About the Book:
unsuccessful London seasons, Lady Julia Tenwick despairs of ever making a love
match. With spinsterhood looming on the horizon, she and a friend set sail for
America on one last adventure. When her travels take her to northern Maine,
Julia meets a reclusive but handsome artist, whose rudeness masks a broken
heart Julia feels compelled to mend.
haunted by the betrayal and death of his pregnant wife two years before,
Geoffrey Jordan is determined never to risk his heart again. Certainly not with
the gorgeous and impetuous aristocrat who intrudes upon his small-town
solitude, and is far too similar to his late wife to tempt him to take another
chance on love.
Julia and Geoffrey find themselves united in a reckless plan to save Julia’s
friend from ruin, they discover that temptation is impossible to resist.
Julia pulled her cloak around her shoulders and left by the
kitchen door. Soft snowflakes danced lightly around her head as she made her
way toward the water. She loved the crisp air, the snow, the scents of wood smoke,
salty waves, and pine. She walked around toward the lighthouse, imagining how
much her brother would love it here. He’d have his sketchbook tucked under his
arm, ready to pull out at a moment’s notice when the mood struck.
The snow began to fall faster, swirling around as she clambered
over the large rocks at the water’s edge. The sky was streaked with red,
orange, blue, and gray, and she stopped, perched, just to watch.
“Get out of the way!”
She jumped at the strident tone, nearly toppling into the water.
Regaining her balance, she turned carefully, and sighed.
Geoffrey Jordan sat on a neighboring rock behind her, sketchbook
in hand. His expression was darker than the sky had been when she started on
this walk. Julia was unable to stop herself from stepping back in surprise.
Apparently there were bears near the shore as well.
“You’re blocking my view.” The muscles of the man’s face settled
into a grimace which Julia found only marginally less frightening than his
“All right, I’m sorry! I didn’t see you there.” Julia took
another step back and cried out in pain as her foot slipped into a crevice
between the rocks.
Geoffrey swore and tossed his sketchbook to the side. He strode
over to her and held out a hand.
Given his expression, Julia considered whether it might be safer
to remain where she was. Geoffrey stuck his hand out again, waving it
Julia finally realized she was more annoyed than afraid. “How am
I supposed to grab your hand when you wave it about like that?”
“Oh, for God’s sake!” He reached down with both hands and
grabbed her waist, pulling her to her feet. She ignored the tingling of her
skin where he touched her and focused on her anger instead.
“I don’t know why you’re so angry at me. It’s not my fault I
fell. You startled me.”
“You stepped into my line of sight. And now the sunrise is
nearly gone, I’ve missed it, and it’s entirely your fault.”
Julia realized his hands still rested on her hips, and she
pushed them away. “You sound like a petulant child.”
He returned to his sketchbook and sat down again. He started
scribbling, ignoring her. She ignored him as well and gingerly ran a hand over
her throbbing ankle. Her stocking was torn, and a shallow cut showed through
it. Deciding she should return home to clean the wound, thanks to this odious
man, she slowly made her way across the rocks past him. She caught a glimpse of
his sketch as she passed. Intrigued, she stopped and bent at the waist, looked
over his shoulder.
“You’re barely drawing anything at all. What does that say?”
He scowled again, but he answered, “Scarlet.”
She pointed at the corner of the drawing. “And that?”
“Azure. I thought all proper English ladies could read.”
“Your handwriting is terrible. What does that say?” She pointed
She peered closer. “It does not. It looks like ‘crindle.’”
He laughed, and she turned her head to look at him. He was much
less frightening when he laughed. Handsome. She blinked and unbent.
“‘Crindle’? What on earth does that mean?”
Her cheeks warmed. “Well, I don’t know, do I? It’s your
“And it says ‘orange.’ What are you doing out here anyway?”
“I wanted to go for a walk.”
“At the crack of dawn?”
“I didn’t think I would see anyone.”
“Why didn’t you want to see anyone?”
She sighed. “Because conversation tires me, sometimes. This one
“I don’t disagree.” He stroked his pencil across the paper a few
more times, and she craned her neck to look.
“Why didn’t you just paint the sunrise? Why describe it?”
“Because the sunrise is a fleeting thing. It never lasts long
enough for me to paint it, so I sketch the scene and write the names of the
colors, to jog my memory when I am in my studio.”
Julia turned to look at the sky. It was gray now, with little
wisps of blue and white streaked across it. All of the stunning red and orange
hues were gone. She suddenly felt terrible for ruining his view.
“I am sorry I got in your way. I don’t suppose you could try
He shrugged. “A sunrise like that one is rare.”
Now she felt even worse. “Well, I am sorry.”
“Where did you think you were going? The rocks lead out into the
water, and the tide will be in soon. What if you’d fallen when I wasn’t here to
help? You’d have drowned.”
Shame was quickly replaced by annoyance. “I wouldn’t have fallen
if you hadn’t startled me!”
“Well, it was careless.”
Julia placed both hands on her hips and stared at the
insufferable man. “You haven’t a very high opinion of my intelligence, have
“I have no opinion of your intelligence at all. I think you take
risks that a lady shouldn’t take.”
“I was hardly doing pirouettes out here! I would have been fine
if you hadn’t yelled at me.”
“I didn’t yell at you.”
“Yes, you did!”
“Fine! I’m sorry I yelled at you. Now go home, before you truly
hurt yourself.” Before she could reply, he tucked his sketchbook under his arm,
stood, and scrambled away across the rocks like a crab.
She watching him go, annoyed with him and herself in equal
measure. Well, mostly with him. Insufferable man. She gingerly followed,
lifting her skirts higher to avoid the rising water. The tide was indeed coming
She hated that he was right.
About the Author:
A northeast Ohio
native, Marin McGinnis has been a voracious reader ever since she could make
sense of words on the page. She’s dabbled with writing for a long time, but
didn’t start writing in earnest until she discovered historical romance about a
decade ago. Marin has three historical romance titles published with The Wild
Rose Press, and is a member of RWA and its Northeast Ohio, Hearts Through
History, and Kiss of Death chapters. She will serve as President of the
Northeast Ohio RWA chapter in 2017. Marin lives in a drafty 100 year old house with
her husband, son, and two standard poodles named Larry and Sneaky Pete.
Connect with her online: