Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Lovers in Paradise

Lovers in Paradise is #93 in the Bantam series and was published in November 1978. It is the story of Count Viktor who is sent to Bali by the Dutch queen and meets an English girl named Roxana, who hides a secret as she lives in the forest and carves the native wood. How they end up together is the romantic plot of this exotic story by Barbara Cartland!

Francis Marshall paints our couple in a lush forest with a menacing stranger on the left and a native dancer on the right. He wears traditional late 1800's hunting gear while she wears a simple bustle gown of white muslin.

Bali was a territory of Holland. They gained their independence in 1945 and became part of Indonesia in 1949.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Race for Love

The Race for Love is #92 in the Bantam series and was published in October 1978. It is the story of Alita, a poor relation in the home of a duke, who meets her new neighbor, the rich American, Clint Wilber. Her uncle is desperate for money and plans to sell some of his thoroughbred horses to Mr. Wilber, but needs Alita's help to do so. How Alita and Clint meet and fall in love is the romantic plot of this story!

Francis Marshall paints our couple in a large room where he places the heroine on a horse in order for her to put on a show and do tricks for the audience. Our heroine is pretty in a soft gray riding habit and seems to match the horse she's riding. Marshall creates an elegance and serenity that our heroine embodies. It's a very nice piece of art!

In the late 1800's, Englishman were realizing the vast fortunes that certain Americans had and were willing to exchange for goods and titles! For the next 20 years, there would be transactions benefiting both countries!

Monday, September 28, 2009

The Judgement of Love

The Judgement of Love is #91 in the Bantam series and was published in September 1978. It is the story of Astara, who promises her guardian to choose one of his three nephews as her husband. She loves paintings and is intrigued by Vulcan, the nephew who is also a painter!

Francis Marshall paints our couple as the heroine is modeling for the hero. She wears a regency dress with flounces while he is dressed as a typical artist! Note the funny mask on the wall! It's a very pretty cover and a nice romance story!

The guardian in the story was a collector of art and many aristocrats during this time were also collectors. Some of the great houses had paintings by many famous artists and it's fascinating to visit these places now and see their art treasures!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

A Princess in Distress

A Princess in Distress is #90 in the Bantam series and was published in September 1978. It is the story of Princess Mariska, whose husband was injured by a terrorist bomb on their wedding day and is now confined to a wheelchair. He forces Mariska to spy on Lord Arkley as war clouds are forming over Europe in 1905. How Lord Arkley saves her from her abusive husband and they find love is the plot of this romance by Barbara Cartland!

Francis Marshall paints a scene of our hero rescuing the heroine from her wheelchair bound husband. Note the pistol and the sheerness of her lingerie! The orange lamps brighten up a somber background, too.

Europe was bracing for war during this time with the European countries allying themselves with and against each other. The assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand of Austria began the chain of events that began WW1.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Passion and the Flower

The Passion and the Flower is #89 in the Bantam series and was published in August 1978. It is the story of Lokita and how her dancing attracts the admiration of Prince Ivan, a cousin of the Tsar but he cannot marry a commoner. How they end up together is the plot of this romantic novel by Cartland!

Francis Marshall paints a gorgeous cover for this book. Our couple stand in a candle lit garden with the heroine in a white bustle gown which looks like a wedding dress! Our hero is dashing in uniform and is taking down our heroine's hairdo! It is a very romantic cover!

As mentioned before, royalty in most countries had to marry royalty or have special permission to marry elsewhere. While men amused themselves with opera singers and ballet dancers, they did not marry them.

Friday, September 25, 2009

A Runaway Star

A Runaway Star is #88 in the Bantam series and was published in July 1978. It is the story of Gracila, who runs away from her own wedding after learning that the groom is her stepmother's lover! She hides with an old servant and meets Lord Damien, who left England years ago due to a scandal. Can they overcome obstacles and find love?

Francis Marshall illustrates our couple as if they were in a picture! She sits on a limb of a tree and he notices her as he rides by! Her pretty pink dress was typical of the style in the 1840's and the green of the trees seem to brighten her dress. It's amazing how many colors Marshall uses in this picture!

Some upper class women had lovers during the 1800's. Unfortunately, it was only wrong if they were indiscreet. Since many marriages were made for money or position and not love, it became acceptable to stray once the "heir and spare" had arrived. Divorce was an expensive and public solution that most did not pursue.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Love, Lords, and Ladybirds

Love, Lords, and Ladybirds is #87 in the Bantam series and was published in July 1978. Petrina is the ward of the Earl of Staverton and is attracted to him after she leaves school, but he is interested only in his mistresses and plans to marry Petrina off. However, she is determined to marry only him and fireworks ensue!

Francis Marshall illustrates our regency couple at a ball and our heroine is beautifully dressed in a white gown decorated with ribbons and flowers. Our hero is dashing in a black and gold decorated jacket.

I'm astounded as I go through these books how many Cartland set during the regency. During this time, gothic romances were very popular, but regencies were being bought and publishers began releasing series for those voracious readers who had been reading Heyer and Cartland and were wanting more!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Wild Unwilling Wife

The Wild, Unwilling Wife is #86 in the Bantam series and was published in June 1978. It is the story of Jarita, who is being forced to marry Lord Vernham after the death of his cousin. She has some exciting adventures before she realizes that she and Lord Vernham may be able to have a relationship and maybe, love!

Francis Marshall paints our couple outside with some wild animals in a personal zoo. Very wealthy Englishman could afford a menagerie and zoos were becoming popular with people who had only seen pictures of these animals! Note the high knot of our heroine's hairdo, which is late regency/early victorian in style! A very appealing scene!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Lord Ravenscar's Revenge

Lord Ravenscar's Revenge is #85 in the Bantam series and was published in May 1978. It is the story of Romara, who ends up becoming Lady Ravenscar after a disastrous meeting with her sister's paramour. How Lord Ravenscar saves both Romara and her sister Caryl is the plot of this romantic novel by Cartland!

Francis Marshall paints our regency couple in an embrace while standing in a stable or carriage house. She wears a typical muslin dress with a shawl while he is in riding dress with a caped greatcoat. Note how big the carriage wheel is in contrast to the hero!

I always liked how these books were numbered and also numbered on the spine. The back cover shows a picture of Barbara Cartland! I've always thought that it was a smart marketing ploy to number books!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Love Locked In

Love Locked In is #84 in the Bantam series. I also have a corresponding Pan (UK) edition included. The Bantam book was published in May 1978 and is the story of Syrilla, who agrees to marry the Duc de Savigne, a man who she hasn't seen since age 9!

I believe that this edition had 2 different covers since there was a hardcover edition published in 1977. The Bantam edition by Francis Marshall has our couple facing each other talking with the chateau in the background. There are tall trees behind them and the planter nearby where they stand is short. The Pan edition has them standing by a taller planter, but with the hero carrying a cane and wearing a red corsage. Both are dressed identically in both covers in a typical late regency/early Victorian style. It's almost like one of those games: find the differences in these pictures!

I'm always looking for FM cover variations, so please notify me if you find any other books that I don't have listed. I know some of the hardcover versions were different.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Magic or Mirage

Magic or Mirage is #83 in the Bantam series and was published in April 1978. It is the story of Devina, who is in New York City after the death of her aunt and trying to get back to England. She answers an ad for a companion to a young lady traveling to England and once hired, finds an adventure in love!

Francis Marshall illustrates a great cover for this book, which is set in 1907. Our heroine looks like a Gibson girl with her upswept hairdo and pink fitted day dress. Our hero is handsome in a suit and they sit on board a ship, maybe in a saloon! I like the contrast of the blue cushions behind her and the flowers behind him.

Ocean liner was the modern way of transportation across the Atlantic in the early 1900's. Many were transformed into use during World Wars 1 and 2. Ships were elegant with every modern convenience and took only 7 days to cross the Atlantic!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Love Leaves at Midnight

Love Leaves at Midnight is #82 in the Bantam series and was published in March 1978. It is the story of Xenia, who meets her cousin after a mix up in a railway accident. Her cousin is in love with an Englishman but is on her way to marry another. Xenia and her cousin end up changing places for a few weeks, but can both find love in such a short time?

Francis Marshall creates an beautiful cover of our couple walking near a waterfall. The heroine's blue and green riding habit seem to mimic the colors of the water and foliage. The hero stands out in his blue jacket. I love the jade green trim of the heroine's dress, boots, and hat.

During the 1800's in Europe, royalty married only other royalty. Queen Victoria was notorious for placing her relatives on the thrones of Europe!

Thanks to reader Tracey for finding this audiobook cover and figuring out which original book it resembled. Another Francis Marshall cover and a great find!

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Problems of Love

The Problems of Love is #81 in the Bantam series and was published in March 1978. It is the story of Alexia, who brings her beautiful sister to London to have a season and implores her kinsman, the Marquis of Osminton, to help her find a house. Once he sees how beautiful her sister is, he is determined to help them just to watch the fireworks once the other beauties see this new one and because he is interested in the older sister!

Francis Marshall illustrates a scene where our heroine is intreating the hero to help them. She is pretty in a light blue regency gown that compliments his dark blue coat and seems to be in motion! The younger sister sits in the background and the color of her dress and hair seem to blend into the walls and furniture. It's a fascinating cover illustration with much to view!

I'm amazed at how many books Cartland set in the regency times! No wonder that I love those stories!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Twists and Turns of Love

The Twists and Turns of Love is #80 in the Bantam series and was published in February 1978. It is the story of Petula and how she meets and falls in love with Adrian Chester. Adrian, unfortunately, is on his way to marry the daughter of a duke. How the title of this book comes true is the plot!

Francis Marshall illustrates our couple in an elegant, candlelit room. She is wearing a late Georgian dress, a style popular before the empire regency, and it's very pretty! Our hero is dressed in regency wear with long trousers. Note the ruffle on her sleeve and the pattern in the carpet!

It was common to marry for money or position at this time in England. Our heroine is taken to London by her uncle to marry, since she is poor. Our hero is in an arranged engagement. Many young people didn't have the means or money to make their own choices when it came to matrimony.

Monday, September 14, 2009

A Fugitive from Love

A Fugitive from Love is #79 in the Bantam series and was published in January 1978. It is the story of Salena Cardenham, who is visiting Monte Carlo with her gambler father. She escapes a Russian Prince after she realizes he is a married man and is rescued at sea by the Duke of Templecombe. Many more adventures occur before they realize their love for each other!

Francis Marshall illustrates a scene including our couple with the angry Russian Prince. Our heroine wears Arabian garb while our hero is dressed in military gear. Note the beauty and opulence of the interior tent? Again, here is proof that Marshall was great at drawing the body because all three people stand in a different position. Enjoy this bright cover!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Saint and the Sinner

The Saint and the Sinner is #78 in the Bantam series and was published in January 1978. It is the story of Pandora and how she runs to her cousin when her guardians try to force her into an unwanted marriage. Her cousin is a wild bachelor and soon comes to the conclusion that he may wish to give up his ways after meeting his cousin!

Francis Marshall illustrates one of my favorite covers here! It is a romantic picture of the hero carrying the heroine away from a carriage accident. She looks as if she's been abducted and he rushes to her rescue. The dark blue of her robe mirrors the night background and it's a very pretty cover!

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Sign of Love

The Sign of Love is #77 in the Bantam series and was published in December 1977. It is the story of Bettina Charlwood who is taken from convent school in France and goes straight to a yachting party along with her father that is going to the celebration of the opening of the Suez Canal. She then is pursued by two very different men!

Francis Marshall illustrates a very pretty scene aboard the yacht with our couple talking as they gaze our at the scene in the harbor with many other colorful ships and flags. Our heroine is beautiful in a blue and white bustle dress and a tiny straw hat that matches her outfit! Note her white parasol. Our hero is dashing in a black jacket and gray trousers.

The opening of the Suez Canal in November 1869 allowed water transportation between Europe and Asia without having to travel around Africa.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Castle Made for Love

The Castle Made for Love is #76 in the Bantam series and was published in December 1977. It is the story of Yola, who is a countess in France and lives in a beautiful castle, but is stunned to find out that she is promised in marriage to the Marquis de Montereau. She decides to travel to Paris and teach the marquis to love her for herself, instead of a wealthy countess!

Francis Marshall paints a beautiful, vibrant cover of our couple! Our heroine is stunning in a red bustle dress which is eye catching and compliments the hero's evening dress. Note her matching red gloves, hair ornament, and ribbon! They stand in a lobby which is beautifully decorated with trees and flowers.

The castle described by Cartland is the Castle of Usse, which inspired Perrault to write "Sleeping Beauty" and is said to have inspired Walt Disney's story castles!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

No Escape from Love

No Escape from Love is #75 in the Bantam series and was published in November 1977. It is the story of Vernita, an English lady trapped in Paris during Napoleon's siege. She masquerades as a seamstress and is helped by Count Axel de Storvik to escape from France!

Francis Marshall illustrates the cover showing our heroine dressed as a seamstress to Paulina, Napoleon's sister, with Napoleon in the background. Count Axel is there to support her, but the background characters steal the show on this cover!

English tourists in 1803 were detained in France after Napoleon returned. Some tried to escape by balloon! Many donned disguises in order to escape being imprisoned.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Hell-Cat and the King

The Hell-Cat and the King is #74 in the Bantam series and was published in November 1977. It is the story of Zenka and how Queen Victoria commands her to marry King Miklos of Karanya. She realizes that she must marry him, but she plans not to become a complacent English wife!

Francis Marshall paints an intriguing scene of our couple! Our heroine sits pointing a pistol at the King! She sits in her boudoir in a filmy white nightdress and robe while the king is wearing the uniform he was married in! She has a beautiful complexion for a redhead and this is a pretty cover that tells a story!

Queen Victoria was known for marrying her relations off to European Royal Houses! Europe was still unstable and countries felt that having an English queen would show that England was also supporting their country.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Naked Battle

The Naked Battle is #73 in the Bantam series and was published in October 1977. It is the story of Lucilla, who leaves England for Ecuador with her father and sister and finds Quito in turmoil after a coup and ends up helping a wounded Spanish officer, Don Carlos, in his quest for freedom!

Francis Marshall paints an intriguing cover with our couple in a town square during a celebration. Note how the heroine's riding dress mimics the hero's jacket! It's interesting that the crowd is consumed with meeting the man on horseback, which leaves our couple alone for a minute! It is another exciting and beautiful cover!

Barbara Cartland set a few books in central America. She didn't like writing about places she had never visited, so she traveled much during the 1970's and 1980's while she was in her 70's and 80's! Remarkable for anyone of that age!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Love and the Loathsome Leopard

Love and the Loathsome Leopard is #72 in the Bantam series and was published in October 1977. It is the story of Wivena, who is pursued by the leader of the smugglers in her neighborhood. Only the Leopard, who is hunting down the smugglers, can save her!

This is an interesting cover by Francis Marshall because a lot is happening! Note our couple in the foreground but the smugglers and ships in the background! Our heroine is pretty in a white empire gown with a purple cloak. She is being rescued by our hero, who carries a gun and has possibly just shot the man lying on the ground! The fire in the background give the night sky orange lights and it is a fascinating piece of work!

Smugglers were busy during the regency times when England was at war with France. They would smuggle wine, brandy, cloth, and spices across the channel into England to sell and make a profit. The Navy was constantly trying to stop them since they felt it was unpatriotic for the smugglers to profit during the war.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Temptation of Torilla

The Temptation of Torilla is #71 in the Bantam series and was published in September 1977. It is the story of Torilla who is bid by her cousin to come and be her bridesmaid. On her way to her cousin's house, Torilla is saved by a kind man who she finds out is her cousin's intended husband! How both Torilla and her cousin find love is the plot of this romantic novel by Barbara Cartland!

Francis Marshall paints a cover of our regency couple outdoors. Maybe they are waiting on a carriage to be fixed? She is pretty in a long sleeved spencer over her dress with our hero in a brown coat and tan trousers. The woods are green and peaceful. Could our couple be falling in love with each other?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Love Pirate

The Love Pirate is #70 in the Bantam series and was published in September 1977. It is the story of Bertilla, whose mother is a society beauty and sends her away to her aunt in Sarawak, because she doesn't want anyone to know she is old enough to have a grown daughter. Bertilla runs into Lord Saire at the train station and later on board ship as she is fleeing a persistent suitor. Soon he finds himself in charge of this girl and later falling in love with her.

Francis Marshall paints a picture of our hero helping the heroine while the natives in the background watch. Are the natives dangerous? I like the palms and tropical foliage in this outdoor scene.

Sarawak is now a state in Malaysia on the island of Borneo. Barbara Cartland visited the locales that she wrote about and enjoyed traveling to exotic places around the globe. She was scrupulous in her facts and many readers credit her for their love of history!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Dragon and the Pearl

The Dragon and the Pearl is #69 in the Bantam series and was published in August 1977. It is a unique story of Zivana and Stanton Ware as they meet to help with Stanton's mission in Peking. This happens just before the Boxer Rebellion of 1900.This story is definitely a meeting of East versus West! I think it may be the only novel set in China that Barbara Cartland authored.

Francis Marshall outdoes himself with this cover. He show our couple in Chinese garb with our heroine in white, signifying her as the pearl and the hero in red meaning the dragon. It looks as if she's wearing pearls and I see dragons embroidered on his cloak. It is a beautiful setting and I remember looking forward to getting each new copy of Cartland's books just to see every new cover!

The Boxer Rebellion was a real event in China in 1900-01. It was an anti-foreign, anti-Christian movement and they wanted to eliminate foreign influence in China. Foreign troops fought and won against the Boxers in 1901.