Monthly Archives: September 2020

Recent Release Review- All Scot and Bothered by Kerrigan Byrne

Title: All Scot And Bothered (Devil You Know, Book #2)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Kerrigan Byrne

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, September 29, 2020

Pages:416

Rating: 2

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

He is first and foremost—at everything. A man who’s made his own way through ruthless cunning and sheer force of will. A strong and imposing Scot who can turn on the charm but does not suffer fools. His title: Lord Chief Justice of the High Court. His name: Cassius Gerard Ramsay. His mission: To investigate the goings-on at London’s most notorious gaming hell, owned and operated by one of the most intriguing and desirable women he’s ever met.

IN THIS GAME OF LOVE, THE RULES DO NOT APPLY

Cecelia Teague was an orphan facing a rather dire future—until a secret benefactor from her mother’s scandalous past swept into her life. Sent to a prestigious boarding school and later to university, Cecelia believed high society was at her fingertips…Then, from out of nowhere, she became the inheritor of a gambling establishment. Now Cecelia must live two lives: one as a proper lady who finds herself undeniably drawn to Lord Ramsay and the other as a savvy gaming hell owner trying to save her business from the very same man. He has no idea she is both women…and Cecelia would like to keep it that way. But what happens when consuming passion and escalating danger threaten to reveal the truth?

**

Are you intrigued by that book blurb? I was and knowing Kerrigan Byrne I knew it would be a good story. Yes, the story had merit. A very proper lawman, Lord Ramsay, trying to shut down what he perceived as an immoral and unlawful blot on the moral, upstanding British society. He was up againist a very independent woman, Cecilia Teague, who was not about to give in or give up, no matter the sexual attraction. What let me down were the characters. Ramsay was a bully. Okay, poor man, he had a rough childhood and managed to rise above, but he just didn’t endear himself to me. Cecelia, was trying to keep open her inherited gaming hell/ school for young ladies/ questionable brothel. I can’t wrap my head around such a place to begin with and why on earth she wanted to keep it all going. Add an orphan, Phoebe, but why? I’m afraid that making Cecelia so stubborn and independent when she shouldn’t have been such was really putting me off. So, no, I cannot recommend this book. However Ms Byrne has many other books certainly worth your read.

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Release Day Review- The Widow’s Christmas Surprise by Jenna Jaxon

Title: The Widow’s Christmas Surprise (The Widow’s Club, book #5)

Genre: Historical Romance/ Regency

Author: Jenna Jaxon

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Zebra, Sept. 29, 2020

Pages: 258

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Christmasy feeling: 4

Description from Amazon:

The death of her husband has thrown Lady Maria Kersey’s future into doubt—and her heart into the arms of a man she cannot have. But Christmas with the Widows’ Club will bring choices—and surprises–that may change all her holidays to come . . .
 
Maria just gave birth to her first child, a beautiful daughter—but the event is shrouded in sorrow.  A month earlier, Maria’s husband, Lord Kersey, was killed in a duel under compromising circumstances. Worse, Maria’s failure to provide a male heir has stripped her of any hope of an inheritance. Scorned by the ton, one of her few allies is her late husband’s steward, Hugh Granger. Hugh is everything her husband was not—warm, charming—and penniless. . . . 
 
Hugh has fallen desperately in love with Maria, but has little to offer but comfort. As their attraction becomes impossible to resist, Maria flees to London to spend Christmas with her dearest friends, a group of widows who lost their own husbands in the Battle of Waterloo. Little does she know the holidays will reveal a twist of fate she never expected—proving that the greatest Christmas gift is the magic of true love .

**

What that book blurb doesn’t tell you, and I’m happy to fill the void, is that there are devastating barriers to the happiness of Maria and Hugh. This book kept me turning pages into the wee hours because I couldn’t put it down. I just had to find out how an HEA would be resolved. Jenna Jaxon’s Widow’s Club series has been a bit hit or miss for me but this one is definitely a terrific read. I think Ms Jackson has become a better author with each successive book in the series.

This is a standalone book with characters from the other books in the series who make appearances. But you will not be lost; each character is introduced if only casually.

There is that Christmasy feeling and I don’t think it is too early in the season to read a book with some Christmas. In fact it just might put you in the Holiday mood. That’s something we all need during this pandemic.

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Advance Review- Her Night With The Duke by Diana Quincy

Title: Her Night With The Duke

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Diana Quincy

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Avon, Sept. 29, 2020

Pages: 382

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 4

Description from Amazon:

Desire knows no reason…

When Lady Delilah Chambers finds herself stranded at a country inn on a rain-swept evening, she’s forced to fend off a group of ruffians with the help of a handsome gentleman. Irresistibly drawn to each other, Leela and the stranger spend one reckless night in each others’ arms—and then go their separate ways. But the very next day Leela receives the shock of her life when she meets the duke who is set on wedding her beloved stepdaughter.

When it finds two destined hearts…

One night isn’t enough with a woman as fierce, fiery, and brilliant as Leela. Elliot Townsend, Duke of Huntington, cannot believe his good fortune when their chance encounter leads to an unforgettable evening of passion. Yet Hunt’s luck runs out when he is introduced to his prospective mother-in-law. Dowagers aren’t supposed to look like this… 

Leela and Hunt are determined to keep each other at arm’s length, which should be easy enough for two intelligent adults with reputations to uphold. The problem is all logic is lost when it comes to a passion that refuses to be ignored.

**

An enjoyable page turner. This hot, sexy novel will have you fanning yourself. Leela is not your typical Dowager Countess. She is a published author, a woman ahead of her time. She falls in love with Hunt and he with her but there are many, many obstacles to any Happily Ever After. It seems impossible. But perhaps fate will find a way. The author does a very good job of dealing with the racism of the era. We have a strong determined heroine in Leela and an equally determined Hero in Hunt. This is a unique Historical Romance which touches on several deep emotions.

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What Turns me on…

La Deetda Reads

What turns me on….

Vincent Eduardo Verastegui

No, no, not him…well…maybe him, but that’s not what I’m talking about here.  (BTW his name is Edwardo Verestiqui) Here I’m talking about what I swoon about with my fave authors

I know there are a ton of books that have been released over the years that I haven’t read and I assume you might have missed them also. That’s why I review some older books from time to time along with current ones.
It seems, when I find a new-to-me author, which I like, I want to read their entire back catalog. Linda Howard was one of those for me, also Lisa Kleypas and Stella Riley, Lucinda Brandt, Harlan Cobin, Julia Quinn, Courtney Milan, Sarah MacLean and Sherry Thomas. All have a way with prose that bespeaks an inventive intelligence and I’m surely (if nothing else) an intellectual snob. There you have it, another confession…

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Release Day Review- The Deadly Hours by Kearsley, Harris, Huber & Trent

Title: The Deadly Hours

Genre: Historical Mystery Anthology

Author: Susanna Kearsley, C.S. Harris, Anna Lee Huber, Christine Trent

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press, Sept. 1, 2020

Pages: 347

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 0

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

A stellar line-up of historical mystery novelists weaves the tale of a priceless and cursed gold watch as it passes through time wreaking havoc from one owner to another. As the hours and years pass, the characters are irrevocably linked by fate, each playing a key role in breaking the curse and destroying the watch once and for all.

From 1733 Italy to Edinburgh in 1831 to a series of chilling murders in 1870 London, and a lethal game of revenge decades later, the watch touches lives with misfortune, until it comes into the reach of one young woman who might be able to stop it for good.

As much a book of curses as a book of destinies, The Deadly Hours is a breathtaking anthology rich with atmosphere and intrigue that encapsulates the exquisite destruction, heartbreak, and redemption wrought by fate.

**

I am first in line when it comes to a Susanna Kearsley book but what a delight to find these other wonderful mystery writers. There are romantic elements to the stories but the focus is the mysteriously cursed (?) watch. As the time periods changed with each story each author brings to life that era. And in each story the protagonists try to get rid of the watch. The legend says that the curse, if there is a curse, will not end until the watch has been destroyed by water, earth, air and fire. I enjoyed following the watch through each time period. I recommend this book to Historical Mystery fans. You won’t be sorry.

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