Saturday, April 6, 2013

Book Tour for A Beastly Scandal by Shereen Vedam (Review & GIVEAWAY)


Today brings us an historical story with an intriguing bit of the paranormal thrown in.  A Beastly Scandal by Shereen Vedam is a great start to a new series and today you get to learn more about it as well as signing up to win your own copy.  So keep reading on.....

The wisdom of love.....

I first want to thank the Scarf Princess for inviting me to this blog. I love the site’s title and wanted to write something about my upcoming novel that hopefully touches on its subject - wisdom.  An online definition of the word suggests that wisdom involves the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment.
I believe wisdom is more than simply showing sound judgment. Just as there is a traditional understanding of IQ, and then there is what’s called an emotional IQ, judgment, too, can have an accepted definition, and one that goes deeper. This leads me directly to the theme of that wonderful age-old fairytale, Beauty and the Beast, which inspired A Beastly Scandal.
Most versions of this fairytale deal with looking beneath the surface of someone’s appearance, manner and actions to see the real person. True love, too, requires that we utilize a special type of judgment. To see beyond the façade a person shows to the world, to the man or woman who lives in the shadows.
Someone in love sees characteristics and possibilities in the person they care for that others might miss. That is how you can tell if a hero and heroine are perfectly matched for each other.  When the heroine notices a special longing in the hero that another woman might miss, or when a hero sees a beauty in a heroine that other men have overlooked. I believe this ‘special judgment,” is the wisdom of true love.

How do you tell when a couple is truly in love?

A BELLE OF THE BALL…
Lady Annabelle Marchant was a belle of the ball in London until she used her psychical senses to save a man’s life.  She failed miserably, leaving him dead and her disgraced.  All she wants now is a chance to comfort his widow by cleansing the woman’s home of her husband’s restless spirit.  But the widow’s son, the beastly Lord of the Manor, accuses her of coming to the wilds of Cheshire to snag him as a husband.  Thoroughly disgusted, she is bent on proving him wrong.
…BECOMES PERSONA NON-GRATA…
Lord Rufus Marlesbury, the Earl of Terrance, is suspected of murdering his father.  He has come home to clear his name by finding the real killer before the new year or the king has promised that Rufus will be called in front of the House of Lords to answer for the crime.  He does not have time to waste fending off a marriage-minded miss who has inveigled an invitation to his home by playing on his grief-stricken mother’s worst fears.
…WHEN A MURDERER IS ON THE RAMPAGE
With an unruly manor ghost terrorizing the occupants and corpses piling up in the village, Belle must find a way to see the man beneath the beast and Rufus must learn to believe in the love of a woman who has no reason to trust him.  Only by working together can they stop a vengeful ghost before it torments the guests or before the killer strikes again.

EXCERPT:

Lord Terrance may have forbid her from coming to his manor house, but she was determined to clear his country home of its resident ghost.
"That is a desolate looking house, is it not?" Winfield said. "I would have it torn down and rebuilt in a more flattering style, but Terrance seems fond of this monstrosity. So what brings you so far north, my lady?"
She faced the gentleman. "I have come for a visit with Lady Terrance. She is my grandfather's friend."
"I had heard the countess still wore dark colors."
Before she could respond, a loud crack sounded. She sensed danger stab from above. With a shouted warning, she pulled Mr. Winfield out of harm's way just as an icicle crashed and shattered where they had stood. She protected her face as splinters flew in all directions.
Mendal screamed. The owl fluttered its one good wing and screeched. The dog barked ferociously.
Mr. MacBride spoke first, his voice quivering and eyes wide with terror. "It is an omen, ah tell ye." "He is right," Mendal said, sounding unusually timorous as she crossed herself. "We should leave. Bad luck comes from going where we are not wanted."
The front doors opened then, and a footman descended. Immediately, the dog raced up the stairs and inside.
"Dog!" Belle called out in alarm. The animal might wreck the place. This was not how she had hoped to introduce herself to the countess.
An older woman, dressed in black, moved to the open doorway. Belle recognized her from a drawing her grandfather had shown her.
This was Lady Terrance. She gave off waves of fear as she looked toward the roofline. Belle's worries drowned beneath the lady's emotional assault, leaving her head pounding with a headache. Through that onslaught, Belle's purpose became crystal clear. This is why she had come here. Lady Terrance needed her. 

Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/TzFVC4czHOw

MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:

A Beastly Scandal contains many of my favorite elements and is an entertaining start to a new series.  Ms. Vedam has managed to nicely balance romance and suspense with dashes of the paranormal and bits of the classic Beauty & the Beast story as represented by the main characters.  

Annabelle is a delightful heroine who knows, and fully accepts, that she's different from the other girls her age and that marriage isn't in her future.  She's smart and uses her abilities to see the dead to help others.  Rufus is rough around the edges.  He's gruff and is hurtful with his words which made it hard to warm up to him.  He needs Annabelle's help in proving his innocence but thinks she's doing it as a way to snag him for husband.  It never seemed that he was truly grateful for her assistance.  He wants to keep her at arms length since he has no interest in marrying but can't keep his hands to himself. This leads to fireworks between them from the start.  Their scenes together crackle with sexual tension.

Along with a satisfying romance came an intriguing mystery that stayed in the forefront throughout the story.  Murders kept occurring as the guesses kept coming in a well thought out mystery that kept me guessing until the very end.  Annabelle and Rufus make a good team and I enjoyed her being such an integral part of their mystery-solving duo that allowed them to interact in a meaningful way outside the bedroom.

This was a thoroughly entertaining story with a wonderful heroine in Annabelle who was smart and more than able to take care of herself. Rufus was hard to warm up to as he always seemed to be in a bad mood but ultimately came through in the end.  I enjoyed the mystery with all its twists and turns and its being equally balanced with an immensely satisfying romance.  This is the first book in a proposed four book series and I look forward to reading more by this author as she showed great promise in this book's storytelling.

My rating for this is a B+

*I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

AUTHOR INFO:

Introduced to fantasy at a young age, Shereen's reality is merely a starting point to other realms.
Her world is populated with little people with agendas, elements that talk and spells that rarely work as designed. Her heartwarming historical tales have a healthy dollop of mystery mingled with heart-melting romance, all stirred with a pinch of magic. In her brand new fairytale-inspired Regency romance series, she brings you four beloved fairytales, with a new twist.  

Website: www.shereenvedam.com
Blog: http://shereentwo.livejournal.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShereenVedam
Faceboo: https://www.facebook.com/ShereenVedam
Goodreads author page: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3415603.Shereen_Vedam


**********GIVEAWAY**********

a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the thoughtful review! Much appreciated. :-)

    ReplyDelete