To Disguise the Truth
by Jen Turano
I waited far too long to finish this series, but I am so glad that I finally got around to it. Eunice’s story was just as intriguing as it promised to be. With a wide variety of settings, action, suspense, and an enemy-to-lovers trope, it proved a page-turning (or sit in my car an extra few minutes inducing) read. I definitely recommend it for fans of Gilded Age stories, detective-type stories, romance, and heroines who stand on their own.
Genre: Historical Romance, Gilded Age
When a man arrives at the Bleecker Street Inquiry Agency, anxious to hire them to find a missing heiress, Eunice Holbrooke realizes her past has finally caught up with her . . . and that she may no longer be able to hide under the disguise that has kept her safe for so long.
Arthur Livingston’s goal in life is to make his mark on the world as a mining industrialist, but after the man who could help him achieve his goal is murdered, Arthur feels compelled to seek justice for the family–but he’s left with more questions than answers after the eccentric Bleecker Street Inquiry Agency refuses to take on his case.
Desperate to conceal her real identity and avoid the irritatingly handsome Arthur, Eunice takes on a different case that requires her to go deep undercover and entangles her in one troublesome situation after another. When other secrets come to light, Eunice has no choice but to confront her past, hopeful that it will set her free but knowing it could very well place her life–and the lives of those she loves–in jeopardy.
Author Website: https://jenturano.com/
Purchase Link: Amazon | Baker Book House | Barnes & Noble | Christianbook
What is the most recent book you’ve read? What did you like about it? Who would you recommend it to?
It’s time for another month of the Unlocking the Past Reading Challenge: Unlock an Adventure. I’m so excited to join you on an adventure this year with guest reviews from our reading challenge participants. If you want to submit a review for upcoming months, feel free to sign up for a month here and use the Google form to submit your review. As my time has become too limited to do a suggestions post each month, I encourage you to jump over to the Unlocking the Past Reading Challenge page and ask for suggestions from there or from any of a number of amazing reader groups like Avid Readers of Christian Fiction or check out the Inspirational Historical Fiction Index.
*The list of prizes available from my prize shelf can be found here.*
July’s Theme: Heroines in Unusual Professions for Their Time
August’s Theme: Bounty Hunter
To Write a Wrong
by Jen Turano
Review by: Crystal Caudill
Jen Turano never fails to be witty, entertaining, and exciting. To Write a Wrong was such a fun story with its dime novel heroine writing during an era when female mystery writers were not accepted. With the hero also a mystery writer and her competitor at that, this story is filled with laughs, romantic tension, and even a murder case. I’d probably call her style light and comedic romantic suspense. How can a book be both comedic and suspenseful? Turano just manages to pull it off with moments of concern for the protagonists and a constant trying to figure out who is the “would-be” murderer, all while laughing at the awkward situations. It truly was just the read I needed, and I’m so glad that I FINALLY got around to taking this one off my TBR pile.
For Fans of: historical romances with a gallon of comedy and a quart of suspense, novelist protagonists, secret identities, light-hearted mysteries, and clean romance
Genre: Historical Romance
Miss Daphne Beekman is a mystery writer by day, inquiry agent by night. Known for her ability to puzzle out plots, she prefers working behind the scenes for the Bleecker Street Inquiry Agency, staying well away from danger. However, Daphne soon finds herself in the thick of an attempted murder case she’s determined to solve.
Mr. Herman Henderson is also a mystery writer, but unlike the dashing heroes he pens, he lives a quiet life, determined to avoid the fate of his adventurous parents, who perished on an expedition when he was a child. But when he experiences numerous attempts on his life, he seeks out the services of the eccentric Bleecker Street Inquiry Agency to uncover the culprit. All too soon, Herman finds himself stepping out of the safe haven of his world and into an adventure he never imagined.
As the list of suspects grows and sinister plots are directed Daphne’s way as well, Herman and Daphne must determine who they can trust and if they can risk the greatest adventure of all: love.
