His Saving Grace: Secrets & Seduction #4 by Sharon Cullen with Excerpt and Giveaway

His Saving Grace: Secrets & Seduction #4 by Sharon Cullen with Excerpt and Giveaway

Welcome to my stop for His Saving Grace: Secrets & Seduction #4 by Sharon Cullen. Please be sure to check the other tour stops, read the excerpt and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win a $25 eGift Card of Winner’s Choice Bookseller and Loveswept Mug & Tote!

Book Review:

Sometimes the ravages of war are oft repeated, and Sharon Cullen uses the remove and distance that comes with fiction and presents a story that is timely despite the setting. 
Grace is a young woman, believing herself widowed and is oft bullied and harassed by her brother in law.  A particularly grasping and distasteful character, he is determined that Grace shall live by his rules as the ‘new’ head of household, a position previously not in his future.  Grace is amazingly strong-willed and determined to do ‘right’ as she sees fit, and she is not amenable to his determination to beat her down.

When Michael, Earl of Blackbourne and survivor of a traumatic head injury during the war returns to his home and wife Grace, everyone must make adjustments for the change in circumstances.  Most striking is the parallel of Michael’s situation with so many returning from far afield today, and Cullen uses that commonality of experience to enrich her portraits of these two characters, adding depth and emotional elements that bring their relationship to the forefront.

Rather than focusing solely on the historic or distasteful societal machinations of Michael’s brother, this story transcends time and place and gives us a look into the rekindling of the relationship between Grace and Michael, and the trials that come with his injury, anger and guilt from the trauma.

Grace is a stand-out character in this story; not only does she love and want the best for Michael, and is willing to overcome any obstacles in her path, she also is unwilling to capitulate to Nigel’s demands. In fact, she finds evidence to discredit his claims and grasping for the title, all while learning and coping with her newly arrived / recently returned husband.

With secondary characters that fill in the story nicely, holding the feel of the time and social station, as well as a villain that it is easy to mistrust in Nigel, this is a wonderful installment to the series.

 

His Saving Grace: Secrets & Seduction #4 by Sharon Cullen with Excerpt and Giveaway

Title: His Saving Grace
Author: Sharon Cullen
Series: Secrets & Seduction #4
Genre: Historical Romance
Published by: Loveswept
Published on: 23 December, 2014
Format:eARC
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 265
Rated: four-stars
Heat: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame

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See this Title on Goodreads

Perfect for fans of Mary Balogh, Sharon Cullen’s captivating novel tells the deeply emotional tale of two devoted lovers facing the ravages of war. 

For months now, Lady Grace Ashworth has mourned the death of her beloved husband—until the day a very-much-alive Michael arrives at her front door. It’s nothing less than a miracle. However, Grace soon realizes that this Michael isn’t the same man who left for the Crimean War. She’s stunned to learn that he has suffered a devastating head injury. Putting all her own desires aside, Grace resolves to devote herself to Michael’s recovery and to love him no matter what troubles may come.

Convinced that his wife is wasting her time on a broken man, Michael attempts to shield Grace from a life of inconvenience by driving her away. But Grace will have none of that. Despite every obstacle Michael throws in her path, she stubbornly soldiers on, fighting not only for their marriage but for the love they once shared. In the end, will her determination alone be enough to save Michael from the darkness that threatens to consume him?

See the series on Goodreads 

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

Tasty Excerpt

The other committee members were already there when Grace arrived. She pasted on a smile and shored up her defenses—something she’d become somewhat of an expert at since she was widowed.Prudence was pouring tea, and everyone was talking to one another before the serious business of planning the festival commenced. Grace sat next to her best friend, Lady Sara Emerson. Lady Sara was the daughter of the marquess of Grandview, a quiet person but reliable: hence the reason she was a committee member. Sara would accomplish any task given to her, even the menial ones, without a word of protest. Grace and Sara had become fast friends when Grace moved to Hadley Springs after her marriage to Michael. Sara tended to disappear into the shadows, especially during social situations, but once Grace had broken through Sara’s shyness, she’d discovered a gem in the soft-spoken woman.

Sara smiled at Grace and moved to make room for her on the settee, but as soon as Grace sat, Sara’s smile faltered. “What is wrong?” she whispered in her soft way.

Grace shook her head, not wanting to get into the story here, where many ears were listening even though they pretended not to be. Sara’s concerned gaze took in Grace’s.

“Not now,” Grace murmured, then smiled up at Violet, Prudence’s daughter, as the girl handed Grace her tea.

Just as Prudence was about to start the meeting, Clara Ashworth, the current countess of Blackbourne, swept in and Grace’s heart sank. Of course Clara would be here. She would not miss this opportunity to gloat and spread the news that Grace was to marry.

Clara’s attendance at the church meetings were sporadic. Usually, she attended only when she had some important piece of gossip or when she felt in a particularly gloating mood. Today would fulfill both of those intents.

The other women tittered, for it was a coup to have the countess at their humble meetings. Never mind that Grace, the dower countess, attended every meeting. Moods shifted. Alliances came and went. She understood that. What she didn’t understand was why these women simpered over the likes of Clara. She was sometimes cruel, often insensitive, and always self-involved.

“I apologize for my tardiness,” Clara said breathlessly as she settled on the other settee. After she made two women move.

She was a pretty woman with light brown hair and dark brown eyes. She was short but round in all the right places. She came from money but not nobility. Her father was a merchant, having earned his wealth in shipping and textiles. She had been thrilled at Michael’s death, for it elevated her to the lofty title of countess. And like her husband, she took to the title with relish and vehemence and never for a moment let anyone forget who she was. For the most part, Grace had little to do with her except for her periodic appearances at their biweekly festival meetings, in which Grace suffered Clara’s superiority in silence and with a smile.

“I know the meeting is about to be under way,” Clara said. “But I just have to ask if the dowager countess told you her wonderful news.”

Everyone’s heads swiveled to look at Grace, their gazes alight with not only interest but also the expectation that they would be the first to learn a very interesting on-dit. Sara shifted and cast a quick look at Grace.

“Do tell, my lady,” Violet said. Prudence, sitting next to her daughter, nodded vigorously.

Grace cleared her throat, despising Clara at the moment. She did not want anyone knowing until she could sort it all out in her mind. Curse Nigel. She would not put it past him to tell Clara to announce it at their meeting, thus boxing Grace in and forcing her acquiescence.

“Yes, well. I just recently found out myself.” She shot Clara a glare, but the woman merely smiled back.

“Well, you can’t leave us wondering, my lady. What is this wonderful news?” Prudence asked, nearly vibrating with interest. There were few occasions when Prudence allowed her meetings to be delayed or interrupted. Apparently, this was one of them.

“The dowager countess is to wed Sir Clayton Timmons,” Clara blurted out with a clap of her hands.

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About Sharon Cullen

Sharon is also the author of romantic suspense, paranormal romance and contemporary romance. The Notorious Lady Anne is Sharon Cullen’s first historical and her debut novel with Loveswept.

If you’d like to find out more about Sharon and her books, you can visit her at her blog or her website. She’s addicted to social networking so you can find her on Facebook and Twitter. Friend her! Like her! Follow her! She’d love to hang out with you and talk about her passion—books.

 

 


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