8/10

#BookReview Brat: An ’80s Story by Andrew McCarthy @GrandCentralPub #Brat #AndrewMcCarthy #GrandCentralPub

#BookReview Brat: An ’80s Story by Andrew McCarthy @GrandCentralPub #Brat #AndrewMcCarthy #GrandCentralPub Title: Brat: An '80s Story

Author: Andrew McCarthy

Published by: Grand Central Publishing on May 11, 2021

Genres: Nonfiction

Pages: 240

Format: Hardcover

Source: Grand Central Publishing

Book Rating: 8/10

Fans of Patti Smith’s Just Kids and Rob Lowe’s StoriesI Only Tell My Friends will love this beautifully written, entertaining, and emotionally honest memoir by an actor, director, and author who found his start as an 80s Brat pack member.

 Most people know Andrew McCarthy from his movie roles in Pretty in Pink, St. Elmo’s Fire, Weekend at Bernie’s, and Less than Zero, and as a charter member of Hollywood’s Brat Pack. That iconic group of ingenues and heartthrobs included Rob Lowe, Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez, and Demi Moore, and has come to represent both a genre of film and an era of pop culture.

In his memoir Brat: An ’80s Story, McCarthy focuses his gaze on that singular moment in time. The result is a revealing look at coming of age in a maelstrom, reckoning with conflicted ambition, innocence, addiction, and masculinity. New York City of the 1980s is brought to vivid life in these pages, from scoring loose joints in Washington Square Park to skipping school in favor of the dark revival houses of the Village where he fell in love with the movies that would change his life. 

Filled with personal revelations of innocence lost to heady days in Hollywood with John Hughes and an iconic cast of characters, Brat is a surprising and intimate story of an outsider caught up in a most unwitting success.


Review:

Informative, interesting, and entertaining!

Brat: An ’80s Story is the honest, fascinating autobiography of Andrew McCarthy’s personal and professional successes, struggles, motivations, and accomplishments as a young actor in the early 1980s.

The writing is perceptive and genuine. And the novel is an introspective, compelling tale of one man’s life from a NY college student to the lights and fame of Hollywood in a time when high school movies aimed at teens would ultimately change pop culture forever.

Overall, Brat: An ’80s Story is a candid, intriguing, enjoyable tale by McCarthy that gives an insightful look into a talented life filled with hard work, determination, luck, and exceptional moments, but also one unfortunately often riddled with insecurity and addiction.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                

 

 

 

Thank you to Grand Central Publishing for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Andrew McCarthy

Andrew McCarthy is a director, an award winning travel writer, and—of course—an actor. He made his professional début at 19 in Class, and has appeared in dozens of films, including such iconic movies as Pretty in Pink, St. Elmo’s Fire, Less Then Zero, and cult favorites Weekend At Bernie’s and Mannequin. He chronicles these films and his time as a member of the Brat Pack in his upcoming memoir BRAT: An ‘80s Story (order here), to be published by Grand Central in May of 2021.

Andrew has directed nearly a hundred hours of television, including some of today’s biggest hits, including The Blacklist, Grace and Frankie, New Amsterdam, Orange is the New Black, and many others.

For a dozen years Andrew served as an editor-at-large with National Geographic Traveler magazine. He has written for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Atlantic, Time, Travel+Leisure, Town & Country, Men’s Journal, Bon Appetit, and many others. He has been named Travel Journalist of the Year by The Society of American Travel Writers, as well as serving as guest editor of the prestigious BEST AMERICAN TRAVEL WRITING anthology.

Andrew is the author of a travel memoir, THE LONGEST WAY HOME and a Young Adult novel JUST FLY AWAY — both New York Times bestsellers.

He lives in New York.

Photo courtesy of Author's Website.

#BookReview The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheHiddenWife #JoannaRees #AStitchinTiime

#BookReview The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees @PGCBooks @panmacmillan #TheHiddenWife #JoannaRees #AStitchinTiime Title: The Hidden Wife

Author: Joanna Rees

Series: A Stitch in Time #2

Published by: Pan Macmillan on May 4, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 496

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8/10

The Hidden Wife by Joanna Rees is the second novel in A Stitch in Time – a sweeping historical trilogy.

