‘Ex-Spinster by Christmas’ by Cheryl Bolen

esbc-cbSTORY: Ever pragmatic, Lady Caroline Ponsby has given up hope she’ll ever receive a proposal of marriage from Christopher Perry, the wealthy man she’s adored for almost two years. She is determined to be an ex-spinster by Christmas. To that end, she has invited a prospective suitor to spend Christmas with her family. She knows very well that Lord Brockton would love to get his hands on her dowry, and she’d love to be a married woman with a home and family of her own.

The very idea of his Lady Caroline throwing herself away on the likes of the vile Lord Brockton rankles Christopher Perry. A pity he cannot offer for her himself, but a duke’s daughter is too far above his touch, given his family’s humble origins. Nevertheless, Christopher attends the Duke of Aldridge’s Christmas house party with the intention of thwarting Lady Caroline’s grave misalliance with Brockton. If only he’s not too late . . .

REVIEW: Lady Caroline (Caro) Ponsby, daughter of the Duke of Aldridge, has loved Christopher Perry for a long time now but finally realizes that they are just not meant to be. Since Caro came out 4 years ago, 11 men have asked her to marry them, but she turned them down because they simply are not Christopher. Therefore, she has invited Lord Brockton to her home, Glemont Hall, for Christmas. The man would love to have her generous dowry and she realizes she would at least be a married woman and no longer a spinster.

Christopher is also be attending the party in hopes of keeping Caro from marrying Brockton. He loves Caro but feels he is not high enough socially to be acceptable for her. When he discovers that the pompous and greedy Brockton is bragging about marrying Caro and gaining access to her dowry, Christopher is furious and determined to make her his.

Caro agrees to marry Lord Brockton which crushes Christopher. How can he get her to change her mind and realize that their love is meant to be?

This is a sweet romance with several twists that will keep the reader’s interest. I enjoyed this story and am a big fan of the author. I look forward to reading more from her.

Complimentary copy provided by the author

Connie for b2b


Spotlight on Elizabeth Hoyt and ‘Duke of Pleasure’!


dukeofpleasure3_rgb300BOOK BLURB: In the arms of danger …

Bold. Brave. Brutally handsome. Hugh Fitzroy, the Duke of Kyle, is the king’s secret weapon. Sent to defeat the notorious Lords of Chaos, he is ambushed in a London alley-and rescued by an unlikely ally: a masked stranger with the unmistakable curves of a woman.

In the heat of desire …

Cocky. Clever. Courageously independent. Alf has survived on the perilous streets of St. Giles by disguising her sex. By day she is a boy, dealing in information and secrets. By night she’s the notorious Ghost of St. Giles, a masked vigilante. But as she saves Hugh from assassins, she finds herself succumbing to temptation . . .

One kiss will change their lives forever.

When Hugh hires Alf to investigate the Lords of Chaos, her worlds collide. Once Hugh realizes that the boy and the Ghost are the same, will Alf find the courage to become the woman she needs to be-before the Lords of Chaos destroy them both?

BUY LINKS: Amazon / B&N / iBooks / Google / Kobo / IndieBound /


A narrow passage.

Another cramped courtyard.

Ah, Christ.

They were already here, blocking the two other exits.

Hugh spun, but the passage he’d just run from was crowded with more men, almost a dozen in all.


He put his back to the only wall left to him and straightened.

He rather wished he’d tasted the wine. He was fond of Viennese wine.

A tall man in a ragged brown coat and a filthy red neckcloth stepped forward. Hugh half-expected him to make some sort of a speech, he looked that full of himself. Instead he drew a knife the size of a man’s forearm, grinned, and licked the blade.

Oh, for—

Hugh didn’t wait for whatever other disgusting preliminaries Knife Licker might feel were appropriate to the occasion. He stepped forward and smashed the bottle of very fine Viennese wine over the man’s head.

Then they were on him.

He slashed and felt the jolt to his arm as he hit flesh.

Swung and raked the sword across another’s face.

Staggered as two men slammed into him.

Another hit him hard in the jaw.

And then someone clubbed him behind the knees.

He fell to his knees on the icy ground, growling like a bleeding, baited bear.

Raised an arm to defend his head…


Someone dropped from the sky right in front of him.

Facing his attackers.

Darting, wheeling, spinning.

Defending him so gracefully.

With two swords.

Hugh staggered upright again, blinking blood out of his eyes—when had he been cut?

And saw—a boy? No, a slight man in a grotesque half mask, motley, floppy hat, and boots, battling fiercely with his attackers. Hugh just had time to think: Insane, before his defender was thrown back against him.

Hugh caught the man and had another thought, which was: Tits?

And then he set the woman—most definitely a woman although in a man’s clothing—on her feet and put his back to hers and fought as if their lives depended on it.

