Regency

Review | The Captain and the Theatrical (Captivating Captains Book 3) by Catherine Curzon & Eleanor Harkstead #TheCaptainAndTheTheatrical #CaptivatingCaptains @e_harkstead @MadameGilflurt

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Hello my lovely friends! Have I got a wonderful book to share with you all today, or what? I am so excited to be sharing my review of The Captain and the Theatrical, which is the third book from the Captivating Captains series…..squeal!!! I think anyone who follows me, will know how much I love this series, be prepared for waffling…so grab a cuppa and maybe a packet of biscuits and enjoy.

FROM MULTI-PUBLISHED AUTHORS OF GAY ROMANCE, CATHERINE CURZON AND ELEANOR HARKSTEAD

Book three in the Captivating Captains series

When Captain Pendleton needs an emergency fiancée, who better to turn to than his male best friend? After all, for Amadeo Orsini, life’s one long, happy drag!

Captain Ambrose “Pen” Pendleton might have distinguished himself on the battlefield at Waterloo but since he’s come home to civvy street, he’s struggled to make his mark. Pen dreams of becoming a playwright but his ambitious father has other ideas, including a trophy wife and a new job in America. If he’s to stand a hope of staying in England and pursuing his dream, Pen needs to find a fiancée fast.

Amadeo Orsini never made it as a leading man, but as a leading lady he’s the toast of the continental stage. Now Cosima is about to face her most challenging role yet, that of Captain Pendleton’s secret amour. With the help of a talking theatrical parrot who never forgets his lines, Orsini throws on his best frock, slaps on the rouge and sets out to save Pen from the clutches of Miss Harriet Tarbottom and her scheming parents.

As friendship turns into love, will the captain be able to write a happy ending for himself and Orsini before the curtain falls?

Finally, its here!! *She says jiggling about like someone with ants in their pants* The long awaited next instalment of the gorgeous ‘Captivating Captains’ is here, am I excited about finally getting my hands on this or what? Patience is not my strongest quality, it feels like an eternity since I had my last Captain fix, honestly, poor Catherine and Eleanor, they must be pretty tired of hearing my constant whining of “I’m so excited’s” and “I cannot wait’s”….I have bored myself…Anyway, it’s here woo-hoo!

This time we are in the Regency era, Captain Ambrose Pendleton (Pen) having just returned from the battle of Waterloo he is shocked to find that his father has arranged a marriage for him, in fact not just a marriage but he has planned out Ambrose’s future, which consists of him leaving England and everything he knows to marry a stranger, move to America and turn his hand to industry. All poor Ambrose wants is to follow his heart and write, while perhaps floundering around in the sea with a certain Italian, not that I blame him at all, Orsini is wonderful and he has the best wardrobe any woman could ever want, I was cheering him on at every turn, follow your heart Ambrose! …anyhow, Ambrose is a dutiful man, as much as he doesn’t want to leave and me hitched with a spoiled little girl he wouldn’t dream of going against his father that is until his good friend Amadeo Orsini comes up with a brilliant plan to release him from the vicars mousetrap.

Ah, Orsini what a fabulous creature you are! Thespian Orsini has made a name for himself – or should that be herself – on the stage in the guise of exotic, vivacious and striking Cosima, she is loved by all where ever she may go she has become the most sought after actress to tread the boards. Orsini and Ambrose have been good friends since meeting while Ambrose was on his grand tour, he is not about to see his good friend be forced into something he doesn’t want and be sent far, far away. Oh no, the tempting Italian has other plans for his darling Ambrose, But how to extricate him from the clutches of the Tarbottom harridan? – or as Orsini says; ‘Tarrow-Bottom’ – why, with a performance that would earn him a Olivier off course.

And this is when the fun really starts! Imagine it; A Derbyshire house party, A set of vile American’s (no offense to my lovely American friends, I know you not all vile ;-)) a actor who just happens to explode on to the scene dressed as a woman announcing her undying love for the brooding Captain and who has very saucy thoughts regarding his gold military sash 😉 a cheeky parrot who sets his eyes on the lady of the house and amongst it all you have a theft….ouh la la! I don’t think I can take anymore excitement…wait, oh yes I can, especially when Ambrose and Orsini finally declare their feelings…honestly I thought they never would, but it was well worth the wait, because these two are just too adorable for words.

I adore Ambrose, even though he has had flings in the past while in the army I think that his feeling’s for Orsini confuse him, he is a worrier, he is undeniably attracted to Orsini as both himself and as Cosima but he is afraid about what his friend would make of his attraction to him….Ambrose, you really don’t need to worry!

