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jackie ivie jackie ivie jackie ivie
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Top Pick - Romance Reader at Heart
"Ms. Ivie pens a magical tale laced with fiery passion and takes you on a journey of treachery, suspense and a love that is determined to conquer two people's hearts."
-Billie Jo, Romance Junkies
(on The Knight Before Christmas)

 


 


a knight and white satin
A KNIGHT AND WHITE SATIN
by Jackie Ivie
ISBN-10: 1420108840
ISBN-13: 978-1420108842
Publisher: Zebra
Release date: October 5, 2010

Available at:
Amazon.com
kensingtonbooks.com
bn.com
booksamillion.com
indiebound.org
borders.com

In the rugged Scottish Highlands, a mighty clansman weds a headstrong heiress against her will—and discovers a fiery passion
he'll risk his life to protect...

A Man Of Power

Payton Dunn-Fadden is the King's Champion, notorious for his ability to fight any man and win. With steely eyes and a deeply-muscled physique, his powers of seduction are just as legendary. But Payton has a dark secret known only to his wife—and it's a secret she may not keep...

A Woman Of Will

Known as White Satin, Dallis Caruth is infuriated by her forced marriage to Payton. The brute is far below her station...which makes her attraction to him utterly maddening. Now Dallis is determined to tame the fearsome laird—and win her freedom in the bargain...

A Dangerous Desire

As Payton and Dallis spar with one another, their desire ignites into fiery lovemaking. But danger is closer than either realizes. For the king has plans for the couple—plans that may unravel Payton's secret—and cost them both their lives...

Excerpt Once Upon A Knight

Chapter One

AD 1540

The spoils went to the victor. Always. It was one truth of life that the Caruths embraced and flexed at will. That was before spoils included her.

For members of the warrior clan of Caruth, claiming victory, taking riches, and wreaking vengeance was right and just and exercised without warning, empathy, or delay. To have it turned so completely was causing bitterness to flood her breast until it was rooted in disgust as she watched them. It was Dunn–Fadden clan. Beggars. Wanderers. Fools. The entire clan was a mass of disjointed factions with none claiming leadership until this surprise. A dark shadow filled the space in front of her, taking her unseeing vision from the few gleeful Dunn–Faddenmen ripping apart her home. She focused on their leader and frowned deeper.

"Come." He had his hand out, the one still encased in the falconer glove. The bitterness moved, filling her throat with the acrid taste. "Nae," she told him.

A half–smile played about his lips for a moment and in the next Dallis was atop his shoulder, blinking on the blood–coated, split tiles of the great hall floor, and hating the fact that she hadn't even seen him move.

"You can struggle. I'd like that."

The portion of her anatomy that he was fondling had never felt what it was now. Dallis choked back any reaction as his free hand caressed her buttocks that he'd put on display for the act. And then he was moving, taking sure steps that had her bouncing with each one.

"Dinna' do this!"

He'd reached the steps leading to her tower, as if he knew where her bedchambers were. If she could have stopped the sobbed words, she would have. Dallis sucked her lower lip into her mouth and bit down, holding it in place to keep any further emotion from sounding. She'd been taught better. You never showed weakness and suffering. And pain? There was nothing more painful than the sting of clan censure and hatred. Dallis held her lessons close, started going through them in a prayer like chant, and still she couldn't stop the shivers. All she could hope was he didn't note them.

He chuckled. He had broad shoulders she'd noted earlier and they shuddered with what was probably his amusement.

"Do what? You're my wife. Taken this night. In wedlock."

"A pagan ceremony, given without clergy!"

He had to have heard her even if he was taking each step like they were level and not steeply assembled. The angle had to be steep. The spiral stairs were a tight and rapid ascent. That's what came of having such a tall, square keep; one that was impenetrable and had never been taken . . . could never be taken.

Until now.

He didn't say anything to her outburst. He didn't have to. She knew the toll she was paying. She just wished all the teachings meant something when butted up against reality. Not fear the solid mass of man that was carrying her? How was she to do that? Mayhap her clan shouldn't have saved the altar of her maidenhead until she was plum-ripe and almost too old. Maybe they shouldn't have dangled the castle, glens, and lochs that came with her hand. Mayhap they should have wed her off to her betrothed, one of the king's most powerful earls, the moment she'd come of an age for it. Any of that they should have done.

In her mind's eye, she could still see the shine of spilt blood below, and how it was being washed by the drip of rain through the roof that had been ripped open when the Dunn- Faddens had first used their battering ram. Dallis had never known the like, never even experienced it. The moment the tree they'd felled hit the doors, the most horrendous roll of the earth had happened, making the floors sway and crack, her mother's prized leaded glass windows warp and then fall inward—creating shards that were difficult to fight amongst and even harder to dodge when wearing slippers—and their blow had even caused the roof above the great hall to split.

They'd reached her chamber, and he didn't have to use a handle to open the door since it was gaping wide from the jamb. The force he'd somehow summoned had affected even here, three stories up the square tower that had been the sign of Caruth power for over a century. He swung wide giving Dallis a sweeping vision of what had been a lady's chamber, decorated with material in a white hue she demanded, but was now little more than hanging strips marking where her canopy had been, an open window where the leaded glass hung in chunks, and chests that contained absolutely nothing. Then there was her serf, Bronwyn. The girl appeared from the antechamber to stand, wringing her hands and sobbing tears that Dallis didn't have the luxury of crying.

"Get out."

The man holding her ordered Bronwyn out, but the maid did little more than burst into louder sobs.

"Take the wench and get her from the chamber. Take her below. Use her for sport. Keep an eye out for Caruth clan. They'll have sent a cry."

Bronwyn shrieked louder and there wasn't even anyone near her. Dallis knew the girl wasn't adverse to a romp, and made certain she had a bed to share for her nights. That should have helped contain Dallis's own fear.

"There'll be none to witness the consummation, my laird." "It won't be an issue. Take her. Now."

The man holding her spoke to three men at his heels that Dallis hadn't known were following them. She gulped, sent the streak of emotion deep, and turned her head sideways, away from them. It was better to arouse anger. That was her lesson. It helped temper everything else. She heard Bronwyn's screams all the way down the hall, and couldn't summon anything except fright.

The door wasn't shutting properly. Dallis hung to his waist as he fussed with it, pushing and shoving and then cursing while she swayed with each movement. The fit had been perfect before God betrayed them and sent the earth heaving. Or maybe it was this Dunn-Fadden and his heathen gods that had the power to make the very earth move with but one hit of a battering ram.

"Now." He had the door bowed, but he'd managed to bolt it, and then he had her on her feet. He backed several steps off and then he just stood there, waiting. He didn't even look to be breathing hard. "What was that said about clergy?"

"Without benefit."

"Unions are held with less." He was unfastening the falcon glove as he spoke, undoing the leather tyrrits that his peregrine had been attached to. She knew he'd own a peregrine without asking. Such a falcon befitted his station.

"And without my troth!" She hadn't agreed to being his wife. She couldn't have. They'd put a bond across her lips, keeping her from saying anything.

He looked across at her, spearing her with an ice-blue gaze that had caught her attention when he'd first pulled off his helm and shown her the color of them. They still did. Dallis had to force her heart to calm, cease the fluttering that was making her ribs feel tight, and then she had to gulp around an obstruction in her throat.

"Your clan had the choice put to them. They should na' have declined."

He had the glove off, and then he was starting to work at the linkage of his thigh–length hauberk. He was wearing Norse battle attire. It was strange, but difficult to fault. It was also difficult to pierce. She had to wait. The dirk hidden in the back of her girdle would be enough. She just had to be patient until he was vulnerable, and that meant until he had the chain crafted tunic off.

"And it was na' agreed! Never! I'm trothed already!"

"Get undressed," he said.

Dallis's eyes widened. "I'm na' helping you," she managed a reply, and it was evenly said and without inflection. She was very proud of that.

"I dinna' request it," he replied.

He pulled the hauberk from his body, showing he wore a tunic of gray that was plastered to muscles with sweat. And little else. It was going to be easy to pierce flesh. She just had to keep him occupied—and not with bedding her.

"Why do you wear . . . mail?" she asked, with the slightest touch of snideness. "'Tis na' verra manly."

"Protection. In battle. My father has but one son. Me. There are some that think me a large target. Easiest to see and easiest to hit."

"You are a large target," she replied.

He looked across at her again, stopping her breath for the barest moment with eyes that looked so striking against swarthy skin and midnight–black hair. Then he was frowning at her. She assumed it was from lack of motion, as she wasn't obeying anything he'd said. His hands stopped fussing with the kilt knot at his hip.

"True," he replied finally. "I dinna' like to wear it. I'm forced to."

Dallis eyed his arms, bare now and thick with strength. There was an obvious sign of muscle on the stomach his tunic was barely shielding, as well. To think him forced to do anything was a lie. It had to be.

"How?" she asked.

"We've nae time for talk. You ken it. I ken it. Now, take your wedding dress off or I'll be forced to tear it from your body."

Her eyes widened. Nothing else on her entire frame betrayed anything. "This is na'my wedding dress."

He smiled, not enough to show teeth, but enough to show his amusement. "It is now," he replied finally. "And I'd na' like ripping it."

