Weekend Writing Warriors ~ 06/17/18 Wedding the Widow ~ Choosing His Corn Maiden

Wedding the Widow will release on July 31, 2018!

 

Welcome to the first of my snippets from my next upcoming release, book 2 of The Widow’s Club series, Wedding the Widow, which will release in print and e-book on July 31. This has been a very busy summer!

In this week’s snippet I’m beginning at the beginning. Lord Brack (Jemmy to his family and friends) and Mrs. Elizabeth Easton, are attending the Harvest Festival while at a house party in Wrotham Village, Kent. The festival is about to finish with a somewhat potent ritual called the Crowning of the Corn Maiden.

(Creative punctuation utilized to conform to WWW rules and snippet may therefore be slightly different from published version.)

Lord Brack led them to the edge of the circle that had formed around the hulking Michael Thorne, the Harvest Lord, and four young women—local girls vying for the honor of being crowned Wrotham’s Corn Maiden.

“They do look pretty,” Elizabeth said, motioning to the figures obviously decked out in their finest, most colorful garb, their hair unbound, flowing around their shoulders and spilling over their breasts.

“Yes, they are a bevy of country beauties, aren’t they? Mr. Thorne’s going to have a difficult time choosing his Corn Maiden,” Lord Brack said, his eyes sparkling as he sipped more ale. “The three not chosen will be quite disappointed, I fear; Michael Thorne’s a very handsome lad.”

“Does he choose a girl to marry him?”

“Oh, no, nothing quite so permanent; he claims a kiss only, said to keep the fields fertile through the winter and into the spring.”

“That must be some kiss.”

Lord Brack took another pull at his ale, the torchlight throwing his features into sharp relief, and he said, “According to Lord Wrotham, it used to be quite a bit more than just a kiss.” He gazed into her face, the gleam in his eyes transforming suddenly into hunger.

 

Wedding the Widow is available for pre-order on Amazon, B & N, Kobo, Google, and Apple.

BLURB:  

“Will she say yes a second time?” 

Widowed by the Battle of Waterloo, the ladies of Lyttlefield Park are reentering London society, where they’ll learn how to live—and love—again . . .Of all the widows of Lyttlefield Park, Elizabeth Easton seems least likely to remarry. Though many gentlemen would love to get to know the charming Mrs. Easton better, she is devoted to the memory of her late husband. Which is why she’s so shocked to be overtaken by passion during a harvest festival, succumbing to an unforgettable interlude with the handsome Lord Brack . . .

After enduring years of war, Jemmy, Lord Brack, plans to defer matrimony in favor of carefree pleasure. But who could resist a lifetime with Elizabeth Easton, a woman as marvelously sensual as she is sweet? Yet despite their mutual desire, she refuses to consider his proposal. With scandal looming, and their families bitterly opposed to the match, Jemmy must find a way to convince Elizabeth to risk her wary heart on him—and turn one infamous night into forever . . .

 

Books in The Widow’s Club series:

 

 

 

 

And don’t forget to check out the rest of the Warriors here.  There’s some fantastic snippets to be read.

 

 

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Posted in Historical Romance, On Regency Romance, On Weekend Writing Warriors, Promotion, The Widow's Club, Wedding the Widow, Weekend Writing Warriors | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

Celebrating Marie Higgins’ 50th Book: Surrender Your Heart

Time to celebrate today! My blog guest is historical romance author Marie Higgins who is celebrating the publication of her 50th book! Congratulations, Marie! Please tell s all about Surrender Your Heart.

I’m celebrating my new release, which just happens to be book #50!  AND… a new series! Book #50, Surrender Your Heart, starts a new historical series – Sweet Savannah Home. I’ve never been to Savannah, Georgia, although I have driven from Atlanta to Charleston, South Carolina, and from the pictures I’ve seen, Savannah is as beautiful as these towns.

The subplot my story focuses on is the immigrants that came from England and Ireland to live in Savannah. But during 1885, people from Ireland were not very happy with the land owners from England. (click link for more info – http://historicalhussies.blogspot.com/2018/06/land-wars-england-vs-ireland-1790-1880.html )

Raving reviews for Surrender Your Heart:

  • I loved reading this book! I loved the characters and the plot! I had a hard time putting this wonderful book down! I will be reading the next book in this wonderful series!
  • I always enjoy Marie’s books. She makes me laugh, cry, sit on the edge of my seat and fall in love over and over again. She has produced another great book.
  • As always, I’d like to thank Marie for this wonderful book, loved every moment spent reading, gave off so many emotions. Didn’t take me long to finish, delved into the story straight away.

After a lifetime of heartache, Adam Hamilton knows bad luck follows him like a stray dog. He doesn’t dare get too close to anyone for fear something terrible will happen to them – like what happened when his wife and son died. After five years of drifting, Adam returns home to Savannah, Georgia, and learns his brother has been murdered. Determined to find answers, Adam decides to stay, but in his quest for truth, he’ll have to fight the ghosts of the past.

Emily Black races to Savannah after the sudden death of her sister’s husband. There Emily meets the coldhearted Adam Hamilton, and the man quickly proves to be an utter pain in her backside. However, as she gets to know him, she realizes a broken man is hiding beneath an aloof façade. Slowly, Emily softens toward him, determined to show him that good still exists in his life, and hoping he’ll include her in it.

Buy links:

Kindle – http://a.co/8dtEary

Paperback – http://a.co/bCkIUMe

iTunes – https://goo.gl/cx22tn

B&N – https://goo.gl/rZtjuJ

Kobo – https://goo.gl/x7cwu1

About Author:

Marie Higgins is a best-selling author of Christian and sweet romance novels; from refined bad-boy heroes who make your heart melt to the feisty heroines who somehow manage to love them regardless of their faults. She’s has 50 heartwarming on-the-edge-of-your-seat stories, and broadened her readership by writing mystery/suspense, humor, time-travel, paranormal, along with her love for historical romances. Her readers have dubbed her “Queen of Tease”, because of all her twists and unexpected endings.

Visit her website to discover more about her – https://authormariehiggins.wixsite.com/romance

Find her on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/marie.higgins.7543

And Twitter – https://twitter.com/mariehigginsXOX

 

Posted in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, Historical Romance, on Victorian Romance, Promotion, Victorian romance | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Medieval Joust

A couple of weeks ago I took a poll of my readers asking what topics you’d like to see me write on for the blog. The number 1 response was Historical Topics (not truly surprising), so today I’m posting about the medieval Joust, in honor of my medieval series Time Enough to Love (Books 1-4) on sale right now for .99 each. I hope you enjoy.

Knights on horseback racing full tilt toward each other with lances fixed may be the most iconic image most of us have of the Medieval period, and for good reason.  Jousting was one of the most popular and dramatic entertainments people of all classes could enjoy at a time when life was uncertain.

Jousts were usually part of a tournament, held by royalty usually during the summer months of the year.  They were major events where knights were pitted against each other for honor, for glory, and for prize money.  They may had had their roots in Roman games at the Coliseum.

On the opening day of a tournament, which may have lasted from 3 to 5 days, there was a formal procession out to the lists (the barriers that defined the field of combat).  This procession could be quite elaborate.  In Time Enough to Love, the knights and their ladies are dressed in costumes as members of King Arthur’s Round Table and it was a great honor to be chosen to ride. I modeled this procession after an actual procession in which 25 ladies on horseback rode beside their knights who walked to the lists (at least a couple of miles) in full armor while tethered to the ladies by silver chains.  King Edward III, at whose court the major action of the first half of the book takes place, had in fact given a grand tournament in 1344, which gave me the idea for one in my book.

Once on the field, the spectators were seated in a grandstand called a berfrois, built a story above the lists. Knights were assigned to brightly colored tents called pavilions, where they rested, waited, and donned their armor, with assistance from their squire, in preparation for the joust.  As a side note, the armor typically worn weighed about 60 pounds, but was so well-articulated that the combatants had much more mobility than we would believe.

One of my favorite medieval movies is A Knight’s Tale. Even though it’s got tons of anachronistic details and inaccuracies, the jousting sections were done fairly correctly (if you disregard some of the audience’s responses). Here’s a look at what a joust might have very well looked like:

The horses used by knights were a special breed, called destriers, who could manage the great weight of knight and armor and still maneuver on the field.  The horses were draped with a cloth called a comparison that covered them from nose to tail, designed in the knight’s colors and emblazoned with his heraldic design.

Of course, as with any contact sport, the potential for injury and death in jousting was great. The most famous death occurred when King Henry II of France was killed when a lance broke on his helmet and a wooden splinter pierced his eye and brain.  Oddly enough, the almost exact same thing happened in January 2011 when a jousting re-enactor was killed when a lance splintered on his helmet and a large piece of it pierced his eye and brain.

