working class historical

C
Starlight

This book was an eel. It was trying to drink soup with a fork. Well, I didn’t catch that eel, and I didn’t have soup for dinner. What I have is enough frustration to blow off the roof because on some level, I still have no idea what I read.         This makes me sad, because I was ra ...

B+
Marriage of Mercy

At times reviewing books is like a little kid eating vegetables. You avoid a book as long as possible and then read it in unpalatable hunks just trying to finish, choking and grimacing all the while. Following that same analogy, Carla Kelly's latest Marriage of Mercy is the dessert, sweet and fulfil ...

A-
Capturing the Silken Thief

There’s a line in Jeannie Lin’s novella, Capturing the Silken Thief, that evokes the effortless, lyrical beauty of her tale. A man - a scholar - and a woman - a musician - meet at night. Ms. Lin writes, “The moon was high and round, with that faint harvest gleam that marked it as a night for r ...

A-
Rainwater

There is something about spring that is always warm and exciting and full of promise to me. But summer can go in any direction - it can be a warm and delightful season full of lazy heat, trips to the swimming pool, ice cream and baseball games. Or it can be ominously hot, full of air so heavy it alm ...

A
The Tea Rose

I picked up The Tea Rose on a whim a couple of years ago. I’d never heard of the author, but the cover was beautiful and the summary sounded promising. After several days of smiling, laughing, and crying my way through the book, I was so glad for that whim, because the story immediately became a f ...

A
Libby's London Merchant

Reissues of old titles usually produce grumbling from the AAR staff, as we see precious bookstore shelf space going to the umpteen-billionth reprint of titles by the usual select group of superstar authors. Not this time, though. For us, the news that Signet is bringing back Carla Kelly’s delightf ...

B+
The Wildest Shore

What a find! The Wildest Shore is really different from anything else I've read lately. The pirate is not a handsome, devil-may-care swashbuckler. The ladies' maid is not bosom friends with her sweet-tempered employer. The tropical island paradise features leeches, headhunters, and bugs the size of ...

N/A
By Design

In By Design, the sequel to By Possession, Madeline Hunter tells the story of the freemason, Rhys and an indentured servant, Joan. Their story is set amidst the turmoil of Medieval England's political wars, where the sides can change quickly. Rhys and Joan are quickly caught in webs spun by others. ...

A
By Design

"Richness" is the word that comes to mind when I think of By Design. This is what happens when an author comes along and takes something familiar - the medieval setting - and brings it to the next level. A proud young woman stands selling her crafted pottery and statues, her poise setting her ...

A+
Miss Milton Speaks Her Mind

It took me two days to finish this little 229 page book because I wanted to savor every page, every paragraph, every word! If I were the Emperor of Japan, I would declare Carla Kelly a Living National Treasure. If I were the Queen, I would make her a Duchess. Since I am only a humble book reviewer, ...