Sunday, August 19, 2018

Bookish Thoughts: Darkest Heart by Juliette Cross

I love the smell of sex and brimstone in the morning. ~ Opening of Darkest Heart

Darkest Heart (Dominion, #1) by Juliette Cross
Entanged/Amara, 2018
Romance/Fantasy; 348 pgs
Source: E-copy provided by the publisher

I can always count on Juliette Cross to write an addicting novel that has me craving more. Darkest Heart is an apocalyptic novel set during the war between angels and demons, where humans are surviving by a thread. Dommiel is a high demon on the outs with his own kind. He is both powerful and dangerous--not someone you would expect to have a blood vow with an archangel, one he would do anything for. When she asks him to assist an angel in her quest to find another archangel, Dommiel agrees. It has little to do with the beautiful stoic angel in front of him who stirs something deep inside him, although that does not hurt. 

Anya has spent time on the battlefield as a warrior fighting for the angels, having long ago given up her post as a guardian angel. What Dommiel does not know is that she carries the deadly poison of a demon prince and her only hope is to find the Archangel Uriel. She must find him--and fast--or risk coming under the prince's control. 

Anya feels the attraction to Dommiel too, but tries to fight it. She is innocent in her own way--at least when it comes to vice, although can definitely hold her own. Dommiel plays the role of the big bad guy, but he is more complex than that. Although Anya helps melt his dark heart, I got the impression his heart wasn't as dark to start as he would want everyone to believe.  There is definite chemistry between the two characters, and they are well matched in personality and skill. Both of them struggle with whether a match like theirs could possibly work--and, of course, there is the little matter of Anya's secret. 

The world the characters live in is indeed dark. The signs of the war are everywhere and a person (or angel or demon) can never be sure who to trust. The reader meets quite a few different types of characters throughout the novel, from human to witch to angel and demon. The author has crafted a world that is not necessarily one I would want to live in myself, but certainly would visit again. 

Darkest Heart has plenty of action and romance, which is just what I was hoping for when I began reading. I will definitely be reading more in this series in the future. 

On a side note, I once had a cat we called Anya, named after a demon in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series. She was definitely more like an angel though.

You can learn more about Juliette Cross and her books on the author's website. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.

© 2018, Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Wishing to Read Wednesday: Old & New (#10)

Books from the Backlog is a weekly meme, hosted by the wonderful Carole of Carole's Random Life in Books to spotlight and discuss the neglected books sitting on our shelves still waiting to be read.. Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by the marvelous Tressa at Wishful Endings to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released.

The Old

Murder is Binding (Booktown Mystery #1) by Lorna Barrett (Berkley Prime Crime, 2008)
The streets of Stoneham, New Hampshire, are lined with bookstores...and paved with murder.

When she moved to Stoneham, city slicker Tricia Miles met nothing but friendly faces. And when she opened her mystery bookstore, she met friendly competition. But when she finds Doris Gleason dead in her own cookbook store, killed by a carving knife, the atmosphere seems more cutthroat than cordial. Someone wanted to get their hands on the rare cookbook that Doris had recently purchased-and the locals think that someone is Tricia. To clear her name, Tricia will have to take a page out of one of her own mysteries-and hunt down someone who isn't killing by the book. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: I love a good cozy and how can I resist this one set in a mystery bookstore?!


Villette by Charlotte Brontë (1853)
Villette is Charlotte Brontë's powerful autobiographical novel of one woman's search for true love.
With neither friends nor family, Lucy Snowe sets sail from England to find employment in a girls' boarding school in the small town of Villette. There, she struggles to retain her self-possession in the face of unruly pupils, the hostility of headmistress Madame Beck, and her own complex feelings - first for the school's English doctor and then for the dictatorial professor Paul Emanuel. Drawing on her own deeply unhappy experiences as a governess in Brussels, Charlotte Brontë's autobiographical novel, the last published during her lifetime, is a powerfully moving study of loneliness and isolation, and the pain of unrequited love, narrated by a heroine determined to preserve an independent spirit in the face of adverse circumstances. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: Jane Eyre is one of my all time favorite novels, and I have heard wonderful things about Villette too. Someday, I would like to dive into this one set in a girls' boarding school. 

*                     *

The New

Toil Trouble: 15 Tales of Women & Witchcraft by Tess Sharp & Jessica Spotswood
Release Date: August 28, 2018 by Harlequin Teen
A young adult fiction anthology of 15 stories featuring contemporary, historical, and futuristic stories featuring witchy heroines who are diverse in race, class, sexuality, religion, geography, and era.

Are you a good witch or a bad witch?

Glinda the Good Witch. Elphaba the Wicked Witch. Willow. Sabrina. Gemma Doyle. The Mayfair Witches. Ursula the Sea Witch. Morgan le Fey. The three weird sisters from Macbeth.

History tells us women accused of witchcraft were often outsiders: educated, independent, unmarried, unwilling to fall in line with traditional societal expectations.

Bold. Powerful. Rebellious.

A bruja’s traditional love spell has unexpected results. A witch’s healing hands begin to take life instead of giving it when she ignores her attraction to a fellow witch. In a terrifying future, women are captured by a cabal of men crying witchcraft and the one true witch among them must fight to free them all. In a desolate past, three orphaned sisters prophesize for a murderous king. Somewhere in the present, a teen girl just wants to kiss a boy without causing a hurricane.

From good witches to bad witches, to witches who are a bit of both, this is an anthology of diverse witchy tales from a collection of diverse, feminist authors. The collective strength of women working together—magically or mundanely--has long frightened society, to the point that women’s rights are challenged, legislated against, and denied all over the world. T
oil & Trouble delves deep into the truly diverse mythology of witchcraft from many cultures and feminist points of view, to create modern and unique tales of witchery that have yet to be explored. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: Just mention witches and I am all over it. This collection appeals to me even more because it features a diverse cast of characters from all walks of life. I cannot wait to read it.


Stars Uncharted by S.K. Dunstall
Release Date: August 14, 2018 by Ace Books
A ragtag band of explorers are looking to make the biggest score in the galaxy in the brand-new science fiction adventure novel from the national bestselling author of Linesman. 
Three people who are not who they claim to be: 
Nika Rik Terri, body modder extraordinaire, has devoted her life to redesigning people's bodies right down to the molecular level. Give her a living body and a genemod machine, and she will turn out a work of art. 
Josune Arriola is crew on the famous explorer ship the Hassim, whose memory banks contain records of unexplored worlds worth a fortune. But Josune and the rest of the crew are united in their single-minded pursuit of the most famous lost planet of all. 
Hammond Roystan, the captain of the rival explorer ship, The Road, has many secrets. Some believe one of them is the key to finding the lost world. 
Josune's captain sends her to infiltrate Roystan's ship, promising to follow. But when the Hassim exits nullspace close to Roystan's ship, it's out of control, the crew are dead, and unknown Company operatives are trying to take over. Narrowly escaping and wounded, Roystan and Josune come to Nika for treatment--and with problems of her own, she flees with them after the next Company attack. 
Now they're in a race to find the lost world...and stay alive long enough to claim the biggest prize in the galaxy. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read this: There are certain keywords that are sure to catch my attention and in this one, "ragtag band  of explorers" was it. This sounds like it will be a lot of fun!

Have you read any of these? Do these sound like something you would want to read if not?

© 2018, Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Friday, August 03, 2018

Weekly Mews: July in Review & My August TBR Poll

I am linking up to the Sunday Post hosted by the wonderful Kim of Caffeinated Book Reviewer, where participants recap our week, talk about what we are reading, share any new books that have come our way, and whatever else we want to talk about. I am also linking to Stacking the Shelves hosted by the great Team Tynga's Reviews and Marlene of Reading Reality a meme in which participants share what new books came their way recently. I am linking up to Nicole of Feed Your Addiction's Monthly Wrap-Up Post, where any book bloggers who write monthly wrap-up posts can link up and visit other bloggers to see what they have been reading.  

Across California the firefighters have been working long hours with little sleep and doing the best they can to save lives and structures. Multiple fires have engulfed the state. I am very grateful for their efforts. The damage caused has been devastating. So many people and animals displaced and lives lost. My uncle and aunt were forced to evacuate as a fire in the northern part of the state threatened their home (they have since been allowed home--thank goodness). And the Girl Scout camp my daughter will likely go to in a year or two had to evacuate here in Southern California due to another fire. The other day someone said it isn't the earthquakes they fear most, living in California. It is the wildfires. And, honestly, I can say I agree with that 100%. California has an annual fire season for a reason--and it is never good. Please keep the fire fighters and those impacted by the fires, both humans and animals, in your prayers and thoughts.

On a happier note, the 23rd of July was my 12th blog anniversary. When I started blogging in 2006, I was not sure how long it would last. The book blogging community has grown exponentially over all these years. Sometimes I miss the smaller version of our community, how close knit we were, old friends now gone. But there is something to be said for progress too, and I am glad to be a part of this ever evolving community. I am so grateful to all of you who have been with me through the years as well as those of you who I have met along the way, including those who may be visiting for the first time. It is my passion for books and wanting to share that love with others that motivated me to start Musings of a Bookish Kitty, and it is that which keeps me going. Thank you for going on this journey with me, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for all of us!

New to My Shelves in July: 

Recent e-book purchases (can you tell I had witches on the brain?):

Murder Any Witch Way (Brimstone Bay #1) by N.M. Howell
The Bakery Murder (Sweetland Witch) by Zoe Arden
Initiation (Hunters' Watch Brigade #1) by Paula Millhouse
The King Tides (Lancaster & Daniels #1) by James Swain
Whisper Me This by Kerry Anne King
Yuletide Homicide (A Wiccan Wheel Mystery #3) by Jennifer David Hesse
Midsummer Night's Mischief (A Wiccan Wheel Mystery #1) by Jennifer David Hesse
Bell, Book & Candlemas (A Wiccan Wheel Mystery #2) by Jennifer David Hesse

 Proof of Life by J.A. Jance (hand me down from my mom)
Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke (purchase for Mouse)

What I Am Reading: As seems to be my end of the month pattern, I spent some time toward the end of July catching up on my year long reading projects, reading War and Peace and Les Misérables. I need to be better about spreading out the reading throughout the month . . . I am now well into my August reading in both. Outside of that, I am starting August with the 4th book in Jennifer David Hesse's Wiccan Wheel Mystery series, Samhain Secrets, which is coming out later this month.

What I Am Watching: A couple of nights this past month, I curled up on the couch and escaped into Hallmark's Christmas in July movies. We've also been watching The Worst Witch. My daughter introduced my husband and I to Sugar Rush on Netflix, a baking competition show. It's an easy show to binge watch.

Off the Blog: In early July we left behind triple digit heat and thunder storms and made our way north to the also hot Sacramento where we took in the sights and visited with family. Somewhere in there Anjin and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary, and I successfully got Mouse's hair in a bun. After we got home from our trip, we hit the ground running with rehearsals, and it was back to work for my husband and me.

I will not be around this weekend, I am afraid. Mouse has her two big performances, and things are more than a little bit crazy around here with a house full of company coming and going and the shows to prepare for and carry out. I am hoping to catch at least one of the shows as an audience member--as I will be volunteering through the other. Mouse heads back to school in another week. It doesn't seem possible the summer (at least for school year purposes) is already coming to an end. I am not ready! We did not get to do much with all of Mouse's rehearsals, unfortunately, but then again, that has been an adventure all in itself.

 My fur-sister

 California State Railroad Museum

Mouse playing in the high-speed train cockpit at the Railroad Museum 

 Visiting the California State Capitol Building
 Have you ever seen so many Jelly Belly Jelly Beans?

 Jelly Belly Factory Tour

Some old fashioned fun 

 Stopping for gas at a rest stop 

 The cats survived their week with the pet sitter.

She's getting so big!

 My Little Flying Monkey

"We Go Together" pose

Passing time as they Lullaby League waits their turn

 Munchkinland (Wizard of Oz Dress Rehearsal)

 Jitterbug Scene (Wizard of Oz Dress Rehearsal)

Here is what I finished reading in July:
  • The Diving Pool by Yōko Ogawa
  • Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire
  • Alchemy by Marie S. Crosswell
  • The Risk of Rogues by Sabrina Jeffries
  • Midsummer Night's Mischief by Jennifer David Hesse
  • Darkest Heart by Juliette Cross
  • Bell, Book & Candlemas by Jennifer David Hesse
  • Yuletide Homicide by Jennifer David Hesse
I may not have had much computer time this past month for blogging, but I was able to get some reading in. Many of the reads were short or lighter reads, which made it easy to devour them pretty quickly. It was a mystery and romance type of month, with a bit of fantasy thrown in.


Thank you for helping me decide what book from my TBR collection I should read next:

My TBR List is a meme hosted by the awesome Michelle at Because Reading. It’s a fun way to choose a book from your TBR pile to read. The 1st Saturday of every month, I will list 3 books I am considering reading and take a poll as to which you think I should read. I will read the winner that month, and my review will follow (unfortunately, not likely in the same month, but eventually--that's all I can promise). 

Each month I find myself making a list of the books to consider for the TBR List poll. Sometimes I choose a theme. Sometimes I aim strictly for variety. I always struggle with narrowing my list down.  This month I am going with second in the series books, and these are the three that made the cut. I cannot wait to see which one you want me to read!

The King Slayer (The Witch Hunter, #2)  by Virginia Boecker
“I think, in time, you’ll either be my greatest mistake or my greatest victory.”

Former witch hunter Elizabeth Grey is hiding within the magically protected village of Harrow, evading the price put on her head by Lord Blackwell, the usurper king of Anglia. Their last encounter left Blackwell ruined, but his thirst for power grows stronger every day. He’s readying for a war against those who would resist his rule—namely Elizabeth and the witches and wizards she now calls her allies.

Having lost her stigma, a magical source of protection and healing, Elizabeth’s strength is tested both physically and emotionally. War always means sacrifice, and as the lines between good and evil blur once more, Elizabeth must decide just how far she’ll go to save those she loves. [Goodreads Summary]


Shelved Under Murder (Blue Ridge Library Mysteries #2) by Victoria Gilbert 
Autumn leaves aren’t the only things falling in the historic Virginia village of Taylorsford—so are some cherished memories, and a few bodies.

October in Taylorsford, Virginia means it’s leaf peeping season, with bright colorful foliage and a delightful fresh crew of tourists attending the annual Heritage Festival which celebrates local history and arts and crafts. Library director Amy Webber, though, is slightly dreading having to spend two days running a yard sale fundraiser for her library. But during these preparations, when she and her assistant Sunny stumble across a dead body, Amy finds a real reason to be worried.

The body belonged to a renowned artist who was murdered with her own pallet knife. A search of the artist’s studio uncovers a cache of forged paintings, and when the sheriff’s chief deputy Brad Tucker realizes Amy is skilled in art history research, she’s recruited to aid the investigation. It doesn’t seem to be an easy task, but when the state’s art expert uncovers a possible connection between Amy’s deceased uncle and the murder case, Amy must champion her Aunt Lydia to clear her late husband’s name.

That’s when another killing shakes the quiet town, and danger sweeps in like an autumn wind. Now, with her swoon-inducing neighbor Richard Muir, Amy must scour their resources to once again close the books on murder. 
[Goodreads Summary]


Off the Grid (The Lost Platoon #2) by Monica McCarty
A team of Navy SEALs go on a mission and disappear without a trace--they are The Lost Platoon.

Investigative reporter Brittany Blake may have stumbled upon the story of a lifetime in her search for her missing brother. When he seemingly disappears overnight, she refuses to accept the Navy's less-than-satisfying explanation. She begins her own investigation, which leads her to top-secret SEAL teams, covert ops, and a possible cover up...

John Donovan is having trouble biding his time, waiting for his Commanding Officer to figure out who set up their platoon. John's best friend and BUD/S partner, Brandon Blake, was one of the many lives tragically lost in the attack against his team. When Brandon's sister, Brittany, tracks John down, looking for answers, he realizes that she may be their best bet--or bait--for finding out who is targeting SEAL Team Nine.
[Goodreads Summary]

Thank you for voting! I hope you all have a wonderful August and Happy Reading!

© 2018, Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Wishing to Read Wednesday: Old & New (#9)

Books from the Backlog is a weekly meme, hosted by the wonderful Carole of Carole's Random Life in Books to spotlight and discuss the neglected books sitting on our shelves still waiting to be read.. Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by the marvelous Tressa at Wishful Endings to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released.

The Old

Cry Wolf (Alpha & Omega, #1) by Patricia Briggs (Ace Books, 2008)
Anna never knew werewolves existed, until the night she survived a violent attack... and became one herself. After three years at the bottom of the pack, she'd learned to keep her head down and never, ever trust dominant males. Then Charles Cornick, the enforcer—and son—of the leader of the North American werewolves, came into her life.

Charles insists that not only is Anna his mate, but she is also a rare and valued Omega wolf. And it is Anna's inner strength and calming presence that will prove invaluable as she and Charles go on the hunt in search of a rogue werewolf—a creature bound in magic so dark that it could threaten all of the pack.
[Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: I have read several of the author's Mercy Thompson books, which I have loved. I purchased a copy of this book several years ago as a result. I want to read everything Patricia Briggs has written. 


Peony in Love by Lisa See (Random House, 2007)
-I finally understand what the poets have written. In spring, moved to passion; in autumn only regret.-

For young Peony, betrothed to a suitor she has never met, these lyrics from The Peony Pavilion mirror her own longings. In the garden of the Chen Family Villa, amid the scent of ginger, green tea, and jasmine, a small theatrical troupe is performing scenes from this epic opera, a live spectacle few females have ever seen. Like the heroine in the drama, Peony is the cloistered daughter of a wealthy family, trapped like a good-luck cricket in a bamboo-and-lacquer cage. Though raised to be obedient, Peony has dreams of her own.

Peony-s mother is against her daughter-s attending the production: -Unmarried girls should not be seen in public.- But Peony-s father assures his wife that proprieties will be maintained, and that the women will watch the opera from behind a screen. Yet through its cracks, Peony catches sight of an elegant, handsome man with hair as black as a cave-and is immediately overcome with emotion.

So begins Peony-s unforgettable journey of love and destiny, desire and sorrow-as Lisa See-s haunting new novel, based on actual historical events, takes readers back to seventeenth-century China, after the Manchus seize power and the Ming dynasty is crushed.

Steeped in traditions and ritual, this story brings to life another time and place-even the intricate realm of the afterworld, with its protocols, pathways, and stages of existence, a vividly imagined place where one-s soul is divided into three, ancestors offer guidance, misdeeds are punished, and hungry ghosts wander the earth. Immersed in the richness and magic of the Chinese vision of the afterlife, transcending even death, Peony in Love explores, beautifully, the many manifestations of love. Ultimately, Lisa See-s new novel addresses universal themes: the bonds of friendship, the power of words, and the age-old desire of women to be heard.
. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: Lisa See is one of my favorite authors, but I haven't quite read all her books yet. I am trying though! One I haven't read yet is Peony in Love, which I really must get to.

*                     *

The New

A Dark and Twisting Path (A Writer's Apprentice Mystery, #3) by Julia Buckley
Release Date: August 7, 2018 by Berkley
Writer's apprentice Lena London is happily working on a new collaboration with her idol and bestselling suspense novelist and friend Camilla Graham, but her joy is short-lived when a dark cloud descends upon the quaint town of Blue Lake, Indiana...

Lena's best friend, Allison, is in a panic. On a walk in the woods by her home, Allison discovers the body of her mail carrier, an argumentative man who recently had a falling out with Allison's husband. Lena quickly realizes that Allison has nothing to worry about as the murder weapon points to a different suspect altogether: Lena's embattled boyfriend, Sam West.

Sam was cleared of his wife's murder when she was found alive, and now someone is trying to make him look guilty again. Surveillance video of a break-in at his house shows a shadowy figure trying to incriminate him by stealing the weapon from his desk. Lena and Camilla work on a suspect list, but a threatening note and a violent intrusion at Graham House prove that the devious killer has decided to write them into the plot.
[Goodreads Summary]
Why I want to read it: I really enjoyed the first book in this series and am anxious to continue with it. I just love Camilla and Lena. Spending time with them is like visiting with old friends.


The Butterfly Conspiracy (A Merriweather and Royston Mystery #1) by Vivian Conroy
Release Date: August 7, 2018 by Crooked Lane Books
In late Victorian times, when new inventions cause both excitement and terror, a mysterious death at a zoological lecture brings together two unlikely allies in a quest through London's upper crust and underbelly to unravel the ingenious murder method and killer behind it.

Miss Merula Merriweather is not like other women her age: instead of hunting for a husband at balls and soirees she spends her time in a conservatory hatching exotic creatures. As the Royal Zoological Society won't accept a woman's accomplishments, she has her uncle Rupert take credit for her achievements. But at a zoological lecture, the guest of honor dies after contact with one of Merula's butterflies, and Merula's uncle is arrested for murder.

In an attempt to safeguard evidence to prove his innocence, Merula almost gets killed but for the timely interference of enigmatic Lord Raven Royston. Viewing natural history as a last resort to regain respectability lost by too many dubious business investments, Raven didn't expect his first lecture to take a murderous turn. Feeling partially responsible because he encouraged Merula to release the gigantic butterfly from the glass case in which it was kept, Raven suggests they solve the puzzle of Lady Sophia's sudden death together by looking closer at her relations with estranged friends, long suffering staff and the man groomed to be her heir, so close to her money and yet unable to touch any of it.

With the police looking for them, and every new discovery raising more questions than answers, especially about the murder method which left no traces of foul play on the body, Merula will have to risk her own life to get at the truth and save her uncle from the gallows in 
The Butterfly Conspiracy, Vivian Conroy’s enchanting series debut. [Goodreads Summary]

Why I want to read it: This mystery set in Victorian times about a woman with nontraditional interests is calling my name quite loudly. Can you hear it?

Do these sound like something you would be interested in reading?

© 2018, Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Bookish Thoughts: A Murder for the Books by Victoria Gilbert

Anyone who claims there are no stupid questions has never worked in a public library. ~ Opening of A Murder for the Books 

A Murder for the Books (Blue Ridge Library Mysteries #1) by Victoria Gilbert
Crooked Lane Books, 2017
Crime Fiction/Cozy; 336 pgs

I went from liking cozies somewhat to loving them in the last couple years. So many good ones have come out. Or maybe it is just me and my reading mood, and cozies are appealing to me more and more. Thank you to everyone who voted for A Murder for the Books in my May TBR List poll. I enjoyed my time in Taylorsford, Virginia with Amy Webber and her aunt. This particular mystery held a double appeal for me. Not only did it have a modern murder that needed solving, but also an old one. I do love a good (or sordid) family secret!

Our heroine Amy Webber is manager of the local public library, having moved to Taylorsford with her aunt who has been having health issues. One day her handsome new next-door neighbor, Richard Muir, stops by the library to do some research on his family history, hoping to clear the name of the woman whom his great uncle loved, accused of murdering her husband in 1825. She may have been acquitted, but the town folk never believed it. While showing Richard the way to the archives, she never expects to find a body just inside. While the police begin to investigate the more recent murder, Amy and Richard begin digging into the past, finding more than they bargained for. Could a conspiracy be involved? Could the present day murder be tied to events the pair have uncovered about the past; secrets someone(s) wanted to keep buried?

Amy is a very relatable character, a plus-sized librarian, who is witty and smart. She’s come out of a bad relationship and is a little wary of starting a new one, and so when Richard makes his interest known, Amy finds herself backpedaling fast. I liked seeing their relationship evolve over the course of the novel. Richard is a choreographer and dancer who teaches dance at a university. I do think he moved a bit fast for comfort (and so did Amy), but I did like Richard. He comes with his own broken heart story, which plays nicely into the novel. I liked how supportive he is of Amy and tackles her concerns head on while at the same time being willing to give her the space she needs.

Some of the more minor characters are worth noting as well. Oh, I do hope Sunshine, Amy's library assistant, runs for mayor! And I just love Amy’s Aunt Lydia. There is also the mysterious and intimidating Paul Dassin who definitely does not seem to be on the up and up. 

This was such an entertaining novel. Amy comes into the present day murder investigation naturally and it never felt as if I had to suspend my disbelief to buy why she was involved. Victoria Gilbert has created a rich history for her characters, especially their ancestors. I liked that Amy’s own family was tied into it all, and not always in a favorable light. Some may be put off by the romance thread that runs throughout the story, but I did not mind it. Sometimes a side dish of romance does a mystery good. While the mystery itself was not that hard to figure out—the whodunit and why—I really enjoyed my time spent getting from the beginning to the end. I would love to spend more time with Amy.

For more information about the author and her books, visit her website. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.

© 2018, Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.