Tag: Roseanna M White

Bookish Question: Do you have a Top 5 list of favourite reads in 2018?

Bookish Question #86 | Do you have a Top 5 list of favourite reads in 2018?

Top five? Are you kidding? Maybe I could come up with a top five list if I didn’t read so many books each year. But probably not (maybe I could do it if I only read six books …)

Anyway, I’ve decided to cheat a little. I posted five new favourite authors for 2018 a couple of weeks ago. I’m posting my Top Ten Reads for 2018 over at Australasian Christian Writers in a couple of weeks. So this post is my completely biased top five romance reads.

Cheating? Probably. #SorryNotSorry.

So here are my Top 5 romance reads for 2018:

The Saturday Night Supper Club by Carla Laureano

Despite the fact I’m a little over writers as main characters (it’s taking ‘write what you know’ a little too far), I still loved The Saturday Night Supper Club. It was probably all the yummy food … and the fact the ending was unexpected.

Click here to read my review.

A Song Unheard by Roseanna M White

Yes, there is a good number of books set in England. There is a good number of books set during World War I or World War II. But this is the first one set in Wales, in the (small) university city of Aberystwyth, where I was born.

Click here to read my review.

More than Meets the Eye by Karen Witemeyer

A heroine with two different colour eyes, and a pet pig. And a hero who tries to rescue her from the pig. It could be stupid to the point of ridiculous, but it’s actually a funny and touching historical romance featuring a wonderful makeshift family.

Click here to read my review.

Made for You by Kara Isaac

Yes, this is a completely biased recommendation, given I edited Made for You and Then There Was You. But I loved it, even though I’m not a reality TV fan (and I especially don’t watch shows like The Bachelor). If you’ve read and enjoyed any of Kara’s earlier books, you won’t want to miss this one.

Click here to read Fiction Aficionado’s review because it says what I would have said.

A Season to Dance by Patricia Beal

I’ve always been fascinated by ballerina stories (isn’t everyone?) A Season to Dance has plenty of ballet, but that’s actually secondary to a beautiful story of love and redemption.

I somehow haven’t reviewed A Season to Dance, so click here to read a review from Narelle Atkins, who recommended it to me.

Do you have a top 5 list of favourite reads for 2018? Which books are on your list?

#ThrowbackThursday | A Song Unheard by Roseanna M White

It’s Throwback Thursday! Today I’m sharing my review of A Song Unheard, the second book in Roseanna M White’s brilliant Shadows Over England series. It follows A Name Unknown, and An Hour Unspent, the third book in the series, releases in September (and I’ll review it then).

My Review

Violin virtuoso Lukas De Wilde has escaped war-torn Belgium with his life and his Stradivarius, but without his family. He has to find Mamman and Margot and get them safely to England before the Germans find them … and the valuable cypher key.

Willa Forsythe is one of London’s best thieves, and her latest assignment from the mysterious Mr V is to befriend Lukas De Wilde and find the cypher key. Which means a trip to Wales and playing best friends with the wealthy Davies sisters, benefactors to De Wilde and his fellow musicians.

It soon becomes apparent that Willa and V aren’t the only people interested in the cypher key … and that finding it isn’t going to be as easy as Willa first thought. Especially when Lukas begins to express his interest in her as a fellow musician, and romantically.

A Song Unheard is a brilliant combination of romance and suspense in a unique historical setting.

It is set in London and Aberystwyth. I lived in London for ten years, so I love reading books set there (perhaps this is why I like Regency romance, because most are set in and around central London). I haven’t read any other books set in Aberystwyth, which is where I was born (although I’ve never lived there). It was great to see the city through the eyes of Willa and Lukas.

I was especially impressed by the research. I’d never heard of the Davies sisters and their World War One Belgian orchestra, so this was a fascinating plot device (yes, they were a real thing. I wonder if any of my Welsh relatives attended their concerts?). I’ve always been fascinated by codes and cyphers, so this element intrigued me, especially the connection with mathematics. And who knew that Mozart encoded messages into his music with cyphers?

Overall, A Song Unheard was brilliant—Roseanna M White’s best book yet.

That’s saying something, because A Name Unknown, the first book in this Shadows Over England series, was excellent, as were her earlier books (especially The Culper Ring series). Recommended for fans of Edwardian romance, and romantic suspense.

Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.

About Roseanna M White

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna has a slew of historical novels available, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia.

Find Roseanna M White online at:

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter | YouTube 

About A Song Unheard

Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a crucial task at the outset of World War I—to steal a cypher from a famous violinist currently in Wales.

Lukas De Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won–until now, when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas fears that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only light he finds is meeting the intriguing Willa Forsythe.

But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t–that she must betray him and find that cypher, or her own family will pay the price as surely as his has.

