Friday, September 30, 2022

Review - Enola Holmes and the Elegant Escapade

Title:  Enola Holmes and the Elegant Escapade 
Author  Nancy Springer
Series:  Enola Holmes #8
Publisher:  Wednesday Books
Genre:   YA Historical Mystery 
Format:  Kindle and Audiobook ARC
Narrator:  Tamaryn Payne
Length:  4 hrs and 17 mins
No. of Pages:   240
Date of Publication:   September 6, 2022
My Rating:   5 Stars 

Enola Holmes, the much younger sister of Sherlock, is now living independently in London and working as a scientific perditorian (a finder of persons and things). But that is not the normal lot of young women in Victorian England. They are under the near absolute control of their nearest male relative until adulthood. Such is the case of Enola's friend, Lady Cecily Alastair. Twice before Enola has rescued Lady Cecily from unpleasant designs of her caddish father, Sir Eustace Alastair, Baronet. And when Enola is brusquely turned away at the door of the Alastair home it soons becomes apparent that Lady Cecily once again needs her help.

Affecting a bold escape, Enola takes Lady Cecily to her secret office only to be quickly found by the person hired by Lady Cecily's mother to find the missing girl—Sherlock Holmes himself. But the girl has already disappeared again, now loose on her own in the unforgiving city of London.

Even worse, Lady Cecily has a secret that few know. She has dual personalities—one, which is left-handed, is independent and competent; the other, which is right-handed is meek and mild. Now Enola must find Lady Cecily again—before one of her personalities gets her into more trouble than she can handle and before Sherlock can find her and return her to her father. Once again, for Enola, the game is afoot.


Our young Enola Holmes is quiet effective as a perditorian
, finder of lost persons and things, according to Enola herself. In fact, when I Googled the word, the Enola Holmes series is the first link! In fact, my search for an accurate definition reminded me that there is a Netflix movie, and I discovered that a second movie is coming this November, that features Enola Holmes, the much younger sister of Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes. Her brothers may have been her guardians, but Enola is quite independent and can definitely take care of herself. 

Along the way in her search for her missing mother, Enola finds herself searching for other things. And This includes solving murders when the case arises. Although her brother Sherlock is a true genius when it comes to sleuthing, Enola has her own talents. These talents were cultivated by her mother, thus leaving Enola skilled in the most remarkable of ways. 

Currently, Enola is busy while living a most unusual lifestyle in London, finding people and things while continually sharpening her skills. She gets that very opportunity when she finds that her friend Lady Cecile Alistair might be confined against her will. Acting on what is proving to be finely honed instinct, Enola decides to see what is going on in Lady Cecily’s circumstances. 

The previous books in the series had Enola doing her best to solve crimes on her own, but in this book she is paired along with her older brother Sherlock. In fact, this is one of the things about this eighth book in the series that would make it work as a standalone novel. 

While this book and series is targeted towards a younger audience, I am loving it! In fact, last year I did an extensive series review of the first seven books. You can find that series review here

Enola is a delightful character. Always a solid plot in each book, with excellent character development, this series what will no doubt appeal to both young and old.

Many thanks to Wednesday Books, Libro,fm and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


NANCY SPRINGER is the author of the nationally bestselling Enola Holmes novels, including The Case of the Missing Marquess, which was made into the hit Netflix movie, Enola Holmes. She is the author of more than 50 other books for children and adults. She has won many awards, including two Edgar Awards, and has been published in more than thirty countries. She lives in Florida.

BLOG TOUR - Snowflakes and Secrets in the Scottish Highlands


Step into the cosy Scottish village of Christmas where you’ll find plenty of secrets, romance and mulled wine! And join Merry McKenzie as she stays at her Aunt Ava’s cottage for the winter festivities to try and mend her broken heart…

Thirty-one-year-old Merry is escaping to the Scottish Highlands for Christmas. Heartbroken by the death of her father, the man who raised her single-handedly, she needs some time to heal. Hiding away at Chestnut Cottage with only her Aunt Ava’s menagerie of pets for company seems like the perfect way to spend a peaceful December. But when she arrives, Merry discovers some curious instructions from her aunt asking her to organise Secret Santa gifts for the residents of Christmas village.

Merry’s determined to try and carry out her aunt’s festive task. But on her first night in the little cottage everything goes wrong – including upsetting the handsome local vet Theo Ellis-Lee when he arrives to assist with a crazed turkey and the mischievous rabbit who’s torn apart her aunt’s gift list. Merry is completely out of her comfort zone and it doesn’t help that Theo is both infuriatingly cheerful and insanely attractive.

Merry’s plans for a quiet break are quickly thwarted as Theo starts coming by every day to check on the unruly animals, and she can’t deny he sets her pulse racing. And, one by one, the friendly locals draw her out of her shell with cosy cups of tea, warm words and laughter-filled evenings in the pub. She finds herself embracing the challenge of finding the perfect gift for each of the kind-hearted people on her list. When Theo offers to help, sparks fly between them. But when the Secret Santa project forces Merry to face her heartache, she’s not sure she’s ready for a fresh start.

At a crossroads in her life, will Merry decide to go home and hide from her problems or will she open her heart and stay in Christmas village?

A gorgeous, winter romance to lose yourself in this Christmas. Perfect for fans of Nicola May, Trisha Ashley and Debbie Macomber – and best accompanied by a hot chocolate!


Title:   Snowflakes and Secrets in the Scottish Highlands
Author:  Donna Ashcroft
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Women's Fiction; Romance
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   291
Date of Publication:   September 27, 2022
My Rating:   4 Stars

Merry McKenzie finds herself busier than she expected to be while vacationing in the Scottish Highlands. She is at her Aunt Ava's cottage and working through the grief of losing her father, Healing comes along with a bit of a different agenda than she imagined. She discovers instructions written in her aunt's hand that require Merry to become the organizer of the annual Secret Santa drive. A previous accident, one that left her in a coma, had left her life in turmoil.

With a bevy of animals, incoming gifts to be distributed, and a long list of instructions, Merry is about to be very busy. However, most of the destructions were destroyed by Chewy the rabbit, Merry knew that starting over would be full of challenges, and things just got much more difficult. Fortunately, she finds that she just might accept local vet Theo's help. It doesn't hurt that he is easy on the eyes and that the two seem to have a connection from the very stat. 

As if she doesn't have enough to do during the season she accepts the challenge of teaching a writing class to children as they write their Christmas stories. Especially due to her previous accident, Merry always felt she had been in a position to be saved. Now that she is in Christmas Village, she intends on taking control of her life, no matter how tempting it is to want to trust Theo to help her out with the presents. 

What a lovely story by Donna Ashcroft. Merry is a delightful character, the Secret Santa drive is so touching, and the relationship she forms with Theo is so very sweet. Oh, all of the animals were a treat as well! 

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

Please enjoy my YouTube video review as well -


Donna Ashcroft was born in London, England and grew up in Buckinghamshire. She went to university in Lancashire and, among other things, worked as a copywriter, buyer, waitress, secretary and marketing manager.

Donna was shortlisted for the RNA Debut Romantic Novel of the Year in 2019, has had nine books published with Bookouture and her tenth is due out in September 2022.

Donna loves a happy ending and is never happier than when she's escaping into a romance novel or movie. When she's not reading or writing she'll probably be found hoovering ... or negotiating with her two teenagers about who is doing the washing up.

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BLOG TOUR - Millstone of Doubt


Caught in the explosion of the Hammersmith Mill in London, Bow Street Runner Daniel Swann rushes to help any survivors only to find the mill’s owner dead of an apparent gunshot.

Even though the owner’s daughter, Agatha Montgomery, mourns his death, it seems there are more than a few people with motive for murder. But Daniel can’t take this investigation slow and steady. Instead, he must dig through all the suspects as quickly as he can, because the clock is ticking until his mysterious patronage–and his job as a runner–comes to an abrupt and painful end. It seems to Daniel that, like his earthly father, his heavenly Father has abandoned him to the fates.

Lady Juliette Thorndike is Agatha’s bosom friend and has the inside knowledge of the wealthy London ton to be invaluable to Daniel. She should be in a perfect position to help with the case. Still, her instructor in the art of spy craft orders her to stay out of the investigation. But circumstances intervene, dropping her into the middle of the deadly pursuit.

