Posts Tagged ‘mailbox monday’

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

It’s been about a month since I posted my new books, but here’s what I added to my shelves since then:

For review:

moonlight over parisMoonlight Over Paris by Jennifer Robson — from William Morrow

It’s the spring of 1924, and Lady Helena Montagu-Douglas-Parr has just arrived in France. On the mend after a near-fatal illness, she is ready to embrace the restless, heady allure of the City of Lights. Her parents have given her one year to live with her eccentric aunt in Paris and Helena means to make the most of her time. She’s quickly drawn into the world of the Lost Generation and its circle of American expatriates, and with their encouragement, she finds the courage to pursue her dream of becoming an artist.

One of those expats is Sam Howard, a journalist working for the Chicago Tribune. Irascible, plain-spoken, and scarred by his experiences during the war, Sam is simply the most fascinating man she has ever met. He’s also entirely unsuitable.

As Paris is born anew, rising phoenix-like from the ashes of the Great War, Helena realizes that she, too, is changing. The good girl she once was, so dutiful and obedient, so aware of her place in the world, is gone forever. Yet now that she has shed her old self, who will she become, and where, and with whom, does she belong…?

Unexpected arrival:

the painter's daughterThe Painter’s Daughter by Julie Klassen — from Bethany House

Sophie Dupont assists her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists — including the handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape.

Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley’s responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host’s daughter in serious trouble.

Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother’s, Stephen proposes to Miss Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage “in name only” to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow.

Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn’t come to regret it?

Won from Austen Variations:

to forgetTo Forget by Maria Grace

Darcy persuades Bingley to leave Netherfield Park in favor of London to avoid the match making machinations of Mrs. Bennet. Surely the distractions of town will help Bingley forget the attractions of Miss Jane Bennet.

But Bingley is not the only one who needs to forget. All Darcy want this Christmastide is to forget another Miss Bennet.

Can the diversions of London help Darcy overcome memories of the fine eyes and pert opinions of a certain Hertfordshire miss?

Christmas gift:

devotionDevotion by Adam Makos

Devotion tells the inspirational story of the U.S. Navy’s most famous aviator duo. Lieutenant Tom Hudner and Ensign Jesse Brown, and the Marines they fought to defend. A white New Englander from the country-club scene, Tom passed up Harvard to fly fighters for his country. An African American sharecropper’s son from Mississippi, Jesse became the navy’s first black carrier pilot, defending a nation that wouldn’t even serve him in a bar.

While much of America remained divided by segregation, Jesse and Tom joined forces as wingmen in Fighter Squadron 32. Adam Makos takes us into the cockpit as these bold young aviators cut their teeth at the world’s most dangerous job — landing on the deck of an aircraft carrier — a line of work that Jesse’s young wife, Daisy, struggles to accept.

Deployed in the Mediterranean, Tom and Jesse meet the Fleet Marines, boys like PFC “Red” Parkinson, a farm kid from the Catskills. In between war games in the sun, the young men revel on the Riviera, partying with millionaires and even befriending the Hollywood starlet Elizabeth Taylor. Then comes the war no one expected, in faraway Korea.

Devotion takes us soaring overhead with Tom and Jesse, and into the foxholes with Red and the Marines as they battle a North Korean invasion. As the fury of the fighting escalates and the Marines are cornered in the Chosin Reservoir, Tom and Jesse fly, guns blazing, to try and save them. When one of the duo is shot down behind enemy lines and pinned in his burning plane, the other faces an unthinkable choice: watch his friend die or attempt history’s most audacious one-man rescue mission.

A tug-at-the-heartstrings tale of bravery and selflessness, Devotion asks, How far would you go to save a friend?

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

For review:

fall of poppiesFall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War by Jessica Brockmole, Hazel Gaynor, Evangeline Holland, Marci Jefferson, Kate Kerrigan, Jennifer Robson, Heather Webb, Beatriz Williams, and Lauren Willig — from William Morrow

The  peace treaty signed on November 11, 1918, may herald the end of the Great War, but for its survivors, the smoke is only beginning to clear. Picking up the pieces of shattered lives will take courage, resilience, and trust.

Within crumbled city walls and scarred souls, war’s echoes linger. But when the fighting ceases, renewal begins…and hope takes root in a fall of poppies.

Birthday gifts from my mother and husband:

two's companyTwo’s Company by Jill Mansell

Celebrity couple Jack and Cass Mandeville seem to have it all — good looks, successful careers and a great marriage. Their children are also incredibly talented: stunning Cleo is a top model; devilishly handsome Sean a hot young comedian; and although sixteen-year-old Sophie hides her looks under big glasses and baggy clothes, everyone can see there’s a beautiful swan just itching to get out. In the eyes of the nation’s press, the Mandevilles can do no wrong.

Until a gorgeous redhead named Imogen turns up to interview Jack and Cass on the morning Jack hits the big Four-O. And the fabulous family finds they’re not so perfect after all…

sheer mischiefSheer Mischief by Jill Mansell

It’s not that Janey Sinclair isn’t pleased to see her sister, she just wishes she could have arrived in less dramatic style. Being woken up at seven in the morning by Maxine, complete with borrowed wedding dress and police escort, isn’t quite how she’d planned to start her Sunday.

Still, life’s never dull when Maxine’s around, and Janey, who’s rebuilding her life after her husband disappeared eighteen months ago, is delighted that her sister’s back in town. But when Maxine sets her sights on Guy Cassidy, the impossibly glamorous fashion photographer, Janey knows there’s no limit to the mischief her sister will get up to in order to dispatch the competition. But little do they know that the competition is a lot closer to home than they think…

kissKiss by Jill Mansell

Izzy is going to be famous one day. The music industry just hasn’t discovered her yet. Irrepressible Izzy has a dazzling talent, two perfect boyfriends and a daughter to organise her. Basically a brilliant life.

Gina’s life couldn’t be less brilliant. Her pig of a husband has just run off with his pregnant mistress. She feels guilty, of course, when she accidentally knocks Izzy off her motorbike. Still, it’s hardly the end of the world, is it? Only a broken leg.

But Gina’s world as she knows it is about to be turned upside down. Izzy and her daughter Kat have been catapulted into her previously ordered life. Worse still, Izzy has got her flirtatious eye on Gina’s oldest friend, heart-stoppingly handsome Sam. How will it all end — in a torrent of tears or with one, unforgettable kiss?

soloSolo by Jill Mansell

When Tess Duvall meets hotel owner Ross Monahan at a party, she has no illusions about what sort of man he is — his ‘bad boy’ reputation precedes him. She knows that he’s only after one thing, and, just for that night, she’s happy to go with the flow.

But weeks later, as Tess finds herself tucking into four banana sandwiches, she realises she may have got a little more from the one-night stand than she bargained for.

Spirited and independent, Tess is determined to go it alone, but Ross, unaccustomed to being rejected, has other plans…

fast friendsFast Friends by Jill Mansell

A reunion with old school friends can be a truly joyful occasion. Then again, as Camilla Stewart discovers, sometimes it can change your world forever.

Meeting up again with Roz Vallender has devastating consequences for Camilla. Thankfully the outrageous Loulou Marks comes to the rescue, persuading her that all is not lost. Loulou’s own life might be completely chaotic but she’s great at giving other people advice. And when Camilla starts taking it, she soon discovers that life in the fast lane is a lot more fun than being a cheated-on housewife…

mixed doublesMixed Doubles by Jill Mansell

The New Year looms and Liza, Dulcie and Pru are ready with their resolutions. When you’ve hit your thirties, it’s definitely time to sort yourself out!

Liza wants to get married. She has no one in mind, but attracting men has never been a problem. Trouble is, she can never stay interested in a man once she’s got him.

Dulcie thinks marriage sucks. OK, so her husband, Patrick, is dishy, witty and charming. But Dulcie, who always acts before she thinks, is desperate for more excitement in her life. She wants a divorce.

Pru has about as much self-esteem as a squeegee mop. She loves her roving husband and can’t imagine a life without him. All Pru wants is to stay married.

Liza, Dulcie and Pru have no idea what the New Year has in store — but Fate has some sneaky plans up her sleeve…

head over heelsHead Over Heels by Jill Mansell

Jessie has kept the identity of her son Oliver’s father a secret for years. She’s stunned when she discovers that the man in question, actor Toby Gillespie, has just moved in next door. The truth’s about to come out.

One glance at Oliver, and a little mental arithmetic, and Toby has the situation sussed. Meeting the son he never knew he had is the shock of a lifetime. It’s a shock, too, for Toby’s wife, the beautiful Deborah, though she seems to take it in her stride.

Would Deborah be so relaxed if she knew just how close Toby wants to get to the mother of his firstborn? As the attraction between them flares up again. Jessie just can’t see her way to a happy ending. But no one is quite what they seem, and there are more surprises to come…

good at gamesGood at Games by Jill Mansell

Suzy Curtis falls in love with Harry Fitzallan the moment she shows him her husband’s sperm sample. Actually, it isn’t her husband’s sperm sample, because she isn’t married. It isn’t a sperm sample either, it’s a carton containing the dregs of her milkshake. (But when you’re desperate to escape a speeding ticket you have to improvise, don’t you?) Oh, and it isn’t really love at first site, it’s a healthy case of lust.

Suzy is the girl with everything — dream job, red Rolls-Royce and ravishing rock-star ex. Then she meets Harry — and his deeply skeptical brother Leo — and before long finds herself with a whole lot more…

the one you really wantThe One You Really Want by Jill Mansell

Nancy can’t quite believe it when her Christmas present from her husband turns out to be a lawnmower. She knows for a fact that Jonathan’s been spending a lot on jewellery. So who’s got the diamonds?

Nancy’s best friend, Carmen, gave up on romance when she lost her adored husband. What Carmen really needs is a man to wake her up — but choosing the right one isn’t going to be easy.

Mia’s just arrived in London to live with her dad. Once she’s met the potential stepmother-from-hell he’s dating, she’s determined to play Cupid — but her wayward arrows are just as likely to cause chaos as to ease the path of true love…

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

It’s been nearly two months (!!) since I posted my new books, but here’s what I’ve added to my shelves during that time:

For review:

jane austen lives againJane Austen Lives Again by Jane Odiwe — from the author

When Jane Austen’s doctor discovers the secret to immortal life in 1817, she thinks her wishes have come true. But when she wakes up from the dead, a penniless Miss Austen finds herself in 1925, having to become a governess to five girls of an eccentric and bohemian family at the crumbling Manberley Castle by the sea. Jane soon finds she’s caught up in the dramas of every family member, but she loves nothing more than a challenge, and resolves on putting them in order. If only she can stop herself from falling in love, she can change the lives of them all!

Inspired by Jane Austen’s wonderful novels and written in the tradition of classic books like Cold Comfort Farm, I Capture the Castle, and Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, Jane Austen Lives Again is an amusing fairy story for grown-ups.

darcy's christmas wishDarcy’s Christmas Wish by Penelope Swan — from the author

**Check out my review**

Fitzwilliam Darcy never forgot the little girl, with the beautiful dark eyes, who saved his life fifteen years ago…though he never expected to meet her again. But when he comes to Rosings Park to spend the Advent season with his aunt and encounters the enchanting, spirited Miss Elizabeth Bennet again, he discovers that at Christmastime, wishes can come true…

Darcy’s Christmas Wish is a sweet, clean, standalone Pride and Prejudice variation — a holiday romance inspired by Jane Austen’s classic novel!

then comes winterThen Comes Winter edited by Christina Boyd — from Meryton Press

If you long for a toasty snuggle on a cold winter’s night, this compilation of original short stories inspired by the magic of the holiday season — and more than a nod to Jane Austen — is fancied as a sublime wintertime treat. On the heels of the summer anthology, Sun-kissed: Effusions of Summer, and in concert with some of Meryton Press’s most popular authors, this romantic anthology introduces several promising writers. With a robust mix of contemporary and Regency musings, Then Comes Winter rekindles passionate fires with equal wonder, wit, and admiration. Stories by: Lory Lilian, Linda Gonschior, Suzan Lauder, Beau North & Brooke West, Sophia Rose, Natalie Richards, Anngela Schroeder, Melanie Stanford, Denise Stout, Erin Lopez, and Maureen Lee.

seeking the starSeeking the Star (Chilton Crosse Book 3) by Traci Borum — from the author

One December night, in the sleepy Cotswold village of Chilton Crosse, a drifter named Ben collapses on George and Mary Cartwright’s snow-covered doorstep. As Christmas cheer spreads throughout the village with a Dickens-themed festival, Mary nurses Ben back to health, but she becomes curious about the secrets he seems to carry.

On Christmas Eve, one of Ben’s secrets accidentally comes to light, forcing him to confront the darkness of his past and to rediscover the faith he once knew.

jane and the waterloo mapJane and the Waterloo Map by Stephanie Barron — from Soho Press

November, 1815. The Battle of Waterloo has come and gone, leaving the British economy in shreds; Henry Austen, high-flying banker extraordinaire, is about to declare bankruptcy — dragging several of his brothers down with him. The crisis destroys Henry’s health, and Jane flies to his London bedside, believing him to be dying. While she’s there, the Reverend James Stanier Clarke, chaplain to His Royal Highness the Price Regent, invites Jane to tour Carlton House, the Prince’s fabulous London home. Clarke is a fan of Jane’s books, and during the tour he suggests she dedicate her next novel — Emma — to HRH, whom she despises.

However, before she can speak to HRH, Jane stumbles upon a body — sprawled on the carpet in (where else?) the Regent’s library. The dying man, Colonel MacFarland, was a cavalry hero and a friend of Wellington’s. He utters a single failing phrase: “Waterloo map”…and Jane is on the hunt for a treasure of incalculable value and a killer of considerable cunning.

the forgotten roomThe Forgotten Room by Karen White, Beatriz Williams, and Lauren Willig — from NAL

Manhattan, 1945: When critically wounded Captain Cooper Ravenel is brought to a private hospital on the Upper East Side, young Dr. Kate Schuyler is drawn into a complex mystery that connects three generations of women in her family to a single extraordinary room in a Gilded Age mansion.

Who is the woman in Captain Ravenel’s miniature portrait who looks so much like Kate? And why is she wearing the ruby pendant handed down to Kate by her mother? In their pursuit of answers, they find themselves drawn into the turbulent stories of the past. But are Kate and Cooper ready for the secrets that will be revealed in the Forgotten Room?

The Forgotten Room is a sumptuous feast of a novel brought to vivid life by three brilliant storytellers.

coal river

Coal River by Ellen Marie Wiseman — from the author

As a child, Emma Malloy left isolated Coal River, Pennsylvania, vowing never to return. Now, orphaned and penniless at nineteen, she accepts a train ticket from her aunt and uncle and travels back to the rough-hewn community. Treated like a servant by her relatives, Emma works for free in the company store. There, miners and their impoverished families must pay inflated prices for food, clothing, and tools, while those who owe money are turned away to starve.

Most heartrending of all are the breaker boys Emma sees around the village — young children who toil all day sorting coal amid treacherous machinery. Their soot-stained faces remind Emma of the little brother she lost long ago, and she begins leaving stolen food on families’ doorsteps, and marking the miners’ bills as paid.

Though Emma’s actions draw ire from the mine owner and police captain, they lead to an alliance with a charismatic miner who offers to help her expose the truth. And as the lines blur between what is legal and what is just, Emma must risk everything to follow her conscience.

An emotional, compelling novel that rings with authenticity — Coal River is a deft and honest portrait of resilience in the face of hardship, and of the simple acts of courage that can change everything.

the doll's houseThe Doll’s House by M.J. Arlidge — from NAL

Ruby wakes up in a strange room. Her captor calmly explains that no one is looking for her. No one wants her. Except him.

When the body of a woman is found buried on a secluded beach, Detective Helen Grace is called to the scene. She knows right away that the killer is no amateur. The woman has been dead for years, and no one has even reported her missing. But why would they? She’s still sending text messages to her family.

Helen is convinced that a criminal mastermind is at work: someone very smart, very careful, and worst of all, very patient. But as she struggles to piece together the killer’s motive, time is running out for a victim who is still alive…

Unexpected arrival:

a fierce and subtle poisonA Fierce and Subtle Poison by Samantha Mabry — from Algonquin Young Readers

Everyone knows the legends about the cursed girl — Isabel, the one the señoras whisper about. They say she has green skin and grass for hair, and she feeds on the poisonous plants that fill her family’s lush Caribbean island garden. Seventeen-year-old Lucas spends summers with his hotel-developer father in Puerto Rico, and he’s grown up hearing stories about the cursed girl. When letters from Isabel mysteriously appear in his room the same day his girlfriend disappears, Lucas turns to Isabel for answers — and finds himself lured into her strange and magical world. But the more entangled Lucas becomes with Isabel, the less certain he is of escaping with his own life.

A Fierce and Subtle Poison beautifully blends magical realism with a page-turning mystery and a dark star-crossed romance — all delivered in lush, urgent prose.

Giveaway wins:

angel of the centerfoldAngel of the Centerfold by Michaela Robertson — from Meryton Press

Disguise of every sort creates difficulties for recent Yale grads Elizabeth and Jennie Blackwell, who are eager to begin the next chapter of their lives. Elizabeth hopes her remarkable voice and academic training will help crown her the new darling of the Met. But will her burgeoning romance with world-renowned philanthropist Lliam Dafydd benefit her career or derail it before it begins?

Elizabeth’s minutes-older twin, Jennie, plans to translate her impressive résumé into a successful medical research program, but her demanding academic pursuits leave little time for romance.

Feeling trapped by her girl-next-door image, Jennie adopts a daring alter ego who behaves as she never would. As “Ariel De Mer,” Jennie becomes captivated by mysterious photographer, Chance Bly. Handsome and suave, he smoothly awakens her desires, while Ariel’s sexiness and sauciness mesmerize her smitten lover.

But Jennie’s innocent charade has a powerful impact on the lives of those she loves, and she is not the only one playing games.

lucky 13Lucky 13 by Cat Gardiner — from Margie’s Must Reads

New York City advertising executive Elizabeth Bennet is determined to find a respectable date to take to Christmas dinner with her insane family. So, what’s a girl to do with only 26 days remaining? She and her best friend embark on a mad-cap dating blitz. Speed dating and blind dates become a source of frustration when one man continually shows up, hell-bent on either annoying her or capturing her heart. Fitzwilliam Darcy, wealthy, hunky, part time New York City firefighter is Elizabeth’s new client, one of thirteen men chosen for a fundraising, beefcake calendar. Sparks fly and ignite as misunderstandings abound. Sit back and laugh as friends and family play matchmaker, conspiring to bring these two together for an unforgettable, hot, holiday season in New York City. Lucky 13 is a fresh and fun Pride and Prejudice inspired contemporary, holiday romance. Imagine “You’ve Got Mail” meets “Sex in the City” in a sexy tale where the secondary characters are as lovable as our hero and heroine.

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Here’s what I added to my shelves over the last couple of weeks:

For review:

prejudice & pridePrejudice & Pride by Lynn Messina — from Martin Publicity

You know Darcy: rich, proud, disapproving, standoffish. Bennet Bethle knows Darcy, too — at least, the type. As a fundraiser for the Longbourn Collection, an art museum in out-of-the-way Queens, he’s met a lot of heiresses. Watching the aloof beauty swat away all comers at his museum’s gala (including himself, even though he didn’t make the attempt), Bennet figures he’s got her all sized up. He knows exactly how this story plays out.

But this story isn’t all that it seems. Despite her air of indifference, Darcy’s interest has been piqued by the irreverent Bennet, who finds himself frequently in her company while her friend Charlotte “Bingley” Bingston plans a ball at the Netherfield hotel to benefit the museum. Well, plans a ball or woos his brother — it’s hard for Bennet to say because Bingley’s motives are murky. One thing, however, is crystal clear: He doesn’t like Darcy.

And yet somehow that becomes murky too.

In Prejudice & Pride, Lynn Messina takes the genres she does best — chick lit, the mashup, Regency romance — and weaves them into one delightfully modern tale with a gender-bendy twist.

Longbourn’s Songbird by Beau North — from Meryton Press

In the autumn of 1948, young millionaire Will Darcy comes to the sleepy, backwater town of Meryton, South Carolina, to visit his best friend, Charles Bingley. When Darcy becomes enchanted by a local beauty with a heavenly voice, his business dealings with Longbourn Farms may close the door to his romantic hopes before they are given a chance to thrive.

Still healing from heartbreak, Elizabeth Bennet takes solace in her family, home, and the tight-knit community of Meryton. That foundation is shaken when Will Darcy makes a successful offer to buy the family farm. Blinded by hurt, will Elizabeth miss the chance to find in him the peace and comfort her heart truly needs?

Confronting the racial, economic, and social inequalities of the times, Longbourn’s Songbird is an imaginative romance inspired by Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and told through the lens of post-WWII America, a story layered with betrayal and loss, love and letting go.

Unexpected arrival:

the japanese loverThe Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende — Atria Books

In The Japanese Lover, Isabel Allende offers an exquisitely crafted novel about the extraordinary relationship between Alma Belasco, a Polish girl transplanted to San Francisco in the face of the Nazi invasion, and Ichimei Fukuda, a gentle Japanese-American boy sent to an internment camp run by the United States government. Their love can only be shared in secret, but their devotion lasts for a lifetime.

Sweeping between San Francisco in the present day and Europe and the United States during the Second World War, The Japanese Lover explores race and identity, abandonment and reconciliation, while powerfully evoking both the horrific acts and selfless deeds of which humans are capable.

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

I can’t believe it’s been more than a month since I’ve posted my new books!  Here’s what I added to my shelves:

For review:

yours forevermore darcyYours Forevermore, Darcy by KaraLynne Mackrory — from Meryton Press

Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy has a secret.

The letter he presents to Miss Elizabeth Bennet after his ghastly proposal is not the only epistle he has written her. In this tale of longing, misadventure, and love — readapted from Jane Austen’s dearly loved Pride & Prejudice — our hero finds a powerful way of coping with his attraction to Miss Bennet. He writes her unsent letters.

The misguided suitor has declared himself, and Elizabeth Bennet has refused him, most painfully. Without intending for these letters to become known to another soul, Mr. Darcy relies on his secret for coping once again. However, these letters, should they fall into the wrong hands, could create untold scandal, embarrassment, and possibly heartbreak. But what happens if they fall into the right hands?

port of no returnPoint of No Return by Michelle Saftich — from the author

Contessa and Ettore Saforo awake to a normal day in war-stricken, occupied Italy. By the end of the day, however, their house is in ruins and they must seek shelter and protection wherever they can. But the turbulent politics of 1944 refuses to let them be.

As Tito and his Yugoslav Army threaten their German-held town of Fiume, Ettore finds himself running for his life, knowing that neither side is forgiving of those who have assisted the enemy. His wife and children must also flee the meagre life their town can offer, searching for a better life as displaced persons.

Ettore and Contessa’s battle to find each other, and the struggle of their family and friends to rebuild their lives in the aftermath of a devastating war, provide a rich and varied account of Italian migration to Australia after World War II.

What can you do when you have nowhere left to call home? Port of No Return considers this question and more in a novel that is full of action, pain and laughter — a journey you will want to see through to the very end.

weeping women springsWeeping Women Springs by Tamara Eaton — from the author

Tears of grief dilute magical Spring waters…

Hope Springs has a secret — the waters mysteriously uplift the spirits of whoever drinks them. When the town’s young men depart to fight in WWII, tragedy strikes. Grief dilutes the waters’ unique effects, and hiding the village away from the world may provide shelter from the pain — but at what cost? Preoccupied with honoring their loved ones’ memories, five shattered women struggle to gather strength to overcome their loss, and find hope again.

Liv Soderlund, at the precipice of adulthood, is safe within Hope Springs, but longs for change. When news of the war comes, she revels in the excitement of new possibilities. It all comes crashing down once reports of fallen servicemen reach them. Angry, she comes up with the idea which could protect the town from further hurt. At the promise of a new love, can she let the past go?

Maxine Fiekens, a young bride who has had to handle adult responsibilities too soon, sends her husband off to war while she remains behind tending the village store. She’s the first to get word from the battlefront. Can she go on in the throes of unending sorrow?

Ruth Ackerman refuses to have a rushed wedding to her fiancé so waves him good-bye at the train station and spends her days planning her dream occasion. When she also receives heartbreaking news, she rejects the notion of being stuck in a town filled with grieving women and heads off to California where she strives for her dreams.

Susie Bracht dreams of leaving the village to further her education, but when the Korean Conflict breaks out, her brother and her boyfriend run off to be heroes. Her life is put on hold as she waits.

Anna Frolander, a woman who already saw the devastation war can bring, sends two sons to the frontlines in WWII then another runs off to the Korean War. Sunk into a deep depression, will she climb out of the abyss?

Some battles of war are fought on the Homefront by those left behind.

after youAfter You by Jojo Moyes — from Pamela Dorman Books

Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can’t help but feel she’s right back where she started.

Her body heals, but Lou knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. Which is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding — the paramedic whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will’s past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future…

For Lou Clark, life after Will Traynor means learning to fall in love again, with all the risks that brings. But here Jojo Moyes gives us two families, as real as our own, whose joys and sorrows will touch you deeply, and for whom both changes and surprises await.

After You is quintessential Jojo Moyes — a novel that will make you laugh, cry, and rejoice at being back in the world she creates. Here she does what few novelists can do — revisits beloved characters and takes them to places neither they nor we ever expected.

the wedding treeThe Wedding Tree by Robin Wells — from Berkley

National bestselling author Robin Wells weaves a moving epic that stretches from modern-day Louisiana to World War II-era New Orleans and back again in this multigenerational tale of love, loss and redemption.

Hope Stevens thinks Wedding Tree, Louisiana, will be the perfect place to sort out her life and all the mistakes she’s made. Plus, it will give her the chance to help her free-spirited grandmother, Adelaide, sort through her things before moving into assisted living.

Spending the summer in the quaint town, Hope begins to discover that Adelaide has made some mistakes of her own. And as they go through her belongings, her grandmother recalls the wartime romance that left her torn between two men and haunted by a bone-chilling secret. Now she wants Hope’s help in uncovering the truth before it’s too late.

Filled with colorful characters, The Wedding Tree is an emotionally riveting story about passion, shattered dreams, unexpected renewal and forgiveness — not only for others, but for ourselves.

pop goes the weaselPop Goes the Weasel by M.J. Arlidge — from NAL

From the international bestselling author of Eeny Meeny comes the second thriller in the “truly excellent series” featuring Detective Helen Grace.

A man’s body is found in an empty house.
A gruesome memento of his murder is sent to his wife and children.

He is the first victim, and Detective Helen Grace knows he will not be the last. But why would a happily married man be this far from home in the dead of night?

The media call it Jack the Ripper in reverse: a serial killer preying on family men who lead hidden double lives.

Helen can sense the fury behind the murders. But what she cannot possibly predict is how volatile this killer is — or what is waiting for her at the end of the chase…

the unthinkable triangleThe Unthinkable Triangle by Joana Starnes — from the author

All is fair in love and war — or is it?

What if Mr. Darcy’s rival for Elizabeth’s heart is not some inconsequential stranger, but his dearest, closest friend?

Unexpected arrival:

if you're luckyIf You’re Lucky by Yvonne Prinz — from Algonquin Young Readers

When seventeen-year-old Georgia’s brother drowns while surfing halfway around the world in Australia, she refuses to believe that Lucky’s death was just bad luck. Lucky was smart. He wouldn’t have surfed in waters more dangerous than he could handle. Then a stranger named Fin arrives in False Bay, claiming to have been Lucky’s best friend. Soon Fin is working for Lucky’s father, charming Lucky’s mother, dating Lucky’s girlfriend. Georgia begins to wonder: Did Fin murder her brother in order to take over his whole life?

Determined to clear the fog from her mind in order to uncover the truth about Lucky’s death, Georgia secretly stops taking the medication that keeps away the voices in her head. She is certain she’s getting closer and closer to the truth about Fin, but as she does, her mental state becomes more and more precarious, and no one seems to trust what she’s saying.

As the chilling narrative unfolds, the reader must decide whether Georgia’s decent into madness is causing her to see things that don’t exist — or to see the deadly truth.


ross poldarkRoss Poldark by Winston Graham

The enthralling first book behind Poldark, the major new TV series from Masterpiece on PBS…

In the first novel in Winston Graham’s hit series, a weary Ross Poldark returns to England from war, looking forward to a joyful homecoming with his beloved Elizabeth. But instead he discovers his father has died, his home is overrun by livestock and drunken servants, and Elizabeth — believing Ross to be dead — is now engaged to his cousin. Ross has no choice but to start his life anew.

Thus begins the Poldark series, a heartwarming, gripping saga set in the windswept landscape of Cornwall. With an unforgettable cast of characters that spans loves, lives, and generations, this extraordinary masterwork from Winston Graham is a story you will never forget.

the persuasion of miss jane austenThe Persuasion of Miss Jane Austen by Shannon Winslow

For every fan who has wished Jane Austen herself might have enjoyed the romance and happy ending she so carefully crafted for all her heroines: “The Persuasion of Miss Jane Austen.”

What if the tale Jane Austen told in her last, most poignant novel was actually inspired by momentous events in her own life? Did she in fact intend “Persuasion” to stand forever in homage to her one true love?

While creating “Persuasion,” Jane Austen also kept a private journal in which she recorded the story behind the story — her real-life romance with a navy captain of her own. The parallel could only go so far, however. As author of her characters’ lives, but not her own, Jane Austen made sure to fashion a second chance and happy ending for Anne and Captain Wentworth. Then, with her novel complete and her health failing, Jane prepared her simple will and resigned herself to never seeing the love of her life again. Yet fate, it seems, wasn’t quite finished with her. Nor was Captain Devereaux.

The official record says Jane Austen died at 41, having never been married. But what if that’s only what she wanted people to believe? It’s time she, through her own private journal, revealed the rest of her story.

when they fall in loveWhen They Fall in Love by Mary Lydon Simonsen

Spring of 1814 – Fitzwilliam Darcy proposes to Elizabeth Bennet at the Hunsford Parsonage, but his offer of marriage is rejected.

Spring of 1821 – A recently widowed Fitzwilliam Darcy has taken up residence with his six-year-old daughter, Alexandra, at a villa in the hills above Florence and invites Charles and Jane Bingley and their daughter to come for a visit. Included in the invitation is Elizabeth Bennet, who has taken on the responsibility of governess for her niece.

In the intervening years, Elizabeth’s opinion of the Master of Pemberley has altered greatly, but has Darcy’s opinion of Elizabeth changed? After all, he married another and fathered a child. Will they be able to put their troubled history behind them?

When They Fall in Love is set against the background of the greatest city of the Renaissance, a perfect place to start over.

Giveaway win:

a constant loveA Constant Love by Sophie Turner — from More Agreeably Engaged

As Britain settles into a short-lived peace, the characters of Pride and Prejudice pick up very nearly where the novel left off, in a new series of stories focused on love and family:

Elizabeth Bennet finds the joy of her marriage and honeymoon are followed by the demands of becoming Mrs. Darcy, all while helping her shy new younger sister come out into society.

Georgiana Darcy must deal with more suitors than she expected, when she fears nothing more than once again being persuaded to think she is in love with the wrong man.


to live out loudTo Live Out Loud by Paulette Mahurin — from the author

An innocent Jewish military officer, Alfred Dreyfus, was unjustly sentenced to life imprisonment on a desolate island. The news that could exonerate him was leaked to the press, but was suppressed by the military. Anyone who sought to reopen the Dreyfus court-martial became victimized and persecuted and was considered an enemy of the state.

Emile Zola, a popular journalist determined to bring the truth to light, undertook the challenge to publicly expose the facts surrounding the military cover-up. This is the story of Zola’s battle to help Alfred Dreyfus reclaim his freedom and clear his name. Up against anti-Semitism, military resistance, and opposition from the Church in France, Zola committed his life to fighting for justice. But was it worth all the costs to him, to those around him, and to France?

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

No review books, but lots of other goodies!  Here’s what I added to the shelves over the last week:

Purchased with a gift card from my mom:

three amazing things about youThree Amazing Things About You by Jill Mansell

Hallie has a secret: she’s in love. He’s perfect for her in every way, but he’s seriously out of bounds. And Hallie doesn’t have long to live. Time is running out.

Flo has a dilemma — she likes Zander, but his scary sister really doesn’t approve.

Tasha has a problem. Her boyfriend is the adventurous type. And she’s afraid one of his adventures will go badly wrong.

As Three Amazing Things begins, Hallie’s about to be given new lungs. But whose?

the unexpected consequences of loveThe Unexpected Consequences of Love by Jill Mansell

When it comes to falling in love, the consequences are impossible to predict. That’s why Sophie Wells is working in St. Carys as a photographer, with a focus on putting her painful past firmly behind her.

When handsome Josh Strachan moves back to St. Carys to run the family hotel, he can’t understand why Sophie has zero interest in letting him — or any man — into her life. Meanwhile, he’s duped into employing Sophie’s impulsive friend Tula, whose crush on him is decidedly unrequited. Josh’s friend, the charming but utterly feckless surfer Riley Bryant, nurses a massive crush on Tula, and Riley’s aunt — superstar author Marguerite Marshall — has designs on Josh’s grandfather.

Love comes with complications, and the town of St. Carys has more than its fair share! Only one thing’s for sure — that love will change you forever, in ways you never expected.

making your mind upMaking Your Mind Up by Jill Mansell

Lottie Carlyle is happy enough. She is living in a beautiful cottage with her two adorable — sometimes — kids in an idyllic village, on good terms with her ex-husband, and with friends all around. Everything is going just fine.

But when she meets her new boss, her peaceful world is thrown into delightful, exciting, and frustrating chaos. Tyler is perfect for Lottie, but her kids do not agree. To make matters worse, the handsome and mysterious Seb appears on the scene, intriguing — and distracting — Lottie and charming her children, making it more and more difficult to make up her mind…

falling for youFalling for You by Jill Mansell

As a teen, Maddy Harvey was a bit of an ugly duckling. Luckily she’s blossomed since then, and Maddy thanks God for this small miracle when a tall, handsome stranger comes to her rescue one starry summer’s night.

Instant attraction becomes a disaster in the making when Maddy learns the identity of her superman: Kerr McKinnon. Of all the colorful residents of the small Cotswold town of Ashcombe, why did it have to be him? Because as family feuds go, the Montagues and the Capulets have  nothing on the Harveys and the McKinnons.


the darcys of pemberleyThe Darcys of Pemberley by Shannon Winslow — from Austenprose

Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy have been married for almost a year, and their heated arguments are a thing of the past. All that passion is now directed into more satisfying pursuits. But how long can the honeymoon last? The couple’s idyllic life together at Pemberley is jeopardized by secrets they begin keeping, and the threat of a villain in their midst. The Darcys of Pemberley is the tale of two romances: the continuation of Darcy and Elizabeth’s story, and the courtship of Miss Georgiana.

miss georgiana darcy of pemberleyMiss Georgiana Darcy of Pemberley by Shannon Winslow — from Austenprose

What’s Georgiana Darcy’s story? Jane Austen tells us so little in Pride and Prejudice that we’re left to wonder. How did the early loss of her parents shape Miss Darcy’s character? And what about her near-disastrous affair with Mr. Wickham? Is that the true source of her shyness? She adores her brother and his new wife Elizabeth, but will their guiding influence be enough to steer Georgiana clear of new trouble as she comes of age and falls in love again?

This work is intended as a companion of sorts to The Darcys of Pemberley (sequel to Pride and Prejudice), with the timelines of the two running parallel. Both novels are unique and complete in themselves, but together they supply a richer reading experience than either one alone. The earlier book focused primarily on Darcy and Elizabeth’s relationship during their early married life. There was a third Darcy represented in the title, however. Now she and her courtship story take center stage in Miss Georgiana Darcy of Pemberley.

wedding nightWedding Night by Lily Lord — from a Facebook release party

Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy become man and wife and begin exploring the privileges of matrimony. To unschooled Lizzy, the passionate nights are shocking but exciting. She wants to please her husband, but how far must she go before she fears her own desires are so lustful and wanton that they are unseemly in the wife of a gentleman?

twice temptedTwice Tempted by Lily Lord — from a Facebook release party

Everything is new to the former Miss Elizabeth Bennet, as is to be expected of a young lady of her time. Eager as she is to please her husband, some things don’t go according to her wishes, or his.

Mr. Darcy has planned an elaborate journey in celebration of their marriage. The trip from Netherfield to the Lake region, in the company of Elizabeth’s sister Jane and her new husband Charles Bingley, is lovely but difficult to enjoy. What Lizzy is experiencing in the evenings is so personal that she cannot bear to share it, even with her sister. Caught between dread and delight when she considers the next night with her husband, the new Mrs. Darcy’s days are a roller coaster of anticipation.

third trystThird Tryst by Lily Lord — from a Facebook release party

Three days after her wedding, Lizzy is ever more delighted by the amorous attentions of her new husband.

But when the couple stays overnight at Viscount B___’s house on their way north from Hertfordshire to the Lake region, Darcy imbibes a bit too much of their host’s vintage brandy.

The elaborate post-wedding journey with the Bingleys includes glorious days full of beautiful sights, but Elizabeth’s nights in the bedchamber with Mr. Darcy are even more exciting. They open up a world of sensations that the former Miss Bennet had never imagined…and which she is every evening more eager to explore.

teatime talesTeatime Tales: Short and Sweet Austen-Inspired Stories by Leenie Brown — from DarcyandLizzy.Com

This book is a collection of short and sweet Austen-inspired stories intended to be a light pick-me-up…a bit of fluff to brighten your day.

From Oxford Cottage by Leenie Brown

A Music Room Meeting
A look at the beginning of Richard and Harriet’s relationship

From Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

With All My Love
A letter from Edmund to Fanny

From Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Mr. Bingley Plans a Ball
Mr. Bingley returns to Netherfield

From Tolerable to Lovely
A ballroom blunder stops Mr. Darcy’s famous disparagement

A Battle of Wills and Words
Elizabeth engages in a verbal joust with Colonel Fitzwilliam

Two Days in November
Darcy and Elizabeth embark on a plan to bring happiness to Jane

Unexpected arrivals:

cleopatra's shadowsCleopatra’s Shadow by Emily Holleman — from Little, Brown

Arsinoe, the bright and incisive eight-year-old daughter of King Ptolemy, awakens one morning from an ominous dream of statues weeping blood to find that her reality is even worse. There’s been a violent coup, and she is stranded alone in the palace, abandoned by both her beloved older sister Cleopatra and her indifferent father. The new monarch? Arsinoe’s half sister Berenice, who has seized the throne and now rules over a bloodthirsty royal court.

Arsinoe’s struggle to establish herself in this strange new world takes her from the palace to the streets of war-torn Alexandria, where she must cast off her childhood comforts, including her idolization of Cleopatra. Meanwhile, Berenice confronts her own demons — her cruel, dying mother, a pair of fickle husbands, and the ever-present threat of her father’s return from exile — as she fights to maintain power as the first queen to rule Egypt alone in a thousand years. When their deposed father, Ptolemy, marches on the city with a Roman army, both daughters must decide where their allegiances truly lie, and Arsinoe grapples with the difficult truth — that the only way to survive her dynasty is to rule it.

the witchesThe Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff — from Little, Brown

It began in early 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister’s daughter began to writhe and roar. It ended less than a year later, but not before nineteen men and women had been hanged and an elderly man crushed to death.

The panic spread quickly, involving the most educated men and prominent politicians in the colony. Neighbors accused neighbors, husbands accused wives, parents and children one another. Speaking loudly and emphatically, adolescent girls stood at the center of the crisis. Aside from suffrage, the Salem witch trials represent the only moment when women played the central role in American history.

The Witches is Stacy Schiff’s thriller of an account of this sentinel story — a great American mystery unveiled in crackling detail by one of our most acclaimed historians.

Free e-book (not sure if it is still free):

courting destinyCourting Destiny: Homecoming (Pride and Prejudice Legacies Book 1) by Lily Granson

Introducing Mr William Bryce the 2nd. The dashing son of the famous lord of Cumberland has arrived home after completing several years of service in the Royal Navy. Formerly a reluctant heir, after traveling the world he is now ready to take on the role he was born to. He understands it will mean finding a suitable wife, someone fit to be Lady of Cumberland, and he is also ready for that…or is he?

There are plenty of eligible young ladies to vie for his attention, after all who wouldn’t want to be the future Lady of Cumberland? Three young ladies in particular stand out. All three have their attractions, but one in particular, the beautiful Destiny Blaine, catches his attention. Destiny is different, while her family is by far the least wealthy of the three, she cares not for titles and the trappings of wealth. Despite this, she finds her fondness for Mr. Bryce growing into something much deeper.

That’s where her troubles begin, William’s growing affection for her has not gone unnoticed, and what neither of them realize is that some young women will do whatever they can to get what…and who they want.

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Here’s what I added to the shelves over the last week:


a sense of obligationA Sense of Obligation by Rose Fairbanks — from the author

**I had the pleasure of editing this novel!**

A chance, but meaningful, encounter in Netherfield’s library changes everything between Darcy and Elizabeth. As they rush to the altar, Darcy’s faulty memory may destroy their chance at domestic comfort before they begin. Knowing their obligations and no longer resisting their attraction, they forge a foundation of trust and respect. New feelings may not be enough, however, to overcome the misunderstanding which lays between them. Exploring the juncture of sentiment and reason, A Sense of Obligation takes Darcy and Elizabeth on a passionate, humorous and introspective path toward happiness in marriage.

mr. darcy to the rescueMr. Darcy to the Rescue by Victoria Kincaid

**I had the pleasure of editing this one, too!**

When the irritating Mr. Collins proposes marriage, Elizabeth Bennet is prepared to refuse him, but then she learns that her father is ill. If Mr. Bennet dies, Collins will inherit Longbourn and her family will have nowhere to go. Elizabeth accepts the proposal, telling herself she can be content as long as her family is secure. If only she weren’t dreading the approaching wedding day…

Ever since leaving Hertfordshire, Mr. Darcy has been trying to forget his inconvenient attraction to Elizabeth. News of her betrothal forces him to realize how devastating it would be to lose her. He arrives at Longbourn intending to prevent the marriage, but discovers Elizabeth’s real opinion about his character. Then Darcy recognizes his true dilemma…

How can he rescue her when she doesn’t want him to?

