Tag Archives: The Chance Sisters Series

Teaser Tuesday!

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Teaser TuesdayWelcome again to another fun instalment of Teaser Tuesday, the blog series where I share snippets from my works-in-progress, up-coming releases and published novels. Most of the time. Occasionally I like to spice it up and let writing buddies tease you with their works too.

Today is such a day and I’m delighted to host historical romance author Anne Gracie on the blog. Her Chance Sisters series, including The Autumn Bride, The Winter Bride and The Spring Bride (current finalist in the Romance Writers of Australia’s prestigious Ruby Awards), has been a blast and I’ve been eagerly awaiting book 4—The Summer Bride—and Daisy’s story. The girls are all great characters but I’ve developed a real soft spot for Daisy and so want her to reach her happy ever after. I bet if you’ve been following the series you feel the same.

Here’s Anne to tell you more about the The Summer Bride. Oh and don’t forget to read right through to the end. There might be a giveaway!

 

Romance Author Anne Gracie

The Summer Bride is the first “friends-to-lovers” story I’ve written, and I have to say I really enjoyed watching these two following their separate paths, all the while fighting an attraction that can’t be denied.

I loved Daisy and Flynn. Daisy is down-to-earth and outspoken and funny, and Flynn . . . well, Flynn’s a real charmer — brash, confident, and very masculine. And though it took him a while to work out what he really wanted, when he did, he went all out to get it.

Daisy and Flynn are on different courses. He wants to marry an aristocratic lady, she doesn’t want to marry at all. She has plans . . .

Daisy had no illusions about herself. She was a little Cockney guttersnipe with a gimpy leg and a foul mouth—though she was working on the swearing, and her grammar. But she loved beautiful clothes and—praise be!— she was good at making them.

She was going to be somebody, and she was going to do it all herself; Daisy Chance, Dressmaker to the Toffs, with a shop and a business all her own. That was her dream, and she was so hungry for it she could almost taste it.

The fact that Daisy fancies Flynn and always has, is irrelevant. She’s a realist, and a businesswoman, and respectability is what matters now.

Daisy pretended to stare out of her window but watched him from the corner of her eye. He was one good-looking man, Flynn. His breeches fitted nice and tight, his legs were long and powerful, and he smelled beautiful—clean and manly, not like so many posh gents who drenched themselves in perfumes and smelled like a blooming flowerpot.

No, Flynn was all man. She fancied him rotten—always had, from the first day he’d come swaggering into Lady Bea’s parlor, as brash and confident as if he owned the place. Those bold blue eyes of his had summed up every female in the room, a perfect invitation to sin.

The Summer Bride by Anne GracieFrom the very first he’d been danger wrapped in shades of masculine elegance—he’d just come from Freddy Monkton-Coombes’s very exclusive tailor—all the while complaining about having to dress like a pea-hen—not a peacock—in drab colors. With a gold earring in his ear, like a bloomin’ pirate. He was wearing it today; it glinted in the dim light.

He’d flirted with her that first day, just a bit—and she’d flirted back.

Daisy sighed. In the old days she’d have gone after him like a shot, but she’d turned respectable now, and so had Flynn.

He was planning to marry the finest young lady in London, and Daisy was starting up a business of her own. They were on different pathways, and a romp between the sheets wasn’t on the cards for either of them.  More’s the pity.

Besides, Flynn was her friend, the first man she’d ever been friends—real friends—with. The men she’d known in the past were users—pimps, predators, thieves and swindlers—all crooks of some kind.

Flynn was different, and she wasn’t going to risk spoiling their friendship with a bit of rumpy pumpy, no matter how tempting it was. That sort of thing never lasted—and the break-up always ruined the friendship.

So it was look but don’t touch.

She eyed his long, muscular thighs in their gleaming boots, and smiled to herself. Lucky he was such a treat to look at.

*

Oooh, I can’t wait for this book. I pre-ordered it back in March and today is the day it’ll be popping onto my Kindle and racing to the top of my to-be-read pile.

I bet you’d love a copy of The Summer Bride too. Well, here’s your chance to win one. Yes, lovelies, we have a…

GIVEAWAY!

For your chance to win a paperback copy of The Summer Bride simply answer this question from Anne:

What’s your favorite romance trope? Friends to lovers? Revenge? Second chance at Love? Convenient Marriage? Secret baby? Amnesia? Etc

Comment away and we’ll pop you into the draw.

Please note: Giveaway closes Friday midnight Friday AEST, 8th July 2016. Open internationally. Rah!

The Chance Sisters books are available right now from Booktopia, BookdepositoryAmazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play, or your favourite bookstore.

The Summer Bride cover and blurb image

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FRIDAY FEAST with Anne Gracie

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Hello lovelies, and welcome to another super-tasty edition of Friday Feast. This week, in a not-to-be-missed post, one of my absolute favourite historical romance authors shows off her gorgeous new release, gives you a step-by-step guide to jelly cake bliss, and generously offers a wonderful giveaway. So keep reading!

But first, the sigh-worthy saga that is Us Heins Weren’t Meant To Play Golf. At last I’m home from South Australia and have managed to hit a familiar golf course with my own clubs. Author Anne GracieI was more than a bit fretful that some of Dad’s bad golfing juju might have followed me home and curled its sniggery, meddling self around my clubs but fortunately that wasn’t the case. Thank god. Then again, it could be simply biding its time. The curse is sneaky that way.

What is most definitely not sneaky is this week’s Friday Feast guest. She’s a joy! Multi-award winning and best-selling Regency romance author Anne Gracie is an auto-buy author for me. Her stories are charming, fun, emotional and absolute delights to read. If you’ve never tested the Regency romance waters, then Anne’s Chance Sisters series it the perfect place to start. The Autumn Bride and The Winter Bride were completely heart-warming and now book three in the series, The Spring Bride, has hit Australian shelves with US following shortly. It looks another beauty. Check it out.

THE SPRING BRIDE

US Cover of The Spring Bride by Anne GracieOn the eve of the London Season, Jane Chance is about to make her entrance into high society. Haunted by a childhood riddled with poverty and hardship, Jane is determined her own children will never suffer the same; she intends to make a good, safe, sensible marriage. All goes according to plan until a dark, dangerous vagabond helps her rescue a dog.

Zachary Black is all kinds of unsuitable–a former spy, now in disguise, he’s wanted for murder. His instructions: to lie low until his name is cleared. But Zach has never followed the rules, and he wants Jane Chance for his own.

If that means blazing his way into London society, in whatever guise suits him, that’s what he’ll do. Jane knows she shouldn’t fall in love with this unreliable, if devastatingly attractive, rogue. But Zach is determined–and he’s a man accustomed to getting what he wants.

Doesn’t that sound wonderful? I already have The Spring Bride loaded to my e-reader and with a few quick clickety-clicks you could have this charming book too. Try those good people at Booktopia, Bookworld or Angus & Robertson. Or visit Book Depository, Amazon.comAmazon.au, Kobo, iBooks, Barnes & Noble, JB Hi-Fi, Google Play, Fishpond, Boomerang Books, or your favourite book retailer.

All loaded up with some spring goodness? Great. Now get some jelly in your belly with Anne!

A Retro Wonder

I made these recently to take to a friend’s birthday party. I was going to make something savoury, but I’ve known this woman since she was 15, so I decided to make something fun and yummy and retro. They proved a big hit.

Cup cakes are very fashionable, but for my money these are more delicious and fun. And surprisingly easy to make. The hardest part is getting the jelly at the right texture, and that’s all a matter of timing. And I had to buy a new patty pan tin because Mum’s old one was all rusty.

Jelly Cakes

Makes up to 30 or more little cakes, depending how you fill the patty pans.

Anne Gracie's Jelly Cakes

The cakes:

60g butter, softened

1 egg, lightly beaten

1/2 cup caster sugar

1 cup self-raising flour

2/3 cup milk

The coating:

85g packet raspberry jelly crystals (any flavour will work, though)

1 cup boiling water

2/3 cup cold water

3 cups desiccated coconut

The filling:

Lashings of whipped cream (a 300ml container of thickened cream is plenty)

Method:

1) Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 12 hole shallow patty-pan tin (1.5 tablespoon capacity) or a gem-iron pan. (If you don’t have one, a cup cake or small muffin pan might do)

2) Cream butter and sugar with an electric beater until light and fluffy. Add in egg, a little at a time, beating until well combined.

3) With a big spoon, gently fold in half the flour and half the milk. Repeat until remaining flour and milk is used up.

Jelly cake batter

4) Spoon mixture into patty pans. Bake for 10 — 15  minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool cakes on a wire rack. (Cakes can be frozen in this state and kept for coating later.)

Jelly cakes ready to bake

Baked, un-iced jelly cakes

5) Make the jelly in a big shallow bowl. Stir jelly crystals and boiling water together until crystals are dissolved. Mix in the cold water. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until cold and slightly thick. (*This is the trickiest part. It needs to be the texture of unbeaten egg white.  Too runny and it soaks into the cake, too thick and it won’t coat the cakes at all. Check frequently. If too solid sit the bowl in some hot water to reverse the setting process. Or maybe zap it in the microwave.)

Jelly cakes being coated in jelly

6) Place coconut into a large bowl. Make like lamingtons — coating each cake in jelly, then rolling in coconut. Pop them into the fridge for half an hour or so to let the jelly set.

Jelly cakes being rolled in coconut

You can serve the cakes like this or fill them with cream, which is decadent and delicious and as far as I’m concerned traditional.

7) I put the jelly-and-coconutted cakes in a large plastic container, and keep overnight or until an hour or two before I want to serve them in. (You can freeze them at this point, too, I believe.)

Place jelly cakes into the fridge

8) Whip cream. Carefully slice the top off each cake and place large blob of cream on the inside. Replace top of cake. That’s it.

Anne Gracie's Jelly Cakes

When you’ve finished creaming all the cakes, eat the wonkiest looking one — you owe it to your guests to make sure the cakes are fit to be eaten. 😉 Put the remainder in the fridge. Then resist temptation firmly, or else there will be no cakes left!

A bitten-into jelly cake

Oh, these are brilliant, Anne! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe. Jelly cakes were such a favourite growing up and you don’t see then often now, certainly not  home-made ones, which are the only ones to have. Love the step-by-step instructions too. Very helpful.

Now for the bit we all adore. Yes, Feasty lovelies, Anne has offered a…

GIVEAWAY!

But of course you’re going to have to work for it. Not very hard though, I promise. Today your task is to choose which cover of The Spring Bride you prefer most and why. So… does the Australian version do it for you?

1SpringBrideAussieMed

Or the US version?

US Cover of The Spring Bride by Anne Gracie

Me? I love the covers of both. They both sing spring, but I have to admit that the US version is the one I like best. Her dress is stunning!

So what about you? Reveal which cover you prefer and why and we’ll pop you into the draw to win a copy of The Spring BridThe. Just the thing to enjoy with a cuppa and a sweet jelly cake.

Please note: Giveaway closes midnight Tuesday AEST, 2nd June 2015. Open internationally. Rah!

If you’d like to learn more about Anne and her gorgeous books, please visit her website. You can also connect via Facebook, Goodreads and Twitter using @AnneGracie, and the totally fabulous WordWenches blog.

Friday Feast recipe index link.