Thursday, October 2, 2014

Get Lost in The Courtesan's Book of Secrets…









From the diary of Cornelia, Comtesse de Vane.
England, 1803


Affection died with my mother. My father, a minor country baronet, didn’t want me because I wasn’t a boy, so he found himself a second wife who gave him what he wanted. Then he died, leaving me to deal with my shallow stepmother. The vapid woman would rather have a house in London so she can find another husband than take care of her own son, my half-brother, the one person I love the most in the world, the one person who loves me, except, perhaps Rafe. Or so I once thought.

Rafe Densmore, 5th Baron of Densmore, was the only man at Lord Perry’s card party who didn’t eye me like a sweet meat as I stood behind my father, before his death, watching him gamble away the last of our money. I was wearing a too small, hand-me-down dress and Rafe smiled at me, not with the lascivious look all the other men threw at me, but with one of understanding. It was as if he alone knew the humiliation I was suffering.  Then, when my father ran out of blunt and the disgusting Lord Edgemont suggested he wager me instead, it was as if the world had turned upside down. My father, the one man who should have protected me, sat there and laughed with the others as old Lord Waltenham won the game then yanked me out into the dark garden.

I cursed my father as I fought the old man’s gnarled hands, but he was stronger.  Just when I’d lost all hope, Rafe stepped from the shadows and gave Lord Waltenham a thrashing. He sent the dirty codger scurrying back into the house. I didn’t know what to think of the handsome Baron standing before me, the one with a reputation for gambling and shouldering the debts of his father. As I rubbed my aching wrists, I expected him to be like Edgemont and demand something in return for his kindness, but he had a much more interesting proposal in mind.

“Working together, we could take the Paris card rooms by storm,” he said with a smile to make my toes curl with excitement.

After the Peace of Amiens, all English society was flocking to France. I’d never been farther than Lord Parry’s estate. Rafe promised to teach me how to act and dress like a lady, an education my mother and stepmother had failed to provide. It was an escape from my wretched life, a chance to slip away from my father and reinvent myself. It tore at my heart to leave my half-brother behind, but if I won in the card rooms of Paris, perhaps I could save myself and him from a life of poverty.  
The partnership Rafe and I agreed to was never about love, only business. I blossomed under his tutelage. I’d never met a man so honest, or one who looked on me as though I was a treasure and not a burden. Together, we lost ourselves in the whirl of London, and then Paris society. In the heady excitement of the card rooms, with Rafe strong, sure and confident by my side, I also lost my heart to him.

It was the biggest mistake I could have made.


The Courtesan’s Book of Secrets 
by Georgie Lee
Available October 1, 2014 from Harlequin Historical
     
Uncovered: a list of noblemen's names—each one guilty of treason. 

To save his family legacy, Rafe Densmore must seize a courtesan's infamous register. No one can ever know how his father betrayed his country! One person stands in Rafe's way—the beautiful Cornelia, Comtesse de Vane. 
In the card rooms of Paris, Rafe and Cornelia made an unbeatable…intimate team. Until, convinced of Rafe's desertion, desperate Cornelia married an elderly comte. 

Now, returning to London an impoverished widow, she'll do anything to possess the register. 
Even if that means becoming Rafe's partner once again…. 

Buy Links:  Amazon http://amzn.to/1lrOwBr   Barnes &Noble http://bit.ly/TmooMK


A lifelong history buff, Georgie Lee hasn’t given up hope that she will one day inherit a title and a manor house. Until then, she fulfills her dreams of lords, ladies and a season in London through her stories. The Courtesan’s Book of Secrets is her third Harlequin Historical. When not writing, she can be found reading non-fiction history or watching any movie with a costume and an accent. Please visit  www.georgie-lee.com to learn more about Georgie and her books.

If you found yourself in Cornelia’s place and had to choose between following a handsome stranger and staying where you were and hoping for the best, would you follow the stranger? Keep in mind, the Peace of Amiens failed fast, trapping English citizens in France for over ten years, and there is no guarantee that you will win at the card tables. By following the stranger, you could end up in a worse situation than before. 

Commenters: Would you still follow the stranger? Let me know in the comments below.

Also, anyone who signs up for my newsletter will be entered into a drawing to win an ebook copy of my second Harlequin Historical, Rescued from Ruin. Follow the link http://bit.ly/1uzeNCJ  to sign up and then leave a comment below to let me know you did it.

Thanks for stopping by, and thanks to Get Lost in a Story for having me, and the Comtesse here today.

Social Media Links:
Twitter: @GeorgieLeeBooks
Website: www.georgie-lee.com





8 comments:

  1. I'd follow the stranger in a heart beat. The alternative sounds bleak.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  2. Have to say following a handsome stranger sounds a lot more interesting!

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  3. Good morning and welcome to GLIAS! I'd have to say a handsome stranger sounds way more fun. Lovely cover too!

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  4. Welcome back to GLIAS, Georgie. Excellent interview !!

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  5. Already signed up

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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  6. Thank you all for visiting with me today and for commenting and signing up. I have to say, I would follow the handsome stranger too. It would make life more exciting!

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  7. Congratulations, Mary Preston! You have won a copy of Rescued from Ruin. Georgie Lee will be contacting you shortly. :)

    ReplyDelete