Paris, 1928

Having fled London and been on the run around Europe, Vita Casey has established a new life for herself, keeping a low profile as a dresser at a cabaret hall where Nancy is part of the risqué dance troupe. It’s a vibrant world of wild parties, drugs and jazz music.

But despite the fun, hedonistic lifestyle they lead, Vita longs for a proper career and to re-kindle her dream of designing lingerie. When an opportunity to work for famous couturier Jenny Sacerdote presents itself, Vita grabs it with both hands and is soon exposed to an altogether different side of Paris society. Before long, romance blossoms in the unlikeliest of places.

However, left to her own devices, Nancy spirals into danger and drug abuse and Vita has to save her friend. But can Vita really trust the people who want to help her? When there are those back in England who wish to see her ruined and forced to pay for the past she ran away from . . .


Review:

Stylish, devious, and intriguing!

The Hidden Wife is a dramatic, menacing tale that picks up right where The Runaway Daughter left off, taking us back into the life of Anna Darton, aka Vita Casey, as with the help of her best friend Nancy and a whole slew of newcomers tries to forget her troubled past and settle into a new life in Paris complete with a highly-coveted position working for the esteemed couturier Jenny Sacerdote.

The prose is smooth and vivid. The characters are lively, troubled, and genuine. And the story sweeps you away to 1920s Paris, where glitz and glamour abound, indulgence is rife, romance is everywhere, and companions are not always as trustworthy as they first appear.

Overall, The Hidden Wife is an immersive, suspenseful, spirited sequel in the A Stitch in Time series by Rees, and I am eagerly awaiting the publication of the third book in this sinister, historical trilogy to see how this story will ultimately conclude.

 

This novel is available on May 4, 2021.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

             

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Joanna Rees

Joanna Rees, aka Josie Lloyd and Jo Rees, is a bestselling writer of twelve novels, including rom-coms, blockbusters and big- hearted adventures such as Come Together, Platinum and A Twist of Fate.The Runaway Daughter, published in August 2019, is the first in The Stitch in Time trilogy set in the 1920s and following the fortune of budding fashion designer and girl-about-town, Vita Casey. The second part, The Hidden Wife is out in 2020.Based in Brighton, Joanna is married to the author Emlyn Rees with whom she has three daughters. They have co-written seven novels, including the Sunday Times number one bestseller Come Together, which was translated into twenty-seven languages and made into a film. They have written three bestselling parodies of their favourite children’s books, including We’re Going On A Bar Hunt and The Teenager Who Came To Tea as well as a light-hearted activity book encouraging people to stop being addicted to their technology called Switch It Off.

Photograph from www.curtisbrown.co.uk.

#BookReview I Thought You Said This Would Work by Ann Garvin @LUAuthors @AmazonPub @OverTheRiverPR #IThoughtYouSaidThisWouldWork #AnnGarvin #LakeUnion #OTRPR

#BookReview I Thought You Said This Would Work by Ann Garvin @LUAuthors @AmazonPub @OverTheRiverPR #IThoughtYouSaidThisWouldWork #AnnGarvin #LakeUnion #OTRPR Title: I Thought You Said This Would Work

Author: Ann Garvin

Published by: Lake Union Publishing on May 1, 2021

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 302

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: OTRPR, Amazon Publishing

Book Rating: 8/10

A road trip can drive anyone over the edge—especially two former best friends—in bestselling author Ann Garvin’s funny and poignant novel about broken bonds, messy histories, and the power of forgiveness.

Widowed Samantha Arias hasn’t spoken to Holly Dunfee in forever. It’s for the best. Samantha prefers to avoid conflict. The blisteringly honest Holly craves it. What they still have in common puts them both back on speed dial: a mutual love for Katie, their best friend of twenty-five years, now hospitalized with cancer and needing one little errand from her old college roomies.

