printed copy

Loving Lord Ash

Sally MacKenzie

ISBN 9781420123234
Publish Date 3/4/2014
Format Paperback
Categories Zebra, Historical, Romance

A Little Misunderstanding. . .

Kit, the Marquis of Ashton, is in a sticky wicket. He married young and for love--how naïve. He discovered his mistake the very day of his wedding, but he is saddled now with a wife he's reluctant to trust. And however much evidence he gathers against faithless Jess, he can't seem to prove her guilt to the final judge--his foolish heart.

Jessica knows she's bobbled her marriage, however innocently. A fairytale wedding makes no difference if she hasn't got the marquis charmed to show for it. Well, she's had enough of accidental encounters with naked gentlemen and near misses explaining things to her husband. It's time to buck up and go win her man back--even if she has to fight very dirty indeed.

"Great fun." --Publishers Weekly

Praise for the Novels of Sally MacKenzie

"Naked, noble and irresistible!" --Eloisa James

"The romance equivalent of chocolate cake...every page is an irresistible delight!" --Lisa Kleypas

"A perfect night's read." --RT Book Reviews

About Sally MacKenzie:

Sally MacKenzie decided to become a writer in grade school when she read one of her stories to the class. Her classmates laughed and she was hooked. She sat down immediately to pen her first novel.

Well, not exactly.

The hooked part is right--cursed might be a better description--but the sitting down and writing part came later. Much later.

Sally eventually went on to college, majoring in English, and, upon graduation, did what many English majors do--she went to law school. But she still couldn’t shake her dream of writing fiction. Midway through law school, she faced the fact that she really did not want to be a lawyer. She took a permanent leave of absence, came home to the Washington, D.C. area, and sat down to type her first novel.

Well, not exactly.

She did come home and write, but mostly she wrote regulations for the United States government’s school nutrition programs. (Ketchup as a vegetable, anyone?) When her law school sweetheart graduated, he moved to D.C. and they got married. A couple years later, the first of their four sons was born, and Sally “retired” to manage their family. She wrote a story or two and some picture book texts, all now stored away in a filing cabinet, but she spent most of her energies on baby tending which rapidly evolved into carpool driving. She became an extremely skilled scheduler, getting all four boys to soccer, basketball, baseball, track, swimming, piano, scouts, and birthday parties without ever losing one. (Okay, she did lose the youngest for a few minutes, but she found him before he’d toddled into the parking lot.) And she did more writing--school newsletters, auction programs, class plays, swim league guidance, and the acclaimed annual MacKenzie family newsletter--but no fiction.

Finally, the boys started driving (Eek!) and leaving for college. The nest was emptying and she wasn't getting any younger. The time had come to chase the dream or let it go for good, so she sat down at the computer and wrote. And rewrote. And rewrote again until she had a polished manuscript. She joined the Romance Writers of America, and when the plea went out for Regency manuscripts for the 2004 Golden Heart contest, she sent in The Naked Duke. The stars aligned. She made the final round, and one of the judging editors liked the manuscript and offered to buy it.

Yee haw!!

When not writing or obsessing over the various mysteries of book promotion, Sally can be found at the gym, working hard to age gracefully, or on a pool deck, timing at her youngest son’s swim meets. 

Average Customer Review

Based on 2 reviews

Customer Review

Wish there were more than three sons. Sad to see this trilogy end. (Saturday, June 28, 2014)
Reviewer: Toni

If you have been with the Duchess of Love series from the beginning you know about Ash, the unhappily married Marquis. We get tidbits that something terrible happened early on in his marriage, but we never quite know. He shuts down, doesn’t want to talk about it and his wife’s name is rarely mentioned. Now we get to find out what really happened.

I’m very happy to finally know the whole truth and to revisit the whole Valentine clan, but this one didn’t stack up to the rest. You have two people, who had feelings for each other, but they can’t manage to make it work and they both suffer terribly.

This is one colossal mess of a marriage. While one of the excuses is that they married young. They were not that young for the time period; she was twenty and he was twenty-two. There was no real excuse for this marriage to have lasted eight years with neither trying to work things out or to finish it. When you find out how much each had suffered in those years, it is beyond unacceptable. Ash’s lack of trying or will to end it bothers me. If it had only been a few years I think I could have accepted it better, but in my eyes he’s a scared wimp. Here we have the future Duke of Greycliffe and he can’t confront his wife about something he seen with his own eyes? Then you pile on years of rumors and gossip, yeah I don’t buy it. I enjoyed that the story was finally told, but the reasoning and excuses didn’t do it for me.

Ms. MacKenzie’s writing was wonderful and she was able to convey the pain, anguish, love and devotion into their tale, but I wish it was more realistic. We already have a marquis marrying a groom’s daughter and then you add in the misunderstanding that would make any man in his position run for the hills. I still devoured the story because I’m totally in lust with the series, but this one didn’t stand up to the other two and a half novels.

I really adore the Valentine family and I’m going to miss them. Farewell Duchess of Love; you have been a joy to read about. Great job on a lovely series Ms. MacKenzie. No matter how I felt about this final chapter, I still loved the journey.

Loving Lord Ash (Wednesday, May 14, 2014)
Reviewer: The Jeep Diva

Happiness is an historical romance that makes me laugh, smile and retreat into the lives and concerns of the characters complete with well-meaning by interfering family members. Sally MacKenzie managed to present all of those elements and more in Loving Lord Ash, the first I have read by this author or in this series, but found delightfully entertaining with no struggles to catch up with past characters or information.

Kit and Jessica married for love, but situations and circumstances, and naked men have caused a rift, and the two have been estranged for eight years. Kit retreated to his family estate, and with his brothers both deliriously happy in their own marriages brings him to decide the time is right to make a decision about his marriage.

Jessica was never a member of the ton, in fact as the daughter of the head groom, she was in that social middle ground: not quite trusted to behave with propriety by the ton, but too ‘refined’ for most of the help. Unwilling to acknowledge the rumours about the men in her house, and not being given the benefit of doubt by her husband: Jessica has quite a battle in front of her. Of course, Kit’s family is aware of the rumours and EVERYONE has an opinion, part of the difficulty in this whole situation is that Kit and Jessica are so very much in love: just unwilling to admit it.

The story takes estranged married couple and adds several twists and interferences, rumours and even some sweet memories to fuel the connection between them that is apparent almost from page one. Both Jessica and Kit are well-developed and easy to like, even as neither takes the simple step of simply asking direct questions and getting the real answers: unhindered by rumours, preconceptions or agenda. This is an angel’s food cake with strawberries sort of story: light, sweet, tasty and the perfect afternoon’s treat read when heavy thought or tension just won’t work.

reviewed by Gaele

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