Sunday

Holy Paska Cheesecake!!! Upcoming Historical Romance Books!!!!!

Authors with an asterisk*, I'm picking up! Release dates mostly between April 15, 2020 and May 14, 2020. For more Upcoming Releases that aren't historical see HEY DELIA!!

 Series indicates a series, spin-off, sequel, trilogy, brother/sister, secret society/spies, good friends who attended Oxford/Eton, vampire/werewolf - anything that has something continuing - even if written 20 years ago. Anthology/novella/short stories could be an anthology or a bunch of books in one print or novella - one tiny book or an anthology with a bunch of novellas - could be a short stories by one author, could be short stories by multiple authors - could be - I'm getting a headache. Ebook, only sold electronically for now. Debut - congratulations! 

By the way, it is not my fault if a publisher changes the release dates - just so you know, they do not consult me. Let me also add this warning - since I am now using different sources, I am finding that one person's genre isn't necessarily another persons - sorry if your book is in the wrong genre.
**Book by an author who is either new to me or has fallen off of my list and I might read.

Historical Romance

Amelia Grey
http://www.ameliagrey.com/
Gone With the Rogue
First Comes Love series
April 28

Amy Rose Bennett**
http://amyrosebennett.com/
How to Catch an Errant Earl
Disreputable Debutantes
April 28

Bronwyn Scott
http://bronwynswriting.blogspot.com/
The Temptation of Lord Tintagel
Cornish Duke series
Paperback – April 21, Electronic - May 1

Emma V Leech
http://www.emmavleech.com/
To Bed the Baron
Girls Who Dare
April 24

Grace Burrowes
http://www.graceburrowes.com/
A Duke by any Other Name
Rogues to Riches series
April 28

Harper St. George
http://www.harperstgeorge.com
Falling for Her Viking Captive
Sons of Sigurd
Paperback – April 21, Electronic - May 1

Joanna Johnson
https://twitter.com/joannajojohnson?lang=en
His Runaway Lady
Paperback – April 21, Electronic - May 1

Eliza Redgold
http://elizaredgold.com/
The Master’s New Governess
Paperback – April 21, Electronic - May 1

Sarah Mallory
http://www.sarahmallory.com
The Mysterious Miss Fairchild
Paperback – April 21, Electronic - May 1

Heather McCollum
http://www.heathermccollum.com
Highland Conquest
Sons of Sinclair series
April 28

Jane Ashford
http://www.janeashford.com
A Duke too Far
Way to a Lord’s Heart series
April 28

Jo Goodman
http://www.jogoodman.com/
Stages of the Heart
May 5

Julia Quinn*
http://www.juliaquinn.com/
First Comes Scandal
Rokesby series
April 21

Madeline Hunter*
http://www.madelinehunter.com/
Heiress for Hire
Duke’s Heiress series
April 28

Scarlett Peckham
https://www.scarlettpeckham.com/
The Rakess
Society of Sirens
April 28

Sophie Barnes
http://www.sophiebarnes.com
Her Seafaring Scoundrel
The Crawfords
April 28

Sophie Jordan
http://www.sophiejordan.net/
The Virgin and the Rogue
Rogue Files
April 28

Tammy Andresen
http://www.tammyandresen.com/
Baron of Bad
Lords of Scandal
May 5
The Look What I Found Books
Midsummer Knights series
A group of authors have banded together to write a series of Medieval long novella stories. Some authors have been around for a while and some have not. Interesting marketing ploy. Hope it works! All books appear to be electronic.

Kris Kennedy
http://kriskennedy.net
Forbidden Warrior
April 14

Madeline Martin
http://www.MadelineMartin.com
The Highlander's Lady Knight
April 28

Eliza Knight
http://www.elizaknight.com
The Highlander's Dare
May 12

Lori Ann Bailey
http://loriannbailey.com/
The Highland Knight's Revenge
May 26

Laurel O'Donnell
http://www.laurel-odonnell.com
My Victorious Knight
June 9

Terri Brisbin*
http://www.terribrisbin.com/
An Outlaw's Honor
June 23

Madeline Hunter*
http://www.madelinehunter.com/
Never If Not Now
July 7
Ms. Hunter knows how to write Medieval heroes
Historical Fiction

Alex George
http://www.alexgeorgebooks.com
The Paris Hours
May 5

Alison Weir
http://www.alisonweir.org.uk/
The Scandalous Queen
Six Tudor Queens
May 14