For review:

we that are leftWe That Are Left by Clare Clark — from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

1910. Jessica and Phyllis Melville have grown up at Ellinghurst, their family estate. A headstrong beauty, Jessica longs for London — the glitter and glamor of debutante life — while the bookish Phyllis dreams in vain of attending the university. Neither questions that it is Theo, their adored brother, whom their mother loves best. Theo eclipses everyone around him, not the least diffident Oskar Grunewald — a prodigy in the rapidly evolving fields of math and physics — who with his mother is a frequent visitor to Ellinghurst. Fascinated by the house but alternatively tormented and ignored by the Melville children, Oskar seeks refuge in Ellinghurst’s enormous library.

Over the next decade, as the Great War devastates and reshapes their world, the children come of age in a country unrecognizable from the idylls of their youth. As the sisters struggle to forge new paths without the guidance of the old rules, Oskar’s life becomes entwined with theirs once again in ways that will change all of their futures forever.

the british lionThe British Lion by Tony Schumacher — from William Morrow

In this crackling alternate-history thriller set in the years after World War II — the riveting sequel to The Darkest Hour — London detective John Rossett joins forces with his Nazi boss to save the commander’s kidnapped daughter, as the Germans race to make the first atomic bomb.

With the end of the war, the victorious Germans now occupy a defeated Great Britain. In London, decorated detective John Henry Rossett, reporting to the Nazi victors, lies in a hospital bed recovering from gunshot wounds. Desperate to avoid blame over the events that led to the shooting, his boss, Ernst Koehler, covers up the incident. But when Koehler’s wife and daughter are kidnapped by American spies, the terrified German turns to the only man he trusts to help him — a shrewd cop who will do whatever is necessary to get the job done: John Rossett.

Surviving his brush with death, Rossett agrees to save his friend’s daughter. But in a chaotic new world ruled by treachery and betrayal, doing the right thing can get a man killed. Caught between the Nazi SS, the violent British resistance, and Americans with very uncertain loyalties, Rossett must secretly make his way out of London and find Ruth Hartz, a Jewish scientist working in Cambridge. Spared from death because of her intellect and expertise, she is forced to work on developing the atomic bomb for Germany. Though she knows it could end any hope of freedom in Europe and maybe even the world, Ruth must finish the project — if she, too, wants to survive.

red sox rhymesRed Sox Rhymes: Verses and Curses by Dick Flavin — from William Morrow

A Boston institution and popular local television personality who is also the announcer, ambassador, and poet laureate for the Red Sox, Dick Flavin has entertained audiences with his incredible poetic talent and abiding love for the Red Sox before countless home games for years. Now this legendary talent’s poems are gathered together for the first time in this keepsake volume.

As a beloved Red Sox insider, Flavin has been privileged to watch history in the making, from the team’s 2004 World Series victory that finally broke its nearly century-long “curse,” to road-tripping with Dom DiMaggio and Johnny Pesky to visit Ted Williams in Florida. His pithy and comedic verses — including such gems as “The Beards of Summer,” “Long Live Fenway Park,” and his best known, “Teddy at the Bat” — pay homage to the American pastime, New England’s favorite team and players (and the curses and legends that have followed it), and the passionate Nation that has remained faithful through victory and defeat.

Illustrated with more than fifty photos, Red Sox Rhymes honors all of Red Sox Nation and is an essential memento for every BoSox fan around the world.

Unexpected arrival:

the gates of rutherfordThe Gates of Rutherford by Elizabeth Cooke — from Berkley

Charlotte Cavendish has been dreaming of her old home at Rutherford Park. It is April 1917; she is nineteen years old. And everywhere there is change. The war still rages on the Continent, where her brother fights for the Royal Flying Corps. Her parents’ marriage is in jeopardy, with her mother falling for a charming American in London.

But not all is grim. Charlotte is marrying Preston, the blinded soldier whom she nursed back to health. Her parents couldn’t be happier about this. The young man hails from a well-established and wealthy family in Kent, and he’s solid and respectable. They hope he’s the one to tame their notoriously headstrong daughter.

But as time passes, Charlotte slowly comes to the realization that she is not truly happy. And for a reason she is only just beginning to understand. A reason she dare not reveal to the family — or the world…

Free e-books (not sure if these are still free):

pride and all this prejudicePride and All This Prejudice by Alex A. King

There are no truths universally acknowledged. We’re people. People. We can’t agree on anything. –Elisa Baros

After three years studying overseas, Elisa Baros is coming home to the most predictable place on Earth, where change is a foreign word and her future is carved in marble. But when a wealthy stranger inherits a house in the tiny village of Meriton, Greece, dragging the surliest man on the planet along with him, all the predictability she used to rely on is shot to pieces. Markos Dellis is judgmental, rude, a Byronic store mannequin of a man who hates the family she adores. The only thing he and Elisa have in common is a mutual loathing; it’s a perfect two-way street.

Or so Elisa believes, until Markos flings his true feelings in her face, leaving her to question how well she knows the arrogant man…and how well she knows herself.

my dear sophyMy Dear Sophy by Kimberly Truesdale

Sophy Wentworth loves her life in sleepy Milverton…

Twenty-three year old Sophia Wentworth lives a quiet life in the small country town of Milverton. Here she helps her Papa, the town doctor, visits with her friends, and attempts – usually unsuccessfully – to keep her younger brothers Edward and Frederick out of trouble. When the opportunity to marry the handsome and attentive young curate who’s just moved into the next town presents itself, Sophy is tempted by a life of pleasant repetitions and obligations, a life that will keep her at the center of the town and the community she loves so much.

Until a stranger arrives…

Captain Conrad Croft grew up in Milverton, where his father is the rector. He has spent the past fourteen years traveling the world with the British Navy. On a surprise visit home, Conrad meets Sophia – who was just eight years old when he left. He becomes intrigued by this woman, the silent core of strength for the entire town. When his attempts to draw her out succeed, Conrad discovers an intelligent, witty, strong woman who might just be his perfect match. He only has to convince her of it before he sails away again.

Fifteen years before the events of Jane Austen’s Persuasion, this is the story of how the Admiral and Mrs. Croft first meet.

the wrong womanThe Wrong Woman (Unexpected Love Book 1) by Kimberly Truesdale

Ten years ago, wealthy and handsome Miles Shepherd, Baron of Revere laughed clumsy and plump Isobel Masters out of any marriage prospects. Now, at the age of 29, Isobel is launching her beautiful younger sister, Cat, into society, and Miles is the first in line to court her.

Though Isobel tries to protest against the man who has caused her so much pain, she knows his fortune and rank will make a good match for her sister. So she resigns herself unhappily to her duties as chaperone. As they spend time together, though, both Isobel and Miles are drawn to each other in a way neither anticipates.

Only hours after Miles finally realizes he’s courting the wrong woman, Isobel is kidnapped. Battling his guilt and memories of his own devastating past, Miles must pray that Isobel will survive so he can tell her that he loves her and that sometimes the woman who seems to be all wrong turns out to be just right.

a prince for aunt hettyA Prince for Aunt Hetty (Unexpected Love Book 2) by Kimberly Truesdale

Harriet Masters has just seen her eldest niece Isobel happily married. Now she’s off to visit her sister for the new year. In their quiet house in the country, she spends her days playing games and reading fairy tales to her young nieces and nephews. The stories of princes and princesses fill their heads. Hetty dreams, too, but she knows that at fifty years old, her chance at a happy ending is long past her.

Rupert Henderson moved to the country to enjoy some peace and quiet after a lifetime in London society. He particularly likes his new neighbors and their children. And when he unexpectedly meets their Aunt Hetty – gingerly making her way through the winter mud – he is even more drawn to the family and to the intriguing woman who has come to visit.

But when Rupert is called back to London on urgent business, the separation might mean the death of a budding romance. Then again, Hetty just might find the prince she never expected…

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

Read Full Post »

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Here’s what I added to the shelves over the last week:

For review:

mrs. sinclair's suitcaseMrs. Sinclair’s Suitcase by Louise Walters — from Putnam

Roberta is a lonely young bibliophile who works at a bookstore in England. She has a habit of keeping the odds and ends she finds inside used books. So when her father gives her a heap of secondhand books in an old suitcase that once belonged to Roberta’s 109-year-old grandmother, Dorothea, she is intrigued. Inside the suitcase she discovers a letter addressed to Dorothea that hints at a dark secret. Curious to know more, Roberta sets out to uncover the truth, but what she learns completely upturns her understanding of her family’s history.

Running alongside Roberta’s narrative is that of Dorothy Sinclair, unhappily married and childless, during the early years of World War II. When an unexpected event occurs, Dorothy must — against her better judgment — make an unthinkable decision, whose consequences forever change the framework of her family.

The parallel stories of Roberta and Dorothy unfold over the course of eighty years as they each make their way through secrets, lies, sacrifices, and love. Utterly absorbing, Mrs. Sinclair’s Suitcase is a spellbinding tale of two worlds, one shattered by secrets and the other by the truth. (publisher’s summary)

pompous schemesPompous Schemes by Ayr Bray — from Loving the Book

Thrown from his horse, Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam is left to traverse the remaining fifteen miles to Pemberley on foot. Richard never imagined the first carriage to cross his path would contain the one woman he thought he would never see again.

Lady Aimée de Bourbon, the only child of Prince du Sang Geoffroy de Bourbon, Marquis of Agen had captured and nearly broke Richard’s heart four years earlier. He had loved her and planned to give up his bachelor ways, but her father intended her to marry a royal, not an English Earl’s second son. Now Lady Aimée is affianced to Señor Duarte de Cortázar, a lesser Portuguese royal.

While lost in his thoughts of his prior love, the carriage is robbed, Lady Aimée’s dowry stolen, and Lord Agen is injured. Colonel Fitzwilliam directs the driver to take them to Pemberley where Mr. Darcy and his wife Elizabeth take them in and offer refuge and a place to heal.

Ancient customs of Dom Duarte’s family forbids marriage without the dowry present at the wedding, and now with the dowry stolen, Lady Aimée and her father fear the de Cortázars will call off the marriage. But Lady Aimée intends to have love and will let nothing stand in her way, even if it means hurting the man she once professed to love.

In Pompous Schemes, Ayr Bray continues her masterfully created world around Pemberley. A world that will make you want to submerse yourself into the fascinating aura of mystery, awe, and romance and never leave. (publisher’s summary)


disdain and deceptionPride and Prejudice: Disdain and Deception by Denise O’Hara — from the author

This Pride and Prejudice variation begins between Darcy and Elizabeth’s engagement and wedding.

Suppose everything happened exactly as in the original until after the engagement. Then Mr.Darcy has an accident…or is it? He is taken away from Elizabeth and she must use whatever means she can to reach him before it’s too late. (publisher’s summary)

Free e-books (not sure if they are still free):

all your pretty dreamsAll Your Pretty Dreams by Lise McClendon

When everything you planned goes south, there is only one thing left: heed the call to come home– even if it involves the polka.

Just because Jonny Knobel hasn’t touched the accordion for years means nothing to his father and his beloved polka band. After years in the city, small-town Minnesota whiplashes Jonny until he runs into the college girls doing field-work next door. The mysteriously rude Isabel Yancey, the crew chief, arrives with her own fresh heartache. Can two such different people attract?

Jonny is trying to break away from his high school sweetheart who he married at 19, when he meets Isabel, a graduate student involved in a study of bees. They couldn’t be more different in their ideals and dreams yet, just like Elizabeth and Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, something draws them together.

Combining the star-crossed lovers of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with the quirky characters of Anne Tyler, the world of Red Vine, Minnesota comes to life: a rich milieu of confrontation, betrayal, humiliation, laughter, and redemption, as Jonny plays Bruce Springsteen, James Brown, and the ‘She Likes Kielbasa’ polka on his grandfather’s accordion. What does a draftsman from the Twin Cities, born into a cheesy polka band, have in common with a prickly, ambitious scientist who has seen the world? And just how badly does she want him to breach her defenses?

A story about second chances and the laws of attraction, this is a New Adult novel featuring twenty-somethings in search of a fresh start. Romance, humor, and the heartache of growing up make All Your Pretty Dreams a unique journey through the hearts and minds of young adults searching for the keys to happiness in a complicated world. (publisher’s summary)

p&p the other way roundPride and Prejudice: The Other Way Round by Jane Austen and Anne Wrightwell

This is Pride and Prejudice with a twist; the classic story takes place in a universe where gender roles are reversed. When Miss Bingley rents a house in Meryton, she meets the lovely John Bennet and her friend, the proud Miss Darcy, meets his enchanting brother, Elijah Bennet. (publisher’s summary)

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Here’s what I added to the shelves over the last couple of weeks:

For review:

the race for parisThe Race for Paris by Meg Waite Clayton — from Harper

Normandy. 1944. To cover the fighting in France, Jane, a reporter for the Nashville Banner, and Liv, an Associated Press photographer, have already had to endure enormous danger and frustrating obstacles — including strict military regulations limiting what women correspondents can do. Even so, Liv wants more. Encouraged by her husband, the editor of a New York newspaper, she’s determined to be the first photographer to reach Paris with the Allies and capture its freedom from the Nazis.

However, her commanding officer has other ideas about the role of women in the press corps. To fulfill her ambitions, Liv must go AWOL. She persuades Jane to join her, and the two women find a guardian angel in Fletcher, a British military photographer who reluctantly agrees to escort them. As they race for Paris across the perilous French countrywide, Liv, Jane, and Fletcher forge an indelible emotional bond that will transform them and reverberate long after the war is over.

Based on daring, real-life female reporters on the front lines of history like Margaret Bourke-White, Lee Miller, and Martha Gellhorn — and with cameos by other famous faces of the time — The Race for Paris is an absorbing, atmospheric saga full of drama, adventure, and passion. Combining riveting storytelling with expert literary craftsmanship and thorough research, Meg Waite Clayton crafts a compelling, resonant read. (publisher’s summary)

avenue of spiesAvenue of Spies by Alex Kershaw — from Crown

The leafy Avenue Foch, one of the most exclusive residential streets in Nazi-occupied France, was Paris’s hotbed of daring spies, murderous secret police, amoral informers, and Vichy collaborators. So when American physician Sumner Jackson, who lived with his wife and young son Phillip at Number 11, found himself drawn into the Liberation network of the French resistance, he knew the stakes were impossibly high. Just down the road at Number 31 was the “mad sadist” Theodor Dannecker, an Eichmann protege charged with deporting French Jews to concentration camps. And Number 84 housed the Parisian headquarters of the Gestapo, run by the most effective spy hunter in Nazi Germany.

From his office at the American Hospital, itself an epicenter of Allied and Axis intrigue, Jackson smuggled fallen Allied fighter pilots safely out of France, a job complicated by the hospital director’s close ties to collaborationist Vichy. After witnessing the brutal round-up of his Jewish friends, Jackson invited Liberation to officially operate out of his home at Number 11 — but the noose soon began to tighten. When his secret life was discovered by his Nazi neighbors, he and his family were forced to undertake a journey into the dark heart of the war-torn continent from which there was little chance of return.

Drawing upon a wealth of primary source material and extensive interviews with Phillip Jackson, Alex Kershaw recreates the City of Light during its darkest days. The untold story of the Jackson family anchors the suspenseful narrative, and Kershaw dazzles readers with the vivid immediacy of the best spy thrillers. Awash with the tense atmosphere of World War II’s Europe, Avenue of Spies introduces us to the brave doctor who risked everything to defy Hitler. (publisher’s summary)

emma mangaManga Classics: Emma by Jane Austen — from UDON Entertainment

Just in time for the 200th Anniversary, Manga Classics: Emma brings Jane Austen’s classic tale of youthful folly and romantic exuberance to a modern audience with this beautiful, new manga adaptation. The impulsive match-making of Emma Woodhouse delivers both humor and heartache through the gorgeous artwork of manga-ka Po Tse (Manga Classics: Pride and Prejudice). Manga Classics editions feature classic stories, faithfully adapted and illustrated in manga style, and available in both hardcover and softcover editions. (publisher’s summary)

guide to photographyNational Geographic Kids Guide to Photography by Nancy Honovich and Annie Griffiths — from Oleg Lyubner Public Relations

This info-packed, easy-to-use, superfun, how-to guide teaches everything there is to know about taking photographs. From smartphone cameras to SLRs, and from point-and-shoot to under-water cameras, we’ve got practical advice for kids of all ages. Watch out National Geographic photographers, a new batch of experts is on the way.


