Je suis Charlie

Je suis Charlie

Mittwoch, 29. März 2017

Royally Roma by Teri Wilson








 Blurb:

In this charming, modern retelling of the classic Audrey Hepburn film Roman Holiday, a royal prince tries to escape his hectic and rigid life and ends up leading a young graduate student on a chase through the Eternal City.

Julia Costa is too busy trying to complete her PhD while also holding down a full-time job as a private tour guide in Rome to keep up with celebrity gossip. So when she crosses paths with a real, actual prince, she mistakes him for a client and takes him on a daylong tour of the city.

Intrigued by the idea of spending time with someone who obviously has no idea who he is, and delighted at the prospect of a day free of royal obligations, Niccolo La Torre, Crown Prince of Lazaretto, acts on impulse and assumes the role of Julia’s client. He swears to himself that he’ll return to his royal duties after only half a day…but he’s having the time of his life.

Until Julia presents him with the bill. Since he snuck out of the hotel without so much as a dime, he tries to escape, only to discover that she won’t let him out of her sight until he can pay her back. She’s determined to get her money…and perhaps more from the handsome stranger she’s fallen for.
 




Somehow, despite the fact that this is a really nice story, it didn't really enthrall me. It was a nice read and it was sweet (and sometimes a bit frustrating) to read how those two explore Rome and get to know each other. Nevertheless, after having read half the book, I put it aside and forgot about it for a while. So - nice but obviously not the kind of book that keeps me glued to my reader.

Somehow Niccolo's Attempts at fleeing his responsibilities (and his bodyguards) were not really convincing and he himself and his actions did sometimes appear a bit, well, not really pathetic but a bit weak.

Oh, Niccolo? Right. Niccolo and Julia are our main characters. Juluia who just works and tries to get by while finishing her studies and Niccolo La Torre, Crown Prince of Lazaretto.
When Niccolo or "His Royal Hotness" as the newspapers hve christened him, grasps at the opportunity of being someone else, just a simple tourist, for a day, his life is changed forever. Or maybe it is the kidnapping that changes him?
As far as Julia is concerned, well, it's not every day that a girl has to reasort to kidnapping, so , yes, talk about a life chainging incident taking place. And when her plain tourist, actually her plain, kidnapped tourist, turns out to be a real prince, well, that's got "trouble" written all over it -  in capital letters! So far so....not really good. Right?

At the end of the book I was a bit frustrated because it felt as if everything was a bit rushed and somehow, miraculously, all those very obvious and insurmountable problems vanish in thin air.
Sooooo....I enjoyed reading this book on the whole but I won't reread very often.


★★
 
 

Dienstag, 28. März 2017

The Highland Duke - Amy Jarecky











Blurb:

 She'll put her life on the line for him . . .

When Akira Ayres finds the brawny Scot with a musket ball in his thigh, the healer has no qualms about doing whatever it takes to save his life. Even if it means fleeing with him across the Highlands to tend to his wounds while English redcoats are closing in. Though Akira is as fierce and brave as any of her clansmen, even she's intimidated by the fearsome, brutally handsome Highlander who refuses to reveal his name.

Yet she can never learn his true identity.

Geordie knows if Akira ever discovers he's the Duke of Gordon, both her life and his will be forfeit in a heartbeat. The only way to keep the lass safe is to ensure she's by his side day and night. But the longer he's with her, the harder it becomes to think of letting her go. Despite all their differences, despite the danger-he will face death itself to make her his . . .



Waking up on the battlefield in the aftermath of the desastrous  Battle of Hoord Moor, Geordie or rather George Gordon, the first Duke of Gordon does not only have to deal with a musket ball in his tigh but also with the fact that he mustn't be found by the redcoats as his lands would be forfeit if he was discovered. When Akira Ayres, the nearby village's healer finds him, he gets her to help him. When they are discovered by the redcoats, a wild ride begins and a flight that'll take them high up into the highlands. This trip will change their life forever ...

Akira's life hasn't been easy up to now and she isn't very happy when circumstances force her to flee with Geordie - and with a bunch of redcoats at their heels. A bunch of very determined redcoats at that.
Akira and Geordie not only have to try to stay ahead of their pursuers but Akira also has to try to keep the severely wounded Geordie alive. Fighting together and getting to know each other, the two of them form a bond. Could there be a future for a duke and a gypsy's daughter? And, even more pressing, will they be able to stay ahead of the redcoats and thwart all their plans to capture them?

I loved the chemistry between the two main characters and I loved that Geordie is very straight forward when it comes to his feelings and that even though he is a man and acts like one, he doesn't want to take advantage of Akira but wants to do everything for her that he can do. Well, the bad part is, that sometimes that is not enough. Sometimes all the feelings and all the good intentions are not enough no matter how much it hurts to realize that.

Akira's family - well, I guess everybody needs an Uncle Bruno, right? Someone who will protect you no matter what, someone who shows you how to survive and someone to watch out for you. Alright, I loved the story and I loved that the good ones win and the bad ones, well, they don't. And it felt so good to see them lose!

This book is sweet and wonderful, romantic, funny and gripping. I really enjoyed reading it!


★★★★



The Duke of Desire - Darcy Burke







 Blurb:

Ten years ago Ivy Breckenridge’s life was ruined. She had to reinvent herself, and now, after painstakingly making her own way in the world, she’s nearly forgotten the dreams of home and family she’d once nurtured. Until one man peers into her soul and awakens every one of her hidden desires. But no matter how good he makes her feel, she can’t trust him—alone by choice is better than alone by necessity.

With a notorious reputation for training married women in the art of passion, Sebastian Westgate, Duke of Clare, is reviled by some and celebrated by others. He doesn’t allow anyone close enough to see past his charming exterior. When Ivy uncovers the man beneath, the seducer is suddenly the seduced. Enraptured by her mind and spirit, he wants more but revealing his darkest secrets is a price he won’t pay.



"The Duke of Desire" is the forth book in the series  - and I loved it just as much as I loved the other books!

Well, I was a bit miffed at our hero, the Duke of Desi...,pardon, Duke of Clare's in the beginning because he was very insistent and very seductive and, well, let's face that fact once more, right: seduction was fine in those times - if you didn't happen to be a woman, then it just meant that you were completely and utterly ruined.

Unfortunately Ivy Breckenridge is a woman - and one who has suffered enough already. So no matter how well meaning and how whatever our Duke's efforts were, I was not very happy with him. So wasn't Ivy, actually, at least, well. Persistence and perseverance can change a lot, can't they? And slowly, very slowly, Ivy dared to dream of something more than just going on with her life as it was.

The Duke of Desire and I got along much better when he finally realized that there was much more to Ivy and that she meant much more to him than he thought possible. I loved to see their attraction grow, to see him fall for her - and when her past catched up to her ...let's just say that he really really won me over.

Well written with an interesting plot, very complex and likeable characters, especially an extraordinarily strong heroine - I really enjoyed reading this book and I'm already looking forward to the next book by the author!

 ★★★★


A Perfect Gentleman by Candace Camp








Blurb:

Forced to marry an American heiress to save his family, Graeme Parr, Earl of Montclair, vowed their marriage would be in name only. Abigail Price thought handsome, aristocratic Graeme was her knight in shining armor, rescuing her from her overbearing father. But when she was spurned by her husband on their wedding night, Abigail fled home to New York.

Now, years later, Abigail has returned. But this sophisticated, alluring woman is not the drab girl Graeme remembers. Appalled by her bold American ways but drawn to her beauty, Graeme follows her on a merry chase through London’s elegant ballrooms to its dockside taverns—why is his wife back? What could she want of him now?

Torn between desire and suspicion, Graeme fears that Abby, like her unprincipled father, has a devious plan to ruin him. But is Abigail’s true desire Graeme’s destruction...or winning his love at last?



Ohhhh, I really loved this book! And I hated Greame and was really really upset with him for the way he treated Abigail. I was crushed when he told "us" how he felt, had he been standing in front of me at that moment, I might have kicked him, somewhere, and I would have enjoyed it - soooo much.
Sometimes I wasn't sure if I thought him worse or his ... wonderful...family. And I loved Abigail, did I mention that?

Anyway - this book was well written and kept me glued to my reader. I simply wanted Abigail to be happy and just the way the book made me feel with Abigail and Graeme, who might have developed some redeeming qualities in the end, is a rather clear sign how completely absorbed by the book I was.

"A Perfect Gentleman" has an interesting story with some twists and turns, even though it was lacking some kind of gentleman, even the non-perfect kind for a very long time, at least in my eyes. Ah, well, I may be a bit prejudiced against "someone", so - never mind.

This is definitely one of those books that I will read again and where I will love to see the paperback on my shelf.




★★★★★



Gone Camping: A Novel in Verse by Tamera Will Wissinger








Blurb:

Hiking in the great outdoors, catching fish, watching the stars come out at night—camping is fun. Until it’s time to sleep. Then, Lucy wonders, what kinds of creatures lurk in the dark? With only her brother and grandpa as tent-mates, will Lucy be able to face her camping fears?
 

Filled with a variety of poetic forms—from aubade to haiku—as well as exuberant art and helpful writing tips about rhyme and rhythm, this entertaining companion to the award-winning Gone Fishing is packed with family humor and adventure. So grab a flashlight and get settled in to experience the joy of campfires, s’mores, and storytelling


This book is really great. I loved the drawings and the poems and it reminded me of the books my daughters loved most when they were small. The poems in those books made the texts special, they learned them by heart and already had a very large vocabulary at a young age. And what is more - they kept their love for language and literature and everything around it. I think that was also due to the fact that they learned that language and stories can be fun and that it is fun to play with the words and rhyme.

They would have loved this book about going camping either. We love to go camping and of course we had it all - the rustling leaves, the hedgehog coming to visit, the rats and mice - and I loved how all those fears were shown in the book and how a sleeping bag chant can help (okay, it doesn't help, when big bears get involved but that is something different, isn't it?) and other little things like that.
Different rhymes, different effects, on the whole a wonderful and adorable story that every child will love  - just beprepared that they might want to go camping afterwards!

For those who are a bit older or for the parents, there's a great part at the back of the book about the different kinds of rhymes with understandable explanations what they are, where in the book they were used and what they mean. Even if you don't want to become a poet, you may find that it is fun to play with words and rhyme along.

I really enjoyed reading this novel and loved its verses, I can definitely recommend this book!

★★★★


Sonntag, 26. März 2017

To Tempt a Viscount (Entangled Nobility, #1) by Naomi Boom










Blurb:

Lady Laura Rosing knows two things: first, she will marry for love, and second, she detests rakes. When she meets Lord Gavin Farris, she understands immediately that he fails both her criteria, and worse yet, he is an absolute cad who refuses to leave her be.

Lord Farris has always appreciated women and cannot understand why Lady Laura is so resistant to his charms. While pretty, she is not his usual type, but something about her intrigues him. Much to his chagrin, he finds himself desperately in love with her, but he may be too late. His adamant refusal to marry just might have planted her firmly in the arms of another.



I enjoyed reading this book and will probably read it again. It is a nice and charming story about oh-so-very-pretty-but-beastly stepsisters, insecurities, indifferent fathers and a couple of misunderstandings. A rake who turns out to be a wonderful person thus making him the love of our heroine's life but this rake doesn't wish to wed. Unfortunately a young lady has to marry - sooner rather than later.

Torn between his wish to stay independent (and unmarried) and his love for Lady Laura, Lord Farris is running out of time, especially as other men start to court Lady Laura. Laura is being pushed into a marriage of convenience by her despicable cousin and Lord Farris risks losing her.
Will he realize soon enough how he really feels about her or will he lose her? And will Laura be able to trust him and believe in his honorable intentions?

There was a lot in this book but it was rather predictable despite some twists and turns and some decisions didn't really convince me. I liked the chemistry between the hero and the heroine but, well, let's say that I thought that it was a bit strange that some actions of Lord Farris' when Lady Laura was ill, didn't lead to scandal (and a proposal), especially as he wasn't very subtle about it.  There were several of those inconsistencies and I was bit annoyed how long it took him to realize the depth of his feelings.

Nevertheless I really enjoyed reading this book and I will also look for other books by this author.

★★


Samstag, 25. März 2017

To Charm a Bluestocking - Renee Dahlia











Blurb:
 
She wants to be one of the world’s first female doctors; romance is not in her plans. 

1887: Too tall, too shy and too bookish for England, Lady Josephine moves to Holland to become one of the world’s first female doctors. With only one semester left, she has all but completed her studies when a power-hungry professor, intent on marrying her for her political connections, threatens to prevent her graduation. Together with the other Bluestockings, female comrades-in-study, she comes up with a daring, if somewhat unorthodox plan: acquire a fake fiancé to provide the protection and serenity she needs to pass her final exams. 

But when her father sends her Lord Nicholas St. George, he is too much of everything: too handsome, too charming, too tall and too broad and too distracting for Josephine’s peace of mind. She needed someone to keep her professor at bay, not keep her from her work with temptations of long walks, laughing, and languorous kisses. 

Just as it seems that Josephine might be able to have it all: a career as a pioneering female doctor and a true love match, everything falls apart and Josephine will find herself in danger of becoming a casualty in the battle between ambition and love.


Wow, this book was amazing! I loved how the author mixed historical facts with her story and made me feel with those young women, trying to find their way in a world that was reluctant to allow women to learn and to study.

The story kept me on my toes, I loved the main characters a lot and I loved how they interacted. I was so proud of Nicholas for not being an ...idiot and underestimating Josephine but I loved how he enjoyed her intelligence, that he was willing to change his ways, to learn how to accept her independance and how proud he was of her and everything she achieved.

Sometimes in between I was seriously upset because of the things that happened and because I feared for some newfound (book)friends of mine and to say that I detest Van Percy...well, that's probably the understatement of the century.

I also loved how Claire, Marie and Josephine as the only female students in their year worked together and stood together against their not always sympathetic fellow male students. It took a strong personality and a strong will for women to study medicin in those times even though the University of Amsterdam was more open and more welcoming than for example the british Universities but there were still many men (and women) who thought that no woman should have a place there. Wasted time because a woman should marry and have children and shouldn't meddle with all those stupid things that would get her nowhere useful - at least in the eyes of many people. unfortunately many of their fellow students shared this view and were harassing them whenever they could.

Where Nicholas was supportive and proud of Josephine and not just because it was part of his job, it is her professor Van Percy who treats her with the least respect and who constantly harrasses her. Well, that's why Josephine's father sent Lord Nicholas St. George over to help her and pose as her fake fiancé, didn't he? The only question is - did her father have something else on his mind when he chose this very handsome, very charming and utterly irresistible and most distracting man as her fake fiancé?

I really loved how open both, Nicholas and Josephine, were to their feelings even if they were not totally happy in the beginning about this potential deviation from their set course. No games of cat-and-mouse, just open minds and honesty. Josephine, being shy, bookish and due to her unusual hight (for a woman) not very confident, nees some time to adapt at the idea of a not that bad looking man caring for her but you can feel her grow and get more confident and you can feel the steel at the core of her personality that made her pursue such an unusual and difficult career. I really loved to see her spread her wings and become more confident.

A wonderful and gripping book that I couldn't put down and that lets me hope for another book by this author - and soon, please!

★★★★★



Freitag, 24. März 2017

Spring Rain by Edie Claire, Julianne MacLean and Mary Campisi









Blurb:

 Immerse yourself in three full length romantic women’s fiction novels from some of the most beloved authors in the genre – more than 800 pages of emotionally uplifting, heartfelt family drama—where falling in love is only part of the story…

ALASKAN DAWN – By Edie Claire

Overachieving attorney Haley Olson has always done the responsible thing. So when her twin sister Micah needs a surrogate mother, Haley willingly volunteers. Like most feats the capable workaholic attempts, her pregnancy goes perfectly... until the results of prenatal testing threaten to tear Micah’s marriage apart.

Pregnant, overworked, and driven to the end of her rope by the neediness of the sister and widowed mother who depend on her, Haley seeks refuge with a week’s vacation on the Alaskan coast. As she soaks up the serenity of the unexpectedly vast and beautiful wilderness, Haley finds something else she doesn’t expect -- deep feelings for the wildlife-loving boat captain who reminds her how to laugh.

With her unborn niece or nephew on the way and thousands of miles of ocean between their lives and careers, Haley and Ben settle for a friendship. But back home in California, the emptiness in her heart refuses to heal, and when her pregnancy takes a frightening turn Haley must examine what really matters -- and rediscover the childhood dream she never realized she had lost.

THE COLOR OF HEAVEN – by Julianne MacLean

A deeply emotional tale about Sophie Duncan, a successful columnist whose world falls apart after her daughter’s unexpected illness and her husband’s shocking affair. When it seems nothing else could possibly go wrong, her car skids off an icy road and plunges into a frozen lake. There, in the cold dark depths of the water, a profound and extraordinary experience unlocks the surprising secrets from Sophie’s past, and teaches her what it means to truly live...and love.

