Tag Archives: medieval romance

Hot Sale on Starla Kaye books!

Four favorite historical romance books by Starla Kaye are on sale until July 10th.

His Lady Ashlynn and Abigail’s Earl (both Regency stories), as well as The Great Scottish Devil and Maggie Mine (books one and two in the medieval series).

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Each book is on sale for $2.99 during the “Author Spotlight” sale from Blushing Books (regular price will be back to $4.99 on Sunday, July 10th). The sale prices are on the Blushing Books site, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Blushing Books Link to more about the books: http://www.blushingbooks.com/index.php?l=page_view&p=free

Lauren Linwood and A Knight for Kallen

A Knight for Kallen 850Today I am welcoming Lauren Linwood to my blog with her new release, A NIGHT FOR KALLEN.

First, let’s talk a bit with the author.

If you use a pen name, how did you decide on it?

I had wanted my pen name to be Diana Leigh, the name my mom had decided to call me before I was born. Little did she know my dad gave the nurses a totally different name they had never even discussed! When I Googled Diana Leigh, I found she was a jazz singer in New York and already had www.dianaleigh.com, so it was back to the drawing board.

I’ve always loved alliteration, so I started trying out first names that I liked and putting a last name that started with the same letter with them. Somehow Lauren Linwood resonated with me. It flowed well—and it’s looked great on my nine book covers!

What drew you to being a writer?

I always made up stories when I was growing up and would act them out with my dolls and my friends. Giving life and a voice to the people I saw in my mind was the most natural thing in the world to me.

Do you do anything special to get in the mood to write?

If I waited to be in the mood or for the muse to strike, I might never get anything accomplished! A lot of writing is BIC—Butt in Chair. You simply have to make yourself do it. I do like to light a scented candle. Sometimes I’ll turn on my noise machine and write to waves rolling in and out or a rain shower or babbling brook. I cannot have music playing, though. I start to sing along with whatever song I hear, and that totally pulls me from my story and era.

Wat is in your TO BE READ pile?

WAY too much! I read everything from thrillers to romance to suspense to horror. I also enjoy biographies. I’ve had to learn throughout this writing journey to budget my time and be a little more selective in my reading so I have enough time to write.

How do you come up with a story line?

My magic words are What if…

I use that phrase every time I begin a new story. What if twins were literally separated at birth became A Game of Chance. What if a Texas Ranger was the son of a famous outlaw turned into Ballad Beauty. What if an English nobleman’s family refused to ransom him and he was left to rot in a French prison is A Bit of Heaven on Earth? (and no – the prison is NOT his piece of heaven here on earth)

What are you currently working on for your next book?

I love to read series, but I’ve never written one before. I decided I wanted to tackle that challenge, so in 2016 you’ll see the first two books in the KNIGHTS OF VALOR series. The first, Word of Honor, will come out next summer, with the second (as yet untitled) releasing in late fall.

How did you come up with your title?

My working title was Aura of Love since my heroine Kallen sees auras about people. My editor wasn’t feeling that, so I christened it A Knight for Kallen. Griffith definitely IS the knight for Kallen.

Do you have a favorite character and why?

You’ll laugh at this, coming from a romance writer, but my favorite character is not one of my heroes or heroines. It’s actually a pair from A Game of Chance. Max is a millionaire in his 90s and is feisty as they come. He’s close friends with my heroine Lily and related to my hero Jed. His butler Harold has a dry sense of humor. The two of them together were comical and endearing and my favorite characters I’ve ever written.

BLURB – A Knight for Kallen

Kallen de Mangeron grew up in a convent, her noble family never knowing of her birth. When a new Mother Superior informs them of her existence, they send trusted knight Griffith Sommersby to escort her home.

Griffith’s heart broke when he lost his wife and infant son during childbirth, and he’s kept his feelings locked away from the world—until he meets Kallen. He soon learns her dark secret—that she sees auras around people—which allows her insight into their actions and personalities.

Now Quentin, bastard brother to the king, decides to harness Kallen’s gift in a plot to win the throne. Will Quentin successfully use a kidnapped Kallen as his political pawn, or will Griffith be able to stop him before Kallen changes the course of England’s history?

BUY LINK:   Amazon

AUTHOR BIO – Lauren Linwood

Linwood IMG_4199 4x5 webLauren Linwood became a teacher who wrote on the side to maintain her sanity in a sea of teenage hormones. Her historical romances use history as a backdrop to place her characters in extraordinary circumstances, where their intense desire for one another grows into the treasured gift of love. Her romantic suspense novels feature strong heroes and heroines who unite to defeat a clever antagonist and discover a deep, abiding love during their journey.

A native Texan, Lauren lives in a Dallas suburb with her family. An avid reader, moviegoer, and sports fan, she manages stress by alternating yoga with long walks. She plans to start a support group for House Hunters addicts—as soon as she finishes her next piece of dark chocolate.

AUTHOR LINKS

Website     Facebook     Twitter     Blog

Amazon Author Page     Goodreads

Their Lady Gloriana re-release

TLG 2015.inddI am thrilled to share that my historical medieval romance THEIR LADY GLORIANA has been re-released. If you missed it originally, you won’t want to miss it now.

Book Title: Their Lady Gloriana

Publisher: Black Velvet Seductions

Date Published: Re-release August 2015 (May 14, 2011 original release)

Genre: Historical, gay romance, ménage, medieval romance

Heat Rating: Steamy 5 flames

BUY LINKS:    Amazon     iBooks     Kobo

BLURB – Their Lady Gloriana

In medieval times honorable men had to do what was required of them by the kings to whom they were loyal…

Thomas Lancaster, a widower with bad memories of marriage and a young son he barely knew was a hardened knight loyal to his king. In reward for his efforts fighting in the Crusades, King Edward gave him Middlemound Castle to hold for the crown. But the king decreed that he must marry the beautiful young widow of the castle’s previous lord.

Lady Gloriana Stewart had suffered brutally in her first marriage and had no desire to marry again. Yet she had no choice. She had to protect her people and obey her king.

All she wanted was for her new husband to give her a baby.
Having already lost one wife in childbirth, Thomas refused to even consider it.

Sir Rowan Montgomery, Thomas’s first knight, friend, and lover complicated the situation even more. Thomas didn’t want to give up Rowan and Gloriana didn’t want to admit she had feelings for her husband and for Rowan.

EXCERPT – PG13 – Their Lady Gloriana

Lady Gloriana could barely draw in a breath. Her life with Geoffrey had done this to her. He’d battled down her self-worth, her dreams of having a happy family, and her natural zest for life. She needed to find the strength to face this new marriage to this war-hardened warrior. She had to make him respect her. Most of all, she had to endure relations with him until he got her with child.

The great hall rang with the sounds of joyous reunions. She heard the deep tone of an unfamiliar voice. It rang with authority, with power, much like Geoffrey’s voice had. Yet something about it drew her instead of repelling her. Something about it called to her woman’s place and she felt warmth spreading there. The reaction surprised her.

Her focus moved to the raised dais. Two such different—and yet the same—men stood there drinking cups of ale. Neither smiled. Both seemed to study her.

Gerald guided her to the dais. “Lady Middlemound, my lord.” He nodded toward the two powerfully built men. “Lord Montrose, my lady. And Sir Montgomery, his first knight.”

“Thomas,” Lord Montrose said and stepped down in front of her. He towered over her by at least a foot. His breadth and brawn made her heart race. Yet she didn’t feel intimidated by him.

Then the other man stepped down. As she glanced up, he gave her a crooked smile. “And you may call me Rowan.”

She felt her heart race even more.

Show Your Dark Side Blog Hop: Oct 9-31

greatscottishdevil200x300I am taking part in KWA’s Show your Dark Side blog hop, which is focusing on villains for the month of October. To join in the fun, go to the Starla Criser website and find the other authors participating.

 

The following were my Goal, Motivation, and Conflicts for my villain from The Great Scottish Devil.

Villain: Alastair Sutherland

Background: In a vengeful act against Braden MacKay (Chief of Clan MacKay), he had Annabel (daughter) stolen as a baby. She was given to Dougal and Katherine Henderson, who owed him their lives and couldn’t have children of their own. They took her in and promised to keep her away from the MacKays and that part of the Highlands.

Goals: (Main) To never allow the MacKay clan to see Annabel again. (Short range) Locate Annabel  (3) Have Annabel killed

Motivation/Inciting Incident: He learns through gossip that Annabel’s “family” are all dead now. He worries that she will somehow end up back with the MacKays.

Conflicts: (1) Annabel is alone now and could possibly end up somewhere that she would run into someone from the clan MacKay.  (2) His hired mercenaries find Annabel now traveling and protected by Brodie Durward (New chief of Clan Durward of Urquhart).  (3) He has his mercenaries hire another one (Angus) to go to be accepted as a knight with Brodie, but Angus struggles getting Annabel alone to kill her.  (4) Angus hires a traveling tinker couple to lure Annabel away with them/bring her to him, but Brodie resists letting her leave his home.  (5) He learns that Brodie sent a message to Braden MacKay about Annabel, questioning if she might be their missing daughter. The MacKay goes to see Annabel, but she has left with the tinkers.  (6) Angus begins acting on his own. He kills the tinker couple, plans to rape and then kill Annabel. But he finds that she has run away while he dealt with the couple.  (7) Annabel manages to kill Angus when they fight. His mercenaries find Angus’s body and tie her up. But Brodie and The MacKay arrive and kill them, free her.  (8) He is furious that he must go into hiding now from Brodie and The MacKay.

