Thursday, December 11, 2014

Spotlight & Giveaway - The Duke's Guide to Correct Behavior (Dukes Behaving Badly #1) by Megan Frampton


The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior
Dukes Behaving Badly # 1

By: Megan Frampton

Releasing November 25th, 2014




All of London knows the Duke of Rutherford has position and wealth. They also whisper that he’s dissolute, devilish, and determinedly unwed. So why, everyone is asking, has he hired a governess?

When Miss Lily Russell crosses the threshold of the Duke of Rutherford’s stylish townhouse, she knows she has come face to face with sensual danger. For this is no doting papa. Rather, his behavior is scandalous, and his reputation rightly earned. And his pursuit of her is nearly irresistible—but resist she must for the sake of her pupil.

As for the duke himself, it was bad enough when his unknown child landed on his doorstep. Now Lily, with her unassuming beauty, has aroused his most wicked fantasies—and, shockingly, his desire to change his wanton ways. He’s determined to become worthy of her, and so he asks for her help in correcting his behavior.

But Lily has a secret, one that, if it becomes known, could change everything . . .


            “Your references.” He held his hand out as he spoke.
            “References,” she repeated, knowing the pink in her cheeks was increasing. Perhaps this was the Room for Blushing, but if it were, she was doing all the work. He looked absolutely confident, that one eyebrow still lifted as though it had noticed her blushes, but he himself had not.
            There was a silence as they continued to look at each other in what felt like a facial standoff.
            His other eyebrow joined its mate. “I presume a reputable governess from a reputable Agency--I saw the advertisement in the papers, and my butler knew of the Agency’s reputation--would come supplied with references?” He lifted his head and crossed his arms across his chest. “Are you saying my butler is misinformed? Are you saying I have made the wrong decision?” His tone was nearly incredulous.
            She still did not speak. She knew what to say--she’d coached enough of the unfortunate women to be able to recite it in her sleep--but she just couldn’t, not with him, and those eyebrows, and all that...virility just a few feet away. 
            She was very far from reputable at this moment, she had to admit.
            His lips--the fulness of which she’d just been admiring--thinned. “I need a governess. Not for me, mind you,” he added, those lips tilting up in a crooked smirk, as though this duke had a sense of humor, “but for charge. A young lady of approximately four years.” A frown. “Or more or less, I’m not precisely certain.”
            This was for the Agency, she couldn’t falter now. Or open and close her mouth like a hungry fish. Either action would not be useful.
            “Yes, of course, Your Grace.” She made a slight curtsey, just as she instructed the women to do. To reinforce the client’s importance so he or she would be beguiled into forgetting all about needing...“References. I regret to say I hastened to assist you without pausing to to collect them.” She had recalled that, back at the moment with the yelping and the general excitement, but everything had left her mind on seeing him. “I will certainly rectify that at a later date. Please know, for now, that I am skilled in the charge of girls, and if I could just meet the young lady in question, I would be able to prove my mettle.”
            His eyebrows lowered as he seemed to consider her words. “Prove your mettle in some sort of governess competition?”
            She replied before she thought. “It is not as though the teaching of girls is something one can be competitive about. Either they learn, or they do not. I assure you, I am quite competent.”
            Oh, stupid, stupid Lily. Wasn’t it an absolute rule that one did not talk back to a duke? Particularly when said duke had your future employment in your hands? Plus the future of the Agency, the one she and her partners had worked so very hard for?
            She clamped her mouth shut before she could say anything else.
            But he hadn’t yet thrown her out, so...She held her breath, seeing how the corner of his mouth had lifted into what might nearly be a smile, how one eyebrow had arched up--honestly, his eyebrows were miraculously nimble--as though he were amused.
            And exhaled as he nodded. “You will suit,” he said.
            She had much more admiration for the unfortunate women now.
            Without saying anything more, he leaned over the surface of the escritoire and lifted a tiny pink bell from the far corner. He glared at it--and really, who could blame him?--and shook it.
            Not unexpectedly, it had a tiny, light tinkling sound, and Lily held her breath, wondering if anyone could possibly have heard it. Moments later, however, the butler opened the door.
            “Escort Miss Rose here now.” No please, no softening of his voice, but to Lily, it was as though an angel had burst from the heavens and was promising her cream cakes and chocolate sauce.
            Which reminded her, she hadn’t eaten for a while. What would she do if her stomach growled? Was stomach-growling a cause for not hiring a person?
            She hoped she wouldn’t have to find out.
            The duke did not ask her to sit, of course; she was a servant being interviewed for a position, not a guest visiting for tea. Once he’d sent the butler off to fetch Rose he’d barely glanced in her direction, even. Although she couldn’t stop looking at him. It was really unfair that he was a duke, and lived in the Mansion with Many Rooms, and looked as he did.
            Now, for example, he was examining some papers on the execrable escritoire, his long, elegant, yet still ridiculously virile fingers shuffling them while his other hand raked through his hair, making it both more disheveled and more dangerously attractive.
            His nose--and really, when had she ever noticed the shape of a person’s nose before?--was straight and sharp, and nearly too big, but was, again, dangerously attractive.
            An attractive nose. She was engrossed by the study of his nose.
            At least he didn’t have a wart or anything. That would be no less engrossing, but definitely less handsome.
            At last, she heard the door swing open behind her, and she turned around to see a small, slight child wearing a shabby gown and clutching the remnants of some sort of pastry, crumbs of which were falling to the floor.
            And her expression--she looked as anxious and terrified as Lily felt, and Lily immediately felt a bond to this little girl who probably couldn’t even count as high as all the rooms in the duke’s house. Perhaps that would be one of their first lessons. If she got the job.
            “Miss Rose, this lady has come to discuss taking a position as your governess.” His voice was gentle, as though he knew just how intimidating he likely appeared to this tiny, pastry-eating waif. To females of all ages, she had to admit. Never mind she wished she had a pastry herself. But that he knew enough to use a softer tone surprised her. She wasn’t accustomed to gentlemen being anything but demanding. Especially at her last unfortunate position.
            He could never know of that particular item on her list of prior positions. Not if she wished to keep her current one.
              “Her name is,” he continued, still in that soft tone, “what is your name?,” he muttered, sounding impatient.
            Lily swallowed. “Lily Russell, Your Grace, but you can just call me Miss Lily.”
            “Miss Rose, this is Miss Lily.” He chuckled, an entirely unexpected sound. “Perhaps I should be called the Duke of Gardening instead of Rutherford.” The joke was even more unexpected than the chuckle, but Lily couldn’t spare a moment to think about how Dangerous a witty Duke might be.
            “Hello, Miss Rose.” Lily spoke softly, as he had, already aware she had to be gentle towards this obviously frightened girl. She could definitely sympathize--Lily was frightened as well, frightened she wouldn’t suit, frightened she would end up like so many of the unfortunate women the Agency hadn’t helped.
            Frightened she couldn’t help this girl as she wished someone had helped her.
            “It is a pleasure to meet you.” She knelt down and extended her hand towards the girl. “I would like to stay here and teach you. Would you like that?”
            Rose looked at Lily’s hand, then nodded as she took a few steps and took it. “Yes,” she said in a whisper.
            Lily heard the duke exhale behind her. “She’s just barely arrived, and hasn’t spoken a word yet.” He was not at all the commanding duke who’d demanded her references, not now. Now he seemed almost...anxious. “Not even once, during our tea. I was worried that she was mute.”
            Interesting. So he’d just met his charge? Not that it was any of her business, of course, prim, methodical Lily reminded that other curious, yelping part of her. But still. Interesting.
            Lily smiled at Rose, who returned the smile, albeit shakily. “I believe Miss Rose and I will have plenty to discuss.” She turned her head to look at the duke. “May I assume I have the position, then?” she asked.
            He glanced quickly at her, and the heat of his gaze seemed to penetrate to the fraud within, the woman who’d never really been a governess, just a young lady with a sister. Her stomach tightened in both hunger and anxiety.
“Yes,” he said at last. He barked out an order, and both Rose and Lily jumped. “Thompson, take Miss Rose and Miss Lily to one of the guest bedrooms, it doesn’t matter which one. That will be the schoolroom.”
            The girl’s fingers were trembling, and Lily wished she could tell her that it was all right, that trembling in the presence of such a pink room and an arrogant duke was a perfectly normal reaction, only she didn’t think it would be good for the child to know her new governess was a ninny who yelped and pondered noses and wan begonias and a vast number of rooms rather than concerning herself with proper conduct.
            She would save all that for a lesson some time in the future, when the topic was Foolish Things Your Governess Thinks of and Does When Panicking.

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Author Info:
Megan Frampton writes historical romance under her own name and romantic women’s fiction as Megan Caldwell. She likes the color black, gin, dark-haired British men, and huge earrings, not in that order. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and son.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


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  1. I can't say I would add anything, it sounds like an interesting read as is.

  2. Oh boy, did I ever enjoy this excerpt! I really like this Duke, though, for his gentleness with his daughter...and I really like Lily, too, because she knew just what to do to get a response from his daughter, who'd not spoken a word until the introduction scene. This is really going to be a lovely story I believe! Thanks so much for this post.

  3. sounds like a great book.. i enjoyed the excerpt! Thanks for sharing :)

  4. I would not add any thing I like to read the books just as they are written. So I might know how the writer makes the characters come to life