Book Review: The Tale of Halcyon Crane

Title: The Tale of Halcyon Crane
Author: Wendy Webb
Publisher Type: Traditional
Genre: Gothic Fiction
Star Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Heat Meter: 🌶🌶
Release Date: March 30, 2010
Recommend: Oh yes, a Must Read!

The Tale of Halcyon Crane is Wendy Webb’s debut novel. The story follows Halcyon Crane as she discovers secrets about her life and family that her father kept from her since childhood. Thirty years later she travels to the remote island of her birth to discover a past she has no memory of.

Webb weaves a tale of mystery and ghostly connections that kept me hooked throughout the novel. Her modern gothic fiction tale pays homage to gothic fiction of old, where historic eerie family estates, death, and ghostly occurrences elicit fear and foreboding. As Halcyon progresses through the story, with the help of the local attorney, the story is rife with supernatural elements and an ominous atmosphere. It was a page-turner that flowed seamlessly from one scene to the next, with richly developed characters and a mysterious setting.

I’m a fan of classic gothic fiction, and thoroughly enjoyed this evolution to modern gothic storytelling. I also love the secondary storyline that included some romantic elements that didn’t diminish but enhanced the main storyline. And bonus! I discovered a new favorite author and will be looking for more Wendy Webb books. If you haven’t read her debut novel yet, I highly recommend it!

Disclaimer: I purchased this book with my own funds. The author and/or publisher have no expectations of a positive review. My opinions are my own.

Dark Gold

Title: Dark Gold (Dark #3)
Author: Christine Feehan
Author Type: Traditional
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Star Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Heat Meter: 🌶🌶🌶🌶
Release Date: July 2000
Recommend: Yes

Dark Gold, Christine Feehan’s 3rd book in her ongoing Dark series. This one is an oldie, but quite the goody! Having read the 1st two books in the series, Dark Prince and Dark Desire, and loved them,

I continued on to the next story in the Carpathian saga and I am completely enthralled with this storyline! I know I will work my way through this 23-year-old series until I get to Feehan’s most recent publication in the Dark books, Dark Tarot, published in November of 2021.

Back to Dark Gold! The Queen of Paranormal Romance has me hook, line, and sinker. I loved this story from the first page to the last. It was a page-turner I could not put down. In this story, Alexandria Houton finds herself an avenging angel or rather Aidan Savage – a true blue Carpathian male who rescues her from the clutches of death and takes her back to his lair. Which just happens to be a posh estate on the California seaside because his world turned upside down the moment he touched her. She brought light back into his long life after centuries of living in darkness.

The story checked all my boxes. A strong female protagonist who won’t put up with his medieval sensibilities, a hunky Adonis-type male protagonist she can’t resist, a love triangle, humor, some very saucy (and extremely well written) sex scenes, and my favorite trope of all – destined mates! I highly recommend this book. It is a must-read and am looking forward to cracking open book 4, Dark Magic, because I have to know what happens next.

Until next time book lovers, I’ll catch you between the pages 🧡

Disclaimer: I purchased this book with my own funds. The author and/or publisher have no expectations of a positive review. My opinions are my own.

The Backup Plan

Book Title: The Backup Plan, Giving Up or Moving On?
Author: Elsie McArthur
Author Type: Indie
Star Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Romance Heat Meter: 🌶🌶
Release Date: January 17, 2020
Recommend: Yes

Marsaili McKenzie’s current life finds her unlucky in the pursuit of her acting career and unlucky in love. Swearing off men to give her career one last go before she throws in the towel and gets a real job is the goal, but the universe has other plans when it plants two gorgeous men in her path. One is an actor named Euan, at the Glasgow theatre where she works as a barmaid, the other is her boss, Will. Marsaili must choose between men and careers, and in the process, she just might find herself instead.

I enjoyed this book completely and gave it 5 stars. This book is wonderful for readers who enjoy Women’s Fiction and Contemporary Romance. I especially loved that the narration was written with a lyrically Scottish approach that flowed beautifully. It is the first time I have read a book narrated like this, and it was a complete joy to read. It was a great break from the typical US translations I’m used to. Her book was defiantly an escape to Scotland.

Elsie McArthur is an indie author that created an entertaining story about a thirty-something woman trying to get her life back on track. It was hard to put down once I started reading. It kept me hooked, and my need to know what would happen next propelled me through the novel. Marsaili, Will, and Euan are all well-developed characters. I got to know each of them. Marsaili frustrated me and gained my respect as the character developed. The story is easy to read and flows well through the highs and lows as Marsaili experienced them.

All and all, a delightful must-read book!

Disclaimer: I purchased this book with my own funds. The author and/or publisher have no expectations of a positive review. My opinions are my own.

Where’d You Go, Bernadette?

Happy Book Lovers Day Bookish by Nature readers!! I figured today would be a great day for a book review…and this one is a great read — Where’d You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple — The book will become a motion picture adaptation in October 2018!

201504-book-bernadette-949x1356I enjoyed this book immensely, giving it 4 STARS. It is cute and quirky. An epistolary novel written from the perspective of Bernadette’s daughter Bee. In the novel, we learn from Bee that Bernadette is a wonderfully brilliant and eccentric woman who owns up to her shortcomings and stands up to the antagonists with grace and cleverness. Quite honestly Maria Semple had me at the first page:

PART ONE

Mom Versus the Gnats

This first page had me hooked. I was thrilled that I already felt the makings for a good, lighthearted read, and I was not disappointed! Semple wove a tale of highs and lows, struggles and triumphs indicative of the idle middle class. I could see something like this happening in Anywhere, USA. If you’re looking for a good read that doesn’t take itself seriously, with high action, great humor, and a lighthearted air — then this is a great book to dive into! I highly recommend it.

I purchased this book with my own funds with no expectation of a positive review from the author and/or publisher.