  • Diagrams showing how cameras work
  • Step-by-step instructions so you can compose, light, and take the perfect shot
  • Info about editing, photo sharing, and all the latest photo software
  • Do-it-yourself activities
  • Tips & tricks from National Geographic photographers and other experts
  • Behind-the-scenes stories about how the pros get the perfect shot
  • Careers for camera hounds
  • Ways to connect through the National Geographic Kids photo-sharing community MyShot
  • Assignments from noted photographer Annie Griffiths to test your knowledge

And much more! (publisher’s summary)

Unexpected arrival:

mrs. bennet has her sayMrs. Bennet Has Her Say by Jane Juska — from Berkley

It is a truth universally acknowledged that every man in possession of a wife must be in want of a son.

1785 was to be the most marvelous year of Marianne’s life, until an unfortunate turn of events left her in a compromised state and desperate for a husband to care — or rather cover — for her. Now, she is stuck in an undesirable marriage to Mr. Edward Bennet, who is desperate in his own way for a male heir. But as she is still carrying a smoldering desire for the handsome Colonel Millar, Mrs. Bennet must constantly find new, clever ways to avoid her husband’s lascivious advances until she is once again reunited with her dashing colonel. Except that the best-laid plans of a woman in good standing can so often go awry, especially when her contrary husband has plans and desires of his own…

Filled with audacious wit and hilarious surprises, this debut novel is an honest, smart, and satirical look at love, marriage, and the beloved Bennet family from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, as you’ve never seen them before… (publisher’s summary)

Free e-books snagged during the Facebook launch party for A Sense of Obligation by Rose Fairbanks:

pemberley mistletoePemberley Mistletoe by Ayr Bray

Fitzwilliam and Elizabeth Darcy had enjoyed a fortnight of being totally irresponsible with regards to anything other than matters of the heart, but the honeymoon is over, and Christmas is sneaking up on them. With the assistant of Mrs. Reynolds, Elizabeth decorates the manor and plans for an intimate holiday party of six, but little does she know how upside down those plans will turn when the party ends up with an additional thirteen uninvited guests.

Will Elizabeth Darcy be able to blend the Darcy and Bennet traditions into a holiday that both she and Fitzwilliam can enjoy, and can she do it while so many women are in attendance waiting for her to mess up? (publisher’s summary)

scent of desireScent of Desire by Ayr Bray

After a tempestuous acquaintance fraught with misconceptions, Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy are at last of one mind and heart. Their betrothal is not without its own difficulties, however, and a single misunderstanding may place all of their future happiness in jeopardy.

By Amazon Best-Selling author Ayr Bray, Scent of Desire is a Pride and Prejudice expansion chronicling the six-week engagement of one of the world’s most beloved Jane Austen couples. (publisher’s summary)

the illegitimate heirThe Illegitimate Heir by Ayr Bray

The younger son of an earl often cannot afford to marry for love, so it is fortunate Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam has fallen in love with Helen Malham, who has both beauty and wealth. Her father, however, will not allow her to marry a man without a title.

When the Prince Regent names Richard the Duke of Blachedone, it is both a blessing and a curse. His newly acquired title means he may marry Helen — assuming she will have him once the truth comes out. He was awarded the dukedom not for his service to the Crown, but because he is the former duke’s illegitimate son, and soon all of London will know.

Mr. Calvin Aldrich is a rake and a blackguard and set to be one of the richest dukes in England…until his uncle is stripped of his titles and possessions while on his deathbed. Bereft of his inheritance, Calvin will stop at nothing to get revenge on his uncle’s illegitimate heir. He will strike at Richard in any way he can, even if it means ruining an innocent woman. (publisher’s summary)

threat of scandalThreat of Scandal by Ayr Bray

At twenty years of age, Georgiana Darcy embarks on her third season in London hoping to find true love. Things go terribly wrong when she is implicated in a scandalous affair with the Duke of Rothford and, though she is innocent of wrongdoing, London society shuns her and her reputation is in tatters.

For months the Duke has had troubles of his own; the last thing he needs is to be caught up in London’s latest scandal with a perfect stranger. The Duke is an honourable man, however, and does his best to clear their names and restore Georgiana’s reputation.

The Duke’s kindness and attentiveness ignite the kind of love in Georgiana she’s always dreamed of. She knows a peer of the realm could never marry a mere gentleman’s daughter, so she contents herself with simply being near him. But when a new scandal arises, she must leave London and the Duke or risk losing her reputation forever. (publisher’s summary)

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

Read Full Post »

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. It is now being hosted at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Here’s what I added to the shelves over the past few weeks:

For review:

a will of ironA Will of Iron by Linda Beutler — from Meryton Press

The untimely death of Anne de Bourgh, only days after his disastrous proposal at the Hunsford parsonage, draws Fitzwilliam Darcy and his cousin Colonel Alexander Fitzwilliam back to Rosings Park before Elizabeth Bennet has left the neighborhood. In death, Anne is revealed as having lived a rich life of the mind, plotting rather constantly to escape her loathsome mother, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Anne’s journal, spirited into the hands of Charlotte Collins and Elizabeth, holds Anne’s candid observations on life and her family. It also explains her final quirky means of outwitting her mother. Anne’s Last Will and Testament, with its peculiar bequests, upheaves every relationship amongst the Bennets, Darcys, Fitzwilliams, Collinses, and even the Bingleys! Was Anne de Bourgh a shrewder judge of character than Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy combined?  (publisher’s summary)

jars of hopeJars of Hope by Jennifer Roy, illustrated by Meg Owenson — from IWPR Group

During the horrors of World War II, there were many unsung heroes.  Irena Sendler was one of them.

While many people lived in fear of the Nazis, Irena defied them, even though it could have meant her life.  This harrowing true story of a woman who took it upon herself to help save 2,500 children during the Holocaust is not only inspirational — it’s unforgettable.  (publisher’s summary)

becoming darknessBecoming Darkness by Lindsay Francis Brambles — from IWPR Group

Like everyone else living in Haven, seventeen-year-old Sophie Harkness is an Immune — a carrier of the genetic mutation that protects her from the virus Hitler unleashed upon the world more than half a century ago.  The virus that wiped out most of humanity and turned two hundred million people into vampires.  But after her best friend is brutally murdered, Sophie becomes determined to find answers to a conspiracy that runs generations deep.  And when she questions the peace treaty that keeps her small community protected, Sophie begins to discover terrible truths about herself and what it means to be human in a world ruled by darkness.  (publisher’s summary)

the book of lost and foundThe Book of Lost and Found by Lucy Foley — from Back Bay Books

Kate Darling’s enigmatic mother — a once famous ballerina — has passed away, leaving Kate bereft.  When her grandmother falls ill and bequeaths to Kate a small portrait of a woman who bears a striking resemblance to Kate’s mother, Kate uncovers a mystery that may upend everything she thought she knew.

Kate’s journey to find the true identity of the woman in the portrait takes her to some of the world’s most iconic and indulgent locales, revealing a love story that began in the wild 1920s and was disrupted by war, and could now spark new love for Kate.  Alternating between Kate’s present-day hunt and voices from the past, The Book of Lost and Found casts light on family secrets and love — both lost and found.  (publisher’s summary)


beach townBeach Town by Mary Kay Andrews — from Savvy Verse & Wit

Greer Hennessy needs palm trees.

As a movie location scout, picture-perfect is the name of the game.  But her last project literally went up in flames, and her career is on the verge of flaming out.  Greer has been given one more chance, if she can find the perfect undiscovered beach hideaway for a big-budget movie.  She zeroes in on a sleepy Florida town called Cypress Key.  There’s one motel, a marina, a long stretch of pristine beach, and an old fishing pier with a community casino — which will be perfect for the film’s explosive climax.

There’s just one problem: Eben Thibadeaux, the town’s mayor, completely objects to Greer’s plan.  A lifelong resident of Cypress Key, Eben wants the town to be revitalized, not commercialized.  After a toxic paper plant closed, the bay has only recently been reborn, and Eb has no intention of letting anybody screw with his town again.  But Greer has a way of making things happen, regardless of obstacles.  And Greer and Eb are way too attracted to each other for either of them to see reason.

Between an ambitious director and his entourage — including a spoiled “It Boy” lead actor — who parachute into town, a conniving local ex-socialite, and a cast of local fangirls and opportunists who catch the movie bug, nothing is going to be the same in Cypress Key.  Now Greer is forced to make some hard choices:  about the people and the town she’s come to care about, and about her own life.  True love is only for the movies, right?  Can Greer find a way to be the heroine in her own life story?  Told with inimitable heart and humor, Mary Kay Andrews’s Beach Town is the perfect summer destination.  (publisher’s summary)

What books did you add to your shelves recently?

© 2015 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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