Tag Archives: Netgalley

The Ride of Her Life: The True Story of a Woman, Her Horse, and Their Last-Chance Journey Across America by Elizabeth Letts


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Filed under Book Reviews, Non-Fiction

The Girls in the Stilt House by Kim Michele Richardson

Publication Date: 06 April 2021

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark

ARC from Sourcebooks Landmark and Netgalley

Rating: 4 out of 5

Desperate times call for desperate measures. Sixteen year old Ada Morgan returns home pregnant to a backwoods swamp located along the trace in Mississippi and finds out just how desperate her life has become. Having run off the previous year, the girl returns to her abusive, belligerent father, Virgil, who is mixed up with bootlegging and running moonshine for the wealthier land owner in the area. Ada meets Matilda, a young black girl, when Matilda saves her life.

The haunted tone of the novel along with a twisted story of murder, arson, and bootlegging had this reader turning the pages to find out how these two young girls survive the harsh events that will give you nightmares. As sad as the story, the book is well worth the read. An unwanted pregnancy, racial intolerance, and abuse are overcome by these young women in a satisfying end to this unique story. Readers of Where the Crawdads Sing and The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek will enjoy this book.

This ARC copy was received from Sourcebooks Landmark. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#TheGirlsInTheStiltHouse #NetGalley

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction

Eternal by Lisa Scottoline

Publication Date: April 2021

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House

ARC copy from Netgalley and G. P. Putnam’s Sons

Rating: 4 out of 5

Meet Elisabetta D’Orfeo, an outspoken young Italian girl who dreams of being a writer someday; her friend Sandro Simone, a young Jewish teen who is brilliant in mathematics and devoted to his family who have lived in Rome for many generations; and the third friend that completes their circle of friendship,  Marco Terrizzi, a young Italian teen who gets drawn into working for the Fascist party before he ever leaves school. The story set in Italy encompasses the years of WWII and the regime of Mussolini and the aftermath of the war for these young people.

Life altering events during the war will forever change the lives of these three young people who have grown up intertwined until they are forced to grow up and accept the changes that war and young adulthood will bring to them. The reality of one of them being Jewish, one working for the Fascist government, and one struggling to support her drunken father puts them on unique paths.

The historical detail in this novel is excellent. I had no comprehensive knowledge of the Jewish Ghetto neighborhood in Rome so the level of detail was enlightening. The author’s notes at the end add depth to the overall story. The characters are vivid and alive with their Italian heritage and the dynamics of their struggle to survive the war. This book is an outstanding first effort into the field of historical fiction for well-established author, Lisa Scottoline.

This ARC copy was received from G.P. Putnam’s Sons and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#Eternal #NetGalley

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction

An Extravagant Death by Charles Finch

Publication Date: 16 February 2021

Publisher: Minotaur Books, an imprint of St Martin’s Press

Rating:  3.5  out of 5

Laced with murder and mystery, this novel begins in London in 1878 when the famed detective, Charles Lenox solves a case that effectively gets him banished to America. Upon arriving he becomes entangled in the murder of a beautiful young debutante, Lily Allingham, in Newport, playground of the rich and famous.

With plentiful suspects showing up as the layers of the plot are revealed, the story definitely keeps the readers’ attention.  Lenox’s dry British wit shows admirably at times throughout the story. The book is rich in historical detail, places and names to spice up the tale. Follow Lenox on his journey from the Prime Minister’s office in London to Caroline Astor’s ball in Newport as he works to uncover who murdered young Lily Allingham!

This ARC copy was received from Minotaur Books and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#AnExtravagantDeath #NetGalley

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction, Mystery/Suspense

Lana’s War by Anita Abriel


Publication Date: 12 January 2020

Publisher:  Atria Books, Division of Simon and Schuster

ARC copy from Netgalley and Atria Books

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Traumatic, life altering events change Lana Antanova’s life forever as she witnesses the deadly work of the Gestapo in Paris. As a result, Lana, the daughter of a Russian countess, goes to work for the Resistance in southern France along the Riviera posing as the mistress of a very wealthy Swiss businessman, Guy Pascal.

The unique setting for WWII definitely got my interest as well as the lifestyle of the German officers and the Russian émigrés which highlights the distinction between people during the war. As Lana and Guy work together to save as many Jewish people as possible, they find themselves drawn together in spite of the difficult times. One of the most personable characters of the story is the taxi driver, Pierre, who is much more than what he seems to be on the surface.

When Guy disappears one night, Lana must take charge of her life and alter her plans. Follow Lana as she travels to Switzerland and reinvents her life. The story sets a good pace and kept my interest most of the time. However, the ending is too farfetched for this reader.

This ARC copy was received from Atria Books and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#LanasWar #NetGalley

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction

The Children’s Blizzard by Melanie Benjamin

Publication Date: 12 January 2021

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Rating: 4 out of 5


This poignant and emotional story begins one beautiful, sunny day in January of 1888 on the plains of the Dakota Territory. The story introduces us to Gerda and Raina Olsen, sisters and schoolteachers working in different parts of the territory. Both girls are faced with decisions that will alter their life and that of their students forever when a blizzard unlike anything they have ever seen hits the prairie.

Gerda and Raina each choose a different path to follow as the storm hits. One becomes disgraced over her actions and the other becomes a heroine. The story follows not only the girls, but several of their students and their paths forward. Intertwined in the story is Gavin Woodson, a disgraced writer, trying to make a new way forward for himself. Gavin’s impact on one of the sisters and her student will be felt for years to come.

