Contemporary, Historical, Romance
When the Earl of Merton suddenly finds himself playing the knight in shining armor to a damsel in distress, he knows his days as a notorious rake are numbered. But though the lady seems grateful for his assistance, she flees the scene without revealing her name. And though past scandals and present dangers threaten his pursuit of the mysterious lady, he knows she is to be his destiny.
The Peculiar Case of Lord Finsbury's Diamonds (Casebook of Barnaby Adair)
Penelope Adair, wife and partner of amateur sleuth Barnaby Adair, is so hugely pregnant she cannot even waddle. When Barnaby is summoned to assist Inspector Stokes of Scotland Yard in investigating the violent murder of a gentleman at a house party, Penelope, frustrated that she cannot participate, insists that she and Griselda, Stokes’s wife, be kept informed of their husbands’ discoveries. Yet what Barnaby and Stokes uncover only leads to more questions. The murdered gentleman had been thrown out of the house party days before, so why had he returned? And how and why did he come to have the fabulous Finsbury diamond necklace in his pocket, much to Lord Finsbury’s consternation? Most peculiar of all, why had the murderer left the necklace, worth a stupendous fortune, on the body? The conundrums compound as our intrepid investigators attempt to make sense of this baffling case. Meanwhile, the threat of scandal grows ever more tangible for all those attending the house party – and the stakes are highest for Lord Finsbury’s daughter and the gentleman who has spent the last decade resurrecting his family fortune so he can aspire to her hand. Working parallel to Barnaby and Stokes, the would-be lovers hunt for a path through the maze of contradictory facts to expose the murderer, disperse the pall of scandal, and claim the love and the shared life they crave.
An Unwilling Conquest
Self-proclaimed rake Harry Lester has no intention of being ensnared by the trap of marriage. With a large inheritance to his name, Harry knows that he'd best start running from London's matchmaking mothers and widows. But when he encounters Mrs. Lucinda Babbacombe, a beautiful, independent widow, he cannot quell his desire for her. Before he knows it, Harry finds himself prisoner in the most passionate of traps.
A Lady of Expectations
Jack Lester seeks the perfect bride—one who is attractive and kind but who also loves him in spite of his wealth. Which is why he keeps this trifling detail hidden. But when Sophie Winterton enters his life, believing he must marry into wealth to run his family's estate, how will he convince her that she is the woman he desires—and that he can be the husband she deserves?
Rose in Bloom: A Novella with Bonus Excerpts
Every Rose has its thorn . . . especially Rose MacKenzie-Craddock! When they were children, the willful girl was the thorn in the Earl of Strathyre's side. Now, as a beautiful woman, Rose drives the Earl wild with desire. But even grown-ups can play some most interesting games...
The Wedding Planner
She planned every wedding of importance…but never her own.Was that now about to change? Beautiful Lady Margaret Dawlish, the daughter of a duke, is proud to plan the ton's most important weddings—including that of a prince! But now it's Lady Margaret who falls in love, with dashing Gaston Devilliers, the Duke of Perigord. This breathtaking man always ends up where he wants to be—and, in this case, that means in Margaret's arms! And, suddenly, her best-laid plans to guard her heart come completely undone.
Scandalous Lord Dere: A Novella from Secrets of a Perfect Night
Once upon a time, a young woman attended a New Year's Eve ball...The moon shone brightly, music filled the air. Kisses were stolen and promises made. But what happens when morning comes? A new year brings new scandal when a rake awakens in the bed of the flame-haired temptress who had seduced him years before. All of society has them bedded, but can he convince her to become wedded?
Lost and Found: A Novella from Hero, Come Back
Reggie Carmathen needs to marry. His mother insists, and even his friends are hinting, so before he has some young chit thrust upon him, Reggie decides to choose his own bride. But then he stumbles over Anne Ashford, a quiet, gentle English rose and a long time family acquaintance, who, shockingly, seems determined to go where ladies should not tread . . . unable to refuse a damsel in need, through their adventures Reggie uncovers hidden depths—in both Anne and himself. Could fate at last have sent Cupid after Reggie?
The Seduction of Sebastian Trantor: A Novella from It Happened One Season
Sebastian Trantor is in need of a wife. But although he's scouted the ballrooms, drawing rooms, and salons of London, he's yet to find a single worthwhile candidate in the young ladies paraded before him. They simper; they giggle; they are completely unsuitable. Then, he discovers Tabitha Makepeace—breaking into a desk! He quickly realizes that this clever and resourceful young lady is the bride for him—but how is he to convince her of that?
The Fall of Rogue Gerrard: A Novella from It Happened One Night
Robert "Rogue" Gerrard's reputation paints him as one of the ton's most notorious rakes. But once, long ago, he fell in love . . . and he's never forgotten the scintillating emotion he, then too young, turned his back on. But one stormy night, he discovers himself stranded at an inn—with his childhood sweetheart, Lydia Makepeace, who has no business being there alone. Lydia, meanwhile, is horrified to find the one man in England guaranteed to protect her—standing between her and the scandalous letter she must, simply must, retrieve.
A Return Engagement
Everyone's eyes are on a royal couple, but there is more behind the scenes than they'll ever know. Lady Nell Daughtry is certain her sister will be a perfect princess, if only she gets the reluctant bride safely to the church to marry Prince Frederick of Lautenberg. But what she doesn't know is that, in the wedding party, she's been paired with her former fiancé, Robert Knightly … and now she'll be face-to-face with the man who walked away.
1347. Calais has finally fallen and Alaun de Montisfryth, first Earl of Montisfryn, powerful Marcher lord and companion of Edward III, is dispatched back to England with orders to secure the Welsh border. Halfway home, pride tempts Montisfryn to attend a tournament held by his family’s old foes at Versallet Castle. Eloise de Versallet, the widowed Lady de Cannar, rules her father’s castle with a tongue sharper than any sword. She has no great opinion of men in general and of knights in particular. Montisfryn and Eloise meet and sparks fly. He is intrigued. She is irritated. He is under royal edict to wed. An experienced lady, well-born, still young, and exceedingly well-endowed with both wealth and beauty, Eloise is a matrimonial prize beyond compare—and has vowed to remain unwed. Potent and powerful, will Montisfryn be able to breach her walls, storm her castle, and succeed where all others have failed? Or will Eloise, haughty and defiant to the last, prevail? The gauntlet is flung, the challenge accepted. And desire enters the fray.
