Publisher: MIRA

#BookReview
House of Shadows by Nicola Cornick
@NicolaCornick @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview House of Shadows by Nicola Cornick @NicolaCornick @HarlequinBooksTitle: House of Shadows

Author: Nicola Cornick

Published by MIRA on November 5, 2015

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 449

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

The wooded hills of Oxfordshire conceal the remains of the aptly named Ashdown House–a wasted pile of cinders and regret. Once home to the daughter of a king, its secrets will unite three women across four centuries in a tangle of romance, deceit and destiny…

1662–A queen

Bound by sex and birth to live for everyone but herself–and to love always in secret–Elizabeth Stuart entrusts a pair of arcane artifacts to her faithful cavalier to keep safe for her rightful heir. But fate will not be generous to the Winter Queen, throwing the question of succession into turmoil, the aftermath of which will resonate through the generations.

1801–A courtesan

Lavinia Flyte wanted so much more from life than to be a courtesan at the mercy of the cruel Lord Evershot. He has brought her to Ashdown, the home of his ancestors, for reasons he guards greedily. But the maids’ whispers of hidden treasures–a pearl with the power to foretell the future–consume her with a curiosity she confides only to her diary, unaware of the misfortune that threatens.

And the mystery that binds them

Alarmed to hear her brother has gone missing at Ashdown Park, Holly Ansell is inexplicably drawn to the clues contained in the journal of a Regency courtesan who was living at the historic home when it burned to the ground two hundred years ago. Lured by the tragedy at Ashdown, Holly’s search leads her not only to the truth about Lavinia, but deeper into her own connection with the Winter Queen.

For fans of Kate Morton and Barbara Erskine comes an unforgettable novel about the power one lie can have over history.


Review:

Romantic, fascinating, and exceptionally absorbing!

In Cornick’s latest novel, House of Shadows, she immerses us in an incredibly intriguing historical time-slip tale of love, life, duty, honour, friendship, family, passion, desire, and mystery.

The writing is fluid and vividly descriptive. The characters, in all time periods, are complex, independent, and strong. And the blended plot is a captivating, sometimes dangerous journey, from the Winter Queen’s exiled court in The Hague to the beautiful, wooded countryside of Sussex, England.

Overall, House of Shadows is a well written, exceptionally researched, entertaining novel that highlights Cornick’s knowledge and passion for history in a tale that interweaves historical facts, compelling fiction, suspense, and romance effortlessly and I can’t wait to read what she publishes next.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Harlequin Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Nicola Cornick

International bestselling author Nicola Cornick writes romantic historical mysteries and witty and passionate Regency romance. She studied History at London and Oxford and was awarded a distinction for her dissertation on historical heroes. It was a tough study but someone had to do it. Nicola has a “double life” as a writer and guide at the stunning 17th century hunting lodge, Ashdown House. Nicola lives near Oxford and loves reading, writing, history, music, wildlife, travel and walking her dog. She also loves hearing from her readers and chatting to them on her blog.

#BookReview & #Giveaway
Red Clover Inn by Carla Neggers
@CarlaNeggers @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview & #Giveaway Red Clover Inn by Carla Neggers @CarlaNeggers @HarlequinBooksTitle: Red Clover Inn

Author: Carla Neggers

Series: Swift River Valley #7

Published by MIRA on March 28, 2017

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 400

Format: Paperback

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 7/10

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author Carla Neggers delivers an irresistible story about love, family and finding a place to call home..

Marine archaeologist Charlotte Bennett is no stranger to risk, but her dives into sunken wreckage are always meticulously planned. However, being the maid of honor in her cousin Samantha’s English wedding gives her a new perspective on her life as a nomad who’s given up on romance altogether. Though an encounter with roguish wedding guest Greg Rawlings leaves her unsettled, the other people she meets make a trip to the tranquil town of Knights Bridge, Massachusetts, enticing. Acting on impulse, Charlotte offers to house-sit at Red Clover Inn while Sam and Justin Sloan are away on their honeymoon.

The quaint inn isn’t open to the public yet and Charlotte will have quiet time to plan her next project. It might also give her a chance to see how her cousin found love and a sense of family. But the peace is immediately disrupted when Greg shows up at the inn. The Diplomatic Security Service agent lives a dangerous life, and he, too, wants to clear his head before his next assignment. Juggling work, raising his two teenage children and nursing a wounded heart has left him jaded, and the last thing he expects is to find himself falling for the willful Charlotte. As the attraction between them flares, Charlotte realizes she might be in too deep. And each of them must decide if they can put love first before it’s too late.


Review:

Lighthearted, easy and sweet!

In this latest novel in the Swift River Valley series Neggers once again takes us back to Knights Bridge with its beautiful landscape, intriguing inn and small-town charm.

The writing is straightforward. The characters are strong, dependable and pensive. And the plot which seems to get a little bogged down in the first half of the story with information into all the characters and relationships between them definitely picks up in the second half and is quite compelling, mysterious, engaging and romantic. 

Overall this is an enjoyable, entertaining read and fans of Carla Neggers and the Swift River Valley series will love not only this new addition to the Bennett and Sloan clan but will really appreciate the opportunity to catch up with some of the beloved characters from previous novels.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

International Giveaway

And now thanks to Harlequin Books, one lucky reader of What’s Better Than Books? will receive a paperback copy of Red Clover Inn by Carla Neggers as well as a Red Clover Inn Door Hanger. 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Thank you to Harlequin Books for providing me with not only one copy in exchange for an honest review but a copy to give away (please see below).

 

About Carla Neggers

Carla Neggers is the New York Times bestselling author of the Sharpe & Donovan series featuring Boston-based FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan, and the popular Swift River Valley series set in the small, fictional New England town of Knights Bridge. With many bestsellers to her credit, Carla loves to write now as much as she did when she climbed a tree at age eleven with a pad and pen and spun stories perched on her favorite branch.

A native New Englander, Carla and her husband divide their time between their hilltop home in Vermont, a sofa bed at their kids' places in Boston and various inns, hotels and hideaways on their travels, frequently to Ireland.

#BookReview
The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle
@KimberlySBelle

#BookReview The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle @KimberlySBelleTitle: The Marriage Lie

Author: Kimberly Belle

Published by MIRA on December 27, 2016

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 334

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Even the perfect marriage has its dark side… 

Iris and Will’s marriage is as close to perfect as it can be: a large house in a nice Atlanta neighborhood, rewarding careers and the excitement of trying for their first baby. But on the morning Will leaves for a business trip to Orlando, Iris’s happy world comes to an abrupt halt. Another plane headed for Seattle has crashed into a field, killing everyone on board, and according to the airline, Will was one of the passengers on this plane. 

Grief-stricken and confused, Iris is convinced it all must be a huge misunderstanding. But as time passes and there is still no sign of Will, she reluctantly accepts that he is gone. Still, Iris needs answers. Why did Will lie about where he was going? What is in Seattle? And what else has he lied about? As Iris sets off on a desperate quest to find out what her husband was keeping from her, the answers she receives will shock her to her very core.


Review:

Brisk, intense, and extremely suspenseful!

This is a compelling thriller that reminds us how easily life can turn on a dime, and hauntingly points out that sometimes the ones we think we know the best can often turn out to be complete strangers.

It is, ultimately, a story about family, trust, grief, deception, lies, secrets, and morals. 

The writing is clear and exact. The plot is brimming with twists and turns, multiple surprises, and fast-paced adventure. And the main character, Iris, is strong, bright, inquisitive and determined.

Overall, this is an intelligent, gripping page turner that will definitely keep you engaged and guessing until the very last page.

 

This book is due to be published on January 1, 2017.

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

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaIndigoBook DepositoryKobo,

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Harlequin – Mira, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Kimberly Belle

Kimberly Belle is the internationally bestselling author of The Marriage Lie, The Last Breath, The Ones We Trust, and the forthcoming Three Days Missing (6.26.18). Her work has been published in a dozen countries and has appeared on the USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and Globe & Mail bestseller lists.

#BookReview
Stalked by Elizabeth Heiter
@ElizabethHeiter

#BookReview Stalked by Elizabeth Heiter @ElizabethHeiterTitle: Stalked

Author: Elizabeth Heiter

Series: The Profiler #4

Published by MIRA on December 27, 2016

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Pages: 384

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

If you’re reading this, I’m already dead… 

That’s the note seventeen-year-old Haley Cooke leaves behind when she disappears from inside her high school. FBI profiler Evelyn Baine is called in to figure out who had reason to hurt her. On the surface, the popular cheerleader has no enemies, but as Evelyn digs deeper, she discovers that everyone close to Haley has something to hide. Everyone from estranged parents, to an older boyfriend with questionable connections, to a best friend who envies Haley’s life. 

Secrets can be deadly… 

One of those secrets may have gotten Haley killed. If she’s still alive, Evelyn knows that the more the investigation ramps up, the more pressure they could be putting on Haley’s kidnapper to make her disappear for good. It’s also possible the teenager isn’t in danger at all, but has skillfully manipulated everyone and staged her own disappearance. Only one thing is certain: uncovering Haley’s fate could be dangerous—even deadly—to Evelyn herself.


Review:

Darkly intriguing, skillfully plotted, and incredibly menacing!

In this compelling fourth installment in the Profiler series, Heiter has written a fast-paced whodunit where suspects continually crawl out of the woodwork, competition and jealous rivalry between teens runs rampant, and life on a college campus has a dark side that’s not all fun and games.

The writing is effective. The characterization is spot on with the persistent and astute FBI heroine Evelyn Baine, the strong, dependable ex-HRT agent Kyle McKenzie, and a few crafty, despicable villains that are easy to abhor. And the plot keeps you on the edge of your seat as it submerges you, page after page, into a world full of abduction, murder, greed, arrogance, jealousy, guilt, deception, secrets and lies.

This is my first Elizabeth Heiter novel and although it can be read as a standalone it has certainly entertained and captivated me enough to put the first three books in the series (Hunter, Vanished, and Seized) high on my “to read” list.

 

This book is available December 27, 2016.

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

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon CanadaKoboIndigo

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Harlequin – Mira, for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Elizabeth Heiter

ELIZABETH HEITER likes her suspense to feature strong heroines, chilling villains, psychological twists, and a little bit (or a lot!) of romance. Her research has taken her into the minds of serial killers, through murder investigations, and onto the FBI Academy’s shooting range. Her novels have been published in more than a dozen countries and eight languages; they've also been shortlisted for the HOLT Medallion, National Readers' Choice, Daphne Du Maurier and Booksellers' Best awards and won the RT Reviewers' Choice award.

Elizabeth graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in English Literature. She’s a member of International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America and Romance Writers of America.

#BookReview
The Bourbon Thief by Tiffany Reisz
@tiffanyreisz

#BookReview The Bourbon Thief by Tiffany Reisz @tiffanyreiszTitle: The Bourbon Thief

Author: Tiffany Reisz

Published by MIRA on June 28, 2016

Genres: Romantic Suspense

Pages: 379

Format: Paperback

Source: Purchased

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

From the internationally celebrated author of the Original Sinners series comes a brand-new tale of betrayal, revenge and a family scandal that bore a 150-year-old mystery

When Cooper McQueen wakes up from a night with a beautiful stranger, it’s to discover he’s been robbed. The only item stolen—a million-dollar bottle of bourbon. The thief, a mysterious woman named Paris, claims the bottle is rightfully hers. After all, the label itself says it’s property of the Maddox family who owned and operated Red Thread Bourbon distillery since the last days of the Civil War until the company went out of business for reasons no one knows… No one except Paris. 

In the small hours of a Louisville morning, Paris unspools the lurid tale of Tamara Maddox, heiress to the distillery that became an empire. But the family tree is rooted in tainted soil and has borne rotten fruit. Theirs is a legacy of wealth and power, but also of lies, secrets and sins of omission. The Maddoxes have bourbon in their blood—and blood in their bourbon. Why Paris wants the bottle of Red Thread remains a secret until the truth of her identity is at last revealed, and the century-old vengeance Tamara vowed against her family can finally be completed.


Review:

Dark, gritty, and impressively compelling!

This novel takes you into the lives of, the multi-generational bourbon maker family, the Maddoxes. They are rich. They are southern. And they are ruthless. And like most families with privilege, money, and power, they have a lot of skeletons in their closets, and hidden behind those closed doors you will find an intricate web of abuse, lies, adultery, secrets, and murder.

The characters are complex, avaricious, vindictive, and self-destructive. And the plot is well written, rich in detail, and highly suspenseful. 

This really is a truly engaging and captivating story and I only hope that I will get to enjoy more of the Cooper and Paris saga in the future.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy of this story from your favourite retailer or from the following Amazon links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon Canada

 

 

About Tiffany Reisz

Tiffany Reisz is the USA Today-bestselling author of the Romance Writers of America RITA®-winning Original Sinners series from Harlequin's Mira Books.

Born in Owensboro, Kentucky, Tiffany graduated from Centre College with a B.A. in English. She began her writing career while a student at Wilmore, Kentucky's Asbury Theological Seminary. After leaving seminary to focus on her fiction, she wrote The Siren, which has sold more than half a million copies worldwide.

Tiffany also writes mainstream women's suspense fiction, including The Bourbon Thief (winner of the RT Book Reviews Seal of Excellence Award) and the RITA®-nominated The Night Mark.

Her erotic fantasy The Red—self-published under the banner 8th Circle Press—was named an NPR Best Book of the Year and a Goodreads Best Romance of the Month. It also received a coveted starred review from Library Journal.

Tiffany lives in Lexington, Kentucky with her husband, author Andrew Shaffer, and two cats. The cats are not writers.

#BookReview
Don’t You Cry by Mary Kubica

#BookReview Don’t You Cry by Mary KubicaTitle: Don't You Cry

Author: Mary Kubica

Published by MIRA on May 17, 2016

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 320

Format: Hardcover

Source: Purchased

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author of The Good Girl, Mary Kubica returns with an electrifying and addictive tale of deceit and obsession 

In downtown Chicago, a young woman named Esther Vaughan disappears from her apartment without a trace. A haunting letter addressed to My Dearest is found among her possessions, leaving her friend and roommate Quinn Collins to wonder where Esther is and whether or not she’s the person Quinn thought she knew. 

Meanwhile, in a small Michigan harbor town an hour outside Chicago, a mysterious woman appears in the quiet coffee shop where eighteen-year-old Alex Gallo works as a dishwasher. He is immediately drawn to her charm and beauty, but what starts as an innocent crush quickly spirals into something far more dark and sinister than he ever expected.  

As Quinn searches for answers about Esther, and Alex is drawn further under Pearl’s spell, master of suspense Mary Kubica takes readers on a taut and twisted thrill ride that builds to a stunning conclusion and shows that no matter how fast and far we run, the past always catches up with us in the end.


Review:

This is a dark, intelligent, psychological thriller that will have you asking yourself, “How well do we really know someone?”

The story is told from two different perspectives. One is that of Quinn, a young woman living in Chicago whose roommate, Esther, has gone missing. And the other is that of Alex, an 18-year-old boy living in a small town 70-miles outside of Chicago who recently noticed a strange woman wandering around the town. These two characters have never met and you are left to puzzle how and when their two paths will collide throughout the novel.

The characters are multi-layered, complex and empathetic. The story is skillfully written. And the multiple plots will have you pondering each and every twist and turn.

This story is not full of action or extremely suspenseful. However, the slow build will keep you enthralled and captivated until the very end.

I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it

 

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