Sunday 30 November 2014

Ally Broadfield: How to Beguile a Duke

Catherine Malboeuf has travelled from America to reclaim her mother's family home, Walsley Manor, and find a missing family heirloom.     

Nicholas Adair,  Duke of Boulstridge, however, refuses to sell the estate. Convinced of his success and to mollify Catherine he offers her a wager. He will sell the estate if Catherine can secure and a marriage proposal from a member of the ton before the end of the season.  Thus ensues a host of incidents, attempted kidnappings, break ins and theft and on top of all this Catherine has to navigate the social jungle that is the haut ton.                                                                                                                                 

    Regency era romance, a rich duke, mystery and suspense! What more could a girl ask for?!

A perfect blend of everything I enjoy in a novel.
Well written with the classic wit that encapsulates the genre of Regency Romance.

I loved the Darcy-esque proposal and the fiesty Catherine's response! Brilliant.

The cover is a little bit misleading- it's only a little bit naughty ;-)

This title will be available on the 8th of December.

Tiffany Snow: In His Shadow

Book one in The Tangled Ivy Trilogy 

A fast paced romantic thriller. There was so much going on, it was hard to put the book down. I enjoyed all of the characters. The twists and turns of the plot kept it exciting. There were, however, a few wtf moments in the way Ivy allows Devon to treat her. I also had to skim read past the numerous sex scenes. I would like to see her give a nice guy like Scott a chance in the next installment and maybe see a jealous Devon grovelling big time!

My first Tiffany Snow novel but it won't be my last.

This book will be available on the 16th of December 2014

Sunday 16 November 2014

Erica Ridley-Dukes of War

Erica Ridley
The Dukes of War : Book two

The Earl's Defiant Wallflower

The best thing I've read since Julia Quinn's Bridgerton series.

Grace is an American looking for a rich and titled husband. She needs the money to bring her sick mother home to England. She finds herself attracted to Oliver, the Earl of Carlisle. The problem is his finances are in complete disarray and he is looking for a rich heiress to pull him out of bankruptcy.

This is such a sweet, romantic story. Grace and Oliver are just adorable. There is a fairy tale quality about how they meet and fall in love. The ballroom scene in Chapter 6 was just magical. I loved how they talked about marriage during a dance, in between partners and suffering through mundane chitchat about the weather. By the end of the dance it is obvious they are in love but can't act on it.

The supporting characters were comical and I'm looking forward to reading their stories in the rest of the series.

It all resolved a little too easily and quickly. There was so much more scope for drama and comedy with the pair. I would have liked to see Oliver deal with a rival for Grace or someone rich and slimy who was trying to win the bet with her.
I got to the end of the story too fast! I'd have loved a few more chapters in the middle of the book. I just wasn't ready to say goodbye to Oliver and Grace. Sigh.

Sunday 9 November 2014

Shattered Witness 

Anna DeStefano

After an assault, CEO Shaw Cassidy's memory is shattered. Under suspicion of treason, only her blocked memories can provide the answers needed to prove her innocence.
Tucked away on her isolated childhood summer home on Lake View Mountain, Cassidy should be in the ideal place to rest in familiar surroundings. But Cassidy is plagued by nightmares coupled with experiencing numerous accidents in the old home and the nagging feeling that she is being constantly watched, puts Cassidy's nerves on edge.

Unbeknownst to Cassidy, her childhood neighbour, friend, and ex-boyfriend, special agent Cole Marinos, has been assigned the undercover task of keeping an eye on her in case she remembers any details pertinent to the case. Although she broke his heart when they were young, and he hasn't seen her in fifteen years, he is convinced that she is innocent and is willing to risk his career to prove it. The only problem is Cassidy can't remember him, she doesn't trust him and she's not convinced he's not the one stalking her.

As Shaw's memory returns, each attack gets more personal and designed to implicate Cole. She has to decide whether or not Cole is out to destroy her or take a chance on the man she once loved and is falling in love with again.

An exciting blend of mystery, intrique, romance and suspense. This fast paced story will have you reading into the wee hours.  Recommended!

This book is out on the 11th of November! Pre-order a copy now.

               True Pretenses (Lively St. Lemeston)

                                                                    Rose Lerner

Ash Cohen raised himself and his younger brother, Rafe, in the slums of London. They survived through any means possible and by the time they had reached adulthood they were confident con artists who tricked people out of their money.

Ash is heartbroken when Rafe becomes disillusioned with this ignoble life and wants out. He is determined to grant his brother's wish and seeks to set him up for life in one last big con. Ash's plan of action is to find a wealthy heiress and convince her to marry his brother. He sets his sights on Lydia Reeve, whom he discovers is anxious to gain access to her inheritance so that she can help the needy in her community. To do so, she needs a husband. Marrying the pair off would be the solution to both their problems. 

Ash's matchmaking plans go awry when he finds himself falling in love with Lydia. Also, family  secrets and past sins threaten his freedom and his relationship with his brother. 
When Rafe disappears and Ash is arrested, the rosy future they had envisioned turns bleak.

Poignant and romantic, this is not the usual lighthearted, witty historical romance that most readers of the genre would expect. The Cohen brothers had a bleak childhood and there is a deep sense of this throughout the story. It shapes the characters' interactions with people and their expectations from life. Nevertheless, the reader is taken on a very interesting journey and you can't help but hope for, and delight in, the rags to riches happily ever after.

This title is available to pre-order now on Amazon and will be published in January 2015

Saturday 1 November 2014

The Innkeeper of Bethlehem-The Story of Santa Claus

by Scott Roloff

If you want a Christmas story that includes the real meaning of Christmas with a little twist in the form of Santa- then this will not fail to entertain. It is told in the form of a story within a story and the idea is that you read a short chapter each day during the run-up to Christmas.

The only thing I found disappointing, is that there are no illustrations in the book. When I read stories aloud to children there are always the few who would literally pull the book out of my hands to see the picture. Some children just need that extra connection and it adds to their enjoyment.

I have mixed feelings about this book.
To be honest, I was expecting a humorous Christmas picture book about Santa and the birth of Jesus but this is the complete opposite.
It is a serious retelling of the life of Jesus and aims to give children an understanding of Santa within this Christian context. Although it is a very good, enjoyable story I'm not entirely sure that I like the inclusion of Santa within this biblical tale. To me, Santa is Saint Nicholas and the history buff in me would prefer the more accurate version of his origins rather than mixed in with a Bible story.
As this book is meant to be read aloud to children who believe in Santa, there are a few scenes that I would probably gloss over or leave out- e.g the killing of Joseph by the Roman centurion and Jesus wanting to kill him in revenge.

Also, the death of Jesus is a scary image for little children to have in their head. Indeed, in Irish Catholic primary schools the details of His death are not taught during the children's first few years at school.

Never Marry a Viscount

Scandal at the House of Russell Book 3

Another good historical romance to read on these wet dreary days in Inishowen.
Although the third in the series, it works well as a stand-alone. 
I haven't read the others and I really enjoyed it.

Sophie Russell, once a sought after society’s darling, is disgraced after a scandal involving her father and his untimely death. She and her sisters lose the family home. The three ladies determine to prove their father innocent of the crime he was accused of. Sophie suspects the new owner of her home, Viscount Griffiths, is the real villain and so decides to investigate. She poses as the new cook with the aim of spying him.

Viscount Griffiths, however, mistakes her for a mistress he hired  sight unseen from an establishment in London. And so, this leads to many comic scenes and banter with lots of double entendres for the reader to chuckle through. 
The villain in the story is not difficult to detect but the journey the reader takes along with Sophie is enjoyable and includes some good suspenseful scenes.

The Viscount's Christmas Temptation (The Dukes of War #1) Erica Ridley


Certain individuals might consider Lady Amelia Pembroke a managing sort of female, but truly, most people would be lost without her help. Why, the latest on-dit is that rakish Viscount Sheffield is canceling the fete of the year because he hasn't time for silly soirees. He doesn't need time--he needs her!

When a flash of lightning destroys the venue for his family's annual Christmas ball, Lord Benedict Sheffield intends to enjoy a relaxing holiday for once. But after twelve days of beguiling Lady Amelia's guerrilla tactics, he's up to his cravat with tinsel... and tumbling head over heels in love.

Regency Era Historical Romance Novella

The Dukes of War historical romance books in series order:

  1. The Viscount's Christmas Temptation
  2. The Earl's Defiant Wallflower
  3. The Captain's Bluestocking Mistress
  4. The Major's Faux Fiancee
  5. The Brigadier's Runaway Bride
  6. The Pirate's Tempting Stowaway
  7. The Duke's Accidental Wife
Review: 5 stars

A delight to read. A charming and funny introduction to the Dukes of War series. I loved it. Well written and entertaining, it was just enough to get me excited about reading the rest of the series.

I imagine (hopefully) that Amelia and Lord Sheffield will feature in consequent titles and that Lord Pembroke will get his own Happily Ever After.

This novella is now free to download for a limited time. Go get it!