Men in Kilts

Our friends at Google Play are running a promotion after our own hearts – and to curb our ongoing Outlander withdrawals. For the next week, you can grab some heart-melting, kilt-scorching highlander romances at fantastic prices, including some of our favourite Escape titles.

From best-selling, award-winning author, Frances Housden:

There’s no chieftain that won’t meet his match…

“Housden has developed the characters well and weaves an absorbing story of envy, treachery, lies and second chances.” – Morag, Goodreads (The Chieftain’s Curse)

“I love when true history is blended in with the authors fictional romance, to me a history junkie that’s my favorite combination in my reads! Truly a beautiful tale that reader won’t forget.” – Barbee, Goodreads (The Chieftain’s Daughter)

Buy now!

From hot newcomer Amy Rose Bennett:


A sweeping, sexy Highland romance about a wanted Jacobite with a wounded soul, and a spirited Scottish lass on the run.

“The Master of Strathburn is a fast-paced story with plenty of action, suspense and intrigue.” – Vikki, Goodreads

“Ms Bennett has given us a thrilling romance with an historical background that feels authentic, a couple of chase scenes with cliff-hanger consequences, some clever plot twists, and plenty of passion.” – Jude, Goodreads

Buy now!

From fan-favourite Allison Butler:

Curb your Outlander cravings with Allison Butler’s seriously sexy Scottish heroes!

“I loved seeing a bit of history come to life within these pages.” – Goodreads (The Healer)

“A must read book that is full of seduction, change and acceptance.” – RaeLatte, Goodreads (The Protector)

Buy Now!


Romances Celebrating Pride

Google Play is currently running a promotion on LGBTQI romances that include some fantastic Escape titles. If you’d like to celebrate Mardi Gras with some queer romance, may we humbly suggest the following?


A gripping,  blood-drenched saga about twin brothers, the men they love, and the enduring truth that true love never dies  — no matter how many times you kill it.

From Goodreads: “If you love your fiction dark, bloody, and breathtaking, you will love this book.”

From Daniel:

Bonds of Blood isn’t just your average series of gay love stories. Gritty, blood-thirsty and passionate, it brings into the light the love that has until now been hidden in the shadows. I love writing in this genre, adding my own voice for the mostly female readers of gay romance to discover.


From the author of the romantic horror debut Beckoning Blood comes the gripping sequel that mixes blood, sex, and magic.

From Goodreads: “graphic in its presentation; impassioned in its friendship; burning with the immortality of love.”


Falling for her best friend was never going to make life easy.

From Goodreads: “a quick, light, airy read that I would recommend to any rock star readers”


An all-access pass to Sex, Love, and Rock ‘N Roll. Because what happens on tour doesn’t always stay on tour

From Goodreads: “an intimate exploration of the M/M dynamic but … this story is also about the journeys we take on the path to finding ourselves”

Hot Sales! (and we mean hot)

On top of our amazing Valentine’s Day promo (check them out here!) , we are so pleased to share that Google Play Books is also running a hot, hot, hot erotica sale…and do we have some hot titles at hot promotional prices for you!


An erotic new adult romance about old insecurities, new beginnings, and the things you can get up to in a tent…

“the attraction … is palpable and the sexual tension sizzling” (Jeannie Zelos, Goodreads)

Hook me up!


She’s a small town caterer, he’s a big city chef, but they don’t need a kitchen to make things sizzle…

“Grab it, gobble it up, and it will leave you feeling satisfied.” (Ms RomanticReads, Goodreads)

Yes, please!


If there’s one thing Zoe Chandler, Historical Restorations expert, knows, it’s that naked bankers aren’t supposed to look like Greek gods.

“Humor, a hot hero, a feisty heroine, some super steamy love scenes (did I mention the love scenes were hot, like really hot, like melt the clothes off of you hot), and of course a happily ever after.” (Constance, Goodreads)

Take me there!


Four stories of eroticism, strength, experimentation, and ultimate salvation.

“If you are looking for a fun, entertaining, and spicy read, Release should be in your to–be-read pile.” (Lori, Goodreads)

Get this on my e-reader!


From Cathleen Ross comes a naughty-but-nice story about the fun one can have playing dress-up.

“The chemistry between Ruby and Jake is explosive and practically melted my kindle.” (Lea, Goodreads)

Gimme gimme gimme!


Natasha Raven is unqualified for her job – but a sexy customer service staffer is about to offer her some professional development…

“If you’re in the mood for a quick sexy read, give Room Service a try!” (Tracy, Goodreads)

Make this mine!


A dark, violent, and devastatingly sensual erotic fantasy about the binding force of love.

“The Sexy Time was SUPER hot!!” (Liz, Goodreads)

Yes please!


An Australian-set paranormal drawing on the Aboriginal Dreamtime in a hot, suspenseful series debut.

