Perks of Loving a Scoundrel by Jennifer McQuiston

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Miss Mary Channing can think of nothing more lovely than an early morning spent in the garden reading a book. She is not perturbed by the prospect of spinsterhood or a life of quiet and solitude. Her sister, unfortunately, is set on making her be social and experience something outside of her small little world.

Mary finds herself called to London and thrown into society unceremoniously. But not before she encounters a drunken Lord in the back garden who can only be a terrible rogue, the likes of which she has only read about in her precious novels.

When Mary finds herself thrown into a conspiracy with the very gentleman she is trying to avoid, and no one will believe them about a possible plot to assassinate a prominent government official or perhaps even a member of the monarchy, Mary Channing’s life takes a very exciting turn, full of ladies of the night, corruption, scandal, duels, espionage and intrigue.

Will Mary survive her London adventures? Can she spend time one on one with a scoundrel Lord with her dignity and virtue intact? If you enjoy novels of the bodice-ripper genre, you will love this amusing, easy weekend read. Perfect for a rainy day in your favorite blanket.

The Girl from the Savoy by Hazel Gaynor

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Two very different women, from very different worlds, cross paths following the devastation of the Great War and embracing the Jazz era. Dolly Lane is a chambermaid from humble beginnings who seeks stardom, glitz and glamour. Loretta May is a beautiful and glittering actress and celebrity who wants to do a bit of good before she is taken by her terminal illness.

In a world of lost love, tragedy, and inhumanity, lives intertwine and a little sunshine peeks out. A musician must come to terms with his war trauma, a wounded soldier must remember what he has lost so he can move on with his life, a girl with a tainted past must face her past decisions and let go of her guilt, and a woman envied by all must use her gifts selflessly to finally get closure and let go of life.

The Girl from the Savoy, by Hazel Gaynor, is a novel about facing demons and embracing the future, and letting go of whatever is standing in the way of life and love. If you liked Hazel Gaynor’s previous works, The Girl Who Came Home, and A Memory of Violets, you will love The Girl from the Savoy. If you’re looking for a quick, fun weekend read, this one probably won’t be your best choice. The Girl from the Savoy will pull at your heartstrings and give you a lesson in human failings and that little glimmer of hope that keeps us all moving. If you want a book with a touch of historical fiction and a literary feel, pick up The Girl from the Savoy, by Hazel Gaynor, today.

The Lake House by Kate Morton

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One little boy disappears in the night. The family is devastated. Alice Edevane is a budding teenager with a flair for mystery fiction writing and she’s concocted the perfect crime. When it appears to have come to fruition in real life and the gardener has gone missing, the weight of what she might have put into motion weighs heavily on her for the rest of her life.

Decades later, a young London detective named Sadie Sparrow is taking some time off after she makes a terrible career mistake. She heads to Cornwall and the mystery of the disappearance of the little boy calls to her, piquing her curiosity and prompting her to fill the long days with investigation into what might have truly happened. Two plucky heroines meet in a crossing of paths as they find they both have an interest in whatever happened to the Edevane baby that night at the Lake House party…And the plethora of family secrets held in the walls of the estate are more than anyone could have ever expected from the private, respected family.

The Lake House, by Kate Morton, does not disappoint. I waited years for the release of the author’s most recent novel and as always, I adored the novel. Kate Morton is a genius in all things secretive and long buried, and she crosses time periods so perfectly so the past has no choice but to slowly resurface, creating perfect page-turning intrigue that will leave you reading deep into the night. If you read The Forgotten Garden, The Secret Keeper, The House at Riverton, or The Distant Hours (or in my case, all of the above), you will not want to miss The Lake House. Kate Morton takes long-buried secrets and mysteries to the deepest, and most intricate levels, leaving readers feeling drained and bereft by the end of her novels…And craving more.

If you are a regular follower on my site you probably already expected me to adore The Lake House. If you have the time and energy for a book that will rob you of all your reserves, you will want to pick up The Lake House today. If you don’t…. Too bad for you.

