Bestselling author of UPON YOUR RETURN and 18 other books. Finalist and Runner-up in the MARSocial’s Author of the Year Competition. Honorable mention in the January 2014 Reader’s Choice Award. Liebster Blogger Award for 2013. Top 50 Authors on AuthorsDB.com. Winner of the Great One Liners Contest on the Directory of Published Authors.
At the tender age of nine, she began writing stories. Her imagination fueled a lot of her early child’s play. Even growing up, she entered writing contests and received a certificate for achieving the second round in one. She majored in Creative Writing in college because that was all she ever wanted – to be a writer. While there, she published two works in a university publication, and was a copy editor on the staff of an online student journal. After graduating from college, she sought out her dream to publish a book.
Since then, Marie has published nineteen books. Marie Lavender’s real love is writing romances, but she has also written mysteries, literary fiction and dabbled a little in paranormal stories. Most of her works have a romantic element involved in them. She just released Magick & Moonlight, a paranormal romance, in March. Upon Your Honor is her second historical romance. Feel free to visit her website at http://marielavender.webs.com/ for further information about her books and her life. Marie is also on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
A list of her books and pen names are as follows:
Marie Lavender: Upon Your Return; Magick & Moonlight; Upon Your Honor
Erica Sutherhome: Hard to Get; Memories; A Hint of Scandal; Without You; Strange Heat; Terror in the Night; Haunted; Pursuit; Perfect Game; A Touch of Dawn; Ransom; Leather and Lace
Kathryn Layne: A Misplaced Life
Heather Crouse: Express Café and Other Ramblings; Ramblings, Musings and Other Things; Soulful Ramblings and Other Worldly Things
Upon Your Honor, sequel to Upon Your Return, Releases on Monday, April 21, 2014
Deception is a dangerous path…
New York City, August, 1891 – Orphaned after the death of her father, Chloe Waverly stows away on La Voyageur to escape the clutches of her cruel fiancé, Lamonte Beckett. Gabriel Hill, a strange and compelling gentleman, comes upon Chloe and promises to protect her without knowing the true circumstances of why she is running away. During their journey, Gabriel doesn’t bargain on being distracted by her fair beauty or succumbing to her many charms. As their attraction to each other grows, so does the danger and Gabriel suspects things are not as they should be.
Both are determined to get to New Orleans, where she can start a new life. But, once they reach their destination, events spin out of their control and Chloe is captured by the fiancé she escaped. Gabriel is left wondering if he can overlook her betrayal. Soon he finds himself in a race against time, to reach her before Beckett can exact revenge.
Excerpt from Upon Your Honor
It was difficult to wake this time, like waking from a deep sleep. The remnants of confusion were with her immediately. Chloe moaned. Her eyes felt too heavy to open. With an effort, she opened them by degrees. The first thing she noticed was the blurriness of the room, then the terrible headache. For a moment, she had to squint to dull the pain. Gradually, it eased, but it was still there, lingering like an annoying neighbor.
When her vision cleared and she could focus, she saw that she was in a bed, a truly comfortable one. The room was a cabin, filled with books and maritime instruments, a large red chair near the fireplace, and a small chaise close by. A tall man with broad shoulders stood facing the fireplace, holding a glass.
Something had happened. They had found her. With that knowledge, Chloe became aware of her state of dishabille as well as the loose hair that fell past her shoulders. They knew she was a woman. What would they do to her now? A moan of distress escaped her lips as she tried to sit up, failing due to a bout of dizziness. She had wanted to appear composed, but she was more like an invalid.
At the sound, the man turned and stepped towards her with purpose. He set his glass on a nearby table, pulled a chair up to the side of the bed and sat down. “Perhaps it would be better if you lie still for now. You will have pain for a while. Until it goes away, I suggest you try to rest.”
His dark red hair was familiar. And now that he was closer, she saw that his eyes were a unique shade of gray. Once she realized it was the same man from before, she managed a nod. Her tongue felt leaden, thick in her mouth. How could one man render her speechless? Clearing her throat, she found her voice at last. “I feel a little silly lying here though, when there is an inquisition to attend.”
“Oh?” He nodded. “Yes, I suppose there is a lot to answer for. But, rest assured, I am at the moment the only one here that is aware of your presence, though others will know very soon. If you have an escape plan, you’d better hatch it.”
His warning sent a shiver over her. “You foresee a lot of trouble then.”
“In your position, you should expect it.”
“I do. I am prepared.”
“You are?” He smiled a little. “Even though you convinced me you were a sailor at first, I now know to expect anything from you. However, you don’t strike me as the kind of woman who has approached many of these situations.”
Chloe licked her lips before replying, “You don’t really know what I will do in order to survive.”
“I suppose I don’t know much of your character. But, you hid away in the storage room for some reason. Are you running from the law?”
She was suddenly aware that he had an accent. French perhaps? She shook her head. “Not yet. No.”
He nodded. “Are you willing to take it to that level?”
“I would like to avoid that if possible.”
“There must be a story, then, if you are willing to do nearly anything to survive. What will you divulge to me if I am your only hope? What will you do to save yourself?”
Indeed, what could she do? The minor insinuations he was making disturbed her, but did not shock her. She was aware that some men were not entirely honorable, including Lamonte. “First, I would need to know whether I was in any danger in your hands.” She swallowed hard. “And then, if that turned out well, we would see…”
“Mademoiselle, you honor me.” He paused. “I assume you are not married?”
She shook her head in negation and licked her dry lips. “If my honor is at stake, then I would expect some cordiality.”
He cocked his head. “Would a stowaway have honor?”
Chloe’s jaw tightened. “Every man or woman has a right to some dignity in the face of extreme circumstances.”
“Extreme? I would say you’re fairly coddled right now. If I had any less respect for your dignity, you would be in a prison. Or worse.”
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