Forbidden – Tracey Cooper-Posey and Julia Templeton

Welcome back everyone, I’m breaking up my Rach Random Resources tours with this review since I know I won’t be able to bring you another review from my own library until mid-March.

I pulled this one out of my TBR thinking I was being so clever knocking off the last of my Aussie author challenge in 2019. Only to remember 1/4

of the way into it that I needed to read a book from a male author, and this one is by two females. One of which is half Australia and half Canadian. Somehow, I don’t think I was ever going to have a chance of using this for an Aussie author challenge!

After realising that, I figured I’d read this as just a book to enjoy. And I did enjoy it. I figured I should share my thoughts with you anyway.

Now I’m sitting here trying to think straight after a day of mindless writing (creating feedback and fixing closed captioning on a training session I ran and recorded) looking ahead to a VERY stressful weekend (I need to evaluate data and write it up and submit it within 48 hours save me now…) so I may need to come back and edit this review later to make it make sense.

Ok! Well. This story is essentially a stepson falling in love with his step-mum and them ending up together. Vaughn is set on revenge against his father while Elisa just wants her son back. Nothing could possibly go wrong right?

Well, as an erotica I found it quite light on until maybe the last third of the book? Before then it was more suggestive, basic quick foreplay kinda stuff to build the tension and need. That last third though took off and it did feel like they were a bit rabbit like. But more because it’s an erotica and so skips some of the storytelling that a you’d expect in a romance.

There is character development, which I think a lot of people miss with erotica’s. That development is tied up in more base emotions than true romances, so I feel like people mistake it for something else.

The struggle that Vaughn and Elisa fight have more to do with their responses to each other and their emotional ties than anything else. You see this in the times Elisa takes control and really shows Vaugh who she is, what she will and won’t accept and stands up to the horrible attitudes of the woman of that time.

I found myself really enjoying this story and wished for more at the end. Yes, a little bit more editing could happen to fix a couple of typos/grammar errors. But overall, I had a really fun time reading this book this week! Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I’ll be reviewing Of Night and Dark Obscurity by Nicola Italia.

Death Takes a Holiday at Pemberley – Kelly Miller

Welcome back everyone, I’m continuing this week with another regency novel. This one is less of a romance than the Miss Amelia’s Mistletoe Marquis and more of a reflection on what’s important in life.

At the beginning of the book Kelly gives a brief introduction to the language she’s chosen to use for the book, great idea! By setting me up with the expectation that the language is going to be different to what I’m used to hearing every day I wasn’t shocked and the transition to comfortably reading it wasn’t too long.

Based on my limited knowledge of the original Pride and Prejudice, which this is meant to be a continuation of, I’m assuming the choice of language was deliberate to ensure it remained as true to the original story as possible.

Given the blurb I was expecting Darcy to have a kind of three ghosts of Christmas experience. Yet Kelly surprised me by having the angel of death be surprisingly human and compassionate. By bringing more characters than just Darcy and Elizabeth into the fold Kelly was able to weave a story that reminded me of so many life lessons. The type that most people can only learn through experience.

By incorporating a raft of characters into this story Kelly was able to include more life lessons and considerations than would’ve been possible with just Darcy and Elizabeth. It felt so well done without being over the top that it really worked.

The key themes I felt expressed throughout were those of love, acceptance, forgiveness, thinking before acting and their impacts on others when either displayed, or not displayed. The little twist at the end was such a sweet touch that left me feeling really happy with how everything was left.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review; on Monday I’ll be reviewing The Cake Fairies by Isabella May. Continue to read further down to find out about the author.

Author Bio

Historical fiction author Kelly Miller discovered writing late in life, but it has quickly become a favorite pastime. When not pondering a plot point or a turn of phrase, she may be found playing the piano, singing, reading, or walking. Kelly Miller resides in Silicon Valley with her husband, daughter, and their many pets.

Miss Amelia’s Mistletoe Marquess – Jenni Fletcher

Welcome back everyone, I hope you all had a great Christmas and New Year break. I know I’ve released a few posts, but this is my first review in TWO WEEKS!

You might have seen that I read this as part of the Reindeer Readathon, that’s because I like to try and read books at least 4 weeks in advance of the review date so I don’t have to stress. Because we all have too much stress in our lives to begin with.

I read this entirely at home (except for the day I finished it, I will admit I took it to work with me that day) because it was a physical ARC (thank you Jenni Fletcher for shipping this to me!) and I hate bringing books to work with me because I inevitably damage them. Yet when I got to the last portion of the book (and I’d just finished another book on my Kindle) I knew I had to bring it in with me.

Whenever I was away from this book, I was thinking about what was happening between Amelia and Cassius. How were they reacting to each other, what were they going to do next, what could happen now since they’re married, and I’ve got a good portion of the book to go? Etc etc etc.

Given it was set at Christmas time I was obviously going to love that aspect of the book. Yet there were some very modern issues of depression and self-worth that were openly discussed and explored. Not only did the characters discuss these issues (maybe not in those terms, but they did) they also coloured all their actions and interactions.

It was fascinating to me seeing such a “modern” thing as mental health be addressed headfirst in a setting where I wasn’t expecting it. Because of this I got the sense that Jenni was trying to say that mental health has always been an issue. Just maybe not talked about in the same was that we talk about it now.

I read this as a standalone, and it can be read as a standalone, but I’ve just (as I’m writing this review) discovered that it’s part of a trilogy that’s been written by 3 different authors! I know I keep coming back to Jenni’s work, but I might consider getting the others to see how their stories play out!

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, on Friday I’m reviewing Death Takes a Holiday at Pemberley by Kelly Miller.

The Lord’s Inconvenient Vow – Lara Temple

Welcome back everyone, after finishing up another month we have just two more left to the year. What a year it’s been! I’m pretty sure this is one of the last, if not the last, regency/historical romance I’ll read this year.

Unless of course I give in to my cravings and read another one anyway!

I’ve read a couple of Lara Temple books since I first started blogging, unfortunately I missed out on the second book of this series. Which I think contributed to me finding it hard to connect the first book, The Earl’s Irresistible Challenge, to this story.

I found myself constantly looking back and trying to remember if the first book mentioned a little sister. If it mentioned time in Egypt. If it mentioned the family dynamic. Because I honestly couldn’t remember it.

In typical Lara Temple style, I found myself drawn into the characters. Although there were a few concerns about how quickly they got together, how they reunited etc that really bugged me. I was completely drawn into the adventure of the story.

Yet I was still left lacking in the emotional build up. Yes, I got the connection and the drama. But it’s not the same as the build up over several chapters. If not, most of a book.

Yes, of course the HEA ending really did suck me in But I felt like I was missing a little something in the meantime.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing A Christmas Kiss by Eliza J Scott. Continue to read further down to find out about the author and any extra giveaways available.

Author Bio

Lara Temple writes regency romances about complex individuals who give no quarter but do so with plenty of passion.

After moving around the world as a financial analyst she returned to her childhood love of making up stories, and was surprised to discover that other people don’t mind reading them. She lives with her husband, two children, and Lord Oscar the pooch who are all very forgiving about her taking over the kitchen table when she’s writing.

Project Duchess – Sabrina Jeffries

Welcome back everyone, after reviewing Zoe Ann Wood’s first sweet romance I’m on to my first approved NetGalley review! Which means I need to tell you that I got this book for free in exchange for an honest review (I always give honest reviews but I don’t want to get in trouble for not explicitly saying this).

I’m pretty excited about this one because it’s the first one I requested to read and got approved for. The other’s I’ve requested I got rejected for, so this feels like a milestone for me. And the story was a pretty good milestone one as well. It would’ve sucked if my first approved book wasn’t great.

Luckily it was good!

A scoundrel who isn’t a scoundrel. An innocent who isn’t so innocent. A murder that’s possibly not a murder. There were a few different layers to this book that I found really engaging. Although there were a couple of moments where I wasn’t sure which story was meant to be more prominent. The romance or the murder?

The story is written in third person from either Grey’s or Beatrice’s point of view. However, there were a few points where we seemed to shift mid chapter. Mostly it only switched characters at the end of a chapter. Or if it did change mid-way through there was an obvious break in the chapter to show the change. Which made it a bit weird when it swapped part way through.

I quite liked this, but for those wanting a pure romance, you should be prepared for the murder investigation aspect. Unfortunately, I was left hanging at the end. I didn’t get the closure I wanted as to who murdered who and why.

On the romance front, however. The ending was very satisfying. So much so that I’ve gotten a copy of the sequel which is due for release in February 2020. So make sure you come back to find out if that carries as well!

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, on Monday I will be reviewing When you were Mine by Lisa Swift.

Mrs Sommersby’s Second Chance – Laurie Benson

Welcome back everyone, after a very busy couple of weeks we’re back into a nice routine of two reviews as week. Today’s novel is taking us back to regency Bath, which is interesting because I don’t think I’ve ever read a book set in Bath before.

I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I have a habit of picking up regency/historical romances partway through or near the end of a series. This one is no exception. How do I keep doing this to myself?!

Luckily, I tend to do it with stories that have enough separation that it doesn’t ruin it. That is also true of this one. Although I did think it was going to be raunchier than it ended up being right at the start. I mean, Laurie did set us up with Clara and Lane fantasising about each other when they first met. So, it’s safe to assume it’s not going to be G or PG rated (I’m thinking Australian standards with those, I think the US is more relaxed than us with their ratings so not sure what the equivalent is, sorry!). Since they’re an older couple than normal (not that like 40 is old) it kind of explains why it went that way so quickly.

I loved the romance that was built and how they got to know each other in such a relaxed, informal and natural way. Sometimes these can feel a little forced. But I loved how Laurie had them running into each other. Or remembering little details and so trying in the hopes they’d see the other person. It gave it a sweet feel that many regency romances lack but really worked for their story.

The one thing that frustrated me was the development of the business side towards the end. If I say much more, I’ll totally spoil it for you, but I do think it could have been done better. I honestly felt like I was screaming in my head for them to do what they did coz it was so obvious. Both times!

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review; on Monday I’ll be reviewing Give me a Dream by Zoe Ann Wood. Continue to read further down to find out about the author and any extra giveaways available.

Author Bio

Laurie Benson is an award-winning author who writes flirty and frisky Regency romances. She began her writing career as an advertising copywriter, where she learned more than you could ever want to know about hot dogs and credit score reports. Now, she is happy to put that behind her and spend her time writing stories that take her and her readers on a romantic adventure. When she isn’t at her laptop avoiding laundry, Laurie can be found browsing antique shops, going on ridiculously long hikes, or sitting in her car on the school pickup line. She lives with her husband and two sons in a house filled with testosterone—even her bunny is a boy.

You can find Laurie on Pinterest and various social media channels.

Sea of Revenge – Nicola Italia

Welcome back everyone, we’re coming into a super busy period in my schedule which means I’m due for a holiday right?In the meantime, we have this sweet author request to review. I’m so thankful for Nicola reaching out to me after seeing my reviews of her other books I’ve read. Thank you!

I was due for an adventure packed regency romance when I picked this one up. I’d read a few contemporary romances and chick lit books, but I needed this fix. Considering the two other books of hers I’ve read I assumed the female lead would be a strong independent character. And I was right!

In The Sheik’s Son the female lead was a writer stirring up discontent against the higher classes, while in Love in the Valley of the Kings the female lead was educated, ahead of her times and so sweet. A noblewoman that moonlights as a pirate captain? That kinda fits the bill I reckon.

Although I was surprised by how and when our main leads met, I really enjoyed seeing them grow and develop. Especially because he was totally ok with her beating him in a sword-fight in front of his entire crew! How many men can say they are secure in their masculinity that they’d be ok with this?

I did feel like this book should be written in two parts. One during the pirate days and one after. It felt like these two sections were very different, and so should have had a bigger way to differentiate between them without creating a sequel. I agree that it didn’t need a sequel, but I still would have preferred a bigger “separator” in the story.

What I didn’t like was how casual Tamzen was when she found out why she’d run away from her “fiancé”. I can’t see someone being so casual about learning that fact, so it was weird that it felt like she was just like “o ok, but you won’t do it again? Ok that’s fine then.” It just confused me a little bit.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, I don’t have another review until July 31st, but I do have a cover reveal and an interview with Samantha Parks coming out next week. Then on July 31st I’ll be reviewing Reclaimed by her Rebel Knight by Jenni Fletcher.

Believe in Me – Ella Quin

Welcome back everyone, we’re still firmed locked in the past, in this case still in regency times. This book came to me in my first Bubbles & Books Book Box and it was a beautifully unexpected regency romance story.

I didn’t realise it at the time, but it’s apparently been a while since I read a regency romance. Looking back through the books I’ve read this year I realised it’s been 3 whole months! Considering how many regency romances I’ve read in the past I can’t believe it’s been so long.

Looking up this book to log it on Goodreads I discovered that it’s the 6th book in the Worthingtons series. How is it that I keep coming across regency series by starting on the 4th or more book in the series?

One of the things I love about regency romances is the glamour, the structure in society and the courting that goes on. The first thing we learn about Augusta is that she spurns societies strictures that ladies can’t be educated. Not only has she already sought private correspondence tuition on a variety of topics. But now she wants to go to Uni, which doesn’t happen for women in that time period.

The fact that she’s able to meet a guy who also believes that women should be educated and is enamoured by her knowledge and skills. I’m glad that she’s able to find a guy like this, even though it’s super unlikely to have actually happened.

Surprisingly, later in the book we went from a nice cruisy pace of luxury travel around Europe to a mad dash with a possible kidnaping, murder and international fiasco looming. So much so, that I found my own heartrate picking up and reading the pages as if the book was about to burn away in my hands without me being able to finish the book.

The ending even threw me another twist that gave the book an even sweeter than I anticipated.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing The Wedding Planner by Eva Devon.

The Determined Lord Hadleigh – Virginia Heath

Welcome back everyone, we’re back again today with another review for you this time with a regency romance. I swear this northern hemisphere summer is bring a lot of great releases with it!

We begin the book with Tristan’s point of view which is unusual for a romance. Normally the romances I read are from the girls’ point of view in the beginning although the guys will often be brought in after the first or second chapter.

One of the things that struck me once we jumped over to Penny’s point of view was how stubborn she was being when people were just trying to make it easier for her to get back on her feet. They weren’t trying to control her life, just give her time and options. So I really didn’t understand why she refused all help and cracked it at those that did try to offer her help.

One of the things I loved was that both Tristan and Penny could talk things through rather logically and see the other persons point of view. After they’ve calmed down from their own stubborn stance. They even helped each other get over some pretty bad memories which were holding them back from their futures.

I mean, if you’re going to be with anyone you want to be with someone who can help you through those tough times don’t you?

There were a few moments where I found myself disconnecting from the writing and having to re-read the sentence a few times for it to make sense. It wasn’t too often, but it felt like maybe some punctuation or something was missing. I couldn’t really nail down what it was, but it didn’t take me long to figure out what the author meant.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing Believe in Me by Ella Quin. Continue to read further down to find out about the author and any extra giveaways available.

Author Bio

When Virginia Heath was a little girl it took her ages to fall asleep, so she made up stories in her head to help pass the time while she was staring at the ceiling. As she got older, the stories became more complicated, sometimes taking weeks to get to the happy ending. Then one day, she decided to embrace the insomnia and start writing them down. Despite that, it still takes her forever to fall asleep.

Cookies Collected!

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. To find out more check out my Privacy Policy. By continuing you accept these terms.