Romney Marsh, Kent, in the early 1800s. A remote part of England, thinly populated, misty…and perfect for smugglers. The Doomsday clan run the free trade across the Dymchurch area of Romney Marsh. But two of them are about to get mixed up in crime, conspiracy, murder—and unexpected love.

The Secret Lives of Country Gentlemen

The Secret Lives of Country Gentlemen cover by KJ Charles. Dark blue background with elaborate old style typeface for the title. down one side: trees, wetland flowers, a fox, a snake. Down the other: a running hare, a stream, a heron, more trees (all rather bare). In the centre a Romney Marsh farmhouse, on very flat land. Figures are Gareth, a blond gentleman in smart Regency dress, and Joss, who has brown skin, long black hair, wears dark grey/black, with a long dark leather coat. Gareth and Joss are both squatting to inspect a stag beetle but looking at one another.

Abandoned by his father as a small child, Sir Gareth Inglis has grown up prickly, cold, and well-used to disappointment. Even so, he longs for a connection, falling headfirst into a passionate anonymous affair that’s over almost as quickly as it began. Bitter at the sudden rejection, Gareth has little time to lick his wounds: his father has died, leaving him the family title, a rambling manor on the remote Romney Marsh…and the den of cutthroats and thieves that make its intricate waterways their home.

Joss Doomsday has run the Doomsday smuggling clan since he was a boy. His family is his life…which is why when the all-too-familiar new baronet testifies against Joss’s sister for a hanging offense, Joss acts fast, blackmailing Gareth with the secret of their relationship to force him to recant. Their reunion is anything but happy and the path forward everything but smooth, yet after the dust settles, neither can stay away. It’s a long road from there—full of danger and mysteries to be solved—yet somehow, along the way, this well-mannered gentleman may at last find true love with the least likely of scoundrels.

Charles successfully balances a complicated suspense plot and an emotionally resonant romance. … This novel launches a delightful new Regency romance series from Charles; readers will be eagerly anticipating the next installment.–Library Journal starred review

A dark and stunning love story between a smuggler and a newly minted baronet. … Readers will devour this … a surprising number of beetles and newts for a romance. –Publishers Weekly starred review

We might just be looking at the next romance phenomenon.–Book Page

As always, Charles combines masterful prose, thrilling romance, fantastic wit, and gripping stakes. Her characters feel as real and relatable as a bruise. She is, in my opinion, a titan of her genre.–Talia Hibbert

The Secret Lives of Country Gentlemen has it all: Smuggling! Blackmail! Secret rendezvous! Scoundrels! Sweethearts! Big feelings! KJ Charles is one of the best romance novelists writing today and The Secret Lives of Country Gentlemen is proof. Historical romance at its finest. – Sarah MacLean

Coming 7th March 2023

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