Sunday, April 25, 2021

Review ~ Abandoned London by Katie Wignall

  • Publisher : Amber Books (July 6, 2021) | Hardcover : 224 pages

With 150 outstanding color photographs, Abandoned London presents a poignant pictorial exploration of the English capital—from forgotten railways lines and underpasses to lost industrial places, movie theaters, churches, and cemeteries. London is both a bright, modern city with soaring skyscrapers as well as a metropolis hundreds of years old—and, despite its gleaming surface, there is another side to the city, one of secrets, dilapidation, and mystery. Wander through disused stations on the Underground; immense, ornate Victorian sewers and waterworks; crumbling but beautiful Art Deco cinemas and empty swimming pools; bombed-out churches and eerie docklands; and ruined mansions and overgrown cemeteries, all haunting relics from a time gone by. Arranged thematically from transport and industry to residential and recreational, these entries cover both the modern city and the historical metropolis. 

Book releases in the UK in May, and here in the US in July 2021. 

Pre-order at Amazon.

My Review  4 STARS!!!

Fascinating history of London and some of its most enigmatic buildings is contained within the pages of Abandoned London. The photography, coupled with the narrative, captivated me. As someone who will probably never travel to London, I was delighted to experience some of its lesser known history through the eyes of the storyteller and photographer. It’s wonderful that these places time may have forgotten are being resurrected in this book.

As someone who reads a lot mysteries my mind was quite intrigued by the car found when civil engineers drained Hampstead Heath in 2015. I want to know more about this and what they may have found inside the car.

One of the most amusing anecdotes is about a man who applied to the city to put in a tank and his application was approved. Except it wasn’t the kind of tank the city expected. It was a literal tank, as in military! That gave me a chuckle and made me contemplate what fun it would be to see something like that just sitting on a residential lot.

If you’re an armchair traveler, this book would definitely be a great choice. There are so many interesting accounts of history contained within. I received an electronic copy from the publisher through Netgalley. No compensation received.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Tea Time Tuesday

 I was so excited to pick up this delightful little tea set today! It's five pieces (teapot w two cups, two saucers) in a darling blue gingham pattern trimmed in silver. I'm drinking Black tea with Italian Sweet Cream, enjoying fresh flowers and spring temps here in coastal VA.

What's in your tea cup today?

“A simple cup of tea is far from a simple matter.”
 Mary Lou Heiss

Wednesday, April 14, 2021


Just popping in here to let y'all know about this awesome giveaway from author Susan Sleeman in celebration of her latest release, Hours to Kill (Homeland Heroes 3). You can read my reviews for each book by clicking on the corresponding image but be sure and click on the giveaway image at the bottom in order to be taken to Susan's website to enter. 

I am in no way affiliated with this giveaway. I'm only sharing the link because I absolutely LOVED this series and I want you to have an opportunity to read it!!!

Monday, April 12, 2021

Miss Wetherham's Wedding: The Brides of Mayfair, Book Three by Linore Rose Burkard


ebook, 260 pagesPublished April 9th 2021 by Lilliput Press

Purchase: Amazon

Every step she takes to ensure his happiness is a nail in the coffin of her own.

Miss Wetherham, a matchmaker, must agree to the devious plan of a society rogue before she finds herself destitute. Helping him gain back his lost love will protect her independence and survival. But can any amount of money protect her guileless heart from falling for his charms?

Nick Dellacort is determined to restore his pride and gain back the bride he lost. Miss Wetherham is the woman able to help him do it and he’ll make it worth her while. But once he sets the devilish wheels in motion, can he persuade her to abandon the scheme and choose instead a scoundrel like him for a wedding of her own?

My Review 4 STARS

Regency fans will find much enjoyment in Burkard's latest, Miss Wetherham's Wedding. This is book three in The Brides of Mayfair series and each volume can be read as a stand-alone. I enjoyed the descriptions, banter, and costume. This is not Christian fiction but it's a quick, easy and clean read with sweet romance. Other than the snuff that Dellacort partakes of, I was completely taken by the story. Granted, it was just once but it did affect my overall reading experience. 

