Friday, July 16, 2010

Exclusive Peek: His At Night by Sherry Thomas

From Sherry Thomas:

The wedding scene below takes place in a London Hotel, not just any hotel, but the Savoy London. I’d originally wanted to set the scene in Claridge’s, but Claridge’s, alas, was closed for renovation during all of 1897, the year in which HIS AT NIGHT is set.

Until Claridge’s reopened, the Savoy was probably the most modern and elegant hotel in all of London. It had its famous restaurant, helmed by the legendary Escoffier. It provided electricity twenty-four hours a day and elevators that were referred to as ascension rooms. Unlike many older hotels, which didn’t have en-suite bathrooms, the Savoy spared its guests the indignity of having to stand in their robes in the morning and wait for the baths down the bathroom down the hall to become available. Not to mention its advantageous location on the river, right next to Cleopatra’s Needle. (See attached image of its terrace, where the fashionable crowd took their afternoon tea.)

So, now you know where the hero and the heroine are, I hope you enjoy the excerpt from their wedding night!

Exclusive Excerpt:

“Our marriage has come as a shock to both of us. I’m loath to impose myself on you when everything has been so rushed and . . . bizarre. Why don’t we go on at a more leisurely pace?"

“No.” She shook her head. “We don’t have the time.”

He gave her a look that was almost sardonic. “We’ve a lifetime—or so the clergyman said.”

She needed to be mindful about her future consumption of Sauternes. Not only were her eyes functioning only questionably, but her tongue had become thick and unwieldy. She had a coherent argument in her head concerning the urgency of the consummation. But she could not motivate her mandible to deliver that argument. It flatly refused.

So she tilted her head and smiled at him instead, not because she had to, but because she wanted to.

His reaction was to pick up the whiskey on his nightstand and take a swig directly from the bottle. Oh, dear, but that was a very masculine thing to do. Very forceful and decisive.


Indeed, his whole person was attractive. Outstandingly handsome. That thick, slightly unruly hair that glinted like polished bronze. That bone structure. Those wide, tightly sinewed shoulders.

“I forgot what color are your eyes,” she murmured.

How preposterous that after four days of acquaintance—and a wedding ceremony—she didn’t remember the color of his eyes.

“They are blue.”

“Really?” She was beguiled. “How wonderful. May I see?”

With that, she approached him and peered up. He was very tall, taller than she’d remembered, somehow, and she had to place her hands on his arms and stand on her tiptoes to see deeply into his eyes.

“Many people have blue eyes,” he said.

“But yours are extraordinary.” Truly they were. “They are the color of the Hope Diamond.”

“Have you ever seen the Hope Diamond?”

“No, but now I know what it must look like.” She sighed. “And you smell good.”

“I smell like whiskey.”

“Yes, that too. But”—she breathed in deeply—“better.”

She could not define or describe it. It was a warm scent, like that of sheets freshly returned from the laundry. Or that of sunbaked stones.

“You’ve had too much to drink, haven’t you?”

She stared at his mouth, firm yet enticing. “‘Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honeycomb: honey and milk are under thy tongue; and the smell of thy garments is like the smell of Lebanon.’”

“You’ve had too much to drink.”

She smiled. He was so very amusing too. Her hands spread against his arms. So firm, they were, yet so smooth. She remembered the night of Squeak Piggy Squeak. She’d liked touching him even then. No wonder. He was marvelous to touch and he smelled like Lebanon.

She looked up into his eyes. He did not smile back at her. But he was very handsome this way, severe and judgmental.

“‘Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth,’” she murmured. “‘For thy love is better than wine.’”

“No,” he said.

She wrapped her arms about his neck and touched her mouth to his. But only for an instant. He firmly removed her person. “You are completely inebriated, Lady Vere.”

“No, not inebriated. Intoxicated,” she declared proudly.

“In either case, you should go to your room and lie down.”

“I want to lie down with you,” she breathed. “‘He shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.’”

“Jesus,” he said.

“No, Elissande. My name is Elissande.”

“This is enough, Lady Vere. You may leave now.”

“But I don’t wish to.”

“Then I will leave.”

“But you cannot.”

“Oh, can’t I?”

Summary from Author's Website:

Elissande Edgerton is a desperate woman, a virtual prisoner in the home of her tyrannical uncle. Only through marriage can she claim the freedom she craves. But how to catch the perfect man?

Lord Vere is used to baiting irresistible traps. As a secret agent for the government, he’s tracked down some of the most devious criminals in London, all the while maintaining his cover as one of Society’s most harmless—and idiotic—bachelors. But nothing can prepare him for the scandal of being ensnared by Elissande.

Forced into a marriage of convenience, Elissande and Vere are each about to discover they’re not the only one with a hidden agenda. With seduction their only weapon against each other—and a dark secret from the past endangering both their lives—can they learn to trust each other even as they surrender to a passion that won’t be denied?

Available at Book Depository.


Carol L. said...

Hi Carole,
I already have this on my TRL. Love Sherry's work. And i can't wait to read this one. Thanks for sharing
Carol L.

Rosie Hong said...

Ooh...from the excerpt alone I can tell this book will be love. :)

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

Hi Carole! I can't wait to read this one! I loved Not Quite a Husband! THanks for stopping by and following my blog :)

Steph said...

Stopped by on the hop to say hi but started reading this review -- interesting -- a man who doesn't want to....
Anyway, I am also having a contest to celebrate being at nearly 200 followers. I will have to enter yours (I just did, right?) Please stop by and check my blog out:

Fangs, Wands and Fairy Dust

Carole said...

@Carrie I loved Not Quite a Husband too! I'm just starting His at Night, so we'll have to see how it goes. :)

@Steph Yes, you did enter. The more you comment, the more chances you have, so you might want to come visit more often. :) I've checked out your site before, but I'll just go again and make sure I entered. LOL Thanks for dropping by.

Sara said...

I looove Sherry Thomas, especially her last book, Not Quite A Husband. I enjoy this little tidbit about the Savoy Hotel, not something I would've known by myself. Certainly wouldn't have gone to research it. LOL Thanks and will go check out her book.

Lindsey said...

Ah, I JUST picked this book up yesterday! I had the extremely good fortune to find it at the used bookstore (already half off, and then, the store's in the midst of their 50% off everything sale. It was a good shopping trip). I'd seen an excellent review of it about a week earlier that piqued my interested, so when I saw in the in the "new releases" section at the used bookstore, I snatched it up right away. It's sitting in my TBR pile right now, but I can't wait to dig into it.

Carole said...

Good for you, Lindsey. If only I could be so lucky. :)

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