The Spinster’s Secret

Midnight Quill

Emily Gee
3
Free sample

This spinster is more than she seems . . .
Matilda Chapple is penniless, orphaned, and dependent on her uncle’s grim charity—but she’s finally found a way to escape: she’ll write her way to financial freedom.
When Mattie pens a series of titillating short stories, she starts earning money . . . and notoriety. Her secret is safe—until Waterloo veteran, Edward Kane, agrees to uncover the anonymous author's identity.
Can Mattie conceal the secret of her scandalous writings, or will Edward discover that the virginal spinster and the risqué authoress are one and the same person?
A Regency romance with a battle-scarred hero, an enterprising heroine, some provocative tales, and a darkly gothic backdrop.
“I can't say enough about The Spinster's Secret. This book straight up touched my heart. It's been a while since I laughed, cried, despaired, and felt one with a character to this extent.”
~ Punya Reviews

**The Spinster's Secret is the second book in the Midnight Quill Trio, but may be read as a standalone.**
Q & A with the author


How would you describe this book?
Good question! Um . . . a gothic Regency romance with underlying humor?
By gothic, I mean that the setting is gothic: an isolated and gloomy manor with dark, drafty corridors and a miserly uncle. There are nightly readings of ‘improving texts’ and some of the worst food in England!
Your hero and heroine are a little unusual. Tell us a bit about them.
The heroine, Mattie, is six foot tall—which is a little taller than your average heroine! Edward, the hero, is even taller, and badly scarred from injuries he received at Waterloo. And when I say badly scarred, I mean really badly scarred.
Did you do a lot of research for this book?
I read two ‘titillating’ novels of the era, Fanny Hill and The Lustful Turk, which were quite ludicrous. The stories Mattie writes are just as silly!
How would you describe your writing?
Several reviewers have likened my writing to Georgette Heyer, which is the hugest compliment ever. I adore Georgette Heyer! She’s why I write historical romance, and I reread her books over and over. (If you’ve not read The Grand Sophy, please do so!) I’ve also had readers compare my writing to Courtney Milan and Mary Balogh, which are also massive compliments.
Who would like this book?
This book would appeal to readers who like the historical backdrop and understated humor of Georgette Heyer and Jane Austen, the dark and sensual ‘noir’ feel of Anna Campbell, and the emotion of Mary Balogh or Courtney Milan.
Have you written any other Regency romances?
Quite a few! In fact I’ve just started a new Regency romance series, the Baleful Godmother series. The first novel is available for free to anyone who joins my readers’ group. Go to emilylarkin.com and sign up for my newsletter to claim your free copy.
Happy reading!

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Additional Information

Publisher
Emily Gee
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Published on
Oct 31, 2017
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Pages
300
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ISBN
9780994138484
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Romance / General
Fiction / Romance / Historical / Regency
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Scandal, adultery and an angry husband has to be avoided if the Duke of Rockinston, one of the most handsome and charming bachelors in London, is to keep his family honour and his preserve his place at the centre of Society. With the furious Earl of Darran hot on his heels, the Duke narrowly escapes complete social ruin after being discovered leaving the home of the lovely Countess at three o'clock in the morning. Unable to convince the Earl that their liaison was nothing more than innocent friendship, the only way the Duke can save his family from scandal, and the Countess from an unpleasant divorce, is by announcing his engagement to someone else as quickly as possible. Aware that any number of London's debutants would jump at the opportunity, but already bored by their vacuous company, the Duke decides to approach his great friend the Duke of Lynbrook to ask for the hand of his beautiful daughter, Venetia. She has everything he is looking for in a wife - renowned beauty, a good family and most importantly having spent the last three years in a Convent school in Paris she will be completely ignorant of his reputation as a rake. There is just one flaw to his magnificent plan. Venetia and he have never met, and are most certainly not in love with each other. Undeterred by this minor detail, Venetia is summoned home by her father, the newspapers are informed and the wedding date set for two weeks time. But neither man has considered how Venetia might feel about their master plan. The Duke of Rockinston may be a charming, wealthy adventurer, but Venetia has always assumed that the man she marries will be her perfect match and is astounded to discover that she is expected to marry a complete stranger. With the Earl still seeking revenge and the elusive Duke away in Scotland until the day of his wedding, will Venetia comply? And if she does, can this marriage of convenience possibly make either the husband or wife happy? With only a fortnight to the big day, Venetia must use all of her exceptional intelligence to work out a way to make a marriage, conceived in desperation, become a love story with a happy ending for everyone.
She's more than just an heiress...
Letitia Trentham is noteworthy for three reasons. One, she’s extremely wealthy. Two, she can distinguish truth from lies. Three, she’s refused every man who’s ever proposed to her.
Until Letty receives a proposal she can’t turn down.
Icarus Reid barely survived the Battle of Vimeiro. He lives for one thing—to find the man who betrayed him to the French. He doesn’t want to marry Miss Trentham; he wants to use her talent for uncovering lies.
Suddenly, Letty finds herself breaking the rules, pretending to be someone she’s not, and doing things a lady would never do. But her hunt for the truth may uncover more than one secret—including the secret that haunts Icarus day and night. The secret he intends to take to his grave...
"Unique and romantic and emotional and simply amazing."
~ Ira @ NetGalley

Q & A with the author


How would you describe this series?
It's Regency England with a dash of magic. I hope to take readers on a journey from the glittering ballrooms of the aristocracy to the dark underbelly of Regency England – with passion, danger, adventure, romance, and a little magic thrown into the mix.
I think the series could also be labelled Regency Noir, because it falls on the darker, grittier side of the romance fence, although each book contains humor, too. The stories are emotional, but not sweet (there’s sex, violence, and my heroes do swear rather badly at times!).
Why did you write this series?
I wanted to get my well-bred heroines out of the drawing rooms and put them in the way of adventure and romance. But I didn’t want to write a series where magic is common; I wanted to write a series where only a few characters have magic, and it’s a deep, dark secret, and no one else knows.
But ... do magic and Regency England go together?
Definitely! Many, many years ago I read Sorcery and Cecelia (or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot) by Patricia Wrede and Caroline Stevermer, and totally loved it and ever since then I’ve thought that Regency England and magic go very well together. Other writers think so, too. Just look at Mary Robinette Kowal's Glamourist Histories and Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell.
What was the catalyst for this series?
A magazine article I read in which celebrities were asked what magic power they’d choose and why. That got me thinking! (I’d choose shapeshifting, by the way.)
How would you describe your writing?
Several reviewers have likened my writing to Georgette Heyer, which is the hugest compliment ever. I adore Georgette Heyer! She’s why I write historical romance, and I reread her books over and over. (If you’ve not read The Grand Sophy, please do so!) I’ve also had readers compare my writing to Courtney Milan and Mary Balogh, which are also massive compliments.
Who would like this series?
This series will appeal to readers who enjoy the historical backdrop of Georgette Heyer and Jane Austen, the dark and sensual ‘noir’ feel of Anna Campbell, the emotion of Mary Balogh or Courtney Milan, and the magic of Patricia Rice and Mary Robinette Kowal. Quite a broad range, really!
What order should I read the series in?
Each book, whether a novel or novella, can be read as a standalone, but many readers prefer to read them in order. And although the series is set in Regency England, a quartet of medieval novellas form the prequel.
The ideal reading order would be:
The Fey Quartet (series prequel)
Maythorn’s Wish
Hazel’s Promise
Ivy’s Choice
Larkspur’s Quest
The Baleful Godmother series
Unmasking Miss Appleby
Resisting Miss Merryweather
Trusting Miss Trentham
Claiming Mister Kemp
Ruining Miss Wrotham
Discovering Miss Dalrymple
Plus three more interlinked Baleful Godmother series to come.

"Oh my gosh!!! I am absolutely in love with this book!"
~ NetGalley reviewer
Who is the Duke of Vickery?
At the age of four Alexander St. Clare was stolen by gypsies and sold to a chimney sweep. At the age of five he was reunited with his father, the Duke of Vickery. His history is no secret—everyone in the ton knows of his miraculous rescue.
But when Alexander finds his father’s diaries, he discovers that there may be a secret buried in his past.
Georgiana Dalrymple knows all about secrets. She has several herself—and one of those secrets is her ability to find missing people.
When Alexander turns to her for help, Georgiana sets out to discover just who he actually is...
"I was taken on a roller coaster of emotions. Had me laughing then had me in tears."
~ NetGalley reviewer
Length: A long novella of 40,000 words
Sensuality level: A Regency romance with a steamy love scene


Q & A with the author




How would you describe this series?
It's Regency England with a dash of magic. I hope to take readers on a journey from the glittering ballrooms of the aristocracy to the dark underbelly of Regency England – with passion, danger, adventure, romance, and a little magic thrown into the mix.
I think the series could also be labelled Regency Noir, because it falls on the darker, grittier side of the romance fence, although each book contains humor, too. The stories are emotional, but not sweet (there’s sex, violence, and my heroes do swear rather badly at times!).
Why did you write this series?
I wanted to get my well-bred heroines out of the drawing rooms and put them in the way of adventure and romance. But I didn’t want to write a series where magic is common; I wanted to write a series where only a few characters have magic, and it’s a deep, dark secret, and no one else knows.
But ... do magic and Regency England go together?
Definitely! Many, many years ago I read Sorcery and Cecelia (or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot) by Patricia Wrede and Caroline Stevermer, and totally loved it and ever since then I’ve thought that Regency England and magic go very well together. Other writers think so, too. Just look at Mary Robinette Kowal's Glamourist Histories and Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell.
What was the catalyst for this series?
A magazine article I read in which celebrities were asked what magic power they’d choose and why. That got me thinking! (I’d choose shapeshifting, by the way.)
How would you describe your writing?
Several reviewers have likened my writing to Georgette Heyer, which is the hugest compliment ever. I adore Georgette Heyer! She’s why I write historical romance, and I reread her books over and over. (If you’ve not read The Grand Sophy, please do so!) I’ve also had readers compare my writing to Courtney Milan and Mary Balogh, which are also massive compliments.
Who would like this series?
This series will appeal to readers who enjoy the historical backdrop of Georgette Heyer and Jane Austen, the dark and sensual ‘noir’ feel of Anna Campbell, the emotion of Mary Balogh or Courtney Milan, and the magic of Patricia Rice and Mary Robinette Kowal. Quite a broad range, really!

A forbidden love...
Lucas Kemp’s twin sister died last year. He’s put aside his mourning clothes, but not his heartache. If Lucas ever needed a friend, it’s now—and who should walk in his door but Lieutenant Thomas Matlock...
Lucas and Tom are more than just best friends; they’ve been in love with each other for years. In love with each other—and pretending not to know it.
But this time, Tom’s not going to ignore the attraction between them. This time, he’s going to push the issue.
He’s going to teach Lucas how to laugh again—and he’s going to take Lucas as his lover...
"Heartbreakingly gorgeous. Tom is the most incredible hero - patient, understanding, passionate, sensitive. Lucas is so proper and stiff, his struggles so very real and poignant. I love Larkin's stories but this one is exquisite."
~ M.C.E. Top 500 reviewer
Length: Shorter length novel of 48,000 words
Sensuality level: A hot Regency male-male romance with sensual love scenes
Q & A with the author


Why did you write this book?
When Tom and Lucas walked onto the page in Trusting Miss Trentham (the third book in the Baleful Godmother series) I fell in love with them both. I really wanted to know their story—so I decided to write it. I’m very glad I did, because it was so much fun! Lucas is my first ever virgin hero, and I really enjoyed writing his scenes.
Claiming Mister Kemp was meant to be a novella, but it grew and grew and grew, until finally I had to admit defeat and call it a (short) novel.
How would you describe this book?
At its most basic, Claiming Mister Kemp is a friends to lovers romance, but it’s also a story about grief, and about two men finding the courage to love one another in a time when this was punishable by death. I think it’s the most emotional book I’ve ever written. Readers have told me that some scenes make them cry, which I take as a compliment!
Claiming Mister Kemp is a Baleful Godmother novel, so both Tom and Lucas have brushes with magic—even if they don’t realize it. And although this book is a companion novel to Trusting Miss Trentham it can be read as a standalone.
How would you describe your writing?
Several reviewers have likened my writing to Georgette Heyer, which is the hugest compliment ever. I adore Georgette Heyer! She’s why I write historical romance, and I reread her books over and over. (If you’ve not read The Grand Sophy, please do so!) I’ve also had readers compare my writing to Courtney Milan and Mary Balogh, which are also massive compliments.
Who would like this book?
This book will appeal to readers who love male-male romances, Regency romances, or both. Fans of KJ Charles, Joanna Chambers, and Cat Sebastian should particularly enjoy it.

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