Friday, March 29, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of A LORD APART, a The Way to a Lord's Heart novel by Jane Ashford

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of A LORD APART, a The Way to a Lord’s Heart novel by Jane Ashford, published March 26, 2019.



Blurb for A LORD APART:

Family secrets, an unlikely alliance―and a love neither expected...

After his parents' sudden death, Daniel Frith, Viscount Whitfield, is struggling to unravel a web of chaotic family records. He is astonished to learn his father's will contains a mysterious legacy: a house left to a complete stranger. He knows nothing about the beautiful Penelope Pendleton and he's not sure he wants to...until she turns out to be a whiz at all those nasty tasks involved in estate administration...

Penelope has no idea why Rose Cottage was left to her. But it's a godsend after her brother's reckless actions disgraced her family. She had planned to stay out of Viscount Whitfield's way, not grow ever closer to him. But when they discover how entwined their families really are, Daniel and Penelope must collaborate to avoid a scandal that reaches much higher than they could have guessed...

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Connie’s Review:

Daniel Frith, Viscount Whitfield, age 27, recently lost his parents when their ship went down in a storm. The couple had loved to travel, exploring new places, and that’s how they spent most of their lives.

Since becoming the Viscount and owner of the family estate, Frithgerd, Daniel has been overwhelmed with the mess of papers piled up in no sort of order. It appears that the estate manager also left some time ago. After spending days trying to sort through the papers, Daniel becomes more and more frustrated.

Penelope Pendleton, age 23, is riding in a coach with her maid, Kitty, when she is overtaken by a coughing fit. The smoky factory air of Manchester has irritated her lungs for a long time now, and she hopes the clean air of Yorkshire will help her. Her destination is Rose Cottage, a small cottage on Daniel’s estate. When he meets her, they both realize they don’t know why his father left her the cottage. It has been uninhabited for some time so Daniel insists on sending people to clean it for her.

As Daniel and Penelope get to know one another, he confides that he has a mess of papers to sort and she volunteers to help him as this is something she has done before and she is quite good at it. They are hoping that they also find out why his father left Rose Cottage to her. She confides that after her parents died, her brother was suspected of being a Luddite before his death which resulted in her losing her home. Now, she is very grateful to have received the gift of Rose Cottage.

In sorting the papers, they find some journals that could have some devastating repercussions if they got in the wrong hands. Will they be able to find out the meaning of these journals? Will their togetherness lead to something more?

I have read many books by Jane Ashford. Some of them have been confusing so readers must pay very close attention to what they are reading. The author adds quite a few subplots which all come together in the end to make for a great read. Enjoy!

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

A LORD APART, a The Way to a Lord’s Heart novel by Jane Ashford, Sourcebook Casablanca,  available now in ebook and print at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of AN UNWILLING EARL by Sharon Cullen

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of AN UNWILLING EARL by Sharon Cullen, published March 25, 2019.


Blurb for AN UNWILLING EARL:

Jacob Ashland’s life has taken an unexpected turn. He’s now the Earl of Ashland and expected to marry. But he’s done that before and had his heart ripped from his chest. When Charlotte shows up at his door needing protection, he offers to marry her—in name only.

Charlotte, an orphan, suspects her sinister cousin of terrorizing London. When her maid disappears, she fears for her own life and runs away. Lord Ashland offers marriage, and it’s the perfect solution. But it isn’t long before she finds herself falling for her new husband.

Unfortunately, he won’t allow himself to love anyone ever again. And she knows her dark secret could destroy everything.

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Connie’s Review:

London - 1850

Jacob Baker is hurrying to meet with Oliver McCaron, the Earl of Armbruster, for their weekly mayhem meeting. On his way, he rescues a lad from being trampled by horses. A frail person, he gives the lad some money and sends him on his way. Jacob is a caring man and always willing to help someone in need. During their meetings, Jacob and Oliver look through newspapers for articles about local crimes and try to solve them. One headline they have been following is the murder of several women found with no head or hands. Many of them appear to be servants.

Jacob works as a solicitor and likes his work. But now, after the death of his cousin, he finds he is the Earl of Ashland. Jacob knows that he will soon have to accept his new title and responsibilities.

An old woman comes to him and asks him to find her niece, Miss Charlotte Morris. The woman is Lady Martha Morris, the Dowager Baroness Morris. While finding people is not what he usually does, the woman is very insistent saying he comes highly recommended by a well-respected barrister. Jacob hopes the young woman is not a victim of the murderer on the loose.

It turns out that Charlotte fled her evil aunt, Lady Morris, and cousin, Baron Morris, after having spent years with them. Her mother passed away birthing Charlotte and her father died several years ago, so she has fled from the Morris home and is now living in the rookery. Her aunt treated her badly saying everything is a sin. Turns out, Charlotte is the “lad" that Jacob had rescued. When he discovers this, he insists that she stay at his home and under his care. He promises that he is simply helping. His own wife and child died in childbirth some years ago. Charlotte agrees and hopes to be able to journey to America where she can teach young American ladies how to win and marry titled English men.

As they spend time together, they find they are attracted to one another. However, Jacob still grieves the loss of his wife and son in childbirth. Charlotte is also determined to go to America. But Charlotte feels she knows who the murderer is who is on the loose and they team up to help solve the case.

This is an interesting story. The first part of it dragged a bit for me, but finally picked up the pace. I think a lot of the “rookery” part could have been whittled down. However, the characters are strong and I know readers will like and connect with them and the book.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.


AN UNWILLING EARL by Sharon Cullen, Entangled Publishing, available now in ebook and print at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Unwrapping A Cover Reveal for RIBBONS OF SCARLET by Kate Quinn, Stephanie Dray, Laura Kamoie, Sophie Perinot, Heather Webb, and E. Knight

RIBBONS OF SCARLET

by
Kate Quinn, Stephanie Dray,
Laura Kamoie, Sophie Perinot,
Heather Webb, and E. Knight

Six bestselling and award-winning authors bring to life a breathtaking epic novel illuminating the hopes, desires, and destinies of princesses and peasants, harlots and wives, fanatics and philosophers—six unforgettable women whose paths cross during one of the most tumultuous and transformative events in history: the French Revolution.

Pre-Order Now –
Releasing October 1, 2019 from William Morrow Books


Ribbons of Scarlet is a timely story of the power of women to start a revolution—and change the world.

In late eighteenth-century France, women do not have a place in politics. But as the tide of revolution rises, women from gilded salons to the streets of Paris decide otherwise—upending a world order that has long oppressed them.

Blue-blooded Sophie de Grouchy believes in democracy, education, and equal rights for women, and marries the only man in Paris who agrees. Emboldened to fight the injustices of King Louis XVI, Sophie aims to prove that an educated populace can govern itself--but one of her students, fruit-seller Louise Audu, is hungrier for bread and vengeance than learning. When the Bastille falls and Louise leads a women’s march to Versailles, the monarchy is forced to bend, but not without a fight. The king’s pious sister Princess Elisabeth takes a stand to defend her brother, spirit her family to safety, and restore the old order, even at the risk of her head.

But when fanatics use the newspapers to twist the revolution’s ideals into a new tyranny, even the women who toppled the monarchy are threatened by the guillotine. Putting her faith in the pen, brilliant political wife Manon Roland tries to write a way out of France’s blood-soaked Reign of Terror while pike-bearing Pauline Leon and steely Charlotte Corday embrace violence as the only way to save the nation. With justice corrupted by revenge, all the women must make impossible choices to survive--unless unlikely heroine and courtesan’s daughter Emilie de Sainte-Amaranthe can sway the man who controls France’s fate: the fearsome Robespierre.

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About the Authors:

Kate Quinn is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of historical fiction. A native of southern California, she attended Boston University where she earned a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Classical Voice. She has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance, before turning to the 20th century with "The Alice Network" and "The Huntress." All have been translated into multiple languages. Kate and her husband now live in San Diego with two rescue dogs named Caesar and Calpurnia, and her interests include opera, action movies, cooking, and the Boston Red Sox.


Stephanie Dray is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal & USA Today bestselling author of historical women's fiction. Her award-winning work has been translated into eight languages and tops lists for the most anticipated reads of the year. She lives near the nation's capital with her husband, cats, and history books.


New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of historical fiction, Laura Kamoie has always been fascinated by the people, stories, and physical presence of the past, which led her to a lifetime of historical and archaeological study and training. She holds a doctoral degree in early American history from The College of William and Mary, published two non-fiction books on early America, and most recently held the position of Associate Professor of History at the U.S. Naval Academy before transitioning to a full-time career writing genre fiction. She is the author of AMERICA'S FIRST DAUGHTER and MY DEAR HAMILTON, co-authored with Stephanie Dray, allowing her the exciting opportunity to combine her love of history with her passion for storytelling. Laura lives among the colonial charm of Annapolis, Maryland with her husband and two daughters. 


Sophie Perinot is an award-winning, multi-published author of female-centered historical fiction, who holds both a Bachelor’s in History and a law degree. With two previous books set in France—during the 13th and 16th centuries—Sophie has a passion for French history that began more than thirty years ago when she first explored the storied châteaux of the Loire Valley.  She lives in the Washington DC metropolitan area with her husband, children, and a small menagerie of pets.


Heather Webb is the award-winning and international bestselling author of six historical novels set in France, including the upcoming Meet Me in Monaco, set to the backdrop of Grace Kelly’s wedding releasing in summer 2019, and Ribbons of Scarlet, a novel of the French Revolution’s women in Oct 2019. In 2015, Rodin’s Lover was selected as a Goodreads Top Pick, and in 2017, Last Christmas in Paris became a Globe & Mail bestseller and also won the 2018 Women’s Fiction Writers Association STAR Award. Her works have received national starred reviews, and have been sold in over a dozen countries worldwide. When not writing, you may find Heather collecting cookbooks or looking for excuses to travel. She lives in New England with her family and one feisty rabbit.


E. KNIGHT is a USA Today bestselling author of rip-your-heart-out historical women’s fiction that crosses the landscapes of Europe. Her love of history began as a young girl when she traipsed the halls of Versailles and ran through the fields in Southern France. She can still remember standing before the great golden palace, and imagining what life must have been like. She is the owner of the acclaimed blog History Undressed. Eliza lives in Maryland atop a small mountain with a knight, three princesses and two very naughty newfies. Be sure to visit Eliza at her historical blog, History Undressed.  




Friday, March 22, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of A LADY'S VIRTUE, an Everton Domestic Society novel by A.S. Fenichel

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of A LADY’S VIRTUE, an Everton Domestic Society novel by A.S. Fenichel, published March 19, 2019.


Blurb for A LADY’S VIRTUE:

Sylvia Dowder had almost made it to the altar when her fiancé unexpectedly became a viscount, and dropped her like a stale crumpet to make a more "suitable" match. Though Sylvia's heart has been crushed, her spirit has not. She puts her wits and social savvy to use as a secret gossip columnist—and as the Everton Domestic Society's party planner to the ton. Luckily, she's not in danger of ever falling for an aristocrat again…

Especially not one like Anthony Braighton, Earl of Grafton. Raised in America, Anthony sees no reason to marry when he can enjoy all the perks of being an eligible earl. Determined to convince his family he doesn't need a wife, he hires Sylvia to act as hostess and decorator for upcoming parties. Yet Sylvia is as adept at captivating his interest as she is at beautifying his home. And despite this Everton lady's aversion to titled men, some attractions can't be denied—and love rarely does go where it's told.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Connie’s Review:

Sylvia Dowder lives in Everton House and works for the Everton Domestic Society. Secretly, she also writes articles about people of the ton for the Weekly Whisper under the name Mable Tattler. Sylvia has a twin sister, Serena. Sylvia had once been engaged to Hunter Gautier. But shortly before the wedding, he inherited the title of Viscount of March. He immediately broke off the engagement to Sylvia because she was not good enough for his new title. Hurt and angry, Sylvia decided to work for the Society. She is no longer interested in looking for a husband. This angers her mother greatly.

Rushing down the stairs to send out her latest article, she runs into a man. He is Anthony Braighton, an American, who has recently become the Earl of Grafton. He is looking to hire someone from the Everton Domestic Society to be a hostess to help him with events with regard to his new title and status. Jane Everton, head of the Society, wants Sylvia to take on the task. In addition, he needs help decorating the townhouse he inherited on Grosvenor Square.

Sylvia impresses Anthony with her decorating and social skills. He is a man who has said he is not interested in marriage. Having been hurt and embarrassed by the Viscount of March, Sylvia feels she would not measure up to marry a titled man. Yet they cannot deny their attraction to one another. They go their separate ways, but will they stay away from one another?

Another well-written romance novel by this author. I have enjoyed a number of her books and look forward to reading more in the future. I’m sure other readers will enjoy it as well.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

A LADY’S VIRTUE, an Everton Domestic Society novel by A.S. Fenichel, Lyrical Press, available now in ebook and print at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Unwrapping a Cover Reveal of TO LOVE AND BE LOVED BY HIM, book 4 in the Seekers of the Past series by Amy Valentini w/#excerpt

TO LOVE AND BE LOVED BY HIM
Book 4 of the Seekers of the Past series
Amy Valentini

Releasing April 16, 2019
Available for ebook Pre-Order Now at 
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobobooks 
iBooks | Smashwords
print coming at release time


Continue the Journey to Where the Past Meets the Present
and Love Lives Forever

Emma’s investigation of the past leads her to Emily Embry. But will it lead her and Sam to the origins of the gold? He’s beginning to believe she’s experiencing something amazing while reading the young girl’s journal, but is it real? What might they learn as they continue seeking the past?

Sent to England to marry a man she’s never met, Emily Embry is determined to quit the contract made by her parents. When tragedy strikes her ship along the way, she encounters a handsome captain who captures her heart making her destiny even less desirable, even as she wishes he was the man she was marrying.

Beau Hawkings is a man of the sea and has no desire to settle down on land or with a wife. When he rescues the woman his grandfather contracted him to marry, he finds her desirable but his desire for freedom is greater—until she begins to claim his heart. Now his deception might be the very thing which drives her away. While both protect their hearts, they grow ever closer as fate voyages them home to where they belong—in love and loved.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Excerpt:

Beau withdrew expecting a rejection but when her only response was to widen her eyes in surprise he took his offer as acceptable. His blood flared hot in his veins when he saw her little pink tongue dart out again to moisten her lips. He took the action and her silence as permission so he tightened his grip on her waist and slid his free hand into her hair to cradle her neck before dipping his head to catch her lips beneath his.
Soft lips fluttered beneath his own as if she wanted to say something but was unable to form the words. He moved his lips on hers and reveled in their warm satiny texture. When he touched his tongue to the crease of her lips, she tensed but then relaxed. A moment later, her lips parted. Stifling a smile, he pushed his tongue between her lips and felt her inhalation. She pressed her hands flat against his chest and started to withdraw. He suspected she had never been kissed like this before but when her warm tongue suddenly stroked against his, he knew she liked it. Smiling, he drew back and gazed down at closed eyes, long dark lashes resting gently on flushed cheekbones. When her dark eyes fluttered open, he smiled at her with an arrogant confidence he was sure was unflattering but could not resist.
“I do not think you really wish to leave,” he whispered as his mouth hovered over hers. “Stay, chérie, stay.”
He pressed his hips against her so she knew just how much he desired her to do so. Suddenly, a sharp pain struck his foot. He released her and she shoved him aside. A sharp throbbing was centered over the top of his booted foot. The little vixen had stomped his foot and had done a good job of it.
“You may think all women are your playthings, Captain Hawkings,” Emily exclaimed, anger curling her lips so her tiny white teeth were bared. “I am not!”
“Please, call me Beau, chérie. No one calls me Captain Hawkings,” Beau pleaded even as he reached for her. “Even my men call me Captain Hawke. For you, chérie, I shall make an exception and allow you to call me Beau.”
He smiled down at her even as her brows furrowed as if she had not heard him correctly. His foot throbbed painfully but he kept smiling. He was not about to let her know how her tiny heel had bruised his foot or his ego.
“I think I would prefer to call you Captain Hawkings, thank you very much,” she exclaimed as she planted her fists squarely on her hips and lifted her chin haughtily. “I do not wish to call you anything else, if you do not mind.”
She turned toward the door with a toss of her mahogany curls.
“You may call me whatever you wish, ma chérie,” he answered with glee as he eyed the lovely view of her backside she was presenting him.
“You mean like arrogant bastard?” Emily threw over her shoulder as she moved further through the door.
“My parents were happily married, milady,” he remarked in teasing.
His response stopped her. She turned and glared at him with narrowed angry eyes.
“Captain Hawkings,” Emily began in a slow cautionary tone. “I do have a name by the way. I would prefer you use it instead of any of those ridiculous foreign intimacies which you prefer.”
Beau was impressed with her spirited nature and was unable to resist a smile. “Ah well, since we have not actually been properly introduced and I do not know your full name, I can only assume you wish me to call you Emily which is by far more intimate than any endearments, but if you prefer—”
“I do not prefer any such thing,” she replied with a haughty tone as she lifted her chin defiantly. “My name is Embry, Emily Embry…and you, sir, may call me Miss Embry.”
The name hung in the air even after she disappeared into the dark passageway. He stood looking at the place where she had just been with the name swirling in the air like an annoying insect. Had she stayed, he was sure she would have inquired why he had suddenly paled. Feeling as if he had just been sucker punched in the gut, he felt a shaking surge of hysterical laughter rise up into his chest.
Beau pushed the door closed but failed to notice it had not closed all the way. He staggered toward his seat behind the desk for between her surname bouncing around in his head and the wine in which he had over-indulged the floor seemed to tilt beneath his feet.
Bloody hell! Was this his punishment for escaping his obligation to his grandfather’s wishes? Of all the women to rescue from a sinking ship, had he truly had the misfortune to rescue the one woman he had hope to avoid meeting in the first place? Perhaps it was mere coincidence. Perhaps there are two women named Emily Embry.
Thinking himself a fool, he knew full well there was only one Emily Embry who would be traveling to London to get married. She must be the same Emily Embry whose name he had been looking at for the past six weeks. The same name he had stared at while he decided what to do about the prospect of marrying against his will. How he wished he had never stopped in Ponta Delgada for then he might have missed the message intercepting him there. However, they had no choice but to stop in the Azores for supplies even if they had not decided to change course and sail to England after he learned of his grandfather’s death.
Beau reached the desk. He pushed aside the dishes and linen cloth, pouring himself another glass of wine before seating himself behind the desk. He downed it quickly then began searching the desk’s drawers for the letter and contract which his grandfather’s solicitor had presented him upon arriving at the man’s London office.
“Why does it have to be you, chérie? Such a cheeky firebrand as you, far more suited to be a delectable tumble between the sheets than a wife. Why does it have to be you to whom I am promised in marriage? Shaking his head as if in the hope of changing what he knew was the truth, he searched through the desk drawers for the missive he knew was there.
“You may be a tasty sweet morsel, innocent for sure, but are you worth being tied to forever? I think not. No woman is. No matter how sweet, spirited, and beautiful.”

—To Love and Be Loved By Him

I hope you enjoyed a peek at To Love and Be Loved By Him...this is the story that started it all for me and I hope you'll read the rest of the Seekers of the Past series. 
Happy Reading Everyone!


   

Monday, March 18, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of TO MARRY A MARCHIONESS, a Lords of London novel by Tamara Gill

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of a TO MARRY A MARCHIONESS, a Lords of London novel by Tamara Gill, published March 12, 2019.


Blurb for TO MARRY A MARCHIONESS:

Lady Henrietta Zetland is definitely not looking for love again after being widowed so young. She cannot provide the heirs most husbands desire, so is quite happy to abandon the trappings of the ton and the London Season for country life. Yet the moment she meets Marcus Duncan, the new Marquess Zetland, the passion she has long suppressed returns to life and overwhelms all good sense and propriety.

Becoming a marquess is just what Marcus Duncan needs to save his crumbling Scottish estate. His travels to England to oversee his newly acquired estates throw him into the path of his cousin's widow. Marcus is instantly charmed by Henrietta, and when a passionate love affair ensues the last thing he expects is to lose his heart to her. Wanting more, he fears that the secret he's hiding will drive her away...but Henrietta has a secret of her own that could separate them forever.

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Connie’s Review:

Lady Henrietta Nicholson, Marchioness of Zetland, is mourning the death of her husband, Walter. They had only been married for a year when he was struck down by a lung ailment.

Henrietta's mother, the Duchess of Athelby, wants her to return to town with her, but Henrietta wants to remain in her estate, Kewell Hall, in Surrey which now belongs to her. She loves her home and is not interested in the social whirl of London.

Henrietta and Walter had not had children and the doctors say that she is barren. Therefore, another marriage would not be right.

Walter’s heir, Marcus Duncan, now living in Scotland, is sad to learn of the death of Walter, but the title and properties coming to him will help him immensely. He plans to travel to England to oversee the properties and then go back to Scotland with income to repair and rebuild his home in Scotland. Marcus is father to a son, Arthur, and he doesn’t want to be away from him for too long.

When Walter calls upon Henrietta, he shows her that she doesn’t truly own Kewell Hall. Shocked, Henrietta politely invites him to stay there while her solicitor sorts it all out. He tells her about his home in Scotland called Morleigh Castle and invites her to visit sometime.

Henrietta shows him Kewell Hall and as they spend time together, an attraction grows. Yet both of them are carrying secrets and they feel once those secrets are revealed, there could be no hope for them to have a relationship. Or is there?

I really liked this plot. Henrietta and Marcus are wonderful and likable characters that pull at the reader’s heart strings. My only complaint is that it is too sexually explicit for me. However, I’m sure others will like it.

Copy provided by the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

TO MARRY A MARCHIONESS, a Lords of London novel by Tamara Gill, available now in ebook and print at Amazon.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of A GUARDED HEART by Heidi Kimball

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of A GUARDED HEART by Heidi Kimball, published March 1, 2019.


Blurb for A GUARDED HEART:

Three years after a shocking scandal destroyed her family and forced her into isolation, Eleanor Hayward finally has an opportunity to put her painful history and dashed hopes behind her. But reentering society is no simple task. In her cousin's glittering ballroom, Eleanor is stunned when she comes face-to-face with the man who broke her heart those years before.

Edmund Fletcher thought he had laid the past to rest until he unexpectedly encounters the woman who so nearly became his wife. Soon to be engaged to another, Edmund knows he must let go of the complicated feelings he harbors for Eleanor. However, when the Hayward scandal resurfaces and the truth behind their parting is revealed, Eleanor and Edmund are left reeling. Tormented by thoughts of what could have been, they realize it is impossible to rewrite history. But is there a future in which they might both find happiness—and true love?

