#ThrowbackThursday ~ Ella Maud ~ The story of an unsolved #truecrime by Nicholas Nicastro #HistoricalFiction

Throwback Thursday this week tells the story of Ella Maud Cropsey, or Nell as she is more commonly known, and her family who live in a small community in North Carolina. Set around the turn of the 20th century, the story is a fictionalised account of her murder, based on the known facts.

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My Thoughts

Nell was feted as a beauty, sometimes a contrary young woman but one who knew her own mind. She was high-spirited, hated the restrictions the ladies of the time were subjected to and planned to attend university. Jim Wilcox had been courting Nell for over three years and was the last person to see her before she disappeared. I say disappeared because it seemed unclear initially to most people what had happened to Nell. Her body was discovered in the river that ran past the family home thirty-six days later, without the expected indications of being in water for that amount of time. An autopsy confirmed Nell did not drown but died from a blow to the head. So where had Nell been before she went into the water? And who put her there?

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Bloomsbury Girls by Natalie Jenner ~ Historical Fiction @NatalieMJenner @StMartinsPress #BloomsburyGirls #HistoricalFiction @Austenprose #TuesdayBookBlog

I’m delighted to be joining the blog tour and sharing my review for Bloomsbury Girls, courtesy of Laurel Ann Nattress at Austenprose PR. 

Bloomsbury Girls Book Tour Graphic

My Thoughts

Bloomsbury Girls continues the story of Evie Stone, who was initially introduced in The Jane Austen Society. However, Bloomsbury Girls works perfectly well as a stand alone. Enough of Evie’s backstory, along with mentions of events and appearances from several characters from the previous book, occur throughout the narrative, bringing the reader more or less up to date.

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Cornish Coast Murder by John Bude (British Library Crime Classics) #CosyMurderMystery #PoliceProcedural

The Cornish Coast Murder, republished to great acclaim in 2014, was my introduction to the British Library Crime Classics. I’ve since read several and enjoyed them, with more in my to read list.

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My Thoughts

Reverend Dodd, vicar of St Michael’s-on-the-Cliff, enjoys his Monday evening dinner engagements with Doctor Pendrill. Boscawen is a small isolated fishing village on the Cornish coast and both the vicar and the doctor look forward to their weekly meetings. Over an after dinner coffee they open the crate of library books each takes a turn in choosing, most commonly crime stories which they’re both addicted to, and are discussed in detail. Reverend Dodds has become quite good at solving mysteries by recalling previous twists, traps and detection methods, whereas they are proving a little more difficult for the doctor. 

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A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice by Rebecca Connolly #HistoricalFiction Based on Fact @AuthorRConnolly #TuesdayBookBlog

51YsJ4+DosL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Author: Rebecca Connolly

Published: April 2022 by Shadow Mountain

Category: Historical Fiction based on fact

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Shortly after midnight on April 15, 1912, the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostron, wakes to a distress signal from the Titanic, which has struck an iceberg on its maiden voyage. Though information is scarce, Rostron leaps into action, determined to answer the call for help. But the Carpathia is more than four hours away, and there are more questions than answers: Will his ship hold together if pushed to never-before-tested speeds? What if he also strikes an iceberg? And with the freezing temperatures, will there be any survivors by the time the Carpathia arrives?

Much has been written about the Titanic so it was a refreshing change to have the story told from the alternating viewpoints of Captain Arthur Rostron of the RMS Carpathia, and Kate Connolly, a third class passenger on the Titanic, leaving Ireland to start a new life in  New York with her sister. The harrowing events on the Titanic and in the lifeboat unfold from Kate’s perspective.

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor ~ #HistoricalFiction based on fact

My Throwback Thursday choice this week is The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter, published in 2018, a book I enjoyed very much.

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My Thoughts

I love books that mix fact with fiction, giving a real authenticity to the story. The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter incorporates the true story of Grace Darling.

Grace’s father was the lighthouse keeper at Longstone on the Farne Islands, off the Northumbrian coast. Twenty two year old Grace loved nothing better than helping her father, taking her turn on watch and making sure the lamps stayed lit through the night. 

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The Last Professional by Ed Davis #Historical #LiteraryFiction @EdDavisAuthor #TuesdayBookBlog

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Author: Ed Davis

Published: January 2022 by Artemesia Publishing LLC

Category: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction

four-half-stars

This is a story of America! Lynden Hoover, a young man on the brink of a new beginning, cannot embrace it without confronting the traumas of his past. Help comes from The Duke, an old loner who calls America’s landscape his home. He clings to an honor code, but in fleeing from Short Arm, his merciless enemy, his code is being tested.

At the end of the 20th century few Knights of the Road still cling to their vanishing lifestyle. The Duke mentors Lynden, enlisting old traveling friends to keep himself and his apprentice just ahead of Short Arm’s relentless pursuit. When two of those friends are murdered, the stakes become life or death.

Bonds are formed, secrets exposed, sacrifices made, trusts betrayed, all against a breathtaking American landscape of promise and peril. Three unforgettable characters, hurtling toward a spellbinding climax where pasts and futures collide, and lives hang in the balance.

When I was contacted by Nick Fontaine with regard to a review of The Last Professional, I wasn’t at all sure it was my kind of book but I’m happy to say I was quite wrong. It didn’t take long for me to become invested in the story and the characters. Set in 1970s America, The Last Professional is an intriguing and engrossing tale of a vanishing lifestyle — life as a hobo, riding freight trains across the country and living free, with the related privations and dangers.

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The Unveiling of Polly Forrest: A Mystery by Charlotte Whitney @CWhitneyAuthor #NetGalley #RBRT #HistFic

415zvJIDM+LAuthor: Charlotte Whitney

Published: 15th March 2022

Category: Historical Fiction, Crime, Mystery

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When her new husband Sam perishes in a bizarre farm accident, would-be milliner Polly soon becomes the prime suspect in his murder. As she digs for evidence to clear her name, Polly falls into a sinister web implicating her in a nefarious crime ring being investigated by White House Police. Polly’s life and those of her family are at stake.

The Unveiling of Polly Forrest is set in Michigan in 1934 during the Great Depression and presents a striking picture of the hardships  of that era. For the rural farming communities times were extremely tough. The prices for crops dropped so much that some farmers were left with no choice but to either sell up or lose their farms to foreclosure. There were no luxuries like indoor plumbing, extra money for clothes or anything but the most basic foods. 

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Murder in Belgravia: A Mayfair 100 Murder Mystery by Lynn Brittney #HistoricalFiction #Crime

517rMDGyi1L._SX323_BO1,204,203,200_Author: Lynn Brittney

Published: March 2018 by Mirror Books

Category: Historical Fiction, Murder, Mystery

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Set against the backdrop of WW1, Mayfair 100 is the telephone number for a small, specially formed crimebusting team based in a house in Mayfair, London in 1915. Just 10 months into the First World War, the City is flooded with women taking over the work vacated by men in the Armed Services.

The first in a new historical crime series set in London during WW1, Murder in Belgavia introduces an engaging mix of characters. Chief Inspector Peter Beech was removed from active service after being injured during one of the first battles. He’s been called to investigate the murder of Lord Murcheson. The victim’s wife is a key witness and also a suspect. She is in obvious pain but declines to be examined by her husband’s physician. Beech persuades her to go to the Women’s hospital and see a friend of his, Dr Caroline Allardyce.

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#SpotlightFeature ~ Adonias Low by D. A. Watson Welcome to Napa Valley, California, 1891. @davewatsonbooks @rararesources #TuesdayBookBlog

I’m delighted to share a spotlight feature for Adonias Low, courtesy of Rachel’s Random Resources.

Adonias Low

Murder. Robbery. Kidnapping.

Welcome to Napa Valley, California, 1891.

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The Dream Weavers by Barbara Erskine ~ Dual Time Line #Contemporary #HistFic #NetGalley #TuesdayBookBlog

51f7+uVOzgL._SX319_BO1,204,203,200_Author: Barbara Erskine

Published: April 2021 by HarperCollins

Category: Contemporary Fiction, Historical Fiction

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In a cottage hidden amongst the misty Welsh hills of Offa’s Dyke, Bea Dalloway is called to help Simon Armstrong, who is searching for peace. Instead he finds himself disturbed by unsettling noises and visions.

It isn’t long before Bea is also swept up by haunting dreams. The past is whispering to them, calling out for the truth to be told at last.  And as dreams and reality weave closer together, Bea and Simon must be strong to resist the pull of the past – and its desire for revenge…

Simon Armstrong has rented an isolated cottage situated on on the Welsh Marches, close to what remains of Offa’s Dyke, while he concentrates on writing his next book – a history of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia. The peace and seclusion he envisaged is interrupted by the desperate sounds of a woman sobbing, calling out a name and banging at the door, but he has never been able to catch a glimpse of anyone. The owner of the cottage puts Simon in contact with Bea Dalloway, the local Canon Treasurer’s wife, who deals with strange occurrences. Bea is intrigued by Simon’s account of the unsettling disturbances he is subjected to.

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