Tag Archives: Suspense

An Unrivaled Conclusion

Hi everyone! Okay, so I’m a few weeks late. Sorry. Kinda got a new job at a library! Of course I’d be excited for a job involving books… lol. But, it’s been a little crazy over here getting into that. I may be a little sporadic the next few weeks then, but I hope you’ll bear with me. 🙂 I do have a new review today! The thrilling conclusion to Roseanna White’s Ladies of the Manor series: A Lady Unrivaled. (I also have reviews for books one and two.) But first, a little more about this story:

51zz12vpunl-_sx323_bo1204203200_Lady Ella Myerston can always find a reason to smile–even if it’s just in hope that tomorrow will be better than today. All her life everyone has tried to protect her from the realities of the world, but Ella knows very well the danger that has haunted her brother and their friend, and she won’t wait for it to strike again. She intends to take action . . . and if that happens to involve an adventurous trip to the Cotswolds, then so much the better.

Lord Cayton has already broken two hearts, including that of his first wife, who died before he could convince himself to love her. Now he’s determined to live a better life. But that proves complicated when old friends arrive on the scene and try to threaten him into a life of crime. He does his best to remove the intriguing Lady Ella from danger, but the stubborn girl won’t budge. How else can he redeem himself, though, but by saving her–and his daughter–from those dangerous people who seem ready to destroy them all?

My thoughts?

This is a stunning conclusion to an excellent series! Rosanna White’s Ladies of the Manor series has been an incredible adventure from the start, and this final book does not disappoint. The stakes are raised, dark pasts revealed, and those surrounding the Fire Eyes must band together or risk falling to the curse of the gems. This time, Ella is the one in the middle of the intrigue, even though everyone has tried hard to push her out. She’s bright and bubbly, but hates that most confuse her optimism with naivete. She’s in the middle of the gem’s mess, and she’s determined to be part of helping to end their hold on her family. Then there’s Cayton, who’s working on changing his life around, to no longer be the fun-loving bachelor who broke more than one heart. He knows he’s bad, and he never wants to break another woman’s heart, especially the one he refuses to acknowled that he’s falling for. The interactions between these two are priceless, both hilarious and sweet, even as they but heads. But when the danger gets closer, entraping more in its web, Ella and Cayton must push through the haze to discern the truth. Who is a friend, and who is a foe? And will they be able to escape the curse alive, or will it claim another victim? This book had me at the edge of my seat until the very end, and what a brilliant ending to such a wonderful series.

Interested? This wonderful book is available in paperback (my personal favorite) as well as Kindle and NOOK. You can also head over to the Roseanna White’s website, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter for upcoming news.

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Powerful Medieval Giveaway!

Hello everyone! So, remember how I said I had something extra special coming up? Well, today’s the day!  I am hosting a giveaway! You should know by now that I absolutely love MaryLu Tyndall’s writing. She just has such amazing stories. And recently, she just published her first medieval tale: She Walks in Power. And wow. She may be far from the middle of the Caribbean, but it’s still awesome! So, to celebrate, I am giving away one e-copy (Kindle or NOOK) of this story away! But, more than that, I not only have a review with my thoughts, but a fun Q & A with this amazing author! So, first a little about the book, my thoughts, and of course the Q&A. And be sure to read down to the end for how to enter the drawing!

51lekss4uyl-_sx322_bo1204203200_Alexia D’Clere didn’t ask to be Protector of the Spear, but after her dying mother gave her the tiny metal object and made her promise to keep it safe, she had no choice. Orphaned at age eight, she began to take over the running of her parent’s castle with the help of a trusted steward. Yet, when a plot to murder her was revealed, a friar whisked her away to live hidden in the forest. There, she learned to shoot expertly with bow and arrow and hone her skills to see into the spirit realm.

Now, at eighteen, Alexia continues to keep the Spear protected, provide meat for the starving village, while secretly caring for her ill sister who still lives in the castle. With Alexia’s powers of spiritual discernment and her skill as an archer, she is no match for those who come for the spear. That is until she meets Ronar LePeine, one of the King’s elite guard.

Ronar desires nothing more than to do his duty to God and King and pay penance for past sins. Yet a forest sprite with red, flaming hair blocks his every move, all the while enchanting him like no other. Something evil lurks at Castle Luxley, and both Ronar and Alexia are soon thrust into the middle of a spiritual battle which will not only test their very beliefs, but put them both in mortal danger.

My thoughts?

Oh. My. Goodness. Talk about an incredible book! I’ve been a fan of MaryLu Tyndall’s from her first series, but this one really shines. I was hooked from the first page to the last, unable to put it down. Not only is it filled with MaryLu’s signature adventures, but she weaves in such a deep spiritual battle that had me on the edge of my seat. Then there are the amazing characters! Alexia is strong, devoted, and has a large heart. She cares deeply for those around her, though sometimes her emotions can get the better of her. Then there’s Ronar, a knight desperate to do good, to atone for his past. So, when he meets Alexia, he can’t understand why he is kind to her, even helps her, when she stands between him and his mission. They are so equal in intelligence, both skilled in strength, and were such a delight to read! While I love a good swoon-worthy, romantic knight (and don’t worry, Ronar does have his moments), it is also fun to read wills clash as each attempts to fight his or her own feelings for the other, and MaryLu’s dialogue just shines! Add in some truly evil villains, a few valiant friends, a battle greater than any on earth, all set in beautiful medieval England. This is a stunning novel, with a wonderful romance, a heart pounding adventure, a great spiritual battle, and a book I highly recommend.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion – which I’ve done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

And now, without further ado, how about we hear from the author herself!

First, I want to thank you so much for taking time from your busy schedule to chat with us.
My pleasure!!  Thanks for having me, Karen!
As this is your first medieval tale, what inspired this new story?
I’ve always had a love for the middle ages. Knights in shining armor, princesses in castles, evil magicians, who wouldn’t love that? It truly was an adventurous and romantic time, but also a dark time when the Holy Scriptures were withheld from the people and hence, many superstitions abounded.  What inspired She Walks in Power was the idea of a lady archer, a powerful hunter and protector, much like Robin Hood, but yet very different. Of course, I needed to give her something to protect, and I’ve always been fascinated with the myths surrounding the Spear of Destiny, the spear the Roman soldier stabbed Christ with on the cross.
What was it like branching out into a very different time period than the ones you’re used to?
Difficult at first. I’m pretty familiar with the 17th and 18th centuries in early America, but heading back in time over 400 years was definitely a challenge. Everything was different back then, clothing, food, culture, language, religion, government, customs, you name it. So, I had a fair amount of initial research to do. This is also one of the few books I’ve written that didn’t take place, at least some part of it, on the sea, so I had another challenge of being completely landlocked for the first time! 
What was the hardest part about writing in a new era? What was the easiest?
Hardest was all the research it required and learning the language, what words I could use and what words I couldn’t because they weren’t known at that time. The easiest I’d say was developing the characters. Human nature is the same regardless of what time period I write in. People in the middle ages had the same desires, needs, fears, and struggles as we have today.
Were there any fun tid-bits you learned when researching for this book?
Many people think that women throughout history had no rights until our modern age, but I discovered that women of high class in the middle ages had a fair amount of rights. For instance, they could inherit property and even run businesses.  Widows and single women had more rights than married women. This really came as a surprise to me, a nice surprise. Yet, for the most part, women were considered inferior to men and were from birth to death under the authority of either a father or husband. Many women joined convents to escape this tyranny and also to escape childbearing, which often resulted in death. In the Church, women could rise up through the ranks and obtain a great deal of power, even over men.
Alexia and Ronar were such fun characters to read, especially their interactions. What drew you to them?
 As I said above, I’ve always wanted to write a story about a female archer who lives in the forest. As I was creating Alexia, I knew she had to be strong, resolute, brave, and yet possess great kindness and deep emotions.  Ronar was just plain fun to create. He’s a handsome knight, valiant, loyal, brooding, determined, yet a man tortured by his past. He’s the perfect hero, the kind of man you always want on your side.
And, last and favorite question, any tid-bits of advice for aspiring authors?
Be humble and teachable. Question yourself as to your motives. If you’re hoping to become a best-seller and make a million dollars, don’t bother. If you write because you love to write and you can’t NOT write, then keep at it! Don’t give up your dream. Learn, grown, write, and write some more. Write the story burning on your heart. And then put all of it in God’s hands.
Wow, great advice. And thanks again for your time and letting us have a brief glimpse of what went into this fabulous tale!
Okay, now, like I said, I am giving away one e-copy of this book (Kindle or NOOK, your choice.) So, here’s what you need to do to enter: I want to know, what is your favorite part of the medieval era, or medieval era novels? Or, if this might be your first jump into the genre, what is your favorite genre and why? Comment below with your answer and I’ll be drawing a winner next next. 🙂
Or, if you just can’t wait to dig in to this delightful read, you can get a copy yourself on Kindle or NOOK, or paperback (which is always awesome). And do check out MaryLu’s website, along with follow her on Facebook and Twitter for news about upcoming novels!

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Adventure and Romance in the Old West

Hey everyone! Sorry for the late post. It’s been a crazy few weeks. However, I did get to enjoy a wonderful new novel, which of course I get to share with you. 😉 So, if you’ve been reading my posts, you’ll learn that I’m not a big Western fan, I usually prefer really early American history or European. However, I absolutely adore Karen Witemeyer’s novels. She manages to write Western novels with that European feeling (or, if you read Head in the Clouds, the hero actually is British.) And her newest novel, No Other Will Do, does not disappoint!

Men are optional. T512b6e5az98l-_sx322_bo1204203200_hat’s the credo Emma Chandler’s suffragette aunts preached and why she started a successful women’s colony in Harper’s Station, Texas. But when an unknown assailant tries repeatedly to drive them out, Emma admits they might need a man after all. A man who can fight–and she knows just the one.

Malachi Shaw finally earned the respect he craved by becoming an explosives expert for the railroad. Yet when Emma’s plea arrives, he bolts to Harper’s Station to repay the girl who once saved his life. Only she’s not a girl any longer. She’s a woman with a mind of her own and a smile that makes a man imagine a future he doesn’t deserve.

As the danger intensifies, old feelings grow and deepen, but Emma and Mal will need more than love to survive.

My thoughts?

This was such a fun read! Emma is a strong woman, owning and running her own back, along with founding Harper Station. She has a kind heart, a willingness to bring in the downtrodden, and an inner flame to fight for those same people. But when her ladies are threatened, even she understands that she needs some help, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s an excuse to see her childhood friend and crush. When Mal receives her telegram, he’s instantly on his way to save her, since she once saved him. Now together, they have to work to figure out who’s behind the threatening notes, while fighting off the newest, and growing even more dangerous, attacks. Their relationship is adorable to read, the companionship that comes from being childhood friends, but also the awkwardness that comes from growing feelings that are much more than friendly. This was such a wonderful read, a great mystery with growing tension, wonderful adventure sequences, and a romance that’s sure to warm to heart. I especially love that it’s a story about women who run their own lives, own their own businesses, are strong and capable in their own right, but it doesn’t diminish the strength of the men in their lives. It’s really refreshing to read a story with both, and I’m very much looking forward to more stories of Harper’s Station’s ladies.

So, interested in this fun read? You can pick up a copy for Kindle or NOOK
, and of course the good old fashioned paperback. And do check out the author’s website, and follow her on Facebook for news of her upcoming fun. 🙂

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Mystery and Love Abound in Regency Woods

Hey all! So, this week’s post is extra fun, because I got to review a book just released this week: Sarah E Ladd’s wonderful Dawn at Emberwilde. This is the second book in the Treasures of Surrey series (you can read my review of the first here), and no less amazing than the first. Before I get into it, though, here’s a little info about the story itself.

Isabel Creston nev51rotk38jbl-_sx326_bo1204203200_er dared to dream that love could be hers. Now, at the edge of a forest filled with dark secrets, she faces a fateful choice between love and duty.

For as long as she can remember, beautiful and free-spirited Isabel has strained against the rules and rigidity of the Fellsworth School in the rolling English countryside. No longer a student, Isabel set her sights on a steady role as a teacher at the school, a safe yet stifling establishment that would enable her to care for her younger sister Lizzie, who was left in her care after her father’s death.

The unexpected arrival of a stranger with news of unknown relatives turns Isabel’s small, predictable world upside down, sweeping her and her young charge into a labyrinth of intrigue and hidden motives.

At her new family’s invitation, Isabel and Lizzie relocate to Emberwilde, a sprawling estate adjacent to a vast, mysterious wood rife with rumors and ominous folklore—along with whispers of something far more sinister. Perhaps even more startling, two handsome men begin pursuing Isabel, forcing her to learn the delicate dance between attraction, the intricate rules of courtship, and the hopes of her heart.

At Emberwilde Isabel will discover that the key to unlocking the mystery of her past may also open the door to her future and security. But first she must find it—in the depths of Emberwilde Forest.

M thoughts?

Sarah E. Ladd has once again proven that she’s a true talent in the Regency genre. Isabel is an interesting character to read. She’s very much content in life, and has a good heart, but also has a strong personality. She tries hard to fit into her place, but never seems to be able to. Then you have her two love interests, Mr. Bradford and Colin Galloway, both of whom treat her like a true lady with their personal brand of charm. I thoroughly enjoyed the relations between the three characters, especially when Isabel’s aunt and uncle try to get involved. I enjoyed that there are almost three plots interwoven together in this novel: Isabel’s growth as a character, her romance with the gentlemen, and the mysteries surrounding the woods. Although, my favorite part about this book was that it surprised me. As an avid reader I rarely am surprised by stories’ plot twists, but this one certainly came with a few. The book was well written, the settings beautiful, and the suspense and romance so wonderful that I couldn’t put it down. While the second in the series, it’s easily read on its own, and one I would recommend to Regency fans.

In full disclosure, the author was gracious enough to provide me a copy of this book for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Interested in this wonderful story? You can get a copy for Kindle or NOOK, not to mention paperback. And do check out the author’s website, and be sure to follow her on Facebook and Twitter

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Double Dose of Regency Fun

Hi all! So, today I’m giving you another double dose. Although, technically it’s more of a triple dose as I’m throwing in a novella as well. This time I’m doing two completely different authors who both write Regency, but in their own unique way. For starters, there’s Julie Klassen, a long time favorite author of mine, who writes the more outskirts of the Regency era, and her recent novel The Painter’s Daughter. Then there’s Kristi Ann Hunter, a new author, who does a beautiful job written about the nuances of the ton in her debut novel A Noble Masquerade and companion novella, A Lady of Esteem. Each is unique, but each is well written and wonderful Regency tales. So, ready to get started?

