These Haunted Hearts: A Regency Ghost Story
Josiah Aston, Earl of Stansfield, wakes to discover he’s seventy years dead and he alone can free his beloved wife Isabella’s tormented soul. But first he must convince her to trust him against all the evidence…
Lady Isabella Verney, beautiful and tempestuous, married the man of her dreams, only to die violently on her wedding day. Every clue points to Josiah as the murderer…
Is true love strong enough to defeat ancient malevolence forever?
Miles Hartley, Viscount Kendall, is society’s ideal catch, but what does that matter if he can’t convince Calista Aston that he loves her? When an age-old curse strikes, only by proving himself worthy of her faith can he save their happiness…
Lady Calista Aston, noted bluestocking, fears she loves Miles Hartley not wisely, but too well. On her wedding day, her doubts place her at evil’s mercy. When death and disaster loom, is it courage or mad folly to believe that Miles loves her in spite of all her faults?
On one fateful wedding day at Marston Hall in 1818, will the lovers emerge triumphant or will darkness conquer all?
The Chinese Bedroom, Marston Hall, Norfolk, May 1818
Calista watched Miles at the window. The light limned him, turned him into a being from another world. The magnificent sight made the breath catch in her throat. He wore a loose white shirt and breeches. She’d never been so aware of his height or the lean strength of his body.
He turned and at last she saw the smile that tilted his mouth. His eyes focused on her and the smile faded, replaced by an expression that looked like awe. He tautened into stillness as he surveyed her from her loosened hair to her bare toes peeping beneath the white hem of her simple night rail.
The moonlight was so bright, she saw his Adam’s apple bob when he swallowed. She could almost imagine that he found her as breathtaking as she found him. His expression smoothed the sharpness from her uncertainty. The clamorous babble of thoughts in her head quietened to a low hum of need.
“You’re undressed,” he said huskily.
It seemed foolish to blush when they both knew she was in this room to offer herself to him, but heat flushed her cheeks. “I wasn’t sure what to wear.”
His joyous smile made her toes curl against the Turkish rug at her feet. “Or not, as the case may be.”
She waited in an agony of pleasurable suspense for him to seize her, ravish her into delight so that she had no chance to remember the dictates of propriety. But he approached slowly, as though afraid if he moved too abruptly, she might vanish. By the time he stopped in front of her, she trembled with apprehension and desire. Her body felt too small a vessel to contain the storm of emotions raging inside her.
He reached out to smooth her hair away from her face. His touch always turned her knees to custard. Now, when the bed and all it portended filled the shadows behind him, the glance of his hand set her burning. If such a seemingly innocent touch had this effect, she’d most likely combust into ashes before they were done tonight.
Calista bit her lip and stood in shaking stillness as he trailed his hand across her neck and shoulders. His touch felt like a discovery rather than a seduction. Although of course she was seduced. Her heart thundered and her breasts tightened against the thin lawn of her nightdress.
“Beautiful,” he whispered, running his hand down her side then up again.
A tremulous sigh escaped her. This tender wooing lured her deeper and deeper into the turbulent waters of desire. She should move, speak, do something to encourage him. But his touch was so delicious, she found herself unable to do anything beyond accept this worship. His scent was spicy, clean. Familiar, yet with a musky tinge that awakened her senses.
Through the haze of pleasure enveloping her, she managed to send up a silent prayer. That the reverence she read in his face would last. That he’d still love her after he’d taken her to bed. That he’d look at her like this in the morning when she stepped inside the Marston parish church to pledge herself to him for the rest of her life.
REVIEW: This is a short but sweet and very suspenseful story of two couples fighting for their love.
I was spellbound by the suspense and read the story in one sitting. Its Gothic feel gave me goose bumps!
My heart went out to both couples as they were fighting this curse.
Josiah Aston, Earl of Stansfield can’t remember how he died, but one thing he does remember is how much he loves Lady Isabella Verney, his bride…
Lady Calista Aston is sure of her love for Miles Hartley, Viscount Kendall, her future husband, but she’s full of doubts about his feelings for her. She somehow feels unworthy of his love and believes he would be better off without her…
I highly recommend this tension and suspense filled gem. You’ll be hooked from the first page to the last. Promise!
*Book purchased from Amazon.
AUTHOR’S BIO: Anna Campbell has written six multi award-winning historical romances for Avon HarperCollins and her work is published in eleven languages. Always a voracious reader, Anna decided when she was a child that she wanted to be a writer. Once she discovered the wonderful world of romance novels, she knew exactly what she wanted to write. Anna has won numerous awards for her Regency-set romances including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice, the Booksellers Best, the Golden Quill (three times), the Heart of Excellence (twice), the Aspen Gold (twice) and the Australian Romance Readers Association’s favorite historical romance (four times). Her books have twice been nominated for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA Award and three times for Australia’s Romantic Book of the Year. In 2012, Anna launches an exciting new publishing venture with Grand Central Publishing. She launches her first series, “Sons of Sin”, with SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED in October 2012.
GIVEAWAY: Tell us if you believe in ghosts and why. One lucky commenter will get an eCopy of this book.