Posted in Clean Wholesome Romance, Historical Fiction, Inspirational, Spotlight

The Inns of Devonshire (2021): Spotlight Post

About the Book

Book: The Inns of Devonshire: Timeless Regency Collection (Book 18)

Authors: Sally Britton, Annette Lyon, & Deborah M. Hathaway

Genre: Regency Romance, Historical Romance, Inspirational Fiction

Publisher: Mirror Press

Release Date: October 5, 2021

The Seventh Star Inn, by Sally Britton — After years of looking after one another, Susan Baxter and her mother view their neighbors in Totnes as family. When a new landlord inherits the leases on their homes and businesses alike, Susan dreads knowing her world could change at the whim of a stranger. But when she meets Collin Stonecroft and his inquisitive daughter, her feelings shift quickly from cautionary to hopeful. Collin has lived in the confines of London boarding houses all his life, and he’s determined to give his daughter more. They check into the Seventh Star Inn with plans to return to London as soon as possible, but both find Miss Baxter and her local history lessons far too enchanting to leave behind. When Susan learns of Collin’s proposed changes to her beloved neighborhood, will she be able to help him see that some things are perfect the way they are?

The Truth about Mr. Blackmore, by Annette Lyon — Leigh’s life at the Old Grey Inn is drudgery broken by flights of fancy thanks in part to novels by Simon Blackmore. When Mattias McGrady comes to the inn for a fortnight, Leigh captures his attention. A relationship develops, and she dreads the end of his stay, which will mean a return to an unhappy life. An urgent letter to Mattias leads to him inviting Leigh to an event that stands to change both of their lives forever. If all goes well, Leigh will have a life of her choosing after all. But half-truths and lies have a way of complicating matters. When their plans go awry, Leigh loses her reputation and Mattias almost surely loses his career. Can either of them find happiness?

The Coachman’s Choice, by Deborah M. Hathaway — Ever-reliable Mary Thorne has helped her widowed mother run The Golden Mermaid Inn for years. She spends her days greeting guests, ensuring the inn runs smoothly—and dodging flirtatious remarks from passing coachmen. But she’s far too busy to pay any attention to such men, even the enticingly attractive Mr. Northcott. Known far and wide for his horsemanship, punctuality, and dallying reputation, Robert Northcott relishes his life as a coachman, especially his freedom to flirt with numerous women from inn to inn, all without the messy details of commitment. There’s just one woman who’s immune to his charms: the lovely, single landlady of The Golden Mermaid. Robert is determined to win Mary over, just as heartily as she is determined to keep her distance from him. But his carefree life is threatened when his pursual of Mary becomes more than just a game.

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About the Series

Since 2015, Mirror Press has been publishing the Timeless Regency Collection, a curated anthology of novellas and short stories set in early 19th century England. Featuring bestselling authors from the historical romance genre, the series has hit the USA TODAY bestselling list and charted at #1 at Amazon.com. Learn more about the series and other anthologies published by Mirror Press at their website.

About the Authors

Sally Britton is a wife, mother, and author who loves the world of romance, received her BA in English from Brigham Young University, and reads voraciously. She started her writing journey at the tender age of fourteen on an electric typewriter, and she’s never looked back.

Sally primarily lives in Oklahoma with her husband, four children, and Izzie the Aussie Shepherd. She loves researching, hiking, and eating too much chocolate.

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Annette Lyon is a USA Today Bestselling author. She’s won a Whitney Award (2010) and is an eight-time recipient of Utah’s Best of State medal for fiction and short stories. She’s the author of more than a dozen novels, even more novellas, a cookbook, a grammar guide, and some 120+ articles. She’s worked as a professional editor for publishers and bestselling authors and graduated cum laude from BYU with a degree in English.

