Release Day! Coming of Age

And Coming of Age, the third story in my Regency romp Twelve Letters series is now on release!

I so enjoy writing about my motley ensemble cast of men about town as they find and try to hold onto lasting love. My established couples of Jo and Daniel, Ben and Edward and Regency himbo Percy and his Nathan are back and facing new joys and challenges.

Coming of Age is currently on a 20% off pre-release/new release sale until November 25th at JMS Books.

After the London Season of 1815, having guided his younger sister Eustacia through her come out despite the social impact of a disastrous family scandal, Percy Havilland is at a loose end. Accustomed to being spoiled and generally admired, although still wealthy, he is shunned by most of the ton. Also, he discovers that he misses looking after his sister now she’s returned to the family estate in Sussex. Taking his frustrations out on Nathaniel Brooks, his long-suffering lover, only makes Percy more uncertain about his future.

Also, Percy’s good friend Jo Everett is having his own problems, thwarted in his dearest wish to share a home with the love of his life, Daniel Walters, a hardworking Bond Street tailor. And the final couple in the ensemble, Captain Ben Harding and Dr Edward Stephens realises the course of true love doesn’t always run smoothly.

Can this society of gentlemen solve their romantic dilemmas to their satisfaction? And might Percy, with a birthday looming, surprise himself by opening up to love?

Universal Book Link.

Rainbow Snippets: Twelve Letters

Coming of Age, the third in my Regency romp Twelve Letters series (starting with Twelve Letters and followed by Queer Relations), will be released later in November and is currently on a 20% prelease/new release sale at JMS Books. So, for this week’s Rainbow Snippets, I reckoned it was appropriate to return to Twelve Letters where the story started for my ensemble cast.

Authors who take part in Rainbow Snippets each weekend are encouraged to post a few lines from one of their stories on their blog and then link back to the group post on Facebook. I always enjoy joining in with Rainbow Snippets, especially to read and comment on everyone else’s choice of snippet.

In these few lines from Twelve Letters, the first of the correspondence has gone astray, with my MC Jo Everett having confused two notes, one meant for his tailor and the other for his spoiled and pampered current squeeze, Percy.

A few streets away, in a very expensively decorated apartment in Mayfair, Percy Havilland lay luxuriously in bed, pillows freshly plumped, a cup of steaming chocolate placed on a small table close by, one hand delving under the bedclothes as with the other, he impatiently tore open the seal of a letter from his current lover. 

When it had been brought to him with his morning refreshment, he had gleefully noted the familiar handwriting with a sense of growing anticipation. Even if he was not the richest or most noble among his circle of suitors, Jolyon was shaping up nicely as an accommodating suitor. Aware he had to make an effort to retain his intended’s attention, he had swiftly learned how best to stoke Percy’s considerable appetite. 

So, preening with expectation, already stroking lazily, ready for rapturous words of boundless praise and fathomless desire for his undoubted beauty, Percy unfolded the note. With a delightful smile already curving his luscious lips, Percy read,

Sir, 

After much deliberation concerning my new coat, I feel that the mother of pearl buttons, rather than the brass, would bestow the finishing touch of elegance.

With a howl of frustrated outrage, Percy crumpled up the note and flung it onto the floor, his disappointed stand shrinking sadly in his grasp.

Rainbow Snippets: A Trick of the Light

As it’s release weekend for my new story A Trick of the Light, I had to choose some lines from it for this week’s Rainbow Snippets!

Authors who take part in Rainbow Snippets each weekend are encouraged to post a few lines from one of their stories on their blog and then link back to the group post on Facebook. I always enjoy joining in with Rainbow Snippets, especially to read and comment on everyone else’s choice of snippet.

A Trick of the Light was written for the JMS Books’ Halloween Trick or Treat submissions call and is currently in the 20% off pre-release/new release sale at JMS Books. The story is set in England in 1950s Bristol and ties in with last year’s 18th-century Bristol-set Halloween story, A Tricky Situation as my main character makes a cameo appearance as a ghost.

In A Trick of the Light, Kenneth Taylor has been thrown out of the family home by his dad for having his own life ambitions that go beyond working in the factory where his father is a supervisor. In this snippet, in his shabby rented room in bomb-damaged Kingsdown, Kenneth has been mulling over his options, none of which seem promising, as well as the dilemma of his increasing attraction to Gino, the son of a local café owner. Undecided and discouraged, Kenneth glances in the mirror and sees more than his own reflection, faced with a ghostly vision from a previous century…

He was wearing striped satin knee-length breeches topped by a rich orange coat fitted to the waist, the full skirts ending at mid-thigh, with lace ruffles at his neck and wrists. The finishing touches to the outfit were shiny buckled shoes on his feet, and even a short, powdered wig covering his natural hair. He looked as if he’d stepped out of a historical film or one of Kenneth’s school history books.

But the expression on his face was kind, even compassionate, as though he sympathised with Kenneth. Transfixed, Kenneth watched as the effigy slowly faded, leaving him alone in the darkness with the sound of dance music echoing from the floor above.

Release Day! A Trick of the Light

It’s that time of year again for JMS Books‘ Trick or Treat submission call! Last year I wrote A Tricky Situation, my Halloween story set in the Kingsdown area of 18th-century Bristol. This year, A Trick of the Light is also set in the same district and city, but in the 1950s. This wasn’t down to lack of imagination on my part, but rather too much!

I imagined Kit, the main character of A Tricky Situation, returning in ghostly form to help a young man in a more modern era, as he endures a similar life crisis. For A Trick of the Light, I thoroughly enjoyed researching and writing about mid-20th century Bristol and contrasting that with the 18th-century flashbacks in the story.

A Trick of the Light is currently on a 20% off pre-release/new release sale until October 7th at JMS Books.

Kenneth Taylor has bright plans for a future as an engineer. In the summer of 1957, as soon as he returns home to Bristol from two years of National Service in the Royal Signals, a furious row with his dad means he’s thrown out of the house, and his prospects are in jeopardy.

He finds lodgings in the hilltop, bomb-damaged suburb of Kingsdown, determined to be independent and juggling night school with his humdrum day job. He soon meets Gino, the good-looking son of a local café owner and is thrilled when the attraction proves to be mutual. As their romance blooms, Kenneth finds unexpected encouragement from an apparition in the mirror who inhabited the house in the late 18th century.

When the ghostly vision of Kit also appears to Kenneth in his dreams, it seems they have much in common when Kit reveals his dilemma at a similar age, concerning his growing attachment to a young man, Ned. Past and present intermingle as Kenneth faces parallel and difficult decisions. But can he trust Kit? Or is it all merely a trick of the light?

Universal Book Link.

Coming Soon: A Trick of the Light

My new story, A Trick of the Light is now on pre-release! It will be released on October 1st and is currently included in the 20% off pre-release/new release sale at JMS Books until October 7th.

This is my story for JMS Books‘ Halloween Trick or Treat submission call. Like last year, I’ve picked Trick, and I also decided to set my story in the city of Bristol. But this time I have moved the historical setting to the 1950s – a bit of a change from my recent Regency stories! However, there is a link between my last year’s Halloween story, A Tricky Situation, as my main character Kit returns in a ghostly form to help a more modern young man with a similar life challenge…

Kenneth Taylor has bright plans for a future as an engineer. In the summer of 1957, as soon as he returns home to Bristol from two years of National Service in the Royal Signals, a furious row with his dad means he’s thrown out of the house, and his prospects are in jeopardy.

He finds lodgings in the hilltop, bomb-damaged suburb of Kingsdown, determined to be independent and juggling night school with his humdrum day job. He soon meets Gino, the good-looking son of a local café owner and is thrilled when the attraction proves to be mutual. As their romance blooms, Kenneth finds unexpected encouragement from an apparition in the mirror who inhabited the house in the late 18th century.

When the ghostly vision of Kit also appears to Kenneth in his dreams, it seems they have much in common when Kit reveals his dilemma at a similar age, concerning his growing attachment to a young man, Ned. Past and present intermingle as Kenneth faces parallel and difficult decisions. But can he trust Kit? Or is it all merely a trick of the light?

Release Day! Queer Relations

And it’s release day for my new story Queer Relations! When I wrote my July story Twelve Letters for JMS Books‘ 12th Anniversary celebrations, I thought that was the end. But the ensemble cast seems to have roosted in my head and they keep giving me story ideas. Each story can be read as a one-off. In this one, Regency brat Percy Havilland takes centre stage…

Queer Relations is currently on a 20% off pre-release/new release sale until August 26th at JMS Books.

In the autumn of 1814, the Honourable Percy Havilland is generally content with his sheltered existence in London’s exclusive Mayfair. As a society beau, renowned for his fair and youthful beauty, an object of desire to other well-born gentlemen, Percy is slightly miffed that his personal life is not running as seamlessly as he might wish.

His good-natured lover from the spring Season, Jo Everett, has inexplicably lost interest, and his replacement, Nathaniel Brooks, is far too hard-headed to be cajoled and manipulated into pandering to Percy’s every whim.

But these trifles are cast into proportion when out of the blue, a family scandal of immense proportions threatens Percy’s peace of mind and his standing amongst the ton. Fearing rejection or even social banishment, to his surprise, Percy discovers a small, unconventional band of friends, including Jo, who are prepared to stick by him. And more importantly, he finds Nathan is utterly reliable in a crisis.

Will Percy remain spoiled, immature and pampered? Or can he grow from this disaster to appreciate the value of true friendship? And might he even learn to love?

Universal Book Link.

Rainbow Snippets: One Summer Night

As its release weekend for my new story, One Summer Night, I thought I’d sneak in another six (or seven!) line of Rainbow Snippet! This story is a Regency romance for JMS Books’ Night or Day story submission and is now available with a 20% off new release discount at JMS Books until August 26th.

Authors who take part in Rainbow Snippets each weekend are encouraged to post a few lines from one of their stories on their blog and then link back to the group post on Facebook. I always enjoy joining in with Rainbow Snippets, especially to read and comment on everyone else’s choice of snippet.

This snippet is from the start of One Summer Night, where my main character Martin Dunne sets eyes on a seductive stranger in Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese Tavern in London’s Fleet Street…

Even in profile, the stranger standing near the bar was strikingly out of place in these commonplace surroundings. From what Martin could perceive, he was of middling height, slightly made, and with a fair ethereal beauty. While Martin was peering through the gloom to get a better look, the man turned full face, and their eyes met. 

He was every bit as enticing as his profile had promised. Although dressed carelessly, he had a look of the quality about him, with those finely-wrought features, almost too delicate for a man, and a slender physique not accustomed to strenuous labor. But what captivated Martin was that intense gaze. The rest of him might look youthful, modest, even unassuming, but those deep blue eyes were worldly, knowing, and outrageously provocative.

Release Day! One Summer Night

And it’s release day for my new story One Summer Night! This story was written for JMS Books‘ August Night or Day story submission. Although like my July story, Twelve Letters, it is set in Regency London, rather than being light and bright, this story (suitable for a nighttime setting) is all about carefully hidden secrets.

This story is currently on a 20% off pre-release/new release sale until August 26th at JMS Books.

In 1801, Martin Dunne spends his days as a hardworking clerk at the War Office in London’s Whitehall. One summer evening, after a drink in a Fleet Street tavern, he has an unexpected passionate encounter with a seducer who haunts his dreams.

But when they accidentally meet at a society function, the alluring stranger not only turns out to be the son of one of Martin’s superiors but also betrothed to a trusting young lady.

Martin’s hopes are dashed as he imagines the Hon. William Grant is a cynical rake of the worst kind. But has he misunderstood the situation? And might he allow Will to explain and give their fleeting connection a chance to develop into a fully-fledged romance?

Universal Book Link.

Rainbow Snippets: One Summer Night

For this weekend’s Rainbow Snippet, I thought I’d choose six lines from my upcoming story release, One Summer Night, a Regency romance for JMS BooksNight or Day story submission. This story is now available as a pre-release with 20% off at JMS Books.

As usual, authors who take part in Rainbow Snippets are encouraged to post a few lines from one of their stories on their blog and then link back to the group post on Facebook. I always enjoy joining in with Rainbow Snippets, especially to read and comment on everyone else’s choice of snippet.

One Summer Night begins with a nameless passionate encounter between my couple, Martin and Will that results in all kinds of misunderstandings when they unexpectedly meet again at an aristocratic function. Martin, a government clerk, is astounded to learn that Will is not only the son of a politically powerful man who rules Martin’s Whitehall department but also that Will is engaged to be married! Will persuades Martin to meet him one evening at Vauxhall Gardens so he can explain his true situation regarding his false engagement and also, his and Martin’s hot first meeting…

“My father was haranguing me about setting a date for the wedding, and avoiding giving him a straight answer, for Imogen’s sake, not mine,” he added hastily, “was a strain on the nerves. I walked along the river for a while and then found myself in that tavern. Of course,” he said with a sly glance at Martin, “if I met someone amenable who would have offered me a helping hand or mouth, I wouldn’t have said no. But as it was, I was content with a glass of port wine and a convivial setting, fully intending to return to Berkley Square afterwards. Then I espied a tall, dark, and handsome stranger, who ogled me like I was a fallen angel and with one speaking look, promised to fulfil my every need.”

“And did I?” Martin asked, glad of the sheltering darkness to spare his blushes.