Monday, March 27, 2023

An Excerpt from my upcoming release! Outcast Artist in Bretagne, by Diane Scott Lewis



Unwed and pregnant, Norah Cooper flees England to hide with her cousin in Brittany just before Germany’s 1940 invasion of France. After her baby is stillborn, she's trapped under the Occupation as war expands across Europe. Norah grieves and consoles herself by sketching wildlife. When she’s caught too near the coast, she comes under scrutiny of the German commandant, Major August von Gottlieb.

August loathes what Hitler is doing to his country and France but is duty-bound to control the people in his jurisdiction. The lively young Englishwoman piques his interest. Is she a spy? He questions her and asks her to sketch his portrait so he might uncover the truth.

Soon, their relationship evolves into a passion neither of them can deny. She endures taunts from the villagers. His superiors warn him of not being harsh enough—he could be transferred or worse. He plans to sabotage a major war machine of the Reich, while she secretly helps the Resistance. Both acts are fraught with danger while kept secret from one another. Will their love ruin her and end in heartbreak? Or will they overcome the odds and survive the surging threats on all sides?

Read an excerpt: Norah confronts the Commandant for the first time.


Friday, March 17, 2023

Excerpt from Hostage to the Revolution, sequel to Escape the Revolution, by Diane Scott Lewis


Continuing Bettina's misadventures from Escape the Revolution, will she find her lover or be kidnapped by the revengeful revolutionaries?
An excerpt.

The woman lowered her Carnival mask to reveal the perfect, glacial features of Lucrece Bardou, Geralde’s former fiancĂ©e.

Lucrece raised her elegant brows. “Very well, we’ll talk here. Are you seeing my Geralde? You have been noticed with him these past months.” She swatted her fan. “And you were dancing with him out front, like two peasants.”

Bettina half-expected this and stifled a laugh. The wine seeped into her muscles, calming her. “We have spent time together, yes. Why is it your business? I heard you were involved with someone else.”

Lucrece tipped up her perfect chin. “That didn’t work out. Geralde and I were practically married. I plan to convince him to change his profession and settle down, with me.” She poked her fan into Bettina’s face. “Without you underfoot.”

Bettina swiped the fan aside. “If he wants to court me, that is our affair.” She grew irritated, yet the idea of his courting her again sent excited quivers along her body. But what about Everett? Could she banish the idea of cheating on a man declared dead? Would the deep hollow in her heart finally heal? “I have nothing more to say to you, Madame.”

“You stay away from him, I’m warning you.” Lucrece turned. A masked man bowed in her path. She jabbed her fan into his chest. “You had better not be a Negro, sir. The law forbids you to mask.” She tossed her curls in superiority and flounced off.

Bettina laughed at the woman’s haughtiness and walked in the other direction from the shrew. She looked around for Geralde, unsure if she should warn him about Lucrece. He may not even want to court Bettina again, and she couldn’t blame him. She’d find him and ask him to dance with the others, under the gigantic crystal chandelier that shimmered and reflected candlelight in sprinkles across the ceiling and walls.

Someone tugged on her sleeve. Bettina glanced down to a Negro child dressed in white cap and apron. “Yes, dear?”

“Pardon, Madame. A man wishes to speak to you.” The girl stared up with large black eyes. “He is on the side gallery.”

Was it Geralde, hiding from Lucrece? “Show me where. Is he a handsome man in buckskins?” She followed the child down a short hallway to a set of long windows. Then she hesitated, uneasy in the shadows. “Can you ask him to come inside?”

“He says he has news about your children.” The girl opened the windows.

Could Fred be here? Were the children ill? Bettina winced and poked her head out to scan the dark porch. “Who is here?” Now she wished she’d brought someone with her.

A man stepped forward, and waved the girl off. The long windows clicked shut. “I have news from your nephew. You must return to the cottage.”

“What has happened? Are my children all right?” She hurried out, thoughts confused.

He clasped her arm. “Come with me, Madame, and I will explain.”

“Tell me who you are first.” She resisted his tug on her arm, her skin prickling.

His grip tightened and he shuffled her toward the steps. “Do not fight me, I have a gun.”

Mais non. How dare you. Let me go!” Bettina gasped and struggled. A pistol barrel stabbed into her side.

Diane lives in Western Pennsylvania with her husband and one naughty dachshund.

Saturday, March 4, 2023

A young woman running from French assassins, Escape the Revolution, by Diane Scott Lewis


Purchase Escape the Revolution HERE

Read an excerpt: 

Around a corner, Lisbette started when a figure emerged from an alley and blocked their path. Armand halted, twitching his shoulders before the huge man who trudged into their lantern’s glow. Lisbette cringed at his filthy clothes. His face looked as if someone had tried to carve their initials into his cheeks. A stench rolled off him, like the slime washed up from beneath the sea.

“So, this is the one?” The giant tugged a frayed hat low on his forehead. Water dripping off the roof behind him smacked the cobbles and stirred the mist around his bulky frame.

“Certainement. This is she, and please be gentle.” Armand glanced at her, his eyes droopy above gaunt cheeks, sadder than she’d ever seen them. “Is it quiet down there, at the harbor?”

“Quiet enough for what we need. Only one from customs. I’ll be there.” The man turned around and in a splat of footfalls the gloom swallowed him up once more.

Lisbette shivered and bunched together the edges of her cloak, already damp from the increasing rain. “Who is that dirty man, Armand? I still don’t understand why you insist on sending me off at this hour and with no decent companion.”

“I’ve explained that it’s too late to engage anyone. But I promised your mother I’d keep you from harm.” He averted his eyes when he mentioned her mother, then coughed into his hand. “Let’s keep walking, my dear.”

“Maman will not approve of this. We should go back to the house. You’re ill. I feel the heat in your arm.” Lisbette wondered if his fever had confused him. The shock of being dragged from bed, her interrupted sleep, scrambled for reason in her head. But the cold air sharpened her fears like a needle. “Ma foi, why is my leaving so urgent?”

Follow Lisbette on her frightening journey to England. Will she find solace or more danger?

Diane lives in Western Pennsylvania with her husband and one naughty dachshund.

Monday, February 27, 2023

War over oysters? An excerpt from my 1950s novel Ghost Point, by Diane Scott Lewis


Purchase e-book or paperback HERE

In 1956, Luke, a young oysterman is caught up in the illegal dredging of oyster beds, dodging bullets from the Maryland Oyster Police. His wife, Yelena, is feeling restless. She wants more from her life. Will a handsome stranger entice her or is he after her husband?


Their rubber-gloved hands culled through the oysters. Each rattle of shells cut into Luke’s brain as he hurried. The stink of the sea and slime filled his nose.

Suddenly a spotlight illuminated Sally and the crew stared into the light, shading their eyes. Captain Jim gunned the stern’s Johnson motor and the boat rumbled and jerked. The winder engine kicked in again. The men hoisted up the dredgers as the police boat nosed its way through the mist to block their escape.

“Damn it all.” Luke jerked his dredger across the deck. His body tightened at the dangerous possibility of arrest. How would he protect his family from jail?

“Stop!” the Maryland officials shouted. A whip sounded as they tried to lash a line across their vessel’s bow. Monroe Sally bumped alongside the police boat. A shot exploded from beside him. The police captain staggered and grabbed his shoulder. The officers aimed their rifles and shots whistled across Luke’s head and right shoulder. He cringed and ducked down among broken oyster shells and mud. Would this be his last night on the earth?

Their boat retreated into the fog at full speed, hugged the shore, then slipped into a cove. Captain Jim cut her engine. Lights off. The crew stayed crouched and held their breath, listening for the growl of a pursuing motor. Silence enveloped them. Frogs grunted in the rushes. Luke cursed to himself at whatever idiot on Sally had fired first.

Diane lives in Western Pennsylvania with her husband and one naughty dachshund.

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

A time-travel excerpt, Beyond the Fall, by Diane Scott Lewis


Tired of the gloomy winter? Enjoy a trip to the past as soon to be divorced, San Franciscan Tamara falls back
200 years to a gritty England caught up in grain riots.

Purchase HERE

Excerpt: Cornwall 1789

Tamara ran down the porch steps and across the yard to better see. Colum marched near the rear of the mob as if he were a herding collie. In a rumble of fury and feet, men were chanting, fists raised. Birds flew from the trees and scattered into the sky like confetti.

She hiked up her skirt and hurried to the end of their lane. A group of women swept up behind her. “Come along, an’ fight for our rights to have our bread.” One woman grabbed her arm and dragged Tamara with them. “An’ for our men to earn good wages.”

“I’m all for your rights.” Tamara skidded beside the scruffy woman who smelled of beer and bad breath, her teeth yellow, two missing. She tried to tug herself loose, then decided she needed to follow Colum and see what hazard he might encounter, or cause.

