I’ve launched a new weekly featured concentration of book reviews on Jorie Loves A Story which celebrates my love and passion for the historical past! For those of whom are regular readers and visitors to my blog, you’ll denote a dedicated passion for reading Historical Fiction (and all the lovely segues of thematic therein) – I am a time traveller of the historical past every chance I get to disappear into a new era and/or century of exploration. There isn’t a time period I haven’t enjoyed ruminating over since  and there are a heap of lovely timescapes I’ve yet to encounter.
This feature was inspired by the stories I’ve read, the stories I’ve yet to experience and the beauty of feeling interconnected to History through the representation of the past through the narratives being writ by today’s Historical Fiction authors. It is to those authors I owe a debt of gratitude for enlightening my bookish mind and my readerly heart with realistic characters, illuminating portals of living history and a purposeful intent on giving each of us a strong representation of ‘life’ which should never become dismissed, forgotten or erased.
I am began this feature with the sequel to a beloved historical novel I first read in  – it was one of the first ARCs I received and it was the first year I was a book blogger though it was through a connection outside my life as a blogger. I celebrated K.B. Laugheed’s literature to kick-off this feature and hopefully will inspire my followers to take this new weekly journey with me into the stories which are beckoning to read their narrative depths and find the words in which to express the thoughts I experienced as I read.
Acquired Book By: I have been hosting blog tours with Cedar Fort Publishing and Media for several years now, wherein their new blog tour publicist (Ms Sydney Anderson) also runs her own publicity touring company: Singing Librarian Book Tours (or SLB Tours for short!). I happily joined her team of book bloggers as a hostess in late Spring, 2018 wherein my first tours with her as a hostess began Summer, 2018. I appreciate reading INSPY literature and was happy to find these are most of the stories she is showcasing through SLB Tours! Most of her authors are published through Cedar Fort, though she does work with authors who are either Self-Published or Indie published through different publishers as well.
There is a bit of a long gap between when I first received these novels for review consideration and when I am actually reading them for review. I cannot remember exactly what took me away from reading them – however, I have a suspicion it was due to migraines and health afflictions as throughout  I had ten months of health issues and severe bouts of high frequency of migraines to battle through – whilst  has gone better in that regard, I have still had issues dealing with migraines despite the fact this year has had a more limited frequency of them compared to last year. When I learnt this author was going on a blog tour for the fourth novel in the series – I knew this was a second chance to redeem myself and properly bring the series to Jorie Loves A Story. Therefore, I am reading all four novels and reviewing them within the week of the blog tour.
I received a complimentary copy of “The Merry Lives of Spinsters” direct from the author Rebecca Connolly in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.
The reasons why this particular series of Historical Romance (ie. #HistRom) charmed me:
IF you’ve been visiting with me for awhile now, you’ve noticed a particular appreciation for Historical Fiction & the lovely niche of Historical Romance floating into my archives here at Jorie Loves A Story! This is because I was charmed by the Historical past eons ago in childhood wherein I first picked up my very first #HistRom round the age of eight or nine – the exact year alters depending on which day I remember gathering those Victorian & Regency Christmas novella anthologies! Those gentle stories of yesteryear centred inside two eras of British History I fell head over heels in love with at *first sight!* became the moment where my bookish heart could not get enough Historical Romances in my life!
I believe Historical Romances should keep in mind the people in power, the situations of the world during the specific time period being explored and of course, keeping mindful of living persons whilst having the internal time-line of the story altered in scope against the known one in History. Some writers alter historical time for literary time which is generally alright for me if it is done in such a way to be believable within their story.
When it comes to Historical Romance, I am not reading it strictly to learn about ‘history’ per se but rather want to feel caught in the joy of the relationship being built against the historical backdrop it is placed. Which tracks well with the choices I make in which Historical Romance authors draw my eye towards their works of literature! In this particular instance, what drew me into a curiosity about the Spinster Chronicles is the curious point of entrance into the women whose lives are at the centre of the series! It is a unique perspective but also an interesting premise – of how thread a series out of a particular set of circumstances and yet, leaving the door ajar for these women to find their happier-ever-afters as well!
