jc rBOOK BLURB: James Whren is brilliant, beautiful, rich, and taken—with himself, or more precisely, his genius for creating music. Desired by many, committing to no one but his muse, on the eve of his brother’s funeral, his father inadvertently turns his life into a living nightmare, and James is left abandoned in hell with no one real to save him.

His odyssey to freedom takes him beyond the looking glass, to the reflection of friends and lovers. Humbled and alone, James escapes to the Greek island of Corfu. But instead of finding solace there, loneliness almost consumes him.

Until Elisabeth, and her son, Cameron.

Reverb is a love story, a psychological thriller paced with romantic suspense. Spun from The Magus, also about a man who learns to love someone other than himself, and way beyond 50 Shades of Gray, Reverb is told like Crime and Punishment–modern, clean, edgy verging on sharp. Like nothing you’ve read, guaranteed…

REVIEW: here
FREE TODAY Romantic Suspense ebook Kindle Giveaway.

‘An American Duchess’ by Sharon Page

sp aadSTORY: Set on a crumbling English manor estate during the height of the Roaring Twenties, an American duchess must decide how much she’s willing to risk for the life she truly desires…

It’s 1922, and New York heiress Zoe Gifford longs for the freedoms promised by the Jazz Age. Headstrong and brazen, but bound by her father’s will to marry before she can access his fortune, Zoe arranges for a brief marriage to Sebastian Hazelton, whose aristocratic British family sorely needs a benefactor.

Once in England, her foolproof plan to wed, inherit and divorce proves more complicated than Zoe had anticipated. Nigel Hazelton, Duke of Langford and Sebastian’s older brother, is as austere and imposing as the family’s ancestral estate. Still reeling from the Great War, Nigel is now staging a one-man battle against a rapidly changing world—and the outspoken Zoe represents everything he’s fighting against.

When circumstances compel Zoe to marry Nigel rather than Sebastian, their heated quarrelling begets passion of another sort. But with Nigel unwilling to change with the times, will Zoe be forced to choose between her husband and her dreams?

REVIEW: It is 1920 and wealthy Zoe Gifford has arrived in England with her mother in search of a husband.  In order to collect her inheritance, she has been directed to marry.  As she is young, vibrant, intelligent and having fun as a single woman, she is not anxious to get married.  Zoe had met Sebastian Hazelton, the younger brother of Nigel Hazelton, Duke and cash-strapped heir to the estate of Brideswell Abbey in Hertfordshire.  Together, Sebastian and Zoe concoct a plan to marry so Zoe can gain her money, then divorce, with Sebastian receiving a fee, and then both can go on with their lives.

The straight-laced members of the Hazelton family are shocked at Zoe.  She wears short skirts, sports a bobbed haircut, drives a motorcar, flies an aeroplane and even smokes! Scandalous!
When Zoe meets Nigel, she finds a cold man who is scarred and remains haunted by his experiences in the war.  His feelings of guilt keep him in a somber mood.  Zoe’s exuberant personality and Nigel’s depressed personality make for some clashes that only intrigue Zoe more to find out about his past.
After spending some time at Brideswell planning her wedding to Sebastian, Zoe learns something quite unsavory about Sebastian that causes her to break off their planned wedding.  However, not all is lost because Zoe and Nigel have begun to spend time together which sparks a fiery passion.
Where will this lead?  Is there hope for happiness and contentment in Nigel’s life and will Zoe settle into the English way of life?
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel and have waited for quite awhile to do so.  It was everything I hoped it would be.  This is a novel that is beautiful, touching, informative and fun.  I know I shall remember this plot for sometime to come.
“An American Duchess” is due for publication on September 30, 2014.
I have tried to give some teasers about this wonderful story without releasing any spoilers.
Connie for b2b
Complementary copy provided by the publisher

‘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 Fortune Hunter’ by Daisy Goodwin

dg tfhSTORY: In 1875, Sisi, the Empress of Austria is the woman that every man desires and every woman envies.

Beautiful, athletic and intelligent, Sisi has everything – except happiness. Bored with the stultifying etiquette of the Hapsburg Court and her dutiful but unexciting husband, Franz Joseph, Sisi comes to England to hunt. She comes looking for excitement and she finds it in the dashing form of Captain Bay Middleton, the only man in Europe who can outride her. Ten years younger than her and engaged to the rich and devoted Charlotte, Bay has everything to lose by falling for a woman who can never be his. But Bay and the Empress are as reckless as each other, and their mutual attraction is a force that cannot be denied.

Full of passion and drama, THE FORTUNE HUNTER tells the true story of a nineteenth century Queen of Hearts and a cavalry captain, and the struggle between love and duty.

REVIEW: Charlotte Baird is a young heiress with an interest in photography.  She is currently living with her older brother, Fred, who does not have her future income but is comfortable.  Fred is engaged to Augusta, a woman who has seen several seasons and never “took” until Fred came along.  Jealous of the wealth that Charlotte will soon enjoy, Augusta never misses a chance to make a snide remark to Charlotte.  Charlotte is an intelligent person with a calm personality, but also has a tendency to speak her mind. Charlotte lost her mother some years ago from a horse riding accident and, thus, Charlotte does not ride.

With her wealth, Charlotte could almost have her pick of husbands but she is attracted to Captain Bay Middleton.  He is very handsome and an excellent horseman.  He has worked with his horse, Tipsy, with the dream of participating in the Grand National race. Bay is also attracted to Charlotte and they enjoy one another’s company.

Empress Elizabeth of Austria, known as Sisi, is an extremely beautiful but vain woman. She is known for her magnificent hair that reaches to her ankles.  As she loves to ride and hunt, she has traveled to England to stay at the home of the very wealthy Earl Spencer and spend some months hunting.  As Bay is so well known for his horsemanship, he is summoned to be Sisi’s pilot and ride with her.  Although Bay did not want to be away from Charlotte, he knew that it would not be good to turn down this opportunity to show his abilities.

Sisi is constantly dieting and doing everything possible to slow down her aging.  While she is  grandmother at the age of 37, she is still a beautiful woman with a trim figure. Soon, she is physically attracted to Bay and they become lovers.  

But what about Charlotte?  While she misses Bay, she remains involved in taking her photographs and displaying them publicly.  One photograph is mistakenly put into a show where Queen Victoria is a viewer and it becomes a scandal.  When Charlotte realizes the attraction between Sisi and Bay, she plans a drastic move.

I absolutely loved this book!  After reading Daisy’s first book, “The American Heiress,” I literally counted the days until “The Fortune Hunter” was published.  It has been worth the wait.  The perfectly developed characters blended with real historical figures is completely delightful!  I couldn’t have asked for more.  Oh wait!  Yes I can.  I will now ask Daisy how long it will be before her next novel!!  

Connie for b2b

‘The Governess Affair’ by Courtney Milan

cm tgaSTORY: She will not give up…

Three months ago, governess Serena Barton was let go from her position. Unable to find new work, she’s demanding compensation from the man who got her sacked: a petty, selfish, swinish duke. But it’s not the duke she fears. It’s his merciless man of business—the man known as the Wolf of Clermont. The formidable former pugilist has a black reputation for handling all the duke’s dirty business, and when the duke turns her case over to him, she doesn’t stand a chance. But she can’t stop trying—not with her entire future at stake.

He cannot give in…

Hugo Marshall is a man of ruthless ambition—a characteristic that has served him well, elevating the coal miner’s son to the right hand man of a duke. When his employer orders him to get rid of the pestering governess by fair means or foul, it’s just another day at the office. Unfortunately, fair means don’t work on Serena, and as he comes to know her, he discovers that he can’t bear to use foul ones. But everything he has worked for depends upon seeing her gone. He’ll have to choose between the life that he needs, and the woman he is coming to love…

REVIEW: This little gem started the whole Brother Sinister series. It tells the story of Hugo Marshall and Serena Barton.

