Reviews by Rike Horstmann

A-
A Regency Christmas II

Anthology
I picked up A Regency Christmas II because it contains one of my favorite Christmas stories of all time: Sunshine for Christmas. I reread it, delighted in it, and then read on. I realized this collection also includes excellent stories by Carla Kelly and Mary Balogh, and even the other two, by autho ...

B-
Mistress of the Monarchy

Of course I bought Mistress of the Monarchy by Alison Weir because of Anya Seton’s historical novel Katherine. I love the novel, and I thought it would be deeply interesting to take a closer look at its main characters from a historian’s point-of-view. I was not disappointed. The love story o ...

A
Finders Keepers

Finders Keepers by Linnea Sinclair is a book I find myself re-reading at regular intervals, three times in three years so far. The first time I read it I considered it a guilty pleasure, with its dramatic plotline and the so very obvious Cinderella theme. It was only on rereading it that I discovere ...

C+
Lucky Charm

Lucky Charm by Carly Phillips is the the first intallment in a projected three-volume series about three cousins who have been unlucky in love all their lives. In a way, that summary pretty much says it all because, while well-written in some ways, this book is still very conventional. ...

C-
The Christmas Countess

The Christmas Countess by Adrienne Basso is a perfect illustration of the fact that too much chocolate is bad for you. Generally I’m all for slow, character-driven romances without too much external conflict, so when I settled down with this book I thought I was in for a delightful holiday read. B ...

B-
One Candlelit Christmas

Anthology
As the days grow shorter, and Christmas lights are put up everywhere, I find myself browsing through holiday romances in the bookstores and online. Harlequin very reliably produces one Regency Christmas anthology each year, and as One Candlelit Christmas features a story by a favorite author of mine ...

C
The Devil and Drusilla

I am very fond of traditional Regencies, and I think it’s great that Harlequin has taken to reissuing two older Mills & Boon books each month, even if they are only available through the Harlequin website. That said, I was less than delighted with The Devil and Drusilla by Paula Marshall. It i ...

B-
A Historical Christmas Present

Anthology
Occasionally, I can’t concentrate on a full-length romance novel, and that’s when I grab an anthology. In addition, they are a great place for testing unknown authors and have introduced me to several authors whose works I now collect. Autumn always brings an flood of anthologies with a Christma ...

B-
Mr. Cavendish, I Presume

Mr. Cavendish, I Presume is part of a literary experiment: It and its companion novel, The Lost Duke of Wyndham, published in June of this year, depict the same few weeks and even partly the same scenes, but each book has as its focus a different couple. I came to this novel with high expectations. ...

B+
His Captive Lady

Although Anne Gracie’s first installment in the Devil Riders series, The Stolen Princess, rather disappointed me, I decided to give the series a second chance with His Captive Lady. I am glad I did because this book lacks the silliness of its predecessor and instead features a strong, likable coup ...