10 Reasons To Love Katy Moran’s Regency Romances

Katy MoranI’m delighted to be joining other book bloggers in celebrating the gorgeous new paperback editions of Katy Moran’s historical romance series – Game of Hearts, Wicked by Design and Scandalous Alchemy – published by Head of Zeus on 3rd February 2022. My thanks to Amy at Head of Zeus for inviting me to take part.

I’ve read all three books and can heartily recommend their combination of exciting adventure and delicious romance. In case you need further encouragement, here are ten reasons I loved the books:

1) The imaginative premise that the Duke of Wellington was defeated, not victorious, at the Battle of Waterloo and that this defeat resulted in the removal of the English Royal Family and the occupation of England by the French.

2) Hester Harewood, the spirited, resourceful and fearless heroine of the first book (originally published as False Lights) who finds herself alone and defenceless following the dramatic events of the book’s opening scenes.

3) The Earl of Lamorna (or Crow to his friends), the troubled, brooding and sultry hero – ‘sailor, soldier, spy, tattooed ployglot, expert liar’ – haunted by traumatic memories of the sights he witnessed and his own actions on the battlefield.

4) The crackling sexual tension between Hester and Crow, not surprising considering the references to the latter’s precise knowledge of how to leave a woman ‘in his power and wanting more’.

5) Kit Helford, Crow’s younger brother, who has a habit of getting himself into scrapes but also a way with the ladies that definitely runs in the family.

6) The settings which include the Scilly Isles, the rugged coast of Cornwall (ideal for those pining the absence of Ross and Demelza Poldark from their lives), the French city of Fontainbleau and the salons of St. Petersburg.

7) The storylines encompassing personal and political intrigue, betrayal and revenge plus a generous helping of spice. Georgette Heyer meets John le Carré, if you will.

8) The luscious period detail of food, clothing and interior decor such as this description of the preparations for a post-hunt picnic at Fontainebleau. ‘Hot-house peaches and necatarines were piled in shining pewter, and preserved Seville oranges arranged in honeyed slices on platters of chinaware. There were great heaps of glistening pastries too, sugar-dusted and dotted with caramelised nuts, covered for now with muslin cloths. Not far away, a quartet of violins and a harpist practised unfashionable Beethoven with bored competence.’ 

9) The vividly depicted action scenes – hand-to-hand combat, unexpected ambushes and hair-raising escapes under cover of darkness that make the books race along like a golden Turkoman mare galloping across the steppes.

10) A bonus for Crow fans‘He’d crouched at the water’s edge to shave himself with a cut-throat razor, stripped to the waist, revealing the extraordinary collection of tattoos on his back, writhing blue-black patterns that ran from shoulder to shoulder, from neck to lower spine.’ Sold to the reader over there having a hot flush…

Katy MoranAny one of the books would make the perfect Valentine’s Day read so, go on, treat yourself.

Purchase from your favourite bookseller via the following links

Game of Hearts
Wicked by Design
Scandalous Alchemy

About the Author

Katy MoranKaty Moran is the author of Game of HeartsWicked by Design and Scandalous Alchemy. After a career in publishing, Katy now lives with her husband and three children in a ramshackle Georgian house in the Welsh borders. She is passionate about history, and is involved with multiple projects including Waterloo Uncovered and The Women of Waterloo.

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#BlogBlitz #BookReview Sherlock Holmes & the Singular Affair by M. K. Wiseman @rararesources

Sherlock Holmes & the Singular Affair

I’m delighted to be taking part in the publication day blog blitz for Sherlock Holmes & the Singular Affair by M. K. Wiseman. My thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to take part and to the author for my digital review copy. Do check out the posts by the other book bloggers taking part in today’s blitz.

Sherlock Holmes and the Singular AffairAbout the Book

Before Baker Street, there was Montague.

Before partnership with a former army doctor recently returned from Afghanistan, Sherlock Holmes had but the quiet company of his own great intellect. Solitary he might be but, living as he did for the thrill of the chase, it was enough.

For a little while, at the least, it was enough.

That is, until a client arrives at his door with a desperate plea and an invitation into a world of societal scandal and stage door dandies. Thrust deep in an all-consuming role and charged with the safe-keeping of another, Holmes must own to his limits or risk danger to others besides himself in this the case of the aluminium crutch.

Format: Hardcover (192 pages )          Publisher:
Publication date: 7th December 2021 Genre: Historical Fiction, Historical Crime, Mystery

Find Sherlock Holmes & the Singular Affair on Goodreads

Purchase links
Hive | Amazon UK
Links provided for convenience only, not as part of an affiliate programme

My Review

Effectively a prequel (and a homage) to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s original stories, the Sherlock Holmes of the author’s imagining has all the observational and deductive skills we have come to expect. This is demonstrated when he identifies a character as a violin player purely from a mark on his right index finger. Okay, he’s a bit of a show-off. However he also has a cabbie’s in-depth knowledge of London and demonstrates a remarkable facility for disguise.

Fans of Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories will have fun spotting the occasional allusions to the original series, including to those ‘untold stories’ often mentioned in passing at the beginning of cases. The aluminium crutch that features in this book is a case in point.  Clearly the author has an encyclopeadic of the Sherlock Holmes stories as there are references to both well-known characters from the original, such as Inspector Lestrade, and to less well-known ones, such as Langdale Pike. I’m sure there were other allusions I missed but my favourite was the name of the alter ego Sherlock Holmes adopts in order to pursue his investigation – Ormond Secker. I’ll pause while you go and search online for that… Are you back? Clever, isn’t it?

Even if you’re not familiar with the original stories, Sherlock Holmes & the Singular Affair is an entertaining historical crime mystery which has moments of melodrama and moments when you might be justified in wondering just how on earth Holmes is going to make sense of everything. Since most of us lack the impressive deductive abilities of Sherlock Holmes, I suggest you just sit back and enjoy the ride.

In three words: Lively, engaging, ingenious

Try something similar: The Vanished Bride by Bella Ellis

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M K WisemanAbout the Author

M. K. Wiseman has degrees in Interarts & Technology and Library & Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her office, therefore, is a curious mix of storyboards and reference materials. Both help immensely in the writing of historical novels. She currently resides in Cedarburg, Wisconsin.

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