“great for a beach or bath tub read” (Stefanie, Goodreads)

Hook me up!


A guarded recluse, some dirty pictures and a spark of curiosity that leads to a dangerous attraction.

“This is one of the funniest, smartest and sexiest erotic romances I’ve read.” (Love Reading Romance, Goodreads)

Gimme gimme gimme!


Traditionally, leather is an anniversary gift. One couple is about to take that in a very non-traditional way…

“an enjoyable, short erotic romance” (Erinne, Goodreads)

Make this mine!


From Cate Ellink comes a sun-soaked erotic novel about a tropical paradise, two athletes used to getting physical, and a sex-filled, no-strings holiday fling. 

“Just make sure you grab yourself a fan, because things do get steamy!”(My Written Romance, Goodreads)

Get this on my e-reader!

Valentine’s Day Sale!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

To show their love, Google Play Books has chosen four of our titles to promote. So if you’re looking for a romantic read, may we suggest the following titles, at promotional prices?


The journey from friends to lovers starts with a very brave first step. Or a catalytic event. Sometimes both.

“delivered a fresh friendship to lover’s trope with a mix of personal growth, humor and self-discovery” (Kimberley, Goodreads)

Yes, please!


What happens when fairytales get the romantic suspense treatment? A cross-genre mash-up with enchanting results!

“a short and quirky novella that mixes up the fairytale and crime genre and honestly its just a lot of fun to read” (Jess, Goodreads)

Buy me now!


They might be one of the hottest up-and-coming bands in Australia, but the members of Selling the Sun have a lot to learn about life, love, sex, and each other.

“a quick, light, airy read that I would recommend to any rock star readers” (Miranda, Goodreads)

Get on my e-reader!


From one of Australia’s hottest new authors comes a story about an international scandal, a billionaire, and a fearless reporter who might just save the day…

“high energy, intense, suspenseful, incredibly romantic (like bone melting romantic)” (Brooke, Goodreads)

Gimme gimme gimme!

(please note: Detained is also available at this promotional price on Amazon and iBooks as part of promotional events with those e-tailers!)

Try one of Escape’s Rising Stars of Romance – for Free!

Apple iBooks Australia is promoting the Rising Stars of Romance for the next two weeks, and many Escape Authors are featured. The best part? You can get the first book in one of their series for free!

Most of these titles are also free on Amazon AU. So check them out!

House on Burra Burra Lane – Jennie Jones


Just ten days after her fresh start in the isolated Snowy Mountains, Samantha Walker trips over a three hundred pound pig and lands in the arms of Dr. Ethan Granger — and the firing line for gossip. It was hardly a ‘date’ but sparks of the sensual kind are difficult to smother in a community of only 87 people. Now there’s a bet running on how long she’ll stay and what she’ll get up to while she’s in town.

Ethan has his own issues — Sammy’s presence in his childhood home brings with it painful recollections of family scandals and a bad boy youth. When the gossip around them heightens, his life is suddenly a deck of cards spread on the table for all to see. Then Sammy’s past catches up with her… and it looks like all bets are off.

(Amazon AU)

In Safe Hands – Lee Christine


She thinks she needs him, but she doesn’t know the secrets he keeps…

Threatened with the publication of naked photographs taken in her law student days, defence attorney Allegra Greenwood enlists the help of former SAS Commander Luke Neilson, unaware of his involvement in her brother’s death in Afghanistan.

In a race to stop the photographs appearing on the Internet, Luke battles a hidden enemy, his growing feelings for Allegra, and his conscience, which demands he protect a fallen comrade’s sister. As the stakes increase and more sinister motives unfold, Luke not only has to fight to save her career, he has to fight to save her life.

(Amazon AU)

Treasured Secrets – Kendall Talbot


From Romantic Book of the Year winner Kendall Talbot comes an adrenaline-fuelled new series with sexy characters, exotic locations, and action-packed adventure.

The last place Rosalina expected the clue to a 700-year-old mystery to lead is back into the arms of Archer, the one man who broke her heart. But neither can solve the puzzle without the other, so together they set off on a new adventure, weaving from Tuscany’s underbelly to Archer’s luxurious yacht in the Greek Islands, trying to ignore the sparks that still fly unhindered between them.

Archer desperately wants to salvage the relationship he shattered years before, but fighting for Rosalina’s love soon takes a back seat to fighting for their lives. They aren’t the only one on the trail for the treasure, and their competition isn’t bothered by ethics and morals to achieve their goals. With evil close on their trail, and Archer wrestling with the remnants of a childhood tragedy, Rosalina begins to wonder if perhaps there are some secrets that were never meant to be revealed.

