Christmas Revels V – Four Regency Novellas by Hannah Meredith, Anna D. Allen, Kate Parker, and Louis
Title: Christmas Revels V – Four Regency Novellas
Author: Hannah Meredith, Anna D. Allen, Kate Parker, and Louisa Cornell
Genre: Historical Romance, Regency Romance
Mr. Hunt’s Christmas Caller – After his anticipated betrothal falls apart, Matthias Hunt wants nothing to do with Christmas festivities. Yet, when quiet, demure Constance Blackwell unexpectedly gives him a piece of her mind, he wonders why he never considered her. Delivering gifts for her aunt, Constance dreads facing Mr. Hunt in the wake of her hasty words. After years of secretly loving her neighbor, she can hardly expect a Christmas miracle... until the weather changes.
The Christmas Gamble – In exchange for her guardian's gambling debts, Lizzie Hancock is pledged to marry the Earl of Stonebrook, a man she's never met. When she arrives for the Christmas wedding, the bridegroom is missing, the servants are secretive, and a prodigal brother has returned. Could Lizzie gain everything she desires—if she's willing to gamble on love?
The Gnome and the Christmas Star – The Earl of Marle has an uncanny ability to judge political candidates, but he’s a failure in matters of the heart. After years spent caring for her late husband, the Dowager Viscountess Lyndon fiercely clings to her new independence. An unlikely meeting offers them both a second chance at happiness, but a Christmas miracle is needed to claim it.
A Perfectly Ridiculous Christmas – Valerian, Viscount Keynsham will do anything to ensure his best friend's marriage to a wealthy heiress, including claim the man's three young Creole daughters as his own. Lady Catherine Chastleton needs a manageable husband to claim her inheritance. As the children try to keep their stories straight, Christmas will be anything but manageable.
Mr. Hunt’s Christmas Caller – The last thing Matthias wants to do is be the butt of the ton’s jokes. Anther failed attempt to secure a wife and at the alter no less, but it isn’t until he gets a thorough dressing down from quiet Miss Blackwell, the fog begins to clear. Why didn’t he see it before? Can he secure the affections of her or is the chaos at his house during a snowstorm too much for her?
I liked this immensely for its mature characters and the drama that swirls around them. I wanted to box a few characters’ ears for their complete disregard for Constance’s feelings but it made for an interesting story. A touch too much drama for my taste but those who love obstacles in their romances will adore this. 4.5 stars
The Christmas Gamble – Lizzie is about to get married to an earl she’s never met. When she and her gambler guardian arrive, the earl has suddenly gone to London without any word. The staff are silent about his whereabouts. The only bright spot in Lizzie’s day is the handsome brother to her betrothed. She’s attracted to him and he makes her feel things she never imagined. When Lizzie discovers a secret so devastating, it could ruin her life, will she gamble on love or reveal the truth?
A delightful romantic whodunit with engaging characters, intrigue and the Christmas season. Lizzie is such an endearing heroine, I was disappointed when the story ended. Sweeping romance from an unexpected hero and a no-good guardian who’s after Lizzie’s fortune. 5 stars
The Gnome and the Christmas Star – Sophia’s worried about her stepson, Henry. After returning home from the war without his left arm, he’s sullen and hasn’t adjusted well. He needs to find his passion and Sophia knows just what to do. When they arrive at Duncan Ashe’s house party, neither realize they’re lives are about to change. Sophia is drawn to Duncan, the Earl of Marle, but he’s giving her mixed signals. When a scandal threatens them both, will they grasp their second chance at love or will they retreat to their lonely lives?
This is my favorite story of the anthology. I’m a sucker for second chance romances and this one tugged at my heartstrings. Both Sophia and Duncan have experienced loss and heartache. Both are mature adults and both don’t know how to express their feelings. A Regency romantic comedy if there ever was one. Delightful and highly recommend. 5+ stars
A Perfectly Ridiculous Christmas – Valerian, Viscount Kenysham, helps his childhood friend Viscount Thynne secure a wife, mother for his three children and heiress. The only catch is that Thynne hasn’t told Lady Catherine about the children yet. A recipe for a farce indeed. It’s Christmas and when Lady Catherine arrives, chaos erupts. Will Valerian reveal his true feelings for Catherine to his best mate or will he walk away from the only woman he’s fallen for?
While the premise was superb, the story itself missed the mark. I had a hard time keeping track of everything and everyone. Scenes seemed jumbled together without a clear flow I usually expect from this author. Disappointing. 3 stars
Favorite Story: The Gnome and the Christmas Star. A sweeping story about a disabled veteran securing his future and two mature adults falling in love. The ending was pure magic.
My Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy it now:
Amazon – http://a.co/0nG03zR
ANNA D. ALLEN
Anna D. Allen is essentially half-Finnish and half-Southern, which means she has no sense of humor and will shoot you for wearing white shoes after Labor Day… unless you are attending a wedding and happen to be the bride. She holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Arts in Language and Literature. She is a recipient of the Writers of the Future award and a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, but she also has a great passion for Regency Romances. It is generally acknowledged that she spends way too much time with the dead and her mind got lost somewhere in the 19th Century.
Along with her contributions to the five Christmas Revels Regency anthologies, her available works include the Regency Romance novel Miss Pritchard’s Happy, Wanton Christmas (and the Consequences Thereof); the Regency Romance novelette “A Christmas Wager;” the novel Charles Waverly and the Deadly African Safari; and three short story collections: Mrs. Hewitt's Barbeque, Lake People, and Lady de Kiernan’s Headache; as well as some boring scholarly stuff about dead people. She is currently writing a Victorian mystery novel, which she freely admits is Holmes and Watson fanfiction... but then, Sir Arthur was writing Edgar Allan Poe fanfiction, so Anna is in good company.
Kate Parker considers herself the most fortunate of people, with a loving family and a profession she adores. After many years of commuting in horrible traffic, she now only needs to walk across the house to her office to begin a new day plotting murder and mayhem. After work she simply has to remember not to poison anyone with dinner. That part is easy—it’s the unburned and tasty part she has trouble with.
This past year, Kate began a new series, the Milliner Mysteries, with The Killing at Kaldaire House. A young milliner in Edwardian London, Emily is trying to raise the money to send her younger, deaf brother to school. When her aristocratic customers don’t pay her for their hats, she uses the skills taught her by her father’s larcenous family to encourage them to honor their debts—with disastrous results.
Next up will be the fourth in the Deadly Series, Deadly Deception, in which our intrepid reporter, Olivia, finds herself caught between rival spies as Hitler menaces Europe.
Because Hannah Meredith’s father was a career military officer, her early life was a somewhat gypsy existence. She’d attended eight different schools in different locations by the time she graduated from high school. She learned early on that friends she made in books could be packed up and taken with her.
She continued to add to the number of these portable friends as she attended college, received two degrees in English, married her high school sweetheart, had a family, taught at the high school and college level, and had a successful real estate career. During all this time, she continued moving as her husband’s job required.
She and her husband of over fifty years have now retired in a charming North Carolina town. Hannah’s book friends have come with her and live in a multitude of bulging bookcases and on assorted electronic devices. It is unsurprising, however, that new characters about whom no one has written have popped up in her mind. She is now trying to write their stories in the hope that she will create friends that others will want to pack up and take with them.
Under another name, Hannah sold over a dozen speculative fiction short stories to major Science Fiction and Fantasy magazines. She now concentrates on historical romance. She currently has five romances available: Kestrel, Indentured Hearts, Kaleidoscope, A Dangerous Indiscretion, and Song of the Nightpiper, a fantasy romance which is a 2018 RITA® Finalist and a 2018 PRISM Finalist. Hannah’s novellas have also appeared in the four previous Christmas Revels anthologies.
Louisa Cornell is a retired opera singer living in LA (Lower Alabama) who cannot remember a time she wasn’t writing or telling stories. Anglophile, student of Regency England, historical romance author—she escaped Walmart to write historical romance and hasn’t looked back. A two-time Golden Heart finalist, three-time Daphne du Maurier winner, and four-time Royal Ascot winner—she is a member of RWA, Southern Magic RWA, and the Beau Monde Chapter of RWA.
Her first published work, the novella A Perfectly Dreadful Christmas in the anthology Christmas Revels, won the 2015 Holt Medallion for Excellence in Romance Fiction. Her first full-length published novel, Lost in Love, was a Golden Heart finalist. She recently released Stealing Minerva, the introductory novella in her The Many Brides of Lord Creighton series. Her first novella for Scarsdale Publishing, A Lady’s Book of Love, was released in May. A Perfectly Ridiculous Christmas is her fourth novella in the Christmas Revels Anthologies.
Louisa lives off a dirt road on five acres in the middle of nowhere with a Chihuahua so bad he is banned from vet clinics in two counties, several very nice dogs, and a cat who thinks she is a Great Dane and terminates vermin with extreme prejudice.
Social Media Links:
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Hannah Meredith –
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Reviewed by: Mrs. N