I write to you today, dear Tattler, to tell of an outrage in my village. What do you say to a lady who sails all the way from London to the south shore of Wales, all to get a husband?
And to take one who has advertised to get you to come hither?
Is that not a ridiculous venture?
Sight unseen to agree to travel hundreds of miles to a sordid little town and devilihs house like the tumbledown Rambles of the barons of Rhouse and Gary? This is a sprawling, ugly monstrosity built by Normans, kept by men who made their living stealing what bounty floated up from the shores.
A wicked house it is too. Filled with wicked men who take women for their money and their land. Hollow men who fill themselves up with the dowries of naive girls and who ravaged them…and any others they wish.
The barons of this house and this lineage are thieves and charlatans. What woman would want such a man as husband?
I didn’t. Yet I had to. My father demanded it of me and where else was I to go, sicne my fiance’s father had already defiled me, eh?
Now this girl comes. Silly thing. She will not have this new baron to wed. I will see to it.
Warn your female readers not to accept a man’s hand if they know him not. It is not wise. It is not safe.
I warn you. Do not answer an advert to become a wife of a Welsh baron. He had only danger and heartache in store for you.
~ Desperate Lady
When a young widow wishes to marry again, will the man she grows to love ask more than she can give?
Mrs. Tynley Wallingford yearns for a quiet, comforting marriage to a man whom she can respect. She’ll go to any lengths to find the best candidate who can respect her, in turn. Even correspond with one fellow at length before she agrees that Kendryck Hollens is the man whose words awaken her desire for a husband she might grow to love.
Tynley takes a risk and sails to Wales with the best intentions. She finds in Kendryck a man with a noble ambition—and a family filled with age-old conflict and despair.
Kendryck Hollens returns home to Wales after fifteen years abroad, a stranger to his cantankerous family. He assumes his rightful title as baron of the legendary house of Strade and attempts to change the dastardly reputation of his ancestors, and put his siblings on the right path to a purposeful life.
Thrilled that Tynley has come to his home, he notices that her presence creates challenges among those in his family. But he feels assured she can help him obtain what he wants most in this world.
When a tragedy threatens to ruin his ambition and his family, he fears the price of endurance will ruin Tynley’s personal objective too—and drive her from him.
How much can one ask of one whom they love? Are any prices too high?
Excerpt YOU MADE ME LOVE YOU, All rights reserved. Copyright 2023. Cerise DeLand.
Kendryck put his two hands to her cheeks. “I told myself I would not take you like a villain.”
“Hmmm,” Tynely said as she considered that with a tip of her head this way and that. Then she pulled at the end of his beautifully tied cravat and said, “You aren’t.”
He took her by the shoulders. “Not against the stables, not in a carriage. We must be in a bed.”
“I do agree.” She sank to lick the skin of his corded neck. “But one must have a few bites of bliss before the main course.” She undid the button of his soft linen shirt and kissed the hollow of his throat. “Otherwise, one’s appetite is not prepared.”
He laughed, he groaned, then he pressed her flush to his chest. “You should have told me you were a tease.”
She rolled her eyes. “Why? Isn’t this more fun?”
He hooted. His grip on her was mighty and seductive. “What should I know, my darling?”
“Making love to you.”
She bent to his mouth and licked his bottom lip. “That I will be as needy as you.”
“That I will want all of you as mine.”
“I rejoice at it. And? Anything else?”
“That I am yours completely and you may have me at your will,” she whispered and took one of his fingers and nipped the end, “as long as I may have you at mine.”
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Cerise DeLand is the USA TODAY Bestselling Author who believes love brings rich rewards from a life lived with honesty, valor—and a functioning funnybone.
Known for her poetic elegance and accuracy of detail, she’s won awards for many of the more than 70 novels she’s written.
Her work has been nearly life-long! First published in 1991 by Kensington, then Pocket Books, St. Martin’s Press and independent presses, she is now published by DRAGONBLADE PUBLISHING. Plus her books have been monthly selections of the Doubleday Book Club and the Mystery Guild.
To research, she’s dived into the oldest texts and dustiest library shelves. She travels abroad taking good walking shoes, big notebooks, trusty pens and a camera! She visits chateaux and country homes she loves to people with her own imaginary characters.
And at home every day? She cooks. (Every night.) Never dusts. (That can be a problem.) She goes swimming or pumps iron once a week and tries (desperately) to grow vegetables in her arid backyard in south Texas!