Giveaway info: Rachel will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Leave a comment with your email and your are entered. Good Luck!
Seduction is a wicked game, and no one plays it better than the devilish Will Samson in Rachel Brimble’s captivating new novel. . .
Since girlhood, Emily Darson has accepted that she will marry Nicholas, the son of her father’s trusted business partner. The marriage contract safeguards her family legacy, Emily’s fortune, and everything she values–except her independence. Only when a sinfully handsome scoundrel enters her life does Emily realize quite how much a loveless match will cost her.
Will Samson has advanced from expert pickpocket to confidence trickster of the highest caliber. Now he has come to Bath to exact vengeance on the man who destroyed his mother–the man Emily will soon marry. But from his first glimpse of the enemy’s bewitching, spirited fiancée, Will’s plan changes.
Amid the ballrooms and salons of elegant society, heated glances explode into scandalous kisses. Revenge is sweet, but surrender will be irresistible. . .
His caught breath released in a low whistle. Attraction twitched his groin. “My God, tell me you’re not his.”
His gaze languidly travelled from the tip of the feather in the woman’s hat, to the glossy black hair curled and twisted beneath it. Her eyes were big and dark, her skin as smooth as glass over sweet apple cheeks. The vivid royal blue dress she wore was pulled in at a waist small enough to fit in his splayed hands, her stature poised and proud. She was exquisite.
Will smiled. Although her ample bosom was decently covered, the soft white netting revealed the faintest hue of her flesh. What he wouldn’t give . . . He forced his gaze upward and stiffened. She stared straight at him—and her mouth twitched with amusement. He pulled back his shoulders and flashed her a smile.
She didn’t lower her eyes as he expected.
Intrigued, he tipped her a wink.
A moment passed before she surprised him again. She did not turn away in disgust or demand Milne punch him to the ground; instead the minx winked straight back. Desire hit Will hard in the gut as a bubble of laughter tickled the back of his throat.
Who was she? He revelled in the tinge of pink staining her cheeks and suspected inside, she laughed right along with him.
Their secretly shared moment came to an abrupt end when her companion took her hand and placed it possessively in the crook of his arm. He led her in Will’s direction and Will bowed as they passed.
I know that I’m supposed to be professional when I review, have authors on the blog that I love but with Ms. Brimble I can’t be. I cheered her on when she was waiting for the “call” from Harlequin, cried tears of joy when she got the contract from them and now with Kensington, even more joy. She will never know what her friendship means to me. 🙂
What draws me to write historicals…
I am so happy to be visiting with one of my best online friends and loyal readers today (waves madly at Harlie)! When Harlie invited me to write a blog post to explain why I write historicals, the question gave me pause for thought…for about a second 😉
I write Victorian historicals, contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Each sub-genre brings its own pleasures and pain, but historical is by far the most challenging. After I wrote The Seduction of Emily, I was so convinced it wasn’t what readers would want, that I vowed never to write another historical again. It was that difficult.
Then I received an email from my agent. Not only did she tell me she’d sold ‘Emily’, but she’d sold it to Kensington (one of my dream publishers) as part of a two-book contract. I wouldn’t be surprised if you heard my scream across the pond from the UK to the US, lol!!
Maybe the book wasn’t so bad after all! J
Writers are notorious for being harder on ourselves than any critic or reader could be, yet we still continue to write through the blood, sweat and tears. For me, there’s no choice. I HAVE to write or I literally turn into a monster. Ask my husband and kids…
So, to answer Harlie’s question – historicals provide exciting and new avenues to explore and enjoy. Up until now, I have concentrated on the Victorian era because the huge changes for women in the period interests, fascinates and inspires me. I am by no means a feminist but I do get a buzz from researching the amazing women from the era and how determined they were to empower themselves and bring forth new opportunities for their children.
I’ve written three full-length novels (one with The Wild Rose Press and two for Kensington) as well as a novella (Wild Rose Press). The common theme that links them is centered around the change in the heroines when they realize they want more than society allows. What are they going to do about it? Who can they trust as allies? Who are their enemies or the people who will resist the new way of life they so passionately seek?