The Lady Risks All
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae, romance fiction superstar Stephanie Laurens has done it again with this passionate tale of an oh-so-proper lady and the dangerous man for whom she throws caution to the wind. The Lady Risks All in this delightfully sexy and sensuous historical romance novel from the creator of the recklessly romantic Cynster family—Regency England’s most irrepressible clan of sexy rogues and ladies—as well as the acclaimed Bastion Club books. The notorious Neville Roscoe, who lives boldly outside the bounds of proper society, is one of Laurens’s most unforgettable heroes—and the story of his seduction of prim, straight-laced Miranda Clifford is filled with intrigue, danger, and passion that will thrill not only Stephanie Laurens fans, but devoted readers of Lisa Kleypas, Johanna Lindsey, and Mary Balogh as well.
The Promise in a Kiss (Cynsters series)
What would you do if you were kissed by the most handsome stranger you'd ever seen? And what if that man was a Cynster? Every girl—even convent-educated ones—dreams of forbidden kisses. So when a man literally falls at Helena's feet as she's walking through the courtyard one moonlit Christmas Eve, the pretty, young comtesse d'Lisle knows he's up to no good. He's clearly a bit dangerous... and obviously caught in the middle of a clandestine rendezvous. Why else would he have risked his neck and jumped out of a window into the snow? It's wrong, it's outlandish . . . and it's the most utterly romantic gesture she's ever seen. So when the good sisters rush up, demanding to know ifshe has seen a man on the grounds, Helena ignores the years of strict upbringing that insist she reveal his presence. To lie would be a sin, but 'no one can be good all the time. As a reward for her silence, the stranger takes her in his arms and enticingly, unforgettably kisses her—and then departs, leaving a lingering if unspoken promise of all that might be, should fate decree that they meet again. Although Helena doesn't know it, her wild Englishman is Sebastian Cynster, Duke of St. Ives, a nobleman who will prove to be her destiny. Seven years later, Helena has been transformed from a pretty schoolgirl to an aristocratic beauty. Her sparkling wit has made her sought after by London's hostesses; her considerable dowry has made winning her hand the aim of many a gentleman . . . but she is deadeningly aware of how boring so many ofthese gentlemen are. Her manipulative guardian has unexpectedly allowed her to find a husband of her own choosing, and she has no intention of marrying any man who tries to tame her. There must be someone perfect for her . . . someone who can live up to the promise ofthat long-ago kiss. Then, at a ball, fate strikes. Once again, it is the Christmas season, and across the crowded room Helena stands transfixed . . . for there is the man whose kiss she has never forgotten, the man of her memory whom no other has ever been able to supplant. Her wild, mysterious Englishman, Sebastian Cynster, Duke of St. Ives. One look, and he's determined to reclaim her . . . .
Miss Dorothea Darent has no intention of ever getting married, certainly not to a rogue such as the Marquis of Hazelmere. A disreputable scoundrel, he is captivated when they meet by chance and is determined to win her heart, even while she's busy dazzling the rest of London society. Now Dorothea has a choice to make: stick with her plan to remain a respectable spinster, or run into the arms of her dashing stranger…
The Curious Case of Lady Latimer's Shoes: A Casebook of Barnaby Adair Novel
With her husband, amateur-sleuth the Honorable Barnaby Adair, decidedly eccentric fashionable matron Penelope Adair is attending the premier event opening the haut ton’s Season when a body is discovered in the gardens. A lady has been struck down with a finial from the terrace balustrade. Her family is present, as are the cream of the haut ton—the shocked hosts turn to Barnaby and Penelope for help. Barnaby calls in Inspector Basil Stokes and they begin their investigation. Penelope assists by learning all she can about the victim’s family, and uncovers a feud between them and the Latimers over the fabulous shoes known as Lady Latimer’s shoes, currently exclusive to the Latimers. The deeper Penelope delves, the more convinced she becomes that the murder is somehow connected to the shoes. She conscripts Griselda, Stokes’s wife, and Violet Montague, now Penelope’s secretary, and the trio set out to learn all they can about the people involved, and most importantly the shoes, a direction vindicated when unexpected witnesses report seeing a lady fleeing the scene—wearing Lady Latimer’s shoes. But nothing is as it seems, and the more Penelope and her friends learn about the shoes, conundrums abound, compounded by a Romeo-and-Juliet romance and escalating social pressure…until at last the pieces fall into place, and finally understanding what has occurred, the six intrepid investigators race to prevent an even worse tragedy.
It Happened One Night
Proper Southerner Harley June Beaumont had come to Vegas to be her best friend's maid of honor, so how had she woken up the next morning in bed with the best-looking man she'd ever known? She had absolutely no memory of the night before, but the "Junie loves Sam" tattoo on her hip told her she'd had quite a time, and so did her handsome bedmate—who claimed to be her husband! She didn't even remember meeting firefighter Sam Clay, just dancing and drinking and having a good time—a good time that stopped well short of a trip to the tattoo parlor, much less the altar. With nothing to do but brazen things out in front of her very proper family, Harley embarked on married life with no expectation that it could possibly last. But Sam turned out to be the whole package, and pretty soon she found herself thinking that sometimes it's a good thing that what happens in Vegas doesn't stay there.
In Pursuit of Eliza Cynster: A Cynster Novel (Cynster Sisters Trilogy Book 2)
The pleasure of your company is requested at thewedding of Miss Eliza Cynster . . . but not until she’srescued from a daring abduction by the mostunexpected of heroes! Brazenly kidnapped from her sister Heather’s engagement ball, Eliza Cynster is spirited north to Edinburgh.Desperate and determined to escape, she seizes uponthe first possible champion who happens along—gentleman scholar Jeremy Carling. Villains and rescues are a far cry from Jeremy’s expertise,yet he cannot abandon a damsel in distress. But dangerlurks and hurdles abound in their race to escapethe mysterious laird, until a final confrontation on awindswept cliff reveals what their future life could hold—if both are bold enough to capture and own theunexpected love they now share.
Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue: A Cynster Novel (Cynster Sisters Trilogy Book 1)
The Cynsters are back in a brilliant new series from USA Today and New York Times bestseller Stephanie Laurens! Fans adore Laurens’s irrepressible fictional family of sexy scoundrels and passionate ladies and their amorous Regency Era exploits. In Laurens’s sensational new Cynster historical romance, it’s Viscount Breckenridge to the Rescue when feisty Heather Cynster steps out of her safe, dull social circle in search of a dashing hero to wed…and ends up kidnapped, scandalized and whisked out of London, with her only hope for salvation—and love—resting with a notorious rogue lord.
