Posted in Book Review, Historical Romance, New Books, Victorian Romance

A Dance To Save The Debutante Eva Shepherd 5*#Review @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #millsandbooninsiders #millsandboonhistorical #harlequinhistorical #historicalromance #evashepherd #victorianromance #histfic #BookReview #ADanceToSaveTheDebutante

A jaded rake

And an innocent debutante…

Seeing Miss Sophia Cooper being rebuffed by a reprobate Duke, Lord Ethan Rosemont does the gentlemanly thing and dances with her himself. He discovers she’s no damsel in distress, but an intelligent woman who’s had enough of the marriage mart. It would be all too easy to give in to the desire fizzing between them – but only if this rake is willing to save her reputation – by marrying her himself…

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

My Thoughts…

A Dance To Save The Debutante’ is an enjoyable romance between a naive but intelligent debutante and a kind-hearted rake. The story gives an insight into Victorian society’s attitude towards women. Sophia and Ethan’s chemistry and unlikely friendship develop into a gentle and engaging romance full of conflicts and soul searching before their happy ending. The two main characters develop satisfyingly. With touches of forbidden passion and fairytale romance, this is a lovely escapist read.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, New Books, Saga, Victorian Romance

A Very Modern Marriage Rachel Brimble 5*#Review @RachelBrimble @Aria_Fiction @HoZ_Books #HistoricalFiction #HistoricalRomance #Saga #BlogTour @rararesources #BookReview #Victorian #Bath #19thCentury #AVeryModernMarriage

He needs a wife…
Manchester industrialist William Rose was a poor lad from the slums who pulled himself up by his bootstraps, but in order to achieve his greatest ambitions, he must become the epitome of Victorian respectability: a family man.

She has a plan…
But the only woman who’s caught his eye is sophisticated beauty Octavia Marshall, one of the notorious ladies of Carson Street. Though she was once born to great wealth and privilege, she’s hardly respectable, but she’s determined to invest her hard-earned fortune in Mr Rose’s mills and forge a new life as an entirely proper businesswoman.

They strike a deal that promises them both what they desire the most, but William’s a fool if he thinks Octavia will be a conventional married woman, and she’s very much mistaken if she thinks the lives they once led won’t follow them wherever they go.

In the third instalment of Rachel Brimble’s exciting Victorian saga series, The Ladies of Carson Street will open the doors on a thoroughly modern marriage – and William is about to get a lot more than he bargained for…

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the author and Aria in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Octavia’s story is the third book in The Ladies of Carson Street series. Set in Victorian England, Octavia has escaped a life of abuse and privilege. She has a safer life in Carson Street with Louisa and Nancy. William is a mill owner with liberal ideals. Searching for investors, he finds his single state a setback. William needs marriage Octavia wants to be a legitimate business owner. She agrees to a fake romance in return for tutorage in business from William.

Octavia and William are believably flawed, likeable characters. Both have struggled to survive and value the people they consider family. Their physical attraction develops into an emotional commitment, but they have internal conflicts and interference from those close to them to overcome.

Cleverly crafted supporting characters and a detailed historical setting makes this an engaging read.

Rachel Brimble

Rachel lives in a small town near Bath, England. She is the author of over 25 published novels including the Ladies of Carson Street series, the Shop Girl series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove Stories (Harlequin).

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association as well as the Historical Novel Society and has thousands of social media followers all over the world.

To sign up for her newsletter (a guaranteed giveaway every month!), click here: https://bit.ly/3zyH7dt

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Giveaway to Win £15/$15 Amazon Gift Certificate (Open INT)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for the fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random

Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for the despatch or delivery of the prize.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Friendship, Historical Fiction, Romance, Victorian Romance

Farringdon’s Fate Linda Finlay 4*#Review @HQStories #BlogTour #Victorian #corsetière #RomanticSaga #EastDevon #Devon #BookReview #HistFic #HistoricalFiction #FarringdonsFate #LindaFinlay

A house. A dynasty. A gipsy’s curse.

One noble family. Five eligible daughters. A sealed fate.

Nettlecombe Manor, nestled in the rolling hills of Devon, is home to Lord Farringdon and his second wife, Lady Charlotte. As if running the vast estate wasn’t enough, Lord Farringdon has five daughters to keep him busy. Lady Charlotte is determined that the betrothal of the eldest, Louisa, should be celebrated with a ball which is the envy of Devon society and summons a corsetière from Exeter to measure them up for new corsets.  

Apprentice Jane Haydon arrives at Nettlecombe to do the fittings. Having never set foot in such a grand home, Jane is disturbed to hear tell of a gipsy’s curse which has haunted the family for generations, and a local wise woman’s vision that there will never be a wedding at Nettlecombe… 

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from HQ via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Full of historical details, vivid descriptions and vibrant characters, this story is a must for fans of romantic sagas. Set in the late nineteenth century, it encompasses all the societal expectations. The story has drama, friendship, romance and tragedy. The Farringdon’s are under a curse, and it seems that it may well come true,

The story is very detailed and includes the craft of a corsetière, in keeping with this author’s style. Believable characters lyrical story writing make this an engaging read.

Posted in Book Review, Historical Romance, New Books, Victorian Romance

Lord Tresham’s Tempting Rival Bronwyn Scott 5*#Review @Bronwynscott @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #MillsandBoonInsiders #HistoricalRomance #VictorianRomance #ThePeverettsofHaberstockHall #BookReview #LordTreshamsTemptingRival

Nothing in common

Except an intoxicating attraction!

Sharing a steamy kiss with Anne Peverett at a Christmas ball is utterly out of character for Dr Lord Ferris Tresham. He’s far too busy treating London’s poor to court anyone. Until Anne is revealed as the herbalist who’s been treating his patients with her homemade remedies! If they unite forces, will Anne be a bigger threat to his practice…or his closed-off heart?

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I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Set against a background of Victorian London, this historical romance is notable for its witty dialogue, the chemistry between Anne and Ferris and its focus on poverty and the role of women. Ferris is a dedicated physician, and Anne is a herbalist both want to make a difference in the health of the poor. Yet both are constrained, by the strictures, of Victorian society.

The historical details add to the story’s authenticity as they bring to life Victorian London and the world of herbalists.. The romance is full of internal and external barriers but proximity and a mutual understanding draw the couple together..

Posted in Book Review, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, New Books, Victorian Romance

The Earl Who Sees Her Beauty Marguerite Kaye 5*#Review @MillsandBoon @MargueriteKaye @HarlequinBooks #HistoricalRomance #RevelationsoftheCarstairsSisters #VictorianRomance #BookReview #HistoricalFiction #MillsandBoonInsiders #MillsandBoonHistorical #HarlequinHistorical

Unaware of her beauty…

Until he awakens her.

Prudence Carstairs knows her scars leave her with no romantic prospects—instead, she’s content revolutionising her employer’s home with her technological marvels. Then he unexpectedly perishes, and his mysterious younger brother, dashing Dominic Thorburn, reluctantly takes over. In the new earl, Prudence finally finds someone who meets her gaze without flinching. Might he see the beautiful, intelligent woman beyond her scars?

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

This story is both a gentle Victorian romance and an adventure into Victorian history. Prudence has physical scars from her childhood that make a suitable match unlikely. She finds solace in working for an Earl and innovating his household. She is a determined and independent character who develops her intellectual and practical skills to innovate around the Earl’s residence. When he dies, his younger heir sees her in an entirely different way to most and makes her believe her life can include love and a family.

This story highlights the expectations placed on women by Victorian society and the obsession with physical perfection and marriage being their best choice in life. Victorian innovation is an integral part of this story and gives it authenticity and depth.

The romance develops believably and with emotion that overcomes their internal and external conflicts to happiness.

Posted in Blog Blitz, Book Review, Historical Romance, Victorian Romance

Playing the Duke’s Fiancée Amanda McCabe 4*#Review @AmandaMcCabe01 @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #harlequinhistorical #MillsandBoonHistorical #BookReview #BlogBlitz @rararesources #PlayingtheDukesFiancée

A pretend proposal

For the unconventional heiress

When American heiress Violet Wilkins crosses paths with William, Duke of Charteris, she has extremely low expectations of the “Duke of Bore.” But when this seemingly stuffy aristocrat offers her escape from a dreadful arranged marriage, she leaps at the chance! To her surprise, the arresting Charles whisks Vi into an exhilarating make-believe romance. And as she gets to know the man behind the title, she can’t help wanting more…

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I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Violet’s story is the second in the Dollar Duchess series but readable as a standalone.
With a vibrant setting and vivid characters, this gentle Victorian romance is an engaging read. Violet is an unlikely Duchess as her sister Lily and isn’t even sure she wants to marry. However, her plans for independence are ruined by her parents’ plan to make her part of a business agreement. She turns to the man who is fast becoming a friend for help and then has to reconsider if being a Duchess wouldn’t be so bad after all.

The’Duke of Bore’ is determined to shed his stuffy image. Unconventional Violet is the woman to help him, just for fun, of course. When a fake engagement answers both their needs, he is forced to reconsider.

The main protagonists are both likeable, and the romance that develops between them is gentle and endearing. The historical setting is glamorous and gives the reader a good sense of time and place.

Amanda McCabe

Amanda wrote her first romance at the age of sixteen–a vast historical epic starring all her friends as the characters, written secretly during algebra class (and her parents wondered why math was not her strongest subject…)

 She’s never since used algebra, but her books have been nominated for many awards, including the RITA Award, the Romantic Times BOOKReviews Reviewers’ Choice Award, the Booksellers Best, the National Readers Choice Award, and the Holt Medallion.  She lives in Santa Fe with a Poodle, a cat, a wonderful husband, and a very and far too many books and royal memorabilia collections. 

 When not writing or reading, she loves taking dance classes, collecting cheesy travel souvenirs, and watching the Food Network–even though she doesn’t cook. 

Amanda also writes as Laurel McKee for Grand Central Publishing, the Elizabethan Mystery Series as Amanda Carmack, and the Manor Cat Mystery Series as Eliza Casey.

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Mystery, New Books, Victorian Romance

Search for the House of Dreams Alison Burke 3*#Review #AlisonBurke @rararesources #BlogTour #BookReview #HistoricalRomance #HistFic #VictorianRomance #FamilyDrama #SearchfortheHouseofDreams

It is the year 1847 in the elegant city of Bath where 18-year-old Genevre Stratton is treated more as a servant than a daughter in the elegant house where bills are not paid, and the rent is in arrears.                                                                                                                           

Appalled by the dishonesty and overriding social ambition beneath her parents’ veneer of respectability, only her love for her younger brother and sisters keeps her there.                      

Left to cope alone when their false world falls apart, she fights to keep her siblings together, until poverty forces her to yield them to the care of their half-brother, George Coleman.  Handsome, wealthy and charismatic, he is the enemy who becomes her lover.               

To surrender all to her passionate desire for him, or to keep the independence of a new-found musical career on the London stage? This is her choice to make until an unexpected call of duty takes her to Paris.                                                                                     

Must the old, dark secrets she discovers there alter the course of her life forever?

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I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Set in Victorian times, this story is full of family drama, hard times and unlikely relationships.

Genevre is the daughter of a Victorian household that outwardly appears respectable and wealthy. Betrayal, deceit and a complete lack of parenting skills are what Genevre has to deal with. She desperately tries to keep her siblings together, protecting them from the depravity and deprivation of Victorian society. Her half brother is both her nemesis and salvation. Their relationship is complex and uncomfortable, especially when their feelings develop. It is indicative of this type of society and adds authenticity.

This is a dramatic story and aptly demonstrates the dire circumstance many women found themselves in. The characters are vividly written although many are unpleasant, they all add to the story.

An atmospheric story with strong characters. It gives the reader a good sense of the darker side of Victorian life.

Alison Burke

I was born in Lancashire and started my career by training as a State Registered general nurse. Later, I joined the army and became an officer in Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps. On a posting to Malaya, now Malaysia, I found my true love. This was an ideal setting for marriage with young children, and now my memories are a wonderfully rich source of material for my writing.

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Saga, Victorian Romance

Trouble for the Leading Lady Rachel Brimble 5*#Review @RachelBrimble @Aria_Fiction @HoZ_Books #HistoricalFiction #HistoricalRomance #Saga #BlogTour @rararesources #BookReview #Victorian #Bath #19thCentury #TroublefortheLeadingLady

Bath, 1852.

As a girl, Nancy Bloom would go to Bath’s Theatre Royal, sit on the hard wooden benches and stare in awe at the actresses playing men as much as the women dressed in finery. She longed to be a part of it all and when a man promised her parents he could find a role for Nancy in the theatre, they believed him.

His lie and betrayal led to her ruin.

Francis Carlyle is a theatre manager, an ambitious man always looking for the next big thing to take the country by storm. A self-made man, Francis has finally shed the skin of his painful past and is now rich, successful and in need of a new female star. Never in a million years did he think he’d find her standing on a table in one of Bath’s bawdiest pubs.

Nancy vowed never to trust a man again. Francis will do anything to make her his star. As they engage in a battle of wits and wills, can either survive with their hearts intact?

The second in Rachel Brimble’s thrilling new Victorian saga series, Trouble for the Leading Lady will whisk you away to the riotous, thriving underbelly of Victorian Bath.

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I received a copy of this book from the author and Aria in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Nancy’s story is the second book in this challenging and compelling Victorian saga. Nancy dreams of being on the stage end in ruin until Louisa ( A Widow’s Vow) saves her. Nancy’s life is not what she wants, but her close friendship with Louisa and Octavia keeps her positive. Limited by her gender and social class, Nancy’s life choices are few. This poignant theme is explored well in this insightful story.

Francis’life in the workhouse still haunts him. He hopes to let go of the horrors through the play he is writing. There is strong attraction when Francis and Nancy meet, but can they fulfil each other’s dreams?

The conflicted romance is passionate, but both driven characters are wary of being hurt. They are easy to empathise with, and you want them to find lasting happiness. The dynamic between Louisa, Nancy and Octavia is relatable and provides humour and realism, adding authenticity.

The setting and historical detail are well researched and give the story its ethos and immersive quality.

This is an engaging Victorian romantic saga with a strong theme of social injustice that resonates.

Rachel Brimble

Rachel lives in a small town near Bath, England. She is the author of over 20 published novels including the Shop Girl series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove Stories (Harlequin).

In 2019 she signed a new three book contract with Aria Fiction for a Victorian trilogy set in a Bath brothel. The first book, A Widow’s Vow was released in September 2020 followed by book 2 Trouble For The Leading Lady in March 2021 – it is expected that the final instalment will be released in the Autumn 2021. Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and has thousands of social media followers all over the world.

To sign up for her newsletter (a guaranteed giveaway every month!), click on link Newsletter Sign Up

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Posted in Blog Blitz, Book Review, Historical Romance, Victorian Romance

His Unlikely Duchess Amanda McCabe 4*#Review @AmandaMcCabe01 @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #harlequinhistorical #MillsandBoonHistorical #BookReview #MondayBlogs #BlogBlitz @rararesources

Money can buy her marriage

But will it lead to love?

Miss Lily Wilkins hopes her American money will compensate for her lack of etiquette, as she needs a prestigious marriage to save her sisters’ prospects. Raised to believe wealth was her greatest attribute, she’s stunned when her unconventional ways catch the eye of the notorious Duke of Lennox. He’s far from the safe, sensible match she’d planned on—but Lily might just discover he’s the one she needs!

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I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

This story is full of intrinsic historical interest. I enjoyed getting to know Lily and her sisters even before they set foot in England. Lily is a facilitator she mediates between her parents and her sisters, wanting them all to be happy. Making a good marriage will secure the future for her younger sisters, but Lily is understandably nervous when her mother accepts an invitation to go to England and Victorian society.

Lily and Aidan’s first encounter is lovely and makes them see the real person behind the public persona. They process their feelings away from society’s glare, and attraction grows. The potential financial settlement and Aidan’s past make their romance conflicted.

The ending is romantic, and there’s an informative epilogue. I look forward to Violet’s romance the next in the series.

Amanda wrote her first romance at the age of sixteen–a vast historical epic starring all her friends as the characters, written secretly during algebra class (and her parents wondered why math was not her strongest subject…)

 She’s never since used algebra, but her books have been nominated for many awards, including the RITA Award, the Romantic Times BOOKReviews Reviewers’ Choice Award, the Booksellers Best, the National Readers Choice Award, and the Holt Medallion.  She lives in Santa Fe with a Poodle, a cat, a wonderful husband, and a very and far too many books and royal memorabilia collections. 

 When not writing or reading, she loves taking dance classes, collecting cheesy travel souvenirs, and watching the Food Network–even though she doesn’t cook. 

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Festive Read, Historical Romance, Mystery, Victorian Romance

A Princess By Christmas Julia London 5*#Review @JuliaFLondon @MillsandBoon #BlogTour #BookReview #ARoyalWedding #MillsandBoonInsiders #APrincessByChristmas #MillsandBoonHistorical #Festive

A Secret. A Lie. A Revolution.

Hollis Honeycutt has written her London gazette since the death of her husband – featuring fashion plates, marriage advice, and the latest gossip in and around Mayfair. But now she feels her gazette should have more meaning, cover topics of more consequence than the latest curl cream.

The opportunity presents itself when Hollis overhears rumours of a potential coup in the Kingdom of Wesloria, a coup linked to the highest level of government in London. During her investigation Hollis spies a man with no business lurking around peace talks, and determines to expose him for the traitor he most certainly must be.

When Weslorian Marek Brendan was fifteen he was shocked to discover his heritage was not what he believed – he was whisked away from the Weslorian palace when he was born because there was fear that corrupt forces would try and kidnap him. Now he is determined to stop these corrupt forces staging a coup in his home country. Except for the beautiful woman whose questions are putting his own investigation at risk. Yet soon Marek realises that pretty Hollis can help him. But when he confides his suspicions, Hollis’s loyalties are tested and she must choose between her loyalties to her family, or her heart…

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

The third book in the ‘A Royal Wedding’ series features Hollis, a widow who is feeling left behind in the romance stakes when her sister Eliza,(The Princess Plan) and her best friend Caroline (Royal Kiss and Tell) find true love.

Hollis is an engaging character conflicted with moving on and keeping her husband’s memory alive. She’s independent, opinionated and a little outrageous for the staid Victorian society and a fabulous character because of these things. Marek’s secret will rock the foundations of Wesloria. He fights his attraction to Hollis fearing she will betray him. Their slow-burn romance is conflicted from the start.

This story is complete and reads like a standalone. However, if you want to know more about Eliza and Caroline and understand the royal world of Alucia and Wesloria read the other books in the series too.

This story has political intrigue at its heart, and its the investigation of a suspected coup in Wesloria that divides and then unites the unlikely couple. The dialogue between Hollis and Marek is witty and informative. Hollis’ introspective thoughts are well written and give important insights into her motivations and personality. The romance is gentle but insistent. There’s a festive twist to this story which gives a perfect picture of Victorian Christmas.