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Monday, January 17, 2011


My name is Grace Elliot and I have a (not so) secret obsession! You see near London where I live I’m the local veterinarian, tending small furry animals by day (and on call at night) but in the evening I become an author of historical romance. I am thrilled to say my debut novel, A Dead Man’s Debt, a regency romance is now a published work. Yeah! 

I turned to writing as an escape, a release from the emotional drain of veterinary work. Rediscovering my creative side I immerse myself in my characters and escape to their world - of satins and silks, of blackmail, peril and duty, where real men rode stallions and a woman with opinions was considered rebellious. I love manipulating their world, reeking havoc with the tidy order of things, placing twist after twist on their tangled lives…and more.

The regency is such a dream of an era for a writer. From chaperons to duels, and debutantes to rogues, it’s a world of contrasts. The pressures of reputation and standing were not to be underestimated at a time when appearances were everything, and denying your needs was a virtue.  One of the themes played out in A Dead Man’s Debt is whether to do the right by society, or defy the Ton to follow your heart’s desire.

Take our hero Lord Ranulf Charing. He yearns to be an artist and yet Society regards this as scandalous, akin to earning a living. Rather than disgrace his family, outwardly he keeps up appearances but at the price of inner turmoil. 

Then there is our heroine, Celeste Armitage, who believes there is more to life than becoming some man’s property in marriage. She craves travel and independence and wants to control her own future. It took a bold woman in Regency times to refuse to marry. Far easier to cave in and take a husband than deliberately invite spinsterhood. 

This scandalous rebellion is punished by exile to the country…where she meets her mirror image, Ranulf.
But who is stronger? Ranulf, for subverting his desires, or Celeste who defies the Ton and courts disgrace?
And what happens when our opposites attract? Well for the answer… why not lose yourself in A Dead Man’s Debt?

‘A Dead Man’s Debt’ is available from most eBook stores including Amazon and Book on Board. To learn more visit:

Excerpt. – Ranulf and Celeste meet for the first time.
So be it. Ranulf gritted his teeth as he grasped the leading leg and pushed. It was like fighting against a brick wall, the calf barely moving. A lamb was difficult enough, how much more so a calf? Just as he was wondering if one man was strong enough, a shower of pebbles rattled down the bank. Concentrating on the calf, he barked.

“Dont just stand there. Get down here!”

“I beg your pardon!” A womans voice answered.

With a flash of annoyance Ranulf glanced upward.

A wide eyed young woman in a straw bonnet peered down. “I say, is everything all right?”

“Does it look all right?” Muttering under his breath, all he needed was some sensitive Miss fainting on him. “Go! Fetch help from the house.”

He saw her hesitate, biting her top lip. “But you need help now.”

A contraction clamped around his arm as the cow's tail switched across his face, stinging his eyes like a cat-o-nine-tails.

In a flurry of muslin and lace the Miss slid down the bank, landing with a thud in the ditch.

“Ouch.” She rubbed her ankle. Ranulf glared back, dark eyes flashing.

“You should have gone to the house.” Damn it all, she could make herself useful then. “Hold the tail aside.”

Pulling a face she limped over. Ranulf's eye lingered for she merited a second glance. Of middle height with a tidy waist and curves where God intended them, she appeared quick witted and bright eyed. Without further ado, she stripped off her gloves throwing them onto a bramble bush. Long, sensitive fingers grasped the muddy tail. Practical, Ranulf thought, silently impressed.

“Why didn't you go for help?”

“There wasn't time.” Her bonnet slipped backwards, revealing a quirky face with a pointed chin, her lips finely drawn with an arched cupid's bow. The sort of face an artist could lose himself in, all shades of the sea to be found in deep emerald eyes framed by a tangle of chestnut hair.

Ranulf tightened his grasp and pushed. Sweat beading his brow. The calf retreated an inch.

“What are you doing?” Her voice was gentle and calm, if somewhat deep for a woman. Ranulf guessed it would be husky in bed, whispering over a pillow after a night of passion. Her eyes were on him - deep green eyes, lively and entrancing. Suddenly he remembered that he was undressed to the waist, her curious gaze on his skin as he was gripped by the idea of those lily white hands gliding over his naked chest, her almond shaped nails digging into his skin. He shook away the thought, trying to remember her question.

All innocence and interest she watched, blushing faintly in a charming way and yet, he realized, no wilting flower. He shook his head. The woman had asked a question, damn it. He would answer.

“The calf is breech.” He grunted, “I need to push her back into the womb to turn her…” He wanted to shock this stranger, to test how bold she truly was. She stared back, biting her top lip, exaggerating her snub nose.

“Ah!” Her gaze met his.

“Think of the calf as a carriage in a narrow driveway. To turn it around you push it back into the stable yard…”

“What can I do to help?”

“Nothing.” He growled.

Throwing him an angry look, she anchored the tail with a log and scrambled round to the beast's head. After a moment
s thought, she placed her pelisse under the cow's head stroking the broad nose and crooning words of comfort.

“She's relaxing.” Ranulf's arm was numb from the contractions. He fell forward, as the first leg finally slid back into the womb. "That helps." His hair had come free from the ribbon, falling thickly about his shoulders. He glanced at the Miss. She was leaning forward, her bosom straining against a tight bodice, a satisfying cleavage between her breasts. He swallowed hard. She was odd looking, he decided, not exactly beautiful but eye catching none the less. Her face showed character, determination…and her complexion too healthy to be fashionable, rosy cheeked and peppered with freckles which with a hint of sunlight burst into a profusion.

The Miss was glaring at him now, her skin glowing bright pink. Had he been staring? His heart raced as he returned to the calving. 

Grace Elliot leads a double life as a veterinarian by day and author of historical romance by night. She lives near London and is addicted to cats, acting as housekeeping staff to five mischievous moggies.

Grace believes intelligent people need romantic fiction in their lives as an antidote to the modern world. Her debut novel A Dead Man’s Debt  is now available from most eBook stores including Amazon, Fictionwise, Smashwords and Books on Board.
To find out more visit

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