Friday, November 18, 2016

Christmas Romance; Always Hope and Always Heartwarming!

I love Christmas, and Christmas Romance Novels are my favorites.

Christmas Romance always delivers joy, intrigue and a happily ever after!

I've written a Christmas Trilogy, and I'm so excited to share them with you here.

The trilogy is unique. It takes place in the sunny, warm Caribbean, not in the northern hemisphere where snow and cold weather accompany the holiday season. Even more unique is the fact that it's a Historical Romance, and you have the makings for a very refreshing and delightful holiday experience.

Elizabeth Beaumont is a new bride in a strange new land. She's far from her home in England, and she's surrounded by family. Everyone is looking to her as the mistress of the household to provide a memorable holiday experience. But is she up to the task?  Recent tragedy has left its mark. She's trying desperately to concoct a traditional Christmas in a very unconventional place. There's no mistletoe or holly, no snow, and the ingredients for a traditional Christmas Dinner are a scarcity. If that isn't hard enough, her new husband is acting peculiar. He seems to be hiding something from her, and playing pranks, which is not like Donovan at all. Elizabeth has much to overcome this Christmas, not the least of which is impressing her husband's mother!  We've all been there, haven't we?

Christmas with family . . . always dramatic! 

Christmas at Ravencrest is the first book in my Christmas Trilogy A Dark Hero Christmas. If you've read Dark Hero, you know that the book ended on Christmas Eve.  I wanted to give readers a peek into Elizabeth and Donovan's first Christmas together, so I wrote Christmas at Ravencrest.

Available at all digital retailers:


This book is also available in the box set A Dark Hero Christmas Trilogy. 

Coming up next time, an excerpt from Christmas at Ravencrest. 

Saturday, June 25, 2016

New Look for a Timeless Love Story

I have a new look for my contemporary Romance!  

Awesome new cover for a Sweet Story
The book was previously published as The Rock Star Next Door, A Modern Fairytale, by Lily Silver. 

Recently, I decided to re-title the book, as it no longer fits into the Rock Star Romance Genre. That means I also had to have a new cover made. My reason for doing this is as follows. The story line is sweet. Yes, the hero is a Rock Star, but he is not the typical wild and crazy type that most rock star romance novels depict. Lex could just as easily have been a CEO of a company, a billionaire, a movie director, or a computer expert. It's the love story, not the hero's career choice that matters. I felt that the main theme of the healing power of love was a better fit with a new title, so that those who enjoy a really wild and erotic read in Rock Star romance would not be disappointed. And those who do not like to read hot and spicy rock star romances would not miss this wonderful and touching story because of it's title. 

The story is about Jessie, an adult survivor of childhood emotional abuse. Her desire is to find a true, abiding love that stands the test of time. She's a runner, and yes, she's a rock guitarist in a band called Heartless. She is also the main songwriter and singer in the band, as she does most of the business dealings with their manager and the record company. Jessie rents a beach house in Malibu for the summer and gets finagled into going on a blind date with a reclusive rock star legend who lives next door, as a favor to a friend. Of course, for Jessie, this is exciting as she used to have posters of Lex on her wall and drool over him when she was in high school. She's now 24 years old, a rock success story in her own right, but still struggling with the demons of abuse from childhood. 

Enter Lex, an enlightened man who is sure of himself. Lex is confident, successful, rich and handsome. Every woman would sell her soul to the devil to garner his attention, as he's a celebrity hottie.  But for Jessie, who has had her share of heartache and abandonment, by her mother as a child, and by men she's dated, it's a dangerous experiment. One she's not sure her heart can survive. Not another rejection or nasty breakup. And certainly not one that will be plastered all over the tabloids. 

Lex woos her patiently. He comes on strong at first, but then backs off when she gets skittish. And, when she is threatened by a dark force from their past, he's right there to bear her up and carry her to safety.  So, that being said, I felt that the book was not a good fit for the "Rock Star" genre of romance. It's a dark book, but not for the reasons expected in the genre that features bad boy rockers as heroes.  

