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Conflagrations: Great Urban Fires in Romance Novels

Rancher Wants a Wife (Mail-Order Weddings) - Kate Bridges The Hostage - Susan Wiggs The Spice Merchant's Wife - Charlotte Betts Journey's End - Patricia Crossley The Marigold Chain - Stella Riley The Vagabond Duchess - Claire Thornton By Elizabeth Camden Into the Whirlwind - Elizabeth Camden One Sweet Moment - Maggie Craig A Man for Annalee - Vonnie Davis Blessed Assurance: Whispers of Love/Lost in His Love/Echoes of Mercy - Lyn Cote
Reblogged from Cat's Books: Romance :

Large scale events such as Urban Fires make wonderful settings for Romance Novels. They give the reader a natural conflict and a depth of history.

 

Here are some marvelous love stories set during the Great Urban Fires of San Fransico, London, Edinburgh, and Chicago.

 

My lists are never in any particular order. 

 

1. The Hostage (The Chicago Fire Trilogy Book 1) by Susan Wiggs

 

Deborah Sinclair is a beautiful, accomplished young heiress with a staggering dowry. But her fortune does her no good when, one horrible night, Chicago is engulfed in flames.

Tom Silver will walk through fire to avenge a terrible injustice—and he may have to. But when he makes Deborah a pawn in his revenge, the heat of the inferno fades next to the attraction he feels for his captive. And the further he takes her from everything she's known, the stronger their passion grows, until it threatens to consume them both.

 

2. Rancher Wants a Wife (Mail-Order Weddings Book 1) by Kate Bridges

 

A marriage to save them both… 

 

Among the responses Cassandra Hamilton receives to her advertizement as a mail-order bride, one stands out—Jack McColton's. The last time she saw him, she was a carefree girl, but tragedy has made her a cautious woman. 

 

Jack is mesmerized by his new bride—Cassandra might bear the scars of recent events, but she's even more beautiful than he remembers. They both have pasts that are hard to forget, but under the cloak of night, can their passion banish the shadows forever? 

 

 

3. The Spice Merchant's Wife by Charlotte Betts

 

666. Newly married to a wealthy spice merchant, Kate Finche believes all her dreams of a happy family life are just around the corner until the Great Fire rages through London. She watches in horror as their livelihood goes up in flames, filling the air with the heady scents of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.

 

As the city is devastated, Kate's husband Robert is forced to seek employment to ensure their survival, but when he is found drowned, Kate refuses to believe that he has taken his own life. Widowed and penniless, she seeks refuge in The House of Perfume, the home of blind perfumer Gabriel Harte, who awakens Kate's senses to a whole new world. But as she flees from this forbidden love, her husband's murderer comes looking for her . . .

 

4. Journey's End by Patricia Crossley

 

Dr. Kari Lunne is ready to leave London in order to fulfill her dream of practicing medicine in the third world. On a last walk on Hampstead Heath, Kari and her dog bump into Mr. Tall, Dark and Mysterious and are catapulted four hundred years into the past - to Tudor England.Somewhere in the twenty-fourth century, maverick historian Aidan Torrance plans to make good his mistake by picking up the annoying woman—and her dog—and depositing them back into their own time, like a wrongly directed parcel. He has the technology. It should be simple.Aidan does not reckon on Kari's strong will. Kari does not expect to have to make choices that threaten her whole future. Neither of them expects to find love and happiness with someone far removed from their own space and time.Lovers meeting after a wild ride through time.

 

5. The Marigold Chain by Stella Riley

 

It is 1666 - the year when people who take prophecy seriously believe that the world is going to end.


For Chloe Herveaux - twenty years old, half-French and practical - marriage to wild, unpredictable Alex Deveril offers escape from a home she hates. For Alex, it is a refuge of a different kind. But while the marriage remains in name only and both, for reasons of their own, agree to seek an annulment, other forces are gathering.


England is once again at war with the Dutch and Prince Rupert, now commanding the Royal Navy, suspects that sabotage is at work within the fleet. Instructed to find the arch-traitor, Alex enters a dark labyrinth of intrigue - where no life is safe and nothing is what it seems.


Chloe, meanwhile, navigates the malice and scandal of Charles 11's licentious Court and plots a course of her own aimed at financial independence. But as the surprising facets of Mr Deveril's personality are gradually revealed to her, the long-awaited annulment becomes a double-edged sword.


Absorbed in his search for a traitor, Alex spares little thought for his bride - until a hot June night on the Falcon Stairs when he and Chloe stand united by tragedy.


As the flames of the Great Fire sweep over London, Alex and Chloe face their ultimate test. Their world is at risk ... their choices may save it.

