RECOMMENDED: To Marry an English Lord is $2.99 digitally right now. Carrie S reviewed this book and gave it an A+. This is historical nonfiction about the American heiresses who came over to England and married themselves some titles.
Carrie wrote in her review, “The gossip is juicy. The psychology is interesting, if mostly superficial – who lived to party all the time, and why, and what were the parties like and how much did they cost? Who dedicated themselves to Good Works, and why, and what did they do? Who took to their beds? What historical events were prompting all these American heiresses to marry overseas?”
From the Gilded Age until 1914, more than 100 American heiresses invaded Britannia and swapped dollars for titles–just like Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham, the first of the Downton Abbey characters Julian Fellowes was inspired to create after reading To Marry An English Lord.
Filled with vivid personalities, gossipy anecdotes, grand houses, and a wealth of period details–plus photographs, illustrations, quotes, and the finer points of Victorian and Edwardian etiquette–To Marry An English Lord is social history at its liveliest and most accessible.
RECOMMENDED: Lucien's Fall by Barbara Samuels is .99c at Amazon, and bizarrely $4.99 elsewhere (HI… PRICE MATCHING GODDESSES?). This is a re-release of a 1995 historical romance which some readers consider one of Samuels' best.
I reviewed it 2006 when Candy said YOU HAVE TO READ THIS, and initially I thought I'd disliked it. After ruminating and continuing to think about it (this book sticks with you, reallyreally) I had to elevate my grade to B+ because it does many interesting things and I liked it more than I thought. This is one memorable hero, y'all, and a longtime reader favorite.
A SINFULLY APPEALING RAKE
Lord Lucien Escher is a renowed London rake who believes there is not a woman in the world who cannot be seduced–he is determined to prove it, come what may.
AN INTELLIGENT AND DETERMINED WOMAN
Madeline is determined to save her treasured ancestral home and has no use for love or the tricks of an unredeemable scoundrel. Against her better judgment, however, she is powerfully drawn to the elusive and dangerous Lucien, whose hard-hearted façade hides a tragedy that is slowly devouring him from within.
As Lucien and Madeline circle each other in a magnetic play of desire and denial, their passion will rise to a crescendo of longing and sacrifice that will change their fates forever.
Cinders and Sapphires is .99c right now. This is historical YA by Leila Rasheed, and the first of the At Somerton series. Reviewers who loved it praised the parallel plotlines following the wealthy family and their servants belowstairs, and the dishy, gossipy story that is full of twists and a lot of fun.
Rose Cliffe has never met a young lady like her new mistress. Clever, rich, and beautiful, Ada Averley treats Rose as an equal. And Rose could use a friend. Especially now that she, at barely sixteen, has risen to the position of ladies’ maid. Rose knows she should be grateful to have a place at a house like Somerton. Still, she can’t help but wonder what her life might have been had she been born a lady, like Ada.
For the first time in a decade, the Averleys have returned to Somerton, their majestic ancestral estate. But terrible scandal has followed Ada’s beloved father all the way from India. Now Ada finds herself torn between her own happiness and her family’s honor. Only she has the power to restore the Averley name—but it would mean giving up her one true love . . . someone she could never persuade her father to accept.
Sumptuous and enticing, the first novel in the At Somerton series introduces two worlds, utterly different yet entangled, where ruthless ambition, forbidden attraction, and unspoken dreams are hidden behind dutiful smiles and glittering jewels. All those secrets are waiting . . . at Somerton.
Reminder! A Night to Surrender is book 1 in Tessa Dare's Spindle Cove trilogy, and it's still on sale for $2.99. As I've mentioned many times, I really liked the series, though this was my least favorite of the books. The setting is wonderful and the characters, especially the women, are fantastic. This book was nominated for a RITA so there are two RITA Reader Challenge reviews: HarperGray gave it a C+ and Kelly gave it an A-.
Welcome to Spindle Cove, where the ladies with delicate constitutions come for the sea air, and men in their prime are… nowhere to be found. Or are they?
Spindle Cove is the destination of choice for certain types of well-bred young ladies: the painfully shy, young wives disenchanted with matrimony, and young girls too enchanted with the wrong men; it is a haven for those who live there. Victor Bramwell, the new Earl of Rycliff, knows he doesn't belong here.
So far as he can tell, there's nothing in this place but spinsters… and sheep. But he has no choice, he has orders to gather a militia. It's a simple mission, made complicated by the spirited, exquisite Susanna Finch—a woman who is determined to save her personal utopia from the invasion of Bram's makeshift army.
Susanna has no use for aggravating men; Bram has sworn off interfering women. The scene is set for an epic battle… but who can be named the winner when both have so much to lose?
A Week to be Wicked features a heroine whose intellectual pursuits make her so unique she is lonely, and I loved her. I still think about this book, especially about the unsung women who discovered fossils first. It's book #2 in the series, it's a road trip romance, and it's $1.99.
Minerva Highwood, one of Spindle Cove's confirmed spinsters, needs to be in Scotland. Colin Sandhurst, Lord Payne, a rake of the first order, needs to be…anywhere but Spindle Cove.
These unlikely partners have one week to
• fake an elopement
• convince family and friends they're in “love”
• outrun armed robbers
• survive their worst nightmares
• travel four hundred miles without killing each other
All while sharing a very small carriage by day and an even smaller bed by night. What they don't have time for is their growing attraction. Much less wild passion. And heaven forbid they spend precious hours baring their hearts and souls. Suddenly one week seems like exactly enough time to find a world of trouble. And maybe…just maybe…love.