A Kiss of Lies: A Disgraced Lords Novel

A Kiss of Lies: A Disgraced Lords Novel

by Bronwen Evans

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Overview

A Kiss of Lies: A Disgraced Lords Novel by Bronwen Evans

USA TODAY BESTSELLER

In Bronwen Evans’s Loveswept debut, a pair of damaged souls ignite each other’s deepest passions—even as they tempt fate by deceiving the world.

 
Desperate to escape her abusive past, Sarah Cooper disguises herself as a governess in the employ of Christian Trent, Earl of Markham, the man who, long ago, she fantasized about marrying. Despite the battle scars that mar his face, Sarah finds being near Christian rekindles her infatuation. A governess, however, has no business in the arms of an earl, and as she accompanies Christian on his voyage home, Sarah must resist her intense desires—or risk revealing her dangerous secrets.
 
One of the renowned Libertine Scholars, Christian Trent once enjoyed the company of any woman he chose. But that was before the horrors of Waterloo, his wrongful conviction of a hideous crime, and his forcible removal from England. Far from home and the resources he once had, Christian believes the life he knew—and any chance of happiness—is over . . . until his ward’s governess sparks his heart back to life, and makes him remember the man he used to be. Now Christian is determined to return to England, regain his honor, and win the heart of the woman he has come to love.

Praise for Bronwen Evans and A Kiss of Lies
 
“This tale is poignant, heartwarming and readers may be reaching for the Kleenex once or twice before the breathtaking ending.”RT Book Reviews (4 1/2 stars)

“Bronwen’s historical romances always make the top of my reading list!”New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jen McLaughlin

“The passion between [Christian and Sarah] sizzles off the pages.”Eye on Romance

“The flow of the story is magnificent, as are the characters, who have admirable depths of complexity.”Buried Under Romance

“Gut-wrenching and so well written, A Kiss of Lies is one of my favorite reads.”Book Obsessed Chicks
 
“An absolutely brilliant historical romance, full of secrets and dark pasts, A Kiss of Lies was a fantastic read.”Imagine a World

A Kiss of Lies is one of those books that made me laugh and cry. In its sensual and tender moments, it brought tears to my eyes, and the witty banter between characters made me smile again and again. No one writes wounded characters who are healed by the power of love like Bronwen Evans. This is a book sure to touch your heart.”—Bestselling author Shana Galen
 
“Absolutely riveting; a veritable page-turner. Fresh and delightful, with just that shade of darkness to up the stakes and keep the reader intrigued. A definite must-read!”—Zee Monodee
 
“I love this book and look so forward to reading anything and everything from Bronwen Evans.”Book Lovin Junkie

“Evans is an engaging, talented historical romance author. A must read!”My Book Addiction
 
Includes a special message from the editor, as well as excerpts from other Loveswept titles.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345547286
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 01/14/2014
Series: Disgraced Lords Series , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 43,145
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Bronwen Evans grew up loving books. She has always indulged her love of storytelling and is constantly gobbling up movies, books, and theater. Is it any wonder she’s a proud romance writer? Evans is a two-time winner of the RomCon Readers’ Crown and has been nominated for an RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. She lives in Wellington, New Zealand.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One
London, England, November 1815

“Get up!”

If not for the fact that the rage-filled voice bellowing in his ear was speaking English, Christian Trent, the Earl of Markham, might have thought he was back in France.

Certainly the press of cold steel at his throat flooded his brain with memories of the war: nightmarish memories, pain-filled memories. Memories he fervently tried, but hopelessly failed, to forget.

Experience had taught him that when one was in such a precarious position, with a sword at one’s windpipe, with the identity and reasoning of the attacker unknown, one was wise to act cautiously.

Without moving a muscle he pried an eye open and tried to focus on the person who was holding the deadly weapon at his neck. The slight movement of his eyeball sent pain stabbing through his head. His mouth tasted like sawdust. Christ, he must have drunk more than he thought last night.

“I repeat, get up!”

To emphasize his request, the attacker’s sword point pierced Christian’s skin. A small trail of warmth trickled down his neck.

In a ghostlike voice, so as not to disturb the pounding in his head, Christian answered, “How can I get up with that sword at my neck? I might still be half foxed, but I have enough wits about me not to push myself upon your weapon,” and with his hand he batted away the blade.

The sword immediately swung back into place.

As lethal as the sword itself, the voice uttered, “That would save me the bother of killing you.”

For a split second Christian welcomed the idea of death before he doused it with an exhaled breath.

He ignored the cannonballs rioting in his head as he twisted and turned, desperate to untangle his limbs from the satin sheets wrapped around his naked body. He did his best to ignore the dizzying weakness his movements evoked. The headache had him willing the contents of his stomach to stay down.

Where was he? The brothel? He recalled he’d paid for a woman. He knew she’d shared his bed. He could smell her lingering scent.

He drew a deep breath and calmed his mind. He had always prided himself on his ability to use his brain more effectively than any weapon to get himself out of predicaments.

“You’re a perverted reprobate,” his attacker sneered.

He tried once more to rise. There was no doubt he’d rather collapse back into a drunken slumber, but through the degrading sickness, his body prickled with stark unease. It was like a second sense, and it had saved his life many a time before.

A movement in the shadows alerted him to a second man’s presence. This silent enemy moved across the floor to throw the curtains wide. Sunlight bounced off mirrors positioned strategically around the room, stabbing at Christian’s eyes like a sharp hunting knife. Christian put his hand up to ward off the sun’s blows.

The presence of the men in his room indicated he didn’t have the luxury of being able to lie down and resume his sleep. So much for drink-inspired oblivion. He’d not endured two years on the battlefields of France to die in a brothel in his own country. Clutching the sheet to his body, he swung his legs over the side of the bed and attempted to lever himself up, gritting his teeth against the hammering in his brain.

He clamped down on his rising panic. Panic did not serve anyone. Fear was the enemy. He’d learned that many times on the battlefield.

“You’ll pay for what you have done.” The second man’s voice indicated he liked to smoke—it was thick and gravelly. Like smoke, his anger was barely contained.

Christian’s throat constricted, as if the proverbial noose were tightening around his neck. He didn’t need a sword under his chin to understand that these men were serious.

His mind quickly evaluated the likely avenues of escape. The windows were the closest options. Although the room was on the second story, if he jumped, he could land safely on the hedgerow beneath. Alternatively, the bedchamber door was wide open, so if he could slip past both men, he could make it down the servants’ stairs.
He was still at the brothel. The Honey Pot was high-class, and even though he’d been a frequent customer there since his return from the war, he had never, ever slept here.

He rubbed the back of his neck. What had happened last night?

Anger cleared the fog clinging to his brain, but only for a second. He ruthlessly clamped down on his temper. Anger was a weakness. When consumed by anger, men lost control. As a child he’d watched his father repeatedly lose control. His father’s rages turned him into a man Christian did not recognize, and as a boy he’d suffered from the consequences. Besides, it led men to make impulsive decisions, and he was anything but impulsive. “Other than taking a little pleasure in this miserable world, what exactly do you—” He paused. “—gentlemen think I have done?”

“Pleasure? Pleasure?” The sword finally swung away as the man’s anger overcame him, and he gestured wildly. “Pleasure? You brought a young, innocent girl here—here!—and defiled her,” he bellowed.

Christian’s fists clenched the sheets. His voice held steady, his tone even. “I beg your pardon. Brought a girl here . . . ? I did no such thing. I’ll call out any man who utters such scandalous allegations.” But because he was not stupid, Christian felt his world slipping out from underneath him.

He’d changed at Waterloo, and not just physically. The puckered, reddened flesh of his neck, upper right arm, and torso was a constant reminder to him, and everyone else, that he was no longer the man he once was. The ugly burns on the right side of his face twisted his mouth and eye, making him a monster. But it was his inner soul that had changed the most. He’d grown sick of the pain, the pity, and the nightmares. At first, the laudanum he took was a necessity due to the agony of his burns. Now he used the drug not only to dull the lingering pain of his wounds but also to soothe his inner torment. The memories of the flames peeling his skin haunted him still. . . .
He’d been weaning himself off the opiate gradually—had he overindulged last night? He swore under his breath.

Why couldn’t he remember?
 
 

Customer Reviews

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A Kiss of Lies: A Disgraced Lords Novel 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
2_PMVH More than 1 year ago
I just read A KISS OF LIES and I must say" AWESOMENESS!!" I love all wounded heroes. Most are wounded inside but Christian was scared inside and out. Sara (she will always be Sara to me) was also scarred inside and out. I read a lot because I am disabled and read historical romance send my mind to a different world of love, action, villains, heroes and heroine. I can't wait until I get all the LIBERTINE SCHOLARS series. I like how you leave me with one but two cliffhanger. No three cliffhangers. Who married who? Where is Grayson? Who Is so angry with all 6 men and Sara? This Series kinda reminds me of Renée Renee Bernard JADED series. Have you read any of her books? I give this book my top score of 5 fingers up and 10 toes!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Between all the plot spoilers giving away the entire book then bragging about getting their book for free, and kids using the nook as a chat room and a sex room, it is hard to get a real review. Please bn, cant you do something to these plot spoilers and kids? Cant they be banned and their posts deleted, especially the obscene ones?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was very long. The characters have so many problems. This book consist of beatings, rape, murder, disfigurement and pure evil.
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
A KISS OF LIES by Bronwen Evans is a fast paced Historical Romance. What an exciting beginning to a new series, “The Disgraced Lords” #1. I absolutely loved this title. It is fast paced and filled with passion, adventure, mystery, suspense, danger, and love. Although, it leaves you holding your breath for the next installment, what a story! The sins of the fathers are visited or forced upon the sons. Someone is trying to kill Christian and Sarah, as well as the other renowned Libertine Scholars, maybe for something their father’s did years prior. Follow, Christian Trent, Earl of Markham and Sarah Cooper,both have secrets, both are in danger of not only losing their hearts but their lives. Oh, yeah, Christian’s little ward is a hand full and one you can’t help but fall in love with also. Christian, was scarred in war in more ways than one. Sarah, is running from an abusive past. Well written with engaging characters as well as a plot to literally die for, how can you go wrong with “A Kiss of Lies”. You do not want to miss a moment of “A Kiss of Lies”. Well done!! I can hardly wait for the next installment. Ms. Evans is an engaging, talented Historical Romance author. A must read! OMG! For readers who enjoy mystery, suspense, passion and romance, this is a must read! Received for an honest review from the publisher and Net Galley. RATING: 4.5 HEAT RATING: HOT REVIEWED BY: AprilR, Courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
stanhope3234 More than 1 year ago
This was my first book from Bronwen Evans and I enjoyed it very much it defiantly won't be my last. Christian was a scarred hero and Serena a scared woman on the run after killing her abusive husband. Serena needs a place to hide and Christian needs a governess for his ward Lily. What begins as a working relationship quickly becomes an affair of the heart. There's some really good suspense and an intriguing mystery. I can't wait for Sebastian's book.
McM0mmy-PW More than 1 year ago
Loved the story of Christian and Serena!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Don't buy this. I was mislead by the phony reviews
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like to read historisl remance this was a fast paced read
Jasmyn9 More than 1 year ago
Two people on the run from their past, Sarah and Christian are thrown together by strange circumstances. Christian is trying to clear his name from a horrible accusation and wondering who would want to frame him for such a horrible crime. Banished to Canada, he makes friends and begins to raise funds to return to England. Enter Sarah, applying for a job as governess to Christian's young ward. She has a dark secret she is trying to keep, and the men looking for her are getting closer and closer. Escaping to England with Christian seems like the perfect solution, but she must ensure that he never finds out who she really is or what she has done. Of course, none of their plans go quite as expected. I'm not usually a fan of the deep dark secret theme, but it fit this story nicely. I understood Sarah's secret and why she had to keep it. But it does cause issues, as secrets will. It also comes out fairly early, so much of the story takes place after they have comes to terms with it and are now trying to help fix it. I really loved it. The Libertine Scholars were a great group of friends. It looks like each book tells the story of one of the infamous rakes. They all be playing important parts in each other's story, too, which means I get to keep in touch with these great characters.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Basically enjoyed story. It did run on a bit too much with characters constant doubt of eachothers actions & motives. If you were that in love with someone, why would you continue to question their devotion? Alas, the ending left you hanging wondering who the antagonist is. Guess that would be revealed if you read the other Libertine's stories.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book!
skelley55 More than 1 year ago
Great read, excellent characters, romance, ans suspense. What more could you ask for?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am always disappointed when smart storylines with characters having interesting backstories is ruined by explicit descriptions of depraved behavior, using vulgar language. It's so much more enjoyable to have the characters transformations revealed through intelligent writing. Brothels and prostitution represented in glamorous prose is a contradiction to the reality of the lifestyle. I much prefer the heroes sins to be implied without graphic details, and their thoughts and feelings to be understood through the progression of the story and changes that occur through their falling in love. I am even more interested to know whether it is the author, the editor, the publisher or all three who decide to add this content to a story that easily could stand alone without the smut. I wish there were a rating on the books to know which ones are filthy and should be avoided because they rob the reader of reading a worthy romance by reducing it to rubbish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't know how anyone who reads or have read this book can not give the writer and the story she told it proper due. If you are thinking on buying this 297 pg book and have read as many of these stories as myself. Then you are about to purchase a winner. It has everything. So enjoy and give your own review. Barvo. Ms. D from bronx NY
GinnyTX More than 1 year ago
I love historical romances, especially when they are part of a series, so I was very happy to read this one since it is the first of what will be a series with an ongoing mystery. I usually can guess the ending before it comes but this book had several plot twists that kept me guessing!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story, suspense as well as romance
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can't wait to start the next book in the series. My new favorite author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book was okay. It started out well, but turned sappy and redundant. It was a little ridiculous how wise and well spoken the child in the story was, too. Ugh.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love how the story unfolds and each book builds the story line even more! Characters are all lovable. Looking forward to book 3!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this book, but I felt that some parts of the story line were just too far fetched to accept. You had to suspend logic numerous times, but if you could do that, it was an enjoyable read.