This will be the first of a biweekly column focusing on my picks of the historical romances publishing in a two-week period. We’re off to a great start this first half of May with many promising historicals making their mark. Here are my choices…
The Highlander’s Lost Lady by Anna Campbell (Apr 29)
This is the third book in the Lairds Most Likely series. When Diarmid Mactavish, Laird of Invertavey, discovers a mysterious woman washed up on his land after a wild storm, he takes her in and tries to find her family. But even as forbidden dreams of sensual fulfillment torment him, he’s convinced that this beautiful lassie isn’t what she seems. Widow Fiona Grant has risked everything to break free of her clan and rescue her adolescent daughter from a forced marriage. But before her quest has barely begun, disaster strikes. She escapes her brutish kinsmen, only to be shipwrecked on Mactavish territory.
Unlaced by the Highland Duke by Lara Temple (Apr 30)
This is the second book in the Lochmore Legacy series. Part of The Lochmore Legacy is a Scottish castle through the ages. Unceremoniously packed off to Scotland to care for the Duke of Lochmore’s young son, practical widow Joane Langdale fears she will be ignored as always. But the deep connection and heated passion that develops between her and Benneit is far more dangerous! When Benneit is expected to propose to another, how dare Jo dream of becoming his duchess? (Frolic Review Here)
Highland Crown by May McGoldrick (Apr 30)
This is the first book of the Royal Highlander series. Trained physician, Isabella, has inspired longing and mystery — and fury– in a great many men. Hunted by both the British government and Scottish rebels, she came to the Highlands in search of survival. But a dying ship’s captain will steer her fate into even stormier waters. Cast from his home as a child, Cinaed is a fierce soul whose allegiance is only to himself until Isabella saves his life — and adds more risk to her own. (Frolic Review Here)
One Night of Surrender by Darcy Burke (Apr 30)
This is the second book of the Wicked Dukes Club series. After one passionate night a decade ago, Valentine Fairfax, Duke of Eastleigh, never forgot Isabelle, the intelligent, witty and forbidden daughter of a head of college at Oxford. However, since suffering a disastrous marriage to an unfaithful wife, the duke has vowed never to succumb to temptation again. Until the day he discovers his friend’s governess is the one woman who still haunts his dreams.
Romancing the Laird by Gerri Russell (Apr 30)
This is the second book in the All the King’s Men series. Legendary Scottish laird and warrior Reid Douglas has never met his match on or off the battlefield until Lucy Livingston – his bride-to-be. Lucy is no meek maiden content to stay at home. She’s trained in the art of war and is determined to destroy the king Reid has vowed to protect with his life. Lucy doesn’t want to wed the handsome, brawny laird, but it is an excellent cover she can use to get close to the king, who is engaged in a campaign to rid Scotland of witches
The Earl’s Countess of Convenience by Marguerite Kaye (Apr 30)
This is the first book in the Penniless Brides of Convenience series. Eloise Brannagh has witnessed firsthand the damage unruly passion can cause. Yet she craves freedom, so a convenient marriage to the Earl of Fearnoch seems the perfect solution. Except Alexander Sinclair is more handsome, more intriguing, more everything than Eloise anticipated. She’s set her own rules for their marriage, but her irresistible husband might just tempt her to break them!
Miss Fortescue’s Protector in Paris by Amanda McCabe (Apr 30)
This is the third book in the Debutantes in Paris series. Running her father’s mercantile empire and campaigning for women’s rights means unconventional Emily Fortescue has no time for romance. But when her politics land her in trouble, old friend Christopher Blakely comes to her rescue. They grew up arguing, sparring…even kissing, until he withdrew into his mysterious work. Now she’s torn between safeguarding her bruised heart and the lure of their spark reigniting…
Baby on His Hollywood Doorstep by Lauri Robinson (Apr 30)
This is the first book in the Brides of the Roaring Twenties series. With the Chicago mob hot on her heels and her late best friend’s baby in her arms, Helen Hathaway hightails it to Hollywood. There she finds little Grace’s uncle, charismatic film producer Jack McCarney. She knows she should keep him — and Grace — at arm’s length; after all, they could be wrenched apart by Grace’s father’s return. But instead she’s falling for Jack and is bonding with the baby who needs them both.
