Spotlight on Darcy Burke and Secrets and Scandals!

‘Her Wicked Ways’


hww dbSTORY: She was his savior

Banished from London for her reckless behavior, Lady Miranda Sinclair is robbed by a dashing highwayman en route to the country. By offering him a kiss in lieu of the jewels she had to leave behind, she commits the very type of act that caused her exile. When her dour guardians extend her punishment to performing charitable work at the local orphanage, she’s further tempted by the home’s owner, a provincial gentleman who stirs her passion in a most wicked way.

He was her downfall

Desperate to save his orphanage from financial catastrophe, Montgomery “Fox” Foxcroft leads a double life as a highwayman. The arrival of wealthy, well-connected Miranda, whose kiss he can’t forget, presents a lawful opportunity to increase his coffers. His problems seem solved—until she rejects his suit. Out of options and falling for the heiress, Fox must risk what principles he has left and take advantage of her wicked ways—even if it ruins them both.

FREE: Amazon  / B&N /


MINI REVIEW: What can go wrong when a reckless and bratty daughter of a duke is sent to ‘rusticate’ in the country? Well, for starters, she meets ‘two’ men she is attracted to, but for different reasons. As for the ‘men’ she meets? Let’s just say that ‘both’ are in a need of funds, and marrying her would solve ‘their’ problems.

Very well written story with plenty of entertaining characters. I liked it a lot and highly recommending it to all that are looking for substantive yet humorous romance.


‘His Wicked Heart’  


hwh dbSTORY: It’s hard to be respectable…

Jasper Sinclair, Earl of Saxton, made a bargain with the devil—his father—to marry in one month’s time. But instead of declaring his intentions for an acceptable debutante, he indulges his long-buried baser needs by joining a fighting club and pursuing a delectable woman who may not be what she seems. Soon he finds himself battling addictions that threaten his already wicked heart.

When you’d rather be wicked

Orphaned seamstress Olivia West wants the chance to lead an honest, respectable life, but the arrogant Earl of Saxton launches a daunting campaign to make Olivia his mistress. Destitute and desperate, Olivia agrees to one night with the dangerous peer, and draws upon her mother’s courtesan experience to seduce him. After binding and blindfolding him, she brings him to the edge of release, only to switch places with an actual prostitute. However, Jasper detects Olivia’s deception and vows to claim what he’s owed— not his money, her.

BUY LINKS: Amazon / B&N /


MINI REVIEW: How does one regain trust in a woman that did him a wrong? Jasper, our hero and ‘His Wicked Ways’ Miranda’s brother, went and will go through many trials and tribulations, before he can accept Olivia for who she really is, and give her his undying love and trust.

Olivia finds herself in a desperate situation and is willing to do almost anything to get out of it, but when her plan backfires and she is caught, will she be able to accept the price of her folly?

Another well written and plotted fun, fast paced read. If you’re looking for two strong characters that are constantly butting heads, these two are IT!

‘To Seduce a Scoundrel’


tsas dbSTORY: A lady on the brink of disaster

Quintessential debutante Lady Philippa Latham is determined to avoid scandal at all costs so that she may marry well. When her mother’s outrageous behavior threatens their family’s reputation, Philippa unwittingly follows her to a party no unmarried Society girl would risk attending. As if that wasn’t bad enough, Philippa is “rescued” from disaster by England’s most notorious scoundrel, which sets them both on a path to public and personal ruin.

A scoundrel in need of seduction

Lord Ambrose Sevrin is infamous for ruining his brother’s fiancée and refusing to marry her. Content to remain among the fringe of the upper ten thousand, he is an intriguing enigma to London’s elite. Philippa thinks she’s met the true Ambrose—a gentleman who would fight to defend her and help her secure a husband before it’s too late. But he can’t be that husband, even for her. He won’t tolerate redemption—or love—for his crimes are far worse than anyone can imagine.

BUY LINKS: Amazon / B&N /


MINI REVIEW: Sparks fly when you pair a society’s most virtues miss with its Vicious Viscount!

In this story she gave me two well developed and complex characters who had me root for them throughout the entire story.

At this point I thought I knew what to expect from Ms. Burke, but she managed to surprise me with this one and I hope you’ll give her a chance to do the same to you.


‘To Love A Thief’

BOOK FOUR/a novella

tlat dbSTORY: To set things right, she has to be very wrong…

Former constable Daniel Carlyle hasn’t the foggiest notion how to be a viscount. No one is more shocked than he when his father’s second cousin and his son die on the same day. When a prominent earl offers to guide Daniel through Society and the House of Lords, he’s grateful to have a champion. Things seem to be falling into place when he meets a lovely young woman he intends to make his viscountess. Until he catches her stealing from his mentor.

The moment Jocelyn Renwick glimpses her family’s stolen heirlooms in the possession of a wealthy earl, she demands their return. He dismissively insists they’ve been in his family for generations, and she privately vows to get them back at any cost. But the law-abiding Lord Carlyle foils her plans, and she reluctantly partners with him to solve the theft of her property. When they discover the earl is up to his ears in criminal acts, he threatens to link Daniel to his gang of thieves. Jocelyn must decide if justice for her family is worth risking a chance at love.

BUY LINKS: Amazon / Kobo /


MINI REVIEW: With a hero that’s just learning how to be a peer and a heroine that aims to solve the mystery of her family’s stolen heirloom, we are treated to a courtship like no other.

This is a gem of a novella that is not for the faint of heart. This author no doubt enjoys writing sensual characters and if you’re not into it, then this one is not for you.

‘Never Love a Scoundrel’


nlas dbSTORY: Vengeance is seductive…

Labeled a lunatic and a reprobate, Lord Jason Lockwood finds solace in debauchery outside the realm of Polite Society. Years after provoking Jason’s downfall, his bastard brother rises from the rookeries to emerge as the premier gentleman of the ton. Jason vows to uncover the supposedly reformed criminal’s secret motive and use it against him to exact revenge—even if it means using a beautiful young debutante whose only mistake is her relation to the woman who has ensured his family’s infamy.

But revenge is sweet

Lady Lydia Prewitt is everything a debutante should be: beautiful, dowried, and in possession of a sterling reputation. But life beneath the thumb of her malicious aunt is eroding Lydia’s faith in her peers and in herself. When the scandalous yet seductive Lord Lockwood solicits her help to gain entry into the best ballrooms, she jumps at the opportunity to be more than her aunt’s minion. But the revelation of his true purpose and the anger that lies beneath his scarred exterior draws her into his dark past. Intervention doesn’t come without a price—can she risk her own future to save his?

BUY LINKS: Amazon / B&N /


MINI REVIEW: I am a sucker for a scarred hero and this story was right up my alley. This story proved to me that this author can write complex and deep, three-dimensional characters and still have the story be entertaining and fun.

My heart went out to Lydia, once I got to know her true nature.

This series is coming to an end soon and I can honestly say that this author is now firmly on my keeper shelf.

‘Scoundrel Ever After’


sea db STORY: Once upon a time there was a very bad boy…

Ethan Jagger will do anything to leave his criminal past behind and take his place as a gentleman in Polite Society. Success is within his grasp until his boss discovers his double cross and frames him for murder. As if running from the law and the outlaws weren’t bad enough, he must protect an innocent young lady from the very criminals who want him dead. Worst of all, though, is the dangerous attraction that sparks between them. If he can escape the hangman’s noose and start anew, will she consent to love a scoundrel ever after?

Who met a very nice girl…

London only thinks of Audrey Cheswick as a wallflower—if they even think of her at all. She’s tried to find satisfaction—if not happiness—as a spinster-in-waiting, though her intrepid spirit yearns for a grand adventure. But when she runs away with England’s most wanted criminal, she learns adventure comes with a price—not just her reputation or her virtue, but her heart.

BUY LINKS: Amazon / Smashwords /


MINI REVIEW: I can say with a certainty that reading a series can be a blessing and a curse. Some series can go on forever [Cynsters anyone!], and some are too short, but in the case of Secrets and Scandals, this author knew exactly when and with whom she’d end it.

This hero shows up here and there throughout the series, and I knew that his story would be one not to be missed and I was right! This was a man made out of too many complex particles, and in possession of many shades of grey. I couldn’t picture the heroine strong enough to meet him half way and accept him as he is. And especially the one described in the blurb.

For all of you out there that love a romance with total opposites, this one is just for you!

As a total series, this one ROCKS!

Melanie for b2b

Complimentary copies provided by the publisher

dbDarcy Burke is the USA Today Bestselling Author of hot, action-packed historical and sexy, emotional contemporary romance. Darcy wrote her first book at age 11, a happily ever after about a swan addicted to magic and the female swan who loved him, with exceedingly poor illustrations.

A native Oregonian, Darcy lives on the edge of wine country with her devoted husband, their two great kids, and two Bengal cats. In her “spare” time Darcy is a serial volunteer enrolled in a 12-step program where one learns to say “no,” but she keeps having to start over. She’s also a fair-weather runner, and her happy places are Disneyland and Labor Day weekend at the Gorge.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads /





‘It Started With a Scandal’ by Julie Anne Long

iswas jalSTORY: Lord Philippe Lavay once took to the high seas armed with charm as lethal as his sword and a stone-cold conviction: he’ll restore his family’s fortune and honor, no matter the cost. Victory is at last within reach–when a brutal attack snatches it from his grasp and lands him in Pennyroyal Green.

An afternoon of bliss brings a cascade of consequences for Elise Fountain. Shunned by her family and ousted from a job she loves, survival means a plummet down the social ladder to a position no woman has yet been able to keep: housekeeper to a frighteningly formidable prince.

The bold and gentle Elise sees past his battered body into Philippe’s barricaded heart…and her innate sensuality ignites his blood. Now a man who thought he could never love and a woman who thought she would never again trust must fight an incendiary passion that could be the ruin of them both.

REVIEW: Elise Fountain was turned out by her family when she found she was expecting after a liaison with a man who left her unmarried and with a son. Elise is a very strong young woman who worked as a teacher at a school for “difficult” young ladies. She has now lost that position due to some jealous remarks by a society woman. So, it is with great fortitude that she applies for the position of Housekeeper at the home of Lord Philippe Lavay in Pennyroyal Green. After a fairly grilling interview with Lord Lavay, he agrees to hire her giving her a fortnight to get his house and his servants straightened around.

Elise’s meeting with the servants is hilarious. They figure that they will only be working there for a short time and are sure they don’t really have to do anything but sit around and play cards all day. Elise sets them straight and thanks to her way with words, the home soon begins to sparkle with cleanliness and the surly servants working as they should.

Lord Lavay is living in England after losing most of his family and fortune to the war in France. In fact, Philippe is a Prince of the House of Bourbon. Having suffered numerous injuries in the war, he is trying to heal and get his strength back. Then, he wants to return to France and see if he can rescue his family’s home.

Elise and Philippe work closely together and he is quite impressed with her getting his home clean and running efficiently, as well as getting his servants back on track. She helps him with his correspondence as his hand has been injured and offers him special herbal tea to help with his pain.

When he meets Elise’s son, he in intrigued by the young boy and they become friends. In addition, the meetings between Elise and Philippe soon spark an attraction that they cannot resist.

Will the difference in their positions keep them apart? Will Philippe look at Elise as just a fling and return to France soon forgetting her?

This was a totally delightful novel with lots of humor and a terrific story all combined to make for a read that one does not want to put down. I look forward to reading even more from Julie Anne Long. She’s a great author.

Connie for b2b

Complimentary copy provided by the publisher

‘A Notorious Countess Confesses’ by Julie Anne Long

STORY: She rose to spectacular heights . . .

From Covent Garden to courtesan to countess, beautiful, fearless, shamelessly ambitious Evie Duggan has riveted London in every role she plays. But the ton never could forgive her scandalous—if shockingly short—marriage, and when her star plummets amid gleefully vicious gossip, the countess escapes to the only legacy left to her: a manor house in Pennyroyal Green.

He never expected to fall so hard . . .

He has the face of a fallen angel and a smolder the devil would envy, but Vicar Adam Sylvaine walks a precarious line: resisting temptation . . . and the wild Eversea blood in his veins. Adam’s strength is tested when scandal, aka the countess, moves to Sussex. But when a woman who fiercely guards her heart and a man entrusted with the souls of an entire town surrender to a forbidden desire, will the sweetest sin lead them to heaven . . . or make outcasts of them forever?

REVIEW: Here comes book seven in Julie Ann Long’s Pennyroyal Greene series and while in this one we’re not following any of the Eversea’s or Redmond’s, even though our hero the Vicar is a cousin to Ian and Colin Eversea, it is still entertaining and character driven as the previous seven.

The story opens with Evie Duggan, or lately better known to the ton as  The Black Widow, as they all ran her out of London believing her capable of ‘doing her husband’ in.

As she escapes to the only place left to her, she meets a town full of women that are righteous, pious and many in awe and very protective of their young Vicar. Laying her eyes on him, she’s not surprised at their actions toward him and to have their friendship, she knows only one man can help her in that attempt, Adam Sylvaine.

Adam Sylvaine is young in age, but when it comes to his soul, the man has seen as much pain as happiness. He’s honest, loving and very protective of his parishioners. His love for them goes beyond his acceptance of their prejudices. It goes to the root of who he is.

Revisiting all the residents of Pennyroyal Greene was like coming to your home town! I loved finding myself among them once again, and as usual, Ms. Long has given me yet another clue to Lyon and Olivia’s story that I wonder if there ever will be a happily ever after for those two together.

Once I found out that this love story would involve a vicar and a courtesan, there was no way in Hell I was going to miss it! She created a Beta hero we can all fall in love with: honorable, caring and kind, and then paired him with a heroine that was flirtatious, smart and loyal; both were loving, courageous and very strong in their own right.

If anyone could pull this off, it was going to be JAL. I can tell you without a doubt, she has done an outstanding job with her writing, pace, plot and dialogue. She’s one of those rare authors that give their secondary characters time and space to grow on us to a point where we become protective of them as much as we do of our hero and heroine.

‘A Notorious Countess Confesses’ is one of those stories that will grab you from the moment our heroine falls asleep in the middle of our Vicar’s Sunday sermon, to the very end when all is revealed.

Julie Anne Long is not just a good story-teller; she’s a poet with her prose. With it, she leaves me light-headed and I promise it’ll do the same to you!

Melanie for b2b

ARC provided by Edelweiss.