Category: Treasure Hunt

(Not quite a) Book Review | “The Smoke Hunter” by Jacquelyn Benson one reader’s struggle with how ‘dark’ fiction can become for #YALit

Posted Friday, 5 May, 2017 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using Unsplash.com photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I am a new reviewer for Hachette Books and their imprints, starting with FaithWords which is their INSPY (Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction) imprint of releases focusing on uplifting and spiritual stories which are a delight to read whilst engaging your mind in life affirming and heart-centered stories. I found Hachette via Edelweiss at the conclusion of [2015] and have been wicked happy I can review for their imprints Grand Central Publishing, FaithWords & Center Street.

I initially received this ARC Autumn 2016, however, it was during a period of time where my computer died (in a fierce lightning storm), my migraines were frequently giving me grief and shortly thereafter, right as things felt they were going to calm down for a bit, my father had a moderate bilateral stroke (see also Post). Ergo, I had to table a lot of my readings which were in queue towards the end of 2016 and the start of 2017. I have been progressing towards resuming where I left off and finding a renewal of joy reading the stories I was not able to alight inside until now. I received this ARC for review consideration and I was wicked happy for the discovery of finding an author who set her story in Central America. My keen interest is also linked to my own adventures in the Mayan ruins of Mexico City and the Yucatan peninsula inasmuch as my former field of choice to study: Archaeology. (see also Review to a bit about why I love Mexico)

I received a complimentary ARC copy of “The Smoke Hunter” direct from the publisher Grand Central Publishing (an imprint of Hachette Book Group Inc.) in consideration for an honest review. I was not obligated to post a review but I decided to share my thoughts for my own edification as much as broach the topic of discussion about how ‘dark’ fiction is becoming. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comI positively LOVE Action & Adventure stories yet finding stories with a healthy dose of Archaeological Intrigue is not always as easy to unearth.

My wanderings inside this niche of literature has it’s roots in the Graphic Novels based off of the Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and the fictionalised novels of Indiana Jones. One in particular truly celebrated what I loved about finding inside stories like these which was Indiana and the Seven Veils. Finding stories which suit my interests with the archaeological angle and keep me on the edge of my chair whilst reading the adventure the lead character is undertaking is sometimes a bit hit or miss depending on how the story evolves.

In the recent past, I have become re-inspired to seek out these stories by my discoveries of the following stories:

  • the Cobbogoth series by Hannah L. Clark (see thread)
  • the Awesome Jones series by AshleyRose Sullivan (see thread)
  • the Jaya Jones series by Gigi Pandian (see thread)
  • the Space Opera series by Cindy Koepp (see thread)
  • the Kitty Hawk Flying Detective Agency series by Iain Reading (see thread)
  • The Legend of the Gypsy Hawk by Sally Malcolm (see also Review)
  • The Land of Look Behind by Aaron Blaylock (see also Review)
  • the first Ian Quicksilver novel, not the second (see also Review)
  • *if I said ‘see thread’ this denotes a series is still in-process

I was hoping this novel might be one I could appreciate in the similar vein of interest I had felt with Jaya Jones; as I truly do appreciate finding Lara Croft-esque characters who are wholly true to themselves but have a fierce passion for their fields of study. I love strong female leads who have a penchant for adventure and of uncovering the historical past in a way which will benefit humanity by the artifacts and discoveries they are making. I also loved The Mummy films starting Brendan Fraser where he was only one-half of the duo of archaeological explorers seeking to understand the lore and legacies of Ancient Egypt. So you can see, I have a healthy interest in reading these kinds of stories but it’s finding the stories which I can truly rally behind and say “I loved reading this!” which has become a quest of it’s own!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

(Not quite a) Book Review | “The Smoke Hunter” by Jacquelyn Benson one reader’s struggle with how ‘dark’ fiction can become for #YALitThe Smoke Hunter
Subtitle: Unlock an Ancient Mystery. Unleash an Earth-shattering secret.
by Jacquelyn Benson
Source: Direct from Publisher

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Find on Book Browse

ISBN: 9781455569069

Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Archaeological | Anthropological Historical Perspectives, Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense


Published by Grand Central Publishing

on 13th September, 2016

Format: Paperback ARC

Pages: 448

Published by: Grand Central Publishing (@GrandCentralPub)
an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc. (@HachetteBooks)

Formats Available: Hardcover, Trade Paperback, Audiobook and Ebook

Converse via: #Historical + #YoungAdult or #YALit, #AdvFict, #HistFic and #TheSmokeHunter

About Jacquelyn Benson

Jacquelyn Benson Photo Credit: Jasmin Hunter

Jacquelyn Benson has always known who she wanted to be when she grew up: Indiana Jones. But since real archaeology involves far more cataloguing pot shards and digging through muck than diving out of airplanes and battling Nazis, she decided to devote herself to shamelessly making things up instead.

