Beth's Book-Nook Blog

Reviews of What I've Been Reading….

One for Sorrow by Mary Downing Hahn

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I found this title online and was happy to receive it through Net Galley for my iPad.

It is billed as a children’s book, but I think the content more appropriate for YA or adults. (similar to the conversations about WOLF HOLLOW — is that really a children’s book? I say not).

In this novel, young Annie is the new girl at school and she snubs an unpopular but clingy and unkind girl, who then contracts influenza and haunts Annie. Lots to think and talk about with this one in regards to how we treat others, and/or in the historical context of WWI.

Here’s the overview:

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Again — it’s not just for children! I enjoyed it and read it straight through in a sitting.
Thank you for my review copy!
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THE ALICE NETWORK by Kate Quinn

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I had heard some chatter about this novel when it first came out earlier this summer, so I was excited to score a copy through Edelweiss. This was a compelling story about female Resistance members and spies in both WWI and WWII (which you rarely get in a novel!).

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She’s also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie’s parents banish her to Europe to have her “little problem” taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she’s recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she’s trained by the mesmerizing Lili, code name Alice, the “queen of spies,” who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy’s nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. That is until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn’t heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth . . . no matter where it leads.

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Oh my goodness — how I loved these characters, Charlie and Eve! Such strong women who could truly fight for a cause. I love it when the main characters are just so perfectly imperfect. You love them because they seem so real.

This was a solid story — at times sad, at times I laughed.

Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction!

Thank you for my review copy!!

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DEVOTION by Meg Kerr

A few months ago, Prism Publishers in Canada sent me a pdf of Meg Kerr’s new novel DEVOTION, a continuation of Pride and Prejudice. Thank you!!

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Here’s the overview:

After answering in her first novel Experience some burning questions that Pride & Prejudice fans have always asked — just how happy ever after were Elizabeth and Darcy following their wedding? And what became of the other Bennet sisters?— in her companion novel Devotion Meg continues  the story of the Darcy family, with particular attention to Darcy’s younger sister, Georgiana.

Devotion follows the now 20-year-old Georgiana Darcy. While her brother sets out without her knowledge to secure her a husband, Georgiana, upon receipt of a long-delayed letter, embarks on a secret journey—leading to a chance meeting with a charming yet wicked young man with nefarious intentions.

The story is full of intrigue, romance and humour, it also brings to the forefront stories of some other characters first introduced in Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice, including Caroline Bingley and Pen Harrington, and seamlessly introduces new characters while maintaining the integrity of Austen’s beloved classic tale.

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I have to be honest, now, and say that normally I detest these types of novels as authors rarely “get it right” (remember – I spend my spare time cavorting around the home of the Alcott’s and I consider Louisa May a kindred spirit. No one has captured LMA’s storytelling skills to date.).

I have to say that I loved this story! I loved the writing and was amazed by how well Ms. Kerr captured the nuances of 19th century style. I enjoyed the storyline and I think that others who love Austen will, too.

FROM JULY 15-JULY 19, 2017 YOU CAN GET DEVOTION FREE FOR YOUR KINDLE VIA AMAZON! Woot!

Here’s a bit about her (I want her to visit Boston so I can show her Orchard House and we can talk about the 1800’s. I will wear my hoop skirt!):

What do you do when you live in the twenty-first century but a piece of your heart lies in the nineteenth? If you are author Meg Kerr you let your head and hand follow your heart. With her love of country life—dogs and horses, long walks in the woods and fields, dining with family and neighbours and dancing with friends, reading and writing and the best conversation—and her familiarity with eighteenth and nineteenth century history and literature, Meg has a natural gift to inhabit, explore and reimagine the world that Jane Austen both dwelt in and created, and to draw readers there with her.

Her forthcoming book, Devotion, will be available in the summer of 2017.

 Here are a few videos of Meg talking about her novel – check them out!

https://www.dropbox.com/s/472d9xav1c9qprc/DEVOTION_3TheOthers.mp4?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/l8uxexsw4qsz6pz/DEVOTION_2MrDarcy.mp4?dl=0

 

 

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THE WITCHFINDER’S SISTER by Beth Underdown

So — I recently found this novel on Net Galley and since I love historical fiction and things like Salem, I thought it would be a great read.

This book totally haunted me and I was horrified to find out it was based on many real events. It was very well done and well-written but also very disturbing. The characters are well developed and more than once I was thankful that I did not live in those times!

Here’s the overview via Net Galley (I loved the gorgeous cover!):

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Thank you for my review copy!
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The Woman on the Orient Express by Lindsay Jayne Ashford

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I had heard about this book, so I was excited when I saw it come up on sale for kindle recently. I bought it and read it on my recent vacation. I’m a huge Christie fan, and I knew about her time “missing” when she was dealing with her marriage issues and stress. This book takes it the next step to create the situation of Agatha taking the Orient Express in order to recuperate from her divorce and to not think about her husband’s upcoming marriage. She meets two women – both with something to hide, and the three become friends, sharing some adventures and excitement along the way.

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

Hoping to make a clean break from a fractured marriage, Agatha Christie boards the Orient Express in disguise. But unlike her famous detective Hercule Poirot, she can’t neatly unravel the mysteries she encounters on this fateful journey.

Agatha isn’t the only passenger on board with secrets. Her cabinmate Katharine Keeling’s first marriage ended in tragedy, propelling her toward a second relationship mired in deceit. Nancy Nelson—newly married but carrying another man’s child—is desperate to conceal the pregnancy and teeters on the brink of utter despair. Each woman hides her past from the others, ferociously guarding her secrets. But as the train bound for the Middle East speeds down the track, the parallel courses of their lives shift to intersect—with lasting repercussions.

Filled with evocative imagery, suspense, and emotional complexity, The Woman on the Orient Express explores the bonds of sisterhood forged by shared pain and the power of secrets.

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I loved this novel! It did an excellent job in portraying Ms. Christie and the pain and struggle that comes with a major life change. There was a bit of a mystery, along with a range of emotions. It was an excellent read and I highly recommend it to lovers of historical fiction (and Agatha Christie!).

 

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Litfuse Publicity Tour for THE CAPTAIN’S DAUGHTER by Jennifer Delamere

I’m happy to take part in the Litfuse tour for this lovely book by Jennifer Delamere: THE CAPTAIN’S DAUGHTER. I would classify it as a Victorian/Christian Romance. It is the story of an orphan (now young woman) who makes her way in London, in part by becoming part of a Gilbert and Sullivan stage show. As a theater buff, I really enjoyed that aspect of the book! Overall, the word “gentle” comes to mind when I read this story- it’s a clean read and a happy ending.

I received an e-copy to review – thank you! And thank you for making me part of the tour.

Book info

About the book:
Warm-hearted Victorian romance brings 1880s London to life.
 
When a series of circumstances beyond her control leave Rosalyn Bernay alone and penniless in London, she chances upon a job backstage at a theater that is presenting the most popular show in London. A talented musician and singer, she feels immediately at home and soon becomes enthralled with the idea of pursuing a career on the stage.
A hand injury during a skirmish in India has forced Nate Moran out of the army until he recovers. Filling his time at a stable of horses for hire in London, he has also spent the past two months working nights as a stagehand, filling in for his injured brother. Although he’s glad he can help his family through a tough time, he is counting the days until he can rejoin his regiment. London holds bitter memories for him that he is anxious to escape. But then he meets the beautiful woman who has found a new lease on life in the very place Nate can’t wait to leave behind.

About the author:
 
Jennifer Delamere’s debut Victorian romance, “An Heiress at Heart,” was a 2013 RITA award finalist in the inspirational category. Her follow-up novel, “A Lady Most Lovely,” received a starred review from “Publishers Weekly” and the Maggie Award for Excellence from Georgia Romance Writers. Jennifer earned a BA in English from McGill University in Montreal, where she became fluent in French and developed an abiding passion for winter sports. She’s been an editor of nonfiction and educational materials for nearly two decades, and lives in North Carolina with her husband.
 
Find out more about Jennifer at jenniferdelamere.com.
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 Blog Tour Schedule
Landing page:

Tour Schedule:
6/20
Amy | A Nest in the Rocks
Debra | 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too !
Heidi | Heidi Reads…
Jalynn | A Simple Life, really?!
Kayleigh | Neverending Stories
Rachel | Smiling Book Reviews
Stacey | Books,Dreams,Life
Vik Tory | Manuscript Tunes

6/21
Carrie | Reading Is My SuperPower
Megan | Pursuing Intentional Living
Mimi | Woven by Words
Sally | Proverbial Reads

6/22
Annie | Just Commonly
Colleen | ColleenRichman.com
Erin | For Him and My Family
Keri | My Table of Three
Lena Nelson | A Christian Writer’s World

6/23
Chantal | This Chattanooga Mommy Saves
Gayle | BOOKS REVEIWS ETC
Hallie | Book by Book
Leah | As We Walk Along the Road
Michelle | I Hope You Dance

6/24
Marissa | The Review Stew

6/25
Becky | Christian Chick’s Thoughts
Carole | The Power of Words
Deana | Texas Book-aholic
Lisa | A Rup Life
Sarah | Running Through The Storms

6/26
Billy | Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer
Kelly | Leafy Not Beefy
Lindsey | Books for Christian Girls
Tressa | Wishful Endings
Katie | Fiction Aficionado

6/27
Charity | Giveaway Lady
Kristie | Moments
Mackenzie | Spreading His Grace
Pamela | Daysong Reflections
Stacie | Pursuing Stacie
Carla | Working Mommy Journal

6/28
Kathleen | Reviews From The Heart
Lisa | Seeking with All yur Heart
Loraine | Loraine D. Nunley, Author
Madelyn | Literary Cafe
Maureen | Maureen’s Musings
Rachel | Bookworm Mama
Renee | Little Homeschool on the Prairie

6/29
Sydney | Singing Librarian Books

6/30
Alex | Inspiration Clothesline
Amanda | Inklings and notions
Amy | Pause for Tales
Andi | Radiant Light
Erin | ReviewsByErin
Stephanie | Have A Wonderful Day

7/1
Amanda | The Talbert Report
Elisha | Rainy Day Reviews
Julie | More Of Him
Renee | Black ‘n’ Gold Girl’s Book Spot
Vera | Chat With Vera
Veronica | Veronica’s ‘Views
Beth | Beth’s Book-Nook Blog

7/2
Barbara | I’m Hooked on Books
Erica | Live.Love.Read.
Katie | Too Read or Not Too Read

7/3
Andrea | Writing to Inspire
Becky | Living Outside the Lines
Molly | Cafinated Reads

7/4
Beth | For The Love of Books
Carolina | Cisneros Cafe
Nancy | sunny island breezes

7/5
Ashley | What’s She Reading?
Sherry | My Reading Journeys

7/6
Paphapin | Feeling in Red
Bree | Bibliophile Reviews
Charity | aTransParentMom
Heather | Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen
Mindy | A Room Wihtout Books is Empty

7/7
Bethany | The Perfect beginning
Dela | Pastries and Novel Thoughts
Tarah | Literary Time Out
Trish | View from the Birdhouse
Faye | Labor Not in Vain

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THE LIFE SHE WAS GIVEN by Ellen Marie Wiseman

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Another book I “wished” for on Net Galley – and was lucky enough to receive! – was THE LIFE SHE WAS GIVEN by Ellen Marie Wiseman. I had been hearing good things about this story of a girl who joins the circus. This was a really memorable read, interesting yet disturbing, and eventually I felt haunted by the ending. But – it was soooo good! If you like historical fiction, and can handle the disturbing child neglect/abuse, then you should check out this novel!

Description

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Some readers may find the alternating points of view confusing, but each story was moving along a tangent where you know they would eventually converge.
If I had one issue, it’s that I like a happy ending that is neat and tidy.
This one still haunts me…
Thank you for my review copy!
You can find this book on Amazon where I am an Associate. It publishes in late July:

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Book Blast for WHERE RAINBOWS END by Anne Marie Brear

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Where Rainbows End by AnneMarie Brear

Publication Date: May 23, 2017
Choc Lit
eBook; ASIN: B071P7KBH6

Genre: Fiction/Historical/Romance/Western

Can she hold on to her dreams…?

It’s 1850 and the Noble family have travelled to the other side of the world to start a new life after scandal drove them from their native England.

Pippa Noble is determined to reclaim their honour by making her father’s plan for an outback farm reality, although her ambition is frowned upon by a society that has very set ideas about a woman’s place…

Pippa learns the hard way about the unforgiving nature of the bush, sometimes with devastating consequences. And when unfortunate circumstance leads to Pippa tending the farm alone, it is the friendship of neighbouring estate owner Gil Ashford-Smith that helps her through.

Then an unexpected visitor from England arrives, putting Pippa’s dreams in jeopardy. But she refuses to let go. She will hold onto her family’s land, even if it means losing everything else…

“A compelling story of a headstrong woman who defies the traditional female role and forages a successful life through hard work and a strong vision. Excellent descriptions of the outback and the hardships of life in Australia in the 1850’s.” – Amazon Review

You can purchase Where Rainbows End in eBook via:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Chapters | Google Play | iBooks | Kobo

About the Author

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AnneMarie has been a life-long reader and started writing in 1997 when her children were small. She has a love of history, of grand old English houses and a fascination of what might have happened beyond their walls. Her interests include reading, genealogy, watching movies, spending time with family and eating chocolate – not always in that order!

AnneMarie grew up in Australia but now lives in the UK.

For more information please visit AnneMarie Brear’s website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Goodreads.

Book Blast Schedule

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Monday, May 29
Tuesday, May 30
Wednesday, May 31
Thursday, June 1
Friday, June 2
Saturday, June 3
Sunday, June 4
Monday, June 5
Tuesday, June 6
Wednesday, June 7
Thursday, June 8
Friday, June 9
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The Hollywood Daughter by Kate Alcott

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I love books by Kate Alcott, so I was thrilled to see that she wrote one about the heyday of Hollywood. The Hollywood Daughter is told from the point of view of the daughter of a publicist who represents, among others, Ingrid Bergman. Jesse idolizes Ingrid Bergman and when Bergman comes to her school to film The Bells of St. Mary, Jesse’s strict Catholic upbringing and her Hollywood family life collide.

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HFVBTour for UNDER THE APPROACHING DARK by Anna Belfrage with GIVEAWAY!!

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I’m super excited to be part of the blog tour for the amazing Anna’s latest novel in the King’s Greatest Enemy series: UNDER THE APPROACHING DARK. Anna’s books are always a treat to read, and they are chock full of exciting adventures and tons of historical details. She has an incredible gift in making history come alive.

I have to be honest and say that this is a time period that I’m a bit sketchy on. I’m one of those Americans who read a lot of Tudor-type books, without thinking too much of the centuries of English history that are not Tudor! Fascinating in its grittiness, I love learning about this time in history through lovable and fun characters, such as ADam and Kit.

I loved Anna’s Graham Saga, so if you did, too, you will certainly adore this series as well! I follow Anna on Facebook – she is a treat! Thank you so much for my review e-copy and for making me part of the tour!!

Under the Approaching Dark by Anna Belfrage

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Publication Date: April 28, 2017
Matador
eBook & Paperback; 424 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

Adam de Guirande has cause to believe the turbulent times are behind him: Hugh Despenser is dead and Edward II is forced to abdicate in favour of his young son. It is time to look forward, to a bright new world in which the young king, guided by his council, heals his kingdom and restores its greatness. But the turmoil is far from over.

After years of strife, England in the early months of 1327 is a country in need of stability, and many turn with hope towards the new young king, Edward III. But Edward is too young to rule, so instead it is his mother, Queen Isabella, and her lover, Roger Mortimer, who do the actual governing, much to the dislike of barons such as Henry of Lancaster.

In the north, the Scots take advantage of the weakened state of the realm and raid with impunity. Closer to court, it is Mortimer’s increasing powers that cause concerns – both among his enemies, but also for men like Adam, who loves Mortimer dearly, but loves the young king just as much.

When it is announced that Edward II has died in September of 1327, what has so far been a grumble grows into voluble protests against Mortimer. Yet again, the spectre of rebellion haunts the land, and things are further complicated by the reappearance of one of Adam’s personal enemies. Soon enough, he and his beloved wife Kit are fighting for their survival – even more so when Adam is given a task that puts them both in the gravest of dangers.

“The writing is impeccable. The story has everything. Under the Approaching Dark is just perfect in every sense” – Sharon Bennett Connolly, History The Interesting Bits

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Chapters | IndieBound | Kobo

About the Author

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Anna was raised abroad, on a pungent mix of Latin American culture, English history and Swedish traditions. As a result she’s multilingual and most of her reading is historical- both non-fiction and fiction. Possessed of a lively imagination, she has drawers full of potential stories, all of them set in the past. She was always going to be a writer – or a historian, preferably both. Ideally, Anna aspired to becoming a pioneer time traveller, but science has as yet not advanced to the point of making that possible. Instead she ended up with a degree in Business and Finance, with very little time to spare for her most favourite pursuit. Still, one does as one must, and in between juggling a challenging career Anna raised her four children on a potent combination of invented stories, historical debates and masses of good food and homemade cakes. They seem to thrive…

For years she combined a challenging career with four children and the odd snatched moment of writing. Nowadays Anna spends most of her spare time at her writing desk. The children are half grown, the house is at times eerily silent and she slips away into her imaginary world, with her imaginary characters. Every now and then the one and only man in her life pops his head in to ensure she’s still there.

Other than on her website, www.annabelfrage.com, Anna can mostly be found on her blog, http://annabelfrage.wordpress.com – unless, of course, she is submerged in writing her next novel. You can also connect with Anna on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, May 1
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!

Tuesday, May 2
Interview at Let Them Read Books
Spotlight at What Is That Book About

Wednesday, May 3
Review at A Book Drunkard

Thursday, May 4
Review at A Holland Reads

Friday, May 5
Spotlight at The Reading Queen

Monday, May 8
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time

Tuesday, May 9
Review at Just One More Chapter

Wednesday, May 10
Review at A Bookaholic Swede

Thursday, May 11
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Friday, May 12
Spotlight at Passages to the Past

Monday, May 15
Review at Historical Fiction Obsession

Tuesday, May 16
Review at Back Porchervations
Guest Post at Ms. Stuart Requests the Pleasure of Your Company

Wednesday, May 17
Spotlight at A Literary Vacation

Thursday, May 18
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Friday, May 19
Review at Beth’s Book Nook Blog

Monday, May 22
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews

Tuesday, May 23
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Review at The Muse in the Fog Book Reviews

Wednesday, May 24
Excerpt at Jo’s Book Blog
Spotlight at The Paperback Princess

Thursday, May 25
Review at Broken Teepee

Friday, May 26
Spotlight at Laura’s Interests

Sunday, May 28
Review at Bookramblings
Review at Books and Benches

Monday, May 29
Guest Post at Yelena Casale’s Blog

Tuesday, May 30
Interview at Dianne Ascroft’s Blog

Giveaway

To win a copy of Under the Approaching Dark by Anna Belfrage, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on May 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open internationally.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

Direct Link: https://gleam.io/2f2eV/under-the-appraoching-dark

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