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Thursday

Book Review: The Haunting of a Duke by Chasity Bowlin




Series: Book 1 in the ‘Dark Regency’.

"I have learned we are all capable of horrible things with proper motivation." ~~ Chasity Bowlin (Book: The Haunting of a Duke)

“The Haunting of a Duke” was hiding somewhere in my Kindle for a while. One day, while riffling through titles I saw this. I can’t say that loved the cover as all covers appear gray & dull in Kindle.

But something about it nagged me to start reading it.

Now let's find out how ‘The Haunting Of A Duke By Chasity Bowlin’ turned out….

Genre: Historical-Paranormal Romance.

Main Characters: Emmaline Walters; Lord Rhys Brammel.

'The Haunting Of A Duke Chasity Bowlin' ~~ Synopsis:

Emme has the gift of seeing and talking to spirits. Sometimes the spirits help her uncover truths people want to hide. She refrains from flaunting her ability. But after helping a few people in need, she becomes known as a medium/physic. 

That’s the reason why Lady Phyllis invites Emme. Lady Phyllis wants the confirmation that her son, as rumored, didn’t kill his wife.

Emme doesn't mind her gifts much; not until she wakes up in strange places at night. Something if anyone finds out could ruin her reputation.

So getting lost in the tunnels in Lord Brammel's home at night isn't a pleasant surprise to wake up to. But Emme has no control over the spirits and how they want to direct her.

Rhys is surprised to find Emme roaming around in the tunnels at night and wondered what the alleged medium is up to.

He doesn't believe in charlatans, his mother likes to invite into their home. But he doesn't object either as that seems to keep his mother happy.

His mother's not the same since the murder of his younger sister and later the untimely death of his elder brother.

As if this many tragedies were no enough, when his crazy wife, Elise killed herself and everyone, including his mother, started suspecting Rhys.  

Rhys never wanted to marry Elise after the death of his brother. He'd even warned his brother against marrying her. But no one listened to him and unfortunately he too fell into Elise’s trap.

Now his mother, yet again has invited another unknown person in their home, who claims to talk to the spirits.

Just because his mother doesn't see the danger in inviting such people in their home that doesn't mean he should not keep an eye on Emme.

Rhys suspects Emme is up to something, maybe she wants to steal something or dupe his mother somehow or is a social climber. So he asks his childhood friend Michael to keep an eye on Emme in his absence.

Emme has enough troubles without adding a suspicious and handsome duke to the equation. He doesn't believe her that's not her only problem....

Emme is beginning to like Rhys. She knows that he distrusts her and does not believe in her abilities.

The other trouble is the nature of her gift seems to be changing as now she can see the spirits just like alive people. So she tells Michael about her conversation with Rhys’s late sister.  

Emme's disclosure unravels Michael and he begins to believe her. Michael shares his opinion with Rhys but Rhys isn't ready to believe in Emme's abilities.

But the killer isn't taking any chances dismissing Emme's claim to have talked to Rhys dead sister. If Emme can talk to the spirits, then he doesn't want to take the risk of Emme finding out.

Soon the killer begins his attempts to kill Emme. Rhys gets busy making sure Emme is safe. In his quest to keep Emme safe, Rhys once again finds himself getting married.

The hunt for the killer begins, who seems bent on killing Emme. Also the crazy spirit of Rhys ex wife comes back to haunt him too, threatening to take away one person he's starting to care about more than anyone.  

 

Review:

 

I enjoyed reading 'The Haunting of a Duke' so much so I ended up thinking that it's a novella that ended too soon. Emme and Rhys characters are interesting and the story is engaging till the end. The best part was when I guessed who the killer is.

The only thing that did bother me is how people came to know about Emme's abilities, considering she's not into flaunting or even acknowledging them. A bit of back story would have been nice.

Anyway, the story is interesting. If you too like your historical romance novels with ghosts roaming around then you might enjoy 'The Haunting of a Duke' too.

 

"When you save someone's hide, it is an act of friendship and generosity and should not be invoked later as a form of currency." ~~ Chasity Bowlin (Book: The Haunting Of A Duke)



Hit Or Miss: Hit!

Ratings: 4 stars/5.

Buy:  Amazon  |    iTunes

Happy Reading!

 

 

 

Monday

Book Review: The Wedding Duel by Katy Madison



Series: Book 1 in the ‘The Dueling Pistols’.

“Some things were just better left unsaid, unheard unthought.” ~~ Katy Madison (Book: The Wedding Duel)

 

I probably would not have read this book, if it were not part of a box-set and just because of the cover. Why change such a nice cover and exchange it with something so weird?

The one I saw on Goodreads is far better than this one. I was thinking I might be able to shoot that one.