The Reasons for Marriage
Miss Lenore Lester was perfectly content with her quiet country life, so she took steps to remain inconspicuous when managing her brothers’ house parties–but to no avail! Though Lenore hid behind glasses and pulled-back hair, she couldn’t disguise her beauty. The notoriously charming Jason Montgomery, Duke of Eversleigh, easily saw behind Miss Lenore’s brilliant disguise, and while she was determined not to be thrown off balance by this charming rake, he was equally determined to loosen the hold she had on her heart.
1822. After years of adventuring in exotic India, wealthy rakehell Lord Dyan St. Laurent Dare has been forced to return to England and assume the title of the 4th Duke of Darke, along with the attendant responsibilities, chief of which is to marry and produce an heir. Seeking to escape familial pressure, Dyan drops in on old friends whose house parties are a scandalous secret among society's elite, but, along with his hosts, Dyan is astonished when his childhood sweetheart, Lady Fiona Winton-Ryder, nicknamed Lady Arctic, unexpectedly arrives. Fiona had scornfully dismissed him fifteen years before, and Dyan had left not just her but England, yet their long-ago, simmering attraction has only intensified...now it sizzles. Fiona has come to save a friend from a compromising situation, but the shock of encountering masterful, arrogant, senses-stealing Dyan after so many years takes her breath away and leaves her emotionally teetering. Nevertheless, coolly assured and every bit the earl's daughter, she remains determined to rescue her friend, but will she be able to ignore her lifetime fascination and evade Dyan? Dyan knows this party is no place for a lady like Fiona, but, by using the heat of the moment, could he - just possibly - melt Lady Arctic's ice, and, at last, capture her heart?
The Reckless Bride (The Black Cobra Quartet Book 4)
The fourth book in New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Stephanie Laurens’s sensational Black Cobra Quartet, The Reckless Bride is a brilliant mix of intrigue, danger, and historical romance from one of the very best in the business. A breathtaking adventure set in England’s Regency Era, The Reckless Bride continues the acclaimed romance novelist’s extraordinary chronicle of love and duty, as brave ex-officers of the Crown band together to destroy the traitorous fiend known as The Black Cobra.
The Brazen Bride (The Black Cobra Quartet Book 3)
The third book in New York Times bestselling author Stephanie Laurens’s sensational Black Cobra Quartet, The Brazen Bride ingeniously blends intrigue and danger with sizzling, passionate love. With ties to Laurens’s wildly popular Cynster novels, The Brazen Bride—and the other breathtaking installments in her magnificent four-book adventure—will enthrall her devoted fans and every reader who craves historical romance rich in excitement and peril.
The Elusive Bride (The Black Cobra Quartet Book 2)
Stephanie Laurens, the phenomenal New York Times bestselling superstar is back with The Elusive Bride—the second book in her magnificent Black Cobra Quartet. Never before in print, this masterful blend of passion and intrigue follows The Untamed Bride, the first in the four-part historical romance series that Booklist calls, “fabulously entertaining.” A spellbinding tale of destiny, duty, desire, and peril—with ties to her popular Bastion Club novels and her well-loved romantic adventures featuring the endearing family of rogues, the Cynsters—The Elusive Bride confirms Laurens’s well-deserved standing as one of the genre’s premier storytellers.
The Untamed Bride (The Black Cobra Quartet Book 1)
The first book in a brand-new series, The Black Cobra Quartet, from New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author Stephanie Laurens, The Untamed Bride is the story of a bold, beautiful woman with a scandalous past and a battle-hardened, sinfully wealthy, completely unstoppable man who must join forces to fight a deadly foe known only as the Black Cobra—and who must also confront the dangers of the heart . . .
Loving Rose: The Redemption of Malcolm Sinclair (Casebook of Barnaby Adair 3)
Miraculously spared from death, Malcolm Sinclair erases the notorious man he once was. Reinventing himself as Thomas Glendower, he strives to make amends for his past, yet he never imagines penance might come via a secretive lady he discovers living in his secluded manor. Rose has a plausible explanation for why she and her children are residing in Thomas's house, but she quickly realizes he's far too intelligent to fool. Revealing the truth is impossibly dangerous, yet day by day he wins her trust, and then her heart. But then her enemy closes in, and Rose turns to Thomas as the only man who can protect her and the children. And when she asks for his help, Thomas finally understands his true purpose, and with unwavering commitment, he seeks his redemption the only way he can—through living the reality of loving Rose.
The Masterful Mr. Montague (Casebook of Barnaby Adair 2)
Montague has devoted his life to managing the wealth of London’s elite, but at a huge cost: a family of his own. Then the enticing Miss Violet Matcham seeks his help, and in the puzzle she presents him, he finds an intriguing new challenge professionally . . . and personally. Violet, devoted lady-companion to the aging Lady Halstead, turns to Montague to reassure her ladyship that her affairs are in order. But the famous Montague is not at all what she’d expected—this man is compelling, decisive, supportive, and strong—everything Violet needs in a champion, a position to which Montague rapidly lays claim. But then Lady Halstead is murdered and Violet and Montague, aided by Barnaby Adair, Inspector Stokes, Penelope, and Griselda, race to expose a cunning and cold-blooded killer who stalks closer and closer. Will Montague and Violet learn the shocking truth too late to seize their chance at enduring love?
Where the Heart Leads (Casebook of Barnaby Adair 1)
Penelope Ashford, Portia Cynster's younger sister, has grown up with every advantage—wealth, position, and beauty. Yet Penelope is anything but a pretty face in a satin gown—forceful, willful, and blunt to a fault, she has for years devoted her considerable energy and intelligence to caring for the forgotten orphans of London's sooty and seamier streets. But now her charges are mysteriously disappearing. Desperate, Penelope turns to the one man she knows who might help her—Barnaby Adair. Handsome scion of a noble house, Adair has made a name for himself in certain circles where his powers of observation and deduction have seen him solve several serious and unsavory crimes within the ton. His pedigree, relentless intelligence, and discretion make him a deadly avenger in an elegant guise. Despite his skills—or perhaps because of them—he makes Penelope distinctly uncomfortable, but the stakes are too grave. Throwing caution to the wind, defying every rule for unmarried ladies, she appears on his doorstep late one night determined to recruit his talents. Barnaby is intrigued—both by her problem and her. Her bold beauty and undeniable brains make a striking contrast to the usual insipid ton misses. And as he's in dire need of an excuse to avoid said insipid misses, he accepts her challenge, never dreaming she and it will consume his every waking hour. Enlisting the aid of Inspector Basil Stokes of the fledgling Scotland Yard, they infiltrate the streets of London's notorious East End. But as they unravel the mystery of the missing orphans, they uncover a trail leading to the upper echelons of society and a ruthless and clever criminal adept at pulling strings who, becoming aware of them and their efforts, is only too ready to destroy all they hold dear, including their newfound understanding of the intrigues of the human heart.
