The Virtuoso by Grace Burrowes

Grace BurrowesSome days are better than others. We all have that one day each week that’s a little harder to make it through than the rest. My friend Grace Burrowes has a fool-proof method for decompressing after a stressful day. Here’s how it goes:

  1. Arrange matters so you never have to stop for groceries, put gas in the tank or socialize on your high stress day. Go straight home.
  2. Make a big pot of decaf Constant Comment or Lemon Lift tea.
  3. Slip into your play clothes. (Grace’s outfit includes fuzzy socks. Mine requires my “Matrix” sweater–It’s not like the slick, cool clothes they’re styling inside the Matrix, but the holey, worn comfortable stuff they wear on the Nebuchadnezzar.)
  4. Light a Midnight Jasmine candle or burn a couple sticks of cedar incense.
  5. Make PBJ for dinner, or whatever you want, but make sure it involves minimal cooking or cleaning up.
  6. Develop temporary blindness about dust bunnies, sticky counters or gritty floors. (I would add overflowing laundry hampers!)
  7. Take a “keeper” read to bed with you.

And with that lead in, allow me to recommend Grace’s The Virtuoso. It belongs on your keeper shelf.

The VirtuosoEllen Markham tells herself she’s happy raising flowers and living in near penury in the Oxfordshire countryside, but when Valentine Windham moves in just on the other side of the wood, Ellen’s longing for things she can never have threatens to overcome her good sense.

Valentine’s artistic soul, tender loving, and ducal determination tempt Ellen to trust and confide in a man who can only be endangered, should he learn of her past. For Valentine, regaining his musical skill becomes far less urgent than winning Ellen’s heart.

Available in Print:

Available in Digital Format:

Grace is offering three chances to win a copy of The Soldier! International entries welcome.



Read an excerpt!

This hour, I’ll also be choosing another reader to receive an ebook of my Maidensong for winner’s choice of Kindle or Nook.

I always think the most satisfying romances result when the hero and heroine start as enemies. Since Rika blames Bjorn for her father’s death, it’s hard to imagine how she could ever see him as anything but a bloody raider.

But I’ve always been drawn to stories where the hero and heroine grow and change in a steep character arc. Hope you are, too.


Touch of a Rogue

Click to order!

Remember today is Touch of a Rogue‘s release day!

Jacob Preston and Lady Cambourne start as wary allies in the search for the last of six magical Druid daggers. But just because they’re working together, that doesn’t mean they don’t keep secrets from each other.

Secrets that could wreck all…

Publishers Weekly’s
Top Ten Romances for Spring 2012


Leave a comment or question for Grace to be entered in the hourly drawing!

27 thoughts on “The Virtuoso by Grace Burrowes

  1. Linda says:

    I’m all for #7. A sure fire de-stresser!

    I’m a big fan of Grace’s books; I think I have all of them. Just pre-ordered Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal last week!

  2. Sharon says:

    I’m sorry that I missed this the day it was happening. So many fantastic authors! And Maidensong sounds amazing. Love Vikings!

  3. Barbara Elness says:

    Love the stress reducers. I also love to sit in front of the television for some mindless entertainment, preferably featuring hot men, like on Hawaii Five O, that relaxes me right up.

  4. Love your pointers for stress-downs, Grace, and I second the North and South suggestion. Anything, really, with Richard Armitage.:) I usually grab a book if I’m too wired to focus on my own writing. I really enjoyed The Virtuoso–all your books, as a matter of fact. Waiting for the next installment.

  5. Cate S says:

    I really like Grace’s style of living… it pretty much matches mine.. although pizza is more likely than PB&J…

  6. Aretha zhen says:

    I will devour all of your suggestion:). Really2 need a big stress relief:)

  7. eli yanti says:

    I love grace’s book Virtouso and really love with Val, i cant wait to read other of Grace’s book ;)

  8. catslady says:

    All wonderful suggestions. I like to curl up in bed with some purring cats late at night and be taken away to new worlds. I so enjoyed The Heir and I’m sure I am going to enjoy more of her stories. Beautiful cover too.