Unfortunately, this book has the same dull cover for the anthology. Even separately the book has the same dull cover.

The blurb is misleading too. Why, why?

Anyways, let’s move on…

Genre: Historical Romance.

Main Characters: Sophie Farthing, Keene Davis.

‘The Wedding Duel by Katy Madison’ ~~ Synopsis:

Keene may not want to shoot one of his best friends. But he does not have a choice. Keen’s other friend is bent on ruining his life and marriage in grief over an incident.

But something goes wrong and he only ends up injuring his friend. On some level, Keene’s relieved. But he still has no idea how he’s going to clean the mess that his friends have created.

Maybe he shouldn’t have jumped into their predicament. It’s not as if there is lack of problems in his life.

Since the death of his younger brother, the true heir of his father, neither he nor his father knows how to deal with the loss. They also don’t know how to deal with their new predicament.

Keene is not his father’s son and the man who had raised him doesn’t want him to inherit the title or the property. But neither is ready to make the family secret public. 

So his father comes up with a solution: either Keene marries his cousin, who his father is determined to declare the next heir or Keene goes to prison for shooting a man.

Keene has many ambitions in life and not one of them involves going to prison. He wants to enter politics and for that he would need a wife anyway.

But he would have never chosen Sophie as the possible candidate for marriage. Sophie never knew anything about control or manners while she’s a kid and he’s sure she hasn’t changed much.

But Sophie he must marry or else. So he begins his journey to meet her parents, hoping they’d decline his offer because of his reputation.

All Sophie wants is to have some fun, ride a horse and if possible dance a little.

But all her parents want her to do is behave like a lady and do nothing until they have married her off to some respectable man. And there are few who her parents have brainwashed into wanting to marry her.

But none of them Sophie wants to marry. So in hopes to escape yet another suitor, Sophie jumps out of the window. But the plan goes wrong and Keene saves her.

Sophie remembers Keene, another person who doesn’t approve of her behavior. Turns out he wants to marry her. Sophie doesn’t know why, but she’s beyond caring.

She likes him and after marriage he’d take her away from her boring country life and stern parents. He surely would take her to attend a ball or two, thinking that Sophie accepts his offer.

Keene is as surprised as her parent with Sophie’s acceptance of his offer of marriage. She’s grown up, but she still seems to behave recklessly.

Then there’s a small issue of mutual attraction between them and the idea of marriage doesn’t seem all that unpleasant. At least, not until his father-in-law implies something that makes Keene wonder for how long he’d avoid his wife.

All the happy dreams of marriage and living in London with Keene, comes crashing down, when Keene leaves Sophie at his father’s house.

Sophie decides that she’d become the kind of woman Keene probably likes, so she’d win his heart. If only she knew the real problem’s something else.

 

Review:

Even if the cover is such a flop, the plot isn’t. I’m glad I didn’t get too much time to judge “The Wedding Duel” by its cover as I would have left reading it for some other time.

I found the duel funny. Maybe I shouldn’t have, it’s nothing to laugh about after all. But I still found it funny. Actually, quite a few situations made me laugh.

Then there’s so much misunderstanding going around that at one point I was sure it’s all going to get confusing. It does not. All the background drama only adds more to the drama, intensity and laughter to the story.

I felt bad for Sophie. After all, she’s the most confused character around and suffers quite a lot because of that. But it’s not like Keene is a bad guy. It’s just a complicated story set in an era with a different set of rules.

Then there’s a sub-plot. When I realized that it’s not going to fade away in the background anytime soon, I suspected I would leave the story in-between. After all, I didn’t sign up for that.

But the story in the background only adds to the confusion, chaos, drama and tension and I quite enjoyed it.

It wouldn’t be wrong to say, “The Wedding Duel” is a comedy of errors..

 

“A sinner in one regard apparently made one suspect in all other matters.” ~~ Katy Madison (Book: The Wedding Duel)

 

Hit or Miss: Hit.

Ratings: 4stars/5.

Buy: Amazon  |  iTunes

Happy Reading!

Book Review: A Gentleman Says 'I Do' By Amelia Grey



Series: Rogues' Dynasty Book Five

"The act of revenge is never as sweet as the anticipation of it." ~~ Amelia Grey (Book: A Gentleman Says 'I Do')

I got the book because I found the blurb amusing and the line 'A Gentleman Says 'I Do' But Only Under Duress.'

Wanted to read as I anticipated some comedy and the heroine is an author, who's known even if she's not. Mystery!

Let's get on with the review to know more about the story....

Genre: Historical Romance

Main Characters: Catalina Crisp, Iverson Brentwood.

'A Gentleman Says 'I Do' By Amelia Grey' Synopsis:

Iverson along with his twin Matson return to London after establishing their business in America as per their father's wishes. But they want to settle in their homeland.

Soon they hear about a parody published in a popular paper that seems to question their parentage. After reading it, the brothers are furious at the author's audacity to insinuate something that scandalous.

Matson's sure that in a few days people will forget and move on to another gossip because it's just a parody, not an irrefutable proof.

But Iverson is too irked to let it all go. How to let it all go? That's Iverson's predicament. The parody is an insult to their dead mother's memory.

It seems people do not just think that the parody is amusing. But they also are eager to share their appreciation of the parody with Iverson. As if someone questioning his late mother’s character would be amusing to him.  

It isn’t. So after punching one gentleman for wanting to discuss the parody, Iverson decides it's time to confront the author, Sir Philip Crisps.

Iverson intends to scare Sir Philip, so that neither the author nor anyone else in the future, would dare to write about any member of the Brentwood family.

When he reaches the author's house, he runs quickly into Sir Philip's rude staff and his feisty daughter, Catalina Crisp.

No matter how Iverson tries to intimidate Catalina with his words, she refuses to lose her calm or show fear. After a while, he starts suspecting, she's finding his behavior amusing. 

He finds himself getting intrigued by the feisty young lady, who stands firm on her stance that her father’s not home. He leaves with the promise to come back to meet her father.

Iverson's visit shakes Catalina more than she showed on her face while tackling Iverson. When she'd finished her father's unfinished manuscript, like always, all she's thinking about earning some money.

Thanks to her father, who lives a carefree life and never bothers about money, Catalina has to worry about money.

After turning sixteen, Catalina at once understood that someone needed to behave like a responsible adult in her household and that someone's not going to be her father or her aunt. So she appoints herself the caretaker of everyone and everything in the house.

Taking care of their huge house, its maintenance, staff that her father kept adding to and her aunt etc. all required money she learned quickly.

Their only source of income is her father's writings. But he believes in disappearing without a trace and often without finishing his work.

So Catalina started to finish his work to get the money in his absence. Not once she’d thought that someone might read too much into her words and comes to confront the author.  

Now that she knows, Catalina wants to correct her mistake by asking the publisher to return the rest of the manuscript. Alas! The publisher refuses to return the rest of the installments. Why would he when the first installment is so popular?  

Catalina's only hope is to find her father and request him to get the rest of the manuscript back. That's when she decides to find her father even if she's no idea where to start her search.

Iverson begins to search Catalina's father too, and goes around meeting Catalina all over the town. Giving gossip-mongers fodder to start a rumor that Baltimore Rake is trying to woo the author's daughter.

 

"Gossip travel fast and long, especially when it's salacious." ~~~ Amelia Grey (Book: A Gentleman Says 'I Do')

 

Iverson doesn't care about the rumors, but he's concerned about Catalina's reputation, but turns out Catalina is more concerned about the terrible poetry the gossip writes, suggesting their alleged affair than the rumors itself.

With a spring in his steps and a song on his lips the Baltimore Rake begins to chase & woo Catalina, in the process, both ends up falling for each other.

Catalina can't stop her thoughts from wandering in Iverson's direction. And every time she thinks about him or spends time with him, it reminds her of a secret she's keeping.

Should she confess that she's the co-author of the infamous parody that he doesn’t like? Or should she wait for her father to come back home and then request him to stop the publisher from publishing the last two installments?

Would Iverson ever forgive her for keeping the secret and understand her reasons?

"There are so many more important things to think about than that elusive emotion called love." ~~~ Amelia Grey (Book: A Gentleman Says 'I Do')

 

Review:

What an entertaining book! I found Iverson's character most amusing and it's my favorite too.

Iverson's character is contradictory to what the author wants us to believe. At least, I'd not, for one moment, imagine Iverson as a 'rake or anything similar.'

I found him more sentimental than Catalina, as he loses hold over his emotions faster than her. Second, sometimes he seems as clueless as Catalina. Like that one time when someone suggests to Iverson that maybe the man he's searching was with his mistress.

Considering Iverson's Rake-ish' image, he should have come to that conclusion without any help from anyone. He keeps insisting he's a bad boy, but gives an impression of 'The Gentleman Doth Protest A Lot.'

I liked Catalina too she's feisty, kind, caring, loving and sometimes a bit of a doormat. The only thing about her character I didn't like was: her insistence on taking on duty after duty without asking her father or aunt to behave like adults.

In the end, I was expecting her family to grow up and take responsibility for themselves but some people just never mature and only grow old.  As a secondary characters Catalina's family members are one of the best, when it comes to entertaining you with their weird antics.  

Hit or Miss: Hit.

Ratings: 4 stars/ 5.

Buy: Amazon   |   iTunes

Happy Reading!