Vintage Treasures

Escape to the Past

Do you love historical fiction? What makes you choose one book over another? For most of us, the cover is the first thing that attracts our attention. 

Each month I will be choosing my ‘Pam’s Pick’. Hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to look beyond the covers I feature and find your next favourite author. If a cover interests you just click on the image to learn more about the book and buy if you wish.

And the not so small print: the judge’s decision is final (that would be me!) and is highly subjective.

Please note this is a cover competition only and does not constitute a review of any of the books featured. It’s up to you to explore. Happy Reading!

My July winner is:

Deadly Engagement by Lucinda Brant

Deadly-Engagement-Lucinda-Brant

What a great cover this is! You know exactly what this book is about and would instantly go to the blurb to find out more (which is what I did!.  This promises to be a good’ shut out the world and escape book’. Now on the reading list for my hols.

Spring 1763. Career diplomat Alec Halsey returns to London to the shocking news his estranged brother, the Earl of Delvin, has not only killed his friend in a duel but is engaged to the woman Alec hoped to marry. The dead man’s mother wants Alec to investigate, so he reluctantly attends a weekend house party celebrating the engagement. Houseguests get more than they bargained for when a lady’s maid is murdered, the bride-to-be is attacked, and a guest is shot dead. Uncovering a connection between these sinister acts and his brother’s duel, Alec confronts a cruel twist of fate and why his brother will go to any lengths to ruin him in Polite Society.

 

As ever, there was stiff competition this month for the top spot. Here are the runners up in no particular order.

 

Including this children’s book by S.P. McArdle

The Red Letter Day - SP McArdle

The Red-Letter Day by SP McArdle

The Red-Letter Day is a magic history adventure for children.

 

Out of Time - Loretta Livingstone

Out of Time – Loretta Livingstone

1191: Giles de Soutenay has never liked or trusted John, Count of Mortain, but when John is taken seriously ill, it falls to Giles to ensure his survival.

2006: Marion Hart, visiting the ruined Abbey of Sparnstow, could never have imagined she would be called upon to help save one of the most dangerous men of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Falling through a gap in time, she finds herself administering first aid to John, inadvertently endangering both herself and Giles.

Book #1 of the Out of Time series – a time travel story, set in medieval England

 

Christmas Cure Dianne Ascroft

The Christmas Cure by Dianne Ascroft

During the Second World War, one song familiar to American servicemen and women around the world conjured warm, comforting memories like no other. But, for some “White Christmas” unbearably deepened their longing for home.

December 1942: Lieutenant Marjorie Baxter is an intelligent, competent U.S. army nurse newly posted to the 160th Station Hospital at Necarne Castle, Irvinestown, Northern Ireland. Preparing to spend her first ever Christmas away from home, she appears aloof as she struggles to hide her homesickness. And everywhere she goes, she hears “White Christmas”.

Reverend Herbert Lindsay, the widowed rector of a nearby village church and a keen herbalist, is rebuilding his life after his beloved wife’s unexpected death two years ago. Exempt from military service after a childhood accident left him blind in one eye, he is dedicated to serving his parishioners as well as the Allied military personnel he encounters in his community.

The pair cross paths when Reverend Lindsay brings a civilian woman, injured by a U.S. army vehicle, to the U.S. military hospital. Although they intrigue each other, the nurse’s determined reserve stymies the minister’s friendly overtures.

As they continue to be thrown together during the Christmas season, can Marjorie open her heart to Herbert’s friendship, homespun remedies and advice, and maybe more?

Watch out every month for the next featured selection of great covers, and don’t forget, if you read a book and love it, post a review and make an author happy.

Do you love historical fiction? What makes you choose one book over another? For most of us, the cover is the first thing that attracts our attention. 

Each month I will be choosing my ‘Pam’s Pick’. Hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to look beyond the covers I feature and find your next favourite author. If a cover interests you just click on the image to learn more about the book and buy if you wish.

And the not so small print: the judge’s decision is final (that would be me!) and is highly subjective.

Please note this is a cover competition only and does not constitute a review of any of the books featured. It’s up to you to explore. Happy Reading!

My June winner is:

Mr Monfort’s Marriage by Vonnie Hughes

This cover instantly said romance and mystery (two of my favourite things).

