Review: Madeline’s Protector by Vanessa Riley

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null Book Info:

Date Published: August 19, 2013

Publisher: White Rose Publishing

Author: Vanessa Riley

If all the young men of England leapt off a cliff, Madeline St. James wouldn’t care. Then she’d have peace. Her nightmares of courtship would end,and she’d cozy up with a Psalm in her aunt’s quiet sculpture garden. Yet, a chance meeting and a bullet wound change everything, and Madeline must trust the Good Shepherd has led her to the altar to marry a dashing stranger, Lord Devonshire.

Death and pain are no strangers to Justain Delveaux, Lord Devonshire, and he vows his dutiful bride will be kept safe and in her place. Though this compromised marriage is in-name-only, his wife and her unwavering faith both intrigue and allure him. Perchance when he thwarts his brother’s killer, Justain will tempt the unpredictable Madeline with the comfort of his arms. But can Madeline and the stubborn earl forge a true bond before the next disaster strikes?

You can order it Here:
Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |

Meet The Author:

Even as she pursued engineering degrees, Vanessa Riley’s love of 19th century history yielded a hunger to take as many Western Civilization credits as possible (two classes shy of a minor). Vanessa adores Regency times with its conflicts between Church and State, the clash of the classes, and the sweeping romances. Her mission is to have the world fall in love with powerful Regency heroes and heroines who battle for peace with a flintlock and a prayer.

Vanessa writes from the comfort of her southern porch with a cup of Earl Grey or Cinnamon Spice.

You can find Vanessa Here:
Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Pinterest

My Favorite Scene:

  “Her soft tongue grazed his cheek. Justain wasted no time in enfolding her in his embrace. He’d been tempting her this past week, finding ways to hold her hand during their isolated travels. He’d stroke her hair for no reason.

  Madeline’s lips slipped to his neck.

  He groaned and lifted her head. “What is it that you want of me, Madeline? I’m your humble servant.”

  She smoothed the crush of her fushia gown.”Everything, but you’ll only give this much.” Madeline motioned with her fingers an inch.

  He patted her hand down to the blanket. “You don’t think that you’ll win everything or that I’m not capable of giving more?”

  “It’s getting late. We should settle in for the evening.” She started searching for her crutch.

  He sat up and pushed the staff from her reach. “Answer my question.”

  “You hide me notes that speak of unveiled emotions. That’s not you. You’re restrained, even in the way you kiss me.” Madeline set the dishes back into their basket. “I believe you will always hide parts of yourself from me. You don’t trust me enough.”

  “Trust?” He shook his head. “My sending you notes has nothing to do with trust.”

  “You’re right.” Madeline put a final plate away. “Your heart has too many defenses. My knight bears too much armour.”

  “Well, a man needs to know when his attention is wanted. You should speak of your desires.”

  “Why, for you to kiss me on the forehead? Pat my head like a good girl.” She tossed a mug into the basket. It clanged as it banged against the other dishes. “Sorry, I guess I hoped there was more to it. The poets make a kiss sound grand.”

  Excellent. Madeline felt frustrated. Justain untied the ribbons of her bonnet and tossed the hat to the blanket. “I’ve never thoroughly kissed you, Madeline.”

  The heart-shaped face studied him. She narrowed her eyes. “Thoroughly?”

  His words must have puzzled her, but if he was to do this now it must be right. “May I?”

  Madeline nodded her consent.

  He flicked away the pins of her chignon to free the bundled tresses. Then, gripping her shoulders, he drew her back into his arms and nibbled the edge of her jaw. “The poets don’t lie.” His lips covered hers. Tasting and nipping, he found his reward, the moist temptation of her deepest kiss.

  Trailing his fingers down her back to encourage her, he felt her temple. Should he relent?

  Her flailing hands settled on the space between his shoulders. She tightened her grip and pressed further into his embrace. Madeline saught his mouth with urgency, matching his intensity.

  Justain pulled her to his chest as he sank against the heavy wool.

  She touched his face and smooth away wisps of hair drizzling down his cheek, then reclaimed his lips.

  His thoughts spun. Strawberry fragrance swirled around him.Justain hadn’t expected Madeline to be this warm, this inviting. Who was being seduced?

  This was too public a place to conceive a Delveaux heir, but would her exploring mood last if he moved them indoors? “Madeline, we should go in before it gets dark.”

  “Not yet.” Her thumbs twisted in the tails of his cravat, yanking it asunder. She lingered about his Adam’s apple before returning to his mouth.

  The measured pacing of their romance erupted in flames. She was kindling wooc, and her warmth blazed his skin.

  He wrapped his arms about her tightly. “Shall we retire for the evening?”

  She abruptly pulled back. Her large eyes seemed filled with questions. No, she wasn’t quite ready to surrender.

  He released her, sat up, and closed the basket. “We have a long ride tomorrow. I suppose I should get you settled into your room?”

  “Yes, I think that’s best.””

Meet The Characters:

Madeline St. James: Madeline grew up a very spiritual person at the hands of her mother. Despite everything she has been through since her mother’s death, most recently being attacked, she hasn’t lost her faith. She put every ounce of her being into fighting the demons of those she loves to bring them to Christ.

Justain Delveaux: Justain is a fighter. He fights to protect those he cares about and he fights the demons from his past. When it becomes too much, he turns to drinking but, after metting Madeline, he loses his desire to drown his sorrows. He is a very proud and stubborn man that keeps his feelings bottle up inside.

Reverend Devlin Delveaux: Devlin is Justain’s cousin but they were raised together and are like brothers. Faithful to God and loyal to those he loves. His one desire is to see Justain beat his demons from the past and be happy with God and his new bride.

Jonathan Winton: Jonathan is Justain’s steward and very good friend. He is always there with advice and he always comes through when needed.

My Thoughts:

After her mother’s death, Madeline St. James grew up in constant fighting and bickering between her father and step-mother. Before leaving to stay with her aunt, Lady Cecil Glaston, she was attacked by her step-mother’s brother. She has known nothing but heartache for years and her only illusions of love are gathered from the poems she reads. When her purse is stolen and Justain Delveaux comes to her aid, it starts a series of events that lead them to marriage. While Madeline has come to care for Justain, she has her doubts he could ever love her. Not only does she fight to save his soul, she fights to win his love.

After the death of his father and, most recently his brother, Justain Delveaux is fighting to restore his family’s estate and assests. He is constantly on lookout for the tirrants that are trying to kill him, or so he thinks. After so much devestation in his life he turns to alcohol to soothe his spirit, not realizing only God can soothe the wounds and hurts he carries with him at all times. When he helps a distressed Madeline, he never imagines their paths will forever become joined. But he soons comes to realize that he loves Madeline and wants forever to be Madeline’s Protector.

Madeline’s Protector was a very enjoyable book. Vanessa Riley stayed true to the history of the “Ton” or “The Society of London”. She wove together an exciting romance and suspense all in one. As they say” The Plot Thickens”. In Madeline’s Protector you never really knew what to expect next. It kept you guessing with the turn of every page. The romance between Madeline and Justain was a battle that was fought hard all the way to the end. Neither knew how to trust and put their demons aside, but God brought them together and healed their wounds. A great read! If you like regency romance, you’ll like Madeline’s Protector!

Regency Tidbits:

  • What is “the Ton”?… The “Ton” were those families that were made up the high society in London. The majority of them live in castles and manors on large estates in the country. This includes the Royals, titled aristocracy, and old landed gentry as well as politicians, a few wealthy merchants and manufacturers, a few doctors and artists.

  • What is “the Season”?… “The Season” came about when those of the “Ton” had to visit London from time-to-time to take care of business matters. The Season was the name given to the months between late January and early July. It officially began when Parliament re-opened in London and was an endless parade of social entertainments – balls, theatre parties, dances, masquerades, military reviews, and many other social pleasures to be enjoyed by the ton.

  • Being a part of the “Ton” requires you maintain your position by not publically humiliating yourself, being seen with the right people and wearing only the most fashionable garments.

  • “Ton” society was intensely class-conscious and the social hierarchy was incredibly rigid. Birth, wealth, titles, and other factors determined class standing.

  • Families with marriageable children used the Season to present their children to the ton in hopes of arranging profitable marriages.

This review was published on: My Blog  |  Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble  |  GoodReads  |  |  |  Tumblr

**A copy of this book was provided by for my honest review**


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