Book Review: “In This Moment” by Gabrielle Meyer (Timeless #2)

Books with wholly unique concepts are rare treats. In This Moment by Gabrielle Meyer is the second book in her Timeless series which unites historical romance with a time crossing concept– but this one has a contemporary year setting, too! Read on for more about the book and my spoiler free review.

While this stands alone as Maggie’s complete story, I highly recommend reading book 1, When the Day Comes, to learn her mother’s story and more behind how Meyer’s time-crossing concept works.

About the Book

Maggie inherited a gift from her time-crossing parents that allows her to live three separate lives in 1861, 1941, and 2001. Each night she goes to sleep in one time period and wakes up in another. Until, that is, she turns twenty-one, when she will have to forfeit two of those lives–and everyone she knows in them–forever.

In 1861, Maggie is the daughter of an influential senator at the outbreak of the Civil War, navigating a capital full of Southern spies and wounded soldiers. In 1941, she is a Navy nurse, grappling with her knowledge of the future when she’s asked to join a hospital ship being sent to Pearl Harbor. And in 2001, she’s a brilliant young medical student, fulfilling her dream of becoming a surgeon, yet unable to use her modern skills in her other paths.

While Maggie has sworn off romance until she makes her final choice, an intriguing man tugs at her heart in each era. The mysterious British gentleman. The prickly, demanding doctor. The charming young congressman. She’s drawn to each man in different ways, only complicating the impossible decision she must make, which looms ever closer.

With so much on the line, how can Maggie choose just one life to keep and the rest to lose?

Goodreads | Amazon


In This Moment by Gabrielle Meyer has a fascinating concept + compelling heroine! I loved getting another glimpse into Meyer’s story world and, this time, 3 different significant historical eras on the brink of wars. Surprises and twists abound, and I was not quite sure how it would end up until the last few chapters, especially concerning the possible love interests.

I cannot elaborate too much on the various storylines of Maggie’s life because I don’t want to spoil some of the best surprises and constructs of the story. One aspect I can share I absolutely loved is the way the reader sees life through Maggie’s eyes. Like the best crafted stories, this insightful look at a character’s experiences allows the reader to shift perceptions as she learns, grows, triumphs, and even grieves parts of her life that change.

I had to jump on the #BookFaceFriday trend with this one!

This is a historical romance, but I feel that the romance threads are secondary to the overall personal journey Maggie undertakes. A significant part of her journey, through all of her eras, is a gained awareness that God is present and active in every circumstance, even when it’s harder to discern His role.

Maggie has three different love interests: one charming, one brooding, and one enigmatic — except I immediately liked two of them better for her. In other circumstances such a setup could feel like a love triangle (rectangle?), but I never felt that way about the writing of these characters thanks to the sensitive way it is approached and even considered in Maggie’s mind as she lives her days contemplating her different timelines. I was unsure until I was deeply into the story which was going to be favored by Maggie, and I’m quite happy with the ending and the ultimate hero — he is lovingly aware of Maggie at a selfless level the others didn’t quite reach.

If you enjoy historical romances or the occasional mind bending time travel concept, you should consider adding Gabrielle Meyer’s Timeless novels to your reading list.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for the review copy. This is my honest review.

Mini Book Review: “The Gold In These Hills” by Joanne Bischof

Today I’m sharing about a book that had been on my TBR for way too long! The Gold in These Hills is absolutely worth reading, and I’m so glad I took the time for the audiobook as it is a great experience, too. Read on for more about the book and my brief review.

About the Book

One wild and mysterious ghost town. Two second-chance love stories. And the century-old legacy that binds them together.

Upon arriving in Kenworthy, California, mail-order bride Juniper Cohen is met by the pounding of the gold mine, an untamable landscape, and her greatest surprise of all: the kind and loving man who awaits her. But when the mine proves empty of profit, and when Juniper’s husband, John, vanishes, Juniper is left to fend for herself and her young daughter in the dwindling boomtown that is now her home.

