Monday, September 26, 2016

Celebrate American #nurses in WWI #Centennial

American nurse aids soldier tear-gassed.
American women saved sick and wounded Doughboys during the First World War. But what do you know about them?

Here is a novel, historically researched, that tells a story all women will be proud of. HEROIC MEASURES by Jo-Ann Power is a critically acclaimed work, thoroughly documented, that tells a story of women who left home, when to do so was extraordinary. Here is the background and the new link to Jo-Ann's site on the USA's National World War One Centennial site!


Jo-Ann and her husband in Chateau-Thierry
on one of their research trips to American World War One battle sites.
When United States Congress declared war in April 1917, the United States had a standing army of only 200,00 men. To fight against a seasoned enemy in the war-torn trenches and forests of Europe, the country needed at least a million men—and a medical corps to care for their sick and wounded.

Caring for wounded, Base Hospital Johns Hopkins Unit, France
With only 403 nurses in the Army Nurse Corps [ANC] when the war began, the Surgeon General called for volunteers. Women in hospitals and private duty as well as many in training responded. Those already staffing hospitals could join the ANC through the Army’s newly established base hospital system and through the American Red Cross.

Beginning in 1917 through the end of the war a year and a half later, more than 22,400 American women left their homes and their families to join the Army Nurse Corps. Most had never traveled beyond their hometown. Few had ever visited a foreign land. More than 10,000 sailed from American ports amid blackouts through U-boat-infested waters. They slept in hammocks, trudged through knee-deep mud, lived in wooden barracks—and sometimes even washed their hair in their own helmets. Enduring rain and snow, disease and danger from bombardment, they nursed more than 320,000 American soldiers sick and wounded.


The cover shows a British captain and an American flyer in proper uniforms!
Both are characters, along with the heroine Gwen Spencer in the novel!
Buy Link to digital and print at Amazon
They worked in base hospital wards approximately 50 miles behind the front lines. Some worked in field hospitals closer to those in combat. Others worked in tents and bombed-out churches, their patients brought in on rickety ambulances and laid down on beds of hay. In mobile surgical units a mile or two from the advancing soldiers, they worked in teams with doctors to provide emergency treatment to critically wounded Doughboys. They treated soldiers with gunshot and shrapnel wounds, gangrene and septicemia, poison gas burns, infections like trench foot, exposure and “shell shock” that we now term PTSD.

For this service, these women held no rank. They received half what an Army private was paid. But like their male comrades in arms, they had volunteered for the duration of the conflict, however long that would last.

Operating Room, nurses and doctors. National WWI Museum photo.
At the start of American involvement, they worked twelve-hour shifts. By the war’s end as the fighting grew more intense and casualties multiplied, they often labored round the clock. Many suffered from exhaustion. Some fell ill themselves. Many died of pneumonia, ear infections, dreaded Spanish influenza and more. A few died in automobile accidents and air raids. None died of combat related injuries. 

Most returned home and were discharged from the ANC. Many resumed their work in civilian posts. Twenty-seven nurses received United States service medals for their bravery and dedication. Dozens more received medals from Great Britain, France, Belgium and other allies.

American cemetery at St. Mihiel, France where many nurses
are buried. This is Jo-Ann's photo.
More than 200 nurses gave the ultimate sacrifice. Many remain in repose in foreign soil next to the men they fought to save. Beneath the same white marble crosses as their male comrades in our American cemeteries, they rest at peace beneath the lovely Linden trees.

In the 1980s, author Jo-Ann Power began to research in museums and archives the lives of these heroic women. In 2013, she published her historical fiction about a group of nurses who volunteered. HEROIC MEASURES is for sale in digital and print.

Yesterday, she inaugurated the section of the National World War One Centennial site about the Army Nurse Corps. World War I Army Nurse Corps Putting all her research to work in a new way for the Centennial Commission, Power recounts the nurses’ challenges, their exploits and their triumphs.  Do marvel at their courage to travel so far and endure so much to salve the wounds of war, heal the sick and comfort the dying. Do applaud these women who, like others afterward, declared that war’s horrors must end—and that this conflict, this Great War, should be "the war to end all wars."

