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The Mrs MacKinnons cover

The Mrs MacKinnons

England, 1799

Major Matthew Southam returns from India, hoping to put the trauma of war behind him and forget his past. Instead, he finds a derelict estate and a family who wish he’d died abroad.

Charlotte MacKinnon married without love to avoid her father’s unpleasant choice of husband. Now a widow with a young son, she lives in a small Cotswold village with only the money she earns by her writing.

Matthew is haunted by his past, and Charlotte is fearful of her father’s renewed meddling in her future. After a disastrous first meeting, can they help each other find happiness at last?

Winner of a Discovered Diamonds Award, and a Chill with a Book Reader’s Award:

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Download book club discussion questions here (pdf):  The Mrs MacKinnons Book Club Questions

Review from Mary Kingswood’s blog

Excerpts (click heading for full review):

“…a beautiful slow-build romance, with the underlying theme that even grevious war injuries needn’t define the rest of your life. I loved the main characters, I loved their first kiss…”
“A great read, and highly recommended for anyone looking for something a little more meaty than the average frothy Regency. Five stars.”


The Marstone Series

Many of my stories will have some characters in common, although each will be stand-alone and the stories can be read in any order. The series is named after the 9th Earl of Marstone, who plays a part in all the stories. Although the 9th Earl appears in The Mrs MacKinnons , it is a very minor part, so this book is not really part of the series.

Sauce for the Gander

Book 1 of The Marstone Series, publishing March 2019

A duel. An ultimatum. An arranged marriage.

England, 1777

William Stanlake, Viscount Wingrave, whiles away his time gambling and having affairs, thwarted in his wish to serve his country by his controlling father. Then a jealous husband and a duel change everything.

Constance Charters is an unwanted daughter, relegated to keeping house for her impoverished but socially ambitious father. When the Earl of Marstone wants a bride at short notice for his errant son, her father eagerly accepts the match. But Connie wants a husband who will respect her for herself, not an idle profligate.

Complete strangers to one another, they are coerced into marriage. But their new home on the wild coast of Devon holds unexpected dangers. Can they overcome the forces against them and forge the lives they want for themselves? And will they learn to love, honour and desire each other?


Work in progress – with the copyeditor and beta readers.

All that Glisters

(working title) Book 2 of The Marstone Series, publishing late 2019

England 1784

This one is just an idea at the moment, so I’m not even working on draft 1!

Playing with Fire

Book 3 of The Marstone Series, publishing late 2019

France 1793

Phoebe Deane is the poor relation in the Calvac household, unwillingly accompanying her aunt and cousin on a journey into revolutionary France. Now France has declared war on England, they need to get home as soon as they can. Her aunt’s imperious manner almost gets them arrested, but a fellow traveller comes to their aid.

Alex works alone and uses many names. An impulse leads him to help the red-head and her family, but can he get them to the coast without endangering himself and his mission?

The story of a young woman using her wits and courage, gaining the confidence to choose the life she wants for herself.


This one is almost ready, but won’t be published until Sauce for the Gander and a possible follow up novel or novella are ready. However if you can’t wait, and fancy being a beta reader* for it, get in touch via my contact page.

*Beta readers read manuscripts before they are finalised. In the case of Playing with Fire, you would be getting a near-final version of the story, but it will not have been copyedited, so there may be some typos and other small errors. The feedback I’d like can be anything from whether or not you liked it, to reactions on each chapter. Particularly helpful are comments about any parts of the plot you did not understand (so I can explain it better), inconsistencies, etc. What you don’t need to do is to check my spelling and grammar – someone will do that at the next stage.