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Guest blogger: Cassandra Samuels

27 May 2018

Author photo courtesy of Mima Photography

I’m not sure who first said that rakes make the best husbands, but we like to think that it is true, at least in fiction. The rake plays hard and falls hard and in that lays the appeal, for me at least. The rake isn’t for everyone but I love it when a good rake reformed story works. The Rake by Mary Jo Putney is a fave and Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase is another. Who doesn’t like a bad boy?

What both of these books have in common though is that the rake has a back story that explains to some extent the reasoning behind the decisions they make. Those reasons have to be believable. It is a pet peeve of mine when a rake is not a rake in word or action. My rake has a back story which is told in the prologue, so right up front, you know where he’s coming from.

In Collector of Hearts, my Regency historical romance releasing on 12 June 2018 (yay!) Robert Mallory, Marquis of Shelton uses his moniker as a mask to hide behind. It is easier to be the Collector of Hearts than to deal with the issues that led him there. On the outside, he seems cold and callous but only those close to him like his friend Lord Shacklesbury know how he suffers and the lengths he goes to protect himself.

When the heroine, Arabella first comes across him she has been forewarned of his reputation. She’s determined not to fall for his tricks but instantly realises she is in trouble when he comes over to meet her and her twin sister:

She knew what he was—a rogue, a rake and a philanderer—and she was well-warned, but her foolish heart still beat madly in her chest as he approached and she could not look away. Her mouth was dry but she hadn’t the wits to even take a sip of her champagne.

He was magnificent. With effortless ease and understated grace, he dominated the crowded ballroom like it was his herd and he the wild stallion. Arabella’s legs trembled like a skittish mare. Her pulse quickened and her eyes widened. She couldn’t help it, she didn’t know whether to bolt or faint, so she just stood where she was and stared at him.

Robert doesn’t dally with virgins, but he can’t get Arabella out of his mind. So, to justify seeing her, he decides that he must warn her about the dangers of the ton. Sort of like a tutor only he is very much out of his depth. And so is she.

To complicate things her twin sister Isabelle and Robert’s friend Shacklesbury fall in love right in front of them. This really puts a spanner in the works. Robert cannot possibly carry on with the game he is playing with Arabella but how can he stay away from her?

Plans and plots abound on both sides until both Robert and Arabella have their happily ever after, but I can’t tell you how that happens. You’ll have to read the book. 😉

Lets just say: A heart worth collecting just might be a heart worth keeping.

You can find Cassandra here: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Pinterest

Cassandra is giving away a copy of Collector of Hearts to one commenter. Leave a comment below to go in the draw. The giveaway will close on 10 June. (The giveaway is now closed. The winner was Juliette.)

Collector of Hearts

Thanks to a wastrel father and a laudanum-addicted mother, Arabella Fleming and her twin sister have one—and only one—season in London in which to find suitable husbands.

Robert Mallory, Marquis of Shelton, is not suitable. Known as the Collector of Hearts, Shelton is a master of seduction, and he never fails when he sets his sight on a new target. And this season, he wants Arabella.

Arabella is too clever to be swept up in Shelton’s wicked amusements, but she finds herself unable to resist the temptation of his company. And when she tastes his kiss, she discovers there’s more to him than a mysterious past and an infamous reputation. Arabella soon realises that, in order to protect her own heart, she has to collect that of another—the heart of the most notorious rake in London.

Collector of Hearts is available now on all e-book platforms. You can find the links here.


  1. 7 June 2018 4:45 pm

    This books sounds fantastic. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy & to read it!

  2. Beverley permalink
    31 May 2018 11:04 am

    Already pre ordered,looking forward to reading your latest book. You write with such wit it is so easy to read.your characters are complex but entertaining.loved the first book and looking forward to many more.

  3. Anonymous permalink
    31 May 2018 10:59 am

    Already on pre order,enjoyed the first book looking forward to the next and the next also.You write with such wit it is so easy to read love your work.

  4. 28 May 2018 8:06 am

    I’m looking forward to reading Collector of Hearts (it’s already on pre-order 🙂 ). Congratulations Cassandra!

    • Cassandra permalink
      28 May 2018 9:16 am

      Thank you marilyn. I hope you love it.

  5. Yvonne Bartlett permalink
    27 May 2018 10:41 pm

    Congratulations on your new release. Looking forward to reading this story with twins and rakes and clever games.

    • Cassandra Samuels permalink
      28 May 2018 9:17 am

      Thank you Yvonne. Rakes are fun.

    • Cassandra permalink
      28 May 2018 9:26 am

      Thank you Yvonne. Rakes are fun to write.

  6. Malvina permalink
    27 May 2018 4:32 pm

    Cassandra, I can’t wait to read ‘Collector of Hearts’. That ballroom scene sounds fabulous, right up my alley. Arabella sounds sweet. I’m delighted it’s not long to wait, now. Thanks!

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