Everything She Forgot by Lisa Ballantyne

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Margaret Holloway gets in a terrible pileup on the highway and finds herself pulled from her vehicle by a strange man with terrible burn scars. When she comes back into everyday life she finds herself haunted by his face…Not because of the scars but because something about him was triggering a memory inside her and it won’t let go. Margaret begins to feel like she will never recover from the accident unless she can find out who her rescuer was, and why she is having strange flashbacks from her childhood.

A little girl disappeared on her way to school one day…What happened to sweet, quiet, plain Moll? Who would kidnap a young girl? Is a mafia member somehow involved? But why? Worlds collide as Margaret tries to put together the pieces of the mystery…Hopefully before it’s too late.

If you are a sensitive, delicate person, the harsh reality of Everything She Forgot may not appeal to your sensibilities. This novel is brutal and detailed and for readers who can handle crime at it’s more gory end. Readers, you know who you are…

Wallflower Gone Wild by Maya Rodale

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Maya Rodale’s Bad Boys and Wallflowers series, which started out with The Wicked Wallflower, has now introduced Wallflower Gone Wild. These lusty bodice-rippers are exactly what you might expect, full of fiery heroines and dark, brooding heroes who have no choice but to fall madly in love with one another (while, of course, breaking all rules of propriety along the way).

Novel #2, Wallflower Gone Wild, is about Lady Olivia Archer. Voted London’s Least Likely to Cause a Scandal, and hen-pecked miserably by her marriage-minded mother, Olivia is at her wit’s end. Especially when she realizes that her less than desirable financial situation has limited her options when it comes to suitors. Not to worry, however, Olivia’s parents have the perfect gentleman lined up for her- Phinneas Cole, otherwise known as The Mad Baron, who is widely known in the rumor mills as a mad inventor who murdered his previous wife.

Olivia will do whatever it takes to avoid marrying this frightening (but devilishly handsome) gentleman. She sets out to make sure that The Mad Baron would never find her attractive. Her plan seems flawless…But what if she doesn’t have the resolve to hold him off?

These novels are for the smutty novel-reading, bodice ripper crowd, so if you are looking for something easy to read and full of scandalous passion, pick up Wallflower Gone Wild today.

The Brides of Wishmore series by Cathy Maxwell

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Cathy Maxwell has two new books out in her brand new Brides of Wishmore series: The Bride Says No, and The Bride Says Maybe. These novels are best read back-to-back, because they feature the inevitable love stories of two sisters, Lady Tara Davidson, and Lady Aileen Davidson. When, once again, the father of these two young ladies has put himself in a dire financial situation, he decides it is time, for once and for all, to put his daughters to good use…By marrying them off, of course. The ladies are heartbroken, but little do they know, true love is on it’s way, and it comes from the most unexpected of places… If you like bodice rippers or historical romance novels with happy endings, and you need a good weekend read, be sure to pick up the new Brides of Wishmore series today!

Duke of Midnight by Elizabeth Hoyt

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The 6th novel in the Maiden Lane series is here, and it’s out in audiobook too! Duke of Midnight, by Elizabeth Hoyt, is a bodice-ripper with a gothic twist.

Artemis Greaves is serving as a lady’s companion to her aristocratic cousin Penelope when they are accosted by some street hoodlums. Before they succumb to the evil men, they are rescued by a masked stranger who can only be the legendary “Ghost of St. Giles”. He is gone before they can get much information from him, but Artemis ends up with a ring from his finger-a ring that can only belong to an aristocrat. Who IS this Ghost, and why does he wander the dirty, booze-ridden streets of St. Giles if he comes from a noble family? Artemis is determined to find out more.

The Duke of Wakefield, Maximus Batten, has a secret second life, spending his days in Parliament and his nights seeking clues in the darkness to solve the murders of his parents, decades ago. No one can ever know the truth about his double life, so he keeps a safe distance from everyone but his faithful manservant. But the time has come for Maximus to find a suitable Duchess-someone from a titled family with a nice dowry would be ideal…So why does he find himself so captivated by Artemis Greaves…?

