Whip Smart

Eliza Gilbert finds herself in a loveless marriage. To make matters worse, her husband has filed for divorce. The divorce will be the ruin of Eliza. She wants to be an upstanding lady and a famous actress. Thus she enrolls in Miss Fanny Kelly’s school. It is here that Eliza meets Mr. Hernandez. Hernandez is Eliza’s dance teacher. He offers Eliza a chance to escape her life and her upcoming divorce trial. She is to meet with someone in France and then travel to Spain. Hernandez’s acquaintance is named Juan de Grimaldi.

Eliza decides to take Hernandez up on his offer for a chance to get away and then come back and take London be storm with her new found independence and skills. Eliza leaves London as just a girl but she returns as a new woman with a new name of Lola Montez.

I had never heard of Lola Montez until I read this book. I had to look her up and get familiar with her story. Of course, I thought that author; Kit did a good job of portraying Lola’s story. This book was a surprise in a good way to me. To be honest, when I saw the book cover, I was expecting this book to be like an erotic novel but it was not. It was more then that. It was about a love story and courage. It was not hard to fall for Lola. She had a strong, colorful personality. I am glad that she did find someone to love her like Diego. He was a caring man. For fans of history or someone looking for a new author to read then you should pick up a copy of Whip Smart today. It is a quick read. One that you will enjoy reading and it is worth your money.

Purchase a copy here

Astor + Blue Editions is proud to present, Whip Smart: Lola Montez Conquers the Spaniards (ISBN: 978-1-938231-47-6; Trade Paperback; Romance, Historical, Women’s Fiction; US $14.95 CAN $14.95; February, 2013), the rollicking first installment of a new series by debut author, Kit Brennan. The series begins the week of the historic birthdate of the Magnificent Lola (February 17).

It is 1842, London, and the gorgeous, ever-capricious twenty-two year old Eliza Gilbert, (a.k.a. Lola Montez) is in deep trouble and seeks escape from a divorce trial. Desperate to be free, Lola accepts an alluring offer of a paid trip to Spain, provided she fulfill a few clandestine tasks for Juan de Grimaldi—a Spanish theatre impresario who is also a government agent and spy for the exiled Spanish queen, Maria Cristina.

Lola soon finds herself in Madrid, undercover as a performer in a musical play. But when she falls dangerously in love with the target, General Diego de Léon—the “perfect Spanish soldier, lover and horseman”—Lola becomes a double agent and the two hatch a plot of their own. Disaster strikes when the plot is exposed, and Lola is forced to flee on horseback to France, with a dangerous group of Loyalists in hot pursuit. Will Lola’s reckless daring, feminine whiles, and signature whip be enough to save her life, her lover and her cause?

She will have to be bolder and more whip smart than ever before.

Written with zest and a passionate, fiery fervor by debut author Kit Brennan, Whip Smart irresistibly whisks readers into a vivid journey through 19th Century, France, England and Spain, riding sidesaddle with Eliza Gilbert, the hot-headed Irish girl, as she transforms into Dona Maria Dolores de Porris y Montez—a.k.a. Lola Montez, The Sensation of Europe!


Kit Brennan is a nationally produced, award-winning playwright, and teaches writing and storytelling at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.

The Victorian era and its personalities have always been of major interest to Brennan. Her play Tiger’s Heart explores the life of Dr. James Barry, who was actually a woman living a double life disguised as a man in order to practice medicine, which was not an option open to women at the time.

Kit divides her time between the vibrant city of Montreal and the quiet lake wilderness of Ontario alongside her husband, Andrew, and a variety of animal friends. Whip Smart: Lola Montez Conquers the Spaniards is her debut novel.

Visit her online at www.kitbrennan.com


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