The Earl’s Acceptance Collection

(2 customer reviews)

Quinn Douglas, a stern viscount from an old aristocratic family, falls in love with Mandy Stuart, a young woman from Houston. His father, the Earl of Morleton, objects strongly, but finally Quinn brings Mandy back to Scotland with him, and she quickly becomes best friends with his younger sister, Maisie, a high-spirited woman whose middle name should be Mischief. When Maisie herself marries her childhood sweetheart, her new husband needs all his fighter pilot training to handle his wife’s antics.

In The Viscount’s Lessons, Mandy’s life is turned upside down when she falls in love with Quinn, an Old World viscount who believes in discipline.

In Lady Amanda’s Pearls, Quinn fights a greedy claim on a family heirloom while also dealing with forbidden behaviors of both Mandy and his sister, Maisie.

In Managing Maisie’s Mischief, Maisie’s new fighter-pilot husband has his hands full trying to rein in his irrepressible wife.

 

Publisher’s Note: This collection of three steamy contemporary romances includes elements of power exchange.

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Sample Chapter

Would it Kill Him to Smile?

Mandy ran up the steps of the museum. She was already fifteen minutes late for her appointment, and she had no idea where she was supposed to find this Mr. Douglas. She’d spoken with him on the phone and had the impression of some dusty old man, so she really wasn’t much looking forward to the meeting.

She stopped at the information kiosk and asked directions, then ran breathlessly up some stairs and down a corridor. Near the end of the hall she stopped, read the name on an office, and went in.

“Is Mr. Douglas here?” she asked, trying to sound composed. “I’m Mandy Stuart.”

“Miss Stuart, do come in,” said a deep voice off to her side. She whirled around and stopped dead. Standing in the doorway of a large office to her right was one of the most handsome men she’d ever seen. He was well over six feet, with full dark hair, piercing dark eyes, and a strong square jaw. He had an athletic body even though she guessed him to be in his mid- to late thirties.

“Mr. Douglas?” she asked, trying to cover her surprise.

“Aye.” The word was clipped and wasn’t accompanied by a smile. He stood to the side of his door and motioned her in, so she entered the office and waited for him to follow.

“Please sit down,” he said, motioning her to a chair in front of his desk. “I’m afraid we won’t have much time. I have a three o’clock engagement, so with your tardy arrival, our time will be limited.”

Mandy stared at him in disbelief. Could he be any ruder?

“I’m sorry I’m late,” she said, smiling at him. “Something’s going on outside and they’ve got several streets blocked off.”

“Tell me again what it is you want from me,” he said.

“Well, as I told you, I’m an independent writer and often do features for the Houston Times. I’d like to do an article on the visiting exhibit you’ve brought here, especially because we’ve had several other articles about Scotland over the last year. Your exhibit on life in nineteenth-century Scotland will have a lot of appeal to many of our readers.”

She stopped and took a breath, then continued. “When I spoke to you on the phone last week, I suggested several areas of particular interest we might focus on.”

“We’ve never spoken before,” he replied. “It was my father with whom you spoke.”

“Oh.” Mandy was temporarily taken aback. “Should I be talking with him now instead of with you?”

“He had to return to Edinburgh due to a family emergency, so I shall be handling the exhibit in his place.” He noticed the look of hesitation on Mandy’s face and added, “Don’t worry, I sometimes work with him on these projects. I am fully credentialed to deal with such matters.”

Mandy blushed slightly and looked uncomfortable. “I didn’t mean to imply that you weren’t,” she said, looking at his impassive face. He looked like someone Hollywood would cast as the stern master of a nineteenth-century estate. She smiled to herself. Maybe he was well equipped after all to oversee the exhibit.

“Shall we get started then?” came the deep voice. It sounded more like a command than a question, and Mandy hastened to comply. “Of course,” she said, getting out her phone to record.

They spent the next thirty minutes with her asking questions and then recording his answers, and it was obvious that he did indeed know a lot about the subject.

“If I could just ask a couple personal questions,” Mandy added. “I assume that you yourself are from Scotland. Did you grow up there, and was your family there in the nineteenth century?”

The younger Mr. Douglas studied Mandy a minute before answering, and she had the feeling he somehow found the question objectionable.

“Yes, I grew up there, and yes, my family was there in the nineteenth century,” he replied finally. “The Douglas clan is an old one, with roots going far back. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to have to end our conversation.” As he spoke, he rose from his chair, so Mandy quickly gathered her things together and also rose.

“I really appreciate your taking time to talk to me today,” she said, extending her hand to him. She had a big smile on her face.

“May I call you again if I need to?” asked Mandy, still smiling.

There was really no way Mr. Douglas could decline, so he agreed, and, in truth, he found the idea of being with this attractive young woman again rather agreeable. There was something about her that seemed to bring life and energy into the room.

Mandy spent an hour looking at the exhibit and making notes. She’d come back again with a photographer, but for now, she needed to start writing.

***

“Oh, my god, Jenny, you can’t believe how awful he was! I swear he had a broomstick stuck up his you-know-what.” Mandy was sitting with her best friend Jenny having supper in their favorite Irish pub. They were both laughing.

“Well, at least you don’t have to work with him. Will you be seeing him again?”

“I’m not sure. I might need to talk to him one more time.” She shook her head. “Do you know the whole time I was there he never even smiled? I wonder if he thinks he’s supposed to stay in character with the exhibit?”

They both laughed again. Then Jenny suddenly remembered something.

“Are you going to that international party the Chamber of Commerce is putting on this Friday?” she asked. “I know you like to go to those kinds of mixers to see if any interesting ideas pop up.”

“I’m going, but I’m surprised you’re asking,” answered Mandy. “What does it have to do with you?”

“I got stuck being the liaison for our office,” Jenny replied. “Marta usually does it, but she’s out for maternity leave.”

“Then I guess I’ll see you there.”

***

Mandy entered the large hall at the Houston Downtown Marriott and looked around. Attendance was good, and there was a general din of overlapping conversations. Around the edges of the room were booths where different international groups had information about their activities as well as about their countries. Mandy got a drink and then wandered from booth to booth, occasionally picking up a brochure or handout.

When she got to the Scottish display, she noticed that a nice flyer was available telling about the visiting museum exhibit. Just as she reached out to pick one up, someone jostled her from the side, making her stumble a bit. Her drink splashed onto her dress, and she bumped into someone behind her rather hard. As if on cue, a hand came from nowhere and steadied her.

“I’m so sorry,” she started as she regained her balance and turned around. Then she froze. Oh, no! she said to herself. There she was, looking up at none other than Mr. Douglas from her appointment the other day. It just had to be him she collided with!

His dark eyes were looking at her intently. “No problem,” he said as he withdrew his hand from under her arm. “Are you all right now, Miss Stuart?”

“I’m fine, thank you,” she said, politely. She gave him a brief smile. “I’m sorry I stepped on you like that. And please, call me Mandy.”

Those dark eyes were still looking at her intently. “Quinn,” he said.

“I beg your pardon?”

“My name is Quinn.” The briefest hint of a smile seemed to pass across his face.

“Sorry. I’m a little slow tonight. Anyway, thank you again. I would have hated to land on the floor.” She looked amused at the idea.

“Would you like to sit down while I get you a new drink?” he asked, gesturing towards one of the tables.

Seriously? This might be one of the last people she’d like to sit down with, but she had to admit he was being nice, and she certainly didn’t want to offend him since she’d probably need his help again before she was done with her article.

“Sure. Thanks,” she heard herself saying. At least she’d have a good story for Jenny tomorrow. She sat down and crossed her legs, then handed her glass to Quinn.

“What are you drinking?” he asked, taking in her long shapely legs. She’d worn a pantsuit to his office, but tonight she was wearing a short dress that revealed much more of her obviously fit body. She looked barely out of college, and he wondered briefly if she was even old enough to be drinking.

“White wine will be fine, thank you.”

She watched as he walked towards the bar. He might not be the world’s most personable guy, but he was certainly over-endowed with good looks. She guessed him at 6’2 at the least, and those eyes! Maybe when you had eyes like his, you didn’t need to talk.

“Here you are,” said Quinn, setting a new glass of white wine down in front of her. He had a glass of red for himself as he sat down next to her at the small round table. For a moment neither of them said anything, and Mandy began to suspect this was going to be as bad as she’d feared. Then Quinn sat back in his chair and looked at her.

“Is Houston your home town?” he asked.

“Not originally, but it is now,” she answered.

Quinn was always amused at how differently the words “home town” were interpreted on this side of the ocean. For him, a home town was where your roots were, and that didn’t change, but here in mobile America, they did.

“I was born in San Antonio, but we moved around a lot. I went to Rice, so then I just stayed here afterwards.” She smiled at him and took a drink of her wine, then added, “I like Houston.”

“It’s an interesting city,” Quinn said noncommittally.

“You mentioned Edinburgh in our interview. Is that where you’re from?”

“We have a family home near there, yes,” he replied.

Mandy thought it was a strange way to word it, but she let it pass. In all honesty, she didn’t much care where he came from.

“It’s lucky you could drop everything and come look after the exhibit when your father had to go back to Edinburgh,” she said, searching for something to talk about.

“I was already here.”

Mandy looked surprised. “I thought you lived in Scotland.”

“I am from Scotland, but I’m a visiting lecturer here in Houston this year.”

“At one of the universities?” asked Mandy. She couldn’t quite imagine him holding the interest of a class, although the women might all sign up based solely on his looks.

“At several of them, actually. Rice first invited me, but the University of Houston and TSU have both asked for some time as well. They’ve kept me quite busy.”

“So what exactly are you lecturing on?” asked Mandy, surprised to discover she really was interested in the answer.

“Different things at each school. Scottish history in the seventeenth- to nineteenth centuries, Robert Burns, modern Scottish culture, the differences between English and Scottish life, those types of areas.”

“Have you actually studied those things, or is it just because you’re Scottish?”

Mandy realized her question sounded a bit rude, and Quinn looked at her strangely before answering.

“I have actually studied such things,” he said dryly.

“Sorry. I guess that sounded kind of rude.” She giggled, and Quinn looked at her in surprise.

“To tell you the truth, I don’t know that much about Scotland,” she went on. “When I was looking at the exhibit the other day, it was all new to me. It seemed like Scotland was really different from England in a lot of ways.”

Quinn nodded, then added. “If you’d like, I’d be happy to walk around the exhibit with you and answer any questions.”

Mandy was startled by the offer and even more startled to hear herself accepting. Had she just gone mad? Why did she keep arranging to spend time with this man? Yes, he was gorgeous, but would it really kill him to smile a few times a day?

They agreed on the next afternoon and said good-bye.

She chose to ignore the small part of her that watched in fascination as Quinn’s tall strong body made its way towards the exit. Wait until Jenny hears this! Mandy thought to herself. She’s never going to let me live it down.

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2 reviews for The Earl’s Acceptance Collection

  1. Redrabbitt

    The Viscount’s Lessons (The Earl’s Acceptance Book 1)
    AMERICANIZED SCOTTISH TREASURE

    What a fun and fascinating contemporary aristocracy tale. This is like a modern day Cinderella story that is full of secrets, snobbery, simplicity, and two separate worlds colliding with a happily ever after ending. When Amanda Stuart meets with Quinn Douglas for an interview at the Museum, there is almost an air of animosity between them. She finds him handsome, but cold, and standoffish. He is put out with her lateness, but she is beautiful and friendly.

    What starts out as a polite invitation to dinner, will slowly turn into more dates and getting to know one another. Mandy knows that her father was of Scottish descent, but nothing much about her lineage.

    “If Quinn was fascinated by Mandy’s casual air and her hidden Scottish heritage, Mandy was equally taken with Quinn’s old-world manners. They went out three or four times before he even kissed her, and it was more than a month before they finally made love. When they did, though, it was an experience that left her shaken.”

    The plot will have two people, from two different social classes and worlds, one comes with great wealth, and the other enjoys the simpler things in life. Quinn never tells her about his lineage and how he is a titled Lord. He is expected to marry well, within noble guidelines because as Viscount, eventually be will become the next Earl of Morleton. Raised in a strict home, one that included discipline, he carries his beliefs over into his relationship with Mandy when she puts herself in danger or doesn’t tell the truth.

    “A real spanking changes behavior. It’s very painful at the time, but in the end, it’s a kindness because it eliminates behaviors or attitudes that are destructive.”

    Quinn will investigate her family lineage, and learn that she comes from respected families, and eventually more will come to light about her family. When he returns to Scotland to speak with his father about marriage to Mandy, there will be plenty of angst and harsh words.

    ‘Being with her for the rest of his days would be like grabbing the gold ring on life’s carousel.”

    Mandy has known nothing but those that matter to her leaving her, will Quinn be next?

    “He knew she was putting up a brave front, but his leaving was taking a toll on her. Everything in her history has taught her that comings and goings were causes for concerns. Just because someone said they were returning didn’t mean they really were. He’d tried every way he could to convince her he’d be back shortly, but he couldn’t see that, underneath her forced smile, she wasn’t so sure.”

    What will happen when Mandy learns the truth about Quinn’s family and his title?

    “You’re somebody who lives in a world that’s not my world.” How far is Quinn willing to go for the woman he loves? Enough to relinquish his title?

    “We’ll speak again tomorrow morning, by which time I hope you will have come to your senses.”

    The story is full of mystery and suspense and is a definite page turner. There is a great cast of characters, plenty of angst, secrets, surprises and romance. Quinn is a stickler for safety and will hold his Mandy to a high set of standards. There are several spanking scenes and explicit sex scenes.

    Lady Amanda’s Pearls (The Earl’s Acceptance Book 2)
    I HOPE WE’VE FINALLY FOUND THE SOLUTION

    The story is the second in the Earl’s Acceptance series and could read as a standalone but is best if it is read after The Viscount’s Lessons. The story picks up with Mandy and Quinn returning from their honeymoon to settle back into life in Scotland. The story will be full of new problems, mystery, suspense, greed, angst, and trials for Quinn and Mandy. Mandy’s mother has never been a loving a caring woman, only thinking of herself. She has always bashed and belittled the Stuart family.

    Mandy will struggle with her new role and title, and with it, comes her responsibility to learn Scottish history, especially of the aristocracy of the various lines. At first, she enjoyed this, but now she is finding having a tutor boring. She will also be shocked at how she is treated by people because she is now a Viscountess, Lady Douglas. Nothing in her former life prepared her for her new role in life as Quinn’s wife.

    The plot will have Mandy’s mother sending a Texas lawyer, Bobby Ray Parks, to Scotland and for the Earl and Quinn, along with Mandy’s Stuart grandfather trying to deal with her greed. An heirloom set of pearls that the Earl of Dunblane gave to Mandy when she wed will become a pawn that now her mother is suing for. As Quinn tries to protect Mandy from her mother’s shenanigans once again, he will find that his best intentions will come unraveled due to his sister, Maisie’s interference.

    Maisie and Mandy have become best friends and more like sisters, but that also lands them into trouble together. Quinn will have his hands full trying to keep these two in line, dispensing correction and advice along with protection.

    The problems with this suit have affected the health of Mandy’s grandfather, her own health, and it must be handled expeditiously before any more harm can come from it. With help from those in Texas, questionable practices by Parks will be unearthed and presented to him. Making a secret deal with Mandy’s mother will help clear the air and hopefully heal the pain caused by her greed.

    I enjoyed this page-turning story with all its secret twists and turns. There is a great cast of characters, plenty of angst, secrets, surprises and romance. The story has several spankings, including the use of a tawse, along with explicit sex scenes. I look forward to the next book in the series that should be available in June 2017, Managing Maisie’s Mischief.

    Managing Maisie’s Mischief (The Earl’s Acceptance Book 3)
    THINK FIRST, ACT SECOND. IT’S A MAGIC FORMULA THAT WORKS LIKE A CHARM

    The story is the third and final in the Earl’s Acceptance series. It could read well as a standalone and even better with the first two books, The Viscount’s Lessons, and Lady Amanda’s Pearls. The story is the life of Lady Maisie and her husband, Michael Kerr. It will have people from the first two books. The story picks up from Lady Amanda’s Pearls where Maisie and Michael marry and are coming home from their honeymoon to begin their married life.

    Maisie and Michael grew up together, got into mischief together, and many times, he took the blame and punishment for what she did. You could say they were destined to marry, and have been the best of friends since the nursery. Maisie has always been a free spirit, loves pranks, and does before she thinks things through. Oft times, because of her impetuous behavior she finds herself in trouble. She is fast approaching thirty, and it is time she started growing up, settling down, and acting like a lady.

    Michael Kerr is the second son, and since he did not have the burden of the title of Earl, he commissioned in the RAF and was a fighter pilot. He took an early out and is back working on the family estate alongside him father and older brother, Logan. He loves the spontaneity of Maisie but reminds her that she needs to think before she acts. Especially when she does something so dangerous, she could have been maimed of killed.

    The story will take the reader on a journey with some of the antics of Maisie that will have her over her husband’s knee for a spanking because of placing herself in dangerous situations. A trip out of town on business will involve a life and death rescue, a newfound respect for Michael from Maisie, and a new addition to their household. Maisie will find a calling to allow her to use her History degree while giving back to the community by volunteering.

    “He would pilot them through their marriage journey, his hands on the controls, keeping them safe and on course while giving Maisie the best trip possible.” “Honestly—his life was a comedy of errors with this woman. If he didn’t laugh, he’d cry.”

    The story will have an epilog that will give the reader a final conclusion to several key people and how their lives change over the years. It has been a fun contemporary royal series, and I look forward to seeing more work from Ms. Laura Hart.

  2. Rhea

    The Earl’s Acceptance is a really great collection of three books; the first two centering around Mandy and Quinn and their struggles in getting two very different kinds of worlds to meet, and the third about Quinn’s sister Maisie and her husband Micheal and their challenges in finding a rhythm in the beginning of their marriage.
    The books are very well written and each has it’s own well worked through and played out plot. The characters are great and defined and although I didn’t always, agree with them, mildly put, when they did wrong it was for the right reasons and they all grow throughout the story. I very much liked that the males in this collection believe in discipline, without exception, period. It gives them a credibility that many books of this kind lack in the pursuit of political correctness.
    I very much recommend it.

    I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

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