Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Cover Clichés: The Hesitant Maiden

Sometimes, while browsing the virtual shelves on Amazon and Goodreads, I see an image that gives me an oddly disconcerting sense of deja vu. I could swear I've never read the book, but I know I've seen the jacket image somewhere before.

This phenomenon is what inspired Cover Clichés. Images are often recycled because cover artists are often forced to work from a limited pool of stock images and copyright free material. That said, I find comparing their finished designs quite interesting.  

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Davenport House is the first book in a family saga that follows the wealthy Davenport family and their servants in 1915 America.

Mary Davenport is a 22-year-old idealist who worries that the world in the Progressive Era is leaving her behind. She lives isolated in the Pennsylvania countryside with her affluent and secretive family. When her father dies suddenly, Mary becomes pained with grief and increasingly suspicious of those around her.

A humble servant girl has the chance of a lifetime to become a lady's companion. Costly dresses, exquisite rooms, and fine dinners are pleasant distractions from what is really happening in the house.

The family saga continues in this sequel to Davenport House, resuming where the first leaves off in the spring of 1915. The family and servants must face their fears amid love and jealousy, grief and moving forward, and threat of imminent War with the World.

The restructure of an upper class family affects all who live on the Pennsylvania estate. 22-year-old Mary Davenport stays occupied with modernizing the house, but insecurities arise when she develops romantic feelings for the first time.

A wealthy socialite persuades one of the ladies to join her on a voyage aboard the exquisite Lusitania. Handsome Ethan is forced to move into the mansion after a fire destroys his home. Tensions rise as Davenport House enters a new chapter with more challenges than anyone is prepared for. 

He’ll do anything to save his daughter, even fall in love.

France, 1668

Hélène de Bonnefoi’s spirit has been squashed by the ever-critical aunt and uncle who raised her. Serving as nanny and stand-in mother to her cousin’s child has saved her from the convent, especially after her cousin’s death. When suspicious accidents threaten the toddler, Hélène overcomes her debilitating near-blindness to seek the help of the child's father, a colonel in Louis XIV’s army.

Jean-Louis, Colonel de Cantière, has spent his life proving his worth, integrity, and honor, first to his family and now in the army. When his daughter’s caretaker appears in his camp during a siege, claiming someone is trying to kill the girl, his loyalties are sorely tested.

Hélène must convince Jean-Louis the threat is real. But the true danger is to the heart of a shy young woman who has always loved her cousin’s husband from afar and to the colonel’s desire to resist complicated emotions.

Street savvy Constance is a prostitute that has survived the Ripper's reign of terror by working her trade in the safety of her room at the Keg and Barrel - but is any girl truly safe in Whitechapel? When the enigmatic Lord Alisdair requests her services at his estate, Constance discovers the occult underworld of London's elite - and finds herself at its center. As Alisdair shares his secrets, Constance becomes his willing altar, offering herself to him and his rituals in body and soul. She's seen Alisdair's power, seen it grow with her at his side, but as the circle's secrets unfold before them, will their connection be enough to get them through London's darkest hour alive? 

Patient Twenty-nine.

A monster roams the halls of Soothing Hills Asylum. Three girls dead. 29 is endowed with the curse…or gift of perception. She hears messages in music, sees lyrics in paintings. And the corn. A lifetime asylum resident, the orchestral corn music is the only constant in her life.

Mason, a new, kind orderly, sees 29 as a woman, not a lunatic. And as his belief in her grows, so does her self- confidence. That perhaps she might escape, might see the outside world.

But the monster has other plans. The missing girls share one common thread...each was twenty-nine's cell mate.

Will she be next?

While working at a wood camp in the Logan canyon during the winter of 1880, Caroline Simpson is forced to thwart the aggressive advances of Mr. Butch Larson, and in the process discovers that her long-time friend James has genuine affection for her. But as stubborn as Caroline is, she minimizes the emotions James has awakened in her, and it takes almost losing him to admit her true feelings. 

Laird Eachann Malleville is chief of the Marches Reivers, the infamous highland raiders. He is a ruthless man on a mission to conquer the highlands. He has his eyes on Elizabeth, the beautiful daughter of the village chief. In an agreement of peace, she is to marry him to save her village.

Elizabeth is heartbroken, especially when she finds out that Eachann has still attacked her village. How is she is to fall in love with a man whose hands are stained with her loved one's blood. Eachann, high on power, thinks of slender Elizabeth as his possession, but she would much rather kill than kiss him.

Their marriage is stained with her hate, and his innate darkness. Just when it seems impossible for love to breed in a lifeless relationship, a change is made. A monumental change that defeats this hate and makes way for everlasting love. 

Destitute and desperate, Catherine Weston accepts the summons from her childhood friend Madeline St. Aubyn to attend her at Cairncroft Abbey, a place of secrets, lies and murder. Madeline's health is in a poor state and she is terrified of her cousin, Gabriel. But Gabriel has quite a different effect on Catherine, stirring longings and desires she believed long buried.

Gabriel St. Aubyn is haunted by the horrors of both his past and his present, horrors he conceals behind a remote, unapproachable facade. He is drawn to Catherine, but is determined to protect her from the tragedies that yet have claws sunk deep in his soul.

Then a young woman is found dead, and Madeline's ravings point to a link between this horrific crime and Gabriel—and Catherine must decide if he is a man worthy of her love or a sinister stranger determined to make her his next victim.

Harold Stonewall, the Duke of Summersat, is a veteran of the Anglo-French wars as well as a loyal subject to his King. Everything he does is in the service of his King, but his service has not been an easy one. Watching friends die, enduring battle and hardship, has made him a man who rarely shows emotion. People all over England nickname him the Duke of Ice.

Elizabeth Hawk, the daughter of a man who has gambled her inheritance away, is more than a little surprised when she receives a letter from the Duke asking her to attend a party at his Castle. She knows Father does not want her to go, but one cannot simply refuse a Duke.

Upon arriving at the party, she is made a fool of by an ex-acquaintance and is about to leave when she runs into the Duke himself. A bond is beginning to develop, but is everything what it seems? Is Elizabeth at risk of further disgracing her family’s name?

Shy, stammering Clara Hamilton is shocked when her father announces her betrothal to a cousin she barely knows. Her uncle’s stepson, Branson Hamilton is handsome, avaricious and rumoured to be unstable. Nineteen-year-old Clara, anxious for her father’s approval, agrees to the union unaware of what is at stake. A sinister family secret surfaces and Clara soon discovers that master of Windemere Hall has a dark revenge in store when she enters into his power.

Betrothed is the first episode in the Windemere Hall Trilogy and launches Catherine Lloyd’s Victorian Villains Gothic Romance Serials. Steamy gothic romance in the tradition of Phyllis A. Whitney and Victoria Holt, they are set in 1867 Victorian England. The novellas will be released in installments like the “penny dreadfuls” of the Age. Each episode ends in a cliff-hanger. These are steamy romances containing scenes, language and themes written for a mature audience.

War, blood, love, and murder.

Lucy Livingston has dreamed of finding someone to complete her life after seeing her cousin Franny find and fall in love with the man of her dreams. She is now at their estate, helping Franny learn the ropes and taking a break from the marriage mart in London. She thinks she is free from the distractions of men. That is until Simon Tucker, an old acquaintance she has had less than pleasant dealings with in the past, comes on the scene.

Simon Tucker arrives at Waltham subdued. Having been injured in the war, he is forced to accept the position of land agent to a friend of his cousin’s, Franny's husband Lawrence Sheridan, and live a normal life after the trials of battle.

Riddled with guilt over leaving his best friend, Marshall Gray, behind after he was injured, Simon is haunted by the memories of blood and violence and what could have happened to Marshall, missing two years now.

An unlucky encounter forces Simon into the most compromising position he has ever been in… found next to a murdered man.

Sweet Regency Romance

When Dominick, Earl of Yardbloom rescues a green eyed beauty from an unhappy fate, he did not expect the speed with which his heart tumbled into love. A rake known for breaking hearts all over London, he was surprised to find his own heart broken when the mysterious girl made her escape, refusing even to tell him who she was.

Determined to unveil the secrets she hid, the Earl gave chase to Moonway Manor, where his best friend James was soon to be married. But would the dangers of Moonway Manor, with it's mysteriously reclusive master, and the enigmatic Mary Montacute, be too much for him?

Caught in a tale of twisted intrigue, unrequited love, and the battle to save her family's manor, Mary has got to confess. Will she be believed though, and will the true villain's identity be finally revealed?

All of Mary Davenport’s short stories are sweet (clean) Regency Romances. 

Helena is bored with the Royal Court. She is betrothed to the King Erland and her life is laid out for her. She has no choice and no excitement in her future.

Enter Prince Ambrose, her fiance's brother. Their attraction is undeniable.

Can Helena hold herself back from making a life-threatening mistake? Or will passion lead her down a treacherous path?

Download these collections now and spice up your kindle with this steamy historical collection! 

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Which cover strikes your fancy and why? What colors draw your eye? Do you think the image appropriate next to the jacket description? Leave your comments below!

Have you seen this image elsewhere? Shoot me an email or leave a comment and let me know. 


Anna Belfrage said...

I liked the last one. And I shuddered at the third where a man in 18th century dress is supposedly the hero of a 17th century novel...

Erin Davies said...

Lol the only thing I like about the third image is the incorporation of a second model. He isn't perfect, but his presence gives the cover a less singular feel that the other covers on this list.

Stephanie Moore Hopkins said...

The third and second one to the last are my least favorite.

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