When a dreadful accident ends in another death on the mill floor, Daniel discovers a connection to his murder case–and to his own secret past. Now he and Juliette are in a race to find the killer before his time runs out.


Title:   Millstone of Doubt
Author:  Erika Vetsch
Series:  Thorndyke & Swann Regency
   Mysteries #2
Publisher:  Kregel Publications
Genre:   Historical Fiction
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   304
Date of Publication:   September 1, 2022
My Rating:   4 Stars

Both Daniel Swann and Lady Juliette Thorndike are experiencing some difficulties in life. Daniel is a Bow Street Runner yet it seems like his employment will soon have its last day. Meanwhile, Juliette is very concerned for her friend Agatha Montgomery as her father has apparently been shot while he was at work.

Daniel is involved because there was an explosion at the mill where Agatha's father was the owner. Moreso, because the cause of her father's death suggested that the explosion might have been an attempt to hide the murder. As Daniel and Juliette have worked well together in the past, the pair find themselves working together again. Daniel is not part of the ton, yet Juliette is. While she proves instrumental to the case at hand, one thing perplexes them both - their strong attraction to one another despite their different stations in life. Any blooming romance between the too seems forever denied.

Millstone of Doubt makes a second excellent book in this historical regency cozy mystery series. I love Daniel and Juliette together while they solve cases, and with the apparent conflict when it comes to any chance at happiness between them. For the case at hand, there seems to be at least a few suspects, making the pair having a race against time as they try to solve the murder and find out who was responsible for the explosion at the mill. Great intrigue, wonderful characters, a few surprises and a delightful ending make this book thoroughly enjoyable.

Many thanks to Kregel Publications and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

Please also enjoy my YouTube video review as well - 


Erica Vetsch is a New York Times best-selling and ACFW Carol Award–winning author. She is a transplanted Kansan now living in Minnesota with her husband, who she claims is both her total opposite and soul mate. 
Vetsch loves Jesus, history, romance, and sports. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s planning her next trip to a history museum and cheering on her Kansas Jayhawks and New Zealand All Blacks.
A self-described history geek, she has been planning her first research trip to England.
Learn more about Erica Vetsch and her books at She can also be found on Facebook (@EricaVetschAuthor), Instagram (@EricaVetsch) and Pinterest (Erica Vetsch).

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Review - The Midnight Children

Title:   The Midnight Children
Author:  Dan Gemeinhart
Publisher:  Henry Holt & Co.
Genre:   Childern's Fiction
Format:  Audiobook ARC
Narrator:  Andre Santana
Length:  9 hrs 39 min
No. of Pages:   352
Date of Publication:   August 30. 2022
My Rating:   4 Stars


An extraordinary story about a family of runaways who take up residence in a small town, and the outcast boy who finds his voice and his people.

In the dead of night, a truck arrives in Slaughterville, a small town curiously named after its windowless slaughterhouse. Seven mysterious kids with suitcases step out of the vehicle and into an abandoned home on a dead-end street, looking over their shoulders to make sure they aren't noticed.

But Ravani Foster covertly witnesses their arrival from his bedroom window. Timid and lonely, Ravani is eager to learn everything he can about his new neighbors: What secrets are they hiding? And most mysterious of all...where are the adults?

Yet amid this shadowy group of children, Ravani finds an unexpected friend in the warm and gutsy Virginia. But with this friendship comes secrets revealed—and danger. When Ravani learns of a threat to his new friends, he must fight to keep them safe, or lose the only person who has ever understood him.

Full of wonder, friendship, and mystery, The Midnight Children explores the meaning of "home," what makes a family, and what it takes to find the courage to believe in yourself.

The Midnight Children is an enjoyable middle grade book that delivers friendship, family and adventure. One night Ravani Foster sees a truckload of children emptying. There are seven in all and they are all carrying suitcases. Ravani wants to know more and he soon starts an unlikely friendship with one of them named Virginia.

