Guest Author & Giveaway: Jennifer Haymore featuring Confessions of an Improper Bride

Wednesday, August 3

I have a sister, whom I love dearly...and would in fact do just about anything for (keys words being "just about"). Which is the reason why anytime I run across a romance that has sisters in it, I am immediately drawn to it because there's already that emotional connection (it's one of the many reasons I love Sense and Sensibility). So when I found out that Jennifer Haymore was writing a new series that featured sisters, I couldn't wait to read it.

Author Jennifer Haymore is my guest today to share with us a bit about her heroine Serena's story in Confessions of an Improper Bride, the dilemma she faces, and coming back from social ruin before finally getting her happily ever after.  Read and enjoy!

Coming back from ruin...was it really possible? (obviously it would be for the heroine since she assumes her sister's identity)

That depended on a lot of factors--the time period (the English of the late 19th century were far more conservative than the English of the early 19th century), the sex of the person who was ruined, and the social status of the person who was ruined.

Ruin was a far easier thing for a man to get over than a woman, I believe. Once the gossip subsided, he could (for the most part) go on as he was before. Of course, I’m sure there were always those who would turn their noses up at him, but if he held a title, then he was even better off and certainly less likely to be scorned.

For a woman, it was more difficult, although definitely possible, especially if you found yourself a titled or rich man to marry. For example, there was Emma, Lady Hamilton, who started off as a maid, became the mistress of a rich, titled man who later married her, and then held a very public affair with Admiral Nelson… Her husband happily lived under Nelson’s roof as well, even when she had a child by Nelson! In her case, I think the threat of ruin hung constantly over Lady Hamilton’s head as well as Nelson’s, but the populace was utterly fascinated by both of them, and everything went along just fine… Until Nelson died and the government ignored his requests to provide for her. Ten years later, she died in debt and obscurity in France. In effect, I think it was Nelson and Hamilton’s husband who kept her from being publicly “ruined,” but once they were gone, so was her protection, and she fell right back into ruin.

In Confessions of an Improper Bride, 18-year-old Serena, the heroine, is ruined, very publicly and horribly. If Jonathan, the man who caused her ruin, had married her instantly, I think that would have been a huge step toward her recovery from ruin. He is the son of an earl, after all! However, when he shuns her after the event, it definitely rubs salt into the wound and makes it virtually impossible for her to be looked upon as anything other than a ruined woman.

So, taking a second to look at it in the point of view of Serena’s mother, Mrs. Donovan--she has identical twin daughters.  One of her daughters, Serena, the one who is the most outspoken and “difficult,” is irrevocably ruined. She will be snubbed in society forevermore, and it would take a miracle for her to have a good marriage now. The other daughter, Meg, is a perfect lady with a spotless reputation, and everyone adores her.

When Meg is lost at sea, all of Mrs. Donovan’s hopes for a good marriage for one of the twins drowns along with her. Can’t you see the temptation, though? All Serena has to do is pretend to be Meg, and all the family’s problems will be solved. The “difficult” daughter, the one with no prospects at all, is gone. The beloved daughter with a suitor who’s a commander in the Navy who shows all kinds of potential for success, is alive and well.

Honestly, I can’t blame Mrs. Donovan for forcing Serena to change her identity. Well, not too much. She’s right, after all--becoming Meg (if she can manage it) solves A LOT of problems for poor Serena when it comes to how people look at her in the world.


Serena Donovan left London six years ago, her heart broken and her reputation ruined by devilishly handsome Jonathan Dane. Now, with her family's future in peril, she reluctantly agrees to return to England and assume her late twin's identity. The price? Marry a man she doesn't love and spend the rest of her days living a lie.

Jonathan Dane, Earl of Stratford, has become an incorrigible rake, drinking, gambling-and trying to forget Serena Donovan. Yet the moment he's introduced to the prim and proper "Meg", he recognizes the sensual young woman who captured his heart. Haunted by his past mistakes, he refuses to lose Serena again. But convincing her to trust him is no easy task. Claiming his lost love means exposing the truth and destroying the life Serena has sacrificed everything to rebuild. With the future of all the Donovans at stake, and their undying passion capable of triggering yet another scandal, how much will Jonathan and Serena risk for a chance at true love?

Congratulations Jennifer!  And thank you so much for being my guest today, as well as for all the romances that you write that I love so much, especially A Hint of Wicked( I have some mad love for that book).

If you'd like to learn more about Jennifer and the books she writes as either Jennifer Haymore or Dawn Halliday you can find her at her websites,, her blog, Facebook and Twitter.  Speaking of Twitter, Jennifer has something special for the release of Confessions of An Improper Bride.  Her hero, Jonathan Dane, the Earl of Stratford, has his own Twitter page and will be interacting with readers throughout the blog tour.  How fun is that! He'll even be tweeting about Jennifer's post at Seductive Musings today.  How often do you get the opportunity to talk to an Earl :)  Go ahead, tweet know you want to.

To celebrate the release of Jennifer Haymore's newest historical romance, Confessions on an Improper Bride, her publisher, Forever Romance, would like to giveaway a copy of the book to three lucky Musings followers.  Here's how you can enter to win....

Ways to earn entries:
  • Mandatory: So tell me, if you were in Serena's shoes, would you impersonate your sister and marry the man who ruined you?  And of course Jennifer would love your questions/comments.  (good for 1 entry)
  • Mandatory: You MUST be a Google Friend Connect (GFC) follower in order to be eligible to win (unfortunately an email subscriber, or subscription in Google reader, and a follower are not the same thing so make sure you are signed up as a follower if you'd like to win this book)
  • If you have a blog, or even if you don't, you can earn extra entries by telling your friends. If they successfully enter to win and mention that you sent them you can each earn extra entries. You can blog about it with a link to this post, post it on Facebook, Twitter, email...or even word of mouth (good for 5 entries for the referrer and the commenter for each friend) . Please note that to earn the points they must mention your GFC name so that I can match you.
  • Purchase any item from the Seductive Musings Amazon store by using this link, or the Amazon widget contained within this post and email a copy of your purchase receipt to me no later than the deadline to enter (email available in sidebar). Sorry purchases made prior to this date do not apply, and link contained in this post must be used. No faxes or snail mail copies are allowed. No purchases are necessary to win. (good for 25 entries, or 50 entries if a purchase is made from the featured author's available titles)
How to enter:
  • You can choose to enter as many different ways that you want, but please place all of your entries in ONE comment 
Rules and disclaimers:
  • This contest is open to US & Canada addresses only.  No PO Boxes.
  • You must be at least 18 years or older, or of legal age in your country
  • The contest will end on August 20th at 11:59 pm EST and winner will be posted after they have been selected
  • Winner(s) will be selected using
  • The winner(s) will have THREE days from the date they are posted to provide a mailing address. If you do not contact me within three days a replacement winner will be selected. NO EXCEPTIONS
  • The book(s) will be mailed directly from the publisher or author and no substitutions are allowed
  • Winners will be subject to one copy per household, which means that if you win the same title in two or more contests, that you will only receive one copy of the title in the mail
  • Seductive Musings is not responsible for prizes that are not honored, distributed in a timely manner, lost, stolen, or damaged during transit 
  • All giveaways are subject to change/cancellation without prior written notice
Good Luck!
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*Seductive Musings is an Amazon affiliate and receives a very small referral fee for purchases made via the links on the blog and through the Seductive Musings Amazon Store. Read the full disclosure here.


Lexi August 3, 2011 at 12:26 AM  

Your new book sounds great! And what a predicament, I would do the trade but after the wedding would let my new husband know who I really was and torture him until he realized I was the next best thing since sliced bread. Oh wait they didn't have sliced bread back then, guess that would make me appear even better! Ha!

Thanks for a chance to win your book, hope it does well for you!

June M. August 3, 2011 at 3:10 AM  

This book does sound great and the story line sounds really interesting. I think since Serena was ruined but by pretending to be her lost sister she could save her family, it is completely understandable. And since Jonathan realizes Serena is herself, not her sister, and wants to reclaim her, and right his wrong, it is tricky situation. I would LOVE to win a copy of this book. I especially want to see if in this book, or a future one, if Meg returns.

GFC follower: June M.
manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

Maureen August 3, 2011 at 6:21 AM  

Congratulations to Jennifer on her new book. It's a fascinating question because the story is set in a time when a woman didn't have a lot of options so marriage would give her some security and I can see myself taking my sister's identity because of that reason.
I follow on GFC
mce1011 AT ao DOT com

Mary August 3, 2011 at 8:13 AM  

Good luck with the new book. I would totally impersonate my sister if it would help my family. Back then it must have been hard. But sometimes you have to do what you have to do.
Thanks for the chance to win this awesome book.

Mary_Reiss @
Following on GFC ~ Mary

Mary August 3, 2011 at 8:14 AM  

Tweeted ~!/SweepingMe/status/98728324418912256

mary_reiss @

Tore August 3, 2011 at 10:16 AM  

Congratulations on your new book. I would have to say I would impersonate my sister. Back then women were treated differently and they had to do what they had to do to get through life. Please enter me in contest. I would love to read your books.

Bethie August 3, 2011 at 11:09 AM  

I don't think I would have the courage to use the shoes and impersonate someone like that.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Ivy August 3, 2011 at 11:38 AM  

Very interesting premise. I would do it...You do what you have to & it was much harder on women then. We carried a lot of burdens that weren't ours to carry.
Thanks for the chance.

I'm a follower

Kathleen O August 3, 2011 at 12:25 PM  

I am not sure I would or could impersonate someone.. But I am looking looking forward to reading these books...