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Connie’s Review:

Herefortshire - 1816

Miss Eleanor Hayward, her cousin, Miss Caroline Warwick, and Caroline’s parents are hosting a ball to introduce Eleanor to their friends and neighbors. She has recently come from her home in Kent. She is nervous about meeting these people, but many are kind. There is a past event involving her brother that brought shame to her family. When she is introduced to Mr. Edmund Fletcher, she is shocked that he doesn’t seem to remember her from three years ago. Ah - but he does remember her and their past association when she had broken his heart when he found her in the arms of another man.

Kent - 1813

Eleanor has walked to her friend’s home called Claremont and home of the Clark family. Beatrice came out to meet her along with her older brother, Charles, and younger sister, Louise, who all welcomed her. Among the group is Edmund Fletcher. The group then set off to tour an Abbey and Castle. Eleanor and Edmund spend time together getting to know one another and enjoying chatting.

The story switches back and forth from the time Eleanor and Edmund came to know one another to three years later after something had happened that tore them apart. Edmund haughtily suggests that Eleanor treated him badly but she doesn’t know what he means. She thinks he just decided back then that his higher station in life compared to her modest one meant that they would not suit.

Both of them are hurting but are reluctant to discuss the past. Eleanor is hiding a family secret that Edmund doesn’t fully understand. If there a way that they can open themselves up honestly and see if their love can be rekindled?

This is a story of miscommunication and pride: two things that can wreck relationships. It is clean, and the verbiage is true to the time period. I found the book to be somewhat sad and depressing, however, that’s what the plot is about.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

A GUARDED HEART by Heidi Kimball, Covenant Communications, available now in ebook, print and audio at Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Unwrapping a Guest Review by Connie Fischer of THE CINDERELLA COUNTESS, a Gentlemen of Honor novel by Sophia James

Greetings my darling readers, I know I’ve been remiss in providing you reviews of good reads this past year and I apologize. Life has a hold on me which does not allow me much reading time. I have tried to make up for that in publishing my own good reads for you and I hope you’ve given them a try. So to make up for my neglect, I will be offering up guest reviews for you enjoy. I hope to be back reviewing for you soon but in the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy my dear friend, Connie Fischer’s reviews to guide you to good reads. Enjoy and Happy Reading!

I present to you a guest review of THE CINDERELLA COUNTESS by Sophia James, book 3 of the Gentlemen of Honor series, published March 1, 2019.


Blurb for THE CINDERELLA COUNTESS:

From rags to riches

By the earl’s side!

Abandoned as a small child, Annabelle Smith has only vague memories of her past. Now living as a healer in London’s poverty-stricken East End, she receives a life-changing visit from the rich and imposing Lytton Staines, Earl of Thornton. He needs a cure for his ailing sister and helping him thrusts Belle into his dazzling life of luxury. But it’s Lytton who makes her world come alive!

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Connie’s Review:

London – 1815

Annabelle (Belle) Smith is 31-years-old, and an herbalist. She is being called upon by Lytton Staines, the Earl of Thornton, age 35. Lytton is seeking help for his sister, Lucy, who appears to have a wasting sickness. The doctors have not been able to help her, and having heard Belle’s good reputation with the medicines that she makes, he needs her help. She agrees to see his sister the next day.

Belle had lived in France with a woman who took her in from the nuns at a nearby church. She was also an herbalist and Belle calls her aunt. She does not know where she came from but has memories of fancy dressed people in large homes.

When Belle visits Lucy, she does not feel that she is truly ill, but is hiding a secret she does not want to face. So, Belle befriends her in a way that she hopes will get her to open up.

Lytton is quite taken with Belle and enjoys her company. She’s intelligent and is well read. Her perfect speech and knowledge of both English and French show she is of an aristocratic heritage.

When Belle is struck and injured by a carriage obviously owned by someone of wealth, she realizes someone from her mysterious past has recognized her and wants her dead. Lytton cares for her safety and hires someone to guard her. When yet another near-death disaster strikes, Lytton is determined to get to the bottom of these events and find out who is trying to kill Belle and why.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

THE CINDERELLA COUNTESS, a Gentlemen of Honor novel by Sophia James, Harlequin Historical, available now in ebook and print at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.