Book Feature: London’s Best Kept Secret (Midnight Secrets #2) by Anabelle Bryant

Note: I am featuring some of the review books I’ve had for a while, but run out of time to do a review for. That’s not to say I’m not going to read them; it’s just that I’ve fallen behind, and think the authors deserve an appearance here!

I loved the concept for this one, and read the beginning before life took over and I ran out of time to finish it. Unfortunately the guy on the cover has a mullet, but ignore that!

London's Best Kept Secret (Midnight Secrets #2) by Anabelle Bryant

London’s Best Kept Secret (Midnight Secrets #2) by Anabelle Bryant

In Anabelle Bryant’s latest novel of ardour and ambition, a lord will stop at nothing to possess the woman of his dreams . . .
 
In monetary matters, Jeremy Lockhart, Viscount Dearing, is used to being in control, but from his first sight of Lady Charlotte, his carefully cultivated world is rocked to its foundations. Determined to best her other, more eligible suitors, he goes to great lengths to ensure his betrothal to Charlotte. A locked black leather box holds the dark secret that has assured his success.
 
Innocent Lady Charlotte is baffled by her new husband’s behavior. Why does Lord Dearing seem so distant one day, and so attentive the next? Her family’s dire financial straits did not allow her the luxury of an extended courtship. If only she could entice him into the marriage bed! When at last Charlotte’s efforts are rewarded, she revels in Jeremy’s unexpectedly bold possessiveness. But outside of their bedchambers, her groom’s guardedness quickly returns. Passion is no longer enough for sweet Charlotte, who vows to unlock the mystery of this complicated man. The truth, however, might be more than her principled heart is prepared to handle. . . .

The Week: 18th – 24th February

Australian Grey Butcher Bird Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney 16th February 2019 Bird Birds Nature Cute 1

Steve, our little resident grey butcherbird, hanging out on the back deck.

This week saw the fifth anniversary of the massacre in Kyiv, Ukraine, and revealed a massive plagiarism scandal affecting dozens of authors. A strange week all around.

Summer is nearly over here. As usual, the year is moving too fast!

Out Now: Devil’s Daughter

My review of Devil’s Daughter (Ravenels #5) by Lisa Kleypas

Devil's Daughter (Ravenels #5) by Lisa Kleypas

Courtney Milan Plagiarised

Plagiarism Update

Here's an updated list of the authors who've reported being plagiarised by Cristiane Serruya or had recipes stolen from their books.

Coming Up for Mary Balogh

A Title to Make You Groan

it's getting scot in here (wild wicked highlanders, #1) by suzanne enoch

No, it’s not Christmastime yet!

Ukrainian Christmas Eve 6th January 2018 Sonya Heaney Oksana Heaney Canberra Australia Silver Christmas Tree Silver Blue Gold Decorations

A Title to Make You Groan

`it's getting scot in here (wild wicked highlanders, #1) by suzanne enoch

Ignore He-Man for a moment and take a look at the title. Puns are (in my view!) unfortunately popular in historical romance – e.g. Earls Just Want to Have Fun and Cloudy With A Chance Of Marriage – but I think this one has to go on the shortlist for most cringeworthy!

It’s Getting Scot in Here, the first book in Suzanne Enoch’s Wild Wicked Highlanders series is due out on the 26th of this month.

It’s Getting Scot in Here (Wild Wicked Highlanders, #1) by Suzanne Enoch

Marry or lose their estate; that’s the devil’s bargain he and his brothers must follow. But wild Highlander Niall MacTaggert’s stubborn oldest brother wants nothing to do with marrying the sophisticated, pinky-out Lady Amelia-Rose his mother has chosen for him, even to save their land. Niall’s only goal is to soften up the London socialite, and show his brother the warm beauty behind the shiny, polished front. But what Niall doesn’t expect to find is the woman of his dreams…

Ten Years

It is the tenth anniversary of the publication of one of the romance genre’s most infamous books:

The Playboy Sheikh’s Virgin Stable Girl

If you’d like to have a good laugh, you can read the wonderful review/summary over at Smart Bitches.

