Category : Historical Fiction

The Du Lac Princess by Mary Anne Yarde

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The Du Lac Princess is the third book of  The Du Lac Chronicles – a Historical fantasy/Young Adult novel by Mary Anne Yarde

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War is coming…

The ink has dried on Amandine’s death warrant. Her crime? She is a du Lac.

All that stands in the way of a grisly death on a pyre is the King of Brittany. However, King Philippe is a fickle friend, and if her death is profitable to him, then she has no doubt that he would light the pyre himself.

Alan, the only man Amandine trusts, has a secret and must make an impossible choice, which could have far-reaching consequences — not only for Amandine, but for the whole of Briton.




A Word from the Author

Author Mary Anne YardeAs a child, I adored the legends of King Arthur and his Knights. I grew up near Glastonbury, England, where the story of King Arthur is woven into the very land itself. Many times I have witnessed Glastonbury Tor rise from the Fata Morgana — the mist — and every time I see it I am enthralled. It is so easy to believe the stories of Arthur when set against such a backdrop.

After Arthur’s tragic death the story comes to a sudden halt. No more is heard of Arthur’s famous knights, and all we are left with is a whispered promise, that when Briton is in peril, Arthur and his Knights will ride again.

Let me take you on a journey back to 6th Century Briton and together we can go on an adventure to find those Knights.

The Knights Code of Chivalry, which High King Arthur and Lancelot du Lac wrote, has been thrown on the rubbish heap. It is every man for himself. But amongst the chaos, there is one woman who refuses to bow down to tyrants. Lady Amandine du Lac was mistakenly left behind by her kin during the uprising against King Budic du Lac. Now she faces a life of scorn and ridicule because she so happened to be on the losing side. But Amandine has an inner strength that even she was unaware of. No matter what they do to her, no matter what they say, she will remain loyal to her kin and to the man she loved with her whole heart.

(Mary Anne Yarde, October 2017)

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Other Books in the Same Series

The Du Lac Chronicles

Book 1 – The Du Lac Chronicles

The Du Lac Chronicles by Mary Anne Yarde

Novella – The Pitchfork Rebellion

Cover The Pitchfork Rebellion - the du lac chronicles novella by Mary Anne Yarde

Book 2 – The Du Lac Devil

cover The Du Lac Devil by Mary Anne Yarde

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Love on a Winter’s Tide by Rosie Chapel

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Love on a Winter’s Tide

by Rosie Chapel

 

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Lady Helena Trevallier is, to outward appearances, a quintessential young lady of Society. She wanders the museums and art galleries, enjoys horse rides or brisk constitutionals — weather permitting — around the city’s many parks. She flits here and there, rather like an exotic butterfly and has several men trailing in her wake, in the hope she might favour them with a dance or better still allow them to escort her to one of the many social gatherings.

Unusually for a young woman of the elite, Helena is in no hurry to marry, unwilling to allow a man to dictate her life, for she has a secret. A secret which, had her social set known anything about might see them throwing up their hands in horror and one which any prospective suitor would surely demand she curtail. Every day, Helena disappears into a world few acknowledge, to help the poor, the downtrodden and the abused.

Hugh Drummond, a wealthy shipping magnate, moves in quite different circles. He rarely mixes with Society and is happy spending his days working on his beloved ships. He takes great pains to avoid the extravagant events to which he occasionally receives invitations, for mamas looking to marry off their daughters usually stalk them and, a state of wedded bliss is something in which Hugh has no interest. He is too busy managing the shipping line and has no need of a wife whose only joy is dancing and frivolity. If — and it was a huge if — he ever marries, it would be to a woman as capable as he, not some giddy society Miss.

Then, quite unexpectedly, Hugh meets Helena and despite his resolve not to fall under her spell and her determination to maintain her independence — fate, it seems, has other ideas. Attraction quickly becomes something far deeper, but dark clouds appear on the horizon, heralding a storm that may yet tear them apart.
Skullduggery abounds, testing their wits and forcing them to an agonising decision, as someone with nefarious intent threatens to destroy all they hold dear.
Stunned when they uncover the identity of the perpetrator, Hugh and Helena have no idea the lengths their adversary is prepared to go, to claim what he believes is his, and as they close in, it becomes race against time. Will they succeed in preventing a tragedy or will their love be swept away, lost forever on a winter’s tide?




A Word from the Author

Rosie Chapel authorLove on a Winter’s Tide is the third in the sequence of what will be five novels. My heroine, Lady Helena Trevallier is the youngest sister of Giles from Once Upon An Earl — in which she appeared, albeit briefly but then nagged me to give her a HEA ever since. Interestingly, this novel came together more quickly than any of my other books, why that should have been the case, I have no idea especially as I spent many hours researching the background and scenarios for both characters.

Helena has absolutely no desire to get married; she is far happier working at Sanctuary House – a refuge established for underprivileged women seeking respite from abusive husbands or situations. Hugh Drummond, a member of the merchant class, has worked hard to make his burgeoning shipping company profitable. Now a wealthy shipping magnate, with a growing fleet of trading vessels, Hugh – although not a member of Society – occasionally moves within their circle. He is, however, as determined as Helena not to be tricked into wedded bliss.

Then one night, at a ball, Helena meets Hugh and romance begins to bloom where least expected.
Their relationship follows an unusual path, for although it is clear their feelings run deep, neither is prepared to relinquish hard won independence. Helena has no mind to give up her work at the refuge, as she believes she is making a difference to the plight of those requiring its protection. Hugh, aware of how easily life can be snatched away in his line of business, cannot countenance marriage under such circumstances. Fate, of course, has other ideas!

Until starting this novel, I knew little about ships of the Regency (or any other) era. The different designs and models; how they were constructed, which ships were used for what purpose, strengths, weaknesses and so on. I quickly became captivated by the majesty of the shipping trade and the speed with which it was developing. This and the fiercely competition nature of the industry inspired the skulduggery abounding in Hugh’s shipyard.

On a more poignant note, my research into the underbelly of London during this era uncovered a harsh and often ignored reality. The daily struggle of those living in cramped and squalid conditions, but whose efforts allowed others to live in the lap of luxury, appeared to be something most of Society rarely contemplated. I imagine it was a volatile atmosphere, which probably exploded more frequently than is recorded. Of course, I barely scratched the surface of the adversity faced by so many, but this is where Sanctuary House fits in. That these women were given the chance to learn a variety of basic skills which could lead to opportunities previously considered impossible, seemed to be something the more socially aware members of the ton might get involved with.

(Rosie Chapel, September 2017)

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A Love Unquenchable by Rosie Chapel

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A Love Unquenchable is a Regency Romance by Rosie Chapel

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Jessica Drummond, a bright and cheerful young woman, rarely gives romance, let alone love, a thought. Long hours working in her brother’s shipping office affords little chance of her ever meeting an eligible bachelor.

Duncan Barrington, veteran of the Napoleonic Wars, believes himself wounded in both body and soul. He has no intention of inflicting his demons on anyone, certainly not a beautiful and, in his opinion, irresponsible city lady.

One cold & snowy morning, the plight of a bedraggled puppy throws Jessica and Duncan together and, as a spark of something indefinable yet wholly unquenchable begins to burn, it is unclear who rescued whom.




A Word from the Author

Rosie Chapel authorJessica Drummond began badgering me to write her romance, long before I was finished with the story about her brother, Hugh — Love on a Winter’s Tide. For some reason, however, A Love Unquenchable took much longer to complete than any of my previous three Regency novels and I think it might be because of the subject matter. When I began this book, I had no intention of writing about battle injuries, trauma, and treatments; if they appeared at all it would be as a side note and certainly not the main theme. As ever with stories and the characters therein, things unfolded in a most unexpected manner and, one day while I was researching artificial limbs and whether they had even been invented or were accessible in the Regency period, my background plot was born.

We are lucky in the 21st century; there are many different forms of counselling and rehabilitation available for returned servicemen, but what, if anything was offered 200 years ago? Questions regarding how those suffering serious trauma or long-term injuries were evaluated and managed plagued me. Their plight prompting me to wonder whether there were any establishments — other than Bethlem Royal Hospital (popularly known as Bedlam and synonymous with insanity) and where many ended up — whose aim was to provide a safe environment in which veterans might learn how to deal with mental and/or physical wounds, allowing them time to heal and hopefully go on to enjoy meaningful lives. It was certainly an interesting subject and while I was unable to find any specific reference to such places, their presence didn’t seem completely improbable. It was these questions, which refused to be quieted and so my story followed a completely unanticipated direction, but one I feel is the better for it.

Duncan Barrington appeared in my first two Regency novels and I really wanted him to have his own happily ever after, it seemed fitting after all he had suffered. Injured in the Napoleonic Wars, Duncan was fortunate to have friends who supported him on his return. Now, he works at Whiteoaks, the Earl of Winchester’s estate, his maimed arm in no way hampering his new found skill as a carpenter. A Love Unquenchable begins one wintry morning when Duncan meets Jessica. She is staying at Whiteoaks with her family and, during a morning walk in the snow, rescues a very bedraggled puppy. A city lady and a country carpenter, at first glance, their lives seem poles apart and their romance is not easy. Duncan still battles demons and has no desire to inflict his black moods on another, but Jessica is one very determined young lady.

When I was trying to come up with the title for this book, I came across several quotes about love, and one, which resonated with me, was by of all people, Bruce Lee (possibly inspired by an earlier quote from Henry Ward Beecher). Yes, I know he wasn’t even a figment of his grandparents’ imaginations in the Regency era, but his words hold, I hope you think so too.

“Love is like a friendship caught on fire.
In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce,
but still only light and flickering.
As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals,
deep-burning and unquenchable.”

(Rosie Chapel, September 2017)

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