Amazon | Baker Bookhouse | Barnes & Noble | Christianbook.com
For your chance to win a print copy, comment with what book YOU read for this month and you will also be entered into the year-end Grand Prize Reader Basket. Use the Rafflecopter below for extra entries and to mark that you left a comment. Entries end on the 7th of each month at midnight EST, and the winner will be drawn sometime that week and notified by email. The winner will be announced don’t the Rafflecopter widget.
*Open to all residents of the contiguous USA, legally able to enter, and an e-book format or Amazon Gift Card will be awarded to those outside that range who are legally able to enter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
What did you read for the challenge? What were your thoughts on it? Would you recommend it?
Recommendations for August:
- The Bounty Hunter’s Bargain by Lucette Nel
- A Match of Sorts by Lucette Nel (A female bounty hunter!)
- Claiming the Bounty Hunter’s Heart by Clari Dees
- A Worthy Pursuit by Karen Witemeyer
- Her Secret Song by Mary Connealy
- Claiming Her Legacy by Linda Goodnight
- The Bounty Hunter’s Baby by Erica Vestch
*New feature to my website: Share your own historical fiction review to potentially be shared on my website. Check out this page for details.
To Steal a Heart
by Jen Turano
I have always loved Jen Turano books . . . I just forgot how much until I read this one. It’s probably been a couple of years since I’ve picked up a Jen Turano book–not for lack of want, but for lack of time to read all the great books out there. Since I had a 3 hour round trip drive to my ACFW chapter meeting, I decided to listen to an audiobook that I also had the print copy of. It’s a good thing I did. Do you remember how I didn’t make the April Reading Challenge? Well you can blame Jen Turano. I ended up reading her book that weekend instead of the one I was supposed to read for the challenge. Oops.
Jen’s books are always packed full of humor, wit, danger, and unique characters. This story brought the levity I needed to a stress-packed month while also giving me the danger, mystery, and crime that I desire. I absolutely cannot wait to continue reading the series. Once a street thief, Gabriella has grown into a respectable woman with a heart of gold and a willingness to do whatever it takes to clear the name of a fellow boardinghouse mate. . . even if it brings her former partner and best friend back into her life. Gabriella isn’t the only whose had a lifestyle change, Nicholas has not only changed his ways, he’s done the impossible and moved into the social circles of the famed Four Hundred. Danger and social differences threaten to break apart the bond they once shared.
Any reader who enjoys banter, humor, adventure, danger, unique characters, and stories of friends to more will love this book.
Genre: Historical Romance, 1886, New York CIty
After a childhood as a street thief, Gabriella Goodhue thought she’d put her past behind her until a fellow resident at her boardinghouse is unjustly accused of theft. In the middle of breaking into a safe that holds the proof to prove her friend’s innocence, Gabriella is interrupted by Nicholas Quinn, the man she once considered her best friend–until he abandoned her.
After being taken under the wing of a professor who introduced him into society and named him as heir, Nicholas is living far removed from his childhood life of crime. As a favor to a friend, Nicholas agreed to help clear the name of an innocent woman, never imagining he’d be reunited with the girl he thought lost to him forever.
As Gabriella and Nicholas are thrown together into one intrigue after another, their childhood affection grows into more, but their newfound feelings are tested when truths about their past are revealed and danger follows their every step.
What I loved: I am a huge fan of the combination of humor and danger, while still maintaining a realistic relationship strain. The characters were delightful, the crimes exciting, and the Bleeker Street Inquiry Agency an absolute joy to watch grow.
Favorite Character and Why: The pairing of Gabriella and Nicholas is wonderful. I love their connection, the banter, and the romance. However, Daphne stole the show for me–which makes me absolutely delighted that she gets her own book next! Not only is Daphne an author, but she’s also an absolute mess and a hoot!
Who would like this? Any reader who enjoys banter, humor, adventure, danger, unique characters, and stories of friends to more will love this book.
Rating and Why: Five stars. It was such a fun story, one I will certainly be rereading.
Amazon Barnes and Noble Baker Bookhouse Books-a-Million Book Depository Bookshop.org Christianbook.com Get It Local Indiebound.org
Have you ever read a Jen Turano book? Which ones? If you haven’t, does her story sound appealing to you?