The Baron and the Enchantress by Paullett Golden – Blog Tour, Review, and Giveaway

About the Book:

Lilith Chambers’ quiet life as a parish midwife shatters when the brother thought responsible for her death discovers she’s alive and well. Having been raised in an orphanage, she has few memories of her real parentage or the circumstances of her disappearance from the life she ought to have. As she reorients herself in a new life, she meets the one man she can’t have.

Walter Hobbs, Baron Collingwood, is struggling to assume the mantle of his untimely inheritance. Then he meets Lilith Chambers, the long-lost daughter of the 15th Earl of Roddam. He is struck by love at first sight. She is everything he could ever want in a woman, except for two inconveniences: she is illegitimate, and she wants nothing to do with him.

This is the love story of Walter and Lilith as they discover themselves through each other.

Click on title below for direct Amazon buy link:                                                          The Baron and The Enchantress (An Enchantress Novel Book 3)

About the Author:

Paullett Golden is a Houston, Texas native who now divides her time between Northumberland, England and her hometown. She has been a university professor for over 20 years. When an oncologist told her she had three months to live, she decided it was time to fulfill her dream of being a novelist. After defying the odds, she now focuses her attention on her writing. Her debut novel has hit the Amazon bestseller list multiple times and has won a Reader Views Literary Award. She loves historical fiction of all kinds as a way to transport us to a different time and place. All research comes from authentic resources of the time and from scholarly and peer-reviewed articles from researchers specializing in the time. Though she may take liberties with the fictional aspects, she does aim for the fiction to reflect the mores, culture, laws, and environment of the time. When not writing, she can be found in her butterfly garden or on a race track.

SOCIAL MEDIA & WEBSITE:  https://www.paullettgolden.com

Facebook: @paullettgolden                  Twitter: @paullettgolden                                             Instagram: @paullettgolden

Read an Excerpt:

“Do forgive me, Miss Chambers. I, uh, I didn’t expect anyone to be about at this hour. I do apologize.”

“No apology needed. It seems we have caught each other in a rare and unguarded moment.”

“Yes, I suppose. If you’ll excuse me, I’ll return to the castle and not disturb your peace.”

“No!” Miss Chambers raised a staying hand, fleetingly looking both frantic and vulnerable. 

When he made no move to leave, she dried her feet with the hem of her dress before slipping a pair of scuffed half-boots over bare toes. Standing, she secured her shawl with a knot to keep it from flying away, then looked steadily at him with bewitching eyes. 

“Shall we walk together, my lord? I would like the company.”

A quick look around showed she had not brought a maid. But of course, she would not. 

Feeling sheepish and more than a little in love, he grinned like a madman and held his arm for her to take. His only hope was that he did not smell like a horse.

She nudged him back to the beach rather than following the dunes. Though they walked a good distance at a casual pace, she made no attempt at conversation. Walter found it difficult not to admire her profile. The top of her head came level with his eyes—a kissable height. She wore a placid smile, as one at peace with the day and her surroundings, though her eyelids drooped from weariness. The wind caught her hair and whipped it about. More than once, she swept a hand across her face to tuck the strands behind her ears. 

“You must be exhausted,” he said.

“Aren’t you a perceptively posh pickle this morning, Lord Collingwood. Is it the dark circles under my eyes that gave me away?”

With an awkward ha, he said, “I meant no slight, only that it was a long night, and I didn’t expect to see anyone awake this early, least of all you who worked so hard to bring new life into the world. And for that matter, I don’t see dark circles. You look beautiful in the morning light.” 

She bowed her head, preventing him from seeing if she blushed and smiled or scowled with annoyance. The compliment was too bold, he feared. But why should he not let his feelings be known? This woman was not wooed by innuendo. 

“Morning is my favorite time of day,” she replied, ignoring his compliment. “A time before the world wakes. When everything is private, quiet. It’s a time to reflect. I’m more surprised to see you this early. I was under the impression peers of the realm prefer to laze all morning since they have nothing better to do than sleep.” 

Her words were not accusatory, rather whimsical. She was teasing him. 

“Ah, guilty as charged, my lady. At least since I’ve been here. When home, that is not the case. I may be a dreamer, but I’m not lazy.”

Giving him a long, assessing look, she said, “You look different this morning. I hardly recognize you.”

Embarrassed, he cleared his throat. He could not recall a time when a woman had seen him in only a shirt, much less such shabby attire. The sweat and sand did not do him any service either. He must look appalling. 

“I do apologize. Again, I didn’t expect to see anyone. Had there been a chance—”

“Now, you mistake my meaning,” she interrupted. “I like this version of you. You look—how should I say this?—human.”

“Human?” he echoed. 

“Quite. You are always so polished, and yet, here you are, raw. Even your cheeks are rough with stubble. Yes, you look human, and I very much prefer this version. You don’t look titled.”

Frowning, he said, “But I am titled.”

“Yes, so you are.”

They lapsed into silence. 

A light drizzle sprinkled, but she did not seem to mind. 

“I would rather have my father than a title, Miss Chambers.”

She directed him to the black rocks at the base of the hill leading up to the curtain wall and signaled for them to sit. He chose the smoothest and largest rock for them to share, holding her hand only long enough to guide her safely until seated. 

Miss Chambers leaned back, her arms behind her, her palms flat against the rockface, her face tilted to the sky to feel the drizzling rain. 

Leaning forward, he rested his forearms against his thighs, snagging a small rock to roll in his hands. Anything to occupy him from staring at her. 

“How did he die?” she asked, breaking the silence. 

“Carriage accident. It was a blind bend. He ran head-on into a curricle racer. He was thrown from the carriage. Died on impact.”

The rock in his hand was smooth, weathered by the sea. 

“You were close to him,” she said.

“Yes and no. Yes, we were close. He was my hero. But those few years after Oxford, I was a hellion. He wanted to teach me estate business and make it a real father-son venture, but all I wanted to do was be with my mates, stay out late, get foxed every night. You know, all those things you think spoiled children of aristocrats do. Only, I was a grown man with no excuse for such behavior. I regret every minute. Those were minutes I could have spent with him, you see.”

He could not believe he was rambling and to a woman he wanted to impress. How could she ever be impressed with him after admitting such foul things about himself? She would think him the very type of man she would want to avoid. 

Much to his surprise, he felt a featherlight touch against his cheek. He flinched and glanced at his companion. Her hand stilled in the air, inches from his face. 

“It’s softer than I expected,” she whispered, tentatively reaching her fingers to his cheek again, running the tips against his stubble. “I thought it might be rough to the touch.” 

Feeling daring but not brave enough to break the spell with a kiss, he tossed the rock aside and caught her wrist. She made no motion to pull away, simply stared at him with unreadable brown eyes. He leaned his cheek into her palm, pressing her hand hard against his skin, raking it against the soft bristles until her palm met his lips. Pressing his lips into her skin, he kissed the ungloved, satin flesh.

She closed her eyes, allowing him to press a kiss to the heel of her palm, and then against the inside of her slender wrist. Only when he began to lean ever so slightly closer did her eyelids flutter open. She tugged her hand free and looked away. 

His body burned for her, the memory of her skin still on his lips. He wanted nothing more than to kiss her senseless. Yet, the moment had passed. Her gaze was on the castle wall, not him, discouraging him from doing what he desperately desired. 

Filtered sunrays found a thinness in the fog through which to peek. 

“Would you like to return to the castle, Miss Chambers?” he asked hoarsely. 

 “No, but I do suppose it would be sensible to head that direction.”

Willing his body to cool, he stood first before helping her down from the rocks. She took his arm, and they walked towards the slope that would take them around to the servant’s entrance. 

“It’s not that I dislike you because you’re titled,” she said abruptly. “It’s only—. Well, we’re from different worlds. I can’t relate to the polished version of you. You’re always formal and stuffy.”

He could not help but laugh at that assessment. Not quite the image he had of himself. No one had ever accused him of being formal or stuffy. 

“But I like this version of you. Very much.” 

Her tone was matter-of-fact, as though providing a diagnosis after an examination. Her words, however, flip-flopped his heart. 

