#BookReview Only the Beautiful by Susan Meissner @SusanMeissner @uplitreads #onlythebeautiful #authorsusanmeissner #uplitreadscampaign

#BookReview Only the Beautiful by Susan Meissner @SusanMeissner @uplitreads #onlythebeautiful #authorsusanmeissner #uplitreadscampaign Title: Only the Beautiful

Author: Susan Meissner

Published by: Berkley Books on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 400

Format: ARC, eBook

Source: Uplit Reads

Book Rating: 10/10

A heartrending story about a young mother’s fight to keep her daughter, and the winds of fortune that tear them apart by the New York Times bestselling author of The Nature of Fragile Things and The Last Year of the War.

California, 1938—When she loses her parents in an accident, sixteen-year-old Rosanne is taken in by the owners of the vineyard where she has lived her whole life as the vinedresser’s daughter. She moves into Celine and Truman Calvert’s spacious house with a secret, however—Rosie sees colors when she hears sound. She promised her mother she’d never reveal her little-understood ability to anyone, but the weight of her isolation and grief prove too much for her. Driven by her loneliness she not only breaks the vow to her mother, but in a desperate moment lets down her guard and ends up pregnant. Banished by the Calverts, Rosanne believes she is bound for a home for unwed mothers, and having lost her family she treasures her pregnancy as the chance for a future one. But she soon finds out she is not going to a home of any kind, but to a place far worse than anything she could have imagined.

Austria, 1947—After witnessing firsthand Adolf Hitler’s brutal pursuit of hereditary purity—especially with regard to “different children”—Helen Calvert, Truman’s sister, is ready to return to America for good. But when she arrives at her brother’s peaceful vineyard after decades working abroad, she is shocked to learn what really happened nine years earlier to the vinedresser’s daughter, a girl whom Helen had long ago befriended. In her determination to find Rosanne, Helen discovers that while the war had been won in Europe, there are still terrifying battles to be fought at home.


Review:

Poignant, insightful, and incredibly absorbing!

Only the Beautiful is a heart-wrenching, compelling tale that sweeps you away to California between the late 1930s to late 1940s and into the lives of Rosanne, a young girl who, after falling pregnant, is sent by her wards to an institute to not only have her baby removed from her care and adopted out when it’s born, but also where for the good of society they perform forced sterilization, and Helen Calvert, a kind, generous woman who after spending the entirety of the war overseas trying to save children with disabilities from Hitler’s horrifying T4 program returns home only to discover she has a niece she’s never met and thus a new mission to find where she ended up and provide her with the best life possible.

The prose is eloquent and expressive. The characters are genuine, sympathetic, and vulnerable. And the plot is a masterfully woven, captivating tale about life, loss, love, heartbreak, courage, hope, manipulation, power, ethics, morality, motherhood, and the unconscionable theory of eugenics.

Overall, Only the Beautiful is an emotional, heartbreaking, beautifully written tale by Meissner that immerses you so thoroughly into the lives, feelings, and personalities of the characters you never want it to end. It is, without a doubt, one of my favourite novels of the year, and it really shouldn’t be missed.

 

This novel is available now.

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

         

 

 

Thank you to Uplit Reads for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Susan Meissner

Susan Meissner is a USA Today bestselling novelist with more than half a million books in print in fifteen languages. Her critically acclaimed works of historical fiction have been named to numerous lists including Publishers Weekly’s annual roster of 100 best books, Library Reads Top Picks, Real Simple annual tally of best books, Goodreads Readers’ Choice awards, Booklist’s Top Ten, and Book of the Month.

She attended Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego and is a former managing editor of a weekly newspaper. Susan’s expertise as a storyteller and her thoroughly researched topics make her a favorite author of book clubs everywhere. Her engaging and warm speaking style appeal to all manner of women’s groups, literary organizations, libraries and learning institutions, and service clubs.

When she is not working on a new novel, she enjoys teaching workshops on writing and dream-following, spending time with her family, music, reading great books, and travelling.

