Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Not a Fine Gentleman by Donna Hatch

Donna Hatch is the author of the best-selling “Rogue Hearts Series,” and a winner of writing awards such as The Golden Quill and the International Digital Award. A hopeless romantic and adventurer at heart, she discovered her writing passion at the tender age of 8 and has been listening to those voices ever since. She has become a sought-after workshop presenter, and also juggles freelance editing, multiple volunteer positions, and most of all, her six children (seven, counting her husband). A native of Arizona who recently transplanted to the Pacific Northwest, she and her husband of over twenty years are living proof that there really is a happily ever after.

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Lady Margaret secretly yearns for love, but fate has exchanged wedded bliss for a lie. When she is caught hovering over her cheating husband’s dead body, she is instantly doomed to hang for his murder. Without hope for justice, Margaret flees into the night alone. 

A cynical Bow Street Constable, Connor Jackson, vows to bring the fugitive Lady Margaret to face the law—but, he doesn’t expect sparks to fly between them. Could the strong yet tender lady truly be a killer? 

As more suspects—and even more condemning evidence—surface, the less certain Connor is of his duty. He must choose between his growing feelings for Lady Margaret and the demands of justice. Will the truth tear them apart or set them free to find love?

The Rogue Hearts Series:

The Stranger She Married 

The Guise of a Gentleman

A Perfect Secret

The Suspect's Daughter

Not a Fine Gentleman

Praise for Donna Hatch:

“Donna Hatch is one of the masters of clean romance with electric tension and smokin’ hot kisses.” ~ Reading is My Super Power Reviews

“Written with heart and depth, Donna Hatch’s books are absolute must-reads for any fan of swoon-worthy historical romance.”  ~ Sarah M. Eden, USA Today best-selling historical romance author

Itching to begin hunting for the murder suspect, despite her brother’s protestations of her innocence, Connor stood to excuse himself.
“Jackson.” Christian Amesbury looked down at his hands and carefully laced them together. “It’s likely that whoever murdered Hennessey is also after Margaret. It’s the only reasonable explanation for why she hasn’t come to one of us.”
If that were true, Lady Hennessy would be in danger. Connor nodded. “Do you have a portrait of her?”
Amesbury retrieved a miniature from a sideboard table. “This was done just before she got married. It’s a good likeness.”
As Connor took hold of the framed painting, everything inside him went still. A stunning, dark-haired woman with a pair of startlingly luminous eyes stared out at him in shades of blue and green that reminded him of the ocean off the coast of Italy. Her full lips suggested she had a laugh tucked in the corner, and the tilt of her head revealed an impish slant to her character. Something else in her, something compelling and almost familiar made his heart trip all over itself. 
No. He would never again make the blunder of allowing his attraction for a woman—especially an aristocratic woman—to cloud his judgment and rule his heart. He’d learned years ago never to dally with a woman of her class. The one and only time he’d made that mistake had nearly broken him. 
Really, considering his mother’s history, he should have known better; the nobility had no place in their hearts for the working class. He knew it now, and he’d not soon forget.
“She was so happy back then,” Amesbury said in a hushed voice.
Connor removed his focus from the oddly compelling miniature. “Back then?”
Amesbury paused as if choosing his words. “The last few years were difficult for her. Her marriage was not … happy.”
Was it bad enough that she killed her husband? 
That mischievous, lively, lovely girl in the painting could not have done such a heinous act. However, if she’d grown into a bitter woman, she might have. Time changed people. Hardship changed them more. What was the saying about hell hath no fury like a woman scorned…?
“She didn’t kill him.” Amesbury’s vehemence set his features into one belonging to a formidable foe, should they ever find themselves on opposing sides—which they might if Connor found evidence that Lady Hennessy was guilty.
After fixing her face in his memory, Connor handed back the miniature. 
Amesbury gestured. “Keep it if it will help you find her.”
Tucking the miniature safely into a pocket, Connor vowed, “I’ll find her and deliver her safely to you.”
Amesbury clasped his hand. “My thanks.”
“Yes, thank you, Mr. Jackson,” Mrs. Amesbury echoed.
Connor inclined his head to them both and strode out to hunt for Grant and Christian’s sister, who might be a murderess. Despite his relationship the noble family, Connor would use every means at his disposal to deliver her to her family. He could only trust that the wheels of justice would turn on the upper crust as swiftly as it turned on the lower classes.

Interview with Donna Hatch

What writers inspired you to become an author? 
I've wanted to write stories since I was a child. I'm most sure who first inspired me, but probably Laura Ingalls Wilder. 

Any special appearances or events coming up that you want to mention?
Not as long as there are COVID restrictions. I'd planned to have an in-person tea party style launch, but it's going to be all online now. 

If you could travel to any time in history, when would you visit?
Regency England--it would be immeasurably helpful to my ongoing research. 

If you could have dinner with any of your characters, which ones would you choose? What food would you serve?
Probably Genevieve from A Perfect Match and A Perfect Secret. She's the softest and warmest of my characters. I think she'd be an easy friend. I'm not a great cook so I'd probably take her out to dinner.
If you could travel anywhere, on earth or off, where would you go?
I've been wanting to see Italy for ages as well as New Zeland. They are both so beautiful!

What color would you wear if you had only one choice?
Blue. I'ts the perfect color and there are thousands of shade variations.

Describe your dream writing spot.
My office is wonderful but I'd love to write in a little shady spot on the beach in full view of the breakers and with the sound of the waves softening the air. So inspiring and peaceful!

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