‘The Lost Love of a Soldier’ by Jane Lark

jl tlloasSTORY: The stunning prequel to Kindle bestseller The Illicit Love of a Courtesan!
Life is for grasping and living…

Naïve and innocent, Lady Ellen Pembroke falls for a dashing young army officer. Captain Paul Harding has such an easy, enchanting smile and his blue eyes glow; vibrancy and warmth emanating from him. She is in love.

In turn, the Captain finds his attention captured by the beautiful young daughter of the Duke of Pembroke at a house party in the summer. Finding Ellen is like finding treasure on the battle field. His sanity clings to her – something beautiful to remind him that not all in the world is ugly.

Ellen is someone to fight for and someone to survive for when he is inevitably called to arms in the battle of Waterloo…

REVIEW: Let me preface this review with letting you all know how much I love reading this author’s work. I was left an emotional wreck each time I finished one of her books, and this one more so than the others and that is because this one is a prequel to Ellen’s romance with Edward in ‘The Illicit Love of a Courtesan’.

My advice, to all that have not read this author, is to read this story before you go on to ‘TILOAC’. Take my word for it. It will help you understand the heroine Ellen much better.

Having read ‘TILOAC’ first, I knew the outcome of this story and to be honest, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to read it. I’m one of those that do not read the ending before I start the book. I can deal with the spoilers, but I can’t deal with someone letting me know what the ending is. It just ruins the story, don’t you think? Well, at least that’s what I think …thought, I should say. Because, in the end, my knowledge of this authors wonderful storytelling won me over and I went for it.

By the time the story was done, I felt sorrow, anger and a relief. That last one was only because I knew that Ellen’s story does not end with this book.

Ms. Jane Lark did an outstanding job at writing a heartbreaking ‘first love’ story of two young and disillusioned people. Both characters were well developed and the emotional turmoil and internal struggle they went through as they slowly came to terms with the choices they made in order to be together. The steady pace of the story helps a reader connect with and understand these two as they embark on the journey of discovery of each other and their environment. Especially the historical part and the era this takes place in. If you loved ‘War and Peace’ than you’ll appreciate the reality Ms. Lark gives to this story and its locations from Brussels at Lady Richmond’s ball, the Battle of Quatre-Bras and on to Waterloo. We are in awe as much as our teenaged bride is, of the life a soldier and his wife are forced to endure, from slow and muddy marches to making silent love in the cot among sleeping soldiers.

Even though I thought the story well written and plotted, I couldn’t help but wonder if I would have been better off not knowing Paul at all. I found myself questioning his choices and accusing him of selfishness while at the same time making allowances for them because of his age. He was so very young and all he wanted to do is love and be loved.

In the end I have concluded that if I’ve read this story before book one, my appreciation and understanding of what Ellen went through would have been ten times of what it really was.

Do I recommend it? Hell yes. The prose alone is worth the read, not to mention the historical detail included. Be warned though. The emotional rollercoaster of this story is ever present and doesn’t let go until the very end, or the next book, I should say.
If you’d like to read of Ellen’s son John Harding, the Duke of Pembroke, his story is in ‘The Scandalous Love of a Duke’.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the author

@grahammctavish and @ETCanada @showcasedotca on Twitter Today!

 

gmct ol@grahammctavish had a treat for his Hobbit and Outlander fans today as he put his fingers to the test and answered as many questions as he could get to. Here is only a small part that b2b caught and is bringing it to all of you! Enjoy this extremely talented man! 

Get those ?’s ready ….Rhenish at the ready….

 

Is McTavish even your real name?  

 

Absolutely and proud of it!

Do you have a family or clan tartan?

Yes, McTavish and my Grandmother was a Graham.

What is your clan motto?

Non Oblitus

Best thing about being Dougal?

Being entrusted with bringing him to life

Do you have fun playing a dwarf? 

Yes, a lot of fun, with some great people.

Do you like playing bad guys or good guys better?

All bad guys should have some good

What is the most demanding part of filming Outlander?

Getting a Latte up a mountain…

Best part about dwalin’s costume/make up?

Mohawk!

What have you enjoyed the most at Outlander-Set?

Scotland!

Is that actual wine or is the Rhenish on set just pink fizzy juice?

Gary insists it’s real

Describe Peter Jackson in one word

Hairy!

Has whiskey ever gotten you into trouble?

Too often….

Is there a place you’ve never been but that you really want to visit?

South America

Would you let Fili & Kili ‘babysit’ your daughter?

No

Same here for me and DH. Besides whisky, what’s a drink you favor?

Gin, tequila, rum, IPA, Wine etc

Who has the most retakes/bloopers?

We’ve all had our fair share!

Can really drink the boys under the table (or off the couch)

Both!

Thoroughly enjoying Will there be more of these adventures? 

Watch this space

How long is a day of filming?

It varies. Longest was 17hours on the Hobbit one day…

Which is scarier to run from? Smaug or Mark Hadlow? 

Mark is a VERY fast runner,….

Any acting plans after filming this season of Outlander? Or just R&R?

Announcement soon…

What’s your favorite part of the day?

The sound of a cork popping…

I always forgot to ask you WHAT you like to draw??

People

How much, if any, Gaelic did you know before Outlander?

I owe it all 2

have u ever been injured on set?

A few stitches here and there but nothing too bad, touch wood.

Hi. what is the strangest thing a role required u to do?

If I told you you wouldn’t believe me!

Can I call you Scottish Santa?

Depends if you’ve been naughty or nice….

I would love to continue but time to rest my fingers. Hope U enjoyed it, and hope you enjoy the show!…. .

Photo Credit STARZ

Photo Credit STARZ

@Outlander_Starz & @lotteverbeek1 on Twitter Today!

lotte verbeek

@lotteverbeek1 had a treat for her fans today as she tried to answer as many questions as she could get to. Here is only a small part that b2b caught and is bringing it to all of you! Enjoy getting to know the actress and the character!

Hi everyone! lets :-)

What inspires you about Gellis?

Great question! she is just always full of surprises, even for me :-)

How many languages do you speak?

5 Dutch, English, French, Italian, German. Oh and outlandish makes it 6 :-)

What is your favorite characteristic of Geillis?

Can i pick 2? Playfulness and Passion

Which episode are you currently filming?

I am wrapped! but they just started the last block (= 2 eps)

Do you relate to your chr in anyway?

Relate to geillis in a lot of ways. though she prolly goes a bit further and crosses more lines than i do!

Is it hard to think “Dutch” at times? You must mainly be speaking/thinking in English…

I am rarely aware of switching languages, have been doing foreign films since i graduated, 6 years ago!

What’s next for you until Outlander season 2 begins production? Theater, movie, vacation?

Am so lucky!! already shot another film and two more to come. jay!

What was your favorite costume to wear?

Let’s see. there was ‘the monkey jacket’ ‘the moth’, ‘the raven’… cant choose!!

Did you get to collaborate with Terry for your costumes?

Absolutely! she is amazing caus i am just as stubborn as like to wear things my own way :-O)

What historical person would you like to have a drink with?

Jeanne d’Arc

If you were a real witch, what would you use your power for?

I would fly. potentially on a broom.

Does it take a long time to put on your Geilis costumes? Are they very heavy? They look like they are…

There is a team to help us get dressed but the wearing we have to do ourselves. jeans are more comfy..

What characteristics do you share/differ with Dougal and Geillis?

Passion, drive, belief for sure. am personally less lethal though :-)

Thanks everyone for all the support for greeting, meeting you in the chat! watch ep 3 tom!!!!

Photo Credit STARZ

Photo Credit STARZ

 

 

‘What a Lady Craves’ by Ashlyn Macnamara

am walcSTORY: Henrietta Upperton is about to marry Alexander Sanford, when he rushes off to India to salvage his family’s fortune. Then comes the devastating news that he has wed another. Eight agonizing years later, a storm washes Alexander ashore—injured, widowed, and hunted—and one glimpse of his ruggedly handsome face reawakens the desire Henrietta thought she had buried deep inside. Her body still yearns for his touch, but she’s determined not let him wound her again . . . not this time.

For Alexander, honor always comes first. But only now does he realize that when given the choice between two virtuous deeds, he picked the wrong one. On the run with his life in tatters and a pair of daughters in tow, Alexander burns for Henrietta. He knows he does not deserve forgiveness. And yet he longs to wrap his arms around her warm body once again. What’s more, he is sure the lady craves the same.

What a Lady Craves on Goodreads

BUY LINKS: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Google Play / Kobo /

REVIEW: Ashlyn Macnamara’s ‘What a Lady Craves’ starts her new book trilogy about the boys of Eton.

We start with Henrietta and Alexander’s story.

I was pleasantly surprised with the depth of all the characters, especially of our heroine, Henrietta. I liked her demeanor and her strength. She wasn’t one of those whiny and bratty females, but someone who at the ‘advanced’ age of six and twenty knew her mind well and wasn’t afraid to use it. I’d like to point out that lately I like that the authors, such as Ms. Macnamara, are willing to take chances with their characters and readers alike. Giving us heroines that are older and bolder is a refreshing departure of yesteryear when silly and whimpery virgins ruled.

Alexander was, at least to me, a mixed bag of Alpha and Beta hero and it took me awhile to warm up to him only because at the start of the book I didn’t understand him much, but patience paid off in the end and I got to understand his character and motives for the things he did in the past and was doing in the present, much better.

Another pleasant surprise was the secondary characters that were treated with the same care as the main, therefore giving much pleasure to this reader. It greatly helps when an author has a keen eye for these and knows exactly how to keep them strong, yet not let them take over the book.

And let me not forget about the mystery part of this book. Here is another proof that the author used her constraint in giving us a mystery but never having it take over the love story. Well done!

I found this read to be fast paced, highly entertaining and engrossing. If you’ve never read this author before, this would be a great one to start you on the journey of discovery of what Ms. Ashlyn Macnamara offers to her fans. It really is a win-win!

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

GIVEAWAY 

>>>>> Rafflecopter <<<<<

Ashlyn MacnamaraAUTHOR BIO: Ashlyn Macnamara is the author of A Most Scandalous Proposal. She lives in the wilds of suburbia outside of Montreal with her husband and two teenage daughters. When not writing, she looks for other excuses to neglect the housework, among them knitting, reading, and wasting time on the Internet in the guise of doing research.

Social Media: Website / Facebook / Twitter

Outlander Ep. 102 – ‘Castle Leoch’

cl 102

Recap: I was pleasantly surprised that the second episode picked up right at the end of the first, Claire’s arrival at Castle Leoch.

Photo Credit STARZ

Photo Credit STARZ

Stablemaster Old Alec greets Dougal

Stablemaster Old Alec greets Dougal

After two days and nights on the back of a horse and in the company of the rough man, our Claire is now pretty sure she’s going to need someone’s help if she’s to get back to those stones, and so she needs to ‘bide’ her time, keep a low profile [YEAH!] and draft someone to aid her …maybe.

The audience is taken to the bosom of the Castle Leoch as much as Rupert and Murtagh are to Mrs. Fitz’s. We get a glimpse of many characters that will in some way touch our heroine, among those are the Laird Colum MacKenzie and his wife Leticia; Old Alec, the stablemaster; Geillis Duncan, herbalist that befriends Claire; little Hamish, the heir of Colum MacKenzie. And of course, the woman who runs the show, from top to bottom, Mistress Fitzgibbons, Mrs. Fitz as she likes to be called.

From that first moment that Mrs. Fitz spots Claire, we know this woman is warm,

Laird Colum Mackenzie

Laird Colum MacKenzie

affectionate and don’t take ‘shite’ from no one. A formidable woman who our heroine is better off to heed, yet our Claire is one strong female as well and stands her proud self erect while the older dame casts a suspicious look at her, having Jamie introduce them and explaining how they ‘acquired’ her.

After insisting to Mrs. Fitz that Jamie needs tending and that she’s capable of doing it, all three head into the castle, at which point Claire is reminded of her visit to its ruins with her Frank.

Mrs. Fitz finds some decent lodgings for Claire and leaves her and Jamie alone by the fireplace so she can tend him properly. Both we and Claire get to see the deep, ugly scars spanning from one end of his back to the other.

jammf 111

He tells her they are from a few floggings administered to him by the Redcoats. As she asks him the crimes he committed, he recounts a few and tells her of the first flogging done by Captain Jack Randall.

His father was at a funeral, he in the fields, and Redcoats came that day to ‘collect their levy’. He heard screams coming from the house, ran to see what was happening and found his sister Jenny fighting off the Redcoats. He doesn’t hesitate to help her, telling her to run into the house, and taking on the two guys, only to be stopped by the casual, low-voiced Captain Randall, holding a gun to his sister’s head.

"You need not be scared of me, nor anyone else here. As long as I'm with you." "When you're not with me?" "Just never forget that you're English in a place where that's not a pretty thing to be." - Jamie

“You need not be scare’t of me, nor anyone else here. As long as I’m with you.” – Jamie

He surrenders to them and asks the Captain to let his sister be. Randall is intrigued by the fact that this is his sister and compliments her on her beauty then very calmly wipes her dirty face with his saliva and suggests that he’d like to “take a closer look”, ripping her bodice open, exposing her naked breasts. The man shows he’s one son of a bitch even more by having his men hold Jamie and lifting his head to look at her!

jammf101

He then proceeds to whip him until he’s all sweaty and thirsty from all that ‘hard work’ of whipping a tied man. He asks Jenny if he should continue or is she ready to offer him “better entertainment”, at which point Jamie orders her not to do it even if she has to watch them cut his throat. She finches as Captain Randall reaches for his knife, approaches Jamie and …knocks him out. He then tries to excuse his sisters compliance with the evil Captain by telling Claire why she chose to join him in the house, and how he ended up in the back of the cart with the chickens, who were not the best of company on the way to Fort William.

13

As Jamie comments on her kindness, gentle touch and that her husband’s a lucky man, her thoughts flashback to Frank and what he might think of her disappearance, which brings her to tears. Jamie asks her to tell him what’s distressing her and she tells him, prompting him to offer her some comfort her by holding her. Both are a bit surprised by their connection; his compassion and her confusion add to the awkward moment of quick separation and a hasty exit, but not before he tells her not to be ‘scairt’ of him or anyone else in the Castle, as long as he’s with her, yet when she asks him what happens when he’s not around, he tells her to remember that she’s English in a place where that’s not so popular.

Clair Hair

Clair Hair

The next morning Claire is woken from a deep sleep by Mrs. Fitz, who brings her some porridge and tries to get her ready to be presented to the Laird of Castle Leoch. It was so poignant watching this scene where she sheds all her 20th off for the 18th Century. A look on Mrs. Fitz’s face was priceless as she is confronted with Claire’s bra which she explains as a ‘French’ fashion.

"It's a brassiere ... ... from France." - Claire

“It’s a brassiere … … from France.” – Claire

Murtagh escorts Claire to a meeting with Colum, and she is now sure of the century but not the year, so she does some quick look-about Colum’s quarters, trying to find anything that would help her find out the year she apparently ‘fell into’. A letter dated 1743 on his desk helps her greatly when it comes to Colum’s gentle interrogation. As they sit and talk, she tells him who she is [using the knowledge Frank once imparted about interrogations], so she sticks as much as she can to the truth, telling him she’s a widow from Oxfordshire, on her way to see distant relatives in France.

Photo Credit STARZ

Photo Credit STARZ

She was robbed by brigands, and then attacked by Captain Randall. Colum isn’t buying her story and tries to point some facts about the Captain, but our Claire stands her ground and veers the conversation to the arranging her transport to Inverness as soon as possible, which it seems is only five days away. In the meantime, he offers her his hospitality and she accepts it, leaving him and heading out for some fresh air and trying to hold onto her sanity, I believe. She spots Dougal jovially sword playing with some boys and especially the one red-headed boy, picking him up and twirling him around. She is comforted to believe that ‘this alien world’ may not be so much alien after all.

“It’s true that Captain Randall has a certain reputation. But he is an officer. A gentleman. And you’re saying that a man bearing the king’s commission decided to rape a stray lady traveler that he came upon int he woods for no good reason?”  – Laird Colum MacKenzie

 

“Is there ever a good reason for rape, Master MacKenzie?” – Claire

That night she joins the people of the castle for their evening meal in the hall and is greeted with stares from many, and offered a prominent seat between the brothers, Colum and Dougal. Colum’s wife Letitia, seated to his right, is introduced to her and they converse a bit and while Colum is always ready with her wine refill, she tries to find out where might Mr. Mactavish be.

Dougal tells them all that he has him at the stables, taking care of the horses and outside the castle walls. Colum questions that decision for only a minute but complies with Dougal’s decision, and at the same time continues the questioning of Claire.

Photo Credit STARZ

Photo Credit STARZ

She welcomes the distraction of the young red-headed boy she saw earlier in the day with Dougal and introduces herself, at which point Leticia asks the boy to give her his name, Hamish he says, and Claire assumes he’s Dougal’s son, and tells him she saw him play with his father, reminding Dougal of the incident. Well, you could hear a feather drop in that hall after that little exchange! The boy is a bit confused and tells her he’s the son and heir of Colum Mackenzie …and as our heroine is just about to pass out from all that wine, she thinks retreat is the best course of action. The permission is granted by the great Laird and off she goes on her wobbly feet, but still holding her head high.

The following day, Claire is pointed by Mrs. Fitz into Jamie’s direction, by the stables and she’s off to feed and re-bandage the young man. We see that she has acquired a ‘shadow’ [Rupert is the 'eyes' of the 'head' of Dougal and is now watching her closely].

" ...I trust you ..." - Jamie

” …I trust you …” – Jamie

She smiles as she spots Jamie training a horse and she tells him why she’s there, so they hide from the rain under the roof of the open stable to have a bite of food. Jamie decides to trust her and let’s her know why his uncles from his mother’s side, Colum and Dougal, have him hid in the stables [a good price on his head for murder that he didn't commit but was responsible for]. He also tells her his surname is not Mactavish, but never divulges what is.

As they finish the meal, she heads back but stops to talk to Dougal’s ‘eyes’ and Rupert admits to watching her at his orders, telling her she better be happy Angus isn’t following her! Her decision to face Dougal might have been smart at the time, but the man has no gumption telling her that he believes her to be English spy and threatens to have her as long as she’s with them. Well, what’s a woman to do?! She tells him to have fun next four days as she’ll be leaving on a Saturday with the tinker! Take that and smoke it, Dougal! The man is shocked at that information and she can tell, so she drives that point right in. It looks like he doesn’t ‘ken’ his brothers mind!

To kill the time, Mrs. Fitz has her working in her gardens, gathering herbs and vegetables for the kitchen and that’s where she meets Geillis Duncan, a very interesting village woman that’s into herbs as much as Claire. They hit it off and are later seen in the hall of the castle as the Laird dispenses his justice among his people, with Dougal standing to his right.

Photo Credit STARZ "They say I'm a witch." - Geillis Duncan

Photo Credit STARZ
“They say I’m a witch.” – Geillis Duncan

One of those that are seeking his counsel and punishment, is a father for his wayward daughter. In steps Jamie volunteering to take the punishment for her, choosing fists and not the straps and Rupert is the one doling out the punishment. Before Rupert starts beating the crap out of Jamie, Murtagh warns him that his Uncle Dougal is up to something and to be careful. Well, needles to say Rupert gets on with the business of punishment, but is always looking at Dougal for the sign’s to stop, which doesn’t come until the blood is drawn from Jamies eye. Poor Claire is ready to rush in and help the poor lad but Geillis stops her from interfering and takes her to him as he leaves the hall.

102jc

While tending to his wounds yet again, she is curious about why he did it, did he know her? Jamie tells her that he’s seen her around but never talked to her and the reason for doing it is simple. It would be harder for the girl to get over the shame of being punishment in front of everyone, while he’s only bruised a bit.

Happy to leave ....

Happy to leave ….

Mrs. Fitz steps in the kitchen [the girl Laoghaire’s (Leree) grandmother], bringing Jamie some concoction for pain. As Claire finishes tending him, she tells him to he’ll be taking off his bandages by himself as she’ll be leaving tomorrow with a tinker. Even though this comes as a surprise to Jamie he wishes her a safe journeys and that’s when Claire spots Laoghaire hovering by the kitchen door obviously wanting to speak to him alone, she bids him goodbye and retreats to her rooms.

Saturday arrives and we see Mrs. Fitz and Claire running down the steps to meet the

Assailed with memories and faced with the Laird's decision that she is 'invited' to stay on as a healer ....

Assailed with memories and faced with the Laird’s decision that she is ‘invited’ to stay on as a healer ….

tinker and as soon as they bid their farewells, BOOM! Dougal stops by the cart and tells her that Colum would like to talk to her and points her back to the castle. She soon realizes where he’s taking her and is very apprehensive about it, feeling that something is up but not knowing what; she is left with no choice but to follow Dougal into the room only two days ago her husband made love to her in.

Meeting Colum in that room did nothing but bring memories of her and Frank, and she really tries very hard to hold her own and demand to be let go after learning that Colum changed his mind and decided to keep her as long as it takes for him to make sure her secrets are not going to hurt his family and his clan. She is devastated as she can’t help but, once left alone in the dark apothecary, break into sobs.

...lonely and alone she breaks into sobs ...

…lonely and alone she breaks into sobs …

Bookworms, am I the only one that’s totally immersed into the Outlander World? Are you watching it? What do you think about it so far?

The above photo’s are my favorite moments [among many]. Tell me which one was yours?

CREDITS: Written for television by: Ronald B. Moore

Directed by:  John Dahl

Starring: Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan, Tobias Menzies, Duncan Lacroix, Graham McTavish, Gary Lewis, Lotte Verbeek, Nell Hudson, Annette Badland

‘One Plus One’ by JoJo Moyes

jm opoSTORY: One single mom. One chaotic family. One quirky stranger. One irresistible love story from the New York Times bestselling author of Me Before You

Suppose your life sucks. A lot. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your teenage stepson is being bullied and your math whiz daughter has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you can’t afford to pay for. That’s Jess’s life in a nutshell—until an unexpected knight-in-shining-armor offers to rescue them. Only Jess’s knight turns out to be Geeky Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire whose vacation home she happens to clean. But Ed has big problems of his own, and driving the dysfunctional family to the Math Olympiad feels like his first unselfish act in ages . . . maybe ever.

REVIEW: Jess is a young, married woman with two children under her care.  Her husband did a disappearing act when his depression got the better of him and he decided to go live with his mother for a little while until he got back on his feet.  Two years later, he’s still gone and has not even been back to see Jess or his children.  Nicky is her husband’s son and is into the Goth World.  This means that his black clothes, mascara and crazy haircut earn him lots of bullying from other kids.  Prime enemies are the Fisher family down the block.  No parental control results in out of control kids.  Then we have Tanzie, short for Constanza.  She is a math whiz who can figure out anything.

Jess is a cleaner.  One of her clients is Ed Nicholls, a wealthy computer tech guy who owns his own company.  But Ed is in big trouble.  He inadvertently gave a stock tip to a girlfriend to get rid of her and ended up being charged with insider trading.  He may be looking at prison time.
When Tanzie gets a chance to participate in a Math Olympiad and Jess cannot afford for her to travel all the way to Scotland, Ed steps up and offers to drive them.  When I say “them,” I mean Ed, Jess, Tanzie, Nicky and last, but not least, Norman, the big, drooling, farting dog.  If you think that the movie, National Lampoon’s “Vacation” was funny, come along for the road trip from hell!
This was such a good book!  Not only did it keep me laughing, it also tugged at my heart-strings.  You cannot help but fall in love with all the characters and their unique personalities.
I don’t want to give away any spoilers but you must grab a copy of this book and sit back for a read you won’t forget.
Connie for b2b

‘The Reluctant Governess’ by Maggie Robinson

mr trgSTORY: A secretary for the renowned Evensong Agency, Eliza Lawrence may have a pretty face, but she’s much prouder of her mind and her morals. When she’s pressed into temporary governess duty as a favor to her boss, she doesn’t expect to bend one bit for the rakish Nicholas Raeburn. Not even when he opens the door to her half-dressed…

Despite his bad reputation, Nicholas is a man of honor. To Nick’s way of thinking, he doesn’t need any help raising his daughter, Domenica. If only he weren’t so drawn to the meddlesome woman’s sparkling wit and uncommon beauty…

But when an act of misplaced chivalry goes seriously awry, resulting in mayhem and almost murder, Eliza becomes the only woman he can depend upon. Nick will do anything to protect his family, but who will protect him from falling in love with his reluctant governess?

REVIEW: It is 1904 in Edwardian English where we find Eliza Lawrence who works as a secretary at the Evensong Agency managed by Lady Mary Raeburn.  Their motto has always been, “Performing the Impossible Before Breakfast Since 1888.”  Eliza loves her job. She has worked as a governess before but prefers her secretarial job and is proud of her skills.

Lady Mary’s brother-in-law, Nicholas Raeburn, is known as a wicked artist and Continental reprobate.  His specialty is painting nude women.  When he needs a governess, Eliza is coaxed into accepting the job temporarily until a permanent governess can be found.  
When Mary enters Nicholas’ home, she is shocked at the lack of a butler and the presence of nude models who pose for him.  However, she is delighted to meet her new charge, Dominica (nicknamed Sunny).  Her mother was a past lover of Nicholas’ and when she died, she asked Nicholas to take Sunny even though she was not sure that Nicholas was her father.
Nicholas is a devil-may-care man whose family lives in Scotland and owns a well-known Scotch distillery.  His has an easy life and has chosen to live it as he sees fit.
The first night Eliza is there, Nicholas has a dinner party for several of his friends after which they hit the town.  He comes in later drunk and beaten up.  Eliza hears him enter the house and knowing he sounds injured, goes to his aid.  She is already exhausted as the house members have come down with the flu.  When Nicholas also succumbs to the flu, she ends up becoming caretaker to him and others in the house.
While Eliza does not approve of Nicholas’ Bohemian lifestyle, the closeness involved in caring for someone intimately begins an attraction between them that cannot be denied.
This novel is well written and the humor is not to be missed.
Connie for b2b
Complementary copy provided by the author