She finally pulled free of her escort and wended forward through the people, her long skirt slapping against her legs.

The marchers trudged on, up the main road that headed north, shouting, “Cheaper bread, fair wages!”

Dust clotted in Tamara’s nose as she squeezed through the crowd. She was used to long walks but not in awkward clothing. She tripped and rushed on, trying to catch up with Colum who had melted into the horde of men.

More people joined them. The mob closed in around her, poking and prodding, stinking of sweat. They followed the rocky coast gouged with inlets along Falmouth Bay. The salty breeze blew over her, teasing at tendrils of her hair.

She took an elbow to the ribs, a shoulder to her chin, but kept pushing through. Now she was glad for her sturdy hiking boots.

Her knees and ankles began to ache, a blister forming on one foot, as more time passed. She swiped perspiration from her face.

Louder shouts and curses erupted as they approached the outskirts of the larger town of Falmouth four miles to the north. In the distance, houses clustered on an incline, and a castle squatted on a peninsula that jutted out into the Carrick Roads she recalled from her map.

Elegant buildings sat among smaller cottages with thatched roofs. How beautiful it all looked, unmarred by modern intrusions. Yet here she was in the middle of an agitated throng. Her breath heaved. Where was Colum?

Gunshots pierced the air. The soldiers bore down on them. Terror coursed through her. She could be killed, forever stranded in the past.

Diane lives in Western Pennsylvania with her husband and one naughty dachshund. 

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Her Vanquished Land, a sexy Welshman and a torn loyalist during the American Revolution, by Diane Scott Lewis


Purchase HERE

Read an excerpt:

Philadelphia, PA 1780

Darkness increased as the sun lowered when Rowena and Sam approached the tavern. The close-in buildings further shaded Fourth Street and Chestnut Street, the corner on which the Indian Queen stood. Each nook and cranny, every shadow, had her flitting her gaze about, hand on her muff pistol in the frock coat’s pocket.

She checked behind her again, to see if anyone followed. They’d snuck out the rear door, through her aunt’s garden, praying no guard would catch them.

“My aunt said many rebel delegates lodged at this tavern when they discussed their plans to form their own government,” she whispered. “And cut their allegiance to Great Britain.”

Expansive and three stories high, the Indian Queen boasted an almost Dutch-shaped roof. An alley ran beside it, black as pitch. Raucous laughter drifted from the building.

“I’ll go in and check for Mr. Atherton, say I has a verbal message,” Sam said. “To be safe.”

“I could do that. Don’t I look manly enough?” She tried to tease, but disliked being marked as the weaker of the team.

“Aye. Good enough, but I’ll pass easier.” He grinned. “Then we’ll know the layout of the place. Your aunt warned that a porter greets everyone who enters.”

“I’ll wait at the alley entrance, but don’t tarry long. Bring him out to me, that’s what I need.” She slipped into the cooler shadows. Was James spying for the loyalists, or colluding with the rebels? If he was with the revolutionaries, she must stop him—in some way. What was the atmosphere in this, as her aunt informed them, largest tavern in Philadelphia? She risked much just being here.

Rowena tugged her hat low and pressed her back against the brick wall near a shuttered window. A cat ran past her. Rats scratched in debris. She wrinkled her nose at the stench of urine. More noise and moving about came from the building. Music also sounded: a lively fiddle. A drunk sang off-key.

Heavier noises from behind her. Footfalls? Nape prickled, she snatched out her muff pistol and whipped around about to release the trigger.

The scent of pine rose up; a harsh breath, almost a wolf-like snarl. Her fingers clenched around the small stock, Rowena pointed her weapon at the murky presence looming over her.

“Have a care, bachgen.” The Welsh accent pierced through Rowena. The dark stranger! He bent closer in the Indian Queen’s alley. “Ye might be the same boy as before. ’Tis dim, and I’d like for once to see ye in the light. Now, I warn ye, put down that gun.”

Diane lives in western Pennsylvania with her husband and one naughty dachshund. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

50% off Sale at Smashwords! Fiction of all Genres, by Diane Scott Lewis



All my publishers books are 50 % off on Smashwords. It's easy to sign up, no fuss, no muss (whatever muss is, lol).

All genres for a staggeringly cheap price. Don't miss out! Scroll down to find mine.

An Excerpt from my upcoming release! Outcast Artist in Bretagne, by Diane Scott Lewis

  Blurb: Unwed and pregnant, Norah Cooper flees England to hide with her cousin in Brittany just before Germany’s 1940 invasion of France. A...