Cheryl Holt is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thirty-one novels.
She's also a lawyer and mom, and at age 40, with two babies at home, she started a new career as a commercial fiction writer. She'd hoped to be a suspense novelist, but couldn't sell any of her manuscripts, so she ended up taking a detour into romance, where she was stunned to discover that she has an incredible knack for writing some of the world's greatest love stories.
Her books have been released to wide acclaim, and she has won or been nominated for many national awards. She is particularly proud to have been named "Best Storyteller of the Year," by the trade magazine, Romantic Times BOOK Reviews.
Her hot, sexy, dramatic stories of passion and illicit love have captivated fans around the world, and she's celebrated as the Queen of Erotic Romance, which is currently the fastest selling subgenre of women's fiction. Due to the ferociousness of some of her characters, she's also known as the International Queen of Villains.
She received degrees in music, languages, and education, from South Dakota State University, and her juris doctorate was obtained at the University of Wyoming. Her colorful and chaotic employment history includes such variety as public school teacher, cook, bartender, lobbyist, and political activist. She also did brief stints in metro-Denver as a deputy district attorney and administrative law judge.
Cheryl lives and writes in Hollywood, California.
Connect with Cheryl: Author Site | Facebook | Twitter
From the moment they’d learned about Thomas, they’d had unending discussions about what their course of action should be.
They all agreed that he should be raised by the Wainwrights, as the law and the church would deem proper, but they were divided on how to wrest him from his mother.
Anne had pushed for consideration and compromise, while the Duke had advocated harsh measures. Michael liked Anne’s approach, and had penned several notes to the mother, requesting an appointment.
To Michael’s amazement, the first two had gone unanswered. The third one, after a lengthy delay, had generated a polite response—from Thomas’s aunt, not his mother—declining the Duke’s offer.
From there, the negotiations had deteriorated.
Michael had written again, being more strident in tone, and he’d been stunned to receive a reply that was equally stern and unbending. The aunt claimed that the Wainwrights had been given numerous opportunities to become acquainted with Thomas, but had rebuffed all overtures, and she found their sudden interest to be offensive and suspect.
She’d accused Michael of having ulterior motives, and he couldn’t believe the woman’s acuity or her audacity. Yes, he’d neglected to mention that John had died, or that Thomas was now in possession of a huge fortune, but she didn’t need to know all the pesky details, and he was furious that she would dare to thwart him.
While he tried not to exhibit too many of the Duke’s more horrid traits, he was the man’s son, and he could definitely be imperious when the situation called for it.
As with his father, no one told Michael no. No one refused him. Not when the topic involved his deceased brother’s only child.
“What is the aunt’s name?” the Duke inquired.
“Frances Carrington—although she signed the letter as Fanny.”
“Fanny Carrington,” the Duke muttered. “What is to be done with her?”
Anne glared at him as if he were an idiot. “Why must you make this so difficult, Father?”
“What is difficult about it, Anne?”
“We needn’t quarrel with these people.”
“Really? And what would you—in your infinite wisdom—suggest?”
“Simply send Michael to speak with the mother in a friendly and courteous manner. Explain the circumstances to her. You’ll catch more flies with honey than vinegar.”
The Duke glowered. “When I want spurious, meaningless phrases, I’ll let you know.”
“And your plan is better?” Anne said. “You’ll menace and frighten and wound, and in the process, you’ll hurt everyone. Particularly Thomas.”
“The boy will be fine,” the Duke declared. “You have my word on it. If you’ll excuse us…?”
He gestured to the door, indicating that her presence was no longer welcome. Briefly, she tarried, contemplating further argument—which would be pointless—then she marched out in a huff.
“Don’t pay any attention to him,” she hissed to Michael as she passed.
He chuckled. “Don’t worry. I won’t let him do anything cruel.”
“How will you stop him?” she countered. “You’ve never tried very hard before.”
She continued on, clearly feeling that Michael would side with their father in his every devious deed. More and more, she chastised him for being too much like the Duke, and her low opinion rankled. Michael could be ruthless, but he had a conscience and knew when to let it kick in.
They were silent until her footsteps receded, then the Duke said, “I’ll get that writ. Then I want you to travel to Sussex, serve it on those two imbecilic females, and bring the child home with you. I won’t tolerate any nonsense.”
“What if they fight you in court?”
Excerpt from Love's Promise ©2013 by Cheryl Holt. All rights reserved.
New York Times bestselling author, CHERYL HOLT, will sweep readers away with the first novel in her new and breathtaking ‘Lord Trent’ trilogy…
With the death of his older brother, Michael Wainwright, Viscount Henley, has become heir to his father, Duke of Clarendon. The Wainwright men are renowned cads, and as his brother’s will is read, it’s discovered that he sired an illegitimate son and has left the eight-year-old boy his entire fortune. Michael decides to bring the boy to London so he can be showered with all the wealth and status guaranteed by his inheritance. But first, he has to gain custody from the boy’s aunt, who is determined to keep her nephew away from Michael’s dissolute family.
Frances “Fanny” Carrington has always lived in a small village in the country. As a newborn, she was left in a basket on the church steps and raised by the vicar and his wife. But they’ve died, and Fanny is in dire straits, struggling to raise her nephew, to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads. When she begins to receive correspondence from Michael, asking for custody, she can’t help but be suspicious. For years, the Wainwrights have refused to claim her nephew or provide financial assistance to him. She’s alarmed by their sudden interest. What can it mean?
As Michael finally meets Fanny, their attraction is swift, blatant, and dangerous. He can’t fight the need to have her at any cost, and gradually, he lures her into his decadent life of affluence and privilege. But she’s never possessed the callous nature required to thrive in the cut-throat world of the aristocracy, so she can never understand the peril she faces from those who would do anything to keep them apart…
“…a master writer…”
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Cheryl Holt is giving away ten (10) print copies of the first release in her historical romance Trent Trilogy, LOVE’S PROMISE.
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