Let’s begin with Julie Klassen’s The Painter’s Daughter.

Sophie Dupont assis51z0v91dbrl-_sx322_bo1204203200_ts her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists–including handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape.

Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley’s responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host’s daughter in serious trouble.

Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother’s, Stephen proposes to Mis
s Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage “in name only” to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow.

Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn’t come to regret it?

My thoughts?

This lovely novel by the talented Julie Klassen just showcases her amazing talent as a Regency author. Unafraid to dive into heavier topics, she none-the-less delivers a heartwarming tale. Sophie is sweet, demure, and lives to be her father’s assistant, loving to paint, but just for herself or her father. She never expected to fall for Wesley, or for him to walk out of her life. When Stephen comes looking for his life-loving brother, he didn’t expect to find a compromised Sophie. Doing the honorable thing, he offers his hand, and Sophie accepts the ‘marriage-in-name-only’. These two are beautifully written, especially together; though neither sets out wishing for more, they form a bond that slowly becomes something more. But when Wesley arrives, he shatters the peace that both have found, and Sophie must wrestle with her feelings for her first love against those of the man who married her. I found this one of the most beautifully written love stories I’ve had the pleasure of  it enjoying. Add to that, there is a deeply moving message of redemption woven into the pages. Though not as suspense-filled as Julie Klassen’s other novels, it is still none-the-less a beautiful novel, with wonderfully written characters, and deep messages that touch the heart. 

You can learn more about this wonderful author through her website, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter. And you can get this wonderful book on Kindle and NOOK, and of course paperback.

And now for Kristi Ann Hunter’s wonderful tales, starting with her novella A Lady of Esteem.
51xafb6qlbl-_sx322_bo1204203200_

Miss Amelia Stalwood may live in London at her absent guardian’s townhouse, but she’s never actually met any nobility, and instead of aristocrats, her closest friends are servants. Quite by Julie happenstance, she’s introduced to the Hawthorne family and their close family friend, Anthony, the reformed Marquis of Raebourne . They welcome her into their world, but just as she’s beginning to gain some confidence and even suspect she may have caught Anthony’s eye, she’s blindsided by an unexpected twist in her situation accompanied by nasty rumors. Will she lose her reputation when the world that has only just accepted her turns its back on her, or will she rest in the support of the friends who’ve become like family and the man who’s shared his faith and captured her heart?

My thoughts:

What a wonderful debut novella to introduce us to Kristi Ann Hunter’s Hawthorne House series! Amelia is a sweet character, outside of normal society, but happy in her place. She never expected to be thrust into society, or to find such good friends in the Hawthorne family, and she especially didn’t expect to fall for their long-time friend, Anthony. Anthony, for his worth, is a true gentleman, and very kind, though even he is taken aback by Amelia’s kindness towards those considered below her. But, when scandal erupts, will she lose everything she has just gained, or will her faith see her through? Wonderfully written story, with lovable characters, along with some comical moments and witty banter, this is a great start to this series.

And now for the novel, A Noble Masquerade.

Lady Miranda Hawthorn51ppjsz22bel-_sx321_bo1204203200_e acts every inch the lady, but inside she longs to be bold and carefree. Approaching spinsterhood in the eyes of society, she pours her innermost feelings out not in a diary but in letters to her brother’s old school friend, the Duke of Marshington. Since she’s never actually met the man she has no intention of ever sending the letters and is mortified when her brother’s mysterious new valet, Marlow, mistakenly mails one of the letters to the unsuspecting duke.

Shockingly, this breach of etiquette results in a reply from the duke that soon leads to a lively correspondence. Insecurity about her previous lack of suitors soon becomes confusion as Miranda finds herself equally intrigued by Marlow, a man she has come to depend upon but whose behavior grows more suspicious by the day. As the secret goings-on at her family’s estate come to light, one thing is certain: Miranda’s heart is far from all that’s at risk for the Hawthornes and those they love.

What I think?

The debut novel for this author, and this series, is at times both fun and serious, that blend well with the romance. Miranda is a beautiful character, a strong woman with a free spirit who has learned, though still fights, to be a polished lady. For years she has written to her brother’s friend, the only person she felt could understand her nature, and pours all her frustrations with society into the letters. She never expected him to ever read them, or to write back. Then there’s Marlow, a kind man with strong convictions who doesn’t seem to fit his role of Valet. I loved the interactions between these characters, and the written letters between Miranda and the duke. There’s great banter, along with some sweet romances. And to top it all off is a great mystery filled with intrigue as a spy searches for traitors in Miranda’s own house. The characters are well written, with wonderful dialogue, and the setting is beautiful. The intrigue is suspenseful, with a good dose of adventure, and the romance is fun to read and heartwarming. All in all, it’s  wonderful Regency and one I recommend to fans of the genre.

You can find more about this wonderful debut author on her website, and of course follow on Facebook and TwitterA Lady of Esteem is free for both Kindle and NOOK, and A Noble Masquerade is also available for Kindle and NOOK, and also paperback.

I hope you enjoy these books as much as I did!

 

 

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Double Dose of Romance

Hi all! So, this week I’m doing another double-book feature. Why? Because I’m so behind… lol. That, and one of my favorite authors, Melanie Dickerson, has published 2 books recently (well, one was more late last fall, but it’s recent enough for me. lol) That, and she has a new one coming out soon that I can’t wait to dig into! So, without further ado, let’s dig into these recent books while I, for one, get excited about digging into the next!

 

Let’s start with The Golden Braid. The latest installment of her original fairytale retelling series, this one does a beautiful job with Rapunzel’s story.

 

The one who needs rescuing isn’t always the one in the tower.

Rapunzel can throw a kni519twhvahzl-_sx325_bo1204203200_fe better than any man. She paints beautiful flowering vines on the walls of her plaster houses. She sings so sweetly she can coax even a beast to sleep. But there are two things she is afraid her mother might never allow her to do: learn to read and marry.

Fiercely devoted to Rapunzel, her mother is suspicious of every man who so much as looks at her daughter and warns her that no man can be trusted. After a young village farmer asks for Rapunzel’s hand in marriage, Mother decides to move them once again—this time, to the large city of Hagenheim.

The journey proves treacherous, and after being rescued by a knight—Sir Gerek—Rapunzel in turn rescues him farther down the road. As a result, Sir Gerek agrees to repay his debt to Rapunzel by teaching her to read. Could there be more to this knight than his arrogance and desire to marry for riches and position?

As Rapunzel acclimates to life in a new city, she uncov
ers a mystery that will forever change her life. In this Rapunzel story unlike any other, a world of secrets and treachery is about to be revealed after seventeen years of lies. How will Rapunzel finally take control of her own destiny? And who will prove faithful to a lowly peasant girl with no one to turn to?

 

My thoughts? Rapunzel is a sweet character, with a good heart, but no pushover. She can protect herself, and has an inner strength to fight for what she wants. Then there’s Sir Gerek, a knight who’s a bit arrogant and driven, but after agreeing to help Rapunzel with her greatest wish, seems to have a sweet side as well. Though at first they seem to butt heads, these two find a way to understand each other in ways that no one else seems to understand. When Rapunzel discovers a mystery in her own past, she begins to question everything she knows, and who she can trust. Can Gerek prove that he’s trustworthy enough, and can Rapunzel gather the courage to go after what she wants? Though a beautiful tale in itself, it also builds onto the world of Hagenheim, and answers some questions woven through several of the previous books, and if you’re a fan of The Princess Spy, there’s a bit of a bonus as you get to read about some of those events from other eyes. It’s a beautifully written story with engaging characters and a plot filled with twists and turns that had me on the edge of my seat ‘til the last page. 

 

And the other, most recent book by Melanie Dickerson, is certainly a shock as she begins a new series by branching out into the Regency era. As I’m sure you’ve all guessed by now, I do love a good Regency, and A Spy’s Devotion does not disappoint!

 

In England’s Regency51tionxmmhl-_sx331_bo1204203200_ era, manners and elegance reign in public life—but behind closed doors treason and deception thrive. Nicholas Langdon is no stranger to reserved civility or bloody barbarity. After suffering a battlefield injury, the wealthy, well-connected British officer returns home to heal—and to fulfill a dying soldier’s last wish by delivering his coded diary.

At the home of the Wilherns, one of England’s most powerful families, Langdon attends a lavish ball where he meets their beautiful and intelligent ward, Julia Grey. Determined to maintain propriety, he keeps his distance—until the diary is stolen and all clues lead to Julia’s guardian. As Langdon traces an evil plot that could be the nation’s undoing, he grows ever more intrigued by the lovely young woman. And when Julia realizes that England—and the man she is falling in love with—need her help, she finds herself caught in the fray. Will the two succumb to their attraction while fighting to save their country?

 

Let me tell you, this novel was amazing, encompassing the Regency era in all its enjoyable nuances. Julia Grey is a poor relation to one of England’s powerful families, but who has a good heart and deep understanding of the Ton and politics of the ballroom. Then there’s Nicholas Langdon, who is no stranger to war or a battle, but now must learn to fight with words when he’s thrust into a plot against England herself. As he finds himself drawn to Julia’s intellect, he also finds an ally in her, though he is reluctant to bring her into the danger. Though Julia could lose everything, she cannot just sit by if she can do her part to fight for her country. As they find themselves drawn closer together, they also find themselves being pulled further into the dangerous plots. Can they navigate the treacherous waters, and save England’s greatest hero? Or will they find themselves caught in the storm and at the mercy of those who hate England? This story brilliantly weaves together the beauties of the Regency ballrooms, and manners and customs of the ton, along with espionage and intrigue of the war with Napoleon. It’s a great blending, with a suspense-filled plot, and a story I highly recommend.

 

So… interested? While they’re two different styles, one a medieval fairytale and the other a Regency suspense, they are both wonderfully crafted novels with beautiful romances. I’ll be posting the links for the books below, as both are available on Kindle while The Golden Braid is also available for NOOK, along with my favorite, print versions of course. And do feel free to check out Melanie Dickerson’s website, along with her Facebook and Twitter, to get all the up-to-date info on her future books, including The Beautiful Pretender coming out next month, and The Silent Songbird, that’s sure to be an interesting take on The Little Mermaid story.

 

The Golden Braid: Kindle, NOOK
A Spy’s Devotion: 
Kindle, B&N

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Murder, Intrigue, and Romance

Hello! I am finally back, and I have a wonderful review of a recently released book! The amazingly talented Roseanna White has released the second book in her Ladies of the Manor series: The Reluctant Duchess. Curious as to what the book’s about?

A Riveting Edwardian Series Set among Britain’s High Society
51yrkeijldl-_sx321_bo1204203200_
Lady Rowena Kinnaird may be the heiress to a Highland earldom, but she has never felt good enough–not for her father, not for the man she thought she’d marry, not for God. But after a shocking attack, she’s willing to be forever an outcast if it means escaping Loch Morar.

Brice Myerston, the Duke of Nottingham, has found himself in possession of a rare treasure his enemies are prepared to kill for. While Brice has never been one to shy away from manor-born ladies, the last thing he needs is the distraction of Lady Rowena, who finds herself in a desperate situation. But when Rowena’s father tries to trap Brice into marrying his daughter, Brice makes a surprising decision.

Rowena wanted to escape the Highlands, but she’s reluctant to marry a notorious flirt. And when she learns that Brice is mixed up in questionable business with a stolen treasure, she fears she’s about to end up directly in the path of everything she was trying to avoid.

My thoughts?

It’s a spectacular second book by this amazing author! The mystery and suspense continues, this time to the Scottish Highlands. Brice is a good man, always wanting to help, and especially follow that little voice he hears every now and then. But, he never expected his desire to help, or God’s call, to lead him to marry a complete stranger. Rowena may be the daughter of an earl, but all she knows is to be a quiet Highland lass, and never believed herself to be worth anything more, especially after she is viciously attacked by the one person she thought loved her. She certainly never believed she’d be saved by an English Duke when he offers to marry her and whisk her away. Complete strangers, they are both forced to try to learn about the other, and in the process, discover themselves. The banter between them is wonderful, and the romance is sweet. I especially love the message woven in about each learning to respect the other. But, whilst they try to make their marriage work, they are thrown deep into the murderous intrigue surrounding the precious items Brice now possesses. Can they learn to listen to the other, and trust each other in order to survive? Or will the curse prove too powerful and destroy a love newel formed? With wonderful twists and turns, a stunning narrative, beautiful messages about listening and following God’s direction, and of course a love story to melt the heart, this is a novel I recommend to any who enjoys a good English historical.

(In full disclosure, I received a copy of this book for my honest review. The thoughts written above are mine.)

Intrigued? You can find this wonderful book in a bookstore near you (and of course online), or you can get
a e-copy for your Kindle or NOOK. And check out the author’s website, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter for all her latest news, including the release of the third book in the series. 😉

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Double the Adventure and Romance

Hi everyone! How is your New Year going? Well, mine’s been full to say the least. lol. Busy holiday season certainly put me behind on these posts. So, to make it up to y’all, I’ll be attempting to double my reviews these next few weeks. For today, I’m bringing you a couple of my favorite authors, who are currently teaming up with a third for a blog-tour with LOTS of prizes (including free copies of their books 😉 ) Anyways, without further ado, here are my reviews of these awesome stories!

Our first acharity_ebookuthor is my personal favorite, the amazing MaryLu Tyndall, and her recent novel: Charity’s Cross. What an amazing novel by this wonderful author! Connecting not one, but TWO of her wonderful series, Legacy of the King’s Pirates and Charles Towne Belles, this story is both a wonderful stand-alone and a great connector of lovable characters. This tale follows Charity, on the run and yearning for a new start, who continues to run into Elias, a pirate-preacher from a long line of pirate-preachers, who just wants to help everyone.  The characters grabbed me from the start and refused to let go. Charity just pulls at the heart strings, knowing how much suffering she’s had in her life, and you can’t help but admire her strength and tenacity, even while her refusal to accept help can get a bit annoying. Personally, I love a character that I can yell at for a bit; it makes it so much more satisfying watching them finally figure things out. And then there’s Elias, who has such a good heart and is so kind, a real knight-in-dented-armor hero, even when he has his moments of annoyance. I love the banter between them, the equality of them from the start, and watching him slowly woo and win her just melts the heart. And of course, it wouldn’t be a true MaryLu Tyndall pirate novel without heart pounding, high-seas battles, beautifully described exotic locales, and a touch of the miraculous. And to top it off, this story is immersed with a beautiful message of God’s mercy and love. Yet another success from this wonderful author, it is a story that I highly recommend for anyone looking for an adventure on the high seas, a romance to warm the heart, and a deep message that seeps into the soul.

Our other author is the wonderful Debbie Lynne Costello, and her newest bofrontresizeok: Shattered Memories. My thoughts? What a great start to a new series! What happens when you’ve lost everything, including a year of your memories? And what if you’re torn between trusting an old family friend and a man believed to be in love with you? That’s exactly the predicament Olivia finds herself in when she wakes up after being injured in the Charleston earthquake. Drew, a doctor, is relieved when his fiancé finally wakes up, but soon realizes that she not only doesn’t remember being in love with him, but fully believes she’s engaged to another man, and a true scoundrel at that. How can he convince her that he’s the man she loves, especially when the other lathers on the charm? Things get especially complicated with her brother missing, and evidence of foul play found in her family’s company. Add to that, Olivia’s memories slowly return, and sporadically, leaving her to wonder who, if anyone, she can trust. Can these two learn to work through the difficulties and trust each other, especially when the trust is shattered? I have to say, I loved watching the sparks fly between the two of them! Their banter is enjoyable, along with watching Drew work to win back his love. Although there were moments where I wanted to knock some sense into both of the characters, to me that was part of their charm. Add to that the mystery surrounding her family’s business, and her missing brother, and this story is certainly a fun one to read. And the backdrop of the earthquake, written with amazing detail, really helps round this story out. It is certainly a story I recommend for anyone looking for a good romance and a message about learning to trust God and His plan.

These are both wonderful, and unique, stories. Full disclosure,I did receive copies of both stories for an honest review, and honestly, they were fantastic! And, as I said, both authors are hosting giveaways on their blogs, so feel free to hop on over and check them out. 🙂 And feel free to pick up either an e-book or paperback. Hope you enjoy these as much as I did!

MaryLu Tyndall: Charity’s CrossWebsiteFacebook, and Twitter

Debbie Lynne Costello: Shattered MemoriesWebsite, Facebook, and Twitter

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Distinct Collision of Comedy and Romance

Hi everyone! I’m sorry it’s been a while since I wrote. I had this post planned for last week, but it didn’t feel right to share it at the time. But, especially with the holidays coming up, I realized that I need to kick myself back into gear and start getting these reviews up and shared. Oh, and did I mention that I absolutely adore ‘book season’ (which is just about wrapping up)? Seriously, SEVERAL of my favorite authors have all come out with their newest novels, so my TBR stack just multiplied exponentially. lol. Although, I don’t think it’s a pile or stack as much as bookshelves… maybe bookcases? lol. So, this week, I am reviewing an older series, but one I recently discovered and absolutely love! The author? Jen Turano. The series? Ladies of Distinction. So, bare with me on this long post, but I think you’ll find it worth it.

This is probably one of the funniest series of novels I have ever read! Several times I’ve had to put the book down because I was laughing so hard, which led to several odd stares from my husband. And of course, explaining why these scenes are hilarious always makes them even more so. Lol. Jen Turano brilliantly weaves together strong characters, wonderfully entertaining romances, great, deep messages, with a deep suspense-driven storyline. One page has you on the floor laughing, while the next has you at the edge of your seat, breath held to see if the hero can rescue the heroine in time, or if she can rescue herself. Both her heroes and heroines are so strong, and extremely intelligent. While they entertainingly but heads, they also match each other’s personalities very well. I think the heroines are my personal favorite. She has a wonderful blend of such strong personalities; these women are truly strong and intelligent, and can definitely handle themselves, but they do so without losing their femininity. And, the heroes have a special place, because they are truly swoon-worthy, suave, and dashing heroes running in to rescue their damsels in distress, without forcing said damsels to stay in the kitchen. But maybe I should introduce you to some of the charming characters and the specific books in the series. While each is a stand-alone story, it does help to read them in order, as most of the characters are present from the first book. Besides, it’s hard not to want to read all these wonderfully hilarious tales.

The first story is the novella: Gentleman of Her DreGentlemanofHerDreams_cover.inddams. This is probably the most stand-alone of the stories, but it sets up the setting for the rest very well. Charlotte is a go-getter, with an imaginative mind, and the gumption to go after what she wants. And when she determines that God’s chosen a certain gentleman as her husband, she gets into some very entertaining scrapes trying to get his attention. And then there’s Henry, her long-time best friend, just recently returned from sailing around the world, who is roped into helping her with her marriage-scheme when he himself has realized he has feelings for her too. It’s an entertaining read, and a great beginning for this series.

