Happy Release Day!
My newest novel in The Widows’ Club series is releasing today!
What a Widow Wants is a story of tangled intrigue, sins of the past, and passion that refuses to die.
Widowed by the Battle of Waterloo, the ladies of Lyttlefield Park are returning to London society—with their futures in their own hands . . .
The widowed Lady Stephen Tarkington, Fanny to her friends, has finished mourning her cad of a husband and is ready to enjoy her freedom. The kind of freedom neither a gently bred miss nor a close-watched wife is permitted: dressing up as Aphrodite for a masquerade, drawing gentlemen away from the party, and hinting at late-night assignations with her dance partners. All is going pleasurably according to plan—until the Roman god Fanny kisses during a masquerade turns out to be Matthew, Lord Lathbury, whose proposal she refused years ago . . .
Lathbury is charming, passionate, inventive, everything Fanny wants in a lover—but unfortunately, he’s on the hunt for a wife. He’s more than willing to use all his wicked skills to persuade her back to the altar, but he can’t wait forever. And now Fanny’s position is more precarious than she once thought. If the tongues of the ton set to wagging, it’s possible no offer in the world will save her from ruin. But does she want to be saved?
Lifting her left foot over the water, she sucked in a breath and braced herself for the plunge.
Beneath the water, something grabbed her right foot and pulled.
Fanny shrieked and fell backward onto the wooden planks of the wagon floor. Scrabbling for a purchase, she dug her elbows in and yanked her right leg back, trying to free it from whatever hellish monster had seized her.
The monster’s grip was relentless, however. It clamped down on her ankle and refused to be shaken off. Dear God, what had grabbed her? She had to get away before it dragged her under the water. If she couldn’t pull away maybe she could injure it so it would let her go. Fanny pistoned her leg back and forth, kicking it at the unseen menace. Grunting with the effort, she frantically peered about the bathing machine for some kind of weapon to use against this terror. Blast it, nothing of any use close to hand.
The chair that held her clothing stood directly behind her a foot or two away. She dove backward, shooting her hand out to grasp it. Fingers gripping the sturdy square wooden leg, she jerked it toward her but the chair moved not at all. Fanny pulled harder, but her fingers encountered the cold metal heads of the nails that fastened the chair to the wagon floor.
The murky water stirred between her legs. Bubbles broke the surface, followed by a sleek, round black form.
She screeched again, pulling herself back from the dark figure that was trying to claim her.
A black head emerged from the depths.
Drawing a deep breath to scream once more, Fanny stared at the monster climbing into the wagon and blinked. “Matthew?”
The name came out an absurd little squeak as she stared into the dripping, grinning face of Lord Lathbury.
“Are you all right, my lady?” A distant shout came from without the bathing machine. Apparently her screams had alarmed her driver and brought him to her rescue.
“The water’s so cold,” she called, scooting back as Matthew mounted the steps, his magnificent naked body towering over her. “I was quite shocked.”
Drops of seawater slid gracefully down the sleek muscles of his chest and arms, over his taut abdomen to fall from his body onto her stomach.
“Are you ready to come out, then, my lady?”
Matthew raised an eyebrow and whispered the words “Or do you want to be wicked?”
Heat surged in Fanny’s belly. “No, I believe I can get used to it,” she called, raising her hand toward Matthew.
He grasped it and pulled her to her feet.
“It’s just going to take me a little bit of time. I’ll call you when I’m done.”
“Very good, my lady.”
Wrapping cold arms around her, Matthew pulled her against his wet chest. Her breasts protested the chilly contact only for an instant before the warmth of him began to seep into her skin. “You are a lunatic. I nearly died of fright.”
“I had faith you were made of sterner stuff.” He grinned, gently grasped her face, and brought her lips to his.
She thought to settle into a long, soul-searing kiss, one that would curl her toes and warm her from the inside out. She’d dreamed of such a kiss often since their encounter at Lady Beaumont’s masquerade.
Matthew, however, had other ideas. He brushed her lips with a fleeting kiss, then pressed his mouth to her cheek, traveled upward to caress her eyelid, then breathed into her ear sending shivers of delight all along her body. With the tip of his tongue he traced the shell of her ear slowly from the top, sliding down the sensitive edge until he reached the bottom, then sucked the lobe into his mouth and kneaded it with his tongue.
Blissful shudders wracked her and she arched her back, pressing her breasts harder against his chest. “Mmm. Matthew.”
His chuckle rumbled against her ear, sending another wave of shivers down her spine. “You wanted to be wicked, my lady. Does this qualify?”
Leaning her head back to gaze into his dark blue eyes—now mostly black with desire—she arched an eyebrow. “That depends on what you intend to do.”
To celebrate this new release, I’m giving away prizes today to people who comment on this blog post. Signed copies of What a Widow Wants and a $10.00 Amazon gift card will be awarded by random drawing. So tell me what you think of my third “wicked” widow?
What A Widow Wants is currently available in e-book format at Amazon , B & N, Kobo, Google, and Apple.
The Widows’ Club Series