#MedievalMonday ~ Mary Morgan

I’m so happy today to welcome, the best friend I never met, Mary Morgan! Mary’s passion for books started at an early age along with an overactive imagination. She spent far too much time daydreaming and was told quite often to remove her head from the clouds. It wasn’t until the closure of Borders Books where Mary worked that she found her true calling—writing romance. Now, the worlds she created in her mind are coming to life within her stories. If you enjoy history, tortured heroes, and a wee bit of magic, then time-travel within the pages of her books. Mary is the author of the fabulous Dragon Knights series, and today she is sharing an excerpt from my favorite, Dragon Knight’s Axe.

An identity revealed…

Her mouth parted slightly. “And you? Who are you?”

He leaned toward her. “Does it matter?”

“Yes.”

“I am called the Dubh Dragon, but ye can call me Alastair. Now, may we leave?”

No! Fiona’s mind screamed at her. He couldn’t be. Could he? She shook her head in confusion.

“Impossible.”

Alastair blinked. Then he threw back his head and laughed. Afterwards, he spread his arms wide. “Och, little bird, I am indeed the Dubh Dragon.”

Follow along next week on Ruth A. Casie’s blog: https://www.RuthACasie.blogspot.com

Leave a comment for a chance to win a digital copy of Dragon Knight’s Axe by Mary Morgan.

BLURB: Alastair MacKay, a battled-scarred Dragon Knight flees to the sea to separate himself from his fae-given power connecting him to the land. But it is on land that he rescues a woman from a slave trader in Ireland. It is through Fiona he steps back inadvertently into a world filled with magic—taking on the role of protector and at the same time leading him on a journey to confront his greatest regret and fears.

Research assistant, Fiona O’Quinlan loves translating ancient artifacts at Trinity College. When she falls asleep on an archeological dig, she awakens in another time. She soon discovers a Dragon Knight’s relic has been entrusted into her care. Determined to return the artifact to the Great Glen, Fiona is unprepared for the danger ahead—losing her heart and soul to Alastair “Beast” MacKay.

Will their love be strong enough to soothe the beast and heal the man? Or will Death swing its axe, leaving them lost for all eternity?

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#MedievalMonday ~ Ashley York

The goddess is pleased to welcome Ashley York to the forest. It is always a pleasure to have her join us for peace and tranquility among the trees. Ashley writes historical romance full of passion and intrigue set in 11th and 12th century Ireland, Scotland, and England where life was wild and survival was never guaranteed. Whether it’s in the mysterious ring forts of Éire, the Scottish Highlands, or the battle fields of Hastings, her characters fight hard and play hard. Good or evil, primary or secondary, they all evoke strong emotional responses. Here is an excerpt from her Medieval Romance, Curse of the Healer.

Her breath caught, though his grip was not overly firm. They stood that way for a long moment—his head lowered to hers so they stood nose to nose, his broad chest brushing against her forearm in time with his heavy breathing.

His gaze dropped, to slowly follow up her length before settling again on her face.

That he continued to study her kept her fully watchful. His features relaxed, but she sensed mounting tension in him.

You can catch more of this great story next week on Lane McFarland’s blog.

BLURBAfter the death of Brian Boru in 1014, a legend arose of a healer so great she could raise a man from the dead, with a power so strong it could make any warrior the next high king of Éire…and to steal it away from her, he need only possess her. 

Fated to be a healer…

Aednat has spent her entire life training to be the great healer, knowing she must remain alone. When she meets Diarmuid, the intense attraction she feels toward him shakes her resolve to believe in such a legend. If she gives in to the passion he ignites in her, can she settle for being less?

Destined to be his…

Diarmuid of Clonascra is renowned for his bravery in battle. Only one thing daunts him: the prospect of taking a wife. The safest course would be to keep his distance from Aednat, the bold, headstrong healer who’s far too tempting for his peace of mind. But his overking orders him to protect her from a group of craven warriors intent on kidnapping her to steal her power.

What starts as duty for Diarmuid quickly transforms into something more. Aednat’s power might be at risk, but so is his closed-off heart.

BUY LINK: Amazon 

Medieval Monday ~ Jenna Jaxon

The forest always seems brighter when Jenna Jaxon stops by for a visit. Jenna has been reading and writing historical romance since she was a teenager. A romantic herself, she has always loved a dark side to the genre, a twist, suspense, a surprise. She tries to incorporate all of these elements into her own stories. She lives in Virginia with her family and a small menagerie of pets. When not reading or writing, she indulges her passion for the theatre, working with local theatres as a director. She often feels she is directing her characters on their own private stage. She has equated her writing to an addiction to chocolate because once she starts she just can’t stop. And aren’t we glad? Here is an excerpt from her Medieval Romance, Betrothal.

An amused murmur ran through the Hall at his words. Sir Geoffrey grinned, his eyes sparkling with humor and something more. Despite the uneven light, Alyse saw an unfathomable promise in their dark depths. She took a shaky breath and looked away.

“I affirm Lady Alyse to be all that could be hoped for in a wife. Please you and God, we shall make the match and with all good haste.”

His self-satisfied tone and the thought of his outrageous teasing touched a contrary nerve in Alyse. She pulled her wits together and beamed brilliantly at her newly-betrothed lord. “Take care, my lord, for the wise women say, ‘Marry in haste, repent at leisure.’”

Be sure to visit again next week when my guest will be Ashley York!

BLURBThe heart can choose, but can it also change?

Lady Alyse de Courcy has fallen in love with Lord Braeton, a nobleman in King Edward III’s court and a man to whom she has barely spoken. Fate, however, has decreed her betrothal to his best friend, Sir Geoffrey Longford—a handsome and imposing knight, yet hardly the man she wants to wed.

When Sir Geoffrey is bound in betrothal by his father, he could not have expected the beautiful stranger to win his heart the moment they meet. But Alyse’s infatuation with his friend casts doubt on whether she can ever return his regard and their wedding day is fast approaching…  Will he have time enough to win her love?

BUY LINK: Amazon  B&N  Smashwords

Medieval Monday ~ Laurel O’Donnell

It’s finally fall in the forest. I’m so looking forward to the changing colors. Such beauty always leaves me in awe. I’m excited to have Laurel O’Donnell visiting today. Laurel has won numerous awards for her works, including the Holt Medallion for A Knight of Honor, the Happily Ever After contest for Angel’s Assassin, and the Indiana’s Golden Opportunity contest for Immortal Death. The Angel and the Prince was nominated by the Romance Writers of America for their prestigious Golden Heart award.  Today we are lucky enough to get a peek at her Medieval Romance, The Angel and the Prince.

“If you really expect me to answer your questions truthfully, then you must be more of a halfwit than legend has it,” he replied.

Ryen dismissed his insult and leaned closer to him so their lips were almost touching.  “You will tell me all your deepest thoughts.  Nothing will remain a secret from me.”

“I think not,” he spat.

Follow along next week at Lane McFarland’s website – www.lanemcfarland.com

Don’t forget to leave a comment for your chance to win a signed copy of The Angel and the Prince!

BLURB: In this exciting medieval romance, the French lady knight known as the Angel of Death wages a battle of wills and desires against her dreaded enemy — the English warrior known as the Prince of Darkness.

Ryen De Bouriez is a French warrior, dedicated to protecting her country against the hated English. In place of glittering ball gowns, she wears shining armor. Instead of practicing the gentler arts, she wields a sword. Those who whisper her name in fear and awe call her the Angel of Death.

Bryce Princeton is the Prince of Darkness, an English knight sent by his king to find and destroy their most hated adversary — the Angel of Death. Little does he know that his enemy is no man at all, but a beautiful woman who will challenge his heart and honor at every turn.

Forced to choose between love and honor, the Angel and the Prince wage a battle of wills that challenges everything they have ever believed in.

BUY LINK:   Amazon

Medieval Monday ~ Ceci Giltenan

Greetings, gods and goddesses! Arduinna is pleased to have Ceci Giltenan visiting the forest today.  Ceci started her career as an oncology nurse and eventually became a medical writer and regulatory affairs specialist in the pharmaceutical industry. She is married to an Irish carpenter and they raised their family in central New Jersey.
With children out of college now, she is leaving the world of drug development behind to focus on writing books. And we couldn’t be happier about that! Here is an excerpt from her #MedievalRomance, Highland Redemption.

“And your father? Is he one of Laird Carr’s guardsmen?”

“Nay.” Tomas said no more. A discussion about his parents was best avoided and the easiest way to do that was to change the subject. “Who taught ye to play chess?”

She smiled sadly. “My mother started to teach me chess when I was a very little girl. I learned how the pieces moved and captured other pieces. Before she died, we played some. But mostly I loved just playing with the pieces like they were dolls. I imagined them to be two royal families, with lots of children.” Vida smiled and blushed. “Mama would play that with me too sometimes. I thought it would be fun to live in a big family.”