It’s simple: travel cross-country together, steal her loathsome ex-husband’s VW camper, find Katie’s diabetic Great Pyrenees at a Utah rescue, and drive him back home to Wisconsin. If it’ll make Katie happy, no favor is too big (one hundred pounds), too daunting (two thousand miles), or too illegal (ish), even when a boho D-list celebrity hitches a ride and drives the road trip in fresh directions.

Samantha and Holly are following every new turn—toward second chances, unexpected romance, and self-discovery—and finally blowing the dust off the secret that broke their friendship. On the open road, they’ll try to put it back together—for themselves, and especially for the love of Katie.


Review:

Humorous, heartwarming, and sweet!

I Thought You Said This Would Work is an optimistic, touching story that takes you into the lives of three old friends and one unexpectedly new one as they embark on a journey to steal a camper, rescue a dog, confront grievances from the past, meet new people, welcome new additions, and prepare for a heart-wrenching goodbye.

The writing style is sensitive and light. The characters are quirky, multilayered, and endearing. And the plot is a heartfelt, lovely mix of friendship, family, introspection, parenthood, support, forgiveness, love, loss, drama, taking chances, and moving on.

Overall, I Thought You Said This Would Work is a pensive, witty, heartfelt tale by Garvin that reminds us to always live life to the fullest and highlights the importance and power of female friendships.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

         

 

 

Thank you to OTRPR and Amazon Publishing for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Ann Garvin

Ann Garvin, Ph.D. is the USA Today Bestselling author of I Like You Just Fine When You’re Not Around, The Dog Year, and On Maggie’s Watch. She teaches writing at the University of Wisconsin Continuing Education and Drexel University Masters of Fine Arts program and has held positions at Miami University and Southern New Hampshire in their Masters of Fine Arts program.
Ann is the founder of the Tall Poppy Writers where she is committed to helping women writers succeed. She is a sought-after speaker on writing, leadership and health and has taught extensively in NY, San Francisco, LA, Boston, and at festivals across the country.

Photo courtesy of Author's Goodreads Page.

#BookReview The Unfit Heiress by Audrey Clare Farley @GrandCentralPub #TheUnfitHeiress #AudreyClareFarley #AnnCooperHewitt #GrandCentralPub

#BookReview The Unfit Heiress by Audrey Clare Farley @GrandCentralPub #TheUnfitHeiress #AudreyClareFarley #AnnCooperHewitt #GrandCentralPub Title: The Unfit Heiress

Author: Audrey Clare Farley

Published by: Grand Central Publishing on Apr. 2, 2021

Genres: Nonfiction

Pages: 304

Format: Hardcover

Source: Grand Central Publishing

Book Rating: 8/10

For readers of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and The Phantom of Fifth Avenue, a page-turning drama of fortunes, eugenics and women’s reproductive rights framed by the sordid court battle between Ann Cooper Hewitt and her socialite mother.

At the turn of the twentieth century, American women began to reject Victorian propriety in favor of passion and livelihood outside the home. This alarmed authorities, who feared certain “over-sexed” women could destroy civilization if allowed to reproduce and pass on their defects. Set against this backdrop, The Unfit Heiress chronicles the fight for inheritance, both genetic and monetary, between Ann Cooper Hewitt and her mother Maryon.

In 1934, aided by a California eugenics law, the socialite Maryon Cooper Hewitt had her “promiscuous” daughter declared feebleminded and sterilized without her knowledge. She did this to deprive Ann of millions of dollars from her father’s estate, which contained a child-bearing stipulation. When a sensational court case ensued, the American public was captivated. So were eugenicists, who saw an opportunity to restrict reproductive rights in America for decades to come.

This riveting story unfolds through the brilliant research of Audrey Clare Farley, who captures the interior lives of these women on the pages and poses questions that remain relevant today: What does it mean to be “unfit” for motherhood? In the battle for reproductive rights, can we forgive the women who side against us? And can we forgive our mothers if they are the ones who inflict the deepest wounds?


Review:

Detailed, fascinating, and shocking!

The Unfit Heiress is the candid, expository tale of Ann Cooper Hewitt, a young woman who sued her mother in 1936 for involuntarily having her sterilized in order to acquire her inheritance, as well as an inside look into her infamous parent’s history and relationship, and the horrifying practice of forced sterilization.

The writing is intensive and insightful. And the novel is an intriguing tale of one woman’s personal experiences, legal battles, and struggles to find compensation, justice, love and happiness.

Overall, The Unfit Heiress is a thought-provoking, comprehensive debut by Audrey Clare Farley that does a remarkable job of highlighting her incredible knowledge and research into this monumental case, the eugenics movement, and the evolution of society’s perception and acceptance of women’s sexuality.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                   

 

 

 

Thank you to Grand Central Publishing for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Audrey Clare Farley

Audrey Clare Farley is a writer, book reviewer, and historian of twentieth-century American fiction and culture. Having earned a PhD in English from University of Maryland, College Park in 2017, she occasionally lectures in history and literature at local universities. Her essay on Ann Cooper Hewitt, published in July 2019 in Narratively, was the publication’s second most-read story of the year. Her writing on the eugenics movement and other topics has appeared in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, The New Republic, Public Books, Lady Science, Longreads, and Marginalia Review of Books, where she is a contributing editor. She lives in Hanover, Pennsylvania.

Photo by Grace Farley.

#BookReview A Hundred Suns by Karin Tanabe @karintanabe @BookSparks @StMartinsPress #AHundredSuns #KarinTanabe #SPRC2021 #SpringBookScope

#BookReview A Hundred Suns by Karin Tanabe @karintanabe @BookSparks @StMartinsPress #AHundredSuns #KarinTanabe #SPRC2021 #SpringBookScope Title: A Hundred Suns

Author: Karin Tanabe

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Mar. 16, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback

Source: BookSparks

Book Rating: 8/10

A faraway land.
A family’s dynasty.
A trail of secrets that could shatter their glamorous lifestyle.

On a humid afternoon in 1933, American Jessie Lesage steps off a boat from Paris and onto the shores of Vietnam. Accompanying her French husband Victor, an heir to the Michelin rubber fortune, she’s certain that their new life is full of promise, for while the rest of the world is sinking into economic depression, Indochine is gold for the Michelins. Jessie knows that the vast plantations near Saigon are the key to the family’s prosperity, and though they have recently been marred in scandal, she needs them to succeed for her husband’s sake—and to ensure that the life she left behind in America stays buried in the past.

Jessie dives into the glamorous colonial world, where money is king and morals are brushed aside, and meets Marcelle de Fabry, a spellbinding expat with a wealthy Indochinese lover, the silk tycoon Khoi Nguyen. Descending on Jessie’s world like a hurricane, Marcelle proves to be an exuberant guide to colonial life. But hidden beneath her vivacious exterior is a fierce desire to put the colony back in the hands of its people––starting with the Michelin plantations.

It doesn’t take long for the sun-drenched days and champagne-soaked nights to catch up with Jessie. With an increasingly fractured mind, her affection for Indochine falters. And as a fiery political struggle builds around her, Jessie begins to wonder what’s real in a friendship that she suspects may be nothing but a house of cards.

Motivated by love, driven by ambition, and seeking self-preservation at all costs, Jessie and Marcelle each toe the line between friend and foe, ethics and excess. Cast against the stylish backdrop of 1920s Paris and 1930s Indochine, in a time and place defined by contrasts and convictions, Karin Tanabe’s A Hundred Suns is historical fiction at its lush, suspenseful best.


Review:

Tense, lush, and twisty!

A Hundred Suns is predominantly set in Hanoi during 1933 and is told from two different perspectives. Jesse Lesage, a young mother who becomes overwhelmed and in over her head when she gets swept up in the ex-pat lifestyle while her husband, a member of the renowned Michelin family, is away overseeing his family’s rubber plantations, and Marcelle de Fabry, a charming woman on a ceaseless pursuit for retribution who will do whatever it takes to exact revenge on those she deems responsible. 

The prose is clever and rich. The characters are multifaceted, driven, and secretive. And the plot told from alternating perspectives is a mysterious, gripping tale about life, love, friendship, indulgences, political unrest, heartbreak, loss, guilt, grief, vengeance, and deception.

Overall, A Hundred Suns is an intriguing blend of evocative fiction, captivating suspense, and palpable emotion, and as a historical fiction lover, I think what I enjoyed the most was being able to delve into a time and place not typically found in this genre.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to BookSparks and Karin Tanabe for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Karin Tanabe

KARIN TANABE is the author of six novels, including A Hundred Suns and The Gilded Years (soon to be a major motion picture starring Zendaya, who will produce alongside Reese Witherspoon/Hello Sunshine). A former Politico reporter, she has also written for The Washington Post, the Miami Herald, the Chicago Tribune, and Newsday. She has appeared as a celebrity and politics expert on Entertainment Tonight, CNN, and CBS Early Show. A graduate of Vassar College, Karin lives in Washington, D.C.

#BookReview The Ladies of the Secret Circus by Constance Sayers @redhookbooks @HBGCanada @BookSparks #TheLadiesoftheSecretCircus #ConstanceSayers #SPRC2021 #SpringBookScope

#BookReview The Ladies of the Secret Circus by Constance Sayers @redhookbooks @HBGCanada @BookSparks #TheLadiesoftheSecretCircus #ConstanceSayers #SPRC2021 #SpringBookScope Title: The Ladies of the Secret Circus

Author: Constance Sayers

Published by: Redhook Books on Mar. 17, 2020

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Historical Fiction, Fantasy

Pages: 448

Format: Hardcover

Source: HBG Canada, BookSparks

Book Rating: 8/10

Paris, 1925: To enter the Secret Circus is to enter a world of wonder-a world where women tame magnificent beasts, carousels take you back in time, and trapeze artists float across the sky. But each daring feat has a cost. Bound to her family’s strange and magical circus, it’s the only world Cecile Cabot knows-until she meets a charismatic young painter and embarks on a passionate love affair that could cost her everything.

Virginia, 2005: Lara Barnes is on top of the world-until her fiancé disappears on their wedding day. Desperate, her search for answers unexpectedly leads to her great-grandmother’s journals and sweeps her into the story of a dark circus and a generational curse that has been claiming payment from the women in her family for generations.


Review:

Rich, compelling, and mystical!

The Ladies of the Secret Circus transports you from present-day Virginia to 1920s Paris as it immerses you into the multi-generational, circus-owning Cabot family and all the powerful emotions, tragic memories, dark magic, fantastical elements, and long-buried secrets that swirl around them.

The prose is dark and mysterious. The characters are multi-layered, vulnerable, cursed, and troubled. And the plot told from alternating timelines is an ominous tale full of familial drama, heartache, tension, obsession, death, revenge, jealousy, sacrifice, sibling rivalry, and violence.

Overall, The Ladies of the Secret Circus is a spellbinding, atmospheric, romantic tale by Sayers that captivated me from the very first page and ultimately left me satisfied and highly entertained.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to HBG Canada and BookSparks for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Constance Sayers

Constance Sayers is the author of A Witch in Time and The Ladies of the Secret Circus which will be published on March 23, 2021, from Redhook (Hachette Book Group).

A finalist for Alternating Current’s 2016 Luminaire Award for Best Prose, her short stories have appeared in Souvenir and Amazing Graces: Yet Another Collection of Fiction by Washington Area Women as well as The Sky is a Free Country. Her short fiction has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net.

She received her master of arts in English from George Mason University and graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor of arts in writing from the University of Pittsburgh. She attended The Bread Loaf Writers Conference where she studied with Charles Baxter and Lauren Groff. A media executive, she’s twice been named one of the “Top 100 Media People in America” by Folio and included in their list of “Top Women in Media.”