Photo courtesy of Author's Goodreads Page.

#BookReview The Golden Doves by Martha Hall Kelly @marthahallkelly @doubledayca @PenguinRandomCA #TheGoldenDoves #MarthaHallKelly

#BookReview The Golden Doves by Martha Hall Kelly @marthahallkelly @doubledayca @PenguinRandomCA #TheGoldenDoves #MarthaHallKelly Title: The Golden Doves

Author: Martha Hall Kelly

Published by: Doubleday Canada on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 528

Format: Paperback

Source: Penguin Random House

Book Rating: 9/10

Two former female spies, bound together by their past, risk everything to hunt down an infamous Nazi doctor in the aftermath of World War II—an extraordinary novel inspired by true events from the New York Times bestselling author of Lilac Girls

American Josie Anderson and Parisian Arlette LaRue are thrilled to be working in the French resistance, stealing so many Nazi secrets that they become known as the Golden Doves, renowned across France and hunted by the Gestapo. Their courage will cost them everything. When they are finally arrested and taken to the Ravensbrück concentration camp, along with their loved ones, a reclusive Nazi doctor does unspeakable things to Josie’s mother, a celebrated Jewish singer who joined her daughter in Paris when the world seemed bright. And Arlette’s son is stolen from her, never to be seen again.

A decade later the Doves fall headlong into a dangerous dual mission: Josie is working for U.S. Army intelligence and accepts an assignment to hunt down the infamous doctor, while a mysterious man tells Arlette he may have found her son. The Golden Doves embark on a quest across Europe and ultimately to French Guiana, discovering a web of terrible secrets, and must put themselves in grave danger to finally secure justice and protect the ones they love.

Martha Hall Kelly has garnered acclaim for her stunning combination of empathy and research into the stories of women throughout history and for exploring the terrors of Ravensbrück. With The Golden Doves, she has crafted an unforgettable story about the fates of Nazi fugitives in the wake of World War II—and the unsung females spies who risked it all to bring them to justice.


Review:

Compelling, intense, and atmospheric!

The Golden Doves is a charged, intriguing tale that takes you into the lives of Josie Anderson, an American Intelligence Officer, and Arlette LaRue, a French waitress, both former spies and Ravensbrück prisoners whose lives intersect and collide once again seven years post-WWII when the hunt for the illusive, evil Dr. Snow and the search for a missing, but cherished child find them both in the tropics of French Guiana hoping to heal their hearts, unravel the secrets from the past, and finally find some justice for it all.

The writing is eloquent and expressive. The characters are layered, dependable, and resourceful. And the plot is a captivating mix of life, love, loss, secrets, passion, heartbreak, betrayal, tragedy, survival, danger, friendship, espionage, and war.

Overall, The Golden Doves is an absorbing, heart-tugging, beautifully written tale by Kelly inspired by real-life events, Operation Paperclip, that does an exceptional job of reminding us of the enduring devastating consequences of war while highlighting her impressive research into an intelligence program that brought Nazis chemists, physicists and other specialists to America after WWII, allowing them to escape justice for their previous horrific crimes, in order to use their knowledge to benefit US government agencies while also subsequently preventing that knowledge from falling into Soviet hands.

This novel is available now.

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

         

 

 

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Martha Hall Kelly

Martha Hall Kelly is the New York Times bestselling author of Lilac Girls, Lost Roses, and Sunflower Sisters. With more than two million copies of her books sold and her books translated in fifty countries, she lives in Connecticut and New York City.

Photo by Jeffrey Mosier Photography.

#BookReview Adelaide by Genevieve Wheeler @geeewheeler @StMartinsPress #Adelaide #GenevieveWheeler #StMartinsPress #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview Adelaide by Genevieve Wheeler @geeewheeler @StMartinsPress #Adelaide #GenevieveWheeler #StMartinsPress #SMPInfluencers Title: Adelaide

Author: Genevieve Wheeler

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Women's Fiction

Pages: 304

Format: Hardcover

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8.5/10

For twenty-six-year-old Adelaide Williams, an American living in dreamy London, meeting Rory Hughes was like a lightning bolt out of the blue: this charming Englishman was The One she wasn’t even looking for.