Reunited with His Long-Lost Cinderella by Laura Martin (Apr 30)
This is the second book of the Scandalous Australian Bachelors series. When widow Lady Francesca attends a masquerade ball, she’s shocked to meet Ben Crawford again. She’d loved him once before her awful marriage, before he’d been transported to Australia as a convict. Ben is now a wealthy landowner, and his contempt of her burns almost as strong as their attraction. She knows he believes she betrayed him — so she must put the past right, before it’s too late…
The Marriage Rescue by Joanna Johnson (Apr 30)
Romani Selina Agres has despised the gentry ever since her mother was murdered by a cruel aristocrat. But she’s not sure what to think when Edward Fulbrooke, that very man’s nephew, rescues her from an angry horde. Edward may be different from the other nobles, but Selina’s distrust runs deep. So she’s shocked when he proposes marriage to protect her and her people! Can she accept?
Never Deny a Duke by Madeline Hunter (Apr 30)
This is the third book in the The Decadent Duke Society series. He is the last remaining duke standing bachelor, yet Davina MacCallum’s reasons for searching out the handsome Duke of Brentworth have nothing to do with marriage. Scottish lands were unfairly confiscated from her family by the Crown and given to his. A reasonable man with vast holdings can surely part with one trivial estate, especially when Davina intends to put it to good use. Brentworth, however, is as difficult to persuade as he is to resist.
Never Kiss a Notorious Marquess by Renee Ann Miller (Apr 30)
This is the third book in the Infamous Lords series. For James Trent, Lord Huntington, there’s no escaping the question that labeled him The Murdering Marquess — was his wife’s death a tragic accident or a cold-blooded crime? He’s avoided London’s gossipmongers by hiding on his Essex estate. Caroline Lawrence doesn’t need a man to rescue her — the aspiring journalist anonymously advocates for women’s rights in a radical London newspaper column. But when a suffragist’s soapbox speech turns to pandemonium, Caroline is knocked on the head and reawakens in Trent Hall — with the notorious lord of the manor irresistibly close.
The Temptation of Grace by Kristin Vayden (Apr 30)
This is the third book in the Gentlemen of Temptation series. Dogged by gossip and scandal, Ramsey Scott, Marquess of Sterling, is the last man who should stand guard over lovely Miss Grace Morgan, much less fall for her. When the innocent’s first outings of the season land her in Temptation, the private club Ramsey manages, he longs to take her in his arms and keep her there, if only his past would allow it. Their friendship will have to suffice — but as Grace blooms in society, Ramsey feels her slipping from his grasp.
Never a Bride by Megan Frampton (Apr 30)
This is the fourth book in the Duke’s Daughters series. After twelve years in Her Majesty’s Navy, Griffith Davies must leave his sea-going life behind because he is forced to rejoin London society as the heir to the Duke of Northam. But though he is now shackled to the land, he has no desire to wed some innocently dull young thing. Who best to shield him from the matchmakers than a woman as notorious as he? Lady Della Howlett’s reputation was tattered years ago, so entering into a false engagement with Griffith is hardly going to make matters worse. What’s one more shock to the ton to set their tongues wagging?
Anything But a Duke by Christy Carlyle (Apr 30)
This is the second book in the Duke’s Den series. Self-made man Aidan Iverson has seen more closed doors in his thirty years than he’s ever cared to count. As a member of the elite Duke’s Den, he has all the money he could possibly need but the one thing he can’t purchase is true power. Brought up to be a proper lady, the only thing Diana Ashby desires is to be left alone to the creation of her own devices. But when her dreams are crushed, she must find another way to secure the future of her invention. Knowing his desire to enter her world, Diana strikes a deal to arrange Aidan’s marriage to the perfect lady — as long as that lady isn’t her.
