Friday, November 17, 2017

A nibble of my new cherry? DARING WIDOW's charming rogue!

Pre-order now at AMAZON for half price!
Money can buy anything, can't it? Those brash Americans--their dollars and charms work wonders. Until they learn that money can buy anything...but love.  

Andre Claude Marceau, Duc de Remy and Prince d’Aumale, finds Marianne’s joie de vivre enchanting—and her plan for a temporary affair with him impossible.

He offers her one night in his arms, and to his delight, she craves another. But he needs more from her than a few hours of bliss. So when he shows her how to fill her days with passions that complement those they enjoy together at night, Marianne must choose.

Will she insist on a passing fancy? Or will she abandon the terrors of her past to embrace a brighter future beside a man who offers her a grand love affair with life?

Excerpt, DARING WIDOW, Copyright 2017, Cerise DeLand.
Marianne stood in front of Number 10, her destination. A three-story stone structure with grape leaves carved in relief into the frame, the building had two abnormally large doorways. They appeared to be proportioned to receive a sculptor’s works. The one with a large cut glass window seemed to be the entrance. Inside, the concierge in a somber black suit spied her, hurried out and opened the door for her.
The address was the same as on the billboard. The plaque on the door proclaimed it as the “Gallerie de la Cite.”
“The Duc de Remy’s exhibit is here?”
Oui, Madame. Through the foyer and up the grand staircase.”
Merci beaucoup.” She sailed through the lobby and up the steps. Four other patrons casually climbed the broad steps.
At the top, she halted her in her tracks. A man and woman passed around her. But she stared at the sculpture before her. It robbed her of breath.
Here upon a black granite plinth stood a man of white Carrara marble, eight or nine feet tall. All muscle and bone, honed by battle and hewn by strife, massively masculine and robust, he was of such proportions that any other human would fall down in honor of him. He stood in the center of the oval entry to the rest of the exhibit, sunlight from a semicircle of windows shining on him, shadowing the arc of a bicep here and emphasizing the indentation of a deltoid there.
Yet he did not stand tall, but was hunched. His back was curled, bowed in new defeat. His hair long and ragged, etched in the pristine marble to invoke its filth, shrouded him to the waist. Ropes circled his torso and hung from his wrists. His noble head hung lax from his corded neck as he stared at the nothingness before him.
The beauty of this body was nothing to the grand agony of his face. She gasped at the sight and could not look away.
She walked around him and bent to face him. He looked at her, but beyond her. He was blind, in torment. She drew back, aghast once more at the brutal honesty of what she saw.
This was a strong man brought low. By loss. By self-destruction.
She ached with him. Once proud, dynamic. A man others had once envied and emulated. A man so capable, so honored and now, abandoned by others and most tragically, by himself.
She stood for how long she did not know. The power of him infusing her. And the power that he’d lost draining her of envy and inspiring pride at Andre’s talent to portray him so precisely.
Across the room, beyond the giant, a young man in an apprentice’s smock tipped his head in question. Not at her. But someone who stood behind her. He tipped his head and, as if on signal, he departed.
Her skin tingled.
The hunger she’d felt for months dissipated. She’d be sated now.
Bonjour, ma petite,” Andre said in that bass voice she heard in the bleak hours of her lonely nights. “I dared not hope you would come.”
She closed her eyes, wishing to hang on to this moment when he was happy to see her and she was as delighted to see him. In this slice of time, there was none of her inner conflict, no yearning to find him, see him, laugh with him. There was just satisfaction. But it could not last.
Why not tell him the truth? He had asked for honesty and he did not deserve duplicity. He had only told her how he admired her and she had rebuffed him out of…what? Not convention, no. But her own fear to allow such a strong man near her heart or body. Perhaps even her own fear of her outrageous ambitions? She faced him, and oh, the delight to see him again ran through her like cool water after a drought. He was as tall, as magnificent as she remembered him. Perhaps more so, since she had pined for him so badly.
Bonjour, Andre.” She gave him that, his given name as he had allowed her use of it. During these past months, she’d thought of him that way, the sound of his name slipping through her lips at night as she attempted to draw him. Andre. “I saw a billboard and I could not stay away.”
He stood against the white marble wall, the gold veins of the stone highlighting the gilded mien of his own long waving hair. He had folded his arms and one leg was casually crossed before the other. He wore a loosely cut black wool suit, a bright vermilion vest, a white linen shirt open to his strong throat and a purple kerchief tied at his neck. Every inch of him denoted the artist at his leisure.
“I’m glad I’ve come. This—” she said and lifted a hand toward the statue, “—this is glorious. I heard others speak of him but they did him no justice.”
He gazed at her with hollow eyes.
“No words can,” she went on, wanting to give him more praise and unequal to the task. “Will you tell me about him?”
“Him?” he asked, as if she had insulted him with the question.
She knew why. He wanted her to ask about himself. And she would. She would.
He stared at her. “You know who he is.”
She did. “Who could not? To view him is to know. No pamphlet or placard need declare it.”
A light glimmered in Andre’s blue eyes. “What do you see?”
“A man torn by his own desires and ruined by his own misjudgments.”
His marvelous mouth firmed. Pride lit his face. “And?”
“He will never see himself again.”
“He did not truly see himself before he was blinded.”
“A punishment,” she acknowledged, “to fit his crime.”
Andre shifted, peering at her with narrowed eyes. “There is another he will not see.”
Oh, yes. “He will never see her again.”
“The one who betrayed him.”
She nodded. “The one whose beauty he believed was soul deep.”
Andre pushed away from the wall and approached the statue. “He must pay for his own failure to perceive her true nature.”
“She was not equal to him.”
He whirled to face her. “That’s not what he believed. He thought she was the most beautiful creature he’d ever seen.”
“The beauty was outside. Her core was hollow.”
“He pays for his miscalculation,” he said.
She dropped her gaze to the floor, anxiety eating her that they spoke of more than the statue or the Biblical story of the blind man and the woman he had loved so unwisely.
“Do you think she pays?” he asked, his deep voice wistful.
She raised her face to consider the statue’s tortured expression. “Delilah?”
He waited.
“Oh, yes. She forevermore will hate herself for her own failures and unworthiness.”
Andre took her by the wrist. “Come with me.”
Her pulse jumped.
He led her down a hallway and into a room where he shut the heavy wooden door and drew her into a room crowded with bronzes and plasters, scattered about on tables and shelves. Two ivory overstuffed chairs stood in one sunlit corner near a sumptuous black velvet chaise longue.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

DARING WIDOW enchants a prince in DeLand's blissful Victorian romance! Pre-order for half today!

Pre-order on AMAZON now!

Andre Claude Marceau, Duc de Remy and Prince d’Aumale, finds Marianne’s joie de vivre enchanting—and her plan for a temporary affair with him impossible.

He offers her one night in his arms, and to his delight, she craves another. But he needs more from her than a few hours of bliss. So when he shows her how to fill her days with passions that complement those they enjoy together at night, Marianne must choose.

Will she insist on a passing fancy? Or will she abandon the terrors of her past to embrace a brighter future beside a man who offers her a grand love affair with life?

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Love Regency and Victorian romance? Enter this contest!

I’m participating in the @BookSweeps promo! Enter to win 45+ Regency & Victorian romances + a brand new eReader and FREE ebooks on entry!  #BookSweeps 
So many marvelous authors are participating and the reading for you can be glorious!
Enter here:

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Want a nibble of my new cherry? WILD LILY excerpt! 5 STARS from TRR!

WILD LILY FB Party! TEATIME WITH CERISE AND SUSANA celebrates Cerise's release of WILD LILY! Authors! Fun! Wednesday October 11 all day long!

iTunes: id1276695583


Now for a nibble of my newest cherry!

Excerpt, Copyright 2017 Jo-Ann Power aka Cerise DeLand
They ran like children along the stone path up to the servants back door of his country house. It was unlocked and Julian thrust it open, pulling Lily inside.
“Come. Here’s the kitchen. No fire, but it’s warm and dry. Sit there.” He looked her over. “You’re drenched. Hell.”
He took four huge strides, disappearing into another room and clanging about. If he kept up that racket, the whole house would soon be awake.
She rubbed her arms, grateful to be out of the storm, but wary of servants who might have been roused.
When he returned, he had his hands full of toweling.
Grateful to be rid of the blanket that smelled of horse, she shrugged it off and folded it. He hurried to wrap a large towel over her head.
She giggled. “You could wake the dead the way you scoured that room.”
“My housekeeper is quite deaf.”
“You’re kidding.”
“Not at all. She’s never been quick to any sound.” He scrubbed her head with too much dedication.
“Ooof.” She picked up a corner of the towel to glare at him.
“Sorry. You need to dry your hair.” He rubbed her scalp.
She clamped her fingers around his wrist. “If you don’t stop, sir, I’ll be bald!”
“Sorry.” He bent to peer at her. “Take off your jacket.”
She balked. She had removed her corset for this adventure and if she took off her jacket, it would be apparent that she was a rather loose woman. In more ways than one. “Ah. I don’t wish to. Unless… Do you have anything to replace it?”
“Not yet. I will.” He dropped another towel around her neck.
“Splendid. I’ll wait.”
“No. You will not.” He began to pick at the buttons on her coat.
She slapped his hands away. “Stop that.”
“You do it then. I’ll not have you die of cold at the risk of a layer of clothing.”
She clutched her stock to her throat. And true, it was wet, but she had few choices here. “It’s not just any layer.”
Confusion overtook his brow. “What?”
“Can you please find me another coat?”
“I will if you promise to begin to unbutton that now.”
She tsked. “Hard bargainer.”
He stood. “I’ll be back with brandy and when I do, you’ll have that jacket off.”
“Fine, fine.” Fretting over that, she undid her last two buttons. Beneath it, the cold cotton of her blouse was damp. Under that, her skin was ablaze with the delicious nature of her predicament. But what Julian didn’t know was a good thing. “Hurry, please.”
He left her, ran up the steps and away. In the silent house, she marveled that no one had yet heard them. How many servants did he have? And were they all deaf?
She shrugged out of her jacket, covering her wet blouse and her beading nipples with the ends of a towel. Shivering in the damp cotton and trying to focus on how soon she’d be warm didn’t work.
Julian returned within minutes, a large coat in one hand and a man’s shirt—his?—in the other.
“I can’t wear that.” She had admired his form, his broad chest, his muscular build. He was fit, firm, a marvelous example of manhood, but she was more than adequately endowed. And his shirt, tailored as it was, would not adequately cover her attributes.
“Why not?” He held it up. “Perfectly fine linen. Clean.”
She ground her teeth. “It won’t fit.”
“Of course, it will.” He quirked a brow. “Oh. Um. Won’t it?”
He had this odd expression on his face which by infinite degrees turned to recognition and then, he laughed.
She tapped her foot on the stone floor. “You’re not helping, dear sir.”
Still chuckling, he stepped toward her and put his hands around her waist to draw her to her feet. “I see that. I am sorry.”
She couldn’t help but cuff him. “Take me back.”
“As I am, yes! Now.” She took his hand and marched them both toward the window.
But lightning streaked the sky and a loud boom shook the house.
She lurched backward.
Against his all too solid chest.
He embraced her, one hand in her hair, one cupped her nape and the lure of his warmth was irresistible. She sank against him, reveling in his support. He was assurance and beneath his riding pants, he was aroused.
She didn’t want to move or even breathe. Could he find her attractive? Still? Even though she’d told him at the opera to ignore her? He certainly did find her company appealing. Much as she’d always declared she’d never tolerate a man as demanding as her father, she liked a man with a mind of his own. This man.
“I like you,” she told him astonishing herself for saying what she felt for him.
He trailed his fingers up into her hairline and turned her head toward him. “Do you?” he asked, his voice wistful. “God knows I like you.”
Her heart did a little jig. “Now, I know, too.”
“We are neither of us very clever.”
“But honest.”
“Lily,” he said her name, a plea more breath than sound. “Lily, darling. Shall we be more than honest?”
“Oh, Julian.” In the dim light, she could make out the fire in his beguiling eyes. To wait any longer to taste him would be a waste. Casting caution to the wind, she swung totally into his embrace and pushed up on her toes. She slid her arms around his shoulders, the towel falling to the floor, and with only hot urgency between them, she said, “Yes, let’s be.”

"Ms. DeLand's WILD LILY is as pleasing to the ear as it is to the eye. It's rare to call an historical erotica romance a delight but this one was downright gleeful to my love of language." ~ Gabrielle Sally, The Romance Reviews 5 STARS  

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

I'm going to a #Regency ball and my choices of gowns are unlimited! Yellow is The Color I've chosen!

1817 Yellow Silk Gown,
Leeds Costume Collection
 We're going to ball, you and I, and it's the Regency period. Our Papa has unlimited money to spend on our wardrobes and that's a good thing because our seamstress is frightfully expensive. Delightfully, our complexions and figures can stand a dashing yellow frothy something or other! And to make everything simply scrumptious, we're arriving in Papa's marvelous new town coach. (Do see a marvelous black lacquered older version of it here.)

What color shall we ask for when we see our seamstress?

The colors available to us (in, say 1820) are numerous. And we see in the fashion plates a few we'd like.

I'm blonde with warm brown eyes. And my sister, Beatrice, is a honey blonde with green eyes. Let's see. Choice of fabric and drape has much to do with how complementary the gown will be. Silk, silk damask, silk gauze would be good choices. But what of the color? What do you think is best, hmmm???

(Colors listed are those used commercially with the approximate date in use and the modern color name by the British Color Council.)

Apollo, 1823. Bright Gold
Isabella, 1821. Cream
Bird of Paradise, 1830. Straw
Orleans, 1832. Rose Beige.
Cameloparde, 1828. French Beige
Congo, 1883. Coppery Gold
Dust of Paris, 1851. Ecru
Florentine, 1867. Yellow with Bronze tint
Oiseau, 1837. Chartreuse Yellow
Terre de Pologne, 1831. Yellow, bordering on Brown
Cerise's picture from her trip to Chateau Vaux le Vicomte:
Berliner de Ville, circa 1840,
by W. King and Company, London
1810-1812 Pale Yellow Evening Gown;
Metropolitan Museum

1811 Ballgown, Regency era

1800-1805 Dress
(no attribution, Pinterest)

Friday, August 4, 2017

LADY STARLING'S STOCKINGS hits bestseller list! Free on KU, 99 cents for this spicy Regency! In Print too!

On Kindle Unlimited FREE, 99 cents to buy!
This Regency starring a lady spy and her spymaster is once again on the bestseller list! So tickled!
Hope you will give her a go with her new cover, new text, too.

When she debuted in 2011, she was in an erotic romance. Now? She's still in love with Monsieur Noir, but now she's in a spicy romance.

I transitioned to mainstream with a bit of hotness a few years ago. One can do erotic for so long and then, it's time to become more mainstream!

So here she is, still finding spies in her cousin's garden in Naples, ferreting out the person who attempts to keep Napoleon's brother-in-law in power in Italy!

Amazon Kindle Unlimited in digital and also in print!

Saturday, July 8, 2017

THOSE NOTORIOUS AMERICANS! Money can buy anything! Anything but love!

Money can buy anything. Can't it?  

When American robber baron Killian Hanniford decides to expand his business empire, he sails to Europe in 1877 and takes his family with him. 

His two daughters—Lily and Ada—are beauties, accomplished and educated. They want for nothing, except a chance to find husbands who love them for themselves, not their dowries. 

His niece, Marianne, is also lovely, shy and a widow who wants for nothing…except perhaps an entertaining and impermanent lover. 

Killian’s son, Pierce, is young, impetuous and too ruthless, it seems, for any young woman to take on as a husband. 

Even Killian himself—without a wife for many years but increasingly bored by his mistress—is shocked to learn he can fall in love. 

Tragic, isn’t it, to learn that money can buy anything but love?

WILD LILY, Book 1, on pre-order August 30!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Brave women who enlisted in WWI! 22,000+ went to France! Pic you haven't seen before

Many of you know I am the curator for the U.S. National World War One Commission for ARMY NURSE COPRS.

Recently, I went to Fort Sam Houston here in San Antonio and took more pictures (most of them obscure and never before published) to show you just how marvelous these 22,000+ women were who traveled far from their homes to nurse wounded Doughboys and comfort the dying.

Please note the descriptions, many of them the originals on the photos. All are black and white and some have been reproduced over the century. But they show how courageous these women were to leave their homes, their towns and travel more than 3500 miles to serve their fellow Americans in need.

I hope you will read my novel, researched for decades, about them, HEROIC MEASURES. Find it here:

Monday, July 3, 2017

Do you see RED? Color in fashion in Regency romances! What great-great-grandma wore!

This charming number is dated approximately 1810
 and sits in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London
Creating fashion in our novels, we authors like to give stunning visuals. Sometimes, those require more research than we’d hope!

Recently on the Beau Monde RWA writers loop, we discussed the color red, the dyes and fabrics that could have existed at the time.

Here from one of my large references on fashion (let that read TOME), I thought it fun to list for you the very limited number of shades of red for that period! Note, too, that many come from the latter part of the period which is not officially the Regency, but indeed the late reign of George IV, once that notorious man, the Prince of Wales.

So this table reads as: the title of the color, the year the term was first used, the modern color description/name as per the British Color Council! (In alpha order!)

Aurora, 1809. Chilli.
Aurora, 1829.  Shell-Pink.
Eminence, 1829.  Crushed Strawberry.
Japanese Rose, 1826.  Crushed Strawberry.
Marsh Mallow, 1829. Crocus or Old Rose.
Morone, 1811. Peony Red.
Naccarat, 1800. Tangerine.
Terre D’Egypt, 1824. Brick Red.

What does this imply? That blood red, ruby red, cherry red and many more were not possible in this period. So when you read that your heroine wears a bright red gown to the ball, beware, she may not have been at all!

Friday, June 30, 2017

What to eat? How? When in Rome, Paris or London, partaking of dinner parties was a ritual fit to burst your buttons! European dining rooms that inspire!

Formal Dining Room at Malmaison where Josephine entertained
before and after Napoleon divorced her.
 If you were invited to a dinner party in the nineteenth century, you would have to be on your manners and either starving or terribly polite!


The meal was hours-long. The service slow and measured. The servants ready to deliver your every need. And the portions to the numerous courses were hearty.

Here are a few of my pictures of houses and dining rooms I adore. In them, kings and queens, emperors and generals ate, laughed and decided the fate of millions of others.
Shall we talk about an average evening and the menu?

Oh, let's!

First, do let out your corset an inch. You're going to need the room to breathe.
Second, roll back your long gloves, darling. No getting those dirty. Just put them in your lap after you've been assisted in your chair by a footman.
Third, remember to sit ramrod straight as your third governess taught you and please do not crush your bustle!
Fourth, you should know which fork or spoon to begin with. Your fourth governess taught you that, remember? Yes, that's right, the soup spoon is the big bowled one.
Remember your nanny's instructions about soup? "Like a ship upon the sea, I scoop my soup away from me!" Good.
That other one above your serving plate? It's for the cream, or shall we say, the ice, later. Hmm. Right.
Fish fork? Tiny, ugly thing. Unmistakeable.
Dinner fork, you'll know right off. Knife too.
Butter knife, ditto.

Now as we begin remember we speak only to the one gentleman on our right. He gets to chat you up for half the meal. If he has not cultivated the art of conversation at teatime with his granny, you must pick up his slack. He needs his bit of talk and you are his to enchant or vice versa, if he is lacking. This means you may well need to be well versed in botany, architecture or archeology, bugs, worms or coal mining. While it is best not to display an understanding of stocks and bonds, it is useful (in your future life as a duchess, etc etc.) to understand farming, goats and sheep, sale thereof, grassland availability on your property, weather patterns. All of this helps immensely when in need of sound dinner conversation.

On to the menu.
First Service:
   Potages (Soup) 
      For example: Consomme or  Puree
   Poisson (Fish)
      Any type: roasted, grilled, sauteed, fried or souped
      Chicken, Beef or Lamb in any cut or form
   Larger Service:
        Beef roast, etc
Second Service:
         Vegetable with meat, fish, protein
           Gateau of fruit (baked, custard, etc with fruit)
Now you can see that you have eaten your way through your corset and volunteer to walk home! The meal was truly heavy. Furthermore, we have now learned that many of the well-to-do in this era suffered from obesity, too few vegetables in their diet and too much protein. The added sugar in desserts did not help make them any healthier. To be so, one had to be selective in portions and in the types of foods consumed.
       As for me, I am happy to have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, fresher meals and fish, all of which is deemed safe before it is stocked in our groceries!

(And yes, all of these photographs are mine!)
Napoleon and Josephine's gold plate, minted for him at Sevres China Factory and given to Josephine's son,
Eugene after her death. Thereafter it was owned by a family in Russia until recently when the French Government
bought it back to display here.
Dining room in Palais Imperial at Compiegne, France set for Emperor Napoleon III and his wife.

A bit different, oui? The servants' dining hall in Vaux le Vicomte south of Paris!

Vive la difference! This is the owners' dining room (set with only half a table) in Vaux le Vicomte!
The Pump Room in Bath, England!
Do go for a full cream tea, music, atmosphere and warm mineral water from the spring!