Review: The Curse of Morton Abbey by Clarissa Harwood

This book has been sitting in my Amazon cart for well over a year! I had it in my cart as a paperback and just never could decide if I wanted to pull the trigger to not. This book sounded like something I would like but it was also kind of off the beaten path and from a smaller press and if I was going to spend $14 on it, I wanted to make sure I was 100% sold on it. But then one night while I was sitting with my son, waiting for him to fall asleep, I was bored looking for something new to read.

Suddenly buying the ecopy for $10 sounded like a good idea and the moment felt right. I was instantly glad that I pulled the trigger! I was sucked into this one almost immediately and by the time I was done, I was kicking myself for not buying it sooner! If you are a Victoria Holt fan or Julia Klassen, then you are not going to want to miss this one! This has all the things I love about Gothic romances! Ambiguous characters, haunted castles, and of course romance!

This one absolutely drew me in and captivated me for a few days. I found myself spending longer and longer in my son’s room well after her went to sleep just so I could finish ‘one more page’! If you love Gothic mysteries with some romance you are not going to want to miss this one. Or maybe you have this book in your Amazon cart like I did and just aren’t sure if it’s worth it—well the answer is YES! Absolutely worth it!

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Special Feature: Peril in Paris (Her Royal Spyness Mystery #16) by Rhys Bowen

How are we already at book 16 in this series?! I have only made it to like book 7 consecutively and then a few of the later ones in the series. All of the books are just so good and I have enjoyed this series so much over the years. It’s one of those book series that you can pick up and know that you are going to get a solid mystery with great characters! I have yet to read a disappointing one in this series! It’s like my go to comfort reading when I don’t know what else to read.

Sadly I couldn’t fit this one into my review schedule for this month, but I have this one queued up to read over winter break! Even though I have jumped around in this series, there have only been a few times where I felt like reading the other books in the series would have been useful, but overall I have been able to jump around with ease. But we are 16 books in to this series so naturally there are going to be established relationships and plot points that carry over within the larger series.

That said though, the author does a good job orientating readers within the story so you aren’t fully lost etc. I would say it’s relatively easy to jump around so if this one sounds good to you, then you should check it out even if you are a new reader. Now long time fans of the series will no doubt have this one on their radar! If you love cheeky historical mysteries this is an excellent series and I highly recommend this (and anything by Rhys Bowen really!) as a fun, cozy mystery with a sassy and smart heroine and a dashing hero!

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Review: Beneath His Silence by Hannah Linder

This cover instantly caught my eye, followed quickly by ‘Gothic style Regency romance’. I LOVE Gothic fiction, especially at this time of year when it’s starting to get colder and all I want to do is be in front of a fire in my cozy blanket with a crumbling estate! I had just finished another Gothic romance and I was eager for more books like that one I finished. This one came across my desk at the perfect time and was exactly what I needed!

Author, Hannah Linder, is a new author and she is from a small publishing house of Christian Fiction. As luck would have it, I love finding new to me authors and ones that are off the beaten path. I adore Julie Klassen who kind of has a cornerstone on Gothic style Christian Fiction, and this new author reminds me a bit of Klassen but with her own unique style. This book is giving me all the haunted estate vibes and has a questionable hero with a fierce heroine, if you are a fan of Gothic fiction you need to check this one out! It’s a fun romp through Regency England that will satisfy your fall reading desires!

I am so glad I picked this one up, I finished it in just a couple of days and was left wondering when we might expect another book by Linder. Lots of atmosphere, some intrigue, and of course romance. I enjoyed getting to know the characters and once I was hooked—I was HOOKED. It did take me a minute to get into this one, but once I did, I didn’t want to leave! Gothic fans, this one has your name all over it!

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Review: The Belle of Belgrave Square (Belles of London #2) by Mimi Matthews

It’s no secret that I have been a long time Mimi Matthews fan. I have loved all of her books but of course some more than others. Over the years I have seen her move from a smaller publisher company to the big time with Berkley publishing. It’s been so exciting to see her grow as an author and or course see other new readers discover her and see how amazing she really is as a writer! I read the first book in this series and liked it quite a bit but this was the story I was most eager to explore since meeting these characters in the first book.

Matthews writes wonderful romances that are more on the sweet side than the spicy side and I am absolutely ok with that. There is something more sensual and romantic about the sweet side of romance and she has a great way of hinting at simmering physical attraction between the characters without being crass. When I picked this book up I couldn’t put it down! I also took it with me on my trip to Cabo and basically read it in a day. I was absolutely hooked on the characters and loved my time with Jasper and Julia.

Personally I think this series should have started with this book and then went on to Evelyn’s story. I thought the chemistry and story of Julia was much better—-and that’s saying something because I loved Evelyn’s story too! But now that I have read this one, I feel like I would probably rate this one higher than the first on (Evelyn’s story). In this book Julia and Jasper had so much more chemistry and I just loved how their story came together, especially Jasper’s backstory!

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Special Feature: That Summer in Berlin by Lecia Cornwall

Any time I see a historical fiction WWII novel, I always wonder how will it distinguish itself from the sea of others? Now I love historical fiction WWII novels just as much as the next person—-I mean come on I read a TON of it ! But there are times when I feel like I have read something similar before. So I am always looking for ways in which new novels of similar content will be ‘new’ or ‘different’ than the others and for this one it was having the Olympics as a backdrop.

This novel also takes place prior to WWII starting, it is set in 1936 when the Olympics were in Berlin. Germany is rising to power at this time and yet playing host to a massive world event so I thought this backdrop sounded REALLY interesting and made this book stand out as ‘new’ and ‘different’ in the way that I was looking for within the genre. I also like that the setting really focuses on how Germany was rising to power again, this is not something that is explored much in many historical fiction novels so I think this one will really stand out for fans of the genre.

Author Lecia Cornwall is an accomplished novelist with many historical romances under her belt. This new piece of historical fiction has been getting tons of early rave reviews and I cannot wait to read it a little later this winter! If you are a historical fiction fan, this novel is likely already on your radar but if it isn’t, it should be! The unique time period and setting sound absolutely intriguing! Get this one on your radar now if it isn’t yet!

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