Category Archives: Romance

Meh, meh, and more meh

Sixteen Scandals

By: Sophie Jordan

Rating: 2 of 5

First of all, regardless of the blurb, there is nothing in this book that brings Jane Austen to mind. Miss Austen’s books dealt with her time and place. She skewered personalities with deft skill. This book is shallow and the characters are trite.

There is enough going on that I would not call the book wholesome and clean but, I am sure, compared to the normal steamy historical romances that Ms. Jordan apparently writes, it must seem so to her publisher.

The main character, Prim, turns sixteen. She was to come out in society but that was not to be. She sneaks off to Vauxhall Gardens and, bad decision after bad decision, proves that she is not really adult enough to be trusted. That is not what the author would have you feel but it is the truth.

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Laugh out loud funny

Brighton Road

By: Susan Carroll

Rating: 5 of 5

This is the first book I have read by Susan Carroll. They were published decades ago and are back in ebook format. Apparently she wrote Traditional Regency novels at the beginning of her career and then veered into writing historical romances (which are not sweet and clean as the earlier books.)

I thoroughly enjoyed this traditional book. It was hysterically funny as the characters moved from one crisis to another.

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A Proper Romance and more

The Gentleman and the Thief

By: Sarah M. Eden

Rating: 5 of 5

This is the second book in the Proper Romance series. In this story, Hollis Darby is infatuated with Ana Newport. She is a music teacher and he is a gentleman who without visible means of support but is able to live a reasonable life regardless.

He has a secret, he writes penny dreadful novels for children. Not only that, he is a member of a secret society that is determined to help those less fortunate who are in great need.

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Sweet and funny Christmas romance

Christmas Charms

By: Teri Wilson

Rating: 5 of 5

I had never read a novel by Teri Wilson before nor had I seen the movie that this book is based on. So, I read it with no preconceived notion and was wonderfully entertained.

The story is about Ashley, a small town girl, who just can’t wait to get to New York City. She thinks her life is perfect as she works for the most prestigious jewelry store and has a boyfriend who she thinks is about to propose. Add to that, she is going to Paris for the holidays.

Things fall apart and she heads home to lick her wounds and get ready to go back to work. The train ride back home is uneventful except for an interesting stranger and the discovery of an antique charm bracelet on her arm when she awakens from a nap.

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Fun and clean traditional Regency Romance

Poor Caroline

By: Elizabeth Mansfield

Rating: 5 of 5

I’ve recently been reading Regency Romances, both older and newer published novels. This is an older book that has been recently been published as an ebook. I had read other Elizabeth Mansfield books years ago but this is one that I had not read before.

The book is funny and has a cast of characters that keep bringing you back to it. Caroline Whitlow is a proud young woman. She has always been so. She can’t take “charity” from anyone. The problem is, she doesn’t always understand that what she sees as charity is, in fact, simple kindness.

She and her two younger brothers move out from the home they have been living in for twelve years when the new heir is coming home.

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Lots of fun in this Regency Romance

Mr. Malcolm’s List

By: Suzanne Allain

Rating: 5 of 5

Mr. Malcolm is a rich and eligible bachelor. He has females running after him all the time. In order to weed out those who are unsuitable (by his criteria), he creates and list and if a young lady doesn’t meet just one item on the list, she is out of consideration.

A young lady, Julia, takes umbrage at the thought, having read much more into an evening with Mr. Malcolm has her escort, and she makes plants to get even.

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Great, old-fashioned Regency Romance

The Firstborn

By: Quenby Olson

Rating: 5 of 5

I am so pleased to find a new author who writes in the style of the Regency Romances that I read when I was much younger. Actually, I found this book to be even better than most of those I read years ago.

The book has a romance that develops normally. It doesn’t have sex or profanity. That’s so unusual these days. I stopped reading Regencies years ago because they had morphed into something less appealing which included detailed sex scenes.

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A wonderful, sweet and proper Regency Romance

Lakeshire Park (Proper Romance)

By: Megan Walker

Rating: 5 of 5

It’s been years since I read a new sweet and, yes, proper Regency Romance. Many that call themselves Regencies today include graphic and/or explicit sexual scenes.

That is not the case with Lakeshire Park. The story is the key in this book. The story is about two individuals in particular. Amelia Moore and Mr. Peter Wood are the heroine and hero of this story.

Amelia is trying to promote a marriage between her sister Clara and Sir Ronald. It is imperative that it happen soon as the two sisters (unbeknownst to Clara) have fairly well been cast off by their dying and truly unlikeable stepfather.

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More of a romance than a mystery but still a good read

Out of the Picture: A Shepherd Sisters Mystery

By: Tracy Gardner

Rating: 4 of 5

When I first started to read this book, I thought I was reading a mystery but, somehow, it came across as a romance. Then I remembered that it was a book released by Hallmark and the romance part of the mystery made sense.

It is the second in a series of three books. The books are about the Shepherd sisters. In this book, Savanna Shepherd as just moved home after losing her long term relationship when her fiance decided he needed something more.

Because she worked for his family, she felt the need to quit and move back to the small town she grew up in and leave behind her prestigious job as an art authenticator.

Savanna loves being home, her new job and spending time with her neighbor, an much older lady who has a wonderful art collection.

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A re-telling of “You’ve Got Mail” with a Christmas flair

Dear Santa: A Novel

By: Nancy Naigle

Rating: 4 of 5

I had not read very far into this book when I realized why the story line was so familiar. It is the same story as that of “You’ve Got Mail”. If this wasn’t done intentionally, I can’t explain the similarities. Everything from a young woman with an inherited business going under to a conversation between strangers carried out over email.

Just as with the movie, the story was fun and heart-warming. The two main characters have good impressions of each other when they spy one another from afar. When they find out who the other is, prior prejudices take over.

The story is set at Christmas time and the title points to one my favorites parts of the story. Each chapter is begun either with a bit of history of their town or, more fun, letters from children to Santa. Those letters made me laugh more than once.

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