Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Julie Anne Long | WHAT I DID FOR A DUKE

March 10, 2011

Julie Anne LongWhat I Did For A DukeHappy Thursday, ladies! Thanks for stopping by to share a few minutes of my WHAT I DID FOR A DUKE release tour with me. 😉 I’ve been having a wonderful time so far—I’m so thrilled and touched by the astonishing reviews—the Perfect 10’s, the Starred Review from the Library Journal, the Desert Island Keeper status from AAR, A grades from Dear Author and other bloggers, the Top Picks….everyone has been incredibly lovely about it. I love the story, so this makes me indescribably happy. 🙂 Let me tell you a little bit about the story, in case you haven’t had a chance to read it yet:

WHAT I DID FOR A DUKE, the 5th book in my Pennyroyal Green series, is the story of what happens when the powerful, dangerous Duke of Falconbridge, he of the mystery-shrouded reputation and reputed black heart (he poisoned his wife, they say), embarks on a campaign to avenge a great loss and betrayal, for the one thing London society knows about him for certain: no one crosses him without consequences. When Ian Eversea does just that, the duke believes the punishment should fit the crime—which means the duke has plans for Ian’s youngest sister, the only Eversea not yet touched by scandal.

But he doesn’t bargain for how Genevieve Eversea will affect him. He notices what everyone else fails to see—that simmering beneath her quiet, gentle, sensible (or so her familybelieves—families often have blinders on when it comes to what’s in front of their noses) surface is a passion and deeply sensual curiosity waiting to be tapped—and it takes just the right man to unravel her control. He uses her own sensuality as a weapon to woo her, but what begins as revenge evolves, to his astonishment, into a love story of true equals—both of them witty, observant, fiercely loyal, passionate, honest, private—who meet, ironically, because each has suffered what they perceive to be a great loss. The duke ultimately teaches Genevieve to be unafraid of her true self, but he gives her the freedom to do it, because he sees her clearly and accepts her for everything she is without putting her in a box.

He begins his campaign of seduction with discussion of what a kiss should be, speaking to her truest nature in a way that no other man ever has:

“It should make you do battle for control of your senses and your will. It should make you want to do things you’d never dreamed you’d want to do, and in that moment all of those things will make perfect sense. And it should herald, or at least promise, the most intense physical pleasure you’ve ever known, regardless of whether that promise is ever, ever fulfilled. It should, in fact…” he paused for effect “….haunt you for the rest of your life.”

And like this, little by little, he reels her in both figuratively and literally as (as he does in this scene from my websitet.

Today I’m going to share the preamble to their third kiss, and to the moment that will change Genevieve Eversea’s life forever. And below it is a little JAL trivia question. The first commenter to answer it correctly will instantly win a signed copy of THE PERILS OF PLEASURE, the first book in the series. And a random commenter will win a signed copy of LIKE NO OTHER LOVER!



copyright 2011 Julie Anne Long

published by Avon/HarperCollins

She found him in the library this time. But he wasn’t standing at the window gazing out into the darkness. He was standing near the doorway, watching the foyer for her, which made him almost too easy to see.

“Were you looking for me, Miss Eversea?” He asked softly.

She found she was so nervous she couldn’t reply. She simply bit her lip.

He smiled at her. “Were you perhaps looking for scintillating conversation? A discussion about art? Of which I know a little more now than I did when I first arrived, I’ll have you know. ”

“Do you?” She was too astonished to be irritated by his teasing.

“I spent an hour or so in here the other day. Quite a collection you have. I wanted to investigate it.”


“Why did I spend time in the library? My curiosity was…aroused.”

Something about the way he said aroused looped around her as surely as a warm arm around her waist. She was desperately nervous. But she was curiously thrilled to suspect he’d done it to learn more about her.

“Why was your curiosity aroused? What did you learn?”

“I read that Boticelli painted something called Venus and Mars in which Mars, poor devil, is nearly naked and flattened as though Venus has just thoroughly had her way with him, and that Veronese painted one in which, ironically, Venus is entirely naked and Mars is clothed. I prefer to imagine the latter.”

“But you knew that already. Do you even like art?”

A hesitation. “I like cricket.”

“And that’s all?” She was smiling now.

“I like dogs. I horses and hunting and fine wines. I like traveling. I like books about the natural sciences. I like chess and fishing and I like making money hand over fist and I enjoy making love to beautiful women. I like speaking with you. And looking at you. And I read a book about art and I tried to become interested in light and form and the like. I think I prefer to imagine the firelight playing about your form.”

Genevieve had never heard a list she’d liked as much, though she could hardly say why. He was more of an artist in some ways than people who professed to enjoy it were, people like Harry—and even herself—who could not see without analyzing. It was in the things he saw and the words he chose to describe them and in how he touched…as he was touching her now.

Because almost before she realized the backs of his fingers were sliding against her throat. Where the skin was satiny smooth and pale.

“And so. Do you intend to have your way with me, Venus?” he murmured.

She still didn’t have the vocabulary for this sort of sensual encounter. Her entire being seemed to rush the surface of her skin, greedily savoring his touch.

“I’ve told you what I want. How much do you want to know, Genevieve?” It sounded like a serious question. Also a fairly fraught one.

“How can I answer that honestly when I don’t know how much there is to know?”

“You’re not entirely naïve about…the process.”

Very romantic. The process.

“It’s impossible to remain naïve when I live with my brothers who will go on talking and when surrounded by animals that will go on mating in front of one.”

“You may be reassured to learn there’s more to it than horses and dogs would have you believe.”

“Given that my brothers have more than once risked their lives over it, I gleaned as much.”

He was smiling at her. His hand never stopped moving over her skin, but he smiled. She’d noticed that he seemed to find her infinitely amusing, even, dare she say it,enchanting.

He liked talking to her.

This amused her.

“Oh, I can assure you women have risked their lives for it, too.”

Her heart was walloping away in her throat, and she was certain he could feel it, as his fingers lingered there. Nearly everything on her body that could stand erect was erect now, clamoring for his touch. The hair on the back of her neck, her arms. Her nipples.

“Are you afraid, Genevieve?”

“No. You do enjoy saying my name.”

“It has a lilt.”

“I see.” Her voice was faint.

“Because you should consider being a little afraid.”

And now she was, just a little, despite the fact that his tone sounded entirely reasonable.

“Why?” she whispered.

“Once we’ve made love, you might find you won’t be able to do without me.”

Made love. Christ, but she was in over her head, but in the moment it seemed there nothing she could do to extricate herself. She didn’t want to extricate herself, and therein was an important clue to the fact that she’d lost her sanity. Or handed it over to him.

“Difficult to imagine.” She’d meant to sound sarcastic. But her voice had begun to make a liar of her, because it had gone lulled, soft, trembling.

His turn to smile in the dark.

“I meant what I said in the garden,” he gently warned.

“Have I been coy so far?”

“No.” he said shortly.

Well, then. What next?

And there was a moment where she thought he might be at a loss. His hand paused against her throat. A moment passed where she was tempted to suggest Perhaps you’re the one who’s afraid. But it wasn’t the sort of thing one said to him, even in jest.

But she was wrong. He did know where to begin, and as usual, it seemed as natural as breathing, as an exhale. He’d already begun; as they’d spoken he’d drifted nearer and nearer, and now he brushed his lips between her eyes. Surprisingly tender, devastatingly sensual, light as a breath. And just like that she turned into smoke; she was indistinguishable from the night; she was only sensation.

She knew only relief that he was kissing her.

{end of excerpt}


As I mentioned earlier, you can check out another excerpt at my website, too——or read the first entire chapter in the ebook version of  TO LOVE A THIEF! And if you’re unfamiliar with the series, you can also read excerpts and FAQ’s for all of them. At my website. The series can be read quite easily out order, but here’s the sequence: THE PERILS OF PLEASURE, LIKE NO OTHER LOVER, SINCE THE SURRENDER, I KISSED AN EARL, and WHAT I DID FOR A DUKE.

A randomly chosen commenter will win a signed copy of THE PERILS OF PLEASURE!

So here’s the JAL trivia question, darlings, for our instant winner: What does Cynthia Brightly name the spider in her bedroom in LIKE NO OTHER LOVER? First person to answer correctly wins a signed book!

Julie Anne Long

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