What a Rake Wants – The Spies of Mayfair

Utterly engaging and fun to read, this book is a lovely trek to a happily ever after.
Gaele The Jeep Diva

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Enjoy an excerpt:

With a swish of her ice-blue net gown worn over white satin, she hurried away, leaving Mrs. Pinkerton peering after her through her lorgnette. It was an appalling lack of decorum, and Althea was sure her ears were burning. A moment later, she had forgotten the ladies entirely, for Montsimon, a determined expression in his gray eyes, made his way steadily through the guests in her direction. She could not talk to him now. Heart thudding, she searched around her for anyone free to engage in conversation, but those close by were so deep in discussion it would be rude to interrupt.

“Lady Brookwood.” Montsimon bowed before her. There was nothing for it.

“Lord Montsimon.” She curtsied. It was extraordinary. Simply because she’d considered a possible affair with him, it had become difficult to meet his eyes, made bluer tonight by the coat he wore.

“I didn’t expect to find you in London,” he said in his pleasant tenor voice. “I believe your intention was to remain in the country until spring.”

“That was my aim,” she said, “but important matters have brought me back to town.”

A waiter approached. Montsimon took two glasses of wine from his tray and offered her one. Althea accepted it with a nod of thanks. She sipped the cold fruity wine, glad to find it lubricated her tight throat.

“Dreadfully crowded,” Montsimon said, bending his head closer to hers.

“The Gossards’ affairs are always a great success. Does your dog wait for you at home tonight?”

“No, he’s guarding my carriage,” Montsimon said with a glint of humor.

“Is he a good guard dog?” Her gaze swept the room again, searching for Lord Churton without success.

“Spot is very thorough. Even my friends are barred from the vehicle.” Montsimon frowned. “But something disturbs you this evening, Lady Brookwood. May I help?”

“You must pardon me, my lord.” She took a step away. “There’s someone I must speak to, but I can’t seem to locate them in this crowd.”

He followed, bringing them close again. “Who might that be?”

“It’s Lord Churton. Have you seen him?”

The expression in Montsimon’s eyes sharpened. Without explanation, he removed her wine glass, which was still half-full, from her nerveless fingers. Conscious of those around them, she murmured a surprised protest. He placed her glass with his on a console table against the wall. “Shall we take a stroll on the terrace?”

Maggi Andersen, What a Rake Wants, Regency, Historical Romance, Spies.

 

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Excerpt from How to Beguile a Duke

HTBAD-1600He ought not to have let her take the journal. It wasn’t appropriate reading material for an innocent. “If you like, I will reread the journal and make note of all of your great-grandmother’s…acquaintances so we can narrow down the possibilities.”

She clasped the journal to her chest. “Good heavens, no. I shall do it.”

“Why?”

“I would never be able to look you in the eye again knowing that you had read about her…exploits.”

“Catherine.” She cast a startled glance at him. Stifling the laughter threatening to erupt, he said, “I’ve already read the journal. There is nothing in there with which I am not already familiar.”

Casting her eyes downward, she said, “Well, there is much with which I am unfamiliar.”

Laughter burst forth from him, refusing to be contained. “Well I certainly hope so. It is not appropriate reading material for you. Give it back to me, and I will make a list of everyone mentioned in the journal. We must be thorough.” Casting his eyes toward the spire of a church in the distance, he attempted to dispel the images of Catherine reenacting her great grandmother’s escapades with him. His imagination was very thorough. Too thorough.

Carefully avoiding eye contact with him, she shook her head. “No. She was my great-grandmother, my relative. I will do it.”

Knowing he would not be able to convince her to surrender the journal to him, he gave up. Her parents ought to have named her obstinate. “Perhaps you could skim the journal and record the names and how they correspond to the dates in which she mentions the tiara. It isn’t necessary for you to reread everything.”

“I suppose that method could prove fruitful.” Drawing her lower lip into her mouth, she studied the open page of the journal. Her eyes widened. “See here.” She pointed to the page. “She reminded Great-Grandfather about the dinner party they were holding that night. Several foreign diplomats, as well as many members of the House of Lords, were to be present. After grandfather left the room, she wrote, ‘What new surprises will my lover have for me tonight?’

He leaned closer, their shoulders touching as she skimmed the page. Squelching his urge to run the tips of his fingers down her neck to her—he shook his head and attempted to listen to her words.

“‘I long for the sweet torture of his touch, for the pleasure he brings me.’”

To complete his torture, she continued reading, oblivious to his discomfort.

**************

How to Beguile a Duke

What reviewers are saying:

“I couldn’t wait to keep reading and when I finished I had to sit back and savour the story. That’s when you know it’s a special book.”  ~Kilts and Swords

“There is a very exciting mystery that runs throughout the whole story. This kept the story moving very quickly and excitement could be found on every page.”~Jasmyn, Bitten by Books

“The characters were vivid, lovable and the storyline, with a hint of mystery and danger, held my attention until the very last page. The chemistry between Catherine and Nick was instantaneous and their dynamic exchanges often had me laughing out loud.” ~RS Addict

“There was a nice balance of mystery, suspense, and some intense UST in this one. I enjoyed it very much and recommend it to you.” ~Kathie, First Page to the Last Book Reviews

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