Anthology-Six of the Best

We have a fun little anthology today. Six British authors got together to bring us some short stories out of British history. We have stories from the Restoration to the late Victorian period. While they may all take place in different points in time, they all include an Alpha male spanking his wife. I wouldn’t strictly call them Doms and subs, but closer to domestic discipline, I think. Well, until you get to Katie Douglas’s story, but that’s a whole other tale. LOL.

So, without further ado, let’s look at the 6 stories that go into making up Six of the Best.

Ashe Barker starts us off with her story, A Scandalous Career.

Cecily is the only sensible member of her family. Her mother and her sister are both feather-headed, and her brother is too young to take care of the family. After her sister got married, Cecily is trying to handle all the debts that the lavish affair accrued plus trying to keep her mother’s lavish spending under control. The problem is that there just is no money coming in, which means that King Charles can’t come stay with them. Cecily goes to a neighbor’s house and tells the neighbor that they are passing over hosting duties to them. Benedict Avery is the neighbor’s prodigal brother. On his long-delayed trip home, he’s robbed by a highwayman.

This is a fun little story, and I have to admit that I really like Cecily. She’s stubborn, resourceful, and sometimes a little too smart for her own good, but she’s also loyal and loves her family.

Felicity Brandon’s The King’s Vice brings us up close and personal with King Charles II.

Lady Jane Pembroke has been told by her mother and uncle that she needs to go to court, snag a rich husband, and keep them in the manner to which they would like to be accustomed. She’s accepted to work as a lady-in-waiting. And she’s brought to the attention of the King. Now, King Charles II had a reputation in real life. He had a number of mistresses and illegitimate children. He was a party boy and wanted to eat, sleep, and fuck. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, not at all. King Charles is enamored with Lady Jane and takes her down to his little sex rooms, where he introduces her to the pleasures of the flesh, including being spanked.

Even though I’m not British, I tend to have my favorite English royals. I’m a real fan of the Tudors. Charles has never really done anything for me, but that’s OK, Felicity’s version of Charles is better than the one I ever imagined. She does take some liberties with history, but that’s all good. Altogether, a pleasing story, and one I’ll read again.

Gracie Malling’s His Impertinent Wife brings us up to the Regency.

The Regency is the time period of Jane Austin and the Scarlet Pimpernel. Good manners and high fashion were all the rage. So, what happens when those manners start to run against two deeply unpleasant people? Well, if you’re Lettie Hunter, your arse gets paddled.

Lettie has recently married Andrew. They have a fine house and live near his half-brother who is married to her sister. Lettie is impetuous and has a temper. However, she’s generally very polite. But, when new people move into the neighborhood and they are rude to her, her husband, her sister, and her brother-in-law, Lettie’s mouth runs away from her and writes checks her bottom has to pay. The Nicholsons do deserve every word that Lettie said to them. I’m not kidding, they are really fucking rude by today’s standards, which is even worse back in the day. Jane Austin would’ve eviscerated them. I think, of all the heroines, Lettie is the one I identify with the most, mostly because I have problems with my temper, I’m deeply sarcastic, and I do not suffer fools gladly. I do love this story a lot, and was really pleased with how it came out.

Vanessa Brooks takes us back a step from Regency England to Georgian England with Petticoat Tyrant.

Owen Rackham has just found out that he is the new Lord Rackham. And not just that, but he has also just inherited an almost 18 year old ward named Cassandra. The majority of her family died in a fire, and her grandmother arranged with the previous Lord Rackham to be her guardian in case something happened to her. Well, dear Grandmama shuffled off the mortal coil much sooner than anyone expected, leaving Cassandra with a stranger, living in the country in isolation. She’s got issues, and she tries really hard to take control as she can and to make everyone feel as miserable as she does. When Owen decides that he’s going to marry her off as soon as possible, Cassandra does everything she can to drive as  many of the men away as possible.

Jaye Peaches brings us back up into the Victorian era with The Accused Wife.

Caroline Dewhurst is a beauty but doesn’t have a large dowry. She needs to find a rich husband so that her family can continue to keep her mother in the hospital. Maximillian Hampton sees her and tells Alexander he’s going to marry her. Alexander doesn’t think much of it, since he’s getting ready to go to Greece. However, when he comes back, he finds out that she’s in jail for murder. She stands accused of murdering her husband, Maximillian. Alexander knows she didn’t do it and is determined to make her his bride.

Poor Caroline, she has such bad luck. But, Alexander does what he can to help her with it and to help her feel better about everything that’s happened. I feel sorry for Caroline. She really was in between a rock and a hard place, and they kept moving towards each other. She just ended up squished in the middle, no matter what. Alexander, though, was a blast of dynamite that let her free. Very awesome story.

Katie Douglas rounds out our 6, and she gives us His Reluctant Bride, set in Scotland in the late Victorian period.

Laura and Andrew have just been married for 3 weeks. You would think that everything would be great, right? Well, not so much. They still haven’t consummated the marriage. Laura has come up with an excuse every night. She has a book that is all about married women keep their modesty, in other words, their maidenhead. Laura’s heard horrible things about sex and how men are ravening beasts and no woman ever likes it. Andrew’s not willing to not have sex with the woman he loves and is attracted to. With the help of a friend, he’s bound and determined to show his wife that sex isn’t a bad thing. I think that this was my favorite story of all. Mostly because of the sex scenes, which are very, very hot.

So, that’s all of our stories. It’s hard to talk about short stories because I don’t want to spoil anything, so if it seems like I’m not telling you much about the story, well, I’m not. You need to go read the book and find them for yourself. They are a great bunch of stories, and you are going to read sweet, hot, sexy, and romantic stories.

No spoilers, today, but an appropriately themed picture.

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