Charlotte Arkendale knew all there was to know about men. After all, she'd made a career out of steering marriage-minded women away from untrustworthy members of the opposite sex. Yet nothing could have prepared her for Baxter St. Ives--an arresting stranger too daring, too determined, too dangerous to be her new man-of-affairs. Still, perhaps he was the perfect person to help Charlotte investigate the recent murder of one of her clients. So she gave him a chance, never realizing that Baxter, a gifted scientist, would soon conduct a risky exploration into the alchemy of desire, with Charlotte as his subject. But even as he sets out to seduce Charlotte, a twisted killer lies in wait, ready to part the lovers...or see them joined together forever--in death.From the Paperback edition.
More than three centuries ago, Nicholas Winters irrevocably altered his genetic makeup in an obsession-fuelled competition with alchemist and Arcane Society founder Sylvester Jones. <P><P> Driven to control their psychic abilities, each man's decision has reverberated throughout the family line, rewarding some with powers beyond their wildest dreams, and cursing others to a life filled with madness and hallucinations. At the heart of this curse is the Burning Lamp.
Evangeline Ames has rented a country cottage far from the London streets where she was recently attacked. Fascinated by the paranormal energy of nearby Crystal Gardens, she finds pleasure in sneaking past the wall to explore the grounds. <P><P> And when her life is threatened again, she instinctively goes to the gardens for safety. Lucas Sebastian has never been one to ignore a lady in danger, even if she is trespassing on his property. Quickly disposing of her would-be assassin, he insists they keep the matter private. <P>There are rumors enough already, about treasure buried under his garden, and occult botanical experiments performed by his uncle--who died of mysterious causes. With Evangeline's skill for detection, and Lucas's sense of the criminal mind, they soon discover that they have a common enemy. And as the energy emanating from Crystal Gardens intensifies, they realize that to survive they must unearth what has been buried for too long.
From a magnificent ballroom ablaze with lights to an imposing country house steeped in shadows comes a breathtaking tale of an impetuous miss--and a passion that leads to peril...At five and twenty, Prudence Merryweather knew very well tht risks a woman took by visiting a gentleman in the dead of night. But bearding the notorious Earl of Angelstone in his den was the only way to stop him from engaging her hot-headed brother in a duel. And that was why she found herself ushered into Sebastian's frobidding presence at three int the morning--and thoroughly kissed before dawn.She was a country-bred innocent--and an intriguing experience for a man who dwelt more in the shadows than in the sunshine. Yet as her boldness drew Prue into one dangerous episode after another, Sebastian found himself torn between a raging hunger to possess her and a driving need to protect her. And the reckless beauty would soon need all the protection she could get...From the Paperback edition.
FromSeductiontoSurrenderandRecklesstoRavished,New York Timesbestselling author Amanda Quick has spun one thrilling love story after another. Now, in her long-awaited hardcover debut, she introduces her most endearing heroine and compelling hero, in a dazzling, daring tale of lost pirate gold and legendary love. . . Deception.
From the windswept, craggy coast of a remote British Isle comes the thrilling tale of a daring lady and a dangerous knight... bound by the tempests of fate--and the dawning of... <P><P> Desire Upon her father's death, beautiful, headstrong Lady Clarre knew that she must wed, for the protection of the Isle of Desire new fell to her. Yet when her guardian's choice of prospective husband rode through her castle gates, she felt utterly betrayed. All sinewy muscle and savage steel, Sir Gareth of Wyckmere was not the poet she'd requested but a fearsome knight whose only interest was in war.Legions of robbers had fallen beneath the Hellhound of Wyckmere's sword, and now this bold warrior was certain that he could tame one willful wife. Yet even Gareth could not deter Lady Clare from trying to mold him into her ideal... until their clash of wills ignited a passion that set them both aflame... and a treacherous plot put their lives in deadly peril.From the Paperback edition.
As if a head for business and a nose for trouble aren't enough to distinguish fiercely independent Lavinia Lake from the other women of London's fashionable Claremont Lane, there is one more feature to set her apart. <P><P>Lavinia is also well versed in the practice of mesmerism, an extraordinary gift that far surpasses mere charm and physical appeal. Nobody knows this better than the usually coolheaded Tobias March, who seems to have fallen hopelessly under her spell. Fortunately for all, however, Lavinia uses her powers for good. And ever since a tragedy involving one of her subjects, she has even retired them in favor of her work with Lake and March, a joint venture providing "discreet private inquiries for individuals of quality. " Celeste Hudson, the stunningly beautiful young wife of a family friend and fellow mesmerist, would surely count herself among such individuals--were she still alive, that is. While mythology's Medusa could turn men to stone, lovely Celeste was more accustomed to turning them to jelly. In fact, unbeknownst to her husband, Howard, the ambitious Celeste was planning to use her talents to forge a new future in Society--one that would not include him. Sadly, her plans were cut short when she was murdered. Only a gentleman's cravat wound around her lovely neck remained for evidence--small compensation for the strange and priceless bracelet that may have been snatched from her wrist as she drew her last breath. As a result, Lake and March are soon in Howard Hudson's employ on the trail of the killer. But Tobias is convinced the dashing widower is more interested in tracking down the missing relic. If so, Howard is not alone. Any number of ruthless types are after the very same antiquity, whose centerpiece is an unusual blue cameo of inestimable value and supposed legendary powers--powers of immeasurable worth to anyone in Howard's line of work. Together, Lake and March undertake a tantalizing investigation that leads them from the glittering ballrooms of the ton to London's seediest taverns to a mesmerist whose therapies include treating ladies suffering from "hysteria" is a a most unconventional method--and, not least of all, to the darkest reaches of men's psyches. Along the way, DON'T LOOK BACK becomes a completely mesmerizing read as the irrepressible Lavinia and Tobias mix business with pleasure. . . .
The New York Times bestselling author of Otherwise Engaged and The Mystery Woman presents an all-new novel of intrigue and murder set against the backdrop of Victorian London... The Kern Secretarial Agency provides reliable professional services to its wealthy clientele, and Anne Clifton was one of the finest women in Ursula Kern's employ. But Miss Clifton has met an untimely end--and Ursula is convinced it was not due to natural causes. Archaeologist and adventurer Slater Roxton thinks Mrs. Kern is off her head to meddle in such dangerous business. Nevertheless, he seems sensible enough to Ursula, though she does find herself unnerved by his self-possession and unreadable green-gold eyes... If this mysterious widowed beauty insists on stirring the pot, Slater intends to remain close by as they venture into the dark side of polite society. Together they must reveal the identity of a killer--and to achieve their goal they may need to reveal their deepest secrets to each other as well...
It isn't easy making a living as a lady's companion when one possesses a sharp tongue and an original mind. That's why Emma Greyson has gone through three such positions in six months. Her current post at a tiresome country house party has her bored to tears--until an extraordinary encounter with the legendary Edison Stokes leads to a secret position as his assistant. Stokes is on a peculiar mission, searching for an anonymous thief who has stolen an ancient book of arcane potions. He suspects his quarry is among the party's guests--and that the villain is looking for an intuitive woman on whom to test a certain elixir. A woman just like Emma. . . For Emma, the new post brings unexpected passion and chilling danger. But when murder strikes, she realizes the awful truth. Unless she and Edison devise a scheme to outwit a merciless killer, she could forever lose the man of her dreams--and even her very life. . . .
While investigating a suspicious death, private inquiry agent Ambrose Wells finds himself on the grounds of Aldwick Castle--and in the midst of utter chaos. The ramshackle castle is in flames--and a beautiful woman and four young girls are taking flight on horseback. It turns out that the strong-minded Miss Concordia Glade and her four bright students are on the run from a notorious London crime lord who'll stop at nothing to destroy them. Now, their only hope is Ambrose, a confirmed loner with more than his share of secrets--and more than his share of desire for the unconventional teacher. And as Ambrose and Concordia risk everything to bring down a criminal mastermind, they will also be forced to battle something even greater: the steamy passion that threatens their hard-won independence...
Imogen Waterstone has always prided herself on being a thoroughly independent young woman, but now she needs a man of implacable will and nerves of iron. That's why she invited Matthias Marshall, infamous Earl of Colchester, to her home in Upper Strickland. Who better than the legendary explorer to help her lay the perfect trap? Her scheme is simple, really: She plans to let it be known that when she inherited her uncle's collection of antiquities, she also inherited a map to a fabulous ancient treasure. She's sure that her enemy would risk financial ruin in pursuit of the mythical artifact. And to make doubly sure the scoundrel took the bait, she wants Colchester to pretend that he's out to seduce Imogene so that he, too, could get his hands on her map. Yet in all of her plotting, Imogene never anticipates Colchester's violent reaction to her request or her own electrifying reaction to him. Neither does she expect that a malevolent threat would emerge from the labyrinth of London--sinister enough to endanger her and Colchester's lives.From the Paperback edition.
After a year of grand adventures touring the classical ruins of Italy and Greece, Iphiginia Bright returned to England to discover that the real excitement was at home. It seems that her Aunt Zoe has fallen victim to a sinister blackmailer and only Iphiginia can hope to stop the culprit before he can do more harm. Her plan is inspired: Imitating history's most legendary beauties--Cleopatra, Helen of Troy, Aphrodite--the former schoolmistress will remake herself, and descend upon London Society as the dazzling mistress of Marcus Valerius Cloud, the infamous Earl of Masters. Rumors hint that the Earl has disappeared at the blackmailer's hands, and by posing as his unknown mistress, Iphiginia is convinced she can ferret out the villain. Overnight, Iphiginia is transformed into a vision with a host of eager admirers, including one she does not expect -- the Earl of Masters himself, who strides into a shimmering ballroom one evening to cooly reclaim his "mistress". He is everything they say he is... arrogant, attractive, devastatingly seductive, and Iphiginia can't help but be enthralled. But when Marcus agrees to play along with her charade, she doesn't know that the determined earl has plans of his own: to tease and tempt her, until the beautiful deceiver becomes more than his mistress in name only.From the Paperback edition.
Under the plain gray skirts of Miss Beatrice Lockwood's gown, a pistol waits at the ready. For Beatrice is a paid companion on a secret mission; and with a secret past; and she must be prepared to fight for her life at any moment. Yet she is thrown oddly off guard by the fierce-looking man who joins her in foiling a crime outside a fancy ball; and then disappears into the shadows, leaving only his card. His name is Joshua Gage, and he claims to know Beatrice's employers. Beyond that, he is an enigma with a hypnotically calm voice and an ebony-and-steel cane. . . . Joshua, who carries out clandestine investigations for the Crown, is equally intrigued. He has a personal interest in Miss Lockwood, a suspected thief and murderer, not to mention a fraudster who claims to have psychical powers. The quest to discover her whereabouts has pulled him away from his mournful impulses to hurl himself into the sea; and engaged his curiosity about the real Beatrice Lockwood, whose spirit, he suspects, is not as delicate as her face and figure. He does know one thing, though: This flame-haired beauty was present the night Roland Fleming died at the Academy of the Occult. Guilty or not, she is his guide to a trail of blood and blackmail, mesmerism and madness; a path that will lead both of them into the clutches of a killer who calls himself the Bone Man. . . .
A tantalizing tale of a legendary knight and a headstrong lady whose daring quest for a mysterious crystal will draw them into a whirlwind of treachery-and desire. When the fearsome knight called Hugh the Relentless swept into Lingwood Manor like a storm, everyone cowered-except Lady Alice. Sharp-tongued and unrepentant, the flame haired beauty believed Sir Hugh was not someone to dread but the answer to her dreams. She knew he had come for the dazzling green crystal, knew he would be displeased to find that it was no longer in her possession. Yet Alice had a proposition for the dark and forbidding knight: In return for a dowry that would free Alice and her brother from their uncle's grasp, she would lend her powers of detection to his warrior's skills and together they would recover his treasured stone. But even as Hugh accepted her terms, he added a condition of his own: Lady Alice must agree to a temporary betrothal-one that would soon draw her deep into Hugh's great stone fortress, and into a battle that could threaten their lives...and their only chance at love.From the Paperback edition.
Miss Amity Doncaster, world traveler, is accustomed to adventure and risk. Benedict Stanbridge, a man of science and a spy for the Crown, has faced danger in the darker corners of foreign lands.<P> But they are about to face a threat that is shockingly close to home...<P> One does not expect to be kidnapped on a London street in broad daylight. But Amity Doncaster barely escapes with her life after she is trapped in a carriage with a blade-wielding man in a black silk mask who whispers the most vile taunts and threats into her ear. Her quick thinking, and her secret weapon, save her... for now.<P> But the monster known in the press as the Bridegroom, who has left a trail of female victims in his wake, has survived the wounds she inflicts and will soon be on his feet again. He is unwholesomely obsessed by her scandalous connection to Benedict Stanbridge--gossip about their hours alone in a ship's stateroom seems to have crossed the Atlantic faster than any sailing vessel could. Benedict refuses to let this resourceful, daring woman suffer for her romantic link to him--as tenuous as it may be.<P> For a man and woman so skilled at disappearing, so at home in the exotic reaches of the globe, escape is always an option. But each intends to end the Bridegroom's reign of terror in London, and will join forces to do so. And as they prepare to confront an unbalanced criminal in the heart of the city they love, they must also face feelings that neither of them can run away from. . . .
