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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

On the 11th Day of Christmas My True Lord Gave To Me...With Anna Campbell and Giveaway

Eleven Mamas Plotting - Anna Campbell

ANNA CAMPBELL has written six multi award-winning historical romances for Avon HarperCollins and her work is published in eleven languages. Always a voracious reader, Anna decided when she was a child that she wanted to be a writer. Once she discovered the wonderful world of romance novels, she knew exactly what she wanted to write. Anna has won numerous awards for her Regency-set romances including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice, the Booksellers Best, the Golden Quill (twice), the Heart of Excellence, the Aspen Gold and the Australian Romance Readers Association's favorite historical romance (three times). Her books have twice been nominated for Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA Award and twice for Australia's Romantic Book of the Year.
Places to find Anna:


11 Mamas Plotting… 

Slipping on the frosty grass, Lady Belinda Cassell grabbed the door’s rusty handle, flung it open and whirled inside. Breathlessly she slammed it shut behind her.

Just in time.

Luckily her pursuers stayed on the rise above the hut. Their strident voices rose over the distant scrape of a string ensemble and the chatter of London’s bluest bloods celebrating Yuletide at the Sheridans’ annual Christmas picnic. The mamas of the Heavenly Eleven had harried her since her first ball two weeks ago. They’d put aside natural rivalries to secure her—or rather her fortune—for one of their unimpressive sons.

“Lady Belinda!” Mrs. Borthington’s powerful soprano rang out.

Her heart racing, Belinda huddled in the dark against the door’s fragile timbers. Mrs. Borthington wasn’t the worst of the Heavenly Eleven, but she went close.

The woman gave a horse-like snort. “Bother the gel. She promised to play forfeits with Algernon.”
After a fraught silence, the women marched off, their steps on the gravel perfectly audible. Belinda played fox to these particular hounds. The image sent a chill down her spine.

Or perhaps that was the arctic temperature in this ramshackle Thames-side hut. Gingerly, in case she touched something slimy, she straightened and sucked in a ragged breath. Her senses flooded with the smells of mildew, stagnant water, rotting timber and tobacco smoke.

Tobacco smoke?

Suddenly she was nervous of what waited inside the hut as well as what waited outside. “H-hello?” she asked shakily, inching her hand toward the door handle.

She heard a rustle from the far corner and terror twisted her belly. Suddenly Mrs. Borthington didn’t seem quite so frightening. Belinda straightened, fumbling for the latch. Where on earth was it? Her hand only encountered another splintery board.

“Hello, yourself.” The rap of heels across wooden floor. “Welcome to the Tudor boatshed, now disused.” The voice was male, deep and warm with laughter. None of those qualities reassured her.

“It smells like there’s still a few dead Tudors in here.” Her eyes adjusted enough to see a large black shape looming closer. “Who are you?”

“A fellow escapee from the madness.” A small red circle flared and she realized he drew on his cheroot. Before she had a chance to object, she heard him crush it beneath his heel. “You must be an heiress.”

He hadn’t answered her. Deliberately, she guessed. “Why?”

When he laughed softly, the sound played along her nerves. “The Borthington witch seeks a well-dowered wife for her puling cub. As do the other ten matchmaking mamas of the Heavenly Eleven. If they’ve united to hunt you as a pack, you must be a rich prize indeed.”

Two could play the game of not answering. “I must return to the party.”

“Let me see if they’re gone.”

“That’s remarkably gentleman-like of you.”

She only realized she’d spoken aloud when that soft laugh shimmered across her skin again. “Isn’t it just, Lady Belinda?”

She stiffened and backed against the clammy walls. “You know my name?”

“Peace, sweet. The harridans outside were howling it.” He brushed past and opened the door. With a surge of resentment, she noticed he immediately located the latch. Then shock blasted pique to dust as she caught sight of her companion in the light.

He looked like a…pirate. A magnificently handsome pirate. Tall, lean, dark, rakish. And good heavens, was that a gold earring glinting in the weak sunlight? If anyone discovered her sequestered with such a brigand, her reputation would be in shreds.

She tensed to flee then heard Mrs. Havelock’s booming voice. “Mr. Grahame, la, you gave me a fright lurking in the bushes.”

“Your pardon, Mrs. Havelock,” the pirate said smoothly.

“Have you seen a young woman? Tall. Blonde. Wearing a yellow gown?”

Mr. Grahame’s laugh was suggestive. Another unwilling shiver of awareness rippled through Belinda. “To my regret, I haven’t. I live in hope.”

Mrs. Havelock giggled in a quite revolting fashion. “Oh, sir, you jest.”

“I suggest you search closer to the house.”

“We saw her come this way.” It was Lady Parkfield, the most terrifying member of the Heavenly Eleven.
“I’ve been alone with my cheroot the last half hour, dear ladies.”

Mr. Grahame waited while the matchmaking mamas moved away, cackling and squabbling. Then he turned to where Belinda hovered inside the doorway. “They’re gone.”

“Thank you.” She drew a shaky breath. “Mr. Grahame.”

“Now you know my name.” A smile tugged at his mouth and black eyes alight with devilry met hers. Her heart lurched and she told herself she should look away.

“Part of it.”

The smile intensified and her heart skittered wildly. He performed a deep bow, the gesture vaguely foreign although his accent was as English as her own. “Orlando Grahame at your service, Lady Belinda.”

“I…I must go.” She cursed the stammer. She wasn’t a girl who stammered. She was a girl who stood up for herself.

He didn’t shift from the doorway and suddenly his height seemed vaguely threatening. Not of violence but something dark and adult beyond her meager experience. “Perhaps I should elaborate further. I’m Orlando Grahame, late of Verona, newly come to London in search of a rich wife. I’m surprised nobody’s warned you against the Sheridans’ black sheep cousin.”

She swallowed to moisten a dry mouth and backed away, her unsteady hands tangling in her filmy skirts. “I’m new to London myself.”

The musical baritone was no longer amused. “In escaping the Heavenly Eleven, you’ve jumped from frying pan into the fire, my delightful Lady Belinda Cassell. When the interfering mamas return, as they undoubtedly will, they’ll discover us in a kiss. You’ll be well and truly compromised.”

She didn’t miss the significance of him knowing her surname. Her voice vibrated with contempt. “I’ll never marry a scoundrel. You’re wasting your time.”

“We’ll see.” With leisurely grace more intimidating than haste, he drew the door shut until thick darkness enclosed them once more.
###

London's most notorious seducer, Nicholas Challoner lives solely for revenge…

The dashing, licentious Marquess of Ranelaw can never forgive Godfrey Demarest for ruining his sister - now the time has come to repay the villain in the same coin. But one formidably intriguing impediment stands in the way of Nicholas's vengeance: Miss Antonia Smith, companion to his foe's unsuspecting daughter.

Having herself been deceived and disgraced by a rogue - banished by her privileged family as a result and forced to live a lie - Antonia vows to protect her charge from the same cruel fate. She recognizes Ranelaw for the shameless blackguard he is, and will devote every ounce of her intelligence and resolve to thwarting him.

Yet Antonia has always had a fatal weakness for rakes…

Check out an excerpt here
Places to purchase:
Amazon | Kindle | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | The Book Depository |


For readers in Australia and New Zealand, HarperCollins have released three of my books, CLAIMING THE COURTESANTEMPT THE DEVIL and MY RECKLESS SURRENDER as an e-bundle called THE COURTESAN COLLECTION at a bargain price. It’s out 13th December and you can get it from all local e-book retailers. | Amazon |

**Giveaway**

Anna is giving away a signed copy of Midnight's Wild Passion to 1 lucky winner. So make sure to leave a comment and to fill out the Rafflecopter form.

Don't forget to head over to Not Another Romance Blog and check out author Theresa Romain's special scene.

**Grand Prize Giveaway**

On behalf of myself, Rita and lots of awesome authors, we will be having one BIG Grand Prize given away to 1 lucky winner. The grand prize consists of a mix of books, swag, and lots of other secret goodies. Believe me, you want to enter to win this prize. Just make sure to leave a comment everyday on each post on both blogs and fill out this FORM. That's it. Super easy!

Good Luck everyone and Happy Holidays!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

103 comments :

  1. Hi Anna,

    I already have this book ;)

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  2. Great giveaway! Happy Holidays!

    barbbattaglia@yahoo.com

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  3. Hi Anna! Happy holiday n merry Christmas. Love all of your books especially this one. Really2 wish I can get this book as my Christmas present. Thank you for the giveaway. Cheers Aretha zhen .aretha_zhen@yahoo.com

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  4. Fabulous excerpt, very mysterious and Mr. Grahame sounds like a most excellent scoundrel.

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  6. Ooooh! Mr Grahame sounds like a total scoundrel YUM!

    I sooo want to read the rest of this.

    Yvonne D.

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  7. Thanks for the giveaway!

    abbydillon16 AT yahoo DOT com

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  8. Hey, day-11-scene-buddy! See, it's barely 6:30 am here, and you've already blown my mind. "Heavenly Eleven"--love it. A mysterious Tudor boathouse containing a scoundrel? LOVE IT. Is this a self-contained scene, or will we see more of Belinda and Orlando?

    Merry Christmas!

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  9. Love it!! Need to know more about Orlando and Belinda!!

    Aislynn
    aislynnt(at)gmail(dot)com

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  10. Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway!

    Merry Christmas!

    pnc07 (at) aol (dot) com

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  11. Hi Anna, happy holidays to you! :-)

    I have to confess ever since I first saw the cover of Midnight's Wild Passion I knew I WANTED to read it. Love the colours, the tamosphere, the sensuality of it. Thank you for the excerpt, I love getting a first taste of the story :-)

    Thank you for the giveaway!

    stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

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  12. Loved the excerpt. It certainly hooked my interest!

    Ashley L

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  13. Lovely scene Anna, like everything you write :)
    Thanks for participating! !!!

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  14. I love Anna's books! I have not read this one yet! It is on my wish list! Thanks for sharing with us!

    evjochum[AT]aol[DOT]com

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  15. Dang! That's it... I need more! Anna you always know how to keep a gal going. Now, where's the rest? Lol!

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  16. Wow, Anna, that excerpt really leaves you wanting to know what happened next!!!
    castings at mindspring dot com

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  17. I have this book on my wishlist so thank you for the chance to win it and for the excerpt.

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  18. Oh, you can't leave us like that! :D I'm dying to know more about our mysterious blacksheep! Anna, as amazing as that was---WE NEED MORE! Lol. Now. *Pause* Please? *blink blink*

    Thanks for the great giveaway as well. :D

    Enjoy!
    TBQ
    The_Book_Queen at yahoo dot com

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  19. By the way, am I the only one having problems with filling out the form above? I try to click "enter" after leaving my post and it won't accept it, it keeps reloading the same page....

    Enjoy,
    TBQ

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  20. Sorry that Rafflecopter keeps messing up. I'm am trying to get it fixed. If anyone else has any issues filling it out please email me all of the tasks you've completed and I'll add you in manually.

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  21. Hi Anna!
    Happy holidays! I already have an autographed copy of this book *grins* so don't enter me in the giveaway for it today! Just wanted to say Hi & Merry Christmas!

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  22. Ms.Campbell,
    I love your books.I am a big fan of yours:)

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  23. Eli, hope you enjoyed MIDNIGHT'S WILD PASSION! And the excerpt from the imaginary novel!

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  24. Thanks, Barb! Happy Holidays to you too!

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  26. Aretha, thanks for swinging by and good luck!

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  27. Gayle, thank you! It was strange how he developed - I thought he was going to be Mr. Nice Guy and he didn't end up being that at all. Love it when a character surprises me.

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  28. Beebs, thanks for saying that. I'm kinda curious myself to see what happens. I think he's got reasons to seek a rich wife, don't you? I mean, apart from the fact that Belinda can keep him in cheroots!

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  29. Happy Holidays, Rosie, and good luck in the draw!

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  30. Hi Theresa! Loved your piece. So romantic and poignant and emotional. Had to smile, though - isn't it interesting how different they both were? Hardly anything in common at all! Well, apart from the historical setting! You know, I think Mr. Grahame and the reckless Belinda may have some future incarnation. Even with this small piece, I became interested in what happened between them in the future.

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  31. Thanks, Aislynn! It may yet come to pass - I'm kinda curious myself!

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  32. Thanks, Phyllis! Good luck and happy holidays!

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  33. Stella, thanks for saying Midnight appealed to you! I love that cover too - gorgeous dress. Actually this piece is from an imaginary novel not part of Midnight. Although there is a major scene in Midnight at the mansion on the Thames where this encounter between Belinda and the mysterious Mr. Grahame takes place. It was fun having an overgrown garden in the middle of London to play with so I decided to revisit it when Danielle and Rita asked me to play this game. So many possibility for mischief ;-)

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  34. Thanks, Ashley! Now I just need to write the rest of the story, LOL!

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  35. Rita, this is such a fun game. I can't wait to see what else you and Danielle have in store for us. Thanks for asking us to participate and for saying you enjoyed the scene!

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  36. Johanna, nobody has read this book. It's but a twinkle in my eye and it wasn't even that until I had to come up with a scene for this great game with Danielle and Rita. Thanks for saying you enjoyed it!

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  37. Landra, I can't wait to see what Mr. Grahame does next and how Belinda gets out of this. I really must keep writing it! Thanks for saying you enjoyed it.

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  38. Thanks, Cheryl. I'm kinda curious myself. Mr. Grahame is definitely up to NO GOOD!!! LOL!

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  39. Thanks, Na. Glad you enjoyed the new scene - it's not actually part of Midnight but it's loosely linked to a house that's in that book. Good luck!

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  40. TBQ, you crack me up! I can hear the cries of "Author! Author!" and I LIKE it ;-) Actually I think this story might have legs - when I started writing it, it was merely an exercise to put something interesting together in a short space but I REALLY want to know what happens between Belinda and the rogueish Orlando now! Thank you!!!!

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  41. Hi June! Thanks so much for swinging by. And Happy Holidays to you too!

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  42. Thanks so much, Gail! Happy Holidays!

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  43. Lovely blog post, I enjoyed that excerpt, and really want to read the book. Thank you!

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  44. Hey, thanks, Aurian. Sounds like I NEED to write this book, LOL! Oh, well, a girl needs a hobby!

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  45. Anna, that was a great scene as usual! I love how involved you are with your fans responding to posts on blogs and FB all the time. <3

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  46. Hi, Anna...

    Loved Midnight's Wild Passion...

    Btw, not sure if you remember but you recommeneded Gail Carriager's streampunk series on another blog... I have now read all 4 of the books in the series and love it! Thanks for the recommendations!

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  47. Loved your little story and would love to win this book Merry Christmas!

    pennsdog@yahoo.com

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  48. A most excellent excerpt. Need to know what happens behind that closed door!

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  49. Heavenly Eleven..awesome :) Adored Midnights Wild Passion and can't wait for more!

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  50. Awww, Katie, thank you. Talking to people is the fun bit of blogging. And it's great for my TBR pile (if very bad for my Visa card, LOL!). And I"m so glad you liked the scene. I was surprised quite how involved I got in these characters over this short space. I really could write a book about them, you know!

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  51. Hey, thanks, May! And how wonderful you enjoyed the Gail Carriger. I'm really looking forward to reading the rest of the series - I loved Soulless so much. Going to hit the TBR pile over Christmas and hopefully knock it down an inch or two (or 12!). Happy Holidays and thanks for being such a stalwart of my blog appearances. Always lovely to see you!

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  52. Hey, thanks, Sue. Good luck in the draw and Happy Holidays!

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  53. Artemis, I wonder just what he's up to too. I don't think she's going to be a pushover. Maybe I should do scene two next year if Danielle and Rita run the same game. I hope they do. This is fun. Did you check out Theresa's scene? It was lovely. Completely different too.

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  54. Hey, thanks, Lisa, that's lovely! So glad you enjoyed MWP! Happy Holidays!

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  55. By the way, I was going to do something about 11 being the number of players in a cricket team but I gather the game's a complete mystery to people outside the British Commonwealth!

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  56. By the way, Dani's been playing host to me all week. There's an interview and another copy of MIDNIGHT'S WILD PASSION up for grabs (closing midnight Wednesday) here: http://ramblingsfromthischick.blogspot.com/2011/12/interview-with-author-anna-campbell-and.html

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  57. I loved 11 Mama's Plotting! Thanks so much.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    junegirl63(at)gmail(dot)com

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  58. I enjoyed the post, and I can't wait to read Midnight's Wild Passion.

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  59. Nice giveaway. Happy holidays.

    penfield716(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

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  60. My pleasure, Maria. I thought this sounded like fun way back when Rita and Danielle contacted me about it. Looking forward to seeing the next days of Christmas pieces too. Good luck in the draw!

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  61. Hey, thanks, Barbara. Hope you enjoy Midnight! Happy Holidays!

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  62. Hey Anna, I already have this book, but not a SIGNED copy, so I'm entering anyway. Happy Christmas to you and yours!!!

    Amy

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  63. Blonde, that's an excellent reason to enter ;-) Thanks for playing and Happy Holidays!

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  64. RAFFLECOPTER UPDATE!!

    I am so sorry that the form is having issues. I contacted the peeps at Rafflecopter and they said to clear out your cookies and cache and that it should help. Again, I'm super sorry for the inconvenience.

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  65. Aloha, Anna! Enjoyed the excerpt and miss you!

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  66. I have this wonderful book already - whoever wins will Love it!

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  67. Hey, so glad you enjoyed the excerpt! Happy Holidays!!!

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  68. Hey, thanks, Di! Happy Holidays to you too.

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  69. omg!!! the excerpt for the 11 mama is AWESOME!!!! I want to read more!
    It should be made into a novel too.

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  70. Hey, thanks! You know, I might end up doing something with this. I can really feel sparks between Orlando and Belinda. I think it might be a fun story!

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  71. Great excerpt, didn't want this to end. I love your books.

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  72. Thanks so much, Alma. I have to say after all the encouragement, I'm seeing more in the future of Orlando and Belinda than just this excerpt ;-)

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  73. Looking forward to reading the book. Thanks for the contest and happy holidays to all of you!

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  74. I'm late to the party, but what a fantastic scene! I definitely think Orlando and Belinda have a longer story to be told... It's so funny how these characters take on lives of their own and demand their time in the spotlight.
    Hugs,
    Sara

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  75. Thanks, Elf! Clearly I need to WRITE the book. Happy Holidays to you too!

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  76. Sara, love your scene from yesterday. Brilliant stuff! As you say, astonishing how even in 1000 words, characters can really come to life. These two certainly did for me. You never know, might the start of a whole new story! Looking forward to seeing the entries in the game over the next days.

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  77. A fabulous scene thank you.

    Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!!

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  78. Hey, thanks, Mary. So glad you enjoyed the scene. It was fun to write. Merry Christmas to you too!

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  79. Great excerpt! Midnight's Wild Passion sounds really good, and I love that cover!

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  80. I'm late as usual but Anna I loved the scene and hope you keep on writing it :)
    Midnight's Wild Passion is on my Christmas wish list and if the older kids know what's good for them I'll be reading it Christmas eve,. lol
    Happy Holidays Anna.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

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  81. Thanks so much, Jess. This actually is something new although the house where the party takes place is the site of a crucial scene in MWP. Happy Holidays!

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  82. Carol, I'm laughing at your "buy it or else" ultimatum. Works for me. Let's hope it works for Santa too! LOL! Hope you have fun with Ranelaw and Antonia! Happy Holidays! Always lovely to see you. x

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  83. Hi Anna,
    I already have the book :)
    Just wanted to wish you Happy Holidays and all the best in the New Year!

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  84. Hey, thanks, Winnie. Happy Holidays to you and yours too! x

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  85. Oh, my! How fantastic! And that last part.... dang. Please tell me we get to find out what happens next! :-)

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  86. Hey, Chelsea, cool that you like it. Thank you! Man, I really want to know what happens next too. Think I'll have to write it!

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  87. I love that they put those three books together in the Courtesan Collection! I love all three of them, what better way to fill up my new kindle!!!

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  88. Hey, Lexi, may I quote you? lol Thank you! I think this is such a good idea. Have fun with your Kindle. I think there will be quite a few new Kindles with Christmas on its way!

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  89. I look forward to reading Anna's books. I really enjoy historical romances and I'm generally jealous of the dresses that the women on the covers are wearing. :)

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    Pam

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  90. I just finished Tempt the Devil. I checked it out from the library. Loved it! Can't wait to read more!

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  91. Pam, isn't that funny? I go ape for the dresses too. I love the trend at the moment for women in really glam gowns on the front of historicals. Hope it continues for a while. There's just something so romantic about silk or satin in a rich colour and with all those flowing skirts. Good luck in the draw!

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  92. Hey, thanks so much, Shelley! So glad you enjoyed Erith and Olivia's story - I had a couple of weepy moments when I wrote it so it definitely got to the author, LOL! Verity and Kylemore who turn up towards the end of that story are the hero and heroine of Claiming the Courtesan, my debut.

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  93. I'm one of those readers who "judges a book by its cover". And I just have to tell you that you have some of the best covers in the industry so I'm instantly drawn to your books. Thanks for the giveaway and Happy Holidays!

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  94. Hi Anna! Merry Christmas! :-) I have to tell you that ever since I saw the cover of A Midnight's Passion it has been on my wishlist, it is sensual, atmospheric, beautiful!

    Loved your piece, and thank you for the generous giveaway! :-)

    Happy holidays!

    stella.exlibris (at) gmail (dot) com

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  95. I've only read one of your books in the past, but obviously I am missing out! Thanks for the scene. I hope that it is part of a book I can read soon.

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  96. Thanks so much, Laura. I think I've been really lucky with covers too. And I LOVE seeing the foreign covers too and seeing the different takes from different countries on the same story. Happy Holidays!

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  97. Hi Stella! Happy Christmas. Thanks for saying you love the cover too. And so glad you enjoyed the extract. Good luck in the draw!

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  98. TxDee, it was fun playing with something that was a bit of a game, not necessarily something I had to turn into a major piece of work. Having said that, I really found myself intrigued by these characters. They may yet get their place in the sun. Happy Christmas!

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  99. Oh my! I need to read this book! I love LOVE the excerpt! Thank you so much for the giveaway! Crossing Fingers!! :) Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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  100. Great story. I can't wait to start reading the rest of your books.

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