Wednesday, May 30, 2018

A Mistress for Penndrake by Tammy L. Bailey - Blog Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway

The Marquess of Wesley is out for blood. For a year, Lord Wesley has tried to undo the devastation his father left to Penndrake, their ancestral home, only to discover the man gambled it away right before his death. Now Wesley is being blackmailed by the new owner into marrying a woman he’s never met in order to get it back. But his intentions are less than honorable…

At one and twenty, Miss Kate Holden intends to become a governess, having sworn off all men years ago. However, her plans are halted when she receives a daunting letter from her cousin about a Lord Wesley. Ignorant of the name, and the devilish marquess that wears it all too well, she nearly ends up compromised. Refusing to fall prey to Wesley’s skillful seduction, Kate decides to turn things around on the rake. But the high-stakes game between them soon leads to her losing the last thing she expected…her heart.

Kate, rattled and weary, stood before his lordship a heart-tangled mess. After enduring Arthur’s presumptuous advances and pretending Lord Wesley’s ignorance in the matter didn’t trouble her, she’d come to his room, ready to do battle. Be strong.

Only she didn’t anticipate herself entwined in his arms or peeking out beyond his bedroom curtains to find Claire in the same steely embrace she’d found herself moments before. Kate hated him for what he’d done. Then, he’d surprised her and kept her presence a secret, throwing Claire out without even stealing a kiss from her.

Still, the entire episode left Kate deflated, and a spot queasy. One more night with Lord Wesley, and Kate knew she was in jeopardy of losing more than what he’d thus far taken from her.

“All right,” she said again, succumbed by his haughtiness, and reaching out to search his clothes. His hazel eyes flickered off the firelight, full of mischief and want.

“There is one catch.”

She exhaled loud and hard. “Well, of course there is.”

“You must wear the mask.”

A shiver of forbidden excitement raced through her. “No!”

“Then all bets are off.” He rotated toward the door.

“Wait,” she called. He stood with his back to her, and she would have given anything to know what he was thinking. “We’ll play by your rules.” How far could the items be inside his clothing, after all?

He sidestepped to retrieve the mask from the bedside table before returning to her. She closed her eyes, feeling the warmth of his closeness as he reached behind her to secure the blindfold in place. “No, wait.” She suddenly remembered her fear of closed places and lifted her hand to push his arm away. Her heart pummeled hard inside her chest, growing wilder with each unsteady breath.

“Miss Holden?” The concern in his voice made her waver, but only for a second.

“Do I still have five minutes, or have you changed that rule as well?”

His mouth descended upon her right ear. “You still have five minutes.”

She shivered from the contact. As the darkness wrapped around her world, she concentrated her goal. All she needed was to reach in, find his silk pockets and pull out the items. Determined to follow through no matter the consequence, she brought in a steady breath, turned and braced herself before him. She fumbled at first, her fingers walking up the hard wall of his chest.

Moment by precious moment, her composure began to disintegrate. Before her, he remained stone still, his warm breath falling easy and steady against her forehead. It irritated her how unaffected he remained while her legs threatened to buckle under her anxiousness.

“Have you found them?” he whispered.

Kate steeled her nerves and shook her head. She didn’t understand how she loathed the man one minute and wanted him to take her in his arms the next. “Not yet,” she grumbled back.

Tammy began writing when the shows and movies she watched didn't end the way she wanted them to end. Whether it's historical or contemporary, for her, there must always be a happy ending. When she's not writing, she's spending time with her husband and two boys near Cleveland, Ohio. Without their sacrifice and understanding, she believes she would have never been able to pursue her passion for writing or her accomplishment of becoming a published author.

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