Tag Archives: Karen Hawkins

Lady Whistledown Strikes Back by Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan

Overview
Image result for lady whistledown strikes back book cover"

Title: Lady Whistledown Strikes Back
Author: Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan
In: Lady Whistledown Strikes Back (Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Historical romanceRegency romance, Short story collections
Dates read: 12th – 25th May 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Avon
Year: 2004
5th sentence, 74th page: Peter was sure of it.

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Synopsis

Who Stole Lady Neeley’s Bracelet?
Was it the fortune hunter, the gambler, the servant, or the rogue? All of London is abuzz with speculation, but it is clear that one of four couples is connected to the crime.

Lady Whistledown’s Society Papers, May 1816

Julia Quinn enchants: A dashing fortune hunter is captivated by the Season’s most desired debutante…and must prove he is out to steal the lady’s heart, not her dowry.

Suzanne Enoch tantalizes: An innocent miss who has spent her life scrupulously avoiding scandal is suddenly—and secretly—courted by London’s most notorious rogue.

Karen Hawkins seduces: A roving viscount comes home to rekindle the passionate fires of his marriage… only to discover that his beautiful, headstrong bride will not be so easily won.

Mia Ryan delights: A lovely, free-spirited servant is dazzled by the romantic attentions of a charming earl… sparking a scandalous affair that could ruin them both.

You’ll hear it first from Lady Whistledown

Thoughts

This was such a great little collection. Like The Further Observations of Lady Whistledown, the four novellas were intertwined in ways that you couldn’t quite imagine. But there was an extra complication / mystery in this collection – that of the missing bracelet. You don’t find out until the final story who actually stole it, but throughout all four novellas, you keep finding clues and wondering what actually happened at the party…

It was incredibly bittersweet finishing this collection – this is the last time I get to read a Lady Whistledown column for the very first time. I would like to reread all of these books in the future, but I’ll never have that beginning joy that you get when you read something for the very first time. I love how all four of these authors, each of who have very different styles, are able to have that similar tone of voice that you can read throughout the entire collection. It’s a great continuing thread that I don’t think many authors could manage so seamlessly.

I liked that this collection had an extra mystery that ran through all four novellas. It wasn’t just about the four couples and finding their happily ever after. But it was also about finding out who stole a priceless bracelet. And all of the wonderful connections between people in the ton. And just how messy this small community can be…

<- The Only One For MeThe First Kiss ->

Image source: Goodreads

The Only One For Me by Karen Hawkins

Overview
Image result for lady whistledown strikes back book cover"

Title: The Only One for Me
Author: Karen Hawkins
In: Lady Whistledown Strikes Back (Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Historical romanceRegency romance
Dates read: 25th May 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Avon
Year: 2004
5th sentence, 74th page: Didn’t like anything that belonged to the old bird, not the stand, the toys, even hated the silver bell m’aunt had bought for the stupid thing.

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Synopsis

Karen Hawkins seduces: A roving viscount comes home to rekindle the passionate fires of his marriage… only to discover that his beautiful, headstrong bride will not be so easily won.

Thoughts

I’ve been looking forward to this novella since Lord and Lady Easterly make a brief appearance in The First Kiss. It was not only a great story, but a fantastic ending to this whole collection. Four gorgeous couples got together and you finally find out what happened to the missing bracelet. In fact, although this story is all about reconciling an estranged married couple, much of it is about the pursuit of truth. Not only the truth of whole stole the bracelet (which you do find out in this story, the last of the collection). But what the truth about your feelings are too.

At the beginning I really couldn’t understand how the male lead was going to be someone I could like. After all, he left his wife for twelve damn years and then returns. I can’t really imagine a situation in which that is okay. And, even though I’ve now finished this story and I did actually like him. I still found the whole moving away for twelve years because one’s pride has been injured kind of… well, ridiculous and unforgivable. Frustrating and horrible to say the least.

One of my favourite aspects of this novel is that there is so much fire and passion in this story. I’m an argumentative and difficult girl, even at the best of times. It was nice to read a story in which the protagonist is the same – argumentative, passionate and sometimes too stubborn and proud for her own good. Actually, both of these characters are wonderfully prideful and stubborn…

<- The Best of Both WorldsLady Whistledown Strikes Back ->

Image source: Goodreads

The Further Observations of Lady Whistledown by Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan

Overview
Image result for the further observations of lady whistledown book cover"

Title: The Further Observations of Lady Whistledown
Author: Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan
In: The Further Observations of Lady Whistledown (Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Historical romanceRegency romanceShort story collections
Dates read: 6th – 26th April 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Avon
Year: 2003
5th sentence, 74th page: “I’ve never seen him like that.”

