DEVILISH ROMANCE (The Saint’s Devils)– SAMANTHA KANE BLOG TOUR

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Samantha Kane returns with another erotic and thrilling installment in her Saint’s Devils series, DEVIL IN MY ARMS. Get to know the Saint’s Devils and the daring ladies who capture their rakish hearts…

DEVIL IN MY ARMS (eBook)

A Loveswept Historical Romance

On sale November 26, 2013

978-0-345-54982-2

Find DEVIL IN MY ARMS, TEMPTING A DEVIL, and THE DEVIL’S THIEF on Goodreads 

Devil In My ArmsDEVIL IN MY ARMS

One by one, the Saint’s Devils—Samantha Kane’s wicked, wonderful Regency heroes—continue to enchant the women who capture their rakish hearts.

Even though she is starving and destitute, Eleanor Enderby’s quiet beauty strikes Sir Hilary St. John speechless. He expects the woman he’s searching for to be skittish and plain. Instead he finds the picture of bravery—and willfulness—in his quarry. She gives away little, but Hil can see something is terribly amiss. And though he cannot say exactly why, he is determined not to let her come to more harm than whatever it is she has already survived.

Six months later, Eleanor believes she has finally found safety from the tyrant she risked her life to escape. Thought to be dead by society, Eleanor is ready to be reborn as someone new—someone whose life will never again be tied to the fate of one man. But her smoldering savior seems unwilling to leave her unprotected for an instant. Despite the threats he thinks he sees coming, the real dangers Eleanor faces in Hil’s arms are unmistakable: temptation, seduction, and maybe even love.

 

Surrey, December 1819

“Wiley,” Eleanor asked as she perused the chessboard between them, “tell me more about Sir Hilary.”

They were in the country at the Earl of Throckton’s estate. The earl was a cousin to one of Roger’s closest friends, Mr. Alasdair Sharp. The truth was, she owed Mr. Sharp a huge debt. He and his wife, Julianna, great friends of Roger and Harry’s, had resided at the earl’s country estate with Eleanor, Wiley, and Mr. Sharp’s cousin Lady Anne Moore, the earl’s sister, off and on for several months. Eleanor knew both Wiley and Mr. Sharp stayed at Harry and Roger’s request, to keep an eye on her and protect her identity. They had all grown rather close these last few months. Alasdair and Julianna had returned to London to spend the holidays with her father and stepmother while Eleanor, Wiley, and Lady Anne had stayed here and celebrated. It had been the most joyous Christmas of Eleanor’s adult life, no matter that it had been a quiet and subdued celebration.

Eleanor moved her white queen. She effectively controlled the center of the board now. Wiley had, of course, started with a gambit to try to expose her king. Now in the middle game, she was working on her pawn structure, playing a closed game. Wiley operated better with an open board, consistently sacrificing material for the endgame, a weakness she’d exposed over and over. True to form, he moved another pawn, and she was able to take it en passant on her next turn.

“Wiley, dear,” she said gently to the younger man, “you must control the center.”

“Damn,” he swore under his breath. “Why can I not defeat you? I have defeated everyone else.” He glared at her. “Everyone but Hil. You’re as diabolical as he is.”

“Speaking of Sir Hilary . . .” she prompted.

“Why are you so interested in him?” Wiley asked, studying the board.

She wasn’t sure. She rather enjoyed the stories they all told about him. He was a bit of a chameleon, changing his colors to suit any situation. Whatever was needed, it seemed Sir Hilary provided, be it a brilliant detective, a sympathetic ear, or a mentor for an ingenious young man from St. Giles, such as Wiley. “He is an interesting person,” she said. “I enjoy hearing stories about his adventures.”

“So you want to hear about his adventures and not him? Shall I tell you again about the night we saved Julianna from the murderous receiver of stolen goods? Or what about when we rescued Roger and Harry from that mad fellow who was trying to marry her for her money and nearly killed them both?” Wiley gave her a sly look.

She blushed. He’d caught her, hadn’t he? Today she had wanted to hear about him and not his adventures. She’d only met him briefly, but through the stories Wiley and the others told her she’d developed a bit of a schoolgirl crush on him. She laughed at herself about it. But he was safe, wasn’t he? He wasn’t here. He was, for all intents and purposes, a figment of her imagination at this point, since she didn’t know him at all. She could barely even remember his features. He was more like a dashing adventurer from some novel.

“I think he’s lonely,” Wiley offered suddenly, sitting back in his chair and looking at her speculatively.

“Lonely?” she asked in astonishment. “But you’ve all described him as a bit of a rake. He’s a Devil, isn’t he? The original Devil.” She was referring to the group of friends from their schooldays who had been dubbed The Saint’s Devils, a sly reference to Sir Hilary St. John, their unofficial leader. Apparently Roger and Alasdair Sharp had been Devils, and Julianna insisted they still were. Eleanor, frankly, could not see either of them gallivanting about London seducing ladies and gambling their lives away, but according to Lady Anne, who had known them all the longest, that’s exactly what they had done. Time, and love, had tempered her brother-in-law, Roger, and Mr. Sharp. Had it done the same for Sir Hilary?

“Used to be, I gather,” Wiley said. “Not much anymore. He spends more time in his library with his books and experiments than he does in the bedroom, if you know what I mean.” He winked and Eleanor felt her cheeks burn with embarrassment again. She feared she’d never get used to Wiley’s blunt speech.

“Yes,” she said. “But why do you think he’s lonely? Simply because he likes to read and pursue intellectual interests?”

Wiley scoffed. “He hasn’t got anyone to tell his secrets to.”

It was such an insightful observation from an unlikely source that Eleanor was speechless for a moment.

“Nobody knows much about him, do they?” Wiley told her, leaning forward and looking at the board again. “Not his past anyway, nor much about what he does now. He keeps most of his inquiries private, although he tells me some since I’ve become his errand boy. But he never talks about his past, before he knew Roger and Alasdair. Not a word. Why? Seems like he’s got something to hide. Hard to carry a burden like that around without being able to share it with someone.”

“Yes, it is,” she said with the knowledge born of experience. It had been dreadful sneaking around for all those months, hiding her identity, on the run from her past and unable to share her burden. That is, until she finally reached Harry and Roger. And now she had a most unlikely group of friends, Devils and earls, and they were all shouldering some of the burden for her. Tears sprang to her eyes and she rose and walked to the window, her back to Wiley so he couldn’t see.

“Aw, now, none of that,” Wiley said, alarmed. “It’s my hide if I make you cry again. Julianna will drag me over the coals.”

Eleanor hiccupped a little laugh. “I’m sorry, Wiley. It’s just that I wouldn’t let myself cry for so long. Now that I have my freedom, well, it seems I’ve let my tears out, too.”

“Going to talk about it?” he asked mildly. “Good to share things, you know, just as we’ve been saying.”

She turned and gave him a wry smile. “You sly boots. Hoping to wrangle my secrets out with your talk of the oh so lonely Sir Hilary. I should have known what a ruse that was.”

Wiley laughed. “It was the truth. Someday he’s going to get hit right between the eyes, just like Roger and Alasdair, mark my words. And he’s not going to know what to do. He likes to be in control of everything, all the time. He’s like a puppet master.”

She made a face. “I don’t like the sound of that.”

“He may not share his secrets,” Wiley said, moving another pawn into a sacrifice, “but he knows just about everyone else’s, right up to the prince regent.”

“Good heavens,” she said, her eyes wide as she slid back into her seat across from Wiley. “He knows the prince regent?”

“Knows him?” Wiley said with a snort of disbelief. “He’s at his beck and call. Saved the monarchy more than once, I think.”

Eleanor was speechless again. A man such as that, with royal connections, had bothered himself to look for her? He must be great friends with Roger, indeed. Without much thought she moved her queen and took Wiley’s rook. “Where is he now?” she asked.

“Told you before,” Wiley said with a sigh, running his hand through his hair as he looked hopelessly at the board. “Even I don’t know this time. I think it’s royal business again.”

“How fascinating,” she said breathlessly. Was Sir Hilary even now in danger? Were some dangerous spies pursuing him across the continent?

About Samantha Kane

Samantha KaneSamantha Kane lives in North Carolina with her husband and three children.  She is published in several romance genres including historical, contemporary and science fiction.  Her erotic Regency-set historical romances have won awards, including Best Historical from RWA’s erotic romance chapter Passionate Ink, and the Historical CAPA (best book) award from The Romance Studio.  She has a master’s degree in American History, and taught high school social studies for ten years before becoming a full time writer.

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