Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Unusual Historical Spotlight: Far East, Middle East, Austria, Arizona and the Circus

Wanted: Mail Order Mistress by Deborah Hale

What You Need To Know: Publication date March 22, 2011; Book 3 in a trilogy
Betrayed by his first wife, Simon Grimshaw won't marry again. But sultry nights in Singapore can be lonely—nothing a beautiful English mistress wouldn't fix!

Bethan Conway answers an advert to become a wife, believing it will help her secret search for her missing brother. But Simon isn't the ugly old man she was expecting. He's a hot-blooded bachelor who wants a woman in his bed—a position Bethan's more and more tempted to fill!
What Makes It Unusual:  It's set in Singapore!

Portrait of Seduction by Carrie Lofty

What You Need To Know: Publication date May 2, 2011, Book 2 in a series, digital only

Greta Zwieg forges masterpieces. With her copies on their walls and the original paintings safely hidden, the noble families of Austria can rest assured their treasures will survive Napoleon's advances. But now Greta’s uncle is changing the rules, selling her counterfeits as originals. Greta abhors the deceit. Anxious for her family's safety in a perilous time, she is nevertheless determined to put things right.

Oliver Doerger is living a lie of his own. Acting as valet for his aristocratic half brother, Oliver thwarts an attempt on Greta's life and is overwhelmed by the forbidden passion that flares between them. Although he's not truly a servant, he is a bastard and a spy--certainly no match for a woman of such exquisite quality.

Though both fear discovery, they cannot resist each other. When the truth comes out, and the city falls into chaos, Greta and Oliver will be forced to choose: love or duty?
What Makes It Unusual: It's set in Austria!

Innocent In The Sheikh's Harem by Marguerite Kaye

What You Need To Know: Publication date June 21, 2011; Book 1 in a series.

Lady Celia Cleveden thinks of herself as eminently sensible from the tips of her sturdy boots to the top of her unadorned bonnet. It seemed logical she would marry an equally practical gentleman.

Until she's rescued by wildly enigmatic desert prince Ramiz of A'Qadiz, while traveling across his unforgiving sands. He offers her a place in his harem and Lady Celia ought to be shocked…except the seductive desert and intoxicating Ramiz make it curiously tempting….
What Makes It Unusual: It's set in the Middle East!

Catch Me by Lorelie Brown

What You Need To Know: Publication date July 18, 2011; digital only

Maggie Bullock's father needed expensive medical care and if that meant stealing from their friendly swindling banker, so be it. Once her father was on the path to recovery she would face the consequences. The whole thing was surprisingly easy until she's kidnapped by bounty hunter Dean Collier.
Collier is tired of tracking down worthless scum. He's afraid he'll lose his last scrap of humanity and become a stone-cold killer, just like the men he brings to justice. He jumps at the chance to become sheriff of Fresh Springs, Arizona. The one condition—capture Maggie.
He figured it'd be easy. Until beautiful, loyal Maggie breaks through defenses he'd thought cemented. His feelings for her run the range from fury to confusion to love, but if he doesn't bring her in someone else will. Can there be a future between a sheriff and a fugitive?
What Makes It Unusual: It's my blog and I say westerns are unusual.  The minute I walk into a bookstore and start tripping over historical cowboys left and right, I'll stop featuring them.  Ahem, anywho - this one is set in Arizona.  Not a whole ton of westerns that feature a southwest flavah.

The Greatest Love on Earth by Mary Ellen Dennis

What You Need To Know: Publication date August 1, 2011

Set against the exotic world of an 1875 circus and the high-society milieu of Denver, Colorado, Mary Ellen Dennis's The Greatest Love On Earth sweeps readers into a story of death-defying feats, dangerous rivalries, and a love that has all the thrills and romance of the greatest show on earth.
Bold, beautiful Calliope Kelley has two passions in life: her father's circus and Brian O'Connor, and she just may lose them both. For years she has singlehandedly struggled to keep the Sean Kelley Circus going. Then Brian O'Connor, the daredevil animal trainer Calliope has adored since childhood, returns to the circus, having found everything a man can want. . .except the right woman.
Soon their passion will explode under the Big Top. Soon a deadly enemy will begin sabotaging Calliope's beloved circus. As terror becomes the star attraction, it will take a woman's indomitable dreams and a man's enduring love to survive and triumph over the most impossible odds of all.
What Makes It Unusual: The circus!  OMG, the circus is in town!
  • Because I can't realistically catch or feature all titles (I'm one woman after all!) - what "unusual" historicals have you run across in the last couple of months, or are upcoming this summer that you have enjoyed and/or are looking forward to reading.  Share the love in the comments section!


Hannah said...

Carrie Lofty has another book coming out--Flawless--that's set in New York and South Africa. Not released until the fall though (September 27th).

Lynn Spencer said...

I loved Libertine's Kiss, so I can't wait to read The King's Courtesan by Judith James, which is coming out this summer, I believe. The books are set in Restoration England, so definitely not the usual.

Wendy said...

I'm going to have to do another one of these posts around late July, early August. For some reason I was thinking the new James was later this fall - but nope, August. Also, Jeannie Lin has a new book coming out in August.

And I'm really looking forward to that Carrie Lofty title! I believe she's under contract for 2 historicals with Pocket - Flawless being the first.

Leslie said...

I read Portrait of Seduction recently and really enjoyed it! I've got Song of Seduction on the tbr e-pile. :)

The western caught my eye - and hey, set in my neck of the woods. Perfect!

And since you're including westerns in the unusual category - Kaki Warner has a new one out this summer, Heartbreak Creek, a historical western set in Colorado coming out in July.

nath said...

I just read Leslie's review of Portrait of Seduction and I tell myself I should give it a try :)

However, the one that caught my attention out of the 5 in this post is Wanted: Mail Order mistress.... Singapore! That's really different :) I wonder how it was there...

Wendy said...

Leslie: I like reading westerns set in the southwest. You don't see too many of them, and I like the change of pace the climate/environment brings.

Nath: I'm curious about that Singapore book! I'm reading the Marguerite Kaye Sheikh title right now. So far, so good!

Hilcia said...

I know I left a comment here... the blog fairy ate it!

Hannah thanks for the heads up about Flawless, I'll be looking for that title! I really enjoyed Portrait of Seduction already.

From the other titles, Catch Me by Lerelie Brown looks good, and yeah... a good western counts!

Wendy said...

Hilcia (and Leslie): I just wrapped up Portrait. Dang, I love Carrie's writing. Review coming up later this week.