I highly recommend this book as Burkard is one of my favorite Regency era writers. She wrote this in third person omniscient (which I didn't know what that was until I read her note in the beginning) but I absolutely love it!!! You get a glimpse into more than just one or two characters thoughts and that feeds my inquisitiveness about what the others are thinking and feeling! It is excellently done!!!

I was provided an early electronic copy with no obligation to write a positive review. No compensation has been received. I also checked it out on KU and there is some bonus material of scenes that didn't make the final cut. Fun!!!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Rebecca Reviews ~ Blackberry Beach (Hope Harbor, #7) by Irene Hannon

Paperback, 352 Pages, Revell Books, April 2021, 

Katherine Parker is on the cusp of having everything she ever wanted--fame, money, and acclaim. So why isn't she happy? In search of answers, she comes incognito to Hope Harbor on the Oregon coast for some R&R. Maybe in her secluded rental house overlooking the serene Pacific she'll be able to calm the storm inside.

Coffee shop owner Zach Garrett has found his niche after a traumatic loss--and he has no plans to change the life he's created. Nor does he want to get involved with his reticent new neighbor, whose past is shrouded in mystery. He's had enough drama to last a lifetime. But when Katherine and Zach are recruited to help rehab a home for foster children, sparks fly. And as their lives begin to intersect, might they find more common ground than they expected . . . and discover that, with love, all things are possible?

Bestselling and award-winning author Irene Hannon invites you to come home to Hope Harbor--where hearts heal . . . and love blooms.

Purchase: Amazon 

Rebecca's Review ~ 4 STARS

"No matter what happens, I'll always be grateful our paths crossed."

"The mystery woman was back." The lovely visitor to The Perfect Blend was certainly eye-catching, even if she did prefer to wear her over-sized sunglasses inside his coffee bar. It had been a long time since anyone had sparked his curiosity, so Zach Garrett decided to be pro-active, but the lady responded with a dose of polite evasion. According to the local muse, "she may be hiding behind a protective wall. Could be she's dealing with a boatload of heavy stuff". If Zach had realized just how heavy, would it have made any difference? Probably not.

Katherine Parker has returned to Hope Harbor with a desire to remain low key and hopefully anonymous. Her Hollywood lifestyle had brought her the "fame and fortune" she once craved, but the price tag had been extremely high, a man had lost his life. Now, she faces a decision . . . . cut off all ties to her past or accept a premiere role that is being offered to her on a silver platter. And why does a pair of chocolate brown eyes have anything to do with it?

Enjoy this satisfying return to a place where the author has established life long friends for her readers, placing Katherine and Zach at the top of list . . . . . with a bonus scenario that will delight the heart of every romantic! Second chances are a beautiful thing to behold . . . . and trust in the Almighty is a powerful place to begin. And of course, there's Charley!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I also purchased a copy.

Senior Reviewer, Rebecca Maney

Rebecca is a graduate of Bryan College with a degree in Christian Education, and is currently serving at the First Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in Gastonia, North Carolina as the Director of Children's Ministry. With over 30 years of experience in her field, she has had many opportunities to use her love of reading and writing in creative ways across the generations. A wife, mother of four "nearly" grown children, and grandmother to four beautiful grandchildren, Rebecca has been able to return to her love of reading and more recently reviewing, with a renewed passion for the "beauty of story".

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Tea Time Tuesday

Black Tea (decaffeinated) with sugar and almond milk served in my Wawel tea/coffee set that was a gift from one of my dear sisters-in-law several years ago on my birthday. I don't know the pattern of the china, after much searching on the internet but it has delicate blue roses with gold leaves, embossing, and gold trim. 

The tray is one of my favorite finds that I picked up from a thrift store. Dating back to mid century, it's a handmade brass tray with a blue enameled Moire' glaze, designed by Harry Alan Kyes. 

What are you enjoying this lovely Tuesday?

Friday, April 2, 2021

Review ~ Hope Between the Pages by Pepper Basham


Uncover the Story Behind a One-Hundred-Year-Old Love Letter

Walk through Doors to the Past via a new series of historical stories of romance and adventure.

Clara Blackwell can’t lose her family’s one-hundred-year-old bookshop, but with the deed missing, there’s a chance her father’s legacy could fall into the hands of her greedy uncle. In an attempt to locate the missing deed, Clara uncovers an unusual love note which leads to the discovery of a long-lost romance. Forced to step outside her predictable bookish world, Clara embarks on an adventure with only the name Oliver as a hint of the man’s identity in her great grandmother’s unknown history. From the beautiful North Carolina Vanderbilt estate to a hamlet in The Lake District, England, can Clara put the pieces of an ill-fated romance together in order to save her bookshop…and maybe even find her own bookish happily-ever-after in the process?

Visit Pepper @

My Review ~ 5 STARS

"God allows us the gift of memories to tide us over to eternity."

Oliver and Sadie just became two of my newest literary favorites! Their story is grand and beautifully sad at the same time. My heart wept from the poignancy of a love that lived on beyond the physical.

"Keep to your Bible and to your fairy tales, sweet girl. One is for your soul and the other is for your daydreams. Both will help you through this, and in both you'll find your story."

Max and Clara are brought together as Clara seeks answers about her bookshop, and in the seeking discovers love. Upon first encounter with Max, his damaged soul burrowed deep and I knew I loved him. Together, they bring hope–and healing–between the pages.

"I've given up enough of my life to fear. I don't want to lose anymore."
Almost exactly what her mom had said to her. She and Max were more alike that she'd realized. Perhaps that was why they understood each other so well.
"And...when you're with someone who sees beyond the scars, then the scars don't seem as large anymore."
Neither does the fear.

Basham has dipped her proverbial ink pen into dual-time fiction and I must say, not a drop is wasted. Anyone who has read her individual historical and contemporary works knows that passion flows liberally and not just the romantic kind. There is so much I could say about this book but I’ll just say this —Hope Between the Pages is a truly beautiful dual love story that fans will want to put on their keeper shelf!

I received an electronic copy of the book for review purposes but I also purchased a paperback for my keeper shelf. No review was required. No compensation received.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Review ~ Hours to Kill (Homeland Heroes 3) by Susan Sleeman

Just as Homeland Security Agent Addison Leigh reaches the pinnacle of her cyber investigation into a firearms smuggling ring, she's attacked and left for dead. Her estranged husband, ICE Agent Mack Jordan, is notified that she's at the hospital in a coma. He may have let his past military trauma ruin their short marriage, but she never gave up on their relationship, and he remains her next of kin.

Mack rushes to her bedside, where he promises to hunt down the man who attacked her. Mack failed her once when he bailed on their marriage, and he's not about to let her down again. But when she wakes up in the hospital, she remembers neither the attack nor ever being married to Mack. And when a second attempt to take her life is made, it's clear something very sinister is going on, and Mack and Addison are in for the ride of their lives.

My Review ~ 5 STARS

If you are looking for an exciting and suspense-filled book, look no further than Hours to Kill! Sleeman knows how to draw readers into a story and keep us honed in on the suspense. I loved how the mysterious case Addison is having trouble remembering is pieced together with the help of the RED team. My mind was pretty blown away by the possibility (or maybe it’s actually real) of the technology that Cam works on. It’s kind of scary but completely realistic in this day and age.

There is so much tension between Addison and Mack it fairly leaps off the page. Addy can't remember Mack and their marriage but her heart hasn’t forgotten. The romance of it is sigh-worthy.

“He beamed a smile at her and she almost gasped at the sharp jolt of awareness that plunged through her. He was a fine-looking man—she’d figured that out already—but when he smiled? Oh, man. Wow. Just wow. She was putty in his hands.”

This has been a great series for any fan of romantic suspense. Sleeman isn’t afraid to grapple with authentic struggles in her characters lives. I highly recommend it!

I received a copy of the book from the publisher. No review required. No compensation received.