The Playboy Sheikh_s Virgin Stable Girl by Sharon Kendrick

Polo-playing sheikh Prince Kaliq Al’Farisi loves his women as much as his horses. They’re wild, willing, and he’s their master!Stable girl Eleni is a local Calistan. Raised by her brutal father on the horse-racing circuit, she feels unlovable. When her precious horses are given to Sheikh Kaliq, she refuses to be parted from them.The playboy sheikh is determined to bed Eleni–and when Kaliq realises she’s a virgin, the challenge only becomes more interesting….

The Week: 25th June – 1st July

Australian Parliament on Saturday afternoon.

Winter Evening Light Eucalyptus Tree Gum Tree Sonya Oksana Heaney 28th June 2018 Canberra Australia Nature

Winter Sky Sunset 2 Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney 28th June 2018 Nature

Winter in Canberra

Yesterday we finally made it to the National Gallery for the Cartier exhibition. I’ll do a post about it next week, but – WOW. This wasn’t just random stuff; it was Kate Middleton’s wedding tiara, and some of the Queen’s favourite jewellery, and Grace Kelly’s tiara, and Elizabeth Taylor’s necklace, and tiaras belonging to Queen Victoria’s daughters, and a clock belonging to a US president…

Followed up with lunch at Canberra’s oldest Italian restaurant – good start to the weekend.

My review of Someone to Care (Westcott family #4) by Mary Balogh

To China

Chinese Embassy Australia Canberra

The next trademark drama.

Cockybot cockygate trademark for Secret Garden

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

To All the Boys I_ve Loved Before by Jenny Han Movie Tie-In Cover

What is this?!

Hidden Truths (My One-Night Stand #3) by Giovanna Reaves

The Week: 18th – 24th June

Winter Sunshine Blue Sky Sonya Heaney 19th June 2018 Eucalyptus Tree Gum Tree Canberra Australia Australian Capital Territory Nature

Winter sunshine in Canberra.

And at the cemetery near the New South Wales/Australian Capital Territory state border on Friday afternoon.

And Lake Burley Griffin on Saturday afternoon.

R.I.P. Errol Pickford

Errol Pickford as Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet © Leslie Spatt Royal Ballet Royal Opera House

Happy Birthday to an Icon

Oksana_Chusovitina_(vault)_04-2011

My review of Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott

My review of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Beyond my limit!

How much more ridiculous can it get?

Cockygate apllication to trademark the word BIG cockybot

Beyond my limit!

A Mad, Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller

We all know that many a book cover in historical fiction has questionable historical accuracy, but the cover designer has gone too far this time!

A Mad, Wicked Folly is supposed to be set in 1909 – the Edwardian era. This canary-coloured prom dress, the long, flowing hair… I’ve heard this is a wonderful book, so the author definitely deserved better.

Is it because it’s young adult fiction? Do they assume younger readers are too stupid to pick up a book unless it looks like every other prom princess cover on the market?

Here is a fashion plate from the *real* year 1909 for comparison:

August 1909 Fashion Edwardian era.

Readers are the world’s smartest, most knowledgeable people! Stop treating us like idiots!

Avon, what are you thinking?!

Admittedly, Avon Romance has never been known for beautiful historical romance covers, but recently I’ve been cringing badly at some of their offerings.

There was the infamous – and awful – 80s prom cover for Lisa Kleypas’ Hello Stranger (a book I otherwise loved), and now there’s THIS.

I don’t even know where to begin! There’s the fact the people look like they’ve been poorly made in Photoshop. There’re the modern hairstyles. There’s the modern clothing.

However, the thing I find most awful about this one are THE VEINS. Both models’ skin otherwise looks smooth and artificial, so they stand out even more.

I don’t know when women collectively decided that bulging veins were a sexy trait for men, but they make me feel a little ill. It’s bad enough that the hero in this has hands that make him look a hundred, but why does he have bulging veins… on *his shoulders*?

Apologies to author Cat Sebastian. Often a good book is hidden behind a terrible cover.

Unmasked by the Marquess (Regency Imposters #1) by Cat Sebastian