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Showing posts from March, 2016

Young Elizabeth: The Making of the Queen: A Book Review

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Young Elizabeth: The Making of the Queen
Author: Kate Williams
Genre: Nonfiction, History, Biography
Publisher: Pegasus 
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 282
Source: Edelweiss/Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: A lively and poignant biography of the young princess who, at the impressionable age of eleven, found that she was now heiress to the throne, by the New York Times bestselling author of Becoming Queen Victoria.

     We can hardly imagine a Britain without Elizabeth II on the throne. It seems to be the job she was born for. And yet for much of her early life the young princess did not know the role that her future would hold. She was our accidental Queen.

     Elizabeth's determination to share in the struggles of her people marked her out from a young age. Her father initially refused to let her volunteer as a nurse during the Blitz, but relented when she was 18 and allowed her to work as a mechanic and truck driver for the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service. It w…

Blog Tour: Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife by Susan Signe Morrison: A Book Review

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Grendel's Mother: The Saga of the Wyrd-Wife by Susan Signe Morrison
Publication Date: September 25, 2015 Top Hat Books Paperback & eBook; 238 Pages ISBN-10: 1785350099 

Source: This book was given to me by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. 
Shortlisted for the 2014-2015 Sarton Literary Award for Historical Fiction
Synopsis: An amber bead. A gold and glass drinking horn. A ring engraved with Thor’s hammer – all artifacts from a Germanic tribe that carved a space for itself through brutality and violence on a windswept land. Brimhild weaves peace and conveys culture to the kingdom, until the secret of her birth threatens to tear apart the fragile political stability. This is her story – the tale of Grendel’s Mother. She is no monster as portrayed in the Old English epic, Beowulf. We learn her side of the story and that of her defamed child. We see the many passages of her life: the brine-baby who floated mysteriously to shore; the hall-que…

Blog Tour: Death of an Alchemist: A Bianca Goddard Mystery (Bianca Goddard Mysteries, Book 2) by Mary Lawrence: A Book Review

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Death of an Alchemist: A Bianca Goddard Mystery (Bianca Goddard Mysteries, Book 2) by Mary LawrencePublication Date: January 26, 2016 Kensington Books Hardcover & eBook; 304 Pages Genre: Historical Mystery



Source: This book was given to me by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: In the mid sixteenth century, Henry VIII sits on the throne, and Bianca Goddard tends to the sick and suffering in London’s slums, where disease can take a life as quickly as murder…

     For years, alchemist Ferris Stannum has devoted himself to developing the Elixir of Life, the reputed serum of immortality. Having tested his remedy successfully on an animal, Stannum intends to send his alchemy journal to a colleague in Cairo for confirmation. But the next day his body is found and the journal is gone.

     Bianca, the daughter of an alchemist, is well acquainted with the mystical healing arts. When her husband John falls ill with the sweating sickness, she …

Blog Tour: Outrageous: The Victoria Woodhull Saga, Volume One: Rise to Riches by Neal Katz

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Outrageous: The Victoria Woodhull Saga, Volume One: Rise to Riches by Neal KatzPublication Date: October 1, 2015 Top Reads Publishing Hardcover, Paperback, Ebook; 344 Pages Series: The Victoria Woodhull Saga (Book 1) Genre: Historical Fiction



Synopsis: Historical fictionalized account of Victoria Woodhull’s rise to presidential candidate and wealth, coming from poverty and abuse.

     What compels a woman and her youngest sister to overcome abject poverty and violent abuse to grow up to defy convention and obliterate every barrier to become the first women to own and operate a Wall Street brokerage firm and publish their own newspaper?

     How did Victoria Claflin Woodhull (1838 – 1927) become the first woman invited to speak to the United State Congress, and then the first female to run for president. What made Tennessee Celeste Claflin (1845 – 1923) so beguiling that the richest man in America, Cornelius Vanderbilt, fell completely in love with her?

      What caused the sisters…

A Daring Sacrifice by Jody Hedlund: A Book Review

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A Daring Sacrifice
Author: Jody Hedlund
Genre: YA, Christian, Historical Fiction
Publisher: Zondervan
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Pages: 222
Source: Netgalley/Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: In a reverse twist on the Robin Hood story, a young medieval maiden stands up for the rights of the mistreated, stealing from the rich to give to the poor. All the while, she fights against her cruel uncle who has taken over the land that is rightfully hers. Forced to live in the woods and hide with the poor people she's grown to love, she works to save and protect them, but she never anticipates falling in love with the wealthy knight who represents all she's come to despise.