Hugo is to Duke of Claremont what Ray Donovan [my newest TV obsession; Showtime’s best show of 2013] is to the Hollywood scene, a ‘fixer’ of problems. He makes the duke’s mistakes disappear. In this case, Hugo is given the task to get rid of a stubborn woman that has been plaguing the duke and that just happens to be Miss Serena Barton, and Hugh is having a hell of a time doing it.

This was an extraordinary story about two ordinary people that are brought together by circumstances that were out of their hands. Both characters were strong, and both were determined to fight and succeed in their task and I was fascinated with both. I eagerly anticipated the outcome and was elated with it.

I love stories of survival of the fittest, and this certainly was that, except we had two people that I rooted for, but one could only be the winner!

If you’ve never read this author, I urge you to snatch this novella [it’s still FREE] and start to read this series. It really is a little gem I hope you don’t pass up.

Melanie for b2b

Jenna Jaxon and …

Eight Fun Facts about Medieval Times

ma1During my extensive research for Beleaguered, and all the books of Time Enough to Love, I have come across a plethora of information regarding the times, people, and customs of the Middle Ages.  Some of these facts found their way into the books in one form or another.  But I couldn’t use everything without sounding like a history book rather than a romance novel.  So I thought I’d share some of these little know facts about Medieval Times.

  1.  During the Middle Ages people bathed a lot more than people today give them credit for. In noble households they might have private baths with servants to assist.  For the masses, there were public bath houses that often also served meals to the bathers.
  1.  Weddings were held outside the doors of the church.  No priest was needed to officiate and if there were no witness, the marriage was still deemed valid as long as the couple had spoken their vows and had given and received a token (such asma2 a ring).
  1. Marriages were usually arranged by the parents of the bride and groom, who were often very young indeed.  The age of consent during the Middle Ages was 12 years for a girl and 14 years old for a boy.
  1. The Bubonic Plague that hit Europe in 1348 was actually three strains of plague.  The bubonic plague is the classic disease of the lymphatic system, carried by fleas from rats, that manifested itself in large buboes or swollen lymph nodes in neck, armpit, and groin. The second strain was septicaemic plague was an infection of the blood and pneumonic plague was an infection of the respiratory ma3system.  The latter two strains had almost a 100% mortality rate.  The Bubonic plague was closer to 50%. During the mid-14th century pandemic nearly one third of all people in the affected areas died of it.
  1. During the Middle Ages women rode  horses astride for travel and hunting.  Sidesaddles did not become fashion until the 15th century and then only for ceremonial occasions.  Women rode astride into the 16th century.
  1. Royal banquets lasted for many hours and consisted up to six courses.  Courses consisted of such dishes as civet of hare, a quarter of stag, sturgeon cooked in parsley and vinegar covered in powdered ginger, chickens covered in yolk of eggs and sprinkled with spice.  The point was to serve many intricate dishes from whichma4 guests took only a bit and then passed it on.
  1. Archery was one of the most popular sports of the medieval period.  Also popular were bowls, colf (forerunner of golf), hurling (forerunner of hockey), horseshoes, and stoolball (a forerunner of cricket).
  1. During the Middle Ages, when a woman went into labor, she was shut into a room with the doors closed and the windows covered until a month after the baby’s birth. She was attended by a midwife, her assistants, and several of the mother-to-be’s friends and relatives.


BOOK BLURB: When death holds sway in the world, can even the greatest love survive?

Finally in France, Alyse and Thomas return to their roles as courtiers to Princess Joanna.  Their passion for one another continues to smolder hot and deep—until one fateful encounter changes everything.

During a formal banquet, Alyse must share an intimate dance with Geoffrey, her first love. His searing touch proves Alyse’s love and desire for him is as strong as when they first met. Tormented by this revelation, Alyse is bitterly torn between the love of her life and her love for her husband.

Into this agonizing situation, the disaster of the Black Death rears its head, decimating the princess’s retinue and threatening all their lives.  Alyse, Thomas and Geoffrey must try to save the princess from the ravening disease but at a dire cost to themselves.  With her world plunged into chaos, Alyse struggles with her feelings for both of the men she loves.  But which love will survive?

Buy Links: Amazon / Smashwords


The men continued to talk, but she paid them no heed, caught in a private hell from which she had believed herself safe. She would have to be vigilant to ensure neither she nor Thomas were burned by the fire that had been kindled months ago between her and Geoffrey Longford. She could not trust any of them now—neither her husband to keep his jealously in check, nor Geoffrey to cease his pursuit of her, nor herself to keep him at bay.

She had believed she loved Thomas enough to lay the ghost of Geoffrey to rest in their bed. But from the moment she had seen him on deck this morning, her beloved still, she knew deep in her very core that Geoffrey had been right: it would never be over between them until they were dead and in the tomb.

This realization frightened her beyond all reason. It was as though she had been two people in one body all day, each belonging to a different man. As long as they lived that would never change. She played with fire each time she met with or spoke to Geoffrey, and one day the banked embers would flame up and consume them both.

There would be hell to pay one way or the other. The only question was how much damage would be wrought. Immortal souls hung in the balance, waiting for Judgment Day.

>>>>> $50 Amazon GC – RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY <<<<<

jjAUTHOR BIO: Jenna Jaxon is a multi-published author of historical  and contemporary romance.  She is currently finishing revisions to  her fifth full length novel, To Woo A Wicked Widow, set in Regency England and the first book in her five part series, The Widow’s Club.

Only Scandal Will Do is Book 1 in her Georgian  House of Pleasure series and Only Marriage Will Do, second book in the series is with the editor. Her medieval trilogy, Time Enough to Love, is being published by Rising Phoenix Publications. Book 1, Betrothal is currently available.  Book 2, Betrayal, will be available later this fall.

Jenna has been reading and writing historical romance since she was a teenager.  A romantic herself, she has always loved a dark side to the genre, a twist, suspense, a surprise.  She tries to incorporate all of these elements into her own stories. She lives in Virginia with her family and a small menagerie of pets.  When not reading or writing, she indulges her passion for the theatre, working with local theatres as a director.  She often feels she is directing her characters on their own private stage.

She has equated her writing to an addiction to chocolate because once she starts she just can’t stop.

Social Media: WebsiteTweeter / Facebook

‘The Heiress Effect’ by Courtney Milan

cm theSTORY: Miss Jane Fairfield can’t do anything right. When she’s in company, she always says the wrong thing—and rather too much of it. No matter how costly they are, her gowns fall on the unfortunate side of fashion. Even her immense dowry can’t save her from being an object of derision.

And that’s precisely what she wants. She’ll do anything, even risk humiliation, if it means she can stay unmarried and keep her sister safe.

Mr. Oliver Marshall has to do everything right. He’s the bastard son of a duke, raised in humble circumstances—and he intends to give voice and power to the common people. If he makes one false step, he’ll never get the chance to accomplish anything. He doesn’t need to come to the rescue of the wrong woman. He certainly doesn’t need to fall in love with her. But there’s something about the lovely, courageous Jane that he can’t resist…even though it could mean the ruin of them both.

REVIEW: I’m a big CM fan, and I’d read a paper bag if she wrote on it!

However, she chose to write another book, thank goodness, and surprise-surprise, I loved it.

I adored this heroine who was such a unique character. I guess that’s why I love CM’s books so much. She literally molds characters right in front of my eyes. I felt like watching Jane emerge from a cocoon and showing me all these colors, then sprouting wings, just like a real butterfly, and taking off into many directions all at once.

Oliver was a perfect match for her and he as well grew in character as we followed along while he got to know the object of his curiosity and love.

The romance between the two had a perfect pace as their friendship was testing their future. On paper, these two completely opposite characters would never fit together, but the author makes them real and so they complete each other perfectly.

If you’re a fan of Courtney Milan, this is a must buy, and if you’ve never read her work, this is a good book to start with, regardless of being a part of the series. Have no fear, it’s a stand alone.

Highly recommended.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher