Tagged: Historical Romance

The Renaissance Club

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus' time travel romance, The Renaissance Club - Contemporary Romance, Time Travel, Renaissance Italy
Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus’ time travel romance, The Renaissance Club

About the Book

The Renaissance Club; Rachel Dacus
Adult; Fantasy Romance; 374 pages

Time Fold Books December 20, 2018

May Gold, an adjunct college teacher earning little more than a Starbucks barista, often dreams in her tiny, moldy office about the subject of her master’s thesis, 17th-century sculptor Gianlorenzo Bernini. In her fantasies, she’s in his arms, the wildly adored partner of the man who invented the Baroque. In reality, May has just landed in Rome with her teaching colleagues and her suffocating boyfriend, Darren, who is paying her way. She feels like a precocious failure and longs for a passionate, creative life of beauty and poetry. When tour leader George St. James lends May his beautiful gold pen to take her notes, she finds herself in the year 1624, under the gilded dome of St. Peter’s, staring into Bernini’s eyes. But can she break free of her present-day life, the dead-end job, the stuffy boyfriend, and the boss who wants to thwart her rise in the Art Department? Only if she can give up everything and figure out the secret to falling through the folds of time, might she seize her unexpected chance for happiness and live in a magical future with her soul mate from another time.

A CAPTIVATING STORY illuminating love’s power over time. Perfect for fans of and Susanna Kearsley and Diana Gabaldon, for those who love Italy, art, and history.

About the Author

Rachel Dacus is a poet, essayist, and novelist who writes about love and history. In her novel, THE RENAISSANCE CLUB, a young art historian gets to meet her hero from the past, the fiery 17th century Italian sculptor Bernini. She then must choose whether she can give up everything — even the time in which she lives — to be with her soulmate. The book was praised as “enchanting, rich, and romantic”.

Dacus is at work on both a sequel and a prequel. She shows off her versatility as a writer in her four poetry collections, most recently ARABESQUE. 

She lives in Northern California with her husband and a tiny, mighty Silky Terrier. She’s a member of the Women’s Fiction Writer’s Association and Authors18. To learn more about her news and upcoming projects, sign up for her quarterly newsletter at http://racheldacus.net. A poem in every newsletter!

Jenn’s Review

A stellar story and subtle romance! Rachel Dacus’ story weaves the past and the present together in a seamless blend of prose and poetry, with subtle undertones reminiscent of a fine Italian culinary dish in The Renaissance Club.

This was not my first time-travel romance, but Ms. Dacus is easily on par with my literary heroine, Diana Gabaldon. While the heroine travels back and forth through time, she tries to keep her present-day, dead-on-arrival, relationship with Darren together; but each trip through the portal of Time, each liason with her artistic hero, Bernini, she finds herself comparing past and present in more ways than one.

The romance between May and Bernini sizzles, and the love scenes are subtle, but pack a punch and the author moves deftly through the full range of human emotions with style and sensitivity. All the while, Dacus is describing art and Italy with a deftness that leaves even the least-experienced art historian with a clear mental image of what the characters are seeing and studying.

Her characters step in and out of time seamlessly, and it would seem that all of our intrepid travelers on this particular three-week academic tour find themselves somehow changed by the magic of Italy; its pull an irresistible dare to be something more, fly higher, try something new, inspired by the innovation in artistic styles that Rome, Venice, Florence, and Assisi seethe with. And who wouldn’t find themselves forever altered by meeting Masters of their time such as Michelangelo, Bernini and Borromini?

Even those who aren’t romance fans will find something in the pages of this book to pique their imagination. Aspiring authors, poets, painters and sculptors especially, should read at least the first three chapters, and pay special heed Bernini’s advice.

You won’t find steamy sex scenes in this book, but in this reviewer’s opinion, they would have most likely detracted from the overall impact of Rachel’s work. Readers will be left with a new appreciation of art, history, love and time itself. A must for every romance reader’s book list, especially fans of time-travel romance.

Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus' time travel romance, The Renaissance Club - Contemporary Romance, Time Travel, Renaissance Italy
Jenn reviews Rachel Dacus’ time travel romance, The Renaissance Club

Buy the Book

This book is available in Kindle and paperback here.

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Katherine Hastings – Author Interview

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn sat down to talk to author Katherine Hastings about her debut historical romance, In the Assassin’s Arms

*This post originally appeared in the July 12, 2018 edition of BETWEEN THE LINES – our monthly newsletter. We’ve since changed the format, and you can sign up here.

Another amazing historical romance novel made its debut this week, along with its author! Jenn read and reviewed the book, and sat down with author Katherine Hastings, to talk a bit about the story.


Allow us to introduce… 

Katherine Hastings.

Jenn: So, Katherine… New book, FIRST book, coming out next week. Are you more excited, or nervous?

Katherine: It’s coming up so fast! I’m switching between nervous and excited with enviable speed. I think I may give myself whiplash.

Jenn:  No! No whiplash.

Katherine: I joked that I was going to wear a neck brace on release day so I don’t hurt myself. LOL

Jenn: LoL… totally.

So, In the Assassin’s Arms comes out in a little over a week. Could you tell us a little bit about it?

Katherine: Sure can! In the Assassin’s Arms is the story of John Douglas and Charlotte “Charlie” Cornewalle who were childhood friends, and each other’s first crush. They haven’t seen each other since childhood and then Charlie comes back into John’s life… but not how he’d hoped. The sweet little girl he remembered is now a skilled assassin, just like him… and she thinks his father murdered hers. He thinks she killed his friend. If that isn’t bad enough, they are each members of different factions of assassins… and sworn enemies. When they both end up with a target on their back, they must work together to find out who is after them, and solve the mystery of who killed her father. Both of these assassin’s must battle their way not only through the people who are after them, but through the feelings for each other that grow on their adventure.

Jenn: Oh, wow! Now, this is a historical romance… What time period does it take place in?

Katherine: It is set in 1714 England.

Jenn: I’m looking forward to reading it (I just got my ARC a couple days ago… squee!). And this is your debut novel… have you always wanted to be a writer?

Katherine: I’m so excited that you’re participating in my first book release! As far as always wanting to be a writer, when I was a child I said I wanted to be a writer. But, like most children with their dreams of being professional ice skaters, or hockey players, I didn’t really think it was an actual option. I put aside my writing after high school and didn’t write again until a few years ago when I got knee surgery. I was so bored I decided to start writing a book I’d come up with, in a dream, about a decade ago. There I was with my leg stuck up in the air and I just started typing away. Once I started I couldn’t stop! I finished the novel in a couple of weeks and was so sad it was over, I started another, then another. Even with a few books written, it still hadn’t occurred to me that I could actually be a writer. But, with the encouragement of my friends, I sent one in for consideration, and Fiery Seas sent me the email they wanted to publish it. There was lots of jumping that day. Lots and lots of jumping. LOL

Jenn: I bet! So, is In the Assassin’s Arms the first in a series? Or is it a standalone novel?

Katherine: It is the first book in a series. So far, I have three written.

Jenn: Oh, very awesome! I adore series…

Katherine: Me, too! I like to get lost in a series and follow all the characters as long as the author will let me!

Jenn: Do you write full time now? Or do you juggle your writing with another J-O-B? And if you do the juggling thing, how do you find balance?

Katherine: I have a business handling marketing and social media for businesses in my area. Luckily for me, it’s incredibly flexible so when I get an idea for writing, I can usually stop what I’m doing for work and write. It’s made balancing the two quite easy, actually. I’m very lucky!

Jenn: Very cool! The businesses that have you working for them are very lucky, indeed. That social media marketing thing can be a killer when you have the million OTHER things needed as a business owner.

Katherine: Exactly! It’s my job to handle their social media so they can focus on what they do best!

Jenn: How much planning do you put into your writing? Or are you more of a pantser?

Katherine: I am a planner through and through! Each book I write starts as a dream. Then from my dream I figure out the plot from start to finish. Once that is done, I put it into a chapter by chapter outline. I leave plenty of room for creative twists and what-not, but when I start writing I have the entire book plotted out. It helps me write so much faster than before I started doing this.

Jenn: I totally envy your ability to write like that… Every book I ever outlined, I had to start back over from scratch.

Katherine: LOL! It definitely takes a lot of thought before I start writing the outline! But so far I’ve stuck to it quite well!

Jenn: Very cool. You mentioned that Assassin’s Arms is the first in a series, and that you have 2 more finished. Could we get an idea of when we can anticipate book 2?

KatherineBeneath the Assassin’s Touch is the second book in the series. Fiery Seas has it signed for publication and it will be out in print and digital hopefully later this year! I’m really excited about this one. It follows a character you’ll meet from In the Assassin’s Arms, Viktor, on his own romantic adventure.

Jenn: Yay for continuing adventures and learning more about other characters!

Katherine: He wasn’t a planned character in In the Assassin’s Arms, yet I adored him so much when he waltzed into my book I knew he needed his own!

Jenn: hehe… Those tend to jump out at us, right?

Katherine: Right!

Jenn: Our review of In the Assassin’s Arms will be live on July 12, and we’ll have buy links up as soon as they become available. is there anything else you’d like readers to know about you or your debut novel before we wrap up?

Katherine: I can’t wait to see what you think about my first book baby! I hope that you and others have as much fun reading it as I had writing it. There’s plenty of action, adventure, and romance for anyone who enjoys those kinds of books. This has been such a childhood dream come true and I look forward to writing more books that hopefully everyone will enjoy!

Jenn: Here’s to book babies and dreams come true that you never thought would!

Katherine: It’s been an incredible adventure!

Jenn: I bet!

I’d like to thank you for your time, on behalf of Thrice Read Books and our readers. This has been so much fun, and I’m so looking forward to reading In the Assassin’s Arms.

Katherine: Thank you so much for hosting me! It’s such an honor to have you take interest in my book, and I can’t tell you how much you book bloggers mean to us new writers! We appreciate you more than you know!

Jenn: Just out of curiosity, would you be heading to RWA2018 in a few weeks?

Katherine: I actually won’t this year due to a bunch of work stuff, but next year I hope to! It’s on the calendar!

Jenn: Aww. Awesome!

Katherine: I really do appreciate all your support! This has just been so fun! You’re my first official interview! LOL

Jenn: Whoohoo! I love that we get to be firsts

I’ll have buttons for this at the bottom of the post, but can readers find and follow you on social media?

Katherine: Great! I love getting social with people!

They can find me at www.katherinehastings.com. I’m also on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. [We’ve got the links in the buttons below!]

Katherine: Thank you again for hosting me!!

Jenn: You bet!

Have a great day, and watch out for that whiplash!

Katherine: HA HA HA! I am pretty accident prone! LOL

Jenn: You, too, Katherine. Thanks again and good luck.

Jenn sat down to talk to author Katherine Hastings about her debut historical romance, In the Assassin’s Arms

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Our Reviews of Katherine’s Books:

In the Assassin’s Arms Beneath the Assassin’s Touch

By the Assassin’s Side

Buy Katherine’s Books Here:

By the Assassin’s Side

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews book 3 in Katherine Hasting's Daggers of Desire series, BY THE ASSASSIN'S SIDE - historical romance - action adventure romance - pirates
Jenn reviews book 3 in Katherine Hasting’s Daggers of Desire series, By the Assassin’s Side

About the book:

By the Assassin’s Side by Katherine Hastings

Historical Fiction/ 242 Pages

Flyte Publishing – February 6, 2019

Gold may not be the only treasure they find. 

As they race to find the treasure, Simon and Vivian must fight the men hunting her down… and the feelings for each other growing each step of the way.

With part of a stolen treasure map in her possession and mercenaries hot on her trail, Vivien runs to the one person she knows will keep her safe. Captain Viktor. But when she arrives at his ship, it isn’t her oldest friend commanding it, a new man has taken his place. Captain Simon Blackmore. Though reluctant to work with this imposter, his skills both as a pirate and an assassin are exactly what she needs to find this treasure… and stay ahead of the men who want their map back.

Half the treasure as payment for protecting the fiery courtesan convinces Simon to escort her and help uncover Captain Avery’s lost loot. Danger nips at their heels every step of the way, and her obstinate personality makes the already monumental task even more difficult. But soon they are fighting for more than just staying alive… they are fighting the feelings for each other that are even more dangerous than the men hunting her down.

Can they work together to find the treasure that could change both their fates, or will they discover that the greatest treasure was there all along?

Jenn’s Review:

Katherine Hastings is back with a third installment of the Daggers of Desire series, rounding the series out with the story of Vivian and Simon.

Simon inherited the pirate vessel, Dark Shark, from his good friend and longtime partner, Viktor, when Viktor retired. While in port, waiting for the crew’s next adventure, a stubborn, determined woman demands to see the captain – only she’s quite distressed to discover Simon now carries the title.

Vivian’s found herself in a bad situation, the worst she’s ever faced. And when the tall, imposing Simon insists that Viktor has retired, Viv is at a loss. Her long-time friend and occasional lover, Viktor, is the only one she trusts to get her through her dilemma – a stolen half of a pirate treasure map.

Simon keeps his word and delivers Viv to Viktor’s doorstep, and true to the new Captain’s word, Viktor confirms his retirement and helps the pair plan their perilous journey to find Captain Avery’s lost pirate treasure.

Nothing in their journey is straight forward, and the pair repeatedly make their predicaments worse through their stubbornness. A common background is the only thing that eases the tension between them to quiet the constant sniping at each other.

This is a fun swashbuckling romance, with a quick pace and quick wit sprinkled throughout. While it is the third book in the series, it can easily be read on its own.


Jenn reviews book 3 in Katherine Hasting's Daggers of Desire series, BY THE ASSASSIN'S SIDE - historical romance - action adventure romance - pirates
Jenn reviews book 3 in Katherine Hasting’s Daggers of Desire series, By the Assassin’s Side

We interviewed Katherine back in July, 2018. You can read more here.

Buy the book:

Beneath the Assassin’s Touch

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews BENEATH THE ASSASSIN'S TOUCH by Katherine Hastings, Book 2 in the Daggers of Desire series - historical romance - romance fiction - assassin fiction - adventure romance
Jenn reviews Beneath the Assassin’s Touch by Katherine Hastings, Book 2 in the Daggers of Desire series

About the Book

Beneath the Assassin’s Touch, 
Katherine Hastings

Adult, Historical Romance, 201 Pages

Flyte Publishing, January 23, 2019

Sometimes the safest place is in the arms of the most dangerous man.

As Viktor fights to save Nora from assassins hot on her trail, it turns out they’re up against an even bigger battle… the feelings for each other they can no longer deny.

When Viktor envisioned pulling the beautiful Baroness into his arms, he was thinking he wanted a quick roll in the hay… a one-night stand like he’d had with a lengthy list of ladies before her. Tossing her over his shoulder to escape her would-be assassins wasn’t what he had in mind, yet that’s exactly how she ended up in his arms the night they met. Now Viktor is stuck protecting the willful woman until they can solve the mystery of who would want her dead. He must use all his skills, as both pirate and assassin, to save her… and all his willpower to resist the growing feelings that threaten to pull him under.

Baroness Nora Aberdeen finds herself ripped from a life of luxury, dependent on the infuriating assassin to keep her alive. Unsure who to trust, she can’t deny the safety she feels when she’s by his side. Dragged through England to places she never imagined, Nora struggles to survive while also struggling to battle the feelings the roguish pirate awakens within her.

Can they fight their feelings while they fight for their lives? Will he be able to save her, and in doing so save himself… or will pride and duty tear them apart?

About the Author

 
Katherine Hastings loves love. It’s why she writes romance novels. Getting lost writing a romantic adventure is one of her favorite pastimes. When she’s not on an adventure with her characters, she can be found at her home in Wisconsin snuggling her husband, two Boston Terriers, and the world’s naughtiest cat. Two things make Katherine want to leave her happy home these days… going for rides on her dressage pony or floating at the beach in her big inflatable raft. Writing her novels while floating in the lake is one of her ultimate pleasures… that and Fried Wisconsin Cheese Curds, of course.

Jenn’s Review

Katherine Hastings is back with book 2 in the Daggers of Desire series, Beneath the Assassin’s Touch. In book 1, we briefly met the pirate, Viktor, and he’s back with his over-the-top wit and salacious, playful antics to rescue the endangered damsel, keep her out of harm’s way, and find his own happily ever after.

Viktor hides a damaged, painful past behind his mask of daring escapades, quick sense of humor, and bawdy bosom buddies. Never one to settle down for long, he agrees to take a short stint away from his pirate ship, Dark Shark, to help John and Charlie prevent an assassination. The only catch is, they don’t know exactly who’s at risk, only that the intended victim will be at a ball at a nearby estate. He’s growing weary of the pirate’s life, even if he is a captain with his own ship.

Never one to let a little work get in the way of a flirtation, Viktor trails a beautiful baroness out onto a balcony for a bit of fresh air.

Nora doesn’t exactly like the plush life she’s carved out for herself, but the cost of turning back is too high for her to pay – so she plays her part and grits her teeth. The dashing, well-dressed man that follows her around her husband’s party is more than an annoyance, his continued affections could jeopardize all those she holds dear. But when armed men attack her in the dark, she has no choice but to flee in the handsome stranger’s arms.

Nora is all prickles and defenses, continually demanding that Viktor returns her to her home, refusing to believe that she’s in any danger. Her ongoing denial and fight for her independence could cost her her life. And Viktor refuses to let the beautiful, strong Nora out of his grasp – she’s possibly his best chance at healing old wounds and finding the happiness he never thought could be his.

Ms. Hastings has tackled yet another historical romance with a flair for witty banter, sexy tensions, and action-packed adventure. BENEATH THE ASSASSIN’S TOUCH is the second book in the series, and characters and situations from book 1 are referenced, met, and take part in some of the action, but this book can be read as a standalone in its own right. A nice break from the typical adult historical romance.

Jenn reviews BENEATH THE ASSASSIN'S TOUCH by Katherine Hastings, Book 2 in the Daggers of Desire series - historical romance - romance fiction - assassin fiction - adventure romance
Jenn reviews Beneath the Assassin’s Touch by Katherine Hastings, Book 2 in the Daggers of Desire series

We interviewed Katherine back in July 2018. You can read the article here.

Buy the Book

 This book is available on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback formats here:

Highland Retribution – Review

**Note: This post may contain affiliate links. This means that when you click one of the links in this post and make a purchase, Thrice Read Books receives a small commission from the seller. We do not charge authors for our reviews and this does not cost you anything additional and does not impact the author’s royalties – it does allow us to continue bringing you ad-free content, and we thank you in advance for your support.**

Jenn reviews Keira Montclair's historical romance novel, Highland Retribution
Jenn reviews Keira Montclair’s historical romance novel, Highland Retribution

About the Book

Highland Retribution,  Keira Montclair, The Band of Cousins Volume 3

Adult, Historical Romance

Keira Montclair (June 17, 2018)

They stole everything from her. With his help, she’ll finally get it back. Braden Grant is haunted by the death of his friend Ronan, who took his own life. No one knows why the warrior resorted to such desperate measures, but Braden blames himself. He won’t feel settled until he’s atoned for failing to save his friend, and when he meets Cairstine Muir, he wonders if he’s finally found his chance. Held against her will by the very man who killed her family, the lass is a prisoner in her own keep. Her beauty and quiet strength call to him as much as her situation urges him to fight. Though life has taught her harsh lessons, Cairstine still has an ember of hope in her heart. She longs to escape her captors and exact vengeance on them, but nothing is more important to her than her wee son’s safety. Though she failed to save her family, she pledges she will always save him, come what may. When a strong, handsome defender steps into her life, promising to help her exact vengeance on her captors, she sees the opportunity she’s waited for…but is the possibility of a new life worth the risk to her son?

About the Author

Keira Montclair is the pen name of an author who lives in Florida with her husband. She loves to write fast-paced, emotional romance, especially with children as secondary characters in her stories. 
She has worked as a registered nurse in pediatrics and recovery room nursing. Teaching is another of her loves, as she has taught both high school mathematics and practical nursing.

Now she loves to spend her time writing, but there isn’t enough time to write everything she wants! Her Highlander Clan Grant Series is a reader favorite is a series of eight stand-alone novels. The Summerhill Series is a contemporary romance series set in the beautiful Finger Lakes Region in Western New York. Her third series, The Highland Clan, is set twenty years after the Clan Grant Series and will focus on the Grant/Ramsay descendants. Her newest series is The Soulmate Chronicles, historical romance with a touch of paranormal. 

You may contact her through her website at www.keiramontclair.com. She also has a Facebook account and a twitter account through Keira Montclair. If you send her an email through her website, she promises to respond.

Jenn’s Review

It’s been a while since I’ve sat down with a romance I knew I could finish in an afternoon. Highland Retribution was on my TBR pile, and I figured I’d breeze through it during one of our family reading nights.

Highland Retribution is aahistorical romance set in 1280’s Scotland, and features Braden Grant and Caistine Muir – two young people with vastly different upbringings.

Braden has a quick and violent temper, but he’s been raised to do the right thing, to never hit those more vulnerable than himself, and to protect women and children. He’s recently lost his closet friend to apparent suicide, and the brief encounter with a beautiful young stranger seems to have had a powerful impact on him. Every instinct inside Braden drives him to seek her out and learn more about her situation – little does he know that learning about her will draw him and his cousins into danger and deeper into an on going mystery surrounding apparent child trafficking.

Cairstine is in a bad situation – the man who killed her entire clan has been holding her hostage for 6 years, their child is the shackles he uses to control her. When she encounters the handsome stranger at a wedding feast that she and her captor were not invited to, her heart begs the heavens to send him to help her. But first, she needs to make sure her son is safe, and her journey out of captivity is a rollercoaster of emotions and danger.

This is a quick read. Not the best romance I’ve read lately, but certainly a satisfying read. The characters don’t always have distinct voices, which was a disappointment – this is the third book in a series, and I would expect that at this point, the author would have sufficiently developed her characters and their voices. Aside from that, if you enjoy hunky Scotsmen, action, and mystery, snag this book for a quiet evening reading.

Jenn reviews Keira Montclair's historical romance novel, Highland Retribution
Jenn reviews Keira Montclair’s historical romance novel, Highland Retribution

Buy the Book

 This book is available from Amazon in Kindle, audiobook, and paperback editions. [affiliate link]

In the Assassin’s Arms – Review

Jenn reviews Katherine Hasting's debut novel, IN THE ASSASSINS ARMS - adult historical romance, assassin romance, action-adventure romance
Jenn reviews Katherine Hasting’s debut novel, In the Assassin’s Arms

About the book:

In the Assassin’s Arms by Katherine Hastings

Series: Dagger of Desire Historical Romance

Flyte Publishing, January 19, 2019

John Douglas may be a well-trained political assassin, but he has met his match in the woman he once called a friend. When his childhood playmate reenters his life, she’s not looking to rekindle their friendship… she’s out for blood.

With a vendetta to settle, Charlotte Cornewalle isn’t stopping until she finds the man who killed her father. All signs point to Robert Douglas, the leader of the opposing faction of assassins… and John’s father. To get her revenge, no one will stand in her way… not even the boy she once adored.

Fate forces them together as they fight to prove their innocence and right the wrongs they have suffered. Sparks fly from more than just their swords, but will they be able to put the past behind them? Will they be able to find the truth before it destroys them both?

About the Author:

Katherine Hastings, Author of Historical Romance "In the Assassin's Arms"

Katherine Hastings loves love. It’s why she writes romance novels. Getting lost writing a romantic adventure is one of her favorite pastimes. When she’s not on an adventure in her mind with her characters, she can be found at her home in Wisconsin snuggling her husband, two Boston Terriers, and the world’s naughtiest cat. Two things make Katherine want to leave her happy home these days… going for rides on her dressage pony or floating at the beach in her big inflatable raft. Writing her novels while floating in the lake is one of her ultimate pleasures… that and Fried Wisconsin Cheese Curds, of course.

Katherine’s social follows: 

Facebook     Twitter     Instagram     Website/Email signup

Jenn’s Review:

Another awesome debut novel! Katherine Hastings’ historical romance, In the Assassin’s Arms is witty, fast-paced and engaging.

John and Charlie go back a long ways – to their childhoods, playing hide and seek and tag as they ran around John’s family estate. Their childhood friendship is shattered when Charlotte (“Charlie”) is ripped away, her father murdered in cold blood in John’s home. Charlie has always blamed John’s father, and the rival assassin organization that John and his father belong to, for her father’s death, and she’ll stop at nothing to avenge his murder.

When these two meet up again in as adults, sparks fly. They are attracted to each other while struggling with the blame each places on the other for the deaths of those they love. Despite their mutual mistrust, they must work together to solve the riddles behind a growing number of murders – before they’re both added to the list!

The banter between these two characters had me giggling – each is quick-minded and they’ve picked up right where they left off, competing with each other to see whose skills are more finely honed. Ms. Hastings serves up some piping hot sexual chemistry as well, with a face-paced plot that had me turning the page for more.

While I immensely enjoyed the dialogue and narrative, I encountered a few spots where the conversation felt a little off; some lines felt too modern, or too casual for the setting and situation. It did not, however, affect my enjoyment of the book to give it any less than 4 stars.

In the Assassin’s Arms is the first book in a series, with book 2 expected to hit the shelves later in 2018. If Adult Historical Romance is your thing, then I would highly recommend checking out Katherine Hastings’ debut.

Jenn reviews Katherine Hasting's debut novel, IN THE ASSASSINS ARMS - adult historical romance, assassin romance, action-adventure romance

Jenn reviews Katherine Hasting’s debut novel, In the Assassin’s Arms

Buy the book:

This book is available in Kindle Format from Amazon in Kindle, and paperback here.

Jenn sat down with Katherine to talk a bit about In the Assassin’s Arms. You can read that interview here.

Jake – Book Review

About the book:

Orginally published in 2014 under the title Redeemed by a Rebel.

Jake Anderson killed a man defending his fiancée from a brutal attack, but lost her and his freedom in the process. Now he’s on the run, tormented by the need for vengeance.

Becky Finnegan will do anything to escape her drunken father’s fists, including slave away at their mine. Her only hope is to strike gold and make a new life for herself somewhere far, far away from Deadwood. But then Jake arrives and does the unthinkable…forces her to feel, to hope…and to love.

Jake would give his life to protect Becky, but all he can offer her is a broken heart, a criminal’s life, and a past haunted by failure. How can he save her when he’s already lost himself? Will he destroy everything, or can the beautiful rebel redeem Jake’s lost soul?

