Anthology

When a Lord Loves a Lady, A Waltz with a Rogue Collection by Collette Cameron

When a Lord Loves a Lady - A Waltz with a Rogue Collection Books 1 - 5When a Lord Loves a Lady – A Waltz with a Rogue Collection Books 1 – 5 by Collette Cameron
Tracy’s rating: 5 of 5 stars

Release Date: October 23, 2017 (for the box set, each novella is already available)

What a great anthology!

A Kiss for Miss Kingsley – 4 stars
Olivia and Allen have a history, three years ago they were in love and wanted to marry, but before Allen could ask for her hand, her father decided to move the family to the Caribbean. Allen is frantic and asks Olivia to run away with him, when she refuses, he tells her that it is over between them.
Olivia was heartbroken, she left for the Caribbean a few days later and didn’t return for three years. Upon her return, her Aunt persuades her to attend a ball being given by Allen’s parents. Unsure but unable to deny that she wants to see him again, Olivia attends. Allen is looking for a wife, he knows know that he was unfair to Olivia, but she is gone and he must do his duty. He attends the ball with the intent of finding a bride and is stunned when Olivia is announced. When he asks for a dance, they both know that their feelings are still strong, but after so much time, can they find what they once shared?

Bride of Falcon – 4 stars
Ivonne (Allen’s sister) aka Ivy and Chancy Faulkenhurst aka Falcon have known each other for years, he is one of her brother’s oldest friends and the first man Ivy ever loved. Falcon left for India 6 years ago, hoping to make his fortune and be able to ask for Ivy’s hand. But things did not work out for him, first he invested his savings with a man and never heard from him again and then was injured and has returned to England with no money and no prospects. He accepted Allen’s invitation to attend the ball and hopes to get a glimpse of the woman he loves before he goes home. But uncomfortable in the crowd, he escapes to the garden, where he overhears Ivy being accosted by a suitor. When she tells the man she will never marry him and he demands to know why, Falcon steps forward and tells him that she was already promised to someone. Ivy is overjoyed to see Falcon, even though he broke her young heart when he left and he never replied to her letters. These two dance around each other and there are some misunderstandings and assumptions that almost keep them from their HEA.

Her Scandalous Wish – 5 stars
When I first started this book, I didn’t think I would accept whatever reason Ms. Cameron came up with for keeping these two apart for so long – but I was wrong! Philomena and Branford were in love, but 6 years ago, he believed she perished in a fire and he was heartbroken. Over the years he has become a rake, but no woman has touched his heart and he knows that no one ever will. Newly returned for the Caribbean and still adjusting to the title he never expected to inherit, he attends a ball with his sister and is shocked to find out that Philomena is still alive. Philomena is trying to grant her brother’s wish to marry before he dies, she spies Bradford and slips out on the terrace to avoid him, she was badly burned in the fire that killed her parents and almost died herself, but what hurt the most was Branford’s desertion. When the two share a kiss and are caught by her brother, he demands the Branford either meets him for a duel or marries his sister. Unwilling to fight, he offers for Philomena, who begs her brother to retract his challenge. When her brother collapses, she frantically agrees to marry. These two must get to know each other again and there will be many obstacles in the road to their HEA – but what an amazing journey it is!!

To Tame a Scoundrel’s Heart – 5 stars
This was my favorite book in the set – I loved Nic and Katrina! Nic was raised to believe he was the bastard son of a duke and he has made his living as a privateer. But now he has unexpectedly inherited a dukedom and two young half-sisters. He knows he needs to marry a woman who can take care of the duchy and his sisters, so he can return to the sea. When he meets Katrina, he thinks she will be perfect for the job, until he finds out that she is all but betrothed. Unwilling to let her go, he enlists her help in finding a bride. Katrina has been infatuated with Nic for years, but she has put that behind her and is looking forward to marrying her Major. Problem is, she can’t quite get her heart to believe that Richard is the man she wants. The more time she spends with Nic, the more confused she becomes. For his part, Nic has decided that he cannot have Katrina, because she deserves a man that will love her and will not leave her for the sea, but he is not convinced that Richard is that man. When Richard returns, Katrina finally realizes that Nic is the man she loves. Faced with the knowledge that he might lose her, Nic admits that he loves her more than he loves the sea and sets out to win her heart. SIGH….I am a little bit in love with Nic.

The Wallflower’s Wicked Wager – 5 stars
Shona is a peeress in her own right and is being pursued for her title and fortune, she has not had an easy life and longs to be loved for herself. While eluding a grasping fortune hunter, she trips and falls in the lake. Morgan Le Draco is a war hero but since the accident that cost him his eye and left him scarred, he is lost, estranged from his father and without a fortune or prospects, he has no idea what he will do. When a young woman falls in the lake, he doesn’t hesitate to save her. When they finally reach the shore, he expects her to be horrified by his appearance, but is delighted when she doesn’t seem bothered by his scars. Shona and Morgan have an instant attraction. When they make their way back to the house party, Shonna is confronted by a nasty woman and makes a wager with the woman – that by weeks end, she will have a kiss from the most handsome man at the party and she means Morgan. These two share a mutual dislike for their parents and both have painful pasts, as they spend time together, their bond and friendship only get stronger. But there are others determined to keep them apart and their doubts in themselves and each other, almost cost them the love of a lifetime.

This was a really wonderful anthology, I had read some of the stories before when they were first released as novellas, but I enjoyed reading them altogether even more! The writing is great and each story is well paced and well done. While the novellas are not steamy, the love scenes are appropriate to each story and I didn’t mind the lack of steamier scenes. I would happily recommend this boxed set!

Christmas Revels IV – Anthology

Christmas Revels IV: Four Regency NovellasChristmas Revels IV: Four Regency Novellas

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Series: Christmas Revels #4
Publication Date: 10/30/17

What a wonderful anthology – Four sweet, clean, happy stories with lovely HEA’s. If you want steam, you won’t find it in these stories, but they are very sweet and romantic. I was only familiar with one of the authors, but they were all great, so I’ll be looking for more of their books!

The Sergeant’s Christmas Bride by Anna D. Allen
While the scenario is highly improbable, it was a delightful story. I just loved Jacob. He is one of the sweetest and most caring heroes I’ve read in a long time. Sergeant Jacob Burrows has just returned from fighting in America. He’s tired to the bone and just wants to sleep before he continues on to his destination. He has just bedded down when he’s rudely awakened by someone holding a gun on him. Imagine his surprise when he finds out that the person with the gun is a woman and he’s at his destination.

Elizabeth FitzWalter needs a husband – quickly. She’s a Viscountess in her own right since the death of her very much-loved brother. It is amazing who and what comes out of the woodwork when a female inherits wealth and a title – she needs to avoid all of that. I like her very much. She is brave, intelligent, self-sufficient and loving. What a pair Elizabeth and Jacob make.

Home For Christmas by Hannah Meredith
Charity Fletcher lived her whole life squirreled away at her father’s country estate. She was totally neglected by him. She was lonely, but she didn’t actually realize that. Then, her father, a Baron, dies without leaving her anything at all and she is at the mercy of her cousin, Horace, who inherited. So, imagine her surprise and delight when she receives a bequest of a cottage by the sea and five-thousand pounds from someone she’s never heard of. She packs her belongings and she and her servant, Lucy Dibble, head to their new home. What they find is a shock. The cottage is much larger than Charity expected and is in a sad state of disrepair.

Colonel Lord Gilbert Narron has returned from the wars where he was wounded. His leg pains him horribly and he just needs a place where he can be alone and recuperate. So, he rents a seaside cottage and he and his servant, Sergeant Holly, set out. Finally, after many grueling days of traveling, he finally arrives at the cottage. As he enters the cottage he catches a glimpse of an intruder who is trying to cudgel him. He reacts automatically and punches the culprit. Yes, you guessed it – his attacker was a woman.

It takes Charity several days to recover enough to get out of bed – and by then, Gil has taken over the house, the repairs, hiring servants, etc. He even hired a companion to live with them and told everyone he was her cousin.

It is lovely to watch these two forge a truce and come to work together to solve a mystery. Then, of course, it is also lovely to see them grow to love each other.

I thought the Epilogue was the absolute best part of the book. I love the brothers bantering and seeing their lives several years down the road.

A Memorable Christmas Season by Kate Parker (one of my favorite authors)
I enjoyed this story of second chances, but I really wish it had been longer because a couple of things left me hanging. For instance – Susanna Dunley, Dowager Countess of Roekirk is supposed to be a very sympathetic character and she really is given all she’s been through. However, she had a chance at real love and turned it down. What left me hanging was that the story says she was ‘forced’ for marry Roekirk, however, there was no mention of how or why other than Will had nothing to offer. Say what! So, I liked the hero much more than I liked the heroine.

This story includes murder, a spymaster, blackmail and a traitor – Oh! My!

Will Marsden, newly minted Earl of Keyminster, came from nothing to have the King bestow an earldom on him for services rendered to the crown. Thirty years ago he was totally in love with Susanna only to have her turn him down and marry the Earl of Roekirk. Will was devastated and immediately chose to leave England as a spy and later a diplomat. He was totally surprised when he received an invitation to a Christmas Ball at the new Earl of Roekirk’s home.

When he arrives, it is to be drawn into hiding a body and possibly covering up a murder. Is Susanna a murderer? Will he protect her? Who is the dead man and why was he in Susanna’s home? Will Susanna and Will renew their love and finally get their HEA? You’ll just have to read the story to find out.

A Perfectly Unforgettable Christmas by Louisa Cornell
This was actually my favorite of the four stories!

Wounded in body and spirit during a drunken, midnight carriage race, Lucien Rollinsby, Viscount Debenwood wanted nothing but peace and quiet and to be left alone. Imagine his dismay when he awakens (at three in the afternoon) to the clanging of the gate next door – constantly back and forth accompanied by several loud thumps- and also the screeches of a querulous banshee.

Lady Caroline Chastleton McAlasdair, daughter of a Duke, is dismayed to see that the small, quiet, off-the-beaten-path home that she had asked her brother to find for her stay in London was actually in the middle of Mayfair. She wanted to be obscure so that she could be sure that her father would not learn of her stay in London. He is a selfish, hateful, uncaring, mean-spirited man and she wants nothing to do with him, after all, he forced her into an unwanted marriage when she was only fifteen.

Both Caroline and Lucien have some very deep and dark secrets. They can share those secrets and either ruin their budding relationship or find forgiveness and love. They have much to overcome and it is a lovely thing to watch them grow.

I loved all of the supporting characters in this story, but I particularly liked Lily, Caroline’s daughter. She is a real little hoyden and is delightful. Then, there is the long-suffering Redford, Lucien’s butler. The banter between Lucien and Redford is absolutely priceless

“I requested and received this e-book at no cost to me and volunteered to read it; my review is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.”

Christmas in Kilts by Various Authors

Christmas in KiltsChristmas in Kilts by Bronwen Evans
Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars

Release Date: October 31, 2017

A very good anthology – all the novellas have a nice Christmas type theme and I enjoyed all the stories, some more than others.

A Highlander’s Hope by Terri Brisbin – 3 stars – Iain is a widower and finally ready to remarry after losing his beloved wife 5 years ago. The woman he has his heart set on is Robena, he knows their joining will not be easy and will cause talk, because Robena is a prostitute. He met her years ago when visiting Rob and Anice, they became lovers and friends. He knows she is the woman for him, despite their age difference and her unsavory past. Now all he has to do is convince her. Robena has not had an easy life and she knows her place, she loves Iain, but refuses his offer for several reasons, primarily because she is barren and so far beneath him in station. Can these two get a Christmas miracle?

A Highlander’s Christmas Wager by Lecia Cornwall – 4 stars – Caught in a snowstorm, Meggie and her grandmother take refuge at the last castle in Scotland that Meggie wants to see. Home of Magnus, the man she believed she loved and loved her, until he married another. Magnus is elated to welcome Meggie into his home, he has been widowed for months and Meggie is just what he needs. Along with Meggie, Magnus has two other guests staying due to the storm, his brother in law Charlie (whom he hopes to match with his sister) and a neighboring laird, Hugh (who is there at his clan’s urging to marry Magnus’ sister). When the three men spy Meggie, they make a wager as to who can claim her kiss first. This is a sweet story with two HEA’s and an appearance by the fearsome McLeod!!

A Scot for Christmas by Bronwen Evans – 4 stars – Dougray is a widower who has grieved for his late wife for 6 long years but is finally letting go of her memory to fulfill a promise to his father to help a neighboring clan. Dougray will marry Fiona, the laird’s daughter to help the clan financially, as he will not accept help in any other way. Emma has loved Dougray for years and was heartbroken when he married, resigned to a spinster’s life, she tags along with her brother to Dougray’s house party with a firm purpose – to taste the passion her spinster life will not allow. Dougray is shocked to see Emma, she has grown into quite the beauty in their years apart and he is unwillingly attracted to her. So when she asks him to be her lover, he knows he should refuse, but his desire outweighs his common sense. Terrified to love again, he was not prepared for Emma and after an incredible night together, he tells her that is the end. Not ready to let him go, Emma goes to confront him, but overhears him talking to his cousin about marrying Fiona. Heartbroken, she runs away before hearing him declare his desire to marry Emma instead. This novella was by far the steamiest of the five and boasts 3 HEA’s!

Leftover Mistletoe by Lavinia Kent – 4 ½ stars – Emma is having a bad day, her maid has run off with her luggage and left this pampered and sheltered Miss alone to fend for herself on the mail coach. Her only traveling companion is a scruffy looking drunk who is snoring. James Barran is not have a good day either, his horse was stolen forcing him to ride in the coach and slowing him down. Time is of the essence because he has a wedding to stop! But when the coach stops, Barran realizes something is amiss, the horses and the driver are long gone and he finds a note from his best friend Robert, telling him to take shelter in the cabin and he will rescue him, once he has wedded and bedded Barran’s sister. Emma twisted her ankle exiting the coach and is bewildered as to why this is happening. She doesn’t want to go with Barran to the cabin, but what choice does she have? When they reach the cabin and he learns who she is, Barran knows what must be done, and he tells Emma they will have to marry. The rest of the story is them getting to know each other and some amusing mishaps (thanks to Emma). By the end of the story, I really believed that they would be happy together.

Sweet Home Highlands by May McGoldrick – 5 stars – this was my favorite novella in the book, it is the story of Gregory Pennington and Freya Sutherland. Freya is guardian to her niece Ella, but since her grandfather’s death, Ella’s grandmother has been questioning whether Freya is capable of caring for her. She has demanded Freya attend her and prove her worthiness. To prove her stability, Freya has agreed to marry her father’s heir, thus proving Ella a home and a financially stable future. She is not happy about the marriage, but the cost it worth it if it means Ella will stay with her. Her discontent grows once she meets their escort, Penn. These two have an instant chemistry, they sizzle! But Penn is not sure how he feels and has plans, plans that do not include a wife and child. And Freya has made a promise and she must marry. With a little help from Ella, these two finally get a HEA.
I thought this was a really good collection and would be happy to recommend it.

*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an eARC that was provided to me by NetGalley and the publisher*

Mists and Moonrise by Various Authors

Mists and Moonrise: The Reluctant Brides CollectionMists and Moonrise: The Reluctant Brides Collection by Kathryn Le Veque, Eliza Knight, Madeline Martin, Laurel O’Donnell, Catherine Kean and Elizabeth Rose

Release Date: 06/20/17

Tracy’s rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was a nice collection of never before published novellas, they are all based on the legend of the ill-fated lovers Kael & Aelwen. While all the stories are rooted in the legend, they are not connected and are all easily read as stand alone titles.

Lady of the Moon, Kathryn Le Veque – 4.5 stars. This is the story of Samarra & Rhodes. When Rhodes refuses to marry the woman his father has chosen for him, his father hires Samarra to abduct him and deliver him to the cave in St. Agnes. His father believes that if Rhodes touches the wall with his betrothed, he will fall in love with her and willingly marry. This was a story of “insta-love”, but it is very well done and surprisingly believable. The story moves at a fast pace, has a lot of action, a little steam and an ironic twist.

Laird of Darkness, Eliza Knight – 5 stars. This is the story of Rosamond and Tierney. Rosamond’s father has abandoned her in the cave at St. Agnes to punish her for rumors at court (which are actually about her twin sister). Tierney has been held prisoner at the tower of London for the last ten years, he was branded a traitor when he saved the Bruce’s life in battle. He has finally been released and is returning to Scotland to reclaim his lands and title when he finds Rosamond in the cave. Tierney rescues Rosamond and on the journey back to Scotland, they share a kiss that leads to a misunderstanding. Once resolved, the decide to marry. They return to Scotland, marry and declare their love before Tierney must leave on a mission for the Bruce. This was one of my favorite novellas in the book, it is fast paced, well written, very steamy, had a believable love story and best of all – Eliza Knight says that this is just the beginning of their story, that she will be following this up with a full length novel later this year (Yay!!)

The Highlander’s Untamed Lady, Madeline Martin – 5 Stars. This is the story of Diana & Evander. Evander’s people are starving so he accepts a bride from England sight unseen as her father has offered him an outrageous dowry to marry her. Diana has been imprisoned by her father for refusing to marry, she manages to escape only to be chased by Evander. He catches up with her in the cave at St. Agnes and tells her that they are to marry and return to Scotland. She of course refuses, leaving Evander no choice but to drug her (and her two pet wolves). They travel back to Scotland and Diana begins to realize how wrong she was about Evander. They marry as soon as they reach his castle, but Diana is not ready to share all her secrets with Evander and tries to keep him at arms length, but the more she gets to know him, the more she admires him. Once Diana admits to herself, that she is in love with him, she takes the ultimate leap of faith and shares her darkest secret. Evander is all you could want in a hero – I loved him! It seems like these two are destined for a HEA, when an unexpected twist threatens to tear them apart. This was my favorite novella – it is well written, emotional, steamy and has a really sweet ending.

Bravest of them All, Laurel O’Donnell – 3.5 Stars. This is the story of Luke and Nessa. Luke has known Nessa for most of her life, they grew up together and Luke is betrothed to Nessa’s older (spoiled/vain) sister Melwyn. Luke has been in France with the girls father for years fighting in the war, their father was struck down and Luke is returning with him to England. They arrive to find that Nessa has been abducted – the villain mistook her for her sister. Luke immediately sets out to rescue her, but his party is betrayed and ambushed. He manages to escape with Nessa, but their story is far from over. Luke is injured when the traitor catches up to them and they must run for their lives. The more time they spend together, the more they realize that they love each other. Once they reach her father’s castle, Nessa has decided that she cannot betray her sister and tells her father that she does not love Luke. This leads to a misunderstanding that almost costs them the love of a lifetime. While I found the story entertaining and well rounded, it did wrap up a bit too quickly and ended abruptly. It was well written and had a lot of action, but there was no steam at all and the heroine comes across as a martyr.

That Knight by the Sea, Catherine Kean – 3.5 stars. This is the story of Garret and Adaline (Addy). Six years ago Garret and Addy were in love, but Garret was sent away. Six years later, Addy believes Garret is dead and is on the verge of being married to a man she detests. Garret is a mercenary and has survived the last 6 years by his sword, when the man who helped him gain his knighthood requests that he abduct Addy, he immediately refuses, the lord then blackmails Garret into compliance. Garret still loves Addy, but he does not believe he is worthy of her because of his part. When he abducts her, she does not recognize him, but it does not take her long to figure out who he is. She begs him to release her, but he refuses – until he learns that he has been double crossed. He tries to get Addy away, but she escapes him and all hell breaks loose. It doesn’t look good for our lovers, but help comes from an unexpected source. This novella had a lot of potential, but there were a lot of typos and some inconsistencies that dimished the story for me.

Pirate in the Mist Elizabeth Rose – 2.5 stars. This is the story of Brody and Gwen. Brody is the captain of a pirate ship, his crew has mutinied and forced him overboard. He swims to a deserted island and spends a week building a raft. He is picked up by a passing fishing boat, only to go overboard again while rescuing the captain’s daughter, Gwen. They find the raft (?) and make it to shore, where they enter the cave in St. Agnes. They touch the wall and immediately fall in love – at least Gwen does. They leave the cave and head to an inn, where miraculously Brody’s long lost friend is the owner. Gwen learns some awful truths about her family and Brody wants to protect her. He decides that he is also falling in love with her and wants them to marry. This story was just too short to do it justice – it seemed rushed and totally unbelievable. If it was longer and the author had time to build up the story and develop a stronger relationship between Gwen and Brody, I think it could have been at 4 star read.

All in all, this was an enjoyable read and for the price, you can’t go wrong – I happily recommend this book

*I am voluntarily leaving a review for an ARC provided to by the author*

Say Yes To The Scot: A Highland Wedding Box Set

Say Yes to the Scot: A Highland Wedding Box SetSay Yes to the Scot: A Highland Wedding Box Set by May McGoldrick

Barbara’s rating: 4 of 5 stars

Publication Date: June 20, 2017

Four of my favorite authors provided works for this anthology – so, it is only natural that I LOVE it.

HOW A LASS WED A HIGHLANDER by Lecia Cornwall
This tale is loosely (very loosely) based on the Princess and the Pea fairytale. Laird Alex Munro of Culmore has to find a wife in five weeks or break a generations long pact. However, the ‘Pea’ is missing and they must have the ‘Pea’ which is the official engagement ring. Not only is the Pea missing, but the neighboring Laird has been attacking and burning the crofters on Munroe lands. After one such raid, Alex finds Cait MacLeod in the woods near the burned out cottage. Alex doesn’t believe Cait’s story and believes she is part of the raiding parties. Cait quickly wins the love of his Clan and even the potential brides who are visiting the keep – but – Alex is still wary of her. They have a long road to find their HEA, but it is a good read to get them there.

A MATCH MADE IN HEATHER by Anna Harrington
This is a story of second chances. Ten long years ago Arabel and Garrick were going to elope. Then, on the night of the elopement, Arabel tells Garrick that she cannot go because of a family situation that has just developed. Garrick is heartbroken and just doesn’t understand why she always chooses her family over him. Then, when she thinks he has left her, she can’t forgive him. There are huge misunderstandings in this story and you wonder how they can get past them. Given what happened to him, I would have thought Garrick would be the one unable to forgive, but it was Arabel who kept clinging to her hurt and anger. Frankly, she got on my last nerve, but finally came around so they got their HEA.

A MIDSUMMER WEDDING by May McGoldrick
I think this was my favorite story in the anthology. I LOVED the characters. They were well developed and fully formed, but I’ve never seen anything by McGoldrick that wasn’t absolutely excellently done! Be prepared – there are some really giggle-worthy moments in this book! Elizabeth and Alex were betrothed as children and raised far apart, so they never met. Their lives were very different – she thought him a barbaric Highlander and he thought her a pampered, simpering, spoiled little princess. Both of them want out of the engagement, but the other doesn’t know that. So, when Elizabeth tries to trick Alex into thinking she was in love with someone else so he’d break the engagement, things go really awry. They end up in the middle of a rain-swollen river fighting for their lives. It is funny how those near-death experiences bring you to being honest – and they were finally honest with each other and agreed to cancel the engagement. So – how do they get their HEA – well – you’ll just have to read the anthology to find out.

THE SCOT SAYS I DO by Sabrina York
This was my second favorite of the stories in this anthology. I loved Catherine’s friends, especially Elizabeth and hope to see their stories in the future. Duncan and Catherine were in love, but it was just not meant to be. She was the Lairds daughter and he was the stable hand – she was twelve and he was not. You have to wonder if there is any way for them to ever have a HEA. Years later, Catherine returns home from a ball to find that her brother has lost their entire estate – homes, land, money – all of it – and now that former stable hand owns it all. He also wants to marry her. Why in the world would he want to marry her now when he walked off and left her so long ago without even saying goodbye. I hope you’ll read this delightful, funny and entertaining story to see how they finally get their HEA. There are twists and turns and even an evil dude – everything you could possibly want.

“I requested and received this book at no cost to me and volunteered to read it; my review is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.”

View all my reviews

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