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Deborah M. Hathaway graduated from Utah State University with a BA in Creative Writing. As a young girl, she devoured Jane Austen’s novels while watching and re-watching every adaptation she could. She finds inspiration for her novels during her travels with her English husband to the United Kingdom, where she draws on the beauty of the country in such places as Ireland, Yorkshire, and her beloved Cornwall. Be sure to sign up for Deborah’s Newsletter to stay updated on new releases, free and discounted Clean Romance novels, and more!

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS | BOOKBUB


Join the virtual book tour of THE INNS OF DEVONSHIRE, a collection of novellas by bestselling authors Sally Britton, Annette Lyon, & Deborah M. Hathaway, October 4-17, 2021. Thirty-five popular on-line influencers specializing in Regency romance, historical romance, and inspirational fiction will join in the celebration of the release of the 18th book in the bestselling Timeless Regency Collection with a spotlights, exclusive excerpts, and reviews of this new anthology set in Regency England.

BLOG STOPS

Oct 04 Fire and Ice (Review)

Oct 04 Austenprose (Excerpt)

Oct 04 Timeless Novels (Review)

Oct 05 Lu Reviews Books (Review)

Oct 05 Beauty in the Binding (Spotlight)

Oct 05 For Where Your Treasure Is (Excerpt)

Oct 06 Probably at the Library (Review)

Oct 06 Our Book Confessions (Review)

Oct 06 Bookworm Lisa (Review)

Oct 07 Literary Time Out (Review)

Oct 07 Reading with Emily (Review)

Oct 08 Bringing Up Books (Review)

Oct 08 Gwendalyn’s Books (Review)

Oct 09 Becky on Books (Review)

Oct 09 Books and Socks Rock (Review)

Oct 10 The Christian Fiction Girl (Spotlight)

Oct 10 Heidi Reads (Review)

Oct 11 My Jane Austen Book Club (Excerpt)

Oct 11 Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Review)

Oct 11 Wishful Endings (Review)

Oct 12 So Little Time… (Excerpt)

Oct 12 The Caffeinated Bibliophile (Spotlight)

Oct 12 Laura’s Reviews (Review)

Oct 13 Austenesque Reviews (Review)

Oct 13 Storeybook Reviews (Excerpt)

Oct 13 Rosanne E. Lortz (Review)

Oct 14 From Pemberley to Milton (Spotlight)

Oct 14 Chicks, Rogues and Scandals (Excerpt)

Oct 14 Christian Chick’s Thoughts (Review)

Oct 15 A Darn Good Read (Review)

Oct 15 Relz Reviewz (Spotlight)

Oct 15 Reading is My Superpower (Review)

Oct 15 Book Confessions of an Ex-Ballerina (Review)

Oct 16 My Bookish Bliss (Review)

Oct 17 The Book Diva Reads (Spotlight)

Posted in First-Line Fridays, Weekly Themed Posts

First-Line Friday #197

Trust Me

by Kelly Irvin

April 22, 2010, San Antonio Art Co-Op, Southtown, San Antonio

The cloying stench of pot told the same old story.


NOW IT’S YOUR TURN!

GRAB THE BOOK YOU ARE CURRENTLY READING, OPEN TO CHAPTER ONE, AND POST A SENTENCE OR TWO IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.

THEN HEAD ON OVER TO READING IS MY SUPERPOWER TO SEE ALL OF THE FLF PAGES THIS WEEK (JUST CLICK ON THE RIMSP BUTTON BELOW).

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Posted in Thursday Encouragement, Weekly Themed Posts

His Encouragement #158

Welcome to His Encouragement Thursday! I don’t know about you, but Thursdays are my struggle day of the week. By Thursday, I have already been working hard at school and at home, and I just wish it would hurry up and be Friday already. LOL! I definitely need a little extra Jesus time on Thursdays.


He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 91:1 (ESV)
Psalm 91:1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the  shadow of the Almighty. | English Standard Version 2016 (ESV) | Download  The Bible App Now

This week, it is on my heart to remind you that no matter how scary it gets here on earth God is ALWAYS our place of safety and refuge.

In Proverbs 18:10 we are told that “the NAME of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous runs to HIM and are safe.” This is why when you call out Yeshua’s name when you are being spiritually attacked the attacks stop. Because there is power in the name of our Lord and Savior. God’s very NAME is that tower, that refuge, we must run to!

The Bible is replete with passages that illustrate God as our source of refuge and protection from every danger known to man. In my humble opinion, Psalm 91 is the best, most encouraging passage in all the Bible when it comes to God protecting His kids. Psalm 91 is known as the “Warrior Psalm,” and I personally believe all professing God-followers should recite it, think on it, and pray it at least once every day. Especially now that every day feels so chaotic and insane and evil.

Do you live in the shelter of God? Are you able to hide in His shadow? Are you daily reading the Word of God and praying/meditating on that Word? If your answer to any of these questions is “NO” then I highly recommend you stop what you are doing right now and go grab your Bible. Right now is the time to put on the full armor of God. If you are not spending quality time with Jesus on the daily, your armor is going to be pretty weak. The war we’re entering is fierce. We cannot afford to enter into it with weak armor.


NOW, IT’S YOUR TURN!

WHAT BIBLICAL VERSE IS ENCOURAGING YOU TODAY?

Posted in Christian Fiction, Christian Romance, Contemporary Christian Fiction, Inspirational

Riverbend Gap (2021)

About the Book

Book: Riverbend Gap

Author: Denise Hunter

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: October 19, 2021

She came in search of the family she’d always wanted—and found the kind of love she’d never dared to imagine.

When Katelyn Loveland’s car veered off a winding Appalachian Mountain road, she thought she was done for. That is until Cooper Robinson, local sheriff’s deputy, came to her rescue. And though Katie narrowly escaped her brush with death, she still fell. Hard.

She wasn’t the only one. But soon Cooper learns that the woman he’s more attracted to than any he’s ever met is his brother’s new girlfriend—and therefore unquestionably off limits. Yet, despite his best efforts, Cooper and Katie can’t seem to avoid running into each other. Or ignore the undeniable chemistry between them.

As they grow closer, Katie shares the secrets of her past and the real reason she moved to their small North Carolina town. She also wins over Cooper’s welcoming and bighearted family. But they don’t know that her feelings for Cooper keep growing—all while she’s dating his brother. Soon the stakes of their emotional connection become higher than either of them could have imagined. Katie stands to lose the first family she’s ever had, and a scandal could doom Cooper’s campaign for sheriff’s office. Suddenly they find themselves on the edge of another precipice—and they’re forced to make a decision that could change their lives forever.

Click HERE to purchase your copy!

My Thoughts

Denise Hunter writes the BEST stories. Riverbend Gap is FANTASTIC. I loved every second with this story and I am so sad my time with these characters is over. This story is so engaging I read it well past my bedtime. It is an unputdownable book! If you know me, you know I’m not a fan of the love-triangle trope. Riverbend Gap is a love-triangle story, BUT it works so well. It’s a testament to Hunter’s masterful storytelling skills. In fact, I don’t think this story would work as well if it didn’t have the love triangle. The love-triangle in this story lends to the perfect blend of angst and tension between the protagonists, Katie and Cooper. I love how respectful Katie and Cooper work to be towards the third character in their triangle. They do everything in their power to refrain from feeling the chemistry and love towards one another in order to not hurt the feelings of someone else. This restraint, this romantic tension, is what kept me turning pages well into the night. I needed to know how Katie and Cooper would get to their happily ever after.

I loved two things about this story. Well, I loved more than two things, but for the sake of this review, I will limit myself to only two. First, I love that this story revolves around unique family blends. There is Katie who was part of a loving and nurturing foster family. Then there is Cooper who grew up in a step-family situation. What I LOVE about this is that both childhoods illustrate healthy love and respect and nurturing relationships. The stereotype that blended families and foster families are somehow less than or filled with violence has always bugged me. I come from a blended family and my step-dad was the BEST father a girl could have ever wanted. So I do take it personally when step-families are shown as being less than or ugly. In Riverbend Gap, Hunter does an excellent job of illustrating just how blessed a child can be in families that look different or are structured uniquely than what is typical.

The second aspect to this story that I loved is the discussion on blessing. There is a moment in this story where Cooper is having a man-to-man with his stepfather and Cooper tells his stepfather that he knows God blessed him in the family department. Yeah, Cooper would have loved it if his biological father never ran out on him, his brother, and his mother, BUT he recognizes that God used that bad and turned it into good because it brought Cooper’s stepfather and sister into his life. God turned a broken situation into one that could become something that produced a beautiful family. If this isn’t a blessing, I don’t know what it. Not only does this remind me of my own blessings where God brought my stepfather, stepsister, and stepbrother into my life, but it also reminded me of Genesis 50:20 — “You meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” There are so many “bad” moments in life that God uses to turn to good, to abundant blessings. The issue is one of perspective. Are we looking back and recognizing all of God’s blessings in our lives? Or are we choosing to only see the bad? What a great set of questions for us all to consider today.

Riverbend Gap is another home run by Denise Hunter. I loved this book so much and HIGHLY recommend it. Make sure to put this book on your To-Be-Read list and grab a copy as soon as it releases on the 19th. You will not want to miss this story!

I received a review copy of this novel in eBook form from the publisher, Thomas Nelson, via NetGalley. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Posted in Must-Get Monday, Weekly Themed Posts

Must-Get Monday #58

Riverbend Gap

by Denise Hunter

Releases October 19, 2021

Amazon 🧺 Goodreads

I love Denise Hunter’s novels, so when I see that a new one is releasing soon I do all I can to clear my reading schedule so I have time to savor her stories. They are always SO good and I know Riverbend Gap will be unputdownable!

About the Book

She came in search of the family she’d always wanted—and found the kind of love she’d never dared to imagine.

When Katelyn Loveland’s car veered off a winding Appalachian Mountain road, she thought she was done for. That is until Cooper Robinson, local sheriff’s deputy, came to her rescue. And though Katie narrowly escaped her brush with death, she still fell. Hard.

She wasn’t the only one. But soon Cooper learns that the woman he’s more attracted to than any he’s ever met is his brother’s new girlfriend—and therefore unquestionably off limits. Yet, despite his best efforts, Cooper and Katie can’t seem to avoid running into each other. Or ignore the undeniable chemistry between them.

As they grow closer, Katie shares the secrets of her past and the real reason she moved to their small North Carolina town. She also wins over Cooper’s welcoming and bighearted family. But they don’t know that her feelings for Cooper keep growing—all while she’s dating his brother. Soon the stakes of their emotional connection become higher than either of them could have imagined. Katie stands to lose the first family she’s ever had, and a scandal could doom Cooper’s campaign for sheriff’s office. Suddenly they find themselves on the edge of another precipice—and they’re forced to make a decision that could change their lives forever.


Join the Fun!

What’s a book that you can’t wait to get your hands on?

Posted in Historical Fiction, Suspense

The Girl in the Painting (2021)

About the Book

BookThe Girl in the Painting

Author: Tea Cooper

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Release Date: March 9, 2021

Genre: Historical Fiction

A young prodigy in need of family. A painting that shatters a woman’s peace. And a decades-old mystery demanding to be solved.

Australia, 1906

Orphan Jane Piper is nine years old when philanthropist siblings Michael and Elizabeth Quinn take her into their home to further her schooling. The Quinns are no strangers to hardship. Having arrived in Australia as penniless immigrants, they now care for others as lost as they once were.

Despite Jane’s mysterious past, her remarkable aptitude for mathematics takes her far over the next seven years, and her relationship with Elizabeth and Michael flourishes as she plays an increasingly prominent part in their business.

But when Elizabeth reacts in terror to an exhibition at the local gallery, Jane realizes no one knows Elizabeth after all—not even Elizabeth herself. As the past and present converge and Elizabeth’s grasp on reality loosens, Jane sets out to unravel her story before it’s too late.

From the gritty reality of the Australian goldfields to the grand institutions of Sydney, this compelling novel presents a mystery that spans continents and decades as both women finally discover a place to call home.

Click HERE to purchase your copy!

My Thoughts

The Girl in the Painting by Tea Cooper is a phenomenal read. I was hooked from the first page and stayed up late several nights to keep reading. My favorite thing about this novel is that it is so unique and intriguing. This is actually my favorite thing about Tea Cooper’s novels — they are all so interesting and so different from anything else in literature today. Cooper takes seemingly insignificant things and turns them into the most captivating of stories. In this book, the reader is treated to a little romance, a ton of mystery, and a great illustration of what it means to be a family.

One of the things I suffered when I gave birth to my daughter was a brain bleed. The subdural hematoma occurred on the side of my brain that deals with language and memory. The first thing I had to overcome was a 64-day long migraine. Yes, it took 64 days for the migraine to dissipate. It was awful. Then, I had to relearn words. This was one of the most frustrating aspects to my recovery because I felt I knew the words — I could feel them hovering on the edge of knowing — but I couldn’t see or say them. My brain was a hazy fog. I also had to come to terms with all the memories I had lost. Random smells or pictures or sounds would make me feel like I should remember something, but for the life of me I could not figure out what it was. I would get so sad and depressed because I felt like my life had been stolen from me and I didn’t know how to get back on track. The brain injury also caused mood swings — one minute I would be totally normal, then I would be angry, then I would cry like a baby. All of this emotional upheaval would come suddenly and out of nowhere. I felt like I was taken hostage by a brain that needed healing and I had NO control or say over the healing process.

So why am I telling you all this? Because one of the characters in The Girl in the Painting suffers from repressed memories. When she was four, she went through something traumatic but her brain has been hiding the event from her for fifty years. I felt drawn to Elizabeth’s character because I can fully relate to her moments of frustration and mood swings caused by her lack of memory. To know something is wrong with you, but to not know what is excruciating and embarrassing. Cooper did a great job crafting Elizabeth’s character. As someone who personally dealt with memory issues, I can tell you this one facet of the story is spot on. I also have to admit to appreciating the sense of catharsis that came from reading this book. Some of the reactions and emotions that Elizabeth experiences, and then the way she acts after her memory-loss moments when she’s embarrassed by her sudden and seemingly out-of-character outbursts, made me feel so not alone. I wasn’t crazy when I was going through my episodes. I just had a hurt brain that needed to heal just like the protagonist of this story has.

I know my review is super personal and totally random, but I think it still reflects what a unique story The Girl in the Painting is. This book has it all — a well-written and highly engaging plot, mystery that kept me turning pages well into the night, and amazing attention to historical detail, so much so I felt like I was transported back in time to early 20th century Australia. This book is stellar and is not one you will want to miss.

I received a copy of this novel in eBook form from Thomas Nelson Publishers via NetGalley in order to review. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Posted in First-Line Fridays, Weekly Themed Posts

First-Line Friday #196

The Girl in the Painting

by Tea Cooper

Maitland Town, Australia, 1906

The bell rang late. Not until after 7:18. This didn’t bode well.


NOW IT’S YOUR TURN!

GRAB THE BOOK YOU ARE CURRENTLY READING, OPEN TO CHAPTER ONE, AND POST A SENTENCE OR TWO IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.

THEN HEAD ON OVER TO HOARDING BOOKS TO SEE ALL OF THE FLF PAGES THIS WEEK (JUST CLICK ON THE FLF BUTTON BELOW).

First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books
Posted in Clean Wholesome Romance, Contemporary Clean Read, RomCom

Just His Secretary (2021)

About the Book

Book: Just His Secretary

Series: Southern Roots Sweet Rom-Com #1

Author: Donna Jeffries

Genre: Contemporary Rom-Com

Release Date: April 1, 2021

She’s just his secretary…until he needs someone on his arm to convince his mother that he can take over the family business. Then Callie becomes Dawson’s girlfriend—but just in his text messages…but maybe she’ll start to worm her way into his shriveled heart too.

Callie:
Dawson Houser makes sure everyone who comes into the office knows I’m “just his secretary.” Heck, I’ve even said it to suppliers and CEOs when they smile knowingly at the two of us during business meetings. He scowls and grumps around the office afterward, as if the two of us dating is the most ridiculous thing on the planet.

Dawson can handle them. I can handle them—and him too, once they leave. And he’s no picnic, let me tell you.

Who can’t we handle?

His mother.

When Lila Houser comes to town with her faux furs and fashion sunglasses, she only has one question for her spoiled rotten son: When are you going to get married, Dawson, darling?

I expect him to laugh and tell her he’s never getting married. I mean, I’ve heard those exact words come out of his mouth. Instead, he pulls me to his side and says, “Maybe sooner than you think, Mother.”

Oh, that Lila Houser can make a woman feel two inches tall with a simple up-down look. I think I’m a pretty good catch…no matter what my last three boyfriends say.

When Lila says, “I thought Callie was just your secretary,” I suddenly want to prove her dead wrong…

Get ready to laugh out loud in this hilarious, sweet workplace romantic comedy! The romance is clean, the jokes witty, and the office grump swoon-worthy.

Click HERE to purchase your copy!

My Thoughts

This year, it has been my goal to read as many new-to-me authors as I can get my hands on. In my search for new authors I have discovered that I have a real love for Contemporary Rom-Coms. Just His Secretary by Donna Jeffries fits all my current reading parameters: a new-to-me author and a seriously sweet Contemporary Romance that had me chuckling often. I love when I find a good, new author to follow, and I plan to get all of Jeffries’s novels now. What did I like so much about Just His Secretary? Well, do you have an hour?! No, I’m just kidding. But I really did love a lot about this book. First, there is the engaging storyline. I was so hooked I read this book clear through the night. I just did not want to put it down. Then, there’s the characters, Dawson and Callie. I really loved them as individuals, but together they make a really great team. I feel their relationship is quite realistic, and their chemistry is on fire! I appreciate how Dawson transforms into a new man after he lets Callie in a bit. At first, Dawson is all rough edges, but after he allows Callie to see that he has a vulnerable side, he changes and grows into a really spectacular man. I like the message that we can help our significant others’ become better people…perhaps the people they are meant to be! I also loved that this story made me chuckle. I really need more laughter in my day.

Just His Secretary is a true gem. I’m really glad I found this sweet story, and I am super glad I found a new author to follow. If you are in the mood for a well-written, highly engaging Contemporary Rom-Com, then I highly recommend you read Just His Secretary by Donna Jeffries ASAP.

I purchased a copy of this novel in eBook form from Amazon.com on April 6, 2021, in order to review. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Posted in Christian Fiction, Christian Romance, Historical Christian Fiction, Inspirational

Crossed Lines (2021)

About the Book

Book: Crossed Lines

Author: Jennifer Delamere

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

Release Date: August 31, 2021

Genre: Historical Romance

Emma Sutton knows she should be satisfied with her position at London’s Central Telegraph Office. But ever since she was orphaned young, she’s longed for a family of her own. Things look up when a handsome engineer is thrown into her orbit and he sends Emma the love note of her dreams.

Mitchell Harris’s sharp wit and facility with a pen have enabled him to thrive despite serious obstacles. That the woman of his dreams works just one floor above his should make life perfect. But a childhood accident has left Mitchell convinced he’ll never draw a woman like Emma Sutton’s attention. When his best friend–who once saved his life–falls in love with Emma, too, and asks for help writing her love letters, Mitchell is torn between desire and loyalty.

