Series: Maiden Lane

Sunday Spotlight: Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted October 15, 2017 by Holly in Features | 4 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be  raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

This is it, the last Maiden Lane book. I’m so sad to see the series ending. As part of the blog tour, we’re sharing an excerpt for our Sunday Spotlight this week. I can’t wait to read this book.

Sunday Spotlight: Duke of Desire by Elizabeth HoytDuke of Desire (Maiden Lane, #12) by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane #12
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Sweetest Scoundrel, Duke of Sin, Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5), Duke of Pleasure
Published by Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: October 17th 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 364
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads

A LADY OF LIGHT

Refined, kind, and intelligent, Lady Iris Jordan finds herself the unlikely target of a diabolical kidnapping. Her captors are the notoriously evil Lords of Chaos. When one of the masked-and nude!-Lords spirits her away to his carriage, she shoots him . . . only to find she may have been a trifle hasty.

A DUKE IN DEEPEST DARKNESS

Cynical, scarred, and brooding, Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, has made it his personal mission to infiltrate the Lords of Chaos and destroy them. Rescuing Lady Jordan was never in his plans. But now with the Lords out to kill them both, he has but one choice: marry the lady in order to keep her safe.

CAUGHT IN A WEB OF DANGER . . . AND DESIRE

Much to Raphael's irritation, Iris insists on being the sort of duchess who involves herself in his life-and bed. Soon he's drawn both to her quick wit and her fiery passion. But when Iris discovers that Raphael's past may be even more dangerous than the present, she falters. Is their love strong enough to withstand not only the Lords of Chaos but also Raphael's own demons?

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Excerpt

DUKE OF DESIRE– Short Excerpt

Desperately she flung herself at the opposite seat and tugged it up. Thrust her hand in.

A pistol.

She cocked it, desperately praying that it was loaded.

She turned and aimed it at the door to the carriage just as the door swung open.

The Wolf loomed in the doorway—still nude—a lantern in one hand. She saw the eyes behind the mask flick to the pistol she held between her bound hands. He turned his head and said something in an incomprehensible language to someone outside.

Iris felt her breath sawing in and out of her chest.

He climbed into the carriage and closed the door, completely ignoring her and the pistol pointed at him. The Wolf hung the lantern on a hook and sat on the seat across from her.

Finally he glanced at her. “Put that down.”

His voice was calm. Quiet.

With just a hint of menace.

She backed into the opposite corner, as far away from him as possible, holding the pistol up. Level with his chest. Her heart was pounding so hard it nearly deafened her. “No.”

The carriage jolted into motion, making her stumble before she caught herself.

“T-tell them to stop the carriage,” she said, stuttering with terror despite her resolve. “Let me go now.”

“So that they can rape you to death out there?” He tilted his head to indicate the Lords. “No.”

“At the next village, then.”

“I think not.”

He reached for her and she knew she had no choice.

She shot him.

The blast blew him into the seat and threw her hands up and back, the pistol narrowly missing her nose.

Iris scrambled to her feet. The bullet was gone, but she could still use the pistol as a bludgeon.

The Wolf was sprawled across the seat, blood streaming from a gaping hole in his right shoulder. His mask had been knocked askew on his face.

She reached forward and snatched it off.

And then gasped.

The face that was revealed had once been as beautiful as an angel’s but was now horribly mutilated. A livid red scar ran from just below his hairline on the right side of his face, bisecting the eyebrow, somehow missing the eye itself but gouging a furrow into the lean cheek and catching the edge of his upper lip, making it twist. The scar ended in a missing divot of flesh in the line of the man’s severe jaw. He had inky black hair and, though they were closed now, Iris knew he had emotionless crystal-gray eyes.

She knew because she recognized him.

He was Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, and when she’d danced with him—once—three months ago at a ball, she’d thought he’d looked like Hades.

God of the underworld.

God of the dead.

She had no reason to change her opinion now.

Then he gasped, those frozen crystal eyes opened, and he glared at her. “You idiot woman. I’m trying to save you.”


You guys! Ahhh!