Anna Solomon
http://www.annasolomon.com
The Book of V.
May 5

Ian McGuire
http://www.alc.manchester.ac.uk/centrefornewwri...
The Abstainer
April 28

Jennifer Steil
http://www.jennifersteil.net
Exile Music
May 6

Sherri Winston
https://voteforcupcakes.com/
Journey to Freedom, 1838
Great escapes series
April 28

Sue Monk Kidd
http://www.suemonkkidd.com/
The Book of Longings
April 21

Thursday

The Earl Not Taken by A.S Fenichel

March 26, 2020
Well, that was a bummer.

http://asfenichel.com/

When I find a new author, I always have hopes that they will be the next Evie Dunmore, Mia Vincy or Mary Balogh. But sometimes those hopes are crushed between a mountain of badly constructed sentences.

Even though the cover of this book was odd, I went ahead and purchased The Earl Not Taken. After all Evie Dunmore’s covers are not quite like other historical romance books. I decided to give it a try. I don’t know about how other people read, but when I read, I have to find an author’s writing pattern before I can immerse myself in their books. I must feel that the author has the same love of the genre that I do before I can enjoy the story. 


I wasn’t long into the story before I ran into problems. Those problems being awkward sentences, clumsy words, and no sense of time, space, and characterization. By the way, there was more than one Napoleon. There was I, II, and III. It takes more than dropping the name to establish historical context. I’m not going into detail, but this book needed a good copy editor, a good proofreader and an honest critique partner. I stuck it out until I arrived at this sentence: “Pain etched lines around Rhys’s mouth. His full and maddeningly interesting lips pulled taught.” There’s so much about that sentence which makes me cringe. But “taught.” Wait a minute! Wait a minute! Are his lips teaching? I don’t think so. I think his mad, interesting lips are probably just taut. After that sentence, I complained to the person across the room. That person told me to continue. I made it to page 23. By this point, I was looking for things that were wrong instead of enjoying a story. It became obvious to me that I could not continue.


As a lover of the romance genre, I was insulted by what appears to be a rush to publish. It always pains me when I cannot finish a story from a genre I love.


Time/Place: England in the time of a Napoleon (by the way II never ruled)
Sensuality: Have no idea

Monday

Chasing Cassandra by Lisa Kleypas

Similar to the Star Trek Odd-Even Rule

https://lisakleypas.com/

All you nerds know what I’m talking about. The Star Trek rule of thumb is: the odd numbered Star Treks are weaker than the even numbered Star Treks. I don’t know if that theory actually holds up on closer examination, but I thought I’d might be able to apply it to Lisa Kleypas’ Ravenel series. Some of the books in this series worked for me: Marrying Winterborne (number 2) and Devil’s Daughter (number 4). And some of them not so much, I even had a DNF, Hello Stranger. I might have to go back and give that book another try. I know, I know. It's quite a stretch for the Revenel series to meet the Star Trek standards. But, somehow, in my mind, it worked. Anyway, onward.

Chasing Cassandra is the sixth, and I believe the last book in the Ravenel series. Tom Severin finally gets his own book. He is paired with Cassandra Ravenel. One of the fascinating things about this story is that these two have never met. One would think with all of the past cross-overs in the previous stories in the series, they would have bumped into each other at some point. But what do I know?

Whenever Tom was in any of the past books, I always wondered about his social skills, or lack thereof. He was always stealing scenes, and hogging the background. While he seemed to be highly skilled at making money, he just never seemed to understand how some of his aggressive corporate maneuvering impacted people. He has achieved everything he has ever wanted, but he feels alone. Although talking about feelings and Tom in the same sentence is a bit of a oxymoron. As he so proudly admits, he has allowed himself only five emotions because the rest don’t serve any purpose.

I loved Tom. I loved how he viewed the world, his thought processes, and his interpretation of classical books. His interpretation of Don Quixote for instance; “A story about a middle-aged lunatic who vandalizes private properties…” I found him to be a completely adorable hero, except for alllll the money. I’ve read a lot of romance novels, and a ton of them have men with oodles of money, but Tom’s worth was staggering. I am beginning to find that kind of wealth annoying. I don’t have a problem with a male providing some financial security, but Tom’s wealth was depressing. I guess if romance writers can’t write about a duke, they have to write about a really wealthy guy. Wealth obviously means power, and it is. But it doesn’t necessarily mean honor.

As a couple, Cassandra and Tom didn’t connect. And, why is that? I blame Cassandra. She was the weak part of this book; she had no personality. She was just plain bland. The only thing I could remember about her after I finished the story was: she was overwhelmingly beautiful. Cassandra just wasn’t a good match for Tom, she wasn’t dynamic enough. Plus, there were long periods of separation, I’m not sure why the long periods of separation were added to the story. They didn’t enhance the narrative in any way, nor add any much-needed chemistry to our romantic couple.  I for one am not a big fan of couples being separated in Romanceland. In this story, even a writer of Ms. Kleypas’ caliber couldn’t make the periods of separation work.

Bazzle. There was a wonderful secondary character by the name of Bazzle. He’s a street urchin. Tom takes him in. Tom at first resists Bazzle’s charms, but it isn’t long before Bazzle has crawled under Tom’s skin. Along with the lice. Normally, I don’t think bugs are funny. But, there are some rather humorous scenes involving Bazzle, bathing, and lice.

There is the requisite returning heroes and heroines from the previous stories showing up. Lucky you! If you really love the Ravenel family, you're in luck! You get to see all their little children. Overall, this book had a bunch of wonderful secondary characters, especially Bazzle. As usual, Ms. Kleypas, has given us a wonderful hero in Tom. Men seem to be Ms. Kleypas' strong point. The problem with the story was the bland heroine, Cassandra. Sorry to say, this was not one of my favorite Lisa Kleypas books. It had some great dialogue, and wonderful chemistry between Bazzle and Tom, but the heroine didn’t have any personility. In a romance, it's important that both the hero and heroine have something we can latch onto.

By the way, the Star Trek rule of thumb may not work here. When I looked back on my calculations, I discovered that I only really liked two in this series. There must be some other rule of thumb I can apply.

Time/Place: England 1870s
Sensuality: Warm

Thursday

Scot Under Covers by Suzanne Enoch

March 12, 2020
“MacArthur's Park is melting in the dark
All the sweet, green icing flowing down
Someone left my cake out in the rain
And I don't think that I can take it
'Cause it took so long to bake it
And I'll never have that recipe again
Oh, no, oh”
Jimmy Webb

http://www.suzanneenoch.com/

Have you ever noticed that the songs which stay in your mind are usually the ones which history isn’t always kind to? Usually they are the ones that one isn’t always fond of, however they are usually the ones which you remember. They stick in your head, and they don’t go away. Unless, of course, another irritating song comes along. “Young girl get out of my mind. My love for you is way out of line…blah, blaaaah, blaaaah.” Well, sometimes that happens with books. As we all know, I have a bad memory. It is very frustrating to try to remember which series is which. However, on the very first page of Scot Under the Covers, (the latest book in the Suzanne Enoch’s series Wild Wicked Highlanders), a blinding light of remembrance went off. I had no trouble remembering this series. Why is that, you ask. Well, my little Petunia’s I’ll tell you. Much like a bad tune, I remembered this book because I had such a strong negative reaction to the parents, especially the mother Francesca, Lady Aldriss. I also thought the future heroes of the series were rather immature. Did I throw the book against the wall? Nah, I read it, and I had some interesting reactions to it. Let us explore them.

First, let’s start with the hero, Aden, and the heroine, Miranda. I liked Aden, sort of. Aden is a rather introspective hero. He does not take anyone into his confidence. That of course, could lead to trust issues. On the positive side, he is extremely protective of his siblings. That protective attitude brought up some issues with me, which I will talk about later. He has a wonderful sense of humor, and is fond of wagering. In fact, when the story begins, he and his brother, Coll, are wagering which of the two is able to knock a bucket off a distant wall by throwing their boots at the bucket. It was an amusing first chapter. It was made more amusing by the fact they were wandering around the streets of London in their bare feet and kilts. Their mother was not amused. While Aden might enjoy a fun wager here and there, his reputation as a gambler might be a tad bit exaggerated. This is not a good thing because Miranda hatesssss gamblers. . .  She hates gamblers because of her Uncle. He lost a bunch of stuff and disappeared into America, leaving his family behind. Miranda is rather obnoxious to Aden when they are first introduced. All that snootiness changes because of her brother Mathew.

Mathew. We were introduced to Mathew in the first book of the series, It’s Getting Scot in Here. Mathew is Miranda’s brother and the fiancĂ© of Eloise. Eloise is Aden’s sister. See how I connected the dots. Well, it seems that Mathew has a problem. He has been hornswoggled by the villain, Captain Vale. He owes Vale 50,000 pounds. Even I know that 50,000 pounds is a lot of money. Well Mathew cannot pay that amount. When I read the first book in the series, I liked Mathew. Compared to the MacTaggart brothers, Mathew seemed to be really nice. Well, he may be nice, but he’s also a slimy toad-coward. There is no polite way to say this. He sells Miranda to Captain Vale in exchange for his debt. I have more to say about that later. When Miranda finds out what Mathew has done, she is livid. Guess what! She has a plan…and it involves Aden.


Miranda’s Aden plan. Who better to bring down the evil gambler Captain Vale, then the very smart gambler Aden MacTaggart. Might as well keep it in the family, that way no one will hear about any kind of scandal. Aden, who is in lust with Miranda agrees. Besides, he has a plan.


Aden’s plan. It’s a secret. Yes, Aden has a plan, but we don’t know what it is. He does a lot of conniving, but it’s all secret. He involves his brothers, but doesn’t tell them why. He feeds Miranda lines to say to Captain Vale, but doesn’t let her know what effect those lines might have. He doesn’t let us, the reader, in on the plans so that we might follow along. It’s alllllll hush, hush, and very irritating. And, when the big reveal happens, it’s all very anti-climactic. 


Mommie-dearest. In the first book in the series, I detested Francesca, the MacTaggart’s mother. Not only did she separate the siblings, she abandoned her sons, and never communicated with them. Then, for some mysterious reason, she decided to force them back into her life. She does this by threatening the livelihood of the tenants on the MacTaggart estate. No matter how much I tried, I could find nothing to like about this woman. It seems to me that Ms. Enoch has painted herself into a corner with Francesca’s character. I’m not quite sure if Francesca can be redeemed in this series. Having said that, there were some scenes in this story which have Francesca revealing a little bit more of her past, and that gave me some hope. But, Ms. Enoch has a long way to go for me to see Francesca as something other than a manipulating, selfish woman. 


Siblings, loyalty, and Mathew. As I mentioned earlier, I have more to say about Mathew’s loathsome actions and Aden, Miranda, and Eloise’s reaction to them. Selling your sister to a creep is not what I would call an attractive trait in ones beloved. Sure, Miranda was livid when her brother sold her to Captain Vale. She eventually forgave him; too quickly in my opinion. Aden, Eloise’s overprotective brother, seemed to adopt a let’s-wait-and-see attitude. He didn’t beat Mathew up, look at him menacingly, or warn Eloise of the kind of man she was engaged to. When Eloise found out, she had a don’t-do-that-again-you-naughty-boy reaction. I would think Mathew’s actions would warrant a major blow-up, maybe even a break-up. Maybe he’d leave, find himself, then come back and do some major groveling in a later book. Then, the plotline Ms. Enoch has painted herself in a corner with would not work. The issue of Mathew being a good guy, but still trading his sister for a gambling debt, lowered my opinion of this book. I think Mathew deserved harsher retribution than he got.


Overall, I liked this book better than the last. Aden made a good hero, and after a few chapters, I even liked Miranda. I would have wished that Miranda and Aden had spent more time together in the story though. I also wish Aden’s plan had not been so secretive. My biggest issue with this story was Mathew. I did not like what he did, and I did not like the resolution of his problem. 

 
Time/Place: Regency England
Sensuality: Warm

 

Mathew

Monday

A Belated Good-bye

It came has quite a shock to me this weekend when I discovered we had lost one of Romanceland's pioneer. Johanna Lindsey passed away October 27, 2019, and her family released a statement December 23, 2019.

Johanna Lindsey opened our eyes. At the time, it was a whole new way of sensual writing. We owe a lot to her. I remember my first Lindsey novel, "The Captive Bride" (1977) with fondness. I also remember some of her eye-catching covers, peaking with Tender is the Night, often lovingly referred to as, Tender is the Loin. It still puts a smile on my face. Yes, we've come a long way, but without Ms. Lindsey, Romanceland would not be as it is today. She was a major influence on numerous authors, and she is one of the authors responsible for some of us loving this genre as much as we do.
Goodbye Johanna, we will miss you.

Tuesday

Holy Corn Beef and Cabbage!! Upcoming Historical!!! March to April 2020!!!!

Authors with an asterisk*, I'm picking up! Release dates mostly between March 15, 2020 and April 14, 2020. For more Upcoming Releases that aren't historical see HEY DELIA!!