Find A Song Unheard online at:

Amazon | ChristianBook | Goodreads | Koorong

You can read the introduction to A Song Unheard below:

And here’s the description of An Hour Unspent:

Once London’s top thief, Barclay Pearce has turned his back on his life of crime and now uses his skills for a nation at war. But not until he rescues a clockmaker’s daughter from a mugging does he begin to wonder what his future might hold.

Evelina Manning has constantly fought for independence, but she certainly never meant for it to inspire her fiancé to end the engagement and enlist in the army. When the intriguing man who saved her returns to the Manning residence to study clockwork repair with her father, she can’t help being interested. But she soon learns that nothing with Barclay Pearce is as simple as it seems.

As 1915 England plunges ever deeper into war, the work of an ingenious clockmaker may give England an unbeatable military edge–and Germany realizes it as well. Evelina’s father soon finds his whole family in danger–and it may just take a reformed thief to steal the time they need to escape.

Quote from A Song Unheard

Book Review | A Song Unheard by Roseanna M White

Happy New Year! May 2018 be full of wonderful books to read! I’m starting out with a good one: A Song Unheard by Roseanna M White. I’ve read most of her books, and this is definitely the best yet.

An Excellent WWI Romance with Suspense Elements

Violin virtuoso Lukas De Wilde has escaped war-torn Belgium with his life and his Stradivarius, but without his family. He has to find Mamman and Margot and get them safely to England before the Germans find them … and the valuable cypher key.

Willa Forsythe is one of London’s best thieves, and her latest assignment from the mysterious Mr V is to befriend Lukas De Wilde and find the cypher key. Which means a trip to Wales and playing best friends with the wealthy Davies sisters, benefactors to De Wilde and his fellow musicians.

It soon becomes apparent that Willa and V aren’t the only people interested in the cypher key … and that finding it isn’t going to be as easy as Willa first thought. Especially when Lukas begins to express his interest in her as a fellow musician, and romantically.

A Song Unheard is a brilliant combination of romance and suspense in a unique historical setting.

It is set in London and Aberystwyth. I lived in London for ten years, so I love reading books set there (perhaps this is why I like Regency romance, because most are set in and around central London). I haven’t read any other books set in Aberystwyth, which is where I was born (although I’ve never lived there). It was great to see the city through the eyes of Willa and Lukas.

I was especially impressed by the research. I’d never heard of the Davies sisters and their World War One Belgian orchestra, so this was a fascinating plot device (yes, they were a real thing. I wonder if any of my Welsh relatives attended their concerts?). I’ve always been fascinated by codes and cyphers, so this element intrigued me, especially the connection with mathematics. And who knew that Mozart encoded messages into his music with cyphers?

Overall, A Song Unheard was brilliant—Roseanna M White’s best book yet.

That’s saying something, because A Name Unknown, the first book in this Shadows Over England series, was excellent, as were her earlier books (especially The Culper Ring series). Recommended for fans of Edwardian romance, and romantic suspense.

Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.

About Roseanna M White

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna has a slew of historical novels available, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia.

Find Roseanna M White online at:

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter | YouTube 

About A Song Unheard

Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a crucial task at the outset of World War I—to steal a cypher from a famous violinist currently in Wales.

Lukas De Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won–until now, when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas fears that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only light he finds is meeting the intriguing Willa Forsythe.

But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t–that she must betray him and find that cypher, or her own family will pay the price as surely as his has.

Find A Song Unheard online at:

Amazon | ChristianBook | Goodreads | Koorong

First Line Friday

First Line Friday | Week 21 | A Song Unheard

It’s Friday, which means it’s time to open the book nearest you and share the first line. Today I’m sharing from A Song Unheard by Roseanna M White:

A Song Unheard

I love it! It’s atmospheric, and takes us straight into the setting.

About the Book

Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a crucial task at the outset of World War I–to steal a cypher from a famous violinist currently in Wales.

Lukas De Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won–until now, when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas fears that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only light he finds is meeting the intriguing Willa Forsythe.

But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t–that she must betray him and find that cypher, or her own family will pay the price as surely as his has.

A Song Unheard releases in paperback and ebook on 2 January 2018.

Amazon | ChristianBook | Goodreads | Koorong

Click the button to check out what my fabulous fellow FirstLineFriday bday loggers are sharing today:

You can then click on the link which will take you to the master page, which holds all this week’s #FirstLineFriday posts.

And you can click here to check out my previous FirstLineFriday posts.

Share your first line in the comments, and happy reading!

Quote from A Name Unknown by Roseanna M White

Book Review | A Name Unknown by Roseanna M White

I’m always in two minds about Christian novels that have one character who, let’s say, has issues with honesty. It’s a basic tenet of the Christian faith, so an author who chooses such a character is often starting off on the wrong foot.