  9. Diane Sallans says:

    Reading stories that take me away to another time or place are one of my favorite ways to de-stress – while wearing comfy clothes of course!

  10. Lisa Hutson says:

    Grace, I have read your ”agenda” before. Thank goodness you have it. We all need to have those days. :-) Love your stories!!

    1. It’s the days in court that do me in the worst, Lisa, and it isn’t the cases, nor the judge, nor the clients. It’s the other attorneys I spend the most energy dealing with. ARGH.

  11. Kendra Edens says:

    Ms. Burrowes, are you referring to the San Francisco Peaks, or Mount Elden? I love in Williams, AZ so get to experience that view often. :) De-stressing for me always involves a book. ALWAYS! Of course if I have a roaring fire, fuzzy socks, hot tea (or possibly a mocha), and something freshly baked (I’ve been on a banana bread kick lately), de-stressing is that much better. But as long as I have a book, I can escape to another place and free myself from the constrictions of the day that may have brought me down in spirit. After reading, I always feel refreshed.

    Congratulations on the release Ms. Marlowe. You are among many fabulous books out today. I’ll be recovering from this spending spree for a while. :)


    1. Kendra, I’m with you. Through years of single parenting, trying to start up a law practice, and generally setting myself up for a permanent case of Frazzled Nerves, I’ve always considering books a necessary coping strategy. I owe Mary Balogh my first born, though she’s probably not interested…

      1. Kendra Edens says:

        HA! That is funny though likely with some truth to it as well. *grins* My most common escape when I don’t get that “ideal quiet reading time” is locking myself in the bathroom and reading in there for a while when I am in need of an escape before the day is out. :) I have six of them, well 7 with hubs … enough said. :)

  12. Pam says:

    I very much like a candle of one of my favorite scents in order to calm me. Of course a great book is a plus too. :)

    Congratulations on the release of Touch of a Rogue.

    1. Pam, I swear lilac makes me happy and the longer I whiff it the more calm and sanguine I feel. I’ve been told the nose acclimates, so your brain stops “smelling” what you picked up when you walked in the room, but my mood says otherwise when it comes to some pleasant scents.

  13. Gayle, (And the Earl of Westhaven would approve of that name), I get my best, best plotting ideas when I’m doing nothing, or driving across New Mexico and Arizona. Whatever that mountain is up behind Flagstaff, it sends out great stories ideas.

  14. Gayle Cochrane says:

    Tea is soothing and right now I am drinking a nice tea called Oregon Chai. Just giving yourself permission to do nothing is always relaxing.

  15. Diane P. Diamond says:

    Those are some great ways of de-stressing Grace. I always feel that a cup of tea a a good book solve all problems. I’d love to read The Soldier.

    Congratulations to Mia on your new release. I did leave a message and pic on your Facebook wall this morning to this effect.


    1. When I finish with a day in court, I’ve used up my quota of “responsible, disciplined, professional grown up” for the day. And isn’t it lovey that what it takes to restore my equilibrium is so readily available? I’m hoping my copy of Rogue shows up by COB Thursday, in fact.

  16. May Pau says:

    OOOh… I love Tea and cookies…

    And I really enjoyed The heir too…

    1. May, “Soldier” is the next book in the line up, featuring our friend and brooding older bro, Devlin St. Just. You will be pleased to know the damsel who wins his heart is a baker of goodies…

  17. Great list. I agree with all of them. Also, sometimes laying down to watch Pride and Prejudice helps me de-stress.

    1. I tend more toward North and South… sound options sometimes.

      1. Yes North and South is another goody.

  18. StacieD says:

    Hello Grace! I love your suggestions for de-stressing. Soaking in a hot tub is usually one of my favorite ways to relax. A cup of Earl Grey tea helps too. Hiding under the covers is always comforting. Too bad I don’t have a manservant to bring me snacks or give foot rubs. ;)

    1. As far as I’m concerned, the cabana boy will never have the appeal of a well turned out footman. I has me standards, and that’s one of them.

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