Opening the wooden door in the curtain wall, he held it for her to enter the castle grounds. Halfway through the doorway, she paused. She stared at him as though she had more to say. But then, she did something he never would have expected. 

Placing two warm hands against his chest, she leaned in and kissed his cheek. 

It was not a quick peck. It was a slow kiss wherein she brushed her mouth against his skin, tickling her lips with his stubble before pursing her lips. She held the kiss, as though memorizing the feel of him. 

Just as slowly, she retreated, her hands still against his chest. 

He knew he was blushing. He could feel his ears growing hot and his neck flushing. Before he could make a move of his own, she patted his chest, turned away from him, and walked with quickened steps towards the castle, leaving him standing alone in the doorway. 

My Review:

I received a complimentary copy of this book.

Walter Hobbs, Baron Collingwood, is at a crossroads in his life.  Since his father’s death two years ago, Walter has been struggling to find something – some cause, some passion – something that will give his life a purpose.  He spent most of his thirty-five years living the good life of a handsome young man of noble birth.  He never spent time with his father to learn how to run the estate, and all he appears to excel at is being charming and having a good time.

Lilith Chambers’s life has been filled with upheaval and tragedy.  She was raised as an earl’s daughter until the age of eight, when she was torn from her beloved mother and brother, and placed in an orphanage.  As time passed, she came to believe that her memories of her family were only dreams.  Now thirty-three, Lilith has made a life for herself by teaching orphans and acting as a midwife.  Her life is disrupted yet again when her long lost brother, Sebastian, finds her and wants to make her a part of his family.  It seems that Sebastian, now the earl, was led to believe that Lilith had died – a cruel lie perpetuated by his evil father.

Lilith and Walter meet at a family gathering, as Walter’s cousin Liz is married to Sebastian, Lilith’s brother.  Walter is thunderstruck at his first view of Lilith, though she’s unfashionably dressed, and has no desire to have any interaction with him.  It’s fair to say that Lilith has a distinct prejudice against nobility, as for years she’s had to endure the slings and arrows from the upper crust people in her town who look down on her.  Walter perseveres, and Lilith is slowly won over by the handsome green-eyed man.  Their affection grows, and Lilith can’t bring herself to admit the truth of her birth to Walter, knowing that their flirtation will end as soon as he finds out she is, in fact, illegitimate.

When the truth is revealed, Walter discovers that he doesn’t care about Lilith’s birth.  He is in love, and wants Lilith for his wife.  Lilith is still struggling with the decision of whether or not to become part of her brother’s family, much less trying to fit in with nobility.  Lilith has found deep satisfaction in her work and providing a genuine service.  Social events bore and terrify her, and she can’t imagine stifling her passions to fit into that kind of life.  Also, if the truth of her birth ever got out, Walter would surely be ostracized along with her.  Lilith is a strong woman, but her deep seated prejudice and fears cause her to return to the safe life she knows, turning away from genuine love in the process.

Walter is honestly a bit shallow at the start.  By no means is he cruel or lazy, but he has no goals or focus.  As we meet him, he is beginning to desire more for his life.  He has charm, and an innate kindness, as well as a touching vulnerability.  He is honest in expressing his emotions and feelings, and I quite adore him.  I hated the hurt he had to endure at Lilith’s rejection, but I loved watching his personal growth.

THE BARON AND THE ENCHANTRESS is not a fast moving book, the pacing is slow, showcasing the cast of characters in great detail and letting the reader get to know them.  I did become frustrated at times with Lilith, but loved watching her come into her own, and seeing true love conquer the obstacles.  There was a minor villain in the story who really deserved a comeuppance which he didn’t receive, and I was very sorry not to see him sent on a mission to Siberia, as I feel his threat wasn’t resolved.  I loved that Sebastian and Liz played a large role here, as I’m a big fan of their story, THE EARL AND THE ENCHANTRESS.  If you enjoy a character driven story with a strong romance, I highly recommend these two books by Paullett Golden.    ~Rose

Enter the Giveaway:

Aug 3-17   Prizes: autographed Baron, autographed Duke, autographed Earl, $15 Starbucks gift card, magnet with book cover and quote of choice

  CLICK HERE TO ENTER GIVEAWAY

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