That reply created shock akin to an ice bath, and her heart was hammering so loudly, she could barely hear over it. "What difference . . . will that make?" She stumbled once through the question, and was amazed her voice didn't warble.

He'd given off untying his kilt and it helped gain her breath. And then he made it immeasurably worse by pulling the gray wool shirt over his head, moving an array of muscle and baring an expanse of flesh that made her gape. She'd also slighted him. He wasn't just the largest target. He was the largest, most fit male she'd ever seen. Anywhere. Even on the castle list.

One thing was certain. He was in much better condition, much younger in age, and much more handsome than her intended husband, who was well–known for two of those things. Admitting that much to herself was a huge mistake. She realized it as her mouth filled with spittle and her eyes widened. She couldn't do a thing about the increase in her pulse. Someone should have put that in her lessons. He was affecting her too much to think.

"We haven't this much time. I'll na' speak it again. Take off your kirtle, or face having it torn off and going without." "The king shall hear of this!"

He gave her another smile, wider this time, revealing teeth that probably owed their whiteness to his tanned appearance, and not any care. "The king canna' put asunder a union that's been consummated. I've given off the warnings, lass. I've na' this much patience."

Then he was striding toward her, making her tower room seem small and insignificant and more stark than usual.

Dallis backed up, stumbling on long skirts she didn't lift. She couldn't. Her hands were behind her back, fumbling for the dirk with fingers numbed by something she wouldn't label as fear. They were cold. Her fingers were that. The handle of her knife was slender, jewel encrusted, and fit for a lady's hand. It looked the size of a needle when she had it out and held in front of her.

"Stay away from me!" Dallis hissed, waving the small blade in front of her.

He didn't break stride. Not even when he reached her and she had it buried in his left side. There wasn't the sign of anything on his face as she pierced flesh, although Dallis was gagging with the feel of it. The spurt of blood doused her, staining the white with crimson. He had her pushed against the wall with his left hand, and with his right he grabbed the neckline of her serviceable bliant and tore it completely down the middle. Nothing on his features betrayed the slightest bit of pain, or anger, or anything, although the light blue color of his eyes seemed darker. Or maybe it was the shadow cast by heavy lashes in the same shade as his hair.

 

Reviews Once Upon A Knight

Second Place - The Lories for Best Historical

 

4 stars - "Jackie Ivie's A Knight and White Satin takes the reader into a very hot, very steamy romance deep in the heart of Dark Ages Scotland. Experience a love that is so deep and tender, the lovers are rocked to their very core before they can even admit to themselves what their true feelings are. Follow along with Dallis and Payton as first she rejects him, then they work together to solve their problems—between smoking hot love scenes, that is." Jennifer's Book Reviews

5 Hearts - "I loved this novel! It is beautifully written with excellent characters. It is so easy to lose yourself in this exciting tale." The Romance Studio

"***** FIVE STARS! - Author Jackie Ivie writes what I can only describe as wonderful disasters. The very first sentence of this story begins with such an occurrence. Wonderful for the reader and a disaster for the heroine. I found my imagination instantly stimulated and the world around me faded away. The character of Dallis was easy for me to relate to. I could actually feel her humiliation. I understood and agreed with most of her actions too. I applauded her strong will and loyalty. As I finished reading and closed the book, I was amazed to discover that I had read, nonstop, the entire night through. Seldom do I find a book that causes me to lose my sense of time, to blink and see that hours had flown by. This "wonderful disaster" is going to my Keeper Shelf, never to be loaned out. ***** Huntress Reviews

4.5 books - "A Knight and White Satin is a high-tension, adrenaline-pumping story with love scenes that leave one breathless." Long and Short Reviews

"A Knight and White Satin...is one of the best historical romance novels I've read in a really long time." I read romance

"A KNIGHT AND WHITE SATIN has enough action, romance and deception to keep the reader thoroughly riveted and always entertained." Single Ttles

"A KNIGHT AND WHITE SATIN is a compelling historical romance that is sure to delight lovers of medieval stories set in Scotland" The Romance Readers Connection

"Lighthearted and lusty, A KNIGHT AND WHITE SATIN fulfills its promise to provide a pleasant evening's read." Fresh Fiction

"Jackie Ivie writes one fantastic story after another and A Knight and White Satin is no exception." A Romance Review

"When it comes to writing historical romance, Ms. Ivie knows how to write with a wicked pen that shows the reader a land and time that I enjoyed reading about." Coffeetime Romance

"This book has everything I read romance for..." Readers Favorite Book Reviews

"This story is as close to the perfect romance as I have read in a long time. It is can't-put-down exciting with enough steamy romance to burn the pages and melt a heart" Affaire de Coeur

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