Suddenly – Book Review



by Candace Camp



I picked up this book for my TBR Jar Draw in October. This book surprised me. It surprised me to get it back form someone I supposedly borrowed it to – I never remembered owning it in the first place. In my curiosity I did something I don’t normally do – check out reviews of others. The reviews I ended up reading were quite harsh on the main female character. I did not have high expectation from this book because of it.


My copy of the book is what some would call – well loved. Edition is old enough to drink alcohol in most of the countries of the world and then there is the unmistakable yellow color on the pages of the book.


I could not help but notice some differences in writing style of a historical romance book from the nineties in comparison to the some books that were written in the last decade. It is very subtle, but there is a general pattern to the female heroins in historical romance fiction then and now. I love it when romance authors like to add some historical facts and interesting details to their work. Romance is still in the center of the story but the characters tend to flare into quirky a lot more in newer books than they did just ten years ago.


I was surprised to find that I disagreed with the harsh reviews and opinions about the main female character – Charity. I had to cringe on the cheesy name. The main male character – Simon Dure was only slightly developed and as the rest of the characters did not have much substance to him. I might have been too used to some more complicated plot twists and deeper characters. This book caught me off guard with more simple approach. Even with that said I cannot claim the book was boring or simple. The tropes it follows were more common decade and a half ago but they were well executed.

Charity is blond, too good to be true, fair, only slightly naive, and very much competent to fend of physical attacks. She is also completely virginal and unaware of her own beauty. Simon is a thirty year old widower with short temper and rumors of have murdered his own first wife. Their steamy scenes were a bit exaggerated for my tastes but were interesting enough.

Neither one of the two characters is developed enough to have earned their flaws and character motivation. In this sense the book seemed a bit underdeveloped. As for the plot – that is something completely different. There are enough twists and turns in the plot to have made it interesting form me to the very end.



I might have had a different opinion of this book had I not been prepared for the worst. The cover was cheesy and while I wondered about the elements on it and how they fit in the book I was glad it was not just another cover with a woman and a man in some strange pose. I liked this book better than I expected. I liked that the plot was more than two characters meeting and falling in love until they get married. I might even think it made me look at the genre in a different perspective. All in all I’m glad I have read this book.

Suddenly You – Book Review


Finished reading

Suddenly You

by Lisa Kleypas



I was intrigued by bits and pieces I’ve heard about this book. This is not my first Lisa Kleypas book. I am a great fan of her Wallflowers book series. This book came up a few times I was looking up for historical romance books. I was drawn to this book by the somewhat different introduction for historical romance genre – “old spinster” hires a male prostitute for her 30th birthday…



Admittedly, the back of the book introductions sounded quite cheesy and scandalous. A thirty year old unmarried woman author in 19th century London decides to hire a male prostitute and experience what making love feels like.

As much as I find this – treating yourself for your own birthday thing – endearingly powerful and logical, the gift in itself was remarkably thought out as much as an unmarried spinster of that time could devise it. The plot twist was interesting enough to keep me going.


I made quite a few breaks while reading and I can partially put the blame on that my feeling that this book felt big in the sense of all that has happened trough the story. Some characters made me suspicious for being to nice and that made me feel bad about how jaded I seemed to myself.

What keeps me interested in these historical romances is usually the drama and this book had drama aplenty. What was different though was how some life altering events gotten blown over with almost no drama at all.

Had I not recently had a heated discussion on a topic of historical romance genre I might have had a completely different review of this book. What changed and came into focus were historical romance imperative – a must have happy ending.


Happy ending aside there were some serious themes that were provided with less page time than the steamy sex scenes. This was done in such an obvious way that I just had to stop and wonder at it. Some themes made me cry a bit and the offset and complete contrast between the two made me uneasy. This has not made the reading of this book an experience I hoped it would be. And sure there were some occasional comedy thrown in to the mix but not nearly enough comic relief by my opinion.



I liked many parts and themes this book introduced. Some were quite serious and heavy but were maybe gotten over with too lightly…I had a sense that for some reason I did not think it was well rounded in the topics it brought out. Book seemed a bit short for everything that happened in it

Maybe it is a blessing when one can pass the difficult themes in as lighter way as it was portrayed in this book…




The Scoundrel Takes a Bride – Book review


Finished reading

The Scoundrel Takes a Bride

(Regency Rogues #5)

by Stefanie Sloane



This historical romance was a part of my TBR Jar Draw from December. I picked it out since I was in the mood for a historical romance book. I wanted a nice and silly historical romance with interesting characters. I have never read any books from the Regency Rogues series or anything by this author before. I got the book as a gift from a friend I used to work with.

historical-romance-fashions-and-hairstyles-versus-the-reality-victorian-era-portrait-book-coverIs the guy on the right wearing a corset too? Whats with that hairdoo? Those bangs look like they have been done by a blind hairdresser! The lady looks like she is embarrassed to be in the picture with him!


