Today’s topic is “Favorite Book Settings”. I could go SO MANY directions with this topic, because setting is a very important part of story to me. A well written, immersive setting is like an armchair adventure to a place (or time) the reader has never been. I’ve decided to keep my choices to the UK and Ireland, or the British Isles as those islands are collectively known.
A Tour of the British Isles in Fiction
Five Days in Skye by Carla Laureano | Contemporary adventure and love story (with a chef!), and an exploration of the Isle of Skye. My Review
Beauty Among Ruins by J’nell Ciesielski | An estate in the idyllic Scottish Lowlands is the setting for this WWI mystery and romance. My Review
A Bound Heart by Laura Frantz | This heart-deep story begins on the Isle of Kerrera, an island in the Scottish Hebrides, during the 18th century. My Review
The London Restoration by Rachel McMillan | Historical romance that explores the architecture of the city — and of a relationship — in post-WWII London. My Review
The Winter Companion by Mimi Matthews | Historical romance set on the coast and rambling moors of Devonshire, complete with a Dartmoor pony.My Review
Just the Way You Are by Pepper Basham | A witty romance unfolds between an Appalachian single mom and an English actor, with a healthy dose of humor and a family mystery, too. My Review
The Brontë Plot by Katherine Reay | A contemporary story of self-discovery sees the heroine, Lucy, travel to England and the Brontë’s ancestral town of Haworth — with plentiful literary references! My Review
A Song Unheard by Roseanna M. White | A little suspense and beautiful music combine in this WWI-era romance set mostly in Wales. My Review
Star Rising by Janet Ferguson | This contemporary romance finds the characters in an unlikely pairing while on a tour of Ireland. Beautiful sights and comical mishaps combine with depth in this adventurous story.
As Death Draws Near by Anna Lee Huber | This enthralling historical tale finds newlywed investigators trekking from England to Dublin to solve a mystery. My Review
Did you share a TTT post this week? What is your favorite setting? Have you read any of these books?
Today’s official topic: Book Titles with Numbers In Them
In looking through my stacks of books and Goodreads shelves, I found several books with numbers in the titles, up to five! And, a couple fun number and count ones. I’ve read most of these books. Have you read any of them?
I want to go to Scotland now! If I didn’t before, after reading Five Days in Skye by Carla Laureano, I really want to see some of the castle ruins and the lochs, er lakes, there. Thanks to Carrie for the gushing review and “team James” anecdotes for influencing me to move this one up in my TBR stack. Read on for my take on the story!
Book summary: Hospitality consultant Andrea Sullivan has one last chance to snag a high-profile client or she’ll have to kiss her dreams of promotion good-bye. When she’s sent to meet Scottish celebrity chef James MacDonald on the Isle of Skye, she just wants to finish her work as efficiently as possible. Yet her client is not the opportunistic womanizer he portrays himself to be, and her attraction to him soon dredges up memories she’d rather leave buried. For James, renovating the family hotel is a fulfillment of his late father’s dreams. When his hired consultant turns out to be beautiful, intelligent, and completely unimpressed by his public persona, he makes it his mission to win her over. He just never expects to fall under her spell.
Soon, both Andrea and James must face the reality that God may have a far different purpose for their lives—and that five days in Skye will forever change their outlook on life and love.
Quote from Andrea and James in Five Days in Skye, via Pinterest. (click through to visit Carla’s Pinterest board for Five Days in Skye)
My thoughts: This book started out fun, light, and entertaining, with undeniable spark between James and Andrea. But, it unexpectedly grew into something deeper. I liked how their first (judgmental) impressions of each other match what the reader first thinks. Then, the reader gets to know then at the same time they learn about each other, revealing depth and flaws in their characters, real struggles with self-worth, faith, and second chances. If you like contemporary romances or dramas — or exploring a bit of the scenery & history Scotland — I’d definitely recommend this one!