Saturday, February 29, 2020

Promised: A Proper Romance Blog Tour

Though she earned degrees in math and statistics, Leah Garriott lives for a good love story. She's resided in Hawaii and Italy, walked the countryside of England, and owns every mainstream movie version of Pride and Prejudice. She's currently living her own happily ever after in Utah with her husband and three kids. Leah is represented by Sharon Pelletier at Dystel, Goderich, and Bourret.

Connect with the Author here:

Margaret Brinton keeps her promises, and the one she is most determined to keep is the promise to protect her heart.

Warwickshire, England, 1812

Fooled by love once before, Margaret vows never to be played the fool again. To keep her vow, she attends a notorious matchmaking party intent on securing the perfect marital match: a union of convenience to someone who could never affect her heart. She discovers a man who exceeds all her hopes in the handsome and obliging rake Mr. Northam.

There’s only one problem. His meddling cousin, Lord Williams, won’t leave Margaret alone. Condescending and high-handed, Lord Williams lectures and insults her. When she refuses to give heed to his counsel, he single-handedly ruins Margaret’s chances for making a good match—to his cousin or anyone else. With no reason to remain at the party, Margaret returns home to discover her father has promised her hand in marriage—to Lord Williams

Under no condition will Margaret consent to marrying such an odious man. Yet as Lord Williams inserts himself into her everyday life, interrupting her family games and following her on morning walks, winning the good opinion of her siblings and proving himself intelligent and even kind, Margaret is forced to realize that Lord Williams is exactly the type of man she’d hoped to marry before she’d learned how much love hurt. When paths diverge and her time with Lord Williams ends, Margaret is faced with her ultimate choice: keep the promises that protect her or break free of them for one more chance at love. Either way, she fears her heart will lose.

Check out my review here!

~ GoodreadsBookBub

"Promising Regency-set debut. Vivid period details and the hero's grand romantic efforts will please fans of historical romance."—Publishers Weekly

"Debut -author Garriott's smooth prose and character-driven story will enthrall readers looking for sweet historicals with Austenesque plots."—Library Journal

"Garriott's impressive debut distinguishes itself with its expertly evoked Regency setting, a cast of realistically flawed yet eminently relatable characters, and a sweetly satisfying love story. Teen fans of Austen-era love stories will fall hard for this impeccably crafted romance."—Booklist

“Promised is a sweet regency romance and one that I recommend to all of you romance fans, especially those of you that enjoy stories inspired by Jane Austen.”—The Book Diva’s Reads

“…a fun, entertaining, and perfect addition to the Proper Romance collection.”—The Readathon

“With an Austen-like focus on minute emotional detail and some amusing secondary characters, Garriott’s gentle novel promises a treat for Regency fans who like their characters well-bred, their interiors comfortable, and the romance no racier than the hero turning up in a wet shirt.”—Historical Novel Society

February 17 My Jane Austen Book Club (Guest Blog)
February 17 Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)
February 18 Katie's Clean Book Collection (Review)
February 18 Wishful Endings (Interview)
February 19 RelzReviewz (Character Spotlight)
February 20 Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Spotlight)
February 21 The Lit Bitch (Excerpt)
February 22 The Debutante Ball (Interview)
February 23 Adventure. Romance. Suspense (Review)
February 24 A Bookish Way of Life (Review)
February 24 Austenesque Reviews (Guest Blog)
February 24 Half Agony, Half Hope (Review)
February 25 Frolic Media (Excerpt)
February 26 Heidi Reads (Guest Blog)
February 26 The Caffeinated Bibliophile (Interview)
February 27 Wishful Endings (Review)
February 28 Lu Reviews Books (Review)
February 29 KJ's Book Nook (Review)
March 1 My Vices and Weaknesses (Excerpt)
March 2 Bringing Up Books (Review)
March 2 Christian Chick's Thoughts (Review)
March 2 For Where Your Treasure Is (Interview)
March 3 Heidi Reads (Review)
March 3 So Little Time…So Much to Read (Excerpt)
March 4 Romance Junkies (Guest Blog)
March 4 Gwendalyn's Books (Review)
March 5 Laura's Reviews (Review)
March 6 Scuffed Slippers Wormy Books (Spotlight)
March 7 Fiction Aficionado (Review)
March 8 The Christian Fiction Girl (Review)
March 9 Austenesque Reviews (Review)
March 10 Bookfoolery (Review)
March 10 From Pemberley to Milton (Review)
March 11 Faithfully Bookish (Interview)
March 12 Impressions in Ink (Review)
March 13 Robin Loves Reading (Review)
March 13 The Green Mockingbird (Review)
March 14 Inkwell Inspirations (Review)
March 15 The Calico Critic (Excerpt)
March 15 Bookworm Nation (Guest Blog)

Thursday, February 20, 2020

For the Lady of Lowena by Deborah M. Hathaway


She’s everything he never wanted—until she was everything he needed.

Tired of the smoke, the smog, and the spoiled females of London, Frederick Hawkins leaves the city behind and purchases an estate in Cornwall, longing to escape his mother’s meddling—and to find a wife worthy of his devotion. When he happens upon a barefooted lady asleep on the beach and rescues her from the incoming tide, he believes he has found such a woman. But first impressions can’t be trusted.

Born into wealth, Sophia Rosewall is offered everything on a silver platter. That is, until her father reveals he has lost their fortune and can now no longer fund their affluent living. Even worse, the intriguing gentleman who’d rescued Sophia on the beach is no one else but the pretentious man now taking possession of her home. Uprooted from everything she has ever known, Sophia relocates to Lowena, a small cottage at the edge of the sea. She clings to her former life, but when Society rejects her, nothing will ever be the same.

As their paths continually cross, Frederick begins to see glimmers of the carefree Sophia he’d first met on the beach, and he cannot help but hope that there is more to the woman than a love of wealth and attention. He does what he can to help her find confidence in her new life and allow her true self to shine forth, but only Sophia can stop attempting to change her circumstances, and instead, change her heart.

My Review: 5 Stars

I'm one of those people who do not have a bucket list. But if I did, I would definitely add visit Cornwall on to it. Every time I read a book in this series, I'm transported to the beautiful seaside where I live and breathe everything Cornwall.

From the moment I met Sophia and Frederick, I was excited for their story. But after the first chapter, I wasn't sure if I was supposed to like Sophia or not. I quickly learned that I was not. She went from being the sweet person Frederick rescued on the beach to the person who is the complete opposite. I was with Frederick when he took an instant disliking to Sophia. She was a snob and pretty much thought the world should revolve around her.

But when tragedy strikes, and Sophia's family loses everything, she's thrown into an unknown world. A world where she realizes that she's no longer welcome among those of her previous class. As Sophia tries to navigate her new life, she'll learn some valuable lessons. Lessons that will have Frederick thinking twice about who the real Sophia is and if she's someone that he can see himself with.

But when Sophia's life takes another turn, will she choose to go back to who she used to be? Or will she choose to be the person she's become?

In true Hathaway form, I was made to feel all the feels. I enjoyed sitting down and strapping in for the emotional roller coaster of Sophia's and Frederick's lives. The lessons they learned on their journey are ones that we all can learn as well. I loved the realness of this book. I loved the reminder that even though we're flawed, it doesn't mean that we are not valuable, that we are not cherished. This book was just what I needed right now. It gave me the hope and peace that I have been seeking.

For the Lady of Lowena is another winner by Ms. Hathaway! I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next!

And of course I can't forget my casting. I absolutely adore these two! What do you think?

Friday, February 14, 2020

The Dear Wife by Jennifer Peel


She’s been holding on for dear life, but now she must learn to let go. 

Marathon runner and quintessential wife and mother Avery Decker appears to have it all together. But don’t let her smile fool you. Since the death of her daughter four years ago, she’s been trying to fake her way through life. 

So far, it hasn’t worked out so well.

Avery is overwhelmed not only with the grief of losing her daughter, but with the fear that she’ll lose someone else she loves—her husband James. This time not to death, but to the secret demons he’s been using to cope with the loss of their little girl. Day after day she’s been privately battling to save him and their marriage, but it’s only left her exhausted and lonely. Tired of pretending, she turns to the strongest women she knows. Together they help her face the truth and realize that the only person she can save is herself. But will it cost her the person she loves the most? Or will James remember who he is and hold on to the person he holds most dear?

Content warning: This book contains sensitive subject matters including pornography addiction and the loss of a child.

My Review: 5 Stars!

*Please note... if you don't read reviews before you read the book, please see my warning at the bottom of this review*

Where do I even begin with reviewing The Dear Wife? This book deals with very hard, very taboo subjects. Pornography and the loss of a child. I know this book is not going to be for everyone, and that's okay. But Ms. Peel is one of those authors who does an exceptional job when it comes to writing about the hard stuff. I can't explain it, but there's just something about her writing style that makes it easier to read about the hard stuff people face in real life.

We know from the previous book that James and Avery were going through something difficult. I didn't know what it was but I have been dying to find out their story. I'm not going to lie or sugar coat anything. Their story broke my heart into a million pieces. I have never cried so much while reading a book before. And don't even get me started on how angry I was. I didn't know how or if James and Avery were going to be able to fix all that was broken between them. There were times that I was encouraging Avery to just walk away. She didn't deserve to be put through everything that she had been.

But as the story progressed, and Avery not only started finding herself again, but started believing that things could be better, I found myself slowly... ever so slowly... having a change of heart about James. But, just like Avery, I was cautious when it came to the possibility of them getting back together. James's story is the prime example of how no one really knows what demons someone is facing on the inside. Their journey definitely was not an easy one. They both had to be willing to do whatever they could to make changes and strive to be better not only as a couple, but as individuals as well.

It doesn't matter what kind it is, addiction is hard. Whether you're the one going through it or you're watching a loved one go through it. It's not something that you can just get over. It takes a lot of blood, sweat, tears, courage, strength, determination, and love to face whatever it is you're facing. Everyone deserves a chance to overcome it and have the much needed support from their loved ones to face that long, difficult road to recovery.

As I said before, Ms. Peel knows how to write about the hard stuff. I can always count on her to make me feel all the feels. If you read The Dear Wife, buckle up and hold on tight as you embark on the biggest emotional roller coaster you have ever been on. There's no question, it will be tough, but this is one of the best books she has ever written! I cannot wait to see what she has in store for us next!

Beautiful souls are shaped by ugly experiences. ― Matshona Dhliwayo

**Content warning** The Dear Wife deals with tough topics including pornography addiction and the loss of a child. If you know you can't handle those topics, PLEASE don't read the book. Jennifer has put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into this book and she does not need readers who cannot handle these topics leaving negative reviews. Please search your heart to know if this book is one you should read or not. 
Saturday, February 8, 2020

Romancing the Rake by Nichole Van


Lady Sophronia Sorrow considers herself an unlikely heroine. Why, just her name alone proves this. Sophronia Sorrow is the name of a simpering miss from a gothic penny novel—the foolish girl who falls prey to a rake and becomes an object lesson for the true heroine to avoid. No, despite her mawkish name, Sophie refuses to spend her life invisible and unwanted, relegated to the margin of the text, never belonging. If only she could uncover the identity of her natural father, perhaps she would belong there?

But one thing Sophie knows for sure—unlike that foolhardy miss in a novel, she will not succumb to a rake. No matter how thoroughly Lord Rafe Gilbert may tempt her.

Lord Rafe Gilbert longs for freedom—freedom from his controlling father, freedom to live his life as he chooses. He knows playing the rake pleases his father, but he longs to determine his own destiny. Case in point, he fell in love with Lady Sophie years ago, but his father’s threats prevent him from pursuing her in earnest. So when Fate thrusts Sophie into his path, Rafe struggles to turn her away. But given the menace hanging over his head, he has no other choice, doesn’t he?

Spanning years and ranging from London ballrooms to a castle in the Scottish Highlands, can two kindred souls heal from past hurts and seize a second chance to write a love story of their own?

My Review: 5 Stars

Wow! What a fantastic addition to the Brotherhood of the Black Tartan series! How fantastic you ask? Well, lets just say I already want to read it again!

Lady Sophie is a rather unique and quirky heroine. But you can't help but love her from the very beginning. Lord Rafe is one of those heroes that you instantly love. Put the two of them together and sparks start flying off the page. They were truly perfect for each other. Not only did they balance the other out, but they loved each other for who they were on the inside... quirks, insecurities, family drama and all. I couldn't get enough of these two!

Watching Sophie and Rafe navigate through their trails and tribulations and trying to figure out their relationship was not easy. I'm warning you ahead of time. You'll feel all the feels! I found myself laughing, getting teary eyed, seething with anger, shocked, and letting out little dreamy sighs throughout the book.

From the moment I started Romancing the Rake, I did not want to put it down. All the twists and turns kept me on the edge of my seat and trying to devour the book as quickly as I could. The time I spent away from the book was absolute torture. I found myself sneaking in reading time whenever I could. I may or may not have gotten irrationally angry when real life kept me from finishing the book as fast as I wanted.

Ms. Van is a phenomenal storyteller! I can always count on her to whisk me away to the setting of her book where I'll live and breathe with all the characters until the very last page. It's no wonder that she's a favorite and an auto-buy author for me.

And what review of mine would be complete without my casting? I absolutely adore these two! What do you think?

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Hidden Gems - February 2020

Welcome to Hidden Gems hosted by KJ's Book Nook! Once a month I'll feature a new to me author that I've discovered and fell in love with their books. I'll share the author's bio, one of my favorite books of theirs and a review.

For this month's Hidden Gems I am going to choose...

Kacey Linden is a coffee-fueled romance author from Oklahoma. She grew up in the Pacific Northwest, and still misses the trees, the mountains, and yes, even the rain. She believes in the power of a good story, and loves the holidays almost as much as she loves horses, kind-hearted heroes and happily-ever-afters.

When she's not dreaming up her next romance, you'll probably find Kacey reading, baking, or enjoying the outdoors with her family.

Kacey also writes fantasy and science fiction under the name Kenley Davidson.


I discovered Kacey Linden when I was searching for clean Christmas romance books. I had been on a small town kick and thought Echo Creek sounded like the perfect place to spend some time. I was pleasantly surprised when I was hooked from the first page. I absolutely adored Echo Creek! 😊

I decided Christmas in Echo Creek would be the perfect book for me to feature since it's the one that hooked me on her books. 

Can the magic of a small town Christmas convince her that love is worth the risk?

When Willow Renner ends up stranded in the quaint little town of Echo Creek, she intends to lay low until she can pay for car repairs and get back on the road. But the locals can’t seem to stop trying to help her, and their obsession with Christmas cheer makes her want things she never thought she’d have. Home. A family. Maybe even a chance at love with a certain handsome sheriff’s deputy…

Deputy Cale Matthews was planning to skip Christmas, until a quiet newcomer makes him rethink everything. Willow is clearly hiding something, but she’s also beautiful, courageous, and in desperate need of hope. It doesn’t take long for Cale to decide he wants more than just friendship, but Willow’s been hurt too often to trust easily.

With the help of a meddling matchmaker and a little mistletoe, will Cale be able to convince Willow to take a chance on love, or will the shadows of her past tear them apart forever?

You can check out my review here.

Happy reading my fellow Book Dragons!
Saturday, February 1, 2020

The Winter Companion by Mimi Matthews


She Needed to be Seen...

As a lady’s companion, Clara Hartwright never receives much attention from anyone. And that’s precisely how she likes it. With a stormy past, and an unconventional plan for her future, it’s far safer to remain invisible. But when her new employer is invited to a month-long holiday at a remote coastal abbey, Clara discovers that she may not be as invisible as she'd hoped. At least, not as far as one gentleman is concerned.

He Wanted to be Heard...

Neville Cross has always been more comfortable with animals than people. An accident in his youth has left him with a brain injury that affects his speech. Forming the words to speak to his childhood friends is difficult enough. Finding the right things to say to a lovely young lady’s companion seems downright impossible. But Miss Hartwright is no ordinary companion. In fact, there may not be anything ordinary about her at all.

During a bleak Devon winter, two sensitive souls forge an unexpected friendship. But when Clara needs him most, will Neville find the courage to face his fears? Or is saying goodbye to her the most heroic thing he can do?

My Review: 5 Stars

I have slowly been falling in love with Neville since the first book in this series. In my opinion, he's the glue that holds these four friends together. I'm sure he holds a special place in all of our hearts. He's one of the most endearing characters I've ever encountered in my years of reading. 

Years ago, Neville was involved in an accident that resulted in a brain injury which has affected his speech. It hasn't been easy to deal with. People think he's slow and, for lack of a better word, dumb. But that's far from the case. Neville is actually pretty smart. He just has a hard time forming his thoughts into words and expressing them. His condition seems to get worse when he's in stressful situations, he's upset or... when he's around Clara. 

Clara lost her teaching position after a scandal involving her rocked her little village. She was forced into letting all her dreams go and become a lady's companion. If her past has taught her anything, it's to become invisible. She doesn't need another scandal derailing the only dream she has left, becoming a secretary to her brother once he completes his schooling. Meeting Neville was never in her plans.

From the moment Neville and Clara meet, there's an instant connection that neither one of them can deny. However, they both know that nothing can ever happen between them. Neville can't leave the abbey and Clara is only visiting for a month with her new employer. But the more time they spend together, the closer they become and the more their feelings start to grow.

As their time together comes to a close, Neville will need to decide if saying goodbye is what's best for both of them or if their love is strong enough to see them through whatever obstacles life may throw at them, together.

*dreamy sigh*

Oh how I loved Neville and Clara! If anyone deserved a HEA, it's these two! I loved watching their relationship grow from friendship into something more. Both of them had insecurities that were hard to face. But together they had all the love, courage, strength and determination they needed to face anything life had in store for them. 

What an amazing ending to a fantastic series! I have loved spending time with the Parish Orphans of Devon and their wives! This series will be a must read over and over again. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves Victorian romance!

I am seriously loving all the books of Ms. Matthews I have read. She has quickly become a favorite and an auto-buy author for me. I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next!

And of course I can't forget my casting. I absolutely adore these two! What do you think?

Weekend Ramblings

Hey party people! Are you ready for another Weekend Ramblings a la KJ?!

Well then... let's get ready to raaaaammmmmbbbbbllllleeeee!!!!!

This week's rambling topic is...

** Reading Pet Peeves **

We all have them. There's no point in denying it. There's at least one thing that bugs us when it comes to reading. I know I've done this topic before but it was 4 years ago. I have a lot more pet peeves than I used too. Haha. And since we have a lot of new readers who weren't around when I did it last time, I thought what the heck! Let's do it again!

Are you ready?! 

*deep breath*

1. The over usage of exclamation points. Holy. Hannah! Some authors go crazy with them. A lot of the time, they don't even match up with the scene. For example, how can someone be in a whispered conversation and BAM! Exclamation point after exclamation point. But they're still whispering. It bugs the heck out of me! 

2. Inconsistencies and grammatical errors. I get that not every book is going to be 100% perfect. But when you're reading a book that has a lot of errors in it, it takes away from the story. After noticing three or four within the first few chapters, I find myself entering beta reader mode and picking the book apart. I usually end up lowering my rating because of it... especially when the errors should've been caught by beta readers and editors.

3. More than one couple in the book. If I'm reading a romance, I want just one hero and one heroine. I do not want to read about 2 or more couples.. especially if the book is written in multiple POV's. Jeezle peezle do I ever get confused! I also think it takes getting to know the characters and connecting with them away from the reader. I can't tell you how many synopsis's I've read recently that have multiple couples in it. There was one that had FIVE couples in ONE book! Oh! And the book was less than 300 pages. How in the world are you going to connect with each one of them?! It makes me batty! If you're going to have that many couples in one book, why not make it into a series?!

I'm sure I can go on and on with this topic but I want to hear from you! What are some of YOUR reading pet peeves?

Inquiring minds want to know! ;)