Blog Tour: A Strange Scottish Shore by Juliana Gray

 

  • Title:  A Strange Scottish Shore
  • Series:  Emmeline Truelove #2
  • Author:  Juliana Gray
  • Genre:  Historical Mystery; Time Travel; Fantasy
  • Pages:  400
  • Published:  September 2017 – Berkley

Description:  The acclaimed author of A Most Extraordinary Pursuit brings a dazzling voice and extraordinary plot twists to this captivating Scottish adventure…
 
Scotland, 1906. A mysterious object discovered inside an ancient castle calls Maximilian Haywood, the new Duke of Olympia, and his fellow researcher Emmeline Truelove north to the remote Orkney Islands. No stranger to the study of anachronisms in archeological digs, Haywood is nevertheless puzzled by the artifact: a suit of clothing that, according to family legend, once belonged to a selkie who rose from the sea and married the castle’s first laird.
 
But Haywood and Truelove soon realize they’re not the only ones interested in the selkie’s strange hide. When their mutual friend Lord Silverton vanishes in the night from an Edinburgh street, their quest takes a dangerous turn through time, which puts Haywood’s extraordinary talents—and Truelove’s courage—to their most breathtaking test yet.  (publisher)

My take:  Emmeline Truelove and Maximilian Haywood, Duke of Olympia, find themselves on another adventure – this time to Scotland. It involves a selkie legend, the Orkney Islands in the 14th century, and a chase like no other that could threaten Truelove’s newfound happiness. No one is more surprised than I that I thoroughly enjoy a time travel series. I love suspending all logic and belief and just go with the story. I guess it’s my kind of adventure. This novel moves from the early 20th century to the 1300s. I love the prim and proper (smart and intuitive, as well) Truelove, her handsome and clever colleague Silverton, and the rather enigmatic Max who seems to know more than he’s letting on. They’re all on the side fighting against evil, this time in the form of a vengeful, potty-mouth, 21st century thug. There’s a mystery to solve and plenty of medieval action scenes. I liked it all and look forward to whatever Juliana Gray comes up with next for Truelove, Silverton, and Haywood. Recommended to fans of time travel/fantasy.


About the author:

Beloved New York Times bestselling author Beatriz Williams is known for her beautifully wrought historical women’s fiction novels including bestsellers such as, A Hundred Summers, Tiny Little Thing and Along the Infinite Sea. Last fall, under the pseudonym Juliana Gray, fans became familiar with another side of her writing in A Most Extraordinary Pursuit, the first in a historical mystery series unlike anything she had ever written before. Now she is back with the highly anticipated follow up in the Emmeline Truelove series, A STRANGE SCOTTISH SHORE (Berkley Trade Paperback Original; September 19, 2017).


 

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Spotlight/US Giveaway: Every Anxious Wave by Mo Daviau

Every Anxious Wave (2:9)

Description

Audiobook catch up

a hundred summers

  • Title:  A Hundred Summers 
  • Author:  Beatriz Williams
  • Narrator: Kathleen McInerney
  • Genre:  Women’s Fiction; Romance
  • Published:  May 2013 – Penguin Audio
  • Length:  11 hours 35 minutes
  • Source:  Purchased

Synopsis:  Memorial Day, 1938: New York socialite Lily Dane has just returned with her family to the idyllic oceanfront community of Seaview, Rhode Island, expecting another placid summer season among the familiar traditions and friendships that sustained her after heartbreak.

That is, until Greenwalds decide to take up residence in Seaview.

Nick and Budgie Greenwald are an unwelcome specter from Lily’s past: her former best friend and her former fiancee, now recently married – an event that set off a wildfire of gossip among the elite of Seaview, who have summered together for generations. Budgie’s arrival to restore her family’s old house puts her once more in the center of the community’s social scene, and she insinuates herself back into Lily’s friendship with an overpowering talent for seduction… and an alluring acquaintance from their college days, Yankees pitcher Graham Pendleton. But the ties that bind Lily to Nick are too strong and intricate to ignore, and the two are drawn back into long-buried dreams, despite their uneasy secrets and many emotional obligations.

Under the scorching summer sun, the unexpected truth of Budgie and Nick’s marriage bubbles to the surface, and as a cataclysmic hurricane barrels unseen up the Atlantic and into New England, Lily and Nick must confront an emotional cyclone of their own, which will change their worlds forever.  (publisher)

My brief take:  Beatriz Williams’ story of wealthy people and soap-like drama was a good beach read. I love the era. It was  post-1929 crash and pre-WWII which encompassed financial difficulties, prejudice, and people ignoring much of what was happening in the rest of the world. Add in the personal issues of failed friendships, betrayal, a broken engagement and an uncomfortable summer season that brings Budgie, Nick and Lily back together and you’ve got a juicy story. I enjoyed listening to A Hundred Summers. Kathleen McInerney’s narration was top notch.

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the firebird

  • Title:  The Firebird
  • Author:  Susanna Kearsley
  • Narrator:  Katherine Kellgren
  • Genre:  Historical Fiction; Paranormal; Time Travel
  • Published:  January 2013 – Audible, Inc.
  • Length:  14 hours 39 minutes
  • Source:  Purchased

Synopsis:  Nicola Marter was born with a gift. When she touches an object, she sometimes glimpses those who have owned it before. When a woman arrives with a small wooden carving at the gallery Nicola works at, she can see the object’s history and knows that it was named after the Firebird – the mythical creature from an old Russian fable.
Compelled to know more, Nicola follows a young girl named Anna who leads her into the past on a quest through the glittering backdrops of the Jacobites and Russian courts, unearthing a tale of love, courage, and redemption.  (publisher)

My brief take:  I enjoyed this follow up (continuation) to The Winter Sea. I’m a fan of these adventures Susanna Kearsley takes us on. I rate it 4.5 stars and the fantastic narration by Katherine Kellgren moves it up to 5 stars.