I’m also in two minds about novels in which one of the main characters is a novelist—it seems to break the fourth wall, as well as being a somewhat cliché application of the writing principle, to ‘write what you know’. But A Name Unknown quickly overcame both these possible issues.

Rosemary Gresham is a needs-must thief who has survived on the streets since she was orphaned at the age of eight.

She’s now built up a ‘family’ of misfit orphans who rely on her to provide for them, Robin Hood-style. Her latest assignment, from the mysterious Mr V, is to infiltrate the Cornwall home of Mr Peter Holstein and prove he is not the loyal Englishman he pretends to be. This is important, as England is on the cusp of war with Germany, what we know as World War One.

Peter Holstein might be German by birth and by heritage, but he’s as English as the King when it comes to his loyalties. If only he could prove it. He knows the documents are in the library, but the library is dark and cramped, filled with the books, letters, and boxes of generations. He needs a librarian to make some sense of it.

Enter Rosemary Gresham …

A Name Unknown is historical romance with suspense elements. And it’s Christian, although the author favours Peter Holstein’s brand of Christian fiction:

He’d certainly never poured a whole sermon into his novels—that would hardly be right in an adventure story—the ideas still snuck in. The readers got the message. Those letters in the attic assured him they did.

The ideas do more than sneak in. Peter is a Christian who prays, whose faith injects everything he does. He’s an excellent hero, even if he’s not the cliché hero of the adventure novels popular with the Edwardian public.

There were a couple of factual glitches that only a non-American would notice, but these were minor and more than compensated for by the outstanding writing. Roseanna M White is a brilliant writer, and I’ll be looking forward to the sequel to A Name Unknown.

Recommended for fans of Edwardian-era Christian romance.

Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.

About Roseanna M White

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna has a slew of historical novels available, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia.

Find Roseanna M White online at:

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter | YouTube 

Click below to buy A Name Unknown:

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Kobo 

And you can read the introduction to A Name Unknown below:

What did you read in September 2016? (and a giveaway)

Well, I’ve (mostly) caught up on my reading and even managed to get some writing done (you can track my progress using the MyBookProgress counter to the right of the screen).

It’s been a great reading month, with some excellent choices. Here are my top four picks for September:

Favourite Reads

And here are the links to my reviews:

The Name I Call Myself by Beth Moran (click here to read my review)

My Hope Next Door by Tammy L Gray (click here to read my review)

A Lady Unrivaled by Roseanna M White (click here to read my review)

The Wedding Shop by Rachel Hauck (click here to read my review)

 

And I promised you a giveaway … so here it is. Click here if you’d like to enter to win a Kindle copy of My Hope Next Door by Tammy L Gray.

What have you been reading this month? Leave a comment and let me know!

This is off-topic, but I have to share: this is where I live, and where I’m setting my stories. Read the article, and you’ll understand why 🙂

Review: Ring of Secrets by Roseanna M White

Have you signed up for my Newsletter? If so, you’ll already have received my entirely biased list of 50 novels from my favourite Christian authors. If not, sign up on the right! Today I’m reviewing Ring of Secrets by Roseanna M White, one of my favourite historical romance novelists.

Introducing The Culper Ring …

Book CoverWinter Reeves’ pretty smile and vacant expression belie her intelligence. She’s a spy for the Culper Ring, collecting information in 1779 New York, a British stronghold. She must hide her true allegiance from everyone except Robbie Townsend, her childhood friend, and Freeman, a loyal family servant who is treated no better than a slave by her Loyalist grandparents.

Bennet Lane is a Yale professor sent to New York to try and find the source of the intelligence leaks. He meets Winter and is attracted to her—he believes that she is more than she appears. He also recognises that a courtship with the beauty will give him a reason for being in the company of New York’s elite, which should aid his quest.

Ring of Secrets is told in the third person from the viewpoints of Winter and Bennet, with occasional scenes from more minor characters (actually, I thought these were probably unnecessary). Winter and Bennet are both well-rounded and likeable characters. It is said that any character with an interesting secret has a good chance of coming alive, and this can certainly be said of both Winter and Robbie (her contact in the spy ring). There is also the added complication of Colonel Fairchild. Winter has cultivated a relationship with Fairchild in order to gain intelligence, but he wants a more permanent relationship.

Overall, I thought the romance was well-developed and the story excellent. I did find some of Winter’s prayers a bit long-winded (even for Christian fiction), and there were a couple of too-convenient coincidences towards the end.

I really enjoy historical fiction that is based on history, as Ring of Secrets is.

Even I, as a non-American, recognised some of the historical figures. A note at the end of the book enlightened me more about the founders of The Culper Ring, an organisation which may still exist—a rumour the CIA will neither confirm nor deny. Recommended.

Thanks to Harvest House and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review. You can read the introduction to Ring of Secrets below: