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Rexanne Becnel

Genre: Historical Romance

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Dangerous to Love

What is it with bad boys that makes them so attractive to otherwise sensible women? My husband was a bad boy, but we just celebrated our 25th anniversary with a Caribbean cruise!

My daughter likes the same sort of guy. No neat hair cuts and tucked in shirt tails for her. No siree. But I am reassured that the bad boys that attract us possess one important quality: they are honorable men, no matter what appearance they present to the world.

So when I wrote Dangerous to Love, it was easy to create Ivan Thornton, bastard earl of Westcott.

My heroine, Lucy Drysdale, is a spinsterish blue-stocking, who thinks she's in love with another scholar. But Ivan puts a serious kink into her plans the first moment she lays eyes on him.

EXCERPT FROM Dangerous to Hold:No one had warned her that he wore an earring! Of all things Lucy might have noticed about Ivan Thornton-his dark lean features, his glossy black hair, his tall, broad-shouldered silhouette-it was that earring that transfixed her. A gold, glinting hoop that winked back the oil-fed light and defiantly proclaimed his gypsy heritage.

His grandmother had warned her that he possessed a certain appeal.

Then he opened his mouth, and she discovered the opposite side of that considerable appeal. "Get the hell out of my house!"

Lucy gasped. But Lady Westcott merely stared at her furious grandson, "I told you before. I will not be put out of my own home. You, however, are free to leave, if that is your desire."

"My desire," he snarled, "is to never lay eyes on you again."

Lady Westcott stiffened, and Lucy's heart broke for the older woman. She moved to stand beside her hostess. "How impossibly rude you are," she snapped. "Lady Westcott has had a long and tiring day. The last thing she requires is to be set upon like this. And did no one ever teach you to knock?"

The unconscionable rogue did not do her the decency of even looking at her, but continued to glare at his grandmother. How dare he ignore her as if she did not even exist!

She stepped in front of the Countess, forcing him to acknowledge her. "I'll thank you to depart these apartments. Now," she added. "Right now!"

The glacial stare focused on her. The furious voice turned low and dangerous. "Unless you are here for some useful purpose, it would be better if you remove yourself from this discussion."

"I am here for a...for a very useful purpose," she sputtered. If a body could burn with outrage and yet freeze with unreasonable far, hers did both. "I am a guest of Lady Westcott's and I-"

"This is my house, not hers. The only guests I allow are my own." The frosty glare moved over her, head to toe, taking an alarmingly thorough appraisal of her person. Then those bitter blue eyes met hers again. "Dare I hope your purpose here is carnal? And that it involves me?"

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