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Archive for January, 2018

Visit the Country Town of Sloan Today #newrelease #romance #steamy

They’re here! The first three books in the Fancy Free series are finally live and available for purchase at Amazon. If you’re a Kindle Unlimited subscriber, you can read them as part of your subscription.

Protection

Who needs Protection? Find out at Amazon. (99c for a limited time)

Romp

A rubber duck? And rotten tomatoes? Learn more at Amazon.

Buzz

What is the buzz about Buzz? Check it out at Amazon.

Murder at The Breakers by Alyssa Maxwell #mystery #review

Murder at The BreakersMURDER AT THE BREAKERS by Alyssa Maxwell
Guilded Newport Mysteries 1

Newport, Rhode Island, August 1895: She may be a less well-heeled relation, but as second cousin to millionaire patriarch Cornelius Vanderbilt, twenty-one-year-old Emma Cross is on the guest list for a grand ball at the Breakers, the Vanderbilts’ summer home. She also has a job to do—report on the event for the society page of the Newport Observer.

But Emma observes much more than glitz and gaiety when she witnesses a murder. The victim is Cornelius Vanderbilt’s financial secretary, who plunges off a balcony faster than falling stock prices. Emma’s black sheep brother Brady is found in Cornelius’s bedroom passed out next to a bottle of bourbon and stolen plans for a new railroad line. Brady has barely come to before the police have arrested him for the murder. But Emma is sure someone is trying to railroad her brother and resolves to find the real killer at any cost…
 
 

The Breakers

View of The Breakers from the cliff path

 
Why?

I picked Murder at the Breakers to read after visiting The Breakers in Newport, Rhode Island. They were selling the book in the gift shop, and I decided I had to read it since I enjoyed my visit so much.

Quick highlights: This is a historical mystery set in Newport during the heyday of the Vanderbilts and it contains a slight romantic element. There are lots of suspects and the main character does a wonderful job of ferreting out clues. I enjoyed it, especially since I’d visited the property.

The Story: Cornelius Vanderbilt’s secretary is murdered during a ball at The Breakers, and Emma’s brother Brady is blamed for the death. Everyone believes the murderer is now in jail, but Emma is determined to clear her brother’s name.

The Characters: Emma is the main sleuth. She is a poor cousin of the Vanderbilts and must scrimp and save to survive. Her parents are overseas, and Brady is her only other family. She’s determined, resourceful and clever. To some readers, her actions might tip into the TSTL category, but I enjoyed this facet of her character.

The Vanderbilts feature too—her uncle, aunt and cousins. The police and several family friends, members of the 400 (the top echelon of society) and servants also form part of the mystery.

The Writing: I enjoyed this story, although I found the start a little slow. The setting is strong and places the reader right in the period. The romantic element totally worked for me. Obviously, we’ll see more development of this in the later stories in the series. I wasn’t certain who the murderer was until the end.

Conclusion: This mystery is the perfect souvenir of a visit to The Breakers. It’s a trip back to the time of the Vanderbilts and the wealth of the period. I recommend this first book in the Gilded Newport series.

Rating: 4 stars

Amazon | Goodreads

The Breakers, Newport, Rhode Island #travel

The Breakers in Newport, Rhode Island was the “summer cottage” of Cornelius Vanderbilt II. Fire destroyed the original cottage, and Cornelius ordered the existing mansion built on the same site in 1893. It took several years, and Cornelius didn’t spend much time in his new mansion before he died in 1899.

The mansion overlooks the Atlantic Ocean and it takes it name from the waves pounding the cliff below—The Breakers.
In a word—it’s impressive. It’s full of marble, beautiful wallpapers and furnishings. The marble bath tubs are something to be seen (evidently, the servants had to fill the tub to warm the marble, then refill it for their master’s use). The butler’s pantry and the kitchens were the best I’ve ever seen. My photos don’t do them justice.

My husband wasn’t keen when I dragged him off for his daily dose of culture, but he enjoyed The Breakers and later thanked me. Of course, it didn’t hurt that we visited the White Horse Inn for drinks and a snack—reputably America’s oldest inn since it opened in 1673.

I highly recommend a visit to The Breakers and the White Horse Inn, should you ever find yourself in Newport.

Me at The Breakers

This is me at the front of The Breakers.

The Grand Staircase

This photo is taken in the ballroom, looking toward the grand staircase. It’s said that it was a tradition for the Vanderbilts and their guests to slide down the bannisters on trays.

Interior

One of the many decadently decorated rooms.

Interior

Another room interior.

Mr Vanderbilt's Room

Mr. Vanderbilt’s room.

Mr Vanderbilt's Bathroom

The amazing marble bath that required filling twice so that the marble heated and didn’t freeze a backside!

The kitchen

The kitchen was amazing and full of all sorts of mod-cons for the time.

View from Side

A view of The Breakers from the side.

The White Horse Inn

Hubby at the White Horse Inn. Our last bit of “culture” for the day and a welcome break with local beer and a bowl of clam chowder.

Celebrate the NEW YEAR with the Janauary Freebie Frenzy and Giveaway

Welcome to the

January FREEBIE Frenzy & Giveaway Event January 1-5!

Click to download these romance reads.

Thank you for being loyal readers! To show their appreciation, your favorite authors have come together to offer a book for FREE. Download one or all. Maybe you’ll find your next favorite author.

Please note: all sales are limited time offers.

Don’t have a Kindle? Don’t worry. Read with the FREE Kindle App.

**Please note: these books may not be free on other Amazon sites and many of these books are free for a limited time only.**

Enter here: http://lovekissedbookbargains.com/2017/12/29/january-freebie-frenzy-giveaway/

☆҉➹☆NEW YEAR FREE AND 99 CENT PROMO! ☆҉➹☆҉

New Year Free and 99c Promo

Over a dozen authors are sharing the ultimate collection of paranormal, urban fantasy and sci-fi reads! Stop by and pick up a new favorite book!

Check out the paranormal romance sale.