Jenn’s Review:

In Cynthia Woolf’s first book in her Destiny in Deadwood series, readers follow the story of Jake and Becky during Colorado’s gold rush. 

Jake Anderson loves his fiancee, even though her father frowns on their relationship and resents Jake’s humble occupation as a farmer. But when Jake comes to call on her, and finds her former beau standing over her with a gun, his life begins to unravel. He manages to exact a kind of vengeance on her murderer, but a crooked witness makes his getaway, leaving Jake in a bad situation, with warrants for his arrest for crimes he didn’t commit.

Along with his two brothers and his oldest brother’s two children, Jake makes his getaway to Deadwood, Colorado – a lawless place outside the jurisdiction of any arm of the law.

Becky struggles to maintain the mining claim she and her abusive, drunken father own, but when Jake stumbles into her life, her world is turned upside down. Both Becky and Jake try to avoid their growing feelings for each other, and when Becky’s father announces that he’s sold her to a seedy land owner, the couple hatch a desperate plan to keep Becky out of the hands of yet another abusive relationship.

Can the pair overcome their individual stubbornness and shady pasts to make a real future for themselves where the Law has no say, and vengeance rules supreme? 

Ms. Woolf spins a beautiful, if rough (because living out of tents as prospectors isn’t luxurious) tale of a man redeemed and a woman stronger than she seems. Sweet, raw and funny, all at the same time.

This book is available in Kindle, audiobook and mass market paperback formats from Amazon here. [Affiliate link]

David: Lord of Honor – Book Review

You can buy this book here.

About the book:

David, Viscount Fairly, has imperiled his honor…
Letty Banks is a reluctant courtesan, keeping a terrible secret that brought her, a vicar’s daughter, to a life of vice. While becoming madam of Viscount Fairly’s high-class brothel is an absolute financial necessity, Letty refuses to become David’s mistress-though their attraction becomes harder to resist the more she learns about the man…

Perhaps a fallen woman can redeem it.
David is smitten not only with Letty’s beauty, but also with her calm, her kindness, her quiet. David is determined to put respectability back in her grasp, even if that means uncovering the secrets Letty works so hard to keep hidden-secrets that could take her away from him forever…

The Review:

I’m not a stranger to the Regency Romance genre, but I haven’t read Grace Burrowes until now. When David: Lord of Honor came into our inventory, I picked it up, because of the unusual circumstances that bring the Hero and Heroine into each other’s lives (plus, attractive cover!).

Most romances, especially Regencies, are quick reads for me. I get lost in the story line at 1 in the afternoon, and it’s dinner time before I realize that the afternoon has passed and I’m just closing the cover of the book for the last time.

David: Lord of Honor was not such a book. I took my time through the first half of the book. It’s not that the plot is slow, because it is well-paced. I wasn’t bored (I don’t bother finishing a book if I cannot truly immerse myself in it by page 60). I was, rather, simply not compelled to sit and read the book in one sitting.

However, as the plot began to reach its climax, I had been drawn into the characters and their journeys. I couldn’t put the book down for more than a few minutes, because I needed to keep going. 

Their emotional journeys alone are compelling (it’s difficult at this point to not give away spoilers!), and you don’t want to stop reading, because you want them to get over themselves and get to their Happily-Ever-After (also known as the HEA).

I rarely cry while reading a romance anymore. Something about writing my own romance stories and knowing that at some point, this couple is going to part ways before they get to their HEA takes the sting out of that dark moment for me. But when David and Letty reach theirs, it hit me hard and I spent at least two chapters in tears.

Whether you’re a hard-core Regency fan or you just enjoy an engrossing romance, David: Lord of Honor is definitely worth a read. It is perfect for rainy days (something we have plenty of here on the Washington Coast) or quiet evenings. Make a pot of tea and enjoy the ups and downs of a brothel owner and his madam (and have the Puffs on hand!).

This book is also available from Amazon in Kindle, Paperback and Mass Market Paperback here. [affiliate link]