Captain Jack's Woman (Bastion Club Book)
They meet in a clash of swords, drenched in the moonlight of Britain’s rugged eastern coast: Captain Jack, his handsome features etched in silver and shadow, his powerful physique compelling “Kit” Cranmer to surrender. He is her dream lover come vividly alive, and his command of the smuggling gang is absolute. His all-knowing gaze penetrates her disguise as the “lad” leader of a rival gang with frightening ease and his “punishment” with kisses leaves her maidenly modesty in tatters. Suddenly Kit finds she’s only too delighted to explore with Jack the pleasures conventionally reserved for married ladies . . . little knowing what dangerous forces she’s unleashing. For even as Kit revels in midnight gallops and cottage rendezvous, Captain Jack is laying a gentle trap that will curtail her freedom . . . and bind her to him with a ring, a promise . . . and ties of devotion and desire.
Mastered By Love (Bastion Club Book 8)
The men of the Bastion Club proved their bravery secretly fighting for their country. Now their leader faces that most dangerous mission of all: finding a bride. As the mysterious leader of the Bastion Club known as "Dalziel," Royce Varisey, tenth Duke of Wolverstone, served his country for decades, facing dangers untold. But as the holder of one of England's most august noble titles, he must now take on that gravest duty of all: marriage. Yet the young ladies the grand dames would have him consider are predictably boring. Far more tempting is his castle's willful and determinedly aloof chatelaine, Minerva Chesterton. Beneath her serene façade lies a woman of smoldering sensuality, one who will fill his days with comfort and his nights with sheer pleasure. Determined to claim her, he embarks on a seduction to prove his mastery over every inch of her body . . . and every piece of her heart.
The Edge of Desire (Bastion Club Book 7)
When Christian Allardyce, 6th Marquess of Dearne, reads those words, his world turns upside down. Lady Letitia Randall is a woman like no other, and the day he left her behind to fight for king and country was the most difficult of his life. He never forgot the feel of her lips against his, but never expects to see her again. Yet now she seeks his help, and Christian knows he will not resist her plea. Letitia believes that Christian abandoned her when she needed him most, and she hates to call on his aid. But to clear her brother's name, she has sworn to use every weapon at her command, even if it means seducing her ex-lover. Yet all the while, Christian is waging a war of his own—a campaign of pure pleasure and sweet revenge that will take them both beyond The Edge of Desire.
Beyond Seduction (Bastion Club Book 6)
In a moment of recklessness, Gervase Tregarth, 6th Earl of Crowhurst, swears he'll marry the next eligible lady to cross his path. Cloistered at his ancestral castle in Cornwall, with nary a suitable woman for miles, he never expects he'll have to fulfill his pledge, at least not until the London Season begins. But then he meets his neighbor, the very appealing Madeline Gascoigne. Years of secret service to the Crown have taught Gervase the value of always having a loophole—there will be no wedding if he and Madeline are incompatible in any way. So he sets out to prove that they would make a most dreadful match . . . by luring her into his arms and, ultimately, his bed. From their very first kiss, Gervase discovers that the headstrong and independent Madeline is no meek country miss . . . and that the fire between them will burn long beyond that first seduction.
To Distraction (Bastion Club Book 5)
The gentlemen of the Bastion Club have proven their courage while fighting England's enemies, but nothing has prepared them for dealing with that most formidable of challenges: the opposite sex. Deverell, Viscount Paignton, is in desperate need of a wife. Unmoved by the matchmaking “herd,” he seeks help from his aunt, who directs him to a lady she vows is perfect for him. Dispatched to a country house party to look the lady over, he discovers her not swanning about among the guests but with her nose buried in a book in the library. Phoebe Malleson is tempted to distraction by Deverell, but marrying him isn't part of her plan. Moved by an incident in her past, Phoebe has a secret cause to which she's committed. Unfortunately, telling Deverell to go away doesn't work, and he quickly learns of her secret. But someone powerful has her cause targeted for destruction and her in their sights. Phoebe must accept Deverell's help…though the cost to them both might be dear and deadly.
A Fine Passion (Bastion Club Book 4)
The men of the Bastion Club are powerful, loyal, and not averse to overcoming danger if they must. Now, after years of loyal service to the Crown, they each-one by one-must face that greatest daner of all...love. The last of his line, Jack, Baron Warnefleet, has fled London after nearly being compromised into marrying a dreadful female. Turning his back on the entire notion of marriage, he rides home to the estate he has not seen for years, determined to set in motion an alternative course of action. But then in the lane before his gate, Jack rescues a startingly beautiful lady from a menacing, unmanageable horse. However, while he begins by taking command, the lady continues by taking it back. Ldy Clarice Altwood is no meek and mild miss. She is the anthesis of the woolly-headed young ladies Jack has rejected as not for him. Clarice is delectably attractive, beyond eligible, undeniably capable,and completely unfortgettable. Why on earth is she rusticating in the country?
A Lady of His Own (Bastion Club Book 3)
The seven members of the Bastion Club have served loyally in the perilous service of the Crown. Now they've banded together to support one another through their most dangerous mission of all: getting married. When Charles St. Austell returns home to claim his title as earl, and to settle quickly on a suitable wife as well, he discovers that experience has made him impatient of the young ladies who vie for his attention—with the exception of Lady Penelope Selborne. Years ago, Charles and Penelope's youthful ardor was consummated in an unforgettable afternoon. Charles is still haunted by their interlude, but Penny refuses to have anything more to do with him. If controlling her heart was difficult before, resisting a stronger, battle-hardened Charles is well nigh impossible, yet Penelope has vowed she won't make the same mistake twice, nor will she marry without love. But when a traitorous intrigue draws them together, then ultimately threatens them both—will Penny discover she has a true protector in Charles, her first and only love, who now vows to make her his own?
