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Cover Copyright ©2004
Trace Edward Zaber
An Unacceptable Demise
by Patricia Harrison
ISBN: 1-59279-325-8 (Electronic)
ISBN: 1-59279-808-X (Paperback)
Best Romance Historical!
Wounded, his army career ended, Daragh Blackstone returns home to start a new life with his beautiful fiancée, Helen, and to resolve his suspicions of his father’s untimely demise. Although exhausted and in pain, he rejects the help of Miss Priscilla Coulter, a doctor’s daughter who is caring for Daragh’s flighty and temperamental mother. Cilla thinks him a stubborn, arrogant rogue who uses his great physical charm to get his way, but for reasons of her own, determines to save him. When Daragh discovers the cause of her dedication, his distrust turns to respect—and more...
But what of Helen and his given word, which has never been broken?
At Shawnton Abbey, Cilla is caught between an ideal, an offer of the secure love she craves, and her own heart.
Shawnton Abbey holds many secrets. Has murder been done? If so, will the murderer strike again, and who will be the victim?
Romance / Regency Romance / Mystery / Detective
Length: Extended Novel (103k words / 274 paperback pages)
~ Purchase ~
Read what the reviewers are saying...
"5 Angels!…An Unacceptable Demise, Patricia Harrison's latest Regency era book, has many dark twists. An unsolved mystery and clandestine characters will keep readers turning the pages. The long-awaited love scene is not out of place and endears the characters further; it is an enchanting pause before the fast-paced chain of events that follow. Patricia Harrison is a fairly new Historical writer with some refreshing ideas. Her lifelike characters, very apt dialogue and dramatic situations will keep her readers coming back for more. Her two earlier books, A Very Proper Thief and Lord Compton's Folly, are firm keepers for this reader, and An Unacceptable Demise has also earned a position on my favorites shelf."—Naomi, Fallen Angel Reviews
"Patricia Harrison has once again given us a delightful Regency story filled with all the expected things, plus a death under mysterious circumstances. The hero and heroine complement each other wonderfully, being two strong-willed and honor-bound people. Then add to the mix frivolous Lady Dunley; a self-righteous, titled brother; and the beautiful Helen. I was pulled into this story from the very first page, and the action continued non-stop. If you enjoy Regencies as much as I do, you don't want to miss any of Patricia Harrison's works, and certainly not this one!"—Chere, PNR The Best Reviews
"9 Gargoyles!...As with her previous books, Patricia Harrison shows a talent for capturing the Regency era through dialogue, description, and a deliciously dark plot in this well-written story! Most noteworthy are the characterizations of a strong-willed couple who each possess an endearing touch of weakness. The author allows readers to see the humanness of these characters as well as to observe how these limitations motivate them. As the story, dark with hidden secrets and intrigue, races to its conclusion, there is a spiraling release of emotions that will more than satisfy readers. Undoubtedly Patricia Harrison’s best work yet!”—Joyce Handzo, In The Library Reviews
"3 cups!...Has all the makings for a perfect Regency Romance, with wonderful characters and delightful plot twists. In the face of danger, the main characters come together and create a wonderful web of romance, lies, murder, betrayal, and general mayhem. To me, those are the makings of a page-turner. The plot had me riveted until the very end, and I will grudgingly admit I had the murderer all wrong. Well done, Ms. Harrison!”—Sue Frazee, Coffee Time Romance
"5 Angels!...Ms. Harrison enchants and amuses us as she weaves a tale of war and wounds, of weddings and wantonness, of willfulness and wonder. I love Cilla, a pert, opinionated, talented and hopelessly romantic miss with a hair-trigger temper. Handsome Daragh is a wonderful, broody, contrary character with enough flaws to keep him human. The host of secondary characters serves to enhance the layers in the story, with Howe and Hoskin being my particular favorites. An Unacceptable Demise is a rare treasure, a gem, and a delightful read! I look forward to reading many more books by Patricia Harrison.”—Michelle, Fallen Angel Reviews
"5 Roses!...The author introduces the suspense part of the story gradually, but certainly knows how to build up tension. I was totally captivated by the characters and plot: it is a story that hooks you from beginning to end, and leaves you sorry when you finish it...Has plenty of romance, passion, suspense, and some brilliant characters. The hero and heroine are outstanding, and secondary characters like Daragh’s mother and Helen are first class. I will certainly be looking for other work by this very talented author. This is a must-read book. Go out and treat yourself to it, and you won’t be disappointed.”—Mary, A Romance Review
Read a short excerpt...
…The alarm in Miss Coulter's face and voice brought Daragh up short. He was at such ease with her, his guard had dropped and he had almost betrayed himself. He rose, affecting unconcern. "Only that such heavy talk on this fine afternoon goes ill with your pretty gown and bonnet. Also, since I am to join my family at dinner, did you not order me to rest?" Smiling, he extended his hand to her.
He saw that he had not distracted her. Although she got to her feet with commendable promptness, her grave, earnest gaze remained fixed on his features. Her eyes shone softly in the shade of her bonnet's brim, and he suddenly felt she could read his thoughts.
"I pray you, Mr. Blackstone, do not act rashly. There is nothing to gain, and all to lose."
Certainly, in her ordered world such things as he contemplated were beyond countenance. "I have never been one to count the cost," he replied, "but I thank you for your counsel."
She astounded him by catching his arm with both hands. "No! Think seriously on it, I beg!"
He stared down at her, deeply moved by her intensity and by her obvious distress. "Can you care so much for my happiness?"
Miss Coulter did not answer, nor did she look away. The gay flowers clustered under her hat brim framed a face suddenly white. Her lips, as pale as her cheeks, trembled once. He had never seen her so overset. He reached out and gently touched her cheek. Her skin felt as soft and warm as flower petals in the sun. Instantly, desire surged through him-desire to pull her into his arms, hold her close and kiss away her distress. The impulse amazed him, so powerful was it.
Color flooded into her face. Her eyes widened and grew dark gold. Had that brief touch conveyed his passion to her? She released his arm as though it burned her, and stepped back, just as he awkwardly took a backward step. Both turned away, and then, as in some mad dance, faced each other again...
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