Fanciful Reader

a book blog about romance and more. . .

Month: August, 2011

Mailbox Monday 8/29

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

This month Mailbox Monday is hosted by Staci at Life in the Thumb.

Here’s what I picked up this week.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Once Upon A Christmas by Nancy Lawrence
A Summer Folly by Mary Kingsley
Unholy Ghosts by Stacia Kane
Food Inc.: A Participant Guide: How Industrial Food is Making Us Sicker, Fatter, and Poorer-And What You Can Do About It by Karl Weber
A Proper Mistress by Shannon Donnelly
Two L by Lauren Willig
Juliet: A Novel by Anne Fortier

What about you? What was in your mailbox this week?

Waiting on Wednesday 8/24: The Anatomist’s Apprentice



“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I chose The Anatomist’s Apprentice by Tessa Harris.
Expected publication date: Dec 27, 2011, by Kensington.

Meet Dr. Thomas Silkstone, an intriguing addition to the annals of detective fiction.

In eighteenth-century England, the murder of Sir Edward Crick sends a torrent of gossip breezing through Oxfordshire; although, aside from his sister, Lady Lydia Farrell, few mourn the young man. When Lady Farrell’s husband becomes the prime suspect in the murder, she enlists the help of Dr. Thomas Silkstone–an anatomist and pioneering forensic detective–to solve the murder and prove his innocence.

Though Dr. Silkstone studied medicine in England under the foremost surgeon in the region, his unconventional methods and unfamiliar field of study have made him an outsider. Still, he agrees to examine Sir Edward’s corpse, but the keenest blade he will use is his intellect. He must determine both the cause and motive of this suspicious death in what will be the first of many cases.

What about you? What did you choose this week?

Mailbox Monday 8/22

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

This month Mailbox Monday is hosted by Staci at Life in the Thumb.

Here are the new books I picked up this week.

First, quite a few titles by Georgette Heyer from the Sourcebooks sale:

Frederica

Masqueraders

Venetia

Corinthian

Powder and Patch

Convenient Marriage

Talisman Ring

Devil’s Cub

Arabella

The Black Moth (The romance classic!)

Friday’s Child

These Old Shades

Reluctant Widow

False Colours

Quiet Gentleman

Faro’s Daughter

And now the non-Georgette Heyer titles:

Georgette Heyer’s Regency World by Jennifer Kloester

Not Quite a Husband by Sherry Thomas

Lady Gallant by Suzanne Robinson

Wild Montana Sky (The Montana Sky Series) by Debra Holland

I also picked up the following titles by Patricia C. Wrede at the used book store:

Thirteenth Child

Across the Great Barrier


What about you? Do you find it hard as I do to resist ebook sales?

Waiting on Wednesday 8/17: Firelight



“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

This week I chose Firelight by Kristen Callihan.
Expected publication date: February 1, 2012, by Hachette

London, 1881
Once the flames are ignited . . .
Miranda Ellis is a woman tormented. Plagued since birth by a strange and powerful gift, she has spent her entire life struggling to control her exceptional abilities. Yet one innocent but irreversible mistake has left her family’s fortune decimated and forced her to wed London’s most nefarious nobleman.

They will burn for eternity . . .
Lord Benjamin Archer is no ordinary man. Doomed to hide his disfigured face behind masks, Archer knows it’s selfish to take Miranda as his bride. Yet he can’t help being drawn to the flame-haired beauty whose touch sparks a passion he hasn’t felt in a lifetime. When Archer is accused of a series of gruesome murders, he gives in to the beastly nature he has fought so hard to hide from the world. But the curse that haunts him cannot be denied. Now, to save his soul, Miranda will enter a world of dark magic and darker intrigue. For only she can see the man hiding behind the mask.

What about you? What’s your WoW pick?

Mailbox Monday 8/15

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

This month Mailbox Monday is hosted by Staci at Life in the Thumb.

Here are the new books I put on my shelf or ereader this week:

Dancing Moon by Barbara Samuel

If I Wait For You by Jane Goodger

Sweet Release (Kenleigh/Blakewell Family Saga) by Pamela Clare

The Amaranth Enchantment by Julie Berry

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Compared with last week, I didn’t pick up nearly as many books. I’m saving my money for the big Sourcebooks sale on Georgette Heyer, which begins 8/15.

What about you? What are you planning to buy this week?

Good Girls Don’t by Victoria Dahl

Good Girls Don't (Donovan Brothers Brewery, #1) Good Girls Don’t (Hqn) by Victoria Dahl

Good Girls Don’t is the first of a trilogy of contemporary romances from Victoria Dahl about the Donavan Brothers Brewery. Below is the publisher’s summary:

Too much of a good thing…

With her long ponytail and sparkling green eyes, Tessa Donovan looks more like the girl next door than a businesswoman—or a heartbreaker. Which may explain why Detective Luke Asher barely notices her when he arrives to investigate a break–in at her family’s brewery. He’s got his own problems—starting with the fact that his partner, Simone, is pregnant and everyone thinks he’s the father.

Tessa has her hands full, too. Her brother’s playboy ways may be threatening the business, and the tension could tear her tight–knit family apart. In fact, the only thing that could unite the Donovan boys is seeing a man come after their “baby” sister. Especially a man like Luke Asher. But Tessa sees past the rumors to the man beneath. He’s not who people think he is—and neither is she.

I was happy to have the chance via Harlequin and Netgalley to review Good Girls Don’t. I had started one of Dahl’s historicals, A Little Bit Wild, this winter, but couldn’t get into it. I think the author’s voice works a lot better for contemporary than historical settings. I enjoyed this book overall though the heroine wasn’t my favorite. I’m sure many others feel the same way about ponytail-wearing perky blondes (speaking as a non-perky blonde myself). I could definitely sympathize with Tessa’s efforts to be a peacemaker in her family and this made her more likeable. There was really nothing I disliked about the hero, Luke.

What kept me reading was the sizzling chemistry between the leads, as well as the quirky characters and witty dialogue. The mystery about the break-in at the brewery was solved in a way that kept the story moving without taking away from the romance. I already have the next in the series, Bad Boys Do, and look forward to reading it soon.

View all my reviews

Waiting on Wednesday 8/10: Under the Same Sky



“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Under the Same Sky by Genevieve Graham

January 3, 2012, Penguin

The year is 1746. A young woman from South Carolina and a Scottish Highlander share an intimacy and devotion beyond their understanding. They’ve known each other their entire lives. They live a half-world apart. And they have never met…

Maggie Johnson has been gifted with “the Sight” ever since she was a child. Her dreams bring her visions of the future and of a presence she knows is not a figment of her imagination. She calls him Wolf, having watched him grow from a careless young boy into a fearsome warrior, and she trusts him with her life and her heart.

Andrew MacDonnell is fascinated by the woman who has visited him in his dreams for as long as he can remember, entranced by her beauty, knowing deep in his soul that she is as real as he. Although he doesn’t know who she is, Andrew believes that destiny will bring them together.

When tragedy and war strike their homelands, both Maggie and Andrew suffer indescribable losses. Separated across an ocean, the bond they share nevertheless grows as they sense each other’s pain, lend each other strength, and embark on a journey of the spirit to find and love one another at long last…

What’s your WoW pick this week?

Mailbox Monday 8/8

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

This month Mailbox Monday is hosted by Staci at Life in the Thumb.

Here’s what I picked up this week.

Making Waves by Tawna Fenske

The Governess and the Sheikh (Harlequin Historical) by Marguerite Kaye

Lady of the Storm by Kathryne Kennedy

Stand-in Wife (Harlequin Superromance) by Karina Bliss

I Love the Earl by Caroline Linden

Wild & Steamy by Crane, Carolyn, Myles, Jill, Brook, Meljean

The Disgraced Playboy (Harlequin Presents) by Caitlin Crews

Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

I’m excited to read all of the above! What was in your mailbox this week?

Waiting on Wednesday: Fortune’s Son



“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Fortune’s Son by Emery Lee

November 1, 2011, Sourcebooks Casablanca

Love is the ultimate gamble…
Seasoned gambler Philip Drake knows every trick and uses most of them. After years of infamy, he’s ready to accept the mantle of respectability with his earldom– until a devastating racing loss and the threat of debtors’ prison force Philip right back into his gaming ways…

Susannah, Lady Messingham, is a woman with a past who refuses to belong to any man again. But Philip’s skill catches her eye and she persuades him to teach her how to win at the tables. Their new partnership turns into an exhilarating high-stakes game that entangles them in terrifying risk and unimaginable rewards…

Immerse yourself in the risky side of Georgian England with a pair of lovers who aren’t afraid to risk it all on a toss of the dice…


What about you–what’s your WoW pick?

One Night in London: The Truth about the Duke by Caroline Linden



One Night in London: The Truth About the Duke
by Caroline Linden
Publication date: August 30th, 2011
Harper Collins/Avon

I’ve wanted to read a book by Caroline Linden for a long time and even have a couple of titles from her Regency spy series in my TBR pile. That’s why I was glad via Netgalley and Avon/Harper Collins to have the chance to read an advanced copy of One Night in London: The Truth About the Duke.

Based on the author’s previous titles, I was expecting another romantic adventure, but instead this book focuses on a custody battle and a disputed inheritance. Plots about inheritance are about my least favorite in historical romance, though they’re among the most common. Still, I found this an enjoyable read.

Lady Francesca Gordon is trying to get custody of her young niece, Georgina, believing that her stepmother is keeping her only for the benefit of the girl’s allowance. After a long search, Francesca finds a solicitor, Wittiers, who is willing to take her case. The moment that the Wittiers agrees, he’s called away on a more urgent case. Francesca discovers that Edward de Lacey, the second son of the late Duke of Durham, has secured the services of the Wittiers.

She then decides to use her influence with a newspaper publisher who has printed a scandalous bit of news that puts the inheritance of the Duke of Durham’s sons in question to persuade Edward to find her another solicitor. Edward agrees, and naturally, he and Francesca find themselves drawn to one another. It’s sort of a “tolerate” to “love” progression.

I really liked the Francesca as a heroine. She was headstrong without being overly feisty. Also though it’s mentioned that her forthrightness is due to her Italian heritage, this stereotype is not carried out to such an extent as in other books (such as Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart). I also thought the ending played out well, especially the subplots about Francesca’s would-be lover Lord Alconbury and her niece Georgina (the latter was especially heartwarming). Plus, unlike many historical romances the hero and heroine barely hold hands for the first half of the book. The “slow burn” progression made the book really stand out in my mind.

The inheritance plot is not really resolved and I assume it will continue in two more books about the remaining two brothers. While I’m not sure that I’ll read the rest of the series, I’m looking forward to I Love the Earl, a novella-length prequel to the One Night in London series. I’ve heard that it’s set in the less-common Georgian period which fascinates me.