     Read more about HEROIC MEASURES here.
    
     For more information, pictures and details about the Army Nurse Corps, American experience in World War One and Jo-Ann's research trips in the States and to France, read Jo-Ann's blog, They Also Fought.

Now, she invites anyone who has photos, letters, documents about a family member or friend or acquaintance to contact her so that she can put them up on the site for all Americans and everyone around the world to see, admire and honor.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Facts I'll watch for in #Versailles TV show next week! #cookies! #soldiers #France

Laduree shop on Champs Elysee!
With a few courses in French history under my skin, I'm not only eager to see what the producers have done with Versailles the television show...but I'm also wild to note if they got many of the details right! (I have few doubts!)

First, I've noted in the commercials, that Louis and one of his mistresses eat what appear to be cookies from a "tree of cookies." The delicacies are round, composed of two cookies with a fondant or cream in the center. These are the macarons, so famous by Laduree.

Laduree has a shop (among many others elsewhere) along the Champs Elysee, where you can not only buy the delicious filled cookies, but you can dine there.

I will be on the lookout for a mention of the famous macarons!

Louis as a child!
Entrance to Les Invalides which Louis built to care for
his injured, disabled soldiers. Louis engaged in so many wars that
this building stands to this day as his care for them.
It is now a military museum which spectacularly covers feudal
warfare up to modern day.
The other little fact I'm tickled to look for is one that made me giggle in French history seminar. What was it? Louis was so sensitive, so demanding, that when anyone approached his chamber, he insisted they not knock on his door to disturb him.

So, you may ask, what did they do instead?

They were, said the Sun King, to scratch on the door with the nail of their little finger! And to accomplish this on a regular basis, one had to take care of that nail and grow it longer!

Louis was also very particular about the clothing of his courtiers. As in England during periods of war, some fabrics were reserved only for the highest level of the aristocracy. Other levels had restrictions of length of trains, types of garments worn and all in an elaborate system that took an inordinate amount of time for noblemen and ladies to learn!
Queen Maria Theresa, Louis's life, and their son, the Grand Dauphin.

And my last little fact for this post about Louis and Versailles: the cost. Ah, yes. Astronomical. Some  estimates are, in today's money, 2 billion Euros. Other experts say it was 5 times that. Why is there so much debate? Because Louis was careful to keep the real costs to himself. Some say, the complete records were never complete. Secret or incomplete, the taxes he imposed on his subjects to build this famous palace—and to fight the wars he declared, bankrupted the country quickly. His two successors were never able to put the country back on a sound financial footing (including the dissolute Louis XV whom we saw in #Outlander in this last season). Grandeur has its costs!

Louis as a young man.
Very handsome!

Cathedral where all French kings were crowned in Reims, France

Thursday, September 22, 2016

#Veterans of #WWI included 22,000+ American #women! Read about them and #Centennial!

American women saved sick and wounded Doughboys during the First World War. But what do you know about them?

Here is a novel, historically researched, that tells a story all women will be proud of. HEROIC MEASURES by Jo-Ann Power is a critically acclaimed work, thoroughly documented, that tells a story of women who left home, when to do so was extraordinary. Here is the background and the new link to Jo-Ann's site on the USA's National World War One Centennial site!


Jo-Ann and her husband in Chateau-Thierry
on one of their research trips to American World War One battle sites.
When United States Congress declared war in April 1917, the United States had a standing army of only 200,00 men. To fight against a seasoned enemy in the war-torn trenches and forests of Europe, the country needed at least a million men—and a medical corps to care for their sick and wounded.

Caring for wounded, Base Hospital Johns Hopkins Unit, France
With only 403 nurses in the Army Nurse Corps [ANC] when the war began, the Surgeon General called for volunteers. Women in hospitals and private duty as well as many in training responded. Those already staffing hospitals could join the ANC through the Army’s newly established base hospital system and through the American Red Cross.

Beginning in 1917 through the end of the war a year and a half later, more than 22,400 American women left their homes and their families to join the Army Nurse Corps. Most had never traveled beyond their hometown. Few had ever visited a foreign land. More than 10,000 sailed from American ports amid blackouts through U-boat-infested waters. They slept in hammocks, trudged through knee-deep mud, lived in wooden barracks—and sometimes even washed their hair in their own helmets. Enduring rain and snow, disease and danger from bombardment, they nursed more than 320,000 American soldiers sick and wounded.


