This boxed set looks such a fantastic read. I’m partial to historical romances, especially ones where scandal meets seduction and this collection fits the bill nicely! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway, read the author post by Maeve Alpin where she discusses her novella The Brass Octopus and check out the scandalous excerpt! 🙂
Through the ages, where there has been society there have always been norms and, conversely, scandals when love gets in the way of propriety.
From the ancient Celts to medieval Cornwall, from Regency and Victorian England to the American west after the War Between the States, eight stories by multi-published, bestselling authors explore the triumphs of love between a man and a woman—even scandalous love—over what’s considered “proper” in their time.
Wilder’s Thief, by USA Today bestseller, Josie Jax
Robbing a bank wasn’t what reformed pickpocket Rachel Conroy had in mind. Yet when the lyin’ banker entangles her in one helluva financial fix, she finds herself in the bank of Diamond Bluff, Missouri, disguised as a lad and holding a gun on an unfamiliar teller. But the handsome man is so distracting she can’t keep her sex-addled brain on the task at hand—until he threatens to turn her over to the authorities to be hanged if she doesn’t return the money.
When village newcomer and winery owner Dierck Wilder mans his uncle’s small-town bank for a few fateful moments, he’s suddenly staring down the barrel of a revolver. His life veers off on a tumultuous path after he pursues the robber and uncovers a sexy diamond in the rough. Now to unearth the truth and tame Wilder’s bandit…
Aphrodite’s Necklace, by Anh Leod
Exiled by her husband to staid, Victorian England, the goddess Aphrodite is determined to spice up life for a mortal couple by giving them a magic necklace that opens their minds and hearts to passion. Can she teach innocents to delight in sensual love?
Emily Rogers is in the marriage mart, but once the necklace is in her hands, she enlists William Coxe, her family butler, to help find its owner. As Aphrodite intended when she dropped the priceless piece at a ball held in Emily’s home, desire overwhelms Emily—and also William, whom Emily’s parents would never countenance her marrying.
Good sense prevails when the two return the necklace to the goddess, but by this time love has caught the lovers in what seems an impossible situation. Can improper love survive the loss of Aphrodite’s necklace? Only with the goddess’s help can they find a way toward lasting happiness.
Madamoiselle Makes a Match, by Kate Rothwell
An original novella, never before published!
Victorian virgins meet at an inn.
In a village where work is hard to find, virtuous Sally must at last “entertain men” or lose her job at the local inn. The young man she agrees to entertain is Jasper, a visiting gentleman who’s appalled that he’d accidentally forced Sally into this predicament. Yet despite their peculiar meeting and the enormous differences in class and education, the maid and gentleman discover passion and something even more precious, intimacy. Their lovely interlude is interrupted, reality intrudes, and Sally faces another choice…
Seducing Laura, a Regency novel by bestselling British author, Lynne Connolly
When a fortune hunter attempts to steal her niece’s heart, Laura Wickenham makes every effort to prevent the ill-fated match. But the appearance of charismatic Ross Stansfield, the fortune hunter’s handsome uncle, throws her off balance. Instantaneous and combustible, their attraction makes her question her decision never to love again. When the young couple elopes, Laura sets out in pursuit, and fearing for her safety, Ross loses no time chasing her. Thrown closely together, their attraction becomes impossible to resist.
Ordered to find a master spy in the maelstrom of Regency London, Ross finds duty is a distraction any time he’s near Laura. He can’t make his need for her real until he discovers which of her suitors is a threat to Britain. As desire flares between the two, a world of spies and family scandal threatened to thwart a lifetime of happiness.
The Brass Octopus, by Maeve Alpin
Spinster Librarian Piety Plunkett is happy alone with her books, until her sister transforms her with a bras octopus beautifying machine. With her new look, the librarian catches the lusty attentions of a notorious rogue. Blake Blackmore enjoys the favors of beautiful women from the brothels of London to high society’s most fashionable debutantes, but only the spinster librarian consumes his mind night and day. Piety insists she will not wed but devote her life to her position as head librarian.
