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Showing posts from May, 2018

The Visionary Mayan Queen: Yohl Ik'Nal of Palenque by Leonide Martin: A Book Review

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The Visionary Mayan Queen: Yohl Ik'Nal of Palenque (The Mists of Palenque #1)
Author: Leonide Martin
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Made for Wonder Publishing
Release Date: 2014
Pages: 268 
Source: Personal Collection
Synopsis: Enter the world of a Mayan Queen

     Yohl Ik'nal, first Mayan woman ruler, must overcome forces opposing her rule . . . betrayal and revenge, attack by enemy cities, and shamanic powers. Using her visionary ability, she saves her city from destruction, builds temples to honor her father and the Gods, and brings prosperity to her people while finding a love that sustains her.

     But she foresees a time of darkness and devastation coming. Danger lurks ahead and she must choose a successor, either her weak son or willful daughter. Can she trust her vision to reveal the will of the Gods? The results of her choice will lead to ruin or bring her city to greatness.

     Discover the opulent world of royal court intrigue, exotic ceremonies on towering pyramids, …

The Pursuit of Mary Bennet by Pamela Mingle: A Book Review

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The Pursuit of Mary Bennet: A Pride and Prejudice Novel
Author: Pamela Mingle
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date: 2013
Pages: 322 
Source: Personal Collection
Synopsis: A tale of love and marriage, society balls and courtship, class and a touch of scandal, Pamela Mingle's The Pursuit of Mary Bennet is a fresh take on one of the most beloved novels of all time, Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice.

     Growing up with four extraordinary sisters—beautiful and confident Jane and Elizabeth, and flirtatious and lighthearted Lydia and Kitty—wasn't easy for an awkward bookworm like Mary Bennet. But with nearly all of her sisters married and gone from the household, the unrefined Mary has transformed into an attractive and eligible young woman in her own right.

     When another scandal involving Lydia and Wickham threatens the Bennet house, Mary and Kitty are packed off to visit Jane and her husband, Charles Bingley, where they meet the dash…

The Deadliest Sport: A Miriam bat Isaac Mystery in Ancient Alexandria by June Trop: A Book Review

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The Deadliest Sport: A Miriam bat Isaac Mystery in Ancient Alexandria
Author: June Trop
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery
Publisher: Black Opal Books
Release Date: 2017
Pages: 242
Source: This book was given to me by iRead Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: Miriam bat Isaac, a budding alchemist in first-century CE Alexandria, welcomes her twin brother Binyamin home to fight his last gladiatorial bout in Alexandria. But when he demands his share of the family money so he can build a school for gladiators in Alexandria, Miriam explains that he forsook his share when he took the gladiatorial oath.

     When she refuses to loan him the money for what she feels is a shady and dangerous enterprise, Binyamin becomes furious. Soon after, the will of Amram, Miriam's elderly charge, turns up missing; Amram becomes seriously ill; and the clerk of the public records house is murdered. Could Binyamin really be behind this monstrous scheme? If not he, who could be responsibl…

The Forgotten: Heir of the Heretic by J. Lynn Else: A Book Review

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The Forgotten: Heir of the Heretic
Author: J. Lynn Else
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: J. Lynn Else
Release Date: 2016
Pages: 452
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Synopsis: It is a time of new beginnings! Pharaoh Akhenaten has declared that there is only one god to be worshipped throughout Egypt. He has also made a promise to his oldest daughter, Merytaten, that one day she will be his heir and the future pharaoh. However, as pressures build up against the new religion, it falls upon Akhenaten's wife, Nefertiti, and Merytaten to help prevent an insurrection. 

     Merytaten soon finds herself trapped in a world of broken dreams and empty promises. When she loses the meaning to her life, how can she possibly help the citizens? What can she do to assist the people who are falling into poverty? How can she save those she loves when Death's shadow looms large across the city? 

     Discover the struggles and triumphs of one young woman's lifetime...

     "Heir of the Heretic" is…

The Forgotten: Aten's Last Queen by J. Lynn Else: A Book Review

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The Forgotten: Aten's Last Queen
Author: J. Lynn Else
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: J. Lynn Else
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 558
Source: Personal Collection
Synopsis: "I am King Tut’s wife, but my name is barely a whisper in history’s memory. I was the last of my family to survive the Aten revolution. I had a child at age 12 and was forced to marry three times. But that didn’t mean my story ended badly. My name is Ankhesenamun, my loved ones called me An, and I will stop at nothing to save my family."

     Despite the vast treasure found in Pharaoh Tutankhamun’s tomb, there is little left over regarding his bride. From the turbulence of her father’s reign, Akhenaten, who forced monotheism on the country to the mending of these wounds by the now-famous Tutankhamun, her life saw more change than most ancient Egyptians dared even dream about. Evidence left to us about her is this: She was forced to marry her father, her brother, and her grandfather. She gave birth to one healt…

Blog Tour: The Deadliest Sport: A Miriam bat Isaac Mystery in Ancient Alexandria by June Trop

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The Deadliest Sport: A Miriam bat Isaac Mystery in Ancient Alexandria
Author: June Trop
Category: Adult fiction, 242 pages
Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction
Publisher: Black Opal Books
Release date: October 7, 2017
Tour dates: May 14 to 25, 2018
Content Rating: PG (mild religious oriented expletives, such as "Lord," some violent descriptions, such as the corpse, the gladiatorial arena)

Book Description:

     Miriam bat Isaac, a budding alchemist in first-century CE Alexandria, welcomes her twin brother Binyamin home to fight his last gladiatorial bout in Alexandria. But when he demands his share of the family money so he can build a school for gladiators in Alexandria, Miriam explains that he forsook his share when he took the gladiatorial oath.