Is it enough?

Does he respond to texts? Honor his commitments? Make advance plans? Sometimes, rarely, and no, not at all. But when he shines his light on her, the world makes sense, and Adelaide is convinced that, in his heart, he’s fallen just as deeply as she has. Then, when Rory is rocked by an unexpected tragedy, Adelaide does everything in her power to hold him together—even if it means losing herself in the process.

When love asks too much of us, how do we find the strength to put ourselves first?

With unflinching honesty and heart, this relatable debut from a fresh new voice explores grief and mental health while capturing the timeless nature of what it’s like to be young and in love—with your friends, with your city, and with a person who cannot, will not, love you back.


Review:

Introspective, poignant, and timely!

Adelaide is a passionate, thoughtful tale that sweeps you away to London and into the life of the young American, Adelaide Williams, as she navigates her goals, dreams, expectations, and mental health, all while consistently giving her all to a love affair littered with disappointments, one-sided effort, lack of communication, and heartbreak.

The prose is sincere and evocative. The characters are kind, multi-layered, and vulnerable. And the tightly crafted, effortless plot unfolds in a back-and-forth style, unravelling all the actions, motivations, personalities, desires, needs, tragedy, and complex relationships within it.

Overall, Adelaide is a sensitive, fresh, reflective debut by Wheeler that does a remarkable job of highlighting all the universal struggles of growing up, acquiring self-confidence, battling depression, anxiety, and worthlessness, forging friendships, experiencing an all-consuming love that isn’t reciprocated, and ultimately realizing that everyone is entitled to always be loved fully.

 

This book is available now.

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

        

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Genevieve Wheeler

Genevieve Wheeler is an American writer and communications manager. Her bylines have appeared in publications like VICE, Vogue Business, Teen Vogue, Elite Daily, and POPSUGAR, with her work and words cited in The New York Times, Vox, the BBC World Service, Cheddar News, Jezebel, and beyond. She holds an MA in marketing communications from the University of Westminster in London and a BS in Advertising from Boston University. She's currently based in London. Adelaide is her debut novel.

Photo Credit: Chelsea Lesser

#BookReview Only Love Can Hurt Like This by Paige Toon @PaigeToonAuthor @PutnamBooks @penguinrandom #OnlyLoveCanHurtLikeThis #PaigeToon

#BookReview Only Love Can Hurt Like This by Paige Toon @PaigeToonAuthor @PutnamBooks @penguinrandom #OnlyLoveCanHurtLikeThis #PaigeToon Title: Only Love Can Hurt Like This

Author: Paige Toon

Published by: G.P. Putnam's Sons on Apr. 25, 2023

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 400

Format: Paperback

Source: Penguin Random House

Book Rating: 10/10

In the spirit of Colleen Hoover and Jojo Moyes’s Me Before You, an unforgettable and heartbreaking love story with an earth-shattering secret at its core that asks the question: is love worth risking everything for?

An earth-shattering secret. A life-changing love story.

When Wren realizes her fiancé is in love with someone else, she thinks her heart will never recover.

On the other side of the world, Anders lost his wife four years ago and is still struggling to move on.

Wren hopes that spending the summer with her dad and step-family on their farm in Indiana will help her to heal. There, amid the cornfields and fireflies, she and Anders cross paths and their worlds are turned upside-down again.

But Wren doesn’t know that Anders is harboring a secret, and if he acts on any feelings he has for Wren it will have serious fall-out for everyone. Walking away would hurt Wren more than she can imagine. But, knowing the truth, how can she possibly stay?


Review:

Addictive, pensive, and heart-wrenching!

Only Love Can Hurt Like This is an immersive, emotional, heartwarming tale that takes us into the life of the sweet, vulnerable Wren as she struggles to juggle a broken engagement, a strained relationship with a father she hardly sees, a newly budding friendship with a half-sister she always slightly resented, and a complicated relationship with a man who is stealing her heart piece by piece but who may unfortunately already be emotionally shackled to another.

