Publisher: Self Published

A #25PagePreview | A STEM Fairy-tale re-telling of “Sleeping Beauty and the Cursed Code” (Book One: STEM Princess series) by Emma Jean

Posted Friday, 18 June, 2021 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: I had to take a leave of absence hosting for this touring company in [2015] whilst I worked towards finding better balance in my blogging and personal life. I returnt to hosting for Lola’s Book Tours in [2018] before having to take a small hiatus from requesting future blog tours for a second time. By [2020] as my health afflictions from 2018/19 started to recede I realised I could start to host for her authors with better confidence in being able to participate on the tours themselves. I am thankful I can continue to host and feature tours by this touring company from 2020-forward.

I received a complimentary bound manuscript ARC copy of “Sleeping Beauty and the Cursed Code” direct from the author Emma Jean in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I will admit, I saw this week going differently than it had – who would have suspected that my rescheduled tour date for this lovely blog tour (shifted from Monday to Friday) would have been further stalled out my even more intensive storms than the weekend prior? I also lost ALL internet connectivity and had to have a full system replacement (blessedly, courtesy of my provider – who even wants to contemplate what that would have cost?) but it robbed me of all the hours I have to read and blog. Not to mention, I logged on early this Friday morning to get a jump-start on my post and to see if I could make further headway than I had – only to have my computer slam me into a locked out state of updates itself! (angry smirks)

I decided to keep this as a reduced review – to where I talk about what I’ve found inside the first twenty-five pages of the story, my thoughts on the characters and how the story is being presented thus far along. I work a lot of double shifts and with the compounded angst of weather & storms (which yes is par usual for Summers in my region) it is further difficult as I’m not generally out in them whilst working — however, you could say, this year has been a year of changes and that has been a bit of a challenge in of itself to work through. I miss reading and just having downtime to listen to Spotify and/or queue up an audiobook. This week was exhausting because I didn’t have a way to unwind after work and the long shifts – whilst wondering if any trees would be spared due to the heaviness of the lightning. The kind that makes you jump even as an adult because its such a strong force of natural phenom crackling right outside your windows!

I pray all is well elsewhere where you all are reading yourselves – where weather and climate isn’t putting a wench into your plans and you’ve been able to soak into some wicked good stories! One note of awesomeness is the beautiful LARGE manuscript ARC I received for this blog tour! I always have to get used to double spaced manuscripts – as I personally don’t use that format as a writer, as it messes with my line reads and eyes a bit — however, the font was graciously large and the book itself was such a delight to have to read as I felt it was a kind transition for a work weary reader such as myself!! This is similar to why I enjoy reading Harlequin Heartwarming in large print as well — sometimes a girl needs a gentle way to ease back into her stories!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

A #25PagePreview | A STEM Fairy-tale re-telling of “Sleeping Beauty and the Cursed Code” (Book One: STEM Princess series) by Emma JeanSleeping Beauty and the Cursed Code
by Emma Jean
Source: Author via Lola's Blog Tours

Sleeping Beauty's thirteenth birthday looms on the horizon as she and her friends hole up in the cursed princess lab, determined to prove that science and technology can defeat dark magic and save the kingdom from 100 years of cursed sleep.

Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult Fiction


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 979-8510604207

Published by 4Pigs2Fly

on 26th May, 2021

Format: Bound Manuscript (ARC)

Pages: 285

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Published by: 4Pigs2Fly

Converse on Twitter via: #STEM #FairyTale
as well as #SleepingBeauty Retelling and #EmmaJean

About Emma Jean

Sleeping Beauty and the Cursed Code by Emma Jean

Emma Jean writes books for children of all ages.

She lives in Massachusetts, near the Mayflower (the one the Pilgrims sailed on... or at least a pretty good replica), with her husband, two sons and one troublesome Basset Hound.

She studied Creative Writing at Holy Cross then earned her Masters in School Counseling at Assumption College.

She spent years working in adolescent mental health both in academic and therapeutic settings. Like her reporters in the Charles McCheese series, she found time to travel the world, helping with the Katrina clean up effort in New Orleans, studying abroad in Sri Lanka, and working alongside the Peace Corps. in Armenia. She worked with the Red Cross and counseled children in some of the toughest cities in Massachusetts.

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Posted Friday, 18 June, 2021 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Coming-Of Age, Lola's Blog Tours, Science Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Young Adult Fiction

Author Interview | Diving behind the story of “Lady August” by Becky Michaels and her writerly styling for #HistRom!

Posted Monday, 7 June, 2021 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

Conversations with the Bookish badge created by Jorie in Canva

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts and fellow book bloggers from the #LadyAugust tour!

I had a lot of lovely plans for last week on Jorie Loves A Story – I was going to run a finale week for my beloved #WyrdAndWonder event I happily co-host with Imyril and Lisa every May and October. I was also planning to run this interview with Ms Michaels on Friday, which was the last day of the blog tour for Lady August. Sometimes best laid plans go a bit awry as they had for me this past week. Between the seriously serious thunderstorms, the wreck of a work week and a bit of illness thrown into it – I decided to throw the towel in on it all late Sunday night whilst stuck in my car due to another fierce storm for two hours after my shift.

Whilst there is a lot of finale celebrations happening today via #booktwt, I had already sorted out I could feature this interview today. Apparently, time is now in my favour and I can bring this conversation to you at long last! I wanted to dive into the topics and subjects being explored in the context of the novel as well as give Ms Michaels a chance to talk about her writerly style and process of creating her stories.

For those who haven’t read the novel, this is a different kind of Regency Romance as it delves more into topics which will relate to women which is why for me it felt a bit more like a Historical Women’s Fiction novel than a traditional Regency Romance. I also felt this was a work of Feminist Historical Fiction with a 21st Century sensibility attached to it as well. As although I do agree Jane Austen was a Feminist, she showed her feminism in a different way than how the romance and relationships were presented in Lady August. And, of course, none of the traditional Regencies bespoke of relationships in such an open manner of approach – as things like that might have been held in more private conversations or at least, that is what it has felt like since I’ve been reading Regencies and other #HistRoms throughout my life.

Lady August broaches a conversation I felt today’s reader would enjoy seeing explored especially since a lot of our Women’s Rights are always on the fringes of being expelled. It has been an incredible several years on that front and the battle continues to see where our rights will remain and which of our rights as women will be unceremoniously removed. It is a good novel to open a discussion with your friends and all the women in your life.

And, without further adieu – enjoy where the conversation I had with Ms Michaels took us!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Author Interview | Diving behind the story of “Lady August” by Becky Michaels and her writerly styling for #HistRom!Lady August
by Becky Michaels
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

August Summer thinks she is a nobody until a London solicitor barges into her employer’s drawing room, revealing not only is she the daughter of an earl but a wealthy heiress as well. Optimistic about a new life, she travels to her ancestral home of Linfield Hall, only for her brother to banish her to London to live with her aunt, a dowager duchess with a reputation.

When Lord Bolton asks him to fetch his illegitimate daughter, solicitor Samuel Brooks does not expect himself to become so invested in the young woman’s debut after wanting nothing to do with dinners and balls before. But as August navigates her way through this new world of the British aristocracy, Brooks is the one who is most dazzled by her unexpected charms.

Since society demands every young girl must marry, August decides she will accept nothing less than someone’s heart in exchange for possession of her newfound fortune. Forced to reexamine his negative views of love and marriage or lose August forever, Brooks soon realizes his heart is the only thing in danger of becoming possessed.

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1735140131

Also by this author: Lady August

Published by Mildred Press

on 30th March, 2021

Format: Trade Paperback

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

On the Historical & Romantic styling of Becky Michaels:

You easily fall into step with Ms Michaels reading this lovely story because of the charm and the delivery of the novel itself. She has captured the Regency well, with descriptive narrative and dialogue which alights through the pages as if we were timewinders ourselves and could easily remove ourselves back into the Regency to experience these scenes firsthand. I love whenever I find a writer who can write a Regency like this one, as it allows your mind to suspend itself into a timescape you enjoy reading! It has all the essences of the Regency, too, from the mindset of the men to the priorities of the women  – Michaels happily carts you backwards into a time where there wasn’t as much equality between men and women as much as the fact young children oft found themselves betwixt and between their parents rows! (ie. arguments)

Michaels is exploring topics and subjects not generally inclusive of a Regency Romance – such as a woman’s right to explore her sexuality even at a young age such as Lady August – there were a few content warnings attached to this novel post-receival but so far, I haven’t had any issues in the pages I’ve read this far along. It is a wonderfully Feminist driven storyline as well – as Michaels have all her female characters in the story feel more well-rounded in their abilities to choose their own paths and speak their own minds; which wasn’t always the case in the Regency.

Even when she shifts back to the male perspective in the novel, she is writing with a realism that is oft found in more contemporary novels than historical; though there have been quite a few I’ve read in the Historical market too, which re-explores sentiment and opinion on these subjects as well. It was a bit refreshing to find this kind of voice in a Historical Regency – wherein its not your traditional Regency by the constructs you’re familiar with finding inside one – but rather a more contemporary Regency by way of how this novel re-explores a look into a time period in History with the sensibility and perspective of a 21st Century writer who is tapping into previously unspoken moments in people’s lives which has merit of being explored.

-quoted from my #25PagePreview of Lady August

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Converse via: #HistFic or #HistNov as well as #HistRom
+ #LadyAugust and #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Becky Michaels

Becky Michaels

Becky Michaels is a historical romance author and self-proclaimed Anglophile. After graduating from Boston University with a degree in English, she reluctantly decided to get a day job but never stopped writing—or dreaming. THE LAND STEWARD’S DAUGHTER, a Regency romance set in 1815 England, is her debut novel. Despite the cold winters and high rent, she still lives in the Boston area with her boyfriend and cat.

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Posted Monday, 7 June, 2021 by jorielov in #HistoricalMondays, 19th Century, Author Interview, Blog Tour Host, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, the Regency era

A #WyrdAndWonder Book Review | The final installment of the Tipsy Fairy Tale trilogy “Mean Spirit” by E. Chris Garrison

Posted Saturday, 29 May, 2021 by jorielov , , , , , 0 Comments

#WyrdAndWonder Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: I have remained in contact with the author through the years as I truly love reading her stories and hearing about her current projects. This particular story has a long journey towards publication and in truth, I haven’t read an installment of this series in five years (since 2016). I have waited on pins and needles to await the fate of Skye and all the characters I came to know in the series – when Ms Chris approached me about the final chapter of the trilogy was being published last year (2020) I was overjoyed as it felt like such a good time to read it. However, I hadn’t foreseen how difficult May & September would be for my chronic migraines – whilst I also found myself pulling out of reading more than I felt attached to it throughout 2020 as a whole.

I decided to push forward my review for this final novel until Wyrd And Wonder, May 2021 as I wanted to share my thoughts with the wider community of #WyrdAndWonder especially for those who might not have seen my previous reviews of her stories or participated in @SatBookChat’s conversation with her as well during #SciFiMonth, 2020.

I received a complimentary copy of “Mean Spirit” direct from the author E. Chris Garrison in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I knew I wanted to finish my readings for #WyrdAndWonder with a few select reads which would occupy my final joys of the event this Year 4. Hence why I held off reading “Mean Spirit”, “Esme’s Gift” & “Trans Witch” as I wanted my final #weekendreads for Wyrd and Wonder to be consumed by stories I knew I wouldn’t be able to put down. I had no idea at the time when I purchased “Trans Witch” it was within the Skye-Blue-universe – somehow that felt fittingly brilliant to me. And, in regards to “Esme’s Gift” – you might want to visit my review for “Esme’s Wish” to see why I am enraptured with that series as much as I am with this one.

I had to ‘let go’ of some of the stories I had planned to read this month – as I simply ran out of the hours whilst I was able to dodge a few migraines which thankfully didn’t fully take root to derail my efforts, I still took ill for a few days this last week of May to where only rest & copious amounts of herbal tea was able to reset me. Those other stories will be coming to Jorie Loves A Story during different events from June-November – however, as this is the final weekend for Wyrd And Wonder – I simply want to say how wicked happy I am to have been blessed to read the stories I could and to spend time with writers who are elevating our joys as we adventure through the wonderment & enchanting niches of genre throughout Fantasy. It is a credit to each of them for giving us a chance to see their own visions for their worlds & to entreat into the footsteps of their characters,… wherein our heart continues to expand with the experiences we can never forget taking with them.

Today, I embarked on saying ‘goodbye’ to a series I’ve felt has been a part of my journey as a book blogger only to remind myself that its never quite a final ‘goodbye’ when it comes to stories,… they are simply awaiting the next moment we re-open the door and walk through their worlds. Here’s to each of us adventuring & discovering & celebrating everything we’ve found this fourth year of Wyrd And Wonder.

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On my connection to Ms Chris (aka E. Chris Garrison):

My path first crossed with Ms Chris through a podcast sponsored by an Indie Speculative Fiction publisher which led me to hosting blog tours which celebrated her stories. Since our first encounter with each other, we’ve developed a friendship I am blessed to have and I appreciate getting to know a bit more about an author whose not only developing a unique style in the world of Fantasy but is receptive to the thoughts readers have as they gain impression by reading the stories themselves.

I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with Ms Chris through our respective blogs, the twitterverse, the podcast world, and privately. I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time. For more information, I disclosed a bit more on my first 10 Bookish, Not Bookish Thoughts (read No.7!).

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Why I love reading the Tipsy Fairy Tales:

One of the best bits of all though were the classic ways in which the Zombies were a key part of the story and how un-Zombie-like they were as it wasn’t so much of a story of the undead but rather a story of manipulation, altered states of awareness and the transitional pursuits of someone whose bent on power and control but hasn’t the proper sense to realise how ill-fated that would make his destiny. Of all the stories I could have read involving Zombies, I am so wicked thankful it was one by Ms Chris!

The tipsy side of Skye’s life soon became a double-edged sword we all knew could turn on her as soon as she let her guard down to notice the implications of leading a life that was quite out of control by most people’s standards. There were consequences she was not prepared for even if she presumed they were possible, yet through it all, she kept moving forward, kept fighting and willing herself to see the endgame was worth the heartaches along the way. This story is paramount to her evolving story-line where she has to make better choices for her future whilst realising that sometimes the hasty choices made on the fly might not be the best advantage in the long-term especially if you burn more bridges than you can handle all at once. Relationships are built on trust and this is one cardinal flaw on Skye’s behalf – she never realised how much trust she had with those she needed most until the day arrived where her restless urgency to ‘do something’ good with her paratalents took away the one thing that anchoured her most in life. To see where she goes from here is going to be interesting as in many regards, she has to rebuild the way in which she manages her impulses whilst becoming the better half of whom she is meant to be.

There were quiet moments of repose to reflect on Skye’s history and on Phil’s where other characters that cross between Ms Chris and Mr Sullivan’s story arcs come into centre play and knowledge. They have a unique working relationship where they ‘borrow’ characters and each have their own unique spin on how those characters are presented. I spoke about this on my review for Blue Spirit in case you’d like a refresher. Ms Chris is one of those authors who has such a clarity about her writerly voice, she can insert ‘background’ on her characters and previous stories (or Mr Sullivan’s) without it sounding like the ‘insert previous information here’ variety of narrative. I applaud that, as sometimes I notice authors overwork the obvious or take you out of the current story to opt to fill in those who read series out of order.

I consider this series pro-positive for both LGBTQIA+ and Allies alike, as everything pertinent to this side of Skye’s life is told organically and shifts between being humourous and serious, depending on the nature of the exchange or the situation at hand. This is positive I think as it has a very realistic vibe attached to it. Skye is not afraid to speak her mind or to live her authentic truth, even if others are not as prepared to accept her on her terms, she still lives her life owning the truth she has within her and that’s something to applaud. She has her faults (who doesn’t?) but her strengths are her willingness to take-on challenges head-on and remain faithful to those she cares about whilst sorting out mysteries of the unexplained.

This is definitely an author to bookmark if your seeking #diverselit and stories of Equality where all characters are realistically written and openly honest about expressing their thoughts, views and feelings.

-quoted from my review of Restless Spirit

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A #WyrdAndWonder Book Review | The final installment of the Tipsy Fairy Tale trilogy “Mean Spirit” by E. Chris GarrisonMean Spirit
Subtitle: A Tipsy Fairy Tale
by Ms Chris (E. Chris Garrison) of Silly Hat Books
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Anne Rosario
Source: Direct from Author

All her fault. How did it go so wrong?

What was supposed to be a fun, exciting convention weekend has turned terribly tragic. All Skye MacLeod had to do was look pretty in a fantasy costume and keep an eye out for suspicious activity. Instead, she got cocky and took matters into her own hands. Death and destruction followed. Now Skye's burying another friend, she's broken trusts, and she isn't sure how to make things right again.

Skye's trying her best. She's quit drinking (giving up her powers in the process) and she's trying to make up for her reckless behavior and stay out of trouble, but something big is happening among the fairy Lords and Ladies of the Circle City. All the major players warn Skye to stay away. So why does she find herself swept up in the middle of things anyway? How will she regain her honor and the trust of the people around her when every choice before her seems wrong?

The exciting conclusion to the Tipsy Fairy Tales Trilogy.

Genres: Fantasy Fiction, Fairy-Tale Re-Telling, Stories of the FAE, Urban Fantasy, Genre-bender


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1953763228

Series: Tipsy Fairy Tale


Published by Silly Hat Books

on 4th August, 2020

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 234

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The Tipsy Fairy Tale Trilogy:

Blue Spirit by E. Chris GarrisonRestless Spirit by E. Chris GarrisonMean Spirit by E. Chris Garrison

Blue Spirit (book one) | see also Review

Restless Spirit (book two) | see also Review

Mean Spirit (book three)

(*) previously these were published elsewhere but all titles
by this author in all formats are published by Silly Hat Books

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Converse on Twitter: #TipsyFairyTaleSeries & #SillyHatBooks

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • #WyrdAndWonder
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Posted Saturday, 29 May, 2021 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Book Cover | Notation on Design, Book Cover | Original Illustration & Design, Book Review (non-blog tour), Dreams & Dreamscapes, Earthen Magic, Earthen Spirituality, Faeries & the Fey, Fairy Tale Fiction, Fantasy Fiction, Fantasy Romance, Folklore and Mythology, Gaming, Genre-bender, Good vs. Evil, Horror-Lite, Illustration for Books & Publishing, Indie Author, LGBTTQPlus Fiction | Non-Fiction, Parapsychological Gifts, Parapsychological Suspense, Premonition-Precognitive Visions, Science Fiction, Shapeshifters, Silly Hat Books, Speculative Fiction, Supernatural Creatures & Beings, Supernatural Fiction, Time Shift, Urban Fantasy, Urban Life, Vulgarity in Literature, Zombies

A #HistoricalMondays #25PagePreview | feat. “Lady August” by Becky Michaels

Posted Monday, 24 May, 2021 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

#HistoricalMondays blog banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours whereupon I am thankful to have been able to host such a diverse breadth of stories, authors and wonderful guest features since I became a hostess! HFVBTs is one of the very first touring companies I started working with as a 1st Year Book Blogger – uniting my love and passion with Historical Fiction and the lovely sub-genres inside which I love devouring. Whether I am reading selections from Indie Authors & publishers to Major Trade and either from mainstream or INSPY markets – I am finding myself happily residing in the Historical past each year I am a blogger.

What I have been thankful for all these years since 2013 is the beautiful blessing of discovering new areas of Historical History to explore through realistically compelling Historical narratives which put me on the front-lines of where History and human interest stories interconnect. It has also allowed me to dive deeper into the historic past and root out new decades, centuries and millenniums to explore. For this and the stories themselves which are part of the memories I cherish most as a book blogger I am grateful to be a part of the #HFVBTBlogTours blogger team.

I received a complimentary copy of “Lady August” direct from the author Becky Michaels in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

On why I elected to write a smaller review for this novel:

Earlier in May, I was able to resume full-time hours at work and since then, I’ve been working a lot of double shifts – which has altered some of my readings this May all the way round as I’ve been a bit more fatigued than I expected to be as I’ve been slowly re-adjusting to working full-time again since February. I decided to give a sampling of a preview of what my first impressions of “Lady August” were today rather than to feel guilty I’ve been reading this story a bit slower than others given the fact I’ve also have been working on most of my days off rather than to stress about trying to read this too fast. I am enjoying working again but I’ve found it to be a bit of an adjustment to re-find the balances in my life.

I still remember when this novel first arrived – the author, takes a page out of my own book in how to SURPRISE someone receiving mail! I used to be quite the correspondent when I was younger and into my twenties – I used to always include confetti with my letters and that was a special treat for me to see an author enclose a heap of confetti with their book! Such a charming surprise – the whole parcel was a delight to open and I thank Ms Michaels for giving me a bit of #bookmail JOY!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

A #HistoricalMondays #25PagePreview | feat. “Lady August” by Becky MichaelsLady August
by Becky Michaels
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

August Summer thinks she is a nobody until a London solicitor barges into her employer’s drawing room, revealing not only is she the daughter of an earl but a wealthy heiress as well. Optimistic about a new life, she travels to her ancestral home of Linfield Hall, only for her brother to banish her to London to live with her aunt, a dowager duchess with a reputation.

When Lord Bolton asks him to fetch his illegitimate daughter, solicitor Samuel Brooks does not expect himself to become so invested in the young woman’s debut after wanting nothing to do with dinners and balls before. But as August navigates her way through this new world of the British aristocracy, Brooks is the one who is most dazzled by her unexpected charms.

Since society demands every young girl must marry, August decides she will accept nothing less than someone’s heart in exchange for possession of her newfound fortune. Forced to reexamine his negative views of love and marriage or lose August forever, Brooks soon realizes his heart is the only thing in danger of becoming possessed.

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1735140131

Also by this author: Lady August

Published by Mildred Press

on 30th March, 2021

Format: Trade Paperback

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Published by: Mildred Press

Converse via: #HistFic or #HistNov as well as #HistRom
+ #LadyAugust and #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Becky Michaels

Becky Michaels

Becky Michaels is a historical romance author and self-proclaimed Anglophile. After graduating from Boston University with a degree in English, she reluctantly decided to get a day job but never stopped writing—or dreaming. THE LAND STEWARD’S DAUGHTER, a Regency romance set in 1815 England, is her debut novel. Despite the cold winters and high rent, she still lives in the Boston area with her boyfriend and cat.

Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • 2021 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge
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Posted Monday, 24 May, 2021 by jorielov in #25PagePreview, #HistoricalMondays, 19th Century, Blog Tour Host, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, the Regency era