It’s Monday, what are you reading? (1/24/22)

With a couple of weeks of reading for pleasure I’ve gotten to re-read and read quite a few great books! It’s funny how if I’ve reserved a book to review mentally I put it in a different mental category, even though they may be books I’ve anticipated reading too. The mind is a tricky thing. LOL. Here are the books that are on my radar.

Again, I’d like to thank Book Date who has started this topic for other bloggers to join in and keep the conversation going.

JUST FINISHED

I love Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, enjoyed the first novel in the series, and it still took me almost two years to read this book. Now that I’ve caught up with Squad 312 I am not letting another two years go by without finishing out the series. This is fast-paced, has a lot of emotional punch, and a great sense of humor. I really do love this writing team.

JUST STARTED

I love great historical mysteries and this series is fantastic. I’m mid-way through and love the direction this plot just took! Book #7 in the series and it’s still fresh and fun.

These are the books that are on my nightstand. What are you reading today?

Happy Monday and happy reading!

Deb

This Chick Read: A Counterfeit Suitor (Rosalind Thorne Mystery #5)

Rosalind is brought in undercover to determine if a determined suitor of a young heiress is honorable or if he is a fortune hunter. While making this determination her estranged father shows up in London in the hands of a man who has threatened Rosalind in the past. She and Russell Thorne have crossed paths many times, and her sleuthing efforts have cost him money. What is her doing with her father? Does this have anything to do with her client’s unsuitable suitor?

A Counterfeit Suitor had a much quicker pace than the previous novel and I have to wonder if it doesn’t have something to do with the change in scenery. Back in London, Rosalind seems to be racing from one place to the next as she follows the twists and turns of her investigation. The underlying threat that Russell Thorne represents to her life and livelihood also adds tension to an already dramatic storyline. With the addition of her love interest Investigator Adam Harkness, I found myself engaged and enthralled with this plot and eagerly turning each page.

There was really a LOT going on in this novel, which helped to capture my attention and hold it. Rosalind’s living depends upon her respectable reputation and it ran the risk of being irredeemably damaged throughout this novel. This time in history is not a favorable one to unmarried women, the details of which are fascinating and really disturbing. It also makes for some great reading.

A Counterfeit Suitor could be read without having any of the background you would know from having read the previous books but I really wouldn’t recommend it. You need to know the history behind each character’s actions, which only add to the reasons Rosalind makes certain decisions, as well as why these people stand by her side. If you are already a fan, don’t wait to pick this book up, it is one of the best in the series to date. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest!

Click this link to purchase this book!* A Counterfeit Suitor (Rosalind Thorne Mystery Book 5)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (11/1/21)

It was a perfect fall weekend, just begging for me to spend time outside, so I spent it inside reading! LOL. I was a serious couch potato this weekend and enjoyed it so much!

JUST FINISHED

A really entertaining and quick read. A Twist of Fate was a haunting mystery and our heroine had an enduring love that survived throughout the centuries. What more could you ask for?

JUST STARTED

I started this audiobook on my walk this morning. I’ll admit this one’s a re-read. I really enjoy the mysteries in this series and Anna and Charles as a couple evolve over the length of the series. It’s deftly written and really great!

Have a wonderful Monday! I hope you don’t miss that book you put down last night too much. 🙂

Deb

This Chick Read: A Twist of Fate (A Stitch in Time #2) by Kelley Armstrong

New mother and beloved wife, Rosalind Courtenay, likes to ride horses late at night. When her horse is found dead after falling over a cliff, it’s feared that Rosalind has died from the fall but her body is never found. What has happened is that she has found a stitch in time and has traveled to the 21st century. Four years have passed and despite returning monthly to the scene of her time travel, Rosalind has been unsuccessful in returning to her life in the past. Until one night her attempt is successful and she needs to figure out how to reveal herself to her son and her husband August. She travels to his estate in disguise and ends up as her sons new governess and becomes embroiled in a mystery filled with specters, missing governesses, and a little boy who can see and speak with ghosts. Rosalind needs to solve the mystery and reveal who she is to her family without becoming one of the missing herself.