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Synopsis

Lady Whistledown Tells All!

Society is abuzz when the Season’s most promising debutante is jilted by her intended—only to be swept away by the deceitful rogue’s dashing older brother—in New York Times bestseller Julia Quinn’s witty, charming, and heartfelt tale.

When the scandalous actions of his beautiful fiancée are recorded in Lady Whistledown’s column, a concerned groom-to-be rushes back to London to win his lady’s heart once and forever, in Suzanne Enoch’s enchanting romantic gem.

Karen Hawkins captivates with an enduring story of a handsome rogue whose lifelong friendship—and his heart—are tested when the lovely lady in question sets her cap for someone else.

A dazzling and delightful tale by Mia Ryan has a young woman cast out of her home by an insufferable yet charming marquis—who intends to take possession not only of the house… but its former occupant as well!

Thoughts

I figured that I would thoroughly enjoy this collection just because it was created by Julia Quinn and featured the character of Lady Whistledown in some way, shape or form. What I didn’t expect was how brilliantly each of these four stories related in to one another. Mostly I was expecting four separate novellas with Lady Whisteldown’s witty repertoire at the very beginning. What I didn’t expect was to find each of the characters from the novellas in each other’s stories.

This is a fantastic historical romance collection which features some amazing new authors. I can’t wait to sink my teeth into some of their books! Each had that great sense of humour and wit that I recognise in the writings of Julia Quinn. Plus, each of the four women in these stories is strong in her own way. Strong and independent (in some cases, unusually so for this style of story). Not only does this make this collection fantastic, but it is a great hint of the type of women who filled the pages of this book with some wonderfully engaging words.

For anyone who loves regency romances, this is a fantastic short story collection. For people who have already fallen in love with Julia Quinn and her Bridgertons series…. it’s even more of a must have. There is just something about the unique voices of the four authors and the way they are able to so seamlessly intertwine their stories with each other… it is just amazing. And beautiful. Definitely a collection that I will be picking up again and again and again.

<- Thirty-Six ValentinesOne True Love ->

Image source: Goodreads

Two Hearts by Karen Hawkins

Overview
Image result for the further observations of lady whistledown book cover"

Title: Two Hearts
Author: Karen Hawkins
In: The Further Observations of Lady Whistledown (Julia Quinn, Suzanne Enoch, Karen Hawkins & Mia Ryan)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Historical romanceRegency romance
Dates read: 20th April 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Avon
Year: 2003
5th sentence, 74th page: Liza dropped her arms to her sides.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Synopsis

Karen Hawkins captivates with an enduring story of a handsome rogue whose lifelong friendship—and his heart—are tested when the lovely lady in question sets her cap for someone else.

Thoughts

One of my favourite romance tropes is the one of friends to lovers. After all, it’s a relationship that is being built on an incredibly strong base. So finding one that is both a regency romance, a tale of individuality and close friends turning to lovers… it definitely put me in my happy place.

Although I have had a pretty major love of / fascination with regency romances recently, one thing I don’t love is the reminder of how women had very little autonomy over their own lives in this day and age. Not a great, happy feeling for me. But what I loved about this, is that it took a few liberties… but created a story in which the woman actually did have most of her autonomy and independence. She was completely herself and found a way to do so with all the flamboyancy that she could want.

Royce and Liza make a great couple. In the end when Royce kind of gets over all of his crap. At first, his attitude and selfishness towards Liza’s wanting a family is kind of irritating. But after he moves on from that… its actually really nice. Particularly since they’re both highly flawed characters (so far, the most flawed in this collection), but they love each other for exactly who they are. It’s just gorgeous.

In a time when everything is going completely, totally and utterly bat shit insane. It was really nice to read a novella that was all about loving people for who they are. For being with those that just accept you and want to be around you. It’s just a nice little departure from reality. One which I really appreciated.

<- One True LoveA Dozen Kisses ->

Image source: Goodreads