     When she refuses to loan him the money for what she feels is a shady and dangerous enterprise, Binyamin becomes furious. Soon after, the will of Amram, Miriam's elderly charge, turns up missing; Amram becomes seriously ill; and the c…

Blog Tour: Woven by Bree Moore

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Author: Bree Moore Narrators: Rebecca McKernan Length: 13 hours 49 minutes Publisher: Books by Bree, LLC Released: Mar. 28, 2018 Genre: Epic Fantasy

For 30 years, Elaina has sat in her tower, fingers caught in an eternal dance, cursed to weave the tapestry of life on her loom. Bound by an enchanted mirror whose magic shows her the distant lives of the people of Camelot, she must forever watch a land which remains ever beyond her reach. Elaina despairs that she will ever experience more than just the shadows of life, until one day, a face appears in the mirror that will change her life, and possibly her fate, forever. Guinevere is losing her mind. When a severe injury to her head nearly kills her and awakens alternate personalities suppressed from her past, Guinevere learns that one of them is plotting with a knight of the round table to murder King Arthur and take control of Camelot. In the midst of war, Guinevere fights to save both her own life and the man she loves, each day comin…

Blog Tour: Cover Reveal for Nancy Bilyeau's The Blue!

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The Blue by Nancy BilyeauPublication: Fall 2018 Endeavour Quill Genre: Historical Fiction
     What would you do to possess the most coveted color in the world? The year is 1758, and a headstrong woman artist, 24-year-old Genevieve Planche, is caught up in a high-stakes race to discover the ultimate color, one that threatens to become as deadly as it is lucrative. When Genevieve’s mission is complicated by her falling in love with the chemist behind the formula, she discovers the world of blue is filled with ruthless men and women and how high the stakes really are. The story sweeps readers from the worlds of the silk-weaving refugees of London’s Spitalfields and the luxury-obsessed drawing rooms of Grosvenor Square to the porcelain factory of Derby and, finally, magnificent Sevres Porcelain in the shadow of Versailles. And running through it all: the dangerous allure of the color blue.
     “Bilyeau’s sumptuous tale of mystery and intrigue transports the reader into the heart of the 18t…

Cleopatra Unconquered (Volume #1) by Helen R. Davis: A Book Review

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Cleopatra Unconquered (Volume #1)
Author: Helen R. Davis
Genre: Alternative Historical Fiction
Publisher: Savant Books & Publications LLC
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 328
Source: This book was given to me by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: The first book of three in a richly imagined ancient world where the course of history is altered by one battle. In this world, Antony and Cleopatra triumph at the Battle of Actium, and Cleopatra emerges as a queen, stateswoman, and politician. Those around her come to life as the reader returns to those days to live them with her. 

My Review: Cleopatra Unconquered is the first in a trilogy that that imagines what would happen if Cleopatra won the Battle of Actium. This book narrates Cleopatra’s challenges to becoming pharaoh. She is the favorite child of her father Ptolemy XII. When he dies, Cleopatra marries her brother Ptolemy XIII. However, she faces a war between her siblings for the crown of Egypt. He…

My Dear Hamilton: A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton by Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie: A Book Review

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My Dear Hamilton: A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton
Author: Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date: April 3, 2018
Pages: 652
Source: This book was given to me by TLC Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: From the New York Times bestselling authors of America’s First Daughter comes the epic story of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton—a revolutionary woman who, like her new nation, struggled to define herself in the wake of war, betrayal, and tragedy. Haunting, moving, and beautifully written, Dray and Kamoie used thousands of letters and original sources to tell Eliza’s story as it’s never been told before—not just as the wronged wife at the center of a political sex scandal—but also as a founding mother who shaped an American legacy in her own right.

A general’s daughter…

     Coming of age on the perilous frontier of revolutionary New York, Elizabeth Schuyler champions the fight for independence. And when she meets Al…

Death Below Stairs (A Below Stairs Mystery #1) by Jennifer Ashley: A Book Review

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Death Below Stairs (A Below Stairs Mystery #1)
Author: Jennifer Ashley
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery and Suspense
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: January 2, 2018
Pages: 335
Source: Netgalley/Publisher in exchange for an honest review
Synopsis: Victorian class lines are crossed when cook Kat Holloway is drawn into a murder that reaches all the way to the throne.

     Highly sought-after young cook Kat Holloway takes a position in a Mayfair mansion and soon finds herself immersed in the odd household of Lord Rankin. Kat is unbothered by the family’s eccentricities as long as they stay away from her kitchen, but trouble finds its way below stairs when her young Irish assistant is murdered. 

     Intent on discovering who killed the helpless kitchen maid, Kat turns to the ever-capable Daniel McAdam, who is certainly much more than the charming delivery man he pretends to be. Along with the assistance of Lord Rankin’s unconventional sister-in-law and a mathematical genius, Kat and Daniel disc…

These Broken Girls by Simone St. James: A Book Review

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These Broken Girls
Author: Simone St. James
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery and Suspense, Paranormal
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: March 20, 2018
Pages: 334
Source: Netgalley/Publisher in exchange for an honest review
Synopsis: Vermont, 1950. There's a place for the girls whom no one wants—the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It's called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it's located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming—until one of them mysteriously disappears... 

Vermont, 2014. As much as she's tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister's death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister's boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can't shake the suspicion that something was n…