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Book One of The Darnalay Castle Series

Roses in Red Wax (Paperback)

Roses in Red Wax (Paperback)

A spellbinding tale of love and rebellion.

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1820 Scotland. Jane Stuart has lost everything. Her betrothed, her ancestral castle, and her cherished orchard—her life’s work—have all been ripped away. Now, exiled and adrift in the cold fog of Glasgow, she's numb to the weight of her grief, resigned to a future shrouded in loneliness and grey.

But fate has a different plan.

Percy Sommerbell is a musician, a free spirit who holds nothing but disdain for his industrialist father. But when familial duty forces Percy to travel to Scotland, he’s confronted with a painful truth—a truth that threatens to unravel the very fabric of his carefree existence. His family’s money, the fortune that funds his hedonistic enjoyment of all life’s pleasures, is generated by the suffering of children in his father's mills.

In the midst of Glasgow's smoke and shadows, Percy encounters Jane, a mysterious Highland beauty whose sad eyes and luscious curves promise both distraction from his guilt and inspiration for his music. Against all reason, Jane falls under Percy's spell. But when the mills become the first spark in a violent radical insurgency, their budding connection faces a trial by fire.

Published on March 3, 2023. 287 pages.

Five Stars

"A truly beautiful book."

- Reader Review


Frequently asked questions:

How long will my book take to arrive?

Paperback orders are generally dispatched within 3-5 business days. Shipping times vary by country and shipping method - look for estimated shipping times listed along with the shipping method choices during checkout.

What if I don't like the book? Can I return it?

Yes! If you are unhappy with your paperback for any reason, you may return it within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.

What's the steam level?

This novel has two multi-page sex scenes and several other explicit scenes and references.

What are the content warnings?

Roses in Red Wax includes graphic descriptions of child labor, dire poverty, forced isolation and the grief that comes from the death of loved ones. The hero of the novel starts his journey in a place of arrogant privilege, which some readers may find off-putting.

Do you offer book club discounts?

Yes! I'm happy to offer discounts on purchases of three or more books. Email me ( with the details and we can work something out.

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  • "I really cannot write just how much I loved this book. At my age, it's harder and harder for me to stay up to finish reading something, but I just couldn't put it down once I was settled in, then next thing I know, it's 3AM!" - Amy

  • "The scenery and setting are developed in a way that guides the reader to envisage, smell, and feel nineteenth century Scotland as if it waits to greet them outside the front door." - Tim

  • "Mayberry artfully weaves a compelling story full of love, secrets, pain and hope that is as riveting as it is heart wrenchingly full of historic truths. I couldn’t put it down..." - Holly

The Darnalay Castle Series

1820 Scotland. Fear of violent insurgency grips the industrial South, while thousands of Highlanders are cruelly evicted in the North . . . 

So begins the Darnalay Castle Series. Centered in Scotland, this groundbreaking historical romance series transports you from Glasgow and the Highlands to the far reaches of the British empire - and back again - to the heart of power in London. And it asks the question:

Can love triumph in a world gone mad? 

Step outside of the ballrooms and bedrooms of the elite into a more inclusive history, where radicals and romantics vie with capitalists and aristocrats in this evocative, one-of-a-kind historical romance series. 

The first three books in the Darnalay Castle series are complete, with the fourth and final book, The Song of the Magpie, coming in late summer 2024. Sign up for Louise’s newsletter to stay up to date on the publication plan, pre-order availability and other news.

About Louise

Louise writes steamy historical fiction from her home in the upper Midwest.

When not writing, she can be found driving an Uber, wandering her garden, attempting to talk her kids into eating healthy food, or curled up in a pool of sunshine with a cup of tea and a good book.

Louise's story