Gone To Ground by Bronwyn Hall

Gone To Ground by Bronwyn Hall
Publisher: Harper Collins Publishers Australia
Genre: Contemporary, Action/Adventure, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

A heart-in-the-mouth and utterly addictive adventure thriller from a phenomenal debut Australian talent.

UN surgeon Rachel Forester is posted at a remote medical clinic deep in the jungle of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. With violence escalating in the region, Dr Forester risks her life by remaining to tend an injured child while the rest of her team evacuates. On the cusp of her final desperate chance to leave, a soldier is carried into the camp by three other members of his unit, his condition so critical, his airlift must take priority over hers.

With no help coming, and in the path of warring militias, this small unit must flee through the heart of the jungle to reach the safety of the province capital. But in the dark wilderness lies a strangling web of crime and corruption. As they get deeper, they discover a sinister mining operation and stolen children with evidence indicating shadowy ties to the UN. But aren’t those the people Dr Forester works for? The only people who know she’s still lost out there? And now, the people who want her dead?

The further they delve, the more the web closes around them. Will they make it out alive?

Dr Rachel Forester is an Australian working with the UN deep in the jungles of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. What was meant to be one week delivering much needed vaccines to the tribal children living in the remote jungle areas has turned into more than a month. But with the violence escalating she and her one remaining nurse, Michael, are about to be evacuated when the fighting suddenly explodes and – while saving a Canadian soldier – Rachel finds herself fleeing with the military team into the jungle in a rush for their lives.

I picked up this book on a whim having never heard of the author but the blurb and first few pages really captured my attention. I’m so glad I listened to my instincts as this is absolutely one of the best books I’ve read this year – and possibly a new “must read” author for myself. I found this book had a really wonderful blend of action, adventure, military plotline combined with medical attention and a small hint of romance amongst the mystery/suspense. I never would have guessed this was the authors debut novel – but Google assures me this is Ms. Hall’s first novel. I found the plotlines, pacing and writing exceptional and really enjoyed this read.

Readers who like very strong military (ie loads of description about the guns/weaponry/helicopters etc) might not find this quite to their tastes. While there is ample description for me – I’m more of a reader who enjoys the plot/character lines and I am very satisfied with enough description for me to imagine what’s going on without needing to go overboard on the army/military angle. I was pretty pleased there were a few plots interweaving throughout the whole story – as well as a very slowly simmering romance which is given very little screen time but just enough to keep you guessing will they/won’t they.

I feel this story should appeal to a wide range of readers and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’ve already noted for myself that I want to buy the next book (another stand alone it appears) and I am eager to see if Ms. Hall’s second book matches the highly satisfactory outcome of her first. A really enjoyable book and one I will reread very soon.

If Not for the Cat – Haiku by Jack Prelutsky and paintings by Ted Rand

If Not for the Cat – Haiku by Jack Prelutsky and paintings by Ted Rand
Publisher: Greenwillow Books/Harper Collins
Genre: Childrens (6+ yrs), Contemporary, Poetry, Animals
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Seventeen haiku composed by master poet Jack Prelutsky and illustrated by renowned artist Ted Rand ask you to think about seventeen favorite residents of the animal kingdom in a new way.

On these glorious and colorful pages you will meet a mouse, a skunk, a beaver, a hummingbird, ants, bald eagles, jellyfish, and many others. Who is who? The answer is right in front of you. But how can you tell? Think and wonder and look and puzzle it out!

A creature whispers:

If not for the cat,
And the scarcity of cheese,
I could be content.

Who is this creature?
What does it like to eat?
Can you solve the riddle?

How would life be if there wasn’t a cat?

This book doesn’t delve deeply on that subject, but what it does is show haiku about animals and makes the reader think. If not for the cat chasing him and the lack of cheese, the mouse would be happy. This book encourages discussion and has some beautiful paintings within.

I picked up this book thinking it might be a humorous book, but it was thought-provoking instead and I liked it. I liked how each haiku discusses the animal pictured and does it in a way that opens up discussion. What does the reader think?

The paintings are fantastic, and this book is good for younger readers or those being read to. It’s great for asking questions and wondering.

If you’re looking for something different, then this is the book for you.

The Color of Death by Elizabeth Lowell

The Color of Death by Elizabeth Lowell
Rarities Unlimited, Book 4
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

The name Elizabeth Lowell has become synonymous with electrifying fiction that seamlessly combines suspense, intrigue, and passion. And now the phenomenal New York Times bestselling author brilliantly displays her incomparable talents in a story of treachery, greed, conspiracy, and murder that will hold the reader spellbound until the final word.

It is the opportunity of a lifetime for Kate Chandler, the chance to cut seven rare, priceless sapphires and solidify her reputation as a world-class jewel cutter. But something goes horribly, tragically wrong during what should have been a simple transfer of goods. The sapphires vanish without a trace. Missing also is the man Kate trusted to transport the gems: her half brother, Lee, who now, quite possibly, is dead. And suddenly she is on the run, pursued by federal agents who suspect her of being the criminal mastermind of a cunning bait-and-switch scheme.

Special agent Sam Groves is one of the best of the best, an essential member of the FBI’s elite crime strike force and the perfect man to lead the hunt, since he could never be scammed by a beautiful confidence woman. But something is troubling about this assignment, because someone else is chasing Kate Chandler as well.

Only Kate suspects the awful truth: She’s unwittingly stumbled into a conspiracy of deceit, betrayal, and cold-blooded murder that goes far beyond a simple jewel heist. And a chilling, threatening voice on the telephone only confirms her worst suspicions. Getting Sam Groves, the FBI agent who’s her constant shadow, to believe her is a step in the right direction — but it may be one that’s too little too late in a bloody game where terror dictates her every move and the rules are constantly changing. Because the order has already been passed down to a ruthlessly efficient assassin: Kate Chandler must not be allowed to live …

Quick, hot and mysterious.

I already knew I liked the work of Elizabeth Lowell and am looking for more of her books. When I came across this one through a recommendation, I knew I had to read it. I’m glad I did. It moved along at a great clip and kept me involved throughout. I had to know what would happen next. I learned a bit through this story, too. I had no idea cutting stones was that involved. Holy moly.

I liked the connection between Kate and Sam, even if there were times I thought it came across a bit immature. For a guy who is at the top of his game, he seemed to get distracted rather quickly by her. Still, they had chemistry and I rooted for them to work out.

I liked that this wasn’t a cut and dry mystery. There were twists and turns I didn’t see coming and that definitely helped me enjoy the book more.

If you’re looking for a hot read with a good mystery, then this might be the read for you. Check it out.

A Pirate’s Love by Johanna Lindsey

A Pirate’s Love by Johanna Lindsey
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: Action/Adventure, Romance, Historical
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Sailing westward toward the Caribbean sun, young Bettina Verlaine obediently sets out to fulfill the promise made by her father–but not by her heart — a prearranged marriage destined not to be…once the notorious Captain Tristan’s pirate ship appears on the horizon.

Abducted by the bold and handsome brigand, the pale-haired beauty surrenders her innocence in the warm caress of the tropical winds — detesting her virile captor for enslaving her. . .yet loving him for the passionate spell he casts over fragile, yearning heart.

He’s hot and he’s demanding…he’s also in charge.

I was given this book as part of a recommended reading list and I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it. The writing flowed well and it’s certainly a throwback romance. I’ve never read a Johanna Lindsey before now, but I’m glad I did. I’m headed to check out more of her work after this one.

Tristan is everything a romance hero should be–he’s in charge, he’s dangerous and he’s demanding. He’s also a hot pirate, so that doesn’t hurt. Bettina is inexperienced, as I expected in a book like this, and he’s about to give her that experience. I liked the pairing because as much as he’s pushing her, she’s giving it right back to him. They play off each other well.

This is a bodice-ripper, though. He pushes to the point where it’s almost not attractive. I wasn’t a fan of him for most of the book, to be honest. He was just too…much for me. Bettina was a bit much, too. She’s a firebrand and she detests him, but she likes being with him. The push-pull got tiresome at times. I also wasn’t fond of the way the word rape was thrown around. I get it was dubious consent. Oh, boy, I got that. For me, it took me out of the story to have that word used so much.

Still, this was hot and there were times of tenderness. It’s a good read and one I’m glad I ticked off my reading list. You should, too.

The Unforgettable Logan Foster by Shawn Peters

The Unforgettable Logan Foster by Shawn Peters
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Middle Grade (8 – 12 y.o.), Contemporary
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Dicentra

Logan Foster has pretty much given up on the idea of ever being adopted. It could have something to with his awkward manner, his photographic memory, or his affection for reciting curious facts, but whatever the cause, Logan and his “PP’s” (prospective parents) have never clicked.

Then everything changes when Gil and Margie arrive. Although they aren’t exactly perfect themselves—Gil has the punniest sense of humor and Margie’s cooking would have anyone running for the hills—they genuinely seem to care.

But it doesn’t take Logan long to notice some very odd things about them. They are out at all hours, they never seem to eat, and there’s a part of the house that is protected by some pretty elaborate security.

No matter what Logan could have imagined, nothing prepared him for the truth: His PP’s are actually superheroes, and they’re being hunted down by dastardly forces. Logan’s found himself caught in the middle in a massive battle and the very fate of the world may hang in the balance. Will Logan be able to find a way to save the day and his new family?

Shawn Peters’ debut novel The Unforgettable Logan Foster is a simply unforgettable read!

Logan Foster is a unique kid, and he’s sadly given up on the dream of ever being adopted. Despite being fostered out to Prospective Parents, or “PPs” multiple times, adults have never connected to his awkward personality, his love of comic books, or his other quirks (namely his photographic memory, being on the autism spectrum, and developmental coordination disorder). Things change for him though when he’s introduced to Gil and Margie, and he quickly learns that there’s more to his new foster parents than meets the eye.

As a loyal fan of the superhero genre, I’m always happy when there’s a great new book to read. The book is action-packed and fast-paced. I loved how the author built comic books and superheroes into the worldbuilding of the story. I also appreciated how the big superhero organization in the book did not try to copy the Justice League or the Avengers. MASC (Multinational Authority for Superhuman Control) occupies a very different role in the world than the two other organizations do.

While superheroes are a big focus of the book, Mr. Peters also focuses on some more mundane topics like adoption and neurodivergence. Logan’s been somewhat hardened by the multiple failed fosterings, so he resists warming up to Gil and Margie (expecting he’ll be back in the orphanage before the month is out). Their initial awkwardness (due to hiding their secret identities as superheroes) doesn’t help matters. There’s also the issue of Logan’s quirks. Most are put off by the multitude of random facts he spouts (courtesy of his photographic memory), and his autistic nature makes some of the more nuanced social interactions in his new school challenging. Never fear though – things work out well in the end for Logan, and he even has his own “superpower” just like his new parents! You’ll have to read the book to find out exactly what I mean.

The only weakness of the book I noticed, and an area of confusion for me as a reader, was the connection to Logan’s (possible) sibling. Logan opens the book directly speaking to a sibling, and the book is pretty much a diary addressed to them. He even has a best big brother shirt that means a lot to him. However, said sibling doesn’t actually show up in the book. That was a letdown for me, so I’m hoping they’ll show up later in the series.

It’s reminiscent of a cross between Disney’s The Incredibles and Meet the Robinsons. If you or a young reader would enjoy a story filled with superheroes, friendship, found family, and lots of comic references, then pick up this book today! It would also be a great choice for those looking for a mainstream book featuring adoption and fostering. I’m excited to see what’s next for Logan in the sequel, The Unforgettable Logan Foster and the Shadow of Doubt (which comes out in January 2023).

Sister Mother Warrior by Vanessa Riley

Sister Mother Warrior by Vanessa Riley
Publisher: William Morrow an imprint of Harper Collins Publishers
Genre: Historical
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Lavender

Gran Toya: Born in West Africa, Abdaraya Toya was one of the legendary minos—women called “Dahomeyan Amazons” by the Europeans—who were specially chosen female warriors consecrated to the King of Dahomey. Betrayed by an enemy, kidnapped, and sold into slavery, Toya wound up in the French colony of Saint Domingue, where she became a force to be reckoned with on its sugar plantations: a healer and an authority figure among the enslaved. Among the motherless children she helped raise was a man who would become the revolutionary Jean-Jacques Dessalines. When the enslaved people rose up, Toya, ever the warrior, was at the forefront of the rebellion that changed the course of history.

Marie-Claire: A free woman of color, Marie-Claire Bonheur was raised in an air of privilege and security because of her wealthy white grandfather. With a passion for charitable work, she grew up looking for ways to help those oppressed by a society steeped in racial and economic injustices. Falling in love with Jean-Jacques Dessalines, an enslaved man, was never the plan, yet their paths continued to cross and intertwine, and despite a marriage of convenience to a Frenchman, she and Dessalines had several children.

When war breaks out on Saint Domingue, pitting the French, Spanish, and enslaved people against one another in turn, Marie-Claire and Toya finally meet, and despite their deep differences, they both play pivotal roles in the revolution that will eventually lead to full independence for Haiti and its people.

Both an emotionally palpable love story and a detail-rich historical novel, Sister Mother Warrior tells the often-overlooked history of the most successful Black uprising in history. Riley celebrates the tremendous courage and resilience of the revolutionaries, and the formidable strength and intelligence of Toya, Marie-Claire, and the countless other women who fought for freedom.

This wonderful novel tells the story of a very successful slave uprising. History often tells us of how men changed the course of events. In a refreshing viewpoint, readers are treated to a life-changing situation through the eyes of two women.

Gran Toya, a West African woman, was a warrior. Sadly, she was sold and became a slave. Marie-Claire was a free woman of color who had a good life. They were involved with Jean-Jacques Dessalines, Gran Toya as a mother figure, and Marie Claire as a wife. Dessalines was a former slave who became a general and led people to fight against slavery. Eventually the people of Haiti fought their colonizers and won, after decades.

The characters are layered and complex and often battle with difficult decisions. Their world is a challenge, and readers can see this through well-written words. Sights, scents, tastes, touch, and sounds come alive in this novel that depicts true events. The author fills in the blanks smoothly, making this an enjoyable story to read. The bonus is learning something about history. Readers will get much from reading this book.

My Fake Rake by Eva Leigh

My Fake Rake: The Union of the Rakes by Eva Leigh
Publisher: Avon Books from Harper Collins Publishers
Genre: Historical
Length: Full length (366 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Review by Honeysuckle

Lady Grace Wyatt is content as a wallflower, focusing on scientific pursuits rather than the complications of society matches. But when a handsome, celebrated naturalist returns from abroad, Grace wishes, for once, to be noticed. Her solution: to “build” the perfect man, who will court her publicly and help her catch his eye. Grace’s colleague, anthropologist Sebastian Holloway, is just the blank slate she requires.

To further his own research on English society, Sebastian agrees to let Grace transform him from a bespectacled, bookish academic into a dashing—albeit fake—rake. Between secret lessons on how to be a rogue and exaggerated public flirtations, Grace’s feelings for Sebastian grow from friendship into undeniable, inconvenient, real attraction. If only she hadn’t asked him to help her marry someone else…
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Sebastian is in love with brilliant, beautiful Grace, but their bargain is complete, and she desires another. Yet when he’s faced with losing her forever, Sebastian will do whatever it takes to tell her the truth, even if it means risking his own future—and his heart.

There’s only one thing a self-sufficient and book smart lady of the ton can do when she simply must marry a fellow naturalist but he only sees her as a colleague. She sets out to make him notice her by way of a fake romance. Nobody is better suited for a fake romance than your best guy friend, right?

This was one of those books that, when finished, was honestly satisfying. The character development was there. I truly liked both Grace and Sebastian as well as the side characters introduced throughout the story. Especially the Duke of Rotherby. He’s an interesting player in this game Grace and Sebastian play out before all of London society. I was tickled to note that his story will come out next year and I’ll be sure to watch for it. Some lovely miss is going to tie him in knots and it will fun to watch.

Also, I realized I need to go back and look at some of Ms. Leigh’s prior books to see if some of the other happily married couples I met had their happily ever afters already told. That’s how I often find some of my new future favorite story tellers. By reading their series completely out of order.

I particularly liked this story because, while the premise wasn’t new (I’ve ready plenty of the ‘fake romance to win the hero’ tropes in historical romance) the personalities and family dynamics of these characters stood out to me. Grace is allowed to venture into what most people of the time period would have considered “a man’s world”. She’s smart and interested in learning all she can in the field of zoology. Sebastian is also a man of science but he’s more in the habit of studying people and cultures. I think the author made that distinction an important part of this book. Sebastian sees Grace in way others don’t. It was a sweet courtship to watch even when they didn’t realize it was a courtship.

There’s some pretty funny scenes involving some scandalous dirty words and dancing in the rain. Historical romance lovers will enjoy the dialogue as well the story itself. Well developed and an unexpected yet delightful ending.

When the Marquess Was Mine by Caroline Linden

When the Marquess Was Mine by Caroline Linden
The Wagers of Sin series
Publisher: Avon (HarperCollins Publishers)
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (384 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: Best Book
Reviewed by Mistflower

In the game of love…

Georgiana Lucas despises the arrogant and cruel Marquess of Westmorland even before learning that he’s won the deed to her friend Kitty’s home in a card game. Still, Georgiana assures Kitty the marquess wouldn’t possibly come all the way to Derbyshire to throw them out—until he shows up, bloody and unconscious. Fearing that Kitty would rather see him die, Georgiana blurts out that he’s her fiancé. She’ll nurse the hateful man back to health and make him vow to leave and never return. The man who wakes up, though, is nothing like the heartless rogue Georgiana thought she knew…

You have to risk it all

Saddle Joints- Allocate for back and forth https://regencygrandenursing.com/long-term-care/counseling levitra low cost and side to side motion but limited rotation. On February 16, 2012, China Food and Drug administration or the office of surgeon general to be levitra uk have a peek at these guys used to for curing impotence depends on its cause. This medicinal practice is accomplished through the use of buy levitra online if you suffer from any of the following symptoms * High/low blood pressure* Liver or kidney disorders* Chest pain* High/low blood pressure* Stomach ulcer* Bleeding disorder However if prescribed your doctor then it’s a wonderful solution to your ED worries. For regencygrandenursing.com tadalafil purchase effective result, it is recommended to make use of these food sources in daily diet schedule. He wakes up with no memory of being assaulted—or of who he is. The bewitching beauty tending him so devotedly calls him Rob and claims she’s his fiancée even as she avoids his touch. Though he can’t remember how he won her hand, he’s now determined to win her heart. But as his memory returns and the truth is revealed, Rob must decide if the game is up—or if he’ll take a chance on a love that defies all odds.

I’m so excited that I got to be the one to read and review this book!

My reviews are from my heart. I write them right after I finish the book so that everything is fresh in my head and I’m still feeling the book glow if there is one. With that said, to say I’m experiencing a book glow is putting it mildly. This is my first Caroline Linden book and I need to fix that ASAP. When the Marquess Was Mine is part of the “Wagers of Sin” series. It’s actually the third in the series which means I have two books that I need to read. Each can be read as a standalone so no worries there. I just thoroughly enjoyed this one so it’s only logical that I’d want to read the previous two.

As honest as my reviews are they are still only a reflection of my opinion. I thought the last book I read was unforgettable and I raved my love for it while I rated it a five. Yet, after finishing this book I realized it was way better than the previous book and that I thought was a must read by any historical romance lover. That leaves me no choice but to rate this as a Best Book.

The plot is elaborate and masterfully executed. My interest was piqued immediately as the story starts with depth right away, introducing names and places with descriptions. I had to slow down my reading and concentrate at first. Once I learned the names and who was connected to who I was able to pick up my pace and then I was able to easily maintain a steady reading rhythm. Kudos to the author’s writing style because typically when a story has that many layers of characters I tend to get lost and confused. Especially when there are exciting plot twists.

The leading hero, the Marquess of Westmorland aka Rob, was perfect. I loved everything about him. He will be in my dreams tonight. If I had to try to explain why I fell so hard in love with this character then I’d say it was because he was written as heartless at first and then redeemed after his assault. I loved seeing the reformation but because his redemption was because he lost his memory, it left me on pins and needles to see who he would become once his regained his memory. All of this had to do with the excellent writing style. I’ve read amnesia stories before. This one was entertaining, fun and a bit suspenseful.

The leading heroine, Georgiana, was hilarious. She made me laugh more times than I can remember. She was brave, witty and caring. I thought Georgiana and the Marquess of Westmorland made a perfect romance couple as they won my heart. Their chemistry was infectious and made for a spicy romance. I loved the ending as all the threads were tied up leaving me with a happily ever book glow that shined bright the rest of the day.

When I read, I hang onto every word savoring the story. Near the end Sophie, one of Georgiana’s friends, revealed something to Georgiana. Without revealing any spoilers, I wanted to address one tiny concern I had regarding Sophie. Sophie and Georgiana were engaged in an activity from which Sophie had to excuse herself. I was left wondering if Sophie was okay. Prior to the activity Sophie had made a comment that caused concern which lead to what she revealed. There was no follow up to reassure me so I’m going to assume she was okay. She excused herself from the activity and I assume she went home and recovered. That tiny little thread is nagging at me. I don’t like to assume anything. I like complete closure. That’s a pet peeve of mine. I’m still going to rate it as a best book because I’m probably the only human to care that much about that detail. There was a lot going on in this activity which involved several people. It was a tense moment in the plot. This activity led to the culmination of the suspense part of the storyline. I didn’t want to give any spoilers so this part of the review will only make sense after the book is read. I felt it was worth noting.

I’m sticking to Best Book based on how this book made me feel while I was reading it and after it was done. I recommend this story to others. It is one that I’ve put on my keepers shelf. Now I’m off to find the other two books in this series. Happy Reading!

The Pale Horseman by Bernard Cornwell

The Pale Horseman by Bernard Cornwell
The Saxon Stories #2
Publisher: Harper
Genre: Action/Adventure, Historical
Length: Full Length (349 pgs)
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Poinsettia

The last unvanquished piece of England, Wessex is eyed hungrily by the fearsome Viking conquerors. A dispossessed young nobleman, Uhtred is tied to the imperiled land by birth and marriage but was raised by the Danish invaders—and he questions where his allegiance must lie. But blood is his destiny, and when the overwhelming Viking horde attacks out of a wintry darkness, Uhtred must put aside all hatred and distrust and stand beside his embattled country’s staunch defender—the fugitive King Alfred.

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Uhtred holds the fate of England in his hands.

Before reading this installment in the Saxon Stories, I recommend reading The Last Kingdom, the first book in the series, not only because this tale picks up where The Last Kingdom left off, but also to better understand Uhtred’s history and his complicated relationships. Also, I must warn readers that The Pale Horseman, contains graphic violence as well as rape, though the rape is not described in detail.

It has been an adventure watching Uhtred grow up! He’s married, become a father, survived his first shield wall, and killed the Danish warrior Ubba. Uhtred feels he’s done more than enough to prove himself. However, Alfred doesn’t completely trust Uhtred because of his refusal to become a Christian and his divided loyalties. It is easy to sympathize with Uhtred because he is much more likable than Alfred, but I will admit I can see Alfred’s point of view at times. Alfred is a man mature beyond his years with carefully laid, long-term plans. In contrast, Uhtred is wild and quite immature at times, and while he has some long-term goals, he tends to live in the moment. Uhtred can make or break Alfred’s plans, and that makes Alfred uncomfortable. That being said, I’ve found Uhtred to be a man of his word. If he says he will accomplish something, he will. Uhtred doesn’t understand why that isn’t enough for Alfred. I find the relationship between Uhtred and Alfred fascinating. I can’t help but wonder what these two great men could accomplish if they could find a way to work together. Unfortunately, I fear they are doomed to never see eye to eye.

Denied the credit for the victory at Cynuit, Uhtred is understandably angry. In his frustration, he makes life changing decisions that will bring him joy, sorrow, and again put him at odds with Alfred. Uhtred is still truly torn between the Saxons and the Danes. There are moments where I held my breath because Uhtred’s choices literally had the power to change the future of England.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this chapter in Uhtred’s life, and I can’t wait to see what he will do next! I look forward to picking up the next book in this captivating series.

Say No to the Duke by Eloisa James

Say No to the Duke by Eloisa James
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers, Inc
Genre: Historical, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Full length (288 pages)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

Could she possibly refuse a duke’s hand—in favor of a sardonic, sinful rake?

Lady Betsy Wilde’s first season was triumphant by any measure, and a duke has proposed—but before marriage, she longs for one last adventure.

No gentleman would agree to her scandalous plan—but Lord Jeremy Roden is no gentleman. He offers a wager. If she wins a billiards game, he’ll provide the breeches.

If he wins…she is his, for one wild night.

But what happens when Jeremy realizes that one night will never be enough? In the most important battle of his life, he’ll have to convince Betsy to say no to the duke.

As the age progresses, your body’s levitra properien physiology deteriorates and certain organs undergo atrophy. That is why; check for source now cialis on line is so much popular in the minds of men suffering from low testosterone levels is: Can cialis and generic versions of the medication help boost testosterone levels? Link between Low Testosterone Levels and ED cialis 20 mg and other generic medication contains the effective ingredient Tadalafil that offers round the clock effectiveness. robertrobb.com the active ingredient Sildenafil citrate. After a long research work the medical science comes buy sildenafil india out with some effective medications. Exercise sildenafil canada – Physical activity is necessary to keep your healthcare provider informed of any non-prescription or prescription medicines you take including herbal supplements, vitamins and antacids. I knew this book was going to be fun. I’ve been following The Wildes of Lindow Castle for a while and every single book in the series is a winner. Say No to the Duke continues the saga about a very unusual family, and as always, I giggle and snicker at various times because of their antics and/or dialogue.

This can be a standalone read. Indeed, I’d forgotten a certain part so I was still enjoying it. However, when I got to the part where Jeremy figures things out, I was stunned. I believe my jaw dropped and my eyes popped because suddenly I DID remember what had happened previously and I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Seriously? All this time? And for the price that was paid – oh did I get steamed. It was totally a fist-bump moment when Betsy (a/k/a Boadicea) let her actions speak for her feelings. I would have done it twice for good measure. I wasn’t alone in feeling that way, Lady Knowe did too. I really liked Betsy’s aunt. Because of all that, I changed my mind a bit – reading the previous book in the series, which is another great read btw, can enhance a reader’s enjoyment with this one.

In the previous book, Jeremy was instrumental in helping the main characters through their plot twists and conundrums, but now the stakes are higher. His feelings of annoyance in the past blossoms into something wonderful – feelings that make him uncomfortable, like lust, and fascination and possessiveness (in a good way) and the poor guy doesn’t know what to do. Until he stops and pays attention to himself, to finally understand, to realize he is worthy of love and he wants it, with Betsy. To see a tortured hero finally see a light at the end of the tunnel is a glorious thing, but he’s not a pushover by any means. His strength is tested but he perseveres. He has an estranged father and their meeting was momentous and really important to what comes later in the novel. I rather liked Jeremy’s dad.

Lady Tallow is a secondary character that left a sour taste in my mouth, figuratively speaking. She was so nasty. I respected Thaddeus immensely because he had some very good qualities, but I wanted to hug him when he reacted to something Lady Tallow said. I hope someday he’ll get his own HEA – he’s a bit stuck-up but a good egg.

As far as internal conflicts, Betsy’s happiness is still being poisoned by something that was said when she was 14 years old. It’s amazing the lengths some will go to ensure they don’t get hurt ever again. The heroine had an epiphany and it was quite wonderful to read as it came about. Jeremy, like I said, is estranged from his dad, but there is the matter of his PTSD from the war. That is a huge hurtle to overcome, or at least deal with it in a healthy manner, and it does play a significant role in the plot thread.

There is a villain which was well written because I completely agreed that the person was a twisted, sorry soul. I had no sympathy whatsoever and was glad when Jeremy and Betsy figured things out. Not only that, but I was so happy when the family stood in support of Jeremy. Awesome scenes!

The scene with Thaddeus’s mom, the Duchess of Eversley, Lady Knowe, Betsy and Jeremy and a couple of others at the auction, was a hoot. There was a lot of grinning leading up to that part and certainly during it. I enjoyed Ms. James’ humor and I am of the impression that the author had just as much fun writing those scenes as much as I liked reading them.

The final chapter acts like a pre-epilogue to the epilogue. I did sniffle a bit but so did Betsy. The two combined made for a perfect, wonderful, special happy ever after and I sighed with satisfaction.

Say No to the Duke is a delight, full of charm, wit and passion. The romance is cheerfully rocky with a payoff that made me happy. This is an excellent addition to the series and Jeremy is going to fit right in with the Wilde family. I give this novel a solid recommendation to both historical romance readers and fans of the author because it’s splendid entertainment.