Tuesday, February 28, 2023

COVER REVEAL - Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord by Celeste Connally (and GIVEAWAY!)

I am very excited today to be able to reveal the cover of a new book that sounds wonderful.  I can't wait to read this myself - it's exactly the type of book I love!  What do you think of this cover?


QUICK FACTS

·       Title: Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord: A Mystery

·       Author: Celeste Connally

·       Genre: Historical Mystery, Regency Mystery, Cozy Mystery

·       Publisher: Minotaur Books (November 14, 2023)

·       Length: (304) pages

·       Format: Hardcover, & eBook 

·       ISBN: 978-1250867551

 

BOOK DESCRIPTION

Bridgerton meets Agatha Christie in Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord, a dazzling first entry in a terrific new Regency-era cozy series with a feminist spin.

When Lady Petra Forsyth’s fiancé and soulmate dies just weeks ahead of their wedding, she makes the shocking proclamation―in front of London’s loosest lips―that she will never remarry. A woman of independent means, Petra sees no reason to cede her wealth and freedom to any man now that the love of her life has passed, nor does she intend to become confined to her country home. Instead, she uses her title to gain access to elite spaces and enjoy the best of society without expectations.

But when ballroom gossip suggests that a longtime friend has died of “melancholia” while in the care of a questionable physician, Petra vows to use her status to dig deeper―uncovering a private asylum where men pay to have their wives and daughters locked away, or worse. Just as Lady Petra has reason to believe her friend is not dead, but a prisoner, her own headstrong actions and thirst for independence are used to put her own freedom in jeopardy.

PURCHASE LINKS

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY | BOOKSHOP | GOODREADS


AUTHOR MESSAGE

Hello, Dear Readers,

I’m incredibly honored you’re here to help me reveal the cover for the first book in my new historical mystery series, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord.

The idea for this book took hold during the pandemic, when I was watching period dramas on the regular, including all my favorite Jane Austen adaptations and Downton Abbey. And of course, in nearly every one, there was the notion of the unmarried woman being a rather pitiable character. I began thinking about how the spinsters never got to be in the limelight, especially in the Regency period. They were hardly ever seen as strong, or capable, or worthy of respect, and I thought to myself that a main character who valued her independence and embraced her decision not to marry would make for a heroine I would like to write.

And thus, dear readers, I am overjoyed to introduce you to Lady Petra Forsyth. Daughter of the Fifth Earl of Holbrook, accomplished equestrienne, goddaughter to the Duchess of Hillmorton, and a woman in possession of her own fortune.

After the death of her fiancé three years ago, Lady Petra’s already headstrong ways—which include occasionally riding astride in her brother’s old breeches—came to include living her life on her own terms. That is, without a husband—though not everyone sees her decision as the right one, or the ladylike one. And when the purported death of a dear friend seems intertwined with mentions of a mysterious physician, Petra does the most unladylike thing she can: she starts asking questions.

When Petra formed in my mind as a character, I saw her with little bits of some of my favorite…well, almost-spinsters. Such as Emma Woodhouse, who was initially willing to go her own way and remain unmarried in a time where doing just that was an incredible risk for a woman, no matter what her financial status. And then there’s Downton Abbey’s Lady Edith, who recognized her talents and carved out a satisfying life for herself as an entrepreneur and businesswoman. She didn’t let it stop her from romance, either…

Another thing my inspirations for Petra have in common is that I feel they would all have made excellent amateur sleuths. Some would say it’s because spinsters have an inclination toward nosiness, but I would say it’s their sharp minds and a refusal to give up on what’s important. I think Petra certainly begins to develop the knack for investigating—whether or not those around her approve—and I very much hope you’ll enjoy riding alongside her for her very first adventure.

All my best,

Celeste

 

AUTHOR BIO

Celeste Connally is an Agatha Award nominee, and a former freelance writer and editor. A lifelong devotee of historical novels and adaptations fueled by her passion for history—plus weekly doses of PBS Masterpiece—Celeste loves reading and writing about women from the past who didn’t always do as they were told.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

 

GIVEAWAY CHANCE

Author Celeste Connally and her publisher Minotaur Books are generously offering a fabulous giveaway for your readers that you can add to your post and on social media.

Giveaway Details:

Two (2) winners (selected at random by Rafflecopter) will receive one (1) advanced reader’s paperback copy of Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord.  One (1) winner (selected at random by Rafflecopter) will receive one (1) advanced reader’s paperback copy of Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Lord and a gift prize package containing the following:

1.     A Jane Austen 'Obstinate, Headstrong Girl' mug from the Jane Austen Centre giftshop.

2.     A bookmark, and a bookplate signed by the author.

3.     A medley of Harney & Sons teas in various flavors individually wrapped teabags.

4.     A handmade ceramic tea tidy in the shape of a teapot for teabags.

5.     A box of English tea biscuits.

Giveaway period: Open from 12:01 am Pacific time 02/22/23 until 11:59pm Pacific time on 03/19/23.

Terms & Conditions:

The giveaway is hosted by Celeste Connally and Minotaur Books. No purchase is 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 books and prizes to the winners. Void where prohibited. One giveaway item per eligible entrant.

Announcement of Winner:

Visit author Celeste Connally’s website on March 20, 2023, to see if you won one of the three prizes.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

The Maid of Ballymacool by Jennifer Deibel (Austenprose PR Book Tour)


 

What is your favorite fairytale?  Do you like when fairytales are incorporated into other books?  The Maid of Ballymacool is a Cinderella type story and I loved it!

Brianna Kelly has worked at Ballymacool House her entire life. Ballymacool House is a boarding school for wealthy girls.  She was left there as a small child and all she has of her own was a locket that was left with her.  She works from early morning far into the night.  Her only pleasure is treasure hunting in the woods near Ballymacool House.  Why are there treasures in the woods and what do they mean?

Michael Wray is the son of a local gentry and has been sent to Ballymacool House to help deal with his cousin, Adeline.  He is dismayed by his cousin and her actions, but he is also drawn to Brianna.  Why does she seem so familiar?

I loved the characters and story in this one.  I especially liked the evil headmistress Magee.  There was a mystery involved with Magee that I liked learning more about.  I also enjoyed the Irish setting and the use of Gaelic throughout the novel.

This was a clean read and I loved the slow build sweet romance that grew between Brianna and Michael.

The author’s note at the end was very interesting as well.  Ballymacool House and woods is a real historic location.  I’m putting it on my bucket list of places to visit!  I’ve always wanted to go to Ireland.

The Maid of Ballymacool is a good Cinderella story with a great clean and sweet romance.  I highly recommend it.

Review Copy from Revell a division of Baker Publishing   Thank-you! I received a complimentary copy of this book as part of the Austenprose PR Book Tour. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

QUICK FACTS

·         Title: The Maid of Ballymacool: A Novel

·         Author: Jennifer Deibel

·         Genre: Historical Romance, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction

·         Publisher: Fleming H. Revell Co (February 21, 2023)

·         Length: (352) pages

·         Format: Hardcover, Trade Paperback, & eBook 

·         ISBN: 978-0800741747

·         Tour Dates: February 13 – 27, 2023

 

BOOK DESCRIPTION

Brianna Kelly was abandoned at Ballymacool House and Boarding School as an infant. She has worked there since she was a wee girl and will likely die there. Despite a sense that she was made for something more, Brianna feels powerless to change her situation, so she consoles herself by exploring the Ballymacool grounds, looking for hidden treasures to add to the secret trove beneath the floorboards of her room.

When Michael Wray, the son of local gentry, is sent to Ballymacool to deal with his unruly cousin, he finds himself drawn to Brianna, immediately and inescapably. There is something about her that feels so . . . familiar. When Brianna finds a piece of silver in the woods, she commits to learning its origins, with the help of Michael. What they discover may change everything.

Fan favorite Jennifer Deibel invites you back to the Emerald Isle in the 1930s for this fresh take on the Cinderella story, complete with a tantalizing mystery, a budding romance, and a chance at redemption.

ADVANCE PRAISE

·         “Deibel’s update on the “Cinderella” story features sympathetic, three-dimensional characters that readers will find easy to root for as they navigate the page-turning plot and find their way to one another. This heartwarming entry will keep readers hooked till its satisfying close.”— Publisher’s Weekly

 

·         "A slow-building, delicious romance wrapped in a mystery!"Erica Vetsch, author of the Thorndike & Swann Regency Mysteries

 

 

PURCHASE LINKS

AMAZON | BAKER PUBLISHING | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY | BOOKSHOP | GOODREADS

 

AUTHOR BIO

Jennifer Deibel is the author of A Dance in Donegal (winner of the Kipp Award for Historical Romance) and The Lady of Galway Manor (a Parable Group bestseller). Her work has appeared on (in)courage, on The Better Mom, in Missions Mosaic magazine, and in other publications. With firsthand immersive experience abroad, Jennifer writes stories that help redefine home through the lens of culture, history, and family. After nearly a decade of living in Ireland and Austria, she now lives in Arizona with her husband and their three children.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS


Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Reckoning by Catherine Coulter

 


Do you have any favorite authors that write in more than one genre?  I have enjoyed Catherine Coulter’s romance novels in the past and this was my first time reading one of her thrillers.  This book was the September 2022 read for the Brenda Novak Book Group.  I’m running just a tad behind on that book challenge!!

Reckoning is basically two different parallel stories. Kirra Mandarian's parents were brutally murdered when she was just twelve years old.  She moved with her Uncle to Australia and changed her name.  Now fourteen years later, she’s back as a lawyer in Virginia, and she won’t rest until she can solve the murder of her parents.  But will the murderers find her first?

The second story is about Emma Hunt.  She is a twelve-year-old piano prodigy that was kidnapped as a child because her grandpa is criminal mastermind.  After someone tries to kidnap her again, she manages to save herself.  Who is after her this time?

This book started off with a bang and the action kept going the entire book.  This is book #26 in the FBI thriller series and I have not read the rest of the series.  The book was a good standalone book, but I did keep wondering when the two stories would connect.  They never did.  Savich and Sherlock were a married couple of FBI agents in the Emma Hunt storyline and I think their story is probably pretty interesting if you read the entire series.

Overall, Reckoning was an enjoyable thriller.

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

Monday, February 20, 2023

Bookworm by Robin Yeatman (Bibliolifestyle Book Tour)

 


Thank you, Partner @bibliolifestyle @williammorrowbooks for the review copy of this book.

Do you daydream?  I know I do.  Victoria daydreams constantly and likes to imagine the lives of the people around her.  She is unhappily married to Eric and also likes to day dream about his demise so she can escape her marriage.   She also starts to daydream about a cute fellow reader that she has met at a coffee shop As she starts to feel more and more trapped in her marriage, her daydreams start to blend with reality.  Will Victoria get her happily ever after?

Bookworm is a tale of an unreliable narrator where it’s hard to tell at times what is real and what is imagined.  It reminded me of a blend of You by Caroline Kepnes and My Cousin Rachel by Daphne Du Maurier.  I finished the book on Saturday and I am still pondering about the ending and what really happened. 

I loved all of the literary references in the novel.  She talked about a lot of different books including Patricia Highsmith.  This seemed like a Patricia Highsmith novel combined with something else such as the short story of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty by James Thurber.  My favorite English teacher just passed away yesterday and she loved James Thurber which had me thinking about Walter Mitty and how he daydreamed his life away.  Victoria is a modern day Walter Mitty, but her daydreams take a darker turn and she is not usually the star.

I didn’t really like the character of Victoria at all, but I did think the story was unique and interesting.  This is the type of novel to pick up when you are looking for something new.

This book was published on February 14th.

BOOK SYNOPSIS FROM THE PUBLISHER: 

A wickedly funny debut novel—a black comedy with a generous heart that explores the power of imagination and reading—about a woman who tries to use fiction to find her way to happiness.

Victoria is unhappily married to an ambitious and controlling lawyer consumed with his career. Burdened with overbearing in-laws, a boring dead-end job she can’t seem to leave, and a best friend who doesn’t seem to understand her, Victoria finds solace from the daily grind in her beloved books and the stories she makes up in her head. One day, in a favorite café, she notices an attractive man reading the same talked-about bestselling novel that she is reading. A woman yearning for her own happy ending, Victoria is sure it’s fate. The handsome book lover must be her soul mate.

There’s only one small problem. Victoria is already married. Frustrated, and desperate to change her life, Victoria retreats to the dark places in her mind and thinks back to all the stories she’s ever read in hopes of finding a solution. She begins to fantasize about nocturnal trysts with café man, and imaginative ways (poisoned pickles were an inspired choice in Jane Smiley’s A Thousand Acres) of getting rid of the dread husband. 

It’s all just harmless fantasy born of Victoria’s fevered imagination and her books—until, one night, fiction and reality blur and suddenly it seems Victoria is about to get everything she’s wished for . . . .

Sunday, February 19, 2023

The Blackhouse by Carole Johnstone

 


Title:  The Blackhouse

Author:  Carole Johnstone

Narrated by:  Joe McFadden and Eilidh Beaton

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio

Length: Approximately 13 hours and 41 minutes

Source: Review Copy from Simon & Schuster Audio.  Thank you @simonandschuster #BookClubFavorites for the free books!

 Do you believe in reincarnation?  If you could be reincarnated, what would you like to come back as next time?  I’ve always thought it is an interesting concept and love to read books about it.  

Maggie Mackay has moved back to Kilmeray in Scotland to try to solve a mystery from her past.  When she was five years old, she announced that she was a reincarnated man who had been murdered on Kilmeray. "I am Andrew McNeil, and I was murdered." The problem was, no one of that name had died on the island.  As Maggie investigates, she starts to uncover many secrets on the island.  Will she find what she is looking for?

In the 1990’s, Robert Reid and his family have moved to Kilmeray to make a fresh start.  Robert grew up on the island, but after his father’s death at sea, he has decided to be a farmer and to forget the past.  The past hasn’t forgotten him though.  What will his fate be?

I liked this dark and gothic novel.  It had many twists in the storyline.  Maggie and Robert were both narrators of different chapters and both were unreliable narrators.  I loved the atmosphere of this novel and the terrific setting.  I also enjoyed getting to know the community and all of the characters in town.  The buildup of the way of life on Kilmeray is a large part of the story and the reveal which I don’t want to spoil.  This book had a bit of everything – romance, thriller, suspense, grief, revenge, and a bit of the supernatural.  I enjoyed it.

Friday, February 17, 2023

Robert E. Lee and Me by Ty Seidule

 


Title:  Robert E. Lee and Me

Author:  Ty Seidule

Narrated by:  Ty Seidule

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

Length: Approximately 10 hours and 45 minutes

Source: Checked out with Libby through the Kewaunee Public Library.  Thank-you!

What is the last book that was recommended to you?  Robert E. Lee and Me by Ty Seidule was recommended to me by one of my favorite high school teachers, Mrs. Parkison.  She was a great history and health teacher!

Ty Seidule is a Professor Emeritus of History at West Point.  He served 2/3 of life in Army.   He grew up in Virginia revering Robert E. Lee.  He attended Washington & Lee University and then was in the military.  As he grew older and served in the military himself, he had a reckoning with the legacy of Robert E. Lee, the Civil War, and the lost cause myth.  He realized that Lee had signed an oath to the United States just days before he turned against his own country and fought against it.  Lee profited from slavery, and he had members of his own family that went against him when he became a traitor and resigned from the United States military.   His actions was directly responsible the deaths of many American citizens.  After the Civil War, the lost cause myth started.  “The Lost Cause became a movement, an ideology, a myth, even a civil religion that would unite first the white south and eventually the nation around the meaning of the Civil War.”

Siedule also states that history is dangerous.  When you go against people’s long-standing views, such as the lost cause myth, they can react very angrily and sometimes violently.  It’s always interesting to me that people stick so firmly to views that were passed down to them, even when they don’t match actual historical accounts from the time period. 

This book was part memoir and part a history lesson.  It was a very interesting audiobook to listen to and it made me wish I had him for an instructor.  I liked that he narrated the book himself. 

The Audiobook has a great interview with the author at the end.

 

Thursday, February 16, 2023

Woman of Light by Kali Fajardo–Anstine

 


Do you ever have moments of déjà vu?  Have you ever had your fortune told?

I definitely have déjà vu, but have never had my fortune told.

Woman of Light was the February pick for the Page-turners Book Club at the Kewaunee Public Library.

Woman of Light is a family drama set in the American West.  Luz Lopez is a tea leaf reader that has inherited a gift for seeing the future that has passed down through her family.  This story is told through shifting timelines as you learn about different generations of the family from the 1860s through the 1930s through Luz’s visions.  Luz also starts a new job to support her and her Aunt after her brother Diego is driven out of town.  She becomes involved in a love triangle between her boss and a musician.  Who will she choose?  How will the family memories be preserved?

My favorite storyline was actually Luz’s grandparents as her grandmother was a sharpshooter who lost her first husband when she accidentally shot him during an act when she was attacked by a performance bear.  I loved how spunky she was but was sad for what happened to this generation of the family.

I thought the look at racism was very interesting in the story as well.  The family has native and Mexican heritage, but even though they have lived for several generations in America, they are still considered foreigners. 

I liked the nonlinear approach to the novel and that it was so different from books that I usually read.  I wasn’t very keen on the ending.  I’m still thinking about it.  I like that the family traditions will be carried on and that Diego was back, but I didn’t like Luz’s life choices.

I liked the list of the generations at the start of the book.  I flipped back and forth to it a lot to try to make sure I knew who certain characters were.

Favorite Quote:

“She had never had a true suitor, and waiting for love felt like searching the horizon for a figure in the distances, walking toward her from the darkened clouds.” – I just thought this sentence was beautiful.

Book Source:  Kewaunee Public Library.  Thank-you!

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Partners in Crime by Agatha Christie

 


Title:  Partners in Crime

Author:  Agatha Christie

Narrated by:  Hugh Fraser

Publisher: HarperAudio

Length: Approximately 6 hours and 56 minutes

Source: Checked out with Libby through the Kewaunee Public Library.  Thank-you!

 

Do you have a favorite crime solving or fighting duo?  This was my first Tommy and Tuppence novel, but it won’t be my last.  They were a witty detective duo that I greatly enjoyed.  They reminded me of Nick and Nora from the Thin man movies.

#ReadChristie2023 is focusing on murders and methods in Agatha Christie novels.  The prompt for February was the use of blunt objects and the book pick was Partners in Crime.  In Partners in Crime, Tommy and Tuppence have been asked to take over Blunt's International Detective Agency and they jump at the chance.  The agency has been a cover for spies. They solve the mysteries that come in as they wait for the spymasters to show themselves.  Tommy finds inspiration from the master detectives of history including Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot.  I loved his mangled violin playing as he tried to channel Sherlock Holmes.  The book is a series of short story mysteries that the two solve.  They were interesting and hilarious.  I loved the repartee between Tommy and Tuppence.

There are only five Tommy and Tuppence novels and this is the second one.  I was intrigued to learn that Tommy and Tuppence are the only Christie characters that age over time.  They start young with one of her first novels, The Secret Adversary in 1922 and end as an old couple in Postern of Fate in 1973.  This definitely makes me want to read all of these novels.   Partners in Crime came out in 1929 so Tommy and Tuppence are still a young couple.  It was funny to me though that Agatha Christie was already including her creation of Hercule Poirot in the pantheon of great detectives in this book.

My favorite story in this collection was The House of Lurking Death which was a case of poisoning.  The Man in the Mist involved murder with a blunt object as per the prompt for February.  It was a clever case.  I enjoyed all of the stories. 

Hugh Fraser was a good narrator for this audiobook.

Monday, February 13, 2023

Mr. Darcy’s Valentine by Heather Moll (Book Tour)

 


Do you exchange Valentine’s Day Cards?  Have you ever written a rhyme or verse for anyone?  I love exchanging Valentine’s Day Cards.  I send them to my family and friends as well as my husband and kids.  I really love old fashioned Valentine’s Day Cards.  My mother has some of my Great Grandparents cards from the early twentieth century and they are so cute!  I am terrible at writing poetry so I have never tried my hand at that.

I love holiday books and I love Pride and Prejudice variations.  Mr. Darcy’s Valentine is a great combination of them both!  In this variation, Elizabeth Bennet is invited to town by her Aunt Gardiner to join Jane in her visit.  Mrs. Gardiner is trying to put distance between Elizabeth and Mr. Wickham.  After Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley meet the Bennet sisters by chance at a concert, Mr. Darcy can’t help but notice that Mr. Bingley has feelings for Jane Bennet.  He apologizes to his friend and helps him to pursue Jane Bennet.  As he spends more time with Elizabeth Bennet, his feelings for her grow. After an evening’s entertainment of writing valentine’s verses to each other, Mr. Darcy accidentally offends Elizabeth and her family.  How can he put things to right?  What will he do when a rival suitor enters the picture?

Mr. Darcy’s Valentine was a quick and a very enjoyable read.  I loved getting to read a new story with some of my favorite characters.  I loved the new twists and turns.  I also loved that Heather Moll really knows the characters well and that they acted true to the original Pride and Prejudice story.  The story was told from both Elizabeth and Darcy’s perspectives, and I enjoyed getting to know the thoughts of both characters.  I also enjoyed the friendship between Miss Georgiana Darcy and Elizabeth.  It was also fun to get to see more the courtship between Mr. Bingley and Jane play out in this story.

I enjoyed all of the Valentine’s Day verse that author Heather Moll wrote for this novel as well.  Especially since I am so bad that the verse!  I felt like Colonel Fitzwilliam who was not that good at it.    Colonel Fitzwilliam provided many lighthearted moments in this novel from his valentine to his discussions with Mr. Darcy.

Mr. Darcy’s Valentine is a clean read with a very passionate kiss at the end.  I felt like I really wanted this to be a movie.

Favorite Quote:

“She escaped from the worst and most irremediable of all evils a woman can suffer:  a marriage to an unprincipled man.”

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

About the Author

 Heather Moll writes romantic variations of Jane Austen's classic novels. She is an avid reader of mysteries and biographies with a masters in information science. She found Jane Austen later than she should have and made up for lost time by devouring her letters and unpublished works, joining JASNA, and spending too much time researching the Regency era. She is the author of An Appearance of Goodness, An Affectionate Heart, Nine Ladies, and Mr. Darcy's Valentine. She lives with her husband and son, and struggles to balance all the important things, like whether to buy groceries or stay home and write.

About Mr. Darcy's Valentine

WILL AN EXCHANGE OF SECRET VALENTINES LEAD TO LOVE?

After her aunt notices her partiality for Mr Wickham, Elizabeth Bennet is invited to town for the winter along with her sister Jane, and February in London gives Elizabeth the chance to become better acquainted with the Gardiners’ friend Mr Elgin.

When Mr Darcy and Elizabeth cross paths at a concert, Darcy must account for how Bingley left Hertfordshire as he considers his deepening feelings for Elizabeth. Bingley is determined to renew his attentions to Jane, and an evening’s diversion of writing valentines leads to disastrous results for Darcy. 

When Valentine’s Day arrives, who will Elizabeth want to receive a valentine from: the lively man she just met or the man whose proposal she already refused?

On sale Feb 1, 2023 by Excessively Diverted Press in ebook and paperback, 160 pages

https://mybook.to/MrDarcysValentine

Content note: this is a 50,000 word kisses-only variation

Social Links

website: heathermollauthor.com

FB: @HeatherMollAuthor

Instagram: @HeatherMollAuthor

Book Bub: bookbub.com/authors/heather-moll

Goodreads: goodreads.com/heathermoll

Twitter: @HMollAuthor

Giveaway 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, February 11, 2023

The Marriage List by Ella Quinn (TLC Book Tour)

 


Are you a list maker?  I definitely am.  I like lists, plans, and schedules.  It should come as no surprise that I found a calling as an engineer.

Lady Eleanor Carpenter is a list maker herself and makes a list for what she is looking for in a husband as she starts her season in Regency England.  When John, the Marquis of Montagu starts to pay pointed attention to her, does he meet the requirements of her list?  Why does he only talk about the weather?  Montagu is looking for someone that is quiet and docile, as he gets to know Eleanor, he realizes he admires her for her opinions.  Will the two be able to find true love?

The Marriage List is a slow burn romance.  I enjoyed the ins and outs of the season and the large family.  I loved all of the children and animals in particular.  This book is part of the Worthington Brides series and is book number eight.  I wish it would have had a chart in the beginning that showed the family tree.  There were a lot of side characters and I’ll admit to getting confused on who was who.   It was distracting.  I think it would be better to read the first books in this series before this book.    I did enjoy Lady Eleanor as a character in particular and that she was such a strong willed woman.

I enjoyed the start of the novel when Lady Eleanor helped out a family in need and explained her interest in helping miners and their families.  I love stories that include miners and mining.  There was also a miner, Dobbins, who was out to get Eleanor for helping out the family in need.  This storyline popped up throughout the novel, but I found myself always wondering why I didn’t hear more about it.  I thought it gave a great start to the book and it was exciting, but I wish it would have been more prominent throughout the story. It did make for an exciting conclusion to the novel.

Favorite Quote:

“It had become clear that if I was to get what I wanted, I must take action instead of hoping it will come to me.”

Review Copy from Kensington Books 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.


About The Marriage List

Publisher: Zebra (December 27, 2022)

Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages

For fans of Bridgerton and lovers of sexy, sparkling Regency romance, USA Today bestselling author Ella Quinn presents a delightful new trilogy set in the reader-favorite world of Regency England’s beloved extended family, The Worthingtons, returning in this first sparkling tale for fans of Sabrina Jeffries, Eloisa James, and Tessa Dare.

As part of a large, rambunctious family, Lady Eleanor Carpenter has gained some knowledge of what makes a successful marriage. She’s even compiled a list of essential qualifications in a potential husband. John, the Marquis of Montagu, seems of good character (check), with money enough to support a family (check). But what of the many other requirements on her list?

Montagu, meanwhile, believes the key to a comfortable life lies in marrying someone quiet and docile. Yet the one lady who captivates him could hardly be more different to what he envisioned. Lady Eleanor is as opinionated as she is lovely, determined to improve working conditions for coal miners, even at risk to her own safety.

From evenings at Almack’s to carriage rides in Hyde Park, this Season will contain many pleasures—and a few surprises that compel both John and Eleanor to rethink their expectations. For one thing is certain: love will not be defined by any list . . .