Winners from my Black Velvet Seductions contest

2940016324050_p0_v1_s260x420I am happy to announce my winners…yes, I decided to have two winners…in my recent Black Velvet Seductions Blog contest. My winners each get to choose one ebook from My Complete Book List.

My Winners:

Eva

Wilma

Thanks so much for stopping by to read the blog and entering the contest.

 

Wicked After Dark Halloween Blog Hop

Wicked After Dark Naughty Halloween Blog Hop

ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FUN? Some “wicked” fun and the chance to win lots of prizes!

Thanks for stopping by my stop on the Wicked After Dark Halloween Blog Hop. And a special thanks to Natasha Blackthorne and Close Encounters with the Night Kind for organizing and hosting this blog hop.

 

There are a lot of prizes to be given away on this hop. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and follow the individual rules for entering the hosts’ contests.

Link to the List of Participating Blogs

 

In addition, I will be giving away a copy of the Scary Spanks anthology from Blushing Books and a “Romance 2nite” door hanger pillow from Eden Fantasys. To enter in my personal contest, leave a comment at the end of this post with your email address and stating the name of the companion book to The Great Scottish Devil. Winner to be announced November 3.

 

Title: Scary Spanks anthology, containing Starla Kaye’s story “The Warlock’s Rebellious Daughter”

Amazon Buy Link

 

As a reader of romance, give me a story with well-written characters and a plot that holds my interest and I’m happy. Make the hero a heart-wounded, emotionally bruised, sometimes gruff man who is frustrated to the limits of his patience with a woman he just can’t resist and I’ll eagerly devour the book.

Make the heroine have wounds of her own, determination to face life, and worthy of this suffering, preferably Alpha man, and the irresistible need to love him, and I’ll read the book over and over.

As a writer of romance, I try hard to give my readers exactly the kind of heroes and heroines I enjoy. I like writing in various sub-genres and different time periods. There are so many ways to play around and tell stories as a writer. Cowboys are my real weakness, whether they are contemporary ones or historical ones. And I love Scots, too, and touching gay stories. Okay, I love ALL of my heroes.

I have to admit that one of my favorite heroes was Brodie Durward in The Great Scottish Devil, from Blushing Books. He had it all for me: a Scottish hunk, emotionally wounded, loyal to his clan, and frustrated almost beyond endurance with the heroine, Annabel Henderson. *Note: This is a companion novel to Maggie Mine, but it can also stand alone.

I enjoy getting reviews, but my favorites come from actual everyday readers. Here are just a few comments on this book.

 

“What a wonderful story of love and life’s realities. This historical tale allows you to really believe you are there with the characters, rooting them on and wanting to protect them from the evil. A lovely and enjoyable story.” 5 Stars from Christina

“If you liked Maggie Mine you will love this book which is its sequel. The hero is a strong Scotsman who doesn’t take any guff from anyone especially a young woman with no sense. Great plot with a bit of mystery thrown in and of course spanking.” 5 Stars from Alicia

“I loved this story! There is a lot of detail and a well-developed story line. Love the characters and was so happy Brodie found some happiness. Read it twice and then had to read Maggie Mine again! Great book!!” 5 Stars from SH

“THE best story I have read in a while…not just from bb.com but store bought books also. Just Loved it…this one is fun, made me laugh out loud a few times…if you like romance, spanking, and a little mystery this is just the book, I will have to read this over and over its a good read.” 5 Stars from Atene

OVERVIEW

Annabel Henderson’s life has fallen apart yet again, worse this time than before. She lost her beloved younger brother, then her mother a year ago, and now her father. His dying words talk of his regrets; warn her of someone or something that he was unable to fully explain. Confused, grieving, she is left alone in the Scottish Highlands to deal with her father’s body and wondering how she can continue on with her family’s tinker trade traveling from village to village. She must do it, for it is the only life she knows. In her heart, though, she yearns for a man to love her and to help her with the trade. Instead her first encounter is with the famed Great Scottish Devil returning to his home of Urquhart. The Devil is more annoying and demanding than he is handsome. How dare he think to take charge of her life!

Brodie Durward isn’t sure he can deal with another problem in his life. He’d barely survived being taken prisoner and seriously wounded in the final battle of the Crusades, left with the loss of his memories. Still struggling with that, he had to go to England and save his sister Maggie from being hung. All he wants now is to return to his family’s holding of the Castle Urquhart. He hopes the once familiar surroundings and being around his clan will help him completely heal and regain his memories. Then he and his men run across a young lad apparently trying to steal the valuables off a dead man. Such a travesty can’t be tolerated!

But the “lad” isn’t a boy at all. The supposed bandit is a tiny sprite of a woman, far too pleasing to the eye for his comfort, and furious at having been called a thief. And then she tries to refuse to travel with him under his protection, claiming she doesn’t need it, doesn’t wish to go in that direction. He has no patience for her foolishness. She will go with him!

Download a sample: Blushing Books-The Great Scottish Devil

Genre: Historical Erotic Romance, with spanking elements

Publisher: Blushing Books

Publisher Buy Link

Amazon Buy Link (Kindle and paperback)

Barnes & Noble Buy Link (Nook book)

 

My “Hottest” Reads for the Summer

It’s hot outside, burning hot. This is also the time of year for vegging out with a “hot” book to burn you in other ways. These are some of my “hottest” stories, favorites of mine and my fans. If you have missed some of these, here’s another chance to enjoy some of my most loved heroes and their women and short excerpts to entice you to want more.

My newest contemporary romance release from Blushing Books, Hot Days…Hotter Nights, involves a couple missing the “fire” in the earlier days of their marriage, trying to find their way back to that or give up and move on.

Buy Link: Amazon Kindle

EXCERPT

“So you’ve been dreaming about me,” he said on a husky growl. “Naughty woman.”

She was beyond the dreaming point; she wanted action. “I don’t want to play. I want you in me. Now!”

“Not yet.”

She wasn’t in the mood for his little games. “Either give it to me or get off. I’ll find my own release.”

“You know I don’t like to be rushed…or threatened.”

Oh, yes, she well knew he didn’t like being pushed. He preferred to take his own sweet time about whatever he did. It hadn’t used to bother her. But considering how few times they’d made love recently and how frustrated she’d been, she didn’t particularly care about what he liked. She glanced back at him, frowning. “It’s not always about what you want.”

 

If you like something historical, something with a troubled, complicated, and sexy Scot…The Great Scottish Devil, from Blushing Books, might give you “hot” dreams.

Buy Link: Amazon Kindle

EXCERPT

“Drop the weapon, lad,” Brodie snarled, holding his three-foot sword in warning. “Step away from the man.”

The boy blinked and tears sparkled in his eyes. Slender shoulders shuddered beneath the dirt-dusted white shirt, and then straightened.

“I’m not a thief!” the boy protested. He had the gall to glower at Brodie, holding the ridiculously small weapon out in defense.

There was no mistaking the swell of plump breasts shoving against the front of the shirt. It took him a second to come to terms with the surprising discover; it took another second to get beyond his surprise and back to his fury.

He slid from his horse in a quick move that caused his kilt to lift slightly before falling in place at his knees again. When he focused on the lass, he found her eyes had widened even more. Pink colored her cheeks and she didn’t appear to be breathing, just staring.

To his annoyance, Douglas chuckled behind him. “I dinna think the lass has seen a mon in a kilt ‘ere. Or what a mon doesna wear under a kilt.”

Brodie heard Douglas dismounting, walking next to him. He lowered his sword, studied the young girl, puzzled at the dark hair cut roughly to chin-length. How could he have not recognized her as a female? God’s teeth, had his loss of memories affected his…

No. No, his cock was even now stirring to life. But, good God, she was but a child! His gaze went to her chest. All right, she was a very endowed child. He scowled in annoyance. She should not be affecting him so. Aye, he refused to allow it!

 

What about a pirate? Maybe a strikingly handsome, far less than proper, English lord forced by circumstances into the life of a pirate will intrigue you…turn up the heat another notch or two. Hawke’s Lady, from Blushing Books,  is a darker romance with discipline elements, and lots of heat.

Buy Link: Amazon Kindle

EXCERPT

Sabrina’s stomach fluttered nervously.  Alone, so very alone, with the famed Captain Hawke, who was whispered about along the English coastline by women of all ages.  The daring and accomplished pirate cursed by men whose ships he’d stolen from, and admired by other men who would give their very souls to be him.  With shoulder-length raven hair held back by a strip of leather and a ruggedly carved face, he was handsome as sin.  Handsome and dangerous.

He stood there on long, muscled legs planted firmly against the swaying of the ship.  Pride and confidence radiated from him.  Dark eyes captured her attention, eyes that revealed nothing but seemed to miss nothing as well.  She felt as if he had looked her over thoroughly even though she hadn’t seen his gaze move from hers.

Hawke couldn’t believe that a young woman had dared to hide on his ship. Yet he understood desperation and knew only that would have made her take such a dangerous chance. He should toss her overboard, give her to his crew, anything to stay away from the sassy miss who dared challenge him. But as she bravely took her rightful punishment and then fairly burst into flames when he took her, he knew he would never let her go. She belonged to him. Forever.

 

What about an historical menage romance? Can you have “hot” dreams of your own while reading about two “hot” medieval warrior lovers and the woman who manages to win their heart? Their Lady Gloriana , from Black Velvet Seductions, has two of my favorite heroes, both with complicated pasts, both struggling to find happiness.

Buy Link: Amazon Kindle

EXCERPT

As he heard his friend move off, Thomas felt the strain of arousal slip away as well. He and Rowan had discovered an appreciation for one another quite by accident almost half a year back. An appreciation that had quickly led to some of the hottest sex he could ever remember experiencing. At first Thomas had been shocked, not sickened or appalled, just surprised. He’d always loved being with women, quite lusted after them actually. He had a hearty appetite for sex and he’d never had any complaints from his more-than-willing bed partners. Yet he’d never been drawn toward a man before that time with Rowan. He still wasn’t drawn toward other men. Only Rowan fired up his need to make love to a man.

His glance shifted to Castle Middlemound in the distance. It was impressive, sprawling over a large piece of prime land. Even from here, he thought the gray-stoned main structures were three stories high along the east and north sections. And not far from its curtain walls stood a village with many houses. This was a holding of great value. It still surprised him that Edward had commanded he marry Geoffrey Stewart’s widow.

He and Lady Middlemound need only be agreeable in bed together to please him.

Rowan wanted only to become Thomas’s first in command at Middlemound. He didn’t want to leave Thomas. While Thomas was certain there could be problems ahead, he was grateful for the man’s loyalty both as a soldier and as a lover. For if Gloriana Stewart couldn’t fully satisfy his hungers in bed, at least Rowan could.

 

Some of my favorite heroes to read and to write about are cowboys. I have written a lot of stories about cowboys, but my recent anthology, Cowboys in Charge, from Black Velvet Seductions, has seven stories of strong, loving cowboys and the women who try their patience. These are romantic stories with a touch of domestic discipline/spanking.

Buy Link: Amazon Kindle

 

BLURBS

Snowed in with Her Cowboy
James wants Kelly to quit work and start a family, but she resists the idea. Will he give up the idea of a family or will he give up Kelly?

Too Much Red at Christmas Time
Lizzie has a bizarre addiction to Christmas shopping and she can’t help herself, even knowing she will face the wrath of her husband who believes in domestic discipline.

For the Love of His Cowgirl
Amber misses the fun little games she and Adam used to play. There never seems to be time for steamy sex, or even the spankings he’d occasionally given her for various infractions of rules or for misbehavior.
Can she entice him back; get the dwindling fires of their love going again?

Cowboys and Their Toys
Jennifer loves Jason and she’d trusted him as he’d led her into the BDSM lifestyle. But now he wants to take things to a more intense level and she’s balking at it. Will she lose him if she doesn’t agree to go 24/7?

Plus three more equally hot stories of cowboys and the women they love.

Merchants in Medieval Times

Merchants of one kind of another have been around for many, many years. My heroine, Annabel, in The Great Scottish Devil had grown up being part of a family of traveling tinkers (merchants). When the last of her family died, she intended to keep on with the only life she had known. But the hero, Brodie, naturally had a totally different opinion.

Title:  The Great Scottish Devil

Book Length:  Novel

Publisher:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Amazon Kindle

Sample Download:  Blushing Books-The Great Scottish Devil

 

Medieval Town Markets and Guilds

  1. It was common for local merchants to set up stalls once a week in the square to market their wares.
  2. Merchants within a city formed associations to protect each other. There were Guilds for bakers, butchers, grocers, millers, smiths, carpenters, weavers, mason, shoemakers, and more.
  3. Merchants who belonged to the guilds had a higher social status.
  4. The Merchant Guild could negotiate with the lord of a land and get the trade levy he charged regulated. The merchants paid an annual payment to the lord who owned the land where the town was based.
  5. Guild members who fell sick were cared for by the guild. Burials were arranged and the guild cared for any orphans.
  6. Guild members provided protection of their horses, wagons, and goods when travelling around.

 

Traveling Merchants/Tinkers

  1. Many local merchants struggled because they couldn’t compete with the selection of merchandise offered by traveling merchants who went from village to village.
  2. They sold food, raw materials, wool from England, furs from Russia, wood from Scandinavia, salt and wine from France, horses from Spain, cloth and tapestries from Flanders, glass from Italy, and silks and spices from Asia.
  3. They were important in establishing and maintaining connections among people in different locations.

Traveling in the middle ages was dangerous and hard. It was uncommon for most people to get beyond 5 miles of where they were born. But people did go on crusades to the Holy Land, Spain, France, Germany, and Poland

Traveling on foot 30 miles would take several days, going about 3 miles an hour. Travelling by horse 30 miles would take 3 days, going about 8 miles an hour.

Sources:

The Town Merchants: http://library.thinkquest.org/10949/fief/medmerchant.html

Merchant Guilds in the Middle Ages: http://www.middle-ages.org.uk/merchant-guilds-in-the-middle-ages.htm

Business and Commerce: http://www.medieval-life.net/commerce.htm

The Medieval Warhorse

Many of us who have read medieval romances or watched movies about that time period have heard about/seen the fierce warhorses ridden by the knights. I have pulled together some information on these powerful horses. Sadly, the original warhorse breed is now extinct, although Clydesdales and Quarter horses are bred today to produce a similar horse.

I lightly referred to such horses in my medieval romances from Blushing Books and Black Velvet Seductions. Here is a sample from The Great Scottish Devil.

