About the Author
Kathleen Woodiwiss (Louisiana, 1939-Minnesota, 2007) revolucionó ya desde su primera novela el género romántico histórico, al hacerlo más explícito, más atrevido y sensual. De sus novelas se han vendido más de treinta y seis millones de ejemplares en todo el mundo.
Date of Birth:June 3, 1939
Date of Death:July 6, 2007
Place of Birth:Alexandria, Louisiana
Place of Death:Princeton, Minnesota
Read an Excerpt
Shanna moved to stand close before him to lend weight to her words. Her eyes wide and appealing, she stared into his and spoke almost in a whisper.
"Ruark, I am in distress. I must be wed to a man of sterling name, and you must be aware of the importance in England of the Beauchamp fam ily. No one would know except myself, of course, that you are no kin. And since you have little future need of your narne, I could use it well."
Ruark' s confusion blunted his wits. He could not think of her motive. A lover? A child? Certainly not debts, for she was of money such as no debt could entangle. His puzzled frown met the blue-green eyes.
"Surely, madam, you jest. To propose marriage to a man about to hang? Upon my word, I cannot see the logic in it."
" 'Tis a matter of some delicacy." Shanna presented her back to him as if embarrassed and paused before continuing. She spoke de murely over her shoulder. "My father, Orlan Trahern, gave me one year to find a husband, and failure shall find me betrothed to whom he wills. He sees me a spinster and wants heirs for his fortunes. The man must be of a family privy to King George. I have not yet found the one I would choose as my own, though the year is almost gone. You are my one last hopeto avoid a marriage arranged by my father." Now came the hardest part. She had to plead with this filthy, ragged colonial. She kept her face averted to hide her distaste. "I have heard,'' she said carefully, "that a man may marry a woman to take her debts to the gallows in re turn for an easing of his final days. I can give you much, Ruark--food, wines, suitable clothing and warm blankets. And surely my cause--"
At his continued silence, Shanna turned toward him and tried to see his features in the gloom, but he had carefully maneuvered their po sitions until she now was presented full to the light when she faced him. The wily beggar had moved so stealthily that she had not been aware of it.
Ruark's voice was somewhat strained as he finally said, "Milady, you test me sorely. A gentleman my mother tried to teach me to be, with good respect for womanhood." Shanna's breath caught as he stepped nearer. "But my father, a man of considerable wisdom, taught me early in my youth a rule I've long abided."
He walked slowly around her, much as she had done with him a few moments before, then halted when he stood at her back. Scarcely breathing, Shanna waited, feeling his nearness yet not daring to move.
"Never--" Ruark's whisper came close to her ear, stirring awake a tingling of fear in her. "Never buy a mare with a blanket on."
Shanna could not suppress a flinch as his hands came over her shoulders and hovered above the fasteners of her cloak.
"May I?'' he asked and his voice, though soft, seemed to fill the very corners of the cell. Ruark accepted her silence as consent, and Shanna braced herself while his lean fingers undid the velvet frogs. He drew the cloak from her, and though lacking splendorous trimming and fancy laces, her deep red velvet gown enhanced her beauty divinely. She was the gem, the jewel of rare beauty which made the dress more than a garment but rather a work of art. Above the hooped panniers which expanded her skirt on the sides, the tightly laced bodice showed the narrowness of her waist while it cupped her bosom to a most daring display above the square decolletage. In the golden glow of the tallow lantern, her skin gleamed like rich, warm satin.
Ruark stood close, his breath falling softly against her hair, his head filled with the delicious scent of woman.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Ordered in english. Got Spanish. Need a refund
Only 27 pages and in spanish Be careful when ordering
I just ordered this in English, but it's the Spanish version. Need to get a refund
Same thing happened to me. Thought this was in English, but it is in Spanish. Had to get a refund.