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Midnight Masquerade by Halley Larkin!
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MIDNIGHT MASQUERADE BY HALLEY LARKIN
Publication Date: January 10, 2022
Series: The Brightley Sisters, Book 1
Genre: Historical Romance
A duke with a past. A lady with no future. One magical night could change everything.
Lady Charmaine Brightley will soon lose her place in the world. Her father is ill and when he passes, a distant male cousin will inherit his title and the family estate. In the meantime, London society flocks to Charmaine’s lavish parties. Whimsical games of chance are the highlight of any evening at Cortwood Manor, games designed to raise money for the so-called “deserving” poor.
Behind the scenes, Charmaine fancies herself a modern-day Robin Hood. Proceeds from her parties support women shunned by the same ladies and gentleman drawn to Cortwood. If the ton ever discovered the true nature of Charmaine’s philanthropy, the revelation would ruin her family. Not that Charmaine cares what anyone thinks. Ever since her devastating first season, she has given up on love. With a promise to her dying mother to always look after her younger sisters, circumstances dictate a respectable attachment to a gentleman of means. What more would she want, really? As far as Charmaine is concerned, passion is a ridiculous dream, meant only for the young and foolish.
Until a dashing stranger appears at her midsummer masquerade, that is. And Charmaine soon wonders if romance might still be in her cards.
After an ill-fated duel, Duke Konstantin Rostov abandoned Russia for England. Kosta doesn’t miss the glamorous life he once enjoyed, or so he tries to tell himself. He is now a fugitive, marked for death by the powerful tsar and hiding in London. For a man accustomed to privilege and power, nothing is worse than indentured servitude to a cruel stepfather, Lord Trenholm.
Determined to restore both his reputation and that of the family he shamed, Kosta sneaks away to Lady Charmaine’s masquerade. He intends to meet Lord Cortham, his stepfather’s former business partner, who knows Trenholm’s darkest secrets. At Cortwood, Kosta finds the lord of the manor is unwell and can’t receive guests. But Kosta’s spirits soon lift when he dances with the alluring Charmaine Brightley.
For years, Kosta restricted his amorous affairs to women who were discreet, worldly, and married. These private flings safeguarded the ladies, as well as his own damaged ego. Despite the thrilling connection between them, Kosta understands he has no place in Charmaine’s life. Lord Cortham’s eldest daughter is destined to marry a gentleman of her station. In another life, Duke Konstantin would have been a perfect match. In his current state, Kosta could never aspire so high. When his stepfather sends him back to Cortwood, however, Kosta can’t resist the opportunity to see Charmaine one more time. Even if it means spying on her during a mysterious trip to London. Even if he must continue to hide his identity.
Reunited, Kosta and Charmaine find their mutual desire catches fire. But Lord Trenholm has his own reasons for pushing them together. Duke Konstantin has become part of his stepfather’s dangerous agenda. And Trenholm’s plans for his family’s future could destroy Charmaine Brightley, the woman who has finally captured Kosta’s heart.
Enter to win a copy of Midnight Masquerade by Halley Larkin!
The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on January 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.
This is a non spoiler review, because you as reader need to read this book. Also, I feel sometimes I have in the past gave away to much of the plot line. This has diminished the pleasure for would be readers.
MIDNIGHT MASQUERADE BY HALLEY LARKIN
Midnight Masquerade, is the first installment in Halley Larkin’s new romance series, The Brightley Sisters. This delightful book grabs the reader right from the start, and made for a very engaging read.
1850 Cordwood Manor in Hempstead England, we follow Lady Charmaine Brightley, and her sisters. The looming reality that the sisters beloved home will pass to a distant male cousin hands heavily, with the decline of Lord Cortham health. Facing spinsterhood with the her devastation of her first season, she has given up on every finding true love for herself. She focuses on taking care of her sisters and father.
She also risk all within ton, as she and her sister cleverly throw lavish society parties, that the proceeds help the ostracized woman, who society has deemed unworthy.
When she throws a midsummer masquerade party Charmaine, dressed as Queen Tatiana from Shakespeare’s a Midsummer night dream. Strong willed and independent, she crosses paths with a dashing Duke Konstantin Rostov, who makes her question everything.
Having left the decadent lavish courts of Russia, now he is in hiding from the Tsar. Becoming an indentured servant to his vicious step-father, Lord Trenholm, who will stop at nothing to further his family holdings and wealth.
I loved reading every moment of this book. Lady Charmaine Brightley and Duke Konstantin Rostov love story starts with a dance and boy do the sparks fly. The romance of Kosta and Charmaine was everything I had hoped it would be!
The author sets the stage for this spellbinding romance, with historical details and rich descriptions. I was easily transported into Halley Larkin’s world. The romantic tension along with the complex relationships and drama made this a compelling book. The storyline is well paced with reveals that come at just the right time, the authors narration flows effortlessly and smoothly.
Halley Larkin has created an engaging and memorable heroine, and her highly accomplished writing ensures that the reader is swept along in this lovely historical romance.
AUTHOR HALLEY LARKIN
My forthcoming series features three free-spirited sisters preparing to leave an estate they love, but cannot inherit. Along the way, their fates are entangled with those of a disgraced duke, a missing heir, and a brash young earl: gentlemen with passion in their hearts and complicated pasts. The first in the series, MIDNIGHT MASQUERADE, is now available for pre-order. The novella prequel MAID TAKES MARQUESS is coming soon.
As a reader, I enjoy witty novels full of sexual tension, dark secrets, and suspenseful twists. My favorite authors include Courtney Milan, Philippa Gregory, Alyssa Cole, Gillian Flynn, George R.R. Martin, and Lisa See. When I’m not reading or writing, you might find me planning a costume for the next San Diego Comic-Con or looking up a recipe from a Victorian cookbook. I live in California with a spoiled tabby cat named Jonesy.
Blog Tour Schedule
Tuesday, January 11
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Wednesday, January 12
Review at Booking with Janelle
Thursday, January 13
Review at Novels Alive