I’m so pleased to welcome one of my favorite people in the world to the Jaunty Quills. She’s Manda Collins and she writes smart, sexy historical romance with a strong dash of suspense – pretty much all of my fave writing things wrapped up in one great package. Manda has a new book out, and she’s here to tell us all about it:

Hello, Jaunties! I’m so pleased to be celebrating the release of GOOD DUKES WEAR BLACK, Book 3 of the Lords of Anarchy trilogy, with ya’all! My thanks to the lovely and talented Vanessa Kelly for inviting me!

As a special treat, I’m sharing an exclusive snippet from Trent and Ophelia’s story with you here today. This hasn’t been posted anywhere else, and I hope you’ll enjoy it! But first, the description:

A writer for the Ladies Gazette, Miss Ophelia Dauntry’s passion is her pen. So when she sees a fellow writer kidnapped before her eyes—and the trail of evidence leads to the Lords of Anarchy—Ophelia vows to find her friend and take down the notorious London driving club in her column. But before she can argue her case, she needs the inside scoop from its newest leader: Piers Hamilton, the Duke of Trent.

Headstrong, handsome Trent joined the Lords of Anarchy after a decade in the British Army. He’s made it his business to tame the misbehavior within the driving club—and the infuriatingly attractive Ophelia is only getting in his way. The deeper she digs into the case, the more she puts her own life at risk. Can Trent convince Ophelia to trust him to seek justice…and find protection, and passion, in his arms?

Good Dukes Wear Black

Now, for the excerpt. In this scene, Miss Ophelia Dauntry and the Duke of Trent are, in the company of their friends the Earl and Countess of Mainwaring and the Lisles, discussing her plans to attend a ball later that evening.

“Don’t tell me you mean to attend a ball after the drama of the past couple of days,” Trent said with a frown. “You suffered quite a serious blow to the head yesterday.”

Ophelia frowned at his high handed tone. Just because they were working together did not mean he had the right to make decisions for her.

“And now I am feeling much better,” she said coolly. “Besides which, my sister is betrothed to the Marquess of Kinston so my mother is expecting me to attend whether I feel up to it or not. And I most certainly do feel up to it.”

He looked as if he would like to say more, but perhaps seeing the mulish set of her jaw, kept silent.

“I can promise to look after her,” Leonora exchanging a sly look with her husband, who winked. “Unless, of course, you mean to attend too, Trent.”

“He must attend,” Freddy said guilelessly. “For I mean to keep you busy dancing, my dear. You will have no time to watch over Ophelia.”

“I’m sitting right here, you know,” Ophelia said rolling her eyes. “And I have no need of a keeper. At least not the last time I checked.”

Trent muttered something under his breath, but when she scowled at him, he shrugged as if to say “Who, me?”

Annoyed with all of them, she stood. “I believe I’ll walk home. It is a fair enough afternoon and my house is only a few streets away.”

“Of course I’ll take you,” Trent said looking offended. “As I said, you’ve had an eventful couple of days. And as I am going in that direction anyway it will be no inconvenience.”

It would serve him right if she refused, Ophelia thought stubbornly. But it was true that she was tired. And if she were going to attend a ball that evening she’d do better to conserve her energy. “Very well,” she said.

“We’ll see you there tonight,” Hermione said as she and Leonora ushered their friend into the hallway and toward the front entrance.


Trent made to follow Ophelia, but was stayed by Freddy’s hand on his arm.

“What’s going on here?” his friend asked with a speaking look in the direction of the departing ladies. “I was unaware that you and Ophelia were more than speaking acquaintances.”

“Certainly not close enough to ride about town together in your curricle for two days in a row,” Mainwaring added his eye bright with mischief.

“Don’t be daft,” Trent said with a frown. “We are only working together to find the her friend because George Grayson is a member of the Lords of Anarchy. Nothing more than that.”

“But it would be easy enough for you look for Maggie Grayson on your own, surely?” Freddy asked, pinning him with his blue gaze. “Especially considering that you don’t know what’s in store when you find her. Shouldn’t you leave Ophelia to her own devices for safety’s sake if nothing else?”

At the suggestion he was endangering Ophelia in some way, Trent stiffened. “Now see here, Lisle,” he said with a voice that sounded threatening even to his own ears. “I am doing my utmost to see that she remains safe. If I were to leave her to her own devices as you so helpfully suggest, then she would be god knows where poking her nose into the devil knows that. That lady is as stubborn as a mule and the only reason she is still safe is because I’ve ensured that she doesn’t take the sort of risks she’d doubtless undertake if she were allowed to go about unchecked.”

There was an eerie silence in the hallway for a moment as Trent realized his mistake.

Damn. Double damn.

“That was some speech, old fellow,” Mainwaring said diffidently picking a bit of link from his sleeve. “I believe you’ve made our point.”

“You are both asses,” Trent said turning his back on his oldest friends and stalking down the stairs toward the entry hall.

“You don’t suppose I was too hard on him?” he heard Freddy said from above. “I sometimes can go a bit too far.”

“Not a bit of it,” Mainwaring replied. “How else were we learn the truth of things. It’s not as if he’ll tell us he’s head over ears on his own.”

Grateful that Ophelia and her married friends were already outside, Trent collected his hat and coat and stomped out the door.

Toast enjoying his copy of Manda's new book

PS. That’s Toast, Manda’s furry buddy, enjoying his copy of GOOD DUKES WEAR BLACK.

Manda also has a special giveaway today – a GOOD DUKES WEAR BLACK tee shirt and a copy of the book. Zounds! For a chance to win, just tell us what you like your heroes to wear. Do riding boots and breeches on a manly man make you swoon, or are you more of a low-slung jeans and a tight tee shirt kind of gal? One reader who comments will win Manda’s prize! And for more info about Manda and her books, please visit her website.