He forced his warhorse into a gallop and thundered down the hill. He pulled his sword from the scabbard on his back at the same time he roared, “Stop, thief!”

 

 

Title:  The Great Scottish Devil

Genre:  Medieval Romance, light BDSM elements

Author:  Starla Kaye

Publisher:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Amazon Kindle

 

A Knight and His Horses

  1. A knight owned several horses used for different duties.
  2. The palfrey was used for general travelling purposes.
  3. The most common type used for battle was called a Destrier and was brought England in 1066. They were bigger and stronger and more expensive. Only the most wealthy knights could afford to have one.

 

Description of a Warhorse

  1. This type of horse had a thick rounded body, a broad back, powerful hind-quarters, and long legs with dense bones.
  2. Generally, a medieval warhorse was black, brown, bag, or gray. They often had long silky, often white, hair on the lower parts of its legs.
  3. These massive animals measured over 24 hands tall.

 

Training a Warhorse

  1. These horses were specially trained for riding in battle or in combating at jousting tournaments.
  2. They were trained to command from a knight’s leg pressure instead of the reins because the knight must hold his shield and his weapons.
  3. They were trained to trample the bodies of fallen enemies.
  4. They were also trained to bite and kick on command.

 

Protection for a Warhorse

  1. Horse armor called barding consisted of rigid pieces of plate armor made of leather and steel.
  2. A warhorse would be fully dressed with armor on the head, neck, body and chest. The head armor often had spike horns.

 

Sources:

Warhorse: http://www.medieval-life-and-times.info/medieval-weapons/warhorse.htm

Horses in the Middle Ages: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horses_in_the_Middle_Ages

The Great Scottish Devil- R Excerpt

He has no memories. She has no home and nowhere safe to go alone. He is betrothed to an unknown woman, but is drawn to another. She longs for the troubled, haunted warrior, but she can’t have him. The Great Scottish Devil is my second medieval romance from Blushing Books. Brodie’s story began in the first book, Maggie Mine, as the older brother who went to England to save the sister he doesn’t remember from being wrongly hung. Now his life gets even more complicated when he becomes involved with Annabel.

CONTEST: Read the complete excerpt here on my website and leave a comment to tell me what Annabell calls Brodie. One lucky commenter will receive an ebook copy of The Great Scottish Devil. Contest ends 6-22-12.

 

Title:  The Great Scottish Devil

Genre:  Medieval Romance, light BDSM elements

Author:  Starla Kaye

Publisher:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Amazon

 

EXCERPT

She snuggled closer, rubbing against his already hard erection, not seeming to notice…but he did. He should have worn braies this night instead of his kilt with nothing under it. He tried to inch her away. She only moved closer.

“I am so alone. So awfully alone.” She was sobbing again, trembling again. Somehow she was facing him, straddling him. Somehow he ended up lying on his back. Her chemise had ridden too high on her thighs, her bare bottom far too close. Only the thinness of his kilt kept his cock from sliding into her body.

“Oh, Anna, sweet Anna,” he moaned, fighting to keep from taking her as he so badly wanted to do.

Her face mirrored confusion even as he saw her eyes soften with desire. He doubted she fully understood what she was doing. She lifted up enough to reach between them and raise his kilt. Her small mouth moved into an “O” and she gave a tiny sigh of wonderment.

Brodie had frozen, afraid if he moved at all, he would only make the problem worse.

Then she reached out a hand and all the breath left his body. She touched him, gently moved her hand up and down his pulsing shaft. “God’s teeth!” he gritted out, dying at such a light touch.

She looked at him, smiling like she’d found a wondrous treasure. “’Tis soft, yet so hard.” She moved her hand once more.

He didn’t think he could survive this. “I am no’ that strong, Anna.”

Her head tipped to one side and she frowned in puzzlement. “You are very strong, Lord Devil. The strongest man I have ever known.”

He groaned as her fingers lightly played over his shaft again. “Nay, I mean strong enough no’ to…”

The suddenly bold woman lifted up, wiggled closer and bent over to kiss him, which he couldn’t resist. Then as he arched upward to hold her and plunder her mouth in frantic need, she sighed and sat down. His cock drove right up inside her, clear to the hilt.

She cried out, but he held onto her so that her cries went into his mouth. Her obvious innocent’s pain lasted only a moment and she slowly relaxed.

Finally he let go and she eased back to look at him. “I did not mean to…” She looked down at where his rod entered her body. “I should…”

Brodie gripped her around the waist and held her in place. His cock was already moving inside her; her inner muscles already massaging him. “It matters no’ now. I canna stop what I must do, nor I think can you.”

She squirmed and gently moved, sighing in obvious pleasure at the sensations she felt. Her eyes were glazed as she focused on him. “’Tis a wonderful thing, this.”

He reached for her plump breasts, taking each one in a hand, molding them. Her eyes widened and she smiled. She was so responsive, so perfect. Still, he felt shame for what they were doing. He’d taken her innocence, even though by accident. He was betraying Agatha. Yet there was no going back now.

“Even if we have only this one time, sweet Anna, I want to do this right.” Although she appeared to be content to sit there impaled on his rod, slowly moving and steadily finding more and more pleasure, he wanted to do the taking. He flipped her onto her back, his cock still deep inside her.

She sighed in delight, her muscles clutching him tighter. “Aye, I like this, too, my lord.”

“Ye’re going to like what I do next even more.” Then he showed her exactly how wonderful it could be to make love with someone you cared for.

Chainmail: Tidbits about Iron-linked Clothing

In many of the historical romances I have read and in some of the movies I have seen, the soldiers wore chainmail. But, in truth, I knew little about this type of battle clothing. I have pulled together some tidbits about the iron-linked clothing which was worn many years ago in warfare. It is still seen in versions worn today in Renaissance festivals.

My heroes and their soldiers in Their Lady Gloriana, from Black Velvet Seductions, wore such clothing.  An example taken from the story is:

The small contingent of soldiers in chainmail and bearing the king’s banner rode between the rows of silent men straight to her. She fought against rubbing her nervous stomach and sucked in a breath to calm her racing heart as she ran her clammy hands over the sides of her gown.

Title: Their Lady Gloriana

Genre: Historical romance, medieval, menage

Publisher: Black Velvet Seductions

Buy Link: Amazon

 

Facts About Chainmail

  1. A type of armour made of small metal rings linked together to form a mesh.
  2. It provided some defense against slashing blows by an edged weapon. A good sword blow in a perpendicular angle could cut through the links. In battling someone wearing chainmail, the goal was to get around the armour rather than through it.
  3. Flexible to wear and allowed ease of movement.
  4. Easy to make, easy and fast to repair.

 

History of Chainmail

  1. This type of armour first appeared after 300 BC and the invention was credited to the Celts.
  2. It was commonly worn on battlefields during the Iron Age (1200-200 BC) and the Middle Ages (500-1300 AD)
  3. It was the primary armour for the average solider until the 14th century.
  4. Shirts of mail (hauberks or byrnies) were worn from the 1320s. They had flared sleeves to the middle of the forearms and reached past the wearer’s knees. Some had sleeves that extended to form mittens for the hands.

 

Garments Made From Chainmail

Hauberk: A knee-length shirt
Haubergeon: A waist-length shirt
Chaussses and Sabatons: Socks
Coif: A hood to protect the head
Camail: Collar which hung from the helmet
Mitrons: Mittens worn to protect the hands

 

Sources

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mail_%28armour%29

An Introduction to Chainmaille: http://www.medievaltymes.com/courtyard/chainmaille_history.htm

Chainmail: http://www.middle-ages.org.uk/chainmail.htm

All Things Medieval: http://medieval.stormthecastle.com/armorypages/chainmail.htm

Chain Mail Clothing: http://www.medieval-life-and-times.info/medieval-swords-and-armor/chain-mail-clothing.htm

The Great Scottish Devil- PG13 Excerpt

 

What does a hardened Scottish warrior and a tinker’s daughter have in common? Stubbornness. It’s the familiar he says “you’ll do as I say because I know best” and she basically says “don’t hold your breath.”

The Great Scottish Devil is my medieval romance sequel to Maggie Mine, with the story of Maggie’s troubled brother. And, as most of us romance readers like, Brodie’s problems only get worse and more complicated when he runs into Annabel.

 

Title:  The Great Scottish Devil

Genre:  Medieval Romance, light BDSM elements

Author:  Starla Kaye

Publisher:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Blushing Books

Buy Link:  Amazon

Reader Comment:

The best romance novel I have ever read! I bought it and finished it in one day! It was so amazing I could not set it down! Brodie is the sexiest character I have ever had the pleasure to read about. I have read and re-read Brodie’s wonderful story. You made it impossible not to love and want to comfort him just as Anna did. I truly truly truly hope that these characters will reappear in another book! I want to know more about their married life and life with a child! I would love a whole series on this family.

 

EXCERPT

He forced his warhorse into a gallop and thundered down the hill. He pulled his sword from the scabbard on his back at the same time he roared, “Stop, thief!”

The boy jerked away from the fallen man, gasping, his gaze darting toward Brodie and Douglas.

As they rode to within a dozen feet of the trembling thief, the lad pulled a dirk from his boot. Small hands shook, but kept the knife in front of him. Amber eyes were wide in fear, yet held determination as well.

“Drop the weapon, lad,” Brodie snarled, holding his three-foot sword in warning. “Step away from the man.”

The boy blinked and tears sparkled in his eyes. Slender shoulders shuddered beneath the dirt-dusted white shirt, and then straightened. A pouty lower lip trembled for but an instant. Then anger spread across a face that appeared too delicate for even a young boy.

