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

No, it’s not Christmastime yet!

So. Last week I got my first email advertising a Christmas book, and I’d just like to say something to authors:

Please don’t do that! Not in February!

I get it: you’re excited about your upcoming releases. I also get it: books are in the works a long, long time before they’re published.

However, the levels of panic that email caused! It’s FAR TOO EARLY to be talking about Christmas yet. It’s bad enough when the Christmas review books start turning up in June. And, because I also celebrate the old calendar Christmas season through January, we have literally only just taken down the decorations!

Please give us a few weeks to get into the new year before we start talking about the end of it!

Cover Love

Just in time for Christmas – if you actually have time for any reading at the moment! This cover is gorgeous, and so lovely and wintry, which is very appealing to me as we have temperatures of 35-39 degrees (Celsius!) forecast for the coming week.

A Christmas Courting by Jennifer Moore, Chalon Linton, Jen Geigle Johnson and Heidi Kimball.

A Christmas Courting by Jennifer Moore, Chalon Linton, Jen Geigle Johnson and Heidi Kimball.

This holiday season fall in love, with heartwarming tales of Christmases past in A Christmas Courting, an enchanting collection of Regency romances.

Love and Joy Come to You by Jennifer Moore

Lord Covington has planned a quiet holiday with his grieving mother but finds his plans rudely disrupted when lovely Cassie Weatherby and her young siblings are invited for Christmas. Despite his reservations, however, he begins to recognize in Cassie a kindred spirit.

A Christmas Courting by Chalon Linton

When obligations keep her in London, Keturah Hensley sadly anticipates missing the festivity of Christmas at her family’s country home and the company of her best friend, Christopher Shepherd. When she learns that Christopher will be joining her family in London for Christmas, she is delighted–but her elation is short-lived. Christopher is coming to Town to court the woman of his dreams, and Keturah fears she may have lost the chance to win his love.

Mistletoe Memories by Jen Geigle Johnson

From childhood, Patrick, Duke of Montrose, knew he’d found his perfect match in Lady Alice Tarrington. When he’s sent on a grand tour, Patrick is confident he’ll marry his sweetheart upon his return. But when he receives word that Alice is to marry another, will he be too late to claim her heart?

Second-Chance Christmas by Heidi Kimball

Francie and Gerard have been friends since childhood, but their friendship ended when she declined his heartfelt proposal of marriage. However, when her interactions with Gerard’s holiday houseguests provoke in Francie unexpected jealousy, she realises she must fight for Gerard’s affections or risk losing him forever.

Recommended Christmas Read: A Holiday by Gaslight by Mimi Matthews

I reviewed Mimi Matthews’ A Holiday by Gaslight last month. Set in the Victorian era, it is a great little read for the Christmas season.

A Holiday by Gaslight A Victorian Christmas Novella by Mimi Matthews

A Holiday by Gaslight: A Victorian Christmas Novella by Mimi Matthews

A Courtship of Convenience

Sophie Appersett is quite willing to marry outside of her class to ensure the survival of her family. But the darkly handsome Mr Edward Sharpe is no run-of-the-mill London merchant. He’s grim and silent. A man of little emotion—or perhaps no emotion at all. After two months of courtship, she’s ready to put an end to things.

A Last Chance for Love

But severing ties with her taciturn suitor isn’t as straightforward as Sophie envisioned. Her parents are outraged. And then there’s Charles Darwin, Prince Albert, and that dratted gaslight. What’s a girl to do except invite Mr. Sharpe to Appersett House for Christmas and give him one last chance to win her? Only this time there’ll be no false formality. This time they’ll get to know each other for who they really are.

Christmas Reads: Christmas at Hope Cottage by Lily Graham

Christmas at Hope Cottage by Lily Graham

Christmas at Hope Cottage by Lily Graham

In the little village of Whistling, with its butterscotch cottages and rolling green hills, snow is beginning to fall. Christmas is coming, and Emma Halloway is on her way home.

When thirty-year-old food writer Emma Halloway gets dumped then knocked off her bike, she’s broken in more ways than one, and returns to her family’s cosy cottage in the Yorkshire Dales. Emma hasn’t been back in some time, running from her crazy relatives and her childhood sweetheart, Jack Allen.

Emma’s grandmother is determined to bake her back to health and happiness, as the Halloways have done for generations. Surrounded by old friends and warm cinnamon buns, Emma starts to believe in her family’s special talents for healing again. But then in walks Jack with his sparkling hazel eyes, stirring up the family feud between them.

As the twinkly lights are strung between the streetlamps, Emma remembers just why she fell for Jack in the first place… and why a Halloway should never date an Allen.

The infuriating new lodger, Sandro, doesn’t believe anyone should have to choose between love and family. With a little bit of Christmas magic, can Emma and Jack find a way to be together, or will Emma find herself heartbroken once more?

An utterly gorgeous Christmas romance about the importance of family, freshly baked biscuits, and learning to trust your heart. Perfect for fans of Phillipa Ashley, Debbie Johnson and Debbie Macomber.