It doesn't take long for the "evil villain" to begin looking for the seven children. Hopefully they can all outsmart the villain and manage to stay out of his clutches. Now, I had this book as an audiobook ARC and as I was listening to the narrator, I was completely pulled in. In fact, before I realized it, I heard the narrator say "epilogue". Yes, this book was that captivating and enjoyable. Middle Grade is still rather new to me, as is the name Dan Gemeinhart, but I do know that I will be reading more of his books in the future. 

Many thanks to Henry Holt and Co. and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Dan Gemeinhart lives in a small town smack dab in the middle of Washington state with his wife and three young daughters. He was lucky and grateful to be a teacher-librarian in an elementary school for thirteen years, where he got to share awesome books with awesome kids. He loves camping, cooking and traveling. He also plays guitar (badly) and reads (constantly). His house is always a mess. He is really pretty darn happy.

BLOG TOUR - The Child Between Us


My beautiful girl, you are my missing piece. You came into my life and changed everything, placing your warm little hand in mine, and looking up at me with your sky-blue eyes, so full of hope. Little did we know what lay ahead, but for a while at least, we had each other…

When I first met you, darling Marina, you were just five years old. You took my breath away, with your long, dark waves and pink cheeks. You needed me, and I instantly knew I’d do anything to protect you. When six years ago, my heart was shattered, I was left utterly broken – but I didn’t know just how lost I was until you filled that hole in my heart.

You quickly became the centre of my world, your sweet laugh my favourite sound. But then things started to change… I put my pain down to work stress, but when the diagnosis came through it was worse than I could ever have imagined.

Our world is about to come crashing down around us, little one, and I don’t know how to stop it. I’ve finally discovered the truth behind the betrayal that rocked me to my core all those years ago. The pain of my past could be the one thing that saves us – or tears us apart. We’re just becoming a family, Marina, should I risk everything to trust the one person who hurt me? They could be your only hope.

We only have each other… But if I don’t make it, what will happen to you?

The Child Between Us is a heart-wrenching story about an impossible choice and what it really means to be a mother. Readers who love Kate Hewitt, Jodi Picoult and Diane Chamberlain will be utterly gripped.

Title:   The Child Between Us
Author:  Alison Ragsdale
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Women's Fiction
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   309
Date of Publication:   September 28, 2022
My Rating:   5 Stars

In this heartbreaking story, Cassie is about to become guardian to her sister Isla's daughter Marina. However, she wasn't even aware that she had a niece. What is more is that Isla had not been in contact with Cassie or their mother in years. Cassie is more than willing to be there for Marina, but she also wants answers about why Isla drew away from the family. More than that, Cassie is also very much concerned about their mother Sadie and the trials she is enduring.

Make sure to have a box of tissues nearby as this story hits hard. Some serious subjects, most notably loss, but also mental illness are factored into this story. However, this is also a story of connection when it comes to what happens to Marina. This is also a story of kindness, compassion and love, even while grief weighs heavily for everyone concerned. 

There was no way to read this story without tears falling. While worrying about Marina was only natural while reading this book, readers will no doubt also be completely drawn to Cassie for what she is facing. Alison Ragsdale is gifted when it comes to writing emotional stories where the reader is pulled in to the actions and experiences of the characters. She has proved that she can make the readers think, but especially feel. This utterly compelling story comes highly recommended.

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

Please also enjoy my YouTube video review - 


A former marketing executive, originally from Edinburgh, Alison now lives near Washington D.C. with her husband and dog. She was educated in England and holds an MBA from Leicester University.

For more information on upcoming books go to





Wednesday, September 28, 2022

BLOG TOUR - The New Couple


The perfect marriage. The perfect house. The perfect secret…

As I step through the cherry-red door of my new home, I know I should feel like the luckiest woman alive. I have a handsome husband, a beautiful daughter and now the house of my dreams. And to everyone else my life looks perfect…

When the neighbours stop by to welcome us, I tell them my name is Stephanie Hamlin and, under the watchful gaze of my husband Richard, I introduce him and our curly haired little girl Poppy. I smile as wide as I can and desperately hope I can fit in to this exclusive place with its pretty communal gardens. Because I’ve risked everything to be here.

Behind closed doors I try to relax, to unwind in the huge clawfoot bath and forget about my complicated past. It’s hard being the new couple on the street when you’ve got secrets.

Because the truth is, my charming husband isn’t really my husband.