      My Review: A Daring Sacrifice is a retelling of Robin Hood. Juliana, once the rightful heir of Wessex, seeks refuge in the woods to hide from her uncle who wants to capture her. Juliana steals from the rich and gives to the poor. However, what Juliana never expected was to fall in love with a weal…

An Uncertain Choice by Jody Hedlund: A Book Review

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An Uncertain Choice
Author: Jody Hedlund
Genre: YA, Christian, Romance, Historical Fiction
Publisher: Zondervan
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 252
Source: Personal Collection
Synopsis: Due to her parents' promise at her birth, Lady Rosemarie has been prepared to become a nun on the day she turns eighteen. Then, a month before her birthday, a friend of her father's enters the kingdom and proclaims her parents' will left a second choice--if Rosemarie can marry before the eve of her eighteenth year, she will be exempt from the ancient vow.

     Before long, Rosemarie is presented with the three most handsome and brave knights in the land. But when the competition for her heart seemingly results in a knight playing foul, she begins to wonder if the convent is the best place after all. If only one of the knights--the one who appears the most guilty--had not already captured her heart.

My Review:An Uncertain Choice is a medieval Bachelorette. Lady Rosemarie is forced to enter the convent when…

Blog Tour: Winter Queen by Amber Argyle

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Winter Queenby Amber Argyle
Release Date: June 19th 2013
Summary from Goodreads:
Becoming a winter queen will make Ilyenna as cold and cruel and deadly as winter itself, but it might be the only way to save her people from a war they have no hope of winning.

Mortally wounded during a raid, seventeen-year-old Ilyenna is healed by winter fairies who present her with a seductive offer: become one of them and share their power over winter. But that power comes with a price. If she accepts, she will become a force of nature, lose her humanity, and abandon her family.

Unwilling to pay such a high price, Ilyenna is enslaved by one of the invaders, Darrien. While in captivity, she learns the attack wasn’t just a simple raid but part of a larger plot to overthrow her entire nation. 

With the enemy stealing over the mountains and Darrien coming to take her to his bed, Ilyenna must decide whether to resurrect the power the fairies left behind. Doing so will allow her to defeat Darrien and the other in…

Raven Flight (Book #2 of Shadowfell Trilogy) by Juliet Marillier: A Book Review

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Raven Flight (Book #2 of Shadowfell Trilogy)
Author: Juliet Marillier
Genre:YA, Fantasy
Publisher: Knopf
Release Date: 2013
Pages: 418
Source: Personal Collection
Synopsis: Neryn has finally found the rebel group at Shadowfell, and now her task is to seek out the elusive Guardians, vital to her training as a Caller. These four powerful beings have been increasingly at odds with human kind, and Neryn must prove her worth to them. She desperately needs their help to use her gift without compromising herself or the cause of overthrowing the evil King Keldec.

     Neryn must journey with the tough and steadfast Tali, who looks on Neryn's love for the double agent Flint as a needless vulnerability. And perhaps it is. What Flint learns from the king will change the battlefield entirely—but in whose favor, no one knows.

My Review: Neryn is now the secret weapon for the rebel army against King Keldec. The army plans to strike a surprise attack against the king in midsummer, and Neryn must be ready…

Blog Tour: Guest Post by Kathleen C. Perrin- In Joan's Footsteps

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Today's guest writer is Kathleen C. Perrin. She is the author of The Watchmen Saga. This essay is about her writing process and also how she was moved to write The Sword of the Maiden after being inspired by Joan of Arc's story. I hope this guest post not only gives you insight into her creative process, but also how we can all learn something from the legacy of Joan of Arc. Thank you Mrs. Perrin.


In Joan’s Footsteps By Kathleen C. Perrin
     While going through the process of writing The Sword of the Maiden, the second novel in The Watchmen Saga, I was preoccupied by all things “Joan of Arc.” Actually, my preoccupation with Joan started long before I wrote my first novel in the series, The Keys of the Watchmen. In fact, the entire unwritten premise of the first novel was to set up Katelyn Michaels as the one mortal who could fully understand and logically assist Joan in her mission. No, my preoccupation with Joan is not just a passing fancy. I have been interested in her rema…