A HIGHLANDER WALKS INTO A BAR by Laura Trentham – Blog Tour: Review and Giveaway

A Highlander cover photo

A HIGHLANDER WALKS INTO A BAR

by

Laura Trentham

 

SYNOPSIS

Copy of A Highlander Walks Into a Bar Cover Image

The timeless romance, soaring passion—and gorgeous men—of Scotland comes to modern-day America. And the rules of love will never be the same…

Isabel Buchanan is fiery, funny, and never at a loss for words. But she is struck speechless when her mother returns from a trip to Scotland with a six-foot-tall, very handsome souvenir. Izzy’s mother is so infatuated by the fellow that Izzy has to plan their annual Highland Games all by herself. Well, not completely by herself. The Highlander’s strapping young nephew has come looking for his uncle…

Alasdair Blackmoor has never seen a place as friendly as this small Georgia town—or a girl as brilliant and beguiling as Izzy. Instead of saving his uncle, who seems to be having a lovely time, Alasdair decides he’d rather help Izzy with the Highland Games. Show her how to dance like a Highlander. Drink like a Highlander. And maybe, just maybe, fall in love with a Highlander. But when the games are over, where do they go from here?

Buy-book link: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250315021

 

ABOUT LAURA

Trentham Author PhotoLaura Trentham is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance, including Then He Kissed Me and The Military Wife. She is a member of RWA, and has been a finalist multiple times in the Golden Heart competition. A chemical engineer by training and a lover of books by nature, she lives in South Carolina.

 

Follow Laura here:

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REVIEW

A Highlander Walks Into A Bar is a fun, light double romance I thoroughly enjoyed for its themes of family, friendship, and community.

The main characters Isabel and Alasdair are well-suited to each other with similar caring for their respective parents and uncertainties about their careers despite their different backgrounds. I like the slow build-up of their romance through proximity and their quick acknowledgment of their mutual attraction. There was no push-and-pull that usually ticks me off.

I also appreciate that the deceptions (Gareth’s hiding of his title for self-protection and Alasdair’s mistake on getting his loathsome co-worker and boss interested in the Buchanan’s property) didn’t play out too long and after a proper grovel, especially on Alasdair’s part, Izzy and her mother Rose forgave their men.

I adore the idea of a small town where people work together to embrace and celebrate their cultural heritage. As an immigrant, I relate to this incredibly well. Highland, Georgia sounds like a fun place to visit during the games as described in this book.

Well-balanced story telling, likable secondary characters (especially Anna and Holt) who were interesting enough without overpowering the leads, smooth pacing, and  an intriguing tease for the next book are the reasons I’m giving this book four stars.

4 out of 5 stars

 

GIVEAWAY

One US reader will receive a paperback copy of A Highlander Walks Into A Bar from St. Martin’s Press. To enter, like the post and leave a comment below. I will draw a winner on Tuesday, August 6, at 12 noon Central time.

 

 

 

 

JACKSON by Emily March – Blog Tour: Review

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Jackson

by

EMILY MARCH

SYNOPSIS

Copy of Jackson cover

Sometimes it takes a new beginning

Caroline Carruthers thinks she buried her dreams along with the love of her life … until a stranger named Celeste dares her to chase a dream all on her own. Moving to Redemption, Texas, is chapter one in Caroline’s new life story. Opening a bookstore is the next. Finding love is the last thing on her mind as she settles into this new place called home. But when she meets a handsome, soulful man who’s also starting over, all bets are off.

to reach a happily-ever-after

Jackson McBride came to Redemption looking only to find himself, not someone to love. Ever since his marriage ended, he’s been bitter. Sure, he used to believe in love—he even has the old song lyrics to prove it—but the Jackson of today is all business. That is, until a beautiful young widow who’s moved to town inspires a change of heart. Could it be that the myth of Redemption’s healing magic is true … and Jackson and Caroline can find a second chance at a happy ending after all?

Buy-Book Link:
Jackson by Emily March

 

ABOUT EMILY

Copy of Emily March

 

Emily March is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the heartwarming Eternity Springs series. A graduate of Texas A&M University, Emily is an avid fan of Aggie sports and her recipe for jalapeño relish has made her a tailgating legend.

 

REVIEW

Whenever I come across a romance novel set in Texas, especially in the areas I’m familiar with, I jump at the chance to review it. Emily March’s Redemption seems to me inspired by Fredericksburg from the description of the German establishments, the distance to Austin, and the beautiful land around it. For me, the setting played a big part in making me enjoy this book as much as the development of the relationship between Jackson and Caroline.

I very much liked the flow of this story. From their first meeting, which was somehow orchestrated by Celeste, to a year later when their second chance at love started to bloom. There wasn’t much back story to trudge through as the reader is a witness to the events as they unfold.

I also appreciate the characterization of Jackson and Caroline. There’s a realism to their thoughts, actions, and words that makes one relate to them somehow. Jackson’s despondency at the prolonged separation with his daughter and Caroline’s grief over her husband’s illness and subsequent death rang true for me, as well as their friendship turning into love as they got to know each other better. It took them a while, but when they fell, they only had the utmost support of one another.

I absolutely love that both of them build something from scratch in their new hometown. Caroline’s bookstore The Next Chapter is the realization of my dream, I completely felt her emotions when she opened it.

There’s a lot of named characters. It got unwieldy at times, particularly when the horde from Eternity Springs came for the opening of the B&B Jackson and his cousins own. I also resented the scenes in the book that happened outside of Redemption. Apart from those things, I really enjoyed Jackson and I’m looking forward to reading the next installment in the series.

4 out of 5 stars

 

IT’S GETTING SCOT IN HERE by Suzanne Enoch – Release Day: Review and Giveaway

IT’S GETTING SCOT IN HERE

The Wild Wicked Highlanders

Suzanne Enoch

 

Synopsis

The first in a wickedly seductive new Scottish historical romance series from New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Enoch!

“It’s time to fall in love with Suzanne Enoch.” — Lisa Kleypas

It's Getting Scot in Here cover

HAPPILY-EVER-AFTER
London socialite Amelia-Rose Baxter is nobody’s fool. Her parents may want her to catch a title, but she will never change who she is for the promise of marriage. Her husband will be a man who can appreciate her sharp mind as well as her body. A sophisticated man who loves life in London. A man who considers her his equal—and won’t try to tame her wild heart…
IN THE HIGHLANDS
Rough, rugged Highlander Niall MacTaggert and his brothers know the rules: the eldest must marry or lose the ancestral estate, period. But Niall’s eldest brother just isn’t interested in the lady his mother selected. Is it because Amelia-Rose is just too. . . Free-spirited? Yes. Brazen? Aye. Surely Niall can find a way to soften up the whip-smart lass and make her the perfect match for his brother for the sake of the family.

JUST GOT A WHOLE LOT HOTTER
Instead it’s Niall who tempts Amelia-Rose, despite her reservations about barbarian Highlanders. Niall finds the lass nigh irresistible as well, but he won’t make the mistake his father did in marrying an Englishwoman who doesn’t like the Highlands. Does he have what it takes to win her heart? There is only one way to find out…

Buy-Book link: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250296375

Review

A fun new Highlander series from Suzanne Enoch. The MacTaggert brothers’ entrance was spectacular and getting to know each of them (Coll, Aden, and Niall) as the book progressed was enjoyable. They were not necessarily nice, more often rough and rude, but they love one another and have the best intentions even if they didn’t show it to the hated Sassenachs.

Being a series starter, It’s Getting Scot in Here is understandably filled with introduction of multiple characters, but it became very obvious quickly that Niall and Amelia are the stars of this particular book even if you don’t read the blurb. I like that their attraction grew from proximity and lots of conversations. I like that there is a true societal conflict–which is reflective of the times–that they have to overcome to be together. And, I especially appreciate how the entire family came together to help them get their happy resolution.

With a fascinating background of the cross-cultural clash between English ton and Scottish highlands, this is a great start to the Wild Wicked Highlanders series and I’m looking forward to the next installments.

 

Giveaway

St. Martin Press is giving away a paperback copy of It’s Getting Scot in Here to one lucky follower of Carpe Diem Chronicles. All you have to do for a chance to win is Like this post and Comment. I will draw a winner on Monday, March 4 at 12 noon Central time.

 

Author Bio

Suzanne EnochA native and current resident of Southern California, Suzanne Enoch loves movies almost as much as she loves books, with a special place in her heart for anything Star Wars. She has written more than forty Regency novels and historical romances, which are regularly found on the New York Times bestseller list. When she is not busily working on her next book, Suzanne likes to contemplate interesting phenomena, like how the three guppies in her aquarium became 161 guppies in five months.
Some of Suzanne’s books include Barefoot In The Dark, It’s Getting Scot in Here, Lady Whistledown Stirkes Back and The Legend of Nimway Hall.

THE DUKE WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO by Kerrigan Byrne – Release Day Review and Giveaway

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THE DUKE WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO

(Victorian Rebels Vol 6)

by

KERRIGAN BYRNE

 

Duke with dragon Tattoo coverSUMMARY:

The bravest of heroes. The brashest of rebels. The boldest of lovers. These are the men who risk their hearts and their souls—for the passionate women who dare to love them…

He is known only as The Rook. A man with no name, no past, no memories. He awakens in a mass grave, a magnificent dragon tattoo on his muscled forearm the sole clue to his mysterious origins. His only hope for survival—and salvation—lies in the deep, fiery eyes of the beautiful stranger who finds him. Who nurses him back to health. And who calms the restless demons in his soul…

A LEGENDARY LOVE

Lorelei will never forget the night she rescued the broken dark angel in the woods, a devilishly handsome man who haunts her dreams to this day. Crippled as a child, she devoted herself to healing the poor tortured man. And when he left, he took a piece of her heart with him. Now, after all these years, The Rook has returned. Like a phantom, he sweeps back into her life and avenges those who wronged her. But can she trust a man who’s been branded a rebel, a thief, and a killer? And can she trust herself to resist him when he takes her in his arms?

Buy Links:

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
IndieBound
Powells

 

REVIEW:

I love Kerrigan Byrne’s Victorian Rebels series. I’ve only ever complained about the title of the last book (should have just been The Scot period), but the stories have all been compelling, the writing outstanding.

My favorite had always been The Highwayman. The first book, it set the bar high. Dougan and his Fairy are ❤️❤️❤️. Now, The Duke with the Dragon Tattoo’s The Rook and his Lorelai are seriously competing for the title of the series’ best couple. There’s just something about them falling in love as teens and staying true after twenty years that tugs at my heart. It’s the ideal of the “one true love” in fairy tales that’s the basis for most romance novels and it works for both The Highwayman and The Duke With the Dragon Tattoo.

“Lorelai, there are only two indisputable facts in this world: The sun will set in the west, and I’ll come for you. Always.”

The lines in this book are so memorable, my Kindle is filled with highlights and bookmarks. Amazingly, most of them are uttered by the hero. That the hero is a pirate/murderer/kidnapper/smuggler/bad, bad, bad boy makes it even more incredibly romantic.

If I write as if the characters are real people, it’s because Kerrigan fleshed them out so expertly, they come alive in my mind. The characters, both main and secondary, are nuanced. They’re flawed, damaged, human.

I always start Kerrigan Byrne’s books at five stars and would adjust at the end for things that didn’t work for me. With TDWTDT, everything worked–the storytelling, the sexytimes, the reunion, the treasure hunt, the revelations in the end. That’s why I’m giving it the full five stars.

 

GIVEAWAY:

Duke_with_the_Dragon_Tattoo_FB_Cover_v2I’m giving away a paperback of The Duke With the Dragon Tattoo to one US reader. To enter:

  1. Like and Follow this blog Carpe Diem Chronicles by Maida Malby. Comment below. (2 points)
  2. Like and Follow my author page Maida Malby on Facebook and comment on this post there. (1 point)
  3. Follow me on Twitter @maida_malby and reply to this post there. (1 point)
  4. Follow me on BookBub. (1 point)

I will draw the winner on Monday, September 3 at 12 midnight CDT.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kerrigan ByrneWhether she’s writing about Celtic Druids, Victorian bad boys, or brash Irish FBI Agents, Kerrigan Byrne uses her borderline-obsessive passion for history, her extensive Celtic ancestry, and her love of Shakespeare in every book. She now lives at the Pacific Coast, fulfilling a lifelong dream. Her Victorian Rebels novels include The Highwayman and The Highlander.

Social Links:
Author Website: http://www.kerriganbyrne.com/
Twitter: @Kerrigan_Byrne
Facebook: @KerriganByrneAuthor
Instagram: @KerriganByrne