Juniper pens letters to her husband but fears she is waiting on a ghost. Perhaps worse, rumors abound claiming the man she loves could be an outlaw. Surviving in a ghost town requires trusting the kindness of a few remaining souls, including the one who can unlock the mystery of her husband’s disappearance—and Juniper’s survival depends not only upon these friends but also the strength of heart she must fight to maintain.

Present day. Trying to escape the heartache of his failed marriage, Johnny Sutherland throws himself into raising his children and restoring a hundred-year-old abandoned farmhouse in what was once known as Kenworthy, California, in the San Jacinto Mountains. While exploring its secrets he uncovers Juniper’s letters and is moved by the handwritten accounts that bear his name—and as a love story from the past touches his own world, Johnny might discover yet that hope and resilience go hand in hand.

With The Gold in These Hills, acclaimed and beloved author Joanne Bischof returns with an absorbing masterpiece of faith, perseverance, and love that changes the course of history.

Goodreads | Amazon


The Gold in These Hills is a beautiful look at understanding the past, its relevance, and its ties to now. Author Joanne Bischof does contemporary and historical stories so well, it is not surprising she writes a split time narrative with equally compelling storylines — and a bit of romance to satisfy my reader heart. The historical one is beautiful in and of itself, with Juniper its complex and endearing protagonist, but Johnny’s present day story amplifies the timeless experience of grief, resilience, and restoration — all concepts Juniper and Johnny both encounter in their own time. I particularly love the way Johnny’s perspective emphasizes the importance of honoring the past and hoping in the future.

Thank you to Netgalley for an ebook copy. I voluntarily purchased an audiobook copy for my own collection. This is my honest review.

Book Review: “The Castle Keepers” Collection by Aimie K. Runyan, J’nell Ciesielski & Rachel McMillan

Snapshot of The Castle Keepers book cover on a tablet, posed with two feet and socks for a #SockSunday IG post

Thanks for stopping by to read my review of The Castle Keepers, a collection of three novella-length historical romances by Aimie K. Runyan, J’nell Ciesielski, and Rachel McMillan all connected by generations of a single family and a Northumberland castle setting.

About the Book

Leedswick Castle has housed the Alnwick family in the English countryside for generations, despite a family curse determined to destroy their legacy and erase them from history.

1870. After a disastrous dinner at the Astor mansion forces her to flee New York in disgrace, socialite Beatrice Holbrook knows her performance in London must be a triumph. When she catches the eye of Charles Alnwick, one of the town’s most enviably-titled bachelors, she prepares to attempt a social coup and become the future Marchioness of Northridge. When tragedy and scandal strike the Alnwick family, Beatrice must assume the role of a lifetime: that of her true, brave self.

1917. Artist Elena Hamilton arrives in Northumberland determined to transform a soldier’s wounds into something beautiful. Tobias Alnwick’s parents have commissioned a lifelike mask to help their son return to his former self after battle wounds partially destroyed his face. But Elena doesn’t see a man who needs fixing—she sees a man who needn’t hide. Yet secrets from their past threaten to chase away the peace they’ve found in each other and destroy the future they’re creating.

1945. Alec Alnwick returns home from the war haunted but determined to leave death and destruction behind. With the help of Brigitta Mayr, the brilliant young psychoanalyst whose correspondence was a lifeline during his time on the Western Front, he reconstructs his family’s large estate into a rehabilitation center for similarly wounded soldiers. Now Alec’s efforts may be the only chance to redeem his family legacy—and break the curse on the Alnwick name—once and for all.

Goodreads | Amazon


The Castle Keepers is an enjoyable story collection which shares story elements and a fascinating Northumberland family castle setting. Through three different generations all affected by war (the Bhutan War, WWI, & WWII), the men of the Alnwick family battle trauma and a family curse to find their way to happiness and love with three influential, strong heroines.

1870 – The Truth Keepers by Aimie K. Runyan

This story set on the cusp of the Gilded Age features an American heiress or “Dollar Princess” seeking position and personal solace on a new continent: England. It introduces the Alnwick family well and sets up a legacy which has great influence on the subsequent stories in the collection. I like the balance of practicality and independence Beatrice finds in a match with Charles, though their early challenges are tricky and full of intrigue.

1917 – The Memory Keepers by J’nell Ciesielski

The Memory Keepers has an artist of a heroine, Elena, trying to aid in the WWI aftermath with her skills in painting masks for disfigured soldiers. Sent on a mission to the north and to assist a reclusive heir to Leedswick Castle, she instead finds Tobias Alnwick to be her match in wits and camaraderie, offering him a compassion that draws him out of his dark place and into a vibrant world. Ciesielski’s voice shines in this situation, depicting a Downton Abbey-like era with aplomb and a bit of an adventure while Elena and Tobias banter AND contend with some foreboding visitors.

1945 – The Dream Keepers by Rachel McMillan

I have two names for you: Alec and Brigitta! Alec Alnwick is just returning from WWII and dealing with all the mental strain that entails. His letters exchanged with Brigitta, a lovely, intelligent aspiring psychoanalyst, are the beginning of a relationship leading to a respite spent at his home, the castle. While Alec’s fellow soldiers gather in an effort to restore and adjust to civilian life, Brigitta’s presence is a balm to all as she offers her expertise in analysis to all — and a wonderfully deeper friendship and connection to Alec besides. In true McMillan style, this story checks all her boxes to include a friends-to-lovers romance that compliments and strengthens, music and waltzes, a Viennese element (Brigitta herself), a cat!, and a reference or two to churches :).

One of the things I love most about this whole collection is the inclusion and influence of a heroine with a different cultural background in each tale (the men of the British Alnwick family unite the stories). Beatrice is an American heiress, Elena an English citizen but her upbringing on the Continent has make her a product of a Bohemian lifestyle, and Brigitta a science-y Viennese psychoanalyst. I especially love the way each story weaves hope and romance together in a voice unique to each author. As a huge fan of J’nell and Rachel already, reading The Castle Keepers is a treat — and I now have a particularly soft spot for Sigmund the cat.

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy. This is my honest review.

Book Review: “The Broken Hearts Bakery” by Carla Laureano

Welcome to my blog and to my review of The Broken Hearts Bakery by Carla Laureano, the first installment in her new indie-released contemporary romance “Haven Ridge” series. She has self-published novellas in the past, but this is her first foray with a full length series through independent publishing.

Laureano introduces readers to this story world through a series-starter novella, The Brick House Café, which is a free ebook for her email newsletter subscribers and available in paperback. See my thoughts on this prequel here!

About the Book

Sometimes the town that broke your heart is the only place that can heal you.

When Gemma left her hometown of Haven Ridge, Colorado, she swore she’d never return. And she’s kept that promise, leaving old shadows behind and building her reputation as one of LA’s preeminent family law attorneys. But when her lifelong best friend begs Gemma to come stay with her teen stepdaughter while she’s on a business trip, she doesn’t have the heart to refuse. She’ll simply keep a low profile, do her honorary aunt duties for Taylor, and be gone before anyone notices.

But Haven Ridge seems to have a mind of its own, and before she knows it, Gemma finds herself caught up with new friends and old rivalries. When Taylor is targeted by teen bullies, Gemma does the only thing she knows how to do: ply her honorary niece with baked goods and words of affirmation. Soon her temporary lodgings are ground zero for teenage girls seeking sugar and consolation for shockingly adult problems—which the girls soon dub the Broken Hearts Bakery.

Complicating matters is an unexpected reunion with Gemma’s high school sweetheart, Stephen, who is determined to change her mind about him, the town, and the nature of love itself. Because as it turns out, her niece isn’t the only one nursing a broken heart.

Goodreads | Amazon


The Broken Hearts Bakery is a story of hope and second chances, told in Laureano’s charming voice that instantly pulls the reader into the lives of the main characters. I especially enjoy the way this second chance romance is deeply emotional and brings with it a maturity the years between have wrought in the lives of Gemma and Stephen.