(Amazon AU)

A Life Worth Living – Amanda Canham


For lovers of Marion Lennox and Fiona Lowe comes a sweet, touching novel about secret desires and second chances, set in the intriguing world of sleep medicine.

Dr Cameron Lewis has been running from his past for a long time, so when a career opportunity opens up in his hometown of Brisbane, he takes it as a sign to move home and pick up the pieces of his life. But his vow to never have a child remains steadfast — it’s the one thing he can’t compromise on.

Nurse Stacey Carter has always craved a family of her own, and, following a bitter divorce and the death of her mother, she finally decides to make her dreams come true. She doesn’t need a man to help, but she can’t help thinking that the new doctor in the Sleep Medicine ward might be the ideal alternative…

(Amazon AU)

Bound By Her Ring – Nicole Flockton


Luciano Morelli has perfected a plan to get revenge on his runaway wife; confronting her at the opening gala for her father’s hotel. What he didn’t plan on was the flaring of emotions the moment he sees her again.

Jasmine Anderson has no memories of her husband. Her only link to him is the wedding rings she wears. Luciano storms back into her life announcing he is her husband, demanding she join him on a business trip or see her father’s livelihood crumble.

Passion reignites as they rediscover what first drew them together. But more than just memories are lost. Can their bond be rebuilt or will secrets infect their already shattered trust?

(Amazon AU)

The Chieftain’s Curse – Frances Housden

8883 (1)

Nominated for the 2014 RITA Award for Best Historical Romance
Euan McArthur is a chieftain in need of an heir.

While still a young a warrior, Euan incites the fury of a witch. She retaliates with a curse that no wife will ever bear him an heir. As he buries his third wife and yet another bonnie stillborn son, Euan can no longer cast her words aside.

Morag Farquhar is a woman in need of sanctuary. With a young relative in tow, Morag flees the only home she has ever known to escape her brother, Baron of Wolfsdale, and find sanctuary in the MacArthur stronghold. Pronounced barren by a midwife, Morag is of little value to her family, but a Godsend to Euan, a lover he can’t kill by getting with child.

Years ago, chance drew them together, and tangled their lives in ways they could never have imagined. This time their destiny lies in their own hands, but it will take courage and strong hearts to see it through to the end.

(Amazon AU)

Insecure – Ainslie Paton


The worst thing a man can do is not be with the woman he loves.

She could have him sacked quicker than licking her lips. He could ruin her reputation with an email.

Jacinta was the CEO in waiting. Mace was the geek from IT. She had an office suite on the top floor. He worked in cubicle hell.

She had power, influence, her life mapped out. He had big dreams, and an appetite for risk.

They had one hot night written all over them, except the city conspired to turn that night into a weekend of unexpected passion and deep connection.

Will love be enough when Jacinta’s star falls and Mace’s dream takes flight, or will ambition, expectation and insecurity pull them apart?

(Amazon AU)

By The Sword – Alison Stuart


From award-winning author Alison Stuart comes a stirring historical trilogy about soldiers, spies, and the strong women that love them. 

England 1650. In the aftermath of the execution of the King, England totters once more on the brink of civil war. The country will be divided and lives lost as Charles II makes a last bid to regain his throne.

Kate Ashley finds her loyalty to the Parliamentary cause tested when she inherits responsibility for the estate of the Royalist Thornton family. To protect the people she cares about, she will need all her wits to restore its fortunes and fend off the ever-present threat of greedy neighbours.

Jonathan Thornton, exiled and hunted for his loyalty to the King’s cause now returns to England to garner support for the cause of the young King. Haunted by the demons of his past, Jonathan risks death at every turn and brings danger to those who love him. Finding Kate in his family home, he sees in her the hope for his future, and a chance at a life he doesn’t deserve.

In the aftermath of the Battle of Worcester, Jonathan must face his nemesis, and in turn, learn the secret that will change his life forever. But love is fragile in the face of history, and their lives are manipulated by events out of their control. What hope can one soldier and one woman hold in times like these?

(Amazon AU)

The Secret Diary of Lady Catherine Bexley – Viveka Portman


In the vein of Portia Da Costa and Charlotte Featherstone, Regency England gets just a bit raunchy in this novella about a gently-raised lady who wants to feel like a woman…

“I have never seen fit in my life to divulge my secrets in a diary, yet now, after today’s proceedings, I do…”

Lady Catherine Bexley is new to marriage and the marriage bed, but surely there must be more to it than this? Her husband is proper and perfunctory — treating her with careful respect but leaving her aching for more.

When she witnesses a gentleman disciplining a maid at a house party, the ache explodes into ravenous desire. She finds herself no longer willing to wait for her husband’s stiff and passionless attentions — and soon develops a naughty plan to finally get what she wants.

