Wild, Wild Rake
by Janna MacGregor
Publication Date: February 25, 2020
St. Martin’s Press
eBook & Paperback; 368 Pages
Series: The Cavensham Heiresses, Book #6
Genre: Historical Romance
Her first marriage was an epic fail.
Lady Avalon Warwyk never did love her husband. Arrogant, selfish, and cruel, it’s a blessing when she’s widowed and left to raise her son all by herself. Finally, Avalon can live freely and do the work she loves: helping fallen women become businesswomen. She’s lived these past ten years with no desire to remarry―that is, until Mr. Devan Farris comes to town.
Can he convince her to take another chance at happily ever after?
Devan Farris―charming vicar, reputed rake, and the brother of Avalon’s son’s guardian―is reluctantly sent to town to keep tabs on Avalon and her son. Devan wishes he didn’t have to meddle in her affairs; he’s not one to trod on a woman’s independent nature and keen sense of convictions. But she’ll have nothing to do with vicar with a wild reputation―even though he’s never given his heart and body to another. If only he could find a way to show Avalon who he really is on the inside―a good, true soul looking for its other half. But how can prove that he wants to love and care for her…until death do they part?
Praise for the Cavensham Heiresses Series
“Full-bodied romance…with intelligence and heart.”―New York Times bestselling author Cathy Maxwell
“Sparkling…MacGregor brings England’s Regency era to life.” ―Publishers Weekly
“Beautifully defined, exceptionally appealing.” ―Booklist (starred review) on The Bad Luck Bride
WILD, WILD RAKE
Book 6 in The Cavensham Heiresses Series by Janna MacGregor
The new Thistledown vicar, Devan Farris, nodded once, and Lady Avalon Warwyk allowed herself to relax for the first time this morning.
It was done. He’d agreed to leave their village.
“How could I refuse?” Mr. Farris smiled.
Such a simple act emphasized his angular cheekbones and the perfect set of those wide green eyes. Her sister Sophia had declared him handsome. Unfortunately, Avalon completely agreed.
“Excellent. Until you’re reassigned in the church, I’ll allow you to tutor my son. That’ll add additional monies to your savings.” Avalon relaxed slightly and smiled. “I’m so happy that we’ve come to a mutually beneficial resolution.”
“I thought it was for the benefit of the village.” He tilted his head slightly.
“Of course,” she said hastily. “That’s what I meant.”
“My lady,” His voice deepened. “I am truly sorry, but I must decline your generous offer.”
Shaking her head slightly, Avalon must not have heard him correctly. He couldn’t be turning her down. She was offering him the world. Or at least, a nice salary that not many in the church would ever hope to earn. “You mean the tutoring? If you’re not interested, I understand.”
“That’s not it,” he said.
“You mean you must ask permission from the bishop?”
He shook his head with a devilish grin.
“Then you must seek the Earl of Larkton’s permission?”
A deep rumble started in his chest. At first, she thought it a growl, then she realized for what it was. He was laughing. Goosebumps broke out across her arms. Whether it was from the cold or the sudden onset of disquiet, she couldn’t tell. She hadn’t said a single word that could be construed as funny.
Finally, he wiped his hands down his face. His fingers were uncommonly long, and his hands were huge. He leveled the most mesmerizing gaze her way.
“No. My brother always looks out for my best interests as family should.” His voice was so low, it practically sounded like he was humming in a deep baritone. “I refuse because it was you, Lady Warlock, who asked.”
She tightened her stomach at the hateful name. “I know all about you, your hunt for an heiress, and your tomcat ways.” She threw the proverbial gauntlet down and waited for him to accept the challenge. In no certain terms, would she allow him to stay.
“My reputation precedes me, I see.”
“One well deserved, I have no doubt.” She straightened in her seat. It was time to strike the fatal blow. “Surely, you’ve seen the articles in The Midnight Cryer.”
He nodded with a sly grin that reminded her of a mouser out for a midnight stroll, one on the hunt for perverse pleasure—like toying with their prey before they killed it.
She’d not let him succeed.
“I’m particularly fond of the description ‘a debauched lecher, who has mastered carousing.’ But between you and me” –he bent forward as if divulging a secret—“it may be gauche, but I’ve kept all the ones that featured me. I do enjoy reading about my escapades.”
“Like the time you were caught swimming in Lord Peters’ fountain with Lady Peters and Mrs. Hemsley completely naked?”
“Someone had to save them from drowning. As I recall, I was still wearing clothes,” he said. “I can’t vouch for the ladies’ attire.”
“Oh really?” She stared in disbelief. “What about you stealing a kiss from the Duchess of Southart in front of her duke?”
“There was mistletoe. Come now, my lady, you wouldn’t deny a man a simple holiday merriment?”
His expression reminded her of a guilty child feigning innocence.
“The article that said I was ‘sniffing’ after the Countess of Eanruig’s hand is incorrect.” He leaned back in his chair and grinned as if pleased with himself. “She was sniffing after me.”
Unbelievably, she found herself leaning forward to hear his words, hungry for his gossip. She exhaled silently. Best to get ahold of herself before she lost her nerve and her advantage.
“Sir, we don’t need your stench of scandal in Thistledown. You’re a wild rake.”
“As in untamed?” He arched one brow.
“Uncouth,” she proclaimed.
The most devilish half-grin graced his lips.
“And wicked,” she huffed while looking her down her nose, but really it was more looking up as he was so tall.
“Birds of a feather…” he murmured.
“Careful, Vicar. You’re showing how provincial you really are.”
“I consider it ‘pastoral,’” His deep voice softened as if charming the devil’s minions.
“You and your reputation are not welcome in our community.” There. She’d said it. The words to drive him away. She didn’t want to insult him, but sometimes it was best to go for the jugular as they say. He didn’t need to know that she was the only one in Thistledown who subscribed to The Midnight Cryer. Nor did he need to know that she watched for articles about him as fervently as he did.
“How ironic? You do realize that you’re welcoming me by gracing me with your presence. Speaking of reputations, what does that say about you?” He tapped the indentation in the middle of his perfect chin with one, long masculine finger. “I think it suggests you’re interested in me.” He had the audacity to laugh.
“I’m interested in getting you to leave.” The clipped words echoed around the room.
“You haven’t lost any of your rudimentary charm, Lady Warlock. You’ll just have to try harder.” He narrowed his eyes. “I’m staying. Now, when shall I meet your son?”
To find out more, visit https://www.jannamacgregor.com/books/the-cavensham-heiresses/wild-wild-rake/
About the Author
Janna MacGregor was born and raised in the bootheel of Missouri. She credits her darling mom for introducing her to the happily-ever-after world of romance novels. Janna writes stories where compelling and powerful heroines meet and fall in love with their equally matched heroes. She is the mother of triplets and lives in Kansas City with her very own dashing rogue, and two smug, but not surprisingly, perfect pugs.
Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, February 24
Review at Rose is Reading
Wednesday, February 26
Review at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals
Thursday, February 27
Feature at YA, It’s Lit
Saturday, February 29
Review at Reading is My Remedy
Monday, March 2
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Tuesday, March 3
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Wednesday, March 4
Review at Bookish Bellee
Friday, March 6
Review at Historical Romance Lover
Monday, March 9
Review at Amy’s Booket List
Wednesday, March 11
Review at Bookish Rantings
Thursday, March 12
Review at Jessica Belmont
Friday, March 13
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Monday, March 16
Excerpt at The Lit Bitch
Tuesday, March 17
Feature at Historical Fiction with Spirit
Thursday, March 19
Excerpt at Cover To Cover Cafe
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of Wild, Wild Rake! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on March 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open to US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.