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Friday, October 30, 2015

Tasty Book Tours Presents: Forever Your Earl & Scandal Takes The Stage by Eva Leigh; #VirtualTour, #Giveaway & #Review

Forever Your Earl and Scandal Takes the Stage
The Wicked Quills of London # 1 & 2
By: Eva Leigh
Avon Romance
Rating:  4 Stars

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book for review from Tasty Book Tours, the publisher, and the author.  I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own.  I am posting this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255:  "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising".


FOREVER YOUR EARL: The Wicked Quills of London # 1
Publishing with Avon on September 29, 2015

Eleanor Hawke loves a good scandal. And readers of her successful gossip rag live for the exploits of her favorite subject: Daniel Balfour, the notorious Earl of Ashford. So when the earl himself marches into her office one day and invites her to experience his illicit pursuits firsthand, Eleanor is stunned. Gambling hells, phaeton races, masquerades…What more could a scandal writer want than a secret look into the life of this devilishly handsome rake?

Daniel has secrets and if The Hawk’s Eye gets wind of them, a man’s life could be at stake. And what better way to distract a gossip than by feeding her the scandal she desperately craves? But Daniel never expected the sharp mind and biting wit of the beautiful writer, and their desire for each other threatens even his best laid plans.

But when Eleanor learns the truth of his deception, Daniel will do anything to prove a romance between a commoner and an earl could really last forever.

Buy Links:  Amazon | B &NiTunes | Kobo
Goodreads Link:

Goodreads Series Link:

Forever Your Earl Excerpt:

But Lord Ashford up close was rather...appalling.  It didn't seem right that a man so blessed by fortune and title should also be so attractive. 
His dark brown hair was fashionably cut and artfully tousled, as if he'd recently risen from a lover's bed.  Given his reputation, that was most likely possible.   He had a broad forehead, a coin-clean jawline, thick brows, and eyes that, even with yards between her and him, stunned her with their blue clarity.  Naturally, he had a mouth that looked very adept at kissing and...other things. 
He moved with a long-limbed ease that betrayed his skill as a sportsman.  His ink blue coat fit the broad width of his shoulders, and his cream and gold-embroidered waistcoat defined the shape of his torso—his tailor on Jermyn Street produced excellent work.  Snug doeskin breeches were tucked into polished Hessians that came from Bond Street.  
Truly, he was quite alarming.
Miss Hawke?” he asked sharply, coming to stand in front of her paper-cluttered desk.  “I wasn't expecting a female.”
“Neither were my parents,” she answered, “but they learned to adapt.  How might I help you, my lord?”
Though she felt an obligation to ask the question, she braced herself for what was sure to be a scorching lecture.
He removed his hat and set it aside.  Then he held up an issue of The Hawk's Eye and began to read.
“'Lord A—d, a figure well-known to our assiduous and genteel readers, was lately seen in the company of a certain Mrs. F—e, whose late husband made his considerable fortune through the manufacture and sale of a woman's garment we blush to mention in these virtuous pages.'”  He tossed one of the issues to the ground. “Wrong.”
“You cannot deny—”
But he wasn't done.  Holding up another issue of the paper, he read again.  “'It may or may not stun our honorable readers to learn that the notorious Lord A—d has not amended his ways following the duel over Lady L., from Y—shire, and has been espied with another married lady of questionable character, at the late night revels hosted by the equally rakish Mr. S—n.  Yet it was noted by our keen-eyed intelligence that this married lady was not the only female vying for the earl's favors.'” This paper he also cast to the floor.  “Wrong.”
She herself had written those pieces, and while they weren't matchless examples of English prose, she was still rather proud of them, as she was of all her labors.  To have her hard work thrown to the ground like so much garbage was rankling.
“I assure you, my lord,” she said bitingly, “The Hawk's Eye strives for the greatest of accuracy.”  She had a network of sources which she used regularly to provide information.  Many members of the aristocracy were in dire need of funds, and they gladly turned on each other in order to maintain the pretense of effortless wealth.  Eleanor always paid her informants to keep them returning.
Whether or not they lied to her just to collect payment wasn't her concern, but she always preferred it if she could validate their statements.  Sometimes that meant going out and conducting a few investigations.  But she was a very busy woman—writing articles, editing countless others, managing the paper’s finances—and didn't always have the time.

She had to earn a living, after all.  And men like the earl didn't.

SCANDAL TAKES THE STAGE: The Wicked Quills of London #2
Publishing with Avon on October 27, 2015
Successful playwright Maggie Delamere has no interest in the flirtations of noblemen like Cameron, Viscount Marwood. She once paid dearly for a moment of weakness… and vows to rebuff the wildly persistent-and irritatingly handsome-scoundrel at every turn. But when pressure to deliver a new play hampers her creativity, an invitation to use his country estate as a writer’s retreat is too tempting to resist...
For years, Cam has admired Maggie’s brilliant work and he can’t pass up the opportunity to discover if the beautiful, mysterious playwright is as passionate and clever as the words that flow from her quill. He’s never offered a lady his bed without being in it, but if it means loosening Maggie’s pen-and her inhibitions-he’ll do exactly that.
But soon Cam’s plans for seduction become a fight for Maggie’s heart. He’s more than the scandalous, carefree rake society believes him to be… and she’s the only woman who has ever noticed.
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Scandal Takes the Stage Excerpt:
Both Ashford and his wife were elegantly attired for a night out. Lady Ashford, in particular, glowed in blue. Though she was a countess, she prided herself on being a working woman. Yet Cam felt certain that the substantial sapphires around her neck and hanging from her earlobes were placating gestures to her husband. Ashford tried to spoil her at every turn.
The couple stood unfashionably close. Ashford had his hand on the small of his wife’s back.
After kissing Lady Ashford’s gloved knuckles and giving his old friend’s hand a shake, Cam said wryly, “I’m older than I thought, since I’m certain that my eyes are failing. This can’t be Lord and Lady Ashford actually leaving their home. Joining those of us who haven’t found wedded bliss.”
“It’s not our fault that the female population of London considers you an irredeemable rogue,” Ashford said.
His wife smiled warmly. “To women, his reputation acts as a lure, not a deterrent.”
“And yet they’ll find themselves sorely disappointed,” Cam noted, clasping his hands behind his back. “Because this piece of beefsteak is not for sale at Smithfield market.”
Ashford shook his head. “Don’t tell your father. He comes to me almost once a fortnight, despairing of you ever finding a wife.”
Cam rolled his eyes. His father was also Ashford’s godfather, and ever since his friend had married, the efforts to see Cam settled and applying himself to the business of getting an heir had redoubled.
“So much labor,” Cam said with mock sorrow, “and for so little an outcome.”
“You are determined to remain a dedicated bachelor, then?” Lady Ashford pressed, ever the journalist. She used her matching blue fan to cool herself against the oppressive heat in the theater.
“I have a younger brother,” Cam noted. “He has three qualities in his favor that I do not.” Holding up his hand, he enumerated each aspect on his fingers. “One: he has already taken a bride of suitable lineage and fortune. Two: they have produced a child. And third: he has no compunction about assuming the role of Marquess of Allam should anything happen to me.”
Shrugging, Cam said, “There are no obstacles to me continuing to live my life as I so desire it. Free of entanglements.” Free of disappointment.
His parents had a remarkably happy marriage. Whilethey didn’t show affection in public the way the Ashfords did, at home, it was another matter. His mother and father were devoted to each other, brushing hands, exchanging looks, even—God help him—sequestering themselves in the middle of the day in the bedchamber.
It hadn’t been a love match, but it had become one, and Cam knew things like that occurred rarely. What had happened with a seasoned rake like Ashford was the exception, about as common as finding a pearl in an apple.
The only place where love happened consistently was on the stage. It wasn’t meant for the real world. Not meant for him. He’d only find disenchantment if he tried for what couldn’t be.
Which is why he always kept his amorous encounters temporary. 

Most of us don’t do anything as exciting as act; write a book or even a play.  Most of us won’t even have a chance of meeting anyone famous.  But can you even imagine having someone seeking you out because of how much they like what you do?  For Margaret, it seems to be a lonely job and then someone like Cam walks into her life.

This is a story that takes its time in revealing things.  The relationship between these two characters also takes its time.  The theater and the plays seem to take center stage (pardon the pun).  You almost have to wonder how these two people will ever find love – but are they looking for it.  It seemed that every time I turned around I had another question.  In order to get them answered, you have to keep reading.

This is book two of a series and didn’t find that you need to read book one in order to enjoy book two.  Characters from the previous book are mentioned so you may want to take the time and explore Forever Your Earl.  I’m a person that sometimes likes to set the mood for when I read a book and for this one I wished I had an old theater nearby in which to go sit in one of the seats and just sit and read.  Sadly, those theaters are now few and far between.  I can almost hear the organ music playing in the background.  The author does such a great job in creating a story around the theater of old that you may want to research more about the subject yourself – road trip!

Author Info:
EVA LEIGH is the pen name of a RITA® Award-nominated romance author who writes novels chock-full of smart women and sexy men. She enjoys baking, Tweeting about boots, and listening to music from the ‘80s. Eva and her husband live in Central California.

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