The writing is sentimental and engaging. The characters are layered, supportive, and generous. And the plot is a touching tale of family, friendship, self-discovery, happiness, heartbreak, taking chances, growth, healing, revelations, tender moments, light drama, selflessness, romance, and new beginnings.

For the past few years, Paige Toon’s books have topped my must-read, favourites list, and even though I didn’t think it was possible to love her books any more than I already did, she proved me wrong once again. Only Love Can Hurt Like This made my heart smile, shatter, and then put it all back together again in 400 pages, and not only did I absolutely adore it, but it might just be, dare I say it, one of my all-time faves!

This novel is available now.

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

         

 

 

Thank you to G. P. Putnam’s Sons – Penguin Random House for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Paige Toon

Paige Toon grew up between England, Australia and America and has been writing books set in sun-drenched locations around the world since 2007. She has written fourteen women's fiction novels, a three-part spin-off series for young adults and a collection of short stories. Her novels have sold 1.5 million copies worldwide.

In Spring 2021, Paige and her publishing team launched ‘feel it all’ branding for her novels, which is inspired directly by her readers and what they have been telling her for years: that when they read a Paige Toon novel, they experience a myriad of emo>ons, from love, heartache and passion, to grief, happiness and hope. The message is simple: get lost in one of Paige’s stories and you really will feel it all.

#BookReview Yours Truly, The Duke (Say I Do #1) by Amelia Grey @smpromance #SayIDoSeries #YoursTrulyTheDuke #AmeliaGrey #SMPRomance #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview Yours Truly, The Duke (Say I Do #1) by Amelia Grey @smpromance #SayIDoSeries #YoursTrulyTheDuke #AmeliaGrey #SMPRomance #SMPInfluencers Title: Yours Truly, The Duke

Author: Amelia Grey

Series: Say I Do #1

Published by: St. Martin's Griffin on Mar. 28, 2023

Genres: Historical Romance

Pages: 368

Format: Paperback

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

Yours Truly, The Duke is the first novel in the historical romance Say I Do trilogy about dukes needing to wed to tap into their wealth by New York Times bestselling author Amelia Grey.

Fredericka Hale needs a husband, and fast. She’s been caring for her deceased sister’s three young children, and now a childless cousin has petitioned the court for custody. Fredericka is powerless to stop her, but having a husband might sway the ruling. The last thing Fredericka wants is a hurried-up marriage to a man she doesn’t know—much less love, but she’ll do it for the children. So when the handsome Duke of Wyatthaven shows up with a proposal, she accepts. He’ll help her, and in return, they’ll lead separate lives. But distance cannot keep them from their powerful attraction.

At the top of his game in London, the Duke of Wyatthaven has no interest in marriage. However, if Wyatt doesn’t marry by week’s end, he’ll lose a sizable inheritance from his grandmother. When Wyatt’s solicitor finds Miss Fredericka Hale, Wyatt considers this little hiccup solved. Miss Hale is lovely, and intelligent. Most importantly, she prefers country life to London, so he’s free to continue his life as usual. But when circumstances force Fredericka and the children to show up at the duke’s door, Wyatt can’t deny he’s always been under her spell. Will the duke give up his bachelor lifestyle and give into the fiery passion growing between them?


Review:

Entertaining, engaging, and romantic!

Yours Truly, The Duke is a passionate, playful tale that sweeps you away to England during the early nineteenth century and into the lives of the sweet, kind Fredericka Hale who may have just unexpectedly found the short-term solution to secure the custody of her nieces and nephews, and the roguishly handsome Duke of Wyatthaven who may have conveniently discovered the perfect woman to help him secure his substantial inheritance without having to give his heart away.

The prose is amusing and light. The characters are loyal, charming, and supportive. And the plot is an enchanting tale full of family, friendship, societal expectations, tricky situations, desire, trust, romance, and love.

