Reviews by Blythe Smith

B+
The Signature of All Things

I had no interest in Eat, Pray, Love in either book or movie form; it just sounded self-indulgent to me. But a novel about a female naturalist in the nineteenth century stumbling on ideas similar to Darwin’s? Sign me up! I loved The Signature of All Things - it’s an excellent reminder of why I l ...

C+
If Wishes Were Earls

It's been a few years since I've read anything by Elizabeth Boyle. I recalled one forgettable so-so book and another that I remembered somewhat better - Something About Emmaline, which had a madcap Remington Steele-like heroine. If Wishes Were Earls is kind of in that camp; fast-paced but disjointed ...

C+
Blythewood

Why did I read Blythewood? Because my name is Blythe, of course. And judging from the fellow readers who added it on Goodreads, that makes...two of us. Perhaps Carol Goodman should have called it Ashleywood. Blythewood is kind of all over the place at first. No sooner has it start ...

B-
The Bookman’s Tale: A Novel of Obsession

The Bookman’s Tale is the sort of book I have trouble resisting. Hopping back and forth through time periods to solve some literary mystery? You can pretty much always sign me up. But though I basically enjoyed it, I didn’t love it quite so much as I thought I would. It’s fun, but I’m not re ...

D+
Secrets of a Scandalous Marriage

Publishers are pretty into “high concept” these days. Secrets of a Scandalous Marriage is fairly high concept. It’s part of a series featuring heroines who write pamphlets about something scandalous and fall in love in the process. In this case, the heroine is accused of murdering her husband, ...

C
Dangerous Curves Ahead

I started Dangerous Curves Ahead when I was waiting in line at an RWA booksigning. It begins with a funny scene - the somewhat chubby heroine is caught red-handed buying a delicious black and white cookie, and when her ex’s skinny, mean aunt criticizes her, Ellis Garrett hilariously puts the old b ...

D
Stealing Home

I’m not really the biggest baseball fan in the world (read: at all), but I like sports romances and was lured in by the cute cover of Stealing Home. As it turns out, I did like the pro baseball player hero - very much. But I certainly could have lived without the thief heroine with the giant chip ...

C+
Less Than a Gentleman

I find it pretty hard to resist a Revolutionary War romance, so when I saw that Kerrelyn Sparks was releasing one, I snapped it up. Imagine my surprise when I discovered it's actually a sequel to her first book - which I also reviewed over a decade ago. I had remembered that one as being a little be ...

C-
The Devil of Clan Sinclair

The Devil of Clan Sinclair is poorly named. The hero is, in fact, a very nice guy. Maybe a little too nice. He's quick to forgive the dishonest and easily manipulated heroine - something I'm not sure I could have done in his place. Virginia Anderson is an American heiress with an amb ...

C-
The Penny Bangle

I picked up The Penny Bangle because a World War II fix sounded like just the thing. I hadn't read a book set in that time period in some time, and WWII romances are somewhat thin on the ground. Unfortunately, it wasn't quite the fix I was hoping for. Who knew WWII could be so dull? Cassie Taylor ...