54 thoughts on “Please welcome Manda Collins!!

  1. Amy says:

    Tight tee shirts all the way. And great cover, BTW! 😉

    1. Nothing wrong with a tight tee shirt! 😉

  2. Glenda says:

    Honestly, it’s the boots. Riding boots and breeches work for me but so do those tight tees and low slung jeans especially when paired with a well used pair of cowboy boots.

    1. I like the way you think, Glenda!

  3. I gotta go with a faded pair of Levis and a white button down. ; ) Great to have you here, Manda!

    1. Thanks, Kristan! What IS it about that white button down with the sleeves rolled up over a pair of faded Levis? Swoon-city!

  4. Valentina B. says:

    Tight tee shirts and low-slung jeans sounds perfect! Love the excerpt. Can’t wait to read this book.

    1. Thanks, Valentina! And three cheers for low slung jeans!

  5. Claire Matthews says:

    I’m kind of fond of the nerdy beta hero, so I’ll go with khakis and a button-down. Covering a deceptively muscular physique, of course. 😎

    1. A woman after my own heart! 🙂

  6. Amy Higgins says:

    Riding boots and tight breeches are perfect!

    1. There’s nothing like a pair of breeches to make me swoon! Great choice, Amy!

  7. Welcome, pal! So happy you could join us today.

    1. Thank you so much, Vanessa! I always love my visits to Chez Jaunty Q!

  8. Kate Sparks says:

    I like jeans kinda tight, but let’s not cut off the blood flow!!

    1. Haha! Good thinking, Kate! We need what’s under those jeans to be fully operational. For scientific purposes, of course;)

  9. Bonny Bordeleau says:

    I like them all…. a man who is comfortable and feels sexy in what he wears does it for me! My sexy man wears underarmor… I never thought it was sexy but on him, it’s super sexy!

    1. Great point, Bonny! Confidence is the ultimate aphrodisiac!

  10. Sue P says:

    Kristan Higgins – you stole my answer! Jeans and a white button down, also. Or low slung jeans and worn cowboy boots, with no shirt! But when reading historicals, tight britches and boots!

    1. Great minds think alike, Sue! And good point–my preference also varies depending on what I’m reading at the time.

  11. LSUReader says:

    My personal hero–that would be Hubby–generally wears golf slacks and polo shirts! But y’all had good ideas, too.

  12. LilMissMolly says:

    I’m definitely a breeches and riding boots kinds of gal! I also like my husband in the skinny jeans I bought him last year – if only he’d wear them! He’s too stuck in the 80’s I’m afraid. 🙁

    1. LOL, Molly. I guess you can lead the husband to skinny jeans, but can’t make him wear ’em. Though I’ll admit to being a little terrified of skinny jeans for myself. It takes me back to middle school when we were wearing the bottoms of our jeans so tight that we could barely get them over our feet!

  13. Elaine C. says:

    Can’t make up my mind. Today I’ll go for the tee and low slung jeans. Great excerpt. Would love to read the rest of the book!

    1. Thanks, Elaine! It does change depending on your mood, doesn’t it? Isn’t it great to have the freedom to change your mind? 😉

  14. says:

    A sword 🙂

    1. Ah, a man of action, then! Great suggestion, Catslady!

  15. Cecilia Rodriguez says:

    Soft cotton shirt, molded breaches, and a pair of pirate boots

    1. Ooh, nice, Cecilia! 🙂

  16. Sharla Long says:

    It all depends on the timing. In real life nothing beats a great pair of Wranglers on a nice body!

    1. Amen, Sharla! Thanks for stopping by!

  17. Deborah says:

    “Don’t be daft,” Trent said with a frown. “We are only working together to find the her friend because George Grayson is a member of the Lords of Anarchy. Nothing more than that.”

    Do better than this when you proofread.

    1. Wow, thanks for pointing that out, Deborah!

    2. Well, that’s on me, Deborah, since I loaded up the post! I guess it just means I’m human.

  18. Shana Galen Shana Galen says:

    Welcome! Cute kitty, and the excerpts are fabulous!

    1. Thank you, Shana! 🙂

  19. alisha woods says:

    Depends on the mood, but I do like a guy in jeans and a crisp white button up shirt. Though breeches and boots are good too

    1. Maybe one for when you’re in a historical mood and one for contemporary?

  20. Deb Trobaugh says:

    Low slung blue jeans & a tight tee does it for me. I think forearms are so sexy, so love the short sleeves. In historical stories I love tight breeches, boots & a white shirt with sleeves rolled up & open at the throat.

    1. What is it about forearms, Deb? That (and I think a holdover from high school when I sat behind boys) the back and shoulders.

  21. Michelle Fidler says:

    Riding boots and breeches. I love cats, too.

    1. Excellent choice, Michelle! (On both the attire AND the whole cat-liking thing )

  22. Quilt Lady says:

    I guess I will go with the Tee-shirts all the way.

    1. Decisive. I like it:)

  23. Natasha Persaud says:

    Low slung jeans all the way

  24. Julie-ann Ford says:

    I like both as long as they are somewhat form fitting. I like to see the muscle highlighted by the clothing.

    1. Good point, Julie-ann!

  25. bn100 says:

    a suit

  26. Joanna M. says:

    It’s so lovely to visit the Jaunty Quills ladies. Give me Hessians and a cravat and the man would be the best dressed in the world! But if we’re talking modern times then to me a man looks best in a suit 😉

    1. Clothes to fit the era and occasion. Perfection!

  27. Dawn A says:

    I’m a jeans and a t-shirt kind of girl.

  28. Thea says:

    The breeches and boots but don’t forget the white puffy pirate shirt.

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