Series Review: Daughters of Hampshire by Sandra Byrd

I received this book for free from Library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Series Review: Daughters of Hampshire by Sandra ByrdMist of Midnight by Sandra Byrd
Series: Daughters of Hampshire #1
Published by Howard Books on March 10, 2015
Genres: Historical, Romance, Mystery, Gothic
Pages: 374
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
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Goodreads
four-stars

In the first of a brand new series set in Victorian England, a young woman returns home from India after the death of her family to discover her identity and inheritance are challenged by the man who holds her future in his hands.

Rebecca Ravenshaw, daughter of missionaries, spent most of her life in India. Following the death of her family in the Indian Mutiny, Rebecca returns to claim her family estate in Hampshire, England. Upon her return, people are surprised to see her… and highly suspicious. Less than a year earlier, an imposter had arrived with an Indian servant and assumed not only Rebecca’s name, but her home and incomes.

That pretender died within months of her arrival; the servant fled to London as the young woman was hastily buried at midnight. The locals believe that perhaps she, Rebecca, is the real imposter. Her home and her father’s investments reverted to a distant relative, the darkly charming Captain Luke Whitfield, who quickly took over. Against her best intentions, Rebecca begins to fall in love with Luke, but she is forced to question his motives–does he love her or does he just want Headbourne House? If Luke is simply after the property, as everyone suspects, would she suffer a similar fate as the first “Rebecca”?

A captivating Gothic love story set against a backdrop of intrigue and danger, Mist of Midnight will leave you breathless.

At ALA, I picked up a historical fiction novel (A Lady in Disguise), because the premise sounded awesome and basically if a book is historical and has romance I am here for it. Then, a couple days later, when I was organizing my book haul, I realized it was not only the third book in a series but that it was also Christian. THE HORROR. I avoid Christian fiction like a plague of locusts, and I was not thrilled at this discovery. But, when I looked at the GR page for the first book, I saw that Jessie (Ageless Pages) had read and really liked it, so I decided to get past my prejudices and give Mist of Midnight a go. For the most part, I totally would not have been able to tell this book was Christian fiction if I’d picked it up randomly, and it’s quite an excellent historical novel.

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Size Doesn’t Matter (136): A Totally Awkward Love Story; The Lonely Hearts Hotel

Size Doesn’t Matter (136): A Totally Awkward Love Story; The Lonely Hearts HotelA Totally Awkward Love Story by Tom Ellen, Lucy Ivison
Published by Delacorte BFYR on May 3, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 320
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
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Goodreads
three-half-stars

For fans of The DUFF, this hilarious and true-to-teen romance is Broad City meets Judy Blume.

The summer before college, Hannah swears she’s finally going to find The One. And for five perfect minutes, Hannah does find him. He’s cute and makes her laugh like crazy. She just wishes she’d caught his name, because Toilet Boy Cinderella really lacks sex appeal.

For Sam, the summer is off to a bad start for a million reasons. But for five minutes his luck changes: in a fancy restroom painted purple like it belongs in a Bond villain hideaway, Sam falls head over heels for some strange and hilarious girl. Of course, he doesn’t know her name. With his luck, he’ll never see her again, and he’ll remain a girlfriendless, moony-eyed virgin. Forever.

But another chance meeting brings them together, only to have a chance misunderstanding drive them apart . . . and then the cycle starts all over again. Madcap mishaps, raunchy hilarity, and deep romance follow these two wherever they go. For two people so clearly destined for each other, they sure have a hell of a lot of trouble even getting together.

Despite this monstrously awful cover, I gave A Totally Awkward Love Story a chance, mostly because it showed up unsolicited at my doorstep. The cover seriously does this book a disservice. A Totally Awkward Love Story is a teen romantic comedy in the vein of movies like Can’t Hardly Wait.

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Cover Snark (222): I Capture the Snark

Welcome to Cover Snark, where the people are snarky and the covers quiver in fear. Since I don’t write many snarky book reviews here on A Reader of Fictions, Cover Snark is my outlet. If you click on the title of the book, where possible, I’ve linked to Goodreads. Clicking on the cover itself will show you the cover in a larger size, in most cases. Feel free to love covers I hate and vice versa. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Please note that you should by no means contact the author if you do not like their cover; they likely have ZERO control. Feel free to express opinions of the covers in the comments, but please do not @ an author on Twitter because of anything you’ve seen here.

Shiny and New:

1. Fragile Chaos – Amber R. Duell

Thoughts: This cover is GOLD. (I mean, okay, the fonts are a bit meh, but who’s looking at the fonts?)

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Review: Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Queens of Geek by Jen WildeQueens of Geek by Jen Wilde
Published by Swoon Reads on March 14, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 288
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads
four-half-stars

When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.

Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Jason Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.

After handfuls of fails and one success, I’ve been trying to convince myself to write off Swoon Reads. Admittedly, it hasn’t gone well. Every single book basically sounds like a great concept for shippy awesomeness, so, despite consistent disappointments, I keep accidentally requesting them. By accident. You know, accidentally on purpose. Because I have no willpower. The good news is that Swoon Reads accidentally published another good book (the other is These Vicious Masks) in Queens of Geek, which is every bit the expression of nerdy delight you hope it will be.

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Size Doesn’t Matter (135): My (Not So) Perfect Life; Maid in the King’s Court

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Size Doesn’t Matter (135): My (Not So) Perfect Life; Maid in the King’s CourtMy (Not So) Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella
Narrator: Fiona Hardingham
Length: 11 hrs, 58 mins
Published by Random House Audio on February 7, 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Humor, Romance
Format: Audiobook
Source: Publisher
AmazonThe Book DepositoryAudible
Goodreads
three-half-stars

Part love story, part workplace dramedy, part witty critique of the false judgments we make in a social-media-obsessed world, this is New York Times bestselling author Sophie Kinsella’s most timely and sharply observed novel yet.

Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie’s life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle—from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she’s trying to negotiate. The final, demeaning straw comes when Demeter makes Katie dye her roots in the office. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she’s desperate to make her dad proud.

Then, just as she’s finding her feet—not to mention a possible new romance—the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family’s farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away—until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie’s future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.

Sophie Kinsella is celebrated for her vibrant, relatable characters and her great storytelling gifts. Now she returns with all of the wit, warmth, and wisdom that are the hallmarks of her bestsellers to spin this fresh, modern story about presenting the perfect life when the reality is far from the image.

Sophie Kinsella’s books were my jam back in high school, and Finding Audrey was so good. Obviously, I was super excited to read her latest adult contemporary romance. My (Not So) Perfect Life has all the charm and humor I expect from Kinsella, but it didn’t bring the ship as strongly as usual.

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