Y’all are in for a treat with this brand new book The Aristocrat by Penelope Ward. Here is a ๐Ÿ‘€ ๐Ÿ“šแ”•แ‘Žแ—ดแ—ฉ๐•‚ โ„™แ—ดแ—ด๐•‚๐Ÿ“š ๐Ÿ‘€! แ–‡แ—ดแ—ฉแ—ช the included แ—ดxแ‘•แ—ดแ–‡โ„™T! ๐’ซ๐“‡๐‘’-๐‘œ๐“‡๐’น๐‘’๐“‡ ๐“Ž๐‘œ๐“Š๐“‡ ๐’ธ๐‘œ๐“…๐“Ž ๐“‰๐‘œ๐’น๐’ถ๐“Ž!

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Title: The Aristocrat
Author: Penelope Ward
Genre: Standalone Contemporary Romance
Release Date: August 30, 2021

 

BLURB

From New York Times bestselling author Penelope Ward, comes a new standalone novel.
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The one that got away. Every girl has one, right?
Mine was a charming, British aristocrat who turned my world upside down one summer.
From the moment I first spotted Leo in the distance through my binoculars, Iโ€™d been captivated. I certainly never expected to find a man showering outside of the property across the bay in his birthday suit.
Then I noticed his housemate staring back at me with binoculars of his ownโ€”watching me watching Leo.
That made for an interesting conversation starter when I inevitably ran into them.
Turned out, the handsome Brits were only renting that house for the summer in my seaside town.
Leo and I formed an instant connection, even though we were technically opposites by all appearances. I taught him how to dig for clams, and he taught me that not all wealthy and powerful guys are pretentious.
Despite knowing he was totally wrong for me, I couldnโ€™t seem to stay away.
It was a wild and crazy few months. And before I knew it, weโ€™d fallen in love.
We both had one wish: more time together.
But Leo had obligations back home. He lived a life Iโ€™d never fit into. And I was going to law school. So, we decided to end it and never look back.
A part of me always felt like Iโ€™d let my soulmate walk away.
I believed our story was over.
Until five years later when he sent me a letter that shook me to my core.
Iโ€™d thought my world was turned upside down that first summer?
Well, I knew nothing yet.
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PRE-ORDER LINKS
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EXCERPT

Hell.
Hell was the moment I stepped into the grocery store a few days later and nearly knocked right into him.
โ€œItโ€™s you.โ€ He held up a long, phallic-looking baguette and shook it. โ€œRemind you of something?โ€
My face felt hot. โ€œVery funny.โ€
โ€œI havenโ€™t seen much of you outside over the last couple of days. Did we scare you?โ€
This was not Shower Guy, but rather the one whoโ€™d caught me peeping. He had a strong British accent and was extremely tall, with dark hair.
โ€œIโ€™ve just been taking a break from the backyard.โ€
โ€œToo hot outside for you, eh?โ€
โ€œLook, I didnโ€™t intend to see what I saw. Iโ€™ve been intoโ€ฆbirdwatching this summer. Then one day you two moved in, and Iโ€”โ€
โ€œWhoa, whoa, whoa…โ€ The other guy had appeared next to his housemate. โ€œIโ€™m sorry for anything he might have said to you just now. Rest assured, itโ€™s all shite. Heโ€™s just playing around.โ€ He, too, had a strong British accent. โ€œI donโ€™t believe weโ€™ve properly met.โ€
โ€œAlthough, youโ€™ve improperly met…โ€ his friend chided.
โ€œPut a sock in it, Sigmund.โ€
Okay, so the asshole is Sigโ€”or Sigmund. The previously naked one must be Leo, then. They were both tall and good-looking, but Leo, with his chiseled features, lustrous hair, and striking eyes was on another levelโ€”a total Adonis, and intimidatingly gorgeous.
Sigmund shrugged. โ€œSurely she knows Iโ€™m just kidding.โ€
โ€œBut you donโ€™t know when to stop. Thatโ€™s always been your problem. Canโ€™t you see how red her face is getting? Youโ€™re embarrassing her.โ€
Uhโ€ฆhow red is my face getting? This was mortifying. I couldnโ€™t control that about myself. After all, I was a redhead with fair skin covered in freckles. Whenever I got embarrassed, I basically turned red from head to toe.
Leoโ€™s tone softened. โ€œI apologize for his rude behavior.โ€ He held out his hand. โ€œIโ€™m Leo Covington.โ€
I took it, enjoying the warmth of his skin. โ€œFelicity Dunleavy.โ€
The other guy offered his hand. โ€œSigmund Benedictus. But please call me Sig.โ€
Benedictus?
Been a dick-tus.
He sure had.
Fitting.
โ€œGood to meet you,โ€ I said.
โ€œAnd you, as well, Freckles.โ€
Freckles? He couldnโ€™t have come up with a more original nickname? I was self-conscious about my freckles, and typically wanted to murder anyone who dubbed me Freckles.
โ€œDo you mind not calling me that?โ€
โ€œDo you prefer a different nickname?โ€ Sig asked. โ€œPeeping Tom, perhaps?โ€
Leo gritted his teeth. โ€œEnough. Seriously.โ€
โ€œAll right. Iโ€™ll behave. Going in search of tapenade for this bread.โ€ He winked. โ€œBe back.โ€
Relief washed over me as he walked away.
โ€œIโ€™m…really sorry about him,โ€ Leo said.
โ€œWell, given how you came to know of me, the ridicule is warranted. I shouldnโ€™t have been spying.โ€
โ€œI donโ€™t reckon you anticipated seeing me in my birthday suit. That was the first time Iโ€™d ever done that. I assumed no one was in the vicinity, of course. For the record, I donโ€™t make a habit of showering for all the world to see. I never had an outdoor shower in England. So itโ€™s a novelty.โ€
Leo was simply striking. His hair was light brown with golden undertones. He had beautiful bone structure and full lips that were difficult not to stare at. There wasnโ€™t one thing I would change about his face. His eyes were a deep blue. They reminded me of a piece of sea glass Iโ€™d used to make a necklace once.
I cleared my throat. โ€œWhat brings you to Narragansett?โ€
โ€œIโ€™m taking six months off from life. It seemed like a good location to get lost. We picked this place randomly on a map, actually. Sigmund and I have spent our time in a few different locales. First was California, then New York, and now Rhode Island.โ€
โ€œAre you twoโ€ฆtogether?โ€
His brow lifted. โ€œWhat do you mean by together? Weโ€™re rooming together. But if you mean romantically together, then no. Exactly what did you assume?โ€
โ€œI thought you might be gay.โ€
โ€œIf I were gay, Iโ€™d have far better taste in men than that wanker cousin of mine. What in Godโ€™s name made you think we were gay?โ€
โ€œI donโ€™t know. Two handsome men…living together in a big houseโ€ฆโ€
โ€œSo, if Iโ€™m a guy living with another man, Iโ€™m automatically shagging him?โ€
โ€œYouโ€™re right. That was a hasty assumption.โ€
โ€œThank you for the compliment, by the way.โ€
I just called him handsome, didnโ€™t I? Feeling suddenly hot, I looked toward the produce section. โ€œWell, Iโ€™d better be going…โ€
โ€œBefore you do, I want to apologize for the flowers he sent your way the other night. I urged him not to. Not everyone appreciates that sense of humor.โ€
I shrugged. โ€œIt was fine. And they were pretty. I was embarrassed, at first, but then I ended up laughing about the whole thing. Mrs. Angelini certainly got a kick out of it.โ€
His brow lifted. โ€œMrs. Angelini?โ€
How do I explain who she is without unloading my history on this stranger? I kept it simple. โ€œSheโ€™s my roommate.โ€
โ€œAh. Roommate. So she must be your lesbian lover, then.โ€ He raised an eyebrow, and I had to smile. โ€œAnyway, why do you call her Mrs. Angelini? She doesnโ€™t have a first name?โ€
โ€œWell, sheโ€™s seventy. Itโ€™s more of a respect thing. Itโ€™s what I started calling her some years back, and it stuck. Sheโ€™s always asked me to call her by her first name, but I got used to calling her Mrs. Angelini.โ€
โ€œI see.โ€ His eyes seared into mine for a moment. โ€œYour roommate is seventy. And how old are you, might I ask?โ€
โ€œTwenty-four. What about you?โ€
โ€œTwenty-eight,โ€ he answered. His eyes lingered on mine for a bit. โ€œListen, weโ€™re going to be renting the house across from you for the entire summer. We know virtually nothing about Narragansett. Iโ€™d love to pick your brain about places to go and things to do here. Maybe you wouldnโ€™t mind coming over for tea sometime this week?โ€
โ€œTea? You really are British, arenโ€™t you?โ€
โ€œGuilty as charged.โ€ His white teeth gleamed.
Looking down at my feet, I said, โ€œI donโ€™t know.โ€
โ€œI promise not to take off my clothes…โ€ He added a crooked smile.
I let out a much-needed laugh. โ€œWell, since you put it that way.โ€
โ€œTomorrow at two, then? Or whatever time works for you.โ€
A part of me wanted to refuse, but why? It wasnโ€™t like I had anything more exciting going on. I didnโ€™t quite understand whether he genuinely wanted my expertise on Narragansett, or if there was something more to the invitation, now that I knew he wasnโ€™t gay.
โ€œSure. Two tomorrow works.โ€
โ€œBrilliant. You know how to get to the house without having to swim across, I take it?โ€
โ€œYes.โ€ I smiled.
โ€œVery well, then. And I promise, Sigmund will be on his best behavior.โ€
โ€œI can handle it if heโ€™s not.โ€
This seemingly rich traveler had no idea just how much I could handle. I might turn red when I was embarrassed, but Iโ€™d grown a pretty-thick skin over the years.
Thatโ€™s the way it is when you always had to fend for yourself.
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Copyright ยฉ 2021 Penelope Ward
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AUTHOR BIO
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Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today and #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author of contemporary romance.
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She grew up in Boston with five older brothers and spent most of her twenties as a television news anchor. Penelope resides in Rhode Island with her husband, son, and beautiful daughter with autism.
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With over two million books sold, she is a 21-time New York Times bestseller and the author of over twenty novels. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages and can be found in bookstores around the world.
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