Good Afternoon everyone,
I hope you’re all fine and safe in your part of the world, and that you have great books to keep you company. I’ve been reading so much lately that Darcy and Elizabeth are starting to become a little predictable, so I am now starting to appreciate books that focus on secondary characters. I confess that the only secondary characters I really wanted to read about were Mary Bennet and the Colonel, but that is also changing now, so I’m really happy to bring you today an excerpt of Sue Barr’s latest book: Georgiana.
I hope you enjoy this excerpt and that you don’t forget to apply to the generous giveaway the author is promoting in the blog tour.
Thank you for visiting Sue! And thank you to include me in the tour Christina Boyd 🙂
Thank you for hosting me and letting me share an excerpt from my latest release, GEORGIANA: Pride & Prejudice continued… Book Three. The scene I’m sharing today is from early in the book and is the impetus for many of the decisions Max makes moving forward.
He’d removed his cravat and pulled his shirt from his breeches when he heard a woman cry out. The sound came from the room below. He waited a few seconds and hearing nothing more, started to remove his shirt. A scream pierced the air.
Without thought that his shirt was undone and loose about his hips, he strode from the room and in less than a minute stood outside the door to the room below his. Sounds of a struggle, although muffled, filtered through the door.
Disgust arose in his chest. He had no idea who occupied the room, or whether it was the man’s wife or a woman from the village in the room with him, but by the sound of it, she wasn’t a willing companion. The thought of any man forcing himself upon a woman, married or not, made his stomach turn and with one well-placed kick he booted open the door.
The sight before him was chaotic. All the bedclothes were scattered about the room, as though someone had jumped on the bed, or scrambled across it to evade. A woman cowered on the floor beside the bed and a man clad only in his breeches, his back to the door, held her ankle in his left hand, his right had raised above his head as though to strike. The woman’s nightgown, twisted around slender thighs, had risen enough to reveal several bruises and one deep cut on her creamy skin.
“Unhand that woman!” Max bellowed.
The man turned and Max was stunned to see it was none other than Sir Reginald Slade, who whirled around and after a momentary hesitation swung his fist at Max’s face. Max feinted to the right, then ducked and tackled Slade around the waist, thankful that years of wrestling with two younger brothers gave him a decided edge.
The momentum of their collision carried them onto the bed, which collapsed beneath their combined weight. A brief struggle ensued, ending when Max managed to punch Sir Reginald solidly on his chin, who fell back onto the mattress, his body limp. Assured Slade would not come around any time soon, Max turned and kneeled beside the woman, her face obscured behind a tangled curtain of dark golden curls.
“You will not be harmed.” Hesitantly, he touched her shoulder, not wanting to frighten her further. “Lend me your hand; I will take you to safety.”
The woman finally raised her tear stained face and his heart stuttered to a stop.
A noise from behind snapped Maxwell out of his shock. Mr. Barrows stood within the door frame, his cheerful face now twisted into a mixture of worry and anger. In his beefy hand, he held a club of some sort.
“I don’t allow this kind of behavior in my inn—” he growled, lifting the club in a threatening gesture.
“Mr. Barrows, this lady needs care.” Max snatched a blanket off the bed and draped it around Georgiana’s shoulders. No one else needed to see the state she was in. “Have someone attend the stables and request one of my men to come here to guard Sir Reginald.”
“Who are you to give me orders? For all I know, you’re in on this with him,” Mr. Barrows sputtered in anger.
Max rose to his feet, Georgiana in his arms, and towered over the man.
“I am the Duke of Adborough.” Mr. Barrows blanched at the mention of his title. “I have nothing to do with this sordid piece of humanity other than saving the lady from his clutches.”
The innkeeper lowered the club and gave him a quick bow.
Max continued. “Would you ask your daughter bring some salve and warm water to my room. This lady requires attention.”
“Right away, Your Grace.”
Max hurried upstairs, distressed by the small whimpers Georgiana tried to hide by pressing her face into his chest. He immediately placed her in a chair and without thought pulled back the blanket to assess if her wounds were dire. At her gasp, he realized how inappropriate his actions were and quickly threw the blanket back over her legs.
“Forgive me, Miss Darcy. I was so worried I wasn’t thinking straight.”
“N… n… not to worry, Your Grace.” She choked back another sob. “I was trying… I was… t…t…t…trying…”
She burst into tears.
Max fell to his knees and society be damned, placed his arms around her slender shoulders and pulled her against his chest. “Hush. You are safe. He cannot hurt you now.”
“I know.” He felt her head nod in time with her statement. “Th…” She drew in a shuddering breath. “Thank you.”
“Can you tell me what happened?”
He felt her head shake in the negative against his chest and heard a stammered whisper. “N.. n… not right now.”
“Shh…., you are safe now. Mr. Barrows is sending his daughter with salve to soothe the injury to your leg.”
Max looked down at the tangle of curls against his chest. How long had he dreamed of holding Georgiana in this manner? There was no way he’d allow Slade to triumph. He’d planned on courting her in a slow, gentle manner and that course of action had been brutally demolished. As soon as he could get word to Darcy, he’d apply for a Special License and he and Georgiana would marry as quickly as possible.
She longs for true love…
A dowry of thirty thousand pounds places a hefty weight upon the shoulders of Miss Georgiana Darcy. Her tender heart has been broken before by a cad who cared not one whit for who she was, but as a prize to be won, and she fears no man will ever see the worth of her heart.
Duty and honor…
These are the stalwart columns which hold up the life of Maxwell Kerr, Fifth Duke of Adborough. After rescuing Miss Darcy from an inescapable compromise, an offer of marriage is as natural to him as breathing air. When he discovers this is not the first compromise she has evaded, anger becomes his faithful companion and threatens their tenuous bonds of love and respect.
You can find Georgiana at:
“The prairie dust is in my blood but no longer on my shoes.”
Sue Barr coined that phrase when once asked where she came from. Although it’s been over thirty-seven years since she called Saskatchewan home, her roots to that straight-lined province and childhood friends run deep. The only thing strong enough to entice her to pack up and leave was love. When a handsome Air Force pilot met this small-town girl, he swept her off her feet and they embarked on a fantastic adventure which found them settled in beautiful Southwestern Ontario when hubby retired from the military and began his second career as an airline pilot.
Sue started writing in 2009 and sold her first manuscript in 2010. For four years she was published under the pen name of Madison J. Edwards, and in 2014 began to write sweet contemporary romance under her own name. Always a reader of Regency romance, she discovered Jane Austen Fan Fiction through a childhood friend who writes under the name of Suzan Lauder. Almost immediately a question popped into her head, “Whatever happened to Caroline Bingley after her brother and Mr. Darcy became engaged to a Bennet sister?” and the “Pride & Prejudice Continued…” series was launched.
Sue is a member of Romance Writers of America and its satellite chapter, The Beau Monde. She is one course away from achieving her Professional Creative Writer’s certificate from the University of Western Ontario’s continuing study curriculum. In her spare time, she cans and preserves her own food, cooks almost everything from scratch and grows herbs to dehydrate and make into seasoning. Hubby has no complaints other than his trousers keep shrinking. At least that’s what he claims…. Oh, the kids and grandkids don’t mind this slight obsession either.
Don’t forget to follow the blog tour for more information about Georgiana 🙂
Sue is also gifting three e-copies of GEORGIANA to three lucky winners via Rafflecopter. Open internationally through March 12.
Click on this link to apply 🙂
Good luck everyone!