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review 2018-02-09 03:21
Enjoyable characters, a page turner for me
An Unsuitable Duchess - Laurie Benson

Mixing an American and a Duke led to some interesting places. Katrina was intriguing with her very proper behavior when required and her more colonial tendencies as time. I found her fun to read. Julian's desire to do what was expected of him made him a bit aloof at times, but when he realized life had more to offer than duty, I enjoyed him more. I loved this story and look forward to reading the rest of the series.

I received this book free through Harlequin, and this is my unsolicited review.

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review 2018-02-04 07:08
King Edward VII
King Edward VII - E.F. Benson

My knowledge about the more recent British kings and queens is more limited than the older ones, and for Edward VII in particular, most of it seemed to come from a book entitled 1000 Years of Annoying the French. However, this was an interesting account which I enjoyed reading, especially the part about his relationship with queen Victoria and the more general history on late 19th century/early 20th century Europe.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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text 2018-01-07 00:49
ND2.0: The Nancy Drew Project Con’t for The Hidden Staircase
The Hidden Staircase - Carolyn Keene
The Hidden Staircase - Mildred Benson,Carolyn Keene

Two years ago, I was inspired by a fellow Bookliker to embark on a project to read through my Nancy Drew collection, in order, and comparing the original to the revised texts. I had completed most of the first book before it stalled due to other demands on my time. I’m setting some 2018 reading goals to get through at least 4 books per year, though, so I’m ready to post on the second book in the series, The Hidden Staircase.


The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories began as a girls’ adventure series in 1930 by the Stratemeyer Syndicate, written by various authors under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene, following the story idea and outline provided by the Syndicate. Starting in 1959, the books were rewritten, condensing them to 20 chapters/180 pages, modernizing the stories, and eliminating some of the racist stereotypes found in the original stories. Some revisions only updated the stories, but others featured extensive revisions and sometimes even a completely new story. The Hidden Staircase was originally written in 1930 by Mildred A. Wirt Benson and revised in 1959 by Harriet Stratemeyer Adams. It is one of those that was extensively revised, so it was much more of a challenge to do a chapter-by-chapter comparison than for The Secret of the Old Clock. I’ll post the chapter comparisons over the next several days.


Shelfie of my Nancy Drew collection: Starting with the books I owned and loved as a girl, I’ve added to it over the years from junk shops, used bookstores, and online purchases, with a goal of owning a copy of each format – original and revised texts, illustrations, and cover art. It is not yet complete.

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review 2017-12-11 03:44
More lust than love
Sprung (The Frenemy Series Book 2) - Kate Benson,Sean Benson

This second book in the Frenemy series wasn't quite what I expected. Sprung has Dash and Evie figuring out the whole relationship thing. While their banter is amusing, it began to feel like that and sex was all they had. This pair was either insulting each other or getting naked, and sometimes both, which is fun for a shorter story, but it leaves little room for romance. The chemistry between Dash and Evie is there in spades, and their emotions came across quite well in Frigid, but seemed to be missing here. Mason acted more like a jealous ex than an over-protective brother and the whole family seems to be keeping secrets. I did like Dash and his big heart even while freaking out about commitment made him an endearing and fun character. This one does have a bigger cliffy than the first book, which I can only imagine will lead to more panic from Dash and hopefully will have Evie growing up a bit. For those that enjoy an amusing, lusty read, this one has plenty of that. The author is talented and the story has its moments, but I did expect a bit more romance from this second in the series. 

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review 2017-12-10 06:36
Amusing enemies to lovers romance
Frigid - Kate Benson

An enemies to lovers romance always makes for a fun read and while I wouldn't go so far as to call this one a romantic comedy, it is amusing and there were some chuckle worthy moments. Most of those moments came from Dash early in the story. It took me some time to warm up to Evie. At first, she came across as an abrasive and spoiled brat, but eventually, I did like this pair together. Knowing there was a part two to this romance, I was curious about a cliffhanger, but for me, this was more a happy for now ending. There are some things left unresolved, and I am curious enough to see how it all comes out, but I wouldn't consider it a huge cliffy. All-in-all, the author does weave an interesting tale and it's certainly worth the read.

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