Winning the Gentleman – Review

by Kristi Ann Hunter

Publisher : Bethany House Publishers (April 20, 2021)
Language : English
Paperback : 352 pages
ISBN-10 : 0764235265
ISBN-13 : 978-0764235269

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Aaron Whitworth hasn’t had control over most aspects of his life, but he’s always taken pride in being an honorable businessman and better-than-average horseman. When both of those claims are threatened, he makes the desperate decision to hire the horse trainer of a traveling circus as a temporary jockey for his racehorses.

Sophia Fitzroy knows that most horsemen don’t take her seriously because she’s a woman, but she can’t pass up the opportunity to get away from the tumultuous world of travel and performing. As she fights for the right to do the work she was hired for, she learns the fight for Aaron’s guarded heart might be an even more worthwhile challenge.

As secrets come to light and past vulnerabilities are confronted, will Aaron and Sophia sacrifice their former dreams and forge a new one together–against all odds?


Hunter always writes unique story-lines with characters we fall in love with. However, this story was especially unique with the main characters a female circus performer turned jockey and a man born on the wrong side of the blanket.

Aaron Whitworth was a fan favorite from his previous appearances, but this book can be read as a standalone. The situation of Aaron’s birth was far more common than it should have been, and it was interesting to see the child’s point of view in this situation. On the outside Aaron is very quiet and standoffish, but there is an endearing quality about him.

Sophia Fitzroy has had to spend the last few years taking care of herself and her injured twin brother. Her situation has made her more independent and determined. I liked how she was such a strong female lead and different from the typical aristocrat.

I really like that this book was different from any other book I’ve read from this time period. And I’ve read a lot of books from this time! If you’ve read previous books by Hunter, be on the lookout for some fun cameos in this one.

Giveaway, Blog Tour, and Review: The Indebted Earl

by Erica Vetsch

Publisher : Kregel Publications (March 23, 2021)
Language : English
Paperback : 288 pages
ISBN-10 : 0825446198
ISBN-13 : 978-0825446191

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Can Captain Wyvern keep his new marriage of convenience all business–or will it turn into something more?

Captain Charles Wyvern owes a great debt to the man who saved his life–especially since Major Richardson lost his own life in the process. The best way to honor that hero’s dying wish is for Wyvern to escort the man’s grieving fiancée and mother safely to a new cottage home by the sea. But along the way, he learns of another obligation that has fallen on his shoulders: his uncle has died and the captain is now the Earl of Rothwell.

When he and the ladies arrive at his new manor house in Devon, they discover an estate in need of a leader and a gaggle of girls, all wards of the former earl. War the new earl knows; young ladies and properties he does not. Still wishing to provide for the bereaved Lady Sophia Haverly, Charles proposes a marriage of convenience.

Sophie is surprised to find she isn’t opposed to the idea. It will help her care for her betrothed’s elderly mother, and she’s already fallen in love with the wayward girls on the Rothwell estate. This alliance is a chance to repay the captain who has done so much for her care, as well as divert her attention from her grief. When Wyvern returns to his sea commission, she’ll stay behind to oversee his property and wards.

It sounds so simple. Until the stalwart captain is arrested on suspicion of smuggling, and Sophie realizes how much he’s come to mean to her. Now she’ll have to learn to fight, not only for his freedom but also for his love.


Captain Charles Wyvern has grown up on the sea and never felt like anywhere else could be home. He has become serious and can come off as gruff. His world changes when after a serious injury he no longer is captain of his ship, he loses his best friend, and he receives some unexpected family news.

Before Lady Sophia Haverly had her happily ever after snatched away with the loss of her fiancé, she was animated and always looking for the good.

Sophia is young and Charles is older, and sometimes they seem like opposites. However, they are exactly what each other needs.

This felt like a different kind of romance than a lot of the ones I read. I like that the hero and heroine did not instantly fall in love with each other. I also like the age gap which was more realistic during this time, and it worked out perfectly in their relationship.

I absolutely loved Thea, and I really want to know what happens to her when she grows up.

This has been such a great series, and there are so many more characters I want to see again. However, each book can be read as a standalone.

Enter Here!

Blog Tour and Review: Forever Phoebe

by Chalon Linton

Publisher : Covenant Communications, Inc. (February 8, 2021)
Language : English
ISBN-10 : 1524416886
ISBN-13 : 978-1524416881

At the dignified age of eighteen, Phoebe Jamison knows she should behave in a manner befitting her station, as her three loving elder brothers often tease. Unfortunately, the lively young woman has a personality every bit as fiery as her red hair, a fact brought to her attention in the criticism from the gentleman she has long pined for. But not every man is of the opinion that a woman should be decorous above all else. The newest resident of Somerset, Mr. Franklin Everly, is considered a most eligible bachelor, and he is immediately drawn to Phoebe’s spirited nature as he becomes acquainted with the delightful Jamison siblings of Primly Park.

Franklin embarks on a friendship with Phoebe that quickly deepens into a warm and thrilling connection. But even as he fights for Phoebe’s attentions, a very real danger is revealed: girls in neighboring villages have gone missing, and the kidnapper is moving ever closer to Primly Park. Despite the guard of her fiercely protective brothers and Franklin, Phoebe must rely on her own strength when she finds herself in the sights of the Bride Snatcher. 