But alas as much as I adore both Ambrose and Orsini/Cosima the star of this has to be Pegolo, yup, the sarcastic, clever and brilliantly hilarious parrot has stolen the show and teamed up with the equally brilliant Mrs Pendleton, well we have a fabulous comedy duo….honestly where else would you see a married older lady walking about with a parrot propped on her shoulder?

This book holds some of the best character’s I have come ever across, not only in the shape of our two romantic leads – who in themselves are absolutely adorable – but the supporting cast are brilliant, from the very amusing Mrs Pendleton, who sees far more then she lets on, to the brilliantly funny Pegolo (this parrot needs a show of his own, he is fabulous) and the ever so slightly vile Tarbottom’s (I can never say that name with a straight face, I’m stifling a giggle now as I write, I can’t help it.) there was something about the Tarbottom’s that really made my skin crawl, and yet I couldn’t look away, which goes to show how much skill there is in this writing.

I love this, there isn’t anything I didn’t like, even though the start was a little slower then expected, with surprised me, but once the reason behind Ambrose’s slight melancholy is revealed all makes sense and I think the slower more thoughtful start is perfect for Ambrose and Orsini and their story. The chemistry and passion between our leads is wonderfully tantalizing and tender, those little glances they cast each other made my heart melt. I loved the little theft twist away from the romance, it builds up slowly and as you read you begin to wonder….hmmm, now is something going on here? I loved the investigation then ensures to find the culprit.

This really has everything I look for in a historical romance; beautifully portrayed lead character’s who you can get behind from the start, a wonderfully original love story with an unexpected sub plot. It has a real whimsical feel about it that made me think of fairy tales, and the humour, my goodness this is so much fun to read, there are some real laugh out loud moments…..Yes, I did a fair amount of giggling an sighing… I definitely think me and Orsino are two peas in a pod, especially whenever he thinks of a certain Captain in those fitted trousers and tall military boots…sigh!!

This is enchanting, it’s fun, romantic, original, the perfect escapism from the real world, I have said it before but I’m going to say it again…I love it!

This series just goes from strength to strength, each is as different from the next as you can get and with the constant love is love message tightly ingrained in each one there is nothing not to love about the Captains. Plus with another planned for later this year and fingers crossed more after…I’m not hinting, OK, I am, I need more Captains…. I am going to be in Captains heaven….or as excitable as a hyperactive spinning top, I may need sedating.

This was an Arc copy via the authors, which I voluntarily reviewed, thank you Catherine and Eleanor xx

The Captain and the Theatrical is to be released on 3rd September and can be pre-ordered now.

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#Review | Desires Of Lady Elise; A Regency Novella by Rachel Ann Smith #DesiresOfLadyElise@rachelannsmit11

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Hello everyone, I have the pleasure to be sharing my review of Desires of Lady Elise, which is a lovely debut from Rachel Ann Smith, so grab a cuppa and enjoy.

Lady Elise knows all too well the risks of falling in love. Her heart was broken by a rake. Instead of hunting for a husband, she helps other ladies escape the nefarious plans of unscrupulous gentlemen.

After a scandal costs Lord Thornston Elise’s hand and heart, he has lived on the fringes of the beau monde. But when his best friend, the Duke of Fairmont, requests his assistance, Thornston is torn. Helping Fairmont means facing the woman who holds his heart and soul.

Succumbing to temptation, Thornston re-enters Society to find Elise still unwed. But as he seeks to reignite her desire for him and earn back her trust, he becomes entwined in one of her investigations. But when events take a dangerous turn, he might lose the woman he loves before he can win her back

This is a lovely quick read, at only 98 pages you can literally read this in one Desires of lady Elise the debut Rachel Ann and from this I can really see a promising future within the historical romance genre and I am sure we are going to be hearing about her for many years to come.

After having her heart broken by a scoundrel years before, she is determined no to suffer again, but instead of going out husband hunting as is what society claim she should be doing, she instead goes out of her way to help ladies escape the clutches of notorious rakehells. But as she helps and rescues other ladies she is still bruised from her own encounter and worst still she still loves the scoundrel who ran off on her all those years ago.

Harold left years before amid scandal, he knows he broke Elise’s heart but he had no choice but to leave, since then he has always been on the outside of the ton looking it. It is only because Elise’s brother has asked Harold for assistance in a certain investigation of his own that makes Harold return to society, only to come face to face with the woman who has been on his mind all these years.

Its not the most taxing story to read, it has a sweetness to it that I found endearing, but there is a bit of intrigue that surrounds Harold and why he left.

My only reservations with this is that there is a lot packed into such a short story, which is what a lot of authors tend to do with novella’s, my personal view is that this would have been better made into a full sized novel, that way the author could have really gone to town and really invested into each characters back story, for example with Harold, I would have loved to know far more about him and his work with the home office and more about his past that led him to b the man that he has become and why he has the reputation that he has. There is nothing better then really delving into the mind of the characters that you are following.

Apart from that and the constant use or ‘my lord/my lady’ which did get a little tiring, this is an impressive debut, it is fast paced, fun and engaging novella. I look forward to seeing what comes next from Rachel Ann, the writing is strong and fluid, there is a real fun feel to it that keeps you reading. Judging by this I have no doubt that she is an author to watch out for in the future, and maybe the next book will be a full length novel which will show her splendid writing off.

This was an Arc from the author in exchange for a honest review, thank you Rachel.

Desires of Lady Elise can be purchased from Amazon.

#Review | The Work Of Art; A Regency Romance by @MimiMatthewsEsq #TheWorkOfArt #ARegencyRomance

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Hello my lovelies, I am so, so excited to be sharing my review of this beautiful book with you all, I am a absolute huge fan of Mimi Matthews, but this is something very special indeed, so grab a cuppa take a seat, try and ignore my babbling and enjoy.

Matthews is a bright, shining star in historical romance…” -Austenprose

An Uncommon Beauty…

Hidden away in rural Devonshire, Phyllida Satterthwaite has always been considered more odd than beautiful. But in London, her oddity has made her a sensation. Far worse, it’s caught the eye of the sinister Duke of Moreland–a notorious art collector obsessed with acquiring one-of-a-kind treasures. To escape the duke’s clutches, she’s going to need a little help.

An Unlikely Hero…

Captain Arthur Heywood’s days of heroism are long past. Grievously injured in the Peninsular War, he can no longer walk unaided, let alone shoot a pistol. What use can he possibly be to a damsel in distress? He has nothing left to offer except his good name.

Can a marriage of convenience save Philly from the vengeful duke? Or will life with Arthur put her–and her heart–in more danger than ever?

Well, I am lost for words (I’m sure some will think that a blessing) but really, I am struggling to express just how magical this book is. Everyone knows how much I adore Mimi Matthews work, I have so much respect for her as a writer and I always get a thrill whenever I open another of her books. Each time I read one of her stories I am always blown away, I read her work and as I do, I keep thinking; how can she possibly top what is the peak of perfection and then what happens? Boom; I am once again blown away by her words, if there was ever a title that was perfect for a book, because this is a work of art in its own right. I honestly think that this is the very best I have read by Ms Matthews – which feels a but traitorous towards her other work.

After the death of her grandfather, Phyllida (Philly) must leave her home to live with family which are practical strangers to her, her only companions are her own pack of dogs, which she refuses to leave behind. Unfortunately, she soon realises that now her life isn’t her own she is lonely and unhappy, she thinks that her uncle Edgar has took her to London to find a suitable match. How wrong she is! Because of her uniqueness her uncle has one man in mind for her; the mysterious and notorious, Duke of Moreland, a man who collects all rare and unique things whether that be art work, dogs or people. Her uncle is a despicable human being, he thinks it’s OK to ‘sell’ Philly to the Duke, even though she has been sheltered, she has always done as she is told, she has always been obliging to others; you could say that she is a little naïve to the world, even she knows that marrying the Duke is the very last thing that she should do.

Enter her hero, in not so shining armour, who comes limping in to rescue her; Captain Arthur Heywood, has recently returned wounded from the war, up until now he has always stayed away from society, away from the scathing remarks and backstabbing ton, but Arthur has business in town, with her uncle that he cannot escape from, which is wen he meets the shy, and monopolized; Philly. He is instantly taken with her, as a friend she was kind to him when others treated him like a leper, in her innocent and very subtle way she showed him that there is goodness in this life and not just the darkness that engulfs him at times. On hearing that his little friend is to be more or less forced into marrying the Duke, a man Arthur has heard some terrible things about, he doesn’t the gentlemanly thing and offers marriage.

Alas, their nasty marriage and fleeing London to his estate, doesn’t go down well with others and as you can expect they soon they find that they have danger hanging over their heads, Arthur is determined to protect his new wife at whatever the cost.

I loved Philly and Arthur the moment we meet them, she is a quiet, caring and loyal young woman who just wants to be able to live happily with her dogs, she isn’t made for the ton she is far more at home in the country being able to run free, I can so relate to Philly she has a gentle soul, but I sensed that she had a strength hidden away and that really shines through in those moments when she is quietly encouraging Arthur, when subtly helps him and the way she stand firm beside him.

What struck me most about Philly and Arthur’s romance was that even though their was ‘marriage of convenience’ they started out as genuine friends, they saw something of themselves into the other and that drew them together, it’s a relationship that isn’t all heart-pounding lust, their blossoming romance is formed on a mutual friendship, they learn about each other and as they start to delve into their own feelings and how their marriage could be, so do we readers, we all go on this journey together and I think that is so skilfully and beautifully done, it really brings the reader into the story and into the character’s lives, I really love how this is written.

Honestly thought this book is amazing; what appears to be a very simplistic regency romance about a young woman who needs rescuing and the wounded war hero appears offering the protection of his name; turns out to be far more then the stereotypical marriage of convenience. With a brilliantly vile baddie, manipulative family, tortured war nightmares and an unexpected twist that makes you go; “What? I didn’t see that coming”, The Work of Art is a marvel of regency romance writing.

I have to say that this is a masterpiece of character writing, each one are brilliantly created, whether that be the sweet and loving Philly and Arthur, the arrogantly horrible; Moreland and Edgar and the cackling banshees that are Elizabeth and Lady Elliott – who really can give the evil Duke a run for his money at being a sadist. But really it is the connection and blossoming romance between Arthur and Philly that keep you hooked and turning the pages, they are an adorable, shy, realistic couple.

Overall a charming, beautifully written, character driven romance, with a dash of intrigue, I cannot recommend this more, it is utterly perfect. I love it, absolutely utterly love it!

This was an Arc copy via the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you Mimi and apologies the late review. x

The Work of Art is to be released on 23 July and can be pre-ordered at Amazon and I do say go and order it.

#Review | Mrs Sommersby’s Second Chance (The Sommersby’s Brides #4) by Laurie Benson #MrsommersbysSecondChance #TheSommersbyBrides @LaurieBwrites @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

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Hello my lovely readers! I have the massive pleasure to be sharing my review of the incredible; Mrs Sommersby’s Second Chance by Laurie Benson. To say I have been excited about this book is an understatement and I am so pleased to say that this is a stunner…I may waffle on a wee bit, which I apologise for, so grab a cuppa and enjoy.

She’s played Cupid for others

Now she’s met her own unlikely match!

Part of The Sommersby Brides. Widowed society matchmaker Mrs Clara Sommersby thinks handsome self-made businessman Mr William Lane is just the man for her neighbour’s overlooked daughter. He’s successful and confident, if somewhat emotionally distant, until suddenly—shockingly—his attention turns to Clara herself! She thought her days of romance were over, but is this dashing younger man intent on giving her a second chance?

Well, what to say about this, other than; My goodness, I love it, its absolute perfection!!! This ladies and – I think there maybe some – gents, is how you write a Regency romance. Laurie Benson, I bow down to you!!

I will attempt to put my scattered thoughts in order and write a proper review without too mush gushing, long sighing pauses and over the top waffling, but really with this beauty I make no promises that I won’t just talk for an hour about how gorgeous Lane is and how brilliant Humphrey is when trying to hump a plant pot…you have to read it, but I think all us dog owners have been in Clara’s shoes a time or two. 😉

So, this is the final book **Sobs and sniffles** in what has been a wonderful series, I will admit that personally the previous book was a little hit and miss for me and I did feel bad about writing a not as glowing review, but i have vowed to be honest but apart from that i have absolutely adore this series. It has been such a joy to get to know the Sommersby ladies over the course of the four books, they have become a little like family now I have spent so much time with them and I am very say sad to let them go….I just don’t want to, surely there is more Sommersby’s out there somewhere?. Long lost cousins four times removed or something….hint, hint 😉

Anyhow, so this is book four and as i always say, you can very easily read this as a stand-a-lone as well as part of the series, but i do say start from the start and get to know all the characters. For me it has been Clara who has been the star of each one, there was always something about older woman that just caught my attention, she is brilliantly funny, independent and insightful. I was very happy when i heard that she was going to get a story of her own. It has been a wait, for someone who doesn’t even like to wait in queue in a shop then wait for Clara’s story was agony, but worth it, because this is a doozy!

Set in the beautiful city of Bath, self made man; William Lane is there doing research for his newest business idea, he is set to propose to his business partner a certain man called Hart, I’m sure others will recognise that gent. While there he is very reluctant to try out the famous healing waters, when he catches the twinkling eye of Mrs Clara Sommersby. He is instantly enthralled by the enigmatic woman – and let me just say that his thoughts aren’t exactly angelic, they do concern hot baths and glistening bare skin 😉 Clara takes a instant shine to the younger man, but obviously she doesn’t think of him in that way, she is far too ‘old’, for a start she has other things to occupy her mind, a bit of matchmaking. Her and good friend the Dowager Duchess of Lyonsdale start to match make Clara’s neighbours daughter; Harriett. Clara has an idea that a certain Mr Lane would be perfect for the younger, shy woman. The problem with that, is William Lane has his beady eye set on someone else completely; why would he want a shy little cub when he can have the lioness instead? I love how there is an instant attraction between Clara and Lane, their blossoming romance builds up in such a beautiful natural way, they are such an adorable couple who you just know are made for one and other.

William Lane, oh, William!! Could there be a more perfect (for me) hero? I don’t think it is a surprise that I find the self made, hard working man alluring. He didn’t have the best of starts in life, being raise in a Foundling Hospital, which by all accounts were just awful, some were no better then the workhouse. But, with true grit and determination to make something of himself, he pulled himself out of the gutter and now he is a business man in his own right, he has got the most brilliant mind, he see’s things in ways which others are just blind to. But there is a vulnerable part of him, the part that still sees the world from the Foundling Hospital, the part that stills believes he isn’t good enough. He is so self assured, so independent; so when he does need help from others -aristocrats especially – it does irk him. I can really relate to this man, everything about his character speaks to me, he is just a wonderful, honourable, loyal and gentle man. Who needs a title when you have a brain?

This book is such a joy to read, I love that our leading couple are older then your average Mills and Boon/Harlequin couple, as Lane is 37 and Clara 45, I found that to be such a refreshing change. Its about time and I do hope that this will the start of more stories with older leads, instead of all the young whipper-snappers – Hmmm, I sounded like my Gran there! Another aspect of this book that I love, is that it shows that having children are not crucial to have a happily ever after, that if anything in the book spoke volumes to me.

As ever the thing that I really picked up from this, as do from any of Ms Benson’s books; is her passion for the Regency era, you get a real sense that she genuinely adores this period of history, she pours her heart into creating a realistic, charming and expressive world for us all to fall into. Another thing that did catch my attention with this, is her subtle ways of incorporating all the senses, it really brings the story and the characters alive, you visualise everything in your mind as though you were sitting in Clara’s hotel garden with them smelling the roses. I love it!

Over all this is an enchanting, mesmerising and captivating love story that meticulously weaves solid historical details with a charming second chance romance. I honestly cannot recommend this more, there isn’t a single thing that I dont like about this.

Perfect!

This was an Arc copy via the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you Laurie. x

Mrs Sommersby’s Second Chance is to be released on the 25th July and can be pre-ordered at Amazon.

#Review | The Highborn Housekeeper (Saved From Disgrace #3) by Sarah Mallory @SarahMRomance #TheHighbornHousekeeper #SavedFromDisgrace @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

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Hello my lovely readers! I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of this gorgeous book; The Highborn Housekeeper by Sarah Mallory, I feels I have been waiting an age for book three in the Saved From Disgrace series; Nancy’s story, but it was well worth the wait, this is so good.

A disgraced lady

Turned lowly housekeeper

Earl’s daughter Nancy turned her back on the aristocracy when she fled a forced marriage, working as a cook and housekeeper. But in nursing an injured man back to health, Nancy uncovers a deep longing for the dangerously attractive Gabriel, and a surprise: he’s working to protect government secrets! She wants to help him. But to do so, Nancy will have to return to the life she once cast aside…

My goodness, this book! The minute I met Nancy in the previous books, I knew she must have a story, there was something intriguing about her, there was a hint of mystery and like a lot of fellow readers, I needed to know her past and to see where her future lay. So, you wouldn’t believe how happy I was when I heard that she was having a story of her own, even though it seems an age since we last delved into this glorious series – or maybe that’s just me, I am very impatient after all. I can happily say that it was well worth the tortuous wait for her HEA, as this is a doozy.

This is book three in the ‘Saved From Disgrace’ series, this can be very easily be read as a stand-a-lone, even though Nancy is from the previous books all you need to know about her part and her history is here for you, but I would highly recommend checking out the others in the series, only because they are just too good not to miss.

This could be my favourite in all of the series, in fact not could be, it definitely is – which seems a bit disloyal to the previous, I’m sure I said the same about those – I love it, the story is ….well, it is beyond my capacity to describe just how good this is, I could say devastating, gorgeous, engaging, thrilling, sizzling chemistry, lies, secrets with a dash of mystery – and that is is just the hero….. oh, do not get me started on the hero.

Oh, my word Gabriel, serious sighing is going on here, he is wonderful, Sarah Mallory, what have you done to me? I am a swooning mess after meeting this gorgeous, grumbling, mysterious man with the playful, twinkling eyes. I may be ruined for other heroes for life. Ah, Gabriel, I need more heroes like this in my life…hint, hint, if anyone is reading this!

Well, I best get on with this review, it’s no good me whittling on about a great chest and fine pair of take me to bed eyes, you want to know a wee bit about this book….or maybe I could get away with just babbling on about Gabriel’s….unmentionables 😉

The story opens with Nancy on her way back from London, home to Prospect House where as you will know if you have followed the series is a home for women who are in need. Our Nancy is far more then just a great cook and housekeeper, she is far more then what she appears. Which is why I wanted to know her story, she is a fascinating woman. The snow is falling heavily when their party briefly stop at an inn that Nancy comes across a man left for dead in the road – as you do. Even though it is going against her better judgement, after all he could be anyone – he could be a bandit, pirate, rogue who knows….and especially as she is precariously close to the very person she has been running away from all these years, Nancy is a good woman and can’t leave the poor man to die so she bustles him into her carriage, even though he could be a pirate, he definitely has the manners for one.

I really, really like Nancy, she is a real bright spark, I always knew that she had a smart head on her shoulders and that she had a real, genuine caring nature and this book has just enforced what I had already thought of her. She has her own secrets , I love that she is very independent she is proud of the life she has found, even though she tries to act all proper even she can’t resist Gabriel when he is tantalising her…well, she is only human how can she not fall under his spell?

So decamping at his home, to a bemused valet, she starts to nurse the mystery man back to health, which is very funny seeing her take over his house hold as though it were her own. Let us just say once he has woken and regained enough of himself he isn’t too happy about the fact that he is now under the wing of an interfering woman who just so happens to have a great bust beneath her prim widows weeds.

Gabriel is like a lion with a thorn in his paw, he is grouchy, brooding, grumbling but he has been attacked and left for dead and is woken to a busy bee of a women stamping around his house, it’s understandable that he’s a little put out and he wants her gone as soon as possible. But, Gabriel has a secret, a huge reason why he doesn’t want an enchanting woman around the house taking up all is attention. Gabriel’s secret and why he was attacked is a major part of the plot, so I ain’t going to go too deep into that, I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you, let us just say that there is far more to Gabriel then a fine pair of twinkling, cheeky and sexy eyes.

This is just marvellous, the chemistry between Gabriel and Nancy is on fire, from the moment he wakes you can feel the heat coming of the page whenever he looks at her, honestly it’s scorching. There is a real buzz between them, the banter is funny, sexy and real, even the more serious moments is enthused with an underlying ‘take me to bed’ atmosphere. The writing is brilliantly engaging, it takes the reader on a real journey and not just straight to bed. Honestly, this book is gorgeous, from the cover to the words within, I cannot recommend this enough, but I do need more from this series, please! Sarah Mallory, you cannot leave me hanging, I need more of Gabriel and Nancy. 🙂 These two are definitely a new favourite couple, they are just perfect!

This was an Arc copy from the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you Sarah. x

The Highborn Housekeeper is to be released on 27th June and can be pre-ordered now at Amazon.

#Review : A Wife Worth Investing In (Penniless Brides Of Convenience #2) @MargueriteKaye #AWifeWorthInvestingIn #PennilessBridesOfConvenience @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

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Hello my lovely readers, today I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of this gorgeous book; A Wife Worth Investing In by the marvellously talented Marguerite Kaye. This is an extra celebration too as this book is Marguerites 50th book for Mills and Boon/Harlequin, wowzers!! Huge congratulations Marguerite. xx

A convenient proposal…

Makes a scandalous match!

Part of Penniless Brides of Convenience: Knocking on Owen Harrington’s door, impoverished and desperate, Miss Phoebe Brannagh wonders if London’s most eligible catch will recognise her. But injured and reclusive, Owen is no longer a carefree man. And he’s in urgent need of a convenient wife! Owen’s shock proposal allows Phoebe to fulfil her life’s ambition to open a restaurant…but his heated kisses tempt her to hope for a new dream – marriage, for real!

I have been waiting – not, so patiently – for this book since I closed the last page of the previous, and I can say without a doubt that this was well worth the wait. This book is gorgeous in every way, shape and form. This book is a testament to just how brilliant Marguerite Kaye is, she is the queen of the marriage of convenience trope. Honestly, there are very few authors who can nail this trope as perfectly as Ms Kaye can.

A Wife Worth Investing In, is the second book in the gorgeous Penniless Bride of Convenience series. This series is connected with three sisters, each sister is as different as the next yet each share a passion for their chosen hobby, which as you will see in this book Phoebe’s turns into a career. As with the previous you can read this as apart of the series, but it can very easily as a stand-a-lone. Another reason to celebrate is that this gorgeous book is also Ms Kaye’s 50th book with Mills and Boon/Harlequin, which is an astonishing achievement. Congratulations Marguerite. I have seriously got some back reading to do, I am making it my mission to read them all.

The story opens, two years previously in a little café in Paris where; aspiring Chef, Phoebe wants nothing more the to open her own restaurant, she is an accomplished cook in her own right and has a great passion for sharing her food with others and really accomplishing something for herself. But, this is the Regency era and it is not as easy for a woman. Which is why she is training in Paris under an acclaimed Chef, it is while she is waiting for her chef and lover that she meets by chance; rakish, charming, handsome and wandering Owen. A man she is instantly attracted to, but not just for his sinful good looks but she sees a kindred spirit in him, a man who actually sees and listens to her as herself. Owen is fascinated with the young woman, he sees so much passion in her a passion that he wishes he had for something, instead of a constant recklessness that sees him living on the edge. Owen and Phoebe make quite the impression on one and other that they agree to meet each other again in the same café two years to the day, to see how they are fairing.

Two years later, and Phoebe and Owen are as changed as they can be. Phoebe is destitute, she has lost everything which includes her self respect, her confidence, her passion and the little light behind her eyes that makes her Phoebe. She has fell on hard times, yet even though she has nothing she refuses to go back home to her sister and aunt, she turns to the one persons she hopes can help her.

Owen is also a shell of the man we first meet, after he left her in that café a terrible, life changing accident. He is in constant pain, unable to walk properly and has turned into a recluse. Yet, he is still the gentleman she knew him to be and as soon as he hears of her plight, it is like she has given him a new lease of life and he is soon planning how t help her. As well as helping himself, as he is in need of a wife and she is in need of security. Perfect, he proposes; they both get what they need. Her the ability to open her restaurant and him the wife his rank states he must have, all very practical and proper.

But, we all know that in historical romances and especially Marguerite Kaye’s book nothing will stay practical and proper, especially once our two start seeing the other as something other then a means to improve their circumstances and delve into their feelings for one and other.

There are some really loving and tender moments between Phoebe and Owen, they are both scarred, both their scars more than skin deep. They have both been through the mill, they have both suffered in more ways than and now need to find happiness – even though neither of them think that they deserve to be happy. I love how they bring each other out of their shells its so subtle and real.

They have a real connection right from the moment they meet in that cafe, and I love how Ms Kaye has built that up from a budding friendship which had a lot of mutual attraction then through difficulties they must both face once married to where they end up, it written with such understated longing and passion, its quite breath taking really.

This is a brilliant story, a real master class of romance writing, its mesmerising and dazzling, honestly its perfect!

For me I saw more as second chance romance too as that is essentially what both Owen and Phoebe have in one another, they have that second chance to have happiness. The journey they go on to their happily ever after is an emotional ride, there are many ups and down for these two and that is just with their personal issues that they must face. I do love them though, Owen is the hero that you need to love, you want to hug him you want to love him and you feel every emotion and every painful step right down in your heart 0 that is how excellent the writing is.

Marguerite you has stolen my breathe away with this, I am absolute awe.

This was an Arc copy via the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you Marguerite. x

A Wife Worth Investing In is to be released on 30th May and can be pre-ordered at Amazon and I definitely say go and pre-order.

#Review : The Determined Lord Hadleigh (Kings Elite #4) by @VirginiaHeath_ #TheDeterminedLordHadleigh #KingsElite @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

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Hello my lovely readers! Well this was a hard review to write, I couldn’t find the words to full express what I wanted to say, even after reading my review back I know that I babble a fair amount, so apologies for that. Another reason is that this will be the last time I get to write a Kings Elite review……sobs, uncontrollably for ten minutes….I can’t believe it! But, I have to say that this series goes out in smashing style 😉

 

He’s got iron control…

But she might be his undoing!

Part of The King’s Elite. Haunted by Penny Penhurst’s courage on the witness stand, meticulous barrister Lord Hadleigh offers her a housekeeper position at his estate. Despite trying to stay detached, Hadleigh is charmed by her small child and surprised by how much he yearns for this proud woman! Can this he break through his own – and Penny’s – barriers to prove he’s a man she can trust…and love?

Well this was a sad day coming where I would be writing my review for the last Kings Elite book, I need tissues, I want to weep. Do I really need to write this review? Can’t I just skip it, bury my head in the sand so that I don’t have to face the fact that this is it for the glorious Kings Elite?

 

OK, well if I must break my heart, I will do it with aplomb – don’t you just love that word? By Jove, has this been an incredible series or what? From those first few pages of book one, I have been avidly turning the pages, becoming more and more absorbed into the Kings Elite world that they are now more known to me than family – Hmmm, Not sure that if that is a good thing or not!

 

So this is book four in the sensational Kings Elite, we have come face to face – figuratively speaking – with the most charming, shy, courageous, loyal, lovable, passionate and gorgeous characters, they have taken us on a whirlwind journey across four books. A journey full of intrigue, smuggling, spies, danger, romance and adventure and now we are here at the finale…..someone hand me the tissues, please! As with each of the previous books; The Determined Lord Hadleigh, can be read as a stand-a-lone very easily, my personal recommendation would be that you do at least read the previous one first; The Disgraceful Lord Gray before this, if you haven’t read the others, there are particular moments in this one that will give away a few spoilers in regards to the sub plot that has been running throughout the series.

 

After testifying against her husband, a man linked with the Smuggling ring – that as been one of the best subplots that has ever come out of a Mills and Boon book – Penny is shocked to find that after his sentence she loses everything, she and her young son are left destitute. Poor Penny, she does the right thing, she stands up for the first time in her life against the man who has made hasn’t just made her life unbearable, but also who has scared the living daylights out of her and now she has nothing. The man who was prosecuting her vile husband, the honourable if a wee bit pompous Lord Hadleigh feels a sense of injustice over what happened to the young woman, so much so he tries to help her. She is a proud, determined woman who after being on the wrong side of a manipulative and controlling man she is very uncomfortable about the charming, golden eyed barristers help. She sees it as being no better off then where she was, she is an amazing woman she may be fragile but I got a sense of real inner strength, like a lioness when times get tough she will do anything in her power to protect her child and I completely admire her for that.

 

To say he is an educated man he really doesn’t have a clue when it comes to women, as he goes about things all wrong. He has good heart, he is noble and honourable and loyal, he does try to help her, even if at first he doesn’t go down the proper avenue. Bless him, he gets it all wrong – thank goodness that Seb ……swoon! Has word with the young barrister. I really, really like Hadleigh, he isn’t at all how I thought he would be from those previous appearances, you are first introduced to a calm, intelligent and caring man but you soon realise that there is more to this man then meets the eye. There is another man beneath the cavernous barristers cloak.

 

So, we finally have Hadleigh’s story, after much waiting and wondering he is here and he does not disappoint. I saw this very much as a second chances story, Tristan Hadleigh and Penny Penhurst, what a remarkable couple they are. Both have complexities, both have vulnerabilities and both learning to love and trust. It is beautiful to watch their blossoming romance throughout the story, the journey they go on as individuals is one of the greatest pieces of writing I have read. It is powerful and gorgeous, it makes you shiver with anticipation about what will happen next and make you sigh with pure elated joy when they get there.

 

This book is packed with deep emotion, which the reader can feel right within them which for me is a testament to how brilliant this author is. Her grasp of language is as ever astonishing, the way this book can take hold of the readers emotions with a few words is perfect writing.

 

This book is absolutely delightful, what a joy it is to read.

 

Before I finish, one last note….Love, Love, Love the epilogue! Its gorgeous and fun, it is the perfect ending for all our heroes and heroines and Trefor 😉 brilliantly written, it brings all what you know and love about the Kings Elite together as a, shall we say; goodbye? Perfect, thank you Virginia for an astounding series, this is why we readers love you! X

 

This was an Arc from the author in exchange for an honest review, thank you Virginia!

The Determined Lord Hadleigh is to be released 27th June and can be pre-ordered at Amazon and do go an pre-order it.