You could say this is a theme that still exists in certain aspects of business and social etiquette now, but it was far worse back then as you can imagine. The sequel to The Seduction of Emily will be sent to my Kensington editor this week, and so the wait begins for his reaction. Will he like it as he liked ‘Emily’? Will he offer a further contract for another book? Watch this space!
As for future projects, I’d like to write a story set in the Georgian or Edwardian period next. I have ideas filed away on my computer, ready and waiting for me to start bringing them to life. So much for my ‘never again’ attitude as far as historical romance is concerned. Clearly, my muse hasn’t finished with me yet…
Okay, now that everyone knows that Ms. Brimble and I are friends, this review is in no reflection of our friendship. I read the book, loved it and Ms. Brimble just needs to relax.
When I had the opportunity to review The Seduction of Emily, I jumped at the chance. If you have never read one of Ms. Brimble’s historicals, you need to. She brings a richness to the genre that few authors can. Why?
A couple of things:
1) She is British and Bath is her backyard
2) She doesn’t muddy the waters with all the detailed trappings of the genre. She tells a story that is relatable to modern times and with characters that we can like and understand.
3) Without all of the pages and pages of what everyone is wearing, the gossip mongering, and the etiquette of the time, you get a great character driven story that you can lose yourself in for a couple of hours.
4) While I do appreciate historical romance with all the back history, detailed information and setting descriptions…sometimes, I just want the story. Lose the filler and give me what I want. A great story. Ms. Brimble does that in spades.
The Seduction of Emily is a beautifully written novel about a contracted marriage between childhood friends arranged by their fathers. Too bad, Emily doesn’t want to be married to Nicholas. She feels stifled and knowing that he doesn’t respect her as his soon to be wife is even more appalling.
Emily is from the new generation of British women in Victorian England that realizes that arranged/contracted marriages are not normal and only wants to marry for love. Too bad, the contract states that to have her half of her father’s business she must marry Nicholas. When she meets Will at the auction, she has no idea how her world and life will change.
Will Sampson is a study in contrasts. What started off as a tale of vengeance for his mother, turns his head and heart toward not only seducing Emily but winning her heart in the end. Will isn’t perfect. Actually his back history is somewhat heartbreaking but it makes him what he is today and why he seeks out Nicholas.
The heart of the book isn’t about Emily, Will or the marriage contract but what Nicholas as done as man and what he continues to do to women. Its appalling and unfortunately in the times, it was common place. Sure it was whispered in some circles but most everyone turned their cheek to it. Not Will and Emily. They vowed to bring justice not only for Will’s mother but to the other women that he has been with. Its heartbreaking to know that one of the secondary characters, Katherine has put up with it for as long as she did.
I loved how Will was able to convince 5 different women to stand up to Nicholas. In that time period, I can’t even imagine what it was like to walk into a police station and tell your tale. Who would believe you? Again, Ms. Brimble handled the material with grace and humility. She doesn’t gloss over but gives you the sense of what it was like.
The romance between Will and Emily was never forced. In fact, it was light, fun and even through the difficult times, realistic. Again, I could relate to both Emily and Will easily and loved watching their romance grow. Their love for one another was evident before they ever kissed. Will wanted Emily to have a voice in things; he loved her wit, intelligence and above all…who she already was. He didn’t want her subservient and submissive. He wanted that fire, passion that she had.
I know that Ms. Brimble is nervous about my review and she shouldn’t be. She wrote an intelligent Victorian novel about two characters that I instantly connected with and cheered for in the end. The social commentary that she brought to the book was well thought out, not glossed over and even relevant to today’s society.
I’m rooting for Katherine to get her own book and maybe even Laura. Hint, hint…
Rachel lives with her husband and two young daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. In 2012, she sold two books to Harlequin Superromance. She also writes Victorian romance for Kensington–her debut was released in April 2013.
Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family and beloved black Lab, Max. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England…although she hopes a dream visit to Canada might just change her mind!
She likes nothing more than connecting and chatting with her readers and fellow romance writers. Rachel would love to hear from you!