I was surprised by Duke of Midnight, mostly because it had a darker twist to it-madness, the corruption of the aristocracy and Bedlam, murder and revenge…If you want a nice, tidy bodice-ripper where boy meets girl and they simply banter back and forth until they inevitably fall into bed together, this one is not going to be that novel. If you want something with a little more bite, however, be sure to pick up Duke of Midnight, by Elizabeth Hoyt, today-and the audiobook version by Hachette Audio is impeccably narrated, so if you like to listen to your romance novels, this one is a keeper.

A Burnable Book by Bruce Holsinger

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John Gower is commissioned by Geoffrey Chaucer with a very vague and mysterious mission-find a book of songs that has gone missing. He is intrigued by the mission, but he has no idea how deep the plot will go until bodies begin to pile up. What is in this book that seems to be traveling in London’s underground? Does it have the power to set in motion terrible events, including the death of King Richard II? The more Gower learns, the more danger builds up around him. The surprise arrival of his formerly exiled son makes for very suspicious timing amid it all-how do all of these events tie together? What is the connection between a dead Lady in the woods, a handful of prostitutes, the famous Geoffrey Chaucer, a group of butchers, and his majesty, the King of England? Only the book will reveal all-and someone is killing to get their hands on it. Can Gower solve the mystery before the ultimate crime occurs?

This novel portrays 1300s London in a very harsh light-nothing is sugar coated, so if you are looking for something pleasant and romantic, this is not the book for you. The language, while probably very accurate, is a lot to take in, especially from the mouths of the prostitutes and the men who commission them. All in all, however, this novel is great suspense fiction, and an incredibly detailed account of what life might have been like during the time of Chaucer. If you enjoyed The Bones of Avalon, by Phil Rickman, you will want to pick up A Burnable Book, by Bruce Holsinger.

The Boleyn King by Laura Anderson

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What would have happened if Anne Boleyn’s baby had survived and been a healthy son? How would history have changed, and what would remain the same? What would Great Britain be like today? Would Mary or Elizabeth have ever found the throne?

The Boleyn King, by Laura Anderson, is a novel about a fictional King, William, the son of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. William has good intentions as a ruler, but has a streak of stubbornness not unlike his father. Elizabeth supports and loves her brother and king, and Mary, while resentful still about her mother being cast aside, seems to only be a moderate threat to his reign thanks to her religious ideals. Minuette and Dominic are two childhood friends of the rulers who have been constant companions to them, and find relationships begin to change as the power structure is laid out before them with time.

These siblings are all at marriageable ages, and things are starting to get interesting. Will they marry for politics or will they find love? Will a secret rebellion knock William from the throne? Can a ruler ever truly be a friend to someone else? Philippa Gregory readers will love The Boleyn King, by Laura Anderson, so be sure to check it out for yourself if you love historical fiction and historical romance.

Any Duchess Will Do (Spindle Cove #4) by Tessa Dare

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The Duke of Halford has a problem. His mother has decided that she has waited long enough for grand babies, and he absolutely must marry as soon as possible or else. But the Duke has no desire to burden himself with the fairer sex, and certainly no interest in chasing debutantes around London. His mother’s counter-offer? He doesn’t have to marry a wealthy heiress or a female with a dowry, he can marry anyone he wants, just so long as he finally marries and puts his family line in motion. The Duke agrees to this plan, but with his own agenda. He will find the most wildly inappropriate female for the job, and he will pay that female to be a complete disaster for his mother’s designs. With any luck, it will go so badly that his mother will stop pushing the issue for a while and he can have some temporary peace. But his plan is flawed. His working-class belle is very rough around the edges, and has just enough spirit and courage to make the Duke question his own methods of operation… Can he follow through with the plan without falling in love with Pauline?

Anyone who loves historical romance novels (bodice-rippers) will want to pick up Any Duchess Will Do, by Tessa Dare. The dialogue is laugh-out-loud hilarious and the romance is sweet and genuine. This novel is like a cross between Pygmalion (My Fair Lady) and Pride and Prejudice, with some sexy and slightly naughty sprinkled on top.