Sunday, March 25, 2012

Celebrating March 27, Part VI


Three Books to Celebrate: Day Six

Earlier this month, I reviewed three of the March 27 releases that I’m celebrating this week. I’ve linked to the full reviews in my excerpts below.


A Week to Be Wicked
By Tessa Dare
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: March 27, 2012
(review posted at Just Janga)

I’ve been a Tessa Dare fan since I read and gave top scores to her entries in Avon’s Fan Lit competition. I’ve read and loved the eight novels and two novellas that preceded A Week to Be Wicked, but I think this is her best book yet. Minerva and Colin are both characters who fall within the conventions of romance fiction (the bluestocking and the rake) and yet manage to be fresh and original. They are funny and flawed and completely engaging—an unexpected pairing that, against all odds, feels perfect.





At Your Pleasure
By Meredith Duran
Publisher: Pocket
Release Date: March 27, 2012
(review posted at The Romance Dish)

Meredith Duran is quite simply one of the best writers I’ve read. Her characterization is superb, her plots compelling, and her prose lucid and powerful. She also offers her readers the gift of difference in a genre more accustomed to sameness. Duran sets At Your Pleasure in England in 1715, the year after the coronation of George I. The possibility of a Jacobite rebellion was real; some scholars believe it was a more serious threat that the rebellion of 1745. Most readers of historical romance fiction are familiar with the rudiments of the latter rebellion, having encountered references to Bonnie Prince Charlie, the Battle of Culloden, and Cumberland’s brutal suppression in novels from Georgette Heyer’s The Masqueraders to those by Veryan, Gabaldon, Canham, and countless others. The political climate of England in 1715 when Catholics, including Catholic aristocrats, were denied the right to worship, to vote, to be educated is less familiar. Duran captures the realities of the period without slamming her readers in the face with a history book. And she combines historical accuracy with emotionally credible actions and reactions.



Confessions from an Arranged Marriage
By Miranda Neville
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: March 27, 2012
(review posted at Heroes and Heartbreakers)

Minerva’s deepening respect for the man Blake is empowers him to become more, and he is able when she needs him most to be commanding and powerful, every inch the duke with generations of dukes behind him. Perhaps the greatest evidence of the changes in Blake is his acceptance of what he is and what he is not, a self-acceptance tempered by his regret that he cannot be the man Minerva wants. And Minerva’s response to his self-acceptance is a lovely reminder that these two have grown into two people who like and respect one another as well as healthily lusting after one another.


“I’m not going to lead the party and I’ll never be a member of the government, let alone Prime Minister. I wish I could be the man you want, Minnie, but I don’t have it in me.”


“You are the man I want. You don’t have to be anyone different.”


Sigh! I’m a believer. Happily ever after all the way.





The three are very different books—a Regency road book (Dare), an early Georgian romance with a political subtext (Duran), and a forced marriage tale between opposites (Neville), but each features characters that capture the reader’s imagination and affections, plots that compel the reader’s attention, and prose that delights the reader’s ear. I highly recommend all three.


 Adding these three books to my March 27 list brings the total number of reviews to eight—five historical romances, two contemporary romances, and one women’s fiction novel. That a close approximation of my reading in romance/women’s fiction generally. What subgenres do your read most often?


Remember that the winner of the free book will be chosen randomly from among those who comment on Tuesday-Sunday posts. 



6 comments:

quantum said...

Mrs Q and I have recently been visiting historic houses in the English Midlands (maintained for the public by the National Trust) and have been intrigued by some of the ingenious priest holes, designed to hide catholic priests from persecution. One house also displayed the room where Guy Fawkes and colleagues supposedly hatched the gunpowder plot!

I have been looking for a novel from the turbulent centuries during and after the reformation. A novel can so often set rather dry history alight. Meredith Duran's book sounds like one to try...... Thanks!

Janga, Asking me for favourite sub-genres is like asking you for your favourite novel.
I like them all but I am building a list of favourite authors.

Following Ella Fitzgerald:
'It Ain't What You write, It's The Way That You Write It' LOL

Great reviews *smile*

quantum said...

Mrs Q and I have recently been visiting historic houses in the English Midlands (maintained for the public by the National Trust) and have been intrigued by some of the ingenious priest holes, designed to hide catholic priests from persecution. One house also displayed the room where Guy Fawkes and colleagues supposedly hatched the gunpowder plot!

I have been looking for a novel from the turbulent centuries during and after the reformation. A novel can so often set rather dry history alight. Meredith Duran's book sounds like one to try...... Thanks!

Janga, Asking me for favourite sub-genres is like asking you for your favourite novel.
I like them all but I am building a list of favourite authors.

Following Ella Fitzgerald:
'It Ain't What You write, It's The Way That You Write It' LOL

Great reviews *smile*

Jane said...

I'm really looking forward to Meredith's upcoming release. I read a lot of romantic suspense and historicals.

Janga said...

You should definitely try Meredith Duran, Q. She's a wonderful writer, and her books are always out of the ordinary in some way.

You are a more adventurous reader than I. There are some subgenres I always avoid.

Janga said...

Jane, I always look forward to a new book from Duran.

Some romantic suspense is just too scary for me. I do follow some RS authors faithfully. Brenda Novak and Roxanne St. Claire are among them, and I'd never miss a Christina Dodd book, whatever the subgenre--unless she wrote a vampire book. :)

irisheyes said...

My primary genre was historical romance, but then my sister turned me onto Nora Roberts and I started trying out contemporaries. I stumbled upon the westerns I'm so fond of now when I picked up Lorraine Heath's Texas Trilogy. And then finally you've shown me the value of a really good women's fiction (although I still need my HEA and some romance).

The only genre I can't really get into is paranormal. I've tried several and even if they're written by a talented author I have a hard time with them.