 Series indicates a series, spin-off, sequel, trilogy, brother/sister, secret society/spies, good friends who attended Oxford/Eton, vampire/werewolf - anything that has something continuing - even if written 20 years ago. Anthology/novella/short stories could be an anthology or a bunch of books in one print or novella - one tiny book or an anthology with a bunch of novellas - could be a short stories by one author, could be short stories by multiple authors - could be - I'm getting a headache. Ebook, only sold electronically for now. Debut - congratulations! 

By the way, it is not my fault if a publisher changes the release dates - just so you know, they do not consult me. Let me also add this warning - since I am now using different sources, I am finding that one person's genre isn't necessarily another persons - sorry if your book is in the wrong genre.  
**Book by an author who is either new to me or has fallen off of my list and I might read.

Historical Romance  

Adele Clee
http://www.adeleclee.com/
The Mystery of Mr Daventry
Scandalous Sons
March 28

Amy Jarecki
http://www.amyjarecki.com
The Highland Rogue
Lords of the Highlands
March 24    

Ann Lethbridge
http://www.annlethbridge.com
The Matchmaker and the Duke
March 17 – Paperback, April 1 - Ebook

Annabelle Anders
http://www.annabelleanders.com
Lady and the Rake
Lord Love a Lady
March 31

A.S. Fenichel**
http://asfenichel.com
The Earl Not Taken
The Wallflowers of West Lane
March 17

Christi Caldwell
http://www.christicaldwellauthor.com
In Bed with the Earl
Lost Lords of London
March 17

Diana Cosby
http://www.dianacosby.com/
Forbidden Realm
Forbidden
April 14 - Ebook

Ella Quinn
http://www.ellaquinnauthor.com
The Most Eligible Lord of London
The Lords of London
March 31

Eva Shepherd
https://www.evashepherd.com/
Awakening the Duchess
March 17 – Paperback, April 1 - Ebook

Laura Trentham
http://www.LauraTrentham.com
A Sinful Surrender
Spies and Lovers series
March 31

Lauri Robinson
http://www.laurirobinson.blogspot.com
The Flapper's Fake Fiance
Sisters of the Roaring Twenties
March 17 – Paperback, April 1 – Ebook

Liz Tyner
https://www.liztyner.com/
Compromised into Marriage
March 17 – Paperback, April 1 - Ebook

Lorraine Heath*
http://www.lorraineheath.com/
The Earl Takes a Fancy
Sins for all Seasons
March 31

May McGoldrick
http://www.MayMcGoldrick.com
Highland Sword
Royal Highlander
March 31

Maya Rodale
http://www.mayarodale.com
An Heiress to Remember
The Gilded Age Girls Club series
March 31

Stephanie Laurens**
http://www.stephanielaurens.com/
The Inevitable Fall of Christopher Cynster
Cynsters series
March 19

Tammy Andresen
http://www.tammyandresen.com/
Viscount of Vice
Lords of Scandal series
April 7

Virginia Heath*
http://www.virginiaheathromance.com
Redeeming the Reclusive Earl
March 17 – Paperback, April 1 - Ebook
Vivienne Lorret
http://www.vivlorret.net
Lord Holt Takes a Bride
Mating Habits of Scoundrels
March 31
Historical Fiction
Alexandra Lapierre
http://www.alexandralapierre.com/
The Woman of a Thousand Names March 31
Alison Weir
http://www.alisonweir.org.uk/
The Scottish Princess
Six Tudor Queens
Novella
April 2
Anika Scott
https://anikascott.com/
The German Heiress
April 7

Ariel Lawhon
http://ariellawhon.com/
Code Name Helene
April 2

C. Pam Zhang
http://cpamzhang.com
How Much of These Hills Is Gold, debut
April 7
Clara Dupont-Monod
The Revolt
April 2

Emily Neuberger
A Tender Thing, debut
April 7

Lisa Wingate
http://www.lisawingate.com
The Book of Lost Friends
April 7

Malcolm Archibald
http://www.malcolmarchibald.com
Agent of The Queen
Jack Windrush series
March 31

Megan Campisi
https://www.megancampisi.com/
Sin Eater
April 7

Pamela Pinning Ewen
http://www.pamelaewen.com
The Queen of Paris
April 7

Paulette Jiles
http://paulettejiles.com/
Simon the Fiddler
April 14

TaraShea Nesbit
http://tarasheanesbit.com/about-the-author/
Beheld
March 17

Tracey Emerson Wood
http://traceyenersonwood.com/
The Engineer's Wife
April 07