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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Blog Tour: Two Dukes and a Scandal (Excerpt + Guest Post + Giveaway)

Gayle Callen has kindly written a guest post on 19th century heroines, so please scroll down to read it! 

** GIVEAWAY Details**
  • Piece of custom jewelry
  • Copies of It Takes a Scandal, How to Lose a Duke in Ten Days, and Redemption of the Duke
About the Books:
The second book in a deliciously sexy new series from USA Today bestselling and RITA award winning author Caroline Linden, in which an utterly shocking book--Fifty Shades of Grey for the Regency era-- has all of London talking and gives more than one young miss a mind for scandal.

Sometimes it takes a scandal . . .

Abigail Weston has everything: beauty, wit, and one of the largest dowries in England. Her parents hope she’ll wed an earl. Abigail hopes for a man who wants her desperately and passionately. But the money seems to blind every man she meets-except one.

Sebastian Vane has nothing. He came home from war with a shattered leg to find his father mad and his inheritance gone. He’s not a fit suitor for anyone, let alone an heiress. But Abigail lights up his world like a comet, bright and beautiful and able to see him instead of his ruined reputation. And it might end happily ever after . . .

To reveal your heart’s desire

Until Benedict Lennox begins courting Abigail. Ben is everything Sebastian isn’t-wealthy, charming, heir to an earl. Sebastian won’t give up the only girl he’s ever loved without a fight, but Abigail must choose between the penniless gentleman who moves her heart, and the suitor who is everything her parents want.

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“If I don’t disgust you, why won’t you speak to me? There was only that one moment, when you told me about the lost grotto, when I felt we were cordial.”

He heaved a soundless sigh. “I’m speaking to you now, aren’t I?”

“Without saying anything,” she grumbled. “We are neighbors, sir. Surely we can have an amiable relationship.”

With unexpected speed and grace he whirled on her. Abigail nearly tripped as she leapt back once, then again until her back hit a tree as he stalked toward her. He loomed over her, so close she could see the lines around his eyes but not so close he was touching her. “Amiable,” he whispered. “We will never be amiable.”

“Why not?” she stammered. Her heart was beating a tattoo inside her chest.

He smiled, but there was nothing light about it. It was a black and bitter expression, and the sight made her eyes grow wide. “Because I am a wicked man, Miss Weston. 
Don’t you listen to the gossip? Madness runs in my family. My estate is utterly ruined. People call me a thief. They even say I killed my father. Ask anyone in town, and they’ll warn you to stay far, far away from me. To a beautiful, innocent young woman, I might as well be the devil incarnate.”

“Did you kill your father?” As soon as the words left her mouth, Abigail wished them back.

“What do you think?” he asked in the same soft, dangerous tone.

She frowned. “I doubt it.”

“But you don’t know. That should warn you to run away.”

She stared at him. “You intrigue me.”

He leaned closer. In confusion she closed her eyes. “And you intrigue me,” he replied, his breath stirring the hair at her temple. “That’s why I avoid you.”

From USA Today bestselling author Laura Lee Guhrke comes the story of a bargain, a marriage of convenience…and the chance for love to last a lifetime

They had a deal…

From the moment she met the devil-may-care Duke of Margrave, Edie knew he could change her life. And when he agreed to her outrageous proposal of a marriage of convenience, she was transformed from ruined American heiress to English duchess. Five years later, she’s delighted with their arrangement, especially since her husband is living on another continent.

But deals are made to be broken…

By marrying an heiress, Stuart was able to pay his family’s enormous debts, and Edie’s terms that he leave England forever seemed a small price to pay. But when a brush with death impels him home, he decides it’s time for a real marriage with his luscious American bride, and he proposes a bold new bargain: ten days to win her willing kiss. But is ten days enough to win her heart?

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They went to the Wash the following day as Edie had arranged, and Stuart was glad Joanna and Mrs. Simmons were with them, for he badly needed their presence to regain his equilibrium.  An irony, that. Both he and Edie had assumed Joanna would be her shield against him, not the other way around. But he knew a kiss wasn’t enough to make Edie fall into his arms, not by a long way, and even if that blessed event did happen in the next five days, his desire for her might remain unsated for much longer than that. Stuart knew he would need all the control he could muster. Nothing like the added presence of a fifteen year old girl and her elderly governess for making a man remember his propers. They set out blankets and a canopy on a nice stretch of grass along the cliffs above the shore, and Stuart was gratefulfor that, too. Being out in the open like this, there was little privacy for stealing kisses. Although they could not be observed by anyone on the beach below, the grassy knolls around them offered little protection from the eyes of anyone coming down to the shore from the fields or the village. These were Margrave lands, but the locals were free to come any time for fishing, bathing or boating, and though Stuart didn’t care much if people saw him kissing his wife on his own lands, he suspected Edie would never relax enough in such a situation to give him the chance to try.

USA Today bestselling author Gayle Callen concludes her new series with a tale of generosity, passion, and the true kindness of the heart.

A duke who needs to be tamed…a lady who refuses to be rescued.

Adam Chamberlin was the third son of a duke, known for gambling binges and drunken nights. No one expected anything of him …until tragedy strikes. Now Adam is the new Duke of Rothford, determined to right the wrongs he’s done. Except a secret in his past means helping the one woman who doesn’t want his help at all…

It’s not every day that a duke introduces himself to a woman sitting by herself in Hyde Park. Faith Cooper is even more surprised when Adam offers her a position as a lady’s companion to his elderly aunt. Faith refuses to be beholden to a man again-certainly not this man, who both infuriates and attracts her. But with the simmering passion between them, will Faith surrender to forbidden desire?

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N | iTunes

Faith had once known all about real dilemmas: dwindling money without dowry or the handsome features that might make up for it. All of this she’d overcome on her own, by means both scandalous and necessary. And though it was hard work helping a self-centered young woman during her first London Season, Faith relished the challenge of guiding the girl to maturity and happiness. Sometimes she felt like she was guiding the baron and his wife, too. They had been social leaders in their quiet village, and were now at sixes and sevens in Town. 

All of these thoughts were on her mind when a boldly handsome man stepped into her path and forced her to come up short in surprise. Though he was tall, it was not his height that was overwhelming; it was his very presence, as if he knew he commanded attention and used that to his advantage. He wore snug trousers, polished boots, and an expensively tailored greatcoat that she suspected did not need padding in the shoulders. To her surprise, he doffed his top hat and gave her a brief bow, which so shocked her that she almost turned around to see if someone stood just behind. He had light brown hair that could almost be called sandy, tousled artfully by the wind. His chiseled face had harsh lines where a woman’s would have soft curves, a nose that commanded attention, and lines about his eyes as if he smiled much of the time. Those eyes were blue and alive with interest and amusement as they took all of her in.
by Gayle Callen

“Nineteenth Century Heroines”

I created my newest trilogy “Brides of Redemption,” to focus on the heroes. After all, the previous trilogy “Scandalous Lady,” was about the women. So sure, REDEMPTION OF THE DUKE, my latest book, and the other two are about the men, fellow soldiers who made a terrible mistake during war and return home to help the families of the men who’d died. But the thing was, since each man had a similar mission, it was the women who had to be very different, to make each book stand apart from the others. Don’t worry—the men are pretty different, too. ;)

Now remember what it was like in the nineteenth century for a young lady of breeding whose male relative, and probably sole support, had died. She couldn’t just get a job as a clerk or a seamstress—she’d be cut off from every friend and even other family members. It was better to be a poor relation, dependent on relatives, than to inappropriately work. But there were ways to get around this, and that’s what my independent heroines do. In RETURN OF THE VISCOUNT (August 2012), the heroine’s father died, and her brother became the earl. You might think she’d be all set, but her brother is a wastrel and terrible at management, and soon she takes over the entire estate. But she does end up marrying our hero by proxy, from halfway around the world, so she can have access to her own money. She thinks she never has to meet him, but of course, circumstances change…

The heroine of SURRENDER TO THE EARL (June 2013) is the widow of a dead soldier—the blind widow, which makes her circumstances even more difficult. At that time, blind women were treated as invalids, but she’s determined to take her rightful place as mistress of the home she inherited. But her family isn’t having it—until our hero decides he’s at last found a way to redeem himself by helping her to be independent.

In my newest book, REDEMPTION OF THE DUKE, the heroine takes a position as a lady’s companion, one of the only two jobs a genteel woman can hold. (The other accepted position is as a governess.) But now she’s no longer part of Society, but nor is she a servant, a difficult place for a woman to be. But she’s made a plan for her future, and doesn’t want the duke to interfere. He thinks he knows what’s best for her—and she’s not having it.

So that’s how my nineteenth century heroines survive in a male-dominated world. Would you do anything differently?

[Mary: If I were in that situation, probably not! :(]
Link to Follow Tour:

Author Bio’s
Caroline Linden was born a reader, not a writer. She earned a math degree from Harvard University and wrote computer software before turning to writing fiction. Ten years, twelve books, two Red Sox championships, and one dog later, she has never been happier with her decision. Her books have won the NEC Reader’s Choice Beanpot Award, the Daphne du Maurier Award, and RWA’s RITA Award. Since she never won any prizes in math, she takes this as a sign that her decision was also a smart one. Visit her online at

Laura Lee Guhrke spent seven years in advertising, had a successful catering business, and managed a construction company before she decided writing novels was more fun. A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Laura has penned over twenty historical romances. Her books have received many award nominations, and she is the recipient of romance fiction’s highest honor: the Romance Writers of America RITA Award. She lives in the Northwest with her husband (or, as she calls him, her very own romance hero), along with two diva cats and a Golden Retriever happy to be their slave. Laura loves hearing from readers, and you can contact her via her website:

Gayle Callen
After a detour through fitness instructing and computer programming, Gayle Callen found the life she’d always dreamed of as a romance writer. This USA Today bestselling author has written more than eighteen historical romances for Avon Books, and her novels have won the Holt Medallion and the Laurel Wreath Award.
Gayle lives in Central New York with her three children, her dog, Apollo, and her husband, Jim the Romance Hero.
Visit her website at

Rafflecopter Giveaway (Three Gift Packs from Avon Romance including a Piece of Custom Jewelry and Copies of Release from All Three Authors) a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Hmm I wonder where they came up with the idea of giving away books and jewelry?

  2. I can't wait for all 3 of this book. Gayle Cullen Brides of Redemption series is great. First, with Audrey and her introduction to her unknown husband. Then Cecilia, who is blind, unloved and a inconvenience to her family. I can't wait for Adam and Faith. Laura Lee Guhrke writes with such humor. In WYMMHM, Belinda and Nicholas story made me crying from laughing so hard. Caroline Linden also writes with humor. Joan and Tristan's (love his name) story had great characters that jumped off the page into my heart. Sebastian and Abigail's story sounds great. I love a wounded hero and a heroine who fights her family for love!! I am sorry I wrote so much but I really love this authors!! I am going to be so POOR on 4/29/2014!!

    1. I enjoyed her Brides of Redemption series too. You and me both, Patty. My wallet is going to cry next Tuesday. :)

    2. So glad you've enjoyed my books, Patty and Mary!

  3. Thanks for the giveaway! I haven't read it yet. Heard great reviews about it.

  4. I love duke heroes because they're the highest peerage underneath royalty and all their poise, grace, ducal arrogance...are quite attractive. lol :) And of course every young Regency lady needs a scandal to bring her love!

  5. Dying to read these books. Great characters, in very interesting situations.

  6. I love everything about Dukes and scandals!!! They go one in one in hand. Besides, having scandals attached to Dukes are more fun to read. :)

  7. I so agree about dukes and scandals! We have such fun writing them. Nothing like a powerful man brought to his knees by love.

  8. 3 great authors and new books, what's not to love?

  9. I loved all 3 excerpts and what a treat to have three such wonderful authors featuring their stories at the same time! I must admit that seeing the Cameo necklace took me back in time to when my grandmother showed me a cameo pin that had been passed down through her family to the eldest daughter and the look of wonder on my oldest sister's face when it was presented to her on her 18th birthday.

    My thanks to Caroline, Laura Lee and Gayle for sharing these wonderful stories with all their readers!

  10. Jeanne, what a lovely story about the heirloom cameo!

  11. All three of you ladies are authors I read. I love these excerpts of each book. Now to write them down on my TBL

  12. Thanks for the giveaway. I always enjoy reading about a duke. Add in a little scandal and that's even better.

  13. Thanks for the giveaway. I like reading about Dukes and scandal because they get in so much trouble.

  14. Replies
    1. That's definitely part of the appeal of the historical fantasy!

  15. These sound like great books. Fun reading.

  16. All three are on my to read list. If the Dukes look anything like the Dukes of my imagination then those gorgeous looks and noble manners are one reason. :) Scandal along with Dukes makes for some exciting and tense reading. I Love it.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

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  20. It sound like a good ol' fashion romance along the kind with some secrets and scandals . Wee all need that some of that.

  21. It gives us a great view that anyone can have a scandal and the dukes are really sexy!! <3

  22. Dukes are usually very alpha & I love seeing them & their heroines get out of scandalous situations!

  23. These all sound great. I love it when Dukes have to move heaven and earth to prevent a scandal.

  24. I'm eagerly awaiting all three of these books! I don't know which one I'll read first next Tuesday.

  25. It seems like Dukes were always involved in scandals and trying to avoid them -- if they cared enough about what the Ton thought. Most Dukes need a good woman to bring them down to earth. :-)

  26. Have to love the title of a Duke, the money is a plus!

  27. Don't know what I like best about it yet. Haven't read it but I am looking forward to it.

  28. There is a great appeal in watching the powerful fall from grace and then actually work to redeem themselves- not just to outward appearances but to better themselves on the inside.

  29. I have and have read earlier books by all three authors, and I have them on my auto buy list. I am an addict of historical romance, especially the Medieval/Regency/Georgian/Victorian genres and there is nothing I dislike about those stories. I like the wounded hero, childhood friend and second chance tropes and other tropes in-between those. I just love historical romance. Period. Thanks for the tour and post!

  30. I love all the propriety!!! The seemingly unending rules. Add a Duke and a scandal, and it's perfect. Even regency ladies love bad boys.



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