Overall, Yours Truly, The Duke is another charming, seductive, delightful tale by Grey that is certainly an enjoyable, promising start to a series Say I Do I’m really looking forward to reading more of.

 

This novel is available now.

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

             

 

 

Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Amelia Grey

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Amelia Grey read her first romance book when she was thirteen and she's been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. Her awards include the Booksellers Best, Aspen Gold, and the Golden Quill. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter, and the prestigious Maggie Award. Her books have sold to many countries in Europe, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, and Japan. Several of her books have also been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs. Amelia is the author of more than twenty-five books, including the Heirs' Club trilogy and the Rakes of St. James series. She's been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years and she lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Northwest Florida.

Photograph by Marcia Reynolds.

#BookReview Simply Lies by David Baldacci @davidbaldacci @GrandCentralPub #DavidBaldacci #SimplyLies #GCPInsider

#BookReview Simply Lies by David Baldacci @davidbaldacci @GrandCentralPub #DavidBaldacci #SimplyLies #GCPInsider Title: Simply Lies

Author: David Baldacci

Published by: Grand Central Publishing on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 432

Format: Hardcover

Source: Grand Central Publishing

Book Rating: 8.5/10

A twisting new psychological thriller in which two women—one a former detective, the other a dangerous con artist—go head-to-head in an electrifying game of cat and mouse.

Mickey Gibson, single mother and former detective, leads a hectic life similar to that of many moms: juggling the demands of her two small children with the tasks of her job working remotely for ProEye, a global investigation company that hunts down wealthy tax and credit cheats.

When Mickey gets a call from a colleague named Arlene Robinson, she thinks nothing of Arlene’s unusual request for her to go inventory the vacant home of an arms dealer who cheated ProEye’s clients and fled. That is, until she arrives at the mansion to discover a dead body in a secret room—and that nothing is as it seems.

Not only does the arms dealer not exist but the murder victim turns out to be Harry Lancaster, a man with mob ties who used to be in Witness Protection. What’s more, no one named Arlene Robinson works at ProEye.

In the blink of an eye, Gibson has become a prime suspect in a murder investigation—and now her job is also on the line until she proves that she was set up. Before long, Gibson is locked in a battle of wits with a brilliant woman with no name, a hidden past, and unknown motives—whose end game is as mysterious as it is deadly.


Review:

Captivating, intelligent, and well-crafted!

Simply Lies is an elaborately plotted, suspenseful tale that takes you into the life of Mickey Gibson, a former police officer, now data analyst and single mother of two whose monotonous life is suddenly turned upside down when she finds herself embroiled in the investigation of a murdered man with a dark, devious, dangerous past when she is deceptively sent out to inventory the contents of a vacant estate.

The writing is sharp and tight. The characters are persistent, resourceful, and multilayered. And the plot, including all the subplots, seamlessly intertwine and unravel into a gripping tale full of twists, turns, surprises, revelations, manipulation, abuse, vengeance, mischief, mayhem, and murder.

Overall, Simply Lies is an exceptionally menacing, intricately woven, highly entertaining mystery that has a nice amount of suspense, good character development, and great pace. It’s currently a standalone novel by Baldacci, but something tells me this could quickly turn out to be another must-read series I need to add to my list.

 

This book is available now.

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

             

 

 

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

 

About David Baldacci

David Baldacci is a global #1 bestselling author, and one of the world’s favorite storytellers. His books are published in over 45 languages and in more than 80 countries, with over 130 million worldwide sales. His works have been adapted for both feature film and television. David Baldacci is also the cofounder, along with his wife, of the Wish You Well Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts across America. Still a resident of his native Virginia, he invites you to visit him at DavidBaldacci.com and his foundation at WishYouWellFoundation.org.

Photograph by Allen Jones.

#BookReview The Last Word by Katy Birchall @smpromance @KatyBirchall @StMartinsPress #TheLastWordNovel #KatyBirchall #smpromance #SMPInfluencers

#BookReview The Last Word by Katy Birchall @smpromance @KatyBirchall @StMartinsPress #TheLastWordNovel #KatyBirchall #smpromance #SMPInfluencers Title: The Last Word

Author: Katy Birchall

Published by: St. Martin's Griffin on May 2, 2023

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 384

Format: ARC, eBook

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8.5/10

The Hating Game meets Beach Read in Katy Birchall’s enemies-to-lovers romcom The Last Word , about a young journalist who puts her career (and her heart) on the line when her former work nemesis is hired in her newsroom.

Harper Jenkins is at the top of her game. A brilliant, determined journalist with a well-known knack for getting tight-lipped Hollywood stars to open up to her, Harper loves her job as Celebrity Editor at a newspaper’s glossy weekend magazine and has the best contacts in the business.

But when her awful boss hires talented reporter Ryan to be the new Features Editor, Harper is furious. Because the two have met a decade ago, they were interns at the same publication, where they fell into a whirlwind romance…until Ryan betrayed Harper, and they never spoke again.

Thrown together in a busy newsroom, their dynamic is a disaster from the start. They can’t agree on anything and bicker constantly―Ryan can’t bear how chaotic and messy Harper is; Harper finds Ryan’s condescending nature infuriating. They clash over who’s writing what article, and fight over who’s going to which event.

Yet as they’re forced to spend more and more time together, Harper realizes she may have misjudged Ryan and can’t help but feel a spark growing between them. Long buried feelings start to resurface and, when they’re thrown together on a romantic press trip abroad, their chemistry comes to a head.

But all is fair in love and magazines, and with the news that layoffs across the department are imminent, Harper is left to who will get the last word?


Review:

Engaging, charming, and sassy!

The Last Word is an amusing, feel-good, enemies-to-lovers romance that takes you into the lives of both Harper Jenkins, a young woman who loves her job as a celebrity journalist and who is determined to prove to her family no matter what that it’s a worthy career, and the reserved, handsome Ryan Jansson who may finally have a shot at expressing his true feelings to the one woman he’s loved since he beat her out of a permanent position at an internship more than ten years ago.

The writing is humorous and light. The characters are hardworking, passionate, and stubborn. And the plot is a push-pull tale full of familial strife, workplace drama, tender moments, competitive rivalry, witty banter, expectations, friendship, chemistry, and love.

Overall, The Last Word is another sweet, spirited, highly entertaining read by Birchall with characters I couldn’t help but root for and a happy-ever-after ending that left me smiling, smitten, and more than satisfied.

 

This book is available May 2, 2023.

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

         

 

 

Thank you to SMP Romance – St. Martin’s Press for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Katy Birchall

Katy is the author of several young adult novels including The It Girl series, the Hotel Royale series and Morgan Charmley: Teen Witch. She is the co-author of the middle grade Lightning Girl series and Star Switch with Alesha Dixon, and the Find the Girl teen series with YouTube stars Lucy and Lydia Connell. Katy was proud to be the author of a retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma for the Awesomely Austen series, a collection of Austen’s novels retold for younger readers. She has also written a non-fiction book, How to be a Princess: Real-Life Fairy Tales for Modern Heroines.

Katy lives in London with her partner, Ben, and her rescue dog, Bono.

Photo by Imogen Forte.

#BookReview One Night with the Duke by Jodi Ellen Malpas @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForever2023 #JodiEllenMalpas #OneNightwiththeDuke #BelmoreSquareSeries

#BookReview One Night with the Duke by Jodi Ellen Malpas @readforeverpub @grandcentralpub #ReadForever #ReadForever2023 #JodiEllenMalpas #OneNightwiththeDuke #BelmoreSquareSeries Title: One Night with the Duke

Author: Jodi Ellen Malpas

Series: Belmore Square #1

Published by: Forever on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Historical Romance

Pages: 304

Format: Paperback

Source: Forever

Book Rating: 8/10

A #1 New York Times bestselling author delivers a sexy and scandalous Regency romance about an adventurous woman and the mysterious son of a Duke who finds his way into her life—perfect for Bridgerton fans.

