Jessica Cale is a historical romance author and journalist based in North Carolina. Originally from Minnesota, she lived in Wales for several years where she earned a BA in History and an MFA in Creative Writing while climbing castles and photographing mines for history magazines. She kidnapped ("married") her very own British prince (close enough) and is enjoying her happily ever after with him in a place where no one understands his accent. She is the editor of Dirty, Sexy History at www.dirtysexyhistory.com. You can visit her at www.authorjessicacale.com.
Broken Thingsby Jessica Cale
Meg Henshawe has been a lot of things in her life, and few of them good. As proprietress of The Rose and Crown in Restoration Southwark, she has squandered her life catering to the comfort of workmen and thieves. Famous for her beauty as much as her reputation for rage, Meg has been coveted, abused, and discarded more than once. She
Rival. Sister. Barmaid. Whore.
Meg Henshawe has been a lot of things in her life, and few of them good. As proprietress of The Rose and Crown in Restoration Southwark, she has squandered her life catering to the comfort of workmen and thieves. Famous for her beauty as much as her reputation for rage, Meg has been coveted, abused, and discarded more than once. She is resigned to fighting alone until a passing boxer offers a helping hand.
Jake Cohen needs a job. When an injury forces him out of the ring for good, all he's left with is a pair of smashed hands and a bad leg. Keeping the peace at The Rose is easy, especially with a boss as beautiful-and wickedly funny-as Meg Henshawe. In her way, she's as much of an outcast as Jake, and she offers him three things he thought he'd never see again: a home, family, and love.
After Meg's estranged cousin turns up and seizes the inn, Meg and Jake must work together to protect their jobs and keep The Rose running. The future is uncertain at best, and their pasts won't stay buried. Faced with one setback after another, they must decide if what they have is worth the fight to keep it. Can broken things ever really be fixed?
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Jessica Cale brings 17th century Southwark to life like no other author I know. Equal parts historical fiction and historical romance, Broken Things follows the love story of a tough as nails Englishwoman and a solitary, Jewish prizefighter as they survive discrimination, poverty, thievery, and greed in 1678 Southwark, London. Meg Henshawe, our heroine, is an Innkeeper with a string of past lovers who is responsible for single-handedly running an Inn while keeping her sisters and their collective brood of illegitimate children from being tossed out into the street by an unfeeling, yet greedy, distant relation. Jake Cohen, our hero, is a Jewish man who lost his entire family, his fiancée, and his livelihood, goldsmithing, in the Great Fire of London. He has since endured, surviving by his wits and through his skill as an undefeated prizefighter. Forced into an early retirement and on the hunt for a means to survive, Jake's path crosses Meg's where they find commonality in the very, real hardships they've endured. In survival, they find companionship and love as they struggle to live in an unforgiving world. Their lives aren't easy; their pasts are full of heartache; and discrimination abounds. But together, they learn just how strong they both truly are. Jessica Cale paints a vivid picture of life in 17th century Southwark. Her dialogue is colorful, witty, and well-crafted with careful consideration for the way people spoke in that time period while still giving the reader an easy, comforting read. You will feel as if you are there, watching it all unfold before your eyes. You will be surprised by the situations our couple face. You will find yourself rooting for Meg and falling in love with Jake as their love develops through a carefully crafted, slow burn. You will cheer when our lovers find their HEA amidst all the broken things that make up their colorful lives.