About the Book:
About the Book:
Haunted by the death of her sister, Finola Shanahan has resolved that she's not worthy of a family of her own and commits to spending her days caring for immigrants in the slums. Unwilling to consider marriage, Finola has perfected the ability to sabotage the relationships her parents arrange for her. At wit's end, her father calls upon the local Irish matchmaker, who pairs her with successful wagonmaker Riley Rafferty. After her usual tricks fail, Finola quickly realizes she can't outsmart or outwit the dashing, determined, and daring man.
A candidate in the St. Louis mayoral election, Riley is confident a union with the wealthy Shanahan family will help solidify his chances of winning--and even more assured he and Finola can make a difference together. When a cholera outbreak begins to take St. Louis by storm, they must navigate a burgeoning attraction and growing danger testing all they know about love and sacrifice.
Finola is bound and determined to become a nun. Maybe if she makes it her vocation she will be able to assuage her guilt. Her parents have promised that if this last suitor the matchmaker has brought for her to meet (the 13th one!) does not work out, she may be free to enter the convent. She is confident that she will be successful, but she has yet to meet Riley Rafferty.
Riley has things in his past too, including a miserable marriage and mistakes he hopes not to repeat. It’s only by a promise he has made to his father does he consider remarrying. Little does he realize that the young lady he saved from a carriage mishap is the same one that Bellamy the matchmaker has chosen for him.
Finola and Riley were the perfect couple and truly complemented each other. They both saw needs and were quick to help wherever they could. The conflicts they had in their relationship made me wonder how they were ever going to work things out. It was a good thing that Bellamy the matchmaker was more clever than either one of them to help them navigate their courtship. I really loved his ingenious schemes and can’t wait to see what happens in the next book.
Things I loved:
Saint Riley and his heroic deeds
The stable incident
Bellamy the matchmaker
Things that Riley hates list
The Shanahan clan
Ice skating date
Letting go of the past
I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, NetGalley, and AustenProse. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
About the Author:
Jody Hedlund is the bestselling author of over fifty novels and is the winner of numerous awards. Jody lives in Michigan with her husband, busy family, and five spoiled cats. She writes sweet historical novels with plenty of sizzle.
About the Book:
Gage, a very tenderhearted man, was in the habit of rescuing animals. So, it only makes sense that extends that type of compassion and he offers to marry Honora and take her away from her truly terrible parents. They did not see her value and only wanted to be rid of her. I don’t think Gage thought he was rescuing her, but he truly did. It was a tender love story as Gage and Honora find that their marriage was more than just one of convenience. They both come to appreciate and love each other.
Favorite Gage quotes to Honora:
“You don’t have to be anything for anyone other than yourself.”
“You are my home, Nora."
While I loved reading about Honora and Gage’s developing relationship, I did feel the pacing was a bit too slow for me. It was the first book that I have read in the series, so I think I may have missed some background that would have made this feel more like a reunion of old friends and a continuation of the other books.
*verbal abuse, mild swearing
I received this book from AustenProse Book Tours. I was not expected to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
The blending of fiction with fact is masterfully crafted by Julie Klassen, one of my favorite authors, to create an English seaside town that I would love to visit and be tempted to stay there permanently. The visit of the Royal family was so realistic that I found myself wondering what was actual fact in the story. I wanted to skip to the historical notes at the end, but I showed some self control and waited until I finished reading the book.
I felt a range of emotions (hope, joy, sadness, loss, fear) as Emily Summer, her sisters, and her mother must face the past, decide what to do about the future, and live in the present. Emily was blessed to have her sister and mother as her sounding boards and help with navigating her feelings. There were two suitors, so which man would she choose?
This is the second book in the series, and I would recommend you read the first book so that you can appreciate what has transpired up until now. Three of Emily’s sisters have stories that need to be told, so I am anticipating great things to happen in the third book. I highly recommend this if you love historical fiction, romance, and/or women’s fiction.
I received a copy of this book through NetGalley and Austen Prose book tours. I wasn’t required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
Book: Knowing You
Author: Tracie Peterson
Genre: Historical Fiction
Release Date: November 7, 2023
Could a captivating art exhibit hold the key to truth—and love?
Budding artist May Parker is captivated by the Japanese exhibits at the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition and longs to know more about her mother’s heritage—which her mother refuses to speak of because of the heartache she left behind in Japan. Wanting to experience more of the exhibits, May works as a Camera Girl–but her curiosity leads her into danger when a suit of samurai armor becomes the target of an elusive art forger.
After ten years apart, May is reunited with her childhood friend Lee Munro, a police detective assigned to keep a watchful eye on the exposition. Their friendship immediately begins to blossom with hints of something more, but when they become entangled in a dangerous heist involving the samurai armor and their love is threatened, can they overcome the odds against them?
I was intrigued when I read the description of a story about the Yukon Pacific Exposition; May Parker, one of the Camera Girls; Lee Munro, a police detective, and a Japanese exhibit of a samurai suit of armor. This proposed to be an interesting tale, and it certainly was.
May Parker was my favorite character in the book. She is such a forgiving, resilient young lady as she encounters all types of people who judge her unfairly because she is Amerasian. She was an example throughout the book of seeing beyond people’s prejudice. She counted on her faith to help her pardon people and keep a joyful attitude.
I loved the atmosphere of the Yukon Pacific Expo with its sites and sounds. I could imagine being a part of the crowd viewing the exhibits. I loved Lee Munro’s part as the detective who must see that the samurai suit is safely returned to Japan. While this is the third book in the Pictures of the Heart series, it can be read as a standalone. This would be a great book to read and discuss with a friend.
I was given a complimentary copy from the publisher through NetGalley and Celebrate Lit. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
Click here to get your copy!
About the Author
Tracie Peterson is the bestselling author of more than 100 novels, both historical and contemporary, with more than 6 million copies sold. She has won the ACFW Lifetime Achievement Award and the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award. Her avid research resonates in her many bestselling series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana.
Knowing You is book three in the Pictures of the Heart series. This series has proven to be a lot of fun for readers, as well as for me. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the research and chance to share this tidbit of history.
In the summer of 1909, Seattle was finally able to debut The Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition – often affectionately called the AYP. The AYP was set up with amusement park rides, vendors, concerts, and all things typical of a fair. It was also designed to showcase various details about life in Alaska, the Yukon, and a variety of Pacific Islands. The latter included Hawaii, the Philippines, and Japan as well as others. When I started looking into the various displays, I came across the building they put together for the Japan Building. They spoke of the various displays that the building held and how photographs and other pieces of memorabilia told of Japan’s history. It was a fascinating set up and I couldn’t help but think it might be fun to have a heroine who was part Japanese.
I mapped out the story studying various aspects of Japanese history, talking to folks who knew more than I did on the topic and reading (a lot) on things like the Samurai and their armor, the Satsuma Rebellion, and the language and Kanji. I learned so much and tried to weave some of the most interesting bits into the storyline. I kept thinking about the fact that most people in the United States in 1909 probably didn’t even know where Japan was, much less anything about their history. There was, after all, no Internet.
Another fascinating thing about the AYP was the fact that it was set on the campus of the University of Washington. The AYP groomed the grounds and put in beautiful fountains and over 50,000 flowering plants. They built several permanent buildings for the University of Washington and strictly adhered to their policy of no-liquor on campus. This was unusual because all the other fairs and expositions had allowed alcohol. Nevertheless, from June until October the fair saw nearly four million visitors, and from all reports, they had an amazing time.
I hope you’ll enjoy your journey with me to the AYP!
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lakesidelivingsite, December 5
Lighthouse Academy Blog, December 6 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 6
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Cover Lover Book Review, December 9
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Blossoms and Blessings, December 10
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For Him and My Family, December 12
Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, December 13 (Author Interview)
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Holly’s Book Corner, December 14
Paula’s Pad of Inspiration, December 14
Splashes of Joy, December 15
Min Reads and Reviews, December 15
A Modern Day Fairy Tale, December 16
Pause for Tales, December 16
Lily’s Corner, December 17
Lights in a Dark World, December 17
To celebrate her tour, Tracie is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Amazon gift card and one paperback set of the Pictures of the Heart series (Remember Me, Finding Us, Knowing You)!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
About the Book Book: Mortal Queens Author: Victoria McCombs Genre: YA Fae Fantasy Release Date: February 6, 2023 They vanish without a...