The story is a rich mingling of history and drama.   Touching on complex issues of the prejudice against immigrants, the difficulties of life on the plains in the 1800’s, and of the complications faced by  young women on their own during this time, the book weaves an engrossing tale that readers of historical fiction will find well worth their time!

This copy was received from Delacorte Press and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction

The Thief of Blackfriars Lane by Michelle Griep

Publication Date:  1 January 2021

Publisher: Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Publishing

ARC from Netgalley and Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Publishing

Meet Kit Turner, a lovely young, female Robin Hood lurking about the streets of London and implementing her own form of social justice by collecting “donations” in a most unusual way. Meet Constable Jackson Forge, brand new constable set on making a success of his new career in London; however, he can’t even make it to work on time for his first day!  These two unlikely characters find themselves thrown together to solve Constable Forge’s only chance to redeem himself by finding a missing hack driver.

Whether scampering around the sewer tunnels or waltzing at the Lord Mayor’s ball, the pair seems to have a knack for finding trouble as they hunt for the missing driver. Intrigue, murder, and chaos seem to follow them wherever they go! Will they make it out of the dark streets of London alive? Is there time in their complex, vastly different worlds for a bit of romance? Read this adventurous tale of Kit and Jackson to see if they can solve their mystery and figure out a path for their divergent lifestyles!

Fun book! Readers of historical fiction, particularly the Victorian era, and Christian historical fiction will enjoy this well- paced story.

This ARC copy was received from Barbour Publishing and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#TheThiefOfBlackfriarsLane  #NetGalley

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Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction

Aunt Ivy’s Cottage by Kristin Harper

Publication Date: 07 December 2020

Publisher:  Bookouture

ARC copy from Netgalley.com and Bookouture

Rating: 4 out of 5

Zoey Jansen settles in for a quiet summer with her great-Aunt Ivy in her rather large, old beach house in the historic little town of Benjamin’s Manor on Dune Island. Little does Zoey realize her summer will be anything but quiet. This emotional contemporary family drama introduces us to Zoey, Aunt Ivy, Cousin Mark, and Zoey’s niece, Gabi.

The family members are each unique and a bit broken in their own way. Their family dynamic is complex and becomes even more so as the summer wears on and family rumors and secrets begin to surface. Can the truth be discovered? Will the truth do some good or just create more turmoil? Join Zoey as she works to uncover the real truth

With a surprise ending well worth the read, readers of contemporary women’s fiction and chick lit will enjoy this family drama. A great beachy read to put you in a warm frame of mind during this chilly winter season!

This ARC copy was received from Netgalley and Bookouture. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#AuntIvy’sCottage #NetGalley #Bookouture

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Filed under Book Reviews, Clean, Contemporary

Joy to the World: A Regency Christmas Collection by Carolyn Miller, Amanda Barratt, and Erica Vetsch

Publication Date: October 2020

Publisher: Kregel Publications

Purchased Copy

Rating: 4 out of 5


Who doesn’t love a heartwarming Christmas story? Put three of these Regency gems in the same book and you’ll be absolutely gifted with Christmas cheer!

Heaven and Nature Sing by Carolyn Miller

Grantley House, 1813

When Christmas festivities draw Edith Mansfield and George Bannerman, one of the most eligible bachelors of the season, to Lady Grantley’s estate for the holiday, can they put their past history behind them and make it through the Christmas holidays? Read this delightful story of pride and pretenses, second chances, and grace and forgiveness under the Christmas kissing ball!

Far as the Curse is Found by Amanda Barratt

London, 1816

When a man in a black mask and cape saves Jenny Grey and her tiny daughter, Anna,  late at night on a dark London street, little does she know the changes that will take place in her life as a result of that meeting. A deeply touching Christmas story of grief, forgiveness, faith, and grace will play on all of your emotions in this poignant, slightly sad tale that was my very favorite out of the trio!

Wonders of His Love by Erica Vetsch

Oxfordshire, 1814

Lady Priscilla Haverly, widow and sister-in-law of the Duke of Haverly, lives a quiet, resigned life with her mother-in-law the Dowager and her baby daughter. When Hamish Sinclair, a ruggedly handsome Scottish painter, arrives to pain the Duke and Duchess, Lady Priscilla’s orderly world is turned upside down with possibilities. Will she receive the gift of her life this holiday season? Delightfully romantic!

This copy was purchased for my personal reading. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.


Filed under Book Reviews, Christian Fiction, Christmas, Historical Fiction

A Christmas Resolution by Anne Perry

Publication Date:  3 November 2020

ARC copy from Netgalley and Ballantine Books

Rating: 4 out of 5


Seth Marlowe, middle age widower, chooses the wrong woman to try and intimidate when he begins threatening Celia Hooper, wife of Detective John Hooper. When Celia’s best friend, Clementine, unexpectedly becomes engaged to Seth, controversy erupts in a multitude of ways in the small village in Victorian England. As Seth blames Celia for his troubles, John Hooper begins his own search for answers to the mysterious death of Seth’s first wife.

Will John and Celia be able to find their way through the tangled web of Seth Marlowe’s life and find an answer before it’s too late for Clementine? Sprinkled with Christmas kindness and lessons on forgiveness, the story unwinds with a satisfying answer to everyone’s questions on Christmas Eve no less!

This ARC copy was received from Ballantine Books and Netgalley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#AChristmasResolution  #NetGalley 

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Filed under Book Reviews, Christmas, Historical Fiction, Mystery/Suspense