Which they did.


There were still eight or so of the attackers left, and although they weren’t trained, they were determined. Hugh slashed and punched and kicked, while his feminine savior danced an elegant dance of death with her swords. When he smashed the butt of his sword into the skull of one of the last men, the remaining two looked at each other, picked up a third, and took to their heels.

Panting, Hugh glanced around the courtyard. It was strewn with groaning men, most still very much alive, though not dangerous at the moment.

He peered at the masked woman. She was tiny, barely reaching his shoulder. How was it she’d saved him from certain, ignoble death? But she had. She surely had.

“Thank you,” he said, his voice gruff. He cleared his throat. “I—”

She grinned, a quicksilver flash, and put her left hand on the back of his neck to pull his head down.

And then she kissed him.

REVIEW: This is a must read for all of us that have waited an eternity for Alf’s story!

I am so happy that the author had so fit to give us fans a full story of this wonderful character. She had such a hard life, and she deserved to find her happily ever after. Giving her Hugh Fitzroy, the Duke of Kyle, was perfect. And letting her be the newest Ghost of St. Giles was a stroke of genius! 

As these two set upon destroying the Lords of Chaos, we watch the two slowly come to realization that they’re meant for each other no matter the obstacles thrown their way.

Highly recommending it to everyone!

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

************SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT*****************

WICKED INTENTIONS is now FREE for a limited time!


The ebook edition of WICKED INTENTIONS, the first book in Elizabeth Hoyt’s bestselling Maiden Lane series will be FREE from November 28 through December 12!  This is a great opportunity to introduce friends to the series! On December 13 the price returns to $5.99.

Buy the Book!

Amazon / B&N / iBooks / Google / Kobo /

hoytelizabethAUTHOR BIO: Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing “mesmerizing.”

She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads /

‘Duke of Sin’ by Elizabeth Hoyt

dos ehSTORY: A Man of Sin

Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile, intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.

A Woman of Honor

Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery’s household to search for the incriminating evidence-and uncovers something far more dangerous.

A Secret That Threatens to Destroy Them Both

Astonished by the deceptively prim-and surprisingly witty-domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can’t resist the slyly charming duke. Now as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets-and neither may be as nefarious-or as innocent-as they appear . . .

REVIEW: I think this is the tenth book in this series and the one I liked the least. The reason for it is the “hero”. I just couldn’t like him. Not one bit.

Here’s the thing. Some heroes can start off as “bad boys” and the heroine can “reform” them. But there are some that no matter how much you try to “reform” the character just won’t be reformed.

There’s just something about this man that is not just off-putting, but down right unlikable. For the life of me I don’t understand why did the author feel the need to try and reform him.

At this point I’ve vested a lot of time in this series and I will definitely continue with it. All the books are well written and plotted, and the characters are phenomenal, except this hero.

If you’ve never read this author, do not start with this book. Pick any of her others and you’ll love it. Not this one.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘Dark Ruby’ by Laura Landon

dr-llSTORY: To escape the memory of a horrific kidnapping that he barely survived, Alexander Linscott, Marquess of Halverston, flees to one of his country estates determined to master his demons. But when Mrs. Daisy Moore arrives on his doorstep applying for the position of housekeeper, he knows his life has taken an unexpected turn. She is clearly not who she pretends to be.

Lady Isobel Culver has no intention of falling in love. She’s on the run and can’t afford to risk giving her heart to anyone, especially a man as tortured as the Marquess of Halverston. But when fate intervenes and brings her to the altar with the murderous villain her father intends for her to marry, Alexander becomes the only man who can save her. If loving her doesn’t cost him his life first.

REVIEW: Lady Isobel Culver of Gilchrist Manor is mourning the death of her maid, Daisy, who has always been like a friend and a mother to her. They had been fleeing to Scotland to avoid a forced marriage for Isobel. Daisy suddenly became ill and died. Isobel arranges to have Daisy buried in the local churchyard and gives her own name as the name of the deceased. She does this so her father, the Earl of Gilchrist, cannot find her. She now assumes her maid’s name: Mrs. Daisy Moore.

After the funeral, Mr. James Holmes, who works for Alexander (Alex) Linscott, the Marques of Halverston, approaches Isobel about a position. The owner of the inn where she is staying suggested her to him. It appears that Temple Hall, home of the Marquess, is in need of a housekeeper and offers her the job. Even though she has never been a housekeeper, she has overseen the running of her father’s homes, so she accepts the position. Mr. Holmes assured her that this is one of the Marquess’s smaller estates with a small staff.

Alex is a man who had been held captive and tortured at one time by a blackguard named Rosenau and left to die. He was deeply affected by this and he needs time to heal and to hopefully stop having nightmares.