 

6. The Vagabond Duchess by Claire Thornton

 

He'd promised to return

But Jack Bow is dead. And Temperance Challinor's quietly respectable life is changed forever.

 

Practical Temperance has no time to grieve for the irresistible rogue who gave her one night of comfort in a blazing city. She must protect her unborn child—by pretending to be Jack's widow.

 

A foolproof plan. Until she arrives at Jack's home…and the counterfeit widow of a vagabond becomes the real wife of a very much alive duke!

 

7. Into the Whirlwind by Elizabeth Camden

 

s owner of the 57th Illinois Watch Company, Mollie Knox's future looks bright until the night the legendary Great Chicago Fire destroys her beloved city. With her world crumbling around her, Mollie will do whatever it takes to rebuild in the aftermath of the devastating fire.

Zack Kazmarek, an influential attorney for one of Chicago's finest department stores, is a force to be reckoned with among the city's most powerful citizens. Bold and shrewd, he's accustomed to getting exactly what he wants--until he meets Mollie Knox, the beguiling businesswoman just beyond his reach.

In the tumult as the people of Chicago race to rebuild a bigger and better city, Mollie comes face-to-face with the full force of Zack's character and influence. Zack believes this may finally be his chance to win her, but can Mollie ever accept this man and his whirlwind effect on her life, especially with her treasured company on the line?

8. One Sweet Moment by Maggie Craig

It's 1822 and Scotland's capital is a city of both splendour and squalor. Kate Dunbar is worked like a slave all day and preyed upon at night in the gloomy vaults that lurk under the Old Town's South Bridge but never gives up hope of a better life for herself and her beloved young brother Andrew.

When wealthy young medical student Richard Hope walks into her life, Kate knows his interest in her could lead them both into danger. Yet it's not long before the two of them have fallen head-over-heels in love.

Others are watching the young lovers. Radical booksellers Peggy and Nathaniel Henderson have Kate and Andrew's best interests at heart. Their greedy and grasping uncle doesn't, and he soon soon starts laying his own evil plans.

Kate and Richard's passionate and poignant romance is set against the brutal realities of life in Edinburgh's Old Town and the brightly-lit if sometimes uneasy affluence of the New Town. Their story intertwines with the richly-imagined colour and pageantry of King George IV's historic visit to Edinburgh in 1822 and culminates in the heart-stopping drama of the Great Fire of Edinburgh of 1824.

Can their love affair have a happy ending or will fate, the evil that threatens them and the rigid rules of class and society allow them only one sweet moment of happiness?

9. A Man for Annalee by Vonnie Davis
 
When men fight over the feisty new arrival in town, the battle for her hand begins...

Annalee Gallagher loses her parents, home, and business in the Great Fire of Chicago. When she travels to Cicero Creek in the Wyoming Territory to start a new life, more heartache awaits her, and so do the attentions of several men--for good and for evil. Why was her stagecoach attacked, and was the shot that zinged over her head one night a wild bullet or a bad aim?

Boone Hartwell, the marshal of Cicero Creek, suspects someone is out to kill the new spitfire in town. She amuses him and touches a lonely part of his soul, but keeping her safe is a fulltime occupation. More importantly, can a white man raised as Cheyenne rise above her other suitors to win her heart? One thing is for certain in his determined mind: He's the man for Annalee.
 
 

In Whispers of Love, Civil War widow Jessie Wagstaff must fend for herself and her son. When a stranger, Lee Smith, befriends Jessie's son, even though she recognizes nine-year-old Linc's need for a father figure, she's reluctant to let a new man into their life. When the Great Chicago Fire blazes, every heart is pushed to its limits.

 

In Lost In His Love, Jessie's son Linc, a social activist and reporter, charms his way through the upper class of San Francisco to build much-needed support for his fight against child labor. His main target is Cecilia Jackson, a beautiful heiress who doesn't recognize the crucial part she plays in this dangerous exploitation. As the secrets of her family's dark past are exposed, Cecilia must revive her own wounded spirit and find the strength to lean on the never-failing love of Christ. But when the 1906 earthquake hits, everyone's faith will be put to the test.

 

In Echoes of Mercy, Meg Wagstaff challenges the racial barriers of 1920s New Orleans in order to prove that her childhood friend did not commit murder. The stubborn lawyer prosecuting the case, Gabriel St. Clair, is an authentic Southern gentleman who makes the mistake of underestimating Meg, both her tenacity and her charm. Despite their many differences, sparks begin to fly. But when Meg discovers the truth, will Gabe be able to protect her from those who can't afford to have justice prevail?

 

 

Did I miss one? Gimme! 

 

To vote for the best of the best and add your brain power to the list, go to my Goodreads list: Conflagrations: Great Urban Fires in Romance Novels