~ Punya Reviews
Matilda Chapple is orphaned, penniless, and dependent on her uncle’s meager charity—but she’s finally found a way to earn her livelihood. With the help of an old diary and a lurid novel she’ll write her way to financial independence!
When Mattie pens a series of racy short stories, she starts earning money . . . and notoriety. Her secret is safe—until disfigured 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 respectable spinster and the risqué authoress are one and the same person?
A Regency romance featuring a battle-scarred hero, an enterprising heroine, a gothic manor house, and some of the worst food in England.
Length: Full-length novel of 71,000 words
Heat level: A Regency romance with steamy love scenes
**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 truly awful food!
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.
Emily Larkin is the award-winning and USA Today-bestselling author of the Baleful Godmother historical romance series, a series that readers are calling “sexy, unusual and vastly entertaining,” and "ridiculously wonderful."
When not reading or writing, Emily can be found hiking—preferably somewhere off the beaten track. She loves to travel, and has lived in Sweden, backpacked in Europe and North America, and traveled overland in the Middle East, China, and North Africa. Her varied career includes stints as a field assistant in Antarctica and a waitress on the Isle of Skye.
Emily writes historical romances as Emily Larkin and fantasy novels as Emily Gee. She has won multiple awards in New Zealand and Australia and has been a finalist in the Romance Writers of America RITA award, as well as the National Readers Choice, Booksellers Best, and Sir Julius Vogel awards.