Burton, Louisa 1954- (Patricia Burford, P.B. Ryan, Patricia Ryan)

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Burton, Louisa 1954- (Patricia Burford, P.B. Ryan, Patricia Ryan)


Born August 9, 1954, in Las Cruces, NM; married; children: daughters. Hobbies and other interests: Victorian erotica, history, and mythology, painting, collecting rare books.


Home—Rochester, NY. E-mail—[email protected].




Golden Heart Award in the short contemporary series category, 1994, Bookrak's Bestselling Author Award, Emily Award, and America's Best Award, Writer's Foundation, American Airlines, and Bank of America, all for The Return of the Black Sheep; RITA Award for Best Long Historical Romance, Romance Writers of America, 2000, for Silken Threads; Reviewers' Choice Award for Best Historical Romantic Mystery/Suspense, Romantic Times, for The Sun and the Moon.


(Under pseudonym P.B. Ryan) Falcon's Fire (romance novel), Topaz (New York, NY), 1995.

(Under pseudonym P.B. Ryan) Wild Wind (romance novel), Topaz (New York, NY), 1998.

(Under pseudonym P.B. Ryan, with others) Taking Care of Business, NAL (New York, NY), 2005.

House of Dark Delights (novel in "Hidden Grotto" series), Bantam Books (New York, NY), 2007.

Bound in Moonlight (novel in "Hidden Grotto" series), Bantam Books (New York, NY), 2007.

Also author of the blog Uncut & Unexpurgated.


The Return of the Black Sheep, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1995.

Burning Touch, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1995.

For the Thrill of It, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1996.

Heaven's Fire, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1996.

Secret Thunder, Topaz (New York, NY), 1997.

Twice the Spice, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1997.

In Hot Pursuit, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1998.

Summer Heat, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1998.

Silken Threads, Topaz (New York, NY), 1999.

All of Me, Harlequin (New York, NY), 1999.

Million Dollar Baby, Harlequin (New York, NY), 2000.

The Sun and the Moon, Signet (New York, NY), 2000.

(With Sherrilyn Kenyon, Carly Phillips, and Kathryn Smith) Naughty or Nice? (novella), St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2001.

(With Nina Bangs, Kimberly Raye, and Cheryl Holt) Burning Up: Tales of Erotic Romance (novella), St. Martin's Griffin (New York, NY), 2003.


Still Life with Murder, Berkley (New York, NY), 2003.

Murder in a Mill Town, Berkley (New York, NY), 2004.

Death on Beacon Hill, Berkley (New York, NY), 2005.

Murder on Black Friday, Berkley (New York, NY), 2005.

Murder in the North End, Berkley (New York, NY), 2006.

A Bucket of Ashes, Berkley (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor to various periodicals, including Lake Affect, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, Romance Forever, Romantic Times, Tales of the Troubador, and Romance Writers' Report.


Born Patricia Burford, erotic novelist Louisa Burton began her career writing romance novels and mysteries under the names Patricia Ryan and P.B. Ryan. Her earliest books were romances for the various Harlequin category lines, including her acclaimed debut effort, The Return of the Black Sheep, written as Patricia Ryan. The novel recounts the story of a grad student who is making some extra money by house sitting for a well-to-do business man. When the prodigal son of the family returns unexpectedly in the middle of the night, the confusion eventually leads to a romantic interlude. Cindy Whitesel, in a review for Romantic Times Online, called Burton—then writing as Patricia Ryan—a "fresh new talent."

Burton proceeded to write numerous romance novels as Patricia Ryan. Among them are Silken Threads, which won the Romance Writers of America RITA Award for Best Long Historical Romance in 2000. The story, which has been compared to the Hitchcock film Rear Window, is set in medieval London, and follows Graeham Fox on his mission to liberate a woman from marriage to her unfaithful husband. However, he is injured en route, and the widow of a silk merchant takes him in while he recovers. He ends up staying and renting a room, ostensibly to have easy access to the woman he has been sent to help, who lives across the road. However, both Graeham and the widow find their feelings for each other deepening, with only his mission serving as a distraction. Kathe Robin, in a review for Romantic Times Online, praised the book for its "engaging characters, authentic historical details and … well-crafted mystery."

The same year that she produced The Return of the Black Sheep as Patricia Ryan, she debuted as P.B. Ryan with Falcon's Fire. Set in medieval France, this historical novel tells of the forbidden love between Lady Martine of Rouen and Thorne Falconer, the man organizing an arranged marriage between Martine and an English nobleman. Reviewing the book for Romantic Times Online, Kathe Robin described it as being "liberally laced with accurate historical details and seeping romance."

Burton's next book as P.B. Ryan was Wild Wind. another tale of illicit desire in medieval France. Nicolette's dying husband seeks an heir at any cost and asks her one-time lover, the warrior Alexander de Perigeaux, to seduce her. Library Journal critic Kristin Ramsdell called Wild Wind "a sensual, emotionally involving, and compelling story."

Burton also wrote a series of historical mystery romances, the "Gilded Age" mysteries, as P.B. Ryan.

The series follows Irish immigrant and pickpocket-turned-governess Nell Sweeney. Nell is called upon to help investigate various murders in post-Civil War Boston, and with numerous secrets of her own, she becomes an expert at discovering the secrets of others. The novels, which begin with Still Life with Murder, touch on themes of wealth, power, corruption and even drug addiction. In a review of the fourth title in the series, Murder on Black Friday, Romantic Times Online contributor Kathe Robin remarked that not only does the author present "a tightly wound, suspenseful novel peopled with multidimensional characters, she writes about an era whose problems mirror our own."

Under her current pen name, Burton went on to write even more sensual books with the "Hidden Grotto" series, which she has referred to as "epic erotica." The books are steeped in many of Burton's longtime interests, including mythology, Victorian-style erotica, and the more sexually charged demons, such as vampires and succubi. She dates these passions back to her impressionable teen years, when she first discovered her father's collection of Victorian erotica. Burton's series begins with House of Dark Delights. Set in present-day France at a country castle where guests gather to indulge in carnal activities, the tale then travels back two hundred and fifty years to the famed Hellfire Club, an actual group from English history that was involved in orgies and the occult. Her cast of characters includes an elf that may take female form in order to mate with a human, a djinn named Darius, and a succubus named Lili who was once a Babylonian goddess. Allison Block, writing in Booklist, found Burton's premise promising, but remarked that the "plot … never gets beyond a mildly stimulating display of lubricity and lust." Yet Another Book Review Web site critic K.C. Heath, however, compared the book to pastry, calling it "sweet and yummy, decadent yet refined … and very erotic." Harriet Klausner commented on her Web site that "the story line is unique as time is not treated sequentially leading to a fascinating intense tale." She predicted that "readers will want return engagements." Burton continues her series with Bound in Moonlight.



Booklist, January 1, 2007, Allison Block, review of House of Dark Delights, p. 49.

Library Journal, February 15, 1998, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Wild Wind, p. 130.

MBR Bookwatch, February 1, 2007, Harriet Klausner, review of House of Dark Delights.

Publishers Weekly, May 3, 1999, review of Silken Threads, p. 73.


Fantastic Fiction,http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/ (September 13, 2007), profile of Patricia Ryan.

Fresh Fiction,http://freshfiction.com/ (September 13, 2007), profile of P.B. Ryan.

Harriet Klausner Review Archive,http://harrietklausner.wwwi.com/ (August 22, 2007), Harriet Klausner, review of House of Dark Delights.

Louisa Burton Home Page,http://www.louisaburton.com (August 22, 2007).

Mystery Reader Web site,http://www.themysteryreader.com/ (September 13, 2007), Jennifer Monahan Winberry, review of Still Life with Murder.

Patricia Ryan Home Page,http://www.patricia-ryan.com (September 13, 2007).

Random House Web site,http://www.randomhouse.com/ (August 22, 2007), profile of Louisa Burton.

Romantic Times Online,http://romantictimes.com/ (September 13, 2007), Kathe Robin, reviews of Murder on Black Friday, Murder in a Mill Town, Still Life with Murder, The Sun and the Moon, Silken Threads, Secret Thunder, Wild Wind, Heaven's Fire, and Falcon's Fire; Cindy Whitesel, review of The Return of the Black Sheep, Renae Dryer, review of In Hot Pursuit.

Running with Quills,http://www.runningwithquills.com/ (January 1, 2007), interview with Louisa Burton.

Yet Another Book Review Web site,http://www.yetanotherbookreview.com/ (August 22, 2007), K.C. Heath, review of House of Dark Delights.

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Burton, Louisa 1954- (Patricia Burford, P.B. Ryan, Patricia Ryan)

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