I’m pleased to have Lela Bay back with news about a collection of heartwarming romances! Read on for excerpts and news on how you can read for free!
The Comedy of Marriage
A big thank you to Rose Fairbanks for allowing me to guest blog.
Romances are often enhanced by the love stories of minor characters. Though they’re more in the background than our heroine’s yearnings and passions, when love is in the air we get glimpses into relationships all around. Like a Shakespearean comedy, where everyone ends up paired and married, romances thrill in the development of love.
Pride and Prejudice isn’t just about Darcy and Elizabeth, but also Jane and Bingley, and even Lydia and Wickham. Jane Austen’s Emma dwells on Frank Churchill and JaneFairfax, Harriett Smith and Robert Martin, and ultimately Emma and George Knightley.
Sometimes, romantic heroes exist in a world of their own, in empty hilltop cabins post-apocalyptic wastelands where they’re the last two people on earth—but that’s rare. More often, their passions make them myopic to others, but it’s for the author to delve into the lives of those around them.
In the story collection Meant to Be…KISSED from Meant to Be Press, lovely ladies rely on friends and relatives while searching their hearts.
“The Grand Gesture” by Lela Bay, takes a public humiliation and turns it into an act of heroism. Rosamund Windham, daughter of the duke, literally drops herself into a pool of filth to save an innocent and in the process befriends the girl’s brother. Later that night Rosamund’s sister, Amelia, stumbles into a muddy trap of her own. Luckily, a childhood friend is around to help:
“The Grand Gesture” by Lela Bay
The nearby bushes rustled, and Rosamund waved an arm. “Hello? Please?”
“No, Rosamund, not in front of Alastair!”
Amelia’s warning arrived too late. Alastair appeared from the bushes at the edge of the puddle, shaking his head. “May I assist, ladies? It would appear that another Windham sisterhas fallen in.”
“I didn’t fall in,” sniffed Amelia, holding her arms out to rest a hand on each of Alastair’s shoulders. Much to Rosamund’s surprise, she sounded subdued and colorbrightened both her cheeks. “I saved my sister. Just as she saved Miss Shelby’s reputation.”
“Did she, now?” he asked in soothing tones. “Mother will be pleased to know it wasn’t all her fault.”
“Of course not, Alastair,” snapped Amelia, both hands still resting around his shoulders.
For her to have known who lurked in the garden, she must have come out with him. Had he been helping her find Rosamund? Interesting.
Alastair, Lady Termington’s son, grinned wolfishly in the face of Amelia’s scowl, but his touch was gentle as he apologized and caught her folded skirts and bare leg. Helifted her entirely, holding her in both arms as he swung her to shore and heldher a moment too long, leaving Amelia hauntingly silent.
“Sparks,” Rosamund murmured, and marveled the feeling in her stomach had settled. What a night it had been. Bemused she hadn’t noticed the tension between them before, she retreated down the path but lingered, torn between wishing to find Miss Shelby and concern for her sister.
Alastair remained pressed close. “If any more of you fall in, my sister will soon be threadbare.”
“Reconsider having mud pits to trap the unwary! Oh no, my shoe is left behind! Can you get it? No, hold me up!”
They rustled together.
“Oh, I’ve spotted your waistcoat!”
“I hear mud’s all the rage. Everyone’s doing it.”
Amelia giggled. “Alastair!”
“Miss Montague’s Winter Kiss” by Emmy Z. Madrigal turns sadness into hope. Grayson is a man who has lost everything, but Cecelia saves his life and rekindles his belief in love. Broken ice and traumatic losses give way to the start of something new, if only the hero can give up past hurts.
The story opens with the romantic pairing from Lord Harrington’s Lost Doe, a couple already very much in love.
“Miss Montague’s Winter Kiss” by Emmy Z.
“They’ve arrived, My Lord,” Benjamin said, interrupting Lord and Lady Harrington’s kiss in the drawing room.
Lord Harrington’s scowl told more of his disappointment than pleasure in the upcoming Christmas festivities. Mercy looked up at her husband, hopeful he’d put away his grumpiness and at the very least enjoy their guests’ company.
“Oh, go on with your merrymaking,” he said, running his thumb across her cheek lovingly. “I have cottages to inspect, but I expect a continuation of this discussion when I return.” His devious smile spoke of more than just conversation. He gave her one last kiss on the cheek and squeezed her hand before leaving the room.
Mercy grinned as she watched her husband go and then she turned to the foyer, giddy with anticipation.
Read for free on Kindle Unlimited. Available in eBook and paperback.
Meant to Be Press celebrates the release of Meant to Be…KISSED (Love Notes Book 2). This is the second collection of sweet of stories from Meant to Be Press authors. This heartwarming collection is themed around winter kisses. The two primary stories are historical romances, with a bonus contemporary flash fiction piece from Meant to Be Press’s newest author, M. M. Genet.
Meant to Be…KISSED is available as an ebook on Amazon and through Kindle Unlimited.
Note: Meant to Be…MINE (Love Notes Book 1) ebook will be free December 1-5th
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