Last Autumn, I had the pleasure of joy learning more about the writer’s (Ms Connolly’s) writing process and a few insights into her series (the Spinster Chronicles) when I shared my interview which was featured during the “Spinster and I” blog tour. This Autumn, I am happily reading the series which inspired the conversation – the stories which have charmed me from afar and of which I was happily soaking inside as the Regency is one of my top favourite #HistRom settings to settle inside!
May your #AutumnReads be as excitingly awesome as mine this year!
The Merry Lives of Spinsters
Subtitle: How do you solve a problem like a spinster? | A Spinster Chronicles Romance
by Rebecca Connolly
Source: Direct from Author
Spinster is as Spinster does...
Georgina Allen is a spinster and everybody knows it. She also happens to be one of the writers for the Spinster Chronicles, and everyday knows that as well. She's accepted her lot in life, and, along with the other spinsters in her circle, takes great pride in the articles she's writes and the influence she has. Then Captain Anthony Sterling infiltrates their group, and her life, and Georgie impossibly begins to hope once more.
Tony Sterling had no idea what to expect when he agreed to break up the Spinsters for his cousin, but he certainly did not expect Georgie Allen. From the very first meeting, she upends everything he thought a spinster would be, and her beauty and wit keeps him on edge in thrilling ways. The more he gets to know the Spinsters, the less he wants to break them up. And the more he wants Georgie in his life. Permanently.
Places to find the book:
Borrow from a Public Library
Add to LibraryThing
Also by this author: Author Interview Rebecca Connolly (Spinster Chronicles), My Fair Spinster
Series: Spinster Chronicles
Also in this series: My Fair Spinster
Genres: Historical Fiction, Feminist Historical Fiction, Historical Women's Fiction, Historical Romance, Sweet Romance
Published by Phase Publishing
on 1st May, 2018
Format: Trade Paperback
Reflections from My Fair Spinster, Book Four:
I read the fourth novel concurrently to reading the first due to the blog tour – it is also why some of my reflections on behalf of Grace co-merge between the two reviews.
At the heart of the Spinster Chronicles, there is an undercurrent theme which runs through all the stories – friendship alongside the love and concern for your fellow peers of whom you might not have realised would become your best mates through serendipitous first meetings. I love how Connolly evokes us to take a close look at her characters – through their associations, their personal friendships and how they understand their own duties within their given families. She also has the knack for showing the ‘other side’ of the Regency – the roguish rakes and the men of whom think they’re every woman’s gift to be unwrapped. She does this quite cleverly against the main backdrop of showing honourable gentleman who may or may not realise how ready they are to tackle marriage and a life with a wife who has taken them by charm, wit and a sophisticated level of independence.
Interlinking this novel with the first was a good turn of surprises, as throughout the series you get so dearly attached to previous characters, you want to seem them continue to ‘step forward’ into future installments. Anchouring Aubrey to Sterling (ie. Georgie’s husband) also gave a unique perspective on why Sterling and Georgie make such a winsome match themselves; as they truly always shared much more in common with each other than they first realised, though the evidence was there it is more present to be observed when you see how Sterling himself fathered his mates as much as Georgie attempted to mother hers. They were each the unexpected hero who looked out for others and tried to look out for themselves in the process and that is one of the most admirable traits within the Spinster Chronicles – don’t just own your individual truths and the path your life is taking but do something with your hours outside of your own endeavours, too.
Connolly has a champion way of enticing us into her plots – just when we think we understand the pattern or direction a particular installment is going to take, she re-knits us close to her heroine and hero, giving us a measured joy in carting off after them to see what shall unite them further together. In this story, what is truly wickedly engaging is how indifferent Aubrey is to the scheme he is employed to undertake and how willingly Grace is attempting to thwart her father’s plans. They were quite literally thrown back together again and that in of itself was the brilliant stroke of luck Connolly could have given them!
-quoted from my review of My Fair Spinster
The Spinster Chronicles:
The Merry Lives of Spinsters (book one) – Georgie
The Spinster & I (book two) – Prue
Spinster & Spice (book three) – Izzy
My Fair Spinster (book four) – Grace
(see also my review)
Published By: Phase Publishing (@PhasePubLLC)
Formats Available: Paperback and Ebook
Converse via: #SpinsterChronicles, #Regency and #HistRom
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: