Category Archives: Books Historical Romance

Advance Review- A convenient Fiction by Mimi Matthews

A convenient fiction

Title: A Convenient Fiction (Parrish Orphans of Devon, book #3)

Genre: Historical romance/Victorian

Author: Mimi Matthews

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Perfectly Proper Press, Oct. 22, 2019 (pre-order available)

Pages: 352

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating:4

Description from Amazon:

She Needed A Husband…

It’s been three years since Laura Hayes’s father died, leaving her and her invalid brother to subsist on the income from the family’s failing perfume business. But time is swiftly running out. What she needs is a husband, and fast. A noble gentleman who can rescue them all from penury. When a mysterious stranger arrives in the village, he seems a perfect candidate. But Alex Archer is no hero. In fact, he just might be the opposite.

He Wanted a Fortune…

Alex has no tolerance for sentiment. He’s returned to England for one reason only: to find a wealthy wife. A country-bred heiress in Surrey seems the perfect target. But somewhere between the village railway station and the manor house his mercenary plan begins to unravel. And it’s all the fault of Laura Hayes–a lady as unsuitable as she is enchanting.

From the beaches of Margate to the lavender fields of Provence, a grudging friendship slowly blossoms into something more. But when scandal threatens, can a man who has spent his entire life playing the villain, finally become a hero? Or will the lure of easy riches once again outweigh the demands of his heart?

**

This is a terrific book. The characters are so well written I started to believe they were real people. Alex is not a “bad” man, just a man trying to make his way in a world that doesn’t always seem to want him to make good. Laura is desperate to save the family from financial ruin by guardians of her father’s estate. These two have a slow build romance that has the reader hang on every word and turn every page quickly. Mimi Matthews is a terrific author and I can’t wait for her next romantic offering.

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Review- Stealing Roses by Heather Cooper

Stealing Roses

Title: Stealing Roses

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Heather Cooper

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Allison & Busby, May 2019

Pages: 320

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

1862. Growing up in the small seaside town of Cowes on the Isle of Wight, free-spirited Eveline Stanhope feels trapped by the weight of expectation from her well-to-do family. Her mother and two elder sisters would rather she focus her attention on marrying well, preferably to the wealthy Charles Sandham, but Eveline wants more for herself, and the arrival of the railway provides just the cause she’s been searching for.
Driven by the cherished memories of her late father, Eveline is keen to preserve the landscape he loved so much and becomes closely involved with the project. She forms a growing attachment to engineer Thomas Armitage. But when the railway is complete and Thomas moves on, will Eveline wish to return to the way things were?

**
I was totally pulled into this book; loving every minute of reading about Eveline’s life in Victorian England. Heather Cooper’s debut is beautifully written with characters who are so well developed that we know their thoughts and even sometimes anticipate their next move (I’m thinking of the gentleman, Charles, here). Tom is a bit of a reluctant suitor but then he does have several misconceptions about Eveline. Victorian England is another character in the book for that is what sets the tone, successes and historical triumphs. I strongly recommend this book to Historical Romance fans and Historical Fiction fans. This is a winner!

I received this book free for review from the publisher.

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Release Day Review- Scandalous by Minerva Spencer

Scandalous

Title: Scandalous ( Outcasts, book #3)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Minerva Spencer

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Zebra, Sept. 24, 2019

Pages: 384

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

Have you no decency?”

Straight-laced missionary Sarah Fisher has never met a man like Captain Martin Bouchard. He is the most beautiful person—male or female—she’s ever seen. Overwhelmingly masculine, elegantly attired despite months at sea, he is in complete command of everyone and everything around him: everyone, that is, except Sarah. But that’s about to change because Sarah has bought Bouchard’s mercy with the only thing she has to sell: her body.

“None at all . . .”

In spite of her outrageous offer, Martin has no doubt Sarah is a virgin, and a most delectable one at that. But instead of bedding her, he finds himself staring down the muzzle of his own pistol. Clearly, the longer she stays on his ship, the greater the chances that she’ll end up its damned captain! Most infuriating of all, she looks past his perfect exterior to the wounded man inside. Can Martin outrun his scandalous past in time to have a future with the first woman to find and capture his heart?

**
This is the third book in Minerva Spencer’s OUTCASTS series but it is a standalone novel if you haven’t read the first two books. But, go ahead, read the first two wonderful books in this series also. This book, and the series, is full of action, adventure, romance on the high seas and the London ballrooms.

Martin Bouchard is a privateer whose mission is to stop any ship that is transporting slaves from Africa. Martin was once a slave until he was rescued by another privateer and set to work on a ship. Now Martin has amassed a fortune working for the British. He is captain of his own ship. He is fastidious in his dress which is amusing to his crew but he is not to be trifled with for he is a dangerous man. A man with a secret.
Sarah Fisher, the orphaned daughter of missionaries in Africa, has been captured along with members of her village and thrown into the hold of a slave traders ship. She is summoned to help the ship’s ailing Captain Graff with her healing abilities when the ship is captured by Martin’s ship. Graff takes her to the meeting with Martin and they both become prisoners until Martin can turn Graff over to the authorities.

As much as I’ve enjoyed this entire series, this book was not my favorite. Perhaps because of the slave trading angle, Martin’s horror filled past and his constant bullying of Sarah. I could not find what the attraction was for Sarah. It was hardly romantic but then Martin spent a great deal of his time denying his attraction. It was also hard to believe that Sarah, after being raised in an African village, could so easily fit into the London Season with only a few dance lessons.

The writing is top notch and characterization spot on. Having been introduced to Martin in an earlier book, it was good to read his story. Yes, I can recommend this book, only not as highly as the others in the series.

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Recent Release review- The Spitfire by Christi Caldwell

Spitfire

Title: The Spitfire (Wicked Wallflowers, book #5)

Genre: Historical Romance/ Regency

Author: Christi Caldwell

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Montlake , Sept. 17, 2019

Pages: 327

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

Her dream is to open a music hall. Only one thing stands in her way—the man she loves. The final Wicked Wallflowers novel from USA Today bestselling author Christi Caldwell.
Leaving behind her life as a courtesan and madam, Clara Winters is moving far from the sinful life to which she was accustomed in the gaming hell the Devil’s Den. Her more reputable and fulfilling endeavor is a music hall for the masses. One night, when she sees a man injured on the streets of East London, she rushes to his aid and brings him home. It’s then that she discovers he’s Henry March, Earl of Waterson, and a member of Parliament. No good can come from playing nursemaid to a nobleman.
When Henry rouses to meet his savior in blonde curls, he is dazzled. This smart and loving spitfire challenges his every notion of the lower classes—and every moment together is a thrill. But after Henry returns to his well-ordered existence, he strikes a political compromise that has unintended consequences. Will his vision for London mean dashing the dreams of his lovely guardian angel?

**
Another winner from Christi Caldwell, a standalone but it is enhanced by the beginning novels in the series.
I love how Ms. Caldwell brings secondary characters to life in their own novel. Clara is an obscure character who gradually makes her presence known in succeeding novels. And now we get her own HEA.

Clara and her dear friend, Regina Killoran, have joined together to open a music hall in a very dicey neighborhood. Henry’s life is saved by Clara in the streets of London and they are thrown together again when Henry’s parliamentary work threatens Clara’s music hall. There is plenty of action and suspense as well as a slow burn romance.

I love to read these books as well as listen to Tim Campbell narrate them on audio. I highly recommend this novel as well as the entire Wicked Wallflowers Series.

 

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Advance Holiday Review- Seduction On A Snowy Night by Hunter, Jeffries and Putney

Seduction on a snowy night

Title: Seduction On A Snowy Night

Genre: Historical Romance Holiday Anthology

Authors: Madeline Hunter, Sabrina Jeffries and Mary Jo Putney

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Kensington Books Sept. 24, 2019

Pages: 320

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Christmasy Feeling: 5

Violence Rating:4

Descriptions from Amazon:
A CHRISTMAS ABDUCTION by Madeline Hunter
Caroline Dunham has a bone to pick with notorious rake Baron Thornhill—and a creative plan to insure his undivided attention. Yet once in close quarters, she finds herself beholden to their smoldering connection . .

Deet’s review: He was on his way to his brother’s estate for Christmas and to secure a wealthy wife . Caroline kidnapped him and took him to her crumbling estate because …well, let’s just say she had a reason. But that reason did not include her falling for the handsome baron.

This novella is Madeline Hunter at her best; terrific development of characters and a unique plot. I loved this story. My Rating:5 Christmasy feeling: 4.5
A PERFECT MATCH by Sabrina Jeffries
Whisked away from a wintry ball by the officer she knew only through letters, Cassandra Isles struggles with her feelings for the commanding Colonel Lord Heywood. For he, secretly a fortune-hunter, must marry for money to save his estate—and Cass, secretly an heiress, will accept nothing less than
love . . .

Deet’s review: Melodramatic, but delightfully so. Deliciously sexy. Splendidly entertaining. Everything I expect from Sabrina Jeffries. My Rating:5 Christmasy Feeling: 5

ONE WICKED WINTER NIGHT by Mary Jo Putney
Dressed as a veiled princess, Lady Diana Lawrence is shocked to discover that the mysterious corsair who tempts her away from the costume ball is the duke she once loved and lost. Now snowed in with Castleton at a remote lodge, will she surrender to the passion still burning hotly between them?

Deet’s Review: Mary Jo Putney’s story is an offering of a second chance love story. The hero and heroine were torn apart by his wicked father. She left for the continent and India and has returned seven years later. They accidentally meet again at a ball, Diana, and her cousin Rory, are a bit scandalous in their dancing but it does attract Anthony’s attention. They are at a masquerade, he a pirate and she an Indian dancer. They find their attraction to each other to be still strong. But can the Duke convince Diana that they have a future?

Here is one of those book boyfriends to swoon over; tortured past, heartbroken over Diana’s refusal to marry him seven years ago, determined to sway her to love him again. Sigh…..
So romantic!!
Deet’s Rating: 5 Christmasy Feeling: 5
I’m so used to having at least one “bad” novella in an anthology that it blew me away with this anthology having three five star stories! There are three abductions in this book; two are human and one is feline. You really can’t go wrong with this anthology.

santa-quiet

Here is that elf again! The minute I type Christmas or Holiday they pop into the blog post.

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Release Day Review- the Landowner’s Secret by Sonya Heaney

The Landowner's Secret

Title: The Landowner’s Secret

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Sonya Heaney

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Escape Publishing, Sept. 12, 2019

Pages: N/A, Kindle 589 KB

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

New South Wales, 1885
When Alice Ryan wakes to find thugs surrounding her cottage, on the hunt for her no-good brother, she escapes into the surrounding bush.
It is wealthy landowner Robert Farrer who finds her the next morning, dishevelled, injured, and utterly unwilling to share what she knows. With criminals on the loose and rumours that reckless bushrangers have returned to the area, Robert is determined to keep Alice out of danger, and insists on taking her into his home-despite the scandal it may cause. Convincing her to stay on with him for her own safety, however, is going to take some work.
What Robert doesn’t expect is his growing attraction to the forthright, unruly woman staying in his home. Before either of them can settle into their odd new situation, their home and wellbeing come under threat and they will need to trust each other to survive. But they are both keeping secrets, secrets that have the potential to ruin their burgeoning love, their livelihood … and their lives.

**
I’ve been following Sonya Heaney’s blog for a couple of years and when she said her first book was going to be published I was looking forward to reading it. But Wow! I did not expect a first book to be this good!

The story is kicked off with a life and death run through the Australian Bush and then it is a stubborn Alice vs a rather level headed Robert. Back in 1885 Australia there were the usual Victorian ideas of propriety and Alice under the roof of a bachelor was a big no-no. Robert’s business partner decided to bring pressure to Robert to marry Alice or send her home. Sending her home is not an option. This is a marriage of convenience story with a slow building romance. There is enough action that I stayed up to the wee hours to finish and then didn’t want the book to end. The characters are so well drawn and personalities are so well written that they come to life on the page.

I highly recommend this book!

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Release Day Review- How To Love A Duke In Ten Days by Kerrigan Byrne

How to love a duke in ten days

Title: How to Love A Duke In Ten Days

Genre: Historical romance/Victorian

Author: Kerrigan Byrne

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, August 27, 2019

Pages: 448

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:
These men are dark, bold, and brave. And there is only one woman who can bring them to their knees…
Famed and brilliant, Lady Alexandra Lane has always known how to look out for to herself. But nobody would ever expect that she has darkness in her past—one that she pays a blackmailer to keep buried. Now, with her family nearing bankruptcy, Alexandra strikes upon a solution: Get married to one of the empire’s most wealthy eligible bachelors. Even if he does have the reputation of a devil.
LOVE TAKES NO PRISONERS
Piers Gedrick Atherton, the Duke of Redmayne, is seeking revenge and the first step is securing a bride. Winning a lady’s hand is not so easy, however, for a man known as the Terror of Torcliff. Then, Alexandra enters his life like a bolt of lightning. When she proposes marriage, Piers knows that, like him, trouble haunts her footsteps. But her gentleness, sharp wit, independent nature, and incredible beauty awakens every fierce desire within him. He will do whatever it takes to keep her safe in his arms.
**
Yay, a new Kerrigan Byrne series! We have a feisty archeologist, Lady Alexandra who along with her two best friends is hiding a secret from their school days. But someone has discovered the secret and is blackmailing her. Her family is destitute and she can no longer pay the blackmailer. That is when the idea of marrying the Terror of Torcliff becomes a good one. Evil follows Alex and Piers.
This is a great start to a new series. The meeting of Alex and Piers is a perfect start to this original plot. Ms Byrne once again kept me glued to the book, only getting up to refresh my coffee. I wanted Piers to be a bit more terrifying. He was just too easy to love. I loved the independent, accomplished Alexandra. The action and adventure was pitch perfect. Highly recommended.

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Kindle & Audible Review- Seeing Miss Heartstone by Nichole Van

Seeing Miss Heartstone

Title: Seeing Miss Heartstone

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Nichole Van

Source: Purchase on Kindle & Audible

Publisher: Fiorenza, Nov. 2018

Pages: 315

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 3

Violence Rating: 0
Narration: by Cat Gould, Rating: 4

Description from Amazon:

Miss Belle Heartstone—heiress and savvy businesswoman—needs a husband. Immediately. As in, yesterday would not have been soon enough. Her mother’s attempts at matchmaking have been disastrous. So Belle decides to solve the problem her way—survey the market and purchase the best groom available.

Colin Radcliffe, Marquess of Blake—debt-ridden and penniless—needs a large infusion of cash. Desperately. Preferably cash that does not come with a wife attached. It is no surprise, then, when he receives Miss Heartstone’s brazen proposal—her cash, his title, their marriage—that he politely declines.

But before he leaves her, Blake suggests something truly radical: Maybe before finding a husband, Belle should find herself.
His simple words send them both on an unexpected journey, spanning continents and years, entwining their lives in ways neither could have foreseen. Can two lonely souls move past societal expectations and forge a unique life together?

Please note: The basic storyline of Seeing Miss Heartstone was originally published as a novella titled, An Invisible Heiress, in the Spring in Hyde Park anthology. This current novel is a greatly expanded version of that plot, adding over 200 pages of text and creating a more robust, well-developed story.

**
If you have not read a Nichole Van novel then this is the place to start and then you can delve into her previous published, wonderful novels. This novel has such a unique premise of a Regency Era miss who is very business savvy making her way in a male dominated world. Not letting her heart rule but listening to it, she waits for her turn at love. Colin needs to make his fortune so that he can support his Marquisette before he can even think of marriage.

Truly a delightful read. Highly recommended!!!!

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Recent Release Review- Marry In Secret by Anne Gracie

Marry In Secret

Title: Marry In Secret (Marriage of Convenience,book #3)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Anne Gracie

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Berkley, July 2019

Pages: 336

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from Amazon:

Lady Rose Rutherford—rebel, heiress, and exasperated target of the town’s hungry bachelors—has a plan to gain the freedom she so desperately desires: she will enter into a marriage of convenience with the biggest prize on the London marriage mart.

There’s just one problem: the fierce-looking man who crashes her wedding to the Duke of Everingham — Thomas Beresford, the young naval officer she fell in love with and secretly married when she was still a schoolgirl. Thought to have died four years ago he’s returned, a cold, hard stranger with one driving purpose—revenge.

Embittered by betrayal and hungry for vengeance, Thomas will stop at nothing to reclaim his rightful place, even if that means using Rose—and her fortune—to do it. But Rose never did follow the rules, and as she takes matters into her own unpredictable hands, Thomas finds himself in an unexpected and infuriating predicament: he’s falling in love with his wife….

**
This is a very good read. It starts off with a real shocker and then takes us on a steady ride to an HEA. Rose has never forgotten Thomas and how she loved him. Thomas is a broken man trying to find his footing in a world he left behind. We truly hope for their reunion. There are twists and surprises. I can highly recommend this well written Historical Romance.

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Release Day Review- Mrs. Sommersby’s Second Chance by Laurie Benson

Mrs. Sommersby's Second Chance

Title: Mrs. Sommersby’s Second Chance (The Sommersby Brides Miniseries)

Genre: Historical Romance/Regency

Author: Laurie Benson

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Publisher: Harlequin Historical, Aug. 1, 2019

Pages: 288

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 4

Violence Rating: 0

Description from Amazon:

She’s played Cupid for others

Now she’s met her own unlikely match!

Part of The Sommersby Brides. Widowed society matchmaker Mrs. Clara Sommersby thinks self-made businessman William Lane is just the man for her neighbor’s overlooked daughter. He’s successful and confident, if emotionally distant, until suddenly—shockingly—his attention turns to Clara herself! She thought her days of romance were over, but is this younger man intent on giving her a second chance?

The Sommersby Brides miniseries

Book 1 — One Week to Wed

Book 2 — “One Night Under the Mistletoe” in Convenient Christmas Brides

Book 3 — His Three-Day Duchess

Book 4 — Mrs. Sommersby’s Second Chance

**
Although this is book #4 in the series, it is definitely a standalone read. That said, I think I might have liked it even more if I had read the first three books. Clara is a very likable character and although she is eight years older than William Lane they are an ideal match. How refreshing to see an older heroine get her romance on with a younger man. Romance blossoms in this book and the reader wears a smile through the entire 288 pages. I kept rooting for William and Clara. Side characters add just the right secondary plot.
You can’t go wrong with this delightful romance.

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