Meredith Bond, welcome to Romance Lives Forever. I’m Kayelle Allen, author and owner of this blog. Happy to have you here! Please tell us about your book.
A Hand for the Duke by Meredith Bond
Genre: Regency romance
Book heat level (based on movie ratings): PG13
Can the Ladies of the Wagering Whist Society help an impoverished modiste win the hand of a sought-after Duke?
Tina Rowan is beautiful, talented—and wants nothing more than to be free of her past. The illegitimate daughter of a baroness, she is being blackmailed by her own foster-father. She must rely on her flair for designing dresses to earn enough to pay him off. Starting a business dressing the ladies of Regency society isn’t easy for a nobody. But Tina has three aces up her sleeve—her own amazing talent, her well-connected biological mother, and the helpful (if meddlesome) support of the Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society.
The handsome, arrogant Duke of Warwick has grown up schooled in the “proper” way for a nobleman to behave. Rule number one: do not fraternize with people of the lower classes. But when he has to introduce his beloved sister to society, he finds himself completely reliant on the beguiling woman he’s hired as his sister’s modiste. To his astonishment, he finds himself opening up to her and enjoying her company far, far too much.
When Tina discovers the true man behind the ducal title, her heart might very well be lost. But can the duke set aside his façade and allow himself to love the only woman who could possibly make him happy?
It will take the combined efforts of the Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society to see this difficult hand well played.
Why did you write this book?
This is the first book of my new traditional Regency series, The Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society. With this series, I wanted to explore character tropes.
I love characters. For me they’re the reason I read. It’s why I love the romances of Julia Quinn, Mary Jo Putney, and Tessa Dare. They all have amazing characters who just fall in love with.
The characters of the LWWS (Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society) are all based on a traditional Regency character trope. I’ve got the “forthright widow”, an athlete, the joker, the stickler, a mushroom, a high-and-mighty duchess, etc. Eight characters because it takes four people to play whist, so two tables of whist (I felt four people would be too few). Each of the characters will have their own book, plus I added a ninth book to make three trilogies.
The first book of the series is a “Cindarella” story about the illegitimate daughter of the woman who founded the LWWS, Lady Norman. Her daughter, Tina Rowan, was raised by a foster-family in a little village, and wants to be a modiste (she’s a talented dress designer and seamstress). Her mother sponsors her and helps her start on her career, never once imagining that she would catch the eye of a handsome, cold-hearted duke who hires her to dress his younger sister.
Tina manages to melt the block of ice that is this duke’s heart and begins to dare to dream the impossible – that this man could one day be hers.
What is your favorite genre to read?
Regency romance, of course! But I also read just about every genre. I love mystery, fantasy, and even sometimes literary fiction. Every so often I’ll read a biography or history because it’s just another way to learn about people and their lives.
Who is your favorite character from fiction (not including your own)?
Falconer, the hero of MaryJo Putney’s Stolen Magic, Daphne Bridgerton, heroine of The Duke and I by Julia Quinn, and whatever I’m reading at the moment!
What are you working on at the moment?
I’m just starting to write book 4 of the Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society, A Trick of Mirrors.
What books will we see from you in coming months?
Next month, in May, Jack of Diamonds, Book 2 of the Ladies’ Wagering Whist Society will be released, and in June I’ll release Book 3, The Games She Played.
Where to buy A Hand for the Duke
Publisher: Anessa Books
Barnes and Noble https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1131086919?ean=2940156472598
iBooks https://books2read.com/u/3nnDOP (proper links coming)
Meredith Bond Social Media
Meredith Bond’s books straddle that beautiful line between historical romance and fantasy. An award-winning author, she writes fun traditional Regency romances, medieval Arthurian romances, and Regency romances with a touch of magic. Known for her characters “who slip readily into one’s heart,” Meredith loves to take her readers on a journey they won’t soon forget. She is currently living in Europe enjoying the Bohemian life.