Phoebe Jamison is a spunky redhead who likes to follow after her three older brothers. She has pined after their friend Mr Mason for years and dreams that he will return her feelings. Instead he constantly admonishes her and tells her to be more like a fine lady.

Franklin Everly is new to the neighborhood and is soon smitten by the feisty Phoebe. He must find time to fix up his estate, win Phoebe’s heart, and fend off her protective older brothers. All this while a kidnapper is on the loose stealing young woman.

I couldn’t stand Mr Mason from the beginning. The guy is just so full of himself, and I don’t see any positives. It’s amazing how someone so fun and full of life like Phoebe could be hung up on him.

A lot of the time the heroes are overly masculine. I love that Franklin is quietly heroic and self sacrificing. Even when it’s hard for him, he stands back and lets Phoebe be herself.

This is my favorite book by Linton. I loved the characters, the sweet romance, and the added mystery. I loved the dynamic between Phoebe and her brothers. I would love for Peter to get his own story.

Enter Here!

The Vanishing at Loxby Manor – Review

by Abigail Wilson

Publisher : Thomas Nelson (January 26, 2021)
Language : English
Paperback : 336 pages
ISBN-10 : 0785232958
ISBN-13 : 978-0785232957

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Her friend is missing.

After five years abroad, Charity Halliwell finally returns to Loxby Manor, the home of dear friends—and her lost love. No longer a young girl, she is now haunted by a painful secret and the demise of her dreams. Instead of the healing and happiness she hopes to find, she encounters a darkness lurking in the shadows of the once-familiar house. When her friend, Seline, disappears the very night of her arrival, Charity is determined to uncover the truth.

Her only hope is the man who broke her heart.

Branded a coward, Piers Cavanaugh has lived the last five years as an outcast far from his family home. When his sister presumably elopes with a stable hand, Piers joins forces with an unlikely partner—the one woman he thought he’d never see again. Together they launch an investigation that leads to strange nightly meetings in the ruins of an old abbey and disturbing whispers of a secret organization. The more they learn, the more desperate the situation becomes. 

The house seems determined to keep its secrets.

As they struggle to piece together the clues, Charity and Piers also endeavor to rebuild their friendship. One cryptic letter changed everything between them. To find happiness they will have to overcome the grief and shame keeping them apart. But first they must discover why Seline vanished and confront the growing fear that she may never return. 


I really enjoyed Abigail Wilson’s previous books and looked forward to reading this one. The Vanishing at Loxby Manor has something of a gothic feel to it. The mystery starts right near the beginning and is weaved throughout the story. Wilson writes some fantastic historical mysteries!

There were lots of twists and turns and some things that kept me guessing about certain characters. I was sad about what happened to one of the characters. I felt like I had grown attached to them and hoped for a happy ending. But in a way it did seem fitting what happened to them.

The Vanishing at Loxby Manor was another excellent book by Wilson.

Blog Tour and Review: Georgana’s Secret

by Arlem Hawks

Publisher : Shadow Mountain (January 12, 2021)
Language: English
Paperback : 320 pages
ISBN-10 : 162972792X
ISBN-13 : 978-1629727929

1811

A Regency romance on the high seas. Two hearts yearning to find a safe harbor, and possibly, a lasting love.

As a young girl, Georgana Woodall dreamed of beautiful dresses, fancy balls, and falling in love. However, when her mother dies, she cannot face a future under the guardianship of her abusive grandmother and instead chooses to join her father on his ship disguised as his cabin boy, “George.”

Lieutenant Dominic Peyton has no time in his life for love, not with his dedication to His Majesty’s Royal Navy claiming his full attention. While trying to adjust to a new crew, he strives to be an exemplary officer and leader. When he sees the captain’s cabin boy being harassed by the crew, he immediately puts a stop to it and takes the “boy” under his wing. After discovering a number of clues, Dominic deduces that George is really a woman. Knowing that revealing the cabin boy’s secret would put her in serious danger from the rowdy crew, Dominic keeps silent and hides his growing affection for her.

Georgana is quickly losing her heart to Dominic’s compassion and care but is convinced nothing can come of her affection. She cannot continue to live her life on the sea, and having already missed too many seasons in London, her chances of being welcomed back into polite society and finding a suitable husband are quickly slipping away.

Georgana’s Secret is about two hearts yearning to find a safe harbor, and possibly, a lasting love.


I loved Georgana’s Secret!

This book had me on an emotional rollercoaster wanting to stay up all night. I ended up hiding in my room to finish it, and I’m not even sorry I ignored all my responsibilities.

It has the perfect amount of action and adventure with a sweet, non traditional love story.

After the death of his wife, Captain Woodall whisks his daughter to his ship to hide her from his abusive mother. Georgana Woodall is able to stay under the radar disguised as a cabin boy for three years. Until Dominic Peyton.

Lieutenant Dominic Peyton hates leaving his mother on shore, but he feels the siren call for the sea he loves. The sea is the only wife he would ever need. Until he meets someone whose siren call is even louder.

I love a good, strong heroine. I also loved how unique this story was. I have enjoyed Arlem Hawks’ novellas, and I had really looked forward to reading this book when I first heard about it. It certainly lived up to my expectations! I look forward to reading more from Hawks.

“Only one person seemed unaffected by the ocean’s wrecking grasp. Someone who laughed into the wind and smiled through the mists. Georgana groaned, burying her face into her shoulder. She was not falling for Lieutenant Peyton. She wasn’t.”


Arlem Hawks began making up stories before she could write. Living all over the Western United States and traveling around the world gave her a love of cultures and people and the stories they have to tell. With her travels came an interest in history, especially the history of her English heritage. When she isn’t
writing, Arlem is baking her characters’ favorite foods, sewing Regency dresses, learning how to play the tin whistle, and water coloring. She lives in Arizona with her husband and two children. Having previously published four historical romance novellas, Georgana’s Secret is her debut novel.

The Best-Laid Plans – Review

by Sarah M. Eden

ASIN : B08PW54CQ5
Publisher : Covenant Communications (January 1, 2021)
Publication date : January 1, 2021
Language: English

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Newton Hughes has long dreamed of pursuing a career in law, an acceptable choice for a gentleman of status and wealth. His parents, however, disapprove of his ambition, urging him instead to take his rightful place as a gentleman of leisure—with a suitable wife of their choosing, of course. 

Ellie Napper would like nothing more than for her parents to abandon their incessant efforts to marry her off to the greatest possible advantage. Her lack of matrimonial enthusiasm drives her family mad, but she refuses to feign frivolity in order to make herself more palatable to potential suitors. 

When Ellie and Newton are introduced through their mutual acquaintance, Charlie Jonquil, they commiserate over their shared plight. In desperation, they hatch a plan: Ellie and Newton will feign an interest in each other—enough to convince their parents not to push them toward unwanted matches but not enough to cause whispers or expectations. Their plot quickly spirals out of control, but the greatest complication is the one they didn’t see coming: their plan never included falling in love.


My Review

Ellie Napper has always had her fun, intelligent, and slightly outspoken personality pushed down by her family. They want her sister to shine, so Ellie is supposed to quietly stay in the background and follow their directions on who they want her to marry.

Newton Hughes dreams of being a barrister. His family believes that a gentleman having an occupation is beneath them.

With the help of their mutual friends Charlie Jonquil and Artemis Lancaster, Newton and Ellie plan to fake their relationship to appease their parents.

No matter if it is a novel or a novella, Eden always draws the reader in with her characters. They are so memorable, and you wish you could know them in real life.

I loved the story, but felt the ending was a little abrupt. I hope Charlie’s story will at least mention how Newton and Ellie are doing.

Yes, this is a lead up to Charlie and Artemis’ story which so many of us greatly anticipate reading. However, I also loved this as a standalone and as Newton and Ellie’s love story.

Top 20 Books of 2020

Losing yourself in a good book was even more important this year than in previous years. I am so thankful for these amazing writers that share their work with us. Here are the Top 20 Books in 2020.

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Courting Misfortune – Review

by Regina Jennings

Publisher : Bethany House Publishers (December 1, 2020)
Language: English
Paperback : 336 pages
ISBN-10 : 0764235346
ISBN-13 : 978-0764235344

Purchase from Amazon

Calista York needs one more successful case as a Pinkerton operative to secure her job. When she’s assigned to find the kidnapped daughter of a mob boss, she’s sent to the rowdy mining town of Joplin, Missouri, despite having extended family in the area. Will their meddling expose her mission and keep Lila Seaton from being recovered?

When Matthew Cook decided to be a missionary, he never expected to be sent only a short train ride away. While fighting against corruption of all sorts, Matthew hears of a baby raffle being held to raise funds for a children’s home. He’ll do what he can to stop it, but he also wants to stop the reckless Miss York, whose bad judgment consistently seems to be putting her in harm’s way.

Calista doesn’t need the handsome pastor interfering with her investigation, and she can’t let her disguise slip. Her job and the life of a young lady depend on keeping Matthew in the dark.  


Calista York feels a calling to become a Pinkerton agent and help save people. While undercover on a case, she finds herself in a seedy part of town. Matthew Cook is in Joplin trying to save the lost sheep. When he runs into Calista, he gets tangled up in quite a mess.

I loved how unique this story was and that I didn’t know what would happen next. There were a number of things I didn’t see coming.

This book is connected to Graham and Willow’s story in Intrigue a la Mode (Harvey House Brides), but it can be read as a standalone. Intrigue a la Mode is an excellent story, so I suggest reading it. 🙂

Calista has a large family and at the beginning it got a little confusing with all the characters, but they were all different. I enjoyed learning about each family member.

This book was a good lesson in not judging people. You never know what someone else is going through, and you often don’t have the full story.

I enjoyed reading the author’s note at the end and learning about the history and research that went into the writing of this book.

This was a great start to a new and interesting series.

“You’re my heart, and anything that threatens you threatens my future.”