Showing posts with label Dorothy Love. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dorothy Love. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Review: A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love


Heidi Reads... A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love

My rating: 3 stars / I liked it

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Synopsis

When the illustrious India Hartley is accused of murder, she has to uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.

India Hartley, the famous and beautiful actress, is now alone in the world after her father’s death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah’s Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night’s performance, something goes horribly wrong. Her co-star, Arthur Sterling, is shot dead on stage in front of a packed house, and India is arrested and accused of the crime.

A benefactor hires Philip Sinclair, the best—and handsomest—lawyer in Savannah to defend India. A widower, Philip is struggling to reinvent his worn-out plantation on St. Simons Island. He needs to increase his income from his law practice in order to restore Indigo Point, and hardly anything will bring him more new clients than successfully defending a famous actress on a murder charge.

Because India can’t go anywhere in town without being mobbed, Philip persuades the judge handling her case to let him take her to Indigo Point until her trial date. India is charmed by the beauty of the Georgia low country and is increasingly drawn to Philip. But a locked room that appears to be a shrine to Philip’s dead wife and the unsolved disappearance of a former slave girl raise troubling questions. Piecing together clues in an abandoned boat and a burned-out chapel, India discovers a trail of dark secrets that lead back to Philip, secrets that ultimately may hold the key to her freedom. If only he will believe her.


My Review

I have mixed feelings about this one- there are a lot of things I liked and enjoyed, but also a handful of things that didn't work for me. The Southern setting and history of the era was well-described and fascinating, I really liked India's character and personality, and the plot was intriguing. I had a difficult time with Phillip- he was so likeable and quite heroic, but at times he pulled back and there was a lack of emotion. The story is told from India's point of view, and I think more cues to how he was feeling in those moments would have helped the romance not be so awkward. The pacing didn't feel smooth to me, with scenes ending in the middle of observations and conversations that felt important but not resolved- in the moment or later. The climax of the outcome of the trial was satisfying, but then more clues kept cropping up, and it seemed like the story would never end as one secret after another came to light and had to be additionally resolved. And then in the end, there was one left hanging! So it was a bit frustrating to feel like the story was winding up, only to have in prolonged with more choppy pacing. I definitely enjoyed the first half of the book more, but had to keep reading to see how it all turned out. A more succinct wrapping up would have been appreciated.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Review & Kindle Fire Giveaway: Among the Fair Magnolias by Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, Elizabeth Musser


 Heidi Reads... Among the Fair Magnolias by Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, Elizabeth Musser

My rating: 

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Synopsis

Four Southern women are at a turning point in history . . . and in their own hearts.

To Mend a Dream by Tamera Alexander
The Civil War cost Savannah Darby everything—her family and her home. When Aidan Bedford, an attorney from Boston, buys the Darby estate, he hires Savannah to redecorate. Can she find a mysterious treasure before her job is finished?

An Outlaw's Heart by Shelley Gray
When Russell Stark returns to Fort Worth, he’s determined to begin a new life. But when he arrives at his mother’s homestead, he discovers that she is very ill and the woman he loved is still as beautiful and sweet as he remembered. With time running out, Russell must come to terms with both his future and his past.

A Heart So True by Dorothy Love
Abigail knows all too well what is expected of her: to marry her distant cousin Charles and take her place in society. But her heart belongs to another. A terrible incident forces Abby to choose between love and duty.

Love Beyond Limits by Elizabeth Musser
Emily has a secret: She's in love with one of the freedmen on her family's plantation. Meanwhile, another man declares his love for her. Emily realizes some things are not as they seem and secrets must be kept in order to keep those she loves safe.


My Review

These four novellas are rich in history and details of Southern life. I felt like I learned several new things with each story. I was especially surprised to learn that during Reconstruction it was the Republican party that advocated for equal rights for black people and the Democrats were murdering, terrorizing, and seeking to prevent the blacks from exercising their freedoms and voting rights, as well as the Republicans that supported them. What a scary time in history. The bravery and courage of those men and women who acted on their beliefs during such violence and danger is inspiring.

Each story has a different setting- a Georgia plantation, a small-town Texas homestead, Nashville slums, and an island for wealthy vacationers. I have a personal preference for characters who experience hardship rather than reading about society's elite, since there is less entitlement and more refining of character. However, the men and women in all the stories seek to overcome hardships and pressures of society to find the path that God would have them follow.

(Thank you to Litfuse Publicity and Thomas Nelson Publishing for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review)

Four best-selling novelists bring tales of four Southern women who face near impossible choices on their journeys in life and in love during the most turbulent decade of our nation’s history in Among the Fair MagnoliasDon't miss this collection of stories from Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, and Elizabeth Musser.

Join the authors in celebrating the release of Among the Fair Magnolias by entering to win their Southern Hearts Kindle Fire Giveaway and RSVPing to their August 13th author chat party!

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One grand prize winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire HD 6
  • One copy of Among the Fair Magnolias
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on 8/13. The winner will be announced at the Among the Fair Magnolias Facebook party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Tamera, Dorothy, Shelley, and Elizabeth, as well as for a chance to win some great prizes!

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RSVP today and spread the word—tell your friends about the giveaway via FACEBOOK, TWITTER, or PINTEREST and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 13th!