When Alex meets and interviews Isobel, he knows she looks familiar and then recognizes her. Alex is shocked that a lady of quality is applying for a housekeeper’s position in his home and demands that she explain why she has run away.

Her father wants her to marry a man she does not love so he can invest in the man’s shipping business. When Isobel told her father that the man he wished to match her with loved her sister instead, he then decided to match Isobel with the Duke of Balsam, a member of the membership-coveted Fortune Club. The man has a vile temper and his first two wives died mysterious deaths.

Isobel further explains to Alex that she wants to stay from from her father for the next three months at which time she will reach her majority and can then be on her own.

Alex agrees and allows her to stay on as his housekeeper and doing a wonderful job. She is very efficient and quickly earns the staff’s admiration. But after being awakened in the middle of the night, she learns about Alex’s nightmares from his valet.

Alex and Isobel enjoy getting to know one another, sharing books and walks on the grounds. But his nightmares continue to plague him. Isobel lives in fear that her father may find her before she reaches her 21st birthday.

This is a delightful story. I liked Alex and Isobel and the other members of the household. There is a lot of suspense in the book that adds to the story. I hope other readers will enjoy this book as much as I did.

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

Connie for b2b

‘Jaded Moon’ by Laura Landon

jm-llSTORY: Ross Bennett, Marquess of Rainforth, hadn’t come to St. Stephen’s Hollow because he wanted friends. He’d turned his back on Society—just as they’d turned their backs on him. Now St. Stephen’s was his sanctuary. But anonymity was short-lived. The mistress with whom he’d parted amicably five years earlier had borne him a child, a child he hadn’t known existed. And that child had been put into the orphanage his grandfather had endowed on the estate.

Ross fought his desire to go to the child, though he desperately wanted to rescue the boy from growing up in an orphanage or never knowing a father’s love. But he stopped himself. What child would want a father who was a murderer? Especially one who’d killed his own father and destroyed the family name? But when an opportunity came to catch a ring of smugglers bringing opium into London, Ross seized it. How could he refuse? The request came from the highest halls of government – from the Queen herself. Success in his mission was his only chance to restore his self-respect…and his good name.

Josephine Foley discovered a family’s love when the Earl of Clythebrooke and his Countess took her from the orphanage and brought her into their home. Now, many years later, she has never abandoned the children of Sacred Heart. Without her efforts, none of the children would have adequate food and clothing to face the harsh coastal winters. Like she herself, many of the children were the unwanted offspring of nobility who had no use for a child born out of wedlock.

But now, one of her children was being threatened. The Marquess of Rainforth, an infamous rake in Society, was looking for little Charlie. There was no way she would allow him to draw her Charlie into the sordid, wasted lifestyle he was reported to live.
True, one less orphan to feed would be a blessing, but that wasn’t a consideration as long as Captain Levy continued to smuggle in the food and clothing they needed. And then one night, Rainforth revealed to her the truth, that in addition to her children’s supplies, Levy was smuggling in opium, illegal trafficking to which she’d been an unknowing accomplice.
The irony was not lost on Josie. The more she discovered about the Marquess of Rainforth and the kind of man he truly was, the closer she came to losing her heart.
And the closer she came to losing her heart, the closer she came to being hanged.

REVIEW: First, I’d love to know who wrote this book blurb. I mean, talk about long! This book blurb doesn’t just wet your appetite, it basically tells you the story. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It was well written By reading it, I knew the story had to be either that good or even better. And it was. Much better, that is, so I’m not going to waste your time in explaining the story but tell you why you must get it and read it.

This author is a master at characterization and her characters are three-dimensional, flawed and deep. Her plots are well thought out and the pace is just perfect because it gives one to enjoy the slow-building, slow burning relationship and romance between the leads.

If you’ve read the first book, you’re probably going to read this one as well. But if you’ve never read this author, this is an excellent story to start with. Don’t worry about not reading the first book. All three stories can be read as stand-alones.

I really loved it and highly recommend it!

Melanie for b2b

‘Ransomed Jewels’ by Laura Landon

rj-llSTORY: With her husband’s dying words, “My marchioness has it,” the Marchioness of Huntingdon is thrown into a nightmare of intrigue and danger. But even those who are holding her brother ransom can’t force her to do the impossible—hand over a necklace she doesn’t have.

Major Samuel Bennett believes the newly widowed Lady Claire Huntingdon is a traitor. He intends to get the necklace he’s convinced she has, before sending her to the gallows. But when he meets the captivating widow, he discovers that nothing is as it seems.

Claire knows she can’t trust anyone, but she isn’t given a choice when Major Bennett arrives, demanding she give him the necklace. And it isn’t until she’s forced to put her life in his hands that she realizes it isn’t only her life she’s in danger of losing—but her heart as well.

