Monday, March 13, 2023


For those of you who don't know this prolific author, Holly Bush is not only one of my favorite authors and people, but she is from Pennsylvania and writes so eloquently about her state and her surroundings from a historical standpoint. Holly grabbed me years ago with her epic and touching  romance,  Train Station Bride and the Post Civil War romance, Reconstructing Jackson, and I have been happily  reading ever since. 

Now I have to be honest and let the readers know that it had been over a year that I had read anything in the Historical Romance genre. I had been burned out by the genre and also had just come off of executing my Romancing the Gold Coast event and needed a big break. Thankfully, after picking up The Captain's Woman, the fourth book in the Thompson's of Locust Street series, I am back. After finishing this book, I went back and binged the entire series again and I now consider myself an honorary Thompson. 

The Thompson's of Locust Street series revolves around a Scottish immigrant family who fled their homeland when danger ensued, leaving the family in imminent danger. With the family settling in Philadelphia, this series follows the siblings as many find their soulmates and start their own little families, but also try to protect each other from the danger that has followed them from Scotland. These stories show the depth of feelings the family has for one another and that family matters above all else.

Holly Bush begins the Thompsons of Locust Street series with The Bachelor's Bride and Elspeth Thompson's foray into the Philadelphia high society. Elspeth meets Alexander Pendergast rather unconventionally in an incident in front of a brothel. Alexander works for a local politician who has some interesting hobbies. Alexander is also heir to his family's textile mill and has everything going for him. 

For this review, I am using one of my Book Obsessed Chicks Book Club members and dear friend, Joann Maggio's review because it says it all!

The Bachelor’s Bride ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
By Holly Bush

I have read everyone of Ms Bush’s books. She never disappoints. Her characters are real life and absorb you into the pages of the story.

Her particular era is after the Civil War. It is packed full of much of our country history. This is a beautiful story about the Thompson family with all its quirkiness and devotion.

Elspeth Thompson the middle sibling wants to stand on her own. She finds the family so overprotective and not knowing the underlying reason makes her rebel more. But danger does lurk for all of them. A chance meeting with Alexander Pendergast sets all their worries in motion.

Alexander realizes what danger he has brought to this family and has a deep fondness for Elspeth. When she is in terrible danger her strength keeps her until she is saved. Although both are from two different backgrounds Society vs working class they come together.

This book is a little different from what Ms Bush usually write very gripping and spot on. I would unequivocally recommend this story.

 Reviewed by Joann Maggio

The second in this series is the exciting story of James Thompson, the local bareknuckle boxing champion. James is a formidable character who is confident as well as thickheaded. This man loves his family and puts them above all else. When he meets society belle, Lucinda Vermeal who is headstrong in her own right. Her father feels that no one is good enough for his daughter unless he has a society pedigree and comes from money. Lucinda whoever could care less for that, she is looking for substance and excitement, someone to set her soul on fire. When she meets James, sparks fly and the battle of wits ensues with these amazing people.

I LOVE this book! James and Lucinda are the perfect pair of opposites that give this story sizzle. Here we get an inside look into James' boxing career and the dangers that come along with it as well as Lucinda's fear for James and his wellbeing. We see the normally confident James have doubts about being deserving enough of a woman such as Lucinda. 

Please read The Bareknuckle Groom, you won't be disappointed!


Talkative and dramatic Kirsty Thompson is next, and the adventure she falls into makes for one great story. The youngest of the Thompson sisters, Kirsty wants to start her own business in importing wool from Scotland and have her own storefront to manufacture and sell items made from the wool. Kirsty devises a plan to try to talk her brother-in-law Alexander's friend, Albert Watson into escorting her and a companion on his travels to England so she can meet with some of the wool importers that she has been in communication with. Now Albert Watson is a medical doctor who is invited to speak on many aspects of research he is involved in and is on his way to London to lecture. Unfortunately or not, his plans change when Kirsty Thompson accidently stows away on the boat sailing for New York and Albert steps in to save her. 

Albert and Kirsty couldn't be more different but it's just something that they see in each other that makes this story so endearing and genuine. Right off the bat, Kirsty finds herself in danger from the family secrets and Albert comes to the rescue time after time. Once back home on Locust Street, Kirsty has her family demanding her honor be saved by Albert doing the right thing and making Kirsty his wife. Kirsty has other plans in the interim and even though Albert is what she thinks she wants, so many things need to be considered, especially when Kirsty meets Albert's evil mother and has to contend with the woman's obvious loathing of Kirsty. In addition to that evident disdain, Albert makes excuses for his mother's behavior and a wedge develops between he and Kirsty.

This third tale in the Thompsons of Locust Street is a compelling story and a wonderful view into Kirsty and Albert's journey to happiness. 


The fourth installment in the continuing Thompsons of Locust Street series is Muireall's story, The Captain's Woman, which made my heart sing. Thirty-something Muireall Thompson has sacrificed her life to keep and protect her siblings, Aunt and household. The demise of her parents on the voyage from Scotland left Muireall the head of the family at only a child's age herself. The wit and determination inherited from her parents make this woman not only a formidable match for anyone looking to hurt her family, but a fierce protector of those in need. 

Muireall has watched her siblings grow and spread their wings, find true love and go off to form their own families. She is devoted still to her family and to the local Catholic orphanage where she regularly dedicates her time and energy. Here at the orphanage Muireall has become attached to little Ann Marcus, who's father, Anthony, a former army captain during the war, regularly leaves Ann at the orphanage while he seeks out work to build a home and hearth for he and his daughter. All Muireall wants to do is help Ann and in turn Anthony, but she is met with his resistance, calling it charity, something he doesn't want. Muireall however is determined to show Anthony that sometimes accepting help is beneficial to all involved. The more time they spend around one another and caring for Ann's needs, the closer these star-crossed lovers come. 

Of course, it wouldn't be a Holly Bush tale without a wrench thrown into the wind, but you are just going to have to read The Captain's Woman to find out how this ends...


I hope you have enjoyed this series spotlight on Holly Bush's 
series.  It is a great ride to take and it's not finished yet...
Note to Holly.... I am impatiently waiting for Payden's story!