The Jaunty Quills are excited to present debut author Lily Dalton, author of Never Desire a Duke. The buzz around this book is fabulous and the reviews are amazing! We’re talking an RT Book Reviews 4 ½ Stars and a starred Publisher’s Weekly review. I just got my copy and cannot wait to start reading it. Readers, keep reading to find out how to win your copy.

Dalton_NeverDesireaDuke_MM[1]Shana: Welcome, Lily! Tell us about Never Desire a Duke. This is the first book in the One Scandalous Season series, right?

Lily Dalton: Hello there, Shana! Thanks to you and the rest of The Jaunty Quills for having me! Never Desire a Duke is indeed the first in the series of “One Scandalous Seasons”–Sophia’s being a Christmas Season! Each book tells the story of one of the three Bevington sisters, who are the Earl of Wolverton’s granddaughters. Sophia is the eldest, and is already married. In a nutshell, Duke is the story of a couple who has become estranged after a terrible tragedy, but become snowbound and as a result must confront not only their present hurts, but the past.

I’ve always loved historical romance novels, but I’m also very much a realist, and I became intrigued by the idea of telling the story of what happens after the “happily ever after”. When the novel opens, Sophia has already had her wonderful London Season, and she has won the prize…Vane Barwick, the Duke of Claxton, the most eligible bachelor in London, a handsome nobleman with a scandalous past. Ooooooh, a scandalous past! That’s not necessarily a bad thing, right? Sophia, like the rest of us who love historical romance, had found that aspect of him intriguing. Because things were going to be different once they married, and theirs was a love match. Or was it? I wanted to explore the idea of what might come after, when married to a man with a past.

Shana: I think it’s fascinating that you’re exploring what happens after marriage to a rake. For that reason alone, I want to read the book. But give us all the details about your hero, Vane Barwick, the Duke of Claxton. He sounds like a rake crossed with a tortured hero. Yummy!

Lily Dalton: Vane, on the outside, is a very cool character. He’s smart, disciplined and very much in control of his world. He is also a respected diplomat, trusted by the Crown to undertake the negotiation of treaties on its behalf. But there are rumors about his past, whispered of but hardly spoken. Vane has no memory of his father until the age of twelve, when the old duke appeared at his mother’s funeral to take him away. Life before, at the country estate of Camellia House, was a happy time. His mother loved him, and instilled within him a care for his world and the people around him. Afterward, everything changes. His father, the duke, has no such care for people, let alone his son, who he believes has been raised “soft”, so he undertakes to make him a “man”. His idea of a man. Life is so torturous that Vane runs away and joins the army under another name, preferring the miserable life of a common soldier than life with the duke. Of course, there’s more to the story, but this is the man with whom Sophia tries to make a happy future, and as a young wife, who has been raised by two loving parents, she finds herself unprepared for Vane’s complexities.

Shana: What about your heroine, Sophia? I love writing books with married characters and reading them. They can be complex, though, because the couple already has emotional backstory.

Lily Dalton: Sophia is a confident and self-assured young woman. Unlike Vane, she enjoyed a happy childhood, and was raised by a mother and father who remained deeply in love, although tragedy has since taken her father. She understands the society in which she lives, where marriage is more about furthering familial wealth and connections, than love. But she wants more. She demands more. And if Vane can’t give her his heart completely, she doesn’t want the rest of him either.

Shana: Never Desire a Duke is a Christmas book. Did you have to do some research into Regency holiday traditions?

Lily Dalton: I did! And let me tell you, in Regency times there wasn’t a Wal Mart or Hobby Lobby selling Christmas decorations starting in September. The holiday was celebrated in a much more subdued manner than what we put ourselves through now. Christmas was a religious observance, and the day was spent with family, perhaps enjoying some games and a nicer than usual meal. At this time in history, the Christmas tree wasn’t really an English tradition, although there is a small tree in Wolverton’s house in honor of Sophia’s Hanoverian grandmother–Germany being a country where Christmas trees were enjoyed. My favorite tradition, that I’ve included in this book, is the kissing bough.

Shana: Tell us about Lord Tango and Sir Oscar.

Lily Dalton Author Photo(1)

Lily Dalton: Those two rascally fellows! I see their reputation precedes them. Lord Tango, my flame point Siamese, is my feline business manager and Sir Oscar, a big ginger cat, is in charge of my research library. They are my constant companions as I write my books, and keep me laughing and feeling loved. Both are adoptions from the local shelter, and despite their continued destruction of my leather furniture and area carpets, I can’t imagine my family without them.

Shana: Finally, tell us what you have coming next.

Lily Dalton: Duke is all snowbound splendor! But my April release, Never Entice an Earl is set in springtime London, in the middle of all the activity and romance of the Season. This book tells the story of Daphne, the “middle” Bevington sister. Daphne’s one of those friends we’d all be blessed to have, in that she’ll do anything for someone she loves. Which not only gets her into big trouble, but throws her into the path of an earl who has come to town for the sole purpose of revenge against a man who may—or may not–be very close to her.

Dalton_NeverEnticeanEarl_MM[1] (1)

NEVER DESIRE A DUKE by Lily Dalton
The magic of Christmas reunites an estranged husband and wife in the debut of this charming and sexy, new regency romance trilogy from Lily Dalton

A MARRIAGE BEYOND HOPE
The Duchess Sophia has long been estranged from her husband, His Grace, Vane Barwick, the Duke of Claxton, whose rumored list of amorous conquests includes almost every beautiful woman of the ton. Yet a shocking encounter with him in a crowded ballroom—and a single touch—are all it takes to reawaken her furious passion for him. But how can she trust the man who crushed her dreams and took away the one thing she wanted most?

A LOVE BEYOND REASON
Claxton has never forgiven himself for the youthful mistake that ruined his marriage to Sophia. Now, after nearly a year abroad, the reformed rogue vows to win back the only woman he’s ever truly loved. He’ll do whatever it takes to prove he can be the honorable husband she deserves—and the passionate lover she desires. As the snowdrifts deepen outside their ancestral home, can they rekindle the flame that burned so bright and find a new path to forever? 

Get A Copy: Amazon | B&N | BAM | Book Depository | indiebound | iBooks
Book Extras: Read an Excerpt


Readers, now it’s your turn. Have you ever wondered what life for your favorite hero and heroine is like after the book ends? Do they go on to live happily ever after? One reader who comments will be randomly chosen to win a copy of Never Desire a Duke. Open internationally! The winner will be announced in the wee hours Monday morning and contacted via email.


36 thoughts on “Bring a Friend Friday with Lily Dalton

  1. Oh yes I do wonder :) started with Darcy and Elizabeth, one of my all time fav couples. They have now written many books, stories, takes on what their lives were like after the last page. But it doesn’t stop me from imagening my own series of events in D&E hea :D

  2. Ada says:

    I always wonder what happens next, that’s why I love series the best, when we get to revisit them while also getting a new HEA to read about! And why I especially love Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series because we get the to see their happily ever afters and beyond!

  3. Laurie G says:

    Characters become real to me when I read about them. So afterwards, I picture them having the same ups and downs as everyone else:births, illnesses, death, the whole life cycle.

    I do like to find out what the author envisioned for them via other series related books.

  4. Shana Shana says:

    Thanks for stopping by, Lily! In answer to my own question, I have wondered if the HEA is really an HEA. Sometimes there’s a pairing where I think, those two really fought a lot. I’d like to see how they’re doing after 2 kids and 4 years or something. I cannot wait to read the book.

  5. Lily says:

    Good morning to Jo’s Daughter, Ada and Laurie G! And to all the JQs! Thanks for having me, and for commenting. I’ve read only two authors who have written ambiguous HEA’s for their characters, and that’s Katherine Sutcliffe (I loved her books!) and Judith Ivory, who is one of my favorite authors. It didn’t trouble me, in that I did not doubt they would find happiness together. The ending just meant: To be continued. There’s more. Life is complicated.

  6. Trudy Miner says:

    Yes, I’ve often wondered about what happens after the HEA. I know that life isn’t always hearts and roses and that weddings aren’t indicative of what comes next. In some series books where previous characters appear, you get some idea of what comes next but, otherwise, you have no clue.

  7. Lily,your book is next up for me. I love reading a book where the hero and heroine are already married or marry early on. sometimes the biggest obstacles occur after the vows. Can’t wait to read this! Tweeted

  8. Lily says:

    Trudy — I agree. And I think the true “love story” happens over time, after the HEA as we see it in our books. There is nothing that warms my heart more than seeing an couple who are still in love after 40, 50 or more years.

    Hey there Nancy!! I hope you love DUKE and Sophia and Vane’s story. You’ll have to let me know.

  9. Kathryn in Montreal says:

    Of course I want to know what happens after the HEA! Because a true HEA can last 50-60 years and there are definitely bumps and twists and turns in the path. I love series…a whole new story, hero and heroine with glimpses of familiar faces from previous stories.

  10. eap says:

    Can’t wait to read your book.

  11. Melody May says:

    LOL! Depending on the hero and heroine. Sometimes you get lucky and see them in other books by the author. I like when that happens.

  12. CateS says:

    I do like to know the ‘after’ whenever possible. Which is also why I like ‘series’ books.

  13. CrystalGB says:

    Yes, I have. I always wonder what happens to the characters later.

  14. Hi, Lily! The book sounds wonderful, and Claxton sounds absolutely delicious! Love a man trying to atone. :smile:

  15. Hi, Lily! You’re book sounds amazing, and I can’t wait to read it. I love the idea of exploring what it really means to be married to a man with a rakish past.

  16. marypreston says:

    I do indeed wonder. The HEA is only the beginning really. Great stories & characters continue to live on in my day dreams.

  17. I hope they’ll have a HEA, with kids maybe :D

  18. Stefanie says:

    I do wonder what happens with the hero and heroine after they have their happy ending. It’s why I enjoy reading tidbits about the rest of their lives in the books of other characters. That way it’s not just a new story about a new couple but it’s also the next part in a previous story.

  19. Amy Keating Casey says:

    Yes sometimes I wonder, did they get married, did they have children, did their life turn out so grand or not….you get so involved in the book, sometimes ya just wanna know!! :)

  20. Lily Dalton says:

    Hello and Happy Monday to Kathryn, eap, Melody (hey you!), CateS and CrystalGB! Thanks to all of you for stopping by over the weekend. Do you like how I benefited from a technical issue, and got several days with the JQ instead of just one!? My evil plan… bwuahahah! :D

    Kathleen – yes! A man trying to atone! That’s a great word to describe Claxton. He just doesn’t know how. It really touched my heart to see him learn to open up.

    Vanessa – Hey there! I know you! Thank you for stopping by.

    Mary, Aly, Stephanie and Amy – I’m glad you all are fascinated by this idea of EVER AFTER (Happily?) like I am!

    1. Vanessa Kelly Vanessa Kelly says:

      And please forgive the EGREGIOUS grammar mistake in my post!!

      1. Lily Dalton says:

        I must be an EGREGIOUS comment reader, Vanessa, because I didn’t even notice!! :)

  21. alisha woods says:

    Yes, I love epilogues or other books where it touches back on previous characters

  22. Shawna Stringer says:

    Yes I have wondered that in many many books I read. I even think that with some series. And in series where they continue it but the next book follows supporting characters I’m like “Hey wait a minute. What’s going on with so and so from the first book. “

  23. dholcomb1 says:

    Always hope the HEA continues. Epilogues are always appreciated.

  24. Katie says:

    Absolutely. If a reader doesn’t wonder about ‘what happens next’ I doubt they sincerely were pulled into the story enough. Of course I tend to put a more humdrum love story into the HEA than the adventure of the story itself tends to have….it feels whole that way to me. *So* looking forward to reading Never Desire a Duke soon.

  25. Kim says:

    Congratulations on your debut. I always like to know how the relationship turns out further down the road. That’s why I like epilogues and series romances.

  26. Cheryl Castings says:

    I always want to know more about favorite couples. That’s why I enjoy epilogues that take place a few years down the road. It’s fun to get a glimpse into their HEA ending.

  27. Renee Brown Thornhill says:

    When you get invested in the lives of the characters you’re reading, I think it’s impossible not to wonder what happened next. That’s why I love a series, where each new book lets us get to know another couple while providing glimpses into the previous couple(s) new lives. It’s fun to see how kids affect the HEA, if any new twists or turns crop up, and how the new relationships affect the old ones.

    This sounds like a fabulous new series, and I can’t wait to see how the story of Sopohia and Clacton began and moves forward. I also have a feeling I’ll need a box of tissues for this one, too!

  28. Lesiach4 says:

    Can’t wait to read your books, Lily!

  29. Lily Dalton says:

    Alisha, Shawna, dholcomb1, Katie, Kim, Cheryl, Renee and Lesiach4. Hey there! I’m so glad you all stopped by! So far, every book in the series has an epilogue! I love a glimpse into the characters’ lives at a time when the conflict is completely resolved, where everyone is just h-a-p-p-y! It’s kind of like at the end of Shrek, where everyone is content and cheerful songs are playing, at least in my head. Sure, there will be difficulties ahead, but they will see things through together!

  30. catslady says:

    I love variety and finding out what happens afterwards would be a new kind of read and sounds wonderful. As long as I care for the characters, I’m usually a very happy camper and historicals have always been my favorite!

  31. LSUReader says:

    Yes, I do wonder about the ongoing lives of favorite characters after the book ends. Epilogues are nice. Having characters drop by in later books, as featured but not main characters is nice, too. It’s so good to catch up with old friends!

  32. Tin says:

    Always! Which is why I appreciate Epilogues and am thrilled when characters reappear in subsequent books in the series. ^_^

    (When I was younger, I’d write mini-fics about what I’d imagine favorite characters doing after the HEA. ^_^)

    Congratulations on your new book, Lily!

  33. Lily Dalton says:

    Tin, LSUReader and CatsLady, thank you for visiting me here at JQ! And thanks also for the congrats on my book. I’m glad you came by to celebrate with me.

  34. Michelle Fidler says:

    I don’t always wonder what happens later, except with Darcy and Elizabeth because I read Austenesque sequels. I love cats too. Lord Tango is an interesting name. I had a Siamese cat once. He was actually a stray.

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