Right at the start this book did not rise to my expectations with the main heroine fainting for some silly reason. That same heroine whose mother was brutally murdered while she was a child has been working with Bow Street Runners and was deeply involved in theory of criminal psychology. And she faints for no reason whatsoever. This made the rest of the reading not so motivating.

Some time in the book the prominent point of the book turns the solving of the mystery murder from the characters childhoods. If it werent for two “romantic” thryst scenes between the main characters this would be historical murder mystery book.

about 1743

The tone of the book was not what I was expecting. The title alone was more than decieving with no actual scoundrel in sight – the character it was supposed to refer to was a bit of an alcoholic with kinda heroic background…


I keep waiting on a good historical romance book to sweep me off my feet in the manner of Desperate Duchesses series by Eloisa James. That series set my expectations for a good historical romance a bit high maybe. For some reason this book did not click with me. This will not stop me from trying out some other new historical romace for February if not sooner.

Any suggestions?

woman with quill Kilburne_George_Goodwin_Penning_A_Letter


The Marriage Wager – Book Review


Finished reading

The Marriage Wager

by Jane Ashford




First of all I have to adress the state of a cover picture. The book was published over twenty years ago. This first cover with a ambiguous dark haired character holding a hand of cards at the gambling table is much more accurate to the story than the pinkish disaster where two fair headed people show much skin while they are embracing. While the main female character of the story is indeed fair headed, the male character is not. I don’t know why I get so agitated by these visual details but I do.



When I started this book I wanted some romantic historical story with quite possible some steamy parts in between. What I got had me surprised more times trough the book. The book opens with intrigue that leaves the author with plethora of plot twist options. Both characters seem to have a murky past. While the actual marriage wager of the book is settled quite fast there was another aspect of this book that caught me by surprise.

Trough most of the book characters are put into a position where care and understanding are the only thing that can lead them to prosperity. Both characters are scared by their pasts and get caught up in the healing power of love. I kept getting surprised from the constant sacrificing acts they do for each other but without each other actually knowing about it.

love is

There were parts of this book when I thought that the author has made a story for couples who need marriage counseling. At times this book felt like a step by step example what happens with good intentions and not enough communication. The themes were strangely universal and easy to understand.


I expected a nice romantic historical drama. I got more drama than I expected but it was worth it. The amount of times I wanted to scream at something the main characters did was surprisingly low. I enjoyed this book even though it had way more intrigue than steamy moments.


Queen of Dragons – Book Review


Finished reading

Queen of Dragons

(Drakon #3)

by Shana Abe



The first book of this series was something different from all the books I was reading at the time. It is historical romance, with all the ladies and lords and proper etiquette in England long past. Add fantastical elements dragons! The second book of the series got me hooked. It took me a while to get this book and continue the series. But immediately after I got it I started reading it. I was really in the mode for a book with dragons and romance.



Again it took me by surprise the historical romance feel of the book. There are lots of mysterious plot holes in this this book. Some of them I’ve written of to the time it passed since I first read the first two books of the series. But as I got more into the book there were more of them. The author lets out lots of things without explaining too much. There is a backstory with dragon tribes. The complicated and rigid traditions. The coloring of the dragons in this book was intriguing for me. Maricara is a strong character and I kept wanting a happy ending for her.

“But this man…this powerful, lovely man was not afraid of her. He was also a beast, and an earl, which seemed to be something like a prince in this country, and he was not afraid. And he was tender, and he was strong, and he was drakon.”
― Shana Abe, Queen of Dragons

Sex scenes were scarce but steamy. I’ve developed an easy connection to these characters and want the next book! At first I thought the plot was slow and then it seemed that this book was just an episode in a longer saga.



This book had me in suspenseful reading binge. I loved center characters. It was a book less about romance and more about intrigue and mystery. It made me feel like the build up from first two books is coming together finally. Rhys is a character I’m hopping to learn more about in the next book. I’m unsure when I’ll get the next book of the series.

Monthly reading review – June 2016


Monthly reading review -June 2016

This June I have read:

Dragon Bound (Elder Races, #1) by Thea Harrison ★★★★

Our Tragic Universe by Scarlett Thomas ★★★

Midnight Marriage (Roxton Series #2) by Lucinda Brant ★★★

A Gentleman Never Tells (Essex Sisters, #4.5) by Eloisa James ★★★★

A onda je Božo krenuo ispočetka by Marina Vujičić ★★


1. How many books you’ve read last month? Are you happy with the amount you read?

I read only 5 books in June. I’m not pleased with this apathy and slow reading progress.

2. What was the best of all the books you’ve read in June? Any scenes or characters that made a lasting impression?

Elder Races series by Thea Harrison was by far the cutest read in June for me. I liked the magic, the dragon and his hoard and new worlds to explore!

3. Were there any not so good books for you last month? What made it hard or not enjoyable to read?

Our Tragic Universe and A onda je Božo krenuo ispočetka were equally bad for my reading time. While the first one had a proper wrap up ending of sorts, the second was an existential novel with open ending. Unlikable and depressing characters are not what I look for in my free time reading.


4. How did the books you were reading last month fit in your reading plans if you had any?

For June I had planned reading a bit more historical romance. I achieved this with a Kindle freebie Midnight Marriage and a new Kindle novella by Eloisa James. Once again I did my RL book club reading ahead of time which is good. Unfortunately the quantity of books was a bit of a fail.

5. Any updates on the series you are reading or are you starting any new series?

I’m already in the middle of reading of second book from the new series Elder Races started I’ve started in June. Novella A Gentleman Never Tells got me to add the whole Essex Sisters book series on my reading list for future reading. I’m still in the middle of reading of Ever After book 11 in the Hollows series and it is going slow.



6. Would you like to recommend any books or authors you’ve been reading this last month?

Eloisa James has again proved to be a real delight in this slow reading month and I recommend any of her books with all my heart.

Final thoughts on June reading:

In June I’ve been struck down with existential and metafiction novels. The lack of fantastic elements was something that even some good historical romance could not reimburse for. I need to go back to magical places, characters with weird abilities and wonderful possibilities


A Gentleman Never Tells – Book Review


Finished reading:

A Gentleman Never Tells

by Eloisa James



I’ve pre-ordered this little novella on Kindle when it was first announced almost a month ago and it turned up in my Library yesterday. I was a bit surprised but pleasantly so. Last few months I’ve been meaning to find some nice historical romance to binge on. This one came in at the best moment possible. High expectations indeed.



I’ve really enjoyed Eloisa James’s Desperate Duchesses series. This is my first book by her not connected to the series I love. I had postponed reading something else from this author.

This novella is a part of Essex Sisters book series. Chronologically it is set after the fourth book. First four books being shown in the picture below.

essex sisters series

I’m not too thrilled by these covers and that’s part of the reason I’ve not read these books already.

This novella is quite short and barely over 100 pages long with interesting and lovable characters. It is a pairing of two minor character from the mentioned series. She is a widow wronged and shamed by her late husband. He seems a little lost and overly sorry for some youthful mistakes. She is quite adorable with her curly hair and bookish ways. It takes one look for him to stop being lost and fall madly in love. Due to the short story there was no bigger character development.

As usual authors quirky writing is delightful. I like how the author does not shy away from writing silly sex scenes. Some quotes taken out of content were pure gold and joy to read.

“When I look at you, Lizzie, I don’t think of sausages.” – Oliver Berwick


Glimpses of other characters from the series were intriguing and this has left me no choice but to add this book series to my reading list. Even in short stories such as this Eloisa James still stays one of my favorite writers of the Historical romance genre.

That Scandalous Summer – Book Review


Finished reading:

That Scandalous Summer by Meredith Duran


I got this book in paperback as a gift. For a while now I was looking for a good historical romance book. It is a regency romance – the kind with English noblemen and ladies, dukes and heiresses. I read the back cover intro to the story and thought it was passable. I love historical romances and they do wonders for me as a stress relief.

“And truly happy people…they were willing to try to understand anything. But as a result of their own comfortable lives, they so rarely could understand.”


The main female character Lady Elizabeth Chudderley is a merry widow who behinds her smiles and composure hides some human fears and past mistakes. She also appears to have a bit of a drinking problem due to the fact that her parents have shown her what true love looks like. She has one dead former husband and freshly ex-lover who turned out to be a total jackass. She is loved by her tennants and subordinates despite her frivolous lifestyle. Since her mother was from a much lover standing than her father was she is charmingly devoid of snobbism.

“Never did a woman have cause to doubt her judgement than when confronted with the pathetic evidence of what she had once somehow found appealing.”


Main hero of this story – Lord Michael de Grey is a second son of the duke. He has found that being a doctor and being very good at it, can make up for certain childhood dramas he suffered while his parents were the topic of every newspsaper gossip. After his brother threatens to destroy everything he holds dear he assumes a cover of a simple country doctor.



What I loved about this story are characters background and motivation. I like characters with flaws but determination. There were some intriguing supporting characters – and that is what makes a good story great for me!

“”Here’s the thing,” he said. “You’re a decent sort, which is more than I could say for myself before I met Lyd. And I suppose Lizzie might also have a taste for pastries one day. Would you know where to look for them?” This conversation was rapidly approaching the surreal. “I suppose I’d try the larder first,” Michael said. Sanburne nodded. “And if she only wanted the strawberry kind?” For God’s sake. “I suppose I’d take all of them, and let he pick out the ones she wanted.” Sanburne laughet. “I like that.” Stepping forward, he delivered a solid clap to Michael’s shoulder. “Remember this ambition. All the pastries. She wouldn’t settle for less, you know. Nor should she. And now…I believe I’ll pretend I didn’t see you here.” With a tip of an invisible hat, he walked onward. Michael stood in the darkness, listening to viscount’s footsteps fade. He felt oddly disoriented – as though he truly had been entranced, and only now had he come awake. All the pastries. He smiled a little. While Sandburne was slightly deranged, he was also right: Elizabeth deserved everything.”

The Spinster and the Earl – Book review


Finished reading:
The Spinster and the Earl (Gentlemen of Honor: Book 1) by Beverly Adam

I got it as a Kindle freebie while searching for some regency romance read to lighten up my reading. In the last year Lisa Kleypas and Eloisa James have become my favorite authors and I was looking for something simillar. I was lucky with Kindle freebies so far and I like trying out new authors for free. Some of the freebies I tried out this way turned into favorites!


This was a historical romance set in Ireland. The Spinster of the story is an interesting character. The story was filed with characters and themes one would expect in a historical romance novel – sometimes I had a feeling that the author wanted to use so many cliched references in her story that her characters suffered. I had some difficulty getting into the story and the characters were a bit fluttery (they were all over the place and predictable).Maybe the story would have worked better if the characters had been better presented. The Earl of the story had a background story that was only hinted at and that’s a real shame.

“As for Beatrice, by the holy rood, the lass needed a husband! Brushing aside the fact that both his daughter and the earl were of hot, unruly dispositions, the old lord spat into his hand and held it out to seal the match.
“My lord, ’tis a match made in heaven,”James said. a faint sardonic smile lit his rugged face as he heartily spat into his own palm and slapped his future father-in-law’s hand. They shook forcefully. The couple was now as good as promised to eachother.”
The Spinster and the Earl (Gentlemen of Honor: Book 1) by Beverly Adam

I am no expert for Irish brogue and English accents but something just felt a bit off in that department.


There were few “laugh out loud” moments trough the book an that is a big plus. I liked the story setting but think that the author could have done better by her characters.

“..a low rumble of manly mirth was heard warming the air.”


Acquisitions in Paperback!

December and the gift of books!

intro-holidayshippingI was lucky to receive several books in paperback as a gift recently! I got five books and here they are!

First book I got is a third book by J.R.Ward series Fallen Angels ENVY.

krI haven’t read any of Fallen Angels series but I have read first four books in Black Dagger Brotherhood series by the same author. In this urban fantasy series I’m expecting something like BDB with Angels instead of vampires.

Second book is historical romance THE SCOUNDREL TAKES A BRIDE by Stefanie Sloane.

krThis book is fifth in the Regency Rogues series. I have not read anything by this author but generally like the genre. I’m looking forward to reading some historical romance and hope it’s a good one!

Next are first three books in Elder Races series by Thea Harrison.

krDragon Bound – book 1

Storm’s Heart – book 2

Serpent’s Kiss – book 3

I have heard some nice reviews on this author but never tried it before. I have only vague idea what this urban fantasy series is about but the promise of dragons is enough to keep me interested!

Lately I’ve been reading some serious books for my Book Club and these will be delightful reprieve from some serious topics.