Believing the writer of the letters is the answer to her prayers, but confused over her growing attraction to Mitchell, Emma’s heart must decide where to call home.

Click HERE to purchase your copy!

My Thoughts

Writing this review is a bit of a struggle for me. I am not a fan of love-triangle tropes and I really don’t like Cyrano de Bergerac. Because of this, Crossed Lines by Jennifer Delamere took me two weeks to read. I want to be crystal clear — Crossed Lines is a very well-written and engaging story. The plot is well paced and the action throughout is constant. In no way is this story boring. I found the characters well crafted, unique, and endearing. Mitchell’s feelings in regards to his deformity are extremely relatable and very realistic. Emma’s desire to be loved and her want for a permanent, loving, stable home is the stuff of most every girl’s dreams. And, Christopher’s infatuation with the pretty girl is quite typical of early romantic feelings. The various conflicts each character deals with in this story are all relatable and realistic. Overall, Crossed Lines is a great Historical Romance that I wholeheartedly recommend. To me, Crossed Lines is a must-read sequel in what is a very excellent series.

My issue with the love-triangle trope is the lack of depth to the lovers’ romance. Because authors have to give time to each pairing (boy #1 + girl and boy #2 + girl), and typically their books are roughly 300 pages in length, there is not enough “time” for real feelings to develop in a believable manner. Generally, it’s just lusty chemistry rather than deep, true love. There are some ways around this. For example, one of the couplings, say boy#1 + girl, have been good friends for most of their lives. Establishing a preexisting relationship in the love triangle helps make romantic feelings a little more believable. In Crossed Lines, Emma has not known either Mitchell or Christopher for any real length of time. For me, the brief time of knowing two very unique men ruins believability when it comes to a love match. It’s more a lust match or a relationship-of-convenience match. Yes, there is such a thing as love at first sight, but that doesn’t really work when there are two men to get to know in a 300-page book. This is just my opinion. I know a lot of people love the love-triangle trope.

My issue with Cyrano de Bergerac has always been with the shallowness of the characters and the lying they’re OK with doing. When I was six years old, my parents took me and my brothers to the drive in. I loved going to the drive in. That particular night was a two-for one special. The first movie was some kiddie movie that I can’t remember, but the second movie was Roxanne starring Steve Martin and Daryl Hannah. I was supposed to be sleeping during the second movie cause that was the rule. Kids get the first movie, then we go to sleep in the car for the second. Well, I didn’t sleep. I watched the “adult” movie instead. I can remember being very disturbed by the film. The girl only liked the pretty boy because he was handsome. I was totally offended that she couldn’t see how dumb the pretty boy was. I also hated how she made the star of the movie, the real love interest, a second choice. I was offended for this man. I was disappointed that he was OK with being the girl’s seconds. And, I really hated the lying. Nothing good comes from lying no matter how you spin it, especially when it’s lying during the brand-new, baby stages of a relationship. I just did not like the themes of the story. When I was older I had to read Cyrano de Bergerac for a class. I had no idea Roxanne was based on this play. I started to read the play and images of Roxanne came rushing to my brain. I tried really hard to like the play, but I just couldn’t. I felt the same as I did when I was six. In Crossed Lines, I struggled the same as I did with Roxanne and Cyrano de Bergerac. I will say that Delamere does a great job addressing the lying issue, and she even acknowledges the 2nd-choice problem. In Crossed Lines, the best man for Emma wins her hand and it doesn’t feel like she is resigning herself to a second-best option. I appreciate that Delamere rectified these issues in her story.

Jennifer Delamere did an excellent job taking the Cyrano de Bergerac storyline and making it her own. Crossed Lines is a good book; one I do highly recommend. If you are a fan of well-written, engaging Historical Romances, if you appreciate the love-triangle trope, or if you love stories with happy endings then Crossed Lines is the book for you!

I received a copy of this novel in eBook form from Bethany House Publishers via NetGalley in order to review. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.