When I received the ARC of this book I was so excited! I love Kelley Armstrong and have read almost all of her books. Then I saw it was book #2- oh no! Luckily I was able to get a copy of A Stitch in Time at my library so that I wasn’t reading these books out of order. The basis for these characters time travel is set up in the first novel so I’m really glad I was able to quickly read that book so I knew all of the characters, and past history needed to read this novel. Truthfully, I probably could have done without but I like to read books in order and I do think it helped my feelings towards the characters, knowing their past history.

What I love the most about this series is the fact that these books are historical mysteries, have a bit of fantasy thrown in with the time travel, and ultimately that they’re love stories. In a Twist of Fate, Rosalind had a head on her shoulders! Her character used lived in the future for four years helping her evolve from a modern woman in her century to an evolved woman from the 21st century and use that knowledge upon her return. She has read up on medicine and understands germs, etc. but is by no means a nurse or a doctor. She just has more sense. Overall she was easy to relate to, Rosalind had a lot of fortitude, was fun, and when danger comes Edmund’s way, she was a mama bear and very protective. She also very much loved her husband August.

Kelley Armstrong has a great sense of fun, and uses fantasy, to enmesh her readers in familiar worlds which are slightly different. This ghostly mystery was quick and entertaining but it was also really well written and engaging. I can’t find any faults at all other than that I hope this isn’t the end of the series because I want to read more!

❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase!* A Twist of Fate (A Stitch in Time Book 2)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: The Vanished Days (The Scottish Series #3) by Susanna Kearsley

Set in 1707 in Scotland the citizens are unsettled at their union with England. In order to appease them, England has gone to their coffers to pay those families of men who died in the Darien expedition eight years earlier, an event that made Scotland all but bankrupt. When a young widow of a Darien soldier comes forward to claim her husband’s wages an investigation takes place to determine if they were actually wed. Set at the cusp of the eighteenth century during a politically motivated time, Adam Williamson finds that there is more involved than the meager wages of a sailor and must set aside his own growing feelings for the widow to figure out the truth.

Other than reading the Outlander series which is set slightly later than this book, I don’t know that much about this time in Scotland’s history. Set during the Jacobite rebellion with flashbacks to the late 17th Century you get a good feeling of what it was like to live during this troubled time when the change in monarchy also meant a change in accepted religions. You also learned a lot about what it meant to be female during this times and were made glad that you live now versus then. Narrated through the investigator, Adam Williamson’s eyes, we learn of Lily’s life from childhood to adult and as we do we serve as judge and jury in deciding if we believe in her story.

During the flashbacks we learned about Lily’s life. Her mother died when she was very young and her father sent her to his mother to be raised in the country where she met her childhood best friend Jamie. Although they were from different levels of society her country upbringing allowed her a closeness with his family that she wouldn’t have had in a city environment. When she moved to Edinburgh and her father dies she is raised by her Stepmother but circumstances force her into becoming a maid to help bring in money. As she grows older her circumstances change again but she still stays on that lower rung of Scottish society and it was really interesting to read, especially in how she viewed herself at these different times of her life. Did it help Adam Williamson determine the truth? You’ll have to read this one to find out. I will say I became very engrossed with her story.

When I read a historical mystery I like a nice methodical pace and The Vanished Days was a slow moving book. Despite the author stating this is book 3 in the series, the characters are not interconnected and this can be read as a standalone novel. If you are like me and really like historical mysteries with a hint of romance I think you’ll really enjoy this novel. The characters were believable, had emotional depth, and I got invested in their story very quickly. This was a good book!

❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley and the publisher for an honest review and it was honest!

Click this link to purchase this book!* The Vanished Days (The Scottish series, 3)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- If you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: A Lady Compromised (Rosalind Thorne Mystery #4) by Darcie Wilde

Rosalind is invited to her friend Louisa’s home to help her prepare for her wedding. Louisa is the sister of Rosalind’s one time beau Devon, now the Duke of Casselmaine, and despite her circumstances she’s happy to spend time with their family again. Once almost betrothed to Devon, prior to her family’s misfortune, Rosalind now spends her time helping members of the peerage with tasks, as a companion, in return for their financial support. This invitation may be her chance to see if she and Devon could once again regain the relationship they’d once had, but she needs to remove herself from any untoward situations….like murder.

This novel moves Rosalind and Devon’s relationship forward from the will they or won’t they status that they’ve inhabited for a long while. Unfortunately, Rosalind is unable to avoid being approached for her help in finding out whether one of Louisa’s friends brother died at the hands of that woman’s fianceé. Rosalind tries to stay removed but the mystery seems to unravel despite her protests and what is revealed helps Rosalind determine the direction her own future may take.

Sometimes I get frustrated with the slower pace in these historical mysteries but A Lady Compromised moved at a pretty quick pace and I think the change in scenery may have helped the plot along. You would think being removed to a country estate for a wedding would slow things down but the number of characters involved seemed to inhabit the Duke’s estate quite frequently. This change of scene also allows Rosalind to see a different side of Devon than she sees in the city and what she sees decides her future course.

A Lady Compromised lived up to its promise. The mystery was solid and our main character made a decision that I agree with whole-heartedly and can’t wait to see her implement in the fifth installment of this series, A Counterfeit Suitor, out this November. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* A Lady Compromised (Rosalind Thorne Mystery Book 4)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend

This Chick Read: When Falcons Fall (Sebastian St. Cyr #11) by C.S. Harris

Sebastian, Viscount Devlin, and his wife Hero are in an idyllic Shropshire village to pay homage to a dead friend when the the new magistrate of that same village asks for his help. A visiting young woman was found dead in a field and having heard of Sebastian’s investigations in London the magistrate wants to make sure they do well by her. As Sebastian and Hero look into the days leading up to Emma Chance’s death they discover that her murder is not the first. As with other St. Cyr novels there are also political implications at play as Lucien Bonaparte, the estranged brother of the famed General Napolean Bonaparte is in residence at a nearby hall. Does his presence have anything to do with Emma Chance’s death?

It’s been a little while since I listened to the previous Sebastian St. Cyr novel and had forgotten how the narrator, Davina Porter, gives life to each character in the story. She imbues them with life and personality and the listener is engrossed with the implications of each character and how they are tied to the plot. This novel is no different and I found myself listening to it when I probably should’ve been doing other things. These are not light hearted novels and the mystery’s are very intricate so I like to really pay attention to each detail so I don’t miss a thing.

The reason for Sebastian and Hero being in the village was to look up the family of Sebastian’s half brother Jamie, who died in the last novel because of his similarity in looks to Sebastion. In When Falcons Fall, we learn a little bit more about who may have fathered Sebastian, as well as meeting Jamie’s twin sister and his grandmother. These glimpses towards who Sebastian may really be tied to are few and far between but oh so interesting! I know as I get closer to the truth that our journey may soon be over.

It is hard to talk about the plot in these novels because each tidbit is a reveal towards the underlying stories and not just the mystery that plays out in this book itself. I will say that the Bonaparte connection was truly interesting and as with past books where we meet famous characters (Ben Franklin) the pages bring life to what they may have been like even if in this novel it’s based only in fiction and not fact.

If you haven’t read any of the novels in this series I’d recommend starting at the beginning. Yes, each mystery is a stand alone but there are so many plot points that tie to earlier novels. I think your experience will be enhanced by how much each character has grown through the series rather than what actually happens on these pages. This novel was enjoyable on it’s own but when you think of how you feel about these characters on the whole it makes the novel go from good to great. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* When Falcons Fall (Sebastian St. Cyr Mystery)

Copyright The Reading Chick 2021 All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (7/26/21)

I have been blowing through books lately and I hate to say it, but some of them have not been that good. You know when you find a great book by an author that is relatively new to you and they have a huge back list? Sometimes you think, Score! Then as you start to go through them you realize well, they might not be the same quality as the most recent book that brought you back in. Usually I don’t give up because sometimes you find a hidden gem. This last one was pretty good, although it did take an unexpected mild dominant/submissive turn. LOL I was NOT expecting that!

JUST FINISHED

I probably should’ve read the reviews but for some reason I thought this was just going to be a slow burn novel. It played that way when I was reading it too when all of a sudden my characters got together and there was spanking involved. LOL. Although that took an unexpected turn I will say that the plot was super good! There was just a bit of dominating to skim through to get to those moments. I haven’t yet decided if I’ll write a review on this one although I did give it a 3.5 rating on Goodreads….

JUST STARTED

Sometimes you just need a palate cleanser and moving to a historical mystery will certainly do that for me! A Lady Compromised is the fourth book in the series and I have an ARC for the fifth so I needed to read this one first to be up to date on my characters. It’s a good series if you haven’t read it!

I’m on vacation the first week in August and am gathering my list of books I want to read. If you have any favorites please let me know. Otherwise, what books are you reading this week?

Happy Monday!

Deb

This Chick Read: Death at the Crystal Palace (A Below Stairs Mystery #5) by Jennifer Ashley

While attending an exhibit at the Crystal Palace, cook and amateur investigator, Kat Holloway is approached by the Duchess of Covington who has heard of her reputation for solving crimes. The Duchess believes that someone is poisoning her and she’d like Kat to solve the mystery. As Kat steps in to negotiate, she calls on her friends to help. She sets up her friend Cynthia as a houseguest with Lady Covington to determine the dynamics of the household and receives police information from the beau of her assistant. At the same time she is drawn into another mystery by her friend and almost boyfriend Daniel to help him with a possible terrorist. When does Kat have time to cook?!!

I love these below stairs mysteries. Kat Holloway, although in service as a cook seems to have gained a reputation as a person who can solve crimes in different levels of society. Her place as a respected cook allows her to gain access below stairs while at the same time finding out all manners of things by the people living upstairs. It’s a fascinating look at the different levels of historical London society.

Her relationship with Daniel seems to have evolved emotionally yet Kat, being a single mother, is hesitant to allow anything untoward to happen. She is not the most trusting woman and Daniel’s predilection to going undercover as some sort of spy keeps her from going all in in her relationship with him. He, on the other hand, seems to be head over heels. Isn’t it nice when the man is more involved emotionally than the woman? She can take her time figuring out what she wants to do with her heart.

I’m not sure how this author switches gears from writing shifter romances to historical whodunnit’s but this series is very effective. It has charm, mystery, and a hint of romance that keeps me entertained and coming back for more. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley and the publisher for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase!* Death at the Crystal Palace (A Below Stairs Mystery)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: An Unexpected Peril (Veronica Speedwell #6) by Deanna Raybourn

While putting together an exhibit for a female mountain climber who died mysteriously. Veronica comes to the attention of the royal retinue of a visiting foreign country. When their princess goes missing, Veronica is asked to step in and take her place. The resemblance to each other is strong enough to fool people from far away. Veronica and Stoker accept so that they can investigate the death of the mountain climber, a woman whom Veronica had met before and felt a kinship with. Of course, dangerous plots ensue and the duo finds themselves again in peril. Will they discover who killed pushed their friend off a mountain and also why the princess went missing?

What I love the most about this series is that Veronica is an independent woman living during a time in history when women weren’t independent and had to fight for every extra freedom. Stoker, her best friend and lover, as he fallen her who was once part of the English nobility, knows how different Veronica’s life could have been. He adores her for her strength of character, even though at times that same character makes him want to tear his hair out. We’ve seen through this series how their relationship has evolved from adversaries, to friendship, to being in love and how those feelings have changed who each of them are; an interesting evolution during normal times but fascinating in the Victorian era. It is these two characters that keep me coming back to this series, not the mysteries they find themselves solving, although those are also interesting.

I think this mystery was probably the least interesting for me. I think because it didn’t help reveal anything new about these characters beyond a little hint of familial want in Veronica. Otherwise, it was just two characters I seriously like solving a somewhat interesting crime. I wasn’t enraptured, but I was captured by the plot.

If you love historical mysteries, this series is truly a fun one. As I said above, these two main characters have a lot of heart and their involvement with each other has been a long time coming and it’s fun to see them in a romantic relationship. If you haven’t read any of these novels, I’d start with the first. I don’t think these should be read as a stand alone novel.

I received a copy of this novel through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase! An Unexpected Peril (A Veronica Speedwell Mystery)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.