Jacquelyn studied anthropology in Belfast, Northern Ireland and married a man from Dublin, New Hampshire. She wrote a thesis on paranormal investigators and spent four years living in a museum. When not writing, you may find her turning flowers into wine, herding an unruly toddler, or hiding under a blanket devouring genre fiction.

Photo Credit: Jasmin Hunter

Read More

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Posted Friday, 5 May, 2017 by jorielov in 19th Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Review (non-blog tour), Bookish Discussions, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Grand Central Publishing, Historical Fiction, Realistic Fiction, Treasure Hunt

Book Review | “The Legend of the Gypsy Hawk” (The Pirates of Ile Sainte Anne No.1) by Sally Malcolm #ChocLitSaturdays

Posted Saturday, 7 May, 2016 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

ChocLitSaturdays Banner Created by Jorie in Canva.

Why I feature #ChocLitSaturdays (book reviews & guest author features)
and created #ChocLitSaturday (the chat via @ChocLitSaturday):

I wanted to create a bit of a niche on Jorie Loves A Story to showcase romance fiction steeped in relationships, courtships, and the breadth of marriage enveloped by characters written honestly whose lives not only endear you to them but they nestle into your heart as their story is being read!

I am always seeking relationship-based romance which strikes a chord within my mind’s eye as well as my heart! I’m a romantic optimist, and I love curling into a romance where I can be swept inside the past, as history becomes lit alive in the fullness of the narrative and I can wander amongst the supporting cast observing the principal characters fall in love and sort out if they are a proper match for each other!

I love how an Indie Publisher like ChocLitUK is such a positive alternative for those of us who do not identify ourselves as girls and women who read ‘chick-lit’. I appreciate the stories which alight in my hands from ChocLit as much as I appreciate the inspirational romances I gravitate towards because there is a certain level of depth to both outlets in romance which encourage my spirits and gives me a beautiful story to absorb! Whilst sorting out how promote my book reviews on behalf of ChocLit, I coined the phrase “ChocLitSaturdays”, which is a nod to the fact my ChocLit reviews & features debut on ‘a Saturday’ but further to the point that on the ‘weekend’ we want to dip into a world wholly ideal and romantic during our hours off from the work week!

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular reviewer for ChocLitUK, where I hand select which books in either their backlist and/or current releases I would like to read next for my #ChocLitSaturdays blog feature. I received a complimentary copy of “The Legend of the Gypsy Hawk” from ChocLit in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Why Jorie loves ‘Pirate Fiction’:

You see, Pirates of the Carribbean arrived on the silver screen at precisely the right timing for me – so much so – I went to see the original film four times before it finally left theaters! I would have gone back for the fifth showing if my theater hadn’t pulled the film the morning of All Saint’s Day! Ironically, they were meant to keep it on the 1st of November but apparently the plans fell through – otherwise, I would have had the pleasure of saying I had spent four months with that blessed film! I went back for each successive sequel, completely caught up in the adventures of Captain Jack Sparrow and full of laughter as he made me smile, chuckle and laugh crazily right along with him!

Most of the appeal is how the actor Johnny Depp brought Captain Jack to life – as let’s face it, he singularly knew how to give personality and spunk to Jack! Even when he’s half off his rail and being completely irrational, there is something charming about Captain Jack! I loved the supporting cast as well – finding likeable portrayals in all of them, but especially Keira Knightley and Orlando Bloom! I went on to follow their careers and appreciated how they continued to bring unique characters to life. Depp has had such a strong array of characters since Captain Jack Sparrow, the bloke will surely never be pigeon holed by any character he’s ever played! The diversity of his choices and the ability to remain true to each of them as if no other character ever existed before them is true craftsmanship!

However, my love of pirates in fiction did not start with Captain Jack, although he does give a girl a reason to swoon after him – if only for the humour, the adventure and the crazy appeal of living in the moment whilst you try to sort out where his true alliances lie – no, my love of pirates in fiction began with Gabriel Bryne! Yes, dear hearts – it was the film Shipwrecked! I was so caught up inside this film, I wished it had spun out a sequel! The back-story alone was worth every inch of it’s cinematic experience, but it’s a clever adventure where pirates can be outwitted by teenagers!

From there, I’ve had a twinkle in my eye for pirates in fiction and every blue moon I find a new film or a new book where I find myself charmed by the pirate in question! I become invested in the adventure first and foremost, but it’s also seeing how the choices in lifestyle also motivated the character to become the rebellious rogue they are as the story progresses forward! Depending on the story, I am either rooting for the pirate (oy – you should have heard me encouraging Captain Jack in the darkened theater!) or I’m rallying behind those who are trying to overcome the pirates hold on whichever circumstances they had the upper hand upon! A good instance of this would be Swiss Family Robinson where your championing the Robinsons and their homemade assault on the pirates climbing the cliffside mountain!

I knew there would be more High Seas adventures from ChocLit because I was already convinced of their stories as soon as I read Zana Bell’s Close to the Wind! And, in regards to Captain Jack Sparrow – had no idea truly, I’d get a fifth installment on the 26th of May, 2017! Eek. Too. Wicked. for Words!

Here’s one of my first s/o tweets on behalf of the then-new Digital Release:

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Book Review | “The Legend of the Gypsy Hawk” (The Pirates of Ile Sainte Anne No.1) by Sally Malcolm #ChocLitSaturdaysThe Legend of the Gypsy Hawk
by Sally Malcolm
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Berni Stevens
Source: Direct from Publisher

Come then, and I’ll tell you the tale of the Gypsy Hawk and her wily captain – the infamous Zachary Hazard …

To Amelia Dauphin, freedom is her most prized possession and she will stop at nothing to keep it. Daughter of a Pirate King and the youngest captain in her father’s fleet, she lives on the island of Ile Sainte Anne, where pirates roam free and liberty reigns.

Zachary Hazard, captain of the Gypsy Hawk, hasn’t been seen on Ile Sainte Anne for six years but his reputation precedes him. To Zach, liberty is the open water and he has little time for the land-bound pirate island.

But when he hears that Amelia’s people could be in danger, he has no choice but to return. And what begins then is a desperate fight for freedom and a legend in the making …

A swashbuckling pirate adventure. Pirates of the Caribbean for adults with a sizzling romance at the heart!

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Book Page on World Weaver Press

ISBN: 9781781892657

Series: Pirates of Ile Sainte Anne


Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Romantic Suspense


Published by ChocLitUK

on 16th March, 2016

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 315

Published by: ChocLitUK (@ChocLituk)

Available Formats: Paperback  & E-Book

Originally published as Beyond the Far Horizon (2012)

Follow the tag for the novel to see my previous tweets on this novel’s behalf!

Converse via: #LegendOfTheGypsyHawk and #ChocLit

About Sally Malcolm

Sally Malcolm

Sally lives in London, England with her American husband and two children. She is co-founder and commissioning editor of Fandemonium Books, the licensed publisher of novels based on the American TV series Stargate SG1, Atlantis and Universe.

Sally is the author of five of the Stargate novels. She has also written four audio Stargate dramas. And recently she completed work on three episodes of the video game Stargate SG-1: Unleashed which were voiced by Stargate SG-1 stars Richard Dean Anderson, Michael Shanks, Amanda Tapping and Chris Judge.

The Legend of the Gypsy Hawk is the first in the Pirates of Ile Sainte Anne series.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo. Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2016 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
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Posted Saturday, 7 May, 2016 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 18th Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Caribbean, Caribbean History, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Indie Author, Modern British Author, Modern British Literature, Pirates and Swashbucklers, Pirates of the Caribbean series, Rebels and Rogues, Romance Fiction, Romantic Suspense, Treasure Hunt, TV Serials & Motion Pictures, Vulgarity in Literature

Blog Book Tour | “The Land of Look Behind” by Aaron Blaylock

Posted Monday, 22 February, 2016 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “The Land of Look Behind” direct from the publisher Bonneville Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

*Note: This novel came with a happy small surprise: the Marketing Manager enclosed his card within the pages of the book and I thought – how clever! On two counts: to have a calling card for a publisher I appreciate reviewing for and hosting their authors, and secondly, it makes a curiously portable ‘bookmark’! I spy the bookmarks for the novels on author blogs and social media feeds but this is as good as that for me! Plus, all the imprints at Cedar Fort are listed and it’s a nice bit of memorabilia for a book blogger who appreciates the publisher.

Why I was curious to read this one:

Mr Blaylock pitched his novel to me before I caught sight of it myself, and through his initial contact with me, I learnt a few insights about how an author reads my Review Policy. In other words, he gave me a lot of lovely compliments and he genuinely understood my selection process as a book blogger! I was quite chuffed to have seen the ‘other side’ of my blog and how what I am leaving behind in this niche of mine is being translated to both readers and authors alike. It was the kind of note your thankful to receive as it introduced you to a new author and allowed you to receive feedback on your own ‘pitch’ to authors who may be seeking a book blogger.

Sharing a portion of my response where I began by explaining why I would be open to reading an LDS focused story-line:

As you might have inferred from my previous Cedar Fort reviews, I’m a non-LDS Protestant but this doesn’t affect how I approach reading LDS Fiction or Non-Fiction as I review both styles on my blog. Quite happily so, as I am finding some of the best fiction today is coming out of Cedar Fort, not just for the discernible adult reader but for young adults and children (as reflected in my Story Vault; you’ll find many CF authors spilt through the genres).

I’m happy to make your acquaintance and I was especially surprised you’ve pitched me your book by going through my Review Request page! That spoke volumes to me on how your approaching your career and your willingness to interact with book bloggers and reviewers. It’s a compliment to you, in other words! Well done.

What drew my eye to CF in the first place was knowing I would be seeking out a wide spectrum of fiction wherein I would find stories that were writ with a gentler voice than most contemporary releases. Herein I refer to my discourse in highlighting the unnecessary need to use vulgarity in telling stories for today’s audience. I never felt I was a ‘clean fiction’ reader until I started to see such a surge of overt instances of both vulgarity and explicit violence (another no-no in my opinion) in stories for young adults and adults alike. For YA I’m quite particular about what I will accept as far as visuals, tone, voice and expression of story even moreso than adult because I believe YA should spare certain inclusions that are rampant in Adult Lit.

I personally love adventure novels, one of the last ones I’ve read was Ian Quicksilver by a fellow CF author; it re-established my desire to read more of it’s kind, as who doesn’t want to jettison off on a quest?  Previously it was Uncovering Cobbogoth that set my sails for seeking stimulating worlds where characters have to overcome an adventurous oft arduous journey.

At first glance, I love how the symbol or crest attached to your world is a watermark addition behind the overlay of text for your title. It’s a very cleverly pieced together book cover, which I will mention on my review.

Ooh! You’ve given me a time slip narrative where I can soak inside two timescapes at once? I love discovering parallel stories where there are two folds to the context of where we’re taken! Hence why I was so very appreciative of reading A Fall of Marigolds (review).

I was quite chuffed realising this novel is centered around your own personal experiences in Jamaica and how you were inspired by the country which hasn’t left your heart. I can relate to this, as I have a personal connection to Mexico and the Mayan ruins, of which I have blogged about on different reviews; giving out a bit of information about my adventures on each one. The latest was on the cookbook Daily Tortilla. (review)

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

It should be mentioned Uncovering Cobbogoth was my first blog tour with Cedar Fort and my entrance into wicked sweet adventure fiction for Young Adult Lit! It set the bar high and gave me a new standard of what I was personally seeking inasmuch as what I hoped to find in the genre as a whole. So much of what I loved about Cobbogoth has directly influenced me to understand what I’m looking for the most in other works by authors who are focusing on a young adult audience. Upcoming this year I will be a new contributor to a Steampunk blog wherein I will be reading a heap of Steampunk spilt between my new venture and Jorie Loves A Story. The ones I am hand selecting for the new blog will have a specific list of ‘must haves’ I will be disclosing at a later point in time. The rest I’ll populate on my blog but will save the majority for Sci Fi November and the Sci Fi Experience where I purposely showcase a heap of science fiction loveliness each year (since I started in 2013).

The reason I remain transparent on my blog about my choices of what I read for review and the reasons behind what goes into my process to make a selection is to help my readers understand what first draws my attention first and foremost, but also, to a lesser extent to keep an open dialogue with my readers about what keeps us curious about the books we’re reading and the authors we continuously are discovering who are attempting to inspire us to such a level of an experience we will all but beg for more of the same to continue to enlighten us in their future releases.

As I move further into 2016 and beyond, you will find my selections growing more select as I enter into my Renaissance stage of Jorie Loves A Story. Hence why when an author takes the time to reach out to me via my blog’s Contact Form, by email or directly on Twitter (or through DMs) I take stock of how well they understand my reading life and the way in which I blog my literary adventures. If your an author following a book blogger, don’t shy away from talking to us. We’ll all bookishly geeky in our own ways, why not take the chance to open up a convo with us and see where that conversation might lead?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Notation on Cover Art and the symbolism of The Land of Look Behind:

On the cover and back cover copy is an embedded symbol which follows into the story itself as it’s on the Chapter Headers (whilst alternating with a second symbol just as important and pertinent to the story-line); the way in which the publisher had it as a textural raised (although subtle) symbol is what originally stood out to me about the cover, as it’s three in one: the image of the adventurer in the cave’s opening going into the light of; the typography of the title of the novel; and this symbol that nearly looked like a watermark from afar. In person it has more of a presence and isn’t flat. As it exists in it’s own dimensional space and draws your eye into being pensive of it’s significance.

It took a bit of digging around the internet but I learnt one important bit of trivia: ‘the land of look behind’ is a direct reference to Jamaica as soldiers used to keep their advantage whilst travelling through the country best by never yielding a look-out point in any one direction. They went so far as to ride horses where both riders were never facing forward as one looked forward as ‘one looked back’. This is gives a bit of new insight to the titling of the novel as I personally did not understand the title at first glance, second look or the third reading of it when I sat to read the story outright.

Blog Book Tour | “The Land of Look Behind” by Aaron BlaylockThe Land of Look Behind
Subtitle: A Jamaican Treasure Worth Dying For
by Aaron Blaylock
Source: Direct from Publisher

Jarvis tried to collect himself.
He needed a plan of action.
Captain Willard had given him strict orders -
but what weight should he give the orders of a dead man?

Three hundred years ago, a soldier named Jarvis journeyed deep into Jamaica and discovered a land of myth, treasure, and danger. Now Gideon, who served in Jamaica as a missionary, returns armed with Jarvis's journal to follow the enigmatic clues with his best friend. But they quickly discover there are forces who would kill to keep the treasure secret.

Travel into Jamaica's treacherous cockpit country in this spine-tingling thriller.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781462117956

Also by this author: , The Unsaid

Genres: Action & Adventure Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Men's Fiction, Thriller, Time Slip and/or Time Shift, War Drama


Published by Bonneville Books

on 1st February, 2016

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 320

Published By: Bonneville Books (@BonnevilleBooks),

an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse on Twitter via: #LandOfLookBehind

About Aaron Blaylock

Aaron Blaylock

Born and raised in Arizona, Aaron is proud to call the desert home. He came of age in the suburbs of Sacramento, California and as a missionary in Jamaica, where he fell in love with the people and their culture, but he has always been drawn back to the valley of the sun.

He married his childhood crush, and the girl of his dreams, in 2001. Together they are raising four beautiful and rambunctious children. He worked as a freelance sports reporter for The Arizona Republic for nearly ten years, combining his love of writing and sports. In his storytelling he draws heavily on his love of history, adventure, his faith and his own life experiences.

*NEWSFLASH*

Don’t forget to read my *special announcement*

at the end of this review! Read More

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Posted Monday, 22 February, 2016 by jorielov in 17th Century, 21st Century, Action & Adventure Fiction, African-American Literature, Ancient Civilisation, Art, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Biblical History, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Christianity, Content Note, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Perspectives, History, Illustrations for Stories, Indie Author, Indie Book Trade, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Jamaica, Lessons from Scripture, Literature for Boys, Men's Fiction, Military Fiction, Modern Day, Mormonism, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Realistic Fiction, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Time Slip, Treasure Hunt, Warfare & Power Realignment, World Religions

Book Review | My 2nd Historical by a #ChocLit author I already love “Fool’s Gold” by Zana Bell #ChocLitSaturdays

Posted Saturday, 24 October, 2015 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

ChocLitSaturdays Banner Created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By:

I am a ChocLit reviewer who receives books of my choice in exchange for honest reviews! I received a complimentary copy of “Fool’s Gold” from ChocLit in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

On wanting to continue reading Bell’s historicals:

Being able to return to New Zealand is quite the treat – as I fell in love with this country through friendship, as I used to correspond with two girls who lived on opposite ends of the country. One appreciated city life whereas the other one grew up on a farm where her family was self-sufficient and able to live off the land. It was a wonderful exchange of letters and conversations, whilst getting to see the differences between the two girls and thus, how where they lived provided them each with a different perspective as a whole.

Whenever I can ‘visit’ a country where a friend of mine has lived (either in the present or past) it’s a special treat indeed as I haven’t had the chance to hop a plane and visit the countries in person. This is one reason postal correspondences are quite dear to me; they allow you the grace of bringing the world closer to home and by introducing you to friends who stay with you through the tides of life. I had to smile when Ms Bell mentioned appreciating writing about Kiwis because one of my friends used to hand-write her letters on Kiwi stationery.

In regards to reading my second historical by Ms Bell, the pleasure is mine! After reading Close to the Wind my mind was lit afire with a happiness of finding a writer who knew exactly what I was hoping to find inside a high seas epic romance! I loved the combination of her settings and the interactions between Georgiana and Trent, as she gave us such a welcoming depth of their character’s evolving journey.

Here is a short quote from my review which I believe explains what I’m referencing:

There is a sudden depth of knowledge ebbing out of Trent’s past life which provides a kaleidoscope of emotions; as you presumed he lived his life more of a pirate than a gent. A glimpse into his rough-hewn past reveals a vulnerable vein of humanity. It’s the choices that each have to make in successive chapters which will give way to where their fates are directing them. I personally was enthralled from the first chapter until the last — not wanting the action, the danger, or the intrigue to let up even an inch! This is definitely an enjoyable read for those who like a bit of a daring risk towards seeking freedom of its most innocent ideal! As much as it is an exposition on self-identity and the assurances we all seek to understand where we belong.

This next novel by Bell has already garnished quite a heap of attention and notoriety by the time it’s reached my hands to read. I sort of had a sense this novel might resonate with readers – I loved it from the moment I first read the synopsis because I liked how the set-up of the plot sounded. Sometimes you gather a proper sense about novels before you read them; this surely was one of those for me! I’m thankful and full of thanksgiving for being able to read it a year after it’s release.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.Book Review | My 2nd Historical by a #ChocLit author I already love “Fool’s Gold” by Zana Bell #ChocLitSaturdaysFool's Gold
by Zana Bell
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Berni Stevens
Source: Direct from Publisher

Love – is it worth its weight in gold?

It’s 1866 and the gold rush is on. Left to fend for herself in the wilds of New Zealand’s west coast, Lady Guinevere Stanhope is determined to do whatever it takes to rescue her ancestral home and restore her father’s good name.

Forced out of his native Ireland, Quinn O’Donnell dreams of striking gold. His fiercely held prejudices make him loath to help any English person, let alone a lady as haughty and obstinate as Guinevere. But when a flash flood hits, Quinn is compelled to rescue her, and their paths become entwined in this uncharted new world.
Though a most inconvenient attraction forms between them, both remain determined to pursue their dreams, whatever the cost.

Will they realise in time that all that glitters is not gold?

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781781891834

Also by this author: Close to the Wind, Guest Post by Zana Bell: Ingredients for a Ripping Tale

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Published by ChocLitUK

on 7th October 2014

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 320

Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Published by: ChocLitUK (@ChocLitUK)

Formats Available: Paperback, Audiobook and E-book

Previously I was introduced to her style of historicals by way of Close to the Wind!

Converse via: #ChocLit

About Zana Bell

Zana Bell

Zana lives in New Zealand. She describes herself as a big fan of Georgette Heyer and combines the elements of light-hearted romance with travel and adventure. Zana’s first book was a young adult time travel, published in New Zealand and Australia. Her second novel was an historical, based on the life and times of Charlotte Badger, convict, pirate and New Zealand’s first English woman immigrant. It was voted Single Titles 10 Best Books in 2008.

She is also the author of two contemporary romances from Harlequin’s Super romance line. The first won a Cataromance Reviewer’s Choice Award 2010. Close to the Wind was her debut novel with Choc Lit and the return to her love of writing historical novels. Fool’s Gold won the 2015 Koru Award for Excellence from the Romance Writers’ of New Zealand.

Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2015 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
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Posted Saturday, 24 October, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 19th Century, Adoption, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Art, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Castles & Estates, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, England, Father-Daughter Relationships, Flashbacks & Recollective Memories, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Immigrant Stories, Indie Author, Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards, Life Shift, New Zealand, Photography, Rescue & Adoption of Animals, Romance Fiction, Single Fathers, Small Towne Fiction, Treasure Hunt