Genre: Historical

THE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND by Julia Quinn

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This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Publisher
THE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND by Julia QuinnThe Girl with the Make-Believe Husband by Julia Quinn
Series: Rokesby #2
Published by Avon Genres: Historical

When she receives word that her brother has been injured on the battlefield in the Colonies, newly orphaned Cecilia Harcourt does the only thing she can do: pack her bags, flee her oily cousin trying to coerce her into marriage, and spend her savings coming to America to take care of her brother.  But when she arrives in New York, it’s not her brother she finds in the hospital, but his best friend, Edward Rokesby.  Edward is injured and unconscious and Cecilia is determined to help him.  To do so, she has to tell one little lie: that she’s his wife.  She doesn’t expect Edward to awaken with no knowledge of the last three months of his life.  He knows who she is and believes it when he’s told they’re married.  With no leads on her brother and an injured, kind man who needs her, Cecilia decides to temporarily carry on her charade.  But the longer she’s around Edward, the harder it is not to slip into the fantasy that she’s his wife.  She knows she can’t lie to him forever, but what will happen when the truth comes out?

 

The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband is a bit of a difficult book for me to review.  Julia Quinn is one of my favorite authors and though this is a solidly-written book, it lacks Ms. Quinn’s signature vibrancy.  Part of this is due to the setting – Revolutionary War America, even away from the battlefront, doesn’t lend itself to witty banter or cheerful antics – but part of the problem is that nothing much happens in this story.  It’s the story of a good woman in a hard situation who is forced to lie, and the good man who is tricked as a result.

 

I won’t say The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband is a bad book, for it isn’t.  Cecilia and Edward are caring, likeable people who clearly make a good match.  But the most engaging part of their romance comes from the excerpts of letters they started to exchange through Cecilia’s brother months before our hero and heroine ever met.  Those tiny bits at the beginning of each chapter were, for me, the liveliest bits of the book.  The rest of the story was fairly slow and uneventful and this is the first time ever that I had no problem putting a book of Ms. Quinn’s down.  As I said before, it’s not a bad book; it’s a sweet, if slightly muted romance, and perhaps it would have worked better for me in a novella format.  Even though The Girl with the Make-Believe Husband wasn’t my particular cup of tea, the ending left me satisfied with Edward and Cecilia’s happily ever after and I’m incredibly anxious to read Andrew Rokesby’s book.

THE ART OF SINNING by Sabrina Jeffries

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This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Publisher
THE ART OF SINNING by Sabrina JeffriesThe Art of Sinning by Sabrina Jeffries
Series: Sinful Suitors #1
Published by Pocket Genres: Historical


 

American artist Jeremy Keane is far more interested in completing his next masterpiece than running the family textile mills.  He’s also far more interested in rakish pursuits than settling down.  It would take someone out of the ordinary to capture his interest, and Lady Yvette Barlow is exactly that person.  Jeremy is captivated by her from the first and is desperate to paint her.  Now if only he can convince her…

 

Yvette can spot a scoundrel a mile away and having been burned once by a rake she is in no hurry to repeat the experience.  But Jeremy catches her off-guard, tempts her and challenges her in ways she’s never known.  And the more time they spend together, the harder it is for either of them to resist the passion brewing between them.  But both Jeremy and Yvette have ghosts that haunt them.  Ghosts that might keep them from ever risking their hearts for a chance at love.

 

Sabrina Jeffries kicks off her Sinful Suitors series with the utterly charming The Art of Sinning.  Yvette and Jeremy are winning characters and their romance was lovely to watch unfold.  Yvette is outspoken, bright, and a truly fun heroine.  It’s easy to see why Jeremy is taken with her.  She’s no ordinary woman but a veritable Juno (to borrow Jeremy’s favorite description of her).  Not to mention her unusual interests – her work to build a slang dictionary had me grinning.  Yvette has a lot of love to give, but she was badly betrayed in the past and thus is wary of rakes.  And boy is Jeremy a rake in the beginning.  He’s a bold artist, one who wears the mask of rogue rather well.  But beneath the surface is a man with scars caused by the death of his wife and child – scars that have never truly healed.  I loved watching both Yvette and Jeremy come into their own as they worked to leave the past behind, though taking leaps of faith comes more easily to Yvette than Jeremy.

 

As individuals, Yvette and Jeremy are great characters. But as a couple, they shine.  Their banter made me grin more than once over the course of the story.  They’re so well-matched in every way that it’s easy to root for them.  Their love story develops organically; I liked that they fit as both friends and lovers.  It isn’t easy for them to get their happily ever after, but Ms. Jeffries makes every bump in the road worth it.  The result is a romance that’s emotional as well as sensual and I couldn’t have been more pleased.  I finished The Art of Sinning one well-satisfied reader and I cannot wait to see what Ms. Jeffries has in store for Yvette’s brother, Edwin.

EARL INTERRUPTED by Amanda Forester

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This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Publisher
EARL INTERRUPTED by Amanda ForesterEarl Interrupted by Amanda Forester
Series: Daring Marriages #2
Published by Sourcebooks Genres: Historical


Captain Robert Ashton, Earl of Darington, knows finding a bride in London will not be easy―not since he has been notoriously dubbed as the "Pirate Earl". What he didn't expect was to get abducted―and to have his escape go horribly awry when an innocent lady gets caught in the crossfire.

Amateur physician Emma St. James is on her way to meet her betrothed when she is rescued by an injured gentleman. Despite her shock after discovering he is the Pirate Earl, Emma feels drawn to the man who saved her life. Duty forces them apart, but when they meet again on the high seas, Darington will risk all―his fortune, his name, and even his life to keep her safe.

 

Emma St. James is about to come into her majority which means she will gain her inheritance.  Unfortunately, Emma’s Step-mother and Step-brother don’t want to turn over the reigns of her fortune. They’re willing to do anything, including sending Emma to an asylum to keep from doing it.

Privateer Dare “Lord of Darlington” is famous for his exploits on the high seas.  After his recent haul, Dare realizes it’s time to find a wife.  Unfortunately, he must go to London to do that.  Upon arriving in London Dare’s sister is kidnapped and he is wounded.  Thankfully, a beautiful stranger comes to his rescue.  The woman affects him more than any before.

Danger lurks everywhere.  Emma and Dare must lean on each other to remain alive.

Dare and Emma have one hell of an adventure in Earl Interrupted.  I liked the action in Earl Interrupted.  It came quickly and kept the story rolling.  I felt for the characters immediately.  Emma and Dare’s situation is dire.  They have excellent chemistry my only problem was the romance moved at a slow rate.  I kept waiting for more conversation and less introspection.  I loved parts of Earl Interrupted but it’s a little too slow to form the romance for me.

THE SCOT’S BRIDE by Paula Quinn

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This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Publisher
THE SCOT’S BRIDE by Paula QuinnThe Scot's Bride by Paula Quinn
Published by Forever Genres: Historical, Scottish


 

 

Patrick MacGregor is a rogue.  He’s uninterested in commitment of any kind especially marriage.  He’s traveling to see his family when he’s sidetrack by a beautiful fairy.

Charlotte “Charlie” Cunningham spends most of her days finding ways to escape her father’s tyranny.  She wants to find a cure for her sister’s mysterious disease then take her far away from her murdering family.

Charlie and Patrick make an adorable twosome.  Neither is eager to be trapped by a marriage.  The love of Charlie’s life was murdered and the thought of being with someone else disturbs her.

The Scot’s Bride is a sweet and thrilling read.  There are many great moments throughout the novel.  Charlie is a strong character.  I loved her tenacity.  She’s smart, brave and she turns Patrick’s life upside down.

Patrick doesn’t want to be attracted to the sassy Charlie but one look at her and he’s smitten.

Patrick and Charlie have a lot of obstacles in their way.  It’s exciting overcoming them with the couple.  The Scot’s Bride is a magical romance that will leave you smiling.

DEVIL IN SPRING by Lisa Kleypas

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This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Publisher
DEVIL IN SPRING by Lisa KleypasDevil in Spring by Lisa Kleypas
Series: The Ravenels #3
Published by HarperCollins Genres: Historical


 

Lady Pandora Ravenel doesn’t wish to be like other ladies of the ton.  Pandora would prefer to make a name and a go at her board game business, making her own money, and not being dependent on a man.  She wishes to work!

Gabriel, Lord St. Vincent, is a rake that every debutante would like to ensnare, however he has managed to avoid that trap until he stumbles upon Pandora.  After “compromising” Pandora, Gabriel is forced to offer for her, but her family isn’t the typical family of the times, and she is allowed to make a choice. Gabriel must pull out the stops to ensnare Pandora or let her walk away.

Devil in Spring was a sweet story with a bit of suspense tossed in towards the end.  I really enjoyed Gabriel, but I couldn’t quite understand Pandora’s originality in the context of the tale.  It seemed that Devil in Spring took a contemporary female protagonist and mixed her up with a historical male figure.  I felt that some things could’ve been fleshed out a bit more in Devil in Spring, as well.  Pandora was a likeable character, but Gabriel was the best part of Devil in Spring, however his proclivities could have stood a bit more exploration, maybe more showing and less telling.  The supporting characters lend a bit more to the story, but some weren’t too deep and could’ve been more rounded in Devil in Spring.  In the end, Devil in Spring, is a cute light romance to cut your teeth on, but one would expect a bit more from such a seasoned writer as Lisa Kleypas.

THE HIGHLAND DUKE by Amy Jarecki

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BECAUSE OF MISS BRIDGERTON

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PURSUED BY THE VISCOUNT by Carole Mortimer

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SINFUL SCOTTISH LAIRD by Julia London

SINFUL SCOTTISH LAIRD by Julia London

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WHEN A MARQUESS LOVES A WOMAN by Vivienne Lorret

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WHY DO DUKES FALL IN LOVE by Megan Frampton

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WHILE THE DUKE WAS SLEEPING by Sophie Jordan

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DO YOU WANT TO START A SCANDAL by Tessa Dare

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ONE FOR THE ROGUE by Charis Michaels

ONE FOR THE ROGUE by Charis Michaels

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THE VISCOUNT AND THE VIXEN by Lorraine Heath

THE VISCOUNT AND THE VIXEN by Lorraine Heath

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HEART OF A HUNTER by Lara Adrian

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PERSUASION by Brenda Joyce

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FRENCH WAR BRIDE by Robin Wells

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MARRYING WINTERBORNE by Lisa Kleypas

MARRYING WINTERBORNE by Lisa Kleypas

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A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO SCANDAL by Kathleen Kimmel

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