Lily Dawson is the only unwed lady left of the famous courtesans dubbed the Three Diamonds by the prince regent. Called the Countess of Charm, Lily uses her social skills and dubious position to ferret out information as a spy for the Foreign Office. Her next mission has her cozying up to the Duke of Ravenscroft and find evidence of any treasonous activities. Unfortunately, the duke’s son may be more of an impediment than Lily anticipated.
Andrew, Earl of Darlington hates that the Countess of Charm has taken up with his father so soon after his mother’s death. He even wants to hate Lily, but there is something about her that sparks his interests. When he discovers that there is more going on than what is visible on the surface, Andrew offers to help Lily uncover the traitor, even if that traitor is his own father.
“Sapphires are an Earl’s Best Friend” is the final installment of Shana Galen’s Jewels of the Ton trilogy. In previous books, Darlington was the persistent suitor of Juliette, the Duchess of Dalliance and the heroine of “If you Give a Duke a Diamond.” Then he seemed like a loveable, but shallow dandy, a man who had still not matured to adulthood. In this story the readers get see Andrew grow up, shed his rakish persona and show Lily and others his true self, a man who is ready for the mantle of Duke and responsibilities he will have one day. He isn’t perfect, but he sees that and tries to achieve better.
It was really satisfying to learn more about Lily. Her past–like those of the other Diamonds–is tragic and difficult. To see what she has become despite the heartbreak and horrors, gives her character dimension and strength without beating the reader over the head with the events. Instead the readers are treated to a look into the longing, heartache and despair some decisions create that feels genuine and sympathetic.
With these two characters you see a spectrum of emotions and with each passing page hope that–after they find the assassin–they get the satisfying ending that they and the series deserve.
“Sapphires are an Earl’s Best Friend” will be released March 4th online and at local booksellers nationwide.
Wealthy heiress Lady Sarah Osbourne is about to be sacrificed on the marriage altar to none other than the royal Duke of Kent. Though the thought of raising the next English monarch holds great appeal, Sarah cannot help but feel like she will be missing out on all life has to offer, so she makes a list of forbidden pleasures she has yet to experience.
Sir Jonah Sharpe has a dark past and is used to unsavory missions. Now he is being blackmailed to prevent Lady Sarah’s marriage to the royal duke by any means necessary. When he learns of her list, Jonah knows the best way to seduce her is to help her complete it, but with every item they cross off the list their mutual attraction blossoms. And soon Sir Jonah does not only want to prevent Sarah’s marriage to the duke, but marry her himself.
BETWEEN A RAKE AND A HARD PLACE is an enjoyable romance about duty to one’s family, friends and country versus the duty we all have to ourselves and our own happiness.
Jonah is a good parallel to modern-day soldiers coming home from war, haunted by the things he’d done and let happen. Whereas Sarah is a woman who wants to push boundaries and not let society dictate what she can and cannot do (even though she usually prefers the usual ways). Both Sarah and Jonah are very likable with commitments not entirely of their choosing, but obligated to fulfill due to obligations and personal integrity. The duality of their mutual dilemma is sometimes frustrating for a reader, but then again, more so for the characters.
Mason and Marlowe have penned a satisfying and well-rounded capstone to their Regency Rakes trilogy.
When they were in college, Vivian Banks left Cooper Haynes waiting at the courthouse on their wedding day, leaving him without a word. Nine years later, they are both standing in the same wedding and when Cooper sees Vivian walk down the aisle, he realizes that he is not over her betrayal and wants revenge. He will seduce her, make her care for him again and then leave her in the morning without a backwards glance.
However, when the morning comes, Cooper cannot seem to get Vivian out of his system. He buys the Lantern Lake cabin she is trying to flip so that he can spend more time with her. As the days become weeks Cooper realizes he may never get enough of his first love.
Lily Everett finishes off the third and final novella of her Billionaire Bachelor series with a simple, well-written tale of how love survives and blooms despite years and adversity.
Lantern Lake is simply good and inescapably enjoyable.