With such a rich heritage of jousting, is it any wonder that I incorporated a joust and as many details of it as possible into Betrothal, Book 1 of Time Enough to Love?  You’ll find the procession—which becomes a serious conflict in the first part of the book—the joust itself, and a stunning injury that threatens the happiness of the hero and heroine.

If you love the color and pageantry of the Middle Ages, you’ll love Betrothal and all of the Time Enough to Love series. You can find Betrothal and the rest of the series on Amazon, Smashwords, and B & N.

Posted in Betrothal, Historical Romance, Medieval Romance, On Time Enough to Love | Tagged , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ 06/10/18 Only Seduction Will Do ~ “Who is She?”

 

Only Seduction Will Do released on June 5, 2018!

 

Welcome to my next set of snippets for Only Seduction Will Do, which just released this past week. This will be the final snippet from Seduction. Next week I’ll go on to my next release, Wedding the Widow, which will release in print and e-book on July 31. A very busy summer!

In this week’s snippet I’m continuing with the night after Jack and Alethea have returned to London from Knowlton’s Keep.  Alethea has gone to bed, is in an exhausted sleep, when Jack knocks at her door. She expects him to want to come to her bed, but he is fully dressed and means to leave her to participate in a duel as a second. We learned last week that Jack’s obligation in the duel is to defend the honor of another woman. Jack is the first to speak.

(Creative punctuation utilized to conform to WWW rules.)

“Do you remember the night you proposed I told you I was betrothed? She is the woman I go to champion; I broke the betrothal, but pledged my protection to her and to Lord Trevor.”

“What does Lord Trevor have to do with any of this?”

 “I must make haste, Alethea; I have neither time nor leave to tell you everything.” His tone had become impatient, despite the lines of concern around his mouth.

Rising like a Fury bent on vengeance, Alethea stalked up to Jack, not stopping until she was toe to toe with her husband. “You will tell me why you are leaving me in the middle of the night, to participate in a duel where you could get killed, over a woman who is neither your wife nor your sister.” Eyes boring into him, she balled her hands into fists, demanding, “Who is she?”

Sighing deeply, Jack shrugged and said, “Miss Violet Carlton.”

Whatever name Alethea had expected to hear, her dearest friend’s was not it.

Only Seduction Will Do is available on Amazon, B & N, Kobo, and Apple.

BLURB:  

“Won’t you come to bed, my lord?” 
 
In a vulnerable moment, Alethea Forsythe allows herself to be seduced by a married peer.  Now she is with child—and without recourse.  Her reputation will soon be in tatters and she will be forced to wed a stranger—unless she takes matters into her own hands.

When Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning, is summoned from the House of Pleasure on a matter of importance, he hardly expects to receive a marriage proposal. He’s long been aware of Alethea’s infatuation with him, but at twenty-three, taking on an expectant bride is not in his plans.  Yet the desperation in the lady’s lovely eyes overrides his misgivings.

Alethea would not have believed it possible for a man to be too chivalrous. But though her new husband is perfectly amicable in public, he insists they maintain separate quarters. Desperate to possess his heart and prove herself a wife in every way, she boldly reaches out to Jack. And as their unexpected connection between silken sheets is tested by jealousy and misfortune, Jack must decide where honor ends…and true passion begins . . .

Books in The House of Pleasure series:

 

 

 

 

 

And don’t forget to check out the rest of the Warriors here.  There’s some fantastic snippets to be read.

 

 

Posted in Historical Romance, House of Pleasure Series, On Regency Romance, On Weekend Writing Warriors, Only Seduction Will Do, Promotion, To Woo A Wicked Widow, Weekend Writing Warriors | Tagged , , , , | 18 Comments

Only Seduction Will Do Release Party Winners!

First, I want to thank everyone for coming by yesterday and making my release party a wonderful success!  We had a fantastic time and lots of participants won some fabulous prizes.

Congratulations to my Winners!

GRAND PRIZE WINNER:

LORRAINE RYAN

Lorraine wins the Georgian style necklace and matching earring set! I hope you have absolutely wonderful places and events to wear them to, Lorraine!

WINNER OF CONTEST #2

LORI DYKES

Lori wins a copy of Handful of Hearts, Vol. 1 instead of Only Seduction Will Do, which she has already read and given a glowing review. 🙂


 

WINNER OF SWAG PACKS

Both Lori Dykes and Joye I win Only Seduction Will Do Swag Packs!

