Monday, July 26, 2021

7/26/2021 TLC tour for THE WIDOWS OF CHAMPAGNE by Renee Ryan - EXCERPT and REVIEW


Publisher ‏ : ‎ Love Inspired Trade 
Publication date ‏ : ‎ July 27, 2021
Language ‏ : ‎ English

For readers of Lilac Girls and The Lost Girls of Paris comes a captivating novel of resilience, as three generations of women battle to save their family’s vineyard during WWII.

Champagne, 1939

Gabrielle Leblanc Dupree is taking her family’s future into her hands. While she should be preparing for a lavish party to celebrate two centuries of champagne making, she secretly hides Chateau Fouché-Leblanc’s most precious vintages behind a fake wall in the cellar in preparation for the looming war. But when she joins the resistance, the coveted champagne isn’t the most dangerous secret her cellar must conceal…

A former Parisian socialite, Gabrielle’s mother, Hélène, lost her husband to another war. Now her home has been requisitioned by the Germans, who pillage vineyards to satisfy the Third Reich’s thirst for the finest champagne. There’s even more at stake than Hélène dares admit. She has kept her heritage a secret…and no one is safe in Nazi-occupied France.

Josephine, the family matriarch, watches as her beloved vineyard faces its most difficult harvest yet. As her daughter-in-law and granddaughters contend with the enemies and unexpected allies in their midst, Josephine’s deep faith leads to her own path of resistance.

Across years and continents, the Leblanc women will draw on their courage and wits, determined against all odds to preserve their lives, their freedom and their legacy…


Ryan wrote an incredibly heartfelt story about three generations of widowed Leblanc women who are taking care of the vineyards of Chateau Fouche-Leblanc during the Nazi occupation of France. Each of the women respond to the conflict in their own way, and they will be changed in more ways than they will ever know.

The writing is completely immersive and emotional. The atrocities and horrors of what the women had to go through is harrowing, and yet they continue to sacrifice their own lives to do what is right against the evil Reich.

I highly recommend this stunning and gripping historical fiction story.

Please enjoy an excerpt from the book:

The siren’s song had her stooping to the ground and scoop­ing up a handful of dirt. She stared at the wet clump, the grizzled hand not that of her younger self but of the seventy-seven-year-old woman she was today.

She blinked again and again, and then, at last, she no lon­ger held wet earth. She saw only the dry soil of decades before leaking through her seventeen-year-old fingers. She reveled in the warm feel of that ancient dirt sifting through a hand unscarred by time and toil. The sensation was as vivid as it was real, the experience an almost mystical connection to God’s creation.

Josephine knew her mind was playing another cruel game, tricks upon tricks. But this time, she wanted to disappear into the lie. She wanted to escape from the harsh realities of dismal weather and looming war. She was tired of death robbing her of loved ones. Would it be so terrible to spend a moment in a time before her life had been touched by tragedy?

The chalky soil warmed her palm.

Was this real, or just a memory?

She didn’t know.

Momentarily caught between past and present, she breathed in slowly, hoping to find her way. But where did she want to go? Back to when life was bright and easy? So tempting.

She breathed in again. The foul scent made her recoil, a touch of death to the nose, and that was it. She was once again standing in the present. The wet, decayed soil was unbear­ably cold in her hand, yet she dropped the clump as if it were a ball of white-hot fire.

Rain continued falling from the dreary sky, sliding beneath her collar. The grapes would be decimated by rot and mold. Gabrielle and her workers would prune, check for fungi or disease, and tie back shoots that came loose. Day after day, week after week, month after month, they had waged their war valiantly. They would still fail.

The enemy was too strong.

The enemy was crafty and cruel.

The enemy was… 


Renee Ryan grew up in a small Florida beach town. Surfing didn’t work for her, but that didn’t keep her from watching others tackle the waves. To entertain herself during those countless hours of “laying-out”, she read many of the classics. It wasn’t until the summer between her sophomore and junior years at Florida State University that she read her first romance novel. Hooked from page one, she spent hours consuming one book after another while working on the best (and last!) tan of her life.

Two years later, armed with a degree in Economics and Religion, she explored various career opportunities, including stints at a Florida theme park, a modeling agency, and a cosmetic conglomerate. She went on to teach high school Economics, American Government and Latin in between coaching award-winning cheerleading teams. Several years later, with an eclectic cast of characters swimming around in her head, she began seriously pursuing a writing career. What better excuse to avoid housework and ignore clocks?

Saturday, July 17, 2021

7/15/21 JOHN EYRE By Mimi Matthews @MimiMatthewsEsq #JohnEyre, #HistoricalRomance, #HistoricalFiction, #GothicRomance, #ParanormalRomance, #MimiMatthews, #BookTour


·         Title: John Eyre: A Tale of Darkness and Shadow

·         Author: Mimi Matthews

·         Genre: historical fiction, Gothic romance, paranormal fiction

·         Publisher: Perfectly Proper Press (July 20, 2021)

·         Length: (364) pages

·         Hardcover ISBN: 978-1736080207

·         Trade Paperback ISBN: 978-1736080221

·         eBook ASIN: B08NPLVHVN

·         Tour Dates:  July 12 – 25, 2021



Yorkshire, 1843. When disgraced former schoolmaster John Eyre arrives at Thornfield Hall to take up a position as tutor to two peculiar young boys, he enters a world unlike any he's ever known. Darkness abounds, punctuated by odd bumps in the night, strange creatures on the moor, and a sinister silver mist that never seems to dissipate. And at the center of it all, John's new employer—a widow as alluring as she is mysterious.


Sixteen months earlier, heiress Bertha Mason embarked on the journey of a lifetime. Marriage wasn't on her itinerary, but on meeting the enigmatic Edward Rochester, she's powerless to resist his preternatural charm. In letters and journal entries, she records the story of their rapidly disintegrating life together, and of her gradual realization that Mr. Rochester isn't quite the man he appears to be. In fact, he may not be a man at all.


From a cliff-top fortress on the Black Sea coast to an isolated estate in rural England, John and Bertha contend with secrets, danger, and the eternal struggle between light and darkness. Can they help each other vanquish the demons of the past? Or are some evils simply too powerful to conquer?


“Bertha Mason Rochester shines, dominating her scenes with vitality and strength. The style, too, is spot-on, reprising the spirit of 19th-century Gothic prose without descending into mimicry.”— Publishers Weekly

“An entertaining spin on a classic with thrilling twists and turns…Matthews skillfully transforms a well-known story into a truly original tale.”— Kirkus

“[Matthews] retells Charlotte Bronte's classic story in a way that will keep fans of the original novel totally gripped from cover to cover... Fresh and dynamic... Fast-paced and spellbinding...a book you will have a hard time putting down.”— Readers Favorite

“One of the most moving, suspenseful, innovative and remarkable retellings of a classic in the history of, well, ever... Every page is sheer rapture as [Matthews] moulds popular source material into a spell-binding creation so wholly her own.”— Rachel McMillan, bestselling author of The London Restoration

“[A] captivating and ingenious retelling of Jane Eyre with a supernatural twist. Smart, suspenseful, and deliciously spooky, JOHN EYRE is a must-read; I loved everything about it!”— Ashley Weaver, author of the Amory Ames Mysteries and the Electra McDonnell series


I loved Jane Eyre and I loved this re-telling - with all the gothic atmosphere you come to expect with a little bit more - supernatural. I found this read to be riveting and uniquely original that Mimi Matthews adoringly wrote to perfection. I absolutely love it and I am delighted with this retelling I am recommending this to everyone!
I was so absorbed into the story and somehow Matthews continued the story for me in ways that I had questioned reading Jane Eyre in the past. The what ifs.... and here it is delivered in the most monumental of ways while combining two classical works of fiction into a book that will runt he test of time. 

The writing is impeccable and John Eyre is an enthralling read - historical and classics readers will have a hard time putting this book down.

All the stars for this book.


USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews writes both historical nonfiction and award-winning proper Regency and Victorian romances. Her novels have received starred reviews in Library Journal and Publishers Weekly, and her articles have been featured on the Victorian Web, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and in syndication at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes a Sheltie, and two Siamese cats.








Join the virtual book tour of JOHN EYRE: A TALE OF DARKNESS AND SHADOW, Mimi Matthews’ highly acclaimed Bronte-inspired Gothic romance, July 12-25, 2021. Thirty-five popular on-line influencers specializing in historical fiction, Gothic romance, and paranormal fiction will join in the celebration of its release with an interview, spotlights, exclusive excerpt, and reviews of this new Victorian-era novel set in Yorkshire, England.





July 12           The Caffeinated Bibliophile (review)    

July 12           Syrie James (review)        

July 12           Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (review) 

July 13           Bronte Blog (interview)

July 13           Laura's Reviews (review) 

July 13           All-of-a-Kind Mom (spotlight)

July 14           Gwendalyn's Books (review)      

July 14           Austenesque Reviews (review) 

July 15           Bookworm Lisa (review)  

July 15           Nurse Bookie (review)      

July 16           Savvy Verse and Wit (excerpt)

July 16           The Lit Bitch (review)       

July 17           My Bookish Bliss (review)           

July 17           From the TBR Pile (review)         

July 18           Rosanne E. Lortz (review)           

July 18           Books, Teacups, & Reviews (review)   

July 19           The Secret Victorianist (review)

July 19           Christian Chick's Thoughts (review)    

July 19           The Gothic Library (review)        

July 20           Getting Your Read On (review)  

July 20           The Silver Petticoat Review (review)    

July 20           Lu Reviews Books (review)        

July 21           Scuffed Slippers and Wormy Books (spotlight)

July 21           The Green Mockingbird (review)           

July 22           Unabridged Chick (review)         

July 22           A Darn Good Read (review)

July 23           Kathleen Flynn (review)   

July 23           So Little Time… (review) 

July 23           The Calico Critic (review)

July 24           The Bronte Babe (review)

July 24           Probably at the Library (review)

July 24           Impressions in Ink (review)

July 25           From Pemberley to Milton (review)       

July 25           Vesper's Place (review)    

July 25           Cup of Tea with that Book Please (review)    







Monday, July 12, 2021

7/12/2021 The Girls From The Beach By Andie Newton

Publisher ‏ : ‎ Aria 
Publication date ‏ : ‎ July 8, 2021

The Girls from the Beach: Another gripping, emotional historical novel from USA Today bestselling author of The Girl from Vichy

'We'd heard stories about the nurses in tent seven. A secret mission, stolen money, and spies...'

In 1944, four American nurses disappeared for five days. No one knew what happened to them. Until now.

When Kit and Red set foot on French soil during the Normandy landings, they know they have to rely on each other. As they head for the battlefield, their aim is simple: save lives. But when they're called away on a top-secret mission to patch up a few men behind enemy lines, everything changes.

Alongside fellow nurses, Roxy and Gail, they're told to prepare for the worst, trading in their nurses' fatigues for civilian clothes and hiding medical supplies under their skirts. But it's a lie. Their real mission tasks them with the impossible – to infiltrate the Reich and steal something the Nazis desperately need to win their losing war.

In an ultimate test of courage and comradeship, each woman must decide what she is prepared to risk and what she has to live for.

Praise for The Girls From The Beach.

'One of my favorite books of 2021 and a true must-read for all fans of the genre. It's not just a story of friendship, but a story of patriotism, heroism, and selfless sacrifice in the name of freedom. Absolutely riveting!' – Ellie Midwood, USA Today bestselling author of The Violinist of Auschwitz.

'A wild ride of a book, laced with beautifully flawed characters, impeccable research and a story that will make you cry with tears of joy and sorrow. A resounding five-star read!' – Terry Lynn Thomas, USA Today bestselling author.

'What a story! The Girls from the Beach took me on a rollercoaster ride of mystery and suspense. The Girls from the Beach is a testimony to courage, integrity and female friendship. And that ending – wow!' – Gill Thompson, bestselling author of The Oceans Between Us

'The Girls from the Beach is a unique and incredibly imaginative story inspired by the nurses who worked on the front line in World War Two. It is action-packed and full of unexpected drama around every turn – I just had to keep reading to find out what was going to happen next! Readers who enjoyed Newton's earlier books will be sure to love this one' – Louise Fein, bestselling author of People Like Us


Andie Newton is one of my favorite authors in the historical fiction genre. I have loved and adored her previous novels and I was more than excited to read this novel most especially because it was about nurses and their contribution to the war efforts risking their lives. This @nursebookie was definitely very very excited for this. After such a tough year working in the front lines during the pandemic, reading about these nurses really was very inspiring to me. 

The Girls From the Beach blew me away - the story line was so thrilling and suspenseful, I literally could not put this book down. This enthralling read was packed full of wonderful stories and examples of bravery as the women took on such dangerous and top-secret mission. I love being immersed into the stories of Kit, Red, Roxy, and Gail - a story of female friendships, and the endurance and sacrifice by brave women. 

I did not know a lot about the nurses that landed in the beaches of Normandy during D-Day and this novel definitely highlighted and educated me on the heroism of WWII nurses. The research done for this novel was impeccable and really appreciated all the details that went to writing this beautiful and riveting novel.

I highly recommend this novel for a fast-paced read that highlighted the women and nurses whose commendable bravery made a difference in the war efforts. Historical Fiction readers cannot miss this novel and will devour this five star read. 


Andie Newton is the USA Today bestselling author of The Girl from Vichy.

All her books are fast-paced female-driven spy stories set in WWII. The Girl I Left Behind was her debut, and her forthcoming release, The Girls from the Beach, will be released in July 2021. She holds a Bachelor degree in History and a Master in Teaching. Andie lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, her two boys, and one very lazy cat.

You can find book club discussion questions on

Twitter: @andienewton
Instagram: @andienewtonauthor

Saturday, July 10, 2021

7/10/21 Better Sleep, Better You: Your No-Stress Guide for Getting the Sleep You Need and the Life You Want By Frank Lipman, Neil Parikh, and Rachel Holtzman


Better Sleep, Better You: Your No-Stress Guide for Getting the Sleep You Need and the Life You WantBetter Sleep, Better You: Your No-Stress Guide for Getting the Sleep You Need and the Life You Want by Frank Lipman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Better Sleep, Better You: Your No-Stress Guide for Getting the Sleep You Need and the Life You Want
By Frank Lipman, Neil Parikh, and Rachel Holtzman

I really enjoyed reading this book and learning from the experts about the importance of sleep and how sleeplessness is detrimental to our health and well-being that can affect not only in the immediate effects but also the long-term consequences such as obesity, hormone imbalances, diabetes, heart, and Alzheimer’s disease.

The experts in the field do not offer quick fix solutions but instead go deep dive into the reasons and scientific facts about the causes and how to manage a solution that is not a one size fix-all. The book serves as a guide to help personalize a solution that will work for any individual’s lifestyle and needs.

I enjoyed reading about the stories and examples, the easy to implement sleep protocol, and everything I would need to have a better sleep life balance, that will prevent chronic illness that will be a detriment to health and happiness.

Thank you Little Brown for the gifted book. This was amazing.

View all my reviews

Friday, July 9, 2021


  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Berkley (June 29, 2021)
    Language ‏ : ‎ English
    Mass Market Paperback ‏ : ‎ 304 pages

    Sparks fly when a runaway heiress bargains with a devilish rogue to escape a marriage of convenience.

    No one would guess that beneath Violet Crenshaw's ladylike demeanor lies the heart of a rebel. American heiresses looking to secure English lords must be on their best behavior, but Violet has other plans. She intends to flee London and the marriage her parents have arranged to become a published author--if only the wickedly handsome earl who inspired her most outrageously sinful character didn't insist on coming with her.

    Christian Halston, Earl of Leigh, has a scheme of his own: escort the surprisingly spirited dollar princess north and use every delicious moment in close quarters to convince Violet to marry him. Christian needs an heiress to rebuild his Scottish estate but the more time he spends with Violet, the more he realizes what he really needs is her--by his side, near his heart, in his bed.

    Though Christian's burning glances offer unholy temptation, Violet has no intention of surrendering herself or her newfound freedom in a permanent deal with the devil. It's going to take more than pretty words to prove this fortune hunter's love is true....


    I loved the first book in this series, The Heiress Gets a Duke. I found it to be such a fun read and I couldn’t wait to pick up this sequel. The Devil and the Heiress focuses on Violet and Christian Halston, Earl of Leigh's story. This one was just as fun and it is great to revisit the Crenshaw women again.

    The chemistry was undeniable and I found the writing super engaging and I was more than happy to get lost in their banter and exciting story. I love that women were portrayed as being headstrong, determined, and have great heads on their shoulders - with an amazing contrast between women from America versus England's Victorian era.

    I am definitely waiting with bated breath for the next installment.

    Praise for The Devil and the Heiress

    “A sparkling jewel of a love story, full to the brim with Victorian wit, romance, and heart-stopping heat. Road trips in a carriage and four don’t get much sexier than this.”—Mimi Matthews, USA Today bestselling author

    "Dear Reader—if you love great characters—sexy rakish heroes and strong heroines—and an emotional story set in Victorian England, The Devil and the Heiress is the historical romance for you!"—Terri Brisbin, USA Today bestselling author

    “St. George’s characters are wonderfully nuanced, and their chemistry is all the more enticing for it. It’s a pleasure to watch this complex duo navigate their relationship.”—Publishers Weekly

    “A rich, compelling, and beautifully written romance. St. George brings us the story of Violet Crenshaw, an American heiress with distinctly modern ideas about love and marriage.”—Elizabeth Everett, author of A Lady’s Formula for Love

    "Captivating...A delightful romance between a man who learns to be vulnerable and a woman who discovers her strength."—Kirkus Reviews

    Praise for The Heiress Gets a Duke

    "A glittering ballroom romance bursting with the industry and wealth that so define Gilded Age heiresses."—Entertainment Weekly

    "The Heiress Gets a Duke is a charming, compulsively readable delight and I can't wait for the next book from Harper St George's magical pen!"—Evie Dunmore, USA Today bestselling author

    "Wit, seduction and passion blend seamlessly to create this deeply emotional romance. St. George weaves an intriguing plot with complex characters to provide the perfect sensual escape. There’s nothing I didn’t love about The Heiress Gets a Duke, especially its lush, captivating glimpse into history."—Anabelle Bryant, USA Today bestselling author

  • About the Author

    Harper St. George was raised in the rural backwoods of Alabama and along the tranquil coast of northwest Florida. It was a setting filled with stories of the old days that instilled in her a love of history, romance, and adventure. By high school, she had discovered the historical romance novel which combined all of those elements into one perfect package. She has been hooked ever since. She lives in the Atlanta area with her family and loves to hear from readers.

July 08, 2021 The Ice Swan by J'nell Ciesielski HFVBT Tours


The Ice Swan by J'nell Ciesielski


Publication Date: July 6, 2021

Thomas Nelson


Amid the violent last days of the glittering Russian monarchy, a princess on the run finds her heart where she least expects it.


1917, Petrograd. Fleeing the murderous flames of the Russian Revolution, Princess Svetlana Dalsky hopes to find safety in Paris with her mother and sister. But the city is buckling under the weight of the Great War, and the Bolsheviks will not rest until they have erased every Russian aristocrat from memory. Svetlana and her family are forced into hiding in Paris’s underbelly, with little to their name but the jewels they sewed into their corsets before their terrifying escape.


Born the second son of a Scottish duke, the only title Wynn MacCallan cares for is that of surgeon. Putting his talents with a scalpel to good use in the hospitals in Paris, Wynn pushes the boundaries of medical science to give his patients the best care possible. After treating Svetlana for a minor injury, he is pulled into a world of decaying imperial glitter. Intrigued by this mysterious, cold, and beautiful woman, Wynn follows Svetlana to an underground Russian club where drink, dance, and questionable dealings collide on bubbles of vodka.


Out of money and options, Svetlana agrees to a marriage of convenience with the handsome and brilliant Wynn, who will protect her and pay off her family’s debts. It’s the right thing for a good man to do, but Wynn cannot help but hope the marriage will turn into one of true affection. When Wynn’s life takes an unexpected turn, so does Svetlana’s—and soon Paris becomes as dangerous as Petrograd. And as the Bolsheviks chase them to Scotland and beyond, Wynn and Svetlana begin to wonder if they will ever be able to outrun the love they are beginning to feel for one another.


“The Ice Swan is a ray of light in the middle of a Europe that was sinking into darkness. Ciesielski’s talent for storytelling from the heart is a feast for the readers’ eyes.” —Mario Escobar, international bestselling author of Remember Me and Children of the Stars



I had always been such a huge fan of J'nell Ciesielski, having enjoyed both THE SOCIALITE an BEAUTY AMONG RUINS this past two years, so when I heard about this upcoming novel about a Russian princess I was all over this book. 

First of all, the gorgeous book cover said it all in this thrilling historical fiction story about the Bolsheviks' annihilation of the Russian monarchy which forced Princess Svetlana into hiding in Paris, and where a chance meeting with a handsome and brilliant Scotsman, who was also a surgeon and a son of a duke may help Svetlana, who was once part of the Russian aristocracy. 

This may be by far my most favorite storyline and historical fiction read from author J'nell Ciesielski - from the heart wrenching life Svetlana had to endure, the characters, and that incredible back story of wealth and power to now going through extreme poverty. 

There was just so much to the story that you find yourself rooting for these characters as they show their strength and resilience in overcoming adversities, adn maybe thier happy ever after too. 

It was also a story about a family of privilege now losing everything, and going through the hardships and escaping persecution that just keeps your heart at bay as you see the extremes in the transition in their lives. I loved the back story and learning in depth about the Russian monarchy was incredible. 

I found the pacing of the story incredibly thrilling that kept my attention and me fully entertained. There were a lot going on in the story and I loved every minute of it.

Historical fiction fans - do not miss this incredible book!


With a passion for heart-stopping adventure and sweeping love stories, J’nell Ciesielski weaves fresh takes into romances of times gone by. When not creating dashing heroes and daring heroines, she can be found dreaming of Scotland, indulging in chocolate of any kind, or watching old black and white movies. Winner of the Romance Through the Ages and the Maggie Award, she is a Florida native who now lives in Virginia with her husband, daughter, and lazy beagle. Learn more at

12/5/2022 WITCHA GONA DO By Avery Flynn

  Publisher: Berkley (December 6, 2022) An unlucky witch and her know-it-all nemesis must team up in the first of a new, hot romantic comedy...