Only a Rogue Knows -Excerpt 

The thick curtains that covered the window in Cordelia Whittemore’s bedroom made it almost
impossible for any light to get through, and that suited her just fine. She didn’t want anyone to see her crying, especially a passing servant. She looked up, clutching her handkerchief, and the image of what she’d just seen came back into her head and started a fresh wave of tears.  

She’d trusted him, and he’d gone and done something like this. They’d hardly been married a month and now she had no idea what was she supposed to do with the rest of her life. Cordelia put her face in her hands. It felt as if she’d never stop crying. 

“Cordelia!” Her door burst open and Arthur came hurrying through, tucking his neatly pressed white shirt into his pants. “I’m so sorry, my dear, I didn’t intend for you to see that.” She looked away from him, hiding most of her face in shadow. She didn’t want him to see how upset she was, but the tears in her voice couldn’t be hidden. 

“How long has this been going on?

“Since long before we were married. I didn’t want you to find out this way.” Arthur took a step toward her and she stood up and moved further away. “I’m truly sorry.” Of this Cordelia had no doubt but she didn’t know how to forgive him for infidelity, much less infidelity of this sort.  

“I’m sure you are,” she said, recovering enough to put a note of ice in her voice. “What am I supposed to do now?”

“Don’t tell anyone,” he said, his voice almost pleading. “Please. It would kill my father.”

“You know I could divorce you for this,” Cordelia said, turning her back on him. “And the Court would allow it, as would the Church. It’s a mortal sin, Arthur.”

“I know, and I’m begging you not to. I never wanted to get married in the first place,” he said. “Father said that if I didn’t marry and give him an heir he would disown me. Once he dies, I’ll be Lord Whittemore and we won’t have to worry about him. You can divorce me then if you want.”

“And if he doesn’t die soon? What then?” Cordelia shook her head. “I can’t believe you would ask something like this of me.”

“I know,” Arthur said. “It’s not fair to you. There’s nothing else for it, though. If you want to ruin me, then by all means petition for a divorce. You’re right, no one would deny it to you and if that’s what you wish to do I won’t deny you.” He came around to where she was facing the wall, forcing Cordelia to look at him. She turned her face toward him, her jaw set in a way that she knew her own father would be proud of. 

“All right,” she said finally. “I’ll keep your secret, but at least keep your affairs out of the house. Find somewhere else to do it or I really will tell your father about it.”

“Yes, of course. Whatever you want.” Arthur leaned forward to kiss her on the cheek and she shrank away from him. She couldn’t bring herself to let him kiss her after seeing him with another man. Cheating aside, she’d brought up to believe that it was unnatural and she didn’t know how she’d be able to look at him after this. He didn’t try to kiss her again and she looked away, unable to believe she was agreeing to this. “Thank you, my darling. You won’t regret this. I’ll make sure you have everything you could ever desire.”

“Mm.” Cordelia kept her face turned away from his and he finally stepped away from her. 

“Well, I suppose I should go visit my father. He’ll be expecting me later but there’s nothing wrong with showing up earlier.”

Of course not, thought Cordelia. Unless you come home early and find your husband with another man.

“Be careful,” Cordelia said, trying not to sound irritable. Arthur paused for a moment, then
walked out of the room quickly, as if he was running away from her.  

Once he was gone and the door was closed, Cordelia went behind him and locked it. Then she went back to her place by the window where there was a handsome wooden rocker. She sat down and began to rock back and forth slowly. Her anger was dissipating, being replaced by a deep sadness. 

She’d brought the chair with her at her mother’s urging, and had been dreaming since she was a girl of sitting in the rocker and rocking her baby to sleep. Now that dream looked to have been shattered. If he wasn’t interested in her, then she didn’t know how they were going to have a baby. The only time they’d come close to making love was on their wedding night and it had taken quite a lot of effort. She’d attributed it to his being nervous and having had a lot to drink but now she knew better.  

Cordelia started to rock faster, focusing on the sliver of light that was coming through the crack in the curtains and not the image of her husband with another man on his knees in front of him. She didn’t know if she’d ever be able to get it out of her head. More tears threatened to fall and she tried to will them away. She’d have to deal with the staff before too long and she didn’t want it to look like she’d been crying. They were all so kind, they’d want to know what was going on and she didn’t want to have to lie to them.  

 It suddenly occurred to her that they may have known about this all along. Feeling betrayed by both her staff and her husband, Cordelia sighed heavily and leaned her head back against the chair. She was really stuck now. The longer she stayed in her marriage, the less likely it would be for her to be able to get a divorce. All she could do was hope for her father-in-law to die soon so she could get out of her marriage, and that made her feel even worse.  

I’m well and truly trapped now, she thought. I wish Father had never made this arrangement.

 Every Rogue’s Heart is available at Amazon for $2.99 from now until December! Buy it here or get it free with Kindle Unlimited.

All Sorts of News

Guess who’s back with a brand new logo, a new release, and a new WIP?

You guessed it, it’s me! I haven’t been very active online for a while for various reasons, but I’m back now and have plenty of news to share.

 First off, you may have noticed that my site has a new look. I got a beautiful logo from Chelsea Barnes and I think it gives my site a personal look and tells new readers exactly what I’m about. I absolutely love it!

Next, I have a new series in the works! It’s going to be a paranormal romance series with an association of vampires called the Night Lodge. The first three books are going to be a trilogy, and I plan to do a couple of standalones after that. I’ve been working on some teaser images for Facebook and Twitter, so follow me there and you’ll get a taste of the series as I work on it.

Last but not least, I had the good fortune to be included in a Victorian box set with a Rogue theme with the same amazing ladies who were in the Treasured Love box set, and it’s been doing really well! It’s currently on Amazon for $2.99 or free on KU, and there are six all-new stories to enjoy. Mine is a full length novel called Only a Rogue Knows, which will be released on its own in January. Get your copy now!

That’s all for now. If you’re interested in a sample chapter, I’ll be posting that next week so stay tuned!

Finally, the Pirate News!

After that super downer of a post, I want to make a happy announcement!

treasured Love coverRemember when I kept saying I was working on a pirate project? I’m pleased to finally announce that my novella, At Her Pleasure, is going to be a part of a pirate-themed box set, Treasured Love, which will be released this November!

This box set is going to feature some very talented ladies, many of which are bestselling authors, and a ton of new stories. I’m really excited to be a part of it and I hope you’ll pick yourself up a copy when it comes out. I’ll give out a little more information when we get closer to our release date, but until then, here’s our gorgeous cover, done by the very talented Victoria Miller!

It’s also available to preorder on Kobo, Barnes and Noble, and iTunes! Amazon links will come a bit later but if you use one of these platforms, be sure to preorder now!

Kobo Link: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/treasured-love-1

B&N Link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1124194041

The Struggle

I’ve been pretty silent recently, due mostly to the fact that I’ve been a little depressed. As I said before, Booktrope’s closing has been really rough on me. Without resources to self-publish The Detective’s Brother, it leaves me with no books available to promote or sell and no means to go forward self-publishing on my own with any degree of professionalism. As much as I would like to put out my own work, the fact remains that I just can’t afford it.

Our family’s circumstances have changed dramatically in the months since Booktrope closed, and part of the reason I went with Booktrope in the first place was because I didn’t have the money or resources to self-publish on my own. Now that we’re in an even worse place financially (temporarily, I hope!), I’m stuck with a lot of work that may or may not ever see the light of day.

I do have a couple of publishers I would like to submit work to, but to submit Detective’s Brother to them I need to have it free and clear from my Booktrope obligations and right now I don’t have the money to do that. I’m looking to submit Turn the Page to a small publisher as well but I need to finish editing it first. I’ve got so much to do and zero motivation to do it.

It doesn’t help that I see friends who have been able to turn their Booktrope titles around and self-publish them having success because I know that if I had the money to do what they have, I might be in a different place. Instead I’m back to where I started before I was ever picked up by the now-defunct Sinnful E-Books.

I envy people who say they’ve never considered giving up on writing. I’m not saying I’m giving up, but this is the sort of thing that makes me want to curl up in a corner and never touch a computer again.

I’m tired. Just tired.

Book Review: Duma Key (Part Two)

duma key

As I said before, I consider the second half of the book to be after Edgar’s art show. The action starts pretty quickly after that fateful night and, like many of King’s books, once the endgame starts it moves fast.

Once the paintings and sketches are sold, the people who bought them are in danger and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that some of those people die. One of them, however, pushes Edgar past his breaking point and he takes Wireman and Jack to the original Heron’s Roost to find and defeat the evil that has woken up again.

The ruin of Elizabeth Eastlake’s childhood home is creepy in and of itself, but the creatures that live in the overgrown jungle around it make it all the creepier. Birds lying upside down, moving lawn jockeys, and the local non-supernatural fauna make for a terrifying trip down memory lane for the three men, and that’s all before it gets dark and the real horrors show up.

When Edgar reveals what happened at Heron’s Roost and the real hero of the 1920’s horror invasion, it gets very sad. Thanks to them, though, he has the power to finally defeat Perse and put the evil back to sleep.

I unapologetically love this book. There are a lot of people that I talk to that roll their eyes when I tell them I like it but I love it. It’s good and creepy, I had to leave the lights on after I read about the big boy, and the setting-up chapters moved quickly. I got really attached to the characters in a way I usually don’t with Stephen King books and enjoyed the ending. If you’re a fan of Stephen King and haven’t read this one, give it a go. At the very least it’s an entertaining 600 pages, unlike Bag of Bones. Don’t get me started on that one.

As far as Stephen King goes, I’m considering giving the Dark Tower series a shot again. My husband gently shoves them at me every time I finish a King book and this time I might let him. Provided he buys me a bagel sandwich first.

Alone Again, Naturally

Detective's BrotherWell, I have some incredibly sad news. As of May 31st, The Detective’s Brother will no longer be available as Booktrope is closing down.

I got the news on Friday and immediately started texting and messaging other Booktrope authors that I have become friends with, as well as my editor. As near as we can figure out, until I pay the team what their usual rate would be my book will be stuck in limbo.

I’ve decided – as have a number of my fellow authors – to go the self-publishing route. I’ve learned a lot from my time with Booktrope and I think I can go it alone as well as possible. I have a day job that I love so I’m not in danger of losing a large chunk of my income, and I’ll have a little more control over what I’ve written.

A couple of friends have encouraged me to try and explore small presses but honestly, I’m not looking forward to doing that again. I’ve been down that road before and it only leaves me stressed and unhappy when no one wants to read historicals or requests chapters and then never says anything again. Not to mention the fact that the two indie publishers that picked up The Detective’s Brother both went under. Sinnful at least returned the rights to me with no strings attached. Booktrope is returning the rights but, as I said before, I can’t republish until my team is compensated and that will take a while if they want the money up front. I adore my editor but I can’t afford her rate unless she lets me pay her back in installments or something.

Turn the Page is still slated for a release this year, though it may be a little longer in coming than originally planned since I’m going to have to shell out the money for the editing and cover myself. However, I’ve got a designer I like picked out and a couple of stock photos for her to work with. I’ve got a few ideas for contemporaries and historicals, so you definitely haven’t heard the last of me, and I hope you’ll stay with me through the next big adventure.