Happy New Year folks! My first guest for 2014 is the fabulous and hugely talented Christina Brookes sharing an excerpt from her new release – THE GREATEST LOVER EVER! With a title like that… how can you NOT read it!? I have a copy and cannot wait to get to it. Check out the blurb, cover and fab excerpt below:
Title: THE GREATEST LOVER EVER
Author: Christina Brooke
Passion to last a lifetime…
The Sweetest Scandal
Beautiful, exuberant, and stubborn Georgiana Black has more spirit than sense—which she learns when an ultimatum to the Earl of Beckenham ends their engagement. Six years later, Georgie is less concerned with impending spinsterhood than with making sure her young sister doesn’t make the same mistakes she did. But soon Georgie stumbles into a scandalous encounter with none other than her former fiancé. Beckenham is still breathtakingly desirable.
The Truest Temptation
Beckenham’s brief engagement to Georgie taught him one thing: when it comes to a wife, he wants a woman who will do her duty and cause no trouble. When the fiery Georgie falls unexpectedly into his arms, Beckenham remembers just how lushly delectable she is. Suddenly, the idea of actually marrying Georgie is irresistible. In a battle of wills, can passion conquer pride?
Having once decided upon a course of action he knew was right, Beckenham never allowed himself to be swayed by uncertainty or base cowardice.
He would propose. She would reject him. Then they could go on as before, and he would know he’d done his duty.
In a low tone, he said, “Don’t play innocent, Georgie. I know it was you.”
He observed her closely, had an impulse to whisk that charming bonnet from her head and toss it into the street for the horses to trample.
She evinced no reaction at all. Which of course spoke volumes. Not that he had an iota of doubt on the matter, but if she truly was innocent, his accusations would have produced a reaction of some sort. Fury, most probably. He’d never known a woman with such a temper.
“As I said, my lord, you were mistaken.” She put the faintest emphasis on the final words, and he received her message loud and clear.
She wanted him to take the hint, accept the lie and leave her be. Damn her. She knew he’d like nothing more than to forget the entire incident.
She offered him the craven solution. If he took it, he would know himself for a coward. Worse, she would know it, too.
He wished, with sudden exasperation, that she’d make it easier for him, admit to her presence and let him get on with this damnable proposal. But when had anything that involved Georgiana Black been easy?
She left him in the awkward position of offering to right a wrong she refused to acknowledge they’d both committed.
“I know not why you seek to continue this pretense,” he said, checking his horses to let a dray lumber past them, “but I must tell you that I am not so easily diverted from my purpose.”
“No,” she said, a little wistfully. “You were ever a steadfast type, were you not? Some might call it stubborn. Or pigheaded, perhaps.”
He ground his teeth.
She sighed, and in the voice of one humoring a child, said, “Very well, in the interests of concluding this delightful interview as soon as possible… Let us pretend—for argument’s sake, you understand—that it was indeed I at this party, in this bedchamber, with you.”
She fanned herself a little with her gloved hand. “Goodness, I’m all a-flutter just thinking of it.”
His frustration fired to anger. “Do you think this is a jest, ma’am?”
“Oh, the very cream of jests. However,” she continued, “let us pretend that all of this happened and it is not a figment of your imagination. What then?”
Her mocking tone stripped any desire to couch his proposal in terms that might make it acceptable to her.
“Obviously, I must offer you my hand in marriage,” he snapped. “For an intelligent woman, you are remarkably slow today.”
Finally, she gave him the full view of her face. Shock etched across her features.
For a bare instant, her plush lips quivered.
Then she laughed.
Threw her head back and laughed. A throaty, husky sound that filled him with all kinds of vengeful, thoroughly bawdy thoughts.
The struggle to keep his hands to himself, compounded by the frustration of bowling through populated Brighton streets, fully occupied with steering his strong-willed cattle, made the pressure build inside him until he bit out, “I take it your answer is no.”
Her chuckles ended on a long sigh. “Oh! My dear Lord Beckenham, you vastly underrate your charms if you think that.”
Giveaway: For the chance to win a copy of THE GREATEST LOVER EVER answer this question in the comments section by Monday midnight EST Australia 🙂
Question: What’s the best or worst proposal of marriage you’ve read/seen/experienced/heard about?