PULLING HOME – Mary Campisi

It's taken nine years and a cross-country move, but Audra Valentine Wheyton has kept her secrets safe. She's created the perfect life: a husband who loves her, a daughter she adores, and a position as head writer for an award-winning daytime soap. When her husband dies suddenly, Audra returns to her hometown for the funeral and faces a community that has not forgotten her meager beginnings and the man who has never forgiven her for marrying his brother.

Jack Wheyton is a successful pediatric neurosurgeon who is about to become engaged when Audra walks back into his life with her daughter. He forgave his brother long ago for taking something that had been his, something he hadn't even realized he wanted until it was gone. But forgiving Audra is another story...and forgetting her? Near impossible.

When a shattering illness strikes Audra's daughter, she turns to Jack to save her child and risks exposing a secret that will change their lives forever.


 
This is not easy. Usually I read all the books before I rate a bundle but in this case I found that one of the books in this bundle hit a bit too close to home and I just couldn't read it.


Anyway, this is not the book's or rather in this case, the story's fault, as it is well written (otherwise it might have been easier) but cancer and the danger of loosing your child are due to our personal history a bit problematic. We almost lost our daughter a couple of years ago and we've lost too many loved ones to cancer so, well, I couldn't deal with that. Again, this is not due to the book but to my personal history.


Despite my problems with THE COLOR OF HEAVEN by Julianne MacLean, I really enjoyed the other books of the bundle. I loved to feel the chemistry between our hero and our heroine in ALASKAN DAWN by Edie Claire and I loved to see how those two fight for their love and their happiness and how much they are willing to give up for it.

What I also loved about the book was the way it dealt with topics like being a substitute mother and everything that implies. It was great (and hard) to read about the potential of a special needs kid as a result. The respect and the love for a well-loved aunt with a Down Syndrome and the mixed feelings at the idea of having a child with those very special needs - all those are at war and it's not easy to find your way in a situation like that. Well, some of those involved in that little mite that's on the way have more problems with it than others, which results in the substitute mother fleeing to Alaska to get away from all the demands, the worries and the smothering.

Throw in some amazing descriptions of Alaska and nature that almost had me pack my suitcase right then and there, great characters and an interesting plot and you'll know why I was hooked.

Nature is a big part of the book as well, actually, not just due to the main characters' love for it but also in their jobs. On the one hand there's Ben who is working as a captain to show tourists all those amazing whales and other animals, who tries to make them aware of nature's beauty and who also tries to fight for nature, to fight against the corporations polluting the sea - and then there's Haley. Haley who is working for the bad guys, actually.

Take Haley's needy and exhausting family (they made me scream with frustration..) and Ben's very lively, very loving, female-dominated family with his numerous sisters, their different jobs and top that with some real hot chemistry . yup, that's it. Sounds like a good story, doesn't it? And that's exactly what it is.

And then there's is PULLING HOME by Mary Campisi. I have already read several books by Mary Campisi and knew that I really love her books which was one of the reasons why I wanted to read this bundle. Pulling Home was great - and it did need a bunch of handkerchiefs and it was heartbreaking and I was so upset and - it was also very hopeful and sweet and I loved it. I loved to see how Audra got a chance at happiness because I was so upset by the way she was treated by her former neighbours, I hated all this judgement, this hypocrisy and - well, let's the, the brutal ironie of reality when all secrets are revealed. I felt sorry for those whose lives where lost to peoples' mean-spiritedness and I was furious thinking of all those narrow-minded people making other peoples' lives hell. In the end, despite everything that went down and all the bad things that happened, I was just happy to see Audra blossom and start a new life.

So, apart from the one book that was  just not my cup of tea but well written nontheless,  I really enjoyed this bundle and can defintily recommend it. 


★★★★

Oh, did I mention....



...that I'll attend the 


RARE 17 - Booked Up In Berlin 

 in June?

And just look at all those amazing authors that'll be there:




Donnerstag, 23. März 2017

A Special Obsession by A.M. Hargrove










Blurb:

From the author of For The Love of English, comes a new a stand-alone contemporary romance.

Rule Number One: Never let anyone get too close…

Weston Wyndham has more money on his tattooed wrist than I’ll ever have in my bank account.

Drunk, he was gorgeous, wicked, sexy… an inked god.
Sober, he is the most arrogant man ever.

If he thinks I’m going to let him order me around like one of his servants, he’s wrong. If he wants me to date him after all this, he’s out of his mind. I don’t care how rich he is, or that he drives a Ferrari and a fancy truck. Those walls I put up are there for a reason … and they were built to last.

But he’s relentless, and hot, and it turns out he likes his girls a little fiery. Giving in doesn’t have to mean disaster—unless I break my number one rule.

Special O’Malley is a handful. With a name like that, she ought to be. Sassy as hell, bossing me around, but damn if I don’t deserve it.

I’m used to getting my way, dealing with difficult people, only she’s not buying any of it. Usually my money attracts women. Not Special. She doesn’t give a damn about it … or me.

There’s more than one stubborn player in this game. I have a few tricks up my sleeve and I’m not planning on giving up any time soon … at least not until I’m between her thighs, making her moan. And those concrete walls she has … I have news for her. Concrete crumbles if you strike at the right place.



I really enjoyed For the Love of English by A.M.Hargrove but I loved A Special Obsession even more.

Special (yes, that is her name, really...) and Weston are wonderful characters with an amazing chemistry and I really loved to see how Special helped Weston to spread his wings and to find his own way, away from his ....indescribable....parents (who are just amazing - at least if you really really want to hate somebody....). Weston is really nice but he has to grow up a bit more and to learn to stand up for himself and those he cares for. Cody, Special's adoptive son and Mimi, her grandmother are also great characters but I also loved the other minor characters a lot.

It was great so see Special start to trust Weston and I loved to see Weston open up as well. Both of them need love and people who care for them in their life. Mimi and Cody are wonderful but, well, every girl needs someone special in her life, right? Even the owner of "Special's Stripper Squad" - if such a squad existed. And the lap wasn't out of order. And.. well. 

Interesting characters and an interesting and gripping plot with many twists and turns that kept me glued to my ereader - this book was great. Action packed, fast-paced and gripping and at the same time sweet and one of those books that make you sport some really goofy grins because it's just so very sweet and nice and...*sigh*

★★★★
 
 
 
 

For the Love of English by A.M. Hargrove











Blurb:

 Single dad, Beckley Bridges, is sexy as hell.
No, really, he’s the hottest thing since the sun was created.
Honest to God, crack an egg on him and the thing will sizzle.
So what’s the problem?
He’s also a gigantic jerk.
I hate the bastard.
I try to avoid him at all costs.
But for some reason, everywhere I go he seems to show up.

Only the real issue is his daughter, English.
She’s an adorable quirky first-grader who’s the sweetest thing since iced tea.
And she’s one of my students but also the love of his life.
So I have to deal with him on a professional level.
It’s not easy.
On a scale of easy to hard, dealing with Beckley Bridges is like nails screeching across a blackboard.

But when English’s mother tries to gain custody after abandoning her on Beckley’s doorstep as an infant, he’ll do anything possible to keep English under his roof.

That’s how he ends up propositioning me.

And crazy as it sounds?
I find myself considering it.

 

Do you know this kind of story that leaves you with an aching face because you've been grinning all the time? Well, not all the time, there were times when I was really shocked and when I feared the worst, reading on and on while barely breathing, there were times when I was so furious and just couldn't believe what happened and, of course, there was a time when I felt crushed. I was devastated and just couldn't believe what had happened...

The story is nice but not that unusual but the wonderful, very very loveable characters make this book special. You definitely have to get used to Beck but his devotion to his daughter and the easy acceptance of his situation as a single father and of course, the loving way how he raises English, make it easy to warm up to him, despite his, well, let's say -  his grumpyness - at the beginning.

Sheridan is sweet and loving and English, well, I'd take her, like, right now. Sweet, loving, charming, smart and just the right amount of wild and tomboyish...perfect. And don't forget Beck's parents, they are amazing as well!
The characters are not very complex but in this case it doesn't matter as the story and the characters just fit. I loved this book and will definitely read it again - and other books by the author as well.

Oh, just a little warning - this book contains explicit scenes so if you prefer clean books, this might not be the right one for you. 

★★★★

 

Dienstag, 21. März 2017

Romancing the Rogue by Erica Ridley








Blurb:

When the new earl inherits, poor relation Miss Rebecca Bond must wed immediately or be out on her ear. The only man she’s ever loved is summoned to hear the will—but he already rejected her so soundly that they haven’t spoken in years. Yet who better than a rakish Viscount to teach her how to snare a gentleman who appreciates her charms?

Daniel Goodenham, Lord North-Barrows, regrets nothing more than the lost friendship with the one woman who treated him like a man, not a title. Fate has given him the perfect pretext to win her forgiveness—even if it means having to matchmake her to someone else. But now that she’s back in his life, he’ll do anything to convince her to choose him instead...

As much as I loved the hero and the heroine I was a bit disappointed in the end when everything turned out just fine - just like that. I even turned back some pages because I thought that I might have missed something. It was a believable and realistic ending but something was lacking. Rebecca starts to hunt for a husband and - poof - game over. Husband found. Not necessarily the one she expected  but...well.

On the whole I was also irritated when suddenly the heroine was not just some "ghost" anymore haunting the estate but somehow without anybody really caring for her, but someone with a maid who accompagnies her and so on, even though before nobody even knew anymore that she existed (Horrible idea! Made me think how many spinsters and their likes may have had a similar fate in those times. Non-existent and invisible to those around them and just happy for the roof over their heads. ) and her uncle didn't strike me as someone who'd take care that everybody is aware of her needs and her presence.

I really liked Rebecca and her strong and independent ways, I liked how she defied society and their opinions again and again and showed her briliance and her strong character along the way.
I know that Daniel was also very young when they first met and still rather young and insecure when all the bad stuff went down but nevertheless I was really upset with him - despite the fact that I like him. Fortunately for him (and my patience), he remembers at last that he has a backbone and that he should trust Rebecca otherwise I would have been a very unhappy reader. Due to his new-found backbone and so on, I liked the book in the end even though it is not a book that I will read again very soon.

★★★



Sonntag, 19. März 2017

Lesung - Micaela Jary: Die Villa am Meer



Wer erinnert sich noch an Micaela Jarys Buch


Da mir das Buch sehr gut gefallen hat, freue ich mich sehr auf das neue Buch der Autorin,


das morgen herauskommt!




Wer die Gelegenheit hat und rund um den 29. in der Gegend von Uetersen ist, 

kann sich freuen:

Micaela Jary liest aus ihrem neuen Roman Die Villa am Meer:

Mittwoch, den 29. März 2017
19:00 Uhr 

Großer Sand 26, 25436 Uetersen

Eintritt 7€
 
 
Die Villa am Meer
 Rostock-Warnemünde 1897: Katharinas Hochzeit mit dem verwitweten, wesentlich älteren Manufakturbesitzer und Korbmacher Olaf Borchers steht unter einem schlechten Stern: Nicht nur, dass ihr Herz einem anderen gehört, Borchers halbwüchsiger Sohn ist nicht einverstanden mit der neuen Frau seines Vaters und torpediert die Ehe von Anfang an. Dennoch tut Katharina ihr Bestes, um mit ihrem Mann glücklich zu werden. Doch das ändert sich an dem Tag, an dem sie Pläne für ein eigenes Geschäft macht – einen Strandkorbverleih an der Ostsee ...
 
 
 

Runes Coloring Book by Ednah Walters, illustrated by Arnild Aldepolla



For all those who just can't get enough of "our" 

Runes-Series

by

and have already read and re-read all the books

....

Help is here! 



Wonderful pictures to color and admire!

Check it out! 

*****
***
*

Mittwoch, 15. März 2017

Convict Heart by Lena Dowling










Blurb:
  
An Australian historical romance about a woman with a past who is fighting with everything she has for her future.

All of Sydney knows she was a convict and a prostitute, but Nellie Malone is now the manager of the ‘Tullamore’ Inn, a respectable businesswoman who makes her living on her brains and hard work – no longer on her back.

But when gentleman Harry Chester, fresh to the colonies, shows up at the Tullamore with papers of ownership and plans to collect rent, Nellie’s carefully controlled world is sent into a tailspin. She has barely enough money to keep her doors open, let alone pay an owner the rent he is demanding. 



The Tullamore is Nellie’s home, her hope, and her freedom all tied up into one, and she will do anything to save it. Now, she has to decide what she is willing to sacrifice to hold on to the dreams for a future she’s only just beginning to realise. 

 
My heart went out to Nellie, our heroine, and very often I was so furious when I read what had happened to her that I had to stop reading. Harry tries very hard to do the right thing but alas, he is a man at a time when few men considered a woman their equal in any way and he is also limited by the expectations of a society he shuns but to which he has to bow to nontheless. Not the best combination when it comes to doing bussiness with a woman, especially a former prostitute. He tries but ...well.

I really enjoyed this story, even though some parts of it were rather hard to read due to the circumstances in which our heroine and our hero find themselves. Apart from the well developed characters and the well plotted story, I was really impressed by the picture drawn of the country. Knowing that Australia was used as a place where criminals  were brought to is one thing, another thing is, when you realize what that meant for the society and the people living there.

Of course I also knew that not everybody who was deported, really was guilty of the crime he or she was accused of but to read about it? To read about people who suffered due to such machinations, such injustice - that is something else. Their life was torn apart, they were shipped of to some foreign country and had no chance to ever see their families and loved ones again. Sometimes mistakes were made, sometimes somebody accused them falsely and they seldom had a chance to prove their innocence.

Nellie and Harry are a wonderful team, working hard to make their dreams come true but will that be enough? And is there a chance for Nellie to become really happy at last? Or will their enemies win?

★★★★


Dienstag, 14. März 2017

Love In An English Garden by Victoria Connelly









Blurb:
 



When I started to think about this review, I realized that the variety of people and of peoples' stories is one of the things that make this book very unique. Like in real life, nobody is an island and their lives overlap, they fight, they love, they ignore each other. It starts with my problem to identify the hero and the heroine because there are several of them. The main characters are Vanessa and Jonathan and Tilda and Laurence - I think. Jassy, Marcus, Dolly and Jenna are also very strong and loveable characters. All of their lives are interwoven, the actions of one of them influences the lives of the others. Different generations, different backgrounds but when it comes to love, being loved and, well, I think you could say - at being "seen" , they are all the same.

This is something very important, I think. Love is not something just for young people and life isn't over when the one you loved dies. Life and love go on, there is always a chance for a second chance if you're  just willing to take a risk. Sometimes your own strength might not be enough but there are others there who will help and support you.
The characters in "Love in an English Garden" get those second chances, they have to learn to take risks, they learn to accept help and I loved reading about them and their fight for something "more".

When Vanessa and her daughter Tilda decided to sell a part of the old manor house that has been in the Jacob's family for generations, they know that Dolly, the mother of VAnessa's late husband and Tilda's grandmother would not accept this decision no matter how much they need the money. What they didn't know was how much their lives would change for the better when Laurence and his father Marcus move into the North Wing. Second chances, new friendships, new love and a much better understanding for those around them will soon follow.

I loved this book and its complex story where one wonderful old manor house and its inhabitants touch so many lives and change them. Each of them has his or her dreams and somehow they help each other to achieve them. A wonderful book that made me think and that stayed with me even longer than the last page.


★★★★


Candy Is Magic: Real Ingredients, Modern Recipes by Jami Curl









Blurb:

This game-changing candy cookbook from the owner of Quin, a popular
Portland-based candy company, offers more than 200 achievable recipes
using real, natural ingredients for everything from flavor-packed fruit
lollipops to light-as-air marshmallows.

Jami Curl, candy-maker extraordinaire and owner of the candy company Quin
has been called the "new Willy Wonka" by Bon Appetit. Her debut book, This is
Candy, includes the recipes that have made Quin a favorite with local and national
media, foodies, chefs, and bloggers. But This is Candy is not just a candy book.
Instead, Jami's approach to candy forms the foundation for a world of other
confections--from bacon glazed with maple and black pepper caramel to a clever
Chocolate Magic Dust that can be turned into chocolate pudding, chocolate sauce,
and even a chocolate lollipop. Packed with more than 200 recipes for totally
original confections like Whole Roasted Strawberry Lollipops, Bergamot Caramels,
Fig & Coffee Gumdrops, and Pinot Noir cotton candy, as well as serious tips and
advice for making amazing candy at home.


 
Wow, this book is really amazing! If, like us, you have to be careful what you eat due to food intolerances and such annoying things, you might also tend to cook and prepare a lot of things at home. Or perhaps - you just like to cook and try new things. Any of those reasons is a wonderful reason to buy this book!

"Candy is Magic" is a great ressource for all sugar-junkies because you can find recipes for almost everything in here with detailed and easy-to-follow explanations. Oh, and if everything should not be enough you'll also find quite a nbumber of unusual recipes in here for any kind of cookies, lollipops, caramels, ice-creams, magic dusts and in the end you'll find that this book will also help you to make "dreams come chew".

This book enables you to make a lot of wonderfuland delicious candy and you don't need special machines or something like that just a couple of regular pots and pans and a whisk, the most unusual tools are a candy thermometer and perhaps a candy funnel or a candy mold. You don't have to rebuild your kitchen or spend a lot of money in order to make candy, you just have to start - and you need the right recipes!
I really really like this book and can definitely recommend it!

★★★★

Donnerstag, 9. März 2017

Resisting Miss Merryweather (Baleful Godmother #2) by Emily Larkin









Blurb:

She sees things no one else does...

Sir Barnaby Ware made a mistake two and a half years ago. A massive mistake. The sort of mistake that can never be atoned for.

He knows himself to be irredeemable, but the captivating and unconventional Miss Merryweather is determined to prove him wrong…

The daughter of a dancing master and a noblewoman, Miss Merryweather had an unusual upbringing. She sees things no one else sees—and she says things no one else says.

Sir Barnaby knows he’s the villain in this piece, but Miss Merryweather thinks he’s the hero—and she is damnably hard to resist…



Resisting Miss Merrywheather?
Who could resist her?

Merry is the one you want to have around when you feel low, the one you want to have around when you are upset and when you lost hope.
And Merry is the one who is around when Sir Barnaby needs someone who helps him to forgive himself when he comes to the christening of the son of his childhood friend Marcus who some readers might remember from the wonderful "Unmasking Miss Appleby". Those who remember will also remember that Barnaby made indeed a big mistake. Big - yes. Unforgivable - maybe. It all depends on his ability to forgive himself.
With someone like Merry around, well, it might be possible at last!
Oh, and guess what - Merry and Marcus' wife Charlotte have also something in common: A very frightening and irritating godmother.

Remember?
"It is a truth universally acknowledged, that Faerie godmothers do not exist."
Don't they?
Well, we are about to find out about that - again and let's just say that right then time is of the essence and, well, this godmother can't come too soon to grant her goddaughter her wish!

Once more Emily Larkin has done it: "Resisting Miss Merrywheather" is another wonderful book in the "Baleful Godmother"-Series! I loved Miss Appleby and her story, I loved Miss Trentham and Miss Merrywheather is irresistible as well. Just the right amount of magic to spice it up, a wonderful story with amazing, complex characters and a heroine and a hero that are just loveable and who simply belong together.

★★★★★
 
 

Dienstag, 7. März 2017

Trusting Miss Trentham (Baleful Godmother #3) by Emily Larkin










Blurb:


Five macaroons and a piece of plum cake....

...or how to bully someone back to life - and (perhaps) to love!
When Letty, or rather - Miss Letitia Trentham, heiress and a faerie's goddaughter with her own special kind of magic, meets Icarus Reid at the Hammond's ball, she doesn't know that his quest for the truth, his quest for justice will change her life forever.

And Icarus? Well, let's just say that he definitely underestimated the power of a woman bent on saving someone despite himself. Not just any woman but Letty Trentham, strong, generous, compassionate  - and extraordinarily stubborn. And macaroon per macaroon, nightmare per nightmare, Letty, a vial of valerian and of course Herodotus bully Icarus back to life.
Always at their side - Houghton, Green and Eliza.

I loved that even the minor characters are well developed and very very likeable.
I felt with Icarus and Letty, I loved to see how they found their way to each other, I loved their big hearts, their compassionate nature and their loyalty.

The whole story is unique and romantic and emotional and simply amazing. I loved "Unmasking Miss Appleby" by Emily Larkin and I loved every other of her books of the Baleful Godmother Series as well. It's just the right mix of Regency paired with the little bit of magic that makes them special. The gripping story and the wonderful characters just topped it off and kept me glued to my reader.


★★★★★


Samstag, 4. März 2017

For The Love Of A Widow - Christina McKnight










 Blurb:

 A widow scarred by love and loss…

After years spent following her husband as he fought against Napoleon’s troops, Lady Lettie Hughes returns to London a widow to take her rightful place among the ton as the daughter of an earl. Her parents and friends expect her to enter the marriage market and secure the match she should have pursued in her debut Season. But Lettie is not the same innocent girl she was before Waterloo. Nightmares of the battlefield plague her, and she doesn’t see a place for herself in society anymore.

A lord determined to save the woman he loves…

Daniel Greaves, the Duke of Linwood, is a man who knows rejection and loss. He’s lived the last six years alone after the woman he was betrothed to cast him aside for another man. Instead of taking control of his title and lands, Daniel fell into a life a debauchery—gaming, women, and spirits. But now the woman who stole his future and left him hollow is back in London.


When Lettie and Daniel are reunited, their connection burns as bright as it once did. But neither of them are the same people they were in their youth—they must trust one another to heal the wounds of their past to find a love that lasts forever.




Two broken people, one broken betrothal and shattered dreams - will Lettie and Daniel be able to find their way back to each other?
When Lettie returns to London as a widow after having followed the drum for six long years, she doesn't expect to find Daniel, the Duke of Linwood still unwed. And she definitely didn't expect her parents to push her into another marriage so soon after having lost her husband and while still being in mourning.
Her family expects her to forget but how can she forget everything that she has seen? Everything she has lived through?
It took something even worse than losing his betrothed to make Daniel realize that his life has to change. He failed more than one person but this one....what happened there is nothing he will ever forget. Never ever. That was the day his life changed. Irrevocably and for the better. Will this be enough to win Lettie back?

I' ve read many books about these times where women followed the drum but I've never "met" any heroine who was as touched by this experience as Lettie. Her life hadn't prepared her for this and having returned, it is hard, no, it is impossible for her to slip back into her former life. 
I really loved those amazing and complex characters with their struggles and their passion. I loved their flawed characters and how they slowly find their way to each other despite all her parents' machinations. Oh, her parents, well, let's just say - they didn't win many brownie points with me with the way they pushed Lettie, especially so soon after her loss.
And of course there's also Lord Gable. The less we talk about him the better. Shock and rage are all I feel when I think of him and it's even worse because he is fictional and I can't even do anything about it.

Well written, (mostly) wonderful characters, a gripping story - and much heartbreak, I really enjoyed reading this book and was happy to see our hero and our heroine get their long HEA.

★★★★


Freitag, 3. März 2017

Blogtour - A Lady's Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran



Remember the blogtour?

Meredith Duran, whose book Sweetest Regret , a Christmas story, I really enjoyed, has
also written ten other novels, including The Duke of Shadows (winner of the Gather.com First Chapters Romance Writing Competition); Wicked Becomes You (included on the Woman’s World List of Best Beach Reads for Summer 2010), and the USA TODAY bestseller and RITA Award Winner Fool Me Twice

She blames Anne Boleyn for sparking her lifelong obsession with British history, and for convincing her that princely love is no prize if it doesn’t come with a happily-ever-after. She enjoys collecting old etiquette manuals, guidebooks to nineteenth-century London, and travelogues by intrepid Victorian women.

 And now it is here:




What did others think about it?

Praise for A Lady’s Code of Misconduct:
“Political intrigue and conspiracies abound in Duran’s engrossing fifth Rules for the Reckless Victorian romance (after Luck Be a Lady), which boasts plot twists galore…Duran is at the pinnacle of her craft as she weaves together humor, forgiveness, and love in a flawlessly executed plot. Jane, Crispin, and the rest of the characters are all well drawn, and the love scenes strike the perfect balance of steamy and sweet. Each layer in the story is suspenseful and delightful, making this the best installment so far.”
Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW

“A sham marriage, political intrigue, and a case of amnesia provide a backdrop for this absorbing Victorian romance. Although Duran (Luck Be a Lady, 2015, etc.) has written a novel as layered as an onion, the characters are well-drawn and the plot flawlessly executed. Add in some very steamy sex, and the fifth installment of Duran's Rules for the Reckless series can't help but delight. This book weaves its spell so thoroughly that the most fortunate reader will be the one who has time to read the entire thing in one sitting. A masterful tale of suspense, forgiveness, and love.”
Kirkus STARRED REVIEW

“Political intrigue drives a captivating historical romance…This Regency romance, part of the Rules for the Reckless series, is a smart love story, peopled with complex and absorbing characters.”
BookPage, TOP PICK IN ROMANCE

“A riveting story.”
—Heroes and Heartbreakers

“A masterful author of historical romances…A Lady’s Code of Misconduct takes worn threads of old tropes, like amnesia and the tortured hero, and weaves them into a lush tapestry with sophisticated, beautiful writing. Crispin seems power-mad and Jane seems saintly, but as Duran slowly unravels their characters amidst a plot of intrigue, betrayal, and dark secrets, we discover they’re more alike than they (or we) realize. The hero is swoonworthy, and I couldn’t help but fall in love with Jane as his flaws shine a light on her own. The tale and characters so captivated me, that I literally couldn’t put it down.”
Omnivoracious Amazon Book Review by Sabrina Jeffries

“Thoughtfully written and the story creates not just a simple story of two people but an entire world for them to inhabit. If you like your historicals to have some meat to them, I highly recommend this one.”
—All About Romance

“Extremely relevant to our current political state…I could have easily sat and devoured this in one evening as each of the chapters seemed to end on a cliffhanger that just won't let you put the book down. Quill says: A Lady’s Code of Misconduct is the perfect book to sit in your favorite chair with and let the world pass by for a little while you get lost in the past.”
Feathered Quill

I absolutely love this series… Meredith writes intelligent characters with a fast paced plot.  Her writing is sensual, witty and totally captivating.  This book has everything you would want in a Historical Romance.   It is witty, sensual with a mystery that will keep you guessing to the very end. Crispin and Jane are extraordinary characters in a riveting story that will leave you wanting more.  The journey of Crispin and Jane to their HAE is fabulous.  I will read anything that Meredith writes.” 
—The Reading Wench

“A fun read. I enjoyed Duran’s characters and plot…there’s a villain who made me think of a Regency era James Bond villain.”
—Bookfan


And what did I think about it? 

I really enjoyed reading this book with its unusual, gripping story and its amazing and interesting characters. 
Crispin, our hero - is definitely not a hero, at least not a first sight. Oh, well, our heroine Jane isn't just sweet and  demure all the time either and, unfortunately, she loathes all he stands for. Well, everything he stood for, strictly speaking. Due to some unfortunate encounter with some blunt object or another, he is not the same man that he was before everything went down. Considering the fact that the two of them found themselves married, let's say, things aren't easy. Especially when Crispin tries to win back his life and to understand what drove him all the time. But maybe, maybe the thing that made him almost lose everything, including his life, will turn out to be his salvation. 
Can a tragedy result in happiness? 


Definition of amnesia (as found in the Merriam-Webster)
  1. 1 :  loss of memory due usually to brain injury, shock, fatigue, repression, or illness
  2. 2 :  a gap in one's memory

  3. 3 :  the selective overlooking or ignoring of events or acts that are not favorable or useful to one's purpose or position … 

Suffering from amnesia, Crispin has to face some very uncomfortable truths about himself and his life when he tries to get his memory back. And somehow this tragedy will turn his life for good. 
Will there be a place at his side for Jane, the wife he never knew he had?  

 Well written and fast - paced, this story is interesting, unusual and - it made me furious. Thinking of girls and women like Jane, who were kept like prisoners due to their inheritance and thier relatives' fear of losing their money - ugh, just another one of those things that make me question why I end up with historical romacnes so often. I really love these stories but the lack of rights and the lack of choices those women had, make me appreciate  so much more the rights and the possibilites we have now. Still far from perfect, in constrast to the time of Jane and Crispin - well, absolutely no comparison there. 

Back to our book in question - I really enjoyed reading it and I can definitely recommend it!
  
 
★★★★