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Thursday, May 1, 2014


I have a love/hate relationship with release days. On one hand there is the excitement of seeing your book baby go out into the big wide world. You have laboured long and hard over every sentence and every word, suffered rejection, rewrites, the anticipation of submission. Then the contract arrives and there is the long wait for edits (which you then curse) and the thrill of seeing the cover for the first time... and then the wait to that magical date:  RELEASE DAY.

The journey for this book has been particularly tortuous. This is the story that won the 2012 Romance Through the Ages Award. It then went through the a series of submissions and rejections until a big US publisher showed an interest, provided I completely rewrote it. You may recall my agonies over this process which culminated in me walking away from that particular door (The Black Moments of a Writers Soul). I took my poor, mangled story ("the Frankenbook") and I did rewrite it, with some help from some wonderful beta readers. I wrote the story I wanted to tell, not the story someone else thought I should be telling.

I have no regrets about that decision. The wonderful people at Harlequin Australia's Escape Publishing picked it up, with a few minor tweaks, and here it is, all wrapped up in a gorgeous cover and ready to face the world.

(Blame Blogger!)
To celebrate the release I will be running month long contest for a "Goody bag" worth over $50. The prize contains:

  • A canvas bag
  • A notebook
  • Fridge magnets (including a "Mr. Darcy" fridge magnet)
  • A Mesopotamian bracelet
  • An autographed copy of Alison's Stuart's collected short stories TOWER OF TALES
  • A voucher for the purchase of an ecopy of any one of Alison's books (excluding Lord Somerton's Heir). Winner's choice.
Entry is by Rafflecopter... and you can enter HERE, or on my website or on my Facebook author page or below...

Over the month I will be out and about as a guest on other blogs, so there will be plenty of opportunities to enter!

In the meantime, I will love you forever if you add LORD SOMERTON'S HEIR to your bookshelf (oh dear, that sounds kind of needy!). 

Anyway here are the BUY links:
Kindle (where it has been on pre order sale for .90c! Hurry you may still catch it) 
Itunes  (where it has also been on pre-order sale for .99c)
For the other retailers, visit the Escape Publishing site. Click HERE

If you love Regency Historicals, particularly those with a suspense element... I hope you will like LORD SOMERTON'S HEIR.

Can the love of an honourable man save her from the memory of a desolate marriage?

From the battlefield of Waterloo to the drawing rooms of Brantstone Hall, Sebastian Alder’s elevation from penniless army captain to Viscount Somerton is the stuff of dreams. But the cold reality of an inherited estate in wretched condition, and the suspicious circumstances surrounding his cousin’s death, provide Sebastian with no time for dreams, only a mystery to solve and a murderer to bring to justice.

Isabel, widow of the late Lord Somerton, is desperate to bury the memory of her unhappy marriage by founding the charity school she has always dreamed of. But, her dreams are shattered, as she is taunted from the grave, discovering not only has she been left penniless, but she is once more bound to the whims of a Somerton.

But this Somerton is unlike any man she has met. Can the love of an honourable man heal her broken heart or will suspicion tear them apart?

(Lead up:  Having installed Sebastian Alder as the new Lord Somerton, Isabel leaves him in London and departs for the country estate at Brantstone...)
...A coach stood at the front of the house, the Somerton arms emblazoned on the door. As he watched, Lady Somerton descended the front steps with a quick, firm step, a black feather in her bonnet waving jauntily, at odds with the deep mourning she affected. She handed the bandbox she carried to her maid and allowed one of the footmen to help her into the coach.
Intriguing woman, Sebastian thought, and, as if he had called out to her, she glanced up. She must have seen him at the window and, while her gaze held his for a moment, she did not in any other way acknowledge his presence.
With her departure he felt oddly cast adrift, as if she had been the one familiar person anchoring him to this strange new life; a life that was proving to be even stranger than he could have imagined, if there was truth in what the lawyer in the room behind him was saying.
The man’s nasal voice ceased and he heard the Somerton man of business, Bragge, clear his throat. Sebastian turned around in time to see a quick, nervous glance pass between the two men.
‘I blame myself,’ Bragge said. ‘His late lordship was not disposed to confide in me. I had no idea that he had...’ The man swallowed, wiping his upper lip with a large kerchief. ‘If I had known... The damage to the estate should have been more readily ascertainable.’
Sebastian regarded the man with cold eyes. Bragge had brought with him a complete accounting of the Somerton inheritance.
What inheritance? Sebastian had thought with mounting anger as Bragge and the lawyer laid the full extent of his cousin’s inept management out for him.
It had all gone, expended on clothes and horses and who knew what else besides. There were large, unexplained monthly payments, which Bragge suggested were probably gambling debts and a foolish investment some two years earlier in a gold mine in Guinea on the basis of a prospectus issued by a group calling themselves The Golden Adventurers Club. It was this last bit of idiocy that had taken every penny, including, it seemed, Isabel’s jointure. Brantstone and the London house were mortgaged.
Any man of business worth his pay should have known to the penny the extent of his master’s debts at any given time, regardless of other concerns. Sebastian regarded the man without sympathy. If he had been his quartermaster, Bragge would have been flogged. As it was, he may well find himself looking for a new employer before this day was out.
‘Does Lady Somerton know that her jointure is gone?’ he enquired.
Bragge shook his head. ‘No, my lord.’...