Eliza Melrose has always cherished her independence. And when she and her family lived in the countryside, it was easy to slip out for a midnight ride, write articles for her father’s newspaper, and otherwise do as she pleased. But now that they’ve moved to the heart of fashionable London, her every move is scrutinized and judged. Worse yet, her father wants her to wed and take her proper place in society.

But Eliza wants nothing to do with marriage. And when the new Duke of Chester moves into his family’s long-abandoned home across the square, her journalistic instincts immediately kick in. Are the rumors true—did he really kill his family? Is he as rakish as everyone says? The more Eliza finds out, the more she wants to know. Because the duke is a fascinating study of contradictions—reclusive and arrogant, fiercely protective and deeply passionate. But those who dance too close to the fire often get burned. And as the undeniable flame between them ignites, the only question is: Who’s holding the match?


Review:

Scandalous, witty, and enticing!

One Night with the Duke is set in London during 1816 and features the handsome, enigmatic Duke of Chester, Johnny Winters, whose sudden mysterious return is laced with rumours and familicide accusations and whose dark secrets and scrupulous plans may be upturned after he crosses paths with the kind, determined Eliza Melrose who may be betrothed to another but whose charms, independence, and fiery spirit will be extremely hard to resist.

The prose is amusing and light. The characters are clever, focused, and passionate. And the plot is a push-pull tale of family, friendship, societal expectations, scheming behaviour, tricky situations, desire, intrigue, and steamy romance.

I’ve had the chance to read quite a few Jodi Ellen Malpas’ erotic romance books over the years and really enjoyed them, so when I heard she was writing a historical romance novel I was over the moon, and One Night with the Duke did not disappoint. It’s an alluring, edgy, captivating tale by Malpas that left me entertained, satisfied and eager to read whatever scandals the residents of Belmore Square manage to get mixed up in next. 

 

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 Jodi Ellen Malpas

#1 New York Times Bestselling Author Jodi Ellen Malpas was born and raised in England, where she lives with her husband, her boys, and Theo the Doberman. She is a self-professed daydreamer and has a terrible weak spot for alpha males. After writing in secret for too long, Jodi exploded onto the scene in 2012 with her debut novel This Man, starring the prolific Jesse Ward.

Writing powerful love stories with fierce, memorable characters is her passion–a passion that has taken her on an amazing journey into the limelight of romantic fiction. Her work is now published in more than twenty-five languages across the world.

Photo Courtesy of read-forever.com.

#BookReview Five First Chances by Sarah Jost @swissSarahUK @Sourcebooks @sbkslandmark #FiveFirstChances #SarahJost #bookmarkedbylandmark

#BookReview Five First Chances by Sarah Jost @swissSarahUK @Sourcebooks @sbkslandmark #FiveFirstChances #SarahJost #bookmarkedbylandmark Title: Five First Chances

Author: Sarah Jost

Published by: Sourcebooks Landmark on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 400

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: Sourcebooks Landmark

Book Rating: 8.5/10

What would you do if you had one more chance for the life of your dreams?

Lou feels like she is stuck on the wrong path: alone, in a city far from home, watching other people be happy. When the man she’s in love with announces his engagement to someone else, Lou is consumed by ‘what ifs’.

That’s when she finds herself slipping back in time to a night two years ago, where one small decision changed everything…

Suddenly, Lou has a chance to fix her mistakes. But as her choices lead her down roads she never could have imagined, she finds herself stuck in a time loop of her own making. And with each slip, Lou notices her life intersecting with one person again and again. A friend of a friend who once lived on the periphery, who is slowly becoming the one person who makes her feel like she might finally be on the right track.

Lou is about to realize that our greatest love stories aren’t always the ones we expected, but are the ones we choose to fight for.


Review:

Poignant, pensive, and moving!

Five First Chances is a heart-wrenching, time-loop tale that takes you into the life of Lou while she’s attending the wake of a casual acquaintance, when grief-stricken family members, a handful of vague memories, and thoughts of what-if leave her contemplative, curious, and exceptionally emotional until fate magically intervenes leaving her reliving the same two years over and over again in order to change, grow, reshape friendships, and discover everlasting love.

