Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Bride Thief by Jacquie D'Alessandro

Samantha is being forced to marry an old man.  The Bride Thief hears of this and rescues her only to find that she has managed to fend off the old man. The thief explains that once he loved a woman who was forced to marry and he could not save her.  So his penance is to save other young women in the same position.  Since Sammie is safe from the marriage, he returns her to her family.
Sammie is the talk of the town.  Everyone wants to know about the bride thief. She meets Lord Eric Wesley. She starts to have feelings for him but he says he will not marry. Eric also has feelings for Samantha. But he has a secret which keeps them apart.

If you need a cute little romance story to read try this one!

From the author's site:
At six-and-twenty, Samantha Briggeham knew her marital prospects were fading by the season and she was pleased by the thought.  She had no intention of being betrothed--especially against her will--to a man she did not love.  She had a plan...and it didn't include being swept into a pair of powerful arms and spirited away by a masked rider.  News of Sammie's heroic rescue from undesired wedlock turned her into the toast of the ton, wooed by suitors far and wide.  But she couldn't forget the swashbuckling brigand who'd abducted her--something about him intrigued her completely.  Then she met Eric Landsdowne, the dashing and seductive Earl of Wesley.  
       His exploits were legendary, his life filled with danger.  He was the elusive Bride Thief, who had his own reasons for helping young women escape the unhappy fate of arranged marriages, and whose true identity was a scrupulously guarded secret.  But from the moment he rescued Sammie--only to discover she'd already managed to get herself un-betrothed--Eric knew he couldn't lose her a second time.  Marriage was out of the question.  Which left only one option: A clandestime affair that might lead to scandal, social ruin, and the unmasking of a love-bested legend...

It happened as quickly as a lightning flash.
     A black horse emerged from the trees, vaulting over a low hedge.  Sammie's heart nearly stalled with surprise, then fear flooded her as she realized the horse was headed straight for her.
     Springing to her feet, she stepped hastily backward.  She caught the shadowy glimpse of a rider who clearly didn't see her, as he veered in her direction.  She opened her mouth to shout a warning, but before she could issue so much as a peep, a strong arm scooped her off the ground.
     Her breath left her body in a loud whoosh and pain shot up her backside as she was deposited sideways on the saddle with a bone-jarring thud.  Her glasses flew from her nose, and her reticule fell from her fingers.  What appeared to be a bouquet of flowers sailed past her.
     The strong arm tightened around her like a vice, pinning her sideways to a large muscular frame as the horse raced into the woods.  "Do not worry," a deep velvety whisper flavored with a faint Scottish brogue sounded in her ear.  "You are perfectly safe."
     Speechless with shock, Sammie tried to move her arms, but her captor held them trapped to her sides with his own.  Turning her head, she found herself staring at a black mask.  Fear snaked down her spine and clogged her throat.  What manner of madman was this?  A highwayman?  But if so, why had he taken her instead of simply demanding money?
     Realization slapped her.  Dear God, was she being kidnapped? She shook her head to clear it.  Logic labeled the idea utterly preposterous, but the fact that she was speeding through the night in the iron-clad grasp of masked man certainly indicated an abduction.  Why on earth would someone kidnap her?  While her family was financially comfortable, they were not wealthy enough to pay an exorbitant ransom.  Had he made a mistake and abducted the wrong woman?  She didn't know, but she had to get away from him.
     Drawing as deep a breath as she could manage, Sammie opened her mouth to let lose with a scream.  The sound had no sooner emanated from her throat than the arm anchored around her middle tightened, cutting her cry into a mere wheeze.
     "Don't scream," he whispered against her ear.  "I won't harm you."
     Unconvinced by his assurance, she opened her mouth again, but his lips pressed against her ear stopped her.
     "I don't want to stuff my handkerchief in your mouth, but I will if I must."
     Sammie reluctantly swallowed the scream trembling on her lips.  Although she was not one to panic, she couldn't stop the alarm quivering through her.  "I demand that you stop this horse and release me.  Immediately."
     "Soon, lass."
     "You've made a mistake.  My family cannot pay a ransom."
     "'Tis not a ransom I'm after."  He leaned closer, his warm breath sending a shiver down her spine.  "Fear not, Miss Briggeham.  You're saved."
Click on the link above to read more.

Pages: 357

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