Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Flights of Fancy (American Heiresses #1) by Jen Turano + A GIVEAWAY


About the Book


Title: Flights of Fancy  

Author: Jen Turano  

Genre: Christian Historical Romance, Gilded Age  

Release date: January 1, 2019  

Publisher: Bethany House


Miss Isadora Delafield may be an heiress, but her life is far from carefree. When her mother begins pressuring her to marry an elderly and uncouth duke, she escapes from the high society world she’s always known and finds herself to be an unlikely candidate for a housekeeper position in rural Pennsylvania. 

Mr. Ian MacKenzie is known for his savvy business sense and has built his reputation and fortune completely on his own merits. But when his adopted parents are in need of a new housekeeper and Isadora is thrown into his path, he’s unexpectedly charmed by her unconventional manner.

Neither Isadora nor Ian expected to find the other so intriguing, but when mysterious incidents on the farm and the truth of Isadora’s secret threaten those they love, they’ll have to set aside everything they thought they wanted for a chance at happy-ever-after.


Click here to order your copy!

My Review

This is an absolutely hilarious historical romantic comedy!

This wonderful book is filled with laugh-out-loud moments. There were times I laughed so hard I was crying. Anytime you take a character that lives at one end of the social scale and drop them in a position near the other end there are plenty of opportunities to laugh. Then throw in an eccentric elderly person and a group of children under 10 years old and the possibilities are multiplied.

I love all of the characters, obviously except for the villains, they are so incredibly well developed. I just plain loved to hate the villains.

The plot was fantastic. I was thrilled with the journeys that both Isadora and Ian took to figure out what purpose God had for them and what was truly important to them. This is the type of journey that we all need to take so it was easy to relate to.

I was completely captivated by this wonderful book and am giving it a rating of 5 stars. I am definitely highly recommending it.


I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. I have chosen to write this review to express my personal opinion.

About the Author

  
One of the Funniest Voices in Inspirational Romance by Booklist, Jen Turano is a USA Today Best-Selling Author, known for penning quirky historical romances set in the Gilded Age. Her books have earned Publisher Weekly and Booklist starred reviews, top picks from Romantic Times, and praise from Library Journal. She’s been a finalist twice for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards and had two of her books listed in the top 100 romances of the past decade from Booklist. When she’s not writing, she spends her time outside of Denver, CO.



Guest post from Jen

Q & A With Jen Turano

“Flights of Fancy” is the first book in the American Heiress Series. What inspired you to write this series? 

The inspiration for this entire series started off with a What If? All of my proposals for new series start off that way, and this time it was – What if Consuelo Vanderbilt had balked when her mother insisted she marry the Duke of Marlborough – and then that led to – What if she’d run away until her mother came to her senses? Just like that, an entire series was born – a bit of a different take on American heiresses because in all three books, my heiresses might decide to go a tad…rogue. We start off with Miss Isadora Delafield – who does run off to avoid marriage to a duke, then we get to meet Miss Poppy Garrison, who is an unexpected heiress but who can’t quite seem to get a handle on the expected social decorum of the day, and then the final book revolves around Miss Beatrix Waterbury – who gets banished to Chicago after she annoys her mother one too many times, and once there, well, gets up to a bit of mischief. 

How do you come up with the names of your characters? 

I find most of my names as I research the New York Four-Hundred, although I normally take a first name here, a last name there so I’m not stepping on any toes by writing about an actual historical figure – except for some of the main figures in New York society back then, such as Mr. Ward McAllister – who was the social arbiter of the day, or Mrs. William Astor, who was the queen of that society. What I don’t do is simply make up names, no matter how outrageous they may appear. And, no matter how I may love a certain name, if the character decides it doesn’t suit them, that’s it, it’s out and I’m back to the drawing board. 

How do you picture your character? Do you use Pinterest, magazines, movies?

Odd as this may seem, I don’t use pictures for my characters. They start off in my mind as a blurry figure, and then, they develop from there – I like to keep my descriptions of them somewhat vague on the pages so that the reader can imagine them exactly the way they’d like them to be. 

What are some of your favorite resources for historical research? 