A Gentleman's Honor (Bastion Club Book 2)
The Season has yet to begin, and the second member of the Bastion Club, tall, handsome Anthony Blake, Viscount Torrington, is already a target for every matchmaking mama in London. None of their flighty daughters can fix his interest, but a certain lady does... Alicia is living a deception. Desperation has caused the determined but penniless lady to boldly launch her ravishing younger sister into the ton and have her make a spectacular match. By masquerading as the widowed "Mrs. Carrington" Alicia can act as the perfect chaperone…but fashionable ladies are not accused of murder... When Tony Blake discovers Alicia standing over a dead body in his godmother’s garden, every instinct tells him she is innocent. His connections allow him to take control of the investigation, his social prominence provides her public support, but it is more than honor that compels him to protect her and to do everything in his seductive power to make her his.
The Lady Chosen (Bastion Club Book 1)
Tristan Wemyss, Earl of Trentham, never expected he'd need to wed within a year or forfeit his inheritance. But he is not one to bow to the matchmaking mamas of the ton. No, he will marry a lady of his own choosing. And the lady he chooses is the enchanting neighbor living with her family next door. Miss Leonora Carling has beauty, spirit and passion; unfortunately, matrimony is the last thing on her mind . . . To Leonora, Tristan's kisses are oh-so-tempting, but once bitten, forever shy, she has determinedly turned her back on marriage. But Tristan is a seasoned campaigner who will not accept defeat. And when a mysterious man attempts to scare Leonora and her family from their home, Tristan realizes he's been given the perfect excuse to offer his services—as protector, seducer and, ultimately, husband.
Temptation and Surrender (Cynster Book 15)
Stephanie Laurens continues her bestselling Cynster series with Temptation and Surrender, the story of Jonas Tallent, brother-in-law of Lucifer Cynster, who leaves the ballrooms of London to manage his family’s estate, and his romance with lady innkeeper Emily Beauregard.
The Taste of Innocence (Cynster Book 14)
For no gentleman is this more true than Charles Morwellan, the eighth Earl of Meredith. Although he's seen the many successful unions of his Cynster connections, he has also watched his father's obsessions nearly destroy their family and fortune, a mistake Charles will not repeat. But as Lord Meredith he must marry, so he offers for Sarah, the daughter of his neighbors Lord and Lady Conningham. She's intelligent enough to run his social life, beautiful enough to grace his arm, and old enough to know the value of his offer. For most young ladies of the ton, the right marriage is the culmination of years of training, perfect deportment, and intricate plans that would impress a general. But as a lady of independent means with a life of her own, Sarah is unwilling to wed unless it is for unbounded love. But Charles always gets what he wants. He convinces Sarah to give him two weeks to win her; if he succeeds, they will marry immediately. And so begins an intense courtship. By day, Charles and Sarah are models of decorum indulging in innocuous walks, polite conversation, sedate waltzes. Each night they steal away to the lush, moonlit gardens, where sensual embraces turn to searing kisses, and much, much more. Both are swept away on a tide of passion and feeling neither can resist. And yet, after the wedding, despite nights of insatiable passion, Charles remains aloof, as if the near-sinful sweetness of their nights exists only in a dream. Sarah battles to prove that true love is a force that can't be contained, a gift worth fighting for, but it's only when she's engulfed in a web of increasingly dangerous incidents that Charles discovers how much he's willing to surrender to protect . . . the taste of innocence.
What Price Love? (Cynster Book 13)
There is nothing more fascinating than a darkly handsome rake, especially one as controlled and elusive as Dillon Caxton, protégé of Demon Cynster. Despite his dangerous air, Dillon is a man of sterling reputation, but it wasn't always so. Years ago, an illicit scheme turned into a nefarious swindle, and only the help of his cousin, Felicity, and her husband, Demon, saved Dillon from ruin. Now impeccably honest, he guards his hard-won reputation and is the Keeper of the Register of all racing horses in England. His standing and aloofness make Dillon undeniably desirable to young ladies, but despite all the lures thrown his way, he remains uninterested -- his attention unfixed. Until "Miss Priscilla Dalling" erupts into his life. A stunning beauty, she affects Dillon as no other ever has, but what fascinates him even more is that this tempting young lady is clearly desperate, and equally clearly lying about wanting to see the Register to fulfill the whim of an eccentric aunt. Lady Priscilla Dalloway will do anything to see what's in the Register -- even lie! Her twin brother, Russell, who had fought with their father and left the family home to work with the finest racehorses, has disappeared. Pris knows that clues to his whereabouts can be found in the tome Dillon Caxton refuses to let her see. She unleashes her feminine wiles on Dillon -- to no avail. But Dillon is now determined to learn the truth behind her quest. Exploiting the powerful attraction that flares between them, he succeeds in convincing Pris to tell him all, to trust him with her twin's life. Together, Dillon and Pris locate Rus, only to discover that his life is being threatened by the perpetrators of a massive betting swindle. The time is ripe for Dillon to repay old debts by helping another as he himself was helped. Assisted by Demon, Felicity, and Barnaby Adair, Dillon and Pris embark on a journey riddled with danger -- and undeniable passion -- as they seek to overturn the swindle and expose Rus's deadly enemies. And along the way they discover the answer to that age-old question: What price love?
The Truth About Love (Cynster Book 12)
Gerrard Debbington, Vane Cynster's brother-in-law, is one of London's most eligible gentlemen. Uninterested in marriage, his driving passion is to paint the fabled gardens of Lord Tregonning's Hellebore Hall -- an opportunity that is now at hand...if Gerrard agrees to create an honest portrait of Tregonning's daughter as well. Gerrard chafes at wasting his talents on some simpering miss, only to discover that Jacqueline Tregonning stirs him as no other. Certainly, she is beautiful, but it is her passionate nature that strikes sparks with Gerrard's own, igniting desire and sweeping them into each other's arms, convincing Gerrard that he has found his ideal soul mate -- the lady he must have as his wife. But something is horribly wrong at Hellebore Hall. Evil and lies are reaching out to ensnare Jacqueline -- and Gerrard will have to move Heaven and Earth to protect the remarkable woman who, for him, personifies the truth about love...
The Ideal Bride (Cynster Book 11)
Michael Anstruther-Wetherby is a rising member of Parliament—a man destined for power. Aristocratic, elegant, and effortlessly charming, he is just arrogant enough to capture the interest of the ladies of the ton. And with his connections to the wealthy and influential Cynster family—his sister is married to Devil Cynster, the Duke of St. Ives—his future appears assured. Except that Michael lacks the single most important element of success: a wife. Political pressure sends him searching for his ideal bride, a gently bred, malleable young lady, preferably one with a political background. Michael discovers such a paragon but finds a formidable obstacle in his path—the young lady's beautiful, strong-minded aunt—Caroline Sutcliffe. One of London's foremost diplomatic hostesses, Caro has style and status but, having lived through an unhappy political marriage, wants nothing of the sort for her niece, who has already lost her heart to another. So Caro and the younger woman hatch a plot—Caro will demonstrate why an inexperienced young lady is not the bride for Michael. She succeeds in convincing him that what he really needs is a lady of experience by his side. And the perfect candidate is right under his nose—Caro herself. Then it is Michael's turn to be persuasive, a task that requires every ounce of his seductive charm as he tempts and tantalizes Caro, seeking to convince her that becoming his bride will bring her all her heart desires . . . and more. But then a series of mysterious, and dangerous, accidents befall Caro—an assailant has stepped in with their own idea for Caro's future—one that could involve murder. Before Caro can become Michael's ideal bride, they must race to uncover the unknown's identity before all hope of what they long for, and wish for, is destroyed.
The Perfect Lover (Cynster Book 10)
Never let it be said that a Cynster male can't face up to the one unassailable truth: A successful marriage gives life its fullest meaning. To all of English society, Simon Frederick Cynster has a perfect life—one of enormous wealth and impeccable social status. His lean handsomeness turns the heads of naïve debutantes, while his sensual allure ensures he never lacks for more sophisticated partners for a night, or more, of pleasure. Yet despite all of this, Simon knows that there is something—or rather someone—missing in his life. To achieve true contentment, Simon must find a lady accomplished enough to be his wife, someone who will spend her days as a member of one of England's most influential families ... and her nights pursuing duties of a more private—and personal—nature. But Simon knows what to expect if he reveals his intention to choose a bride; nothing could be more tiresome than having every blushing miss on the marriage mart thrust upon him. So he discreetly begins his search at a house party at Glossup Hall . . . and is astonished that the lady who immediately captures his interest is Portia Ashford. Simon has never considered Portia as a potential wife. He's known the raven-haired beauty since childhood; she's willfully independent and has always claimed to be uninterested in marriage. But an unexpectedly heated kiss abruptly alters the rules of their decade-long interaction. Soon they begin to long for the moments they can spend in each other's arms. But all is not as it seems at Glossup Hall. As Simon and Portia begin to explore the depths of their mutual passion, a shocking murder is committed ... and it appears that the next victim will be Portia herself. And even more shocking than the fact that a murderer secretly walks among them is the realization that all of Simon's considerable strength and influence may not be enough to protect Portia—his once and always perfect lover . . .
On a Wicked Dawn (Cynster Book 9)
Amelia Cynster is stunned to hear these words from Lucien Ashford—the enigmatic sixth Viscount Calverton and the man she has always loved—just before the handsome rogue passes out at her feet. Dawn is breaking and she's already risked scandal by lying in wait for him just outside his London home. And though torn between indignant affront and astonished relief, she's nevertheless thrilled that Luc has agreed to her outrageous marriage proposal. However, rather than submitting to a hasty wedding as Amelia had planned, the exasperating lord insists on wooing her properly…in public and in private. She longs for their time alone, when she can learn all about seduction from a master, yet frustratingly, they all too often find themselves beneath the stifling gaze of the ton. But there is method behind the viscount's madness—he has a secret reason for wooing Amelia. And like all desirable things, his passion has a price.
The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae (Cynster Sisters Trilogy Book 3)
Stephanie Laurens fans simply cannot get enough of the Cynsters—the New York Times bestselling author’s wickedly seductive family of sexy rogues and headstrong young ladies. With The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae, Laurens’s enthralling historical romance miniseries featuring the Cynster Brides comes to a wild and satisfying conclusion—as lovely, determined Angelica Cynster recognizes her ideal match across a candlelit ballroom…only to find herself suddenly kidnapped by the man, spirited off to the Scottish Highlands, and engaged to be married!
The Taming of Ryder Cavanaugh (Cynster Sisters Duo Book 2)
The Honorable Miss Mary Cynster always gets what she wants. As the last unwed Cynster of her generation, she is determined to remain in charge of her life and of the man she will marry. At the very bottom of her list of potential husbands is Ryder Cavanaugh, the daring and devastating Marquess of Raventhorne, an overwhelming and utterly unmanageable lion of the ton. But destiny has a different plan. Ryder needs Mary as his wife, not just because she is delightful, fiery, and tempting, but because he values all she could be. When fate and circumstance hand him the chance, he claims Mary as his marchioness...only to discover what he truly desires is not just to take her hand in marriage, but to capture her heart.
And Then She Fell (Cynster Sisters Duo Book 1)
Set in Regency England, London’s Henrietta Cynster, known as “The Matchbreaker” has a special talent for making sure that bad marriages never happen. After breaking up one ill-suited couple, Henrietta is obligated to find the perfect bride for the debonair James Glossup. The assignment proves to be a challenging one for the single-minded Henrietta, who believes that finding love isn’t in her own stars. But Henrietta discovers—in spite of her personal denials of love—that both she and James are indisputably drawn to each other.
On a Wild Night (Cynster Book 8)
Where are all the exciting men in London? After spending years in the glittering ballrooms of the ton, Amanda Cynster is utterly bored by the current crop of colorless suitors. Determined to take matters into her own hands, one night she shockingly goes where no respectable lady ever should, but where many an intriguing gentleman might be found. But titillating excitement quickly turns to panic when Amanda discovers she′s quite out of her depth. She looks around for help -- and is unexpectedly rescued by the Earl of Dexter. Lean, sensuous, and mysterious, he has delayed re-entering society, preferring instead a more interesting existence on its fringes. He′s the epitome of the boldly passionate gentleman Amanda has been searching for, but although his very touch makes it clear he′s willing to educate her in the art of love, Amanda has to wonder if such a masterful, lionized rake can be sufficiently tamed into the ways of marriage.
All About Passion (Cynster Book 7)
New York Times bestselling Australian author Stephanie Laurens delivers the latest tale in the immensely popular Cynster series. When Chillington is elected an ′honorary Cynster′ at the end of All About Love, he knows he needs a wife , and an heir. His goal; a simple marriage without romance. He agrees to marry a woman he believes to be pliant and quiet. Unfortunately for him, the woman he thinks is Francesca Rawling is really her cousin, Franni.Francesca herself is proud, passionate and opinionated in short, the perfect bride for a Cynster...
All About Love (Cynster Book 6)
Lucifer Cynster has sworn never to pledge his heart -- but fate has other plans... The last unwed Cynster, Alasdair -- known as Lucifer -- has escaped to Devon one step ahead of London's matchmaking mamas. Yet, despite his dedication to avoiding the parson's mousetrap, the irresistible Phyllida Tallent -- a willful, independent beauty -- brings all his masterful Cynster instincts rioting to the fore. Initially Lucifer tries to suppress the desire Phyllida evokes, but fate intervenes, leaving him facing the ultimate challenge for a Cynster -- wooing a reluctant bride. Her wit, charm, and beauty have garnered Phyllida a bevy of suitors, but not one has tempted her the way Lucifer does. His offer to teach her all about love is almost too tantalizing to refuse. And although she has not yet surrendered completely, Phyllida knows only a fool resists a determined Cynster. And Phyllida is certainly no one's fool.
A Secret Love (Cynster Book 5)
And now, Stephanie Laurens has created her boldest Cynster yet - Gabriel - a man who has known the pleasure of many women, but who has given his heart to no one. She was desperate for his help... When a mysterious lady, her face hidden by a black veil, begs Gabriel Cynster for his help, he cannot refuse her plea. For despite her disguise, Gabriel finds the woman alluring and he is powerless to deny her. But he exacts payment as only a Cynster would demand: with each piece of information he uncovers, she must pay him - in the form of a kiss. He was powerless to resist... Lady Alathea Morwellan knows Gabriel is intrigued, but despite the sparks that fly between them, they have never passed a civil moment together. Yet as the stakes get higher, so does Gabriel′s desire for payment. And with each overpowering kiss, each passionate embrace, Alathea knows that she will not be able to resist his ultimate seduction...but what will happen when she reveals the truth?
A Rogue's Proposal (Cynster Book 4)
Demon Cynster has seen love bring his brethren to their knees, and he′s vowed that he will not share their fate ... until he spies Felicity Parteger sneaking about his racing stable. Demon remembers Felicity as a mere chit of a girl, but now she stands before him, all lush curves and sparkling eyes... Felicity knows Demon was one of the town′s most eligible bachelors and a rogue of the worst sort, but he was the only one capable of getting her friend out of trouble. She knows Demon will never yield her the love she desperately seeks, but could a marriage of passion alone be enough?
Scandal's Bride (Cynster Book 3)
How can an honourable lady like Lady Catriona Hennessy unite with a rake like Richard Cynster? Though charmed by his commanding presence, she cannot give up her independence. Marriage had not previously been on Richard′s agenda, but perhaps taming the lady was just the challenge he needs - if he can have the rights of the marriage bed without making any revealing promises of love?
A Rake's Vow (Cynster Book 2)
He vowed he′d never marry. To Vane Cynster, Bellamy Hall seems like the perfect place to temporarily hide from London′s husband hunters. But when he encounters irresistible Patience Debbington, Vane realises he′s met his match ... She vowed no man would catch her. Patience isn′t about to succumb to Vane′s sensuous propositions. Yes, his kisses leave her dizzy and his caresses made her melt; but Patience has promised herself she′ll never become vulnerable to a broken heart. Is this one vow that was meant to be broken?
Devil's Bride (Cynster Book 1)
When Devil, the most infamous member of the Cynster family, is caught in a compromising position with plucky governess Honoria Wetherby, he astonishes the entire town by offering his hand in marriage. No one dreamed this scandalous rake would ever take a bride. And as society mamas swooned at the loss of England′s most eligible bachelor, Devil′s infamous Cynster cousins began to place wagers on the wedding date. But Honoria wasn′t about to bend society′s demands and marry a man "just" because they′d been found together virtually unchaperoned. No, she craved adventure, and while solving the murder of a young Cynster cousin fit the bill for a while, she decided that once the crime was solved she′d go off to see the world. But the scalding heat of her unsated desire for Devil soon had Honoria craving a very different sort of excitement. Could her passion for Devil cause her to embrace the enchanting peril of a lifelong adventure of the heart?
A Comfortable Wife
Miss Antonia Mannering had made plans, and Lord Philip Ruthven played a large part in them. They had been childhood friends, but had not seen each other for years. She knew Philip was popular with the ladies, but he had never married any of them. Wouldn’t he now be ready for a wife? If she could prove to him that she could run his home, not disgrace him in Society and be a comfortable wife for him, surely he would be prompted to propose to her. But she never expected that love and passion would enter into their arrangement!
An Irresistible Alliance (Cynsters Next Generation Novels Book 5)
With his older brother’s betrothal announced, Lord Michael Cynster is freed from the pressure of familial expectations. However, the allure of his previous hedonistic pursuits has paled. Then he learns of the mission his brother, Sebastian, and Lady Antonia Rawlings have been assisting with and volunteers to assist by hunting down the hoard of gunpowder now secreted somewhere in London. Michael sets out to trace the carters who transported the gunpowder from Kent to London. His quest leads him to the Hendon Shipping Company, where he discovers his sole source of information is the only daughter of Jack and Kit Hendon, Miss Cleome Hendon, who although a fetchingly attractive lady, firmly holds the reins of the office in her small hands. Cleo has fought to achieve her position in the company. Initially, managing the office was a challenge, but she now conquers all in just a few hours a week. With her three brothers all adventuring in America, she’s been driven to the realization that she craves adventure, too. When Michael Cynster walks in and asks about carters, Cleo’s instincts leap. She wrings from him the full tale of his mission—and offers him a bargain. She will lead him to the carters he seeks if he agrees to include her as an equal partner in the mission. Horrified, Michael attempts to resist, but ultimately finds himself agreeing—a sequence of events he quickly learns is common around Cleo. Then she delivers on her part of the bargain, and he finds there are benefits to allowing her to continue to investigate beside him—not least being that if she’s there, then he knows she’s safe. But the further they go in tracing the gunpowder, the more deaths they uncover. And when they finally locate the barrels, they find themselves tangled in a fight to the death—one that forces them to face what has grown between them, to seize and defend what they both see as their path to the greatest adventure of all. A shared life. A shared future. A shared love.