Blake takes matters into his own hands. In three passion filled lessons, he tutors Piety in carnal pleasure. Now that she is sharing her body, instead of just her books, Piety is shocked yet pleased at how naughty she can be. But if anyone finds out about what goes on in the library after closing time her reputation would be ruined. Is that Blake’ ultimate plan?
Beneath a Cornish Moon, by Ann Jacobs
A dying man’s last wish: Protect Lea. Make her your bride.
Marrying the lovely, sensual Lea will be no hardship for Alain, Earl of St. Vincent. Keeping her safe may be another matter, for a curse lies upon the St. Vincent lands.
Unless Alain can convince Lea to join with him in the fertility rites of the Winter Solstice, her life and his lands may be forfeit.
Alain’s dark passions seduce Lea’s heart and body, but it will take more than passion to bring St. Vincent back from the dark side of the moon.
Timeless Voyage, by Cornelia Amiri
As the pirate Anwen, presses her dagger against the throat of, Kaeso, her Roman captive, he s captivated by dreams of a woman he loved in a previous life, the mirror image of Anwen. Can Anwen and Kaeso steer their timeless voyage to a happy destiny or will they be robbed of love again?
As the Celtic pirate, Anwen, presses her hard iron dagger against a Roman’s throat, memories of fated lovers, druids and sacrifice, stay her hand.
Wooing the Librarian, by Jane Leopold Quinn
After a spectacularly failed romance left her devastated, all Isis Garrett wants is to start her library in this California town. The last thing she wants is another man, not even the handsome preacher who offers his church for her books.
Pres MacKay is starting a new life as a preacher. He can’t hide his attraction to the sweetly rounded new librarian even as she pushes him away. Can he discover the way into her closed heart and prove to her he’s one of the good guys?
Pres isn’t about to give up on Isis, though. The question is can she forget the pain of the past and see a future with him?
Author Post by Maeve Alpin
Scandalously Yours is a fantastic box set of historical fantasy romances. I’m thrilled to have my tale, The Brass Octopus, in the box set. It’s a Victorian novella that uses the ugly duckling and sexy librarian tropes.
The ugly duckling is a favorite fairy tale of mine. The so called duckling was always beautiful, she was just with the wrong family. If she’d been with a family of swans no one would have ever used the word ugly. That’s what happened to my heroine, Piety. Her verbally and emotionally abusive mother called her ugly. As she grew up, Piety tried to not bring attention to herself – dressing drably and throwing herself in to her work. She’s the head librarian in London, so she’s quite prim and proper. Naturally, since I am writing Steampunk I needed a machine and since I was using the ugly duckling trope I thought of a beauty machine, one with eight arms like an octopus. It covers your head, does your hair, puts make up on you and more. So the brass octopus beauty machine was born.
Now, let me tell you about the hero. Blake Blackmore is a rich rogue who spends his nights gambling and womanizing. I’m sure you’ve already guessed, once he meets Piety he’s willing to give all that up for her.
So these are tropes you’ve seen before: the ugly ducking and the lovable rogue. What makes The Brass Octopus different is – Piety and Blake live in an alternate dimension in which inventions depicted in Jane Loudon’s book the Mummy, A Tale of the 23rd Century have been created. So even though it’s Victorian London, there is some advanced technology for the era. Women wear pants, and tinkering or inventing gadgets is a favorite pastime for proper Victorian ladies along with decoupage, scrapbooking, and hand painting china. And Piety’s sister, Polly, has created a beauty machine called The Brass Octopus.
Can a prim librarian make a rogue smile…Can a lovable rogue make a librarian wild?
Librarian, Piety Plunkett is happy alone with her books, until transformed by a beautifying machine. Blake enjoys the favors of women but only Piety consumes his mind night and day. If anyone discovers what’s happening at the library after closing time, Piety’s reputation will be ruined. Is that Blake’ plan?
Blake nodded at the servant. “We are chums of Meriwether Aston. Do you know where he is?”
“Yes sir, Young Master Aston is dancing in the sky with a young lady.”
