- File Size: 939 KB
- Print Length: 298 pages
- Publisher: Bell Bridge Books (October 31, 2011)
- Publication Date: October 31, 2011
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B005Z5MF6M
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #729,612 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Digital List Price:||$5.99|
|Print List Price:||$15.95|
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A Regency Holiday Kindle Edition
|Length: 298 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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I've never read anything by any of these four authors so I was a bit skeptical; however I was in a mood for Christmas stories during Christmas season, so what-the-heck? I took a chance, and it paid off. If you're like me, during this busy season, I'm only good for a quick and light read and all four of these stories more than deliver. There is nothing better than an Anthology for intro to some authors that you've never read.
In the first story, COVENTRY'S CHRISTMAS by Rebecca Hagan Lee, we meet Amabel Thurston who upon her father's death is forced to seek out her guardian as her stepmother is about to remarry and have her new husband move in a home that Amy always thought of her own. She's very anxious to meet her guardian, Deverel Brookfield, eighth Marquess of Coventry and is surprised, that after a long journey to his main residence, to find the place shrouded in darkness and the Marquess gone to London. Never one to give up, our little heroine manages to track him down...to a brothel! Well, she's not aware of the fact, in the beginning, thinking it's an orphanage and requesting of a Madam that runs the place to help her find her guardian.
Devlin hates Christmas and it is well-known to his staff in all of his residences that NOTHING is to be displayed to acknowledge the season. The reasons for it are very personal and better not mentioned to him, so for a few years now Devlin indulges himself with twelve days of pure and unadulterated lust, which help him take his mind off the painful memories.
With his father's death, he not just inherited the wealth, but the responsibilities as well which in this case include Amy, his father's young ward.
This was such a cute little story of a young woman whose strength and ability to love is a wonderful compliment to the hero that has forgotten how to enjoy the simpler pleasures in life.
Second story is `STAR OF WONDER' by Lynn Kerstan and in it we meet Stella Bryar who lives in the country with a couple of servants of whom she's very protective as after her father's death, they're her only family. It's not easy for our heroine to keep up her only legacy; an old and dilapidated run down cottage, as winter approaches and the money is short. When a man appears at her door, asking after her father, she's taken aback, and because of her stepmother's cruelty and greediness, she has a very hard time trusting him, but in the end relents and offers him shelter.
Kiro Viscardi (Radanovic) is a man on a mission. He needs to find a treasure that he believes stolen from his home, but to do that, he must have this young woman's full coöperation. As he makes plans to ingratiate himself to Stella, he becomes attracted to her, and that is something he hasn't counted on.
I started off not liking the heroine at the beginning but by the end of the story, I loved her strength and courage. Kiro was also a very interesting character especially when he reveled his origins (Montenegro is still a part of Serbia which is my birth country too) and by the time they reached their HEA, I was happy as well. The story actually brought forth memories of what my country went through under the Ottoman Empire, and I love history, so this one hit a home run with me.
The third story is `A CHRISTMAS HOMECOMING' by Allison Lane and her hero is Alex Northcote who after six years in the army, returns home to a house full of debutantes for his taking-as in WIFE. The reason, for his joining the army in the first place, was his broken heart and he never expected to find the object of his pain and suffering, now employed by his mother as her companion.
Sarah is now a widow with two little daughters and she knows that a lot of things need to be explained to Alex, but will he be able to understand her after so many years have gone by? This story was so sweet and while Alex woos Sarah and her little girls, we can't help but fall in love with their HEA!
In the last story, `HOME FOR CHRISTMAS' by Alicia Rasley our heroine is Verity, a single mother who is in a need of a man to pretend, just for the Christmas Season, that he's her husband otherwise her father will never accept her illegitimate daughter Beth. You see, Verity went all out to `legitimize' her little one by inventing a husband, Captain Eric Randall, who conveniently is never around and always away on his ship.
Jason Brock has spent most of his life on one of those ships and now owns one, but there's some unfinished family business that he needs to take care of, and answering an announcement in the papers brings him to Verity's small rose Cottage in makes him feel as if he's been thrust into an adventure and mystery that is making him uncomfortable yet he willingly participates in this deception to get his own business taken care of.
I truly loved this story whose characters were strong, sweet and funny. To watch Verity and "Eric" as they pretend to be married, was such a treat, especially while they "parent" little Beth, who by the time the charade is over, is calling Jason Papa. The end of this story will leave you in tears.
So, there you have it. `A Regency Holiday' has four not so unique stories, yet all four are sweet and tender; well-developed (as much as any Anthology can be) and well written. This would be a perfect addition to your Holiday read or really, anytime read. It had a bit of everything in it; sweet and tender moments, bad stepmother and heard hearted fathers as well as some cute little ones. I recommend it whole heartily!
* I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
The first story is annoyingly religious with unlikeable characters. The hero has had a tragic Christmas (for which he now spends the holiday abed with paid companions, if you get my drift), the heroine is truly a child, and the other characters are just annoying. Just how is it that they came to love each other? Why? It's just not plausible to me. Pass.
The second story has a rather vile heroine (she tries to shove him off into the barn when he stays, and only allows him to stay in the house - locked in the attic! - because the house servants outvoted her, and she makes sure he knows it), and a silly hero. And somehow they fall in love. Right. I liked this story the least. Pass.
The third story was the only one with promise (although there was a point in the story where I had to roll my eyes), and it ends just where it feels like it should begin. I suppose that's to be expected with short stories, but it was rather disappointing. The hero and heroine are childhood sweethearts parted by circumstance, and she ended up married to an abusive man. She still bears his scars, and this was not resolved to my satisfaction. Had the story been longer, I'm sure it would have wrapped up well somehow. Alas. Decent enough, however, for what it was.
The fourth story is ridiculous. Not to mention the punctuation errors. The heroine needs someone to lie to her father for Christmas in order to convince him that she is married and her child is legitimate in order to give said child a better future, and the hero plays along to get his hands on a dagger he sold in youth that her father had managed to acquire years back. Enter purported romance. Pass.
I can't believe all the positive reviews this book has gotten. I regret having downloaded it and having read it.
This book was an absolute pass. Time to delete it from my Kindle and hope I never get curious about it again.
I finished the first story and called up my mother to make sure this book was on her reading list. In involved a lady of negotiable virtue, a bluestocking, and a marriage proposal in five languages. It's like kryptonite for me.
That story alone would have made the book worthwhile, but the other three stories were also pretty darn good. I wished for all of them to be a bit longer, which is a good sign that I was engaged in the worlds.
The story in the second novella was a bit contrived, but I forgive it for this line:
"Sometimes she'd longed for a different life, though, one with fewer sheep, closer neighbors, and friends her own age."
Don't most of us long for a life with fewer sheep?
The heroines are a bluestocking, a fierce and lonely country lady, a badly-abused jilt, and a free-spirited young mother. None of the stories has that deadly sameness to them that can make anthologies bog down so badly.
Read if: You would like a little Christmas romance cheer. You like to see romances where the heroine is not a teenager. You have a soft spot for squishy romantic guys.
Skip if: You are not in the mood for romance. You want a naif as heroine. You don't like men who love kids for their own sake.
Also read: You should just buy this one.
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