I’ve been building up a research library over the past few years and now have over 200 books dedicated to the Gilded Age. My favorites are – “A Season of Splendor” by Greg King, “Society as I Have Found It” by Ward McAllister, “The Gilded Age in New York – 1870-1910” by Esther Crain, and “ ‘King Lehr’ and the Gilded Age” by Elizabeth Drexel Lehr. 

The setting for “Flights of Fancy” is a bit of a departure for you since it’s set in and outside of Pittsburgh. Any reason for that? 

My mom was born in Pittsburgh, and unfortunately, her father, a prominent attorney back in the day, died when she was only four. I thought it would be cool to set a story in Pittsburgh, which would then allow me to really dive into some research. And get this – while I was doing that research, I found this obscure journal called “Memoirs of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. In that journal was a bit about my great-grandfather, Fred, his wife, Susie, my grandfather, and his brother and sister, but I’d never heard about this brother, who apparently died quite young. One of the most fabulous research tidbits I’ve uncovered to date. 

What are you working on now? 

I’ve just recently turned in the content edits for the second book in this series, “Diamond in the Rough,” and I’ve also turned in a novella about the Harvey Girls that will be coming out in a novella collection in Fall, 2019. With those out of the way, I’m now starting the third and final book in the American Heiress series, Miss Beatrix Waterbury’s story, but I’m having a bit of a struggle with the hero at the moment – he was supposed to be Edward, but he doesn’t want to be an Edward – I think he wants to be Norman – but, time will tell on that one – don’t hold me to the name – it’ll depend on if he changes his mind or not – pesky characters. 

You seem to enjoy adding animals in many of your stories. Will we find any animals in “Flights of Fancy?” 

Since Miss Isadora Delafield ends up on a farm, I do believe you will find a few animals, such as an adorable cow by the name of Buttercup, a few goats that seem to have a great liking for laundry, and…there might be some chickens.

Thanks for stopping by today, everyone! Always enjoy visiting with all of you – in fact, that’s the best part of my job! 

All the best, 

~ Jen ~

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, January 10
Among the Reads, January 10
Through the Fire, January 10
Blogging With Carol, January 11
Back Porch ReadsJanuary 12
KarenSueHadleyJanuary 12
Godly Book Reviews, January 12
Daysong RefectionsJanuary 12
Livin Lit, January 13
The Becca Files, January 13
Texas Book-aholic, January 13
Rebekah’s Quill, January 14
All-of-a-kind Mom, January 15
Stories By Gina, January 15
Splashes of JoyJanuary 16
Mary Hake, January 17
Maureen’s Musings, January 17
Bibliophile Reviews, January 17
Baker Kella, January 18
Simple Harvest ReadsJanuary 18 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Robin is Bookish, January 19
Carpe Diem, January 19
Have A Wonderful DayJanuary 20
Life with the Tribe, January 20
Inklings and NotionsJanuary 20
amandainpaJanuary 21
Pause for Tales, January 22
Live Love Read, January 23
A Rup Life, January 23
Bigreadersite, January 23

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Jen is giving away a grand prize of a trunk filled with all of Jen’s full-length novels released to date!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! 


Click the link below to enter. 



Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Cold Fury (Cold Harbor #3) by Susan Sleeman













Title: Cold Fury (Cold Harbor #3)
Author: Susan Sleeman
Pages: 303
Year: 2018
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Edge of Your Seat Books, Inc.
Format: eBook (also available in paperback)
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. I have chosen to write this review to express my personal opinion.

About the book:

     Five years ago tragedy tore them apart…

     Forensic anthropologist Maggie Turner happily works as an assistant professor at her local university and lives a quiet life near campus. That is until Jackson Lockhart enters her classroom. Then a cyclone of emotions erupt as she remembers the tragedy that once tore them apart. She’s often thought of him, but they’d agreed never to see each other again and so far they’d kept their promise. But today…Jackson has a good reason for breaking his promise. Maggie’s life depends on it.

     Will it now bring them back together?

     In an ongoing investigation, Jackson has learned that university officials secretly videoed her classroom in a study on attendance. The recorder was supposed to run only during the class session, but it malfunctioned and recorded an entire week, which includes a shocking murder that has now put Maggie’s life in danger. Can Jackson unravel the lies surrounding this incident before the killer unleashes his fury on Maggie and takes her life?

My review:

     This is an incredible romantic suspense novel!

     It was wonderful to return to visit the team at Blackwell Tactical. I loved getting a look at how life is progressing for the main characters from the first two book in the series. In this story though Jackson Lockhart steps into the spotlight. His pas is revealed along with some things that helped form his character. All of the characters in this book are very well developed and presented in a way that I can just picture them in my mind’s eye while reading.

     It was great getting to know Maggie, Jackson’s lost love. They are both holding deep heartache from a tragedy that tore them apart. I thoroughly enjoyed the emotional journey that they each took. They had to learn how to trust God with their pain and move past it.

     The plot for this book is fantastic. It is filled with lots of twists and turns. I was fascinated by the details given about the tactical ops the team carried out.

     I am giving this wonderful book a 5 star rating. I am highly recommending it.


Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Flights of Fancy (American Heiresses #1) by Jen Turano













Title: Flights of Fancy (American Heiresses #1)
Author: Jen Turano
Pages: 352
Release Date: January 1, 2019
Genre: Historical Romantic Comedy
Publisher: Bethany House
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and through NetGalley. I have chosen to write this review to express my personal opinion.

About the book:

     Miss Isadora Delafield may be an heiress, but her life is far from carefree. When her mother begins pressuring her to marry an elderly and uncouth duke, she escapes from the high society world she’s always known and finds herself to be an unlikely candidate for a housekeeper position in rural Pennsylvania.

     Mr. Ian MacKenzie is known for his savvy business sense and has build his reputation and fortune completely on his own merits. But when his adopted parents are in need of a new housekeeper and Isadora is thrown into his path, he’s unexpectedly charmed by her unconventional manner.

     Neither Isadora nor Ian expected to find the other so intriguing, but when mysterious incidents on the farm and the truth of Isadora’s secret threaten those they love, they’ll have to set aside everything they thought they wanted for a chance at happy-ever-after.

My review:

     This is an absolutely hilarious historical romantic comedy!

     This wonderful book is filled with laugh-out-loud moments. There were times I laughed so hard I was crying. Anytime you take a character that lives at one end of the social scale and drop them in a position near the other end there are plenty of opportunities to laugh. Then throw in an eccentric elderly person and a group of children under 10 years old and the possibilities are multiplied.

     I love all of the characters, obviously except for the villains, they are so incredibly well developed. I just plain loved to hate the villains.

     The plot was fantastic. I was thrilled with the journeys that both Isadora and Ian took to figure out what purpose God had for them and what was truly important to them. This is the type of journey that we all need to take so it was easy to relate to.

     I was completely captivated by this wonderful book and am giving it a rating of 5 stars. I am definitely highly recommending it.


Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*

Distress Signal (Coldwater Bay Intrigue #3) by Elizabeth Goddard













Title: Distress Signal (Coldwater Bay Intrigue #3)
Author: Elizabeth Goddard
Pages: 224
Release Date: December 31, 2018 
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense
Format: eBook (also available in paperback)
Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. I have chosen to write this review to express my personal opinion.

About the book:

     Perilous reunion at sea.

     When shipwreck archaeologist Cora Strand is attacked and the research boat she’s on explodes, her ex comes to her rescue. Years ago, Kirk Higgins forfeited her heart, and now with no memory of who attacked her, Cora must trust him with her life. But at the risk of blowing his cover, can the NCIS agent stop a killer determined to put them both in a watery grave?

My review:

     This is a thrilling romantic suspense novel!

     I love both of the main characters! Kirk and Cora have come back into each others’ lives while they each carry baggage from how things ended before. They both have deep insecurities that they need to work through. I enjoyed reading their journeys and found it encouraging that they were both praying for God’s help.

     The plot was filled with plenty of twists and heart-pounding action. There were a lot of secondary characters. One of the things that kept me guessing along with Kirk and Cora was the question of who were the good guys and who weren’t

     I loved this story and am giving it a rating of 5 stars and highly recommending it.


Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*