I also followed the Kindle edition from time to time. An added bonus of the print book are the author’s notes at the end. Kearsley answered questions I’d had in mind while reading such as what is historically accurate and what is filled in to connect dots. I always wonder about those things while reading historical fiction. I don’t care what the answers are if the story grabs me – something that is never a problem with Kearsley’s novel. Like I mentioned, I’m a fan!

This book is part of the Slains series and I realized too late that I was reading them out of order. No matter, I have The Shadowy Horses on my shelf and look forward to reading it. Can’t wait to meet the sigh-worthy Rob from the beginning 🙂

Timeless Desire by Gwyn Cready

Title:  Timeless Desire

Author:  Gwyn Cready

Genre:  Time-travel Romance

Published:  August 2012 – Astor + Blue Editions

Synopsis:  Two years after losing her husband, overworked librarian Panna Kennedy battles to distract herself from crushing grief, while she wrestles with yet another library budget cut.  During a routine search within the library’s lower levels, Panna opens an obscure, pad-locked door and finds herself transported to the magnificent, book-filled quarters of a handsome, eighteenth-century Englishman. She soon recognizes the man as Colonel John Bridgewater, the historic English war hero whose larger-than-life statue loomed over her desk.

However, the life of the dashing Bridgewater is not at all what she imagined. He’s under house arrest for betraying England, and now looks upon her—a beautiful and unexpected half-dressed visitor—as a possible spy. Despite bad first impressions (on both sides), Bridgewater nonetheless warms to Panna, and pulls her into his escape—while both their hearts pull the other headlong into their soul-stirring secrets.

Very quickly Panna is thrown into a whirlwind of high-stakes intrigue that sweeps her from Hadrian’s Wall to a forbidding stone castle in Scotland.  And somewhere in the outland, Panna must decide if her loyalties lie with her dead husband, or with the man whose life now depends on her.

My take:  I hope you read the synopsis and that it made you want to read this book as much as I did! I really enjoyed Timeless Desire. It’s filled with adventure, conflict, humor and romance. Gwyn Cready’s heroine – Panna, short for Pandora – has come through an emotional time. As you’d expect, her husband’s illness and death took a lot out of her. It’s been a few years and she’s not sure she’ll ever be ready to get back in the dating pool. But fate has other plans for her.

Panna finds herself (see synopsis) in 1706 England and Scotland during border conflicts that pit clans against the Queen’s army. She also finds the man whose statue she has looked at every day at work for years! Or is it? And if it is will he donate a few books to Panna’s library and give their budget a boost? I loved that Panna is a librarian. It was a fun aspect to the novel.

The romance between Panna and Jamie is reminiscent of Diana Gabaldon’s Clare and Jamie of Outlander fame. But they are unique as well. Panna and Jamie have emotional hurts that have changed their lives. As they begin to trust each other and share their secrets they form a bond that could be unbreakable.

Recommended to fans of Time Travel and Romance. This is my first time reading a book by Gwyn Cready. I look forward to reading her backlist.

Disclosure:  I received an eBook for review from the publicist. I was not compensated for my review. See disclosure policy in sidebar. 

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Click Timeless Desire page for more information (eBook links, etc.)

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About the author:

Gwyn Cready is a RITA Award Winner (Best Paranormal Romance 2009) and the author of several beloved romances includingTumbling Through TimeSeducing Mr. DarcyFlirting with ForeverAching for Always and A Novel Seduction.

Highly regarded by her fans and peers, Gwyn has been called, “the master of time travel romance,” and her writing described as “sexy,” “delightfully original” and “wickedly witty.”  Timeless Desire is her latest foray into the time travel genre and men in kilts.  She still finds both eminently satisfying.

Gwyn lives in Pittsburgh with her family.

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley

Title:  The Rose Garden (audiobook)

Author:  Susanna Kearsley

Narrator:  Nicola Barber

Genre:  Historical Romance; Time Travel

Published:  October 2011 – Audible

About:  (product description) Eva Ward returns to the only place she truly belongs, the old house on the Cornish coast, seeking happiness in memories of childhood summers. There she finds mysterious voices and hidden pathways that sweep her not only into the past, but also into the arms of a man who is not of her time.

But Eva must confront her own ghosts, as well as those of long ago. As she begins to question her place in the present, she comes to realize that she too must decide where she really belongs.

My take:  I loved Susanna Kearsley’s latest historical time travel novel. Eva is grieving the recent loss of her only sibling. She goes to a favorite family vacation spot in England – Cornwall – to scatter her sister’s ashes. While there she stays with old family friends and becomes involved in helping them spruce up the house to become a tourist destination. She researches the history of the old home and learns of some former residents who may have been smugglers  – the Butler brothers. While walking on the grounds one day she sees a man who seems of another time. Turns out, Eva has turned up in the time of Daniel Butler. The story takes off from there and I was completely swept away. If you enjoy time travel novels I think you’ll like The Rose Garden.

Nicola Barber’s narration was great. I’m glad I listened to the book because the accents made the characters come alive for me.

Source:  I bought it.