And I’m not Stephanie Hamlin…

An absolutely gripping psychological thriller that will keep you guessing until the last page. If you love Behind Closed Doors, My Lovely Wife and The Perfect Couple, you’ll be hooked.

Title:   The New Couple
Author:  Alison James
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   300    
Date of Publication:  September 27, 2022  
My Rating:   4 Stars

With a perfect marriage - not...the perfect couple - not...the perfect house. Well, one out of three is correct. Stephanie Hamlin, husband Richard and baby Poppy are about to move into a beautifully renovated house in an exclusive neighborhood. The thing is, Stephanie and Richard are not married. And Poppy is not there little girl. The manner in which this fabricated family move into the house is the mystery that goes from bad to worse in this latest book by Alison James. 

Stephanie and Richard are trying settle into the new house in a low key manner. However, they have a welcoming new neighbor named Jane Headley. Stephanie is not so appreciative of Jane noticing that they have moved in and is more than a bit rude. Therefore, Jane is then rather surprised when Stephanie ends up knocking on her door and all but pushes Poppy into her arms and asks her to babysit. Jane agrees, and ends up watching the baby a few times, but she still does not see much of Richard. 

As the story progresses, the nefarious nature behind Stephanie and Richard's activities begins to come clear. The story is full of intrigue as Stephanie, Richard and his brother create a plan, begin to follow through with it, all while not caring about any consequences that might face them. 

In this book, while Jane's suspicions grow by leaps and bounds, she pushes and pushes in order to figure things out. Meanwhile, the other characters who are not who they portend to be continue on an irreversible past. Kudos to Alison James for writing such a different story with difficult characters, lots of twists, even pacing, devastating secrets and a satisfying read. Definitely another winner for me.

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

Please enjoy my YouTube video review - 


Alison James was born in the Cotswolds but spent most of her formative years abroad. She studied languages at Oxford, then became a journalist and author, returning to university after her two children to take a law degree. After a three-year stint as a criminal paralegal, she worked as a commercial copywriter and then a TV storyliner, before coming full circle to write fiction again.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Review - 6 Ripley Avenue

Title:   6 Ripley Avenue
Author:  Noelle Holten
Publisher:  One More Chapter
Genre:   Psychological Thriller 
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   384
Date of Publication:   September 27, 2022
My Rating:   5 Stars



Jeanette is the manager of a probation hostel that houses high risk offenders released on license.

At 3am one morning, she receives a call telling her a resident has been murdered.

Her whole team, along with the eight convicted murderers, are now all suspects in a crime no one saw committed…

Noelle Holten takes a departure from her fabulous DC Maggie Jamieson series for this exciting, stand-alone thriller. 6 Ripley Avenue has all of the ingredients for a gripping novel where a murder takes place at Ripley House Approved Premises. One thing is for certain, either one of the ex-cons residing at the probation hostel or one of the staff committed the murder.

Senior Probation Officer Jeanette Macey is trying to keep things running as smoothly as possible as the police begin their investigation. They are not the only interested parties. In fact, Sloane Armstrong, freelance investigative journalist, with a focus on crime, takes a strong interest in the investigation, and stays as involved as possible. She is not the only one, as there is yet another person who has a vested interest in what is going on at Ripley House.

As this compelling story moves forward with various third person perspective from key characters, there is also the chilling first-person point of view of the killer, and their part in what is going on while the police are working on the case. With a house full of high-risk criminals, suspicion reigns king from the start. While, the hostel has upset the community already, if this case is not solved, and quickly, the doors might close indefinitely. 

I have heard it said more than once to write what you know. As a former probation officer, Noelle Holten knows her stuff. Coming from experience, her writing led credence to a well-written story that was impossible to put down. The book never once let me go as I could not wait to figure out who the killer was. With an excellent storyline, incredible pacing, a few surprise twists and a satisfying conclusion, 6 Ripley Avenue kept me on my toes as I was pulled into the story from the very start. 

Many thanks to One More Chapter and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

Please enjoy my YouTube video review as well - 


Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of risk cases as well as working in a multi agency setting. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, attending as many book festivals as she can afford and sharing the booklove via her blog.

Dead Inside – her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK is an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

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