The writing is heartfelt and tender. The characters are strong, passionate, and endearing. And the plot is an absorbing, bittersweet tale of life, loss, family, friendship, kindness, honesty, acceptance, generosity, grief, romance, humour, introspection, and unconditional love.

Overall, Five First Chances is a reflective, emotional, promising debut by Jost that does a remarkable job of reminding us just how important it is to appreciate all those little things in life, the moments, the sunsets, and the shared smiles, while also highlighting the sheer power of love.

 

This book is available now.

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

        

 

 

Thank you to Sourcebooks Landmark for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Sarah Jost

Sarah Jost is a Swiss national who has been living in the UK since 2008. She works as a Housemistress and French teacher at a girls’ school, which she considers an immersive course in character study. Sarah lives in Buckinghamshire with her partner Luke and their adorable and destructive puppy Winnie. Five First Chances is her debut.

#BookReview If We’re Being Honest by Cat Shook @CeladonBooks #IfWereBeingHonest #CeladonBooks #CeladonReads #partner

#BookReview If We’re Being Honest by Cat Shook @CeladonBooks #IfWereBeingHonest #CeladonBooks #CeladonReads #partner Title: If We're Being Honest

Author: Cat Shook

Published by: Celadon Books on Apr. 18, 2023

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 304

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: Celadon Books

Book Rating: 8/10

For fans of We Are the Brennans by Tracey Lange and All Adults Here by Emma Straub, Cat Shook’s debut novel If We’re Being Honest is the snappy, smart, heartwarming story of the Williams family, and the sweltering summer that rewrote their history.

When Gerry, the beloved Williams patriarch, dies suddenly, his grandchildren flock from across the country to the family home in Eulalia, Georgia. But when Gerry’s best friend steps up to the microphone to deliver his eulogy, the funeral turns out unlike anyone expected. The cousins, left reeling and confused, cope with their fresh grief and various private dramas. Delia, recently heartbroken, refuses to shut up about her ex. Her sister Alice, usually confident, flusters when she spots her high school sweetheart, hiding a secret that will change both of their lives. Outspoken, affable Grant is preening in the afterglow of his recent appearance on The Bachelorette and looking to reignite an old flame with the least available person in town. Meanwhile, his younger brother Red, unsure of himself and easily embarrassed, desperately searches for a place in the boisterous family.

The cousins’ eccentric parents are in tow, too, and equally lost—in love and in life. Watching over them all is Ellen, Gerry’s sweet and proper widow, who does her best to keep her composure in front of the leering small town.

Clever and completely original, If We’re Being Honest reminds you that while no one can break your heart like your family can, there’s really no one better to put you back together.


Review:

Complex, heartfelt, and absorbing!

If We’re Being Honest is a tender, hopeful, multi-generational story that delves into all the emotional bonds and intricate ties that exist between family members and immerses you in a tale about confronting the past, accepting the things you cannot change, following your heart, learning to heal, and embracing whatever comes next.

The prose is well-turned and fluid. The characters are flawed, troubled, and bitter. And the plot is a captivating tale about life, loss, heartache, grief, guilt, love, secrets, resentment, revelations, acceptance, familial drama, friendship, hope, forgiveness, and introspection.

Overall, If We’re Being Honest is a nuanced, uplifting, character-driven debut by Shook that was a good reminder that family can be frustrating, messy, secretive, and sometimes hard to love, but they can also be surprising, supportive, loyal, and the only true place that feels like home.

 

This novel is available now.

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

         

 

 

 

Thank you to Celadon Books for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Cat Shook

Catherine Shook graduated from the University of Georgia in 2016 with degrees in Creative Writing and Mass Media Arts. Born and raised in Georgia, she now lives in Manhattan. IF I WERE BEING HONEST is her first novel.

Photo Credit: MurphyMade

%d bloggers like this: