Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres, and books like this are exactly why I love the genre! I loved the peek into the world of early aviation, and it was great to see it from a female’s view!
How I Felt:
The story is told through two timelines, one in the ’40s and one in the ’30s. I love stories that unfold this way! In Her Last Flight, there were so many details that just came together towards the end, and I loved that I wasn’t expecting so many of them! It was an amazing story!
I loved the location of this story. Every time I come across a story set in Australia, I find myself just succumbing to the lovely descriptions of the land and people. Tea Cooper did a fabulous job of placing the reader in the setting. It was written beautifully.
How I Felt:
The Woman in the Green Dressis told through two timelines. One in 1853, and one in 1919. I really enjoyed the perspective of the story from these two different times. I felt like the author did a fabulous job of transitioning between the two periods.
There was a lot I loved about this story! I loved the way the main character, Hannah, travels back in time. I loved the determination she had to make things right. It made her character so interesting, and I enjoyed her story!
Hannah Meyers has just quit her job and is looking forward to a break from some jerky co-workers. She heads to her theater practice where she holds a small role in a play. Through a set of events, she didn’t know she was putting into motion, she is propelled back in time to 1918.
Completely confused and disoriented, she stumbles around the theater, meeting two gentlemen that take pity on her. Through their kindness, she is set up in a boarding house, getting the chance to figure out what on earth has happened to her.
All she wants is to find out how to get back to her time, but when one thing after another happens, she realizes that she cares for the people she has met and that she may have a role to play in their lives.
How I Felt:
This book was so wonderful! It had time travel, which I love, but more than that, it was a wonderful story with characters that I cared about, and a wrap-up that I adored!
I love a retelling! I especially like one that comes from a story I love so much. I’ve seen Phantom of the Opera on multiple occasions, I’ve read the book multiple times, and now…my first retelling! Nocturne was a wonderful retelling that really pulled me into the story.
How I Felt:
Nocturne tells the Phantom of the Opera tale, but from the perspective of Meg Giry, a dancer and friend of Christine Daaé. I really enjoyed that this new character was added to the story. I liked her perspective and her investigative mind.
The story’s beginning had me completely pulled in. I love it when a book grabs you from the start, and this one did! Meg is lost in the depths of the Opera trying to get to dance class. I loved the way the author made me feel Meg’s emotions through this. I felt her fear and concern over being late to class, and then of being lost. Cheryl Mahoney’s writing grabbed me emotionally again and again throughout the story. She has a great way of making the reader feel what is happening!
I love that this book covered three generations of characters. I think it really helped me to understand who Christel, the main character, was. I got an excellent understanding of why her emotional state was the way it was, and I appreciated all the details that went into building the timeline.
Alan and Julian are an odd-couple type of business relationship. Julian is a wonderful man with a lovely personality, while Alan is the exact opposite. He is a cruel, ruthless man that is focused on making it to the top of the success ladder.
Julian finds out he is a father shortly before his death, and he entrusts his daughter to Alan. WHY?!?!? I know as the reader we know more than the characters, but this decision broke my heart. So, Alan ends up the caregiver for Christel, and he is terrible. Christel endures unthinkable acts *see warnings below* and her treatment emotionally hollows her out.
Christel’s early childhood experiences shape who she becomes as a woman. She must work to embrace who she is with the help of someone from her past.
How I Felt:
The plot was so interesting. I really liked how the story covered such a wide range of years. There were twists and turns that I didn’t expect throughout the book, making the story such a page-turner! Christel’s history provides so much for the reader to learn about, and as the information was revealed, I just needed to know more!
The characters were so well-written. They had a depth that stemmed from their expansive histories, as well as the care the author took to develop them throughout the story. Alan is a despicable person. I was disgusted by him throughout the entire book. I found myself blaming Julian again and again for putting Christel in this horrible situation.
What an absolutely lovely surprise this book turned out to be! I loved everything about this book. The characters, the setting, the plot, the mystery…everything.
Isabella Waverly was born into an aristocratic family that fell from grace early in life. After her mother’s death and her father’s drunken escapades, Isabella finds herself as a servant. After growing up as the one being served, this change of events is frustrating and “beneath her”. Isabella perseveres though. She is earning money that supports her father who can’t get a job and her younger sister who would go hungry without Isabella’s wages.