REVIEW: This is the first book in Ransomed Jewels series, yet it was the last in order that I’ve read. I started this series from its third book and worked my way to the first. It so happens that I loved,  LOVED Dark Ruby so much that I had to track down all the other books in this series. And while I’m new to this authors writing, she is probably familiar to most of you and I aim to make her familiar to me as well.

Even though this is definitely a romance, I found in it a bit of mystery and suspense with plenty of drama and passion. But what made this story awesome were the compelling characters of Claire and Samuel. They were likable and relatable and their journey to the happily ever after was powerful and entertaining.

I have a feeling that I’ve just stumbled onto an author that will be on my keeper shelf for a long time.

Melanie for b2b

Spotlight on Christy Carlyle and ‘Rules for a Rogue’!


rfar-ccBOOK BLURB: Following the rules never brought anything but misery for Christopher “Kit” Ruthven. After rebelling against his controlling father and leaving the family’s Ruthven Rules etiquette book empire behind, Kit has been breaking every one imaginable for the past six years. He’s enjoyed London’s sensual pleasures and secured his reputation as a Rogue, but he’s failed to achieve success. When he inherits his father’s publishing business, Kit is forced back into the life he never wanted. Worse, he must face Ophelia Marsden, the woman he jilted but never forgot.

After losing her father and refusing a loveless marriage proposal, Ophelia has learned to rely on herself. To maintain the family home and support her younger brother, she tutors young girls in deportment and decorum. But her pupils would be scandalized if they knew their imminently proper teacher was also the author of a guidebook encouraging ladies to embrace their independence and overthrow outdated notions of etiquette like the Ruthven Rules.

As Kit rediscovers the life, and the woman, he left behind, Ophelia must choose between the practicality she never truly believed in, or the love she’s never been able to extinguish.

BUY LINKS: AmazonBarnes & NobleKobo /

REVIEW: Well written and plotted, this heartwarming second chance at love story will melt your heart and make you laugh. You’ll come to care and admire the strength of our heroine, while the hero will leave you tied up in knots. There were times I really wanted to give him a shake, but he sort of grew on me as the story moved along.

These two had a turbulent journey to their happily  ever after, but I loved every moment that made them come closer to it.

In the end, I give this tale big marks for its fast pace and great plot, as well as wonderful characters.

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher



  • Rules for a Rogue prize pack filled with the following items:
    • Book of Victorian etiquette (because RULES is all about etiquette)
    • “Opelia’s blue” 1928 teardrop earrings (blue is Ophelia’s color)
    • Harney and Sons English breakfast tea (because my characters are always drinking tea)
    • a Rules for a Rogue spiral lined notebook
    • Jasmine-scented hand lotion (jasmine is Ophelia’s scent)
    • Downton Abbey scone mix (my characters eat scones with their tea)

*US shipping ONLY

>>>>>>>>>> RAFFLECOPTER <<<<<<<<<<



“Kit Ruthven.”

“You remember me, then?” He grinned as he loomed on her threshold, his shoulders nearly as wide as the door frame. Eyes bright and intense, he took her in from head to toe, and then let his gaze settle on her mouth. When he finally looked into her eyes, the cocksure tilt of his grin had softened. She read a wariness in his gaze that matched her own.

Ophelia had spent years trying to forget those dark, deep-set eyes.

“I remember you.” Her book slipped, skidding across her backside and clattering to the floor as her throat tightened on sentiments she’d been waiting years to express. None of them would come. Not a single word. Instead, in outright rebellion, her whole body did its best to melt into a boneless puddle. Gritting her teeth, Phee fought the urge to swoon or, worse, rush into his long, muscled arms.


“I’m relieved to hear it.” He had the audacity to kick his grin into a smile, a rakish slash that cut deep divots into his clean-shaven cheeks. Then he took a step through her door. “I worried that—”

“No.” She lifted a hand to stop him. Looking at the man was difficult enough. Hearing his voice—deeper now but achingly familiar—was too much. If he came closer, she might give in to some rogue impulse. And that wouldn’t do. That wouldn’t do at all.

Ophelia swallowed hard. She needed a moment to gather her wits. To rebuild her walls.


ccAUTHOR BIO: Fueled by Pacific Northwest coffee and inspired by multiple viewings of every British costume drama she can get her hands on, Christy Carlyle writes sensual historical romance set in the Victorian era.

She loves heroes who struggle against all odds and heroines who are ahead of their time. A former teacher with a degree in history, she finds there’s nothing better than being able to combine her love of the past with a die-hard belief in happy endings.

SOCIAL MEDIA: WebsiteFacebook / Twitter/