Review: A Most Extraordinary Pursuit (Emmeline Truelove #1) by Juliana Gray

About three chapters into A STRANGE SCOTTISH SHORE, I knew that I needed to read the first book in this series.

For one, I thought it would help me figure out some of the little nuances in the book that I was missing, as well as the backstory for many of the characters and their relationships.

So confession….I put down A STRANGE SCOTTISH SHORE about five chapters in and started reading this one instead. I just felt like there were so many little things that I was missing and I felt like I was cheating myself by skipping the first book.

As the personal secretary of the recently departed Duke of Olympia—and a woman of good character—Miss Emmeline Rose Truelove never expected to be steaming through the Mediterranean on a luxuriously appointed yacht under the watchful and jovial eye of one Lord Silverton. But here they are, as improper as it is, on a quest to find the duke’s heir, whereabouts unknown. (more…)

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Review: The Essence of Malice (Amory Ames #4) by Ashley Weaver

Here I am, yet another late comer to a new mystery series and I find myself wondering how in fact I missed this series in the first place!

Picking up a book mid series is always a risk, but I have found that more often than not, the author tries to fill in the missing links for new readers so they don’t feel like they need to start at the beginning. However sometimes it’s just not possible to go back and try to recap everything that a new reader might have missed.

While this book was well written and fun to read, I did feel like I needed the other books to stay up to par with everything that was going on.

1930s England.

When Milo Ames receives a troubling letter from his childhood nanny, Madame Nanette, he and Amory travel to Paris where they are soon embroiled in a mystery surrounding the death of a famous parfumier. Helios Belanger died suddenly, shortly before the release of his newest, highly-anticipated perfume, and Madame Nanette, who works for the family, is convinced that her employer’s death was not due to natural causes. (more…)

Review: A Strange Scottish Shore (Emmeline Truelove #2) by Juliana Gray

Sometimes you pick up a book in a series and immediately know you are going to love it. That’s what happened with this one.

Just the cover and title alone was enough to entice me to read this one and next thing I know, within a couple of pages, I already know I desperately need the first book in the series.

For a number of reasons though, not just because I liked Emmeline Truelove and wanted more, but mostly because I felt like I needed to know more about what was going on with the characters and the over all story.

Scotland, 1906. A mysterious object discovered inside an ancient castle calls Maximilian Haywood, the new Duke of Olympia, and his fellow researcher Emmeline Truelove, north to the remote Orkney Islands.

No stranger to the study of anachronisms in archeological digs, Haywood is nevertheless puzzled by the artifact: a suit of clothing, which, according to family legend, once belonged to a selkie who rose from the sea in ancient times and married the castle’s first laird. (more…)

Review: The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor

When you first glimpse the cover of this book, it doesn’t shout ‘magical realism’. It shouts ‘family saga’. At least to me it does.

Admittedly, I skimmed the review pitch very lightly and didn’t really pay close attention to it because like it or not, I knew I would review this one based on the cover and title.

It just sounded like a title that said ‘family saga’ in the vein of Kate Morton for some reason. Then you add in that cover and there you have it, I was convinced at face value that this was a family saga (something that I love).

So imagine my surprise when there were fairies and magic in this book.

(more…)

Review: The One That Got Away by Melissa Pimentel

Unlike most Jane Austen fans, Pride and Prejudice is NOT my favorite by her Austen novel. Nor are the other more popular novels: Emma, or Sense and Sensibility. My favorite Jane Austen is the lesser known Persuasion.

Of course all of her novels are fantastic and her heroines memorable, but none stood out to me more than Anne Elliot and her ever so charming, Captain Wentworth. So when I saw that the novel by Melissa Pimentel was a retelling of Persuasion, I was all eyeballs.

Ruby and Ethan were perfect for each other. Until the day they suddenly weren’t.

Now, ten years later, Ruby is single, having spent the last decade focusing on her demanding career and hectic life in Manhattan. (more…)

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