Seduction Swag Kit: Handkerchief, note pads, Seduction magnet, lavender sachet

 

WINNER OF CONTEST #4

Lori Dykes has also won a copy of Only Scandal Will Do!

Ladies, if you will please contact me at my email 1jennajaxon@gmail.com, I will get your prizes out to me immediately.  Please email me your snail mail address so I can get your goodies out to you ASAP, and Lori, I also need your email address to get your books to you as well.

Many thanks again to everyone who participated in my Release Party! This one was so much fun, I’ll be having another one for Wedding the Widow as well, that releases on July 31. I hope to see you there!

Posted in Historical Romance, On Only Scandal Will Do, On Regency Romance, Only A Mistress Will Do, Only Marriage Will Do, Only Seduction Will Do, Promotion, Release Party, Winners | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Release Party & Giveaway for Only Seduction Will Do!

Today is release day for my 4th House of Pleasure book:

Only Seduction Will Do

Break out the good stuff!

By THOR Dom Perignon

I want to do some partying today with several giveways and some fun games.

I’ll be gathering comments all day and at the end of the day (midnight, EDT), I’ll announce the winner, by random drawing, of the GRAND PRIZE: a Georgian style necklace and earrings.

Throughout the day I’ll be asking questions, giving away books, gift cards, and swag. I hope we all have a great time!

Blurb:

In a vulnerable moment, Alethea Forsythe allows herself to be seduced by a married peer.  Now she is with child—and without recourse.  Her reputation will soon be in tatters and she will be forced to wed a stranger—unless she takes matters into her own hands.

When Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning, is summoned from the House of Pleasure on a matter of importance, he hardly expects to receive a marriage proposal. He’s long been aware of Alethea’s infatuation with him, but at twenty-three, taking on an expectant bride is not in his plans.  Yet the desperation in the lady’s lovely eyes overrides his misgivings.

Alethea would not have believed it possible for a man to be too chivalrous. But though her new husband is perfectly amicable in public, he insists they maintain separate quarters. Desperate to possess his heart and prove herself a wife in every way, she boldly reaches out to Jack. And as their unexpected connection between silken sheets is tested by jealousy and misfortune, Jack must decide where honor ends…and true passion begins . .

Only Seduction Will Do is available for pre-order at Amazon,          B & NKobo,  iTunes, and Google.

 

EXCERPT:

Jack nodded, sipping wine. “I spoke with Braeton about it when we signed the settlements. He suggested we journey to Knowlton’s Keep for a few weeks’ time. A place we could be alone and become acquainted.”

My print copies arrived last week! Gorgeous!

“Knowlton’s Keep?” Astonished, Alethea stopped in the middle of bringing her wine glass to her lips. She’d traveled there with Eithne and Braeton last summer. To put it bluntly, there was nothing to do there.

“Your cousin believed time alone together would be good for us, together yet apart from the ton. He certainly painted the ancient castle as a treasure for those seeking solitude from the world.”

“Well, that much is true.” Laying her napkin on the table, Alethea clasped her hands in her lap. Lord, the thought of going back to Sussex filled her with loathing.

“You object to the Keep?” Jack’s eyebrows shot up almost to his hairline.

“No, not at all.” Of course she did. But she wouldn’t voice that to her husband. “Merely startled. I’ve only been there in the summer. It may be drastically different in winter.”

“I’m sure we’ll manage to stay warm.” His eyes twinkled and he raised his wine glass, his gaze never wavering from her face.

Heat touched her cheeks. It might have been the wine she’d already drunk, but she didn’t think so. She seized her wine glass and raised it to her lips. Tonight would be awkward. She was prepared for that. As long as he was at least somewhat gentle, she’d get through it. The first time had been bad, but that had been her own fault. Excitement bubbled up in her, despite her misgivings. She’d dreamed of this night often enough, ever since she’d met Lord Manning. It wouldn’t be perfect, but it would get better.

Dinner flew by in a flurry of meats, vegetables, salad, and at last small white iced cakes for dessert. Alethea at least tasted everything, but lost her appetite about halfway through the courses. At last the footman removed their dessert plates and Jack took her hand.

“Let us retire, my dear. We have quite a journey tomorrow.”

Suddenly shy, she nodded and rose, her mouth dry. She took his arm and tried to still her trembling hands as he led her back up the stairs. She’d been dreaming of this moment almost since she’d met this gorgeous man. And now he would be hers, in name as well as in the flesh. Breath quickening the closer they got to her apartment, Alethea tried holding it to calm herself. Anything to keep from fainting.

He stopped outside her apartment, opened the door and faced her.

Her heart beat fast then slow, unable to make up its mind which suited it best.

“May I come in, Alethea?”

She swallowed hard, expecting this of course, wanting this, just not quite so soon. She hadn’t prepared… “Of course, my…Jack. If you would allow me some little time to prepare for …”

“You can get ready for bed when I’ve left.”

Casting a wild glance into the room, searching desperately for Clemons, Alethea could

Seduction Swag Kit: Handkerchief, note pads, Seduction magnet, lavender sachet

think of nothing to do, so she smiled back at him. What could she do now? Allow him simply to come in? What if Clemons appeared? What if he wanted to watch her disrobe? And just how was she to accomplish that without assistance?

“I don’t quite know how…I mean, I’ll need to get ready for you if…”

His eyebrows rose. “Oh, I’m sorry, my dear.” His voice was gentle but firm. “I see you are under the wrong impression. We have not had time to talk properly.” He clasped his hands behind his back. “Despite our nuptials this morning, we will not be sharing intimacies tonight.”

THE HOUSE OF PLEASURE SERIES

Posted in New Release, on Georgian Romance, Only Seduction Will Do, Promotion, The House of Pleasure | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 52 Comments

Weekend Writing Warriors ~ 06/03/18 Only Seduction Will Do ~ An Unexpected Obligation

 

Only Seduction Will Do releases on June 5, 2018. Only 2 more days until Release Day!

 

Welcome to my next set of snippets for Only Seduction Will Do, which will be out in just  two more days!  *throws confetti*

In this week’s snippet I’m continuing with the night after Jack and Alethea have returned to London from Knowlton’s Keep.  Alethea has gone to bed, is in an exhausted sleep, when Jack knocks at her door. She expects him to want to come to her bed, but he is fully dressed and means to leave her to participate in a duel as a second.

(Creative punctuation utilized to conform to WWW rules.)

He set the candle down and pried her hands off him and gathered her into his arms.  “I promise you I will return unscathed, but I must go; I am obligated.”

“To whom? Lord Trevor?” She couldn’t let him go to his death—no matter to whom he felt indebted. “You will place duty to Lord Trevor above duty to your wife? From what you’ve told me, he seems more Lord Dalbury’s friend than yours.”

“No, my dear, the obligation is to…a woman.”

Rage flew into her as she jerked back, tearing herself from his arms. “Another woman?”

Only Seduction Will Do is available for pre-order at Amazon, B & N, Kobo, and Apple.

Also, if you would like to read and review the book, please contact me. I have ARC copies!

Release Party Grand Prize

I also plan to host a party on my blog on release day, Tuesday, June 5, where there will be party games, prizes, swag and a special grand prize to go along with the Georgian setting of Only Seduction Will Do. I’ll be offering copies of the books in the series as well. So plan to stop by here on Tuesday and join the Celebration of Seduction!

BLURB:  

“Won’t you come to bed, my lord?” 
 
In a vulnerable moment, Alethea Forsythe allows herself to be seduced by a married peer.  Now she is with child—and without recourse.  Her reputation will soon be in tatters and she will be forced to wed a stranger—unless she takes matters into her own hands.

When Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning, is summoned from the House of Pleasure on a matter of importance, he hardly expects to receive a marriage proposal. He’s long been aware of Alethea’s infatuation with him, but at twenty-three, taking on an expectant bride is not in his plans.  Yet the desperation in the lady’s lovely eyes overrides his misgivings.

Alethea would not have believed it possible for a man to be too chivalrous. But though her new husband is perfectly amicable in public, he insists they maintain separate quarters. Desperate to possess his heart and prove herself a wife in every way, she boldly reaches out to Jack. And as their unexpected connection between silken sheets is tested by jealousy and misfortune, Jack must decide where honor ends…and true passion begins . . .

Books in The House of Pleasure series:

 

 

 

 

 

And don’t forget to check out the rest of the Warriors here.  There’s some fantastic snippets to be read.

 

 

Posted in Historical Romance, House of Pleasure Series, On Regency Romance, On Weekend Writing Warriors, Only Seduction Will Do, Promotion, To Woo A Wicked Widow, Weekend Writing Warriors | Tagged , , , , | 22 Comments