Today we're excited to spotlight Dangerous Alliance by Jennieke Cohen.
Read on for more about Jennieke and her book, an excerpt, plus an giveaway!
Meet Jennieke Cohen!
A lifelong lover of history and literature, Jennieke Cohen studied English history at Cambridge University before receiving her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Davis. After interning with a literary agent and at Prima Games (an imprint of Penguin Random House), she entered the Master of Professional Writing program at the University of Southern California. Cohen has worked as a writing consultant and as a ghostwriter and has written prescriptive nonfiction. She is a member of SCBWI, Romance Writers of America, and the Jane Austen Society of North America. When not writing or reading, Cohen can be found watching classic movies, drinking tea, singing opera and musical theater, and planning her next trip to England. She lives in California. You can visit her online at www.jenniekecohen.com, and find her on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Meet Dangerous Alliance!
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue meets Jane Austen in this witty, winking historical romance with a dash of mystery!
Lady Victoria Aston has everything she could want: an older sister happily wed, the future of her family estate secure, and ample opportunity to while her time away in the fields around her home.
But now Vicky must marry—or find herself and her family destitute. Armed only with the wisdom she has gained from her beloved novels by Jane Austen, she enters society’s treacherous season.
Sadly, Miss Austen has little to say about Vicky’s exact circumstances: whether the roguish Mr. Carmichael is indeed a scoundrel, if her former best friend, Tom Sherborne, is out for her dowry or for her heart, or even how to fend off the attentions of the foppish Mr. Silby, he of the unfortunate fashion sensibility.
Most unfortunately of all, Vicky’s books are silent on the topic of the mysterious accidents cropping up around her…ones that could prevent her from surviving until her wedding day.
~ Excerpt ~
Excerpted with permission from Dangerous Alliance: An Austentacious Romance by Jennieke Cohen. © 2019 by Harperteen, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
CHAPTER THE FIRST
The danger, however, was at present so unperceived, that they did not by any means rank as misfortunes with her. —Jane Austen, Emma
April 1817 Oakbridge Estate, Hampshire, England
The lichen-kissed stone dropped onto the rock pile with a hollow clack. Lady Victoria Aston rested her aching hands on the rough stone. She wiped her muddy palms down the front of her thighs,
smearing muck onto her father’s old tan breeches. When attempting to save the lives of a particularly bothersome flock of sheep, one had to make sacrifices.
With two more sizable stones, she would close the gap in the wall. Then she could scour Oakbridge’s 6,562 acres for the estate shepherd. Vicky narrowed her eyes at a shaggy old ewe: one of many she’d found out-of-bounds in the neighboring pasture. They’d jumped over the crumbling gap and gobbled a patch of indigestible clover. Soon, their bellies would bloat, and without the shepherd’s aid, they would certainly perish.
Inhaling the clean morning air, redolent with the perfume of freshly drying grass, Vicky bent for another rock. This would never have happened to Emma Woodhouse. Or rather, Emma Wood- house would never have let it happen to her.
Having just finished reading Emma for the third time since its publication, Vicky had lately found herself comparing her own country existence to the heroine of said novel. Not that Emma was her favorite heroine from the four novels written by the author known only to the public as “a lady” (but whom most of the local Hamp- shire society knew to be one Miss Jane Austen). No, Vicky reserved that honor for Miss Elizabeth Bennet of Pride and Prejudice.
A clear picture of Elizabeth Bennet muddying her gown to fix a stone wall darted into Vicky’s mind—after all, Elizabeth had walked miles unaccompanied to see her sister, Jane, when she was ill and staying at Netherfield. Vicky’s lips curved into a smile at the idea that her favorite heroine would approve of her behavior.
As Vicky straightened, movement far in the distance caught her eye. She squinted. Amid the emerald-green fields on the other side of the wall, a rider in a russet coat and dark hat cantered adjacent to a short hedgerow. She couldn’t see his face, but his bearing looked familiar. She blinked.
Surely, it wasn’t the one person she had no wish to see on such a morning. Fate wouldn’t be so cruel.
She glanced down at her father’s muddy breeches. They didn’t exactly outline her legs, but they weren’t particularly loose either. They hugged her hips just tightly enough to allow her to tuck a muslin shirt into them and actually stay up without other assistance. She’d buttoned the top half of her olive-green riding habit almost up to her neck for a semblance of decency, but by any stranger’s standard, she was courting scandal.
She peered at the rider again. His attire proclaimed him a gentleman, and although she still couldn’t make out his features, he rode a peculiar chestnut of medium height that looked something like a working horse. She had never seen the breed before.
Well, if he—whoever he was—felt scandalized by her appearance, that was his affair. Breeches afforded more comfort on her post-dawn inspections across the estate and allowed her to ride astride. That meant she could be more efficient helping her father, especially when something went wrong, like today. Their management strategies shouldered the livelihoods of more than a hundred individuals; if her father or his steward couldn’t allocate funds or attention to one small piece of the puzzle making up the estate, someone less fortunate would suffer. Vicky helped wherever and whenever she could.
She hauled the stone up and set it on the pile with an involuntary squeak before glancing back at the rider.
He had jumped the hedgerow. Now he rode toward her, picking up speed. What was he—
Vicky’s stomach tensed as his face came into focus. It was just as she’d feared: the rider was Tom Sherborne. Blast! She looked at her breeches again and winced.
Still some fifty feet away, Tom raised his hand and something fluttered in her chest. But he wasn’t greeting her as she’d thought. With his whole arm, he pointed at something behind her.
She frowned. As she turned, something hard collided with the side of her head. White-hot pain burst through her skull. Her vision pitched sideways and her neck whipped to the right. As her knees smacked into the soggy turf, everything went black.
By: Jennieke Cohen
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: December 3rd, 2019
Three winners will receive a copy of Dangerous Alliance (Jennieke Cohen) ~ (US Only)
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