She lives outside of Washington DC. Like her character in The Ladies of the Secret Circus, she was the host of a radio show from midnight to six.

Photo by Julie Ann Pixler.

#BookReview After Alice Fell by Kim Taylor Blakemore @AmazonPub @LUAuthors #AfterAliceFell #KimTaylorBlakemore

#BookReview After Alice Fell by Kim Taylor Blakemore @AmazonPub @LUAuthors #AfterAliceFell #KimTaylorBlakemore Title: After Alice Fell

Author: Kim Taylor Blakemore

Published by: Lake Union Publishing on Mar. 1, 2021

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 288

Format: Paperback

Source: Amazon Publishing

Book Rating: 8/10

Until she discovers the truth of her sister’s death, no one will rest in peace.

New Hampshire, 1865. Marion Abbott is summoned to Brawders House asylum to collect the body of her sister, Alice. She’d been found dead after falling four stories from a steep-pitched roof. Officially: an accident. Confidentially: suicide. But Marion believes a third option: murder.

Returning to her family home to stay with her brother and his second wife, the recently widowed Marion is expected to quiet her feelings of guilt and grief—to let go of the dead and embrace the living. But that’s not easy in this house full of haunting memories.

Just when the search for the truth seems hopeless, a stranger approaches Marion with chilling words: I saw her fall.

Now Marion is more determined than ever to find out what happened that night at Brawders, and why. With no one she can trust, Marion may risk her own life to uncover the secrets buried with Alice in the family plot.


Review:

Gritty, immersive, and haunting!

After Alice Fell is a sinister, historical thriller set in New Hampshire during 1865 that takes you into the life of Marion Abbott, a young woman determined to discover what really happened to her sister Alice at Brawders House, the local asylum, and prove once and for all that her sister didn’t commit suicide but was actually murdered.

The writing is atmospheric and eerie. The characters are tormented, insistent, and resourceful. And the plot is a taut, twisty, evocative tale rife with desperation, manipulation, abuse, familial dynamics, deviance, greed, jealousy, and murder.

Overall, After Alice Fell is a dark, engrossing, well-written tale by Kim Taylor Blakemore that does a wonderful job of highlighting the struggles and hardships of life at the end of the civil war, and reminds us of some of the unimaginable, horrific practices deemed appropriate treatments at that time for those considered to be mentally defective.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

         

 

 

Thank you to Amazon Publishing for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review.

About Kim Taylor Blakemore

Kim Taylor Blakemore is the author of the historical mysteries THE COMPANION and AFTER ALICE FELL (March 2021). Publishers Weekly calls The Companion a "captivating tale of psychological suspense."

Other novels include BOWERY GIRL a NYPL Best Reads for Teens; and CISSY FUNK, a Willa Literary Award winner for Best YA Novel.

She is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers and Historical Novel Society. She and her family reside in the Pacific Northwest, and she loves the rain. Truly.

Photograph courtesy of Author's Goodreads Page.

  

#BookReview A Rogue to Remember by Emily Sullivan @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForeverPub #ReadForever2021 #ARoguetoRemember #EmilySullivan #LeagueofScoundrelsSeries

#BookReview A Rogue to Remember by Emily Sullivan @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForeverPub #ReadForever2021 #ARoguetoRemember #EmilySullivan #LeagueofScoundrelsSeries Title: A Rogue to Remember

Author: Emily Sullivan

Series: League of Scoundrels #1

Published by: Forever on Mar. 9, 2021

Genres: Historical Romance

Pages: 313

Format: Paperback

Source: Forever

Book Rating: 8/10

In this irresistible historical romance debut, a seasoned spy sets out to rescue the childhood friend he once loved from a reputation-destroying rumor—only to discover that she is actually the source.

After enduring five interminable seasons, Lottie Carlisle has had enough of shallow London society, her boring little life, and her uncle Alfred’s meddling. When he demands she accept a proposal by the end of next season or else he will choose a husband for her, she devises a plan: create a scandal shocking enough to make her unmarriageable and spend her spinsterhood far enough away in the countryside where no one will ever recognize her.

Alec Gresham hasn’t seen Lottie since he left his childhood friend without a word five years ago. So he’s not surprised to find her furious when he appears on her doorstep. Especially bearing the news he brings: her uncle is dying, her blasted reputation is still intact, and Lottie must return home. As they make the journey back to her family estate, it becomes increasingly clear that the last five years hasn’t erased their history, nor their explosive chemistry. Can Lottie look past her old heartache and trust Alec, or will his secrets doom their relationship once again?


Review:

Picturesque, passionate, and mysterious!

A Rogue to Remember is a lighthearted, compelling, second-chance romance that features the independent, strong-willed Lottie Carlisle, who successfully flees London for the Italian countryside in order to ruin her reputation and foil her uncle’s attempts to have her married off by the season’s end, that is until Alec Gresham, a spy for the Crown and her childhood friend and former crush finds her and endeavours to return her home.

The prose is engaging and fun. The characters are secretive, multilayered, and spontaneous. And the plot is a charming mix of friendship, family, drama, emotion, secrets, societal expectations, tender moments, and perilous situations.

Overall,  A Rogue to Remember is a seductive, spicy, highly entertaining debut by Sullivan that has the added bonus of sweeping you away to 1897 Italy instead of the typical UK setting most often found in this genre.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following link.

                 

 

 

Thank you to Forever & Grand Central Publishing for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Emily Sullivan

Emily Sullivan is an award-winning author of historical romance set in the late Victorian period. Her love of romance first began when she was an angsty, tortured teenager, but now she prefers stories with a HEA. She has both a BA and MA in English and her writing has been featured in a variety of print and online publications, including The Southampton Review and The Toast. When she isn’t writing or reading, she enjoys planning fantasy trips abroad, watching every costume drama on Netflix, and working her way through Faber and Faber’s Adult Piano Adventures, which is not as racy as it sounds.

#BookReview When We Were Young by Jaclyn Goldis @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForeverPub #ReadForever2021 #JaclynGoldis #WhenWeWereYoung

#BookReview When We Were Young by Jaclyn Goldis @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForeverPub #ReadForever2021 #JaclynGoldis #WhenWeWereYoung Title: When We Were Young

Author: Jaclyn Goldis

Published by: Forever on Feb. 16, 2021

Genres: Women's Fiction, Historical Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback

Source: Forever

Book Rating: 8/10

Three generations of women come together in this page-turning debut full of family secrets, heart-wrenching drama, and the promise of second chances.

Corfu, 1942: To sixteen-year-old Sarah Batis, the Nazis are a distant danger—of far greater threat is the opposing needs of her heart and her people. Tradition demands that Sarah marry a Jewish man. Only Sarah has fallen in love with a fisherman outside their community. And when the Nazis invade, Sarah must watch from afar as her family is taken away. . .

Corfu, 2004: Sarah’s daughter, Bea, has built a happy life with a steadfast husband and two independent daughters. Their summers on the Greek island with the Winn family appear idyllic, especially the love that blossoms between Bea’s daughter Joey and Leo Winn. But there is a secret threatening their beach paradise.

Florida, 2019: Joey is only days away from marrying the nice Jewish man her family adores. The arrival of Leo, Joey’s first love, sends her reeling. Even after fifteen years, the attraction between them burns bright—but Leo isn’t looking for a happy reunion. He’s there to reveal why he really broke up with her during their last summer together.

Weddings have a way of bringing out the best—and worst—in those you love the most. And as the revelations of her family flood to the surface, what Joey learns will either bring them closer together . . . or tear them apart forever.


Review:

Captivating, poignant, and nostalgic!

When We Were Young is a heart-wrenching, affecting tale that takes you on a journey into the lives of three main characters. Sarah, a young Jewish girl who can never quite forgive after her love for a fisherman saves her life but not her family during the Nazis invasion of Corfu; Bea, an uninhibited mother of two who loves spending summers with family friends while simultaneously hiding a secret that could possibly destroy them all; and Joey, a woman whose life becomes completely upheaved when the love of her life suddenly reappears a few days before her upcoming nuptials to another man.

The prose is emotive and smooth. The characters are confused, troubled, and heartbroken. And the plot using a past/present, back-and-forth style intertwines and unravels effortlessly into a touching tale of familial dynamics, drama, emotion, secrets, love, loss, duty, heartbreak, passion, tradition, and self-discovery.

Overall, When We Were Young is a sentimental, heartfelt, promising debut by Goldis that does a wonderful job of highlighting the complex ties that bind families together and reminds us that happy-ever-after endings rarely resemble those we read about in fairytales.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

            

 

 

Thank you to Forever and Grand Central Publishing for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Jaclyn Goldis

Jaclyn Goldis is a graduate of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and NYU Law. She practiced trust and estate law at a large Chicago law firm for seven years before leaving her job to travel the world and write novels. After culling her possessions into only what would fit in a backpack, she traveled for over a year until settling in Tel Aviv, where she can often be found writing from cafés near the beach. She loves to hear from readers.

#BookReview The Spinster and the Rake by Eva Devon @evadevonauthor @entangledpub @angelamelamud #TheSpinsterandtheRake #EvaDevon #NeveraWallflowerSeries

#BookReview The Spinster and the Rake by Eva Devon @evadevonauthor @entangledpub @angelamelamud #TheSpinsterandtheRake #EvaDevon #NeveraWallflowerSeries Title: The Spinster and the Rake

Author: Eva Devon

Series: Never a Wallflower #1

Published by: Entangled Publishing on Feb. 9, 2021

Genres: Historical Romance

Pages: 306

Format: Paperback

Source: Entangled Publishing, Angela Melamud

Book Rating: 8/10

The marriage game is afoot in this clever blend of My Fair Lady meets Pride and Prejudice with a twist!

Edward Stanhope, the icy Duke of Thornfield, likes his life in a certain order. Give him a strong drink, a good book, and his dog for company, and he’s content. But when he goes to his library and finds a woman sitting in his chair, petting his dog, what starts as a request for her to leave quickly turns to a fiery battle of wits, leading to a steamy kiss that could ruin them both if they were caught.

So of course, damn it all, that’s when Edward’s aunt walks in, and thereafter announces Miss Georgiana Bly is the future Duchess of Thornfield.

Georgiana was content to be a spinster, spending her days reading and working to keep her family out of debt. But now her days are spent locked away with a growly duke, learning how to be the perfect duchess, and her nights spent fighting the undeniable attraction to a man who was never meant for her.

As their wedding day approaches, the attraction between them burns hot and fierce, but is it enough to melt the duke’s chilly facade?


Review:

Light, sweet, and enticing!

The Spinster and the Rake is a heartwarming, Georgian romance that transports you back to 1790s England and features the intelligent, bold, Georgiana Bly who is well educated but content with her simple, country life, and the handsome, single Duke of Thornfield, Edward Stanhope who prefers solitude, quiet, and bachelorhood but after an impulsive kiss grudgingly agrees to marry to protect reputations.

The prose is effortless and alluring. The characters are private, considerate, and appealing. And the plot is a fulfilling blend of family, friendship, societal expectations, secrets, scandal, attraction, understanding, love, and tender moments.

Overall, The Spinster and the Rake is an alluring, charming, atmospheric tale by Devon that is more character-driven than action-packed but is nevertheless a wonderful start to this Never a Wallflower series that I look forward to more of.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following link.

               

 

 

Thank you to Entangled Publishing and Angela Melamud for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Eva Devon

USATODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR, Eva Devon, was raised on literary fiction, but quite accidentally and thankfully, she was introduced to romance one Christmas by Johanna Lindsey's Mallory novella, The Present. A romance addict was born. She devoured every single Lindsey novel within a few months and moved on to contemporary and paranormal with gusto. Now, she loves to write her own roguish dukes, alpha males and the heroines who tame them. She loves to hear from her readers.

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