Category Archives: Historical Romance

The Bashful Bride by Vanessa Riley

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Description

 

My Review:

The books in this series are stand alone, but I found that I believe more enjoyable when read in order. Vanessa Riley brings to life a time period and culture from a time period that is rarely written about. She does so in this beautiful tale of love, where people are willing to do anything for another person’s care and devotion.

However, there are also forced marriages, evil uncles, and controlling parents to add to the mix, along with racial prejudices. This novel is both entertaining and educational, all wrapped in a well written package. Check this one out!

“The Bashful Bride” is available on Amazon.

This was obtained through Netgalley. The opinions contained herein are my own.

 

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Together Forever by Jody Hedlund

 

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Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

Description

My Review:
The first book in this series (and these are not stand alone books), was not about the traditional orphan trains as much as I thought it would be. This one was more traditional.  I enjoyed the storyline, and following up on Marianne’s story a bit more, getting to know her, as it were.
Ms. Hedlund is talented at pulling out pieces of history that actually happened, real life stories, both the sad and the good. This book was no exception.
It addresses something that many of us face, the ability to blame ourselves for things that we are not responsible for. It often seems easier to blame us as we believe it of ourselves.
This story could be used to demonstrate lessons, but also if you were studying history, a way to learn about some of the orphan trains and their history.
I obtained this book from NetGalley and the publisher. The opinions contained herein are my own.
This book is available for pre-order and ships May 1st. You can find it from your local book sellers and here on Amazon. Together Forever

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The Lacemaker by Laura Frantz

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Description

My Review:
This book had hints that reminded me of one of my all time favorite books, Celia Garth. Only hints, but it was very good. Ms. Frantz delves deeply into the history of the time period, along with how a woman of means would have been helpless and be used as a pawn, even with a strong character and resolve.  It was not just easy to go and make a life on your own, and forced marriages were commonplace, especially among the wealthy as well as the poor.
I thought this book did a wonderful job of helping you live that. You felt her desperation, frustration and also resolve, as she set out to sacrifice what she could for those she loved.
I am looking forward to reading Jocelyn Green’s book as well, which was mentioned in the notes at the end of the book, that while not related, has some of the same notes of flavor.
A deeper historical novel, much like her others, I wouldn’t really classify this as a romance, although it has some romantic overtones and select scenes, there is nothing that would not be appropriate for a high school student.
This book is available where books are sold and on sale from Amazon right now on eBook for under $2.
I obtained this book from the publisher. The opinions contained herein are my own.

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The Ladies of Ivy Cottage by Julie Klassen

 

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Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

About the book:

Return to Ivy Hill in The Ladies of Ivy Cottage as friendships deepen, romances blossom, and mysteries unfold.

Living with the two Miss Groves in Ivy Cottage, impoverished gentlewoman Rachel Ashford is determined to earn her own livelihood . . . somehow. When the village women encourage her to open a subscription library with the many books she has inherited or acquired through donations, Rachel discovers two mysteries hidden among them. A man who once broke her heart helps her search for clues, but will both find more than they bargained for?

My Review:

Much like the previous book,  if you do not like Regency books that move similar to speed to Jane Austen, you may not enjoy this one. I do, hence the great enjoyment.
I had waited to read both of the books near to one another, but when I finished this one, I was dismayed that I will be waiting another year for the next one. There were some resolutions, but not nearly enough for me!
The romance is a little more in this one than the first one, but again, very, very light throughout. It is not the storyline as much as it is the tale of the “Ladies of Ivy Cottage”.
I was struck by the way that the society was set up for women to struggle when they were unmarried.
Ms. Klassen does an excellent job of giving you a complete picture and painting the set up to make you want to read the next book as well.

This book is available for purchase from booksellers near you and Amazon. If you like Regency and Jane Austen, get this one as well as the one before it.

“Ladies of Ivy Cottage”

I obtained this book through the publisher, Bethany House. My opinions and thoughts are my own.

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A Dangerous Legacy by Elizabeth Camden

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Description

My Review:
Sometimes you read a book that you finish and you go, “Good book.” Other times you don’t enjoy the book as much and move on easily.
This was neither of those. This was a book that I finished and thought, “Wow. I wish I had not just read that book as I would like to read it again!”
Elizabeth Camden is an exceptional author, but I love her unique characters. They have quirks, fun personalities, and flaws, yet you can love getting to know them while learning amazing historical facts without even realizing it.
Carrier pigeons, Morse code, newsrooms, spies, and narcissistic/abusive family members are only a few of the topics covered in this fast paced story. It is one you will not want to put down.
Elizabeth Camden is one of the authors that is an automatic buy for me. I see she has a new book out and I don’t even stop to think if I will enjoy it.
I can’t wait to see what the future holds for her writing and books! I never think I can have one that tops my favorites by her, and then another one comes along.
I obtained this book through NetGalley and Bethany House publishers. The opinions contained herein are my own.
You can purchase your own copy, (and I encourage you to do so) at local booksellers and online. “A Dangerous Legacy” 

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To Wager Her Heart by Tamera Alexander

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Book Description

Can a railroad man and a Southern Belle turned teacher find a way to work together to achieve their dreams in the new reality of the post-Civil War South?

Sylas Rutledge, former gambler and new owner of the East Line Railway, invests everything he has into this venture, partly to see if he can do it—but mostly to avenge his father.

Spurning her family’s wishes that she marry, Alexandra Donelson is pursuing her passion for teaching at Fisk University, the first freedmen’s university in the United States. But her family does not approve, and ultimately, her father expels her from the family home and cuts her off completely.

Set at Nashville’s historic Belle Meade Plantation, To Wager Her Heart is a sweeping Southern love story about a nation mending after war, the struggle to move a country forward, and the courage of a man and woman to see themselves for who they truly are—and can be—with each other.

My Review:

As I read the description above, (since I didn’t write it), I found myself wondering at how much it leaves out. This has to be one of my favorite books by this author. I have not been so deeply moved by a novel in quite some time. While this description makes it sound romance centric, it really is not.

Instead, you will find yourself experiencing more of what the Fisk University students experienced, I was riding the train when there was an accident, or so I felt when I finished this novel. I experienced the historical events as they happened, and found myself close to tears several times.

I had heard of Fisk University and the Jubilee Singers on Adventures in Odyssey, but otherwise, have not read much about them. Phillip Bliss is a well known name to me and others that come up in this novel.

This story is not just about two broken people that found healing, it is a story that can help you understand what many faced in that time period, but also find healing yourself through their story.

I obtained this book from BookLookBloggers. The opinions contained herein are my own.

This book is available for purchase through Amazon and other book retailers. I highly recommend you set money aside to purchase it straight away!

“To Wager Her Heart”

You will not be sorry you did, even if you have not read the previous books in the series.

 

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An Inconvenient Beauty by Kristi Hunter

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Description

 

My Review:

It is not often that you read a book where you feel the author really made it a point to bring the point home on how hard it was to be a beauty.

I felt this story really showed the drastic measures that men took in the time period to use and abuse their power over women and their families, while playing with their heart.

The story was totally enjoyable, while not too deep, it was enjoyable and I would love to read more by this author. If you enjoy regency fiction, you will want to check this one out. It is likely my favorite by this author so far.

I received this book through NetGalley. The opinions contained herein are my own.

This book is available for purchase from Amazon.

An Inconvenient Beauty

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These Healing Hills by Ann Gabhart

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Description

My Review:
Well, anything to do with birth or midwifery always fascinates me. This book is no exception. This book reminded me of Christy by Catherine Marshall of sorts, with instead of a teacher, we have a nurse midwife in training. Her pain from being abandoned  by the supposed love of her life in the beginning of the book sets the stage for us to learn some valuable lessons.
I loved the history that is woven throughout on the training, the hard births, the tough calls that they had to make as well as balancing the old wives tales while still utilizing some of the natural remedies that were good.
Ms. Gabhart did an amazing job telling us this story, while causing us to experience life there in the hills.
This book is available for purchase from Amazon and where books are sold for pre-order.

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A Dangerous Engagement by Melanie Dickerson

 

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About the book:

Just as merchant’s daughter Felicity Mayson is spurned once again because of her meager dowry, she receives an unexpected invitation to Lady Blackstone’s country home. Being introduced to the wealthy Oliver Ratley is an admitted delight, as is his rather heedless yet inviting proposal of marriage. Only when another of Lady Blackstone’s handsome guests catches Felicity’s attention does she realize that nothing is what it seems at Doverton Hall.

Government agent Philip McDowell is infiltrating a group of cutthroat revolutionaries led by none other than Lady Blackstone and Ratley. Their devious plot is to overthrow the monarchy, and their unwitting pawn is Felicity. Now Philip needs Felicity’s help in discovering the rebels’ secrets—by asking her to maintain cover as Ratley’s innocent bride-to-be.

Philip is duty bound. Felicity is game. Together they’re risking their lives—and gambling their hearts—to undo a traitorous conspiracy before their dangerous masquerade is exposed.

My Review:

You ever want a light and happy regency mystery? Look no further. Here you have one. Following the theme of spies and regency romance, this light and happy tale leads you down paths of intrigue. And it might have you questioning why on earth parents of that time period thought that sending your child off to stay with a unknown relative was a good idea.

I loved the whole big family idea/them that was in this one as being one of 11, I totally related to it!
Melanie Dickerson triumphs again with a great read!

You can pre-order it now on Amazon!

A Dangerous Engagement 

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A Name Unknown by Roseanna White

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

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Description

My Review: 

I was not sure what to expect from this book and I found it started off a bit slow for me. But it did not stay that way for long. I found myself absorbed in the story of a thief attempting to basically infiltrate a life and lifestyle she did not know anything about.

Each twist and turn of the story, especially with a hero that stutters made this absolutely unique for me. I loved all the tidbits of history throughout, but the hero and heroine who had no focus on romance whatsoever, but you almost felt like it was a natural part of the story, but not the focus.

I would highly recommend this book, especially if you are stocking up on fall reads at the moment. Check this one out and put it on the “Must read” pile.

You can find this book for purchase from Amazon and other book sellers. “A Name Unknown” 

(This book was provided by NetGalley and Bethany House. The opinions are my own)

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