France

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The Forbidden Rose (#62 on AAR's Top 100 Romances)

An AAR Top 100 Romance originally published on June 10, 2010 Plodding through forgettable spy novels (and historicals in general) sometimes makes me forget what a truly great book looks like – and then I read one like The Forbidden Rose. Joanna Bourne’s latest novel has everything I love about ...

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Beauty Like the Night

Beauty Like the Night, the eagerly awaited sixth book in Joanna Bourne’s widely acclaimed Spymaster series, tells the story of Séverine de Cabrillac, whom we first met as a very young child caught up in the revolutionary terror of late eighteenth century Paris in The Forbidden Rose.  Ten years a ...

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A Crown of Bitter Orange

The first Laura Florand book that I read was The Chocolate Kiss, the second story in her Amour et Chocolat series. I loved it, and since then I’ve been a pretty dedicated fan, so any new book by her is a cause for celebration. The author has now moved from the world of haute cuisine to the world o ...

B
Isla and the Happily Ever After

Isla Martin has been in love with Joshua Wasserstein since she first saw him in ninth grade, but between Isla’s shyness and Josh’s misunderstanding of her relationship with her best friend Kurt, the two never managed to get on the same page. Suddenly it’s senior year, and these bicultural New ...

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Rogue Spy

To say I’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of Rogue Spy is an understatement of immense proportions. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed each of the books in Ms. Bourne’s Spymaster series, and given the revelations about Pax made in The Black Hawk I’ve been on the edge of my seat waiting for his sto ...

C+
Midnight Train to Paris

Narrated by Tanya Eby I have mixed feelings about this audiobook, and had to think about my review – and grades – for several days after I finished listening. There’s a lot I don’t like about this time travel story, from the clichéd language in sex-scenes to the use of first-person prese ...

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Anna and the French Kiss

When my teenage student walked into my classroom, slammed a copy of this book on the desk, and announced, in audible capital letters, “THIS IS THE BEST BOOK EVER WRITTEN,” I knew Anna and the French Kiss was something special. A contemporary story of discovering the world and yourself at the sam ...

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The Black Hawk (#17 on our Top 100 Romances list)

Once in a while, during every reader’s literary life, you encounter a book that reminds you why you are a reader. It renews your faith, if faith was lost; it rekindles your interest, if interest waned; and every word, every page, is a wonder. Adrian and Justine’s story is not only such a book an ...

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The Silver Rose

The Silver Rose is the last book in Susan Carroll's Sisters of Faire Isle trilogy. It beautifully weaves all the threads left dangling from the first two books into a rich tapestry of magic, history, passion, intrigue, and impossible love. Faire Isle has undergone a drastic change from when we fi ...

B+
Personal Assets

If you’re not familiar with Emma Holly’s name, you should be aware that her books are a bit different from other romance novels. Before moving into the historical romance arena, she wrote straight erotica for Black Lace, among other publishers. Classifying this book is difficult as it is more se ...