(Amazon AU)

Words Once Spoken – Carly Drake


YA meets high fantasy in this lush series debut about a girl who never quite fit in — and the reason why…

Evelyn might not love the confines of her village life, but she takes her small freedoms where she can get them. But everything changes when her parents decide it’s time for her to wed. Suddenly she loses her tunic and breeches, her bow, her horse, and gains rigid gowns, restrictive manners, and carriage rides.

The best way to escape is through her dreams, but as they become more and more real, Evelyn begins to worry that she is losing her grasp on reality. It is only when she makes two new friends that the truth is revealed: she is destined for far, far more than even she could imagine.

(Amazon AU)

King Hall – Scarlett Dawn


A fresh, meaty, sink-your-teeth-in-and-hold-on-tight new adult fantasy series kicks off with King Hall…

King Hall — where the Mysticals go to learn their craft, get their degrees, and transition into adulthood. And where four new Rulers will rise and meet their destinies.

Lily Ruckler is adept at one thing: survival. Born a Mystical hybrid, her mere existence is forbidden, but her nightmare is only about to start. Fluke, happenstance, and a deep personal loss finds Lily deeply entrenched with those who would destroy her simply for existing — The Mystical Kings. Being named future Queen of the Shifters shoves Lily into the spotlight, making her one of the most visible Mysticals in the world. But with risk comes a certain solace — her burgeoning friendships with the other three Rulers: a wicked Vampire, a wild-child Mage, and a playboy Elemental. Backed by their faith and trust, Lily begins to relax into her new life.

Then chaos erupts as the fragile peace between Commoners and Mysticals is broken, and suddenly Lily realises the greatest threat was never from within, and her fear takes on a new name: the Revolution.

(Amazon AU)

Legend Beyond the Stars – SE Gilchrist


Seeking redemption from a mission gone terribly wrong, Captain Alana Knight volunteers to aid a dangerous operation to transport colonists between Earth and alien traders. But on board the spaceship, she learns of a galactic war raging for power. A power that can be transformed into a terrible weapon.

When the colonists are betrayed and sold, Alana’s mission is re-defined. Nothing will stop her from keeping those in her care safe and finding a passage home. But her new captor is nothing like she expects…

Commander Tarak El Rajan is human, male and equally determined to retain his payload. With his race on the brink of extinction he is under strict orders to transport all females to the planet Isla for research purposes.

In a world of uncertainty, where the wrong decision could mean the death of an entire race, the last thing either of these two soldiers expects or needs is to fall in love.

(Amazon AU)

Out of Rhythm – Shona Husk


They might be one of the hottest up-and-coming bands in Australia, but the members of Selling the Sun have a lot to learn about life, love, sex, and each other.

Coming off a successful Australian tour and prestigious industry award nominations, Gemma Field’s life should be perfect. Instead her parents want her to get a real job, the second album isn’t coming together, and her best friend, Kirsten wants nothing to do with her.

Falling for her best friend was never going to make life easy. After an almost accidental drunken kiss almost six months ago, they aren’t even talking. Gemma can’t even talk about it with anyone – not her family, not her bandmates, not even the one person she used to share everything with. Instead she lives in a space of indecision and pain, and it’s affecting all aspects of her life, including the band.

Kirsten Vincent missed Gemma like crazy, but did she miss her as a friend or as something more? She’s confused and Gemma is hurt, and the consequences of a bad decision will affect more than their personal lives. Will another kiss, a sober kiss, a kiss with intent, do more damage, or could it be the start of something more?

(Amazon AU)

The January Wish – Juliet Madison


From Escape’s queen of ro-magic comedy comes a sweet, emotional contemporary romance about the pleasures of making a wish and seeing it come true.

When Dr Sylvia Greene makes an impromptu wish at the Tarrin’s Bay Wishing Festival, it’s the most out of character action she can think of. Hers is not a life of wishes. Hers is a controlled life of order, plans and preparation…of science and research and diagnosis and treatment. But her past has been weighing on her mind, and decisions made long ago have far-reaching consequences.

A week later, the daughter she secretly gave up for adoption at sixteen arrives in Sylvia’s small coastal town with secrets that can’t be shared. Between feelings of guilt, gossip, and a growing attraction to an emotionally unavailable colleague, Sylvia’s well-ordered life is soon thrown into chaos. She is no longer alone, and for the first time she feels as if her world is open to possibilities.

They say be careful what you wish for, but, for Sylvia, the unexpected consequences may be just what the doctor ordered.

(Amazon AU)

Children of the Mist – Jenny Brigalow


An original paranormal YA about an unconventional girl, an unconventional boy, their extraordinary transformations, and the secrets of the Scottish Highlands.

When skater girl Morven Smith turns sixteen, she develops boobs, acute appendicitis…and a pair of pointy teeth. While she is stunned by her metamorphosis into vampire, her best mate, the enigmatic Zest, is not. For the young werewolf, Morven’s transformation is an answer to his lonely prayers.

But they are unable to celebrate their mutual paranormalcy for long — there are too many dangers, too much suspicion, and too many questions. It’s only in Scotland that Morven can learn the truth about her past. But she discovers more than she bargained for when she meets her birth family — an ancient feud between vampires and werewolves. They may both be Children of the Mist, but only one species can survive.

(Amazon AU)

Beckoning Blood – Daniel de Lorne


A gripping,  blood-drenched saga about twin brothers, the men they love, and the enduring truth that true love never dies  — no matter how many times you kill it.

Thierry d’Arjou has but one escape from the daily misery of his work at a medieval abattoir — Etienne de Balthas. But keeping their love a secret triggers a bloody chain of events that condemns Thierry to a monstrous immortality. Thierry quickly learns that to survive his timeless exile, he must hide his sensitive heart from the man who both eases and ensures his loneliness…his twin brother.

Shaped by the fists of a brutal father, Olivier d’Arjou cares for only two things: his own pleasure and his twin. But their sadistic path through centuries is littered with old rivals and new foes, and Olivier must fight for what is rightfully his – Thierry, made immortal just for him.

(Amazon AU)

THE RED SILK CLOAK – A tale of Unrequited Love

by Alison Stuart

This is a sad story… and as you know, we like happy ever afters, but for the Honourable Orlando Bridgeman, that HEA was not to be…

I came across Orlando’s story in the Guards Museum in London (well worth a visit). With the National Army Museum being closed, the smaller museums around the UK were hosting different aspects of the Waterloo story and, of course, the Guards are inextricably tied up with the action at Hougemont Farm so there was quite a display about Waterloo. Tucked away in a glass case, and looking completely out of place in a military museum was a full length, woman’s red silk cloak and this is the story that accompanied it.


Born in 1794, the third son of the Earl of Bradford, Orlando, as all third sons did, joined the Army and the age of 17 found himself as a young Ensign at the siege of Cadiz in Spain. Here young Orlando succumbed to a fever and was left behind by his regiment. Hurrying north to rejoin his regiment, he found himself caught up in action at the capture of Seville in August 1812. After the action he encountered a French Sergeant of Chasseurs who implored the honourable young man to help a wounded (and dying) French officer by the name of Marbet. Marbet, Orlando was told, had left his fiancee, Mademoiselle de Casteja, in Madrid and now with the English army moving north, Mlle de Casteja was alone and friendless in the midst of enemies. “Please,” Marbet begged, “Tell her of my fate and help her procure a pass through the British lines so she can return to Paris.” Orlando gave his word and as soon as he reached Madrid he sought out Mlle de Casteja.

Mlle de Casteja enchanted the young man and a ‘tendresse’ formed between the two. The safe pass was arranged and Mlle de Casteja left for Paris, leaving her red silk travelling cloak with Orlando as a keepsake, along with a request that he seek her out in Paris when the war was ended.

Three long years of war followed and with Napoleon’s return from Elba, the allies and French met once more at the decisive battle of Waterloo. Now Captain Orlando Bridgeman was there, as Aide de Camp to Sir Rowland Hill. Although wounded (not badly) he hastened with the allied forces to Paris, anxious to keep his promise to Mlle de Casteja only to find that not only had Marbet inconsiderately survived his wounds, he had been reunited with his love and married her.

It is said that Orlando had kept the red silk cloak with him for those three long years and had even worn it at Waterloo (the latter is dubious as not only was it impractical but showed little sign of having been in a battle of such magnitude).

Broken hearted, Orlando left the army and returned to England where, two years later he married an old friend, Lady Selina Needham. They had four children but sadly Orlando died at the age of 33.

Many of his letters survived and are contained in a book, A YOUNG GENTLEMAN AT WAR edited by Gareth Glover. For more about Orlando’s life, click here

20836 (1)Can the love of an honourable man save her from  the memory of a desolate marriage?

From the battlefield of Waterloo to the drawing rooms of Brantstone Hall, Sebastian Alder’s elevation from penniless army captain to Viscount Somerton is the stuff of dreams. But the cold reality of an inherited estate in wretched condition, and the suspicious circumstances surrounding his cousin’s death, provide Sebastian with no time for dreams — only a mystery to solve and a murderer to bring to justice.

Isabel, widow of the late Lord Somerton, is desperate to bury the memory of her unhappy marriage by founding the charity school she has always dreamed of. Except, her dreams are soon shattered from beyond the grave when she is not only left penniless, but once more bound to the whims of a Somerton.

But this Somerton is unlike any man she has met. Can the love of an honourable man heal her broken heart or will suspicion tear them apart?

Alison-web smallABOUT ALISON

Escape author, Alison Stuart is an award winning Australian writer of cross genre historical romances. Alison is a lapsed lawyer who has worked in the military and fire service, which may explain a predisposition to soldier heroes and men in uniform. If your taste is for duelling cavaliers, wayward ghosts, time travel and murder mysteries – sometimes all in the same book – Alison’s stories are for you. The second book in Alison’s GUARDIANS OF THE CROWN series for Escape, THE KING’S MAN will be released in September.

What is all the fuss about the Battle of Waterloo?

by Alison Stuart

The 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo fell on June 18th this year, and the occasion was marked at the battle site itself with a weekend of re-enactments, presentations and memorial unveilings attended by 100,000 people. Church services and commemorations were held in London and Brussels (but in France it passed with barely a murmur. In fact, I suspect, the French probably think they won the battle.)

Not this Waterloo...

Not this Waterloo…

And I was there… or nearly! My husband and I were fortunate enough to visit the Battle Site the week before the commemoration. The new Visitor’s Centre (which is AMAZING!) had just opened and workmen were frantically laying paths and putting up the bleachers… and we pretty much had the whole place to ourselves on a very warm, sunny day.


After a longish bus ride in a stuffy local bus from central Brussels, we had a whole day on our hands and we took the time to visit the Wellington Museum in Waterloo itself (the inn where Wellington stayed the night of the battle and from which he wrote his famous Waterloo despatch). At the site of the battle, we spent ages in the Visitors Centre, climbed the 200 steps to the top of Butte de Lion and walked the line of the ridge to Hougemont Farm with its brand new English Oak gate. Sadly without a car, time did not permit a visit to Napoleon’s headquarters.

Alison at Wellington's HQ 2015 Jun

Back in London we visited the Guards Museum which hosted an exhibit on Hougemont Farm (where the Guards regiments distinguished themselves), the National Portrait Gallery which had a whole exhibition devoted to Wellington, Apsley House on Waterloo Day and in Paris… at the Hotel de Ville (the military museum), there are galleries devoted to Napoleon’s glory years but blink and you miss any mention of Waterloo!

So… Waterloo is very much on my mind and I am thrilled that in honour of Waterloo, my ‘Waterloo’ story Lord Somerton’s Heir will be 99c (on Amazon and iBooks) from 4 -13 July only.

As I picked up a few little bits and pieces on my travels, I will be offering a Waterloo Commemoration prize as part of a Rafflecopter contest that will run all week (details are on my website at But wait… there’s more… sign up to my Readers’ Group newsletter and not only do you get extra points in the contest, you will receive a short story, the ‘prequel’ to Lord Somerton’s Heir… SEBASTIAN’S WATERLOO.

Enough preamble… there is something about Waterloo that captured and held public attention like very few other battles in history. Why? I would be interested in your comments…

In the meantime, here are some facts about Waterloo…

  • It is the only battle in the long Napoleonic campaigns in which both Napoleon and Wellington faced each other.
  • The Prussians wanted to call the battle Belle Alliance after the village where Napoleon had his headquarters. Wellington’s practice was to name battles after the village in which he spent the night before the battle… hence Waterloo. 
  • The casualties numbered 200 000 men, 60 000 horses (apologies to horse lovers!), and 537 guns were in action, contributing havoc and destruction on an enormous scale. The action was fought in a relatively small space (5 square miles) and at 2291 casualties per square mile, Wellington’s losses were greater than the 234 casualties per square mile over the 120 days of the Battle of the Somme in 1916.
  • Tourists flocked to the battlefield from the day after the battle and are still flocking.
  • Napoleon blamed General Grouchy for his defeat. Grouchy had misinterpreted an order from his commander. Napoleon’s Chief of Staff had scribbled ‘The battle is commenced’, intending for Grouchy to join in. Grouchy read the word ‘engagée’ (commenced) as ‘gagné’ (won)and stayed put. 
  • A good trade in false teeth went on for years after the battle – with the teeth of the dead being set in hippo bone and used as dentures.
  • Three days after the battle, in Paris, Napoleon attempted to commit suicide by swallowing poison. His doctors saved him but it is possible it hastened his death on St. Helena only a few years later.

And was it such a splendid victory? Well in the opinion of two old army officers (self and husband) it was indeed, as Wellington said, a ‘near run thing’.

  • IF Grouchy had not misunderstood his orders…
  • IF Ney had not led his cavalry off on a wild charge unsupported by artillery and infantry…

And, most importantly,

  • IF the Prussians had not turned up when they did, the outcome would have been totally different!

So please take a moment to enter the Rafflecopter contest. Details of the prize, which includes a reproduction of The Times with the Waterloo despatch, are on my website

And don’t forget to join up to my reader’s list and find out how the hero of Lord Somerton’s Heir, Sebastian Alder, passed the day of 18th June 1815.