Maiden Lane

Giveaway: We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

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Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author


WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing “mesmerizing.” She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Enter the publisher sponsored giveaway as well! They’re giving away 10 copies of Duke of Desire!


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Guest Review: Duke of Pleasure by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted November 30, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Duke of Pleasure by Elizabeth HoytReviewer: Tracy
Duke of Pleasure by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane #11
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Sweetest Scoundrel, Duke of Sin, Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5)
Published by Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: November 29th 2016
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

IN THE ARMS OF DANGER

Bold. Brave. Brutally handsome. Hugh Fitzroy, the Duke of Kyle, is the king's secret weapon. Sent to defeat the notorious Lords of Chaos, he is ambushed in a London alley—and rescued by an unlikely ally: a masked stranger with the unmistakable curves of a woman.

IN THE HEAT OF DESIRE

Cocky. Clever. Courageously independent. Alf has survived on the perilous streets of St. Giles by disguising her sex. By day she is a boy, dealing in information and secrets. By night she's the notorious Ghost of St. Giles, a masked vigilante. But as she saves Hugh from assassins, she finds herself succumbing to temptation.

ONE KISS WILL CHANGE THEIR LIVES FOREVER

When Hugh hires Alf to investigate the Lords of Chaos, her worlds collide. Once Hugh realizes that the boy and the Ghost are the same, will Alf find the courage to become the woman she needs to be—before the Lords of Chaos destroy them both?

Alf is a woman who has always had to take care of herself.  She’s been living on the streets of St. Giles her whole life and it was easier to pass herself off as a boy than it was to be a girl.  She’s an information collector by day and by night she’s the notorious Ghost of St. Giles.  Though she loves what she does but now that she’s 21 years old she’s also started to think about being a woman and having a family.  She knows it will never be possible for her but that doesn’t stop her from longing for it all.

The Duke of Kyle is enthralled with the Ghost of St. Giles.  She helped him when he was attacked and then proceeded to kiss him.  He finds himself highly intrigued.  He hires Alf to get information about why he was attacked not knowing that she’s the Ghost.  When Alf is hurt he has her stay in his house – not knowing he’s a she.  Alf gets close with his sons and when he finds out that Alf is a woman he can’t seem to keep his mind off of her.  When she learns to dress and act like a proper woman for a job Hugh can’t keep his eyes off of her either.  The chemistry between Hugh and Alf is off the charts but neither one knows how they can make a relationship work. Hugh had been greatly hurt by his wife and didn’t trust his own judgement.  Alf living as a street urchin makes her think that she could never be with a duke.

I have to start by saying I’ve loved Alf since she first came on the page.  Even when I thought she was just a small boy my heart went out to her.  I was extremely happy when I saw that she was getting her own book and it was definitely one worth ready.

Hugh was the perfect guy for Alf.  He had been working for the King (his father) and had been living a life of danger before his wife died and he came home to take care of his children.  Part of his attraction to Alf was her love of intrigue but also her fearlessness.  She wasn’t afraid to take care of those in need and he loved that about her.  He was a good man and loved her whether she was in men’s clothing and being a street urchin or in a dress being a woman.  He could accept all parts of her and that is what makes a good romance, imho.

I have to say that I also really loved the addition of Hugh’s children, Peter and Kit.  Kit was pissed off at his father as he hadn’t been around (Hugh’s wife took many lovers and Hugh left the country).  Hugh was trying to make up for that and show his kids the love he had for them.  It was a very touching part of the story and I was happy that Hoyt included them/it.

Overall I really liked the book and can’t wait for the next one.  I read the excerpt for the next book and I can tell you I’m on pins and needles already.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Guest Review: Once Upon a Moonlit Night by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted July 6, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Once Upon a Moonlit Night by Elizabeth HoytReviewer: Tracy
Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5) by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane #10.5
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Sweetest Scoundrel, Duke of Sin, Duke of Pleasure
Published by Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: July 5th 2016
Genres: Historical Romance
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

Hippolyta Royle is running for her life. Pursued by hounds on a cold rainy night, the heiress flags down a passing carriage and throws herself at the mercy of the coach's occupant. Whoever this handsome traveler may be, he is her only hope to escape a terrible fate. But should he agree to escort her to safety, he's in for much more than he bargained for . . .

At first Matthew Mortimer doesn't believe Hippolyta's story, that she's a fabulously wealthy heiress who's been kidnapped. He assumes she's a beggar, an actress, or worse. But once his new travel companion washes the mud from her surprisingly lovely face, and they share a breathtaking kiss, there is no turning back . . .

Hippolyta Royle is the richest heiress in London and had been kidnapped in the previous book.  She was set free and was running for her life when she found a road and stopped a carriage.  Of course after climbing hill and dale to escape she was an absolute mess and extremely filthy.  She had mud all over her, was soaking wet and smelled horrible.  Luckily the man inside the carriage was nice enough to take her to the next village.

Matthew Mortimer, the new Earl of Paxton, was traveling to London from Edinburgh.  He assumes this bedraggled mess of a woman is a beggar maid or even a prostitute but he doesn’t really want to leave her on the side of the road.  He agrees to take her to the next village but that ends up being hours and hours away.  While the two get to know each other they have their disagreements but after spending two days together Matthew knows that this is the woman for him – no matter who she is.

Such a sweet, charming novella.  I love the Maiden Lane series and was so happy that Hippolyta got her HEA.  Matthew was a bit of a pain to start with but he made me laugh.  I loved how he supported Hippolyta no matter what and that showed the power of his love for her.

We had the extra joy of Tommy Teapot in this novella – a mongoose.  He was a little stinker but a cute and loveable addition to the story.

At the end we got a very small taste of the next full novel, Duke of Pleasure, and I can honestly say I just can’t wait to read it!

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Guest Review: Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted May 31, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Duke of Sin by Elizabeth HoytReviewer: Tracy
Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane #10
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Sweetest Scoundrel, Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5), Duke of Pleasure
Published by Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: May 31st 2016
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

A MAN OF SIN

Devastatingly handsome. Vain. Unscrupulous. Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery, is the man London whispers about in boudoirs and back alleys. A notorious rake and blackmailer, Montgomery has returned from exile, intent on seeking revenge on those who have wronged him. But what he finds in his own bedroom may lay waste to all his plans.

A WOMAN OF HONOR

Born a bastard, housekeeper Bridget Crumb is clever, bold, and fiercely loyal. When her aristocratic mother becomes the target of extortion, Bridget joins the Duke of Montgomery's household to search for the incriminating evidence-and uncovers something far more dangerous.

A SECRET THAT THREATENS TO DESTROY THEM BOTH

Astonished by the deceptively prim-and surprisingly witty-domestic spy in his chambers, Montgomery is intrigued. And try as she might, Bridget can't resist the slyly charming duke. Now as the two begin their treacherous game of cat and mouse, they soon realize that they both have secrets-and neither may be as nefarious-or as innocent-as they appear . . .

Val, the Duke of Montgomery, is a pretty bad guy who seems unredeemable until he meets Bridget. Bridget is his housekeeper and he’s incredibly intrigued by her. He starts to demand her presence more and more and he’s fascinated by the things she tells him about scruples but he almost can’t get his head around it.

Bridget is at the duke’s house under false pretenses. Yes, she’s a housekeeper, and a very good one at that, but she is there to help out her birth mother – to find some letters that Val has that he can blackmail her with. Bridget’s scared of losing her position but she’s also intrigued by the duke. He seems, to the world, an evil man but Bridget sees more in him and is willing to risk her job and her feelings to keep him on the straight and narrow.

This was an interesting story. It definitely wasn’t your typical romance as it involved a man that for the most part almost seemed sociopathic but wasn’t. I truly loved that Elizabeth Hoyt put these two people together because it really is the only way that it would have worked for them. If Val had been an ordinary duke it would have never worked out for the two of them, that’s for sure.

Bridget in this book was a housekeeper but her mother was the daughter of a viscount. She has compassion streaming through her pores and while she loved her position she always wondered about why her mother hadn’t kept her (she knew she was a bastard but still). I loved that she saw Val for the despot he was. She couldn’t understand what he did or why he did it but she still gave it her all to teach him right from wrong.

Val was a piece of work. For a while I truly didn’t think the man could be redeemed. Even when he started his relationship with Bridget he was still working his schemes and I wasn’t sure where the story was going. I thought that the way that Hoyt brought about their ultimate HEA had me believing it was possible but Bridget still had her work cut out for her.

While this certainly wasn’t my favorite book in the series it was a good one. I liked that they slowly fell in love and it wasn’t a foregone conclusion that it would all end well; I liked that Bridget wasn’t a raving beauty but was an ordinary looking woman; I liked that the author didn’t try to make me believe that Val had been completely rehabilitated by the end of the book. These elements along with the romance involved made this worth reading.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Guest Review: Sweetest Scoundrel by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted November 20, 2015 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Sweetest Scoundrel by Elizabeth HoytReviewer: Tracy
Sweetest ScoundrelSeries: Maiden Lane #9
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Duke of Sin, Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5), Duke of Pleasure
Published by Forever
Publication Date: November 24, 2015
Genres: Historical Romance
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

SHE'S TAKING CHARGE

Prim, proper, and thrifty, Eve Dinwoody is all business when it comes to protecting her brother's investment. But when she agrees to control the purse strings of London's premier pleasure garden, Harte's Folly, she finds herself butting heads with an infuriating scoundrel who can't be controlled.

HE'S RUNNING THE SHOW

Bawdy and bold, Asa Makepeace doesn't have time for a penny-pinching prude like Eve. As the garden's larger-than-life owner, he's already dealing with self-centered sopranos and temperamental tenors. He's not about to let an aristocratic woman boss him around . . . no matter how enticing she is.

BUT LOVE CONQUERS ALL

In spite of her lack of theatrical experience—and her fiery clashes with Asa—Eve is determined to turn Harte's Folly into a smashing success. But the harder she tries to manage the stubborn rake, the harder it is to ignore his seductive charm and raw magnetism. There's no denying the smoldering fire between them—and trying to put it out would be the greatest folly of all.

Eve Dinwoody is the illegitimate sister of the Duke of Montgomery, and is his “man” of business as well. She’s holding the purse strings to her brother’s investment into the reconstruction of Harte’s Folly and Eve isn’t thrilled with Mr. Harte and the money he’s been – at least to her thoughts – spending recklessly.

When Eve first confronts Harte he is in dishabille with the woman hired to sing in the opera on opening night at Harte’s Folly. She’s not taken with the man at all but when he shows her the garden and is so very passionate about it she starts to see a different person. Mr. Harte, who’s real name is Asa Makepeace, lives for the theatre. He loves it so much that he became disowned by his father because of it. He lives, eats and breathes the Folly and won’t allow Eve to cut off his funds. Eve agrees, because of her brother’s goading, to contin ue to supply Asa with funds but strange things start happening around the garden and lives get put into danger.

Asa gets to know Eve and the more he’s around her the more he likes her. He doesn’t understand his feelings but he’s not a stupid man and isn’t willing to question them too deeply. He knows he wants her but even he can’t predict how much he’ll end up caring for the lady.

This was a wonderful story. I have long waited for Asa’s story and reading about Eve in the last book piqued my interest even more. I love this pairing as it was just so very unlikely!

Eve, though she has some emotional scarring from her past deals with Asa beautifully. She pushes him to levels he didn’t think anyone could and is happy to do it for her. She, at first, can’t stand for any man to touch her other than her bodyguard but soon Asa has gotten under her skin and she’s enjoying his touch.

The story is a bit suspenseful and very sexy – as I find all of Elizabeth Hoyt’s books – and that’s a definite plus in my book. I am intrigued by the Duke of Montgomery and what he’s up to, that’s for sure.

It was great to see the other members of the Makepeace family in this story as well and catch up with them a bit. It wasn’t for long but just enough that it made me want to go back and start the series over again.

I found Sweetest Scoundrel to be a great addition to the Maiden Lane series and can’t wait for the next book!

four-stars


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