Isabella is a hard worker and finds she has an interest in the kitchen, soon managing to get placed there as an assistant. After her father’s death, she mentions her dreams of possibly going to America to start a restaurant, and her employer tells her she would not provide a reference. Isabella feels stuck.
Then, she witnesses a young woman get hit by an omnibus in the street. The girl hands Isabella a letter before she dies. Inside she finds an invitation for an interview as a cook…at Buckingham Palace. Isabella decides to impersonate the girl, Helen.
Above the Bay of Angels follows Isabella/Helen on her incredible journey through the kitchens of the palace. There is court intrigue, murder, love, and above all else, a fierce determination to succeed.
How I Felt:
This is my first book by the author, Rhys Bowen, but it will NOT be my last. I am so happy that I stumbled across this book on Netgalley, and after the last page, I jumped on Netgalley hoping for more!
Following the story of Helen from Lithuania to America was just wonderful. Helen is the kind of character you just need to see succeed. I loved reading about her story and her determination.
This historical fiction is based on the author’s grandmother’s experiences,but is a work of fiction. Helen (Hinde), just sixteen-years-old, lives in war-torn Lithuania where Jewish people are persecuted daily. At her brother’s 12th birthday, the army comes to take him away to force him into their ranks. After hiding him during the army’s visit, the family knows that they must leave to keep their children safe.
Helen’s father is first to go to America, working to save enough money to bring Helen over next so that she can assist in working and saving money to bring the next family member over until everyone is safely in America.
Helen travels by ship from Lithuania to America in search of a better, safer life for her and her family. She begins work in the garment section of New York and works hard to bring her siblings to America.
How I Felt:
Stitching a Life: An Immigration Story follows Helen on her journey to America and her life there. It was a beautiful story featuring a determined, hardworking main character, and her love for her family.
The Jane Austen Society is filled with conversations about Austen’s work and characters. It was an absolute delight to read about people that loved her books and enjoyed discussing them.
It’s just at the end of World War II in England. We are introduced individually to a group of people that have one thing in common, a love for Jane Austen. 🙋♂️ A village worker who is lonely and living with his mother. 🙋♂️ A widowed doctor trying to find happiness without his wife. 🙋♂️ A lawyer for the Austen estate. 🙋♂️ An auction house employee. 🙋 A pregnant war-widow. 🙋 An American movie star in the twilight of her career. 🙋 A young housekeeper with a brilliant mind. 🙋 The Heir Apparent to a Jane Austen residence
That is quite the eclectic group of people! They each for relationships with one another through completely different avenues as the book progresses. This group takes one little idea and collaborates to build it into a functioning society when it looks like one of the Austen estates could change ownership.
How I Felt:
I think that I may have made my synopsis sound a bit like a game of Clue and that is not what this book is at all…so mystery readers…sorry. The Jane Austen Society is a beautiful story of building unlikely friendships, personal growth and overcoming loss and disappointment. Each character has their own troubles that they struggle with throughout the story, and the friendships they form help them to become the person they want to be.
The Forgotten Home Child was about a historical event that I didn’t know much about. I really enjoy reading about people and situations that are new to me. The children brought from England to Canada have such heartbreaking stories, but I am so glad that I was able to read this beautifully written book.
How I Felt:
The story introduces us to Winnifred Ellis, our 98 year old main character in 2018. Her story is told through present day, 2018, as well as the historical view starting in 1936. Winnifred is moving in with her granddaughter and great-grandson and her granddaughter accidentally knocks a suitcase open, spilling some of its contents. This leads to questions about the suitcase and its contents, and Winny decides it is time to share her secrets with her family.
I loved the details in this story. Michelle Cox writes with vivid descriptions providing depth and an immersive experience into her story. It was lovely to read!
How I Felt:
The story is set in the 1930s in Chicago, Illinois, as does the rest of this series. Henrietta has just had a miscarriage and is suffering from depression. Clive has been struggling to aid and console her and feels that a new case might be able to help. This new case is more than Clive expected though and connections between a case Henrietta takes on connects to Clive’s. Together they involve a psychic, an asylum, and a lost child.
I loved the writing in this story! I felt completely sucked into the characters and the story. The mixture of action and relationships was perfect. It was wonderfully written and had a great romance subplot that I thoroughly enjoyed!
How I Felt:
The writing was beautifully done. The story felt fast-paced, but at times, there was a nice pace change that gave me enough time to settle in and understand the premise and the characters. The story was intriguing and filled will secrets and dangerous situations as well as such a lovely romance.