20836Can the love of an honourable man save her from  the memory of a desolate marriage?

From the battlefield of Waterloo to the drawing rooms of Brantstone Hall, Sebastian Alder’s elevation from penniless army captain to Viscount Somerton is the stuff of dreams. But the cold reality of an inherited estate in wretched condition, and the suspicious circumstances surrounding his cousin’s death, provide Sebastian with no time for dreams — only a mystery to solve and a murderer to bring to justice.

Isabel, widow of the late Lord Somerton, is desperate to bury the memory of her unhappy marriage by founding the charity school she has always dreamed of. Except, her dreams are soon shattered from beyond the grave when she is not only left penniless, but once more bound to the whims of a Somerton.

But this Somerton is unlike any man she has met. Can the love of an honourable man heal her broken heart or will suspicion tear them apart?

Q&A with Lily Malone – in which she only answers one question

Q: So, Lily, why did you write a romance with a heroine who has a dodgy vagina?

  • Because I enjoy flushing pink as my beanie whenever I’m asked this question, that’s why!
  • Because I always wanted my mother (who has read Fairway To Heaven) to study me over her glasses and say: “is everything really alright with you, Love? You know… down below?”
  • Oh heck, because I like an author research challenge as much as the next writer!
  • Because I wanted to write a heroine with a sexual physical disability, and make this as natural in a romantic context as I could.
  • Because I wanted to raise awareness about Lichen Sclerosus as a women’s health issue, AND because auto-immune diseases/illness of all kinds SUCK!
  • Because one of the romance books I best remember reading about 20 years ago featured a heroine with huge breasts, (and not in a good way). I cannot remember the title of the book but the heroine played violin or bass brilliantly and was only comfortable when playing the instrument (because it hid her breasts). The story was as much about the romance between the H&H as it was about the heroine’s personal journey toward eventual breast-reduction surgery and a happier, healthier life. This resonated with me and still does! Too many perfect heroines, or heroines given token issues as character ‘flaws’.
  • Because a friend in my mother’s group dared me to do it.
  • Because it felt like a good idea at the time.
  • Because I was interested in pushing the boundaries of ‘realistic’ contemporary romance, to see how readers responded and to see where this would go.
  • Because I really want to write a heroine or hero (or both) who have genital herpes. DO YOU THINK THE ROMANCE WORLD IS READY FOR THIS??

Long live Jennifer Gates’ and her dodgy fanny. Loud and Proud!

23729It’s going to take more than summer loving to heal old wounds, but a remote beach, old friendships and a bit of sunshine might just spark a second chance at love.

When Jennifer Gates drives to Sea Breeze Golf Club to kick off date-night with her boyfriend, the last thing she expects is to find Golf Pro Jack giving one of his lady students a private—and very personal—lesson in bunker-play.

Lucky for Jenn, her best friend gives her the keys to the Culhane family’s beach shack on the white-pepper shores of Western Australia’s Geographe Bay. Jenn hopes a weekend on the coast with her young son will give her the space she needs to rebuild her confidence after Jack’s betrayal.

But she’s not the only person seeking sanctuary by the sea. Brayden Culhane is there too, and Jenn can’t look at Brayden without remembering the tequila-flavoured kiss they shared on the shack steps years ago.

As long-buried feelings are rekindled, and a friendship is renewed, Jenn knows it is more than lazy summer days bringing her mojo back. Romantic sunsets, ice-cold beers and the odd round of golf can only go so far, because this time trusting Brayden with her heart won’t be enough. Jenn has to learn to trust her body, too.

Don’t Be Perfect. Fall in Love.

by Charmaine Ross.

I’m a realistic, and I know I’m not model material. Never have been. Never will be. I don’t expect my heroines to be perfect either, and in a real world nobody expects anybody to be perfect. So why then, so we expect to read about perfectly formed barbie-body women in our books? Is it because we prefer it? Is it because we think our heroes won’t fall in love with a woman unless they have a perfect super-model figure? That they have to be perfect in every way otherwise no-one will even like them?

What I do know is that glossy magazines and Photoshop have a lot to answer for. We have created bodies to be an unrealistic product, to be moulded just as one would a mug on a pottery wheel, or a toy for a toy-shop. Bodies are not like that, and neither are women. Most are not the height of a model, or the wafer thin size that goes with it. Most women I know are people with tempers, a sweet-tooth, anxious, happy, joyous, hard-workers. They get sad, they get excited. They do not strut down a cat-walk in uncomfortable clothing, nor do they aspire to. In fact, they want more from life. Much more.

