#BlogTour : #Review Shakespeare’s Witch (Pages Of Darkness #1) by @SamanthaGrosser #ShakespearesWitch #PagesOfDarkness #HistoricalFiction via @hfvbt #HFVBTBlogtours
Good morning everyone! I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on the mammoth blog tour for Shakespeare’s Witch by Samantha Grosser. I am not only sharing my review of this fascinating yet darkly eerie story, I also have a giveaway to win a copy for yourself. So, grab yourself a cuppa and let me tell you a wee bit about this book.
Shakespeare’s Witch by Samantha Grosser
Publication Date: March 20, 2019
Sam Grosser Books
Format: eBook & Paperback; 358 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Love, Witchcraft, Sorcery, Madness.
A fortune told …
When Sarah Stone foresees Will Shakespeare’s latest play has opened doors to evil, she begs the playwright to abandon it. But Will refuses, aware the play is one of his best. And so rehearsals for Macbeth begin.
Forbidden desires …
After her vision, Sarah fears for her life – she has never known the shewstone to lie, and she turns to her brother Tom for comfort. A strange darkness seems to haunt the playhouse, and when Tom sets out to seduce John Upton, the boy actor who plays Lady Macbeth, the boy sees the hand of witchcraft in his own forbidden desires for men. Then Sarah weaves a spell to win the love of the new lead actor, and John, terrified for the safety of his soul, begins to make his accusations.
The Spirits have spoken …
As rehearsals continue, Sarah and Tom must struggle to convince John he is mistaken and that his sins are his own – their lives and the fortune of the play are at stake. But the Spirits have spoken – will the fate that Sarah foresaw come to pass or is their destiny their own to decide?
Set against the first production of Macbeth in 1606, Shakespeare’s Witch is a seductive tale of the origins of the curse of the Scottish Play.
Well this is certainly different to anything I have previously read! I was intrigued by the sound of this, the moment I saw it, and it definitely grabbed my attention – at times not exactly for the good, but it is a page-tuner. I am a big fan of darker historical fiction, it really grabs my attention and Shakespeare’s Witch is certainly no different. It is darkly unique and spell-binding. It is one of those unforgettable books which will stay with you long after turning the last page.
What I found fascinating about this was that even now I have mixed feelings about it and that started while reading it. On one hand I found it to be captivating and very original and on the other I was mildly confused, a little taken back especially with one aspect – which I can’t go into due to spoilers as this is a major part of the story – I was a little uncomfortable reading those scenes, but once finished it struck me that even though I didn’t like this certain aspect of the plot it was needed and it made the ending all the more moving.
Set in 1606, William Shakespeare has just written Macbeth and the story is set around that very first showing. Will goes to Sarah to consult the spirits whether this play will be a success or not. But, what she sees terrifies her she sees nothing but evil circulating around this play, she pleads to Will not to go ahead with Macbeth that this play is pure evil and has opened the door to the bad spirits which haunt his dreams. Will is rebuffs her pleas and goes ahead with rehearsals for what we all know will become one of his greatest pieces.
Sarah and her brother Tom dabble in the occult after their mother taught them a bit of witchcraft, which was illegal and as we know from history it was an era full of fear and superstition and any sniff of witchcraft lead to a horrific outcome for those who had the finger pointed at them, they had to endure awful treatment during the witch trials and then were sentenced to death. So, for both Tom and Sarah to be more or less openly dealing with such things can and does place them not just in trouble but in danger. At the same time they are working in the theatre as Macbeth is being rehearsed.
Sarah is living in fear of what she saw and at the same time she is also inexplicably drawn to Nick; one of the actor’s who is to star in Macbeth, but being the confused young women she is she does go about things all wrong to gain his love, which is connected to the part of the story that I found very uncomfortable to read. Without giving too much about the story away, this is certainly eye-opening and it does take the reader off the beaten track of what you think is going to happen, and takes them to another much darker place completely.
Overall it does engage the reader and with the twists to the plot it does keep you guessing and turning the pages. It’s is steeped in swirling, eerie darkness, there is romance, magic and sex, plus a touch of dark, grisly history. Ms Grosser has a real gift at story-telling, her writing is strong and articulate she really draws the reader into her mysterious world. I’ve not read any of Ms Grosser’s work before, so this is a great introduction to her books and I will definitely be reading more from her.
This is one of those books that I would class at Marmite; it is you will either love it or hate it. For readers like myself who do love the darker more unique historicals which has a hint of romance, then you will love it. It may not be for the more puritan historical romance lover’s, but if your willing to give it a go then I do recommend it.
This was a complimentary copy from the author via Historical Fiction Virtual Blog Tours in exchange for an honest review as apart of this blog tour. Thank you Samantha and Amy!
About the Author
Historical fiction author Samantha Grosser originally hails from England, but now lives on the sunny Northern Beaches of Sydney with her husband, son and a very small dog called Livvy.
Combining a lifelong love of history with a compulsion to write that dates from childhood, Samantha is now bringing her passion for telling compelling stories to the world.
Samantha has an Honours Degree in English Literature and taught English for many years in Asia and Australia. She is the author of wartime dramas Another Time and Place and The Officer’s Affair, and The King James Men, set during the turbulent early years of 17th Century.
Blog Tour Schedule
Do check out the other amazing blogs on this blog tour.
