Friday, May 22, 2020

Review: In the Dark With the Duke (Lost Lords of London Book 2) by Christi Caldwell


In the Dark With the Duke is the second book in Christi Caldwell's Lost Lords of London series. This wonderfully woven tale pairs Lady Lila March, who suffered greatly during the tragedy at Peterloo, and street fighter/Lost Lord, Hugh Savage. 

Both characters, deeply scarred, attempt to heal each other in unconventional ways. Both Hugh and Lila transform each other's lives in ways that only can be imagined by delving into this dark to light tale. 

In the Dark With the Duke by Christi Caldwell, is yet another triumph to her credit. A fan of darker romance, this story sated my appetite for the dark along with the build up to an perfect HEA. 


~KIMBERLY~

Friday, May 15, 2020

To Hold a Lady’s Secret by Christi Caldwell





The mistake that Lady Gillian Farendale made by attending a notorious masquerade, has finally caught up with her. Now her unfeeling parents want her to make things right, but doing that would destroy her spirit.

Gillian seeks out her childhood best friend, Colin Lockhart, one if the numerous  bastard sons of the Duke of Ravenscourt, for help. She is praying that the promise they made as children would finally be able to be fulfilled. When Colin, now a struggling private investigator in London is reunited with Gillian, things don’t exactly work out how Gillian thought they would and she is disheartened as well as desperate. 

As soon as Colin sends Gillian away, he regrets it. His past with her comes rushing back and he realizes that she still means more to him than is prudent for a Lady and a bastard.  Her desperation brings him to action and neither of their lives will ever be the same. 

Lady Gillian Farendale is one of my favorite of author Christi Caldwell’s heroines. She is matter of fact, she doesn’t blame anyone for her actions and take complete responsibility for decisions she has made, good or bad.  Despite the crime that was committed against her, she is strong and resilient and deserving of a bright future with a caring man. The one man she has been on her mind since she was a young girl getting into mischief, Colin Lockhart 

Colin Lockhart has been on his own since his banishment from the Farendale lands, caring for his sister and mother. Discovered on the streets by a brother, another bastard son, Colin picks himself up and sets out to create a new life for himself as a private investigator. He is consumed with his business and until Gillian reappears in his life, he is rather solitary in his existence, keeping a small circle of a few of the brothers and his beloved sister. He is considered to be common if not below that for being a bastard, but has more integrity, compassion and honor than any man in the ton. 

To Hold a Lady’s Secret is one of my favorite Christi Caldwell books to date. While some of the subject matter is not an easy one, the story is superb and getting to that prefect ending is just a marvel. This story is meaningful and compassionate and will stay with me for quite a while. Bravo Ms. Caldwell…


~KIMBERLY~

Monday, May 4, 2020

EARLY REVIEW: A Dark and Stormy Knight by Kerrigan Byrne




I want to begin this review by saying that Kerrigan Byrne is a talented genius and her writing fills my heart. I have honestly been waiting for Carlton Morley’s story for years and now it’s finally here and I am just so darn happy about it. I also have to say that Kerrigan Byrne’s publisher has really dropped the ball on this particular book being directly in their Victorian Rebels series. Sir Carlton Morley has always deserved his own story. He has been an integral part of the menagerie with the dark secrets that needed to come to light.    So I say a big bravo to Kerrigan Byrne for going ahead with A Dark and Stormy Knight, Morley’s story. Thank you for making me a happy reader!

The right proper and upstanding Chief Inspector Carlton Morley is after the killer of male prostitutes plaguing London. All of his spare time I spent in the roaming the dark and dangerous streets seeking clues in his task. A loner, Morley stalks those streets with an urgency only a few could possibly understand. 

 After the emotional let down of discovering that her fiancĂ© is an unfaithful rogue, Penelope Goode decides to take one night of passion for herself before being thrown into the constraints of marriage to the unscrupulous lout. She wants to give her virginity to a man of her own choosing. To achieve this, she finds herself at Miss Henrietta's School for Cultured Young Ladies, where she was given a password to gain entrance into the garden of pleasures that awaits her.

Chief Inspector Morley, in disguise, is lead to Miss Henrietta's School for Cultured Young Ladies with his own agenda of crime stopping, but when a  stunning young woman literally stumbles over him, sparks fly and both of their worlds will be forever changed.

I prefer to stop here with my details of this story. This tale must be experienced individually and I strongly insist that you do. The anticipation of Carlton Morley finally meeting his match is pure exhilaration. Kerrigan Byrne uses her masterful understanding of the English language to spellbind her readers, and the reader is only too happy to be put under her spell. A Dark and Stormy Knight by Kerrigan Byrne is so worth the wait! 






~KIMBERLY~

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Time to Blog... Time to Read


It has been some time since I have posted anything of substance on this blog. In this tumultuous time, I feel the need to share the direction that my brain has gone.

Most of you know that Book Obsessed Chicks is also my much loved book club as well as the blog and pages on social media. While my book club had been active before Covid-19, it’s been at a stand-still as much of everyone’s lives.

For me, the decline in my reading regimen began two years ago when I began working in a hospital affiliated Geriatric/Palliative office. At first, I was just completely exhausted when I got home and life got in the way. I used to read a book a day and now I read on a week or every other, if I am lucky. I also have retinopathy and reading print became a thing of the past as my Ipad and Kindle have become my primary source of reading as well as a new appreciation for audio books. While I missed the written word, I missed sleep more.

I began to watch television again, to my dismay, and hours were wasted on mindless entertainment. Since this quarantine and social distancing has begun, I am completely done with watching the news and all of these shows. I turned off the television about two weeks ago and returned to reading. It was a task at first, but with the help of my super talented and favorite authors, I am back into full swing and don’t want this reading binge to end. Instead of loneliness and separation, I feel fulfilled and relieved. At the end of a trying day in the office hearing about sick patients,  reaching  for my eReader is my salvation. Reading a good book, I can block out the insanity for a time. We al definitely need a respite from the current climate and I am so happy that I love books.


I am very lucky to have three adult children who understand my need to read and respect my space when I do delve into a tale. So stay home, stay healthy and read books!

The books that got me back to reading! It's been one exciting week! 

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

#BOC Must Reads: Every Bit a Rogue (The Ellinghams) by Adrienne Basso



When a young lady sacrifices her reputation to save a viscount, it’s the beginning of an extraordinary adventure in Adrienne Basso’s captivating Regency tale . . .
 
Jon Burwell, Viscount Kendall, knows what the gossips say about him. They claim he’s been a dejected, half-mad recluse ever since he was jilted at the altar. The simple truth is that Jon has thrown all the passion he once had for his fiancĂ©e into his latest mechanical invention. But his single-minded existence has lately been shattered by repeated encounters with Miss Emma Ellingham, his neighbor’s intriguing sister-in-law . . .
 
Painting and sketching have been Emma’s consolation since her own secret heartbreak. When she stumbles upon the viscount’s workshop, his machine revives her artistic imagination. The gentleman himself is even more fascinating—and deeply seductive. When Jon is accused of a crime, Emma risks her good name for his sake. But though the threat of scandal compels them to wed, only courage can overcome their pasts, and allow desire to transform into love . . .

Find out more about Adrienne Basso


GUEST REVIEW BY ELODIE NICOLI

When circumstances bring together two broken-hearted persons, do they get a second chance at love ...

I know, I often say this, Mrs Adrienne Basso is a new-author-to-me, so it is the blurb that caught my eyes. I love stories set outside ballrooms and people driven by pursuits far away the conventional ones.
I adored this book!
The story begins with Jon’s heartbreak rudely spread in front of everyone when he is left waiting at the altar by his selfish runaway bride.
After I might say lucky him as her character was portrayed as a spoiled brat, only thinking of herself and ready to deplete his coffers for her own enjoyment.
Still he didn’t saw her under this light so smitten by her colorful personality.
Why he retreated from society’s prying eyes to nurse his wounded heart and bury his mind in scientific fulfillment.
Emma suffered too from her own devastating heartache, the difference it was left a secret lingering only between herself and the man whom never returned her feelings. Still it affected her painting muse, shattering her will and need to express herself on paper and canvas.
So when unexpectedly it is reawakening when she stumbles upon Jon’s creation, whatever his rebuttal, she is drawn to him and his engineered machine.
I loved their straightforward personalities, they are honest and caring, thus their tale is one of a romance slowly filling their heart and mind, satisfying their bodies and without rush their need for more than what their firstly expected.
It was nice to see two people with a level head, they might make mistakes, still they give each other time to adjust, they rehearse before giving to doubt, they act maturely able to wait for the other to take the first step.

5 stars for this stirring lively romance of two people who never foresee love might just need a spark to ignite their heart and soul and it was awaiting them in corner.

I was granted an advance copy by the publisher Kensington, I preordered too my own.
Here is my true and unbiased opinion.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Release Day Bliss with Anabelle Bryant's *LONDON'S LATE NIGHT SCANDAL*


This is the third book in the Midnight Secret Series and I have read all three much to my delight.

Matthew Strathmore, Earl of Whittingham, suffered a debilitating injury in his knee and has been somewhat limited in his pursuits.As Chief officer of the Society of Intellectual Advance it is his job to verify if articles published by the group are correct.
When Matthew discovers an anomaly in a recent article published by the renowned Lord Talbott he must investigate. Matthew sets himself on the long arduous trip to Leighton Hall home of Lord Talbott. It is at Leighton Matthew meets Theodosia granddaughter of the Lord.
Matthew observes how protective Theodosia is of her grandfather and although he was invited to visit feels like an intruder. As Matthew digs deeper into this family dynamic he sees more than he bargained for.
Ms Bryant addresses several situations in this book. True a love story emerges but true family too emerges. Family is not just blood but loyal people surrounding this needy twosome. Dementia is addressed as well as the caregiver.
Her hero is made of the true stuff and in for the duration. I loved this book.



GUEST REVIEWER: JOANN MAGGIO

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

RELEASE DAY BLISS: The Spitfire (Wicked Wallflowers Book 5) by Christi Caldwell



As many who know me well, especially those in my book club and author friends, I normally do not read romances where the heroine is a courtesan. It’s my personal preference, I’m just not into them. Once in a long while, comes a story that really moves me. The Spitfire by Christi Caldwell is one of those tales that has me all happy inside.

Those of us who have read Christi Caldwell’s Wicked Wallflowers Series have met Clara Winters before. The former courtesan/madam is Reggie’s best friend and has moved on from the Devil’s Den. Her dream of opening her music hall, the Muses is just so close. Aside from a few construction setbacks, she and Reggie are on their way to being professional business owners and for a woman, that is quite a feat.

Henry Waterson, an MP and an Earl, has quite a few enemies in his repertoire… The staid gentlemen has ruffled more than a few feathers in his day with his legislation. It would seem that a few people even want him dead. When Clara comes upon two hoodlums beating a gentleman to a pulp, she steps in and saves his life. Clara’s mistrust of men is completely understandable, but her insistence in aiding the broken man is shocking, but just like her. When Clara discovers that the man she has saved is a member of the ton, an Earl to boot, she is terrified but resolute in the fact that she could not let him die.

Henry has never been in a situation like this. Being cared for in the apartments of this fascinating woman has perplexed him beyond belief. Instead of calling for assistance from family or friends, he begs Clara “with no surname” to keep him in her apartments until he is well enough to travel home. His ins in fear of frightening his mother and sisters with his injuries. Clara reluctantly allows Henry to stay, but she also has much business to attend to, with the impending opening of her club.

The few days Henry stays at Clara’s apartments, the two come to realize that many of their prejudices about each other’s stations and ways of life are not all they appear to be. Henry has a few revelations about how, as member of the ton, he always took advantage of the creature comforts of his wealth, but never thought if those outside of his level were even able to keep warm. When he realizes that he must return home, he slips out while Clara is out. When she returns to an empty apartment, she is relieved but also saddened, as Henry was unlike any man she had ever met in her lifetime.

Trouble begins when Clara receives a cease and desist order for the Muses, stating that her establishment is immoral and illegal. When she discovers that Henry is behind the order, in a fury, she bounds into his home to confront him. Henry never thought he would see his savior again, but Clara is not as happy to see him as he is her. Unfortunately, the dealing with her Music Hall are not something that can be undone and Henry has to fix the wrong he has done. Henry’s younger sister, who was hurt in an uprising several years prior has been a recluse since the tragedy, but hearing Henry and Clara go at it, she is awakened and seeks Clara out to assist her. With Clara and Henry’s sister working together, she and Henry also spend more time together, inevitably becoming closer and more attracted to one another, but can these two people from completely different worlds build something lasting? You know I am not going to tell you! Read The Spitfire yourself to find out!

Ok, so notice that I did NOT delve deeply into the fact that Clara was a courtesan? That fact is actually irrelevant to this story. Clara is a woman who was used and abused and one day said enough. Her hopes and dreams started to become a reality for her.

I really must thank author Christi Caldwell for taking me out of my comfort zone, but making me smile and make my heart full. The Spitfire is a fabulous read!


KIMBERLY