Wednesday, April 11, 2012

How to Redeem a "bad" wolf by Stephanie Burkhart

In "The Hungarian" (Budapest Moon, book 1) Count Anton Varga was introduced as a "foil/counterpoint" to Count Matthias Duma. Anton shared the same struggles as Matthias, being made into a werewolf on the same night as Matthias. Anton struggled with containing the more feral/aggressive nature of his soul. He also saw Matthias as a rival in many things, life, money, property, and love, but then something happened.

That something was Lady Amelia Andrassy.

Amelia fainted in the Duma bookstore and Anton caught her. It was a gesture any decent human being would do - catch another while they were falling, yet Anton looked into Amelia's eyes and saw similiar wounds in her heart that he harbored. Amelia was kindred spirit and suddenly Anton had something of his "own." He just needed to figure out a way to reach out to Amelia.

In my "free" prequel, "Moonlight Sonata," Anton determines what he has to do to become the man Amelia needs. In "The Count's Lair" he's set on his course to win Amelia's love. Now, if that doesn't redeem a "bad" wolf, falling in love, I don't know what will.

The Count's Lair is an award winning book:
2011 Reader's Favorite Silver winner in Romance: Sci-Fi/Fantasy

It was also nominated for book of the week with Long & Short Reviews.

Here are some of the reviews for "The Count's Lair:"


"Want a recipe for a great story? Take an awesome writer like Ms. Burkhart, stir in her intimate knowledge of Hungary, her innate ability to create wonderful characters, a book-full of suspense, mystery and passion and you get a book you can’t put down."

Fennel -- Long and Short Reviews
Rating = 5 Books.
Nominated for BOOK OF THE WEEK!


The Count’s Lair is filled with suspense, mystery, passion, and the paranormal. This story is set in the beautiful city of Budapest; the author brings her knowledge of the area to her plot. She describes the history and culture of Budapest... I was cheering for Anton. However, for me the best scene was the last one when Anton gives Amelia her choice. He held her with an open hand."

Reader's Favorite Book Reviews
Rating = 5 Stars


"Burkhart does it again with book two in the Budapest Moon book series, The Count’s Lair. The second book is filled with passion, chock full of paranormal goodness, romance, suspense and mystery... Those who love paranormal romance with a dash of suspense and mystery will fall in love with The Count’s Lair and do not forget to read the first book in the series!"

The Pen and Muse


"This is one of the best werewolf books I have ever read. Stephanie Burkhart gives a great view of the 18th Century Catholic Church and Werewolf relationship, as well as going into more detail about the attributes of werewolves. If you enjoy the Werewolf legends, or just romantic relationships, The Count's Lair is a wonderful read."

5 Hearts
Sizzling Hot Book Reviews


"...The Count's Lair was an agreeable read populated with likable and relatable characters... The Count's Lair is the second book in the Budapest Moon series. I'll be looking forward to the next novel due for release at the end of this year (2012) that will continue with the next generation of Vargas with Anton and Amelia's daughter, Sophia's story."

The Hope Chest Reviews
Rating = 4 Stars


Ralphi Finnes inspiration for "Anton"

Count Anton Varga is haunted by the curse of the moon. It tugs on his emotions, ravishing his soul. Anton abhors the beast he must learn to tame if he is to find peace. 

Lady Amelia Andrássy is an accomplished pianist, but her life in Budapest had been filled with heartache. When Amelia faints in the Duma's bookstore, it's Anton's strong arms that cradle her fall. His unusual indigo eyes spark with hers, replacing their individual loneliness with the promise of feral passion. 

After a two month separation, Anton is ready to walk into Amelia's life again, but is Amelia ready to fan the spark they shared into a flame?


Count Varga looked like a tamed jackal. His hair was wind-tussled, and his overcoat accented his muscled physique. His scarf hung casually over his shoulders, too, as if it were just for show. She was completely disarmed by his full red lips, more vulnerable to his presence than she would have thought. Anton draped the cloak over her shoulders and snapped the front clasp. Sparks of warmth jumped off him, saturating her body. His smoldering sapphire eyes found hers. She adored his attention.

Amy Adams inspiration for "Amelia"

Bryant handed her a pair of gloves, her hat, and her scarf. She hung the scarf around her neck and put on her hat.

"Are you ready?" Anton asked.

She nodded, and he escorted her to his auto. The cold winter air nipped at her cheeks. It was only the first week of December, but Anton hadn't joked about the temperature.

They got in the back seat of his auto, and the driver took off. The auto was warm. Amelia put her gloves in her lap.

"Some people have set up a tent in the middle of the market and are selling goulash and warm apple wine. Do you mind having lunch there? I thought we'd take in the market's ambience."

"Not at all."

"I've missed you." He turned in the seat to look at her.

She smiled. "I've missed you, too."

"Did you get your invitation to the noble's ball?" he asked.

"Yes. I got it today."
"May I escort you?"

"I would like that," she replied. She'd like it a lot. Too much for her own good, but she wasn't prepared to admit that to him just yet. He already had unsettled her. It was exciting to be in the presence of a man so confident and secure. The last few weeks with Mikel, she'd thought he had avoided her because of the success of her piano concerts.











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