Mr Montfort's Marriage - Vonnie Hughes

Mr Monfort’s Marriage by Vonnie Hughes

 

A marriage of convenience is not always convenient.

The woman needs saving, so he’ll save her. A marriage of convenience should suit them both. But don’t expect him to trust her or love her in spite of those knee-trembling smiles and bright intelligence. Women of the ton are not to be trusted. But Verity certainly is enticing…

As ever, there was stiff competition this month for the top spot. Here are the runners up in no particular order.

 

 

Giselle Marks The Fencing Master's Daughter

The Fencing Master’s Daughter by Giselle Marks

 

Edward, Earl of Chalcombe, walking home, is attacked. He attempts to defend himself but is bludgeoned to the ground. Death seems inevitable when a fat ugly man carrying a stick and a beautiful slender young lady appear and rescue him. The rescuers bundle Edward home and the young lady, Madelaine, summons the Bow Street runners. Refusing reward she provides no address. But Edward, fascinated by both Madelaine’s beauty and swordsmanship, intends to pursue the acquaintance. Edward seeks his rescuers and the culprits who wish to terminate his life. He offers the elusive Madelaine marriage but she repeatedly declines. Madelaine’s father accepts an invitation to visit Edward’s estate with her over Christmas as he takes a liking to Edward. As Edward pursues Madelaine, the attempts on his life continue. The mystery intertwines as their romance progresses and Madelaine eventually reveals the secret making her refuse to marry him.

 

 

 

LookingForJamie Angela Rigley

Looking for Jamie by Angela Rigley

 

The first book in the saga of Jamie.
Set in the late nineteenth century this is the story of a young boy who is found bedraggled and starving, having lost his memory. All he knows is his name, Jamie. He is taken in by the household of The Grange on the Brightmoor Estate who soon come to love him as one of their own, especially the master David Dalton whose own son had been killed in an accident two years before. Some months later Tillie Raven is released from prison where she had been sent for stealing a loaf after holing up in a barn to escape a fire. Now she has to find her son, she does not even know if he is still alive, but where should she look first?

Sherlock_Holmes and the mystery of the broken window - Bill Todd

Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of the Broken Window

 

Sherlock Holmes shows a rare side to his humanity when he and Watson search for a missing fifteen year old girl who has been abducted from her home. The only clue: her window had been smashed through by a rock thrown by an unknown person the night before. With little to go on and no help from the local police, the great detective seems sure of only one thing: if he and Watson cannot find her before dawn, she will be lost forever.

 

Watch out every month for the next featured selection of great covers, and don’t forget, if you read a book and love it, post a review and make an author happy.

Do you love historical fiction? What makes you choose one book over another? For most of us, the cover is the first thing that attracts our attention. 

Each month I will be choosing my ‘Pam’s Pick’. Hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to look beyond the covers I feature and find your next favourite author. If a cover interests you just click on the image to learn more about the book and buy if you wish.

And the not so small print: the judge’s decision is final (that would be me!) and is highly subjective.

Please note this is a cover competition only and does not constitute a review of any of the books featured. It’s up to you to explore. Happy Reading!

My May winner is:

Perception & Illusion by Catherine Kullmann

Continue reading

Head n shouldersThis evening in the Library we have Suzan Collins, who has dropped in to say hello and to share some insights into her life as an author.

You are very welcome, Suzan, please introduce yourself: 

Hi Pam, thanks for having me along. You want a short bio? I write and I eat cake. I do other things too. I also run two companies.

Did you read much as a child? Are you an avid reader now? Do you prefer books in your own genre or are you happy to explore others?

Gosh that’s a long time ago. Yes I did read but was more into sport. Sport was my love and represented school and college. It is important to read and I try to but finding the time when you’re writing and running two businesses can be quite difficult. Continue reading

ABIS Neighbour blog tourAbi's Neighbour Blog Tour - Day 2 - 9th May

Today in the Library we have Jenny Kane­, who has dropped by as part of her blog tour to say hello and to share some insights into her life as an author.