I am follower on this blog on GFC..
and on facebook..

Kathleen O August 3, 2011 at 12:25 PM  

I am not sure I would or could impersonate someone.. But I am looking looking forward to reading these books...

I am follower on this blog on GFC..
and on facebook..

Kathleen O August 3, 2011 at 12:27 PM  

I am not sure I would or could impersonate someone.. But I am looking looking forward to reading these books...

I am follower on this blog on GFC..
and on facebook..

mbreakfield August 3, 2011 at 6:31 PM  

Since she is doing it to save her family, I would do it.
GFC follower

Na August 3, 2011 at 6:32 PM  

The cover is stunning!
Even if it was for love I'm afraid the risk would be too great for me, living a lie and being someone else. If the charade is unveiled sometimes the trust is forever lost. If it were me I would not, because I am rooting for Serena.


Barbara E. August 3, 2011 at 7:24 PM  

If I were in Serena's shoes, yes I'd marry the man because I think it will all work out in the end. It's a romance after all, LOL.

Barbed1951 at aol dot com

jeanette8042 August 3, 2011 at 7:59 PM  

If I were in Serena's shoes I would impersonate my sister and marry the man who ruined me to save the family and hope for the best.

GFC follower

chey August 3, 2011 at 8:00 PM  

I'd do it to save my family.
chey127 at hotmail dot com

Sheree August 3, 2011 at 9:26 PM  

Hi, Jennifer! I'm loving Earl of Stratford's tweets!

I guess I would impersonate my sister to save my family even if I dislike the guy. What better way to make him pay than to marry him? Bwahahahaha....

Love the slide show of the books (one has Paul Marron in a kilt and a couple have him on the stepback, including Stratford himself!).

GFC follower
ironss [at] gmail [dot] com

elaing8 August 3, 2011 at 10:29 PM  

I am really looking forward to reading this book.
Yes,I'd pretend to be my sister and marry him.He knows its really her anyways and wants to be with her.So yeah,I'd do it.

GFC follower



Carly Waid August 4, 2011 at 12:17 AM  

Thanks for the opportunity! Hmm. If I were in Serena's shoes, I don't know that I could marry the man. It would be difficult.
-Carly Waid

JenM August 4, 2011 at 12:34 AM  

That's a hard question. I'm sure I would probably go ahead and marry him, but I don't think that I would ever forgive him. I hold grudges for a long time and that would be a hard one to get over.

jen at delux dot com
GFC follower

librarypat August 4, 2011 at 2:28 PM  

I have several of your books on my TBR mountain. All your story "blurbs" sound so good. In this case, redemption is going to take a bit of work and some risky chances. Complications are what make life interesting.
Considering the time period of the story, one doesn't have very many options. One could remain "herself" and face a future with limited possibilities for a marriage of any sort worth having plus the probability of poverty when there is no longer parental support. I would hope I could start anew in America. A good marriage would be more possible and there is always the possibility of becoming financially independent. As far as marrying the man who ruined me, I loved him once and there is still a bit of it locked in my heart. It would take much convincing, but I think if he tried hard enough to convince me he really cared and had a good enough reason for his actions in the past, I would give him a second chance.

Best of luck with the release of CONFESSIONS OF AN IMPROPER BRIDE. Lovely cover.

I am a GFC Follower, librarypat.

Cialina at August 5, 2011 at 12:51 AM  

I am a GFC follower under my name Cialina.

Hah! I don't think I'd have the guts to do as Meg did. I hope I'll never be in her shoes though. It sounds very tough.

This sounds like a great book. Thanks for the giveaway.

Carol L. August 5, 2011 at 9:06 AM  

I've enjoyed all your books Jennifer.
To help my family I'd certainly impersonate my sister as well. Ruination happened in the blink of an eye back then. It most certainly was a man's world.But I'd definitely let him know who I really was afterward. Thanks so much for the chance to win.
GFC follower under Lucky47.
Carol L
Lucky4750 9at) aol (dot) com

winnie August 5, 2011 at 9:24 PM  

I think that this would be a heard decision to make if it happens during this day and age, but given that it is not, then I would probably impersonate my sister knowing that doing so would help my family.

Thanks for the giveaway! Looking forward to reading this.


Pam S (pams00),  August 11, 2011 at 6:44 PM  

Congrats on the latest Jennifer! Love your books - including the Dawn ones. Hint of Wicked is among my fav historicals.

I would totally impersonate my twin sister under the circumstances. It was quite an ordeal it seemed to make matches etc. in the period and I could see the pressure she would have been under.

gfc - pams00

pams00 @

Maria (pronounced Mariah) August 16, 2011 at 5:18 PM  

I think I would feel to guilty to pull off the impersonation! The stress of the guilt would eat away at me! So nope couldn't do it!

GFC follower: Maria (pronounced Mariah)

mmafsmith at gmail dot com

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