The Lady By His Side (Cynsters Next Generation Novels Book 4)
Sebastian Cynster knows time is running out. If he doesn’t choose a wife soon, his female relatives will line up to assist him. Yet the current debutantes do not appeal. Where is he to find the right lady to be his marchioness? Then Drake Varisey, eldest son of the Duke of Wolverstone, asks for Sebastian’s aid. Having assumed his father’s mantle in protecting queen and country, Drake must go to Ireland in pursuit of a dangerous plot. But he’s received an urgent missive from Lord Ennis, an Irish peer—Ennis has heard something Drake needs to know. Ennis insists Drake attends an upcoming house party at Ennis’s Kent estate so Ennis can reveal his information face-to-face. Sebastian has assisted Drake before and, long ago, had a liaison with Lady Ennis. Drake insists Sebastian is just the man to be Drake’s surrogate at the house party—the guests will imagine all manner of possibilities and be blind to Sebastian’s true purpose. Unsurprisingly, Sebastian is reluctant, but Drake’s need is real. With only more debutantes on his horizon, Sebastian allows himself to be persuaded. His first task is to inveigle Antonia Rawlings, a lady he has known all her life, to include him as her escort to the house party. Although he’s seen little of Antonia in recent years, Sebastian is confident of gaining her support. Eldest daughter of the Earl of Chillingworth, Antonia has abandoned the search for a husband and plans to use the week of the house party to decide what to do with her life. There has to be some purpose, some role, she can claim for her own. Consequently, on hearing Sebastian’s request and an explanation of what lies behind it, she seizes on the call to action. Suppressing her senses’ idiotic reaction to Sebastian’s nearness, she agrees to be his partner-in-intrigue. But while joining the house party proves easy, the gathering is thrown into chaos when Lord Ennis is murdered—just before he was to speak with Sebastian. Worse, Ennis’s last words, gasped to Sebastian, are: Gunpowder. Here. Gunpowder? And here, where? With a killer continuing to stalk the halls, side by side, Sebastian and Antonia search for answers and, all the while, the childhood connection that had always existed between them strengthens and blooms…into something so much more.
A Match for Marcus Cynster (Cynsters Next Generation Series Book 3)
Restless and impatient, Marcus Cynster waits for Fate to come calling. He knows his destiny lies in the lands surrounding his family home, but what will his future be? Equally importantly, with whom will he share it? Of one fact he feels certain: his fated bride will not be Niniver Carrick. His elusive neighbor attracts him mightily, yet he feels compelled to protect her—even from himself. Fickle Fate, he’s sure, would never be so kind as to decree that Niniver should be his. The best he can do for them both is to avoid her. Niniver has vowed to return her clan to prosperity. The epitome of fragile femininity, her delicate and ethereal exterior cloaks a stubborn will and an unflinching devotion to the people in her care. She accepts that in order to achieve her goal, she cannot risk marrying and losing her grip on the clan’s reins to an inevitably controlling husband. Unfortunately, many local men see her as their opportunity. Soon, she’s forced to seek help to get rid of her unwelcome suitors. Powerful and dangerous, Marcus Cynster is perfect for the task. Suppressing her wariness over tangling with a gentleman who so excites her passions, she appeals to him for assistance with her peculiar problem. Although at first he resists, Marcus discovers that, contrary to his expectations, his fated role is to stand by Niniver’s side and, ultimately, to claim her hand. Yet in order to convince her to be his bride, they must plunge headlong into a journey full of challenges, unforeseen dangers, passion, and yearning, until Niniver grasps the essential truth—that she is indeed a match for Marcus Cynster.
The Tempting of Thomas Carrick (Cynsters Next Generation Series Book 2)
Thomas Carrick is driven to control all aspects of his life. The wealthy owner of Carrick Enterprises, located in bustling Glasgow, he is one of that city's most eligible bachelors and intends to select a wife from the many young ladies paraded before him. He wants to take that next step along his self-determined path, yet no one captures his eye, nor his attention…not the way Lucilla Cynster did. Thomas has avoided his clan's estate because it borders Lucilla's home, but disturbing reports from his clansmen force him to return. His uncle, the laird, is ailing, a family is desperately ill, and the healer is unconscious and dying. Duty leaves Thomas no choice but to seek help from the last woman he wants to face. Strong-willed and passionate, Lucilla has been waiting for Thomas to return and claim his place by her side. She knows he is her fated lover, husband, protector, and mate just as she is his one true love. Though his return wasn't on her account, Lucilla is willing to seize whatever chance Fate hands her. Thomas can never forget Lucilla, or the connection that seethes between them, but to marry her would mean embracing a life he does not want. Lucilla sees that Thomas has yet to accept the inevitability of their union. But how can he ignore a bond such as theirs—one so much stronger than reason? Lucilla is as determined as only a Cynster can be to fight for the future she knows can be theirs. And while she cannot command him, she has powerful enticements she's willing to wield in the tempting of Thomas Carrick.
By Winter's Light: A Cynster Novel (Cynsters Next Generation Series Book 1)
It’s December 1837 and the young adults of the Cynster clan have succeeded in having the family Christmas celebration held at snow-bound Casphairn Manor, Richard and Catriona Cynster’s home. Led by Sebastian, Marquess of Earith, and by Lucilla, future Lady of the Vale, and her twin brother, Marcus, the upcoming generation has their own plans for the holiday season. Yet where Cynsters gather, love is never far behind—the festive occasion brings together Daniel Crosbie, tutor to Lucifer Cynster’s sons, and Claire Meadows, widow and governess to Gabriel Cynster’s daughter. Daniel and Claire have met before and the embers of an unexpected passion smolder between them, but once bitten, twice shy, Claire believes a second marriage is not in her stars. Daniel, however, is determined to press his suit. He’s seen the love the Cynsters share, and Claire is the lady with whom he dreams of sharing his life. Assisted by a bevy of Cynsters—innate matchmakers every one—Daniel strives to persuade Claire that trusting him with her hand and her heart is her right path to happiness. Meanwhile, out riding on Christmas Eve, the young adults of the Cynster clan respond to a plea for help. Summoned to a humble dwelling in ruggedly forested mountains, Lucilla is called on to help with the difficult birth of a child, while the others rise to the challenge of helping her. With a violent storm closing in and severely limited options, the next generation of Cynsters face their first collective test—can they save this mother and child? And themselves, too? Back at the manor, Claire is increasingly drawn to Daniel and despite her misgivings, against the backdrop of the ongoing festivities their relationship deepens. Yet she remains torn—until catastrophe strikes, and by winter’s light, she learns that love—true love—is worth any risk, any price.