Review: Murder at the Mill (An Iris Grey Mystery #1) by M.B. Shaw

I love discovering new mystery series and new to me authors. M. B. Shaw is not a new author, but she is new to me and I was eager to check out a book that sounded like an Agatha Christie mystery.

An quirky protagonist solves crime at a country house party…..at the holidays? Yes and double yes! I was so excited to read this one, especially during the holiday season!

A picture hides a thousand lies . . . And only Iris Grey can uncover the truth

Iris Grey arrives at Mill Cottage in a picture-perfect Hampshire village, looking to escape from her crumbling marriage. She is drawn to the neighbouring Wetherby family, and is commissioned to paint a portrait of Dominic Wetherby, a celebrated crime writer.

At the Wetherby’s Christmas Eve party, the mulled wine is in full flow – but so too are tensions and rivalries among the guests. On Christmas Day, the youngest member of the Wetherby family, Lorcan, finds a body in the water. A tragic accident? Or a deadly crime? Continue reading “Review: Murder at the Mill (An Iris Grey Mystery #1) by M.B. Shaw”

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Review: Judah’s Wife: A Novel of the Maccabees (The Silent Years #2) by Angela Elwell Hunt

I happened to see one of this author’s books up for giveaway on Goodreads and I was intrigued by the sound of her ‘signature style’ which seems to be women in the Bible. I didn’t win the giveaway but I did pick up one of her books the next time I was at my library.

This book stood out because of the beautiful cover and I know next to nothing about the Maccabee rebellion so I thought—-why not?

Seeking peace and safety after a hard childhood, Leah marries Judah, a strong and gentle man, and for the first time in her life Leah believes she can rest easily. But the land is ruled by Antiochus IV, descended from one of Alexander the Great’s generals, and when he issues a decree that all Jews are to conform to Syrian laws upon pain of death, devout Jews risk everything to follow the law of Moses. Continue reading “Review: Judah’s Wife: A Novel of the Maccabees (The Silent Years #2) by Angela Elwell Hunt”

Review: The Blue by Nancy Bilyeau

I’ve only read a couple of Nancy Bilyeau’s novels, which was a good read but for some reason I didn’t get back to any of her other novels. I saw this one floating around various book sites and was intrigued.

I was interesting in this book because I thought it was going to be about china and porcelain and somehow circle back and become a historical thriller. In sort, that’s exactly what I got with this one—-porcelain and a little bit of suspense.

In eighteenth century London, porcelain is the most seductive of commodities; fortunes are made and lost upon it. Kings do battle with knights and knaves for possession of the finest pieces and the secrets of their manufacture.

For Genevieve Planché, an English-born descendant of Huguenot refugees, porcelain holds far less allure; she wants to be an artist, a painter of international repute, but nobody takes the idea of a female artist seriously in London. If only she could reach Venice. Continue reading “Review: The Blue by Nancy Bilyeau”

Review: A Holiday By Gaslight: A Victorian Christmas Novella by Mimi Matthews

I am absolutely in love with this cover. The more I saw this book, the more I wanted to read it—even if it was just a novella. I was thrilled that I was able to get it in over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend so that I could start getting in the mood for more holiday reading.

This book was super shot (just over 100 pages) and I could easily have read it in one sitting, though it did take me two sittings, but only because I started it late at night. This was a quick, fun read full of Christmas cheer and love.

A Dutiful Daughter

Sophie Appersett is quite willing to marry outside of her class to ensure the survival of her family. But the darkly handsome Mr. Edward Sharpe is no run of the mill London merchant. He’s grim and silent. A man of little emotion–or perhaps no emotion at all. After two months of courtship, she’s ready to put an end to things. After all, even a dutiful daughter has her limits. Continue reading “Review: A Holiday By Gaslight: A Victorian Christmas Novella by Mimi Matthews”

Review: Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield

I had one experience with Diane Setterfield’s novels and that was Bellman & Black way back in 2013. I wasn’t terribly impressed with the book and I was so sad because I wanted to love it so very badly. I mean it sounded right up my alley and I was reading it as my ‘scary read’ for October so I was even more disappointed in it.

At the time I wanted to read her other novel, The Thirteenth Tale, but I was just so let down that I didn’t want to risk being disappointed again. So flash forward five years…..since reading this Bellman & Black,  I have thought of her other book off and on but just haven’t gotten around to reading it.

Then I was approached to read Once Upon a River and I was actually super excited. By all accounts and descriptions, all of her books should be something that I would love. I was eager to try out another one of her books, especially because I had already heard quite the buzz happening around this book which made me excited. And let’s just say the only regret I have with this book is that I didn’t start it sooner! Continue reading “Review: Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield”