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The spirited Catherine Malboeuf has just arrived in England to reclaim her ancestral home, Walsley Manor, and a valuable missing heirloom. Nicholas Adair, the attractive and frustratingly inflexible Duke of Boulstridge, however, is quite unwilling to sell the estate back to Catherine. Unless, of course, she accepts a small wager...
Nick will sell Walsley Manor if--and only if--Catherine secures an offer of marriage from an eligible member of the ton before the end of the London season.
Of course, Nick is certain he'll win. After all, no proper gentleman would ever marry a woman who conceals a cutlass in her skirts. Yet something about Catherine's unconventional disposition seems to ignite a need deep inside him. A need that won't just cost him the wager, but the very heart he swore to never give away...
She crossed her arms. “Your Grace. I have never been so insulted. I am not accustomed to having my word questioned.”
“Well you must become accustomed to it if you are going to continue to break into other people’s homes at your whim.”
“You should as well if you are going to lie to your guests about your whereabouts.”
He took a step forward and looked down his nose at her. Every part of her body awakened to his proximity. A whiff of cedar tickled her nose.
“Miss Malboeuf, you would do well to learn the customs of English society. It is my prerogative to turn away callers I do not wish to see. When my butler told you I was not at home, you should have understood it meant I did not wish to give you audience.”
She took a step back, hoping her mind would reengage. “It is still an untruth, which is the same thing as a lie. Why not tell the truth? Then I would have known your intentions from the start.”
The duke clenched his jaw. “Perhaps you should seek out someone who can provide you lessons in deportment.”
“That won’t be necessary, Your Grace. I attended a class on deportment in New Orleans.”
His gaze dropped to her unshod feet. “It’s a pity you weren’t able to complete the course.”
Author bio and links
Ally lives in Texas and is convinced her house is shrinking, possibly because she shares it with three kids, four dogs, a cat, a rabbit, and several reptiles. Oh, and her husband. She likes to curse in Russian and spends most of her spare time letting dogs in and out of the house and shuttling kids around. She writes historical romance set in Regency England and Imperial Russia.
She loves to hear from readers and you can find Ally on her website, Facebook, and Twitter, though she makes no claims of using any of them properly.
Group Blog: http://embracingromance.com
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