Follow along next week on Lane MacFarland’s website: http://lanemcfarland.com/. Remember to leave a comment for a chance to win an e-copy of Highland Redemption or another e-book of your choice by Ceci Giltenan.

BLURB: Tomas’s life changed forever when at the age of seven he was adopted by Laird and Lady Maclan ending the abuse he’d suffered at Ambrose Ruthven’s hand. He’d never looked back and never intended to

But fate had other plans…

Now, nineteen years later, he runs headlong into his past. The Ruthvens are in trouble and Tomas is in a position to help them. But can he set aside his hatred for Laird Ruthven for the good of the clan into which he was born?

Fate always adds a twist…

Laird Ruthven’s daughter is not what Tomas expected. Vida Ruthven is sweet, smart, and utterly irresistible.

Now, Tomas must choose between being the savior or taking the ultimate revenge.

BUY LINKS: Amazon

Medieval Monday ~ Nicole Locke

Welcome to Arduinna’s Forest. Today the goddess welcomes the sensational Nicole Locke to the forest for the first time. Nicole first discovered romance novels hidden in her grandmother’s closet. Convinced hidden books must be better, Nicole greedily read them. It was only natural she should start writing them (but now not so secretly). Her next Medieval Romance won’t be out until November, but you can pre-order now. Her Christmas Knight is sure to be worth the wait.

Grabbing the seal, she rushed into the too-bright room. Images of people and flames flickering in elaborate wall sconces distracted her. She collided with a wall wearing chainmail and started to fall backwards.

Thick arms wrapped around her waist and lifted her. Clutching the seal against her chest, she felt her feet leave the ground as she was pressed against the unmistakable curves of a trained warrior. Winded. and blinded by the sudden light, she felt his flat abdomen against her own, her breasts rubbing abrasively against interlocked steel, and still the warrior pulled her up…and up.

She was being held much too closely. She breathed in to catch her breath, to protest, and smelled leather, metal, and a scent that was this man’s alone. A scent that hovered on her memory…elusive, familiar. It filled her with such a sudden wanting that she clamped her mouth shut.

Images blazed in her mind. It couldn’t be him. It shouldn’t be him.

Don’t miss the next excerpt next week at Lane McFarland’s blog.

BLURBA knight to protect her—this Yuletide 

By order of the English king, Alice of Swaffham searches London nobility for the traitor dealing information to the Scots. Little does she know that the mysterious spy she seeks is the man she once loved and thought she’d lost forever… 

If Hugh of Shoebury felt unworthy of Alice before, as the Half-Thistle spy he can never claim her heart. Now he must fight to keep not only his dark secrets—and Alice—safe from a vengeful king…but also his burning longing for her at bay!

BUY LINKS:  Amazon Harlequin

Medieval Monday ~ Elisabeth Hobbes

Greetings, gods and goddesses. Welcome to Arduinna’s forest where my special guest is Elisabeth Hobbes. Elisabeth grew up in York where she spent most of her teenage years wandering around the city looking for a handsome Roman or Viking to sweep her off her feet. Sadly it never happened but luckily for us, she developed a love of the past and now regales us with stories set in my favorite time period. Here is an excerpt from her Medieval Romance, Redeeming the Rogue Knight.

Lurching forward unexpectedly, he raised his left arm and knocked it out of her hand.

He staggered, as if this had taken the last of his strength, and fell forward towards her. Instinctively Lucy reached her arms out to catch him, her hands sliding beneath his armpits. She stepped backwards and found herself wedged between him and the wall, his weight crushing her. She yelped in pain as something sharp scratched her left shoulder through her thick wool dress. She looked down to see the head of an arrow protruding from the man’s right shoulder.

‘He’s really hurt!’ she exclaimed.

Don’t let me die unmourned, dove,’ the man slurred, his voice deep and husky.

Before Lucy could think how to reply he had reached his left arm to the back of her head, tilted it back and covered her lips with his.

BLURBThe spy who sought refuge…

When injured spy Sir Roger Danby comes asking for shelter at her inn, Lucy Carew is wary. He may be strikingly handsome, but the disgraced single mother has learnt the hard way with men like him. Against her better judgement, she gives him refuge.

Sir Roger has never been at the mercy of a woman before, and he’s never met one as mysterious and bewitching as Lucy. He hasn’t come looking for redemption, but Lucy is a woman who could reach in and touch his closely guarded heart…

BUY LINK: Amazon