loud, she is a strong personality and readers will really get a sense of her character – I think Ms Stewart has found her niche.
This is seductively hot, with scorching chemistry, fabulously clever plot and two characters’s who will entice you into their glamourous and sinfully sexy world. I really love Rachael’s writing, she brings a whole new level of drama and sexiness to the romance genre, her stories are pure sexy lust as well as being hugely honest and full of emotion and passion.
You will never again see Christmas in the same way again, without blushing and becoming rather hot around the collar, this is an excellent naughty, but nice treat that will have you swooning right into the new year.
This was an Arc copy via the author, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Rachael. xx