Date Published: January 24,2023
Publisher: Boroughs Publishing
Lady Lydia Clifton must escape a brutal forced marriage and she must get out of England however she can, but Valkin Brishen, King of the Romany stands in her way, and he means to unravel why she is on the run, and why she's pretending to be his mistress.
NO ONE TOUCHES THE KING'S MISTRESS
Thrown to the wolves by her father, Lady Lydia Clifton faces a forced marriage and all the brutality that comes with the Earl of Basingstoke. She must flee and has only one way out of England: disguise herself as Martha Dale, mistress to the Romany king.
Lydia knows her brother Wil became estranged from their family and all of English aristocracy because he fell in love with a Romany woman. That makes this white lie more potent, as it offers the kind of protection that just might keep her safe.
Despite her reputation being in tatters, all Lydia needs to do is to make it to France, and into the care of her oldest brother, Roger.
King Valkin Brishen is fully aware lies and subterfuge can and has brought harm to his people, yet when his men find a lovely English maid on the run who claims to be his mistress, anger battles with more than curiosity over exactly why this English rose is fleeing with such haste.
Her flight speaks of courage, but her deceit could put his people in peril.
And more, he wonders if it's worth the risk to his heart if he takes her under his protection.
Tell us about
Clifton flees her father’s chosen groom – and travels under a false name. She
decides it’s safer if she pretends to be mistress to a man few would wish to
cross – and chooses Valkin Brishgen, the Romany King who’s acquainted with her
family and known to be fiercely protective of his women.
very well, but what happens when she runs slap-bang into the man himself?
Valkin hasn’t seen her since she was a young girl (she appears in my debut
novel Always a Princess).
doesn’t recognise the woman claiming to be his mistress. She’s lying about her
name and she’s definitely not one of his lovers…yet. So why does he feel so
drawn to her? So fiercely protective, in fact, that he risks his Romany to keep
her safe…her curious combination of vulnerability and strength intrigues him
until he can barely stand to be near her. Loving an Englishwoman is dangerous
for any Romany, but for the Romany king to love a woman whose past he cannot
account for is downright foolish. Unless he’s in love, of course.
Mistress is the story of a woman who’s been taught she’s worthless for so long
that she’s forgotten she’s really strong and smart and has value as herself,
until she has to rely on her own wits, her own skill – and until someone shows
up to remind her of her worth. Someone who sees her differently – and falls in
love with the woman he sees, even though he’s not sure who she is.
What is the
PRIMARY benefit, above all others, that your potential reader will gain from
reading this book? (Be very specific. Please do not answer with 'good read' or
'page turner' or some other worn-out, overused phrase. Be concise and avoid
The story offers a bit of adventure,
a bit of mystery, some heat and overall, an overwhelming belief in the power of
love to shift our perspectives – of other people, and of ourselves.
Hopefully, it offers a look at a
woman who is stronger than she’s been taught she is – and slowly comes to
accept and know this about herself. To step into her power, despite years of
alienation and abuse (note – this happens off page). It also offers a happy
ending for my lovers. That’s always the best part!
If you had to
compare this book to any other book out there, which book would it be?
The audience does not yet know you. It is very important that you reference
something they might be familiar with to effectively and powerfully communicate
what your work is about. You are NOT saying you are 'better than' or 'just
like' this comparative, but are somewhat the same in a very general sense, to
give the listener a point of reference.)
I’d compare it to Julie-Anne Long’s
Pennyroyal Green series, because this was my primary inspiration in creating
the world of Clifton Hall and its inter-connected stories. I was also
influenced by the way Mary Renault wove real history into her fiction – and I
try to do the same when incorporating my research.
thousands of books come out every year. Why should someone buy THIS book? (What
is it that sets THIS book apart from ALL those other books in the same genre or
category? What will the buyer get from you and ONLY you that simply cannot be
I feel it’s a different take on
Regency England. England was a shared land by this time. The Romany had lived
in England for hundreds of years, and their stories are so rarely told – yet
the Romany were there. They lived, and loved and danced and sang. Grew families
and clans and legacies that still exist today – along with the prejudices that
sideline their narratives. The Romany are more than the way Austen wrote them
in Emma, or Bronte depicts them (sort of) in Jane Eyre. The scene where
Rochester disguises himself as a ‘gypsy fortuneteller’ annoyed me as much as
the way they’re referred to in Emma.
By the Regency era, even speaking to
a Romany could see someone hanged – or not. It was rather arbitrary, but the
depiction of these families as ‘not-quite-us’ is found in many contemporary
Who is your
target audience? (Be very specific. Gender? Age range? Geographic area? Primary
interests? What benefits does the reader hope to gain from buying a book like
Readers of historical romances, who
enjoy a different take on the era with well-researched facts woven in here and
there. Readers who enjoy nuanced characters, and who also like a high level of
environment or upbringing play a major role in your writing and did you use it
to your advantage?
I have some Roma heritage (Russian –
not British), and I drew on this and my other marginalised heritage to offer a
different take on a Regency-era story. I am also neuro-divergent, as is Lydia,
Tell us your
most rewarding experience since publishing your work?
Being able to pop my book baby into
the hand of Julia Quinn (the author of the Bridgerton novels) on Valentine’s
How would you
describe your writing style?
sensual, detailed and tending towards the lyrical. In fact, there’s almost
always a song or two in my novels, and I love writing nature scenes and
characters pure fiction, or did you draw from people you know?
Every character I write is drawn from
people I know. Some are individual and others are composites but everyone’s
Are you more
of a character artist or a plot-driven writer?
I am working on balancing both,
because I have been honing my mystery writing skills, so that’s meant more
focus on plot. Romances foreground characterisation and I do enjoy this, but I
am also keen to try my hand at a mystery or two. That said, I feel
characterisation is my primary strength at the moment.
What do you
hope to accomplish with your book other than selling it?
I write to (hopefully) move
people. If people enjoy my words, then I’m satisfied.
About the Author
Clyve Rose has been writing historical romance fiction for the best part of two decades. She works in the historical romance, fantasy, and speculative fiction genres. She also creates literary novels under an alternative pen name. In between her devotion to fiction writing, Clyve researches various mythologies and historical periods, often basing her characters on actual historical personalities.
When Clyve isn’t writing fiction, she can be found pounding the sand at just about any of the beautiful beaches near her Australian home. She is also addicted to short-haul ocean swims and has a ‘thing’ for Poseidon, ancient Greek god of the Seas. Much of the inspiration in her stories is drawn from the ocean landscapes near her home.
One of her novels was longlisted for a 2010 Hachette Award for Fiction while her paranormal short story The One Below is a Sexy Scribbles award-winning piece. Her novel, Always a Princess is a winner in The BookFest Awards Spring 2022. Its sequel, The King’s Mistress, is her latest novel.
The first piece she ever had published was a fictional biography of an erotica writer who made a living crafting extremely explicit dating profiles for online chat sites. She lives fairly simply these days, sharing her home with a small white demon-dog and a budding Amazon warrior. Clyve Rose believes that love is the highest and strongest force in the world, and that it only manifests when we are our best and truest selves. Anything less, and we diminish our divinity. She believes she will continue writing about love in all its various, glorious forms, and that one day her epitaph will read ‘just one more read-through’.
a Rafflecopter giveaway