Sager’s face twisted into a puzzled expression as he gazed up at the tall footman. “I am afraid I don’t follow.”
“Mr. Meriwether Aston took one of the guests up in the family balloon,” the footman replied in a deadpan voice.
Blake placed one hand on his hip. “Are you saying some young lady is unchaperoned in a hot air balloon, with Meriwether?”
“Yes, sir,” the footman answered with a blank expression.
Blake felt his lips draw together in a perfectly puckered circle of surprise. “Sounds like something I would do.”
“It’s sure to be the scandal of the ball.” Sager rolled his eyes.
“He may be forced to marry that one,” Blake said under his breath.
“Meriwether has one lady, but there are many more beauties here for us, and I plan to dance with them all.” Sager wagged his eyebrows.
“They are all the same. I tired of high society and giggling debutantes long ago. I am here for you and will try to survive the night as best as I can.”
“Oh, I see Miss June Ashton-Boyd. I must sign her dance card.” Sager adjusted his cravat.
“By all means. I’ll stay near the door for now. In case I need to leave unexpectedly.” No matter what he’d told his friend, Blake didn’t plan to stay for more than an hour. The young misses attending the ball came for one reason only: to find rich husbands. He was not in the market for a wife. He never would be. Unless he could find a beauty with the striking confidence and intelligence of that librarian, but clearly she wasn’t impressed by him. He’d never find that type of woman at a dance, anyway. More like a church social or a tea party. He seldom attended either. Those events lacked a certain thrill and rush that he loved.
As Sager dashed off to secure a dance with one beauty, Blake’s breath caught in his throat as a vision of loveliness glided into the entrance hall. He peered at the woman’s neck, swan-like and creamy, above the low-cut, shimmering blue gown. A desire to press his lips against her neck jolted him.
He noticed the resemblance at the nose and mouth between the auburn-haired lady and the blonde at her side. Sisters, he guessed. Blake sensed he was missing something. Their features seemed familiar, but he couldn’t place how. A servant handed each woman one small, leather booklet to slip onto their delicate wrists.
Blake bowed to them. “Good evening, ladies.” Then he flashed his brightest smile at the lady in blue. “I would be greatly honored if you would allow me to sign your dance card.”
“Are you asking me to dance with you?” She wiggled her lips, not quite a frown or a smile. Her brow furrowed as if his request confused her.
Usually women flirted with him to persuade him to sign their dance cards. As charming as this lady appeared, she might prove to be a challenge. That piqued his interest even more.
“Well, I know we have not met before.”
“Do you joke, sir? I am not amused. I have accompanied my sister with the intent of enjoying the ball and I shall do so no matter what you may think of me.” Piety tilted her head away from him.
“I did not mean to cause you any distress. I shall help you enjoy the ball. I assure you, I am a fine dancer.” She seemed a little calmer. “Let me introduce myself, I am Blake Blackmore.” He placed his hand on his chest. “May I have the pleasure of your name and that of your companion?” He flipped his palm off his chest and held it out toward her.
As she turned her head toward him, her eyebrows arched. “My name is Piety Plunkett and this is my sister, Mrs. Polly Plunkett Young.” She tilted her chin in the air. “Do you truly not recognize me?”
“I am sure I would have remembered if we’d met before.”
With a frown on her face, she opened her empty dance card. “By all means, feel free to choose a dance.”
When he finished filling in his name, she glanced at her card. “You have reserved each song. It is quite improper of you to engage more than four dances.”
“So it is.” He nodded, hoping she wouldn’t mark his name out. “I am quite improper.” She had an air of confidence and independence about her that he found compelling. He needed to charm her into a dance before she realized she had the option of saying no. He stretched his arm out to her. “May I escort you and your sister into the ballroom?”
Amazon UK– http://amzn.to/1POPAdZ
All Romance Ebooks– http://bit.ly/1Vk1rED
Books will also be available at barnesandnoble.com and iTunes (Apple), but buy links are not yet available for them.
Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway. The tour dates are here: http://www.writermarketing.co.uk/prpromotion/blog-tours/currently-on-tour/scandalously-yours/