Friday, January 27, 2023

The Letter


 

Book: The Letter

Author: Edwina Kiernan

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: November 1, 2022

She wants a new life.

He’s in danger of losing his.

Will love solve everything — or immerse them in even worse peril?

Restless and ready for a change, Grace Stratton gladly accepts the opportunity to leave her remote parsonage home to serve as a wealthy spinster’s companion in the idyllic country town of Lindenfell. Its warm atmosphere and friendly inhabitants sooth Grace’s lonely heart. But when a mysterious stranger arrives, she soon discovers things aren’t always what they seem.

Convinced chloroform will revolutionise the medical world, Dr. David Carbury frequently administers it to his London patients — until one of them dies. Facing a grave trial to prove his innocence and defend a drug most people view as poisonous, he makes hasty plans to buy time to bolster his case. But he wasn’t expecting to face an even deadlier challenge.

As attraction sparks not long after they meet, Grace soon suspects he’s hiding something, and David knows he can’t run from the truth forever.

But neither of them could imagine the sinister threat lurking just around the corner…

Immersed in faith and intrigue, this Christian Victorian romance from award-winning author Edwina Kiernan will encourage and delight you long after you turn the last page.

Click here to get your copy!

 My Review: 

This is the story of two people who hope to find a new beginning for their lives. Grace Stratton feels the small judgmental town in which she has grown up is not where she wishes to stay. Given a chance to become a companion for an elderly lady, she leaves to pursue that opportunity for change. I admired her courage to take a leap of faith for something better and her tenderness toward Miss Withers to be there and care for her. 

Dr. David Carbury flees London under a cloud of suspicion and facing legal life threatening circumstances. Escaping to his Aunt Withers’s house, he uses his cousin’s name instead of his own in order not to be discovered. At first I did not like him, but his compassionate heart for helping others changed my opinion. I am glad he faced his problems and confided in his friend, Isaac, who was instrumental in helping him with the charges that were brought against him.

I enjoyed the historical aspect of what was taking place in the medical field. How Ms. Kiernan wove this into the story was interesting and key to the story. I also liked the faith and forgiveness aspects as was evident in the lives of many of the characters. I loved Miss Withers and the godly advice she gave to Grace. I would like to have seen Grace and David’s relationship develop at a slower pace and to see more of them as a couple.

Grace’s mother’s past embroils her in a very dangerous situation that provides a twist in the story. It was tense and suspenseful, but I am glad Grace was able to escape from it.This is the first book in the Victorian Virtues series and can be read as a standalone. However, I have seen that the story of her parents’ love story is told in a previous book and I believe that would have answered given me more details for this story. 

I recommend reading this book for readers of all ages. I received a complimentary copy of the book through the publisher and Celebrate Lit. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Edwina Kiernan is the Christian author of the award-winning novel, Ruby’s Redemption.

An enthusiast of classic novels and history, Edwina combines her faith, imagination and research to create hope-infused tales set in times past.

A lifelong word admirer, with Welsh and Irish heritage, she started writing stories early in childhood.

She is a committed follower of Jesus (the Living Word), and endeavours to use her pen to point others to Him.

 

More from Edwina

Have you ever wished you could travel back in time to a place where quaint buildings are bathed with a golden glow in the afternoon light, where the people are polite and respectful, and where the pace of living allows your soul to breathe and just… be?

 In that case… Welcome to Lindenfell!

 The Letter introduces us to Grace Stratton (daughter of the hero & heroine from my award-winning novel, Ruby’s Redemption), who accepts a position as a lady’s companion in a place she’s never been before, but where she’ll soon discover a whole new world.

 “The air in Lindenfell had a scent of its own — one of warmth and peace. Of hope.”

 Lord-willing, the Victorian Virtues series will have nine books, each based on an aspect of the Fruit of the Spirit, and each exploring the historical events and everyday realities that change and challenge eighteen main characters and nine blossoming romances.

 Friends and foes, tragedies and triumphs, hopes and heartaches — the best and worst of life, all in one fictional market town in Victorian England. 

It is my deepest hope that, as you travel to Lindenfell in each book of the series, you’ll find the truth and hope you need to navigate your own trials and triumphs, and discover that the refreshment your soul longs for is already available to you, wherever you may be.