Jenny’s Bio:

Jen and Abi's House 1Jenny Kane is the author of the full length romance novels Abi’s Neighbour, (Accent Press, 2017),  Another Glass of Champagne (Accent Press, 2016),  Abi’s House (Accent Press, 2015), the contemporary romance/medieval crime time slip novel Romancing Robin Hood (Accent Press, 2014), the best selling contemporary romance novel Another Cup of Coffee (Accent Press, 2013), and its novella length sequels Another Cup of Christmas (Accent Press, 2013), Christmas in the Cotswolds (Accent, 2014), and Christmas at the Castle (Accent Press, 2015). Continue reading

Do you love historical fiction? What makes you choose one book over another? For most of us, the cover is the first thing that attracts our attention. For me, the cover has to look professional and must convey genre and a hint of what the story is about.

Each month I will be taking a look at historical fiction covers and choosing my ‘Pam’s Pick’ for the month. Hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to look beyond the covers I feature and find your next favourite author. If a cover interests you just click on the image to learn more about the book and buy if you wish.

And the not so small print: the judge’s decision is final (that would be me!) and is highly subjective.

Please note this is a cover competition only and does not constitute a review of any of the books featured. It’s up to you to explore. Happy Reading!

My April winner is: The Finish by Angela Elliott

I was drawn to this cover by both the individual images and the way they were beautifully combined and the rich and vibrant colours. If I saw this in a book shop I would definitely investigate it. And it’s the first in a series – congratulations to Angela.

THE FINISH Angela Elliott

The Finish by Angela Elliott

It is 1769 and these are violent times. London’s Covent Garden has long been a centre of hedonistic pleasure. Kitty Ives, an alluring whore, takes a man to her bed and wakes to find him dead. Scared she will end up on the gallows, Kitty decides to uncover the identity of the murderer. The Finish is the first terrifying and mysterious episode in the Venus Squared series, comprising The Finish, The Surety, The Debt, and The Trade.

As ever, there was stiff competition this month for the top spot. Here are the runners up.

 

Yankee Years boxset Dianne Ascroft

The Yankee Years by Dianne Ascroft

 

The Yankee Years Series: During the Second World War Northern Ireland hosted American, British and Canadian troops. County Fermanagh welcomed Air Force squadrons hunting U-boats and defending shipping convoys in the Atlantic Ocean and Army battalions training and preparing for deployment to Europe’s Western Front. After the Allied troops arrived, life would never be the same again. The Yankee Years novels and Short Reads weave thrilling and romantic tales of the people and the era.

 

Fire & Steel - Cliff May

Fire & Steel by C.R. May

 

Britannia 523A.D.
Chaos sweeps the land as rival warlords fight for control of its riches. Into this toxic brew a small tribe clings to its new colony of Anglia as war rages along the frontier. But Britannia is not the only land in flux and powerful enemies covet the homeland of Engeln itself. As Danish raids increase in daring and ferocity, a momentous decision is reached as the English king prepares to lead his people on the greatest campaign in their nation’s history. A hero, Eofer king’s bane lands the first blow. Leading a lightning-fast raid he burns Heorot, the heart of the Danish kingdom. Before the Danes can recover Eofer leads an army north, laying waste the lands of the Jutes as the war of fire and steel begins. Fire & Steel is the first in a major new series which chronicles the migration and settlement of the first English people, the Angles.
Scars from the Past - Derek Birks

Scars from the Past by Derek Birks

An unwelcome legacy. An impossible love. A relentless enemy.
By 1481, England has been free from civil war for ten years. The Elder family have found a fragile peace after their part in the bloody struggle for the throne, yet scars from the past remain with them all. Given time, they might heal, but when did the Elders ever have enough time? Close to home, in Ludlow, trouble is stirring.
Born out of the carnage of the Wars of the Roses, young John Elder is now the heir to his father’s legacy, but he finds it a poisonous one. Driven from the woman he loves, John abandons his legacy and flees the country to become a mercenary in Flanders.
In his absence, the other members of the Elder family must face a ruthless outlaw family. When the young heir to the throne, Edward, Prince of Wales, is caught up in their bitter struggle, his very life hangs in the balance. To save a prince, all other lives must be put at risk, but only if the Elders can leave the scars of the past behind them, is there any hope of survival.

 

TheDukesWickedKiss Kathleen Bittner Roth

A Duke’s Wicked Kiss by Kathleen Bittner Roth

While on a secret mission for the Crown, a proper duke falls for an improper daughter of an Indian royal and British noble.

Miss Suri Thurston knows the pain of abandonment. Intent on confronting the grandmother who tossed her to the lions, she travels from England to her birthplace in India. Her plans run afoul when she encounters the man who, ten years prior, left a mark on her soul with one stolen kiss. But he is a duke, and far beyond the reach of even her dreams.

The Duke of Ravenswood, secret head of the British Foreign Service, has no time for relationships. His one goal is to locate and eliminate key insurgents involved in an uprising against the British East India Company before it’s too late. But when Suri appears in Delhi, his resolve is tested as he finds his heart forever bound to her by the one haunting kiss they shared once upon a time.

With Suri’s vengeful Indian family looking for her death, and insurgents intent on mutiny tearing their world apart, can their love rise above the scandal of the marriage they both desperately want?

Watch out every month for the next featured selection of great covers, and don’t forget, if you read a book and love it, post a review and make an author very happy.

Today in the Library we have Nancy Jardine, who has dropped in to say hello and to share some insights into her life as an author.

Hello Nancy, you are very welcome. Please introduce yourself:

Hello! I’m Nancy Jardine. I live in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, a fabulous place for anyone who adores history as much as I do. My week vanishes in a blur of reading, writing, marketing, blogging, news and politics. I’m a fair weather gardener and like thousands of retired people across the UK, I officially (unpaid for government statistics) look after my grandchildren about two and a half days a week. Since they stay next door to me, the rest of the week can be ad hoc minding or just happy interruptions from the 3 and 5 year olds. Any time left during the week is for general living, breathing and sleeping. Many Saturdays, and some Sundays, from April to December I can be found at Craft Fair venues around Aberdeenshire. I sell paperback versions of my novels at these events and get bookings for doing local author talks to various types of groups. I’m a member of the Romantic Novelists Association, the Scottish Association of Writers and the Federation of Writers Scotland. Continue reading

img089

Uncle Billy

I have very happy memories of visiting my mother’s family in County Mayo when I was a child. My Uncle Billy was a great character, famous for his singing and playing the saxaphone. But he was also a terrific storyteller. Unfortunately, he was rather fond of telling ghost stories of an evening. As a young child, unused to country ways and the absolute darkness of a country night, whenever he told one of his eerie tales, I was absolutely terrified. I’d go to bed shaking with fear and would lie there for hours trying to convince myself there was nothing to be afraid of and jumping at the slightest noise in the old house. He probably never realised the effect his stories had on me, and, although at the time I wasn’t too happy about it all, those stories still resonate with me to this day. Continue reading

Catherine Kullmann 4 MBThis evening I have a special guest in the Library. Catherine Kullmann, my good friend and fellow Irish historical fiction author, has settled down for a chat about her new release, Perception & Illusion, which will be available on Amazon (ebook and paperback) on Tuesday.

Firstly, Catherine, can you tell us a little about the story?

Lallie Grey, who has been cast out by her father for refusing the suitor of his choice, accepts Hugo Tamrisk’s proposal, confident that he loves her as she loves him. But Hugo’s past throws long shadows as does his recent liaison with Sabina Albright and soon Lallie begins to question his reasons for marrying her. As she struggles to find her feet in the haut ton, Hugo feels ignored by his new wife and before long they are embroiled in a tangle of jealousy and resentment. Small misunderstandings lead to greater ones as Lallie’s rejected suitor stirs the pot. Hugo’s smouldering resentment finally erupts. Is all lost, or can they find their way to a new beginning? Continue reading

Do you love historical fiction? What makes you choose one book over another? For most of us, the cover is the first thing that attracts our attention. For me, the cover has to look professional and must convey genre and a hint of what the story is about.

Each month I will be taking a look at historical fiction covers and choosing my ‘Pam’s Pick’ for the month. Hopefully, you will be intrigued enough to look beyond the covers I feature and find your next favourite author. If a cover interests you just click on the image to learn more about the book and buy if you wish.

And the not so small print: the judge’s decision is final (that would be me!)

and is highly subjective.

 

Please note this is a cover competition only and does not constitute a review of any of the books featured. It’s up to you to explore. Happy Reading!

My March winner is  The House at Zaronza by Vanessa Couchman 

I was instantly transported back in time to wonderful holiday strolls through old streets in ancient towns in France and Italy when I saw this cover. Such an evocative image. The story sounds wonderful and I have to admit, I have it waiting on my Kindle for my hols.

House at Zaronza - Vanessa Couchman

The House at Zaronza: A Tale of Corsica by Vanessa Couchman

The past uncovered.

Rachel Swift travels to Corsica to discover more about her forebearers. She comes across a series of passionate love letters and delves into their history.

The story unfolds of a secret romance at the start of the 20th century between a village schoolteacher and Maria, the daughter of a bourgeois family. Maria’s parents have other plans for her future, though, and she sees her dreams crumble. Her life is played out against the backdrop of Corsica, the ‘island of beauty’, and the turmoil of World War I.

This is a story about love, loss and reconciliation in a strict patriarchal society, whose values are challenged as the world changes.

Love gained and lost.

There was stiff competition for top spot this month, with the following being close runners-up:

 

FeathersInTheWind - Alison Stuart

And Then Mine Enemy by Alison Stuart

 

A family ripped apart in a country divided by war . . .

England 1642: Hardened mercenary, Adam Coulter returns to England sickened by violence, seeking only peace, but he finds England on the brink of civil war. He has seen first hand what that will mean for every man, woman and child and wants no part of it.

King or Parliament? Neutrality is not an option and Adam can only be true to his conscience, not the dictates of his family.

Having escaped a violent marriage, Perdita Gray has found much needed sanctuary and the love of a good man, but her fragile world begins to crumble as Adam Coulter bursts into her life. This stranger brings not only the reality of war to her doorstep but reignites an old family feud, threatening everything and everyone she holds dear.

As the war and the family tensions collide around them, Adam and Perdita are torn between old loyalties and a growing attraction that must be resisted.

 

New Beltane Nancy Jardine

The Beltane Choice by Nancy Jardine

AD 71: Banished from the nemeton, becoming a priestess is no longer the future for Nara, a princess of the Selgovae tribe. Now charged with choosing a suitable mate before Beltane, her plan is thwarted by Lorcan, an enemy Brigante prince, who captures her and takes her to his hill fort. Despite their tribes fighting each other, Nara feels drawn to her captor, but time runs out for her secret quest.

As armies of the Roman Empire march relentlessly northwards, Lorcan intends to use Nara as a marriage bargain, knowing all Celtic tribes must unite to be strong enough to repel imminent Roman attack. Nara’s father, Callan, agrees to a marriage alliance between Selgovae and Brigante, but has impossible stipulations. Lorcan is torn between loyalty to his tribe and growing love for Nara.

When danger and death arrive in the form of the mighty Roman forces, will Nara be able to choose her Beltane lover?

The Beltane Choice tells a tale of war and love in Celtic Britain.

 

 

Angel Heart Marie Lavel

Angel Heart by Marie Laval

Devonshire, January 1815.

Marie-Ange, the young widow of an English officer, accepts an inheritance in France only to find that everything in Beauregard is not as it seems. Why is the sinister Malleval so obsessed with her family? And could her darling Christopher still be alive? Marie-Ange finds herself trapped in a dangerous web of lies, intrigue, and mystical possession, and the only person to whom she can turn for help is Capitaine Hugo Saintclair. Yet the enigmatic Hugo represents a danger of a different kind …

 

A Warrior's Pledge Emma Prince

A Warrior’s Pledge by Emma Prince

 

Her Warrior…

To forge an alliance between the English and the Scots, Lady Rosamond must marry a Lowland stranger. But when a mysterious attacker threatens the engagement and her life, Robert the Bruce assigns one of his most trusted warriors to protect her. Finn Sutherland’s brooding gaze is almost as dark as his heart, yet Rosamond finds herself captivated by her Highland bodyguard. Now she must choose between responsibility and the searing need Finn ignites within her.

His Pledge…

Finn is honor-bound to swallow his hatred of the English and serve as bodyguard to Lady Rosamond. He never expects his charge to touch his scarred heart with her warmth and kindness. Worse, her honey hair and violet eyes bring him to his knees with lust. When the threat to Rosamond spirals out of control, Finn does the only thing he can think of to protect her—he stands in for her betrothed as a proxy husband. As desire clashes with duty, Finn’s pledge will be tested like never before.

Watch out every month for the next featured selection of great covers, and don’t forget, if you read a book and love it, post a review and make an author very happy.