Gemma’s unplanned return to her hometown brings about circumstances that make her ponder her bitterness and old wounds in a different light. Her interesting career (family law) contrasts with her roots, but it shows how Gemma treasures autonomy in a great way — an admirable aspect of her personality she holds onto even as she grows in this story. As she has some insightful interactions with Stephen, her first love, and some opportunities to indulge in her baking passion and influence her niece, she begins to find a new fit into a community that is more welcoming than she ever thought before. Stephen is a patient contrast to her strong will, and his friendly approach draws her in as he comes to a realization that he’s pined for her for YEARS! Their dynamic reminds me how much I enjoy a well-done second chance romance.

With a few hints of magic to the town of Haven Ridge, Laureano brings the southern Colorado setting (a favorite destination of mine, both in fiction and reality!)to life with a near love-letter type reverence for the mountain air and sky. She is also the queen of details as mannerisms and aspects of the characters lend an inherent relatability to this novel. More things to love: Gemma’s baking adventures (that make me want to try my hand at some eclairs), Stephen’s rustic cabin and penchant for literature, Gemma’s sister-like friendship with Liv and “niece” Taylor, and a memorable cast of secondary characters. I’m very excited to return to Haven Ridge in upcoming stories — this is definitely a series to check out, especially for fans of Becky Wade and Courtney Walsh!

“…there’s a difference between someone making a mistake and who someone actually is.”

-Chelsea (unexpectedly) in chapter 29

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy. This is my honest review.

About the Book

Carla Laureano is the two-time RITA® award-winning author of sixteen books, spanning the genres of contemporary romance and Celtic fantasy. A graduate of Pepperdine University, she worked in sales and marketing for more than a decade before leaving corporate life behind to write full-time. In 2022, she founded Sophisticated Fiction to provide editorial, critique, and coaching services to authors of all levels. She currently lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband, two sons, and an opinionated tortoiseshell cat named Willow.

Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads | Bookbub | Amazon

Book Review: “Return to Satterthwaite Court” by Mimi Matthews

My love for Mimi Matthews and her stories knows no bounds. She has catapulted to the top of my list of all-time favorite authors. She does the historical romance genre SO WELL and stands out with her Regency and Victorian depictions in a sea of other books with those settings. Her new novel that’s out today (!!!) is an indie-released story that links two of her previous novels with a new generation and a story world that’s (excitingly) set to continue on.

Return to Satterthwaite Court is the third book in her Somerset Stories series, uniting the children of the main couples of the previous two epics, The Work of Art and Gentleman Jim.

About the Book

A reckless Victorian heiress sets her sights on a dashing ex-naval lieutenant, determined to win his heart as the two of them embark on a quest to solve a decades-old mystery in USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews’s sequel to her critically acclaimed novels The Work of Art and Gentleman Jim.

Lieutenant Charles Heywood has had his fill of adventure. Battle-weary and disillusioned, he returns to England, resolved to settle down to a quiet, uneventful life on an estate of his own. But arranging to purchase the property he desires is more difficult than Charles ever imagined. The place is mired in secrets, some of which may prove deadly. If he’s going to unravel them, he’ll need the assistance of someone as daring as he is.

At only twenty, Lady Katherine Beresford has already earned a scandalous reputation. As skilled with pistols as she is on horseback, she’s never met an obstacle she can’t surmount—or a man she can’t win. That is, until she encounters the infuriatingly somber Lieutenant Heywood. But Kate refuses to be deterred by the raven-haired soldier’s strong, silent facade. After all, faint heart never won handsome gentleman.

From the wilds of rural Somersetshire to the glittering ballrooms of early-Victorian London, Charles and Kate embark on a cross-country quest to solve a decades’ old mystery. Will the greatest danger be to their hearts—or to their lives?

Goodreads | Amazon


Satterthwaite Court is truly a return to a favorite story world, now fully in the Victorian era, with a new generation stirring up adventure. It matches the adult children of beloved characters in a heart-stirring romance that unearths the past and thematically explores honor and commitment.

From the destined meet-cute involving a scrappy dog (appropriately so for the son of Philly from The Work of Art), Charles Heywood and Kate Beresford have a certain magnetic connection. It’s delightful seeing Charles’s world shaken by the prospect of an assertive, attractive female. His honorable nature is adorable and makes him appear almost grumpy, but in truth he is just reserved and careful with expressing himself. And, Kate holds her own as a forward-thinking woman who has a spark of adventure making her more suited to her country life than the high society of London. It’s enjoyable to see her wonderfully comfortable with her family (her brothers are endearing) and how her mother has passed on certain daring skills.

The whole story has nods to the previous two books, so I highly recommend reading Gentleman Jim and The Work of Art first to appreciate the entire story world. 

Thank you to the publisher for providing an early review copy. This is my honest review — and I have happily purchased a copy for my shelves!

Book Review: “Memory Lane” by Becky Wade

Photo of the paperback copy of Memory Lane by Becky Wade, displayed on the top of a shelf with a tree figurine the the background

I’m truly delighted to share my review today of author Becky Wade’s latest contemporary romance, Memory Lane, the first book in a new Sons of Scandal series. Fun fact: this is Becky’s first indie published novel! She’s currently offering a fun giveaway on her website that’s open for a few more days.

About the Book

After surviving a trauma several years back, Remy Reed relocated to a cottage on one of Maine’s most remote islands. She’s arranged her life just the way she wants it, spending her time working on her wood sculptures and soaking in the beauty of nature. It’s quiet and solitary—until the day she spots something bobbing in the ocean.

Her binoculars reveal the “something” to be a man, and he’s struggling to keep his head above water. She races out to save him and brings him into her home. He’s injured, which doesn’t detract from his handsomeness nor make him any easier to bear. He acts like a duke who’s misplaced his dukedom . . . expensive tastes, lazy charm, bossy ideas.

Remy would love nothing more than to return him to his people, but he has no recollection of his life prior to the moment she rescued him. Though she’s not interested in relationships other than the safe ones she’s already established, she begins to realize that he’s coming to depend on her.

Who is he? What happened that landed him in the Atlantic Ocean? And why is she drawn to him more and more as time goes by?

There’s no way to discover those answers except to walk beside him down memory lane.

Travel to the rocky coast of Maine for “opposites attract” banter, witty humor, a fascinating mystery, and destiny-changing love. This sweet contemporary romance kicks off Becky Wade’s new Sons of Scandal series!

*A Note from Becky: For a list of sensitive topics in Becky’s novels, visit and click the link you’ll find at the top of the “My Books” page.

Goodreads | Amazon


Becky Wade works magic with tropes, and this story is additional proof. With Memory Lane, she has taken a situation that could be completely cliche and made it original, interesting, and the furthest thing from predictable! Gosh I love the hero and heroine, and all of their adventure, journey, chemistry 😍, healing, and even a bit of a mystery they find!

film stills from Knight and Day with Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. He's explaining a "with me, without me" scenario in which she will do better with him.
a tiny moment in the banter between Remy and J makes me think of this scene from Knight and Day!

Remy is a strong person and has amazing perspective on life and, eventually, in understanding the hero and his circumstances (for the sake of keeping it spoiler free, we’ll call the hero “J”). She’s not without a growth arc, though, which I appreciate in Becky’s characters because they are always relatable emotionally or stir a deep empathy for individuality. Her past, once revealed, is heartbreaking and handled with sincerity within the story and with such tenderness by J, flummoxing Remy in the best way.

J and his search for his memories, along with a new attachment to Remy, gains a new perspective because of his ordeal. It’s fascinating to see his reassessment process for life as his old self collides with a “J 2.0”, making him seek healing and closure for part of his past and making him certain of his honor towards Remy. His personality is plain FUN, and his flirty-then-sincere combo is genuine hero material for Remy. And whew, when their romantic tension ramps up, it goes into classic Wade territory that’s tasteful yet still-so-sexy — especially that one scene where he’s the controlled experiment. I’ll say no more 😉

Through the memories and search for closure, and even the tiny bit of suspense that surrounds a mystery thread, Remy and J are remarkable in their chemistry and complimentary opposites. Author Becky Wade ties it all together with a satisfying ending, and just enough of a hint about the hero of her next book to have me eagerly waiting for publishing news.

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy. This is my honest review.

Recommended Reading: Literary Influenced Fiction

Hello friends! It has been a while since I shared a Recommended Reading post. Also, in the past, I’ve shared lists of Reading for Janeites and 10 Favorite Jane Austen-Esque Romances, so in keeping with that sentiment, I’m sharing some more books influenced by classic literature. These go beyond Austen’s influence and draw from other classic novelists, sometimes subtly or directly.

Laura’s Shadow by Allison Pittman | The Laura of the title is, in fact, Laura Ingalls Wilder of Little House fame, and the setting of the book includes De Smet and the tangential influence Laura had on a pupil, then later that child’s granddaughter.

Once Upon a Wardrobe by Patti Callahan | The wardrobe in question is that of C. S. Lewis’ Narnia chronicles, and Lewis appears as a character in this fictional story of siblings, hope, and grief.

Lost in Darkness by Michelle Griep | This story pays homage to the classic Frankenstein and Mary Shelley and tells a tale of sibling connection alongside a Regency romance.

John Eyre: A Tale of Darkness and Shadow by Mimi Matthews | As the title indicates, this is a gothic retelling of Brontë’s Jane Eyre and *spoiler alert* elements of Dracula. It flips the genders and expectations of the classic tales, telling a story of bravery, allies and romance, and the battle between light and darkness.

The Belle of Belgrave Square by Mimi Matthews | Combining elements of the fairytale Beauty and the Beast with aspects of The Blue Castle by L. M. Montgomery, this wonderful bookish tale has a swoony romance and a perfect HEA.

Bloomsbury Girls by Natalie Jenner | While I can’t pick one author that has obvious connections to this fictional story, at its center is a book store and literature in many forms plays a big role in the story. An earlier, related book by Jenner, The Jane Austen Society, has closer ties to that prominent lady.

The Curse of Morton Abbey | An updated twist on The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett with adult characters instead of young ones, this story also has some influence from Jane Eyre within its mystery elements.

Before Time Runs Out and Only Time Will Tell by Amy Matayo | Both of these are part of her “Charles and Company Romance” series, as in Charles Dickens. They combine a few time shifting plot devices that allow the characters to travel back to Dickens’ London (book 1) and to trade places in life/circumstance in present day (book 2).

Isabelle and Alexander by Rebecca Anderson | While the influence of a classic is more subtle in this romance, as a fan of North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell, I was quick to note the similarities in setting and the personality contrast of the hero and heroine.

Your turn! Do you have any favorite stories influenced by classics? Have you read any of these books or authors?

Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Books I Own in Multiple Formats

It’s another Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl!

Today’s topic is Books I Loved So Much I Had to Get a Copy for My Personal Library. I’m editing that to reflect books I have in multiple formats — digital ebook, audiobook, and print! My reasons for having these in so many formats vary, but it’s mostly so I can read the book whenever and however I want. Sometimes audiobooks are the best use of my time.

10 Books I Own in Multiple Formats

the Kindred duology by Lori Benton: Mountain Laurel and Shiloh | I greatly enjoyed these in audio form — especially the accents!

the Parish Orphans of Devon series by Mimi Matthews: The Matrimonial Advertisement, A Modest Independence, A Convenient Fiction, and The Winter Companion | A set I just *needed* in all 3 formats. I’ve loved listening to these after my initial read-through.

Love’s Reckoning by Laura Frantz | I listened to this one recently, thanks to all the feedback on another TTT post.

Provenance by Carla Laureano | Carla’s novels *always* have to be on my shelf. Plus the audio was great!

Whose Waves These Are by Amanda Dykes | A gorgeous tale, I remember reading and listening to this one a few years ago.

When Twilight Breaks by Sarah Sundin | My absolute favorite by Sundin, and I’m in love with this cover.

Which of these have you read? Do you collect multiple copies of favorite stories?

Audiobook Review: “An Hour Unspent” by Roseanna M. White

Thanks for dropping by to read my review of An Hour Unspent by Roseanna M. White, a book that wraps up her “Shadows Over England” trilogy. I have wanted to read this one for a while, and I’m so glad I finally got the audiobook copy and listened to it (mostly during drives!).

About the Book

Once London’s top thief, Barclay Pearce has turned his back on his life of crime and now uses his skills for a nation at war. But not until he rescues a clockmaker’s daughter from a mugging does he begin to wonder what his future might hold.

Evelina Manning has constantly fought for independence but she certainly never meant for it to inspire her fiancé to end the engagement and enlist in the army. When the intriguing man who saved her returns to the Manning residence to study clockwork repair with her father, she can’t help being interested. But she soon learns that nothing with Barclay Pearce is as simple as it seems.

As 1915 England plunges ever deeper into war, the work of an ingenious clockmaker may give England an unbeatable military edge—and Germany realizes it as well. Evelina’s father soon finds his whole family in danger—and it may just take a reformed thief to steal the time they need to escape it. 

Goodreads | Amazon | BookBub


The main thing to know about this book: Barclay Pearce is my new book boyfriend. 🙂

An Hour Unspent is an excellent work of historical romance for the inspirational market. It has everything I love about a great story and characters in the genre. With its early WWI timeline, plenty of intrigue and interesting things happen to Barclay Pearce on the homefront as he works as a procurator for the admiralty — a nice label for a former thief now turned honest. The heroine of the story, Evelina Manning, has an unlikely encounter with Barclay that turns into a friendship with lots of sparks.

I very much enjoyed seeing the larger cast of characters around these two, especially Barclay’s immediate family, interact and be meaningful to the story. I appreciate the deeper themes White has included, like those of loyalty, family, and sacrifice, that weave naturally through the story. Seeing Barclay find a measure of romantic love and being cared for (instead of being the caregiver) is good for the heart, as is seeing Evelina come into her own with her familial relationships and asserting her strength and capability with Barclay — who faithfully supports her.

The narrative as told by Liz Pearce in audiobook form is particularly enjoyable, especially as the accents of the characters transition through classes from a posh society tones to a fun cockney one. I recommend the other stories in this series, and the follow up connected Codebreakers series, for a full story world experience and many beloved characters.

Thank you to the publisher for the ebook copy. I purchased an audio copy. This is my honest review.

My thoughts on Shadows Over England Book 1, A Name Unknown | Book 2, A Song Unheard

Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Books to Read Soon from my TBR

It’s another Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl!

Today’s topic is a FREEBIE! I’m sharing 10 books sitting on my shelves that I want to read soon — and hoping YOU can help me decide which to read next! If you’ve read any of these, I’d love to know your favorites. Share in the comments, or vote in my Twitter polls (Poll 1, Poll 2, Poll 3) for your picks.

10 Books to Read Soon from my TBR

Love’s Reckoning by Laura Frantz | It’s the only novel of Laura’s I haven’t read!

The Mistletoe Countess by Pepper Basham | The only one of Pepper’s I need to catch up on!

Your is the Night by Amanda Dykes | It’s by Amanda… nothing else needs to be said.

Heart in the Highlands by Heidi Kimball | Isn’t this a gorgeous cover!?

Facing the Enemy by Paige Edwards | A newer release on my TBR, it sounds so intriguing!

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green | I’ve been excited about this debut novel since *before* it came out.

Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle | Highly recommended by reader friends 🙂

The Key to Love by Betsy St. Amant | Bakery + romance = something I know I’ll love!

My Stubborn Heart by Becky Wade | One of her backlist titles I need to read!

The King’s Mercy by Lori Benton | Dare I admit I haven’t read this yet?

Which of these have you read? Do we share any TBR titles in common? What’s a book that’s been on your shelf for too long?t