“I’m not a thief!” the boy protested. He had the gall to glower at Brodie, to continue holding the ridiculously small weapon out in defense.

“’Tis a lass!” Douglas said in shock.

Brodie, too, had surmised that from the “boy’s” all-too-feminine voice, more so when the “boy’s” chest had thrust out in anger. There was no mistaking the swell of plump breasts shoving against the front of the shirt. It took him a second to come to terms with the surprising discovery; it took another second to get beyond his surprise and back to his fury.

He slid from his horse in a quick move that caused his kilt to lift slightly before falling in place at his knees again. When he focused on the lass, he found her eyes had widened even more. Pink colored her cheeks and she didn’t appear to be breathing, just staring.

To his annoyance, Douglas chuckled behind him. “I dinna think the lass has seen a mon in a kilt ‘ere. Or what a mon doesna wear under a kilt.” He chuckled again.

Disgusted, Brodie strode toward the lass, who was now scooting back toward the wagon, still brandishing the useless dirk. He pointed with his sword at the clearly dead man. “If ye killed him, ye will die here as well.”

“I didn’t kill him.” She swallowed hard, tears creeping slowly down her cheeks. “He’s my father.”

Brodie heard Douglas dismounting, walking next to him. He lowered his sword, studied the young girl, puzzled at the dark hair cut roughly to chin-length. How could he have not recognized her as a female? God’s teeth, had his loss of memories affected his…

No. No, his cock was even now stirring to life. But, good God, she was but a child! His gaze went to her chest. All right, she was a very endowed child. He scowled in annoyance. She should not be affecting him so. Aye, he refused to allow it!

“Ye should no’ be out here alone,” he bellowed.

Douglas glanced at him with a raised eyebrow but said nothing.

The girl, though, shot to her feet, brushed away her tears, and scowled right back at him. “I wasn’t alone until my father died.” At the last word, some of the spirit went out of her. “You do not need to interrupt your travels because of me. You can leave at any time.”

His men started down the hill behind them. The many hooves plodding over the ground drew everyone’s attention. His shoulders stiffened. He didn’t like the idea of his big, brawny Highland soldiers seeing this tiny sprite of a female. Especially with her standing there wearing boy’s-sized braies, which fit her slender form far too well for his peace of mind. And, in her anger with him, her breasts had thrust forward even more, pushing against the fabric of her shirt. He could see her nipples, dark rose-colored buds, pebbled hard.

“Ye have no’ hidden yer woman’s body well enough.” He motioned her toward the wagon. “Find something to cover up with.”

She didn’t move, simply continued to scowl defiantly at him. “You cannot tell me what to do.”

“I have fifty men riding closer by the second. Men who’ve been many days on the trail, many days without a woman.” That all might be true, but he knew none of his men would harm her. He would never allow it. And not a one of them would want to tangle with him.

As if she hadn’t heard the pounding hooves or seen their approach, she looked toward the hill now thickly covered with armed soldiers and powerful horses. The color left her face. “Please, take your men and continue on your way. Please.” She glanced back at the ashen-faced, middle-aged man near her feet. The dirk she held lowering to dangle in her limp hand. “Leave me to bury my father in peace.”

Brodie saw the miserable grief in her expression, fear as well. He knew all about fear, all about grief. Ever since the clansmen who’d brought him back to Urquhart from Tunis had told him about the deaths of his father and his older brother, he’d been grieving. But his grief hadn’t been as wrenching as hers clearly was, because he didn’t actually remember his father or his brother.

“We will see to the burying of yer da,” Douglas stated in a tone that brooked no discussion.

Nodding in agreement, Brodie grew more anxious as the other men neared. He reached over his shoulder to slide his sword back into its sheath. Thinking quickly, he went to his horse and pulled the plaid fabric he used to cover him as he slept on the ground at night from a pouch. He walked to her and easily relieved her of the dirk. Then, as she watched him in astonishment, he draped his plaid around her.

“There. ‘Tis better.” He stepped back, relieved at hiding her woman’s assets that had been making him uncomfortable. And now none of his men would see them either.

Frustrating lass that she could be, she started to pull the plaid off, but stopped when he gave her a fierce glower. “You’re a most annoying man.”

“Aye, he can be, lass,” Douglas chuckled, grinning when Brodie turned the glower in his direction. “He is not called The Great Scottish Devil for nothing.”

Her eyes flashed wide as she gasped, “I’ve heard of you!” But instead of cowering as many people did when they were around him, she gave a soft laugh. “Tales of you are known all throughout the lands. Tales spread by tinkers, added to by maidens fair—and not so fair—eager to be taken to your bed. Your reputation as a lover nearly surpasses your reputation on the battlefields.”

She smiled and studied him. “As such a feared warrior, I thought you would be more battle scarred. Breathe fire even.” She blushed and looked at his kilt. “I can understand why you are lusted after, Lord Devil.”