Lord Bredon and the Bachelor’s Bible by Mia Marlowe (Apr 30)
This is the second book in the House of Lovell series. Newly-minted earl, Edward Lovell, bears a weighty responsibility: to restore his family’s estate to its former grandeur. The task requires not simply a wife, but a wealthy one. Thanks to The Bachelor’s Bible, he already has a particular lady in mind. He has only to convince her sponsor that he will make a suitable husband. There’s just one complication: the sponsor is none other than, Anne, the only woman he’s ever loved — and inexplicably lost.
Saving the Mail Order Bride by Linda Broday (Apr 30)
This is the second book in the Outlaw Mail Order Brides series. He may be a wanted man, but all outlaw Jack Bowdre ever desired was a second chance. Now he’s on his way to jail, completely unaware that his unexpected traveling companion is none other than Nora Kane, his mail order bride. When their stagecoach crashes and the truth comes spilling out, they’re suddenly left to fend for themselves — shake the devil from their trail.
The Pursuits of Lord Kit Cavanaugh by Stephanie Laurens (Apr 30)
This is the second book in The Cavanaughs series. One of the most eligible bachelors in London, Lord Christopher “Kit” Cavanaugh has discovered his true path and it doesn’t include the expected society marriage. Kit is all business and has chosen the bustling port of Bristol to launch his passion, the Cavanaugh Yachts. Miss Sylvia Buckleberry’s passion is her school for impoverished children. When a new business venture forces the school out of its building, she must act quickly. But confronting Kit Cavanaugh is a daunting task made even more difficult by their first and only previous meeting.
No Other Duke But You by Valerie Bowman (Apr 30)
This is the eleventh book in the Playful Brides series. Lady Delilah Montebank has her marital sights set on the Duke of Branville. There’s just one problem: he barely knows she exists. But no matter, she’s got a plan to win him over with her charm, her wit — and perhaps the love potion she has in her possession wouldn’t hurt her cause. Lord Thomas Hobbs, Duke of Huntley, thinks his best friend Delilah’s quest to become a duchess is ridiculous. He’s always said he’d rather give up all the brandy in London than commit to one person for life.
The Bashful Bride by Everly West (May 2)
This is the sixth book in the Ladies Club of Laramie series. Charlotte Bennett has always been different. A birth defect has given her a lifetime of misery and as an adult, the ridicule hasn’t stopped. When preparations for a spring festival begin, the sudden attention from Elijah Collins, the middle son of the local mercantile owner, make her dream of a future she never thought she’d have. But rumors of his impending marriage make her question his motives. Why is he still pursuing her if he plans to be married? And how will she protect her heart if the rumors turn out to be true?
To Steal a Kiss by Emma V. Leech (May 3)
This is the second book in the Girls Who Dare series. Being dared to kiss a man in the moonlight is all well and good, but men and moonlight do not fall from the skies at will. Until they do.
Under instruction from a friend, drab Alice Dowding lingers alone on a moonlit balcony. Not the most sensible course of action for a usually sensible girl. When Nathaniel Hunt’s sister begs him for a favor, he can hardly refuse. Nathaniel, part owner of one of the most scandalous gambling dens in London is responsible for Matilda’s tattered reputation, and she knows he is no position to deny her anything. When she begs him to kiss her mousy friend on a moonlit night, however, a chain of events is set in motion that none of them could have predicted.
The Bluestocking by Christi Caldwell (May 7)
This is the fourth book in the Wicked Wallflowers series. Gertrude, the eldest Killoran sister, has spent a lifetime being underestimated, especially by her own family. She may seem as vulnerable as a kitten, but given the chance, she can be as fierce as a tiger. Her adopted brother, Stephen, has just been snatched back by his true father, and she’ll be damned if she relinquishes the boy to the man reviled throughout London as the Mad Marquess. Still haunted by a deadly tragedy that left him publicly despised, Lord Edwin holds only hatred for the Killorans, the people he believes kidnapped his son. And not one of them will ever see the boy again.