A Change of Fortune is the official first novel, and starts the seri51vi2bzqoa0l-_sx322_bo1204203200_es off with its unique twist of mystery and comedy. Eliza is a born noble, a lady of England, but her father’s death, and being cheated from her fort
une, sends her to New York searching for the man who swindled her. She poses as a governess to find the man, but she didn’t expect to literally fall into the arms of New York’s most wanted bachelor. Hamilton wants nothing to do with women; his sole focus is on a man who seems to be cheating his family out of money. But when the charming governess falls into his arms, he finds his focus wavering. When they discover their shared enemies, a tenuous partnership is formed. But while Hamilton wants to do all the work himself, Eliza is not going to just sit by and determines to take her fortune herself, even without Hamilton’s help. Their relationship is probably the most even from the beginning, but even they are enjoyable to watch banter. Throw in a couple of unruly kids with big hearts and you’ve got a frolicking good time.

A 16109762Most Peculiar Circumstance lives up to its title. You’ve got Arabella, wealthy socialite, who has no problem traipsing around the country to help out women in need, even if it means getting into messy situations. Theodore is one of the best private investigators in the country, and when he’s hired by Arabella’s brothers to track her down, he’s expecting a sweet, docile woman who knows her place, not the spit-fire who landed in jail. While Arabella’s one of the most progressive women he’s ever me, Theodore is one of the most old-fashioned men she’s known. Sparks immediately fly, and both seem to bring out the arrogant side from the other. The banter between them is akin to Benedict and Beatrice in Shakespeare’s Much Ado, and I couldn’
t help but fall in love with the way their relationship progressed. Throw in some unscrupulous men who threaten both of them and it’s a recipe for a fun adventure.

In A Talent for Trouble, Felicia, the image of lady-like perfection, a51f072bd117l-_sy344_bo1204203200_nd
Grayson, the English nobleman hiding behind his secrets, get thrown together for an adventure that’s other-worldly. Felicia
is kind, compassionate, and has spent years grooming herself to become a minister’s wife, even going so far as to wear horrid gowns. But, when the man she wanted chooses another, she soon finds herself free to choose to be someone else entirely: the girl she is inside. That girl is spunky, adventurous, and too inquisitive, especially of the new-in-town lord, for her own good. Grayson, for his part, is haunted by his choices in his past, and deaths he believes are of his own making. But, when his past seems to come back to life, they learn they have to work together to make right certain wrongs, and hopefully stay out of prison.

The last 51y4dhnxkzl-_sy344_bo1204203200_book, A Match of Wits, finally tells the story of Agatha and Zayne, two people who have obviously fallen for each other since the first novel. However, while Zayne is no longer with his former fiancé, even more pressing issues seem to keep the two apart. Agatha is a strong-willed, independent woman, who writes scathing exposés about the downtrodden, earning her more than one enemy along the way. Zayne is hardened by life’s circumstances, and the last thing he wants is to be dragged back home to his family by the obstinate girl too proud to admit she needs help. As both work hard to be the hero the other ‘needs’, they hate being seen as needing help. Sparks fly as these two match their wits to the other, fighting themselves and each other, even while needing to find and fight a bigger enemy.

All together, this series was a great read, filled with memorable scenes *cough* jail *cough*, adorably lovable characters, and flying sparks between the love interests make these truly memorable. It is a series I highly recommend for anyone looking for a great laugh, strong characters who learn and grow, and a wonderful moral message about trusting God through the difficult times. I hope you enjoy these stories, and this wonderful author, as much as I have!

If you’re interested in finding out more, you can always follow this wonderful author on Facebook, as well as check out her website. Each of these wonderful books is available for Kindle and NOOK, and the novels can also be found in paperback at most retailers.

A Gentleman of Her Dreams: Kindle, NOOK

A Change of Fortune: Kindle, NOOK

A Most Peculiar Circumstance: Kindle, NOOK

A Talent for Trouble: Kindle, NOOK

A Match of Wits: Kindle, NOOK

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Lady Maybe

Hello! So, I’m a tad late. Again. lol. But, I am posting only a couple of days late this time. And, I am back to a classic favorite author of mine this week: Julie Klassen. Her newest novel, Lady Maybe, was one of the most interesting novels I’ve read in a long time.

This novel was a shock, in the best way. I’ve been a fan of Julie Klassen for years, but this one really stood out to me. Sure, it had the classic Julie Klassen secrets, the mysteries that if released could destroy lives, but even she took a new page in the book. There were so many twists in this book that I was not expecting, which is very rare for someone who’s as avid a reader as I am. I usually see most surprises coming, but not in this book. I actually had to re-read the last few chapters twice just to let the ending sink in. Oh it was good! It was a very good ending, but also a surprising one. The beginning starts with an accident, and a lady with no memories, and it only gets better from there. A lady with no memory, a lord in a coma, a solicitor who’s inquisitive and skeptical, and a lord chasing after them makes this story rich. Add to that multiple points of view, and not the traditional hero and heroine, and this book is a great read. It’s definitely a heavier read, dealing with deeper issues, but a good one and one I recommend for those interested in a meatier story.

You can find this novel on both Kindle and NOOK, not to mention the good old fashioned paperback. Also, you can follow this wonderful author on Facebook and Twitter, not to mention checking out her website. Chat with you soon!

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