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 14

Simple Harvest Reads, January 14 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Blogging With Carol, January 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 16

For Him and My Family, January 17

Cover Lover Book Review, January 17

Texas Book-aholic, January 18

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 19

Holly’s Book Corner, January 20

deb’s Book Review, January 20

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 21

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, January 22

Mary Hake, January 23

Connie’s History Classroom, January 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 24

Melissa’s Bookshelf, January 25

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 26

Pause for Tales, January 26

Book looks by Lisa, January 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Edwina is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of The Letter and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/23a11/the-letter-celebration-tour-giveaway




Thursday, January 26, 2023

A Novel Proposal


About the Book: 

When western novelist Sadie Goodwin must pen a romance novel to rescue her lackluster sales, there’s only one tiny problem: she’s never been in love.Desperate to salvage her career, Sadie accepts an invitation to hole up at her friend’s beach duplex for the summer and devote herself to this confounding genre. After all, where better to witness love than on the beautiful South Carolina shore?But Sadie soon finds many ways to procrastinate the dreaded task—like getting to know the beach regulars and installing a Little Free Library on the property. She even attempts conversation with Sam Ford, the frustratingly stubborn neighbor on the other side of the duplex. But things take an unexpected turn when Sadie finds inside her library an abandoned novel with a secret compartment—and a beautiful engage­ment ring tucked inside.Suddenly, locating the ring’s owner becomes the perfect way to put off writing that romance. Sadie draws a reluctant Sam into her mission. And as the two close in on an answer to the mysterious proposal, she discovers a tender side to him. She begins to wonder if he just might make the perfect hero for her romance novel—or maybe even her heart.

 My Thoughts: 

I loved this book that has a sunshine and a grumpy character sharing a duplex for the summer. Sadie Goodwin is the eternal optimist who doesn’t know a stranger and each day is a joy. Sam Ford is such a curmudgeon! As Sadie barges into his life, he finds as many ways as he can to avoid her. But, there are not enough potted planters or brush offs to keep Sadie and her dog, Rio, from being a part of Sam’s life. 

Here are some of the things that I loved: 


Bubbly, impatient female MC

Emotionally wounded, brooding male MC

Humor!

Beach setting

Strict rule following church librarian

Writing tip epigraphs

A mystery with a twist

Little Free Library

A Maltipoo

Forced proximity

Forgiveness


I highly recommend reading this romantic comedy that had me laughing and shaking my head at Sadie and Sam. This is a quick, fun read that has a good message of forgiveness and trust. I’d love to see this made into a movie. 


I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.




About the Author:

Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than forty novels, three of which have been adapted into Hallmark movies. She writes hope-filled, small-town love stories, peopled with layered characters who deal with real-life issues. Denise has appeared on The 700 Club and been featured in Southern Living and Woman's World. When Denise isn't orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking chai, hiking, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband are enjoying an empty nest. You can learn more about Denise through her website  DeniseHunterBooks.com  or by visiting her FaceBook page at  facebook.com/authordenisehunter  

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

I'm Not Charlotte Lucas

 



About the Book: 

Northern California girl Charlotte “Charlie” Lucas has two great loves: Diet Coke and Pride and Prejudice. But her passion for Regency classics is tempered by a very real fear: Charlie is terrified of having to endure the fate of her namesake—spinsterhood. Despite her best attempts to maintain a modern sensibility, she can’t say no when an elderly neighbor asks Charlie to attend a charity ball with her grandson. Blind date or not, Charlie is powerless to resist the allure of a real-life ball. Soon it’s clear that she will struggle to resist the charms of her blind date too.

Liam Connell is every bit the swoon-worthy leading man, straight out of Charlie’s daydreams. But he’s completely unattainable—his last girlfriend was a gorgeous actress and a far cry from Charlie’s world. So after a magical evening with Liam, Charlie is ready to get back to reality, even if her best option right now is a former boyfriend who wants to give it another shot. Unfortunately, despite imagining she’ll never see Liam again, he seems to be everywhere. How is a lady to move past a fantasy when life suddenly seems to be imitating fiction to an alarming degree?

My Thoughts: 

Charlotte “Charlie” Lucas  knows the story of Pride and Prejudice quite well and fears that she will suffer the fate of the possibility of marrying someone just so she doesn’t have to be alone, just like the character Charlotte Lucas did. She suffers from a lack of self confidence and needs someone to be her champion. 


I loved this story and was surprised how quickly I flew through the book. I think all of us can relate to Charlie’s imposter feelings and thoughts that you don’t measure up to self-imposed expectations or those of others. Her character was lovable and just so sweet! I couldn’t wait to see her realize she was worthy of being loved and highly valued. My favorite line was, “It didn’t matter what anyone thought. I was happy. I was loved. I was enough.” 


Liam Connell was not what I expected. He was surprisingly humble, non pretentious, and compassionate. He was not deterred by Charlie’s insecurities and saw beyond them to fight and win her heart. Every lady needs a Liam in their life to help them through those rough times when you compare yourself to others, when you think you have to settle for second best because you just aren’t good enough. 


I highly recommend this positive and encouraging story. Buy several copies of this book. You just can’t read this without talking about it with your best friend, your mother, or your book club.


I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my own.


5/5 stars

Sunday, January 22, 2023

The Baron's Unavoidable Match

 



About the Book: 

Duncan Powell, Lord Westbridge, knows belonging to a circle of spies is dangerous, but his sense of duty means he is willing to lose anything to keep England safe—even an arm. After being wounded while delivering a stolen French communique to Wellington’s camp, he sequesters himself at his family’s hunting lodge. He needs time to heal and to hide from his mother and her ridiculous threat of forcing him to marry. But when French spies are spotted near his family estate, he has no choice but to return and protect his home.

Rebecca is too focused on helping her father keep their bank books afloat to seriously consider Lady Westbridge’s proposal on behalf of her son. But when the investment Rebecca recommended sinks her father’s fortunes to the bottom of the sea—literally—she knows marrying Lord Westbridge is her last chance at a secure future. Rebecca doesn’t want love, especially after seeing the toll it took on her widowed father, but a stable marriage would mean releasing the burden of doing everything alone.

However, managing an engagement with a reluctant Lord is only the beginning of Rebecca’s challenges. When danger lands at their doorstep, their alliance brings anything but security. And while Lord Westbridge has accepted the consequences of his career, this time he is risking much more than life and limb for England. He is risking his heart.


My Review: 

I loved this book! It was fast paced and exciting to the point that I didn't want to put the book down to find out what was going to happen next. Danger, spies, a wounded hero, a matchmaking mother, and a courageous heroine, this book had it all.


Lord Duncan Westbridge was in need of finding that he worthy of being loved despite his thinking a wife required a man who was not disabled. Rebecca Bartlet was in need of a husband to rescue her from financial ruin and saw Duncan for the honorable man he was. Duncan's mom was wise in seeing that together they were the prefect match. The risk taking personality of Rebecca was just what Duncan needed when he was in danger and made for an interesting part of the story.


This is the first book in the Embroiled in Espionage series and there are questions that I can't wait to have answered! I highly recommend this book if you enjoy historical clean romance with political intrigue. I was given a complimentary copy of the book. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.


Rating: 5/5 stars

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Scotland's Melody

 



About the Book: 

Melody Foster has been granted every luxury available save one: the ability to love whom she chooses. When her father reveals that she is to marry a wild Scot she’s never met, Melody defies him and declares she will never marry without affection. Her choice to marry Richard, a footman in her father’s household, prompts her family to disown her, and she goes to London to risk everything for love. But she is blindsided. Without a penny to her name, her love is worthless to Richard, and he decides to change tactics. Perhaps she could still serve a purpose—after all, her family can’t sit idly by while she is held for ransom . . .

Desperate to escape the man she thought she loved, Melody finds allies to aid her: first, her old governess and then Cameron Findlay, a handsome stranger who is startled by the distraught young woman who catapulted into his life. Cam finds himself sympathetic to the young woman’s plight, so he and his sister agree to take her on as a servant in their household. Cam and Melody are powerfully drawn to one another, but can Melody ever trust her heart when it was so terribly wrong before?

My Review: 

Melody Foster is an independent young lady who strains against the expectations her family puts upon her to marry a titled Scotsman. Deciding to take a chance on a love of her own choosing, she is duped into running away to London to meet him there. Melody has much to learn as she must escape the man who she thought loved her and found out too late he was just using her to get her dowry.

I enjoyed reading the story of how she is taken in by Elise Findlay and her brother, Cameron. Here she discovers what it means to be truly accepted and loved for who she is and not how much she is worth monetarily. I loved Elise’s character and her willingness to help both Melody and Cameron discover what their relationship could become. I hope to see more of her in the future.


I loved the setting of Scotland, the castle, the harp, and the poetry of  the famous Robert Burns.  All that was needed were bagpipes! The ending had left me with questions so I hope there will be a second book to follow. You will enjoy this story if you like Regency romance.


Thank you to Covenant Communications and Wholesome Romance for an eARC of the book. All opinions are my own. 

Friday, January 20, 2023

A Winter at the White Queen

 

About the Book

Book: A Winter at the White Queen

Author: Denise Weimer

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: January 3, 2023

In the world of the wealthy, things are never quite as they appear.

Ellie Hastings is tired of playing social gatekeeper—and poor-relation companion—to her Gibson Girl of a cousin. But her aunt insists Ellie lift her nose out of her detective novel long enough to help gauge the eligibility of bachelors during the winter social season at Florida’s Hotel Belleview. She finds plenty that’s mysterious about the suave, aloof Philadelphia inventor, Lewis Thornton. Why does he keep sneaking around the hotel? Does he have a secret sweetheart? And what is his connection to the evasive Mr. Gaspachi, slated to perform at Washington’s Birthday Ball?

Ellie’s comical sleuthing ought to put Lewis out, but the diffident way her family treats her smashes a hole in his normal reserve. When Florence Hastings’s diamond necklace goes missing, Ellie’s keen mind threatens to uncover not only Lewis’s secrets, but give him back hope for love.

 

Click here to get your copy!

My Review:

Ellie Hastings is a unique lady who is charged with secretly observing eligible bachelors to see if they are a good match for her cousin, Ada. She is just the right one to do that since she is good at being undetected and is not prone to romantic notions. 


The historical aspect of the story was well researched and made details given in such a way that you feel as though you were there at the hotel during an exciting time of great change. I enjoyed how the inventions that were coming on the scene were incorporated into Lewis Thornton’s story. This would have been such an exciting time to live in and I loved that these new inventions were part of the book. There was a unique back story he shared with Ellie that gave him a connection to her. It was a great “aha!” moment for not only her, but for me as a reader.


I recommend you read this book. Readers of all ages will enjoy this story. 


I received an advanced reader copy of the book through the publisher and Celebrate Lit. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions expressed here are my own.

About the Author

North Georgia native Denise Weimer has authored a dozen traditionally published novels and a number of novellas—historical and contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and time slip. Having served three years as managing editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas’ two historical imprints, as well as a freelance editor, she’s helped other authors reach their publishing dreams. A wife and mother of two daughters, Denise always pauses for coffee, chocolate, and old houses.

 

More from Denise

Enter the Age of Wonder …   

I like to think of the time period between the Gilded Age and WWI as the Age of Wonder. New ideas and inventions swept society in waves while those who wanted to preserve the old ways tried in vain to hold back the tide. Opportunity and advancement flowed as railroads and communications linked America’s coasts, motorcars allowed individual freedom of travel, and companies flourished following Reconstruction.

 My goal was to capture this excitement and promise in A Winter at the White Queen. You follow my heroine, Ellie, and her uncle and his family for their fashionable winter 1910 season at the Hotel Belleview in Clearwater, Florida. Ellie is more than “the poor relation companion” to her younger cousin Ava. She’s also a trusted friend, and like the heroines in her female detective novels, a budding sleuth—sniffing out promising matrimonial candidates for Ava at the bequest of Aunt Florence. Little does she expect to stumble into her own romance—and a mystery surrounding a certain intriguing entrepreneur.

 Ellie Hastings is tired of playing social gatekeeper—and poor-relation companion—to her Gibson Girl of a cousin. But her aunt insists Ellie lift her nose out of her detective novel long enough to help gauge the eligibility of bachelors during the winter social season at Florida’s Hotel Belleview. She finds plenty that’s mysterious about the suave, aloof Philadelphia inventor, Lewis Thornton. Why does he keep sneaking around the hotel? Does he have a secret sweetheart? And what is his connection to the evasive Mr. Gaspachi, slated to perform at Washington’s Birthday Ball?

Ellie’s comical sleuthing ought to put Lewis out, but the diffident way her family treats her smashes a hole in his normal reserve. But when Florence Hastings’ diamond necklace goes missing, Ellie’s keen mind threatens to uncover not only Lewis’s secrets, but give him back hope for love.

Lewis’s work allowed me to sprinkle White Queen with clever inventions that spark Ellie’s curious nature. Among them are:

 Temperature-compensated balance wheels, which Lewis invented as a teen. The backstory of how he sold his invention to the railroad, allowing them to synchronize all their watches, provides an unexpected link to uncover between Lewis and Ellie.

 The cinématographe, patterned after Thomas Edison’s kinetoscope but intended by the Lumière brothers to show films to a wider audience. Used in the show at Washington’s Birthday Ball to end the season, the cinématographe aids in the culmination of the mystery of Florence’s missing diamond necklace.

 The magical orange tree, which not only blossomed but appeared to grow actual oranges, was a real mechanical invention featured at Ava’s birthday party by The Great Gaspachi.

 The Hydro-Vacu. I couldn’t resist including this titter-worthy, real-life machine, used, of course, by the appearance-conscious Aunt Florence. After applying a bleaching cold cream or “tissue food” to ensure plump cheeks, the massaging “Depurator” was rotated slowly over the face. How long until that idea makes a comeback?

 As fun and whimsical as A Winter at the White Queen may be, our characters have some real growth to do … if they can get past the social expectations and masks, the suspicions and past hurts. I hope you’ll brighten your winter days by joining them at the White Queen.

Blog Stops

Book Looks by Lisa, January 20

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 20

An Author’s Take, January 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 21

deb’s Book Review, January 22

Christina’s Corner, January 22

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, January 23

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 23

Connie’s History Classroom, January 24

Betti Mace, January 25

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 25

Texas Book-aholic, January 26

Paula’s Pad of Inspiration, January 26

Bigreadersite, January 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 27

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, January 28 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, January 28

Cover Lover Book Review, January 29

Holly’s Book Corner, January 29

Rebecca Tews, January 30

Blogging With Carol, January 30

Back Porch Reads, January 31

Simple Harvest Reads, January 31 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, February 1

Blossoms and Blessings, February 1

Pause for Tales, February 2

To Everything There Is A Season, February 2

Giveaway

 

To celebrate her tour, Denise is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/23bc4/a-winter-at-the-white-queen-celebration-tour-giveaway


Thursday, January 19, 2023

Expired Return



 About the Book:

She’ll give everything to protect her family.
He always knew she was the one.

Veterinary tech Pepper Miller lives a quiet life in Last Chance County. She’s watching her niece until her sister shows up…if she ever does. When Victory’s father demands he take over her care, Pepper knows something has gone wrong. With a new drug in town, and her sister embroiled in a dangerous bargain, it’s up to Pepper to protect the people she loves.

Even if it costs every secret she’s ever kept.

Fire Department liaison Allen Frees lives with the injuries he sustained as a police officer in a raid gone wrong. He’s put his life back together but getting the truck crew and engine squad to succeed might be his toughest assignment yet. When Victory is nearly kidnapped at a community event, Allen steps in to help Pepper keep her niece safe. The one thing he couldn’t fix was the love he lost, but he isn’t going to let Pepper walk away this time.

No matter what walls he has to break down.


My Review: 

This suspenseful story has fast paced action and lots of twists to keep you engaged and not wanting to stop reading until the last page.  Do you like books that have: 

    an unstoppable hero "Show me a roadblock. I'll bring a bulldozer and go through it." 

    a strong female lead

    second chance romance

    forgiveness

    justice


 then this book is for you! I am looking forward to reading additional books in the Last Chance Fire and Rescue series. This story is similar to books written by authors Dee Henderson and Lynette Eason.


I was given a complimentary copy of the book. A positive review was not required. All opinions expressed are my own. 

The Letter

  Book:  The Letter Author:  Edwina Kiernan Genre:  Christian Historical Romance Release date:  November 1, 2022 She wants a new life. He’s ...