Lex is a good guy, a true hero, and he's on a mission to redeem himself after messing up and losing the love of his life, Jessie, in a past life incarnation. He recognizes Jessie. She doesn't recognize him, and is uncertain if he's not a little crazy. And Jessie has dealt with crazy men in her life, and crazy parents. She's running away from crazy, has been since she was 16 years old. She's not sure if Lex is just another weird guy hitting on her since she's climbed the ladder of fame, or if his penchant for publicity stunts is to feed his ego. She's frightened by his persistence, but when she talks to her friends and her twin brother, they tell her to just go with it and not worry so much. As much as she wants to just let go of control and enjoy life, as her brother suggests, she cannot escape the fears of the past; fear of rejection, fear of getting hurt, fear of having another piece of her heart shaved away by trusting the wrong man. 

So, the title "Jessie's Hero" seems to fit the story much more than the rock star theme. Yes, the hero and the heroine are both rock stars, but the main point of the story is sweet, poignant, and it depicts the emotional devastation of childhood abuse. The idea of reincarnation, where two lovers separated by tragedy in one life can find each other in the next, is a very deep spiritual concept.  

Jessie is a wounded soul, a battered soul. She's dreaming of finding true love, but frightened at the prospect when a man comes forth claiming to be her soul mate from another age. She longs for a hero. Is Lex, the rock star living next door, her hero? Or is he just a deluded celebrity living on the edge? 

If you've bought and read the book as The Rock Star Next Door, nothing has changed in the story. It's the same book, just a different branding, a different wrapping if you will. This has been done so that those who would be interested in the story are not put off by the bad boy rock star stereotype the old title implies.  

If you have suffered deep scars of emotional abuse, you will find this story an accurate depiction of the lasting affects of childhood abuse. Many people have written me to say that they felt as if it were their story, and have thanked me for giving their pain a voice. I have also included self-help links for those still struggling with the black cloud of abuse.  

I am a survivor of child abuse. My mother was mentally ill, and frequently let myself and my siblings know that we were not wanted. My mother threatened suicide repeatedly, and threatened to leave us. So, like Jessie in the story, I have abandonment issues. Many of the scenes in the story are true. Jessie's story is really my story, only I didn't marry a rock star. My hope is that others suffering the same kind of quiet, hidden abuse will find succor and hope in knowing they are not alone. 

Lily Silver, Author, free spirit, artist, and survivor! 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Hooray for Summer Reads, Hooray for Free!


Summertime has always been about reading for me. Sun, surf, ice cold lemonade or something stronger, and I'm in heaven.  

June marks a big anniversary for me, the 25 year anniversary of when I started writing historical romance. That's right, 25 years!  Actually, I started in May of 1991 just as my kids were finishing school for the year, but I am counting 25 years as a romance writer, so let's celebrate!  

I've recently made my first published novel, Dark Hero, also the first in the Reluctant Heroes series FREE.  That's right, it's a 400 plus page historical romance novel full of suspense, mystery and magic, for free on me. You can download it from any of the digital platforms using the links below.  

What's it about?   An eighteen year old girl, a very troubled hero, and Celtic Magic! 
When Elizabeth's mother is murdered, her Celtic Granny casts a spell to summon a Dark Hero to rescue them. Granny's spell works, bringing a very troubled hero to Elizabeth's doorstep. Before he can whisk his new bride safely away, Elizabeth kidnapped. Donovan rescues her only to find she doesn't remember falling in love with him, in fact, she doesn't even recall ever meeting him before awakening in his bed. 

Her Dark Hero has no choice but to try to make her fall in love with him all over again.  

Elizabeth struggles with emerging magical skills and tries to hide them from this stranger she married. If Donovan learns she can see and speak with the dead, she fears he'll drop her at the nearest asylum and wash his hands of her. So, what's an 18th century girl to do? She's stuck on a remote island in the West Indies with a dark, brooding hero harboring secrets of his own, isolated and alone with no family or friends to can help her.  This is a Gothic Romance with plenty of supernatural events to keep you awake at night. And, it's free, the first book in the Reluctant Heroes Series! 

Itunes Link:  Download a free copy

Nook Link: Download for Free 

And, there's more! 

You can also get another full length Historical Paranormal Romance FREE!   If you like shapeshifter romance, werewolf romance, or just a good Gothic Romance, you'll love The Gypsy's Curse, A Gothic Tale of Romantic Suspense.

To receive your second free book, just fill in the details below and you will be able to download a second free full length novel by Lily Silver to enjoy this summer.

Your Free Book

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Happy Summer, and Happy Reading!  

Friday, April 8, 2016

Romance of the Flowers: A Greek Love Story

Primavera by Sandro Botticelli, ca 1482

As spring emerges we think of flowers. New growth in plants, whether its weeds we must pull, new grass that needs to be mowed or visiting the garden store to buy our flower plants for the season. 

In the Renaissance painting above, aptly called Primavera--a Celebration of Spring--we have Aphrodite in the center, or Venus to the Romans; the goddess of love. Above her is Cupid, his arrows at the ready. Surrounding her are other goddesses. The three muses are to her left, dancing in celebration of the coming of spring.  Mercury is the man to the far left. He's a messenger of the gods, and is looking off into the distance, not joining the festivities. 

To the right of Aphrodite/Venus (our central figure) are two female figures. The first one is clothed in a flowing floral gown and is known as Primavera. You'll notice the woman on the far right, next to Primavera, is about to be seized by a man with a bluish face who appears to be dropping down from the sky. The scantly clad woman is Khloris, a forest nymph. The man seizing her is Zephyrus, Greek god of the west wind. He is considered one of the gentlest of the wind gods, and is a messenger of spring.  (think warm wind from the west, a spring zephyr, a gently flowing warm wind). He is a god, and yet, he is a sensual man. He's said to have had more than one wife. 

In this 15th century depiction by Botticelli, the god appears to be about to kidnap Khloris. I admit, he looks a little scary here, like a stalker, but his intent in the myth is more romantic than threatening.
As a nymph, Khloris is associated with springtime, and flowers. The Romans referred to her as Flora. But, this affiliation came about after she was taken away by Zephyrus. After their union, she becomes a goddess of the flowers. When Zephyrus abducted Khloris and married her, he gave her dominion over the flowers of the earth. They had a child together, named Karpos, which literally means fruit.
Okay, so the west wind pollinates the flowers and we have the result of that act in growing fruit. You can see the sexual parallels in this story. 

In the painting above, it looks ominous for Khloris as the God of the West Wind drops down from the sky to seize her and carry her away to his lair.  But, this is not the rape/abduction scenario as we might interpret it in modern times. Botticelli lived in the 15th century. This depiction idealizes the coming of spring, flowers, new growth, fertility, and the conception of fruit into a romantic allegory. In the world of the Renaissance, the male lover swoops in to gather the female in his arms, carries her away, makes love to her and gives her the power over all flora on the earth. The result of their union is 'fruit'. Not only is this a very sensual and primitive depiction of procreation, but it's a romanticized notion that Spring arrives because a man and a woman made love.  

Another illustration of the myth comes from a painting created in 1875 by William Adolph Bouguereau. In this depiction, we a see Khloris napping in the grass and Zephyrus comes upon her and kisses her cheek, here we have a romantic interlude instead of the more stark idea of seizure. 

By Stephencdickson - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Either way, our idea of Springtime is a time for falling in love. Anyone recall the old adage about springtime being a time when young men abandon their school books because their mind is on romance?  Ah, the Greeks and their mythologies!

Depending on the interpretations of this painting and the meaning of the characters in it, you'll find philosophical arguments that both women on the right of Venus, Primavera and Khloris, represent the same person. This interpretation embraces the idea that Khloris became Primavera, (or Flora), because of her love affair with Zephyrus. I was taught this interpretation in my Art History classes ca. 2004. However, each generation of art scholars discover new meanings in the symbolism of a painting so interpretations can change over time.

Bottom Line: we have Spring being brought to us by an act of romance, the handsome god swooping down to gather the lovely maiden in his arms. He carries her away in a moment of passion. His act changes her, it gives her a new purpose in life. She becomes the goddess in charge of all the flowers of the earth, not just a meandering forest nymph.

This Sweep-Me-Away story-line predates Harlequin Romance books by at least a few millennium. Despite the cultural stigma of reading romance, Romance novels still sell more than any other genre of books, meaning women still like the fantasy of being taken away from a dull life by the billionaire, or the bad boy, the rock star or the rogue. We still like a little escapism with our love stories. Doesn't matter if it's Edward in Twilight taking Bella away from her mundane life as a high school student and opening her up to a whole new world she didn't know existed consisting of vampires and werewolves, or a Greek god swooping down to embrace beauty and take her away to a new world with new opportunities, giving her power as a goddess in her own right.

Don't you just love the Greek myths!  Romance abounds in those old stories. Betrayal and lust, too, but we're not going there today.  

Happy Spring!

As I write this, it's snowing outside my window. Yes, that's right, snowing on April 8th in Wisconsin. The lovely green grass is covered with a fresh layer of snow.  

Next time, more Greek Lovers. Here's a shot from my photography collection.
Irises by Lily Silver, 2007

P.S.  As it happens, Iris is said to be another wife of Zephyrus!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

St. Patrick's Day Fun: Darby O'Gill and the Little People

Darby O'Gill and The Little People was released in 1959. I remember be taken to it as a four or five year old in the 1960's for a movie matinee and being so scared when the pooka scene came on, and crying so loudly that my older sister had to take me out of the movie theater. She was a teen, and was not very happy with me for ruining her Saturday at the matinee.

Well, since then, I've gotten over that childish fear, and this movie is one of my all time favorites for St. Patrick's Day. To see my other favorite movie, go here Luck of the Irish

In Darby O'Gill, Sean Connery plays an Irish caretaker to an estate in Rathcullen in what appears to be an early 20th century time. Mostly horses and wagons for transportation. Connery's character is not the main character, however.

Darby O'Gill is an aging caretaker to an estate in Rathcullen. The owner of the estate decides to hire a younger caretaker and pension Darby off at half pay. Darby is upset. He's not the best caretaker, to be honest. He spends most of his time in the pub drinking and telling stories about his encounters with the little people. He has tried to capture one for some time, and succeeds. But, when he opens the bag in the pub to show his companions, he finds that King Brian has turned himself into a rabbit, and so everyone thinks he's just a deluded old fool. Darby has a daughter, Katie, and he doesn't want Katie to know he's losing his job because he's ashamed. This means they have to move out of the cottage they live in as well.

Darby's replacement arrives, a handsome Dubliner named Michael (Sean Connery).  Darby begs Micheal to not tell his daughter Katie that he's being replaced.  Michael agrees for the time being.

Meanwhile, the King of the Lephrechauns, Brian, kidnaps Darby. He's taken to the inside of a mountain and held as a guest of the little people. There is gold beyond imagination there, feasting and song. It seems a paradise, except for one thing, Darby can never return home. He soon tires of this and misses his daughter Katie. So, he begs the King so set him free. King Brian warns him that if he did so, others of the little people might be tempted to take their ire out on his daughter, Katie. Legend says that once someone is kidnapped by the little people, they can never go home.

Darby is a clever old fellow. He plays a song on the violin during a feast for the lephrechauns, stirring them up with a song of the hunt that makes them wish to leave the inside of the mountain and go out riding on the hunt. The mountain opens, and Darby escapes.

Darby in King Brian's lair inside the mountain

Michael and Katie have been having a little romance. They go about exploring the countryside together, having fun. Michael (Sean Connery) sings to her, and they sing a cute song together  "She's my dear, my darling one, my smiling and beguiling one, no other, no other, can match the likes of her!"  My husband and I still sing it together today, it's catchy!
Sean Connery as Micheal, Janet Munro as Katie

So, handsome Michael is the romantic lead, and also a problem character for the main protagonist, Darby. He's younger, and has taken over Darby's job.  Katie has a temper, and she and Michael end up sparring words. The lephrechaun's do their mischief against Darby by making Katie severely ill with a fever. The coiste-bodhar (the death coach) and the banshee make their appearance. Darby tries to bargain with the little people for Katie's life.  Of course, once Katie recovers, Michael and Katie have a happily ever after.

This movie is fun, romantic, and PG. It's something kids can enough along with their parents. Granted, CGI had not been created at the time so the graphics might seem cheesy, but it is a treasure from the Disney vault and worth the effort to find. The little people are played by real people, not just special effects creations.

The movie is based on two books by Hermione Templeton Kavanagh;  Darby O'Gill and the Good People,  and Of Ashes and Old Wishes and Other Darby O'Gill Tales.  The movie, of course, takes a few liberties with the books, but that is to be expected when books become films.

Two things I have to say about the folklore:

  • The term 'little people' actually is used for the fey folk, fairies, not lephrechauns true Irish folklore, so in this film I see a blending of Lephrechaun lore and Fairy lore.  Lephrechauns were little shoemakers who hoard gold.  Fairies lived inside of mountains, and were known to kidnap humans in lore. They (fairies) were often called the 'Other Folk' or Other Crowd by the Irish.  
  • For a discussion on The Other Crowd and reference to a good book on the subject, see this post Fairy Magic, have you met any of the good folk?
  • The idea of lephrechauns living in the mountains and taking on the characteristics of the fey is troublesome if you actually know Irish folklore. The fairies and the lephrechauns of legend are two very different types of magical beings. 
That said, there is still a lot to enjoy in this very old movie that celebrates Ireland. Enjoy the trailer below: 

If you are looking for an Irish Romance in books, I am offering my two historical romance novels for free on St. Patrick's Day.  This offer is one day only, March 17th, 2016

Some Enchanted Waltz, a full length historical romance featuring an Irish rebel as a hero in 1798. 

Bright Scoundrel, a full length historical romance featuring an Irish rake returning to his ancestral home to find it full of ghosts and dark creatures. 

Thanks for visiting my blog, and have a Happy St. Patrick's Day!  

Monday, March 7, 2016

St. Paddy Day Romance Movies: Luck of the Irish!

Shamrocks are everywhere, and the wearing of the green is upon us!  I love this time of year. For many years I have indulged myself and my kids in Irish culture during this season. We've cooked the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage popular with Irish Americans, and we've made homemade Irish Soda Bread. My Love of all things Irish extends to romance, naturally. I love to read romances set in Ireland, and I also devour movies with lovers set in Ireland. 

Let's take a look at one wonderful , fun, lighthearted Irish romance movie to get you in the mood while your Irish Soda Bread is baking in the oven.   Irish Soda Bread Recipe at bottom of page. 

The Quiet Man,  1952

This movie is my all time favorite.  It's an oldie, being over sixty years old, but it's well worth the watch.  It was filmed in Ireland, and stars John Wayne as an Irish American returning to his Irish roots after a traumatic event in his life.  

Shawn Thornton Arrives in Rural Ireland

Shawn Thornton (John Wayne) arrives in the small village and sets out to buy the cottage he was born in.  He meets an old companion, who aids him in settling in to his new life as an Irish farmer.  This story is full of lovely Irish landscapes from the 1950's, and plenty of Irish bluster. Shawn makes an enemy in the village, another gruff, burly fellow who seems to run the town. And he meets a goddess in the hills, a lovely red haired woman herding sheep.
When he first sees her, he asks his companion, "Is she for real?" He's used to big city gals in America, not a simple, barefoot shepherdess strolling the countryside with her hair down in casual clothing. His friend assures him he's not imagining things.  The woman is Mary Kate. A 'spinster', according to the village people and the times.  She's unmarried, and past her first blush of youth. 

Lovely Maureen O'Hara as Mary Kate
Shawn is so captivated with her that on his second encounter, as she is coming out of the church, he does something shocking. He cups water from the fount outside the church in his hand and holds it out to her to do her cross.  This is shocking in the era because only a husband would be allowed to do such a thing, so it's a bold, flirty move. Mary Kate (Maureen O'Hara) responds to his brash behavior by dipping her fingers in and making the sign of the cross. Note, this is outside the church, not in public. So, she's a little embarrased and taken aback by her own response and shyly tugs her shawl close and runs off. It's cute, it's the fifties. She's shy because she's not had a suitor before.

Shawn starts to court Mary Kate, and of course there are difficulties in their relationship. She's from the old world of Irish heritage and he's from America, the new world as it were. They are besotted with each other, and of course their personalities clash. Mary Kate has a temper and she has some high expectations about what is proper in a marriage contract. They have romantic moments, however, and share a few kisses in the rain at an old abbey. (Love that scene). 

The lovers encounter a big hurdle in the brother of Mary Kate, none other than the town bully. Shawn has a backstory that conflicts with taking the man on. Shawn was a prizefighter in America. He killed a man accidentally with his mighty paw during a fight, and since then has vowed to never fight again. So, he's required to fight a physical battle with Mary Kate's brother to win an argument and the man's respect, but won't do it. There are whispers from his adversary that he's a coward, which goads him on. 

Mary Kate is a complicated woman. She loves Shawn, but has such strict codes of honor regarding her marriage inheritance (some furniture of her mother's and a small monetary inheritance), that she makes it hard for Shawn. She marries him, but when her brother refuses to give her her due portion as her marital inheritance, Mary Kate refuses to sleep with Shawn. She says she will cook and clean for him but not share his bed until he gets up enough 'nerve' to fight (yes physically fight) her brother for what is rightfully hers. So, complicated romance, even after the marriage. Plenty of fun, and a good clean romance. 

The Quiet Man has plenty of scenes of Irish culture, including a very well cut scene displaying an annual horse race that is similar to Galway Races. It's fun, as are the pub scenes and the courting scenes. This is an idyllic Ireland, to be sure, as many critics say it's not authentic. However, it is a wonderful movie featuring Irish Lovers, and the breathtaking Irish countryside, including quaint whitewashed cottages and ruined abbeys. There's a happily ever after, of course, but I won't tell you what it is. 

Here's a Romantic view of the movie: 

Next Time, I'll talk about another wonderful Irish Romance from long ago you may have missed.

Irish Soda Bread Recipe:
I found this recipe over twenty years ago in an Irish cookbook. It's lovely.
2 pounds flour
2 teaspoons salt
3 teaspoons baking soda (bicarbonate of soda in Irish recipe)
17 fluid ounces of buttermilk
1 ounce of butter
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
sift flour, salt and soda in large bowl with a wooden spoon. Gradually work in buttermilk.
Combine mixture thoroughly. The dough should be smooth but firmer than normal bread.
Turn onto lightly floured surface and kneed lightly for 3 to 4 minutes. Divide into two portions. Form each portion into a a firm ball then gently press with the palm of your hand to flatten round cake. Should be about 8 inches across and 1 and 1/2 inch thick.
Generously butter the two baking sheets and position a cake in the center of each. Cut a deep cross, extending to the edges, on the top of each cake. Place in the center of oven and bake for 35 minutes or until pale and golden. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for thirty minutes. Eat while still slightly warm.
** I came across this twenty two years ago in an authentic Irish cookbook that I found at my library. I cannot remember the name of the book, but I do hold that this is a authentic recipe from the old country.

Friday, February 12, 2016

A Dangerous Hero; Release Day for Noble Assassin!

Just in time for Valentine's Day!  A New Historical Romance Release from Lily Silver:

Hello everyone. I'm excited this weekend. It's Release Day for Noble Assassin, Book Four of my Reluctant Heroes Series!  As a Valentine's Treat, take a peek at an Excerpt below from the First Scene;

The Governess meets the Assassin!  Excerpt from Noble Assassin, Copyright Lily Silver 2016

The Island of Ravencrest, West Indies, 1808
“Will you help me?” The lovely blonde woman sat before him at his desk, her blue eyes pleading and fearful.
Ambrose was not a heartless man, but he was as yet unimpressed by her tale of woe.
The glow of a candle flickered and danced before him, although it was only mid- afternoon. The storm outside made it necessary to light the candles to see. The tropical rainstorm brought an additional sense of gloom to the atmosphere as Miss Wallingford sketched out her story in the most obscure terms possible.
The light of the flame was entrancing, a warm yellow golden glow that bathed his mind in calm. It was a trick he learned in the East Indies, to focus on the simplest thing to clear his mind of all the clutter that shadowed an issue and brought a thousand questions and concerns.
The warmth of the flame could comfort. The heat could maim or kill.
So it was with any object. It could be used for good or evil. The intent was purely in the one wielding the object in his hand. His childhood tutors trained him to see even everyday objects that appeared harmless as potential weapons at his disposal.
“Mr. Duchamp, will you help me?” The whisper soft voice of his unexpected guest brought Ambrose back from his quiet contemplation of the flame. Miss Wallingford was quite fetching by candlelight. Her buttery blonde curls framed a face that could launch a thousand ships, if the legend of Helen of Troy were to be given life. She was an English woman with an English nose, a resolute English chin and prim, tight English lips.
Pink lips, to be precise. Lips that needed kissing, but had likely never had the pleasure.
Miss Wallingford was the governess at Ravencrest Plantation. He steepled his hands before him and studied the lovely woman who had come to the island plantation just eighteen months ago.  He studied her with ruthless silence, ignoring her plea. Why would such a lovely, intelligent woman require the lethal assistance of a man such as himself?  “I will think on it.”
Her smooth English brow was pinched. She appeared offended by his reluctance to entangle himself in her private affairs. “I have no one else who can help me, sir. No one else to turn to.”
“You might speak with his lordship,” Ambrose suggested.  Sharing her dilemma with their employer was an unpleasant option, but an option, nevertheless. “Count Rochembeau is a fair man. He has a soft spot for those trapped in unfortunate circumstances. He might offer a better solution than I could. A more civilized and honorable solution.”
“His lordship would dismiss me and send me back to England.” Miss Wallingford sat up straight in the chair. “And they would find me easily if I were returned to English shores.”
Ambrose sighed. He studied the candle again, seeking the serenity of the silent flame. He knew what happened when a target was located by a professional assassin. There could be a time of waiting to make the kill. If the assassin were smart, he would strike quickly and leave the area before someone noticed him and his cover were blown.
Pretty Miss Wallingford was putting him in a very difficult situation by asking for his help with her would-be pursuers. Suppose she was involved in political intrigue?  His employer would not be pleased if Ambrose brought trouble to the serene island refuge where both he and the count had come to escape the horrors of France years ago. Count Rochembeau had finally found peace after his ordeal in the Bastille. The count found refuge in the arms of his beautiful wife and the bland domestic life they shared with their five children.
He picked up an apple from the bowl on his desk and began peeling it with his favorite dagger. After twirling away the skin with ease, he sliced it into quarters and picked up a piece with the tip of his blade. He bit into the tasty fruit. He’d skipped lunch and he was famished. He picked up another piece with the tip of his blade, about to shove it into his mouth.
She was watching him with fascinated horror. So, she’d heard the stories about him and his fondness for sharp instruments from the sailor’s wives. Tres bien. A fierce reputation was not a flaw but a weapon of the mind. A weapon he’d honed to full advantage. 
“Pardon, mademoiselle,” he said in a flat tone devoid of true regret. “I have forgotten my manners. Would you care for a piece?” He extended his arm across the desk, holding the dagger out to her with a chunk of fruit impaled on the end.
Her eyes told the tale. She was appalled by his casual savagery. 
End of Excerpt, Copyright Lily Silver, 2016

If you want a simmering, suspenseful historical romance with an unlikely hero set in the warm Caribbean, here is the link for the book on Noble Assassin on