Wednesday, March 20
Review at Passages to the Past
Thursday, March 21
Review at Book Reviews from Canada
Friday, March 22
Interview at Jathan & Heather
Saturday, March 23
Feature at Broken Teepee
Monday, March 25
Review at Amy’s Booket List
Tuesday, March 26
Feature at What Is That Book About
Wednesday, March 27
Review at Pursuing Stacie
Friday, March 29
Interview at Passages to the Past
Sunday, March 31
Review & Excerpt at Clarissa Reads it All
Monday, April 1
Review at For the Sake of Good Taste
Tuesday, April 2
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Thursday, April 4
Interview at Hisdoryan
Monday, April 8
Review at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals
Tuesday, April 9
Review at Bibliophile Reviews
Wednesday, April 10
Review at Macsbooks
Friday, April 12
Review at A Book Geek
Tuesday, April 16
Feature at CelticLady’s Reviews
During the Blog Tour, we will be giving away one eBook and one paperback copy of Shakespeare’s Witch! To enter, please use Gleam form/Link which can be found below.
Enter Here – Shakespeare’s Witch
*Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on April 17th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
* Giveaway is open to residents in the US & UK only.
* Only one entry per household.
* No sweepstakes accounts please.
* All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
* The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner will be chosen.
#BlogTour : The Earl’s Runaway Governess by Catherine Tinley @CatherineTinley #Review, Exclusive Extract & #Giveaway #TheEarlsRunawayGoverness @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks via @rararesourses
Hello my lovelies, I am so excited to be one of the blogs to be kicking off this smading blog tour, for the beautiful; The Earl’s Runaway Governess, the new realease by Catherine Tinley. Not only will be sharing my review of this amazing book, but I also have an exclusive extract and a giveaway. So, what are you waiting for? Grab a cuppa and let me tell you about this marvellous book.
The Earl’s Runaway Governess by Catherine Tinley
Genre : Historical Romance
Publisher : Mills and Boon/Harlequin
Who knew living with an Earl…
…would lead to such temptation?
Marianne Grant’s new identity as a governess is meant to keep her safe. But then she meets her new employer, Ash, Earl of Kingswood, and she immediately knows his handsome good looks are a danger of their own! Brusque on first meeting, Ash quickly shows his compassionate side. Yet Marianne doesn’t dare reveal the truth! Unless Ash really could be the safe haven she’s been looking for…
The interior of the inn was dark, cosy, and well-maintained. A fire burned in the grate, for the January day was chilly. Marianne made her way towards the wooden counter at the far end of the room, where a woman who must be the landlady was busy pouring ale. As she walked, Marianne found herself warily assessing the strangers in the room. Since the day and hour she had left home she had not felt truly safe, for even a minute. She had no experience with which to assess where danger might lurk, so she found herself constantly on edge.
Her fellow passengers were already seating themselves in various parts of the taproom, and there were also two men who looked like they might be farmers, each with a mug of beer in front of him.
Then she saw him. Her heart briefly thumped furiously in her chest, and the hairs at the back of her neck stood to attention.
He was seated with his back to her, at the table closest to the counter. She could see his dark hair, swept forward in a fashionable style. He wore a driving cloak with numerous capes. She could also see long legs encased in tight-fitting pantaloons and gleaming black boots. He looked like any one of a dozen London bucks. Except this time, she reminded herself, you have no reason to fear him.
She kept walking, soothing herself with calm thoughts. As she reached his table, she turned her head, compelled to confirm it was no one she knew.
This man was a few years older than Henry – perhaps in his late twenties or early thirties. His hair was similar – thick, dark, and luxuriant. But the face was totally different. This man was handsome – or at least, he would be if he were not scowling so fiercely. His strong bones and lean features contrasted with Henry’s slight pudginess and rather weak jawline. And, now that she could see all of him, she realised that his body shape was totally different to Henry’s. He was lean and muscular, with no sign of a paunch. The clothing was similar to that favoured by Henry – and indeed, by all the young bucks of London. There the resemblance ended.
Sensing her there, he looked up from his mug and their eyes met. Stormy blue eyes bore into hers and Marianne felt a slow flush rise. My, but he was attractive! – and, she realised, his gaze was doing strange things to her. Breaking away from that endless, compelling contact, she bit her lip and took the final four steps to the counter.
Marianne summoned a polite smile. She felt slightly lost and shaky, and she could feel the man’s gaze boring into her back. Still, she managed to reply to the landlady. ‘I am expecting someone to meet me here. I have travelled from London on the mail coach.’
‘Who is it you are expecting, miss?’
Marianne’s brow creased. ‘I am not exactly sure.’ Inside, panic was rising. What if there has been some mistake? What if there is no governess position? ‘I am to take up a position as governess at a place called Ledbury House. I was told to travel here by mail coach today.’
‘Ledbury House? This gentleman –’ she indicated the fashionable buck ‘– is also travelling there. Perhaps you are expected to travel with him?’
Heart sinking, Marianne swung round to face him. His scowl had deepened as he listened to their exchange, and he now raised a quizzical eyebrow. ‘Curious’ he mused. ‘And to think I was unaware of the delights this day would hold.’
Marianne was taken aback. She was unsure how to take this. The man’s words were perfectly polite, but something about the tone suggested the possibility that he was not, in fact, delighted. Accustomed as she was to straightforward politeness, his words and tone felt disconcerting. Something of what she was feeling must have shown on her face because, as she watched him, his expression changed to one of chagrin.
‘I have no doubt,’ he murmured cryptically, ‘that this is a mess of Fanny’s making, and I am expected to fix it. Well, I shall do so this one time, but no more.’ With this enigmatic statement, he drained his mug, then stood. ‘You’d best come with me.’
Not waiting for her reply, he swung away towards the door.
Marianne stood rooted to the spot, uncertainty bedevilling her. Should she go with him? A stranger, and she was to travel with him unaccompanied. Miss Marianne Grant, a lady, would never have done so. Miss Anne Bolton, governess, could.
Conscious that all eyes were all on her, Marianne was surprised to find determination rising within her. Surprised, because she did not often need to be brave. She was normally a placid, timid creature, most at home with a book in her hand and harmony and peace all around.
This unknown gentleman was expecting her to simply climb into a carriage beside him – without any chaperone, maid, or footman accompanying them. Perhaps he had a groom? Well, even if he didn’t, it was clear that everyone expected the governess to go with him and be grateful for the ride.
Although he was handsome and strangely compelling, she was almost relieved to be wary of him – being guarded would be much, much safer than being attracted to him.
Torn between the surprising temptation to sit down somewhere safe and wait for an unknown rescuer, and the (even stronger) temptation to run, to get as far away as she could from the danger inherent in being alone in a carriage with a man, Marianne recognised that instead, her best option was simply to get into the carriage and hope she would be safe with him.
*Extract was provided and used with permission from the author as apart of this blog tour post.
Well this is a beautifully written, hopeful and very loving story that really instils in the reader that love really can appear in the most surprising of places when you least expect it. I have said it before but I will say it again, that Catherine Tinley wondrous writer, she takes the reader on an emotional journey to find that elusive happily ever after, I have always felt that she genuinely loves the era and the stories she writes about as her passion just jumps of the page with every word.
Marianne runs away from home after her lecherous, foul and drunken step-brother makes it abundantly clear exactly what he expects from his ward; Marianne. She knows that for as long as she is under his roof she will never be safe, so she flees and takes a position as a governess under the alias of ‘Anne Bolton’. She hopes that as her position is in the country and far away from London she will be safe, but as we all know nothing is ever as it may appear in historical romance and there is always road blocks in the way. That said road block just happens to be the rakish, rude and society loving new Earl Kingswood; Ash.
Ash neither expected the Earldom or wanted it, he has been raised to live life free and basically to do as he pleases with no responsibility, something which he loathes more than actually having the title. So, you can imagine what a kick in the rump it was that the notorious playboy must put others before himself for a change. He had planned to settle what needs to be settled with the estate and then hop it back to London as fast as his beautiful horses will take him, but things tend to always get in the way especially when h meets Marianne.
You can see that there is a spark between them, there are little glances but in all essence it is a will they, wont they love story; which I found utterly charming. But with Marianne having deep secrets and Ash not ready to commit himself, there is a wall between them. What will happen when Marianne’s true identity comes out? – when that does happen it is a fabulous piece of writing.
Even though I did end up falling in love with Ash, I will admit that it took me a while to warm to him. I can’t explain why, I just didn’t feel as drawn to him at first as I usually do with heroes. There was something very self-centred about him that put me of. He did have to work all that much harder to win me over, but I am pleased to say he did. This is what I love and admire about Catherine Tinley, to be able to completely change the readers initial opinion of a character from; ‘Hmmm, I’m not sure I even like this guy.’ to ‘Oh, my goodness! I’m in love!!’ that is a real gift in writing and there are few authors out there who can so easily accomplish it. So, I whole-heartedly applaud you Catherine!
Whereas I instantly connected with Marianne, she is this an amazing young women, to leave home and everything she knew; her whole life is such a strong act. Yes, she had no choice about leaving she knew that if she stayed something terrible would have happened to her at the hands of her foul, lecherous step-brother. Knowing that one must leave is one thing, but for her actually to do it without even a shred of thought of what would happen to her is another. But, yet she takes the bull by the horn and plunges into her secret life as a governess.
This book really conveys just how powerless women were, not just with Marianne having her awful step-brother becoming her guardian, meaning in the eyes of the law she is his and can basically do as he wishes with. But you also see that power being flaunted in the case of the Dowager Countess of Kingswood and her daughter, I won’t say too much about the details as it would give too much of the plot away but there were times when I did feel a pang of pity for the Countess. This is what makes Ms Tinley’s writing pure, realistic and so brilliantly powerful, that us reader go through a monopoly of emotions as we read.
Overall this is a definite must read, I love the personal journey Ash and Marianne go on through out the story, they both have to get past their own personal issues, but I also like that there is an undercurrent of suspense that runs throughout the story. It’s alike a tingling of what is to come, of something more. I have loved every book of Ms Tinley’s that I have read so I knew that I would be in for something great and it doesn’t disappoint.
Very highly recommended!
This was an Arc copy via the author in exchange for an honest review as apart of this blog tour, Thank you Catherine and Rachel.
About The Author
Catherine Tinley writes witty, heartwarming Regency love stories for Harlequin Mills & Boon. She has loved reading and writing since childhood, and has a particular fondness for love, romance, and happy endings.
After a career encompassing speech & language therapy, NHS management, maternity campaigning and being President of a charity, she now works in Sure Start. She lives in Ireland with her husband, children, and dog and can be reached via the links below.
To be in for a chance of winning one of three signed copies of The Earl’s Runaway Governess, plus a mystery book by another romance writer. The enter via the Rafflecopter form/Link below.
Rafflecopter Giveaway – Enter Here
Open Internationally – 2 x UK winners and 1 x International Winner.
*T&C’s : Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
#BlogTour : #Review Mr One-Night Stand by Rachael Stewart @rach_b52 – Exclusive Extract & #Giveaway #MrOneNightStand #DoYouDare @MillsandBoon #MillsandBoonsInsiders
Hello my lovelies, I have the huge pleasure to be the next stop on this fantastic blog tour. I am so excited to be sharing my review of Mr One Night Stand by the very lovely Rachael Stewart, plus I have an exclusive extract to whet your appetite, and on top of all that, I have an exclusive to Mills and Boon copy of Mr One Night Stand to giveaway to one very lucky winner – you may have seen the gorgeous black books popping up all over social media, Yep, I have a spare, Phew! So, grab a cuppa, sit back and enjoy.
About The Book
One night only.
Just think of the possibilities…
The second she sees Mr Oh-So-Delicious, Jennifer Hayes knows she needs one night of crazy. No names, no strings, no rules. Except that Jennifer’s naughty one-nighter is actually Marcus Wright—her new business partner! Now they’re mixing business with all kinds of pleasure. But when it comes to falling in love her sexy Mr Wright is either Mr Wrong or the best mistake of her life…
Mr One Night Stand is to be released on the 21st February, and can be found at Amazon
Her breathe caught, a peculiar awareness taking hold.
He sat at a table beside the glass wall. A great seat from which to enjoy the far-reaching cityscape below, although his eyes showed no interest in the vista. No, they were well and truly pinned on her, projecting an intensity that had her skin prickling with such thrill.
Hell, she wanted to stride straight over – the urge was almost making her do just that – but sense prevailed. Tony wanted her. Hopefully he could explain away his crazy behaviour, and put her mind at rest over the future.
Giving a small sigh, she headed for the bar. A drink – that was what she needed. Anything to take the edge off.
Slipping on to the bar stool, she crossed her legs and replaced her clutch with the leather-clad drinks menu.
“Good evening, Miss Hayes, what can I get you?” She looked up to find Darren, the head bar tender, approaching with a smile, his hands busy drying off a glass. She returned his smile easily and scanned the list, honing in on a Vodka Martini and figured that had to be strong enough.
He cocked an eyebrow when she made her request, “Shaken, not stirred madame?” his Scottish-accented Bond impression had her laughing, and the sound was alien to her eyes. It had to be weeks – months, even – since she had a proper giggle. Maybe she was the one in need of a good shake, never mind the drink.
He knew her too well. She didn’t do spirits. A spritzer was her usual drink of choice. But a spritzer just wasn’t going to cut it. Nit tonight. It wasn’t just Tony, it was her concern of her mother too. She was getting worse and there was nothing Jennifer could do to stop it.
Her heart fluttered painfully and she pushed the thought aside. Not now!
“Sounds perfect,” she said, flipping open her and retrieving her mobile to check if Tony had at least messaged. But shed not eve lit the screen before her eyes sidled away drawn to the brooding silhouette not twelve feet away.
He was tall – she could tell that even though his body folded deep into the bucket seat. The ankle of one leg casually rested atop the knee of the other. The designer cut f his dark suit and tan leather shoes spoke money. Although whether he had any was an entirely different matter. She’d learned tat quickly enough in the city. People only had to dress to impress and it attracted wealth like bees to honey.
But there was something in the broad set of his shoulder’s, accentuated as they were by this tailored jacket, and the confident air in his relaxed poise that had her certain he was all about the front.
And what a front…
Her eyes drifted upwards. The crisp white shirt say smoothly over his torso, no hint of spread. Then they drifted higher, to the last fastened button of his open collar and the hint of dark hair curling there.
Her pulse skipped, her mouth watered, and her eyes snapped back to her phone. Not now!
Seriously, what was wrong with her? Was she that desperate to get laid? That fed up with her trusty vibrator that her body was putting up a fight? Truth was, there was no time in her life for that complication. Mr Dildo didn’t talk back, didn’t require care and affection. He didn’t require time that she didn’t have.
Between dashing back and forth between London and Yorkshire each weekend to be with her family she was all out of that.
But one night, though. Think of the possibilities…
Heat simmered low in her belly as she activated her phone scree. No notifications. She fired off a brief ‘Where are you?’ Message and placed the device back on the bar, her heighten awareness picking on movement from the man’s direction. She watched him crook his finger to the blonde waitress hovering nearby and an inexplicable pull ripped through her.
Christ, he was reeling her in too.
She nibbled the inside of her lip, drinking in his rakishly long dark hair, chiselled set of his jaw that softened delectably with his easy grin. And then there were his eyes – so compelling. She couldn’t make out the colour, but there was something about them, something deliciously sinful…
Her tummy contracted with a barrage of heat, and in that second she knew she wanted to leave with him. That she wanted one night of crazy. No names, no real talk, just wild, no-holds-barred sex.
Could she do it? Hell, would he?
My, oh, my!! What a book! Ms Stewart has been cutting her teeth with saucy, sexy romances for a while now, but what surprised me most is that this is her debut Mills and Boon Dare novel. And what a debut! The quality of this is astounding, I can see a shining long and successful writing career ahead of her. This is – and I am rather embarrassed to say – first full length novel I have read by her, why is this? I don’t have an answer to that, only I must have been living in a Historical focused bubble for the best part of a year. But, that will change. I can’t wait to read more from this talented author.
I am a late-comer to Dare books, after only reading my first this year – again living in a bubble, so when I got offered to participate in this blog tour, I did jump at the chance as fast as I could. And I am so pleased that I did, as this is fabulous!
When Jennifer has to attend a business meeting, she is rather more peeved at her boss Tony not only because he does tend to use and lay a n awful lot on her shoulders. But mainly by the fact that he doesn’t even appear to meet her as promised, he was supposed to do all the introductions with the man who has bought into their business; a Mr Marcus Wright. Jennifer is frustrated – in mores way then one, she has had enough of how lax Tony is being lately and she is in an emotional state worrying about her ill mother. So when she sees the sinfully attractive man sitting in the airport, she has only one thing on her mind – and it has nothing to do with business meeting and corporate partners, it has everything to do with a partner in a completely different sense.
She makes it very clear to the stud in the suit that she only wishes for one night, one night of no strings and good old-fashioned – and may be a bit of new-fashioned – sex. But what she doesn’t realise that she has just gone and had the night of her life with not any old random from the airport lounge, but her new business partner; the enigmatic Marcus Wright!
Now she knows the truth, can she really go on as thought nothing happened? Can she forget what they did with each other, how he made her feel sexy and special and how she melted him with a mere smile? Or should she do what is said never to be done, and mix business with a whole load of pleasure?
What really appealed to me about ‘Mr One-Night Stand’ was just how real and relatable the two lead character’s are, I sometimes find it difficult to relate or even like character’s who like nothing more than to sip champagne while wearing a cat-walk named suit, people who do nothing but complain about breaking nails and not being able to jet off on holiday. Those people – I hate to admit it, irritate me. I am more of a fan or very real character’s who have actually lived and understand the world; which is Marcus and Jennifer down to a tee. Yes, they are both powerful and wealthy individuals who have forged their way into their world with hard graft, but beneath their cool masks of powerful business magnets they are very complex and fascinating people, especially Jennifer.
I so related to certain aspects of Jennifer’s life, she spoke to me, I understood her far better than I do most character’s. Her need for her own life, her career, to protect and look after her family. The fact that she has an ailing parent at home and her guilt at not being able to be there all the time and help spoke volumes about her to me. She is an amazing women who has fought for what she has, she has toiled and worked her arse off to get to where she is, and I really admire her for that. She is a strong, independent, no-nonsense woman who knows what she wants….and she wants Marcus!
Overall, this is hot! Fiery, sexy, raunchy, spicy, steaming-up-the-windows hot. A great twisty plot that will keep the reader hooked and engaged, but the real pull of this has to be the character’s. They are wonderfully developed, each one real and with their own back story which makes you sit up even further to pay attention. Jennifer and Marcus don’t iust steam up the page, they burn the book right out of your hand. Their attraction for one and other is instant, it’s sizzlingly hot – and this is before they proceed to the bedroom, once there…well, phew pass me the ice ;-) The writing is solid, it’s stylish and flowing, it’s very easy to become fully absorbed into the story, I got a real sense that Ms Stewart has put her heart into this book and I for one cannot wait to read more from her.
If you like your romances very hot, then this is the book you need to read, even if erotic romances aren’t your bread and butter then I would say give it a go as there is far more to this then just a good old fashion romp between the sheets.
This was an Arc copy via the publisher in exchange for an honest review as apart o this blog tour, thanks you Sanjana and the Mills and Boon Insiders team.
About The Author
Rachael adores conjuring up stories for the readers of Harlequin Mills & Boon and Deep Desires Press.
She’s been writing since she could put pen to paper as the stacks of scrawled on A4 sheets in her loft will attest to, and the lovingly bound short stories that her father would run off at work and proudly share out with his colleagues. Thinking it was a pipe dream to be published one day, she pursued a sensible career in business but she was really play-acting, achieving the appropriate degree and spending many years in the corporate world where she never truly belonged. Always happiest when she was sat at her laptop in the quiet hours tapping out a story or two. And so here she is, a published author, her full-time pleasure, a dream come true.
A Welsh lass at heart, she now lives in Yorkshire with her husband and three children, and if she’s not glued to her laptop, she’s wrapped up in them or enjoying the great outdoors seeking out inspiration.
Rachael loves hearing from her readers, why not check out the links below.
I was so lucky to be sent two proof copies – you know the gorgeous black one’s which really do look amazing! – of Mr One Night Stand. One to review (Which I am ashamed to say, does look a little worse for wear now – or in other words, it looks loved.) and a spare. I so want to share this saucy and amazing book with you all, so I am giving away my spare copy plus I will throw in a selection of tea’s and chocolate for you to enjoy while reading.
How do I enter? I hear you ask.
Just comment below telling me who makes your pulse race that bit faster? Mine is below and for those who know me, it isn’t a surpise 😉
The giveaway is open across Twitter and Facebook too, same rules apply; just like the giveaway post/s and comment with your answer. (Each post you comment on is a separate entry, eg; If you comment here, Twitter and Facebook you have three chances to win.)
Good Luck, my lovelies!
*T&C’s – Closing date is 26th February at 9pm GMT, the winner will be chosen at random and will be announced shortly after, winner will be contacted directly by myself whether that be by email or DM via Twitter or Facebook. This Giveaway belongs to me and it is not sponsored or endorsed by anyone. Open to UK only, sorry!
Cadenza by Stella Riley (@RileyStella) #BlogTour #Historical #Saga #RockliffeSeries #HistoricalFiction #BlogTour #HFVBTBlogTours #Giveaway via @hfvbt
I have the great pleasure to be hosting Stella Riley’s Blog Tour for her latest novel, Cadenza.
I haven’t read any of Ms Riley’s books yet, but I have heard so many great things about her work . You can read all about her new book; Cadenza below, plus there is a chance to enter our giveaway! Are you ready to meet the Rockliffes?
Cadenza by Stella Riley
Publication Date: November 22, 2018
eBook; 380 Pages
Genre: Historical Romance
The performance finished in a flourish of technical brilliance and the young man rose from the harpsichord to a storm of applause.
Julian Langham was poised on the brink of a dazzling career when the lawyers lured him into making a catastrophic mistake. Now, instead of the concert platform, he has a title he doesn’t want, an estate verging on bankruptcy … and bewildering responsibilities for which he is totally unfitted.
And yet the wreckage of Julian’s life is not a completely ill wind. For Tom, Rob and Ellie it brings something that is almost a miracle … if they dare believe in it.
Meanwhile, first-cousins Arabella Brandon and Elizabeth Marsden embark on a daring escapade which will provide each of them with a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The adventure will last only a few weeks, after which everything will be the way it was before. Or so they think. What neither of them expects is for it to change a number of lives … most notably, their own.
And there is an additional complication of which they are wholly unaware.
The famed omniscience of the Duke of Rockliffe.
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About the Author
Readers’ Favorite award-winning author and B.R.A.G. Medallion honoree Stella Riley trained as a teacher in London and now lives in Kent. She enjoys Amateur Dramatics, dancing, reading and travel. She is fascinated by the English Civil Wars and has written six books set in that period. She loves the extravagant fashions of the mid-Georgian period, likes men with long hair and her current passion is for Baroque harpsichord music.
The first 5 books of the Rockliffe series (recommended in The Times newspaper!) are also available in audio, narrated by Alex Wyndham. And Rockliffe Book Six – CADENZA – is currently available for pre-order and will be released on November 22nd.
Blog Tour Schedule
Make sure you keep following this great blog tour as there are some great blog stops.
Sunday, November 25
Excerpt at Old Timey Books
Monday, November 26
Feature at Donna’s Book Blog
Tuesday, November 27
Excerpt at Maiden of the Pages
Thursday, November 29
Excerpt at Among the Reads
Monday, December 3
Guest Post at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals
Monday, December 17
Review at Coffee and Ink
Tuesday, December 18
Feature at CelticLady’s Reviews
Wednesday, December 19
Interview at Passages to the Past
During the Blog Tour we will be giving away eBooks from Stella Riley’s Rockliffe series – The Parfit Knight, The Mésalliance, The Player, The Wicked Cousin, or Hazard! 5 eBooks are up for grabs!
To enter, click on the ‘Cadenza’ link below to be taken to the gleam form.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on December 19th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to US residents only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.
Mystery and desire cloak the Scottish Highlands
Unruly. Unmarried. Unapologetic. Catriona Mackenzie’s reputation precedes her everywhere she goes. Her beloved late aunt Zelda taught Cat to live out loud and speak her mind, and that’s exactly what she does when Zelda’s legacy—a refuge for women in need—comes under fire. When her quest puts her in the path of the disturbingly mysterious Hamlin Graham, Duke of Montrose, Cat is soon caught up in the provocative rumors surrounding the dark duke. Never one to retreat, Cat boldly goes where no one else has dared for answers.
Shrouded in secrets, a hostage of lies, Hamlin must endure the fear and suspicion of those who believe he is a murderer. The sudden disappearance of his wife and the truth he keeps silent are a risk to his chances at earning a coveted parliamentary seat. But he’s kept his affairs tightly held until a woman with sparkling eyes and brazen determination appears unexpectedly in his life. Deadly allegations might be his downfall, but his unleashed passion could be the duke’s ultimate undoing.
Oh, my word! This is incredibly good! I have been a fan of Julia London’s work for ages now and I have been avidly reading this ‘Highland Grooms’ series with relish but this, I have to say is the best of the series, so far. I will admit that the last book; Aulay’s story didn’t live up to the previous book’s, after reading Rabbie’s and Cailean’s stories I didn’t think that this series could get any better and along come Catriona and Hamlin.
After her auntie Zelda’s death, Catriona is left to run Kishorn Abbey on her own, for it is in fact a refuge for women who for whatever reason need a safe place to turn to. Catriona has had a lot to deal with, she was by her auntie Zelda’s side through her illness and slowly she withdrew from society and public life and now she is practically a shell of what she used to be. To an extent that her family are worried, she is drinking heavily, unsociable and severely unhappy. She maybe proud of her spinsterhood and the fact that she doesn’t want or need a man in her life, deep down she is lonely.
Which is why they plot against her and send her to recuperate at her uncle Knox’s, Catriona doesn’t intend to spend her days lounging about she fully intends to get her wealthy English uncle’s support to help save Kishorn Abbey from being taken by the crown. But her well laid out plan’s soon take a turn when she meets the mysterious and devilishly handsome Duke of Montrose. As soon as she sees him across the Inn for the first time in years she feels alive and intrigued by something.
From the onset of meeting Catriona, you see straight way that there is a darkness hanging over her head, London has wonderful job with Catriona’s depression in the first part she hasn’t gone over done it but in those few moment’s you can get a glimpse of Catriona’s state of mind and she isn’t a happy woman. She tries to show to the world she is content but deep down she is a crying wreck.
Hamlin Graham is living under a dark and heavy cloud, of secrets, lies and scandal after the disappearance of his wife all of society think’s that Hamlin murdered her. He has lived with that hanging over his head, it has tarnished his reputation blackened his good name and now driven him to live a lonely and isolated life. It would all be well and good if he didn’t have his hopes set on gaining his seat in Parliament, after all Scotland were only allowed a handful of seats and he wanted one. He had plans to help and he could only do that once he gained that seat. But the scandal in his past and the secret he holds close to his heart are standing in his way.
That is until he meets feisty, determined kindred spirit; Catriona. Who brings the sunshine back into his dark life and makes his once dead heart begin to beat again. Catriona is the only one that knows Hamlin wouldn’t have killed his wife, he may be a huge, brawny and monosyllabic man but he she sees the goodness, she knows beneath that rude persona there lies a gentle, sensitive man.
Oh, my goodness, what a stud! Hamlin is soooo swoon-worthy, he ruggedly handsome. Kind, generous, dark and brooding. Plus, he is very good with his hands in more ways than just welding a hammer to fix his own roof, he isn’t your stereotypical duke. Part man part devil and when he looks at Catriona with those dark/black soulful eyes you melt. He is dark uncivilised and equally as sad as Catriona, they are a match made in heaven!
I love that first chapter where all the Mackenzie clan are all together after Zelda’s death, their closeness and protectiveness to one and other is so heart-warming. This is why I love this family so much, they maybe brutish men in kilts and fierce women with great mind, but they are also hugely supportive of each other and a wonderful family.
Just want to say that I am so intrigued by Nichol Bain who is Hamlin’s secretary. He is a mysterious young man, he has many secrets hidden behind those green eyes and I do hope that he will get a story of his own. He is quite a man I would love to know more about him.
This really is so good, wonderful storyline that keeps you hooked, and keeps you turning those pages to find out what happens’. Character’s that are engaging, intriguing and it’s a joy to watch as their relationship blossoms and their personal characters develop.
As I said in the beginning of the review, this is the best of the series, it’s thrilling, romantic, sexy with two of the best character’s. London has outdone herself with this, it is perfection!
This was an ARC copy via the Author’s PA in exchange for an honest review.
Tempting The Laird is to be released 26th June and can be pre-ordered at Amazon.
I have a wonderful and exclusive to Chicks Rogues and Scandals Giveaway, to be in for a chance to win some exclusive Julia London swag then just answer the question below.
As the Highland Grooms is set in Scotland, what is your favourite thing about Scotland?
It can be anything, from food, clothes, the highlands or something Scottish from TV, mine has got to be Outlander 😉 what’s yours?
This giveaway will be open on here and on the Chicks, Rogues and Scandals Facebook Page which means you have the chance to put your name into the hat twice.
(Eg: Comment on this post -1 entry / Comment & Like Facebook post – 1 entry)
Good luck everyone!
*Unfortunately, giveaway is only opened to US and UK, Giveaway closes on 31st May at midnight GMT. Winner will be announced as soon as possible after closing date.
The Hell Hath No Fury by Annabelle Anders, Release Day Blitz
Read on for an exclusive to the Blitz Tour Except, Get to know Annabelle and an exclusive to the Blitz Giveaway and my Review of her debut Historical Romance, Hell Hath No Fury.
Cecily Nottingham has made a huge mistake.
The marriage bed was still warm when the earl she thought she loved crawled out of it and announced that he loved someone else.
Loves. Someone else.
All he saw in Cecily was her dowry.
But he’s in for the shock of his life, because in order to keep the money, he has to keep her.
With nothing to lose, in an attempt to goad the earl into divorcing her, Cecily sets out to seduce her husband’s cousin, Stephen Nottingham.
Little does she realize that Stephen would turn out to be everything her husband was not: Honorable, loyal, trustworthy…
Handsome as sin.
Stephen returned to England for one reason. Save his cousin’s estate from financial ruin. Instead, he finds himself tempted by his cousins beautiful and scorned wife.
He isn’t sure what to do first, strangle his cousin, or kiss his wife. His honor is put to the test, right along with his self-control.
Amid snakes, duels and a good catfight, Cecily realizes the game she’s playing has high stakes indeed.
There are only a few ways for a marriage to end in Regency England and none of them come without a high price. Is she willing to pay it? Is Stephen?
A ‘Happily Ever After’ hangs in the balance, because, yes, love can conquer all, but sometimes it needs a little bit of help.
“Stephen!” she gasped, shocked by what he seemed intent upon doing. “What on earth are you doing?”
He looked up at her, smiling lustily. “Nothing.”
And then he went about his business.
Not in a million years had she ever imagined allowing a man to do… this!
And with his mouth no less!
“Oh, my God! Stephen, you are wicked,” she said, feeling quite wicked herself as she grasped the sides
of his head.
He was not to be deterred. His tongue stroked and sucked in much the same way he’d done with her
mouth, causing a new multitude of sensations to spiral inside of her.
He paused only a moment to look up at her.
“Surrender, Cecily.” He said. Giving her a lazy, sensual smile, “And prepare to die.”
A little about the music in the trailer by Annabelle Anders
The song for the trailer was written by myself and my sister, Marcie Stanley. Marcie’s beautiful voice is
featured while she plays the piano… Due to illness, Marcie doesn’t perform much anymore so it was
very special for me to be able to use the song that we wrote together, over twenty years ago.
The Song is titled “Disposable Relationship.” I have a few tweeks for the lyrics to fit Stephen and
Cecily’s situation. Next time Marcie is up to recording I’ll change them to this:
For you, I would have done anything.
For you, can NOT have my soul.
For once you looked at me with empty eyes, the consequences… began to roll…
You’re a disposable relationship, damn the ton I’ll see your body gone. I’m throwing away a piece of
my heart with you.
with the ash and the chamber pots of my life… you’re going down and I won’t cry… anymore…
There is nothing more frightening then a woman scorned, and this really showcases just how far women will go for the revenge they so desperately want.
And that is exactly what Cecily wants. Revenge…
I have come across real bad egg before, but Flavian Nottingham is one real nasty piece of work. He is egotistical, self righteous pain in the backside, who unfortunately can charm the bird out of the trees with his golden looks and manners. But in actual fact he is anything but, he is exactly how Cecily describes him; as a toad! The way he treats Cecily is really terrible and this guy deserves everything that’s coming to him!
Cecily wasn’t born an aristocrat her father is a Merchant/Business man, who has built up his Empire from scratch h she grew up learning the ropes and ways of business, she knows her ways around the books and banking and even legal documents. There is nothing that she cannot have she has everything a girl would want, the only thing her father can’t seem to purchase for her is respect and social standing, he cannot buy her someone to love her.
Then came along handsome, charming Flavian Nottingham. This god took an interest her, he charming her and made her fall in love with him and she thought he loved her too. So contracts were signed, the marriage was sealed and then he told her the awful truth …that he only married her for her !money and he didn’t love or feel anything for her.
Obviously Cecily was devastated but the hurt from her husband wasn’t finished there, he goes out of his way again and again to ostracize her from society and humiliate by flaunting his mistress about adorned in Jewels he had bought with Cecily’s dowry.
This really is the last straw for her so she decided that she needs to rid of him, now this is where her fabulous three friends come in and basically tell her, she needs to bump him off and live as a lavish widow, but she isn’t keen on that idea so with help of her toadish husband’s cousin Stephen she comes up with a plan that will force him to divorce her.
There is only two issues, one that someone is trying their damdest to murder her and secondly she falls head over heals for the cousin.
Cecily is in her own right an intelligent, strong-minded women but I felt as soon as she married Flavian and learnt the horrible truth she did loose s lot of her spark. She returned into some kind of simpering mouse who cries and whines – a lot! But once she has got over that and her friends start coming up with hilarious ways to get rid of him she really comes into her own.
I like the fact that she is from a normal background, it is so refreshing to have a working class woman as the lead but this is what Anders has done perfectly, the social divide between then is as clear as a bell, the way she gets ostracized just for her back ground really is quote appalling and true for the time.
Stephen is an enigma he keeps his emotions and the thoughts under wraps, he is a powerful man in his own right as handsome as sin but what I like about him is he respects her and takes as she is. Being business man and one of her father’s competitors he has a good solid intelligent head on those impossibly wide shoulders.
The two of them as much as they try to keep those feeling under wraps and under control the atmosphere sizzles with a built up tension. I especially like when they are plotting both their revenge on Flavian and it is highly entertaining watching as Cecily plot revenge on him and when Stephen asks her what she wants the fist it me she says is her husband’s head on a silver platter is very funny.
I adore this it is by far the funniest Historical Romance I have read, the plot is enjoyable very fun and I can see some really good things coming from this author. Her writing flows she has created a story that has you laughing out loud, gripped to edge of your seat and shouting at the book wanting to know what comes next.
This is highly recommended, really very good and a fabulous debut.
About the author
Married to the same man for over 25 years, Annabelle Anders is mother to three children and two
Miniature Wiener dogs. After owning a business and experiencing considerable success, she and
her husband got caught in the financial crisis and lost everything; their business, their home, even
At this point, she put her B.A. in Poly Sci to use and took work as a waitress and bartender.
Unwilling to give up on a professional life, she simultaneously went back to college and obtained a degree in Energy Management.
And then the energy market dropped off.
And then her dog died.
We can only be grateful for this series of unfortunate events, for, with nothing to lose and completely demoralized, she sat down and began to write the romance novels which had until then, existed only in her imagination.
She is happy to have found her place in life.
Annabelle is generously giving away some of her tasselled Hell Hath No Fury, Bookmarks. So to be in for a chance of winning one answer the question that Annabelle has set and follow the instructions… Over to Annabelle..
“I write under the name ANNABELLE ANDERS and my first book, Hell Hath No Fury released on 7-7-17. I love the date!
Anyway, my novel is an edgy Regency Romance. I say ‘ edgy’, because it’s a little off the beaten path. Whereas most heroines in Regency Romances begin the story NEEDING a husband, my character, Cecily, needs to get rid of one. The man she married (an earl) turned out to be a
complete and utter toad (not literally! LOL)”
To be in for a chance of winning a bookmark answer the following Question :
Does it bother you that the hero is not the man she is married to in the beginning?
E-mail your comment to email@example.com along with your address and I’ll send you a Hell Hath No Fury tasselled Bookmark. (First 20 Respondents) Please include the name of the group or blog you are responding from ☺
I look forward to discovering your thoughts on this concept!
* I received this ARC copy from Love Affair With Fiction via the author in return of an honest review.
* The Promo including; Excerpt, Trailer and Author information were provided to Chick’s Rogue’s and Scandal’s exclusively for this Release Blitz.