The cover shows a British captain and an American flyer in proper uniforms!
Both are characters, along with the heroine Gwen Spencer in the novel!
Buy Link to digital and print at Amazon
They worked in base hospital wards approximately 50 miles behind the front lines. Some worked in field hospitals closer to those in combat. Others worked in tents and bombed-out churches, their patients brought in on rickety ambulances and laid down on beds of hay. In mobile surgical units a mile or two from the advancing soldiers, they worked in teams with doctors to provide emergency treatment to critically wounded Doughboys. They treated soldiers with gunshot and shrapnel wounds, gangrene and septicemia, poison gas burns, infections like trench foot, exposure and “shell shock” that we now term PTSD.

For this service, these women held no rank. They received half what an Army private was paid. But like their male comrades in arms, they had volunteered for the duration of the conflict, however long that would last.

Operating Room, nurses and doctors. National WWI Museum photo.
At the start of American involvement, they worked twelve-hour shifts. By the war’s end as the fighting grew more intense and casualties multiplied, they often labored round the clock. Many suffered from exhaustion. Some fell ill themselves. Many died of pneumonia, ear infections, dreaded Spanish influenza and more. A few died in automobile accidents and air raids. None died of combat related injuries.

Most returned home and were discharged from the ANC. Many resumed their work in civilian posts. Twenty-seven nurses received United States service medals for their bravery and dedication. Dozens more received medals from Great Britain, France, Belgium and other allies.

American cemetery at St. Mihiel, France where many nurses
are buried. This is Jo-Ann's photo.
More than 200 nurses gave the ultimate sacrifice. Many remain in repose in foreign soil next to the men they fought to save. Beneath the same white marble crosses as their male comrades in our American cemeteries, they rest at peace beneath the lovely Linden trees.

In the 1980s, author Jo-Ann Power began to research in museums and archives the lives of these heroic women. In 2013, she published her historical fiction about a group of nurses who volunteered. HEROIC MEASURES is for sale in digital and print.

Yesterday, she inaugurated the section of the National World War One Centennial site about the Army Nurse Corps. World War I Army Nurse Corps Putting all her research to work in a new way for the Centennial Commission, Power recounts the nurses’ challenges, their exploits and their triumphs.  Do marvel at their courage to travel so far and endure so much to salve the wounds of war, heal the sick and comfort the dying. Do applaud these women who, like others afterward, declared that war’s horrors must end—and that this conflict, this Great War, should be "the war to end all wars."

     Read more about HEROIC MEASURES here.
    
     For more information, pictures and details about the Army Nurse Corps, American experience in World War One and Jo-Ann's research trips in the States and to France, read Jo-Ann's blog, They Also Fought.

Now, she invites anyone who has photos, letters, documents about a family member or friend or acquaintance to contact her so that she can put them up on the site for all Americans and everyone around the world to see, admire and honor.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Care to waltz? #Regency style? Sip Champagne with FABULOUS #Regencyromance authors?


Amazon
     Do come join me Tuesday on FACEBOOK when 20 of my best friends and I celebrate the release of my box set, REGENCY ROMPS!


     This collections contains nearly 500 pages, the first 3 of my ROMPS series for a ridiculously low price of 99 Cents. But hurry, because the price is for a limited time only!


     Buy the box set and come join us for our own Assembly Room Ball beginning at 11:15 EASTERN and going on until the wee hours of the evening here:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1379820468724985


    And look who's coming to receive all of you with me! A marvelous group of some of the most talented authors you can read today! Many write Regency, but others are masters of contemporary. All write stories you will adore.




NOTE WELL: THESE TIMES begin with EASTERN Time Zone!

11:15 EST/ The Receiving Line with Cerise DeLand
11:30 EST/10:30 C/9:30 M/8:30 P     Amy Rose Bennett
12:00 EST/11:00 C/10:00/9:00 P        Kate Richards
12:30 EST/11:30 C/10:30 M/9:30 P   Susanna Ellis
1:00 EST/12:00 C/11:00 M/10:00 P   Nicole Zoltack
1:30 EST/12:30 C/11:30 M/11:00 P   Patricia Walters-Fischer
2:00 EST/1:30 C/ 12:30 M/11:30 P    Eliza Loyd
2:00 EST/1:30 C/ 12:30 M/11:30 P    Paige Tyler
3:00 EST/2:00 C/1:00 M/12:00 P      Teri Wilson
3:30 EST/2:30 C/1:30 M/12:30 P      Caroline Warfield
4:00 EST/3:00 C/2:00 M/1:00 P        Layna Pimentel
4:30 EST/3:30 C/2:30 M/1:30 P        Madison Sevier
5:00 EST/4:00 C/3:00 M/2:00 P        Cerise DeLand
5:30 EST/4:30 C/3:30 M/2:30 P       Anabelle Bryant
6:00 EST/5:00 C/4:00 M/3:00 P       Elle James/Myla Jackson
6:30 EST/5:30 C/4:30 M/3:30 P       Ella Quinn
7:00 EST/6:00 C/5:00 M/4:00 P       Dominique Eastwick
7:30 EST/6:30 C/5:30 M/4:30 P       Suzi Love
8:00 EST/7:00 C/6:00 M/5 P            Sabrina York
8:30 EST/7:30 C/6:30 M/5:30 P      Sherry Ewing
9:00 EST/8:00 C/7:00M/6:00 P      Jolene Navarro

9:30 EST/ Last Waltz with Cerise DeLand!

Monday, September 12, 2016

#Regency Romps, box set #Cover Reveal, #99cents for limited time!

My box set of the first three Regency Romps debuts today!
And (drumroll) it is only 99 cents for a limited time!

It is also on KINDLE UNLIMITED for those of you who subscribe to that.

Buy Link: Amazon

First is Lady Varney’s Risqué Business!

     When a proper lady of the ton takes on a new client in her matchmaking business, she discovers he has one risqué demand. Spend the night with him!

     Lady Kitty Varney runs a discreet matchmaking business to support herself and pay off her late husband's gambling debts. Selective about her clientele, she finds her newest prospective client is none other than Viscount Justin Belmont, the very man she was forbidden to marry years ago. If she accepts him, can she bear to help him wed any other woman?

     Justin however is selective and lists his very exacting criteria for a wife. Kitty is shocked—and delighted to learn she is among the few candidates he’d find suitable. Especially since he demands each candidate spend one night with him.

     Can Kitty deny herself the opportunity to enjoy the charms of the man she's never forgotten? Lady Varney's risqué business might be her saving grace—but it may well become her undoing.

 Rendezvous with a Duke comes second! 
     Anna Fournier secludes herself, scandal staining her family name and all her prospects for anonymity, employment and even love. But one afternoon she plays her newest composition in a piano shop—and one man who cannot forget her decides to right the wrong done her years ago.

     Anna Fournier never intended to fall in love. Not with any man. Especially not a duke. But Hugh Lattimer persists in courting her despite the scandal that surrounds her—and the innuendo that could ruin him.

     Can she escape her past and embrace a future as Hugh's duchess? Or will the man who murdered her father return to ruin her future once and for all?

Finally we have Masquerade with a Marquess (and a sneak peek at #4 in the series, Interlude with a Baron, which is out now, too.)

She wanted to find her family’s stolen treasures. He wanted to avoid caring for her again. But together, they found more than treasure. They discovered love that had endured decades of despair.

     Sophia di Contini risks her life to sail to England alone and slip into the homes of those she suspects stole priceless treasures from her family during the wars. Discovered by Victor Cameron, she agrees to search for her art his way even though she’ll live in his house, yearn for his touch, pine for his kisses…
    
     Five years ago, while spying for the Crown, Victor had spent one scintillating night with Sophia in his arms. But the next morning, she betrayed him to his enemies and he barely escaped.

     Now that she’s come to England, he fights his desire for her. When others attack her, risking her life, Victor decides the best thing to do is to help her find her precious art, even if he risks the chance she’ll steal his heart away…again.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

10 Traits of a Rake! by Anabelle Bryant #Regency #romance


One of the reasons I adore reading and writing Regency romance is my fascination with rakehells. By definition, a rogue or breathtakingly handsome scoundrel who lives by his own rules in disregard of formal society.
Why?
Their wicked qualities, of course. The forbidden allure and sensual prowess that somehow makes them difficult to censure despite they break all the rules. The Regency rake possesses distinct qualities, all of them delightful to write about and therefore I give you the ten traits of a rake.
1.     Sinful grin. Its appearance is rare and devastating, able to cause a heart-stopping gasp by way of a flash of even, white teeth.
2.     Thick hair. Any color, too long to be considered fashionable, an echo of his soul’s rebellion to conform.
3.     Smoldering eyes. Preferably dark, filled with erotic promise and vulnerable secrecy.
4.     Potent virility. His height, broad shoulders, skill with words, and command of the room by mere presence.
5.     Disregard of propriety. A true rakehell breaks the rules and is forgiven all the while making him more attractive.
6.     Double entendre. Clever word play and master of temptation, able to relate any conversation to the bedchamber.
7.     Forbidden distractions. Pleasure gardens, gaming hells, mistresses, swimming and sleeping in the nude, each qualify.
8.     Wealth and power. The best of everything, horseflesh, town house, tailoring…all enhanced by very deep pockets.
9.     Muscular physique. Smooth, hard muscles, strong arms to keep you safe, soft heart that hides a wounded secret.
10.  Sexual expertise. For a rakehell, pleasure is an art. Giving, receiving and experimenting are all part of his mastery of seduction. Very little is off limits.


So there you have it and if by chance you run across a modern day rakehell, don’t let him go. Even though I prefer to live between the pages of a book, there’s no saying you might find a rakehell in this century. A rarity, indeed.
Anabelle Bryant
Bio:
Anabelle Bryant is the bestselling author of seven historical romances for Harlequin/HarperCollins. Her love of writing keeps her busy in front of her laptop when not in front of a classroom. His Forbidden Debutante is the latest Regency Charms release where stories are linked by a charm bracelet. Visit AnabelleBryant.com and see what she’d up to on Facebook and Twitter.

Buy Links:
His Forbidden Debutante
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1Pr1SJl

Social Media Links:
Website: www.anabellebryant.com
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/AnabelleBryantAuthor  
Twitter: @AnabelleBryant

YouTube Channel: http://bit.ly/1r0TjsY

Monday, September 5, 2016

3 Sites to see in #Paris if you love #Georgian and #Regency #romance!

We authors of historical romances love to do our research in those locations that bring the period and the people to life. Most often for Regency or Georgian Romance authors and readers, we travel around England, Scotland or Ireland.

But Paris has much to offer too for someone who wants to soak up the atmosphere of the period when Prince of Wales was Regent and Britain was at war with Napoleon. What could those places be?

Entrance to Malmaison
Part of Josephine's toilette.
First, I offer up the delights of Josephine's home south of Paris in the current suburbs. Malmaison (available by the Metro) is a term that really derives from the terms meaning "bad house' from the period when the Vikings raided through here and destroyed all in their path. The house, built a few decades before the Bonapartes purchased it, is a jewel of perfection of this period. Surrounded by
The back of Josephine's salon.
Josephine's rose gardens and the rest of her beautifully landscaped lawns, the house is lovingingly maintained today by the State. Most of the decor and the furnishings are original to the period if not the house per se and the audio tour (which you must take!) describes the uses Josephine put to the house. The card room, for example, is a small—very small—room, almost a closet. But the empress loved it for its intimacy and warmth. The salon which still holds her harp and her pianoforte contains much of her private art collection as well as furniture. You can almost see the dignitaries conversing, drinking tea or wine, remarking on the politics of the day. Her bedroom where she died is quite stunning in its rich canopy. Most alluring is her toilette, small, the walls swathed in cotton and linens to increase the warmth. Often when she bathed and dressed, Josephine took three hours!
Napoleon's private bedchamber.

A visit to the Cathedral of Saint Denis on the northern tip of Paris (and available by the Metro) is a trip to acquaint you with the horrors of the French Revolution and the Terror, the counter influence on the British mindset during the wars of that period.  Saint Denis is the church in which most of the kings and queens of France and their children are buried.  I say most of them because many are indeed buried elsewhere. However, once you've entered and admired this church, the first gothic cathedral in France and its architecture, and once you've admired the enormous number of sarcophagi of various French monarchs and their families, a visit to the crypt is what you're really after. Here you will find the plaque on the wall which is all that remains of that noted monarch, Louis XIV. It is ironic to find his burial place in such a barren place. But walk further into the center of the crypt and here you see only a huge flat black granite stone covering a very deep pit. This is the marker for the burial plot of those aristocrats of the ancien regime who died by the guillotine during the Revolution and most numerously the Terror. Their bones were collected from various churchyards and from the Conciergerie (on the Isle de France) where they were interred after execution. This tragedy of their deaths by violent means is the very horror that outraged the British, many of whom were their relatives. This slaughter of the nobility is what the British sought to avoid for themselves. While they spent significant national treasure attempting to defeat the various regimes that succeeded the Bourbons, including the emperor Napoleon, they were attempting to ensure not only their own survival, the continuance of their economic system, but also their naval power around the world.
The dining room in Malmaison

Chantilly lies north of Compiegne, and to get here you must buy a train ticket for roughly $11.00 at Gare du Nord to travel beyond the Metro line. But you will adore the easy walk from the train station (1.5 miles) and the ambiance of the forest and the town. The first owners of the chateau were the Montmorency family of soldiers and diplomats. Rising to prominence during the reign of Francis I, Anne du Montmorency ( a man) made his name serving the king. Later, cousins to the Bourbon monarchs, the Princes Conde became owners of the chateau. With landscape designed by the famous gardener Andre Le Notre, the grounds are sumptuous in the Baroque manner. Even the stables are lavish in their appointments. What is notable here are the decor and furnishings much of which dates from the Bourbon Restoration of 1815 when the nephew of the newly restored Louis XVIII and his brother Charles X was granted the property. There his descendants remained until the 1880s when they could not longer pay the taxes and turned the building over to the government.
Louis XIV plaque in crypt of Saint Denis
Life size gisants of praying Louis XVI and his wife, Queen Marie Antoinette in chapel of Saint Denis

Chateau Chantilly: View of the stable block and riding academy.

Walter view of Chantilly

Salon with murals commemorating the Fronde led by the Grand Conde.

A portion of the music room with harp.
+N.B. All the photographs are mine.


Saturday, August 27, 2016

#Fashion of #Outlander TV show! From Paley Center in Los Angeles! #history #Scotland

Recently on a trip to Los Angeles, Mr. DeLand and I went to Hollywood specifically to see the OUTLANDER fashion show at the Paley Center for Media Arts.

This was a Fab.u.lous treat for anyone who adores fashion, the recreation of historical fashion and this stunning TV show.

A series of outfits on mannikins, the display also featured dioramas and reproductions of portions of the set. The most intriguing displays were the digital recreations of sets in which the actors walked!

You must know that there was no tour, no tour guide and no brochure. I thought this a major fault as, many of us who live for historical detail and who drool over the show, would purchase such a reference.

I will tell you, however, that the fashions were the real ones worn by the actors during the second season and that most of them were those of Claire and Jaimie, closely followed by those worn by the Comte de Artois. Much of this gentleman's clothing was featured because it was so elaborately made, reflecting his wealth and status at court and in society.

Louis XV outfit, in the front window!

Claire's green gown, also in front window mezzanine

Detail of Claire's green gown,
typical of period of Louis XV

Captain Jack Randal's military attire

In front hall, a patron could step into
Claire's red gown and here I am!
One of many costumes for the Comte de Artois

Gown worn by Claire's French friend, Louise in season 2.
Much of the detail work on the clothes was done, as in the period, by hand.
Here you see the embroidery and lace work.

Much of the detail was exquisite.

Sample of architecture model made to scale.
This is chemist's shop.


Here is the digital representation of King Louis's bedchamber.
Drawings along the walls displayed the original sketches for costumes
as well as designs for rooms and buildings. Here is the costume for Gellis Duncan.
On one wall, the sketch for the building of the astrolabe and for the exterior of Claire's and Jaimie's Paris residence.
Do download and enlarge if you wish to read this.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Hot Cowboy from Sabrina York, out tomorrow! Get your tiara NOW!

Coming August 16th
Enter to win a tiara below!

Stud for Hire by Sabrina York
Just south of Fort Worth, Texas, you’ll find a little ranch where the hot, toned cowboys are ready and eager to take it all off and make your naughtiest fantasies come true...

When her sister plans a wild bachelorette weekend at the Double S Ranch, Hanna Stevens is pretty sure she’ll just grin and bear it while the other women get their fill of hot cowboy strippers. After all, Hanna has never met a man who made her really want.

Zack, Hanna’s future husband, offered to marry her and save her family’s ranch from financial ruin, and while she accepted, it was never what you’d call a passionate affair. But when she locks eyes with Logan, Hanna is suddenly overwhelmed by the feeling she’s always craved and never experienced: Pure. Animal. Desire...

The first in a new series of Stripped Down Cowboys from New York Times and USA Todat Bestselling Author, Sabrina York

"Sabrina York can write a sexy cowboy like no other!" Susan Stoker, New York Times bestselling author

Read an Excerpt

“Hi.”
Logan’s heart stilled and then shot into a rapid tattoo. He dropped the heavy bale on the ground. It landed with a dull thud and a plume of dust. Slowly, he turned, trying to ignore the shivers running over his skin at that low, sultry voice.
And yeah. There she was, backlit by the sun in the yawning barn door, a tantalizing silhouette.
“Ma’am.”
He tipped back his hat so he could see her better. Wiped the sweat from his brow. Damn, she was beautiful. Her red hair was down, flowing over her shoulders like a rippling stream, teased by the breeze. The buttons of her plaid shirt strained against the curves of her breasts. He loved the way her skinny jeans clung to her legs, disappearing in a pair of well-worn boots.
She wasn’t supposed to be here. The women were supposed to be settling in, dressing for the evening’s festivities. A Hunky Hoedown. Logan was supposed to be preparing for that too—but he’d decided to work off his simmering energy here, in the barn.
He hadn’t really expected her to take him up on his offer and find him here. Never dared hope.
But…here she was.
His knees went a little weak. He tightened his muscles and forced himself to remain where he was, watching her every move. Every breath.
Though he suspected why she’d come, he wasn’t sure. It would be wise to let her make the first move.
God help him.
Because he wanted to pounce.
“So…” She wandered deeper into the barn, pretending to study the tools hanging on the wall. Her fingers drifted over a harness; the sight made a shudder walk through him.  When Gotham poked out a head and sprayed her with a welcoming snort, she patted his snout, but not like a city girl. Not with a tentative pat as though she were afraid he’d bite.
Logan swallowed the pool of drool in his mouth. He’d like to take a bite. Of that.
“So…” she repeated. “Is this a working ranch, or only a weekend bordello?”
Logan stiffened. If he wasn’t mistaken, that was a flirtatious tone. She flicked a look at him, from beneath amber lashes and his gut clenched. Shit. It was.
His heart lurched. His cock swelled. Sudden sweat beaded his brow.
This was Hanna. His Hanna—well, the Hanna of his dreams. The woman he’d wanted forever, the woman who’d never seen him.
And she was flirting. With him.
Inexorably drawn to her, he stepped closer. “Oh. It’s a working ranch.” A low rumble, infused with meaning. Yeah. He’d like to work her. Work her over.
“I see.” She leaned against the wall and crossed her arms. It took every ounce of concentration in him to keep his gaze on her face. Oh, it was a fascinating face, but the cleavage her action created was even more mesmerizing.
His brain fizzled and popped at that hint of a shadow. He said the only thing that came to mind—the only thing fit to say, at least. “Cody has over two hundred head.”
“I see. Do you…” Her attention trickled over his bare chest. He was covered in sweat and bits of hay. She didn’t seem to mind. Her lips pursed. Then she licked them. “Do you work here?”
He snorted. “No.” His days working as a cowpoke for Cody were long gone…unless he lost a bet.
“Ah.” Her gaze flicked up to his. The muscle in her cheek tightened. “I didn’t think so.”
The words skimmed over him in a hot rush, her tone, low and woven with implication. His breath hitched at the look in her beautiful eyes.
And then it plunged to his toes.
Because he could tell, from every line of her face, from the way she held her body, from the way she looked at him. She didn’t recognize him.
She had no idea who he was. No idea they’d gone to high school together. No memory of what he’d done, how he’d risked everything for her. And nearly lost.
Nope. She thought he was just a random stripper. Manflesh brought in for the sole purpose of providing pleasure to the lady guests.
On the one hand, that pissed him off.
But on the other hand…hell, she thought he was a stripper.  Probably one willing to make himself available to Cody’s guests should the right offer arise.
A mix of annoyance, need and lust warred within him.
Lust won.
Hanna Stevens, the prim and proper princess of Snake Gully, thought he was a stud for hire. And she wanted him.
This could be fun.
He stepped closer to her, adopting a gait, an attitude he assumed a man of lesser morals might employ. “I’m just here for the weekend, ma’am. Just here to make sure you ladies have a…good time.”
“I-I see.”
“My name is Logan.”
“Hanna.”
Yeah. He knew. He knew her name.
She tipped up her head as he neared. Her eyes went wide. Pupils dilated. Lips parted. Damn, she was a tiny thing. Heat gathered low in his belly. He fought back the urge to yank her into his arms and kiss the shit out of her. “I…ah…and…” She glanced away and then slowly forced her gaze back. “And what would that good time entail…exactly?”
Everything in him stilled.
First, because hell, was she propositioning him?
And second because, hell! She was propositioning him.
“That’s…negotiable.” He hated that his voice cracked on the words. But he really couldn’t help it. It was all he could do to keep control of his raging emotions. Okay. His raging lust. His cock was hard. Tight in his jeans. Thudding with every beat of his heart. And his pulse thrummed like an out of control jackhammer. “W-what do you like?”
He was pretty sure gentlemen of the evening didn’t stutter, but he couldn’t help himself. He held his breath, waiting for her answer. God, he wanted to know. He’d always wanted to know. Ached to know.
She drew her finger along the leather harness dangling from the wall and his cock jerked in sympathetic reaction. “I don’t know. Something…improper.” The look she flicked at him set his soul on fire. A dark wind screamed through him like a violent summer storm on the range.
“I can do improper.” Could he.
She stepped closer. Her scent engulfed him, clouded his brain. Something feminine and light, like powder. She tipped her chin and met his gaze as she set her palm flat on his chest. He nearly winced at the touch. Their first real touch. His muscles bunched at the effort to hold back that involuntary reaction. Her hand was tiny. She was tiny. He wanted to scoop her up, find a nice soft pile of hay and roll her in it. Hard.
Her lashes flickered. “Something…very improper.”
He swallowed. “I can do very improper.”
“Something naughty.” A whisper. As though some deep part of her was not allowed to hear.
“I can do naughty,” he whispered back. “I’m very good at naughty.”
A sizzling energy passed between them. She licked her lips again and this time he saw it for what it was. An invitation.
To take.
What he wanted.
What he’d wanted for years.
Forever.
And he did.
He kissed her.



Read more about the Stripped Down Cowboys!
STRIPPED DOWN SERIES from SABRINA YORK
Cowboy to Command by Sabrina York 10/18/2016
Spurred On by Sabrina York  01/17/2017
PREQUEL NOVELLAS (AVAILABLE NOW)
The Real McCoy (Prequel #1) http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=sabrinacom05-20&l=ur2&o=1
Come Hell or High Water (Prequel #2)http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=sabrinacom05-20&l=ur2&o=1
Protect and Serve–Cowboy Justice (Prequel #3)http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=sabrinacom05-20&l=ur2&o=1

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About Sabrina York
Her Royal Hotness, Sabrina York, is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of hot, humorous stories for smart and sexy readers. Her titles range from sweet & snarky to scorching romance.  Visit her webpage at www.sabrinayork.com to check out her books, excerpts and contests. Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/bj8tKb.

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