Then why this phenomena? Why do women think that they have to be perfect to be worthy of falling in love? That they must starve themselves to be so thin, and only then will they catch the eye of a man? That they don’t go into a melt down because they’ve slipped the gym for the day because some magazine told them they have to work out six times a week, keep a neat house, work a high-paying full time job, have two point five kids that are well-behaved, get them to their sporting activities each night after school and have a nutritious meal on the table every night? Does that sound like something well-rounded women want, or is it because we’ve been told from an early age that if we don’t do these things that we are unworthy. And no-one wants to be unworthy. Because if you are unworthy, you won’t be loved.

This makes love a leverage to be used as currency and love was never meant to be anything like that. Love is a gift. It is meant to enhance your life, make you feel good, comfort you when you are sad, be joyous when you are happy. It grows with you. Touches your soul. Tells you that you are a worth-while person even though you might have been cross, or angry, or tired. Because if you do all of those things the magazines tell you to do, you will be tired. And guess what, you probably won’t have time to fall in love, or enjoy all of the good things that go with it.

Women don’t have to be perfect to fall in love. Most men aren’t, and they get to have good women fall in love with them every day. After all, people are more interesting when they are sad, and angry and tired. That’s when things start to happen. That’s when people reach out for other people, they need to connect, they need to talk and laugh and get to know another person. And that’s when they fall in love. When you are not perfect and you reach out, you let another person in. And that gives love a chance to grow.

So don’t be perfect. Don’t even try. Life and love is more interesting that way.

Charmaine’s novel Makeover Miracle about a decidely imperfect heroine and her imperfect hero is currently free on Amazon!


8905Abbey Miller and her friend Jennifer have been picked from a live audience to take part in reality television show Makeover Miracle. This is Abbey’s worst nightmare, and brings back deep memories of being teased and the brunt of cruel jokes. The last thing Abbey wants is her soul to be laid bare for the whole of Australia to see, but being the true friend she is, she agrees to help Jennifer, who desperately wants to change her life.

Quinn Campbell, the producer of Makeover Miracle can see Abbey crumbling live on stage, and after she vomits into a waste paper basket, goes to her aid, not expecting see such a sad, haunted look in her eyes. There’s something about Abbey that reaches out to him. The look in her eyes brings back long buried memories of his sister and his failure as a brother to help her.

This is a story about one woman’s journey through harsh emotional abuses and the man who is able to make her believe in herself. Set against the beautiful Dandenong Ranges, Makeover Miracle is a story about forgiveness, understanding, personal growth and, of course, falling in love with that one special person.

Out of this World – (and on sale!)

The wonderful SE Gilchrist has released the next book in her thrilling, sexy SF romance Darkon series. Read on for the inspiration behind Star Pirate’s Justice – and for a brief time, both this title and the first in the series Legend Beyond the Stars are on sale. Follow the links to choose your e-tailer of choice.

My love of spec fiction stories stems from a lifetime of watching sci fi shows, of reading many books, and, with the dawn of the internet, browsing informative and sometimes off-beat sites.

After I read various articles on cloning and genetically modified foetuses, the inspiration behind my science fiction romance series was born. For I could visualise the Darkon race.

8867I started the series off with what I guess is an idea that’s certainly been done before. Earth woman captured by alien – falls in love – lives happily ever after – you get the picture. But I wanted it to be more than a simple love story. I wanted action, adventure, and a world where danger is in the very air you breathe. And of course, some really great sex.

I wanted baddies lurking in the shadows or masquerading in plain sight. I wanted to explore in a subtle fashion, moral issues that concern me.

So in Legend Beyond the Stars, I used the concept of genetically modified babies and how the Darkon race became so powerful, i.e. they arose from a manipulated gene pool. I also took this concept further by having their people on the brink of extinction caused by a retro virus which had decimated their women and children.

What would a leader do? Would he bow to the inevitable? Look for answers? Well I had Lord Rajan look for answers – in the most fanatical way and with no thought or consideration as to pain and suffering of others, to human rights (or alien rights as is the case here). We all know how that turned out for Rajan.

And also for Alana and her friends. Placed in a situation well out of their comfort zone, not everyone is capable of adjusting or dealing with their experiences. An aspect I explored with poor Linette.

20206In Star Pirate’s Justice, my heroine is another lost star traveller from Earth. Carly has inner strength and great compassion, traits which enable her to embrace every aspect of her new life in her quest to fulfil her life goal. But what will happen when she is thwarted at every turn from realising her goal? Especially when time is her enemy?

And especially when there’s a traitor determined to remain unmasked.

I love writing this series. So far I’ve researched nano technology and graphene technology, space / time travel, heat sinks and stealth ability of vehicles, EMP blasts, futuristic and modern weapons (and the history thereof), body armour…just to name a few. It’s fascinating how a titbit of information can stimulate another idea whether it adds layers / sub-plots to my current manuscript, another book in the series or an entirely new story.


And I have plenty of inspiration to come.