Monday, October 31, 2022

Reluctant Immortals by Gwendolyn Kiste


Are you a fan of Jane Eyre and/or Dracula?  Have you ever wondered if Bertha Mason or Lucy Westenra could have had a different fate?  If so, Reluctant Immortals is the book for you.

Lucy and Bee (Bertha) are immortal and have survived and are currently living in 1960s Hollywood. They have their daily routines living their undead lives, but when Dracula and Mr. Rochester appear back on the scene, how will Lucy and Bee deal with these terrible men from their past who just won’t leave them alone?

Reluctant Immortals is a hard book to characterize.  I don’t want to give too much away as I thought it was a crazy, fun, and unique ride for a book.  I loved Lucy and her strength. She was a great narrator for this book. I also loved how the ladies took control of their own narratives.  It all perfectly seemed to fit into the psychedelic world of the 1960s and the summer of love in particular.  This book had a one-of-a-kind story line and fantastic characters.  I enjoyed it.

Review Copy from Simon and Schuster.  Thank you @BookClubFavorites #BookClubFavorites for the free book. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

When Life Gives You Vampires by Gloria Duke


Title:  When Life Gives You Vampires

Author:  Gloria Duke

Narrated by: Meg Sylvan

Publisher: Dreamscape Media

Length: Approximately 9 hours and 54 minutes

Source: Review Copy from Netgalley and Dreamscape Media.  Thank-you!

 What is your favorite vampire story, book, or movie?

 Lily Baines wakes up one morning feeling off.  She soon discovers she has fangs and a craving for blood.  When she talks through things with her best friend, she regains her memories and realizes that after she left with a hot stranger, Tristan, that he accidentally turned her into a vampire.  She is not happy with the situation, but after he turns up and tells her that they broke vampire law, they team up to stay safe.  As their feelings for each other grow, will they find romance, and will they be able to beat Tristan’s mortal enemy?

 I enjoyed this novel, but it’s hard to describe.  It’s a fun and humorous paranormal romance with some steamy parts.  It’s also an adventure at the end as well.   I found myself laughing a lot during this book.  Lily has problems with body positivity as she is overweight, and her mother makes sure she doesn’t forget it.  When she realizes that she will always now remain overweight for eternity it crushes her.  In the book she has to learn about feeling positive about herself and also realizing that she herself has also shamed someone else for their body.  I thought it was an interesting angle.  I also just liked the silly parts such as Lily being glad that she shaved her legs so that her legs will remain hairless for all time.  Her thoughts as she navigates now being a vampire seemed real for how someone would think about such things.  I thought it was entertaining.  I also loved the pop culture references.  Lily does swear quite a bit in this book.

 Meg Sylvan had a fun voice for Lily in the book and I thought of her as the character. 


Friday, October 28, 2022

The Postmistress of Paris by Meg Waite Clayton


Thank you, Partner @bibliolifestyle @harperperennial for the review copy of The Postmistress of Paris by Meg Waite Clayton.

How many books are on your nightstand right now?  I have a lot – probably thirty books on my nightstand right now!

Nanee is an American who has moved to France in the 1930s.  She is wealthy and adventuress, flying airplanes and hanging out with artists.  After World War II starts, she tries to flee and ultimately joins the resistance.  She becomes known as the “postmistress” as she delivers secret information to those in hiding.  She also helps them to flee to safety.

Edouard Moss is a Jewish photographer who has fled Germany with his young daughter. Unfortunately after France falls to the Germans, he is captured and put into a concentration camp.  He met Nanee before the war and was struck by her beauty which reminded him of his late wife.  When their path collides again, Edouard has a chance for freedom, but what about his missing daughter?

I loved the characters in this book, especially Nanee.  She was such a strong and inspirational character.  She used her own wealth to rent a villa in Marseille and filled it full of artists and members of the resistance.  I loved learning at the end at this was inspired by a real-life Chicago heiress Mary Jayne Gold.  She helped thousands escape the Nazi regime.  I thought it interesting that both the real-life heiress and the fictional one grew up with a summer home on Lake Michigan.  I looked it up and it is south of Holland and became a part of Hope College.  I would love to see it!

This novel has a great setting, great characters, suspense, light romance, a cute dog, and an adorable little girl.  It was a great World War II historical fiction book with a unique story.  I enjoyed it.

Review Copy from Harper Books as part of the Bibliolifestyle Book Tour.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Thursday, October 27, 2022

Spells for Lost Things by Jenna Evans Welch


Title:  Spells for Lost Things

Author:  Jenna Evans Welch

Narrated by:  Renee Dorian, Ali Andre Ali

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio

Length: Approximately 12 hours and 15 minutes

Source: Review Copy from Simon & Schuster.  Thank you @BookClubFavorites #BookClubFavorites for the free book.

 If you had a spell that could do anything you wish, what would that spell be for?  I think my spell would be for an automatically clean house.  No more laundry or cleaning for me! 

 Willow and Mason are two teenagers who find each other and themselves in this compelling young adult novel.  Willow’s mother is always busy with her business.  After her parents’ divorce, Willow has felt disconnected with her mother.  She dreams of traveling the world.  She is surprised one day when her mother announces that her twin sister had died and they are going on a trip.  Willow had never heard of this aunt.  When they travel back to Salem to finish up her Aunt’s affairs, Willow finds even more secrets about her family.  Why has her mother never told her that their family is from Salem and that they are a family of witches?

 Mason is in foster care and all he wants is to find his mother and be a family again.  When his mother’s high school friend Emma and her family agree to become his foster parents in Salem, Mason has a new opportunity.  He learns more about his mother from Emma.  He starts to become fond of his foster family, but he yearns to reunite with his mother.  When he meets Willow, he gets caught up in helping her figure out her family secrets through a series of secret letters that they find.  But will a spell for lost things bring back the thing he wants most of all? 

 Spells for Lost Things was ultimately about relationships.  As a mother, this audiobook brought tears to my eyes.  Mason’s search for his mother, and her inability to give up drugs to be his mother, was heartbreaking.  I love Mason’s relationship with Emma and her family and with Willow.  I also liked the exploration of Willow’s relationship with her Mom.  She learned a lot about her, and they worked to mend their own relationship. I enjoyed the sweet romance between Willow and Mason as well.

 A secondary star to this novel was the setting of Salem.  It made me want to visit and go on some of the tours.  I also liked Willow’s eccentric Aunts.  There is brief magic in the book as Willow learns the history of her family. 

 The chapters were narrated by either Willow or Mason.  I liked that there were two narrators so that each was the voice of one of the characters.  They did a great job narrating.

Sunday, October 23, 2022

Spells for Forgetting by Adrienne Young

Do you keep in touch with your high school friends?

I live in a different state now, but I keep in touch with my best friend Jenn.  I wish I had more time to keep in touch and actually see more of my high school friends in person.  I’m grateful for social media to at least be able to keep in touch that way.

Spells for Forgetting is my first book by Adrienne Young, but it won’t be my last.  This tale was set on an island off the cost of the state of Washington.  The people on the Island make their living from tourism associated with an orchard owned by the Salt family.  After a devastating fire and the death of a teenage girl, Lily, August Salt and his mother left the island forever in a cloud of suspicion.  Now fourteen years later, August has returned to buy his mother and tie up lose ends.  He once again meets his high school love, Emery.  Emery has stayed on the island and tried to move on.  She can’t forget August and also can’t find out what happened to him.  Now that he has returned, what will Emery do with life?  Who killed Lily all of those years ago and who started the fire?  What other secrets does the town hold?

I loved the atmosphere and setting of this young adult novel.  I also always love a second chance romance novel.  The spells in this title are some slight magic that happens in the novel.  Old spell books are passed down through families on the island.  I would call this a mystery young adult novel with a hint of magical realism.  I guessed some of the ending, but not all of it in this novel.  It’s told from mostly August and Emery’s perspectives with a few other islanders thrown in. The action mostly takes place in the present, but it also flashes back to the past before the fire and death.

Review Copy from Netgalley.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Saturday, October 22, 2022

The Belle of Belgrave Square by Mimi Matthews (Austenprose PR Book Tour and Giveaway!)


What is your favorite fairy tale?    My two favorite fairy tales growing up were Beauty and the Beast and The Twelve Dancing Princesses.  I loved fairy tales and reading all of the different versions of them.  I still love them.

I was excited to review The Belle of Belgrave Square and discover it was a Beauty and the Beast story.  I loved, loved, loved The Siren of Sussex and I felt the same way about The Belle of Belgrave Square.  Although this is a series, these are standalone novels.  The characters were first introduced in The Siren of Sussex, but The Belle of Belgrave Square is its own independent story.

Julia Wychwood is a sheltered heiress who has never left London.  Her parents are always on their sickbed and her only escape is through reading novels or riding her horse, Cossex.  When Captain Jasper Blunt starts to take notice in her, Julia is not sure what to do.  He is hailed as a hero from the Crimea, but the tales of his treatment of his soldiers is horrifying.  Since his return, the stories of his haunted estate and illegitimate children do not paint a better picture.  As Julia gets to know him thought, she believes maybe he has changed.  After her parents take bloodletting too far on her, she realizes she needs to make a change.  Would marrying Captain Blunt be just the change she needs?  What secrets is he hiding?

I felt like this was a perfect book for the fall.  It had perfect Gothic vibes.  Matthews had wonderful notes at the end to fill in the history of the Victorian times discussed in the novel.  I also loved that she said it was also based not only on Beauty and the Beast, but also The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery which is another one of my favorite novels.  After I read that, I connected the dots and saw how much it was inspired by The Blue Castle.  I was able to figure out the twists in The Belle of Belgrave Square ahead of time, but that probably was because it was inspired by some of my favorite works.  I enjoyed it just the same.  My favorite scene was Jasper showing Julia his library for the first time.  Now that is love!

I liked the inner look into Julia and Jasper as well.  For Julia she had to deal with anxiety, especially at social events that she was required to attend.  She was constantly working on ways to deal with her anxiety.  Jasper is dealing with both the internal and external scars from being a soldier in the Crimea as well as a traumatic childhood.  I love how they both had to build trust with each other and understanding through the novel.

This book has a very low level of spice at the end.  It is a marriage of convenience trope – which I love.

I can’t wait for the next book, The Lily of Ludgate Hill, which is previewed at the end of this book!

Review Copy from Berkley Romance and Netgalley as part of the Austenprose PR Book Tour.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.


·       Title: The Belle of Belgrave Square

·       Series: Belles of London (Book 2)

·       Author: Mimi Matthews

·       Genre: Historical Romance, Historical Fiction

·       Publisher: ‎Berkley Romance (October 11, 2022)

·       Length: (432) pages

·       Format: Trade paperback, eBook, & audiobook 

·       ISBN: 978-0593337158

·       Tour Dates: October 3 - 23, 2022



A BookBub Best Romance of 2022

A London heiress rides out to the wilds of the English countryside to honor a marriage of convenience with a mysterious and reclusive stranger.

Tall, dark, and dour, the notorious Captain Jasper Blunt was once hailed a military hero, but tales abound of his bastard children and his haunted estate in Yorkshire. What he requires now is a rich wife to ornament his isolated ruin, and he has his sights set on the enchanting Julia Wychwood.
For Julia, an incurable romantic cursed with a crippling social anxiety, navigating a London ballroom is absolute torture. The only time Julia feels any degree of confidence is when she’s on her horse. Unfortunately, a young lady can’t spend the whole of her life in the saddle, so Julia makes an impetuous decision to take her future by the reins—she proposes to Captain Blunt.
In exchange for her dowry and her hand, Jasper must promise to grant her freedom to do as she pleases. To ride—and to read—as much as she likes without masculine interference. He readily agrees to her conditions, with one provision of his own: Julia is forbidden from going into the tower rooms of his estate and snooping around his affairs. But the more she learns of the beastly former hero, the more intrigued she becomes…



“A grand cross-class romance, a twisty mystery, and emotional internal struggles combine to excellent effect…fans and new readers alike will root for this well-earned love story.”— Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“[C]ombines deception, risk, and a resourceful heroine to create an intoxicating, suspenseful romance. Highly recommended.”— Library Journal (starred review)

“If you’re a fan of Beauty and the Beast, this regency romance will rapidly become a new favorite of yours. Wallflower meets an infamous war hero in this fascinating and intriguing love story.”— BuzzFeed

“Mimi Matthews never disappoints, with richly drawn characters and couples whose individual shortcomings become strengths, when paired together. In this Beauty and the Beast retelling, we get to root for two underdogs who get to rewrite their own stories.”— Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Wish You Were Here

“The Belle of Belgrave Square is such tremendous, good fun: a heroine with a big horse, an even bigger novel-reading habit, and a hidden anxiety; a hero with a crumbling estate, a trio of wary children, and a literary secret—what's not to love? Mimi Matthews paints Victorian England with vivid humor, and her Belles of London is set to go on for at least a few more much-anticipated installments. Julian Fellowes fans will rejoice!”— Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Diamond Eye





USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews writes both historical nonfiction and award-winning proper Victorian romances. Her novels have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist, and Kirkus, and her articles have been featured on the Victorian Web, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and in syndication at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes a retired Andalusian dressage horse, a Sheltie, and two Siamese cats.




Join Mimi at her Victorian Reading Room Facebook Group for exclusive access as she shares her love of writing, historical romance, Victorian fashion, brooding heroes, independent heroines, and of course, her beloved pets


Discover intriguing insights into The Belle of Belgrave Square and Mimi’s writing life in this exclusive interview at


Mimi has generously offered a fabulous giveaway that book tour participants can add to their post and on social media. Here are the details:

Giveaway period: October 3 – October 30

Terms & Conditions:

Giveaway hosted by Mimi Matthews. No Purchase Necessary. Entrants must be 18 years or older. Open to US residents only. All information will remain confidential and will not be sold or otherwise used, except to notify the winner and to facilitate postage of the book to the winner. Void where prohibited.

Giveaway Details:

1 winner (selected at random by Rafflecopter) receives a paperback copy of The Belle of Belgrave Square, signed and annotated by the author with personal comments, underlining of her favorite lines, and other highlights by Mimi Matthews.

Giveaway is open from 12:01 am Pacific time 10/03/22 until 11:59pm Pacific time on 10/30/22.

 The winner will be announced on Mimi's blog on 10/31/22.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, October 20, 2022

The Duke’s Rules of Engagement by Jennifer Haymore (TLC Book Tour)


Joanna Porter is firmly on the shelf at age 27.  It is 1817 and there is not much that Johanna can do to support her mother after her father’s death.  She turns to somethings she excels at, matchmaking.  She loves to make sure that people meet their perfect match and marry for love.  When Matthew Leighton, the Duke of Crestmont steps into her office, she has a new challenge.  He is dashing, but he is looking for the perfect Duchess.  He does not want love, but someone who can perform the duties admirably.  As Joanna gets to know Matthew to find his perfect match, she realizes that she may have feelings for him.  What is a matchmaker to do?

I loved this book so much.  It was a delightful romance and I read through it quickly.  I loved both Joanna and Matthew so much.  They were unique and independent personalities.   I loved that different from most Regency romance novels, Joanna has a job in this book.  Matthew is a member of the ton and Joanna having a job makes her an unsuitable match.  Matthew seems gruff and standoffish at first, sort of like a Mr. Darcy type character, but as Joanna gets to know him, she learns there is so much more to the man.  He had been hurt in the past and is afraid of love in the future.  I love that they both loved the weather so much and that Matthew had started to figure out the science of it.  Matthew also had a great love for rowing. 

The Duke’s Rules of Engagement is a steamy read.  The story is shown through both Joanna and Matthew’s third person perspective.   The chemistry between the two leads and the romantic tension was great.  I’m not sure on the trope for this one – is matchmaker that falls for her client a trope?

The Duke’s Rules of Engagement was enjoyable historical romance.

Review Copy from Entangled and Netgalley as part of the TLC Book Tour.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Hour of the Witch by Chris Bohjalian


Title: Hour of the Witch

Author:  Chris Bohjalian

Narrated by:  Grace Experience, Saskia Maarleveld, Danny Campbell, Cassandra Campbell, Arthur Morey, Mark Deakins, Julia Whelan, Kaleo Griffith, Kirby Heyborne, Rebecca Lowman, Mark Bramhall

Publisher: Random House Audio

Length: Approximately 12 hours and 8 minutes

Source: Checked out from the Kewaunee Public Library through Overdrive.  Thank-you

 Do you take books out of a library or always buy your own?  I do a mix.  I check out books from the library, buy new or used books, and love getting books for review from publishers, authors, and NetGalley.

 In 1662 Boston, Mary Deerfield is the 24-year-old wife of the much older Thomas Deerfield.  Thomas is a miller, and they have a fine life, but it is a loveless marriage.  As Thomas’s abuse of Mary escalates, she decides to take matters into her own hands and apply for a divorce.  Why would a woman want a divorce in 1662 Boston?  Why is she thinking independently for herself?  Why have the “devil’s tines (i.e., forks)” been buried near her doorway?  Is she a witch?

 Hour of the Witch was the October pick for the Page-turners Book Club at the Kewaunee Public Library.  I loved this book.  I listened to the first half on audiobook which I thought was intriguing, but I switched to the regular book for the last half after I came down with COVID.   I sadly didn’t get to attend the meeting because I was sick, and I think this would have been a great book for discussion.

 I thought this was a tightly written, intriguing historical fiction novel.  It’s disturbing how women who were alone or women that spoke their minds were accused of witchcraft.  It is written in the speaking style of the 1600s, which I enjoyed.    I couldn’t put this book down, I really wanted to see how it ended.  I thought the narration of the book was good.  There were different quotes at the start of different chapters, and they had different narrators for the quotes.  I was convinced that this was based on a true story until the end.  Author Chris Bohjalian did a lot of research on the time and trials, but this is a fictional account.

 SPOILER ALERT I very much enjoyed the ending of this book.  Although I did enjoy the ending, I realized that it was farfetched and not the ending of that any of the accused women of the time would have had.  SPOILER END

Favorite Quote:  "She was sent to the scaffold because she had a sharper tongue and a shrewder mind than her accusers.  It is always the case when men hang women.  Look at Magistrate Caleb Adams: there is nothing that frightens a man more than a woman who does not live happily under a man's thumb."

Monday, October 17, 2022

Murder at the Majestic Hotel by Clara McKenna (Stella and Lyndy Mystery #4)


Where did you go on your honeymoon or where would you like to go on vacation if you could pick anywhere?

We went to Arizona and toured around from Sedona to the Grand Canyon, to the Hoover Dam.  It was a lot of fun.

Murder at the Majestic Hotel is a riveting historical mystery set in England in the early twentieth century.  Viscount and Lady Lyndhurst (Lyndy and Stella) have just married and are looking forward to spending their honeymoon staying in the honeymoon suite of the Majestic Hotel in York.  They find out on their arrival that there has been a mix-up and someone else has their suite, Mr. Horace Wingrove the famous chocolatier.  In the night, he mysteriously dies, and Stella and Lyndy are on the case.  What caused his death?  Where is the missing chocolate formula?  Does this have anything to do with the visit of the princesses?

I enjoyed this book so much.  I thought the mystery was top notch and the various mysteries kept me guessing all through the novel.  I loved the characters. Stella and Lyndy had a great, sweet romance between them.  I loved Stella’s pluck.    All of the other characters were interesting as well.  The York setting was fascinating and had me looking up things after I finished the book.

This is the fourth book in the series.  I was fine reading it as a standalone, but it does make me want to go back and read the rest of the series!  I have already purchased the first book.

Murder at the Majestic Hotel will be available on October 25th!

Review Copy from author Clara McKenna and Netgalley.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Sunday, October 16, 2022

Life on the Mississippi by Rinker Buck


Title:  Life on the Mississippi

Author:  Rinker Buck

Narrated by:  Jason Culp

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio

Length: Approximately 15 hours and 21 minutes

Source: Review Copy from Simon & Schuster.  Thank-you!

 If you had unlimited time, where would you like to explore in the world?

 Rinker Buck is a fascinating historian.  While he does research as other historians do, he also likes to fully live out the experience that he is researching.  His previous book, The Oregon Trail, is one of my favorite books.  He experienced pioneer living by crossing America on the Oregon Trial in a prairie wagon.

 In Life on the Mississippi, Rinker Buck explores another great part of our history that was a prime way our country was settled and grew economically, flatboat travel down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.  Buck starts his journey upstream of Pittsburg and he goes all of the way to New Orleans.  This books tells the story of his journey with helpers along the way.  The river has changed a lot since the nineteenth century and Buck has many near misses with barges.  He stops at different towns and tells the stories of those towns.  He also fills in with different related points in history as well. He talked about slavery and the removal of Native Americans.  He also includes his political views which may be off-putting to some people.  He spent a lot of time talking about his broken ribs and seemed very proud of breaking them several times in his life.  It just sounded painful to me.

 I like how it looked at this point of history of the regular people who used the rivers to travel to new areas of the United States and to ship goods.  I didn’t realize just how important it was for commerce in the founding of our country and even now.

 It also is sad how trashed the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers are now and how they are set up for commercial and not leisure craft.  He did have some not nice things to say about the Army Corp, but some of it was misunderstanding of what the Army Corp does.  Its purpose is to keep the river navigable and to prevent flooding.  It’s purpose is not to clean up the river and make it beautiful. 

 I listened to the audiobook while my husband Ben read the physical book.  We both enjoyed the journey.  The one thing both of us wondered about was how blunt he was talking about his friends (and not friends) that were on the journey with him.  He was not always the nicest in his descriptions.  It was fun to read it at the same time and share our thoughts.    Jason Culp was a good narrator of the audiobook.  I did miss Rinker Buck as the narrator.  He narrated his previous book, The Oregon Trail.

 Life on the Mississippi is a good adventure story and an interesting way to learn history.

Friday, October 14, 2022

Haunted Tales Edited by Lisa Morton and Leslie S. Klinger


Do you have a favorite ghost story, book, movie, or character?  I used to love Caspar the friendly ghost when I was growing up.  We are currently watching the show Ghosts on Paramount Plus.  My favorite ghost story is probably the Turn of the Screw by Henry James.

I was happy to be able to review Haunted Tales, Edited by Lisa Morton and Leslie S. Klinger.  It is a perfect book for the season.  It is a great collection of “classic stories of ghosts and the supernatural.”  The book starts with an interesting introduction by editors Lisa Morton and Leslie S. Klinger.  It discusses how the industrial revolution in the nineteenth century also brought about mass murder.  The Napoleonic wars killed more than four million people.  Those left behind were looking for new ways to communicate with their loved ones.  Ghost stories became a popular genre.  They were found in popular magazines and were especially popular at Christmas time, for example the spirits in A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. They were published all year round though and not just for holidays.

I loved how this anthology included stories from well-known authors such as Oscar Wilde, Rudyard Kipling, H.G. Wells, and Virginia Woolf, but I loved even more that it included stories from authors that were popular in the nineteenth and early twentieth century but aren’t as well read now.  At the start of each story, there was a biography of the author. I like the biographies as much as the stories.  There were great footnotes throughout the stories to fill in the historical references. 

I found the stories to be fascinating and spooky.  They gave gothic vibes which would thrill Catherine Morland from Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey.  All of these stories were new to me, and I was happy to finally read “The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde”.  I have to admit, “The Canterville Ghost” was my absolute favorite story in this collection.  It was both hilarious and heartwarming.  It was also beautifully written.  The Canterville Ghost is pretty proud of all of his shenanigans through the years, but when an American Minister and his family move into the estate, he can’t seem to scare them.  Worse still, the young twin sons start to terrify the ghost.  It is the daughter of the family though who really figures out the mystery of the Canterville Ghost.  I thought “They” by Rudyard Kipling was a poignant story especially knowing from the bio at the start of the story that he had lost his own young child. 

I also enjoyed the Gothic splendor of “The Cold Embrace” by Mary Elizabeth Braddon.  “He was an artist – such things as happened to him happen sometimes to artists.  He was a German – such things as happened to him happen sometimes to Germans.  He was young, handsome, studious, enthusiastic, metaphysical, reckless, unbelieving, heartless.  And being young, handsome and eloquent, he was beloved.”  He loves his cousin Gertrude, and she loves him.  They promise to devote each other until death, but while his love strays, Gertrude’s remains even after death. 

One last story call out was “M. Anastasius” by Dinah Mulock.  Charles Dickens himself thought it was the best ghost story ever written.  I enjoyed it.  It was also Gothic and haunting about two young lovers that are haunted by the ghost of the young woman’s guardian who was lost at sea. 

I loved in the notes for “The Canterville Ghost” that it discussed that the phrase in this story “England and America are two countries divided a common language” was first seen in this story although it is commonly attributed to George Bernard Shaw.  I had just seen this elsewhere lately attributed to Shaw and I thought this was interesting information.

I highly recommend this collection for lovers of all spooky tales!

Review Copy from Pegasus Books.  Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.