Category Archives: Books Historical Romance

Recent Release- The Earl’s Countess of Convenience by Marguerite Kaye

The Earl's Countess of Convienience

Title: The Earl’s Countess of Convenience (Penniless Brides of Convenience, book #1)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Marguerite Kaye

Publisher: Harlequin Historical, May 1, 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 288

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 0

Description from Amazon.com:

A countess in name only…

…tempted by a night with her husband!

Part of Penniless Brides of Convenience: Eloise Brannagh has witnessed firsthand the damage unruly passion can cause. Yet she craves freedom, so a convenient marriage to the Earl of Fearnoch seems the perfect solution! Except Alexander Sinclair is more handsome, more intriguing, more everything than Eloise anticipated. She’s set her own rules for their marriage, but her irresistible husband might just tempt her to break them!

Penniless Brides of Convenience miniseries

Book 1 — The Earl’s Countess of Convenience

Book 2 — A Wife Worth Investing In

Book 3 and 4 — coming soon!
**

This is the first book in a new series for Marguerite Kaye. It starts off, necessarily, with a lot of “telling” by Eloise and Alexander. They are trying to get to know each other to see if they would suit for marriage. They assure each other that this is to be a platonic arrangement. Both have their reasons to avoid an emotional entanglement. There are few obstacles until they both start having feelings for the other.

The characters are well developed with introductions to Eloise’s sisters and aunt who will probably figure prominently in future books in the series. I enjoyed the obvious naivety of Eloise and even Alexander. I thought the beginning a bit of a slow start but once the marriage took place it became a page turner.

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Recent Release Review- Lord Bredon and the Bachelor’s Bible by Mia Marlowe

Lord Bredon and the Bachelors Bible

Title: Lord Bredon and the Bachelor’s Bible (The House of Lovell book#2)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Mia Marlowe

Publisher: Lyrical Press, April 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 214

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 4

Description from Amazon.com:

With the dowries of all the season’s debutantes exposed in its scandalous pages, The Bachelor’s Bible is a handy tool for an earl in need of an heiress . . .
Edward Lovell, newly minted earl, bears a weighty responsibility: to restore his family’s estate to its former grandeur. The task requires not simply a wife, but a wealthy one. Thanks to The Bachelor’s Bible, he already has a particular lady in mind. He has only to convince her sponsor that he will make a suitable husband. There’s just one complication: the sponsor is none other than the only woman he’s ever loved—and inexplicably lost. Now a young widow, Lady Anne Howard is more beautiful than ever . . .
Anne is not about to be taken for a fool a second time. When they last met, Edward was Lord Bredon, the man she adored—the man who destroyed her dreams of a happy future. Now he is pursuing the hand of the young lady Anne must keep safe from unscrupulous suitors. But who will protect Anne from the earl who still possesses her heart?. . .

**
There seems to be no way these former lovers, Anne and Edward, can be reunited. He has an estate that is going bankrupt and his only hope of saving it is to marry for money. The hitch is that he loves widowed, penniless, Anne Howard who returns his love but also refuses to marry him and cause his estate to fall to ruin. How can this lead to a Happily-Ever-After? It takes a clever, intelligent author to bring about this HEA and this we have in Mia Marlowe. There are some twists and total surprises which are always my favorites. If this book seemed a bit slow to start it certainly picked up the pace later on. I look forward to the next book.

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Recent Release Review- No Other Duke But You by Valerie Bowman

No Other Duke But You

Title: No Other Duke But You(Playful Brides Series #11)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Valerie Bowman

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, April 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 312

Rating: 5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating:

Description from Amazon.com:

SINGLE LADY SEEKS DUKE
Lady Delilah Montebank has her marital sights set on the Duke of Branville. There’s just one problem: he barely knows she exists. But no matter, she’s got a plan to win him over with her charm, her wit—and perhaps the love potion she has in her possession wouldn’t hurt her cause…
Lord Thomas Hobbs, Duke of Huntley, thinks his best friend Delilah’s quest to become a duchess is ridiculous. He’s always said he’d rather give up all the brandy in London than commit to one person for life. Besides, he knows that Delilah’s love potion can’t possibly win over Branville…since she accidentally gave it to him instead. But perhaps this is the excuse he needs to show her he’s always loved her…
Delilah can’t believe she gave the potion to the wrong duke. Then again, Delilah could do a lot worse than win the hand of her handsome best friend. Could it be that the right duke has been before her eyes all along?

**
This is number eleven in the Playful Brides Series and this is the end of the series. To wind things up for this grand finale Ms. Bowman has given us a book that has many characters participating from earlier books in the series. But being the accomplished author that she is this is still a delightful standalone book.

I can count on this author for laugh out loud moments that populate the pages. While the characters are readying themselves for a charity production of A MIDSUMMERS NIGHT DREAM their lives are remarkably resembling that Shakespearean play. There is mistaken identity and various delightful couple switches. The friends to lovers trope is well done.

I highly recommend this book and this author to all Historical Romance fans.

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Release Day Review- A Modest Independence by Mimi Matthews

A Modist Independence

Title: A Modest Independence (Parish Orphans of Devon book #2)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Mimi Matthews

Publisher: Perfectly Proper Press, Apr. 23, 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 399

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 4

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:
He Needed Peace…

Solicitor Tom Finchley has spent his life using his devious intellect to solve the problems of others. As for his own problems, they’re nothing that a bit of calculated vengeance can’t remedy. But that’s all over now. He’s finally ready to put the past behind him and settle down to a quiet, uncomplicated life. If only he could find an equally uncomplicated woman.

She Wanted Adventure…

Former lady’s companion Jenny Holloway has just been given a modest independence. Now, all she wants is a bit of adventure. A chance to see the world and experience life far outside the restrictive limits of Victorian England. If she can discover the fate of the missing Earl of Castleton while she’s at it, so much the better.

From the gaslit streets of London to the lush tea gardens of colonial India, Jenny and Tom embark on an epic quest–and an equally epic romance. But even at the farthest edges of the British Empire, the past has a way of catching up with you…

**
Ms. Matthews has done extensive research on Victorian times and British Colonial India. That research is apparent throughout the book and brings to life the era for the reader. Jenny’s trek from England to France to Egypt to finally India is told with vivid atmosphere and interesting side characters. Tom spends most of his journey trying to keep Jenny safe and tamping down his ever growing desire for her. Tom’s back story as one of the “orphans” was actually more interesting than Jenny’s quest for the Earl, I would have liked more of his story and less of the Jenny/Tom back and forth romantic times that slowed the book to a near crawl in the middle. I liked the first book in this series, THE MATRIMONIAL ADVERTISEMENT, and I can recommend this book also. I look forward to the next book about Orphan, Alex.

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Recent Release Review- When A Duchess Says I Do by Grace Burrowes

When A Duchess Says I Do

Title: When A Duchess Says I Do (Rogues to Riches book #2)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Grace Burrowes

Publisher: Forever, April 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 385

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:
Duncan Wentworth once tried his hand at rescuing a damsel in distress long ago, and he’s vowed he’ll never make that mistake again. Yet when he comes across a stranger in the poacher-infested woods of his estate, decency compels him to offer the lady aid. Matilda is whip-smart, she can read Duncan’s horrible penmanship, and when she wears his reading glasses all Duncan can think about is naughty Latin poetry.

Widowed duchess Matilda Wakefield can’t entrust her secrets to Duncan without embroiling him in the problems that sent her fleeing from London, but neither can she ignore a man who’s honorable, a brilliant chess player, and maddeningly kissable. She needs to stay one step ahead of the enemies pursuing her, and falling into Duncan’s arms is a distraction she can’t afford-or they’ll both pay the price.

**
I do love the way Grace Burrowes brings characters to life with individual personalities, foibles and interesting pasts. There is mystery and suspense in this romance. We keep turning pages to find out what is keeping Matilda from following her heart and why is she being searched for. Duncan is a really kind man, not the usual Alpha hero. He is thoughtful, handsome and smitten for the first time since he lost his wife.

I am a true fan of this author and highly recommend this and all her Historical Romances to fans of the genre.

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Advance Review- Never Deny A Duke by Madeline Hunter

Never Deny A Duke

Title: Never Deny A Duke (Decadent Dukes Society, book #3)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Madeline Hunter

Publisher: Kensington, April 30, 2019 (pre-order available)

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 304

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating:

Description from Amazon.com:

He is the last duke standing

. . . the sole remaining bachelor of the three self-proclaimed Decadent Dukes. Yet Davina MacCallum’s reasons for searching out the handsome Duke of Brentworth have nothing to do with marriage. Scottish lands were unfairly confiscated from her family by the Crown and given to his. A reasonable man with vast holdings can surely part with one trivial estate, especially when Davina intends to put it to good use. Brentworth, however, is as difficult to persuade as he is to resist.

The Duke of Brentworth’s discretion and steely control make him an enigma even to his best friends. Women especially find him inscrutable and unapproachable—but also compellingly magnetic. So when Davina MacCallum shows no signs of being even mildly impressed by him, he is intrigued. Until he learns that her mission in London involves claims against his estate. Soon the two of them are engaged in a contest that allows no compromise. When duty and desire collide, the best laid plans are about to take a scandalous turn—into the very heart of passion . .

**
A terrific enemies to lovers story. This trope works so well in the hands of an accomplished author and Madeline Hunter is one of the best. I loved the character development.

Davina is on a mission to find the necessary proof to reclaim her ancestral land. She is not letting anyone stand in her way of discovering the truth, not even the King. Brentworth, the Duke, is not about to give up his claim to those lands that Davina insists are hers. But when the two decide to work together to discover the truth they fall passionately in love.

I highly recommend this book to all Historical Romance readers.
I read book #2, A DEVIL OF A DUKE, in this series and loved that one also. Each is a standalone so I will definitely seek out Book #1, THE MOST DANGEROUS DUKE IN LONDON.

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Recent Release Review- Wicked With The Scoundrel by Elizabeth Bright

Wicked With The Scoundrel

Title: Wicked With The Scoundrel (Wicked Secrets #3)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Elizabeth Bright

Publisher: Entangled, Feb. 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 217

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating:

Description from Amazon.com:

After ten years of adventure, Colin Smith, the bastard son of a viscount, returns to the place he most despises ––London. But only until he can sell off some of his treasures. He has no use for the stifling rules of the ton, but he’s more than happy to play the game if it gets him what he wants.
Lady Claire, daughter of a marquess, is everything Colin loathes about the ton, but she is determined to win him over. Her life is a catalogue of dances and evening gowns, and thanks to an eidetic memory, she can remember every blasted, boring second of it. A treasure hunt for the Cleopatra Emerald promises adventure, but Claire wants more. If she can convince Colin Smith to take her with him as he travels the world, then she’ll have the life she’s always dreamed of. There’s just one problem, he doesn’t seem to like her much.
But Lady Claire loves a good challenge and the intellectual beauty may be on her way to the grandest adventure of all.
Each book in the Wicked Secrets series is STANDALONE:
* Twice As Wicked
* Lady Gone Wicked
* Wicked With the Scoundrel

***

Here we have a quirky heroine who remembers everything and feels free to recite all details whenever someone inquires. Our hero is an adventurer who is only moderately interesting. They go on a quest; she for adventure and he for a treasure. Actually they both would like the treasure but only Claire is determined that it is to be found. Colin believes it to be a wild goose chase. He goes along with the adventure at the bidding of Claire’s father who has promised funding for Colin’s next Egyptian quest.

I enjoyed this book for the unique characters. It was well written with interesting side characters.

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Recent Release Review- Lady Notorious by Theresa Romain

Lady Notorious

Title: Lady Notorious (Royal Rewards book #4)

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Theresa Romain

Publisher: Zebra, Feb. 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 368

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 5

Description from Amazon.com:

Cassandra Benton has always survived by her wits and wiles, even working for Bow Street alongside her twin brother. When injury takes him out of commission, Cass must support the family by taking on an intriguing new case: George, Lord Northbrook, believes someone is plotting to kill his father, the Duke of Ardmore. Decades before, the duke was one of ten who formed a wager that would grant a fortune to the last survivor. But someone can’t wait for nature to take its course—and George hopes a seasoned investigator like Cass can find out who.

Cass relishes the chance to spy on the ton, shrewdly disguised as handsome Lord Northbrook’s notorious “cousin.” What she doesn’t expect is her irresistible attraction to her dashing employer, and days of investigation soon turn to passionate nights. But with a killer closing in and her charade as a lady of the ton in danger of collapsing at any moment, Cass has no choice but to put her life—and her heart—in the hands of the last man she ought to trust . . .

***

This book was unique in that we have an Alpha heroine and a Beta Hero. I did enjoy the fact that Cass was so intelligent and capable as a detective but George, Lord Northbrook was just a bit too Beta for my taste. He seemed to be so set on his camera obscura experiments to the ignoring of the task he hired Cass to do. He even took his experiments along on their trip to the seaside. Still the romance was fun with Cass playing the seductress. The mystery was solved (although it was a bit obvious). I do recommend this book for that twist of Alpha and Beta, it is well done.

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Advance Review- A Wicked Reputation by Liana Lefey

A Wicked Reputation

Title: A Wicked Reputation (Once Wicked book #3)

Genre: Historical Romance/Regency

Author: Liana LeFey

Publisher: Entangled: Amara, Feb. 25, 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 243

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5

Violence Rating: 4

Description from Amazon.com:

Betrayed by her fiancé and her best friend, Lady Diana Haversham’s reputation is left in ruins, and she is unjustly cast out by her family. Left with little choice, she agrees to pretend to be a courtesan to protect her benefactor’s secret. What she didn’t count on was meeting temptation in the form of one Lord Lucas Blackthorn.
Lucas is fascinated by the shameless Diana, whom his friends claim is his perfect counterpart. He can’t stop thinking about her sultry smile and captivating eyes, but what draws him most is the sharp mind she reveals—and the certainty she’s hiding something.
When Lucas learns the scandalous truth, Diana will have to make a life-and-death choice.
Each book in the Once Wicked series is STANDALONE:
* To Love a Libertine
* Once a Courtesan
* A Wicked Reputation

***

This was a good read. The premise of a scandalous lady being wooed by an aristocrat is perhaps not new but this match up has many layers of subterfuge. It has heart pounding moments Where we think everything is lost. The side characters are well developed and add to the plot. Lucas is a swoon worthy hero but so is the Marquess Harrow who is Diana’s protector. Diana is the daughter of a Duke but because of lies her reputation was ruined.

I liked the unique plot and the way the characters were developed with sympathy. At times I thought that Lucas made some rather ill thought out mistakes which almost made me give up on him. But then he would turn around and redeem himself.

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Release Day Review- A Duke In Need Of A Wife by Annie Burrows

a duke in need of a wife

Title: A Duke In Need Of A Wife

Genre: Historical Romance

Author: Annie Burrows

Publisher: Harlequin Historical, Feb. 1, 2019

Source: Free for review from the publisher

Pages: 288

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 3

Violence Rating: 0

Description from Amazon.com:

A search for a duchess…despite his scandalous secret!

Oliver, Duke of Theakstone, needs a duchess, but who will accept his secret illegitimate child? He invites several eligible ladies to his estate to assess their suitability, including infuriating beauty Miss Sofia Underwood. Oliver is a master of cool practicality, so he’s hopeful when he sees the connection between Sofia and his daughter. What scares him is there’s nothing cool or practical about his attraction to Sofia!

**
Some historical Dukes can be so clueless. Oliver is fighting his attraction to clumsy, wild child Sofia and Sofia does not see herself as Duchess material. She is only at this house party because her Aunt Agnes wanted to hob-nob with the hoy-paloy. But Oliver has a secret child that Sofia accidentally meets.

There is nothing unique in this book, we have read it all before but somehow the magic happens with this author. What was ordinary becomes a fun, engrossing read. I can recommend this book to historical romance fans who like a good story with only kisses, no sex.

( Although this cover references the book content, I really don’t like it at all.)

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