Tuesday, August 31, 2021

A Stage for Harriet by Mary-Celeste Ricks #bookreview #regencyromance


A Stage for HarrietA Stage for Harriet by Mary-Celeste Ricks
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Genre: Regency Romance
Source:  Received to Review

Book Description: When farmer's daughter Harriet Shore flees her small seaside town to accept a position as a governess in London, attending lavish balls and parties is the last thing on her mind. She long ago gave up her childish notion of acting, but when the Duchess of Dorset notices Harriet's uncanny resemblance to her own daughter, Virginia, the duchess offers Harriet the role of a lifetime. Befriending and impersonating Virginia is easy enough at first, but Harriet's double life quickly becomes complicated. When her childhood sweetheart, Stephan Grimsby, arrives on the scene, along with some unwanted suitors, the entire charade threatens to unravel.If Harriet maintains the illusion and pleases the duchess, her dreamed-of happy ending would be within reach, but her new friend Virginia might suffer a terrible fate.

My thoughts: "All the world's a stage." Harriet grew up wanting to become an actress then found out that it was a disreputable profession. She finds a "stage" when she is asked to participate in a scheme where she pretends to be her look-alike.

Harriett has been in love with her neighbor and best friend for a very long time. The differences in their status are pointed out by Stephan's mother. She runs away to become a governess to protect her broken heart, and give Stephan a chance to find an appropriate woman without her being around to see it happening.

Fortunately, this is the beginning of Stephan and Harriet's story. The story is sweet and the characters delightful. There were humorous instances and unexpected plot points. I wanted to cheer for Virginia, Harriet, Stephan, and a sailor named Ralph. In their own way, each of the characters was worthy of my esteem and hope for a happily ever after.

This is a sweet romance that was a lot of fun to read. I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own opinion.

Online Purchase Links:
This novel is part of the Kindle Unlimited program.

About the AuthorMary-Celeste Ricks earned a BA from Brigham Young University in humanities with an emphasis in English and minors in editing and Italian. She finally dared to imitate her hero Georgette Heyer after studying abroad in London, taking Romantic period literature courses in both English and Italian and sneaking peeks at 19th century manuscripts while working in the archives.She has two darling children, loves to learn, and enjoys cooking and eating delicious food. She loves love and is currently living happily ever after with her handsome, nerdy husband playing board games, D&D, and video games.

Friday, August 27, 2021

An Engagement of Sorts by Alene Wecker #giveaway #regencyromance #blogtour #bookreview


An Engagement of Sorts by Alene Wecker
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Genre: Regency Romance
Source:  Received to Review

Book Description: Much to her mother’s dismay, spirited Anne Fletcher spent her youth seeking her father’s approval by hunting and riding. More comfortable in breeches than ball gowns, Anne sees the freedoms she once enjoyed slowly taken from her in the name of fashioning her into an eligible young lady. When her parents try to force her into marriage, Anne makes a desperate attempt to salvage her last vestige of independence. If she is to marry, she will do so on her own terms.

Anne strikes a deal: if she cannot secure a man for herself, she will agree to marry the husband her parents approved. She soon finds herself in the last place she would ever choose—that stifling parade of etiquette, the London Season. Anne’s plan is in motion. Now all she needs is a man willing to masquerade as her fiancé.

My thoughts:   If I didn't know better I would almost think that Alene Wecker wrote this book with me in mind.  It has my favorite things!  I will revel in snarky humor, a strong female character who is as clumsy as she is able to think for herself, humorous romance, great characters.... my list could go on and on and on.

Anne Fletcher does not want to marry the victor who is more a brother to her than a prospective groom.  She is fantastic at getting out of tricky or unwanted situations.  She has a strong head on her shoulders and a great sense of self.  She knows her worth, even when the people who should accept her try to change her.

The pairing of the characters of Anne and Mr. Pailing is almost diabolical as well as genius.  Oh my word, I loved them.  It was amazing to me that this is Alene Wecker's debut novel.  The characters and the story flowed really well.  This is an author whom I look forward to reading her works in the future.

Content Warning:  There is a character who tries to force himself upon Anne and makes sexual comments and threats to her.  

Online Purchase Links:

About the Author: Alene Wecker writes because her favorite authors—Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer—haven’t published anything new in ages! Alene graduated from Brigham Young University with a Master of Music in Vocal Performance, though she rarely uses her degree. She likes to tell herself her education comes in handy as she describes debutantes who, like herself, are frequently forced to display their mediocre skills at the piano-forte. When she’s not writing or mothering her six children, she is usually reading, or can sometimes be found singing with Utah Symphony/Utah Opera. She also enjoys traveling and learning new languages. Some of her favorite haunts include: Berlin, Brașov, Bucharest, Budapest, London, Maui, New York City, Oahu, Paris, Rome, San Diego, Vancouver, and Venice.

Website: AleneWecker.com
Facebook: @authoralene
Instagram: @authoralene

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Wednesday, August 18, 2021

The Merchant and the Rogue by Sarah M. Eden #TheMerchantAndTheRogue #HistoricalRomance #HistoricalMystery #BookTour


The Merchant and the Rogue
by Sarah M. Eden
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance
Source:  Received to Review

Book Description:  London, 1865

Vera Sorokina loves reading the Penny Dreadfuls and immersing herself in tales of adventure, mystery, and romance. Her own days are filled with the often mundane work of running the book and print shop she owns with her father. The shop offers her freedom and an income, and while she is grateful for the stability it brings to her life, she often feels lonely.

Brogan Donnelly was born and raised in Ireland, but has lived in London for several years, where he’s built a career as a penny dreadful writer. He has dedicated himself to the plight of the poor with the help of his sister. But with no one to share his life with, he fears London will never truly feel like home.

Brogan and Vera’s paths cross, and the attraction is both immediate and ill-advised. Vera knows from past experience that writers are never to be trusted, and Brogan has reason to suspect not everything at Vera’s print shop is aboveboard. When a growing criminal enterprise begins targeting their area of London, Brogan and Vera must work together to protect the community they’ve both grown to love. But that means they’ll need to learn to trust each other with dangerous secrets that have followed both of them from their home countries.

My thoughts: Sarah M. Eden has crafted another winning book. It is so much fun to read. The authors of the Penny Dreadfuls are still out saving others. This time it is Brogan with his own story. He shares it with Vera, her father owns a publishing shop and she runs it while he runs the printing press.

Vera is in her own right amazing. She takes the street children under her wing by giving them odd jobs to do around the shop and help provide them a way to purchase their very own installments of the penny dreadful publications. She does this although the shop is struggling.

This is where Brogan comes on the scene. He is under assignment for the Dread Master and is investigating on his own. Fortunately, this brings him in contact with Vera. Their effortless banter and work ethic make them mighty main characters. They both like to help unfortunate children.

There is a villain on the scene who is threatening the livelihood of the community. He uses extortion and threats to cause mayhem. Together Brogan and Vera work to bring down the villain and save the businesses in the district. They have help from family and friends. It reminds me that people can make a difference when they unite in a common cause.

The insert of the Penny Dreadful stories is wonderful. The stories go right along with the book. It adds another dimension to the story and is a nice interlude from the main story.

This is the third installment of a series but can be read as a stand-alone. I would highly recommend all of the books. They are well written and fun to read.

Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

P.S. I also purchased a copy for my personal library.

Online Purchase Links:



This trailer got me very excited to read the book!

About the Author: Sarah M. Eden is the author of critically acclaimed and award-winning Proper Romance series novels including The Lady and the Highwayman and Ashes on the Moor. Combining her passion for history and an affinity for love stories, Sarah crafts smart, witty characters and heartfelt romances. She happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library and dreams of one day traveling to all the places she reads about.



Please help Sarah M. Eden get her latest novel, THE MERCHANT AND THE ROGUE, to hit the New York Times best-seller list by purchasing a copy between August 15-22, 2021.

Everyone who submits a copy of their receipt and fills out the form during the week of August 15-22 will receive The Merchant and the Rogue - Swag Bundle. Supplies are limited, so act today. Please visit the Swag Bundle webpage for details. 

Monday, August 16, 2021

Ten Little Disciples by Sierra Wilson - A Christian Children's Picture Book

Ten Little Disciples by Sierra Wilson

Genre: Children's Christian Fiction Book

Source:  Received to Review

Rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Description Playful and yet intentional, Ten Little Disciples take us on a journey through what it looks like to help others. By combining biblical teaching on service and early childhood education, Sierra Wilson creates an entertaining story that helps little readers learn how to count and love others well. It's a perfect bedtime read that will be asked for again and again.

My thoughts:  Ten Little Disciples is a very cute book. It has a positive message on being and doing good. We follow 10 little children as they go about helping others. At each stop, one disciple leaves the group to help someone else.

The book is told in rhyme and has adorable illustrations. I wish I had this book when my kids were children.

Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Online Purchase Links:

About the Author:  Sierra Wilson started talking early and has been a storyteller ever since. She loves to teach and work with children, and this love has shaped her life from working as a junior high/high school English teacher and children’s art teacher to serving as a church children’s leader and a mother. Sierra is passionate about writing, art, hiking, family time, and eating entirely too much chocolate. She currently lives with her husband and three young children in the prairies of Alberta, where she is a toddler-chaser by day and a writer/artist by night.

Visit her WEBPAGE

Visit the Blog Tour Stops!

August 12th - My Book a Day
August 14th - Heidi Reads
August 16th - Bookworm Lisa
August 17th - Geo Librarian
August 18th - Rachelle Christensen
August 19th - Books are Sanity
August 20th - Singing Librarian Books
August 23rd - Life is What it's Called

Friday, August 13, 2021

The Wise One by K.T. Anglehart #bookreview #booktour #giveaway #magic


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

The Wise One
(The Scottish Scrolls #1)
By K.T. Anglehart
Young Adult Fairy Tale, Folklore, Fantasy
Hardcover, Paperback & ebook, 254 Pages
October 25, 2020 by Kat Biggie Press

Worlds collide for both young and mature readers, who will love the fast-paced thrills, chemistry between characters, and interplay of witchy fantasy, mythology, Celtic folklore, and reality in The Wise One—book one of The Scottish Scrolls series.

Mckenna's never thought much of her nightmares, but on her seventeenth birthday, a vivid dream of burning at the stake awakens her dormant abilities, thrusting her into a world where faeries are real, spirits hold a grudge, and a High Priestess obsessed with a 16th-century prophecy is tracking her every move.

Now, her overprotective dads, Seán and Andre, are forced to tell her the truth—they know who her birth mother is, and her life is not the surrogate story she's always been told. Abigail, Mckenna's mom, is some sort of mystic, and Mckenna a Wise One.

Whatever the hell that means.

With the help of a persistent little wren and company of a newfound friend, Mckenna journeys to Ireland in search of her mother and real answers. Along the way, she learns to harness her innate magic and trust her intuition, as best she can anyway—Cillian, a kind and passionate delegate who crosses her path, is proving much harder to read.

Only her mother could truly help her halt her ill fate and prepare her for what's to come . . . before she gives in to the darkness she knows is buried deep within.

Author K.T. Anglehart expertly weaves a story set in Ireland that is both timeless and unique, a perfect cross-market read for those searching for the next endearing urban fantasy classic.

My thoughts: Magic, fairies, and Celtic lore are some of my favorites. That made this book a "no-brainer" for me to pick up.

The book is set during the 1990s. McKenna is a teen who doesn't fit in with most kids. The first thing is that she is teased because she has two dads. It was definitely something that set her apart during the time period. She likes to do her own thing, she isn't super social, and she just found out that her biological dad had a relationship with her mom. She has a mom out there who shipped her and her dad to America from Ireland.

The book is one of self-discovery. McKenna begins to realize she is different in her journey across the sea and to Ireland. She begins to "see" things and to have dreams about people and places from the past. The book really became interesting to me when she started to meet friends of her moms who taught her magical skills and prepared her for her role as a "wise one".

She makes a few friends along the way. Some are wonderful, and others are not so great. The joy really is in the journey. The story is told from multiple viewpoints as a reader, so I knew who had ulterior motives. I'm just waiting for McKenna to catch up.

I would recommend the book to an older YA reader. It contains language, underage drinking, and innuendo that may not be appropriate for some YA readers.

Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Rating: 4 of 5 stars

Praise for the Book

"A heartwarming coming-of-age story with characters that resonate, rich European folklore, and enchanting details that tickle the senses long after the last page is read." —V. G. Anderson, author of The Light in the Sound

(Affiliate links included.)

About the Author

Katrina Tortorici Anglehart is a born and bred Italian-Canadian from Montreal. A devoted academic, she holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism; a graduate certificate in Scriptwriting; and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. After dabbling in TV writing and working as a digital marketing content manager, she left the nine to five to launch her freelance editing and coaching career. Today, she relishes in helping aspiring authors to develop and refine their stories.

Besides English, Katrina speaks French, Italian, and Spanglish. When she's not writing, diving into magical reads, or Netflixing, she's travelling with her favourite human--her high-school-sweetheart-turned-husband, Andy--and obsessing over her pet bunny, Magic, and newly rescued pup, Nessie. Katrina currently lives in Toronto, Ontario.

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One winner will receive a print copy of The Wise One (open to US, CAN and UK)

Ends August 25, 2021

Monday, August 9, 2021

The Barrister and the Letter of Marque by Todd M. Johnson #BethanyHouse #ToddMJohnson #BookTour #HistoricalMystery #BarristerAndTheLetter #Giveaway


The Barrister and the Letter of MarqueThe Barrister and the Letter of Marque by Todd M. Johnson
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Genre: Historical Mystery/Suspense
Source:  Received to Review

Book Description As a barrister in 1818 London, William Snopes has witnessed firsthand the danger of only the wealthy having their voices heard, and he's a strong advocate who defends the poorer classes against the powerful. That changes the day a struggling heiress, Lady Madeleine Jameson, arrives at his door.

In a last-ditch effort to save her faltering estate, Lady Jameson invested in a merchant brig, the Padget. The ship was granted a rare privilege by the king's regent: a Letter of Marque authorizing the captain to seize the cargo of French traders operating illegally in the Indian Sea. Yet when the Padget returns to London, her crew is met by soldiers ready to take possession of their goods and arrest the captain for piracy. And the Letter--the sole proof his actions were legal--has mysteriously vanished.

Moved by the lady's distress, intrigued by the Letter, and goaded by an opposing solicitor, Snopes takes the case. But as he delves deeper into the mystery, he learns that the forces arrayed against Lady Jameson, and now himself, are even more perilous than he'd imagined.

My thoughts: I love historical fiction that is full of intrigue and mystery. The Barrister and the Letter of Marque carried the perfect amount of both that left me anticipating the turning of the page as I dove into the world that Todd M. Johnson created.

Lady Jameson made an unfortunate financial decision that took her and her family to the point of ruin. Their ship was seized in port for piracy, even though a Letter of Marque had been obtained. The letter disappeared the moment it was needed the most. Leading to the retaining of a barrister, William Snopes. Snopes is not just any barrister, he is exceptional. He uses frowned upon techniques to bring about a favorable verdict for his clients. His cunning, style, confidence, and tenacity lead Lady Jameson to his office to seek his help.

The book is reminiscent of the classics. Snopes is willing to hunt down the evidence to determine why the Padget has been seized. Why was a family at the point of bankruptcy targeted? Why was the captain thrown into prison without a trace to his whereabouts? So many pieces of the puzzle did not fit. Snopes could tell that the case of the Crown would not bear up to scrutiny.

The plot is intricate with many players. I loved how Johnson was able to bring them together in a near-seamless fashion. It was an intricate story that was easy to follow along and interesting to read.

The story contains non-graphic violence.

Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Online Purchase Links:

About the Author: Todd M. Johnson is the author of three legal thrillers: The Deposit Slip (2012), Critical Reaction (2013), and Fatal Trust (2017), and The Barrister and the Letter of Marque (2021), his first foray into historical mystery. He has been a practicing attorney for over 30 years, specializing as a trial lawyer. A graduate of Princeton University and the University of Minnesota Law School, he also taught for two years as adjunct professor of International Law and served as a US diplomat in Hong Kong. He lives outside Minneapolis, Minnesota, with his wife and daughter.




“Johnson debuts with a tense story of powerful interests teaming up to thwart a legal challenge in Georgian-era England…Johnson steeps his story in legal maneuvering, layers of intrigue, midnight chases, and even a hint of romance. While faith elements are subtle, this enthralling novel will appeal to fans of both legal thrillers and historical inspirationals.”— Publishers Weekly

“… a mystery worthy of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. This richly historical and lively paced story has all the makings of a modern classic.”— Jocelyn Green, Christy Award-winning author of Shadows of the White City

At once atmospheric and gripping, Johnson's latest is a luminous and refreshing new offering in inspirational historical fiction.”— Rachel McMillan, bestselling author of The London Restoration, and The Mozart Code

“A fascinating glimpse into a Regency London readers seldom see.”— Roseanna M. White, bestselling author of Edwardian fiction

Visit the Tour Stops!

Aug 02           The Readathon 

Aug 02           From Pemberley to Milton 

Aug 02           Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog 

Aug 03           Life of Literature 

Aug 03           Captivated Reading 

Aug 04           Laura's Reviews 

Aug 04           The Green Mockingbird 

Aug 05           My Jane Austen Book Club 

Aug 05           Reading is My Superpower 

Aug 06           Among the Reads 

Aug 06           The Blue Stocking 

Aug 07           Gwendalyn's Books 

Aug 07           Reading with Emily 

Aug 08           Storeybook Reviews 

Aug 08           Rosanne E. Lortz 

Aug 09           Heidi Reads 

Aug 09           Bookworm Lisa 

Aug 10           The Caffeinated Bibliophile 

Aug 10           Wishful Endings 

Aug 10           My Bookish Bliss 

Aug 11           By the Book 

Aug 11           A Bookish Way of Life 

Aug 12           Books, Teacups, & Reviews 

Aug 12           A Darn Good Read 

Aug 13           Fire & Ice 

Aug 14           The Lit Bitch 

Aug 14           The Book Diva Reads 

Aug 15           Vesper's Place 

Giveaway:  I really liked this book and would love to share my review copy with one lucky winner.  Look at the terms and conditions in the upper right sidebar.  Just say hi or tell me why you want a copy of the book in the comments.  Must have a US mailing address (media mail is my favorite).  The contest will last until August 31st.  The winner will be notified by email.  So if your email is not attached to your comment identity, you may want to leave that too.