From the book: "Once again, the incomparable Quick has whipped up a delectable Regency romance" (Booklist) about an ice-cold business agreement that turns into something far more heated... The Earl of St. Merryn needs a woman. His intentions are purely practical-he simply wants someone sensible and suitably lovely to pose as his betrothed for a few weeks among polite society. He has his own agenda to pursue, and a false fiancee will keep the husband-hunters at bay while he goes about his business. The simplest solution is to hire a paid companion. After all, the sorry women who must accept such employment are sure to be grateful for any favor... When he encounters Miss Elenora Lodge, he believes his problem is solved. Her dowdy attire and pinned-up hair cannot hide her fine figure and the fire in her golden eyes. And her unfortunate circumstances-and secret dreams of a life onstage-make the Earl's offer undeniably appealing. But St. Merryn is clearly hiding something, and things seem oddly amiss in his gloomy Rain Street home. Elenora is soon to discover that his secrets are even darker man his d&or- and this lark will be a more dangerous adventure than she'd been led to believe. And Arthur, Earl of St. Merryn, will find mat the meek and mild companion he'd envisioned has become bom a partner in his quest to catch a killer-and an outspoken belle of the ball who stirs a bothersome passion in his practical heart...
Victorian London holds many secrets. But none are so closely guarded as those of the shadowy Arcane Society. In her suspenseful new novel, "New York Times"-bestselling author Quick delves into this underworld of passion, greed, and powers that lie beyond this realm.
A paranormal killer pushes an unlikely duo's powers and passions to the limit. Virginia Dean wakes at midnight beside a dead body, with a bloody knife in her hand and no memory of the evening's events.<P><P> Dark energy, emanating from the mirrors lining the room, overpowers her senses. With no apparent way in or out, she's rescued by a man she's met only once before, but won't soon forget. Owen Sweetwater inherited his family's talent for hunting the psychical monsters that prey on London's women and children, and his investigation into the deaths of two glass-readers has led him here. <P>The high-society types of the exclusive Arcane Society would consider her an illusionist, a charlatan, even a criminal, but Owen knows better. Virginia's powers are real - and they just might be the key to his investigation.
From the cozy confines of a tiny seaside village to the glittering crush of the a fashionable London soiree comes an enthralling tale of a thoroughly mismatched couple . . . poised to discover the rapture of love.There was no doubt about it. <P><P>What Miss Harriet Pomeroy needed was a man. Someone powerful and clever who could help her rout the unscrupulous thieves who were using her beloved caves to hide their loot. But when Harriet summoned Gideon Westbrook, Viscount St. Justin, to her aid, she could not know that she was summoning the devil himself. . . . <P>Dubbed the Beast of Blackthorne Hall for his scarred face and lecherous past, Gideon was strong and fierce and notoriously menacing. Yet Harriet could not find it in her heart to fear him. For in his tawny gaze she sensed a savage pain she longed to soothe . . . and a searing passion she yearned to answer. Now, caught up in the Beast's clutches, Harriet must find a way to win his heart-and evade the deadly trap of a scheming villain who would see them parted for all time.From the Paperback edition.
At sixteen Phoebe Layton had imagined that Gabriel Banner was a brave and valiant knight, a noble-hearted hero born to rescue ladies in distress. Which was why, eight years later, when she desperately needed help to carry out a vital quest she could think of no one more suited to the job than Gabriel. But when she lures her shining knight to a lonely midnight rendezvous, Phoebe finds herself sparring with a dangerously desirable man who is nothing like the hero of her dreams, and when he sweeps her into a torrid - and blatantly unchivalrous - embrace, she can't help but fear that she's made a dreadful mistake. It's a kiss that will seal Phoebe's fate. For now the exacting Earl of Wylde has a quest of his own: to possess the most intriguing, impulsive, outrageous female he has ever met&even if he has to slay a dragon to do it.
Augusta Ballinger was quite sure that it was all a dreadful mistake. The chillingly pompous and dangerous Earl of Graystone could not possibly wish to marry her. Why, it was rumored that his chosen bride must be a veritable model of virtue. <P><P>And everyone knew that Augusta, as the last of the wild, reckless Northumberland Ballingers, was a woman who could not be bothered by society's rules.That was why the spirited beauty had planned a midnight encounter to warn the earl off, to convince him that she would make him a very poor wife indeed. <P>But when she crawled in through his darkened study window, Augusta only succeeded in strengthening Harry's resolve: to kiss the laughter from those honeyed lips and teach this maddening miss to behave! How could he possibly know that it was he who was in for a lesson . . . as his brazen fiancée set out to win his heart--and an old and clever enemy stepped in to threaten their love, their honor, and their very lives?From the Paperback edition.
The first kiss occurred in a dimly lit hallway on the upper floor of Elwin Hasting's grand house. Louisa never saw it coming. . . . Of course, Anthony Stalbridge couldn't possibly have had romantic intentions.<P><P> The kiss was an act of desperation, meant to distract the armed guard who was about to catch the pair in a place they most definitely did not belong. After all, in her dull maroon gown and gold-rimmed spectacles, Louisa Bryce was no man's idea of an alluring female. Clearly, the only thing a catch like Anthony Stalbridge had in common with a wallflower like Louisa was a passionate interest in the private affairs of Mr. Hastings - a prominent member of Society whom they both suspect of hiding terrible secrets. <P> Now, thrown into each other's arms by their ruse, Anthony and Louisa are united in their efforts to find the truth. Each has a personal reason for the quest. Months earlier, Anthony's fiance threw herself into the Thames - or at least, that is the version whispered in London's social circles. Anthony believes someone else may have had a hand in her death - and a murderous one at that. Louisa, whose own identity is shrouded in layers of mystery, is convinced that Hastings has a connection to a notorious brothel. <P> When Anthony successfully cracks Hasting's hidden safe and discovers highly incriminating evidence, it appears that both their instincts were correct. But Hastings is hiding far more than jewels and ledger books. Bringing him to justice will be more perilous than Louisa and Anthony anticipate - and their partnership will be more heated than either expects. For the two share a thrilling attraction to danger, and it isnot only Anthony's curiosity that Louisa arouses.
From a stately country house in Hampshire to the dazzling drawing rooms of London society comes an exquisite tale of an elfin beauty, a vengeful lord, and a wild, sweet love that is sheer poetry.With her reputation forever tarnished by a youthful indiscretion, lovely Emily Faringdon is resigned to a life of spinsterhood-until she embarks on an unusual correspondence and finds herself falling head over heels in love. Sensitive, intelligent, and high-minded, her noble pen pal seems to embody everything Emily has ever dreamed of in a man. But Simon Augustus Traherne, the mysterious Earl of Blade, is not at all what he seems.Driven by dark, smoldering passions and a tragic secret buried deep within his soul, Blade has all of London cowering at his feet, but not Emily . . . never Emily. For even as she surrenders to his seductive charms, she knows the real reason for his amorous suit. And she knows that she must reach the heart of this golden-eyed dragon before the avenging demons of their entwined pasts destroy the only love she has ever known.From the Paperback edition.
In financial straits and on a sure path to spinsterhood, Venetia Milton thought her stay at the remote, ramshackle Arcane House, far from society's prying eyes, would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to engineer her own ravishment. <P><P> She was there to photograph the relics and artifacts collected by a highly secretive organization, founded two centuries earlier by an eccentric alchemist. And the alchemist's descendant - her employer, Mr. Gabriel Jones - had the eyes of a sorcerer . . . <P> After a night to remember, Venetia is prepared to cherish the memories of her romantic encounter and move on, but she is shattered when, shortly after their night together, she reads of Jones's death in the papers. As a private tribute to her one-time lover, she adopts the name "Mrs. Jones" and the guise of a respectable widow, and embarks on a new career as a fashionable photographer in London, where her unique ability to "see" beyond her subjects and capture that quality in her photography makes her photographs highly prized. But her romantic whim causes unexpected trouble. For one thing, Mr. Jones is about to stride, living and breathing, back into her life. <P> And the bonds that tie them together include more than just the memory of passion; Venetia's special "double vision" has caught the attention of someone Mr. Jones is tracking - someone who will go to any lengths, even murder, to possess an ancient, extraordinary secret that has been lost for centuries. Someone who believes that as the "wife" of Mr. Jones, Venetia is the key. Now, as she introduces Gabriel about town as her miraculously back-from-the-dead "husband," Venetia must join him in a perilous quest to track down a dangerous opponent who manages to stay one step ahead. As they explore the darker, wilder underbelly of the modern, scientific Victorian world, they must see through society's illusions - or this time, Gabriel Jones may not be coming from the dead, and neither may Mrs. Jones.
Townsfolk called him devil. For dark and enigmatic Julian, Earl of Ravenwood, was a man with a legendary temper and a first wife whose mysterious death would not be forgotten. Some said the beautiful Lady Ravenwood had drowned herself in the black, murky waters of Ravenwood Pond. Others whispered of foul play and the devil's wrath.Now country-bred Sophy Dorring is about to become Ravenwood's new bride. Drawn to his masculine strength and the glitter of desire that burned in his emerald eyes, the tawny-haired lass had her own reasons for agreeing to a marriage of convenience. One was vengeance, and in its pursuit she would entangle Julian in a blackmail plot, a duel at dawn, and a dangerous masquerade. The other reason was dearer to her heart, but just as wild a quest: Sophy Dorring intended to teach the devil to love again.From the Paperback edition.
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