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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Book Review of Three Weeks with a Princess by Vanessa Kelly, Plus a Q&A w/ the Author!

Three Weeks with a Princess (The Improper Princesses #2) by Vanessa Kelly 
Genre: Adult Fiction (Historical Romance)
Date Published: June 27, 2017
Publisher: Zebra

In Vanessa Kelly's captivating series, three young women are descended from royalty--in the most improper way. But that doesn't stop them from pursuing lives rich in adventure. . .

Lia Kincaid, illegitimate daughter of the Duke of York, comes from a long line of notorious women. Raised by her grandmother, formerly mistress to the late Marquess of Lendale, she has little hope of a respectable marriage. But the new marquess, her childhood friend, Jack Easton, would make a very desirable protector . . . if he weren't too honorable to take her to bed.

It's bad enough being saddled with a title he never desired. Now Jack must resist the beautiful woman he desires far too much. Duty calls, and he is duty-bound to choose a wealthy bride. But then Lia makes another outrageous suggestion: asking Jack to devise some tests to find her the perfect paramour. Tests that involve flirting, kissing, and other pleasurable pursuits. Tests that, in a matter of weeks, could transform friendship into the ton's greatest scandal, igniting a passion even duty can't deny. . .

Three Weeks with a Princess is the second book in The Improper Princesses series by Vanessa Kelly. This was both a forbidden romance and a romance that grew from a strong friendship. My two favorite kinds. Lia was so incredibly stubborn, and she met her match with Jack, as he was too. They bickered and argued, but they had the best times together and a strong history as friends. I thoroughly enjoyed watching their relationship grow through all the uncertainties, and with her family history, there were many. These two were such a cute and entertaining pair. I can't wait to  see who's story we get next.

The ARC of Three Weeks with a Princess by Vanessa Kelly was kindly provided to me by the Tasty Book Tours for review. The opinions are my own.

Lia pulled herself up, her back ramrod straight. She regarded Jack with a degree of haughtiness that would do a princess proud.
“If you’re referring to my mother, she has been respectably married for ten years. My stepfather is a well-regarded businessman whose conduct is above reproach.”
“In the theatrical world, yes. But society still looks askance on those engaged in that particular business and you know it.”
“And let’s not forget that your mother came rather late to domestic respectability,” he continued. “We both know she was considered as notorious as your grandmother in her day. For you to join her company as an actress, even under the protection of your stepfather’s good name, would invite exactly the type of attention from exactly the type of men you’re trying to avoid. I absolutely forbid it.”
That brought Lia to her feet in a flash. “You forbid it? May I remind you, sir, that you have no right in that regard?”
“Legally, perhaps not. But I’m responsible for you nonetheless. Aside from your grandmother, I’m the closest thing to family you have—which you just pointed out only a few moments ago.”
“You seem to be forgetting that I do have a mother—and a stepfather,” she said with a lethal glare. “And I said you were my best friend. I’m starting to doubt that particular relationship at the moment, given your wretchedly selfish behavior.”
“Good God, Lia, my behavior is anything but—”
“So, let me be perfectly clear, your lordship,” she said, jabbing a finger in his direction. “You are not my brother, my father, or anything else that gives you the right to command me. I am a woman grown and I have proven time and again that I am more than capable of making sensible and rational decisions. And given the extremely precarious position in which my grandmother and I find ourselves, my plan is without a doubt the most sensible course of action.” She gave her head a dramatic toss. “You, Lord Lendale, have nothing to say about it.”
Her disdainful tone and her rejection of their relationship set off a little explosion in Jack’s head. He marched around the desk and planted himself in front of her, his legs spread and his hands propped on his hips. It forced Lia to tilt her head back to meet his gaze, glare for glare.
“As much as it pains me to speak so bluntly . . .” he started.
“Ha! I doubt that.”
“The circumstances demand that I must do so,” he said, ignoring her jibe. “You are no more an actress than a courtesan. You are no more a Notorious Kincaid than I am. What you are is an innocent and nice young lady who was raised in the country. And that is exactly where you will remain until I figure out how to deal with this situation.”
Her eyes blazed with icy blue fire. “I beg to differ, my lord. If I put my mind to it, I’m quite sure I can be just as notorious as the other women in my family.”
Then she reached up and clamped his face between her palms. She went up on her toes and planted her mouth on his, kissing him with a fury that almost knocked him off his feet.
It wasn’t the first time she’d kissed him, but those had been chaste pecks on the cheek. This clumsy kiss took him like a storm, blasting amazement through his veins. Instinctively, his arms started to wrap around her to pull her close.
But she shoved him away, leaving him slack-jawed and gasping for breath. The color was high on her cheekbones and her lush, pink mouth was dewy. Like him, she was panting, but from the look on her face he suspected it had more to do with rage than passion.
“Let that be a lesson to you, Jack Easton. You don’t know me as well as you think you do.”
Then she turned on her heel and marched to the French doors. Spinning around, she once more jabbed a minatory finger in his direction. “And don’t ever try to tell me what I can and cannot do.”
With that daunting remark, she disappeared into the bright morning sunlight, leaving Jack with the unnerving sensation that he’d just lost control of everything.

If you could sit and write in a different country where would it be? 
England, probably the Lake District or the Cotswolds. My fantasies generally do not involve sexy guys—they involve peaceful little cottages on a hillside overlooking a beautiful lake. Oh, and tea, scones, and a nice glass of wine at the end of the day. LOL!

 Co-writing: have you done it with another author, if not, would you?I co-write with my husband as VK Sykes. We’ve written a number of books, including contemporary romances and romantic suspense. Hubby is also my critique partner for my historical romances. I enjoy the process and we work very well together—likely because we know each other’s weak spots and how to deal with them. It’s really fun to work creatively with him; plus, it keeps us busy so we don’t kill each other from boredom! I don’t know if I could actually co-write a book with another author, although I’ve worked on interconnected anthologies with other writers. I enjoyed that process, too.

Can you tell us a little about your book?THREE WEEKS WITH A PRINCESS is the second book in The Improper Princesses Series, which is a spin-off from my previous series, The Renegade Royals. That series featured the illegitimate sons of England’s royal dukes, who fought for their rightful places in the world—falling madly in love with some pretty swell gals along the way, of course. In this new series, the illegitimate daughters of royal dukes take their turn, surmounting all the obstacles that society put in their way in that time period, and winning the hearts of their own heroes. There’s love, laughter, adventure, and just a little bit of danger to spice things up!

How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?Aside from the fact that it’s a spin-off, THREE WEEKS WITH A PRINCESS is based on the famous movie musical, Gigi. My heroine, Lia Kincaid, is the daughter and granddaughter of notorious courtesans and is expected to follow in their footsteps. There are a few problems with that plan, however—she has no desire to become a courtesan and she’s madly in love with her childhood friend, Jack Easton, Marquess of Lendale. But events conspire to push Lia in the direction she doesn’t want to go, and Jack is pretty much losing his mind trying to stop her. Jack, unfortunately, also has big problems, which include a mother who hates Lia’s guts and a debt-ridden estate all but falling down around his ears. Needless to say, Lia and Jack have more than a few obstacles to a happily ever after!

What are some books that you enjoyed recently?I just read a great book called BITTER SPIRITS, a paranormal romance set in San Francisco during the Roaring Twenties. The hero is a bootlegger and the heroine is a spirit medium, and they meet under very unusual circumstances: the hero is under a curse. They have tremendous chemistry and I loved the atmospheric setting. I’m halfway through the second book in the series by Jenn Bennett, and I’m enjoying it, too. I’m kind of a sucker for unusual historical settings for romance, and this one really fit the bill. 

What do you like best about being a writer? What is the most challenging part?The best part for me is writing The End. I relish having a finished book in my hands, and it’s still a thrill to know I created a new story with characters I’ve invariably come to love. The most challenging part is actually sitting down every day and getting words on the page. Sometimes it’s easy, sometimes not. There are days when I feel like being lazy or reading a book, but deadlines mean butt has to get into chair, regardless of inspiration striking or not. 

Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
The theme I most frequently come back to, whether I realize it or not at the time, is family and finding home. It’s just the one that sticks with me. I do have a number of characters I’d like to return to at some point, mostly secondary characters from my Renegade Royals Series. There are a pair of children in my recently released short story, THREE RENEGADES AND A BABY, who I think are demanding their own story when they grow up. So, stay tuned for that!

Can you tell us about your upcoming book?
My next book is called THE HIGHLANDER’S PRINCESS BRIDE, and it’ll be out in November. It’s Improper Princesses 3, and it moves the action to a remote castle in Scotland. My heroine finds herself trying to teach a very rambunctious family of Highlanders how to be proper gentlemen, a la Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. This book segues into my next series, which will feature the Kendrick brothers—a wild group of Highland rogues! I’m really excited to be moving in that direction. 
Have you read the first book?

Check out my review of another book by this author!

Vanessa Kelly is a USA Today Bestselling, award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.”  Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated for awards in a number of contests, and her second book, Sex and The Single Earl, won the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance.

Vanessa’s previous series, The Renegade Royals, was a national bestseller. She is currently writing a spin-off series called The Improper Princesses. My Fair Princess, book 1, was named a Goodreads Romance of the Month. Vanessa also writes USA Today Bestselling books with her husband, under the pen name of V.K. Sykes.

To learn more about Vanessa Kelly and her books, visit her website & blog.You can also find her on GoodreadsFacebook, and Twitter.

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  1. Thank you for hosting your review today!
    Tasty Book Tours

  2. Thank you both for the opportunity and for stopping by! ;-)


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